Many Potential home buyers still sitting on the fence in March
March home sales for Greater Vancouver were down 31.4 % when compared to March 2018. However March sales were up 16.4% when compared to February 2019.
Housing demand today is not matched with our growing economy and low unemployment. Most of the slow down we are seeing is the result of taxes and tighter lending policies introduced by the government over the past three years. What the government fails to understand is that disrupting demand with these policies only builds more pent up demand over the long term and also hurts young Canadians trying to enter the market more than anyone else.
There are currently 12,774 homes listed on the MLS in Metro Vancouver which is a 52.4% increase from March 2018 and a 10.2% increase from February, 2019 so there is lots of inventory for buyers to choose from.
The overall sales to listings ratio for March is 13.5%. For Single homes it is 9.4%, Town Homes 15.9% and apartments/condos 17.2%.
When the ratio drops below 12% analysts say that home prices experience downward pressure and when the ratio exceeds 20% home prices experience upward pressure.
The benchmark price for all property types in Metro Vancouver has decreased 7.7% since March, 2018. Single Homes have dropped 10.5%, Apartments/Condos 5.9% and attached homes 6%.
I get asked almost every day, when is the best time to step into the market. What I tell people is that prices are already down and inventories are up so it is a great time for buyers to find good quality homes and negotiate a good price. When assessing when to step in it is important to remember that the best homes will be gone before the market bottoms out. If you are looking for a home for yourself then the quality of the home is a major part of the investment. Yes you could have held off until the market went down a couple more points but it is doubtful the best homes will still be available then and if you are planning to own the property for a number of years the better quality home will be the best investment overall.