August activity in the Greater Vancouver housing market finished well above last year’s pace and slightly below the ten-year average for the month. According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 2,514 on the Multiple Listings Service in August 2013. This represents a 52.5 per cent increase compared to the 1,649 sales recorded in August 2012, and a 14.7 per cent decline compared to the 2,946 sales seen in July 2013.
We’ve seen a healthy amount of demand in the marketplace this summer compared to the number of homes listed for sale. The market today is much stronger than we saw last year and is consistent with our long-term averages for this time of year,
Sandra Wyant, REBGV president, said.
In August, new listings for detached, attached, and apartment properties totalled 4,186. This represents a 3.5 per cent increase from the 4,044 new listings reported in August 2012, and a 13.8 per cent decline from the 4,854 new listings seen in July this year. The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® in Greater Vancouver is 16,027, which is an 8.8 per cent decrease compared to August 2012 and a 3.6 per cent decline compared to July 2013.
The sales-to-active-listings ratio rose 15.7 percentage points between July and August in Greater Vancouver. This ratio remains consistent with balanced market conditions.
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Greater Vancouver is currently $601,500. This represents a 1.3 per cent decline compared to August 2012 and an increase of 2.3 per cent since the beginning of 2013.
People entering the market should not confuse stronger sales activity with rising prices. Home prices have been quite stable and consistent for much of this year,
• Detached property sales (with 1,052 units) experienced a 69 per cent increase compared to August 2012 (with 624 units), and a 3.1 per cent increase compared to August 2011 (with 1,020 units). The benchmark price decreased by 2 per cent compared to last year’s benchmark price of $923,700.
• Apartment property sales (totalling 1,018 units) experienced an increase of 40.4 per cent compared to August 2012 (with 725 units) and an increase of 6.6 per cent compared to August 2011 (with 955 units). The benchmark price for an apartment property in Greater Vancouver declined 1.1 per cent from August 2012 to $366,100.
• Attached property sales (totalling 444 units) increased 48 per cent compared to August 2012 (with 300 units), and increased 10.2 per cent compared to August 2011 (with 403 units). The benchmark price of an attached unit decreased by 1.1 per cent between August 2012 and 2013 to $457,000.
Richmond, Vancouver East, and Vancouver West Sales Statistics Compared
In the second part of this month’s analysis, we’ll focus on the situation in the Vancouver East, Vancouver West, and Richmond real estate markets.
Vancouver East sales activity for detached properties in August decreased by 4.1 per cent (from 148 to 142 units). The sales for attached properties declined 20.8 per cent (from 53 to 42 units), and decreased 25.3 per cent in the apartments sector (from 124 to 94 units) compared to last month’s data.
Vancouver West sales activity for detached properties in August rose by 2.3. per cent (from 130 to 133 units) compared to last month. The situation for attached properties, with a 19 per cent decrease (from 58 to 47 units), isn't very stable — and apartments experienced a 12.8 per cent decrease compared to July 2013 (from 384 to 335 units).
Richmond experienced a 27 per cent decline in the detached properties market (from 146 to 136 units) compared to last month´s data. There was no change in the attached properties market (94 units), and there was a 33.9 per cent decrease in the apartments sector (from 165 to 109 units) compared to the month before.
Year-over-year, Vancouver’s overall sales activity decreased 15.7 per cent in detached properties, 8.8 per cent in attached properties, and 15.9 per cent in apartment properties.
New Listings in Vancouver East, Vancouver West, and Richmond
Vancouver East recorded an 11.4 per cent drop (from 236 to 209 units) for detached properties, a significant 48.2 per cent decrease in attached properties (from 83 to 43 units), and a 15.6 per cent drop in apartments compared to the end of last month’s results (from 167 to 141 units).
Vancouver West experienced a 20.8 per cent decrease in the listings activity of detached houses (from 289 to 229 units) compared to last month’s decimated listings. For apartment properties, there was a drop of 7 per cent (from 598 to 556 units), and listed attached properties fell by 34.2 per cent (from 111 to 73 units).
The Richmond real estate market experienced a 24.2 per cent decrease (from 265 to 201 units) in the apartments sector compared to last month’s results. Listings of detached properties declined by 20.7 per cent (from 285 to 226 units), and there was a 12.3 per cent decrease (from 162 to 142 units) in attached properties compared to July 2013.
Overall, the Vancouver listings of detached properties decreased by 13.3 per cent, and there was a 15.9 per cent decline in attached properties and a 13 per cent decrease in apartments.