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Condo prices in Vancouver area expected to drop: real estate analyst

Last Updated May 19, 2020 at 7:45 pm PDT

FILE - Condos and apartment buildings are seen in downtown Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday February 2, 2017. Some of Canada's biggest landlords say they're committed to working with tenants who have lost their job because of the coronavirus pandemic.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

A real estate analyst predicts condo prices will drop in the Vancouver area

Dane Eitel says if people can afford to hold off on buying, they should for now

Nearly 4000 condos are listed for sale across the Lower Mainland, but just under 508 sold

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Now isn’t the time to buy real estate if someone is willing to wait for a better deal, according to a local analyst who predicts condo prices in the Vancouver area are set to decline for years.

Eitel Insights founder Dane Eitel says it’s not the time to try to catch a falling knife, or rather the longer someone holds on to a property they can’t afford, the harder it will be to get rid of it.

He’s advising buyers who can afford to wait for a better price to hold off until at least next year since “need-based selling” will be coming into the market in 2020. He says many investors facing hardship because of the pandemic are also feeling mounting pressure to sell.

“So, I would definitely hold off purchasing a condo. You could really almost sell your condo property right now and go away for a long time, come back and you’ll see that similar type property at extremely lower values.”

The average price for a condo is more than $660,000, but he says that’s going to change.

“For the condo market, January 2018 was the peak at $750,000. Currently, we’re down 12 per cent from that. We’re right at $660,000 for roughly six months in a row in the condo market average sale price,” Eitel explains.

Within two years, he says that price should fall to $525,000 in a few yeas, and heavily-mortgaged owners may soon be forced to sell.

“There are buildings that have been completed and they’re roughly 60 per cent available –30 per cent for sale, 30 per cent for rent– so, all these investors that purchased are going to be put in a tough place and you’ll see a continuation of increased inventory,” Eitel says.

He adds as of April, nearly 4000 condos are listed for sale across the Lower Mainland, but just under 508 sold.

However, Eitel also says the situation is not as bad for single-detached homes where the average price in that market could drop below $1.4-million dollars, down from more than $1.6-million it is now.