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February 2, 2000

For immediate release

January market slow but high-end home sales increase

Vancouver - The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that overall housing prices held steady in January 2000, while sales recorded on the Multiple Listing Service® were down 15 per cent compared with January 1999 figures.

January detached homes sales of 534 units dipped eight per cent compared to 583 units sold during the same month last year. According to the Board's Housing Price Index (HPI), the benchmark price of a typical detached home in Greater Vancouver is $343,980, up four per cent from one year ago.

"Real estate sales run in cycles and it's not unusual for January sales to be slower than other months," says Dick Coates, REBGV president. "The percentage decrease in sales may look significant but the actually change in units sold is relatively small."

The Board also reports that apartment sales slipped 21 per cent with 288 units sold this January compared with 365 units sold at the same time last year. Apartment prices remained steady; the benchmark price of $160,030 is up two per cent from one year ago.

January attached property sales were recorded at 124 units, down 28 per cent compared with 172 units sold in January 1999. The benchmark price of $211,520 reveals a two per cent decline from the same time last year.

On a brighter note, sales of homes listed in the $500,000 plus price range increased 49 per cent, as 125 units sold this past month compared to 84 units sold in January 1999.

"Increased consumer confidence and renewed interest from Asia and other international markets have positively impacted purchases of high-end homes," says Coates.

According to recent market reports by CMHC and Royal Bank, increased consumer confidence has encouraged between 15 and 18 per cent of Vancouver area households to plan for a home purchase this year.

Other bright spots in January, 2000 compared to January 1999 include:

Detached:

Burnaby South

up 12%

(18 units sold from 16)

South Delta

up 27%

(23 units sold from 18)

Port Coquitlam

up 52%

(29 units sold from 19)

Vancouver Westside

up 22%

(70 units sold from 57)

West Vancouver

up 35%

(27 units sold from 20)

Attached:

Vancouver (East)

up 88%

(17 units sold from 9)

Apartments:

Coquitlam

up 9%

(23 units sold from 21)

Richmond

up 17%

(33 units sold from 28)

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver is an association of REALTORS® committed to providing its approximately 7,700 members with the structure and services to ensure a high standard of business practices and ethics and to effectively serve the real estate needs of the community. For the most comprehensive and accurate real estate information in the Lower Mainland, visit the REBGV's internet web site at www.realtylink.org



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