February real estate sales bounce back from January lows
By Derrick Penner, Vancouver SunMarch 3, 2009 3:01 PM
In most of Metro Vancouver, realtors recorded 1,480 Multiple-Listing-Service registered sales, about 45 per cent below the same month a year ago. February sales, however, were almost twice January's 762 transactions.
Photograph by: Reuters files, .
VANCOUVER - February real estate sales across the Lower Mainland surpassed their dismal January lows, although the trend of lower sales levels that started last year continued through the second month of 2009, key real estate boards reported Tuesday.
In most of Metro Vancouver, realtors recorded 1,480 Multiple-Listing-Service registered sales, about 45 per cent below the same month a year ago, according to figures from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver.
February sales, however, were almost twice January's 762 transactions.
The so-called benchmark price of a detached home in the board's area hit $653,342, a 14-per-cent decline from the benchmark in February a year ago.
Fraser Valley realtors saw 682 sales in February, which was 48 per cent lower than the same month a year ago, according to figures from the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board.
That number, however, was 75 per cent higher than January's sales.
February's so-called benchmark price of a typical Fraser Valley detached home was $456,683, a 10.4-per-cent drop from the same month a year ago, but slightly higher than the January benchmark.
Realtors in both board areas reported more traffic at property open houses.
Dave Watt, president of the REBGV said activity is picking up "as people begin to see whether their position in the housing market has strengthened as a result of falling interest rates and improved affordability."
Paul Penner, incoming president of the Fraser Valley board, said consumers are still wary of global economic conditions, but lower prices and lower mortgage rates are instilling some confidence.
"For the first time since last September, Fraser Valley Realtors had higher traffic at open houses, more multiple offer situations and an increase in home sales," Penner said in a news release.