Greater Vancouver Real Estate Prices Just Made The Second Biggest Monthly Drop Ever

Greater Vancouver real estate continued its rut, like most of the country’s markets. Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) data shows the price of a typical home fell in July. It was the third consecutive drop, coming in just a hair below the record. Despite the recent downturn, prices are still much higher than last year but that can change fast. Even the board warned both buyers and sellers to assess their circumstances.

Greater Vancouver Home Prices Fell, But Still Up From Last Year

Greater Vancouver real estate prices made a sharp drop but are still up by a lot. The composite benchmark price of a home fell to $1,207,400 in July, down 2.4% (-$28,500). Prices are still 10.3% (+$112,400) higher than last year. Huge numbers in both directions, so let’s take a quick dive.

Greater Vancouver Real Estate Are Off The Peak

The composite benchmark price of a home across Greater Vancouver.

Source: REBGV; Better Dwelling.

Last Month Was The Second Biggest Drop For Home Prices Ever

Greater Vancouver’s monthly price decline was one of the biggest on record. July was the third consecutive month to see prices fall, becoming larger each time. Last month’s decline was so big, it was only $100 shy of the record. Housing is still setting records, just not in the direction many would hope. 

Nearly All Gains YTD Price Gains Have Been Wiped Out 

Home prices rolled back nearly half a year. A typical home is now at the lowest price since January 2022, with annual growth back to March 2021 levels. If prices are able to retain the double-digit growth, it would still be huge. However, prices are dropping fast and  only 3 more months like this can wipe out annual gains. 

Greater Vancouver Real Estate Price Growth Is Decelerating

The 12-month percent change for the composite benchmark price of a home across Greater Vancouver.

Source: REBGV; Better Dwelling.

The sales to new listings ratio (SNLR) shows the market is still in balanced territory. It’s at the lower range of balanced, and prices are still falling. This can indicate it’s on its way into a buyer’s market, where annual price growth turns negative. 

“In today’s changing housing market, both home buyers and sellers should invest the time to understand what these changes mean for their personal circumstances,” said REBGV CEO Daniel John. 

There wasn’t much more and it sounds ominous, but there’s a lot to consider. If you’re a buyer, the market is seeing much healthier levels of inventory. However, BMO recently warned of an uptick in buyers trying to walk away and a rise in failed closings. They went so far to say they’d be bullish on real estate lawyers this year.  The takeaway there is make sure you’re not stretching too far, and really want the home you’re buying.

At the same time, sellers should realize it’s pretty hard to find buyers while prices are falling. Prices are still much higher than last  year, but certainly off the market’s peak. This can mean not listing at the right price can risk bigger erosion of value. At least if the property needs to move in the short-term.

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5 Comments

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  • Reply
    Average Man 4 months ago

    Every time I read one of these stories I just start chanting “Let the bodies hit the floor.”

  • Reply
    Kyle 4 months ago

    The condo market is still very weird. I guess since rents are rising so fast and people see the price drop as temporary they’re still considering it. Such a risky play right now though. I’m just going to a wait a few months and reassess.

  • Reply
    Ian 4 months ago

    I don’t know, I’m at my breaking point living in Vancouver and I own a condo. Just so many people homeless people everywhere and it’s just getting depressing. Also living here for the privilege of being close to my job that lets me work from home? Why?

    Could always just rent a hotel once a month and drive in for the same sort of situation and take a few hundred Ks in equity.

    Just a rant in case anyone else feels me, it’s happening it’s just tough to say it out loud to other people who are also pretending to have the time of their life.

    • Reply
      george 4 months ago

      If economics are the main drive for you, then you know what to do. There are more important things in life than $$ (once one realizes that) and whatever others are doing should not concern you. Just withdraw, think for a moment what is actually meaningful to you and then make a decision, not based on the market trends, friends and all the nonsense around you. This is the best time of your life (assuming you are healthy), don’t waste it by waiting for outside circumstances to happen your way because the chances are slim. Good luck!

  • Reply
    zeejay 4 months ago

    An Abstract.
    “Since the 1970s, the federal government essentially stopped intervening in the credit market, effectively allowing the private sector to make the decisions. That move, some argue, has only led to a housing bubble. People are buying not because they need it, they are buying because of greed. Unfortunately, people are buying second, third, and fourth properties because equity on the first property, second, the third property is easier, and renting them out is more profitable than paying a mortgage which is cheaper than renting. Cheap money is responsible, at least in part, for driving home prices sky high. From 2009 onward, the Bank of Canada kept its crucial overnight interest rate below 2%—an historical low. With a policy rate of 0.25% until recently, interest rates on a five-year variable mortgage were as low as 1.25%. That was incentive enough for most Canadians to purchase properties and greatly increase costs.
    The Bank of Canada kept interest rates low to stimulate the economy after a recession in 2009. In recent years, the central bank lowered interest rates to navigate the financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. Because its primary focus is to keep inflation low and stable, the Bank’s potential impact on real estate prices—as a result of its own monetary policy—is unpredictable. This means that, essentially, the central bank has no incentive to act if a housing bubble does form so long as the overall inflation rate remains at 2%.
    The Canadian government has proposed an anti-flipping tax for one year, meaning anyone who sells a home they have owned for under 12 months could be subject to full taxation on their profits as business income. Some argue, however, that the one-year period is not long enough since stopping speculative behavior in the real estate market and encouraging longer-term investments would require a much longer period of anti-flipping taxation.”

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