April another lethargic month for Metro Vancouver home sales: Real estate board

Residential home sales last month were 43.1 per cent below the 10-year April sales average

Home sales remained sluggish across Metro Vancouver in April and real estate analysts slam government policies for the lack of activity.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver says residential home sales last month were 43.1 per cent below the 10-year April sales average.

Across the region, April sales totalled 1,829, a 29 per cent decrease compared with sales one year earlier, but the board says activity has edged up 5.9 per cent since March.

The listless market is also reflected in prices, with the board reporting the composite benchmark price for Metro Vancouver residential properties is currently $1,008,400, an 8.5 per cent year-over-year decrease, and a 0.3 per cent skid since March.

Real estate board president Ashley Smith blames government intervention for the tepid market.

She says the federally imposed mortgage stress test has reduced buyers’ purchasing power by about 20 per cent, causing entry-level buyers to struggle to secure financing.

READ MORE: B.C. real estate board urges feds to revisit mortgage stress test

“Suppressing housing activity through government policy not only reduces home sales, it harms the job market, economic growth and creates pent-up demand,” says Smith in a statement, adding that more homes are for sale in Metro Vancouver than at any time since October 2014.

“This trend is more about reduced demand than increased supply,” she says.

“The number of new listings coming on the market each month (is) consistent with our long-term averages. It’s the reduced sales activity that’s allowing listings to accumulate.”

Just over 14,000 homes are currently listed for sale in Metro Vancouver, which the board says is a 46 per cent increase in one year and a 12 per cent leap since the tally one month ago.

The sales-to-active listings ratio also saw a nearly one per cent slip since March, to its April setting of 12.7 per cent.

The calculation reflects the ratio between the number of homes sold and the number of new listings being added to the market. Broken down by property type, it stands at 9.4 per cent for detached homes, 15.4 per cent for townhomes and 15.3 per cent for condo apartments.

Analysts expect downward pressure on prices when the ratio dips below 12 per cent for several months, while home prices tend to climb when the ratio moves above 20 per cent.

The benchmark price in April for a detached home was $1,425,200, an 11.1 per cent drop in one year and a slip of 0.8 per cent compared with the setting one month earlier.

The benchmark price for a Metro Vancouver condo was $656,900, down 6.9 per cent from April of last year but unchanged since March 2019.

Townhome prices also didn’t budge month-to-month but the board says April’s benchmark of $783,300 is 7.5 per cent lower than it was in April of last year.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Funding uncertain, but Agassiz’s Storytime in the Park will go on, organizer says

The literacy program takes place each summer in Agassiz, Harrison and Seabird Island

COLUMN: Search for Grace shows community’s true nature

As Chilliwack searches for missing woman, a writer looks back 61 years at a similar story

Serious police incident unfolding at Sts’ailes

Small reserve near Agassiz surrounded by police vehicles, helicopter, ERT

VIDEO: Agassiz farm spreads awareness for barn owls

Miel Bernstein hopes others will learn how they can help the threatened owl species

Fraser-Cascade school district hosts by-election to fill void left by passing of Tom Hendrickson

Advance voting begins on July 17, with general voting on July 27

VIDEO: Agassiz remembers local officer at grave-marking ceremony

Montague White-Fraser had been buried in the Old Cemetery for 92 years without a headstone

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

B.C. mom to go to Europe court in hopes of getting alleged abducted daughter back

Tasha Brown alleges her estranged wife abducted their daughter Kaydance Etchells in 2016

Scheer on Trump: It’s ‘offensive’ to question the family background of critics

Trump is being called a racist for saying that the four congresswomen should go back where they came from

Instagram expands Canadian pilot removing ‘like’ counts to more countries

Social media giant plans to roll out the test in Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Japan, Italy and Ireland

Pamela Anderson adds star power to B.C. Green Party town hall

Celebrity attended Nanaimo meeting with representatives from U.S.-based environmental group

Olympic softball qualifier gets $150K boost from provincial government

2019 Americas Qualifier to be held in Surrey from Aug. 25-Sept. 1

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

RCMP release sketch of suspect in SFU assault, appeal to witnesses who helped woman

The RCMP want to talk to two women who helped the victim after she got to the parking lot

Most Read