Canada: House prices in Vancouver drop by nearly one-fifth

The Vancouver housing market saw a huge drop in sales volumes in early 2017. According to numbers from the Canadian Real Estate Association, the average re-sale price in Greater Vancouver in January 2017 was down 18.9% from the previous year, and the average sales value is now under $1 million at $878,242. The Vancouver decline was led by a fall in high-end home sales, which have declined since reaching a peak in February last year.

The Vancouver decline was led by a fall in high-end home sales, which have declined since reaching a peak in February last year.

Although the decline began before the introduction of a foreign buyer tax by the British Colombian government in August 2016, evidence suggests that the tax had an immediate effect on home sales, with research from the Canadian Real Estate Association showing that sales are down 39.7% from a year ago, while the dollar volume of transactions has dropped 51.1% in a year. A Chinese crackdown on foreign property purchases is also likely to have had an impact, with Chinese nationals requesting a currency exchange now required to sign a declaration saying they will not use the funds to buy property under threat of being banned from currency conversion and tax audits for non-compliance.

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