Burnaby houses still selling well above assessed value: study

Real estate sales in Burnaby may have flat-lined during COVID-19, but prices haven’t really followed suit, according to a new report.

There are signs that detached home sales in Greater Vancouver are remaining stable and could be slowly recovering according to a newly released study, but Burnaby prices are showing interesting things, says the study, compiled by Vancouver-based real estate marketing firm Roomvu,

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Detached homes in Richmond and Burnaby are experiencing the biggest percentage gains in sold price over assessed value, the study said.

Detached home prices slightly increased in May from April by 0.3%, after falling 3% overall from January 1 to May 31 of this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Other findings:

  • The median sold price of detached homes in Metro Vancouver dropped 3% from pre-COVID (Jan 1 – Mar 15) to post-COVID (Mar 16 – May 31); but increased by 0.3% since April 
  • A decline in median assessed value and average size of detached homes from pre- to post COVID suggests buyers’ are showing a preference for low priced properties.
  • The median sold price of apartments has dropped 3.7% from pre- to post COVID; 0.3% since April 
  • Decline in assessed value of apartments sold indicates buyers’ appetite for lower-priced apartments 
  • Two-bedroom apartments are becoming increasingly popular during post-COVID and have a higher percentage increase of sold price to assessed value.
  • The sale of apartments has dropped by 47.6% YoY and 59% from pre- to post-COVID.

The study compared detached home and apartment prices and sizes from January 01, 2020 – March 15, 2020 (pre-Covid) and March 15 – May 31 (post-Covid). It found that the median price of sold apartments dropped by 3.7% in this time, with overall sales lower by 59%. Despite this, the median sold price for apartments in Greater Vancouver was up 3% year-over-year. 

“Low transaction volumes typically lead to low prices; however, it appears sellers and buyers have disappeared from the market in similar proportions,” says Thomas Davidoff, economist and professor at UBC’s Sauder School of Business. “Conditions in the market appear to have changed less than one might have expected before and after the shutdown,” he added. 

“There are difficulties when comparing pre- and post-COVID-19 average or median sale prices,” explains Sam Mehrbod, a local Vancouver-based realtor and CEO at Roomvu. “Average or median prices can quickly become skewed based on outliers. For these reasons, our team examined pre- and post-COVID sales prices as they relate to government property assessment values,” he added. 

The entire study can be readhere.

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