Sales WAY down. Prices WAY up.

November 3, 2016

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The stats contained in the October 2016 Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) should really come as no surprise to anybody, yet still, headlines across media outlets will write in the biggest, boldest, red letters they can find that housing sales have dropped a staggering 38.8% in October 2016 compared to October 2015. Let’s not forget that the Provincial government has done everything in it’s power to make sure that these results happened. Is this really a shock? Is it really a bad thing?

Taking into account that government intervention can be closely tied to these latest results, are we seeing the affordability issue that we are always hearing/reading about improving/changing?

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $919,300. This represents a 24.8% increase compared to October 2015!

Sales WAY down. Prices WAY up. Inventory slightly down. Will that change? Potentially in the short term if supply starts to exceed demand.

Let’s look at the residential monthly sales stats for October over the past 7 years.

  • Oct 2016 > 2,233 -38.8%
  • Oct 2015 > 3,646 +19.3%
  • Oct 2014 > 3,057 +14.9%
  • Oct 2013 > 2,661 +37.8%
  • Oct 2012 > 1,931 -16.7%
  • Oct 2011 > 2,317 -1.0%
  • Oct 2010 > 2,337

Annual average over last 7 years = 2,597

Relatively speaking, we are not that far below the annual average for sales in October since 2010.

The REBGV also reports new listings that come to market for a given month.

  • Oct 2016 > 3,981 -3.5%
  • Oct 2015 > 4,126 -8.0%
  • Oct 2014 > 4,487 +4.0%
  • Oct 2013 > 4,315 -0.2%
  • Oct 2012 > 4,323 -1.2%
  • Oct 2011 > 4,374 +18.3%
  • Oct 2010 > 3,698

Annual average over last 7 years = 4,186

Again, note that we are just below the 7 year average here as well.

What does this all mean? It means we need to take a little more pragmatic approach to our home selling and purchasing. Does history predict the future? Absolutely not. Yet, we can look at historical statistics to assist us in logically predicting the future.

I welcome your comments!