BUYERS SEE VALUE IN SINGLE FAMILY DETACHED HOMES IN THE FRASER VALLEY

(Surrey, BC) – In March, the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) processed 1,259 sales on its Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®), an increase of 12 per cent compared to the 1,128 sales during March of last year, and a 14 per cent increase compared to February’s 1,102 sales.

Ray Werger, President of the Board, says, “We did see activity pick up last month with an increase in demand in particular for single family detached homes. Sales were noticeably higher in North Delta, Mission and Langley compared to last year.

“Last March, sales of detached homes accounted for 55 per cent of sales of our three main residential property types and this year that increased to 58 per cent. It may not sound like much, but that translated into over 100 more sales. The property type that lost ground was townhouses.” Werger explains, “Our main buyers are families looking for the best value possible by taking advantage of continuing low interest rates and stable home prices.”

The most popular price range for single family detached homes in the Fraser Valley last month was between $500,000 and $600,000. The benchmark price of a typical detached home was $563,400, an increase of 3.5 per cent compared to $544,300 during the same month last year.

For townhouses, the benchmark price in March was $297,100, a decrease of 0.4 per cent compared to $298,200 in March 2013 and the benchmark price of apartments was $195,400, a decrease of 4.3 per cent compared to $204,200 in March 2013.

The Board posted 2,799 new listings last month, an increase of 2 per cent compared to the 2,736 posted during March of last year bringing the total number of active listings in March to 8,763 – 8 per cent less than were available during March 2013.

Werger adds, “We can’t emphasize enough that real estate is local. What’s happening with the Fraser Valley housing market in general may or may not be happening to the market for your home. Contact your local REALTOR® for detailed market information by community, neighbourhood and property type.”

In March, Fraser Valley’s sales-to-active-listings ratio – a comparison of sales and inventory that measures the health of the market – was 14 per cent for all property types (residential and commercial combined); and, 18 per cent for the three main residential property types indicating stability in the marketplace.

Mortgage rates are down and the local real estate market takes another hit. We are passing the mid-point of the year most homeowners at this point are very aware of the down turn we are experiencing in the local real estate market. Inventory has climbed and sales have fallen. Property values are headed down and as much as some would call it a balanced market, it’s more of a buyers’ market. Of course, there are few exceptions to this. Vancouver area homes sales posted their weakest June in almost twenty years. “We’re continuing to see an expectation gap between home buyers and sellers in Metro Vancouver,” said Ashley Smith, REBGV president. “Sellers are often trying to get yesterday’s values for their homes while buyers are taking a cautious, wait-and-see approach.” To take a closer look at the stats, click here Selling property in this market is challenging and requires a skillful realtor. Hard work often pays off, but in these conditions; it’s more about price and affordability. Buyers are taking advantage of these conditions and ‘low ball offers’ are becoming the norm. Sellers should prepare themselves and understand that it will likely take additional time to sell their home. When it comes to selling successfully there are few things that can help in delivering great results. Click here to ask me. Mortgage lending conditions are not much better. The good news is that interest rates have fallen since the beginning of the year and 5 year fixed is now as low as 2.74%. Most economists think fixed rates should hold steady and that we should see the prime lending rate move lower later this year. Borrowers looking to access these cheap rates should ensure they have all income taxes up to date and if you are self-employed ensure you have updated financial statements. This will help get you the answer you need quickly. Alternatively, if you need funds quickly and cannot meet the stringent lending criteria; then there are lots options but it comes at a higher cost. Mortgage rates: (certain conditions apply): Best 5 year fixed: 2.74% - insured Best 5 year fixed: 2.79% - uninsured Best Variable: Prime – 1% Best 10 year fixed: 3.44%