New multi-family home availability hits historic low in Vancouver

As of the end of March, 15 new condos ready for occupancy across Metro Vancouver | Shutterstock

The availability of new multi-family homes that are move-in ready has hit a record low across Metro Vancouver, according to the Urban Development Institute (UDI)

The UDI said there are pre-sales taking place for many units in varying stages of completion across the region, and these are considered part of the overall available inventory, but since these are not move-in ready, they don’t help those currently looking for a home to move into right away.

“We clearly need a regional housing strategy with more homes for more people,” said Anne McMullin, president and CEO of the UDI.

“That means more high-rise apartments along rapid transit corridors and more townhomes, rowhomes, multi-family low-rises, duplexes and laneway homes in traditional single family neighbourhoods.”

While the population of Metro Vancouver increased by 29,900 over the past year, reaching almost 2.2 million, there has been no improvement in either the vacancy rate – which has remained at 0.6% – and the amount of move-in ready supply. As of the end of March, there were 16 new townhomes and 15 new condos ready for occupancy across Metro Vancouver. As well, in the city of Vancouver, there were no new move-in ready townhomes at all.

All images from UDI’s State of the Market Quarterly Market Research Report, Q1 2017

There were four wood frame condos in the Metro Vancouver region, and this included zero units in Vancouver. Eleven concrete condos – a record low – were available, with none in Vancouver.

“What’s causing the supply shortage is the restrictive single family home neighbourhood zoning on 85% of our residential land base, available to a select few high income earners who can buy there,” McMullin said.

“That keeps out young families, middle income earners and renters, who can’t afford single family homes.”

UDI's full report can be found here .