Vancouver Residential Average – July 09

Ups and Downs


This Vancouver Residential Average price graph has become a standard reflecting data recorded by the Vancouver Real Estate Board since 1977. As a record of historical real estate prices, it is interesting to review the values of real estate climb over the decades. One problem resulting from the amount of data residing behind the chart, is that it presents in a highly compressed format. As such, it is difficult to see the nuances of the market’s ups and downs. Hoping to alleviate this problem, and with the goal of presenting a visual representation that shows these variants via a scaled down version, below is a representation of a 3 year portion of the data. The assumption is that it will deliver more relevance to those born after 1980 and for those amongst us who I suspect, may require reading assistance.


Heads Up

It bares repeating that Averages are always a little scary. As a snap shot indicator they can prove beneficial, but verification of a trend is only accomplished from a historical viewpoint. The title for such a trend might be ‘Remember When’. One can only surmise that those who use historical averages as an indicator of the future usually have a predilection for being caste into an arena full of hungry lions.

July’s Month of Numbers

The heat was definitely on both in temperature and prices for Detached homes and Apartment units. Both sectors showed an up-tick in pricing with Detached climbing back to $824,437 with a flat line at 0% MOM (month over month) yet staying the YOY average at -8% below 2008’s value.

Apartments rang the bell at $400,823 up from last month’s $383,725, still down MOM (month over month), at -1% and off -7% from 2008’s YOY Average. .

Coming through the door, Attached units stumbled a little, dropping to $486,564 – from June’s price of $489,741 a MOM drop of -2% while continuing to trail at -7% YOY from 2008.

The overall climb in the Vancouver market continues. With the balance of 2009 ahead of us, soggy tea leaves in the cup suggest that it is possible, we might come close to the averages seen in the first quarter of 2008. Although you shouldn’t bet your mortgage payment on this, low mortgage rates drive a hard bargain that is difficult for many buyers to resist. Recently, reports from other markets show a revival of positive reports and combined it may be enough to push our market further than anyone expected in Q4 – 08. One element that may sour this view, is unemployment.


Looking forward, another issue one could speculate upon is that this positive rise in house prices will not last. With the impending arrival of the Harmonized Sales Tax, the cost of acquiring almost any good or service that has the word ‘home’ associated with it, is going to increase your cost.

From the look of things, this brilliant new tax will be pervasive in its extent. Judging by the cover it will affect all things ‘home’. A first view tells us, the new tax will add to your purchase price in ways previously exempt. It will extend from the initial hit on a Realtors service fee to the cost of interior finishing, renovations, contractors labour, appliances, fixtures, light bulbs, door knobs and almost anything else you can think of that is ‘home’ related.

All these will be tax magnets that will in ‘harmony’ take more money from your pocket then ever before. You can presume in advance that the effect will be daunting.

Supported by all Vancouver Realtors, our local real estate board has commissioned Dunwoody Accountants to complete a full analysis of the extent to which the new tax will affect homeowners and potential homeowners. Rest assured, the resulting report of the overall impact will be an eye opener. Do you hear a Cah-ching?

For those of you who are renting, you will not escape the impact. The increased costs to landlords for management, maintenance, repairs, lawn care, electricity and gas will eventually find it’s way to an increased rent cheque.

Usually not an overt cheerleader of the ‘buy now at any cost’ mantra, it would seem that if you are thinking you might buy a home, have done your diligence and crunched the numbers to determine that you can afford to do so, early indications are that doing so now before this tax kicks in on July 1, 2010, will save you a lot of money. My cheer – get going while the going is good and dare it be said – I’m around if you need help.

Vancouver Real Estate Average Price Numbers:

Detached Attached Apartment
June 09 – 819,235 June 09 – 489,741 June 09 – 383,725
July 09 – 824,437 – Up July 09 – 486,564 – Down July 09 – 400,823 – Up

Vancouver Real Estate Average Price // Monthly Difference Y2Y:

Detached Attached Apartment
July 07 – 831,195 July 07 – 487,809 July 07 – 398,710
July 08 – 828,780 July 08 – 493,434 July 08 – 389,204
July 09 – 824,437 July 09 – 486,564 July 09 – 400,823

*Disclaimer: Statistics Courtesy REBGV. While believed to be accurate they are not guaranteed.

**Numbers provided may vary as they are dynamically posted by the REBGV.

About Larry Yatkowsky

Larry is a recognized real estate expert. A veteran professional, his experienced counsel leads Vancouverites in his west side community to place their trust in a man passionate about his work. Uncompromising ethics bring a balanced approach to realizing your real estate dreams.

When Life Moves You - contact Larry:

*Disclaimer: Statistics Courtesy REBGV. While believed to be accurate they are not guaranteed.
**Numbers provided may vary as they are dynamically posted by the REBGV.

Reader Comments:

Charles Barkley Says:
August 1st, 2009 at 5:27 pm

As usual, another post with stats, analysis, and wit! Thanks Larry!

Larry Says:
August 1st, 2009 at 7:04 pm

I’ll take that as a compliment. Appreciated.

blueskies Says:
August 1st, 2009 at 8:58 pm

re: HST

BC guvmint NEEDS the revenue…or else

August 1st, 2009 at 9:14 pm


or else what?

surely there is more to your statement. come on I know you got it in you. Help us all make through the night. Don’t leave us hanging. 🙂

Thanks Chief Says:
August 1st, 2009 at 10:51 pm

HST:New tax scheme is to put cap on Developers and flippers,When starts are mendatory it will hit the market if it is not important it won’t hit the market.This tax has nothing to do with home prices when re-sale prices will keep close gap it will encourage buyers to go for new housing.Government don’t want to see supply over built that’s mean we will never see usa style championship.

Larry Says:
August 1st, 2009 at 11:40 pm

Interesting perspective but, it would seem, that you have negated the impact this tax will have on all consumers.

HST is omnibus in it’s application. Virtually anything you buy or service you enlist will now cost you more. Real estate, home acquisition or disposal is only small pieces of the entire puzzle.

For a great number of people the only thing remaining in their wallets will be dust bunnies.

anon Says:
August 7th, 2009 at 10:19 pm

Larry, you are the best realtor web presense in town
!!!!!! Keep it coming!!!!

Carrying on from blueskies, the BC government is about 1.5 billion in the red, and the feds bribed bc to the turn of 1.5 billion to go hst. their bribe wipes out this year’s deficit.

I despise the hst, but it is better than an increase to income tax.

August 8th, 2009 at 9:56 am

It’s a tradition on this blog to delete ‘anon’ comments. However, because of your nice compliment……… 🙂

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