Sales of single-family homes in July board-wide rose by three per cent year over year and were 12 per cent higher than in June. Last month, 453 single-family homes sold on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) System compared to 406 the previous month and 438 in July 2018 with an increase in townhouse sales by 22 per cent. Some areas remain active and even brisk at specific price points.
Weaker housing demand has contributed to an increase in total active residential listings across the province. In the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board, inventory of single-family homes rose by nine per cent from one year ago (1,419 to 1,552). but townhouse inventory decreased by 10 per cent (217 to 195). Prices in the VIREB area are still rising, but they are softening compared to the price increases posted during our long-running sellers’ market. The benchmark price of a single-family home was $513,700 in July, a three per cent increase from one year ago, slightly lower than in June. (Benchmark pricing tracks the value of a typical home in the reported area.) The benchmark price of a townhouse rose by two per cent, hitting $410,600 last month, the same price as in June.
Regionally, the benchmark price of a single-family home in the Campbell River area last month was $434,300, an increase of six per cent over July 2018. In the Comox Valley, the benchmark price reached $516,200, up by two per from one year ago. Duncan reported a benchmark price of $472,000, an increase of two per cent from July 2018. Nanaimo’s benchmark price rose by three per cent to $556,400 while the Parksville-Qualicum area saw its benchmark price increase by two per cent to $588,500. The cost of a benchmark single-family home in Port Alberni reached $322,500 in July, an 11 per cent increase from one year ago.
Although month-over-month price fluctuations are less useful for anticipating trends, it is interesting to note that several zones did experience small price reductions on single-family homes from June, including Campbell River, Comox Valley, Nanaimo, and Parksville-Qualicum.
Trends in Vancouver help me determine what might transpire in our market in the future as we get consumers making the move this way. Going through the numbers with my colleagues working in the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board, witnessed a jump of 22 per cent across Metro Vancouver July compared to the same month last year. This made July the second highest-selling month so far this year. Many feel this type of increase is unusual as sales tend to change gradually, instead of suddenly. Is this a bottoming of the trend as buyers look to take advantage of the low rates and extra inventory that is available.
Additionally, home sales via Canadian MLS® rose for the fifth consecutive month in July, putting them about 15% above the six-year low reached in February 2019.
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