The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2017 Second Quarter Housing Forecast today.
Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province are forecast to decline 10 per cent to 101,000 units this year, after reaching a record 112,209 units in 2016. Housing demand gained strength this spring, as some of the effects of federal and provincial policy efforts to tamp it down dissipate. In addition, strong market fundamentals continue to underpin an elevated level of home sales. The ten-year average for MLS residential sales in the province is 84,700 units.
“The province is in its fourth year of above-trend economic growth," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "Strong employment growth, consumer confidence and an influx of inter-provincial migrants are important drivers of the housing market this year." In addition, with the millennial generation now entering their household forming years, the condominium market in major urban centres is experiencing pressure on supply.
The average MLS® residential price in the province is forecast to decline 1.1 per cent to $683,500 this year, and increase 5.2 per cent to $719,100 in 2018. The decline in the provincial average price is largely due to rising demand for more affordable condominiums and a larger proportion of home sales occurring outside the Metro Vancouver region. The supply of homes for sale is at a 20-year low in the province, with sellers' market conditions prevelant across most BC regions and home types.