Vancouver Condo Pre-Sales Cut In Half, New Inventory Delayed

Greater Vancouver Condo Pre-Sales Cut In Half, New Inventory Delayed

The pandemic drove Greater Vancouver new home sales off a cliff, but things have improved… a little. MLA Canada, a Vancouver-based real estate firm specializing in condo pre-sales, observed an increase in absorption for June. Despite unusual market conditions and a bump from lows, absorption is the same rate as last year. Although the current rate is likely being managed through inventory, and project delays.

Greater Vancouver Condo Pre-Sales Down 50%, But Off Pandemic Lows

Greater Vancouver condo pre-sales bounced from record lows, but still came short. There were just 36 units sold in June, up 51% from the month before. The number is a massive 50% lower than the same month last year. A bit of a surprise considering last year was one of the slowest Junes on record. This persistent slowdown is turning into a throttle for new project launches.

Greater Vancouver New Pre-Sale Real Estate Listings

The number of newly available pre-sale units of new homes across Greater Vancouver.

Sep 2017Nov 2017Jan 2018Mar 2018May 2018Jul 2018Sep 2018Nov 2018Jan 2019Mar 2019May 2019Jul 2019Sep 2019Nov 2019Jan 2020Mar 2020May 202005001,0001,5002,0002,500New Pre-Sale Listings
MonthNew Inventory
Sep 2017 929
Oct 2017 1,838
Nov 2017 2,123
Dec 2017 843
Jan 2018 1,020
Feb 2018 2,210
Mar 2018 1,572
Apr 2018 879
May 2018 1,560
Jun 2018 572
Jul 2018 1,921
Aug 2018 1,039
Sep 2018 688
Oct 2018 2,418
Nov 2018 1,298
Dec 2018 1,724
Jan 2019 997
Feb 2019 1,144
Mar 2019 811
Apr 2019 865
May 2019 539
Jun 2019 519
Jul 2019 157
Aug 2019 254
Sep 2019 978
Oct 2019 671
Nov 2019 562
Dec 2019 48
Jan 2020 866
Feb 2020 299
Mar 2020 723
Apr 2020 283
May 2020 240
Jun 2020 259

*MLA Canada number not available.
Source: MLA Canada, Better Dwelling.

Over 57% Of Pre-Sale Homes Expected Are Delayed

The extended slowdown in sales is leading to a lot less inventory than expected. Greater Vancouver saw 259 new pre-sales hit the market in June, up 8% from the month before. This works out to a drop of 50%, compared to the same month last year. It’s inline with the decline in sales, but it’s also 57% lower than the anticipated units for the month. That’s about 338 units delayed, that may pop up later, or be cancelled  – depending on future absorption.

Units are being absorbed at an incredibly low rate, but similar to last year. The sales to new listings ratio (SNLR) reached 14% in June, the same ratio as last year. Analysts generally believe prices will rise when the SNLR is above 60%, fall below 40%, and are priced correctly between those two.

Greater Vancouver New Home Pre-Sale Absorption

The ratio of sales to new listings of pre-sale homes across Greater Vancouver.

Aug 2017Oct 2017Dec 2017Feb 2018Apr 2018Jun 2018Aug 2018Oct 2018Dec 2018Feb 2019Apr 2019Jun 2019Aug 2019Oct 2019Dec 2019*Feb 2020Apr 2020Jun 2020020406080100Sales to New Listings Ratio
Aug 2017 90
Sep 2017 80
Oct 2017 75
Nov 2017 60
Dec 2017 63
Jan 2018 94
Feb 2018 70
Mar 2018 60
Apr 2018 43
May 2018 70
Jun 2018 48
Jul 2018 65
Aug 2018 44
Sep 2018 38
Oct 2018 41
Nov 2018 38
Dec 2018 40
Jan 2019 19
Feb 2019 15
Mar 2019 28
Apr 2019 20
May 2019 22
Jun 2019 14
Jul 2019 37
Aug 2019 40
Sep 2019 36
Oct 2019 45
Nov 2019 30
Dec 2019*  
Jan 2020 31
Feb 2020 31
Mar 2020 28
Apr 2020 17
May 2020 10
Jun 2020 14

*MLA Canada number not available, Better Dwelling estimate based on inference data obtained from MLA.
Source: MLA Canada, Better Dwelling.

Greater Vancouver condo pre-sale absorption is unchanged from last year, but with a few caveats. Sales are significantly lower this time around, and so is inventory. Even more inventory has been delayed and throttled to get to this level. The market may actually be softer than absorption implies. Whether that matters depends on if developers can effectively control inventory longer than buyers wait.

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The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB.