Last year was Metro Vancouver’s third highest home-selling year on record: REBGV

REBGV president Dan Morrison | BIV files

Sales cooled off toward the end of the year, but in 2016 overall, the number of homes sold across Metro Vancouver was the third highest on record, after 2015 and 2005.

A total of 39,943 homes changed hands last year, which was a 5.6% drop compared with the 42,326 units sold in 2015, the highest year on record, according to Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver data released January 4. It was also 20.6% higher than the 33,116 homes sold in 2014.

REBGV president Dan Morrison called 2016 “an eventful year,” and said the low supply and high demand caused a lot of attention to be focused on the area’s real estate.

“As prices rose in the first half of the year, public debate waged about what was fuelling demand and what should be done to stop it,” Morrison said. “This led to multiple government interventions into the market.”

These interventions included the 15% foreign buyer’s tax implemented last summer and new federal mortgage rules put in place in October.

The composite benchmark price for all home types across Metro Vancouver was $897,600 at the end of the year, which was a decrease of 2.2% compared with the end of June but up 17.8% year-over-year. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 18.6% over the year, reaching $1,483,500. For apartments, the benchmark price climbed 17.3% to $510,300, and attached property prices increased 20.4% to $661,800.

Sales falter in December

In the final month of the year, 1,714 homes were sold, which was a 39.4% drop compared with the 2,827 sales in December 2015. It was also a 22.6% decrease compared with November, when 2,214 homes were sold.

A total of 541 detached property units were sold in the month, which was a 52.4% year-over-year decline. The number of apartments sold dropped 25.3% to 915, and a total of 258 attached properties were sold – a drop of 44.6%.


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