Photo: Flickr / sama093

Despite a recent slump in sales volume and home prices, thanks mostly because of the impact of the foreign buyer tax implemented a year ago by the provincial government , recent sales performance has actually shown a strong revival towards price and sales trends seen a few years ago during what has been termed as the city’s booming years. According to a new report released by Statistics Canada, Vancouver has seen a rise of two percent in regards to home prices between the months of July and August, with an overall price increase of nearly eight percent since the beginning of the year. 

Such price trends have been pointed to be the result of a newly implemented loan program created by the city, which aimed to help new homebuyers secure the necessary funding needed to purchase property in the most expensive city in Canada. According to the program’s conditions, the government would help match the amount that new homebuyers have saved up for a down payment, contributing up to five percent of the purchase price, as long as the home was worth less than $750,000. The program has been criticised since its introduction late last year by various economics experts, who have argued that the move was a contradictory measure by the government in a period where home prices have risen to sky-high levels. Certainly, it appears that their fears were right, given that home prices in Vancouver – despite dropping down in the first few months after the foreign buyer tax – have risen right back up again, and even higher than before. Along with the loan program, Vancouver’s municipal government, in an effort to tackle housing affordability, also instituted a pilot program aimed to help create affordable rental housing within the Oakridge area aimed at residents earning up to $80,000.

At the national level, home prices have risen half a percent compared to the month of June, and when looking at home prices at a yearly basis, they have gone up by nearly four percent compared to the same period last year. Part of the reason for this growth was thanks to the heavy performance in the country’s most competitive housing markets of Toronto and Vancouver, where the average home price for both cities is well above one million dollars. Compared to Vancouver, Toronto has seen similar price growth annually, with a near seven and a half percent increase in prices compared to 2016. 

Published Date: Oct 26 2017