Metro Vancouver Housing Market Update March 2021

Metro Vancouver’s housing market reached unprecedented levels with March 2021’s market report from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) showing exponential growth in residential home sales. Whether you’re looking to move to a different neighbourhood or simply downsizing from your current living situation, home sales have increased across the board from detached homes to apartments. 

Last month’s sales were 72.2% above the 10-year March sales average and are the highest monthly sales total ever recorded in the region.

“In March, residents bought and listed homes across our region at levels not seen before. This surge in activity is increasing upward pressure on prices,” noted Taylor Biggar, REBGV Chair. “We’re beginning to see double-digit price gains for single-family homes and townhomes over the last 12 months.”


March’s Housing Market At A Glance

REBGV reports show that residential home sales in the region totalled 5,708 in March 2021, a whopping 126.1% increase from the 2,524 homes sold in March 2020 and a 53.2% increase from the 3,727 sales in February 2020.

There were 8,287 homes newly listed on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) system in Metro Vancouver in March 2021. This number represents an 86.8% increase compared to March 2020 and a 64.2% increase over February 2021.

There are now 9,145 homes listed on Metro Vancouver’s MLS® system, a 4.8% decrease compared to March 2020 and a 9.4% increase compared to February 2021. The number of homes listed is 18.6% below the March 10-year average for new listings. This drop in supply, especially when coupled with an increase in demand, is causing upward pressure on housing prices.


March’s Sales-to-Active-Listings Ratio and Composite Benchmark Price

For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for March 2021 is 62.4%. The breakdown is as follows:  

Detached homes – 52.9%
Townhomes –  79.9%
Apartments – 65.4%
Analysts generally expect home prices to dip when the ratio falls below 12% for a sustained period. Home prices often rise when the sales-to-active-listings ratio goes above 20% over several months.

“Today’s activity can be attributed, in part, to an economy that’s showing signs of recovery, historically low interest rates, high demand for space, and increased household savings,” Biggar said. 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,123,300. This represents a 9.4% increase over March 2020 and a 3.6% increase compared to February 2021.


Metro Vancouver Home Sales by Property Type

Detached Homes

There were 1,965 sales of detached homes in March 2021, a 130.6% increase over March 2020. The current benchmark price for a detached house is $1,700,200. This price represents a 17.9% increase from March 2020 and a 4.9% increase over the previous month. 

Attached Homes

Attached or townhouse sales in March 2021 totalled 1,046, an 112.2% increase compared to March 2020. The benchmark price of an attached home is now $872,200. This price represents a 10.4% increase over last year and a 3.9% increase compared to February 2021.

Apartment Homes

There were 2,697 apartment home sales in March 2021, a 128.8% increase compared to March 2020. An apartment home’s benchmark price is now $715,800, a 3.7% increase over last year and a 2.6% increase compared to the previous month.