The increase in buyer activity in Greater Vancouver observed over the summer months continued into October as both sales volumes and benchmark prices improved on both a monthly and yearly basis.
There were 2,858 residential home sales across Metro Vancouver in October, which was a 22.5% increase over September, 45.4% increase over the same month last year and perhaps what is most encouraging, trended 9.8% above the 10 year October sales average.
The increase in sales activity corresponded with a decline in both the number of homes newly listed as well as in the aggregate number of properties listed on the MLS. This resulted in a continued increase in the sales to active listings ratios across all product types, with both townhouse (26.2%) and condos (29%) now firmly in a seller’s markets. The single family sector remains in a balanced market state at 17.3% but did see a substantial jump over September when the ratio was only 12.7%.
Index prices increased modestly across all product types month-over-month with townhouses leading the way at 0.5% month-over-month followed by single family homes at 0.3% and condos inching up 0.2%.
What does this mean for development land north of the Fraser?
The increase in MLS sales has afforded for cautious optimism amongst the developers we work with and the number of groups pursuing new development sites has increased accordingly. While prices are down across the board, the segment seeing the hardest hit to land values right now is high density concrete due not only to a decline in end product revenues, but also to the relatively large and steady increases in construction costs for these types of projects over the last several years.
In what could be a positive leading indicator for the market, single family builders are starting to show increased interest in development sites that can be built out with affordable, compact houses which they can sell at prices in line with what prospective local owners can afford.
Wood frame condo and townhouse sites continue to be of interest in our markets north of the Fraser, however slower absorptions for these types of projects, combined with an abundance of projects currently in the entitlement process, have many groups thinking twice before leaping at available opportunities.
Please note: areas covered by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.
View the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver’s entire stats package for October 2019 here.
This representation is based in whole or in part on data generated by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy.