B.C. Real Estate Association’s Second Quarter Housing Forecast for 2010

The B.C. Real Estate Association has released it’s Quarterly Housing Forecast for 2010. Included in this report is the Housing Forecast Summary, where all the real estate board areas are shown individually. (link removed) to view the full report with the charts. Information from the report is included below.

Residential units sales through the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC are forecast to ease back 3 per cent to 82,350 units in 2010, before climbing 4 per cent to 85,900 units in 2011. Waning pent-up demand, upward pressure on mortgage interest rates and tighter lending qualifications for low equity home buyers will moderate consumer demand this year, particularly on the South Coast.

Improving economic conditions, however, are expected to counterbalance some of the erosion in affordability caused by higher mortgage interest rates and tighter lending.

Stronger economic and employment growth in 2011 will bolster housing demand and push home sales higher. Regionally, home sales are forecast to edge lower in Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley as the dramatic rebound in consumer demand experienced during the latter half 2009 was induced by short-term factors of pent-up demand and favourable interest rates.

The North is expected to post the strongest percentage gains in unit sales as a result of reinvigorated demand for commodities and the associated employment growth. The rest of the province is expected to continue along a trajectory of gradually improving consumer demand in line with overall provincial economic performance.

After climbing 2.4 per cent in 2009, the average MLS® residential price in the province is forecast to increase a further 6.2 per cent this year before remaining relatively unchanged in 2011, albeit up 1 per cent. Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley comprise two-thirds of provincial home sales and the 2009 year-over-year change in BC home prices largely reflect gains already realized in those markets.

Seller’s market conditions have now given way to balanced conditions in the Lower Mainland and Victoria as moderating consumer demand and a larger inventory of homes for sale are quelling upward pressure on home prices.