Home sales and construction activity in British Columbia will be on the upswing next year, continuing trends already well underway during the second half of 2019, according to veteran industry observers.
In their recent joint piece for BIV.com, Business Council of British Columbia executive VP / chief policy officer Jock Finlayson and chief economist Ken Peacock noted that “a sooner-than-expected upturn in the residential real estate sector is also a plus for next year.”
The housing market can look forward to further recovery in 2020, “and residential building activity will surprise on the upside.”
“Under the weight of stress tests, demand-dampening tax measures and escalating affordability challenges, home sales fell precipitously in recent years. But in the second half of 2019 sales activity jumped, resulting in more balanced market conditions,” the duo wrote.
Expansion of the inventory of other housing types will prove to be a significant driver of activity, as well.
“The BC government’s plan to develop more rental, co-op and non-market housing should add to new home construction,” Finlayson and Peacock said. “In line with stronger sales activity, we expect average resale home prices in the Lower Mainland to edge higher in 2020 and BC housing starts to remain close to 2019’s above-average level.”
A RE/MAX analysis earlier this month had similar conclusions, with a mixture of economic and demographic conditions leading to a “bottoming out” of the province’s housing slowdown within two years.
Citing trends data from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, RE/MAX stated that starts are expected to hover between a low of 39,300 and a high of 42,300 by the end of this year, and a low of 40,700 and a high of 44,700 in 2020.
This is likely to further intensify into a low of 41,900 starts and a high of 46,900 by 2021.
Meanwhile, sales are projected to climb to a maximum of 84,400 in 2020 and 90,800 in 2021. This will be a breath of fresh air after the muted 78,000 transactions in 2018 and a further dip to around 69,000 this year.