January Starts Strong For Metro Vancouver Housing Market

In contrast to the balanced market observed at the close of 2023 in Metro Vancouver, January of 2024 saw a shift favoring sellers due to a disparity between the rate of newly listed properties and the volume of home sales. According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), residential sales in the area reached 1,427 in January 2024, marking a substantial 38.5% rise from the 1,030 sales documented in January 2023. However, this figure stood 20.2% below the 10-year seasonal average of 1,788.

"It’s hard to believe that January sales figures came in so strong after such a quiet December, which saw many buyers and sellers delaying major decisions. If sellers don’t step off the sidelines soon, the competition among buyers could tilt the market back into sellers’ territory as the available inventory struggles to keep pace with demand." - Andrew Lis, REBGV director of economics and data analytics

In January 2024, there were 3,788 detached, attached, and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in Metro Vancouver, marking a 14.5% increase compared to the 3,308 properties listed in January 2023. However, this figure was 9.1% below the 10-year seasonal average of 4,166.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS system in Metro Vancouver stands at 8,633, reflecting a 9.8% increase compared to January 2023 (7,862). This total is slightly below the 10-year seasonal average by 0.3% (8,657).

The sales-to-active listings ratio for January 2024 across all property types—detached, attached, and apartments—is 17.2%. By property type, the ratio is: 
11.9% for detached homes 
22.9% for attached properties 
19.9% for apartments

Historical data suggests that sustained ratios below 12% exert downward pressure on home prices, while those exceeding 20% over several months typically lead to upward price trends.

“Our 2024 forecast is calling for a two to three per cent increase in prices by the end of the year, which is largely the result of demand, once again, butting up against too little inventory. If the January figures are indicative of what the spring market has in store, our forecast may already be off to an overly conservative start. Markets can shift quickly, however, and we’ll watch the February numbers to see if these early signs of strength continue, or whether they’re a blip in the data.” Lis said

The current MLS Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver stands at $1,161,300. This reflects a 4.2 percent rise over January 2023 and a 0.6 percent decline compared to December 2023.

In January 2024, sales of detached homes reached 379, marking a 28% increase from the 296 detached sales recorded in January 2023. The benchmark price for a detached home is $1,942,400, indicating a 7.3% increase from January 2023 and a 1.1% decrease compared to December 2023.

Apartment home sales reached 746 in January 2024, a 30.6% increase compared to the 571 sales in January 2023. The benchmark price of an apartment home is $751,900, showing a 4.4% increase from January 2023 and a 0.1% increase compared to December 2023.

Sales of attached homes in January 2024 totaled 285, representing an 82.7% increase compared to the 156 sales in January 2023. The benchmark price of a townhouse is $1,066,700, indicating a 4.3% increase from January 2023 and a 0.6% decrease compared to December 2023.

We have seen the January market start off with a bang. This shows that there has not been a lack of desire to purchase. Currently we are running into the same issue that kept the prices up for a lot of last year... Low inventory. With the BoC (Bank of Canada) holding their rates, it signaled to many buyers that the increases were over and brought back more consumer confidence in the real estate market. The purchasers that were concerned about getting in the market, but not being able to handle the, what felt like, ever increasing interest rates are coming back into the fold as the rates have been held for the past two opportunities. 

Currently multiple offers are becoming more common and as soon as there is a decrease in the interest rates, we will likely see a sharp increase in market activity, pushing the market right back into sellers market territory. 

In a nutshell, if you are thinking to purchase. Waiting will likely not be the best idea unless you enjoy paying more for the same home.

If you would like to have to some real world advice about how to navigate the current market and plan for the future call or text me at 604-522-4777 or e-mail directly at: haze@hazerealty.com or join us at our Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/HazeRealty) and we see what the best move can be.