Prices continue to hold their own in transitioning housing market

SURREY, BC – The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board’s Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) processed 1,379 salesin May,
a decrease of 15 per cent compared to the 1,616 salesin May oflast year and 1 per centmore than were
processed in April. By historical comparison,salesin May were the slowestforthatmonth since 2001.
Looking atinventory,the Board received 3,172 new listingsin May – 4 per centfewerthan received during the
samemonth last year – raising the volume of active propertiesto 10,651 the highestit’s been this year and 2 per
centlowerthan those available in May 2012.
Ron Todson, President ofthe Board,says, “We’re in a transitioningmarket. We’ve seen a significantimprovement
in activity compared to lastfall, but by historicalstandards we’re lagging. Sales are about 20 per centlowerthan
normalforthistime of year, while the number of new listings coming on streamisright on average.”
An industry standard formeasuring the health ofthe real estatemarketis comparing the ratio of number ofsales
to the number of active listings. The British Columbia Real Estate Association describesthe Lower Mainlandmarket
as balanced when thatratio is between 15 and 20 per cent. In the Fraser Valley,thatratio hasfavoured buyers
hovering between 10 and 15 per centformost ofthe lastthree years.
Todson adds, “In orderforthere to be significant downward pressure on home prices, you need to have a
sustained period oftime when the ratio ofsales‐to‐activesisin the single digits and because that hasn’t happened,
prices are remaining relatively stable.”
In May,the benchmark price ofsingle family detached homesin the Fraser Valley was $549,200, an increase of 0.2
per cent compared to $548,000 during the samemonth last year. Fortownhouses,the benchmark price was
$298,000, a decrease of 2.9 per cent compared to $306,800 in May 2012 and the benchmark price of apartments
was $203,400, virtually unchanged from$203,600 in May 2012.

Source: Fraser Valley Real Esate Board

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