Affordability remains the big challenge for BC homebuyers

Potential homebuyers in British Columbia continue to be challenged by their reduced ability to buy a home due to the mortgage stress test.

The British Columbia Real Estate Association says that sales province-wide were down 18.9% in April compared to a year earlier, with 6,652 sales recorded through the MLS.

The average sale price was also lower, down 6.2% year-over-year to $685,305 with the total dollar volume of transactions down 23.9% year-over-year to $4.6 billion.

“BC home sales were essentially unchanged from March on a seasonally adjusted basis,” said BCREA Chief Economist Cameron Muir. “Prospective home buyers continue to grapple with the decline in their purchasing power caused by federal government changes to mortgage policy.”

Meanwhile, listings surged by 33.6% year-over-year to 38,672 units and the ratio of sales to active residential listings declined from 28.4% to 17.2% over the same period.

Year-to-date sales
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 29.8% to $13.9 billion, compared with the same period in 2018.

Residential unit sales decreased 24.5% to 20,479 units, while the average MLS residential price was down 7% to $680,671.

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