Housing sales will fall this year, rise next year: B.C. Real Estate Association

A new home is under construction in North Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, June 12, 2018. The annual pace of Canadian housing starts in September slowed compared with August. THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward.

The B.C. Real Estate Association has released its fourth quarter housing forecast, and it’s predicting sales will decline 23 per cent in 2018 but will rise 12 per cent in 2019.

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“The marked erosion of affordability and purchasing power, caused by the mortgage stress test and rising interest rates, continue to be a drag on the housing demand,” the association’s chief economist, Cameron Muir, said.

However, he says the continuing strong performance by the provincial economy and favourable demographics are expected to push home sales above the 10-year average in 2019.

He says the combination of fewer home sales and a larger inventory of homes for sale, has led to balanced conditions in most markets across the province, and price growth has slowed considerably.

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In addition, a record number of homes are under construction in B.C., which he says will provide for a much-needed expansion of the housing stock and greater price stability.

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