April another lethargic month for Metro Vancouver home sales: Real estate board

Residential home sales last month were 43.1 per cent below the 10-year April sales average

Home sales remained sluggish across Metro Vancouver in April and real estate analysts slam government policies for the lack of activity.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver says residential home sales last month were 43.1 per cent below the 10-year April sales average.

Across the region, April sales totalled 1,829, a 29 per cent decrease compared with sales one year earlier, but the board says activity has edged up 5.9 per cent since March.

The listless market is also reflected in prices, with the board reporting the composite benchmark price for Metro Vancouver residential properties is currently $1,008,400, an 8.5 per cent year-over-year decrease, and a 0.3 per cent skid since March.

Real estate board president Ashley Smith blames government intervention for the tepid market.

She says the federally imposed mortgage stress test has reduced buyers’ purchasing power by about 20 per cent, causing entry-level buyers to struggle to secure financing.

READ MORE: B.C. real estate board urges feds to revisit mortgage stress test

“Suppressing housing activity through government policy not only reduces home sales, it harms the job market, economic growth and creates pent-up demand,” says Smith in a statement, adding that more homes are for sale in Metro Vancouver than at any time since October 2014.

“This trend is more about reduced demand than increased supply,” she says.

“The number of new listings coming on the market each month (is) consistent with our long-term averages. It’s the reduced sales activity that’s allowing listings to accumulate.”

Just over 14,000 homes are currently listed for sale in Metro Vancouver, which the board says is a 46 per cent increase in one year and a 12 per cent leap since the tally one month ago.

The sales-to-active listings ratio also saw a nearly one per cent slip since March, to its April setting of 12.7 per cent.

The calculation reflects the ratio between the number of homes sold and the number of new listings being added to the market. Broken down by property type, it stands at 9.4 per cent for detached homes, 15.4 per cent for townhomes and 15.3 per cent for condo apartments.

Analysts expect downward pressure on prices when the ratio dips below 12 per cent for several months, while home prices tend to climb when the ratio moves above 20 per cent.

The benchmark price in April for a detached home was $1,425,200, an 11.1 per cent drop in one year and a slip of 0.8 per cent compared with the setting one month earlier.

The benchmark price for a Metro Vancouver condo was $656,900, down 6.9 per cent from April of last year but unchanged since March 2019.

Townhome prices also didn’t budge month-to-month but the board says April’s benchmark of $783,300 is 7.5 per cent lower than it was in April of last year.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Townhouse fire in Langley

Crews called to scene Saturday afternoon

VIDEO: Langley-Aldergrove MP Tako van Popta hands out seedlings at Home Depot

Free Saskatoon berry and Red-twig Dogwood plants were offered up to shoppers Saturday morning

VIDEO: Friday night car show a no go at Surrey/Langley border

Vintage cares were turned away at 2800 block of 192nd Street due to COVID-19 precautions

Graduation 2020: Langley Fine Arts student celebrates amid social distancing

Emilie Colbourne submitted a photo of her daughter celebrating grad with her grandparents

Trudeau offers $14B to provinces for anti-COVID-19 efforts through rest of year

Making a difference in municipalities is a pricey proposition

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping the Aldergrove Star to continue its mission to provide trusted local news

‘Like finding a needle in a haystack’: Ancient arrowhead discovered near Williams Lake

The artifact is believed to be from the Nesikip period between 7,500 BP to 6,000 BP

Indigenous families say their loved ones’ deaths in custody are part of pattern

Nora Martin joins other Indigenous families in calling for a significant shift in policing

Friends, family mourn Salt Spring Island woman killed in suspected murder-suicide

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched for Jennifer Quesnel’s three sons

Run for Water: Abbotsford man raises $100,000 running 100-mile marathon

Kevin Barata ran up and down Ledgeview Trails 32 times, exceeding elevation of Mt. Everest

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Indigenous chief alleges RCMP beat him during arrest that began over expired licence plate

Athabasca Chipewyan Chief Allan Adam calling for independent investigation

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Most Read