As home listings fall to record basement level, BCREA asks: how low can they go?

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      Real-estate boards and economists have repeatedly sounded the alarm about the low number of homes for sale.

      Just how bad is the situation?

      A report by the B.C. Real Estate Association states that home listings have fallen to an “all-time record low for the province”.

      In October 2021, the total number of homes for sale dropped to 19,214.

      Compared to the same month last year, October listings represent a 39.2 percent decrease.

      In October 2020, there were 31,601 listings across B.C.

      In Greater Vancouver, Fraser Valley, and Chilliwack district, home listings in October 2021 fell year-over-year by 35 percent, 52.8 percent, and 44.1 percent, respectively.

      To illustrate what’s happening, the BCREA prepared a graph showing the level of listings since the year 2000.

      The chart shows that October 2021 listings are the lowest in number in two decades.

      The graph indicates that the number of listings needed for a “long-term balance” is between 40,000 to 50,000.

      The BCREA headlined the graph with this question: How low can they go?

      Chief economist Brendon Ogmundson noted in a media release Wednesday (November 10) that the “story across the province continues to be the record low number of listings”.

      “Rising mortgage rates should start to temper sales activity next year, but even with a moderation in demand it will take quite some time for the inventory of homes to return to a healthy level,” Ogmundson said.

      As for sales in October 2021, a total of 9,593 homes changed hands, a decrease of 13.7 percent from the same month last year.

      Meanwhile, average residential price in BC climbed to $964,777, an 18.9 percent increase from $811,307 in October 2020.