Housing sales slide as condos pick up slack in Langley

The housing market seems to be easing in terms of price increases.

The trend of declining house sales and increasing townhouse and condo sales continued in July as the summer slowdown hit Langley real estate.

Numbers released by the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board Aug. 2 showed that 111 single family homes sold in July of this year, down 16.5 per cent from the 133 that sold in the same month in 2016.

Meanwhile, townhouse sales edged up to 102 from 99 over the same period, a three per cent increase, and apartment sales were up to 103 from 88, a difference of 17 per cent.

The average price of a detached home remained above $1 million in Langley, at $1,068,026. That was barely above the “benchmark” price as measured by the FVREB, which looks at the price of a typical home. In July, the benchmark was $990,000.

The average price increased 13 per cent year over year in July for a detached home, and the benchmark was up an almost-identical 13.5 per cent.

The average price for a townhouse hit $546,145 in July, up 8.9 per cent in a year, while the benchmark was $461,500, a 10.8 per cent increase.

Condo prices saw the steepest increases. The benchmark price for a condo was $352,200 – more than the $323,758 average.

The average was up 26 per cent year over year, while the benchmark was up 34.8 per cent in 12 months.

In general, a detached house in the Fraser Valley area is now two and a half times more expensive than 12 years ago.

Despite those increases, house prices haven’t been on a steep upward incline over the past few months. Price growth has been relatively slow since the spring.

The market showed some signs that it was heading back towards balance between buyers and sellers, with 6,000 properties listed for sale, a record high for the year.

Homes for sale have been at low levels for several years, compared to a high of 12,000 homes for sale just after the 2008 recesion struck, and typical levels of between 8,000 and 10,000 from 2010 to 2015.