Housing demand is slowing in one of the country’s hottest housing markets.
Home sales in Metro Vancouver fell 14.6 per cent month-over-month in July, the lowest level for that month since 2000. There were 2,070 home sales recorded for the month, compared with the 2,425 homes sold in June.
Sales fell 30.1 per cent from the same month last year, when 2,960 home sales were recorded.
“With fewer buyers active in today’s market, we’re seeing less upward pressure on home prices across the region,” Phil Moore, president of the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, said in a release.
“This is most pronounced in the detached home market, but demand in the townhome and apartment markets is also relenting from the more frenetic pace experienced over the last few years.”
The number of homes for sale also declined to 4,770 listings in the region last month. This represents a 9.6 per cent decrease compared to June, when 5,279 homes were for sale.
Although demand softened, there was little change in the benchmark home price, which slipped 0.6 per cent in July from the prior month.
Homebuyers have been grappling with higher borrowing costs, after the Bank of Canada raised interest rates four times over the last year. The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions also introduced new mortgage stress tests in January for uninsured buyers who put down at least a 20 per cent down payment.
“Summer is traditionally a quieter time of year in real estate. This is particularly true this year,” Moore said. “With increased mortgage rates and stricter lending requirements, buyers and sellers are opting to take a wait-and-see approach for the time being.”