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More choice, lower prices: Why now may be a good time to buy real estate in Vancouver

By Rafferty Baker for CBC News

A new quarterly report on the Metro Vancouver housing market says there’s a high degree of vulnerability in the market, but prices are down, and inventory is up, which means buyers will find some advantage.

According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the region’s soaring real estate prices have cooled since last June’s highs — down about seven or eight per cent — while the rest of the economy has remained strong.

“This housing market assessment is an early warning system for vulnerabilities in the housing market,” said Eric Bond, market analyst with CMHC. “The degree of imbalance between home prices and the local economy is narrower than it has been at any point in the last several years.”

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According to Bond, over the last two years, the inventory of homes for sale in Metro Vancouver has been about 400 units, but now, for multi-family units, there’s closer to 1,100 active listings.

He said that’s still very low, relative to the population, but it means there’s more choice for buyers.

“In many ways this is an opportunity for them to explore more options, and also to take their time making a purchase and putting reasonable conditions on that offer,” said Bond.

But according to Josh Gordon, assistant professor at Simon Fraser University’s school of public policy, buyers may want be careful.

Continue reading the full story here >>

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