Why Are Vancouver Condos So Popular Today?
Despite recent economic downturns in other parts of the country, the cost of owning a detached, single-family home in Vancouver continues to rise. More and more prospective homeowners are looking at Vancouver condos as an alternative route to homeownership in this flourishing city.
Guest post submitted by Tanya Jakubec with Condos in Yaletown.
As home prices in Vancouver continue to rise, luxurious condos in Yaletown and Vancouver downtown condos are an increasingly attractive alternative for many of Vancouver’s up and coming residents.
How Hot is the Market for Vancouver Condos?
According to recent statistics, it now costs nearly 120% of a household’s median annual income to purchase a stand-alone house in Vancouver. Royal Bank of Canada, in its 2016 first quarter RBC Housing Affordability Fact Sheet, refers to Vancouver’s 25% year-over-year housing price surge as “epic.”
Housing prices for single-family homes in Vancouver have reached such extreme heights that in June Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hosted experts at a Roundtable on Affordable Housing to discuss the situation.
Detached Home Prices are Boiling Over
In its 2016 first quarter Housing Trends and Affordability Report, RBC announced an 87.6% aggregate affordability rating for detached, single-family homes in Vancouver.
This means that the total cost of owning a home in Vancouver—including mortgage payments, taxes, and utilities—would consume over 87% of a typical family’s monthly pre-tax income.
Kerry Gold, writing about the housing roundtable and citing data from Landcor, reports that the average price for a detached house sold in Vancouver is now nearly $3 million.
Other reports place the average sale price at a mere $1.4 million. While these figures would seem to indicate that incomes in Vancouver are robust, home ownership is still not for the faint of heart or light of wallet.
Prices for Vancouver Condos Stay on Simmer
The burgeoning prices of detached single-family homes in Vancouver have put them out of reach for many hopeful homeowners and made them unattractive to investors and lenders. Fortunately, Vancouver condo and apartment prices, while still moving up, have not increased at the same alarming rates.
Craig Wright, RBC’s Chief Economist, stated in a recent news release that the2016 first quarter housing affordability rating for Vancouver’s condo apartment market is 46%—a figure that aligns with housing costs in much of the rest of Canada.
The same article that reports average detached home prices in the $3 million range indicates that the average condo in Vancouver may be purchased for just under $750,000.
Before You Decide on a Condo
Condo living seems to be attractive because of their low maintenance as compared to single-family houses, and the living arrangements are a lot more convenient.
If you currently live in an apartment and you prefer an apartment lifestyle, you’ve probably already thought about buying a condo instead of a single-family home.
If this is the first time you’ve thought about a condo, there are some things to consider though when thinking about buying a condo instead of a house. You need to take into account the location, amenities and even your neighbors before deciding on the perfect condo, especially if you have children.
There’s no difference between buying a single family home or a condo when it comes to researching the location of the property.
If you’re moving your family with school-age children, you may want to be near good schools. Plus, with condo living, you may not have a convenient yard, so you may want to make sure there are parks close by to take the kids to.
In addition to schools and playgrounds or parks, you may also want to be close to shopping centers and restaurants. So it’s a good idea to really get to know the area before making a final decision.
What are the Neighbors Like?
When you go to see the condos, check to make sure there aren’t any “thin walls” between your condo and your neighbors’. Can you hear their televisions or stereos inside your condo? If so, you may want to check out other buildings.
How High Are the Maintenance Fees?
Most Vancouver Condos will have maintenance fees, which are similar to Home Owners Association (HOA) fees for single-family houses in certain communities.
It’s a good idea to find out how much the maintenance fees are on the condos you’re looking at.
Finding a Condo That’s Just Right in Yaletown
Even as the Vancouver housing market tightens, purchasing a condominium in Vancouver remains an option for those who are ready to stop renting. Instead of having to move far away from the city center, those seeking to own a home can enjoy all the benefits of living in a close-knit community by purchasing a Yaletown condo.
Yaletown high-end condos are a perfect way to buy a home sans the extra maintenance and commute time associated with owning a single-family home. Yaletown and downtown Vancouver condos are available with a number of attractive features that make them just right for buyers of all types.
Before the market gets any hotter, isn’t it time to find the one that suits you?