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Market Update

JULY 2013

The Vancouver Real Estate market hasn't seen a noticeable Summer slow down and neither have we! We're moving into the fourth month in row with an absorption rate (sales-to-active listings ratio) sitting at or above 15%, which is known to be a balanced market. Favouring neither Sellers nor Buyers, we are seeing well priced listings from Sellers, and reasonable Buyers. Sales and interest has been strong in the last month or two. If you're still looking for a home - don't fret, though there will be less listing than you'll typically see in the Spring, there will also be less Buyers to compete with.

The mortgage market has seen some changes as well. Interest rates have been climbing so we highly encourage you speak with your mortgage broker to secure a rate hold (meaning you have about 90 days to buy a home financed with that interest rate). It will be interesting to see if this keeps the real estate market busy through what is typically the slowest time of the year.

Let's see what happened last month..

CONDOS

In the Vancouver West Condo market, we see a lot of the same as last month - except for the average price. Don't be fooled, this is thanks to a couple very high end luxury listings selling in Coal Harbour skewing the average price. Condos selling in the least expensive price bracket (sub-$425k) had the best absorption rate in Van West, though everything seemed to be in demand, especially entry level homes in Kitsilano. Looking Downtown, 1 bedroom unit and homes in Yaletown seem to be a Seller's best bet.

In comparison, we saw a 18% drop in condo sales in Vancouver East and a long 16 day increase in the number of days on market. There is specific demand in East Van: condos under $600k had a good absorption rate whilst anything more expensive showed less demand, leading to a Buyer's market. With average prices still hovering around $350-$360k, and the average price per sqft having decreased by $10 since last year, this is still a great entry level market for new Buyers. After a slow start to the year, demand has picked up in Hastings and Hastings East.

After a decrease in May, the North Van condo market saw slight increases in both sales and listings. The average price also returned to a more typical $414k after jumping to $450k in May. Good news for Sellers - the days on market decreased to 49 days making this the fastest moving condo market. Most sales occurred in the sub-$400k market, with the $400-$650 2 bedroom market performing as well.

TOWNHOMES & HALF DUPLEXES

In the Vancouver West townhome market we see a big 25% drop in listings and a 10% drop in sales - both typical of the time of year. Good news for Sellers and Buyers alike: the days on market and price per sqft have continued to drop since last year. Every price bracket showed a 17% or higher absorption rate (a balanced market), with 2 and 3 bedroom units being the norm. You can't read too much into average prices in this area since downtown has a large variety of price brackets, really skewing the numbers. However, the median price is $846k so half of the 63 sales were less expensive than this, most likely sitting around the $700k mark.

Vancouver East saw a big change in the townhome market last month. Though the number of listings remained steady, sales dropped 23% and both the average and median prices jumped about 10% to about $640k. Not surprisingly, the best selling market was $600-$750k with 3 bedrooms or more. Townhomes in East Van will continue to be most people's next purchase after owning a condo and before owning a house - note the 15% increase in listings and 18% increase in sales since June 2012.

The North Vancouver townhome market saw 9 more sales than last month and a $8 drop in price per sqft foot. This area remains the least expensive townhome market that we analyze. Demand is still good: townhomes sell in an average of 36 days on market and the area has almost double the sales compared to June of last year.

DETACHED HOUSES

Moving into the Vancouver West house market, we saw a 21% decrease in sales and a 5% decrease in listings with prices remaining fairly steady. This is quite indicative of the fact that Buyers are looking for a certain product, that being something under $3-million with the sub $1.5-million market performing best (having a 50% absorption rate). Not surprisingly, most homes had 4 bedrooms or less, which is typical of the less expensive price range in this area. Take a look at the change since last year: 47% increase in sales and 25% decrease in listings. Single family homes in Vancouver West continue to be in demand, and not surprisingly, Kitsilano is a Seller's best bet.

We're seeing a different story in Vancouver East. The number of sales dropped 10%, though demand is quite strong over last year with 30% more sales) while the average and median price dropped at least $50k. The best performing markets are between $700-$900k, typically with 4 to 6 bedrooms. Though the average price is about $900k, budget about $1-million for extra renovations to make the house more comfortable or to add a basement suite (as a mortgage helper). The demand remains high in Main, Grandview and Fraser, while the further from downtown you get, the lower the demand.

In North Vancouver saw a 17% decrease in sales, with slight gains in median and average price. The best performing price bracket was $600-$800k, with most sales being less than $1.5-million. As with most other areas, the number of days on market increased to 43 days. Lynn Valley and Upper Lonsdale remain the hot spots.

We've got a few new listings coming up in the next week or two, with many more Buyer's tours scheduled. With the number of days on market creeping towards 60 days, patience is a virtue for Sellers and Buyers. Send us an email if you're interested in jumping into the Summer market.

Rob

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