Financial Post Headline – ‘Vancouver home sales plunge, posting second-worst August since 1998’

“Sales activity in the country’s most expensive housing market continues to tumble but the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver maintains prices are not being impacted.
The board says sales of detached, attached and apartment properties were 1,649 in August, a 30.7% drop compared to the 2,378 sales in August 2011 and a 21.4% decline compared to the 2,098 sales in July 2012. It was the second worst August since 1998 for sales and 39.2% below the 10-year average.
“Home sales this summer have been lower than we’ve seen for most of the past 10 years, yet we continue to see relative stability when it comes to prices,” Eugen Klein, REBGV president said.

– from ‘Vancouver home sales plunge, posting second-worst August since 1998’, Financial Post 5 Sep 2012

“Overall MOI approaching 11 as Aug/12 is 2nd lowest sales in the last 15 years (since 1998).
Benchmark prices now flat or down YoY and down MoM (inc. detached Van West, Van East down MoM).
Only 75 sales of SFH in Van West in Aug/12: DOWN 42.3% YoY!!
Only 79 sales of SFH in Van East: DOWN 46.6% compared to Aug/11 !!!”

vanpro at RE Talks 5 Sep 2012 10:04am

“East Vancouver detached benchmark down from 863K to 859K August to Sept.
How does this help you?”

eyesthebye at RE Talks 5 Sep 2012 6:43pm


1. Noteworthy for another bearish headline in the MSM.
2. How does this “help”? Well, this is how crashes look when they start, and, depending on one’s perspective, a large decrease in Vancouver RE prices may be seen to be ‘helpful’ in many respects.
– vreaa

23 responses to “Financial Post Headline – ‘Vancouver home sales plunge, posting second-worst August since 1998’

  1. Who the smeg is Gary Marr?

    “Home sales this summer have been lower than we’ve seen for most of the past 10 years, yet we continue to see relative stability when it comes to prices”

    Well gaw-lee! Is there a crayon font I can layer into my CSS when reading garbage like that?

  2. pricedoutfornow

    Americans on various housing blog websites in the states would tell us that this is how a crash looks at the beginning-lower sales, building inventory. Sure, prices look “stable” but that’s just because people haven’t clued in yet that this is IT. I do believe this happened in the US, if you look at a graph of housing prices you see there was a period where prices didn’t drop, all looked stable. And then….CRASH!
    Why wouldn’t this happen here? Eventually people need to sell and cut their losses. Out of 100 people in a neighborhood,even if only 2 need to sell, these are the ones who will set the prices for the rest of the hood. I think there’s no way prices aren’t going to drop now. It will happen sooner or later.

  3. “Well, this is how crashes look when they start…”

    10% of the detached inventory ‘disappeared’ this month and will continue each month until next spring. This is how crashes look when they’re averted

    • Prediction noted.
      We’ll see.

    • Doesn’t matter that some people took their houses off the market. Prices are set on the margin–it only takes a handful of transactions. The sellers who are deferring now will actually worsen the crash later, when they capitulate.

    • 🙂 15% of detached demand ‘disappeared’ this month and will continue until …

      • Meanwhile, on the West Side, demolitions continue at a record pace and new builds keep getting slapped up while nobody’s buying the old builds.

      • 4SlicesofCheese

        f1 doesnt care about the West Side, but..

        East Side new builds are not moving either, who are buying east side teardowns?

      • yeah, maybe they were just kidding and didn’t really wanna sell. I call it “pent-up supply”…..

      • ” demolitions continue at a record pace”

        chart

        Demos are elevated and continuing in 2012. Not everyone reads memos 🙂

      • Thanks, YVR, i wasn’t quite accurate! Hadn’t remembered scrutinizing that chart….

      • epte it’s an important note that demos are continuing even as sales falter. Relative to sales volumes they are close to a “record”. I don’t know what the builders/investors doing these demos are thinking but I can be pretty sure more than a few are praying for buyers to be active a year from now.

        I was surprised with the amount of building activity in some ‘hoods recently. While perhaps not the same scale as parts of California they look “McMansion-y” to me.

      • again, unless you’re looking on the west side you’re not helped too much by the poor statistics.

        “There’s also the matter of different conditions in different areas. For example, detached homes on Vancouver’s west side are taking an aver-age of 55 days to sell, while homes on the east side are selling in 29 days”.

        http://www.canada.com/business/Vancouver+home+sales+plunge/7198471/story.html

      • 4SlicesofCheese

        “again, unless you’re looking on the west side you’re not helped too much by the poor statistics.”

        What about Burnaby, or Richmond.

        Concerning yourself with only the area you live in, you are missing the forest for the tree.

      • 4SlicesofCheese

        Wait, what?

        Only 75 sales of SFH in Van West in Aug/12: DOWN 42.3% YoY!!

        Only 79 sales of SFH in Van East: DOWN 46.6% compared to Aug/11 !!!

      • YVR, thanks very much for this info. Agree with you completely on the McMansiony thing, and yes on the bewilderment of watching MOI get bigger while demolitions continue at such a high rate.

        I do believe some of these builders must be misled, uninformed, too optimistic, or downright delirious. Will we be left with neighbourhoods where smaller and more affordable “heritage” houses (defined by Heritage Vancouver as anything more than 20 years old) are largely replaced by newer, very high priced homes that stand empty or are capriciously rented until the markets change somehow and their owners decide to sell? This is definitely the trend in the neighbourhood where I live, and nearby.

    • UBCghettodweller

      Someone quote that back to him come June of 2013.

      It’ll be a litmus test of his credibility.

  4. In 2006, various American sportsmen who were coming up to Canada to fish in the Lake of the Woods (Ontario/Manitoba border) could be heard saying, “Prices are still up, but houses just aren’t selling anymore.” This was more than a full year before the bubble popping became apparent, and a full two years before everyone realized what deep doodoo they were in. Popping bubbles only seem sudden in retrospect, when viewed against the background of a multi-year boom period. While they happen, they are painfully slow.

  5. Well, I’m just one American, but it looks really familiar to me. Sales volume falls before pricing. Many of the people taking homes off the market as Formula1 mentions will only be more desperate in six months. They’ll have the same carrying costs, but see worsening sale prospects and a declining sale price. Those who can unload will start putting them back on the market to take what they can get. Others will be stuck in underwater homes indefinitely like so many in the US. Others will be ruined.

    “…a 30.7% drop compared to the 2,378 sales in August 2011 and a 21.4% decline compared to the 2,098 sales in July 2012…”

    This sure looks like it to me. Strap on your seatbelts.

  6. And yet, can anyone actually define what a benchmark is? I’ve take a lot of stats courses in my life… and I just don’t recall hearing this word in this context until very recently.

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