When you take a closer look at the numbers for both sales and listings for the first nine months of the year, to how it compares with last year, it is oddly the same! Well, numbers-wise it is, but not when you take a hard look at how the activity is portioned out. While sales volume in single-family and town homes is almost identical, the one exception is apartments, which saw a decrease of 44%. When it comes to listings, single-family detached has 17% fewer listings than 2018, town homes are almost identical, while apartments are lower by 15%. The lower apartment numbers are mostly because there were not as many presales as there were in 2018.
The beginning of 2018 came in with a BANG but as the yea rolled along it ended in a whimper. Several factors played into the slow down. Many of them to do with government intervention to cool the market, which had some positive and negative affects. The slow down then carried on into the first three months (at least) of 2019, but then something began to change. Well at least in the Squamish market it did, other areas may have had different experiences.
The first quarter of this year as mentioned saw very little sales activity across all sectors. Then as we began April things started to shift. Well, sales did not see a drastic increase but there was more buyer inquires leading to more active showings of listed property. As we move toward the summer months sales start to pick up in single-family and town homes, apartments still lagging behind. The 3rd quarter maintained steady activity, which was double what was experienced in the 3rd quarter of 2018.
Key factors to be aware of moving into the fall/winter. Listing inventory in single-family homes is below historic norms and prices remain stable. Town homes, which in September 2018 had a sales to listing ratio of 12% now are at a ratio of 57% so the pressure is being felt on pricing. Apartments whose sales and listing ratio last September were at 57% have gone down to 23% this year so pricing correction is being strongly felt. Sellers need to be mindful of conditions as pricing still is the dominating factor as buyers want value or uniqueness. Buyers, while under some pressure if they are in specific areas of the market, do not feel that they need to rush unnecessarily into a buying decision as the market conditions remain stable.
Information deemed to be accurate, all information taken from the MLS Database, October 2019