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Spring sales and home prices heat up in Greater Vancouver

Supply isn’t enough to meet demand, which is being spurred on by record low interest rates, a strengthening economy, and pandemic-fuelled house hunting.

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Greater Vancouver’s spring real estate market is off to a blistering pace.

April residential sales in the region hit 4,908, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver — 56 per cent higher than the 10-year April average, and setting a new record for the month.

This follows a record-setting March, where sales were up 72 per cent above the 10-year March average.

“Our housing market has changed considerably from one year ago when COVID-19 concerns brought activity to a near standstill,” said real estate board economist Keith Stewart. “This was followed by a well-documented spike in homebuyer demand across the region. So far this spring, we’ve seen a corresponding supply response from home-sellers.”

More home-sellers are listing their properties, prompted by the boom in demand and rising home values, said the board. There are currently 10,245 homes listed for sale on the MLS system, a 12 per cent jump compared with March, but still lagging the 10-year April average by 11 per cent.

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Supply isn’t enough to meet demand, which is being spurred on by record-low interest rates, a strengthening economy and pandemic-fuelled house-hunting, said the board.

“While homes are now being listed at record levels, more supply is needed to meet today’s demand and help market conditions achieve greater balance,” Stewart said.

Condo sales topped all residential types, with 2,289 units exchanging hands in April, followed by detached homes (1,655) and townhouses (964).

Benchmark prices are about two to three per cent higher in April compared with March, depending on housing type. The benchmark price for a detached home for the region is $1,755,500, $900,900 for townhouses and $729,600 for condos.

Bowen Island (46 per cent), the Sunshine Coast (43 per cent) and Maple Ridge (25 per cent) posted the highest year-over-year gains in April.

In Vancouver, benchmark prices rose 9.3 per cent in the east side, and 5.6 per cent on the west side, compared with last April.

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