December Vancouver Real Estate Report
November was a busy month for me. I made several sales for both buyers and sellers and also spent a week in a Financial Analysis for Investment Real Estate course put on by the CCIM Institute. I am looking forward to the respite that December usually offers to busy realtors.
After six straight months of increasing, the Months of Inventory (MOI) for detached Westside homes fell in October but in November, the MOI for Westside Vancouver homes increased anew for all home types. The MOI increased to 10.99, 8 and 7.63 for Detached homes, Attached homes and Apartments respectively. It remains to be seen whether or not the rising MOI trend will continue but the effect of its protracted rise to date is evident: prices are falling.
Active house listings declined from 960 in October to 846 in November and it is likely that the month of December will see listing volumes drop again as the Christmas season approaches and many would be sellers put their plans on hold until the early spring. House sales dropped too from 104 in October to 77 in November. Again, we can expect sales volumes to diminish further in December as is typically the case. Over 250 listings are currently set to expire in December so the number of sales in December will ultimately determine what the MOI index looks like for Westside houses at the end of the year. If sales drop to 35 we could see an MOI over 15. If they drop to only 60 sales it could be under 10. Presuming a less dramatic fall in sales, I suspect that the MOI will hover near its present value of about 11 in December. I also expect to see nearly all of the expiries re-list between late January to early March so next spring will really be the test of where this market is heading.
Anyway that you look at the pricing for detached Westside houses, they are falling. The average sale price of a Westside house fell to $2,190,320 in November. The median sale price of a Westside house dropped to $1,878,000 in Novemeber. The Real Estate Board's HPI index for a "typical" Westside house was $2,029,300 for Noverber. All of these are the lowest figures seen in nearly 2 years.
Some argue that there is "pent-up" demand and that as prices fall we will see a flurry of buying in the spring. I believe that we will see large listing volumes in the spring and not enough demand to reverse the present downward trend.
SELLERS: Act decisively and price below the previous sales comparables. In this market, a quick sale is the sale that will get you the most for your property.
BUYERS: You have a huge inventory to choose from and plenty of vendors willing (or those who are compelled by circumstance) to negotiate in earnest. If you need a long term home it is a fun time to be shopping (though tiring with so much to see).
I am presently selling a boutique development of 12 homes in Fairview Slopes that includes two bedrooom and den townhomes with roof-decks (great views) and several studio apartments (inquire about the genuine investment opportunity here). I am pleased to be offering brand new construction at prices that reflect the market we are in. If you are interested please register at: www.aldercrossing.com or give me a call.
Remember that Months of Inventory (MOI) is a measure derived from the number of active listings during a given month divided by the number of sales that month. It indicates the theoretical length of time it would take to sell all of the properties on the market if nothing changed. Historically, 0-5 months of inventory has generally implied upward price pressure for the ensuing six months, 5-8 months of inventory meant a flat market with respect to pricing and over 8 months of inventory has, for the most part, precipitated downward price pressure.
Do not hesitate to call me if you have any questions and please pass this and my contact information along to any friends or family who might benefit from my services.
Sam Wyatt - Vancouver Realtor