It’s a tale of two real estate markets in the Lower Mainland, where the detached housing and condo markets continue to trend in opposite directions.
New numbers from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) show sales of detached homes continuing to slide, while demand for condos outstrips supply at a never before seen rate.
Condo sales actually dipped 8.5 per cent year-over-year in June, with 1,905 units moving versus 2,108 in June of 2016.
But despite the dip in sales, competition for tight supply is at its highest ever level.
That demand is best visible in the the sales-to-active listing ratio, which reached an all-time high of 93.2 per cent in June, according to Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board president Jill Oudil.
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That measure looks at the balance between supply and demand in the market by comparing the number of units for sale to those that actually sell.
According to the BC Real Estate Association (BCREA), the ratio in a balanced market is is between 14 and 20 per cent.
“It’s simply a matter of supply and demand. Condominiums are in high demand right now and the amount of listings for sale in condominiums is relatively low,” said Oudil.
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That demand has been reflected in soaring prices, with the benchmark Lower Mainland apartment costing just over $600,000 in June, up a whopping 17.6 per cent from the same month last year, and up 2.9 per cent from May.
“There’s a lot of first time buyers on the hunt for condos, it makes it difficult because we’re seeing a lot of multiple offer situations to attain a condo right now,” Oudil said.
In contrast, the sales-to-active ratio for detached homes sits at 24.5 per cent.
There were 1,320 detached homes sold in June, a 15.5 per cent decrease from the 1,562 houses sold in June of last year.
However prices aren’t falling with them. The benchmark price of a detached home for May was just under $1.6 million, up 1.4 per cent year over year, and 1.1 per cent from May of this year.
Last month, data crunched by Vancouver realtor Steve Saretsky and UBC Economist Tom Davidoff found hot demand for condos has been fueling a growth in speculation, with condo flipping rates now starting to climb.
-With files from Matt Lee