Blog by Maureen Stout, Ph.D.

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January 2016 Market Update

January Market Update

2015 was a record year in real estate in Greater Vancouver. Sale prices and sales volumes rose throughout the year, with overall sales totalling 42,326, a 27.8% increase over 2014. We experienced a very strong seller’s market that got stronger as the year progressed.

Many areas of Vancouver showed sales figures that far exceeded the average. For example, in December in Dunbar 88 out of 100 houses listed were sold (an 88% sales ratio); Kitsilano outperformed that, with a 100% sales ratio for its few detached properties and 73% for the many condos and townhouses in that area.

On the East side, the December sales ratios were remarkable, with some areas seeing 100% or higher for houses (Fraser, Grandview, Hastings East, Knight, Main and Mount Pleasant). For attached properties, several areas were also at or above the 100% mark.

So What Does 2016 Hold?


As some of you have heard us say, we try not to forecast anymore, since Vancouver real estate continues to defy expectations in one way or another. Nonetheless, let’s look at some of the factors that may affect the market this coming year.

The dramatic fall of the loonie may encourage people not only from Asia, but also from the US and other countries, to invest in Vancouver real estate. A client told me the other day of a busy open house she went to at a downtown condo, and noted that several of the interested parties were American.

Interest rates remain generally stable and still at historic lows, so that is not likely to be a major factor in any market changes this year. Moreover, since many high value investors don’t need or want a mortgage, rates are irrelevant to them.

One upcoming change may affect the lower end of the market. Currently, the minimum down payment for properties under $1M is 5%. After February 15, the minimum down payment for the portion of a property’s value above $500,000 will increase to 10%. So if you purchase a property for $575,000, your minimum down payment will need to be 5% on the first $500,000 and 10% on the last $75,000. Note that for down payments of less than 20%, you will need to pay a higher mortgage rate to insure your mortgage against default.


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Every month, we send out a market update and Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) stats, along with an additional stats package that breaks down prices in sub-areas (like MacKenzie Heights, Dunbar, etc.) and shows how many properties sold in different price bands. We also have an extensive library of information on just about anything you'd like to know about buying and selling, including buying a condominium, Depreciation Reports, mortgage rates, what to know when listing a property, and so on. 

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Our Seminars

We regularly hold educational seminars on real estate throughout Vancouver. To see our list of seminars, please go to either the "For Buyers" or "For Sellers" tab on the home page, and hover over to see the "Our Seminars" sub-page for information and how to register. If you have trouble registering, or would like further information, please drop us a line.

If you would like further information on anything on this website, or would like to discuss your buying or selling needs, please get in touch. We will give you the information you need without the hard sell you don't need.


We are holding a seminar this Thursday, January 28, from 7 - 9 p.m. at West Point Grey Community Centre on buying and selling your home (this covers houses and condos). We still have some spaces left, so if you would like to attend, drop me a line and we'll add you in.