Vancouver market activity steadily depleting housing stock

August was a “busier than expected” month for the market, according to the regional real estate association

Vancouver market activity steadily depleting housing stock

Despite moderating from a peak in March, housing activity in Vancouver remained robust last month, pushing listings to lows not seen since 2016, according to the region’s top real estate association.

Home sales in the region totalled 3,152 transactions in August, up by 3.4% annually but down by 5.2% from July, said the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. The August level was 20.4% above the 10-year average for that month.

“August was busier than expected, and listings activity isn’t keeping up with the pace of demand. This is leaving the market under-supplied,” said Keith Stewart, economist at the REBGV. “Housing supply is the biggest factor impacting the market right now. To help relieve pressure on prices and improve people’s home buying options, the market needs a more abundant supply of homes for sale.”

Read more: What’s happening in the Vancouver housing market?

A total of 4,032 residential properties were newly listed for sale on Vancouver’s multiple listing service in August, representing decreases of 7.9% monthly and 30.6% annually. Active listings stood at 9,005 properties, dropping by 8.6% from July and 29.7% from August 2020.

“Housing affordability has been a key issue in the federal election,” Stewart said. “We encourage the political parties to focus on policy solutions that will help streamline the creation of more diverse housing options for hopeful home buyers today and into the future.”

The sales-to-active listings ratio across all of Vancouver’s residential asset classes in August was 35%. By property type, the ratio was 25.3% for detached homes, 51.8% for townhomes, and 39.2% for apartments.

The composite residential benchmark price in Vancouver stood at approximately $1.177 million, up by 0.1% monthly and 13.2% annually.