Sotheby's

A detached home in West Vancouver

Bi-annual study notes that while the city’s housing surge has not stopped, there are signs that it has somewhat slowed

What was once called the “luxury” housing market now more or less represents the minimum one can pay for a detached home in Vancouver. With that in mind, a recent report from the Canadian arm of multinational corporation Sotheby’s sums up Vancouver’s current real estate climate—at least when concerned with detached homes—quite nicely.

The latest edition of the “Top-Tier Mid-Year Report” found that sales of homes over $1 million in Vancouver saw a dip compared to the same time last year.

Overall residential real estate sales (condominiums, attached and single family homes) over $1 million decreased 19 percent year-over-year. It’s the second time in a row the rate went down.

Sales of $4-million-plus properties saw an even greater fall, decreasing 47 percent compared to the same period in 2017.

When only looking at condominiums in the million-dollar price range, however, a different story emerges. In the first six months of the year, $1-million-plus condo sales increased 9 percent when compared to the same period in 2017, while $4-million-plus condo sales increased 35 percent.

Sotheby’s chalks up much of the drop in detached homes as “a result of buyer uncertainty, wavering supply, and the cascading consequences of governmental policies incrementally implemented since 2016 in an effort to curtail escalating prices and address the region’s affordability concerns.”

The first stage of a calming housing market or merely a temporary port in a never-ending storm?