experts: real estate column Wednesday, March 06, 2002

It Just Keeps On!

The lament of the North Shore home seeker (and the Realtors representing them) is "why so few places available?"

By Alan  Skinner

The lament of the North Shore home seeker (and the Realtors representing them) is "why so few places available?". Yes folks, supply is a problem, and demand, as we discussed last month, continues to be vigorous. But why are listings not growing? That appears to be the question but, is it true? Well, partially ≠ listings are coming on to the market but the dratted things are selling too quickly! In the first 2 months of last year, sales represented about 50% of the new listings over those months ≠ this year we are seeing sales at 75% of new listings ≠ quite a dramatic change.

Looking specifically at North Van ≠ detached sales for 2002 (Y.T.D.) are 226 (up 46% from 2001), townhomes 79 (up 84%) and condo apartments 182 (up 167%). Combined inventory is at 74% of last year at this time.

West Van is similar with detached at 138 sales (up 42% over 2001), townhomes at 21 (up 61%) and condo apartments 29 (up 100%). Inventory here is down over last year by not quite as much (11%).

What about prices? What indeed? Here I am going to be a bit cagey. In the various categories we are seeing a mix of average price changes - from 2% to 16%, to unchanged to down 11%. It is a little early (2 months) to call an average increase for the North Shore market with any degree of accuracy. Remember too, that, if a greater number of 1 bedroom condos sell in one month than 2 or more bedrooms, the average price of condos would obviously appear to have dropped. It would, in this instance, be erroneous to conclude that the prices are heading downward. I will therefore reserve specific judgment except to say, yes, we are feeling a definite firming up of prices and, with the multiple offers on a number of listings, there is general consensus that values are on the rise.

To those of you looking to buy, do make sure that your friendly banker or broker has you preapproved for mortgage financing, and the interest rate locked in. There is no charge for this and if it takes a month or more to find your new home, you will at least be protected from any interest rate increases (and will get the reduced rate if rates should drop). Donít neglect the potentially major savings here.

I remain currently available to represent select sellers and buyers. Please feel free to "interview" me by visiting my website ( - then call for a face-to-face meeting at (604-988-7368). I look forward to meeting you.

FLASH - A new feature (thanks to Andrew K) has been added - North and West Vancouver graphs showing how prices and sales have changed. Take a look - these will be updated monthly (click on the link or copy and paste into your browser).

Please don't hesitate to call/e-mail with any questions on local real estate, whether buying, selling or just looking at future options.

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Recent Articles by this columnist:

Keeping Realtors Honest
Tuesday, August 12, 2014

How well do we stack up?
Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Resistance to change and compliance delay
Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Of urban planning and municipal wisdom
Thursday, April 17, 2014

Yes, it's official - demand is rising
Tuesday, March 11, 2014

All articles by Alan  Skinner

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