Although a lack of supply is keeping market conditions tight, home sales in British Columbia trended lower during April thanks to rising interest rates, a sign that demand is starting to normalize. Photo: edb3_16 / Adobe Stock

Although a lack of supply is keeping market conditions tight, home sales in British Columbia trended lower during April thanks to rising interest rates, a sign that demand is starting to normalize.

New data released by the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) shows that B.C. logged a total of 8,939 residential sales over the province’s MLS systems in April. This marks 34.9 per cent decrease from the provincial sales record set in April 2021, when 13,736 homes were bought and sold.

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Between the province’s real estate boards, the majority of April’s transactions were counted in Greater Vancouver, where 3,281 sales took place. However, compared to the same month last year when 5,010 sales were recorded, transactions decreased 34.5 per cent year-over-year. Powell River reported the least amount of homes sold in April, where just 31 properties exchanged hands, 38 per cent less than 50 property sales a year ago.

Year-to-date, B.C. has recorded 35,618 transactions across the province. This is a notable 24.2 per cent decline from 2021, when 46,961 sales had been logged at this point in the year.

“Canadian mortgages have sharply increased, surpassing four per cent for the first time in a decade. With interest rates rising, demand across B.C. is now on a path to normalizing,” said BCREA’s chief economist, Brendon Ogmundson, in the market report. “However, given existing levels of supply, market conditions remain tight.”

B.C. home prices keep rising as active listings drop

On an annual basis, active B.C. listings trended downward in April, but the cost of a home continued to rise.

According to BCREA, a total of 23,345 listings were active provincewide in April, a 7.5 per cent decrease compared to the 25,243 active listings in the previous year. The majority of April’s active listings could be found in Greater Vancouver, where 9,176 homes were available for sale last month.

BCREA noted in its report that although listings were lower, the number of homes on the market are starting to accumulate in some areas as demand dissipates.

“However, it will likely take a year or more for the supply of listings to return to balanced market levels,” the report noted.

In April, the average MLS residential price in B.C. was $1.065 million, up 12.9 per cent from $943,765 in April 2021. Greater Vancouver recorded the highest average residential price in April at $1.340 million, 10.7 per cent higher than last year’s average of $1.211 million. Compared to the other real estate boards, the average home price grew the most in Powell River, where prices jumped 52 per cent from $553,385 to $841,387 in one year.

Last month, $9.5 billion in total sales dollar volume was recorded, down 26.5 per cent from $12.9 billion in April 2021. On a year-to-date basis, residential sales dollar volume in B.C. has dropped 10.7 per cent from $43.02 billion to $38.4 billion.

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