Blog › North Vancouver Market Update

Buyer Remaining Cautious in 2019

front of house   ariel



Buyer’s Remaining Cautious in 2019

Through the first three months of 2019 one thing remains clear there is no urgency to buy.  Not long ago, prices in the North Vancouver market were growing 5 to 10% per year and buyer’s wanted to get into the market or they might not be able to afford to buy the next year.  We are now coming off 2018 where selling prices fell and buyers are now taking a cautious approach to the market in anticipation of prices continuing to fall.  Consequently, sales in all market segments are on the decline.  See chart below.

Affordability continues to impact buyers in all market segments.  At the top end of the market, the Foreign Buyer’s tax, the Speculation tax, and higher school taxes and property transfer taxes have impacted sales above $2 million.  At the lower end of the market higher interest rates and the 2% stress test have sidelined young buyers in all market segments.  Young  buyer’s are having difficulty getting the financing they need.

At some point, the market will turn.  This will happen when prices drop far enough that even with all the new taxes and rules, buyers can afford to purchase.  The buyer’s are out there, and they will buy once affordability and a sense of urgency returns to the market.

North Vancouver – average unit sales per month






2019 YTD




















West Vancouver – average unit sales per month






2019 YTD




















REBGV President Ashley Smith made the following statement this past week:

"Housing demand today isn’t aligning with our growing economy and low unemployment rates. The market trends we’re seeing are largely policy induced," Ashley Smith, REBGV president said. "For three years, governments at all levels have imposed new taxes and borrowing requirements on to the housing market.”

“What policymakers are failing to recognize is that demand-side measures don’t eliminate demand, they sideline potential home buyers in the short term. That demand is ultimately satisfied down the line because shelter needs don’t go away. Using public policy to delay local demand in the housing market just feeds disruptive cycles that have been so well-documented in our region."

If you need a REALTOR to assist you with Buying, Selling or Investing, I am definitely someone you can rely on and trustFriendly introductions always welcome and very much appreciate.

Jeff Mulock

Sutton Group West Coast realty


[email protected]








Affordability Key issue Facing Buyers and Sellers in 2018

A year ago today, a couple with an annual household income of $138,153 and a 20% down payment could purchase a $1,000,000 home.  Today, that same couple with the same income could only afford to purchase a $750,000 home.  What has changed?  The Bank of Canada has had three key rate increases totaling .75%, and the Federal government is now requiring lenders to “stress test” all mortgages at two percentage points higher than they are right now to ensure borrowers would be able to pay off the loan.  The net effect is that Buyers will have to save more and lower their expectations.  What does this mean to Sellers?  In the long term, it means fewer Buyers with less purchasing power.


How does this impact the current market?  In the short term, supply and demand factors are still driving the market.  However, we did start to see the impact of affordability on the North Vancouver detached market last year as higher prices sidelined many Buyers, and inventory levels for detached housing started to increase.  Lower demand levels for detached housing saw the market move from a Seller’s market (sales to active ratio 20% +) back towards a Balanced market (sales to active ratio 12 – 19%).


We are now starting to see high prices impact affordability for townhouses/duplexes and apartments, and with Buyers being impacted by rate increases and “stress tests”, I believe inventory levels will build again for both market segments and we will see a trend back to a more balanced market.


North Vancouver Detached Market

Sellers’ market running between 20 – 25% sales to active ratio.  The year over year bench mark price up 5.5%.  Builders are currently carrying high levels of inventory at the $3 million plus price range and are not as active purchasing at the lower end of the market resulting in less competition.  Most active price range $1.500m - $1.999 million.


North Vancouver Condos Market

Inventory levels continue to decline resulting in a hot Seller’s market; 40 – 80% sales to active ratio.  Market is showing signs of slowing down because of high prices.  The year over year benchmark price is up 23.0%.  Most active price range $400k to $900k.


North Vancouver Townhouse/Duplex Market

Inventory levels remain low resulting in a strong Seller’s market; 35-60% sales to active ratio.  The year over year benchmark price is up 17.6%.  Most active price range $900k to $1.5 million.



If you need a REALTOR to assist you with Buying, Selling or Investing, I am definitely someone you can rely on and trustFriendly introductions always welcome and very much appreciatedJ


Hot North Vancouver Sellers Market Making It Difficult For Buyers and Sellers

REALTORS do not like the current market because it is becoming more and more difficult for Sellers and Buyers to actually accomplish anything.  There is no question that Sellers are benefiting.  Current market conditions are driving up prices.  Most Sellers are looking at multiple offers within a week of putting their home on the market.  The difficult part is that Sellers are also Buyers.  Yes they can sell - but can they find anything that meets their needs to purchase and how many other Buyers are they going to be competing with?  If you are selling and moving away, or purchasing an apartment, then you are likely okay.  But even the apartment market is heating up.

The solution is to buy first and then sell your home.  If you think about it, the solution becomes part of the problem, because now Sellers are waiting to find something to purchase and this drives inventory levels down even further.  If Sellers take the opposite approach and sell first, they may not be able to purchase anything.  If they are out of the market too long then they will actually fall behind, with prices continuing to raise.


North Vancouver Detached Homes

Only 104 active listings.  A good balanced market needs 400 active listings.  The year over year increase in the benchmark price is 26.6%.  The good news is that your $1 million home a year ago is now worth $1,266,000.  The North Vancouver detached home market has now been in a Seller’s market since March 2013.  Month over month, inventory levels continue to erode.

North Vancouver Apartments (Condos)

Only 117 active listings.  These numbers do not include existing or scheduled projects.  The year over year increase in the benchmark price is 9.9%.  For downsizers and first time buyers, this is still the easiest and most competitive market to buy in to.  New projects allow you to make a purchase for something that you will like and then you can sell your home 3-months prior to your possession date.  I help many clients with new project purchases.  Remember the sales person at the project showroom represents the Developer not you!  I am very knowledgeable about current and future North and West Vancouver projects.


North Vancouver Attached (Duplexes/Townhomes)

Only 48 active listings.  The year over year increase in the benchmark price is 16.6%.  We have been in a Seller’s market since February of 2014.  This market has really heated up recently because detached Buyers have turned to the attached market because detached homes have become unaffordable for a lot of North Vancouver Buyers.  The other factor is that West Vancouver also has very little attached inventory (10 active listings).


The market has become very competitive and complex.  I would be happy to give you an overview of what is happening in your neighbourhood and provide you with a free market evaluation of your home.  More importantly, we can discuss a strategy to help you become a successful Seller and Buyer in this current market.

Buying, Selling or Investing?  I can provide answers and solutions.  Friendly introductions are always welcome!!!    


Jeff Mulock    REALTOR®

Sutton Group West Coast Realty


(C)  604-512-2477

[email protected]


View 1st Time Buyer Video