One of the top news stories on everyone's lips is the Vancouver real estate market and how it is clawing its way back to balance.
Similar to the comeback occurring in Toronto, Vancouver's housing market is bouncing back after it's Government policy-driven slump. For the third month in a row, the number of real estate sales in the west coast city was higher than the year previous (with some attributing the City's high employment rate supporting the increase in buyers). In fact, the Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) predicts that the housing market will continue to experience healthy improvements over the next two years, increasing in line with population growth." The combination of resale market home price stabilization and a record number of new units currently under construction since 2017 will maintain a level of housing activity above the 10-year average through 2021." (DailyHive).
But media outlets continue to report on the one significant exception to this upward trend: luxury properties. Generally defined in B.C. as dwellings valued over $3,000,000, Vancouver's luxury real estate market took a nose-dive after government intervention in 2017. The mortgage stress test, foreign buyer tax, vacant homes levy and the provincial government's commitment to making who owns what more transparent have each contributed to a shift in the market from 'hot to not', especially with respect to money laundering and shadow flipping. The hardest hit was from the top down, where the multi-million dollar marketplace for mega-mansions screeched to a halt. It was reported that, in 2018, Vancouver experienced the world's biggest drop in luxury home prices ever, with the city remaining the world’s weakest luxury housing market since according to Knight Frank’s ranking of 46 major world cities. Many owners, whose luxury homes have sat unsold for months, have been renting their impressive properties out for cheap instead. In fact, this past March almost 800 mansions were listed online for rent, at sums far below their value.
According to Sotheby's, in the first half of 2019, the number property sales over $4M was 49% lower than the previous year, and predicted to get worse with the NDP's proposed transparency laws. In 2017, it was reported that government records didn’t clearly identify the true owners of nearly half of Vancouver’s most valuable properties. Now, two years later, a new policy will require full disclosure on property ownership including the full legal names, citizenship and addresses of all both owners and majority shareholders. While certainly justified - and good news for law-abiding Vancouverites - it's predicted that the new mandates will further put off potential luxury real estate buyers - particularly those who seek anonymity in their investments.
As of September 2019, the average time it was taking a property over $3M to sell was 29 months (anything above 6 months is considered a Buyers' Market). Here are some of the most luxe homes on the market in Vancouver, many at sums below their 2017 value, and a couple which have been on the market for over a year. If you love to ogle beautiful homes, like we do, enjoy!
This 12,413-square-foot home designed by Airey Group is a modernists' dream, combining contemporary architecture with mid-century touches and furniture. Notable features include elegant custom millwork, an in-house elevator, 7 spacious bedrooms and a self-contained guest house, a self-contained an enormous wine/cognac cellar, a Smart home system, a Koi aquarium, and stunning mountain views!
Listed for $39,980,000!
Situated on a 12,297 square foot lot, located in the sought-after "Golden Miles" of prestigious Point Grey Road, this family home boasts six bedrooms and five bathrooms spread out over four levels. The 6,857 square feet of luxurious living space may not look as luxe as some of the neighbouring mansions, but its the views that make this property stunning. Perched on the waterfront, most rooms in the home have a 180 degree view of the bay, mountains and city lights!
Originally built in 1912 and recently refreshed, this home is listed for sale at $35,880,000.
• 1011 W Cordova Street, Penthouse 02
Listed for $38,000,000 in May 2018 and reduced to $29,998,000 a year later, this condo on West Cordova Street in the Fairmont Pacific Rim includes 6,652 square feet of indoor living space, and another 2,900 outside - and is still unsold!
It's a four bedroom, five bath penthouse that sits atop the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel in the Fairmont Estates at 1011 W Cordova Street, Vancouver. As the listing realtor, Malcolm Hasman, puts it, “this brilliantly designed two-level residence encompasses approximately 6,700 square feet of expansive living with over 2,900 additional square feet of outdoor courtyard and terraces all enjoying one of the most prized city, mountain and water views in the city.”
You can view a one minute video of the penthouse here! Pretty incredible!
• 5791 Newton Wynd
This exquisite family home unfolds over 10,000 square feet of interior living space, with 6 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms, and sitting on a 30,000 square foot landscaped estate. Check out those sweeping views of ocean and mountains!
The property has been on the market for 277 days at $19,980,000!
How much would you pay for this contemporary beauty? More information on the realtor's site here: Faith Wilson Group.
While we certainly hope that these beautiful homes find the perfect owner, who pays a price in live with the property's value, that doesn't always happen in a difficult market, as evidenced by this May 2019 sale: 'This West Vancouver Mansion Just Sold For Less Than Half Its Asking Price.' Economist Tom Davidoff was quoted as saying "we're seeing very, very slow sales, and the houses that are selling, we're seeing these very, very large price reductions." If you have the funds and are in the market fo a high-end West Coast property, perhaps now is the time to buy!
Before you go, try out the complimentary Houseporn posts for more beautiful homes!
~ Posted by Steven Fudge, the purveyor of houseporn.ca and proprietor of Urbaneer.com, a division of Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage.