Vancouver Real Estate Market Update February 2013!

Hi there, my name is Teresa Comeau and I'm with Re/Max Select Realty, and I'm located on Main Street in Vancouver. Welcome to Market Update for February, 2013. Now, I'm getting a lot of questions from clients and customers and I'm going to kind of go through some of the answers to these common questions I'm getting.
Now, the first one I'm getting a lot of. Is the market really as bad as they say? Well, I don't think so. I see real positive signs out there that tell me that we'll see improvement this year. So, despite what's being reported by the media, the real estate market is not dead.
Now, the other question I'm getting is, are sales down? Yeah they are, about 14% over last year. But considering how unrealistically hot the market's been in previous years, this tells me that we had an adjustment.
Now, Vancouver Real Estate has been clipping along at such a frantic pace for so long, that very few people have any conception of what is normal. Now, are the number of homes homes for sale up? Yes they are about 5%. But what is also notable is that new listings coming to the market have dropped by about 11% over last year. This is a good thing, because this tells me that we should see inventory drop and bring us back to a balanced market. Now, what's more important is real inventory. Now, these are homes that are based on current market conditions, and most homes that are on the market right now are totally out to lunch, they've effectively taken themselves out of the running. So, real inventory is actually quite low.
Another question I'm getting is, have prices dropped? Well, in the last year, the benchmark price has gone down. But, it is hard to find any region or area that has shown a price drop from today to say three years ago. So, real estate is still safe investment. My RSPs, not so much.
So, what's gonna happen? I think we're going to continue to see softer conditions until the end of the year, from what we're accustomed to. But again, what is normal? We could see prices drop by the end of the year, but I highly doubt it's going to be by much. What I see as more likely is prices start to increase by the end of the year.
So, who has an advantage now? Well, there's three types of buyers that have the advantage right now. Number one is the first-time buyer, and that's because interest rates are low and prices are down, and they have more negotiating position. Also, the investors, now those for the same reasons as the first-time buyer. And also, move-up buyers. Now, those are buyers that are moving up to a higher price point. So, those higher prices have come down a little bit and the transaction costs are less. So, those are three type of buyers that could benefit from this market.
So, who do you listen too? Well, there are multiple opinions out there and, if you're confused and want a clearer picture, give myself a call. Again, my name is Teresa Comeau with Re/Max Select Reality and my phone number is 604 240 1879.
Thank you for watching, I look forward to hearing from you!