Increased seller activity is giving buyers more choice this 2024 spring

Increased seller activity is giving buyers more choice this  spring
In the bustling real estate landscape of Metro Vancouver, the MLS® data reveals a significant uptick of nearly 23 percent in listed homes compared to the previous year. This surge offers prospective buyers an expanded pool of options as they navigate the market this spring.

According to the latest report from the Greater Vancouver REALTORS® (GVR), residential sales in the region amounted to 2,415 in March 2024, marking a modest 4.7 percent decline from the sales figures of March 2023, which stood at 2,535. Notably, this figure falls 31.2 percent below the 10-year seasonal average, which typically stands at 3,512 sales.

“If you’re finding the weather a little chillier than last spring, you may find some comfort in knowing that the market isn’t quite as hot as it was last spring either, particularly if you’re a buyer,” Andrew Lis, GVR’s director of economics and data analytics said “Despite the welcome increase in inventory, the overall market balance continues inching deeper into sellers’ market territory, which suggests demand remains strong for well-priced and welllocated properties.”

In March 2024, the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver witnessed a significant surge in newly listed properties, with a total of 5,002 detached, attached, and apartment properties hitting the market. This marked a notable 15.9 percent increase compared to the 4,317 properties listed in March 2023. However, despite this increase, the figures remained 9.5 percent below the 10-year seasonal average of 5,524.

The total number of properties currently available for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver stands at 10,552, reflecting a substantial 22.5 percent surge from March 2023's figures, which stood at 8,617 properties. Remarkably, this figure surpasses the 10-year seasonal average by 6.3 percent, which typically stands at 9,923 properties.

Examining the sales-to-active listings ratio for March 2024 across all property types—detached, attached, and apartments—reveals a ratio of 23.8 percent. Breaking down the ratio by property type, detached homes recorded 18.2 percent, attached properties showed 31.3 percent, and apartments demonstrated 25.8 percent.

Historical data analysis indicates that when the sales-to-active listings ratio falls below 12 percent for an extended period, it exerts downward pressure on home prices. Conversely, sustained ratios surpassing 20 percent over several months typically lead to upward pressure on home prices.

“Even though the market isn’t quite as hot as it was last year, we’re still seeing modest monthover-month price gains of one to two per cent happening at the aggregate level, which is an interesting dynamic given that borrowing costs remain elevated,” Lis said. “With the latest inflation numbers trending in the right direction, it remains likely that we’ll see at least one or two modest cuts to the Bank of Canada’s policy rate in 2024, but even if these cuts come, they may not provide the boost to affordability many had been hoping for. As a result, we expect constrained borrowing power to remain a challenging headwind as we move into the summer months.”

The current MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver stands at $1,196,800. This reflects a 4.5 percent upswing compared to March 2023 and a 1.1 percent rise in contrast to February 2024.

March 2024 witnessed 694 detached home sales, marking a 5.4 percent decrease from the 734 sales in March 2023. The benchmark price for a detached home now stands at $2,007,900, indicating a 7.4 percent hike from March 2023 and a 1.8 percent increase compared to February 2024.

For apartment homes, March 2024 recorded 1,207 sales, indicating a 7.9 percent drop compared to the 1,311 sales in March 2023. The benchmark price for an apartment home is now $777,500, showcasing a 5.7 percent increase from March 2023 and a 0.9 percent rise compared to February 2024.

In March 2024, attached home sales totaled 495, marking a 6.2 percent increase compared to the 466 sales in March 2023. The benchmark price for a townhouse is $1,112,800, demonstrating a 5 percent uptick from March 2023 and a 1.7 percent increase compared to February 2024.

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