Chart showing changes of prices in standardized benchmark residential homes since 2005.

Chart showing changes of prices in standardized benchmark residential homes since 2005.

Real estate prices start year with gain in Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley

Lower Mainland houses up more than three per cent over last year

Lower Mainland real estate markets climbed modestly in the first two months of the year.

The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB), which includes Surrey, White Rock and North Delta, reported a benchmark detached house price of $558,100 in February, up about 1.5 per cent from December and up 3.2 per cent year-over-year.

Townhouses were up 0.7 per cent to $296,700 from February of 2013 but the benchmark price of Fraser Valley apartments dropped 4.6 per cent from a year ago to $193,200.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver said its benchmark price for a typical detached house climbed 3.5 per cent from a year ago to $932,900.

Attached units were $458,300 – a 0.6 per cent one-year gain. Apartments were up 3.6 per cent over one year to $373,300.

The biggest one-year gains reported were for detached houses in Vancouver and South Burnaby, which are up more than seven per cent, while detached houses in North Delta and Langley were up six per cent.

The biggest recent drop was in Abbotsford apartments – their benchmark price is down 21 per cent from a year ago.

Other areas where prices have dropped include apartments in Squamish and Whistler – both down 13 per cent – and detached houses on Bowen Island and the Sunshine Coast, both down more than four per cent.

The most expensive market to buy a detached house remained the west side of Vancouver, where the benchmark price is $2.15 million, while the cheapest was Mission at $352,800.

It’s taking less time for a home to sell – an average of 51 days in the Valley.

Both real estate boards reported sales are up significantly, reflecting a typical jump in buyer interest as spring approaches.

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