A real estate sign is pictured in Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, June, 12, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward

Vancouver housing market posts second-best October on record as sales rise 29%

Vancouver housing market posts second-best October on record as sales rise 29%

Vancouver home sales were up 29 per cent compared with a year ago in October, making it the second-best October on record, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver said Tuesday.

The board said its agents sold 3,687 homes last month, up from 2,858 sold in October 2019.

The benchmark price for Vancouver homes hit $1,045,100 in October, up six per cent from last October and 0.4 per cent from September.

Bowen Island saw the biggest one-month increase in benchmark home prices, of 5.7 per cent, followed by the Sunshine Coast, where prices rose 3.2 per cent. West Vancouver was the priciest neighbourhood, with a benchmark of $2,266,000.

The housing market has been catching up after COVID-19 lockdowns earlier this year stymied the spring selling season. Borrowing costs have also been low amid the COVID-19 response from the Bank of Canada.

The October housing market snapshot shows that people are re-thinking their housing situation during the COVID-19 pandemic, with more days and evenings spent at home this year, said board chairwoman Colette Gerber.

“Home has been a focus for residents during the pandemic,” said Gerber in a statement.

Home sales, which were up also 1.2 per cent from September, rose amid a surge in sales of detached homes. In October, 1,335 detached homes changed hands, a 42.3 per cent increase from the same period last year. Detached homes also saw the biggest year-over-year price increase in October, up 8.5 per cent to $1,532,800.

The smaller market for attached homes, such as townhouses and rowhouses, also saw sales rise 45.9 per cent to 782 sales. The benchmark price was up 5.4 per cent, year-over-year, to $813,000.

But sales growth was slightly slower in Vancouver’s most common home type, apartments. Apartment sales hit 1,570, up 13.4 per cent compared with October 2019, while the benchmark price was up 4.4 per cent to $683,500.

The pace of sales in the condo market — particularly, the number of listings hitting the market — has been a focus of economists.

“Rural and suburban areas that once lagged desirable city addresses are now roaring hot as homebuyers wearied by lockdowns seek bigger yards and larger living spaces” wrote RBC economist Robert Hogue on Oct. 29.

“As rents soften and vacancies rise, condo listings are spiking in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver — albeit from low levels.”

Of October’s listings in Vancouver, 2,891 were apartments, 948 were attached homes, and 1,732 were detached homes.

But the 5,571 homes on the market last month — up 36.7 per cent from a year ago — was still below the 6,402 homes that were listed in September. The board said that a closely watched measure of housing supply and demand — the sales-to-active listings ratio — was above a key level that supports rising home prices even for apartments.

“With demand on the rise, homes priced right for today’s market are receiving attention and, at times, garnering multiple offers,” said Gerber.

In Montreal, home sales jumped 37 per cent in October compared to October 2019, the Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers said on Tuesday. Outer markets like Vaudreuil-Soulanges and North Shore saw sales jump 63 per cent and 52 per cent, respectively, compared with a 29 per cent increase on the Island of Montreal.

But while sales were up 36 per cent for single-family homes and 37 per cent for condos, the listings there told a different story. Active listings for single-family homes were down 35 per cent from October 2019, while condo listings were up 12 per cent.

The real estate association said it was the first October since 2014 where condo listings increased.

Despite the rising supply of Montreal condos, median prices were up 16 per cent to $323,500. Single family home prices were up 21 per cent, year-over-year, to $430,050 in October.

Charles Brant, director of market analysis at the QPAREB, also noted that there was a “substantial decrease” in listings in the outlying suburbs.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 3, 2020.

Anita Balakrishnan, The Canadian Press


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Marcus Golczyk, with Taco Monster, hands food to a customer during Food Truck Drive and Dash in the Westerner Park parking lot in Red Deer Friday afternoon. The drive-thru event will run every Thursday from 4-7 p.m. and Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. through June. Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff
Food Truck Fridays, Food Truck Drive and Dash return in Red Deer

Red Deerians are able to take in a drive-thru food truck experience… Continue reading

Don and Gloria Moore, of Red Deer, are set to celebrate their 70th anniversary later this month. (Contributed photo)
Red Deer couple to celebrate 70th anniversary

Red Deer couple Don and Gloria Moore are set to celebrate their… Continue reading

Chris Scott, owner of The Whistle Stop Cafe, was put in handcuffs after an anti-restriction protest Saturday in the parking lot of the business. (Screenshot via The Whistle Stop Facebook page)
UPDATE: Central Alberta cafe owner arrested after anti-restriction protest

The owner of a central Alberta cafe, which was the site of… Continue reading

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
Red Deer now has 911 active COVID-19 cases

Central zone has 2,917 active cases

FILE - A firefighter wears a mask as he drives his truck. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward, File
VIDEO: Flames rip through Edmonton-area seniors complex, but no fatalities

ST. ALBERT, Alta. — Fire has destroyed part of a retirement complex… Continue reading

Quebec Premier Francois Legault chairs a premiers virtual news conference as premiers John Horgan, B.C., Jason Kenney, Alberta, and Scott Moe, Saskatchewan, are seen onscreen, Thursday, March 4, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Several provinces bring in new restrictions as high COVID-19 case numbers persist

Several provinces are gearing up to tighten public health measures once again… Continue reading

Members of the RCAF take part in a Royal Canadian Air Force change of command ceremony in Ottawa on Friday, May 4, 2018. The Royal Canadian Air Force is hoping Canada will open its doors to military pilots from other countries as it seeks to address a longstanding shortage of experienced aviators. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
RCAF turns to foreign pilots to help with shortage as commercial aviators stay away

OTTAWA — The Royal Canadian Air Force is hoping Canada will open… Continue reading

An arrivals and departures information screen is seen at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport in Halifax on Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018. The chief executive of Atlantic Canada's largest airport is hoping for COVID-19 testing for arriving passengers "sooner rather than later," as an added measure to combat the province's third wave of the virus. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Halifax airport CEO hopes for more on-site COVID testing ‘sooner rather than later’

HALIFAX — The chief executive of Atlantic Canada’s largest airport is hoping… Continue reading

Shoppers wear mask as they shop at a nursery & garden shop on Mother's Day weekend during COVID-19 pandemic in Wilmette, Ill., Saturday, May 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Tearful reunions mark second Mother’s Day under pandemic

Last Mother’s Day, they celebrated with bacon and eggs over FaceTime. This… Continue reading

Arizona Coyotes head coach Rick Tocchet, standing, watches the game during the second period of an NHL hockey game Wednesday, April 14, 2021, in St. Paul, Minn. The Wild won 5-2. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)
Tocchet won’t return as coach of Coyotes after 4 seasons

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Arizona Coyotes and coach Rick Tocchet have mutually… Continue reading

Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella shouts at an official after a fight between Columbus Blue Jackets' s Gavin Bayreuther and Florida Panthers' Sam Bennett during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Monday, April 19, 2021, in Sunrise, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Tortorella out after 6 years as Columbus Blue Jackets coach

COLUMBUS, Ohio — John Tortorella is out as coach of the Columbus… Continue reading

A caribou grazes on Baffin Island in a 2008 file photo. A last-ditch attempt to save some of Canada's vanishing caribou herds is a step closer after a scientific review panel's approval of a plan to permanently pen some animals and breed them to repopulate other herds. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kike Calvo via AP Images
Parks Canada captive caribou breeding proposal gets OK from scientific review panel

JASPER, Alta. — A last-ditch attempt to save some of Canada’s vanishing… Continue reading

The smouldering remains of houses in Slave Lake, Alta., are seen in a May 16, 2011, file photo. The wildfire that is devastating large swaths of the northern Alberta city of Fort McMurray comes just five years after another blaze destroyed 400 buildings and left 2,000 people homeless in Slave Lake, Alberta. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ian Jackson
Ten years later: Five things to know about the Slave Lake wildfire

A wildfire burned about one-third of Slave Lake in northern Alberta in… Continue reading

Most Read