Report forecasts Vancouver home prices to hold steady: “Why would owners sell for less if they don’t have to?”

This Vancouver residence at 115 West Woodstock Avenue asked $1,999,000, and it sold after eight days on May 3 for $2,370,000.

Home prices in Metro Vancouver have managed to stay up in the face of declining sales.

Moreover, a report by Vancouver-based realty agency expects prices to generally hold steady.

Dexter Realty stated that the “issue of supply will continue to dictate price and how much pressure there will be to come off the highs that have been achieved in the last 18 months”.

The company noted that listings have yet to produce a balanced market, which currently remains in favour of sellers.

“We might even see prices for some areas and types of homes just hover around those highs as opposed to showing much correction at all. Why would home owners sell for less if they don’t have to?”

Moreover, “We must remember, there will continue to be more people moving to British Columbia, and specifically Metro Vancouver. So, any temporary decrease in demand will eventually be replaced by more people looking to buy in the region.”

The report was written by Dexter Realty partner and managing broker Kevin Skipworth, who looked into sales as of mid-May this year.

Skipworth predicts that total sales for the month of May will come to less than 3,000 homes.

This level of activity will be comparable to 2019 and 2018, when 2,638 and 2,833 sales were made, respectively, for the months of May during those years.

However, the anticipated volume of sales for May 2022 of less than 3,000 is significantly below the 4,268 sales in May 2021.

The expected sales this month also falls below the 3,232 sales reported by the real-estate board for Greater Vancouver for the month of April 2022.

Sales in April 2022 marked a 34.1 percent decrease from the 4,908 sales recorded in April 2021, and a 25.6 percent decline from the 4,344 homes sold in March 2022.

However, prices remain firm.

The real-estate board noted that the benchmark price in the region for all types of properties rose in April 2022 to $1,374,500.

This means an 18.9 percent increase over April 2021, and a one percent increase from March 2022.

The board covers Burnaby, Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, New Westminster, North Vancouver, Pitt Meadows, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Richmond, South Delta, Squamish, Sunshine Coast, Vancouver, West Vancouver, and Whistler.

It does not include Surrey and other neighbouring markets.

In the Dexter Realty report, Skipworth noted that total active home listings totalled 9,770 in mid-May compared to 11,198 during the same period in 2021, and 8,515 mid-month in April 2022.

Skipworth explained that there are “two parts to the real estate market: activity and prices”.

He stated that a “change in activity doesn’t necessarily correlate to a dramatic change in prices”.

“Be prepared for words like ‘plunged, steep declines, slump’ when really, we should be saying ‘average, balancing and expected’,” Skipworth suggested.

The realty executive continued, “Many are dusting off their adjectives to try and put a label on current market trends, when in fact this market is really doing what we expected it to do in the face of rising interest rates and global challenges – and more so incredible activity in the last year and a half.”


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