For some reason, things look nicer on the West Side of Vancouver compared to the East Side.
For one, streets seem to be better groomed.
This historically more affluent side is also closer to local beaches, which for some is simply priceless.
It’s no wonder that West Side homes are more expensive than those on the other section of Vancouver.
To illustrate, the benchmark price of a single-family home on the West Side in May 2021 stood at $3,383,100.
Compare that to the benchmark price of a typical detached home on the East Side during the same month, which was $1,709,700.
It means that West Side homes are almost twice as costly compared to their East Side counterparts.
While this is generally true, realtor David Hutchinson suggests that in a number of cases, the lines are disappearing between the two sides of the city.
For example, the home at 3742 Ontario Street sold on May 18, 2021 for $2,150,000.
A week later, the residence at 3622 West 17th Avenue sold for the same price.
“This is really a new phenomenon, with Vancouver East prices reaching some Vancouver West price points,” Hutchinson told the Straight.
The Sutton Group-West Coast realty agent noted that some factors may explain what is happening.
“It could be due to a bit of hollowing out of some parts of Vancouver West,” Hutchinson said.
“A recent stroll through Shaughnessy shows empty homes, some unkempt houses, and overgrown lawns,” he said by way of an example.
“Some shops are also struggling,” Hutchinson added.
Meanwhile, the East Side presents “more reasonable price points”, which draw in more buyers, thereby pushing up prices.
“As more buyers look east for housing options, they are finding pockets like Strathcona, Trout Lake, Hastings Sunrise, larger lots in Killarney, and Fraserview next to the golf course, and the new River District master planned community, that appeal to them,” Hutchinson said.
The Sutton Group-West Coast Realty agent cited a recent sale of a cute, little house in the heart of Kitsilano for a “very good price as an example of the recent blurred lines between east and west in Vancouver”.
The West Side home at 2233 Balaclava Street sold on May 14 for $1,890,000.
Compare this to 3631 St. Catherines Street on the East Side, which sold on May 10 for slightly more at $1,898,000.
Here’s another example, with 3344 Fleming Street, which sold on May 11 for $2,030,000.
The next day on May 11, the house at 3449 West 6th Avenue sold for $2 million.
“The East Side was historically the blue-collar section of Vancouver, a working area that provided affordability,” Hutchinson said. “That seems to be rapidly changing.”
However, Hutchinson said that the East Side retains a lot of its working-class charms.
“For some buyers, they're leaning toward a sense of community, and that has them looking to good ole East Van, where you can still find neighbours growing grapes, tomatoes, and figs in their yards, and sitting on the front porches on warm, sunny days,” Hutchinson said.