Kitsilano Real Estate Market Update Blog – March 2018

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Kitsilano Real Estate Market Update Blog – March 2018

Hello! This month offers a lot of news, so let’s dive in.
Our team (The Zwick Chimes Real Estate Group!) was named the #1 RE/MAX Team in Vancouver for another consecutive year, and we’re really excited about that! We do a lot of business for a lot of great clients, across a variety of different neighbourhoods and types of properties, so it’s a fantastic feeling to be recognized as one of the best. 
The New NDP BC Budget was announced in February. The BC Budget had some surprises, some of which are still being ironed out. The biggest changes (that will affect the real estate market) are:
  • Increase in Property Transfer Tax for properties over $3-million. The new tax asks for an extra 2% on the portion exceeding $3-million. Effective immediately.
  • Increase in Foreign Buyers Tax, from 15% to 20% and expansion to Greater Victoria, Nanaimo, Central Okanagan and the Fraser Valley. Effective immediately, though there was some relief for those with existing contracts.
  • Increase in school tax on properties over $3-million. There will be an extra 0.2% on properties assessed between $3-million and $4-million, and 0.4% on properties over $4-million. Effective in 2019.
  • A speculation tax, which is a hot topic in the news due to unknown factors. The proposal is to tax people who do not pay income tax in BC, but own a home and leave it vacant for a certain length of time. The proposed tax will be 0.5% of assessed value in 2018 and 2% of assessed value in 2019, effective in the fall of 2018 (unless the details change beforehand).
  • New rules regarding pre sale condo assignments, land title registration and the ALR.
We’ll certainly see a change in the high end / luxury house market due a triple whammy of increased taxes: Property Transfer Tax, School Tax and Foreign Buyers Tax (if applicable). However, the addition of the Foreign Buyers Tax in other areas of the province may push some Foreign Buyers back to Vancouver (or Squamish/Whistler) if they had started looking outside of Greater Vancouver for investment properties.
Unfortunately, I don’t see any changes that will make it easier for first time home buyers or families to get into the market. I imagine we might see an increase in inventory amongst the higher end market if Sellers are looking to get out of the market sooner rather than later and we’ll see a slow down in Buyer’s interest in these properties as everyone adjusts to the new reality. Thankfully Kitsilano has that undeniable draw that will never wane. With UBC not too far away, and one of the City’s best beaches/pools/public spaces, and true neighbourhood streets, this area will always remain popular.
Aside from these changes, the market keeps chugging along at the same pace – multiple offers on just about every condo, townhouse or duplex, a variety of price strategies being used by listing agents and the need for Buyers to be informed and prepared. Read on for more information about each market..
The market stats in this report are based on February’s data.

Kitsilano Condo Market Update:

The HPI price of a condo in Kitsilano has been steadily rising for years, and currently sits at $652k. Breaking this down, we see an average of $658k ($1,027/sqft) for 1 bedroom condos, $970k ($920/sqft) for 2 bedroom condos and $1,24-million ($1,013/sqft) for 3 bedroom condos in Kitsilano. Keep in mind the average can be really skewed based on what was sold that month, whereas the HPI Price takes into account size, construction, etc.
Total condo inventory in Kitsilano is really low right now. It dropped at the end of last year and hasn’t quite recovered yet. History shows that it increases significantly in April/May, so I would expect the same this year. Inventory for condos is pretty well split between 1 and 2 bedroom options, though this month saw low inventory numbers for 1 bedroom condos.
The average days on market is still quite quick. Anything that is well maintained and shows well, along with condos that allow rentals, will likely received multiple offers. Sellers, this means that putting some extra effort into your listings (staging!) will pay off when it comes to enticing Buyers. We always help our Sellers stage properties to look their best, so contact us to chat about your needs. And Buyers, this means that you still have to be prepared financially, as it can be a really quick market. If you haven’t already, get pre-approved with a great mortgage broker so you know your options. If you’re interested in sitting down to chat about what you can expect trying to navigate the market, and what you can expect to be within your budget, contact me!

Kitsilano Townhouses Market Update:

The HPI price of a townhouse in Kitsilano is $1,088,000, which is close to the highest it’s been in years, but there have been months with a higher average. This is a market where we see on average 10 to 25 listings, so some variation is expected with few units contributing to the averages and a variety of price points in Kitsilano. The average price $1,515,557 ($1,114/sqft) and the median price is $1,698,000 ($1,144/sqft) so there are certainly some high end listings in Kitsilano bringing up the average. Good properties are still selling quickly and with multiple offers, but Sellers need to ensure they’re priced well and staged to appeal to Buyers.
Inventory is fairly low right now, though that should pick up as we head into the typical Spring Market from April thru to July) and Buyers are out there if good listings hit the market. Most townhouses listed currently are 2 bedroom units, with some 3 and 4 bedroom units as well.
Breaking down the price, and we see an average of about $752,000 ($1,098/sqft) for 1 bedroom townhouses in Kits, $1,294,000 ($986/sqft) for 2 bedroom townhouses and $1,817,225 ($1,156/sqft) for 3+ bedroom townhouses in Kits. .
Some of the details that set apart townhouses in Kitsilano – aside from great staging – are a family friendly floor plan, 2 full bathrooms, outdoor space and great storage.
Featured Townhouse Listing: A renovated townhouse with a roof top deck at #23 2375 W Broadway.

Kitsilano House Market Update: 

The Kitsilano Detached House Market had an HPI Price of $2,434,000 last month, which is close to the lowest it’s been over the last couple of years. Last February had the lowest HPI Price we’ve seen in a long time ($2,381,000), but the market rebounded in the Spring to a high of $2,625,600 before dropping again the Fall.
Inventory is fairly low this month, but that isn’t unusual for February. Every year shows inventory increasing in the Spring before it tops out around September/October. The Sales to Active Ratio is 8.3%, which is firmly in a Buyer’s Market.
It will be interesting to see how this market is affected by the new BC Budget announcements – will we see more inventory, further encouraging a Buyer’s market, and will prices drop (and by how much) if the market remains softer than normal.
If you’re looking for a brand new house with a great floor plan on a well placed lot: 3468 W 14th
Inventory always increases in the Spring – especially in Kitsilano where the neighbourhood comes alive – so hopefully we’ll see more units to satisfy Buyer demand. If you haven’t already, talk to a good mortgage broker so you can be as prepared as possible to submit a subject free offer or know what your options are when it comes to moving up to a bigger property.. I always suggest Pinsky Mortgages for their outstanding work ethic and knowledge.
Staging is still really important in a sale, as well as pricing strategy and how offers are handled, so give us a call to chat through all of the possibilities. Send me – Kristi – an email at [email protected] or give me a call at 778-387-7371 .

Kitsilano Real Estate Stats

Keep in mind that the numbers vary depending on location and types of properties, so if you would like more information on a particular type of home or neighbourhood, let us know and we’ll give you the stats.
(Green is Detached Houses, Blue is Townhouses, Orange is Condos)
Total Inventory: 
 Sales to Active Ratio
Home Price Index (HPI) Price: