Metro Vancouver’s housing market slowed in July, but prices remained sky-high (sigh). 

Following the same red-hot and frenzied pace as Toronto's thick-of-pandemic-times real estate market, the pace has slowed lately in the west coast city infamous for its unattainable housing and living costs. 

According to figures from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), 3,326 homes were sold in July. This was 6.3% more than July 2020 – a time of uncertainty around the still relatively new COVID-19 virus – but 11.6% fewer than the homes sold this past June. 

In July, Vancouver saw 4,377 homes of all types newly listed for sale, marking a 25.2% decrease from the 5,849 homes listed the month prior and a 26.4% decrease from the 5,948 homes listed in July 2020. Last month’s new listings were 12% below the 10-year average for July. 

READ: GTA Home Sales Down Compared to Last Year, Still Well-Above Average

In July, Vancouver's sales-to-active-listings ratio was 33.8% -- with 25.5% for detached homes, 47.8% for townhomes, and 37.3% for apartments. 

multiple home ownershipAerial view of Downtown Vancouver during a summer evening before sunset.

“Moderation was the name of the game in July. Home sales and listings fell in line with typical seasonal patterns as summer got going in earnest in July. On top of moderating market activity, price growth has levelled off in most areas and home types,” said Keith Stewart, REBGV economist, in a statement.

According to REBGV, analysts say downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below 12% for a sustained period. In comparison, home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20% over several months.

It should be noted that over 3000 homes sold is still no low figure. Vancouver’s sales were still 13.3% above the 10-year July sales average. While the market is cooling, it’s still hot in Vancouver. 

Tellingly, the MLS Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Vancouver is $1,175,500. This figure is a notable 13.8% higher than July 2020 but unchanged from June. Compared to last year, detached homes have seen the biggest price hike, with a benchmark price of $1,801,100. These prices remain unchanged from June. 

 “Low housing supply remains a fundamental factor in Metro Vancouver’s housing market,” Stewart said. "Home sales remain above average and we’re starting to see price increases relent as well. Going forward, the supply of homes for sale will be among the most critical factors to watch. This will determine the next direction for house price trends."