Vancouver Housing Market Report

WOWA Trusted and Transparent
Market Report Summary for July 2022
Updated August 4th, 2022
  • The benchmark price of homes in Metro Vancouver increased 10.3% year-over-year to $1,207,400 in July 2022.
  • This price exhibits a 29% increase over two years but is 4.5% lower than the all-time high of $1,264,700 in April 2022.
  • The Bank of Canada policy rate increases and quantitative tightening show their effect on the overheated Lower Mainland housing market.
  • Detached home's average price increased by 11% year-over-year to $2.00M.
  • Townhouse's average price increased by 16% year-over-year to $1.10M.
  • Condo apartment's average price increased by 11% year-over-year to $755k.

Greater Vancouver Housing Market Overview

Data for July 2022
Benchmark Price:$1,207,400
All Property Types:$1,207,400
Detached:$2,000,600
Townhouse:$1,096,500
Condo Apartment:$755,000
Transactions (Buy/Sell):1,887
All Property Types:1,887
Detached:523
Townhouse:304
Condo Apartment:1,060
Best 5-Year Variable Mortgage Rates in Vancouver
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BMO
BMO
4.24%
TD
TD
4.35%
CIBC
CIBC
4.39%
RBC
RBC
4.50%
Scotiabank
Scotiabank
4.90%
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The benchmark price of homes in Metro Vancouver was $1,207,400 in July 2022, a 2.3% monthly decrease and a 10.3% increase year-over-year. Metro Vancouver and the Toronto area are Canada's most expensive housing markets. The benchmark price of homes in Vancouver changed by $268k over the past two years; with this amount of money, it is possible to buy a house in Winnipeg.

All property types continued to see decreasing prices compared to last month. Benchmark prices of detached homes in Vancouver have increased 11% over the past year and have reached $2,000,600 for July 2022. That’s 2.8% lower than last month’s benchmark price of $2,058,600 in June 2022.

Over the past two years, Vancouver detached homes' benchmark price has increased by $482,200. This two-year gain is more than the average price of a home in Edmonton, more than the median price for semi-detached houses in Calgary and close to the median price for a single-family detached home in Montreal.

Vancouver townhouse prices have also surged 16% year-over-year and dropped 1.7% month-over-month to $1,096,500 in July 2022, remaining above the $1 million mark after passing that level for the first time in November 2021. Apartment benchmark prices increased 11.4% year-over-year and a 1.5% decrease month-over-month to $755,000.

Looking at Metro Vancouver's housing market, there were 10,288 active listings at the end of July 2022, up 4.4% compared to this time last year. The 3,960 new listings this month is a 9.5% decrease year-over-year. The 1,887 home sales this month are 43% lower year-over-year. This puts Vancouver’s sales-to-active-listings ratio at 18%. That’s far lower than the 57% sales-to-active-listings ratio seen in March 2022, which suggests a seller's market is moving into a buyers market in 4 months.

As the covid pandemic started early in 2020, the Bank of Canada (BoC) decided to fight the expected economic downturn forcefully. In addition to bringing their policy rate close to zero, the BoC went on a shopping spree. Assets of BoC were around $120B in early March 2020; these assets reached a peak of $575B in March 2021. Newly created Canadian dollars paid for this $475B increase in BoC’s assets.

Some of this newly created money came to the real estate market. Though home prices are not included in the official inflation number, increases in house prices cause increases in landlords' asking rents. This in turn increases tenants' rents and, with a considerable time lag, finds its way into official inflation numbers.

Now that inflation is over 8%, and the central bank's reputation is at stake, BoC is raising rates and destroying some of the money it had created through quantitative tightening (QT). The headwind currently reducing real estate prices is the continuation of Bank of Canada rate hikes. These hikes would mean that Vancouver mortgage rates would continue to increase and reduce home affordability in Vancouver even further. Mortgage rates have increased, and higher rates have reduced activity in Vancouver’s housing market.

The money created between March 2020 and March 2021 finds the housing market an attractive destination because of the inelasticity in the supply of houses. Enough houses cannot be made because of the limitations imposed by Canadian municipalities on property rights (zonings). These limitations have acted as a strong tailwind for house prices in Canadian cities. Restrictions on property rights in the form of constraints imposed on the extent and manner of land use reduce the supply of homes.

Another tailwind for Canadian real estate, including real estate prices in BC, is disruptions in the supply chain for house building materials. These disruptions have materially slowed down the completion of houses under construction.

Home Prices in Vancouver

Single-Family Detached Home Prices in Vancouver

Statistics for July 2022
Benchmark Price: $2,000,60011.0% from Jul. 2021
Units Sold: 523-50.2% from Jul. 2021

Freehold Townhouse Prices in Vancouver

Statistics for July 2022
Benchmark Price: $1,096,50015.8% from Jul. 2021
Units Sold: 304-50.2% from Jul. 2021

Condo Prices in Vancouver

Statistics for July 2022
Benchmark Price: $755,00011.4% from Jul. 2021
Units Sold: 1,060-36.4% from Jul. 2021

Vancouver Housing Market Statistics for All Property Types in Metro Vancouver

$1,207,400
Benchmark Price
-2%
Monthly change
-5%
Quarterly change
10%
Annual change
1,887
Transactions (Buy/Sell)
-23%
Monthly change
-42%
Quarterly change
-43%
Annual change

MLS HPI Benchmark Price

Total Transactions

Property Type Distribution

Detached
Townhouses
Condo Apartments
Best 5-Year Variable Mortgage Rates in Canada
CanadaLeaf
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Butler Mortgage
Butler Mortgage
3.44%
nesto
nesto
3.45%
Pine
Pine
3.55%
BMO
BMO
4.24%
TD
TD
4.35%
CIBC
CIBC
4.39%
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Market Overview for Detached Homes in Metro Vancouver

$2,000,600
Benchmark Price
-3%
Monthly change
-5%
Quarterly change
11%
Annual change
523
Transactions (Buy/Sell)
-20%
Monthly change
-46%
Quarterly change
-50%
Annual change

Benchmark Price

Transactions


Market Overview for Townhouses in Metro Vancouver

$1,096,500
Benchmark Price
-2%
Monthly change
-4%
Quarterly change
16%
Annual change
304
Transactions (Buy/Sell)
-35%
Monthly change
-47%
Quarterly change
-50%
Annual change

Benchmark Price

Transactions

Market Overview for Condo Apartments in Metro Vancouver

$755,000
Benchmark Price
-1%
Monthly change
-3%
Quarterly change
11%
Annual change
1,060
Transactions (Buy/Sell)
-20%
Monthly change
-37%
Quarterly change
-36%
Annual change

Benchmark Price

Transactions

Regulation of Strata Insurance

Condo owners in Vancouver and B.C. have recently faced significant increases in their their strata insurance rates. According to a 2019 report commissioned by the B.C. Financial Services Authority, strata insurance premiums in B.C. increased by on average 40% in 2019 alone. Owners in Metro Vancouver faced even greater increases with an average increase of 50%. These costs have placed a headwind to condo prices in Vancouver as condo fees adjust to the new costs.

In response to the financial hardships caused by strata insurance premiums and COVID-19, the B.C. Ministry of Finance recently announced an amendment that, along with a proposed bill, will:

  • End referral fees between insurers or insurance brokers and strata property managers or other third parties
  • Require strata corporations to inform owners about insurance coverage, policy changes, and allow use of the contingency reserve fund
  • Protect strata unit owners against large lawsuits where the owner was not at fault
  • Change the minimum required contributions made by strata unit owners and developers to a strata corporation's contingency reserve fund

These changes will help condo owners deal with the financial burden of strata insurance and open the industry to more transparency.

What is Strata Insurance?

Greater Vancouver Area Breakdown by Region for July 2022

City
Benchmark Price
#1Lower Mainland$1,201,400
#2Greater Vancouver$1,207,400
#3Bowen Island$1,619,000
#4Burnaby East$1,154,200
#5Burnaby North$1,051,100
#6Burnaby South$1,100,600
#7Coquitlam$1,134,600
#8Ladner$1,169,300
#9Maple Ridge$1,041,700
#10New Westminster$834,200
#11North Vancouver$1,410,500
#12Pitt Meadows$955,500
#13Port Coquitlam$946,100
#14Port Moody$1,197,300
#15Richmond$1,162,400
#16Squamish$1,189,400
#17Sunshine Coast$920,400
#18Tsawwassen$1,257,800
#19Vancouver East$1,196,600
#20Vancouver West$1,315,300
#21West Vancouver$2,809,500
#22Whistler$1,560,700
#23Fraser Valley Board$1,091,800
#24North Delta$1,244,400
#25North Surrey$872,500
#26Surrey$1,184,600
#27Cloverdale$1,101,000
#28South Surrey & White Rock$1,296,000
#29Langley$1,118,500
#30Abbotsford$909,700
#31Mission$1,004,600

Glossary and Definitions

MLS® HPI: The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) is an index by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) that tracks the prices of homes in a neighborhood. It allows Canadians to quickly compare home prices across Canada and between periods of time without having to account for specific features of a property. Unlike market prices, which can fluctuate from month to month based on seasonal dynamics, the HPI provides a stable view tracks trends across a longer period of time. The HPI is reviewed every year in May to adjust for changes in the real estate marketplace.

MLS® HPI Benchmark Price: The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Benchmark Price is the HPI translated into a real-world price number.

Strata Insurance: Strata insurance is insurance used by a strata like a condominium to covers damages to common areas and assets and liability to the strata. It can also include fixtures built or installed as part of the original construction of each unit, even though these may not be common structures. The insurance can cover:

  • Buildings and structures associated with the strata including common areas such as the roof, parking garages, driveways, gyms, pools, etc.
  • Liability for any property damage or bodily injury suffered on strata property
  • Any fixtures that are part of the "standard unit" or original construction of each unit

Strata insurance does not usually include personal items and appliances that are part of a condo unit. It also does not cover the damages made by individual unit owners, such as in the case of water damage caused by a unit owner. These are usually covered by personal condo insurance.

Property types

Detached home: A detached home is your standard single-family home. It is a residential building that stands alone and is separately titled or legally a single unit.

Semi-detached home: A semi-detached home is similar to a detached home, except it shares a wall with another home. This pair of homes must make up an independent building and each should be separately titled or legally two separate units. There can only be two homes in a semi-detached building.

Townhouses: A townhouse is the middle between a detached/semi-detached home and a condo apartment. Like detached and semi-detached homes, they are often single-family units that have their own land and may be attached to other units. However, like condo apartments, they typically have to pay co-ownership fees for maintenance and may share some common features with their neighbors.

Condo apartment: This category includes all apartments and condominiums. These are complexes of residential units with common areas such as hallways, parking lots, stairwells, etc. They can be low-rise, mid-rise, or high-rise buildings. Unlike townhouses, there are no parts of the lot (the land of the building) where access is reserved for only one owner or occupant. There can be privately owned units and spaces inside the building.

Plexes are multi-story buildings with two to four individual units, usually one on each floor. They are a mainstay in Montreal and other cities in Quebec. Each unit is usually individually accessible via an external entrance with higher floors connected by staircases.

Property Classes

Freeholds: A freehold is any property where the owner owns both the house and the land it is built on. Common freehold property types include: detached, semi-detached, some townhouses, and farmland.

Condominiums: A condominium or condo is any property where the owner owns the home (or unit) but shares ownership of the land and other improvements with a condominium corporation. Common condominium property types include condo apartments and some townhouses.

Housing Markets Across Canada

Data sourced from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) and the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). Any analysis or commentary is the opinion of the analysts at WOWA.ca and should not be construed as investment advice. Please consult a licensed real estate professional before making a real estate investment decision. The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA.