Watch BCREA Chief Economist Cameron Muir discuss the March 2013 statistics:
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Vancouver, BC – April 15, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 5,661 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during March, up 6.6 per cent from February on a seasonally adjusted basis, but down 17.7 per cent compared to March 2012. Total sales dollar volume was down 18.5 per cent to $3.06 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $540,662, up 2 per cent from February, but down 1 per cent from a year ago.
“BC home sales in March posted the largest seasonally adjusted month-to-month increase since January 2011,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “However, homes sale per capita continue to remain near a cyclical low, suggesting that pent-up demand may be beginning to grow in the housing market.”
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume declined 22.1 per cent to $7.2 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales dipped 18.8 per cent to 13,572 units, while the average MLS® residential price was downn 4.0 per cent at $530,435. The pdf file with all of the statistics can be found here.
Vancouver, BC – March 14, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 4,501 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during February, down 23.6 per cent compared to February 2012. Total sales dollar volume was down 29.9 per cent to $2.39 million. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $514,134, up 3.1 per cent from January, but down 8.1 per cent from a year ago.
“BC home sales continued at a modest pace in February,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Despite improved affordability, many potential buyers and sellers remain in a holding pattern. With pent up demand now becoming latent in the market, it’s not a matter of if, but when home sales rise above their current pace.”
“An unusual spike in the average MLS® residential price in February 2012 is largely responsible for the year-over-year percentage change,” added Muir. “Most BC markets have experienced relatively stable price levels during the first two months of the year.”
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume declined 24.6 per cent to $4.1 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales dipped 19.6 per cent to 7,911 units, while the average MLS® residential price was down 6.2 per cent at $523,117.
For the second month in a row, the value of building permits issued in Kamloops has exceeded 2012 monthly totals.
The city doled out $6.6-million worth of permits in February, compared to $4.2 million in the same period in 2012.
But, bucking the trend of late, February’s surge wasn’t driven by commercial construction.
Commercial projects accounted for only $814,091 of the month’s totals, while residential-permit values totaled $5.7 million.
In 2012, residential construction accounted for only $1.3 million of permit value.
Multi-family projects accounted for the greatest amount of permit value, at $3.1 million.
Development and engineering director Marvin Kwiatkowski said that’s a trend that will likely continue.
“It’ll be higher than last year and you see that already,” he said.
A number of larger projects have yet to come through and the city is predicting it will add about 220 multi-family dwelling units by year’s end.
After a run of big-ticket commercial projects in previous months, Kwiatkowski said there aren’t many more major builds on the horizon.
On the institutional side, however, the city is expecting a $30-million bump from permits for the Royal Inland Hospital’s new clinical- services and parking building some time this year.
So far, the city has handed out $23.4 million in permits for 2013, compared to $18.8 million at this time last year.
By Andrea Klassen – Kamloops This Week
Vancouver, BC – February 28, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) Commercial Leading Indicator (CLI) edged lower by 1.3 points in the fourth quarter of 2012, to an index level of 111.3. On a year-over-year basis, the CLI was up 0.8 per cent during the fourth quarter of 2012.
The decline in the CLI translates to a slight rolling over in the underlying index trend, signaling a potential slowing of activity for the first half of 2013.
“A modest slowing of commercial real estate activity is in general accord with 2013 being somewhat of a transition year for the economy,” said Brendon Ogmundson, BCREA Economist. “We anticipate that slower growth through the first half of 2013 will give way to a more robust economy in 2014 and therefore an increase in commercial market activity.”
British Columbia’s housing affordability saw noticeable improvements in the fourth quarter of 2012, but it remains the priciest province in which to own a home, the latest Housing Trends and Affordability Report released today by RBC Economics Research shows.
“Affordability improvements across most housing types in the fourth quarter were welcome news to prospective buyers in British Columbia,” said Craig Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. “Still, the market has a long way to go before affordability reaches less stressful levels.”
In Metro Vancouver, home resales fell 23 per cent in 2012 to the lowest level in 12 years, excluding the recession of 2008, RBC said. While the RBC report says poor affordability is a key factor behind the 11.9-per-cent drop in home resales in the province in 2012 compared to 2011, other databases offer a more nuanced picture of housing affordability in Metro Vancouver.
The Vancouver Sun introduced the UDI/FortisBC Housing Affordability Index earlier this month to provide a more contextual and in-depth look at housing affordability across Metro Vancouver.
This index found that outside of the city of Vancouver — notably in suburbs like Surrey and Maple Ridge — the housing market remains affordable to people earning average incomes.
The significant differences between the RBC Housing Affordability Measures and The Vancouver Sun UDI/FortisBC Housing Affordability Index is that RBC expresses the percentage of an average income that is required to service the debt on a home and does not separate out the different areas of Metro Vancouver, while the UDI/Fortis Index looks at the percentage of households in a given region that can afford to buy a home in that specific region, using no more than 32 per cent of their income.
“The UDI/FortisBC Housing Affordability Index powered by Urban Analytics provides a better representation of what you can afford to buy and where in Metro Vancouver, because we looked at the different geographic regions separately,” said Michael Ferreira, principal at Urban Analytics, a company that provides research and advisory services for the new home industry.
RBC’s housing affordability measures track the proportion of pre-tax household income needed to service the costs of owning a home at market values — it puts the cost of owning in B.C. at 66.4 per cent of median household incomes for a detached bungalow, 72.7 per cent for a two-storey home and 33.4 per cent for condominiums. These were all down from the previous quarter, except for the two-storey home category, which went up 0.4 per cent after a 3.2 per cent drop last quarter, as prices declined between 0.8 and four per cent across the region.
For Vancouver, the RBC data shows a detached bungalow costs 82.2 per cent of median income, including mortgage payments, utilities and property taxes.
The UDI/FortisBC Housing Affordability Index breaks Metro Vancouver into three areas: the city of Vancouver, Inner Metro (West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, South Delta, Coquitlam, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam) and Outer Metro (Surrey, Langley, North Delta, White Rock, Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge).
Splitting the region into three areas means the numbers are not skewed so heavily by the priciest markets like the west side of Vancouver, Ferreira said.
The index shows that the majority of households in outer Metro can afford the payments on all types of homes, both new and resale. It found that as many as 82.9 per cent of households in outer Metro could make the payments on a resale wood-frame condo, while 80.4 per cent could afford a resale concrete condo.
For inner Metro, the index found that while 64.5 per cent of working households can afford a resale wood-frame condo, just 51.7 per cent of working households can afford a new concrete condo and less than 40.9 per cent of households could afford a single-family home.
In Vancouver proper, the UDI/FortisBC Affordability Index shows that housing is affordable for a far smaller percentage of the population — fewer than 32 per cent of households can afford payments on a single-family home, a new or resale townhouse or a new concrete condominium
By Tracy Sherlock, Vancouver Sun
OTTAWA, February 22, 2013 — Moderation in economic and employment growth in the second half of 2012 has led to more modest housing demand. With continued moderation expected in the first half of 2013, total annual housing starts are expected to be lower in 2013 relative to 2012, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) first quarter 2013 Housing Market Outlook, Canada Edition1.
As fundamentals, including employment, economic growth and net migration are expected to gain momentum later in 2013 and in 2014, housing starts are expected to trend slightly higher next year.
“CMHC expects housing construction activity will trend lower in the first half of 2013, before gaining more momentum by the end of the year as economic and employment growth remain supportive of the Canadian housing market,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist for CMHC. “In 2014, improving economic conditions may be partially offset by a slight moderation in the number of first-time homebuyers, and potential small and steady increases in mortgage interest rates.”
On an annual basis, housing starts are expected to range between 178,600 to 202,000 units in 2013, with a point forecast of 190,300 units, following a level of 214,827 units in 2012. In 2014, housing starts are expected to range from 171,200 to 217,000 units, with a point forecast of 194,100 units.
Existing home sales are expected to range between 418,200 to 484,000 units in 2013, with a point forecast of 451,100 units, following a level of 453,372 in 2012. In 2014, Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®2) sales are expected to range from 439,600 to 505,000 units, with an increase in the point forecast to 472,300 units.
The average MLS® price is forecast to be between $356,500 and $378,500 in 2013 and between $363,800 and $390,800 in 2014. CMHC’s point forecast for the average MLS® price calls for a 1 per cent gain to $367,500 in 2013 and a further 2.7 per cent gain to $377,300 in 2014.
As Canada’s national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable housing solutions. CMHC also provides reliable, impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making informed decisions.
BC Real Estate Association (BCREA) Chief Economist Cameron Muir discusses the January 2013 statistics. The real estate statistics for Kamloops pertaining to this post can be found here.
The British Columbia Real Estate Association has released the residential average price, active listings and sales to active listings statistics for January 2012 & 2013.
The numbers for Kamloops look very good. The entire document can be found at the bottom of this post.
The Kamloops residential real estate average price increased 8.9% from January 2012 to January 2013. The number of active listings increased 0.6% for the same period. The sales to active listings for the same period is almost unchanged going from 6.3% to 6.2%.
In Kamloops the dollar volume of residential real estate sales actually increased 6.9% from January 2012 to January 2013. A lot of communities saw double digit declines. The number of residential real estate sales for the same period decreased 1.8%.
The British Columbia Real Estate Association has released it’s British Columbia Housing Forecast Update for 2013 & 2014.
Some important points from the report below:
- B.C. residential housing sales are forecast to rise 5.6% in 2013.
- B.C. residential housing sales are expected to trend higher. 6.1% in 2014 is forecast.
- Issues with the global economy make growth difficult in British Columbia presently.
- A stronger global economy is expected in 2013.
- The average B.C. MLS home price is expected to drop 1% this year to $510,400 and increase in 2014 by 0.6%.
- B.C. housing starts will increase 1.5% in 2014.
Kamloops Real Estate Housing Forecast:
- Kamloops and surrounding communities real estate sales will increase 3% in 2013 and 4.6% in 2014.
- The Kamloops average MLS price will increase to $315,000 an increase of .07% in 2013 and to $319,000 an increase of 1.3% in 2014.
The Kamloops and District Real Estate Association has released it’s latest statistics for August 2012. Click on the image to enlarge.
The Kamloops and District Real Estate Association has released it’s latest statistics for July 2012. Click on the image to enlarge.
OTTAWA – November 15th, 2010 – National resale housing activity rose for the third consecutive month in October 2010, according to statistics released by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).
Seasonally adjusted national home sales activity via the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) Systems of Canadian real estate Boards climbed 4.6 per cent in October 2010. The monthly rise in activity builds on similar increases in August and September. As a result, activity now stands 13.3 per cent above July levels, when it reached this year’s low point. Three-quarters of local markets posted monthly increases in seasonally adjusted activity in October, led by Toronto and Vancouver.
As further evidence that the market is returning to normal, sales activity in October stood halfway between the recessionary low reached in December 2008, and the record level activity posted in December 2009.
Actual (not seasonally adjusted) national sales activity in October 2010 was 21.6 per below levels for October 2009, when activity set a new record for the month.
National sales activity rebounded last year without a single monthly decline and hit record levels in the second half of 2009. As a result, large declines in activity compared to year-ago levels are masking recent monthly gains in national sales activity. Record level activity late last year is expected to continue stretching year-ago comparisons over the rest of 2010 (Exhibit 1).
Read the rest here. Link
But CMHC predicts sales to slow in 2011.
The Canadian housing resale market was almost five per cent more active in October compared to the previous month, the Canadian Real Estate Association says.
The 4.6 per cent increase in sales on the agency’s Multiple Listing Service follows similar rises in September and August. As a result, activity is 13.3 per cent higher compared to July, the low point for 2010.
“National sales activity is now running almost halfway between the highs and lows posted between late 2008 and late 2009,” CREA chief economist Gregory Klump said. “This suggests that the Canadian housing market may be starting to normalize.”
On a yearly basis, sales remained 21.6 per cent below the level of October 2009, the most active October ever for home sales.
The national average price for homes sold in October 2010 was $343,747, up less than a percentage point compared to a year ago. October was the fourth consecutive month in which the average resale price has remained roughly even with year-ago levels, suggesting a balanced market.
“After the wild roller-coaster ride that many housing markets have been on, normal and stable market conditions are something that many buyers and sellers will likely welcome,” Klump said.
There was 6.2 months worth of housing stock inventory at the end of the month, the group said. Inventory describes how long it would take to sell off all the homes available based on current buying patterns. In September, the figure was 6.5 months.
Housing starts to slow
At the same time, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported Monday that housing starts are expected to slow in the last three months of 2010 and fall in 2011 from 2010 levels.
The federal housing agency predicted housing starts in the final quarter of 2010 will be in the range of 176,700 to 194,700 in 2010, or approximately 186,200.
In 2011, housing starts will be in the area of 148,000 to 202,300 units, or approximately 174,800 units.
“High employment levels and low mortgage rates will continue to support demand for new homes in 2011,” CMHC chief economist Bob Dugan said in a release.
“Nevertheless, housing starts will decrease to levels are more in line with long term [population growth] next year,” he said.
The agency predicted sales of existing homes also will be lower in 2011.
It forecast sales in the range of 423,800 to 455,900 in 2010, or approximately 440,300 units.
The next year, it estimated, sales will be from about 390,600 to 483,700, or about 438,400.
By Raphael Alexander, Vancouver Sun
I wrote in early January about the “bubble” economy in British Columbia, which, despite the Olympics-related building, still resulted in a massive collapse in the construction industry in tandem with the recession. Construction jobs contracted by 11.9 per cent in the province in 2009, as we were one of the last districts in Canada to feel the effects of the global economic meltdown.
Although January construction numbers are up to 198,600 jobs, it is below the 202,100 jobs from a year ago, and a far cry from the 220,800 jobs during the boom.
The good news is that new construction is on the rise in the province, with the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts reaching 186,300 units in January, a 5.8-per-cent increase from December.
That’s much better than the 149,081 housing units to begin 2009, but the construction starts have progressed steadily until now, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. It’s even better than the figure that economists from financial institutions had been predicting.
In cities, housing starts are up 4.4 per cent, and within those numbers the increase of multiple urban starts [like condos] also increased by 5.7 per cent. All of those numbers show a recovery from the recession, with confidence in the housing market improving, and home sales rising again.
But the victory may be short-lived, with experts predicting the bubble will pop when the harmonized sales tax kicks in on July 1.
Home buyers will likely advance their demand for houses before the HST is implemented, meaning fewer purchases in late 2010 and early 2011.
This is forecast by the Canadian Real Estate Association itself, which says that not only the 12-per-cent HST, but also higher interest rates, which must inevitably rise after historically prolonged lows, will push real estate down in 2011.
B.C.’s housing resale market is forecast to jump 19.8 per cent for 2010, with average home prices going up by 4.2 per cent to $485,500. But the bulk of those sales will be before the HST and the Bank of Canada interest rate revisions.
Interest rate increases are likely to further dampen the housing market in 2011, with an expected decline of 7.1 per cent in the number of units sold. B.C.’s market is forecast to see the largest decline of 12.9 per cent to 88,800 units sold in 2011.
Even though the market is expected to fall in 2011, the prices of homes in B.C. are expected to decline only 1.8 per cent, meaning that investors will still be making a profit with the dip. That means there’s no relief for homebuyers who were hoping the astronomical prices of an average home in Vancouver would go down.
The median sale value of a home in Vancouver in 2009 was $540,900, while median household income was $58,200. According to The Demographia International report which calculates home affordability in an index that divides the price of a home by household income, Vancouver is the most expensive city among 272 metropolitan markets in Canada, the U.S., the U.K., Australia, New Zealand and Ireland.
The “Median Multiple” gives Vancouver an index of 9.3 in affordability, much higher, for instance, than Kamloops, where the median family income is $67,434 while the price of a home is $257,242, giving a Median Multiple of 3.8.
Seasonally adjusted national home sales dropped 2.8 per cent from near record levels reported in December. Ontario accounted for about half the national decline. Activity was also down in British Columbia, Alberta, and Manitoba, but reached new heights in Quebec.
Actual (not seasonally adjusted) residential sales activity in January 2010 was up 58 per cent from year ago levels, when national home sales activity reached the lowest level in a decade. Because activity began recovering in February last year, large year-over-year gains are expected to shrink over upcoming months.
The average price of all homes sold through the MLS® Systems of Canadian real estate Boards in January 2010 was $328,537, up 19.6 per cent from one year ago. In January 2009, the average residential sale price fell to the lowest level in almost three years. Year-over-year average price gains are being stretched by weakness one year ago, and are expected to shrink beginning next month.
The price trend is similar but less dramatic for the national weighted average price, which compensates for changes in provincial sales activity by taking into account provincial proportions of privately owned housing stock. It climbed 14.9 per cent year-over-year basis in January 2010.
The residential average price in Canada’s major markets also climbed 19.6 per cent year-over-year in January. As with the national counterpart, the price trend is similar but less dramatic for the major market weighted average price, which rose 13.1 from January 2009.
Across Canada, the seasonally adjusted number of new listings on Boards’ MLS® Systems edged up three tenths of one percent on a month-over-month basis in January to reach the highest level since November 2008. New listings rose in British Columbia, Alberta and Newfoundland, offsetting declines in other provinces. The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of new residential listings was up 3.4 per cent from one year ago.
“The resale housing market is becoming more balanced in a number of provinces, including my own province of Saskatchewan,” said CREA President Dale Ripplinger. “A more balanced market is likely to result in smaller price increases going forward, with buyers in less of a rush due to an increase in supply. That said, market conditions vary across Canada, so buyers and sellers are wise to consult with a REALTOR® since they know current conditions in your local market.”
Strong demand for resale homes continues to draw down supply. There were 170,199 homes listed for sale on Boards’ MLS® Systems in Canada at the end of January 2010, a decline of 18 per cent from levels reported for the same month in 2009. Nationally, there were 4.4 months of inventory in January 2010 on a seasonally adjusted basis. This is up slightly from 4.2 months in December.
The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of months of inventory in January 2010 stood at 6.6 months. This is well below where it stood one year ago (12.8 months), but slightly higher than it was in the month of January in the years 2004 through 2008. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.
“January results suggest that the national resale housing market may be past the recent peak,” said CREA Chief Economist Gregory Klump. “One car doesn’t make a parade, so a few more months of results showing a cooling trend will be required before talk of a Canadian housing bubble begins to fade. It could take until the second half of the year before a cooling trend becomes evident, since home buying activity may continue to be accelerated in the first half of 2010 by expected interest rate increases, and by the introduction of the HST in Ontario and British Columbia on Canada Day.”
Charts and statistics in pdf format can be found here.
OTTAWA – February 8, 2010 – The Canadian Real Estate Association has revised its forecast for home sales via the MLS® Systems of Canadian real estate boards in 2010, and extended the forecast to 2011.
With Canadian economic growth rebounding from the recession, the unusually severe decline in sales activity in early 2009 is not expected to recur in 2010. Annual activity in 2010 is forecast to be well above the previous year’s level as a result.
CREA forecasts national activity will reach 527,300 units in 2010, up 13.3 per cent from 2009. This would represent a new annual record, standing 1.2 per cent above the previous peak in 2007. Low interest rates are expected to boost housing demand in the first half of the year, resulting in strong annual sales growth in nearly all provinces in 2010, led by British Columbia and Ontario.
National home sales activity is expected to remain strong in the first half of 2010, fuelled by low interest rates and homebuyers motivated to avoid the HST before it comes into effect in Ontario and British Columbia. Over the second half of the year, national activity is expected to trend downward as the last of pent-up demand is exhausted, interest rates begin rising, and the HST comes into effect in Ontario and British Columbia.
Interest rate increases will contribute to weaker national sales activity in 2011. National home sales activity is forecast to decline 7.1 per cent to 490,100 units in 2011, putting it on par with annual levels reported in 2005 and 2006.
“Although interest rates are expected to rise, they will still be low enough to keep affordability within reach for many homebuyers requiring mortgage financing, and support overall housing demand,” said CREA President Dale Ripplinger.
The national average home price is forecast to climb 5.4 per cent in 2010, reaching a record $337,500, with average price gains forecast in all provinces. The national average price increase will continue to reflect upward skewing from the rebound in activity among Canada’s priciest markets, particularly in British Columbia and Ontario.
The national average price is forecast to ease by 1.5 per cent in 2011. Modest average price gains are forecast for all provinces except British Columbia and Ontario, whose share of national activity is expected to ease. The shift in the contribution made by provinces toward national activity will continue skewing the annual comparison in the national average price in 2011.
The price trend is similar but less dramatic for the weighted national average price, which compensates for changes in provincial sales activity by taking into account provincial proportions of privately owned housing stock. The weighted national average price is forecast to climb 4.8 per cent in 2010, and remain stable in 2011.
“Improved financial market stability and recovering global economic growth mean that home sales activity in 2010 is unlikely to repeat the dive it experienced in late 2008 and early 2009,” said Chief Economist Gregory Klump.
“Fiscal restraint, a strong Canadian dollar and a subdued inflation outlook point to marginal interest rate increases over the next couple of years, especially if the U.S. economic recovery proves to be weak and protracted,” said Klump.
“The Bank of Canada will need time to gauge the effect of interest rate increases on Canadian economic growth,” Klump said. “It recognizes that consumer debt burdens are running high, so it will want to gauge the impact of interest rate hikes on domestic demand and overall economic growth. Changes in interest rates impact the economy with a lag, so the timing and magnitude of interest rate hikes will be tricky, given that the Bank expects the private sector to lead economic growth once temporary government stimulus spending expires,” he added.
“The decline and subsequent rebound in sales activity for homes in the upper price spectrum in some of Canada’s priciest markets skewed average prices upward in the second half of 2009 and into 2010. This segment of housing activity in Ontario and British Columbia is expected to ease beginning in the second half of 2010, causing average prices to moderate in those provinces,” said Klump.
“A downward trend in national sales activity combined with an increase in listings will result in a more balanced market. Although builders are understandably more upbeat than they were during the depth of the recession, speculative building will likely continue to be held in check. As a result, while the real estate market will become more balanced, Canada will continue to avoid the massive realignment in housing supply and demand experienced in the U.S.”
CREA Residential Market Forecast:
|Residential unit sales forecast||2009||2009 Annual percentage change||2010 Forecast||2010 Annual percentage change||2011 Forecast||2011 Annual percentage change|
|Prince Edward Island||1,404||-0.6||1,450||3.3||1,450||0.0|
|Residential average price forecast||2009||2009 Annual percentage change||2010 Forecast||2010 Annual percentage change||2011 Forecast||2011 Annual percentage change|
|Prince Edward Island||146,044||4.4||149,900||2.6||153,200||2.2|
NOTE: All statistics contained in this release are obtained through analysis of the MLS® Systems of real estate Boards across Canada.
From the Vancouver Sun.
The mortgage-rate fuelled bounce back of British Columbia real estate in 2009 has probably used up most of the market’s growth for 2010 and 2011, according to a new estimate from the B.C. Real Estate Association.
Association chief economist Cameron Muir is forecasting province-wide sales in 2010 to increase only three per cent above the hot 2009 results to 90,100 sales in 2010, then slip back three per cent to 87,500 units in 2011.
The provincial average price, Muir is forecasting, will advance five per cent to $490,900 in 2010 then eke out just one-per-cent growth to $494,800 in 2011.
Muir characterized his forecast as 2009 ending with a “gold medal finish, [which] will give way to a silver medal performance in 2010.”
“Affordability is the biggest factor over the longer term,” Muir added in an interview, “because home prices in markets such as Victoria and Vancouver are trending on record levels, and mortgage rates are likely to edge higher at the end of this year and through 2011.
“That’s going to increase the carrying cost of housing, and by extension, overall housing demand.”
Home carrying costs, the monthly mortgage payment, taxes and other fees, saw a dramatic trim during the downturn that lasted through the last half of 2008 and first part of 2009, but Muir noted that that advantage is rapidly disappearing.
In his forecast, Muir estimates that the markets that roared back the most in 2009 — Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and Victoria — will be among those with the most muted results in 2010 and 2011.
Some great news! Interest rates are definitely helping. What do you think will happen when interest rates inevitably go up?
VANCOUVER — B.C. home sales in November climbed 165 per cent over the same month last year to 7,182 units, the B.C. Real Estate Association (BCREA) reported Wednesday.
The month reflected the highest number of residential sales for November since 2005, when 7,721 units changed hands.
“Since the beginning of the year, we’ve seen a dramatic rebound in sales in the province, led by Greater Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley,” BCREA chief economist Cameron Muir said in an interview.
“It’s been driven by first-time buyers getting into the market due to increased affordability and low mortgage rates. A lot of it is because of the pent-up demand that welled up last fall and winter.”
Muir said the elevated sales level in November was largely regional.
“There’s a dichotomy in the province, [with] significant regional differences. There was a very strong seller’s market on the coast, with upward pressure on prices. But in the Okanagan and the Kootenays, the market is now just trending towards balanced conditions, meaning stabilized prices.
“Prices today [in Greater Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley] are beginning to scratch record levels, but certainly not elsewhere in the province.”
Muir also said that despite the high sales numbers, the BCREA expects consumer demand to moderate in the new year as pent-up demand is largely expended and higher costs erode affordability.
“Going forward, sales levels [in Greater Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley] will come off their lofty heights as pent-up demand is drawn down. In 2010, sales will more closely reflect the moderate recovery.”
According to a BCREA news release, the year-to-date MLS residential sales dollar volume increased 21 per cent to $36.8 billion over the same period last year. A total of 79,325 units were sold in the first eleven months of 2009, up 19 per cent from 2008, while the average price increased two per cent to $463,555.
Greater Vancouver saw a 252-per-cent increase in the number of units sold compared to November 2008, from 889 to 3,133; the Fraser Valley a 192-per-cent increase, from 483 to 1,409; the Okanagan Mainline a 104-per-cent increase, from 219 to 447; and Victoria a 165-per-cent increase, from 2,707 to 7,182.
The latest Kamloops Real Estate statistics for your reading pleasure.
Kamloops Real Estate, Comparative Analysis By Property Type For November 2008.
Kamloops Real Estate, MLS Activity Report For November 2008.
Kamloops Residential Real Estate Sales By Subarea For November 2008.