Housing market conditions continue to favour home buyers
Total home sales in the residential sector for February 2019 totalled 1,484, representing a 32.8% decrease from sales recorded in February 2018 with 2,207 homes sold. Last month’s sales were also 42.5 % below the 10-year February sales average. In comparison to January 2019, sales have however increased by 34.5 % from 1,103 homes sold to 1,484 homes sold.
Phil Moore, REBGV president states that while we have operated in a seller’s market for the past 4 years, conditions have now shifted in favour for buyers, especially for the detached housing market. This results is buyers having more homes to choose from, more time to make a decision and less competition.
MLS or Multiple Listing Service recorded 3,892 newly listed homes comprising of the detached, apartment, and attached residences. This reflects a decrease of 19.7% compared to homes listed in January 2019 and a 7.8% decrease in comparison to the 4,223 newly listed homes in February 2018.
MLS current listings are 11,590 or 48.2% higher than February of 2018, whereby listings totalled 7,822. In comparison to January 2019 MLS recorded an increase of 7.2%, with 10,808 homes listed the previous month.
The sales to activity ratio in February 2019 was 8.5% for detached, 15% for attached (townhouse) and 17% for condos. Overall, across all property types, the sales to activity listing ratio were 12.8%.
February 2019 Sales-to-active listings ratio
Townhomes and condos have now moved into a balanced market, however detached homes remain a buyers market. According to Phil Moore well priced homes attract more buyers and open houses have experienced more traffic. This trend leads into increased sales activity in the spring market.
The general rule of thumb for analysts is home prices adjust downward when the sales to activity ratio drop below 12% for a sustained time. Home prices increase when this ratio exceeds 20% for a sustained period of time.
Metro Vancouver benchmark price for all residential homes currently sits at $1,016,600 as indicated by the MLS Home Price Index composite. That is a 6.1% decrease over February of 2018 and a 6.2% drop over the last 6 months.
February 2019 saw detached housing decrease 27.9% (448) from the detached sales record of February 2018 (621). Currently, the detached home benchmark sits at $1,443,100 a 9.7% decrease from February 2018 stats and an overall 7.6% drop over the past 6 months for detached homes.
The benchmark price for apartments is currently $660,300. This represents a 4% decrease from February 2018 and a 5.1% decrease over the past 6 months. MLS recorded 759 sales in February 2019, representing a 35.9% decrease compared to 1,185 sales in February 2018.
Lastly, Townhomes or attached homes, sales totals for February were 277 showing a 30.9% decrease over February of 2018 where sMLS recorded 401 sales. The attached home benchmark price currently sits at $789,300 a 3.3% decrease in comparison to February 2018 and a 6.7% decrease over the last 6 months.
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