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Vancouver's Hot Summer Real Estate Market

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Blog by Tony Hepburn | September 4th, 2013

An amazing thing happened this summer. July and August are typically a little quieter given the number of people on summer vacation. However, the hot summer weather also brought on a hot summer real estate market.

Sales of detached properties, for the month of August were up to 69% from August 2012. A 3.1% increase from the number of units sold in August 2011.

Sales of attached properties increased 48% this August compared to last August 2012. A 10.2% increase from August 2011.

Apartment properties increased unit sales by 40.4% in August 2013 and an increase of 6.6% compared to August 2011. 
What does this all mean in terms of prices? Not much....yet.  At the moment the market has stabilized in most areas and in some areas showing slight gains.

The strongest niche of the Westside Vancouver market,as always, are detached houses which shows an increase of 3.9% over the past six months. Compared to January's statistics which showed a decline of -8.1% for the 6 month change.
The townhouse market for Vancouver Westside shows a -0.6% decline over the same period. Keep in mind this number -4.7% in January only a few months ago. The condo market remains about the same -0.7% decline for the past six months.

For those of you who are beating yourself up about not locking in at 2.99% two months ago, do not fret. If you're wondering what to do, a wise move might be a variable rate mortgage for you. This of course depends on how well you sleep at night. If you're far more comfortable with a fixed mortgage, 3.3% to 3.5% is still historically very low. There are ways to refinance your existing mortgage without going through a brand new mortgage application and full credit review.

It is interesting to note that despite most people's desire to lock-in at a low fixed rate, 70% of Canadian households are discharging their mortgage before the due date. This becomes significant when you are calculating mortgage penalties. The average variable rate mortgage will incur approximately 0.7% penalty based on the mortgage amount. The penalty for a fixed term mortgage averages around 4.0% of the mortgage amount. You may want to keep this in mind when you are thinking about your long-term plans.

For the balance of 2013, we are expecting a strong finish. The total number of properties listed for sale in Vancouver is actually down 8.8% compared to the same time last year.
At the moment, the increase sales activity has caused some areas to increase in value perhaps 3% to 5%. In other areas this increase in activity has simply stabilized the market.

After such a busy summer, the fall market is likely to be even busier. Many people who have been looking for an excuse to get back in the market or make a move up, will jump back in the game this Fall. 

For every potential client who asks how is the real estate market doing? The answer is "very well thank you". The Vancouver has proven it's resilience time and time again. Despite the naysayers we still rise to the top.

Undoubtedly, you cannot go wrong owning real estate in Vancouver for the long term.
What you do over the short-term will depend entirely on your own personal situation. There is no one right answer for everyone.

If you are looking for an honest appraisal of your property and a professional team to help guide you along the way please call us or visit us on our website.

Get a jump on the competition and call us now!