As you know, there is a lot of talk about the Vancouver Real Estate market in the media. Mainly, there is talk about the market "crashing" and the prices to go down by as much as 20%!
In my opinion, the claims made by the media are too generalized as the Vancouver market is comprised of many different pockets which have and will always act in a slightly different manner.
I will demonstrate with a few examples:
1) MLS HPI Price: (HPI is the best and purest way of determining price trends in the housing market. It takes into account what averages and medians do not. Items such as lot size, number of bedrooms, age, etc).
- Entire Greater Vancouver Area HPI Price:
July 2011: $612,200
July 2012: $616,000
This demonstrates an increase in the HPI Price of 0.6% for all of Greater Vancouver over the course of one year.
- Vancouver West Side HPI Price:
July 2011: $814,700
July 2012: $817,100
This represends a 0.3% increase for the West side of Vancouver.
- Vancouver Coal Harbour HPI Price:
July 2011: $667,900
July 2012: $652,400
This means a decrease of 2.3% in HPI Price from 2011 to 2012, where we had an increase of 3.6% from 2010 to 2011. So in 2012, the HPI Price is still higher than 2010.
2) Median and Average Sales Prices:
The median and average sales prices for almost all of the areas and subareas of the Greater Vancouver region has decreased compared to last year.
However, as previously mentioned, these indicators do not take important factors such as lot size, age, etc... into account.
As a result, using these indicators provides a very skewed perception of the inflation or deflation of the real estate market.
To sum up, I believe that the Vancouver market is becoming more stable and realistic compared to last year where prices suddently went through the roof (as much as 20% increase in some areas!). Additionaly, when my clients ask me where I see the market going, I always ask: "Which part of town are you asking about?"
For a more detailed analysis please watch the following video by the REBGV.