Canada’s hottest housing market continued defying gravity in June.

The benchmark price for all properties in Vancouver rose 32.1 per cent to $917,800 last month, according to data released on Tuesday by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver.  The price appreciation was even more significant for detached homes, whose benchmark price surged 38.7 per cent to reach $1,561,500. 

Steep prices gains are the unintended consequence of central bankers’ cheap money policies, according to Lyle Stein, managing director at Vestcap Investment Management.

“Central banks have put money into the system, driven interest rates down – and Vancouver is probably one of the top ten cities in the world in terms of destinations. So you have limited supply and you’ve got money flying in from pretty well everywhere in the world,” Stein told BNN in an interview.  “[The price growth] is great if you own a home; I think it’s very scary for the long term because the price-to-income ratio makes it unsustainable for the people who actually live in Vancouver." 

Vancouver’s double-digit price gains last month were helped along by ongoing supply constraints: total listings with the MLS system plunged to 7,812 in June, marking a 35.9 per cent decline from a year ago. 

“While we’re starting to see more properties coming onto the market in recent months, the imbalance between supply and demand continues to influence market conditions,” said REBGV President Dan Morrison in a statement. 

Overall sales of residential properties set a new record for the month of June, rising 0.6 per cent to 4,400 – helped along by an 18.8 per cent surge in apartment property transactions, while detached home sales sank almost 19 per cent.