As house prices have slid over the fall and winter, condo sales have stayed the course and prices will continue to rise in 2017, predicts leading local REALTOR® Keith Roy.
Speaking to REW.ca editor Joannah Connolly on her Real Estate Therapist radio show on Roundhouse Radio, the top-producing RE/MAX agent said, “The demand for condos remains overwhelming and the supply remains very limited. With houses, even at 10 to 15 per cent below the peak of prices, they still remain out of reach of the vast majority consumers, so condos remain a very popular option.
“I see continued price appreciation in condos this year – they can’t not appreciate at the pace that they’re selling. But at the same time, you’re not going to double your money in 12 months. Whereas houses will see more of a balanced market, buyers will have time to decide, there will be inspections on houses, and it will take more than a weekend to sell your house. In comparison to the last year or so, it will be a pretty boring year.”
Roy added, “While the rest of Canada’s economic activity will be limited, especially in Ontario and Quebec, the West will continue to do well… We have a sense of economic activity in British Columbia that gives positivity to the real estate market. The Canadian dollar will remain low, which will continue to draw in foreign money, despite the 15 per cent foreign buyer tax – that tax shocked the market, but hasn’t stopped it.”
He also argued, “The inauguration of Donald Trump as US president will not have an effect on the value of your home, no matter how much you talk about it. That kind of macro [level economic activity] has very rarely affected the Vancouver real estate market.”
Roy, who has a degree in political science, predicted that the biggest impact on the local housing market will be caused by the provincial election this spring. “Elections breed uncertainty and fear, which prevents people from making major decisions. I’ve been looking at patterns, and housing activity always declines in the run-up to an election. Let’s say, if I think the NDP is going to get in, and I believe they have been historically bad for the BC economy, I’ll assume that they will be bad again and that real estate prices might go down, therefore I’ll wait before I buy a house.
“So what might happen in the spring, where we normally see a more active market, we might see a lot of uncertainty around that… bringing us to a more normal market. Because it’s a coin-toss right now between the Liberals and the NDP.”
To listen to the full interview, click here.