British Columbia

Vancouver home sales fall nearly 40% in January as prices pull back

Vancouver's once red-hot housing market continued to cool last month as the number of home sales fell to the lowest level seen in January in 10 years.

Home sales fell to the lowest January level in a decade

Prices are falling across property type, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. (Rafferty Baker/CBC)

Vancouver's once red-hot housing market continued to cool last month as the number of home sales fell to the lowest level seen in January in 10 years.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver says 1,103 homes were sold in Metro Vancouver last month, down 39.3 per cent from the same month a year earlier.

Month-over-month, January home sales were up 2.9 per cent versus December 2018.

The board says last month's home sales were 36.3 per cent below the 10-year sales average for January, and the lowest January sales figure recorded since 2009.

The composite benchmark price for a property, which includes detached properties, townhomes and condominiums, dropped 4.5 per cent from a year ago to $1,019,600.

Sales of detached homes fell 30.4 per cent year over year, while the benchmark price pulled back 9.1 per cent from January 2018 to $1,453,400.

The benchmark price of an attached home last month dipped 0.3 per cent year-over-year to $800,600, while the benchmark price of a condominium fell 1.7 per cent to $658,600.

The board says home prices across all property types have fallen over the region in the past seven months, pressured by the federal government's mortgage stress test that tightened homebuying rules last year.

"This measure, coupled with an increase in mortgage rates, took away as much as 25 per cent of purchasing power from many home buyers trying to enter the market,'' said the board's president, Phil Moore, in a statement.

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