It’s hot and we don’t just mean the weather…the Vancouver condo market has been seeing strong activity this summer. While social distancing measures continue to exist alongside the real estate market, this hasn’t seemed to put a damper on buyers’ excitement for securing a home, particularly of late. In Vancouver, the coronavirus has affected the market in various ways. Yet, there’s been an upswing in home sale and listing activity which points to signs that the real estate market may be on the path to recovery.
Below, we share our round-up of the hottest summer real estate trends in Vancouver’s condo market:
Pent Up Demand
In June, home sales and listings were back to their typical levels in Metro Vancouver. In fact, the surge in condo listings showed increased confidence in the market from sellers. This many listings being added in one month hasn’t been seen in a half decade.
Promising trends showed that home sales were up 9.4 per cent above the ten-year July sales average. This could point to a strong market recovery after the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although, another cause could be the pent-up demand from the seasonal Spring homebuying activity that we see yearly in the market. Buyers are eager to get back in the market and explore their options after being cooped up at home. Gradually, as we move further away from the height of the pandemic, we have seen more people enter the market, more comfortable to adjust to the new conditions.
For those who were unwilling to adapt to the changing real estate landscape with virtual tours and other e-signatures, the heightened activity over the summer months may be a delay from suppressed spring market. More people may be choosing to tour potential condo options during this time. The Real Estate Council of British Columbia removed their ban on open houses early last month, although it’s important to note that open houses will be unlike ones that occurred prior to COVID-19. Instead, sellers and buyers are required to follow several safety procedures to protect the health of homeowners, homebuyers, and their agents.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) indicated that sales of apartment homes reached 1,400 in July 2020. This was a 12.6 per cent increase compared to the 1,243 sales in July 2019. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $682,500. This represents a 4.2 per cent increase from July 2019 and a 0.3 per cent increase compared to June 2020.
During the pandemic condo prices did dip, however they have since easily returned to the prices that were seen at the beginning of the year.
Low Interest Rates
The uncertainty from the coronavirus pandemic has caused the Bank of Canada to drop the benchmark interest rate in order to help stimulate the economy. Rising household debt has sidelined some buyers, yet this may be an enticing opportunity to others.
Home buyers can take advantage of these very attractive rates to secure the mortgage financing they need to purchase a condo in the Vancouver market. Others who have been able to get through a temporary but tough time financially and are relying on government aid, may also be able to enter the market with rates this low. This rate may push many to start their home search now, despite lingering anxieties surrounding the coronavirus.
For those who have job security and aren’t concerned about financial instability, this could ignite the desire to purchase a condo. While economic fluctuations may have hurt investments, those who have cash on hand that isn’t tied down in investments, may also be inspired to purchase a Vancouver condo while the competition is slightly softened.
A typically expensive market, purchasing a condo in Vancouver this summer may be the thing to do! Earlier this year the COVID-19 pandemic made the market look bleak. However, summer has rejuvenated real estate with increasing home sales and slight downward pricing trends. Renewed confidence from sellers and buyers could mean Summer 2020 is the perfect time to secure a Vancouver condo.