A real estate sign is pictured in Vancouver, B.C., on June, 12, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward)

A real estate sign is pictured in Vancouver, B.C., on June, 12, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward)

Vancouver’s real estate market up 22% in 2020, despite pandemic

December’s sales were almost 58 per cent higher than same month’s 10-year average

  • Jan. 5, 2021 8:00 p.m.

Unexpected and unpredictable – that’s the sentiment coming from newly-released 2020 real estate numbers for Metro Vancouver.

With its busiest-ever December, Metro Vancouver’s 2020 real estate numbers were buoyed by a total housing sale increase of 22 per cent – rising from 25,351 in 2019 to 30,944 in 2020, according to Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver.

Board chair Colette Gerber said that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the real estate market took a heavy hit in March. “We knew, however, that shelter needs don’t go away in times of crisis, they intensify.”

After adapting to the new normal of pandemic protocols, and managing expectations of what the future would hold, home buyer demand and seller supply returned strongly in the fall, with the added boost of low-interest rates, fueling interest.

With a benchmark price of $676,500 for an apartment, and $1.55-million for a detached house, December’s sales were almost 58 per cent higher than the average December over the last 10 years.

“Robust December sales outpaced long-term averages in what’s traditionally the quietest month of the year in real estate. This was part of an unusual seasonal pattern the market followed last year, which can be attributed in large part to the pandemic,” Gerber said.

Adil Dinani, Royal LePage real estate advisor, suggested that due to the pandemic “the definition of what a ‘home’ is for people has become crystal clear,” and that is what is driving record-breaking growth.

“If you’re a buyer, maybe you need more space. If you’re a seller, maybe you’re realizing you need less space. I think you have priorities that have come to the forefront of the market,” Dinani said.

Seeing a shift away from the condo market in the first half of 2020, Dinani suggested that the migration of homeowners to the eastern parts of Metro Vancouver will continue in 2021, and the freeing up of entry-level homes, in response.

With interest rates at record breaking lows, first home buyers could finally get their foot in the door. “First time buyers that were renting before are now saying, ‘Wow, now, I can almost own for a similar monthly expenses as renting,’” Dinani said.

However, with a 23-per-cent reduction in available listings comparatively to this time last year, the market is still in a favorable position for those seeking to sell.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Real estate

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country's crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of May 9

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Abbotsford Christian Elementary School recently held a ribbon-cutting event to celebrate the opening of its StoryWalk project. (Submitted photo)
Abbotsford school offers outdoor walk with picture book along the way

StoryWalk project at Abbotsford Christian Elementary celebrates literacy for all ages

A map showing where the most number of cases were recorded from April 23 to 29. This map, revealing a breakdown of infections by neighborhood, was pulled from a data package leaked to the Vancouver Sun last week (and independently verified).
36 Abbotsford schools flagged for COVID-19 exposures in the last 2 weeks, shattering record

Clearbrook Elementary recorded an ‘exposure’ on all 11 school days

<a href="Facebook users reported seeing a body on the side of the road this morning." target="_blank"></a>Facebook users reported seeing a body on the side of the road this morning. (File photo)
Man killed in fatal hit-and-run collision between Abbotsford and Chilliwack

Body reported at 6 a.m., police close North Parallel Road, single highway lane as they investigate

Kassandra Clack of Abbotsford has been named one of 18 finalists in the Jim Beam Virtual National Talent Search, taking place in June.
Fraser Valley country singer Kassandra Clack a finalist in national talent search

18 finalists vie to win Jim Beam Virtual National Talent Search in June

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

RCMP are looking for information on an alleged shooting attempt near an elementary school in Smithers March 10. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News/Stock)
UPDATE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

Details about the police incident are still unknown

Pieces of nephrite jade are shown at a mine site in northwestern B.C. in July 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Tahltan Central Government MANDATORY CREDIT
Indigenous nation opposes jade mining in northwestern B.C.

B.C.’s Mines Act requires operators to prepare a plan to protect cultural heritage resources

Vancouver Giants celebrated a Justin Sourdif goal Saturday night in Kamloops. Giants dropped a 3-1 decision to Kamloops, a game that clinched the 2020-21 B.C. Division banner for the Blazers. (Allen Douglas/special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Vancouver Giants drop 3-1 decision to Kamloops

Third-period rally should have come sooner, said coach of Langley-based team

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country’s crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
IHIT investigating after man killed in Burnaby shooting

Police looking for more information on fatal shooting

After Bobby Henderson apologized online for his comments to a Toronto reporter, the Langley Rivermen announced that he was no longer team coach and general manager and in fact, had ‘parted ways’ with the franchise in March. (file/Twitter)
Former Langley Rivermen coach and GM apologizes for comments to Toronto reporter

Bobby Henderson blames stress due to the pandemic for his ‘disparaging’ remarks

The body of Brenda Ware, 35, was found along Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park on Thursday, May 6, 2021. (RCMP handout)
RCMP ask for tips after woman’s body found in Kootenay National Park

Brenda Ware was found along Highway 93 in the park, 54 kilometres north of the town of Radium

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read