Market Expectations Market Realities

Market Expectations, if sustained, sooner or later become Market Realities. A significant reduction in Sales activity fuelled by politically motivated, economically flawed taxes & government policies targeting (while vilifying) real estate investors, users, & homeowners alike, has caused a “clawback” in property values in Vancouver. Monthly REBGV “Sales Summary” report data shows that the Average Price/Unit for Single Family Detached properties in East Side Vancouver in April 2019 is at the levels of late Fall 2015 approx $1,400,000 & down from approx $1,700,000 in April 2018. The West Side Average Price/Unit of approx $3,000,000 in April 2019 is back to early 2015 levels, down from $3,600,000 in April 2018, & down approx 30% from the peak of $4,200,000 in 2016. These price changes reflect the dramatic drop in sales volumes for the same periods. For East Side, approx 200 Detached Homes sold in the 1st 4 months of 2019 compared to approx 300 sales in 2018, & down from 650 sales Jan-April 2016. On the West Side, there were approx 200 sales through April 2019, down from over 800 sales in the 1st 4 months of 2016. The market has changed dramatically in favour of buyers, with more opportunity for them to search, select & negotiate a purchase. Buyers are still buying though, & are moving with some urgency still when they find something that fits their needs & their budget.

At the same time, however, Sellers & property owners are not rushing to dump their homes onto the market. Vancouver owners are generally well capitalized, with plenty of equity in their properties & no real financial pressure to sell. The number of properties for sale, both East Side & West Side, are 12% - 15% fewer than 1 year ago, so that side of the market is also adjusting to the situation. The majority of owners regard this market as a temporary & understandable correction, & are confident that they can hold their properties for years to come, & still prosper. Those that are selling have a good reason for doing so, are accepting the current market reality, & pricing their properties appropriately. Sales activity has been subdued in large part to the fact that Buyers & Sellers alike are cautiously waiting to see market stability.

Despite the current anti-business climate & ever increasing tax & policy burdens aimed at Residential Real Estate, Vancouver is still Vancouver & latent demand remains strong. The physical beauty, excellent climate, & “liveability index”, unparalleled in North America, makes our City one of the most attractive in the world. This, coupled with the limited supply of land here, will continue to underpin values through the short term political & economic cycles that every market experiences. Change happens, is inevitable, & always brings opportunities. This is an excellent market for move-up buyers, & for those wishing to upgrade their investment base to something with higher value, & higher returns. It is also a good time to dispassionately re-examine all assumptions, & to consider alternate strategies. My general observation for those involved is that they might want to step back & look at this situation as a game they wish to win.

Please contact me to discuss your real estate strategies for selling, buying, or any aspect of Real Estate ownership. I sincerely appreciate any referrals for your family, friends & associates. Please Feel Free to “Bother” me, thanks Bob Bracken.

If you are looking to sell or buy real estate or wish to discuss further any topic on Real Estate, please contact Bob Bracken at 604-220-2035 cell, 604-263-2823 office, or email.

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