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Phasing into the Future

Can We Hug Already 🙃

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Phasing Into The Future - Can We Hug Already 🙃

Chris Spötzl

There really is no city quite like Vancouver anywhere in the world and that is what sets it apart...

There really is no city quite like Vancouver anywhere in the world and that is what sets it apart...

Jun 8 20 minutes read

Market Update

The numbers have looked really good for our province and a lot of credit must be given to how our 'Top Brass' Dr Bonnie Henry has managed this pandemic. Over the last few weeks we have seen life slowly start opening up from laughter on patios to the streets starting to look a little more alive. Kids are back in school (sort of), playgrounds are open and, reluctantly, people are starting to come out of their dens and socialize, of course always 2M apart. However, we are far from where we left it in the middle of March. During these past few months we have been busy working with clients from finding new homes and selling their current homes to discussing how everyone is doing and, of course, how the market is fairing. All in all, BC has done a remarkable job and the world is noticing. If there is one place where you'd want to be during a Pandemic, BC is at the top of the list and that will bode well for the rebound of our province on the outset of all of this.  A safe, beautiful, adventurous and compassionate place to live!

For the past 3 months, we have seen more innovation in the way we do business than the past several years and real estate is no exception. Our industry adapted quickly as an essential service and people are starting to feel more comfortable with the protocols put in place to protect everyone. As we moved through May, we saw a real estate market begin to form from the depths of the slowdown in March/April and, with it, the actions of many came under the microscope. For better or for worse, humanity moves forward. Home sales and listing activity showed significant improvement in May, with the provincial government announcing a phased approach to re-opening the economy and business. There was a breath of air that came with that announcement and continued lower numbers of COVID-19 cases in British Columbia compared to other parts of Canada and globally.

There were 1,506 homes sold of all types in Greater Vancouver in May this year compared with 1,119 homes sold last month, 2,669 sales in May last year and 2,890 homes sold in May 2018. We have had two very slow years in real estate in Metro Vancouver, in fact 2018 and 2019 were 20 per cent and 26 per cent below the 10-year average respectively. To say there is pent up demand is an understatement. But May saw the number of homes sold almost double in the last half of the month compared to the first two weeks. The growth of sales in May’s second half was greater than the growth of new listings. So yes, the number of homes sold for May is still below last year’s amount and the lowest on record for the month of May, but that is to be expected considering where we are coming from. With the second lowest number of homes sold being in 1998 at 1,799, we are seeing improvement during a time of significant isolation and economic turbulence.

2020 Average Daily Sales in Greater Vancouver by Week in COVID times:

Early March: 253 new listings 138 sales

Mar 23 - 27: 172 New Listings 131 Sales

Mar 30 - April 3: 104 new listings 62 sales

Apr 6 - April 9: 137 new listings 58 sales

Apr 14 - 17: 131 new listings 63 sales

Apr 20 - 24: 117 new listings 48 sales

Apr 27 - May 1:126 new listings 48 sales

May 4 - 8: 168 new listings 58 sales

May 11 - 15: 169 new listings 69 sales

May 19 - 22: 243 new listings 93 sales

May 25 - 29: 196 new listings 90 sales


May Highlights:

  • Detached home sales outside of Vancouver performed better year-over-year compared to townhouse and apartments showing the need for space and separation were and will be important factors in home decisions moving forward
  • Absorption rates still continue to be better than what we saw in the first quarter of 2019
  • Compared to the last two weeks of April which showed the most significant lag in home sales and new listings, it was the opposite for May which saw the second half out perform the first and we are seeing more multiple offers occurring
  • Port Coquitlam detached houses saw the highest absorption rate with 30 homes sold and only 30 homes listed
  • According to a survey of landlords by the Urban Development Institute and LandlordBC, residential landlords reported the highest percentage of full rent payments at 86 per cent with overall rent payments at 90 per cent and only 3 per cent not collecting any rent.                                                                                              

The number of homes available for sale in Greater Vancouver increased in May. At the end of May there were 10,771 homes for sale, compared to 10,115 at the end of April and 15,452 at the end of May 2019 – a 30 per cent reduction in the number of homes available year-over-year. Even with the increase in the number of homes actively for sale, it is still the 4th lowest amount for the month of May going back to 1995. Make no mistake, there is a shortage of homes for sale. The number of new listings in May for Greater Vancouver increased with there being 3,777 homes listed for sale compared to 2,399 in April but this was the first time there were fewer than 4,000 new listings in the month of May going back to 1991. This amount was well below the 10-year average for May which is 6,344. Current market conditions continue to be different in every way compared to other market downturns with home sales and listing activity decreasing tantamount to each other. The market is still operating but in a vacuum of much less activity due to the pandemic. There hasn’t been an indication of any kind of panic in the market. Yes, economic conditions continue to be something that will need to be considered going forward but with British Columbia having much less instances of mortgage deferrals and less insured mortgages as a percentage of overall in Canada, the real estate market can be seen to have less risk than other parts of Canada. With mortgage rates at all-time lows and government continuing to provide economic stimulus, there are certainly backstops in place to help keep the real estate market from going down a negative road that some are trying to predict. That tied with the numbers in the graphs below, Metro Vancouver and much of the province is in a better position going through the pandemic and as such, deciphering real estate markets should be done on a regional basis. And perhaps at the end of the day, let the market speak for itself.

Percentage of Insured Mortgages

Percentage of Mortgage Deferrals in Canada

“Home prices have been stable during the COVID-19 period,” Colette Gerber, REBGV Chair said, “While we’re seeing a variety of long-term projections for the market, it’s critical to understand the facts and trends as they emerge. Home sale and listing activity is down compared to typical, long-term levels and up compared to the activity we saw in April 2020. Home buyers and sellers are adapting today, becoming more comfortable operating with the physical distancing requirements that are in place in the market.”

Greater Vancouver 
Westside
Eastside

Mortgages News

Mortgage rates are at all-time lows and the government is continuing to provide economic stimulus all this and with the numbers in the graphs above, Metro Vancouver and much of the province is in a better position to get through this current market than most of the country and even the world.

Late last week CMHC announced they were going to tightening the criteria for insured mortgages which would make affordability go down (roughly 10%) after July 1st. However on Monday Genworth and Canada Guaranty, Canada's private insurers, said they were not going to be following CMHC. This is the first time that we can remember that one has changed and the others did not follow suit. We'll be following this closely. 



Summary of the numbers: 

Greater Vancouver: Total Units Sold in May was 1,506 – up from 1,119 (35%) in April 2020, down from 2,669 (44%) in May 2019, down from 2,890 (48%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 10,771 compared to 15,452 (down 30%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 40% compared to April 2020, down 37% compared to May 2019 and down 42% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 7 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 40% compared to 44% in May 2019 and 44% in May 2018.

Vancouver Westside Residential: Total Units Sold in May was 264 – up from 195 (35%) in April 2020, down from 460 (43%) in May 2019, down from 504 (48%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 1,931 compared to 2,778 (down 30%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 66% compared to April 2020, down 30% compared to May 2019 and down 42% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 7 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 36% compared to 44% in May 2019 and 40% in May 2018.

Vancouver East Side Residential: Total Units Sold in May was 167 – up from 120 (39%) in April 2020, down from 328 (49%) in May 2019, down from 364 (54%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 886 compared to 1,403 (down 37%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 57% compared to April 2020, down 37% compared to May 2019 and down 47% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 5 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 43% compared to 54% in May 2019 and 50% in May 2018.

North Vancouver Residential: Total Units Sold in May was 136 – up from 96 (42%) in April 2020, down from 257 (47%) in May 2019, down from 238 (43%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 686 compared to 1,035 (down 34%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 52% compared to April 2020, down 35% compared to May 2019 and down 37% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 5 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 40% compared to 50% in May 2019 and 45% in May 2018.

West Vancouver: Total Units Sold in May was 43 – up from 29 (48%) in April 2020, down from 71 (39%) in May 2019, down from 63 (32%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 535 compared to 740 (down 28%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 51% compared to April 2020, down 39% compared to May 2019 and down 52% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 12 Month’s Supply (Buyer’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 30% compared to 30% in May 2019 and 21% in May 2018.

Richmond Residential: Total Units Sold in May was 152 – up from 137 (11%) in April 2020, down from 271 (44%) in May 2019, down from 356 (57%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 1,549 compared to 2,329 (down 33%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 68% compared to April 2020, down 47% compared to May 2019 and down 52% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 10 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market to Buyer’s Market Conditions) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 37% compared to 35% in May 2019 and 41% in May 2018.

Burnaby East: Total Units Sold in May was 18 – up from 12 (50%) in April 2020, down from 25 (28%) in May 2019, down from 29 (38%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 108 compared to 101 (up 7%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 34% compared to April 2020, down 14% compared to May 2019 and down 42% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 6 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 42% compared to 50% in May 2019 and 39% in May 2018.

Burnaby North: Total Units Sold in May was 79 – up from 40 (98%) in April 2020, down from 123 (36%) in May 2019, down from 147 (46%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 409 compared to 655 (down 38%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 15% compared to April 2020, down 44% compared to May 2019 and down 41% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 5 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 50% compared to 44% in May 2019 and 55% in May 2018.

Burnaby South: Total Units Sold in May was 64 – up from 55 (16%) in April 2020, down from 131 (51%) in May 2019, down from 127 (50%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 450 compared to 841 (down 46%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 23% compared to April 2020, down 60% compared to May 2019 and down 59% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 7 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 50% compared to 40% in May 2019 and 40% in May 2018.

New Westminster: Total Units Sold in May was 73 – up from 61 (20%) in April 2020, down from 127 (43%) in May 2019, down from 132 (45%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 356 compared to 562 (down 37%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 77% compared to April 2020, down 43% compared to May 2019 and down 40% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 5 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 47% compared to 47% in May 2019 and 51% in May 2018.

Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in May was 132 – up from 93 (42%) in April 2020, down from 205 (36%) in May 2019, down from 200 (34%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 760 compared to 1,140 (down 33%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 94% compared to April 2020, down 30% compared to May 2019 and down 28% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 6 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 36% compared to 39% in May 2019 and 40% in May 2018.

Port Moody: Total Units Sold in May was 46 – up from 28 (64%) in April 2020, down from 62 (26%) in May 2019, down from 64 (28%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 211 compared to 264 (down 20%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 73% compared to April 2020, down 24% compared to May 2019 and down 25% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 5 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 47% compared to 49% in May 2019 and 50% in May 2018.

Port Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in May was 60 – up from 42 (43%) in April 2020, down from 132 (55%) in May 2019, down from 104 (42%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 190 compared to 362 (down 48%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 17% compared to April 2020, down 51% compared to May 2019 and down 61% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 3 Month’s Supply (Balanced to Seller’s Market Conditions as a result of a significant shortage of homes available for sales) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 66% compared to 71% in May 2019 and 44% in May 2018.

Ladner: Total Units Sold in May was 20 – up from 17 (18%) in April 2020, down from 41 (51%) in May 2019, down from 36 (44%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 160 compared to 163 (down 2%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 33% compared to April 2020, down 44% compared to May 2019 and down 42% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 8 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 42% compared to 48% in May 2019 and 43% in May 2018.

Tsawwassen: Total Units Sold in May was 35 – up from 24 (46%) in April 2020, down from 38 (8%) in May 2019, down from 35 (0%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 237 compared to 305 (down 22%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 102% compared to April 2020, down 7% compared to May 2019 and down 2% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 7 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 40% compared to 40% in May 2019 and 39% in May 2018.

Pitt Meadows: Total Units Sold in May was 23 – up from 19 (21%) in April 2020, down from 40 (42%) in May 2019, down from 39 (41%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 103 compared to 137 (down 24%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 55% compared to April 2020, down 20% compared to May 2019 and down 29% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 47% compared to 66% in May 2019 and 57% in May 2018.

Maple Ridge: Total Units Sold in May was 111 – up from 82 (35%) in April 2020, down from 171 (35%) in May 2019, down from 188 (41%) in May 2018; Active Listings are at 633 compared to 832 (down 23%) at this time last year; New Listings in May 2020 were up 37% compared to April 2020, down 43% compared to May 2019 and down 44% compared to May 2018. Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 6 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market while still seeing multiple offers) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 54% compared to 47% in May 2019 and 51% in May 2018.

East of the Fraser River: the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board processed 805 sales of all property types on its Multiple Listing Service® in April, an increase of 17 per cent compared to sales in April and a 47 per cent decrease compared to the 1,517 sales in May of last year. There were 2,207 new listings in May, a 56 per cent increase compared to April and a 38 per cent decrease compared to May of last year. May finished with 6,454 active listings, an increase of 8 per cent compared to April’s inventory and a decrease of 24 per cent year-over-year. “Although our overall numbers remain significantly lower than seasonal norms, it’s to be expected. The market is resilient and as all of us continue to work together responsibly for the betterment of public safety, it will continue to improve. It is important for buyers to note that prices overall remain stable. We’re not seeing a lot of downward pressure on prices because for many areas there is a shortage of inventory. We’re even seeing multiple offer situations currently where buyers are paying asking price. When supply and demand stay in balance, prices remain relatively firm.” Chris Shields, President of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board.

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