VANCOUVER, BC – While down from last year’s record numbers, home sale activity in Metro Vancouver’s* housing market remained elevated in March.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential home sales in the region totalled 4,344 in March 2022, a 23.9 per cent decrease from the 5,708 sales recorded in March 2021, and a 26.9 per cent increase from the 3,424 homes sold in February 2022.
Last month’s sales were 25.5 per cent above the 10-year March sales average.
“March of 2021 was the highest selling month in our history. This year’s activity, while still elevated, is happening at a calmer pace than we experienced 12 months ago,” Daniel John, REBGV Chair said. “Home buyers are keeping a close eye on rising interest rates, hoping to make a move before their locked-in rates expire.”
There were 6,673 detached, attached and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in March 2022. This represents a 19.5 per cent decrease compared to the 8,287 homes listed in March 2021 and a 22 per cent increase compared to February 2022 when 5,471 homes were listed.
The total number of homes currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 7,628, a 16.6 per cent decrease compared to March 2021 (9,145) and a 13.1 per cent increase compared to February 2022 (6,742).
“We’re still seeing upward pressure on prices across all housing categories in the region. Lack of supply is driving this pressure,” John said. “The number of homes listed for sale on our MLS® system today is less than half of what’s needed to shift the market into balanced territory.”
For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for March 2022 is 56.9 per cent. By property type, the ratio is 38.8 per cent for detached homes, 73.3 per cent for townhomes, and 70.3 per cent for apartments.
Generally, analysts say downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below 12 per cent for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,360,500. This represents a 20.7 per cent increase over March 2021 and a 3.6 per cent increase compared to February 2022.
Sales of detached homes in March 2022 reached 1,291, a 34.3 per cent decrease from the 1,965 detached sales recorded in March 2021. The benchmark price for a detached home is $2,118,600. This represents a 23.4 per cent increase from March 2021 and a 3.6 per cent increase compared to February 2022.
Sales of apartment homes reached 2,310 in March 2022, a 14.3 per cent decrease compared to the 2,697 sales in March 2021. The benchmark price of an apartment home is $835,500. This represents a 16.8 per cent increase from March 2021 and a 3.4 per cent increase compared to February 2022.
Attached home sales in March 2022 totalled 743, a 29.0 per cent decrease compared to the 1,046 sales in March 2021. The benchmark price of an attached home is $1,138,300. This represents a 4.4 per cent increase from March 2021 and a 28.1 per cent increase compared to February 2022.
One of the most common questions I get asked from potential homeowners is “What is better, Presale or Resale?”
The answer is not as simple as it seems but there are a few key points that can help with your decision on choosing which option is best for you. Typical Presale and Resale units are Condos and Townhomes.
When are you looking to move in? This is an important factor to consider as presale will typically be finished anywhere from 1-4 years depending on the stage you get into the presale. In resale, it will be available for you once you determine the conditions and time your new property completes and the date of the possession, which will be a lot sooner for you to be able to move into compared to a presale.
Mortgage and Down payment
When purchasing a presale unit, you only need to pay the deposit for the property. And your mortgage will only begin when your property is complete. This can allow you ample time to save more money or build up the amount you can borrow from the lender. It’s a great way of planning for the future to get into your home now. For resale, you will need to have your mortgage ready for completion in a more timely manner. So you will have to be ready to put down the deposit with completion coming much sooner than presale.
New vs “Old”
When you move into your presale, you are getting a brand-new home. Everything from the exterior to the interior of the property will be new. This will also include your appliances. Also with new homes, there is a home warranty of:
This can give you peace of mind so you don’t have to worry about anything that is needed for repair in that timeframe. If repair work is needed, it will likely be under the new home warranty. If you are deciding on a resale unit, the condition of the current home becomes a larger factor. This extends to the what type of home, build, natural wear and tear, the condition of the interior of the home, etc… If the home is not to your standard, you may need to invest more money in renovations that need to be calculated in the cost of your purchase.
When you purchase a presale, taking a look at the developer is a factor. If your builder is a reputable developer with a good track record with quality of construction, the timeframe of the building being completed on time, good customer service to address your needs before and after completion, then this can help give you a good piece of mind that the project is a good buy or not, along with the other factors we are discussing. There have been cases that the developer goes bankrupt or the project is significantly delayed. Also in some cases, the build is finished and quality is not up to standard. For a purchase of a resale unit, all this is already known. So you can decide on what is already complete, allowing you to make a more informed decision.
New Pre-sales will have a limited number of by-laws and restrictions as a new development will need to have a Strata council to be able to add new by-laws and restrictions. Any new changes would be grandfathered for owners that own the property before the changes happen (original owners). Common change range form: rental units, pets, and age restriction. When purchasing a resale, you should have a clear understating of the clause and bylaws going forward which may effect the livability of your home.
Another question that comes up frequently is, “Will my presale appreciate more in value than a resale unit?” In my opinion, if you can acquire a presale unit in an up-and-coming area before it has broken out, then you could see some appreciation when your unit is finished in a few years. It can go the other way as well. You are essentially betting on the future and the desirability of the neighborhood when the unit is complete. When you are purchasing a resale unit you are getting in on the current value. You may still see increased value in your home on top of being able to live in your unit, pay down your mortgage, and build on your equity right now.
These are just a few factors to consider. Finding out where you are financially and your long term or short term goals will be important to help you decide what is right for you.
In the end, there is no right or wrong answer. The determining factor of what is important to you will help guide your decision.
Lastly, having a Realtor to help guide you through the process can help with your decisions!
I would be happy to help you narrow down what is right for you! Good luck