Real Estate Update February 2012

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BC Housing Sales Forecast 2012

  • Photograph of Tom Whitfield
  • Parksville Qualicum Beach REALTOR®
  • Published: Feb 8th, 2012 at 5:16 pm

At the Housing Outlook 2012 conference in Vancouver, analysts from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) sketched a scenario of surprising stability in the Vancouver and B.C. market for next year. For all of B.C., housing sales are forecast to increase 7.4 per cent, according to CMHC. "Modest economic growth at home and abroad is expected to limit growth in consumer demand both this year and in 2013," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "While European sovereign debt concerns and a sluggish US economy will continue to impact consumer confidence, strong demand in the bond market is expected to keep mortgage interest rates at or near record lows for most of 2012," added Muir. Home prices in most BC markets are forecast to experience little change over the next 24 months as the supply of homes for sale more closely matches consumer demand. There seems to be flickering, rays of dawn: the dawn of recovery. There is now better news emerging from south of the border. For instance, a much higher number of new jobs than anticipated, with the unemployment rate the lowest in three years at 8.5 per cent (7.5 per cent nationally in Canada, seven per cent in B.C.) The Canadian economy is not faring badly either. We will likely see more of the same in terms of the pace of the market in the next year or two, but a slight to modest rise in sale prices and volume. I believe that we may look back at the years of 2011/2012 as the "bottom of the market." Let's not forget that the peak of the real estate prices was seen around 2008 - almost four years ago. Indications are that a change, slow but positive, is on the way. For those who are still thinking about buying a property, do not stay on the sidelines too long - the tide of good buys seems about to change! For additional market information, see the Market Statistics link on the home page.

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