January Home Sales, Prices See Sunnier Conditions in the Fraser Valley: Stats

Valley housing trends seeing effects of changing market, but sales not declining like Vancouver’s – and prices keep rising, says board

February 3, 2017

Fraser Valley blueberry farm winter sun blue sky

Fraser Valley’s real estate market trends continued to outshine those of Greater Vancouver, with sales in the region above the 10 year average for January despite falling year over year, according to figures released by the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) February 2.

There were 976 sales – of all property types, including commercial and industrial – in January. This is 27.1 per cent lower than the very active January 2016, but higher than usual for the month over a 10-year average. Of these, 848 sales were residential transactions.

“The impacts of 2016’s tremendous real estate surge continue to be felt as we enter the New Year, and a new market,” said Charles Wiebe, FVREB president.

“Notably, the distribution of sales across our residential property types levelled off even further in January. As well, prices continue to adjust to match more typical demand, albeit slowly.”

The benchmark price of a home in the Fraser Valley (combined residential property types) in January was nearly 25 per cent higher than one year previously, and 0.3 per cent up from December.

Sales and Listings

There were 976 real estate sales in January (all property types, including commercial and industrial), which is a drop of 27.1 per cent compared to January last year, but still slightly higher than the 10-year average for the month.

For home sales only, 848 homes were traded in January, which was a fall of 28.4 per cent year over year and 0.7 per cent lower than December 2016.

Single-family home sales in the region fell the most in January at 54.3 per cent, compared with a year previously, totalling 360 units. However, this was a recovery of 3.2 per cent compared with the previous month.

Townhouses and other attached property transactions had another weak month, dropping by 22.9 per cent year over year to 212 sales, which was also a decline of 6.2 per cent compared with December.

Sales of condo-apartment units in the Fraser Valley continued to defy market conditions, soaring in January by 42.3 per cent year over year to 276 sales. This was 1.1 per cent – or three units – lower than December.

Like in Greater Vancouver, there was a New Year’s rush of new residential listings, as 1,790 homes came up for sale – 181 per cent more than the previous month. However, it’s still 69 per cent lower than the 2,058 new listings of January last year.

There were 2,905 active home listings at the end of January, which is a rise of 18.3 per cent over December but a fall of 22 per cent from the 3,148 listings available in January last year. That said, because of slow absorption of single-family homes, total listings for this property type were up 20.8 per cent year over year.

Wiebe added, “"This is a great time to list in the Fraser Valley; buyers are looking at a wider range of homes and the market is still lacking inventory needed to match demand.”

Benchmark Prices

Prices in the Fraser Valley continued to hold steady at comparatively elevated levels. January’s benchmark price of a Fraser Valley home (combined residential property types) was $630,900, which is a rise of 24.9 per cent year over year, and 0.3 per cent higher than December 2016. However, it is still 0.5 per cent lower than six months ago, showing that there was a slight slide during the late summer and fall that looks to be recovering.

The benchmark price of a single-family home in the Fraser Valley in January was $856,300, a rise of 24.3 per cent since January 2016 and virtually level with December’s $856,700.

Townhome prices in January also kept rising, up 27.6 per cent year over year to $420,400 and up nearly one per cent month over month.

The region’s condo-apartments continued to shine, with the benchmark price increasing year over year by 26 per cent in January to $262,300, and posting the biggest month-over-month rise – up 1.3 per cent compared with December.

To see home prices, sales and listings broken down by community, see the FVREB January 2017 statistics package

Joannah Connolly is the editor and content manager of REW.ca and Real Estate Weekly newspaper, and editor-in-chief of Western Investor and West Coast Condominium. She also moonlights as the host of the Real Estate Therapist call-in show on Roundhouse Radio 98.3FM every Saturday, 9-10am. A dual Canadian-British citizen, Joannah has 20 years of media experience in Vancouver and London, with a background in construction, architecture and business media. Like many of the residents of her newly adopted town, Joannah has a decidedly unhealthy passion for Vancouver real estate and is often to be found scouring property listings well above her pay grade.
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