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Linda Shaw, Realtor 604-787-2062E-mail Me Now

Seasonal Affect (Dis)Order?

"To everything there is a season, turn turn turn" sang The Byrds almost half a century ago! Yet the wisdom of the lyrics still rings true today. While some may argue our market has gone to the birds, there is a whiff of a change of seasons in the air, and it’s not just our delicately fragrant cherry blossom trees in spring bloom…

 

Vancouver’s real estate market has been in the throes of stagnation for the past 8 months or so, and what started as a price adjustment to the region's highest-in-the-country's housing prices has now stretched into one big long stall of inactivity. You could almost say that buyers and sellers are playing one giant game of free range chicken, with each waiting for the other to blink.

 

The facts tend to agree with this theory: Since May 2012, the number of transactions have decreased by roughly 20% over both the last year and the 10 year averages, and the average price for a home has dropped by approximately 6% overall.  Flaherty’s much maligned tightening of mortgage policy simply amplified an already cooling market, with global uncertainty and general real estate trends playing an additional role in why this occurred.

 

Which brings us to where we are at right now, and the real question on everybody’s mind: where is the market going, down, or up? I think it’s really anybody’s guess at this point, but I see a number of important indicators are trending upward.

 

Housing starts in the US are up for the first time in almost 5 years, and Europe seems steadier. Interest rates are historically low with no signs of significant change anytime soon and local pent up demand should release into a busier spring market, raising activity and stimulating interest. But longer term, I think it will be slow and steady for a while, with no big drama but no real excitement either! So still lots of good deals out there for smart buyers, and a competitive but steady market for sellers…

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