Vancouver housing market is on a roll

Sustained demand is fuelling tighter buyer competition and sharper price growth

Vancouver housing market is on a roll

In the Metro Vancouver area, home buyer demand remains “well in excess” of long-term averages while supply continues to decline across the region, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver.

A total of 43,999 home sales took place in the region in 2021, growing by 42.2% annually and exceeding the previous record high of 42,326 set in 2015, the REBGV said. The 2021 sales total was also 33.4% higher than the region’s 10-year sales average.

“With low interest rates, increased household savings, more flexible work arrangements, and higher home prices than ever before, Metro Vancouverites, in record numbers, are assessing their housing needs and options,” said Keith Stewart, economist at the REBGV.

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Metro Vancouver’s listings reached 62,265 last year, up by 14.7% from 2020 and up by 19.9% from 2019. The 2021 level was 11% above the 10-year average, the REBGV said.

However, “while steady, home listing activity didn’t keep pace with the record demand we saw throughout 2021. This imbalance caused residential home prices to rise over the past 12 months,” Stewart said. “We begin 2022 with just over 5,000 homes for sale across the region. This is the lowest level we’ve seen in more than 30 years.”

The benchmark residential price in Metro Vancouver stood at $1.23 million by the end of December, representing an annual increase of 17.3%. Both detached home and townhome benchmark prices grew by 22% last year, while apartment prices increased by 12.8%.

“With demand at record levels, residents shouldn’t expect home price growth to relent until there’s a more adequate supply of housing available to purchase,” Stewart said.