Some Vancouver Condo Flips Return $12,000 a Month

Frank O'Brien
October 2, 2015

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If you had bought a typical condominium in the Grandview area of East Vancouver in May and flipped it in August, you could have made $10,000. Had you done the same thing in South Cambie, the three-month return on your investment would have been $33,700.

Across the west side of Vancouver, the typical condominium sold in August had a benchmark price more than $12,000 higher than a month earlier, according to dig-down statistics from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver.

On the east side of the city, the average monthly return on investment was a more modest $3,200.

If you look at price appreciation over the past five years, the average Metro Vancouver condominium is up 11.3 per cent, or more than $41,000, to an August value of $405,000. The typical townhouse returned 13.5 per cent, or nearly $67,000, in the same period.

If a condominium investor had put down 20 per cent back in 2010 and sold this summer, they could have made a 56 per cent cash-on-cash return.

Anyone purchasing a resale condominium must appreciate the appreciation seen in Metro Vancouver’s strata sector. The opportunity to buy and flip appears tantalizing.

While the past is no guarantee of future performance, benchmark condominium prices are up 49.5 per cent in the past 10 years and townhouse prices are up 55 per cent. Let’s just say the odds of your condo increasing in value this year are pretty good.

So where exactly should you buy in the city of Vancouver to gain the maximum return on your investment with a quick sale?

We looked at appreciation over the past three months in 34 individual Vancouver neighbourhoods.

While some markets had higher increases, the best areas for a condominium investor appear to be the West End, Mount Pleasant, and Marpole, all of which have active sales.

In the West End, where more than one condominium sold every day during August, the typical price increased 5.1 per cent from three months earlier, or a return of $23,000.

In Mount Pleasant on Vancouver’s eastside, which registered 33 condo sales through the Multiple Listing Service in August, the typical price increased 4.9 per cent from three months earlier, or nearly $17,000.

In Marpole, the three-month appreciation was 12.3 per cent – highest in the city – for a $45,500 increase in value.


Based on benchmark condominium values for three months ending August 31

Neighbourhood                                    % Increase                                                              Dollar increase

Marpole                                                    12.3                                                                                 45,500

Oakridge                                                   9.3                                                                                  70,900

South Cambie                                          5.9                                                                                   33,900

West End                                                  5.1                                                                                  23,000

Point Grey                                                5.0                                                                                   21,100

Mount Pleasant (East Van)                      4.9                                                                                   16,900

Source: Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver 

Frank O'Brien
Frank O'Brien is the editor of Western Canada's biggest commercial real estate newspaper, Western Investor, as well as a contributing editor at West Coast Condominium, real estate contributor to Business in Vancouverand a regular media commentator on real estate investment.