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July home sales in Metro Vancouver lowest in 18 years

Residential housing sales in Metro Vancouver reached their lowest levels for the month of July since the year 2000, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).

There were 2,070 residential property sales in July 2018 — a 30.1 per cent decrease from the 2,960 sales recorded in July 2017.

It was also a 14.6 per cent decline compared to June 2018 when 2,425 homes sold.

Last month's sales were 29.3 per cent below the 10-year sales average for the month of July, according to the REBGV.

"With fewer buyers active in today's market, we're seeing less upward pressure on home prices across the region," REBGV president Phil Moore said in a statement.

"This is most pronounced in the detached home market, but demand in the townhome and apartment markets is also relenting from the more frenetic pace experienced over the last few years."

Sale prices are dropping, too. According to the REBGV, the benchmark price for a detached home was $1.59 million in July, down 1.5 per cent from a year earlier and 0.6 per cent from June.

Even in the red-hot condo and townhouse markets, prices fell between June and July — though they're still well above where they were last year. The benchmark price for an apartment is now $700,500, down 0.5 per cent from June, while townhouses sit at $856,000 are down 0.4 per cent.

Moore said summer is generally a quieter time of year in real estate, but that this year might be particularly slow due to increased mortgage rates and stricter lending requirements.

Slowdown hits Fraser Valley

The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board has also seen a dramatic drop in sales since last year. A total of 1,290 sales were processed in July, down 33.4 per cent from July 2017 numbers. That's despite a 23.9-per-cent increase in active listings over the same time period.

And as in Metro Vancouver, the drop in sales coincided with a slight month-on-month decrease in sale prices. The benchmark prices for all housing types were down slightly from the month before — detached homes prices fell by ​0.1 per cent to $1.02 million, townhouses by 0.1 per cent to $557,500, and apartments by 0.7 per cent to $450,400.

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