Buying a Metro Vancouver Condo Right Now is a lot like Buying Tickets to see Beyoncé

BREAKING NEWS: BEYONCÉ to perform in Vancouver at Rogers Arena!

Tickets on sale on Monday! (This isn't actually happening, although we all wish it was).

You spend the rest of your weekend rallying your squad, then hope you are fast enough to click through Ticketmaster's robot validators that prove you are indeed a human. Finally through the hoops, you find that the only tickets left are way out of your price range. Dreams dashed, you retreat back to your phone to explain to your friends that it didn't work out. A month later, you hop onto StubHub and Craigslist, only to find re-sellers flipping tickets at double the price.

Are we still talking about Beyoncé? Isn't this a real estate blog?

Like a Beyoncé show, anyone who set out a year or two ago to buy a condo in Greater Vancouver in 2017, is facing a market that has through the roof demand and constantly rising prices. When a Pre-Sale housing development is offered for sale, by the time you're prepared to purchase, everything is too expensive. You hold off and go with the assumption that there will be enough people needing to sell at completion to allow you to get a reasonably priced home.

What has happened has been nearly the opposite. Instead, not nearly enough people want to sell. If and when owners do, their prices are significantly higher than a few years ago back at the time of the Pre-Sale. And who can blame them? It doesn't take an economist to figure out that a well priced home with 10 people clamouring to purchase it is worth as much as the highest bidder will pay for it. 

Let's look at a recent example in the real estate world:

Earlier this year, I listed a studio home at 1088 Richards Street in Downtown Vancouver:

This home was purchased brand new in February 2013 for $305,000. A ground floor studio, not everyone's taste, but certainly eye catching for some. Fast forward to January 2017, where the owner is considering a move if a certain level profit is achievable, otherwise staying put is the better decision for them. 

We set the price at $499,900. We felt this was a fair valuation based on recent sales of similar properties. What happened next: the listing went up on Monday, my phone rang off the hook all week, and by Friday, someone had outbid three others, and purchased it for $510,000. The owner made over $190,000 in profit after all fees!

Going into the listing, I advised my client of the market conditions: limited supply and high demand. In the end, the property was sold for what the highest bidder was willing to pay to own the home.

Similarly, when an individual purchases a Beyoncé ticket, they have a price point they'll sell at. They would be willing to forego the opportunity to see Queen Bey in order to realize financial gain. If they list their ticket on Craigslist and receive offers for two and a half times the amount they paid, it's certainly understandable why they may sell. With only 18,910 seats in Rogers Arena, and hypothetically 30,000 people wishing to go, is this result really a surprise?

What does this all amount to? Undoubtedly, buying a condominium in Metro Vancouver can be a challenge. With the limited amount of supply currently available, buyers are often left with no choice but to be flexible with their criteria. The importance of working with a hardworking and attentive REALTOR® such as myself, has never been stronger. A savvy agent will be able to understand your criteria and expose you to homes that meet them as best as possible without much sacrifice.

For more information on the Greater Vancouver real estate market and how you can achieve home ownership within it, please feel free to get in touch at

All the best,