To little surprise it was another quiet month for single family homes in Vancouver. Liquidity has essentially evaporated for higher end homes. Overall, home sales across the city of Vancouver declined 34% year-over-year. There were just 111 home sales, the lowest total ever recorded, surpassing the previous low of 114 sales set back in September 2008. On a slightly more positive note, the East side of Vancouver, where homes are relatively more affordable, seem to be holding up better. However sales still dipped by 23%.
With sales volumes having tumbled over the past eighteen months, inventory has continued to build. However, it took a surprising decline in September. Total inventory for sale dipped by 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. It appears sellers are trying to weather the storm and wait for better market conditions in the spring of 2019. New listings plunged 28% year-over-year. This will be an important metric moving forward, however despite the plunge in new listings and inventory growth having stalled, there remains 15 months of inventory for sale. Unwelcoming news for sellers.
Price declines are becoming more prominent. The average sales price of a detached home in Vancouver registered a 19.7% decline in September. The median sales price reported a 7.8% decline, while the MLS benchmark price which tends to be a lagging indicator now shows a 7.6% decline year-over-year. We are seeing detached houses on the west side of Vancouver selling back at 2015 prices, while the East Side has held better, and is off about 10-15% from the peak. Price declines can be hard to quantify given sales volumes are at record lows.