Helen Gambling  'A Sure Bet in Real Estate'

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February 2, 2016

Home buyer competition keeps home sellers in the driver’s seat

Home buyer activity remains at near record levels across the Metro Vancouver housing market.


Residential property sales in Greater Vancouver totalled 2,519 in January 2016, an increase of 31.7 per cent from the 1,913 sales recorded in January 2015 and a 10.9 per cent decline compared to December 2015 when 2,827 home sales occurred.


Last month’s sales were 46 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month and rank as the second highest January on record.


“Fundamental economics are driving today’s market. Home buyer demand is at near record heights and home seller supply is as low as we’ve seen in many years,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said.


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Greater Vancouver totalled 4,442 in January 2016. This represents a 6.2 per cent decline compared to the 4,737 units listed in January 2015 and a 119.8 per cent increase compared to December 2015 when 2,021 properties were listed.


“The MLS® is the most powerful real estate marketing system in the country. If you’re thinking of selling, it’s important to talk with your REALTOR® about putting your home on the MLS® system to ensure your property gets maximum exposure,” McLeod said.


The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 6,635, a 38.6 per cent decline compared to January 2015 (10,811) and a 10.1 per cent increase compared to December 2015 (6,024).


The sales-to-active listings ratio for January 2016 is 38 per cent. This is indicative of a seller’s market.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches the 20 to 22 per cent range in a particular community for a sustained period of time.


Sales of detached properties in January 2016 reached 1,047, an increase of 34.1 per cent from the 781 detached sales recorded in January 2015. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 27.9 per cent from January 2015 to $1,293,700.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,096 in January 2016, an increase of 35.5 per cent compared to the 809 sales in January 2015.The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 19.4 per cent from January 2015 to $456,600.


Attached property sales in January 2016 totalled 376, an increase of 16.4 per cent compared to the 323 sales in January 2015. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 16.4 per cent from January 2015 to $563,700.


Source:REBGV

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January 5, 2016

Metro Vancouver home sales set an all-time record in 2015

In a year when the number of homes listed for sale was below historical averages, actual home sales in Metro Vancouver set a new record.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that 2015 home sales were the highest annual total in REBGV history. This was powered early in the year by four straight months with more than 4,000 sales a month from March to June, another first for REBGV.

Sales of detached, attached and apartment properties in 2015 reached 42,326, a 27.8 per cent increase from the 33,116 sales recorded in 2014, and a 48.4 per cent increase over the 28,524 residential sales in 2013.

The total number of homes listed for sale on the MLS® in 2015 ranked fifth in the last ten years, while the MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) saw double-digit year-over-year price increases.

The number of residential properties listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in 2015 reached 57,249. This is an increase of 2.1 per cent compared to the 56,066 properties listed in 2014 and an increase of 4.6 per cent compared to the 54,742 properties listed in 2013.

With sales-to-active-listings ratios above 25 per cent for 11 months in 2015, the Metro Vancouver market experienced seller’s market conditions for much of the year.

"Home buyers were active and motivated throughout 2015 despite the pressure on supply of homes on the market," Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. "Housing markets typically experience quieter periods within a calendar year, but that wasn't the case in Metro Vancouver last year."

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver ends the year at $760,900. This represents an 18.9 per cent increase compared to December 2014.
     
“We often hear economists say that seller’s market conditions put upward pressure on home prices,” McLeod said. “That was certainly the case in 2015, with price increases ranging from 14 to 24 per cent depending on property type.” 
     
December summary
Residential property sales in Greater Vancouver totalled 2,827 in December 2015, an increase of 33.6 per cent from the 2,116 sales recorded in December 2014 and a 19.8 per cent decline compared to November 2015 when 3,524 home sales occurred.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Greater Vancouver totalled 2,021 in December 2015. This represents a 7 per cent increase compared to the 1,888 units listed in December 2014 and a 40.4 per cent decline compared to November 2015 when 3,392 properties were listed.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 6,024, a 41.6 per cent decline compared to December 2014 and a 25.6 per cent decrease compared to November 2015.

Sales of detached properties in December 2015 reached 1,136, an increase of 36.4 per cent from the 833 detached sales recorded in December 2014. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 24.3 per cent from December 2014 to $1,248,600.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,225 in December 2015, an increase of 34.3 per cent compared to the 912 sales in December 2014.The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 14 per cent from December 2014 to $436,200.

Attached property sales in December 2015 totalled 466, an increase of 25.6 per cent compared to the 371 sales in December 2014. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 13.6 per cent from December 2014 to $543,700.


Source: REBGV






 

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We’re only weeks away from the start of a new year. I hope it turns out to be a terrific one for you and your family.
If you’re like most people, you probably have things you want to do and accomplish in 2016. Perhaps your plan is for something personal, like taking up a new sport. Maybe it’s something familyoriented, like arranging the vacation of a lifetime.

 

Whatever your plans, there’s one thing for sure: rarely can a goal be achieved without some help. In some cases, expert help. That’s where I come in. You see, as your REALTOR®, I can help with most goals that are real-estate related.

 

I don’t have to remind you that your home is a big investment. Possibly your biggest Whether it’s providing an assessment of your property’s value in today’s market, helping you determine the benefits of a renovation, or getting you into a brand new home, I can help.


So if the coming year’s plan includes something to do with your home, please give me a call. When it comes to real estate, I’m all about turning my clients’ goals into reality.

 

Season's Greetings, wishing you and your family health and happiness!


All the best!

 

Helen Gambling

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Simple Ways to Reduce Your Monthly Utility Costs

 

Many homeowners think there’s not much they can do about telephone, heating, water and other utility expenses. Sure, you may grumble about a high heating bill one month, but what can you do about it?

 

Turns out, you can do plenty. There are several ways to reduce monthly utility costs that can save you tens or even hundreds of dollars. For example:

 

  • Shop around for a better phone plan. Then contact your phone company. They might match the rates.

 

  • Turn down the thermostat on your water heater. You likely don’t need tap water to be that hot.

 

  • Clean the screen on your outside air conditioning unit regularly. (Gently with the water hose.) Dirt and leaves can build up on it, reducing the unit’s efficiency.

 

  • Leverage the sun. Open curtains in the winter to gain heat. Block direct sunlight in summer to keep the cool air inside.

 

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Housing demand remains strong despite diminishing supply


VANCOUVER, B.C. – December 2, 2015 – Home sales reached near record levels in
November even as home listings began the traditional year-end decline.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in
Metro Vancouver reached 3,524 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in November 2015.


This represents a 40.1 per cent increase compared to the 2,516 sales recorded in November 2014,
and a 3.3 per cent decrease compared to the 3,646 sales in October 2015.


Last month’s sales were 46.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month and rank as
the second highest November on record for residential property sales.


“November is typically one of the quietest months of the year in our housing market, but not this
year,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “The ratio of sales to home’s available for sale
reached 44 per cent in November, which is the highest it’s been in our market in nine years.”


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 3,392
in November. This represents a 12.5 per cent increase compared to the 3,016 new listings
reported in November 2014.


The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 8,096, a 35 per
cent decline compared to November 2014 and a 15.4 per cent decline compared to October 2015.
“Demand remains strong and there are housing options at different price points throughout the
region,” McLeod said. “It’s important to work with your REALTOR® to understand your
options before you embark on your home buying journey.”


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro
Vancouver is currently $752,500. This represents a 17.8 per cent increase compared to
November 2014.


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in November was 43.5 per cent. Generally, analysts say that
downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark,
while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a
particular community for a sustained period of time.


Sales of detached properties in November 2015 reached 1,335, an increase of 31.9 per cent from
the 1,012 detached sales recorded in November 2014, and a 44.2 per cent increase from the 926
units sold in November 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver
increased 22.6 per cent from November 2014 to $1,226,300.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,553 in November 2015, an increase of 47.6 per cent
compared to the 1,052 sales in November 2014, and an increase of 60.3 per cent compared to the
969 sales in November 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 14 per
cent from November 2014 to $435,000.


Attached property sales in November 2015 totalled 636, an increase of 40.7 per cent compared to
the 452 sales in November 2014, and a 49.3 per cent increase from the 426 attached properties
sold in November 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 11.3 per cent
between November 2014 and 2015 to $536,600.

 

*Editor’s Note: Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast,
Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody,
Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.


Source: REBGV

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Realtors Care Blanket Drive, November 16 - 23
Donations can be dropped off at our Re/Max LifeStyles Pitt Meadows /Maple Ridge locations

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November 3, 2015

Metro Vancouver home buyers push October sales above long-term averages

 

Home buyers remain active across Metro Vancouver despite a reduced supply of homes for sale.

 

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in *Metro Vancouver reached 3,646 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October 2015. This represents a 19.3 per cent increase compared to the 3,057 sales recorded in October 2014, and a 9 per cent increase compared to the 3,345 sales in September 2015.

 

Last month’s sales were 36.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

 

“Home sales are more than one-third above what’s typical for this time of year yet the supply of homes for sale is the lowest we’ve seen in five years,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “This activity has created favourable market conditions for anyone considering selling their home today.” 

 

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,126 in October. This represents an 8 per cent decline compared to the 4,487 new listings reported in October 2014.

 

The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 9,569, a 30 per cent decline compared to October 2014 and an 11.4 per cent decline compared to September 2015.

 

This is the lowest active listing total in Metro Vancouver since December 2010.

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $736,000. This represents a 15.3 per cent increase compared to October 2014.

 

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in October was 38.1 per cent. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a particular community for a sustained period of time.

Sales of detached properties in October 2015 reached 1,437, an increase of 13.1 per cent from the 1,271 detached sales recorded in October 2014, and a 34.7 per cent increase from the 1,067 units sold in October 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 20.1 per cent from October 2014 to $1,197,600.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,543 in October 2015, an increase of 21.7 per cent compared to the 1,268 sales in October 2014, and an increase of 40.5 per cent compared to the 1,098 sales in October 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 11.4 per cent from October 2014 to $425,800.

Attached property sales in October 2015 totalled 666, an increase of 28.6 per cent compared to the 518 sales in October 2014, and a 34.3 per cent increase from the 496 attached properties sold in October 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 9.3 per cent between October 2014 and 2015 to $526,700.

 

Source: REBGV

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Conditions continue to favour home sellers across Metro Vancouver’s housing market.

     

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 3,345 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in September 2015. This represents a 14.5 per cent increase compared to the 2,922 sales recorded in September 2014, and a 0.5 per cent decrease compared to the 3,362 sales in August 2015.

 

Last month’s sales were 32.9 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

 

“Residential home sales have been trending at 25 to 30 per cent above the ten-year sales average for most of the year. The number of homes listed for sale hasn’t been keeping up with the demand,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “It’s this dynamic that’s placing upward pressure on home prices, particularly in the detached home market.”

 

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,846 in September. This represents a 7.9 per cent decline compared to the 5,259 new listings reported in September 2014.

 

The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 10,805, a 27 per cent decline compared to September 2014 and a 0.8 per cent decline compared to August 2015.

 

“At no point this year has the number of homes listed for sale exceeded 14,000, which is the first time this has occurred in the region since 2007,” McLeod said.

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $722,300. This represents a 13.7 per cent increase compared to September 2014.

 

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in September was 31 per cent. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a particular community for a sustained period of time.

 

Sales of detached properties in September 2015 reached 1,272, an increase of 0.2 per cent from the 1,270 detached sales recorded in September 2014, and a 24.3 per cent increase from the 1,023 units sold in September 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 18.9 per cent from September 2014 to $1,179,700.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,529 in September 2015, an increase of 28.7 per cent compared to the 1,188 sales in September 2014, and an increase of 50.2 per cent compared to the 1,018 sales in September 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased nine per cent from September 2014 to $415,100.

 

Attached property sales in September 2015 totalled 544, an increase of 17.2 per cent compared to the 464 sales in September 2014, and a 23.1 per cent increase from the 442 attached properties sold in September 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 8.1 per cent between September 2014 and 2015 to $518,600.

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September 2, 2015

Competition continues to drive Metro Vancouver’s housing market

Metro Vancouver* home buyers spent the summer months searching for their next home. Between June and August, home sales were between 25 and 30 per cent above the ten-year sales average.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 3,362 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in August 2015. This represents a 21.3 per cent increase compared to the 2,771 sales recorded in August 2014, and a decrease of 15.5 per cent compared to the 3,978 sales in July 2015.


Last month’s sales were 27.9 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.


“There was no summer lull in our market this year. Home buyers have been working with their REALTORS® throughout the summer months,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “They’re motivated, but they’re competing for a smaller supply of homes for sale than is typical for this time of year — that’s the dynamic driving our market right now.”


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,281 in August. This represents an 8.7 per cent increase compared to the 3,940 new listings reported in August 2014.


The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 10,897, a 26.2 per cent decline compared to August 2014 and a 5.3 per cent decline compared to July 2015.


“Those who have a sound buying strategy and an understanding of current price trends are having the most success in today’s market,” McLeod said.


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $708,500. This represents a 12 per cent increase compared to August 2014.


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in August was 30.9 per cent. This is the sixth consecutive month that this ratio has been above 30 per cent in Metro Vancouver.


Sales of detached properties in August 2015 reached 1,290, an increase of 11.4 per cent from the 1,158 detached sales recorded in August 2014, and a 22.6 per cent increase from the 1,052 units sold in August 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 17.5 per cent from August 2014 to $1,159,600.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,494 in August 2015, an increase of 32.7 per cent compared to the 1,126 sales in August 2014, and an increase of 46.8 per cent compared to the 1,018 sales in August 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 6.3 per cent from August 2014 to $405,400.


Attached property sales in August 2015 totalled 578, an increase of 18.7 per cent compared to the 487 sales in August 2014, and a 30.2 per cent increase from the 444 attached properties sold in August 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.3 per cent between August 2014 and 2015 to $511,500.

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Metro Vancouver home sales were more than a third above the 10-year average in July, while the number of homes listed for sale continues to trend below recent years.

     

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver* reached 3,978 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in July 2015. This represents a 30 per cent increase compared to the 3,061 sales recorded in July 2014, and a decrease of 9.1 per cent compared to the 4,375 sales in June 2015.

 

Last month’s sales were 33.5 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

 

“Today’s activity continues to benefit sellers as home buyers compete for the homes available for sale,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said.

 

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,112 in July. This represents a 3.8 per cent increase compared to the 4,925 new listings reported in July 2014.

 

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 11,505, a 26.3 per cent decline compared to July 2014 and a 5.5 per cent decline compared to June 2015.

 

"Much of today’s activity can be traced to strong consumer confidence, low interest rates, and a reduced supply of homes for sale.” McLeod said. “We have about 5,000 to 6,000 fewer homes for sale today than we've seen at this time of year over the last five to six years."

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $700,500. This represents an 11.2 per cent increase compared to July 2014.

 

With the sales-to-active-listings ratio at 34.6 per cent, the region remains in seller’s market territory.

 

“Although there aren’t as many homes for sale today compared to recent years, home buyers continue to have a range of housing options, at different price points, to choose from across Metro Vancouver,” McLeod said. “The diversity of housing options is part of what’s driving today’s demand.”

 

Sales of detached properties in July 2015 reached 1,559, an increase of 17.9 per cent from the 1,322 detached sales recorded in July 2014, and a 24.8 per cent increase from the 1,249 units sold in July 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 16.2 per cent from July 2014 to $1,141,800.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,729 in July 2015, an increase of 42.7 per cent compared to the 1,212 sales in July 2014, and an increase of 42.9 per cent compared to the 1,210 sales in July 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 5.9 per cent from July 2014 to $400,900.

 

Attached property sales in July 2015 totalled 690, an increase of 30.9 per cent compared to the 527 sales in July 2014, and a 41.7 per cent increase from the 487 attached properties sold in July 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.8 per cent between July 2014 and 2015 to $511,500.

 

Source: REBGV

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July 3, 2015

Metro Vancouver home sales set record pace in June

Last month was the highest selling June, and the second highest overall monthly total, on record for the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).


The REBGV reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver* reached 4,375 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in June 2015. This represents a 28.4 per cent increase compared to the 3,406 sales recorded in June 2014, and an increase of 7.9 per cent compared to the 4,056 sales in May 2015.


Last month’s sales were 29.1 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month. It’s the fourth straight month with over 4,000 sales, which is a first in the REBGV’s history. The previous highest number of residential home sales was 4,434, recorded in May 2005.


“Demand in our detached home market continues to drive activity across Metro Vancouver,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “There were more detached home sales in the region last month than we’ve seen during the month of June in more than 10 years.” 


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $694,000. This represents a 10.3 per cent increase compared to June 2014.


“Housing market activity comes in cycles; we're in an up cycle right now that looks similar to the mid-2000s,” McLeod said. “It would be easy to point to one factor that's causing this cycle, but the truth is that it's a number of different factors.


"Conditions today are being driven by low interest rates, a declining supply of detached homes, a growing population, a provincial economy that's outperforming the rest of Canada, pent-up demand from previous years and, perhaps most importantly, the fact that we live in a highly desirable region," McLeod said. 


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,803 in June. This represents an 8.7 per cent increase compared to the 5,339 new listings reported in June 2014.


"We’re seeing a steady stream of new listings entering the market, but the overall number of homes for sale is not keeping up with buyer demand," McLeod said.


The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,181, a 23.9 per cent decline compared to June 2014 and a 1.3 per cent decline compared to May 2015. This is the lowest active listing total for June since 2006. 


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in June was 35.9 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2006. A seller’s market typically occurs when this ratio exceeds 20 per cent for a sustained period of time. 


“The competition in today’s market means that buyers have less time to make decisions,” McLeod said. “Given this, it’s important to work with your REALTOR® to gain insight into the local market, to get quick access to new MLS® listings, to develop a buying strategy that meets your needs and risk appetite, and to receive other services and protections that come from having professional representation.”


Sales of detached properties in June 2015 reached 1,920, an increase of 31.3 per cent from the 1,462 detached sales recorded in June 2014, and a 74.2 per cent increase from the 1,102 units sold in June 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 14.8 per cent from June 2014 to $1,123,900.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,774 in June 2015, an increase of 35.6 per cent compared to the 1,308 sales in June 2014, and an increase of 66.1 per cent compared to the 1,068 sales in June 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 5.3 per cent from June 2014 to $400,200.


Attached property sales in June 2015 totalled 681, an increase of 7.1 per cent compared to the 636 sales in June 2014, and a 44.3 per cent increase from the 472 attached properties sold in June 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.1 per cent between June 2014 and 2015 to $506,900.


*Editor’s Note:  Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.

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Should You Sell First and Buy Later? Or Vice-Versa?

 

When you’re thinking of selling your home and buying another, you face the inevitable question: Should I list my property first or buy my new home first?

 

Let’s take a look at both options.

 

If you attempt to buy a property before listing your home, you run into a couple of challenges.

 

First, sellers may not take you seriously as a potential buyer. After all, you haven’t put your own home up for sale. As far as they’re concerned, you might merely be testing the market.

 

Second, your property might not sell as quickly as you thought it would. If there is an early closing date on the home you purchased, you might end up owning, and paying a mortgage on both properties, at least until your home sells.

 

If, on the other hand, you list your property before buying a new home, sellers will know you’re serious. That puts you in a competitive position in the event of multiple offers.

 

Also, if your home sells quickly, you’ll have the peace-of-mind of knowing exactly how much of a new home you can afford. You’ll be able to shop with confidence.

 

Of course, like the first option, there is a chance that the closing dates won’t match and you’ll end up owning two properties for a period of time. However, solutions such as bridge financing are available to help.

 

So, there is no perfect answer. A lot depends on the state of the local market.

 

Looking for a good REALTOR® who can help you decide which is the best move for you? Call today.

 

 

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June 5, 2015


The below letter from President J. Darcy McLeod was sent to our media contacts this afternoon.


Will more taxes solve housing affordability challenges? History says no and so do we....

 

The rising cost of homes in our region is well-documented. Metro Vancouver home prices have increased nearly 80 per cent since 2005. Detached home prices have increased over 100 per cent.

We worry about how our children can afford a home and how the most vulnerable among us can find basic shelter. These concerns have led to public debate about possible solutions.

One suggestion is for government to introduce new taxes. Some believe government should tax non-Canadian investors who buy properties. Mayor Robertson believes there should be a "luxury housing" tax on the sale of the most expensive homes in Vancouver.

We believe more taxes won’t help. Taxes bring unintended consequences. There’s little to no evidence that a luxury or foreign buyer tax would make homes more affordable. 

History tells us that taxes like this fail to have the desired impact and succeed in permanently adding to government coffers.

In 1987, the provincial government implemented what was advertised as a “wealth tax”. It was supposed to apply to the sale of the most expensive five per cent of homes sold in BC. It's been 28 years since that tax was introduced and the thresholds have never been adjusted for inflation. 
           
Today, that tax is known as the Property Transfer Tax (PTT). It’s applied to 95 per cent of all residential property sales in the province. This tax makes housing less affordable. 

The home is where many people’s financial net worth resides. It's one of the last major assets that residents can sell and not pay a tax on the revenue. A little mentioned fact is that we already have tax disincentives for foreign owners. If a foreign home owner wants to sell a property in Canada, they are unable to receive a capital gains exemption.

The picture of affordability and home ownership is changing in Metro Vancouver. Our region's affordability challenges are complicated and, unfortunately, there isn't a single action that can solve them. Economists will tell you that offshore investment is a factor in today’s market. To what extent, no one has the data to know. 

What we do know is that local conditions have a much more significant impact. We live in one of the most beautiful, progressive and prosperous areas of the world. There are more people who want to live here than there are homes available. This causes prices to rise. 

The natural solution would be to create more supply, but we're constrained by mountains to the north, an ocean to the west, and a border to the south. 

Despite the headlines, the majority of home sales in Metro Vancouver are not $1-million and beyond. Based on our Multiple Listing Service (MLS) statistics, nearly 70 per cent of all sales in the region last year were below $800,000. 

The price of condominiums today ranges between $200,000 and $600,000 depending on size and location. Townhomes range between $300,000 and $800,000 in the region.

Detached homes in the City of Vancouver are at the high-end of our market. Recent activity has pushed homes on the Vancouver Westside above $2.5 million. 
           
It’s a different story in neighbouring communities. The benchmark price of a detached home in Maple Ridge today is $499,100; in Ladner the benchmark price is $713,200; in Coquitlam the benchmark price is $845,400.

Affordability challenges exist. But there are also more options and aspects to the story than is typically discussed in the media. Certainly more than the mayor is putting forward.

Sincerely, 

J. Darcy McLeod
President of the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver

Source: REBGV 

 

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June 2, 2015

Metro Vancouver home sales surpass 4,000 for third consecutive month

It continues to be a competitive spring market for Metro Vancouver* home buyers. This competition continues to put upward pressure on home prices, particularly in the detached home market.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 4,056 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in May 2015. This represents a 23.4 per cent increase compared to the 3,286 sales recorded in May 2014, and a decrease of 2.9 per cent compared to the 4,179 sales in April 2015.


Last month’s sales were 16.7 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.


“We continue to see strong competition for homes that are priced right for today’s market,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “It’s important to remember that real estate is hyper local, particularly in a seller’s market. This means that conditions and prices vary depending on property type, neighbourhood, and other factors."


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,641 in May. This represents a 5 per cent decrease compared to the 5,936 new listings reported in May 2014.


The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,336, a 23.2 per cent decline compared to May 2014 and a 0.8 per cent decline compared to April 2015.


“While the supply of homes for sale remains below what’s typical for this time of year, our region continues to offer a diverse selection of housing options at different price points,” McLeod said. “This diversity within the housing stock is part of what’s driving today’s home sale activity.”


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $684,400. This represents a 9.4 per cent increase compared to May 2014.


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in May was 32.9 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2007.


Sales of detached properties in May 2015 reached 1,723, an increase of 18.6 per cent from the 1,453 detached sales recorded in May 2014, and a 42.2 per cent increase from the 1,212 units sold in May 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 14.1 per cent from May 2014 to $1,104,900.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,600 in May 2015, an increase of 24.4 per cent compared to the 1,286 sales in May 2014, and an increase of 40.8 per cent compared to the 1,136 sales in May 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 4.6 per cent from May 2014 to $396,900.


Attached property sales in May 2015 totalled 733, an increase of 34 per cent compared to the 547 sales in May 2014, and a 37.3 per cent increase from the 534 attached properties sold in May 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 6.4 per cent between May 2014 and 2015 to $501,000.


*Note:  Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.

Source: REBGV

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May 4, 2015

Home buyer demand outpacing supply across the Metro Vancouver housing market


Strong home buyer demand coupled with below average home listing activity has created seller's market conditions within the Metro Vancouver* housing market.

 

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 4,179 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in April 2015. This represents a 37 per cent increase compared to the 3,050 sales recorded in April 2014, and a 2.9 per cent increase compared to the 4,060 sales in March 2015.

 

Last month’s sales were 29.3 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

 

“The supply of homes for sale today in the region is not meeting the demand we're seeing from home buyers. This is putting upward pressure on prices, particularly in the detached home market," Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said.

 

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,897 in April. This represents a 0.9 per cent decrease compared to the 5,950 new listings reported in April 2014.

 

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,436, a 19.8 per cent decline compared to April 2014 and an increase of 0.5 per cent compared to March 2015.

 

“It’s a competitive and fast-moving market today that is tilted in favour of home sellers. To be competitive, it’s important to connect with a local REALTOR® who can help you develop a strategy to meet your home buying or selling needs,” McLeod said. 

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $673,000. This represents an 8.5 per cent increase compared to April 2014.

 

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in April was 33.6 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2007.

 

Sales of detached properties in April 2015 reached 1,815, an increase of 35.9 per cent from the 1,336 detached sales recorded in April 2014, and a 70.6 per cent increase from the 1,064 units sold in April 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 12.5 per cent from April 2014 to $1,078,900.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,579 in April 2015, an increase of 34.7 per cent compared to the 1,172 sales in April 2014, and an increase of 50.1 per cent compared to the 1,052 sales in April 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 4.4 per cent from April 2014 to $394,200.

 

Attached property sales in April 2015 totalled 785, an increase of 44.8 per cent compared to the 542 sales in April 2014, and a 53.6 per cent increase from the 511 attached properties sold in April 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 5.7 per cent between April 2014 and 2015 to $493,300.

 

*Note: Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.

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April 2, 2015

Metro Vancouver home buyers out in force in March


Demand continued to rise across Metro Vancouver's housing market in March.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 4,060 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in March 2015. This represents a 53.7 per cent increase compared to the 2,641 sales recorded in March 2014, and a 32.6 per cent increase compared to the 3,061 sales in February 2015.

Last month’s sales were 26.8 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

"We're seeing strong competition amongst home buyers today. This is leading to more multiple offer situations and some upward pressure on home prices,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “For sellers, this means that it's taking less time, on average, for your home to sell if you have it priced correctly for today's market."
   
New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,968 in March. This represents a 13 per cent increase compared to the 5,281 new listings reported in March 2014.
   
Last month’s new listing count was 4.7 per cent higher than the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.
   
The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the REBGV MLS® is 12,376, a 14.5 per cent decline compared to March 2014 and a 4 per cent increase compared to February 2015.

“The number of homes for sale today is below what’s typical for this time of year,” McLeod said. “If you’ve been considering putting your property on the market, these market conditions indicate that now may be a good time to list.”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $660,700. This represents a 7.2 per cent increase compared to March 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in March was 32.8 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since July 2007.

Sales of detached properties in March 2015 reached 1,711, an increase of 53.3 per cent from the 1,116 detached sales recorded in March 2014, and an 83.4 per cent increase from the 933 units sold in March 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 11.2 per cent from March 2014 to $1,052,800.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,627 in March 2015, an increase of 47.1 per cent compared to the 1,106 sales in March 2014, and an increase of 65.7 per cent compared to the 982 sales in March 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 3.3 per cent from March 2014 to $390,200.

Attached property sales in March 2015 totalled 722, an increase of 72.3 per cent compared to the 419 sales in March 2014, and a 67.1 per cent increase from the 432 attached properties sold in March 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.9 per cent between March 2014 and 2015 to $484,900.

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By 2041, more than 1.2 million more residents will move to the Metro Vancouver area, bringing our population to 3.4 million residents.

 

To accommodate these newcomers, we’ll need more than 574,000 new housing units according to Metro Vancouver data.

 

Given Metro Vancouver’s geographical constraints – the North Shore mountains, the Pacific Ocean, the US border, and protected agricultural land to the east – how will this shape our communities?

 

To find out, we asked urban design specialist Bob Ransford, who has spent the last 24 years tackling complex urban development and land use challenges.

 

Here are the five trends he believes will shape real estate in Metro Vancouver in the next decade. 

1

 

Transit oriented development (TOD): increased density around transit lines and stations will occur if the TransLink referendum passes. Micro-suites of 250 sq. ft. with common areas for dining and fitness will become more popular with Millennials who live more in the street and in coffee shops and are used to sharing cars, rides and space. TOD reduces traffic, energy consumption and our carbon footprint. If the TransLink vote is no, TOD development will halt. 

 

 

 

2

 

Small-scale density: to maximize land use and reduce building and infrastructure costs, we’ll see more small detached energy-efficient homes, cottages and multi-family units on small lots in pocket neighbourhoods. This increases affordability, lets younger families move into neighbourhoods and lets seniors stay in neighbourhoods.

 

 

 

3

 

Social purpose such as real estate owned by faith-based groups and other non-profits: we’ll see more development of property owned by places of worship, often located on prime real estate. Congregations increasingly want to use land more efficiently to build affordable housing and are not interested in making a profit. Developments will include smaller, affordable apartments.

 

 

 

4

 

Maker Spaces: a new trend that preserves industrial areas by combining light industry, for example, artisan manufacturing, with residential. Cities are economic growth engines and this new mixed-use zoning encourages industry which doesn’t produce noxious fumes or use heavy equipment in residential areas, helping jobs stay close to home. Examples includeMakerLabs on Kingsway which rents laser cutters, routers, 3D scanners and printers, industrial sewing machines and woodworking tools.

 

 

 

5

 

Changes in tenure: fee simple, strata tenure and co-housing ownership will be joined by new types of shared ownership that helps promote small-scale density. Legislation will change to allow property owners to build and sell laneway homes and basement suites, which are presently only allowed as rentals.

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March 3, 2015

Home buyer and seller activity outpaces historical averages in February

 

Conditions within the Metro Vancouver* housing market continued to strengthen in February as home sale and listing totals came in well above the region’s ten-year average for the month. 

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 3,061 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in February 2015. This represents a 21 per cent increase compared to the 2,530 sales recorded in February 2014, and a 60 per cent increase compared to the 1,913 sales in January 2015.

Last month’s sales were 20.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“It’s an active and competitive marketplace today. Buyers are motivated and homes that are priced competitively are selling at a brisk pace right now,” Ray Harris, REBGV president, said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,425 in February. This represents a 15.4 per cent increase compared to the 4,700 new listings reported in February 2014.

Last month’s new listing count was 11.8 per cent higher than the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the REBGV MLS® is 11,898, an 11.3 per cent decline compared to February 2014 and a 10.1 per cent increase compared to January 2015.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $649,700. This represents a 6.4 per cent increase compared to February 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in February was 25.7 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since March 2011.

“We’re seeing more multiple offer situations and generally more traffic at open houses today,” Harris said. “In a market such as this, it’s important to do your homework and work with your local REALTOR® before embarking on your home buying and selling journey.”

Sales of detached properties in February 2015 reached 1,296, an increase of 25.6 per cent from the 1,032 detached sales recorded in February 2014, and an 84.1 per cent increase from the 704 units sold in February 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 9.7 per cent from February 2014 to $1,026,300.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,244 in February 2015, an increase of 20.5 per cent compared to the 1,032 sales in February 2014, and an increase of 63.7 per cent compared to the 760 sales in February 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 3 per cent from February 2014 to $386,500.

Attached property sales in February 2015 totalled 521, an increase of 11.8 per cent compared to the 466 sales in February 2014, and a 56.5 per cent increase from the 333 attached properties sold in February 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.6 per cent between February 2014 and 2015 to $481,500.

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Posted: Tuesday, February 10, 2015

               

Home buyers remain active despite reduced selection

The first month of 2015 saw home sale activity above historical norms, while the number of homes listed for sale trended below typical levels.

 

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 1,913 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in January 2015. This represents an 8.7 per cent increase compared to the 1,760 sales recorded in January 2014, and a 9.6 per cent decline compared to the 2,116 sales in December 2014.

 

Last month’s sales were 14.9 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

 

“While demand remains steady, we’re seeing fewer homes for sale at the moment,” Ray Harris, REBGV president, said. "This is creating greater competition amongst buyers, particularly in the detached home market. The number of detached homes listed for sale today is the second lowest we’ve seen in four years.”

 

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver1 totalled 4,737 in January. This represents an 11.4 per cent decline compared to the 5,345 new listings reported in January 2014.

 

Last month’s new listing count was 1.2 per cent higher than the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.

 

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the REBGV MLS® is 10,811, a 14.2 per cent decline compared to January 2014 and a 4.8 per cent increase compared to December 2014.

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $641,60022. This represents a 5.5 per cent increase compared to January 2014.

 

With the sales-to-active-listings ratio at 17.7 per cent, the region remains in balanced market territory.

“The Bank of Canada’s recent announcement to lower its benchmark interest rate is an important one for home buyers, sellers and owners to note,” Harris said. “A reduced rate could allow you to pay down your mortgage a little faster, save some money on your monthly payments, or change the amount you qualify for. It’s important that you do your homework and understand how these announcements impact your situation.”

 

Sales of detached properties in January 2015 reached 781, an increase of 7.3 per cent from the 728 detached sales recorded in January 2014, and a 44.1 per cent increase from the 542 units sold in January 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 8.4 per cent from January 2014 to $1,010,000.

 

Sales of apartment properties reached 809 in January 2015, an increase of 7.4 per cent compared to the 753 sales in January 2014, and an increase of 40.5 per cent compared to the 576 sales in January 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 2.5 per cent from January 2014 to $382,800.

 

Attached property sales in January 2015 totalled 323, an increase of 15.8 per cent compared to the 279 sales in January 2014, and a 38.6 per cent increase from the 233 attached properties sold in January 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.3 per cent between January 2014 and 2015 to $479,600.

 

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January 5, 2015

Home sale and listing activity reach historical norms in 2014

It was a typical year for the Metro Vancouver housing market in certain respects. The region’s home sale and listing totals for 2014 both rank fifth when compared against the past 10 years of activity, while home prices increased.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that total sales of detached, attached and apartment properties in 2014 reached 33,116, a 16.1 per cent increase from the 28,524 sales recorded in 2013, and a 32.3 per cent increase over the 25,032 residential sales in 2012.

The number of residential properties listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver increased 2.4 per cent in 2014 to 56,066 compared to the 54,742 properties listed in 2013. Looking back further, last year’s total represents a four per cent decline compared to the 58,379 residential properties listed for sale in 2012.

“While home buyer and seller activity created balanced market conditions within the region, we also experienced some upward pressure on home prices over the course of the year,” Ray Harris, REBGV president said.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver ends the year at $638,500. This represents a 5.8 per cent increase compared to December 2013.

“Detached homes continue to be the most sought after property type in our market,” Harris, said. “Detached homes in Metro Vancouver have increased 8.1 per cent in value over the last 12 months while townhome and condominium properties have increased 4.5 and 3.5 per cent over the same period.”

December summary

Residential property sales in Greater Vancouver totalled 2,116 in December 2014, an increase of 8.3 per cent from the 1,953 sales recorded in December 2013 and a 15.9 per cent decline compared to November 2014 when 2,516 home sales occurred.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Greater Vancouver totalled 1,888 in December 2014. This represents a 1.7 per cent increase compared to the 1,856 units listed in December 2013 and a 37.4 per cent decline compared to November 2014 when 3,016 properties were listed.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 10,320, a 10.7 per cent decline compared to December 2013 and a 17.8 per cent decrease compared to November 2014.

Sales of detached properties in December 2014 reached 833, an increase of 9.3 per cent from the 762 detached sales recorded in December 2013. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 8.1 per cent from December 2013 to $1,002,200.

Sales of apartment properties reached 912 in December 2014, an increase of 7.3 per cent compared to the 850 sales in December 2013.The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 3.5 per cent from December 2013 to $380,700.

Attached property sales in December 2014 totalled 371, an increase of 8.8 per cent compared to the 341 sales in December 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.5 per cent between December 2013 and 2014 to $476,800.

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