Now that the winter is over, spring signals the opening of what is often thought of as real estate season. This spring, however, brings with it a new excitement as real estate agents and analysts and moving companies finally see what they have been predicting—a seller’s market. Emboldened by the current statistics coming out of Vancouver, it seems as if the individuals looking to sell their homes and move are fully in the driver’s seat.
The seller’s market is a designation when there is more demand for homes than there is supply of homes on the market. As a result, seller’s can basically set the price for the home. One of the other benefits is that foreign investment has not only drive up the price of homes, reaching on average to over $1 million, but it also means that there is an increased demand for those homes, particularly newer models with more contemporary amenities.
Just this past month, home sales in Vancouver rose by over twenty percent when compared with the average of February sales over the last 10 years. Based on those same numbers, listings are up over ten percent and many agents feel that this is not enough to keep up with the housing demand in this booming metropolitan area.
Another good sign that Vancouver real estate is moving to a seller’s market is the sales-to-active-listings ratio. In order to be classified as a seller’s market, this ratio has to climb over 22 percent. In February, the ratio rose significantly from 17 to almost 26 percent, well above the requisite for the seller’s designation. This was the highest the figure has reached in almost four years. The market is moving so heavily that some agencies have called this past month their busiest in almost a decade. The market is also favoring detached homes, with the ration at 26 percent for these as compared to 22 percent for townhouses and only 12 percent for apartments.
Some agents are trying to remain hesitant about declaring a seller’s market, stating that one month above the 22 percent threshold is not a sure sign that they are in the right range. However, they add that a few more consecutive months of this kind of market will mean for sure that the momentum has swung to the seller’s side.
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