Published: Sun, January 06, 2019
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

BC housing market shows signs of moderation: assessment agency

BC housing market shows signs of moderation: assessment agency

"High home prices, rising interest rates and new mortgage requirements and taxes all contributed to the market conditions we saw in 2018", he said.

Despite a slight decrease in residential values, the District saw a value increase in light industrial and commercial properties; 2.89 percent and 0.12 percent respectively. The benchmark price for a detached home was $1.479 million, down 7.8 per cent in a year.

Anything below 12 per cent suggests falling prices ahead, REBGV says.

Detached homes led the fall as their benchmark price fell 7.8 per cent from December 2017 to $1,479,000. But Surrey, Delta, Langley, Port Moody and Coquitlam saw increases of four to five per cent on an average.

A drop by up to 10 per cent on the estimated value of some homes in Metro Vancouver reflects a broad softening in a once hot market that is being affected by wider economic shifts, say two experts. However, it's 16.5 per cent lower than the active listings of November this year.

The average assessment of a single-family home last year was $1,149,000 which climbed $1,222,000 in this year's report.

December sales were down by almost half compared with December 2017.

"We've had record building activity in recent years and many projects will complete soon", REBGV president Phil Moore said in a statement.

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Eilers said new mortgage "stress tests" brought in by the federal government have had a huge impact on both first-time buyers and those already holding mortgages who want to move up in the housing market.

The benchmark price (an industry representation of the typical home sold in an area) for detached houses sold last month on Vancouver's West Side decreased to $3,135,400, down 11.8 per cent from a year earlier.

In the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board's territory, which includes the sprawling suburb of Surrey, there were 15,586 sales on the Multiple Listing Service a year ago, down 30.2 per cent from 2017 and marking the lowest annual sales since 2013.

Townhouse benchmark prices increased by 1.3%, with annual gains also hurt by a 5.3% decrease over the last six months.

Condo prices went up slightly, by 0.6 per cent over the past 12 months, but have declined 6.4 per cent since June.

Some 535 condo units traded hands across the region in December, which is a 34 per cent decrease compared to the 1,028 sales in December 2017 and 34 per cent lower than November 2018. "The Northern B.C. region encompasses approximately 70 per cent of the province stretching east to the Alberta border, north to the Yukon border, west to Bella Coola including Haida Gwaii and to the south, just north of Clinton".

He noted in the cases of properties with assessed values around $1 million in places such as Saanich, the value of the home is as little as $100,000, while the price of land makes up the vast majority of the price.

However, value declines and increases vary by municipality and property type.

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