Vancouver sales slumped at year-end

Home sales in Metro Vancouver closed out 2016 with a slump but the year was still the third best on record behind 2015 and 2005.

Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver reports that there were 39,943 units sold in 2016, down 5.6 per cent on 2015 but more than 20 per cent above 2014’s sales.

In December, sales slumped 39.4 per cent from a year earlier with 1,714 units. That was 22.6 per cent below the November 2016 total and 8 per cent lower than the 10-year average for December.

The December drop was driven by single-family detached house sales which halved from a year earlier.

“It was an eventful year for real estate in Metro Vancouver. Escalating prices caused by low supply and strong home buyer demand brought more attention to the market than ever before,” Dan Morrison, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) president said.

The board’s home price index at the end of 2016 stood at $897,600 which is down 2.2 per cent over the past six months but 17.8 per cent up on the end of 2015.

“As prices rose in the first half of the year, public debate waged about what was fuelling demand and what should be done to stop it. This led to multiple government interventions into the market,” added Morrison. “The long-term effects of these actions won’t be fully understood for some time.”

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