East Van Real Estate Update for May 2020

Hello from my East Van home! I hope everyone is doing well, getting out for some sun and making the most of the new normal. My garden is flourishing thanks to my constant attention, though we’re both looking forward to more sunny weather.

It’s been almost 2 months since the “Stay at Home” measure and thankfully BC has proven to have handled this outbreak quite well. We’ll soon see a slow re-opening of the economy and a bit more semblance of normal in our lives. I am still working with some keen clients and I recently sold a couple listings, so believe me, the market is still moving (with proper precautions in place). A lot of Buyers see this as an opportunity to buy something with less competition – remember, everything was getting multiple offers before the pandemic hit – and some Buyers are still still willing to go after something great if it hits the market. I’ve seen a few “deals” and interestingly, there have still been quite a few multiple offer scenarios in the last few weeks. I’ve seen it on condos, houses and everything in between. The common denominator is that the unit checks off a lot of boxes on a common list of what Buyers are looking for, and that the price was reasonable.

Spring is always the busiest few months in real estate – we typically see the highest inventory levels and the highest number of sales. As you can imagine, the market has slowed down. There are fewer Sellers and fewer Buyers, which is not surprising as many folks are weary of viewings and everyone wanted to wait to see if this pandemic would affect them financially. The general consensus is that the market will be affected leading to some declines in price as well.

The interesting thing is most Vancouver markets haven’t been affected when it comes to price. A slowing market often hits suburbs (think Burnaby, Richmond, etc) harder and longer than it does the city so I would expect those markets to show more price declines and Buyer negotiation power over the next few months. A slowing market also affects high priced properties in each market – for instance, 1 bed condos above $700k may not be as busy, but the entry level condo market is still very active.

Keep in mind, prices are still generally down from the high point a few years ago, so if you’re looking to move up to a bigger property, now could be a good time. Your East Van condo may down from the value it was at the height of the market, but the house you’re looking to buy will be down even more, so the difference in price between them is smaller. In other words, comparing the highest HPI Price we saw over the last few years to the most recent HPI price, East Van condos are down about 4% while East Van houses are down 8% in East Van and townhouses are down 7%.

In terms of the future of the market, I think we’ll see:

  • an increase in activity once we see an increase in inventory. The big question is how long it will be until we see a big increase in inventory and just how much of an increase will we see? There is a demand for good inventory out there, as indicated by the sales and multiple offer situations recently, but not much to choose from, and more inventory makes people are excited to consider a move.
  • an influx of tenanted units hit the market once the restriction on giving Tenant’s Notice to End Tenancy is lifted.
  • a generally stagnant value over the next few months. Keep in mind list price is different from value – some listings are over priced and some will be underpriced so you’ll see a relative adjustment on their price with a sale.
  • a a busier summer then normal, which should roll into a busy Fall.

At the end of the day, I think Buyers need to be prepared – financially and mentally – to jump into the market. You can’t take advantage of a potential “deal” if you’re only casually looking and don’t have a current idea of your mortgage qualification, and you won’t be able to compete in multiple offers if you’re not ready to go.

Let me know if you need a recommendation for a mortgage broker. Some mortgage qualification has changed due to Covid, so ensure you have an up to date idea of your affordability and options. Mortgage Brokers are also really helpful in instructing you how to improve your affordability if you are hoping to buy down the road (increased down payment? pay off your car first? etc).

Onto the stats. 

East Vancouver Real Estate Stats up to and including April 2020

HPI Price for East Vancouver

Median Percentage of Original Price for East Vancouver

New Listings for East Vancouver

Total Inventory for East Vancouver

Total Sales for East Vancouver

Sales to Active Ratio for East Vancouver

Median Days on Market for East Vancouver

Remember, good properties in good buildings in good locations will hold their value and will be a better option for you than long term than something priced low for a reason (unless that reason is that the unit needs serious renovations – then you can add future value). Don’t lose sight of the fact that you’re looking for a home that works for you, ideally for a number of years, so go after the property that makes the most sense to you.

If you want to chat through your options, best path forward and the intricacies of the market, let me know! I’m happy to jump on a Zoom call (or regular phone call) to get you started. It takes some finesse to handle a buy and sell, so make sure you know your options before jumping in. If you’d like to slowly dip your toes in the market, I can also set you up on a Custom Real Estate Search so feel free to contact me: [email protected] or 778-387-7371 to let me know what you’re looking for in a new home.

This kind of market leads to a needed reminder for Sellers – you need to ensure your property looks good, is priced right and has an agent truly trying to sell it. Contact me to talk about the best plan of action for the sale of your home – you need good marketing, positive viewings, market knowledge and strong negotiation.

Sending you health and happiness, and the suggestion to watch Veep if you’re looking for a new show to watch 🙂

– Kristi, contact me at [email protected] or 778-387-7371