Vancouver’s sales up 126%, Calgary’s surge 147%

by Neil Sharma on 06 Apr 2021

March was a record-setting month in Metro Vancouver with 5,708 sales, says the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).

Sales surged by 126.1% year-over-year from 2,524 in March 2020, and by 53.2% from 3,727 a month earlier. Moreover, last month’s sales total was 72.2% above the 10-year March average.

The region’s rural and suburban areas saw the most significant increases in activity, including in Delta-South, where sales surged by 195.8% year-over-year, Whistler, where sales increased by 194.7%, and Squamish, where sales rose by 188.6%.

According to the REBGV, there were 8,287 new listings in the form of detached, attached and condo apartments on the MLS in Metro Vancouver last month, representing an 86.8% year-over-year increase from 4,436 listings in March 2020, and a 64.2% month-over-month rise.

There are currently 9,145 homes listed on the Metro Vancouver MLS, which is 4.8% below the number of listings in March 2020, and 18.6% below the 10-year average for March.

“While we did see a record number of listings enter the market last month, the demand in today’s market isn’t allowing that new supply to accumulate. As a result, the overall inventory of homes for sale decreased compared to last year,” Taylor Biggar, the REBGV’s chair, said in a statement.

The average price of a Vancouver area home last month was $1,123,300, which is 9.4% higher than in March 2020, and a 3.6% month-over-month increase. Detached homes increased by 17.9% year-over-year to $1,700,200, while attached homes rose by 10.4% to $872,200, and condo prices were up 3.7% to $715,800.

Meanwhile, the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB) reported that home sales increased by 147% last month to 2,903 from 1,174 in March 2020, which it attributed to the low interest rate environment and excess savings in the city’s households. Moreover, the sales spike marked a 14-year high.

The board noted that bidding wars are commonplace in Calgary’s housing market and that inventory had declined to 5,416 properties last month from 5,863 during the prior-year period. New listings also rose by 83% to 4,437 from 2,418.

The benchmark price of a Calgary home increased by 7% to $441,900 in March from $414,800 a year earlier, while the benchmark detached house price rose to $516,300 from $478,400, and condos climbed to $250,000 from $242,500.

"Low lending rates and improved savings have supported sales activity," said CREB’s chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie in a statement. "However, sales have been somewhat restricted by the lack of listings. This month there was a jump in new listings, contributing to the strong monthly sales."

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