Though many naysayers have been predicting a bursting of what has been termed a housing bubble in the Vancouver market, the reality is a good deal brighter. Articles and blogs claiming a dramatic decline in housing values in B.C. have very little true credibility.
The fact remains that throughout the previous year almost all Vancouver residents saw modest gains in their Vancouver real estate assessments. In the city of Vancouver itself, net gains of about 2.2 percent in assessed home values were seen.
Likewise in Burnaby gains were as much by 3.99 percent and in Surrey home values increased by 5.15 percent.
In the Township of Langley residential real estate values increased by 3.13 percent. The City of Richmond did however see a very slight decline in the assessed values. A marginal decline of some 0.64 percent was noted, however this fails to show some important facts.
For instance, though the value of high-end single family homes went down, the condos for sale in the Richmond actually increased by a fairly dramatic 5.1 percent during 2012.
Thus, despite some negative press, the reality of the situation is that the year ahead looks much the same. While total home sales have declined by about 12 percent, so far this has not had a major impact on sale prices.
The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is likewise not sounding any alarms. In fact, according to them the housing market looks stable. Strong employment growth and an increase in population growth suggest that there will be a normalized market.
The bottom line is that the Vancouver housing market looks good. Vancouver real estate should see a steady, if somewhat marginal growth over the coming year.