A look at the Abbortsford BC housing market April 2018 #whatshappeningwednesdays

Wednesday May 02nd, 2018


Episode 1_May 01 2018_ What's Happening in the Housing Market in Abbortsford, BC

with Jennifer Foley, Sales Rep, Remax Rouge River Realty Ltd Brokerage and Faeine Grant, Sales Representative Homelife Glenayre Realty

Watch the video here:


Jennifer Foley:     All right, here we go. It's Faeine and Jennifer show!

Jennifer Foley:     West Canada, and East Canada.

Jennifer Foley:     Faeine Grant, from BC, and Jennifer Foley from Ontario.

Faeine Grant:       Awesome.

Jennifer Foley:     So, I'm going to put me back in the corner her, and let you reintroduce yourself.

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely. My name is Faeine Grant, I am a realtor here with Home Life Glenayre Realty.

Jennifer Foley:     Rock Star Realtor!

Faeine Grant:       My marketing is themodernrealtors.com

Faeine Grant:       And I'm here in Abbotsford, BC.

Jennifer Foley:     So, where abouts is Abbotsford?

Faeine Grant:       Yes. So, we are putting Abbotsford on the map. 

Faeine Grant:       So basically, picture Vancouver. And then, drive along Highway 1 East, in a straight line, and you go East about 45 minutes, and then here we are.

Jennifer Foley:     Wow. What's the population there?

Faeine Grant:       Yeah. I joke and I say, "Well, we have two Walmarts now." So we're big enough for two Walmarts, just over 140,000.

Jennifer Foley:     Walmart definitely realizes you are big enough for that.

Faeine Grant:       Exactly.

Jennifer Foley:     And we know if Walmart puts themselves in a small town, well, this is our theory, it's going to be someplace up and coming, for sure.

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely. They definitely see growth.

Jennifer Foley:     What's your favorite thing about living in Abbotsford?

Faeine Grant:       We have really cheap gas in comparison to everybody else around us.

Jennifer Foley:     That's your favorite thing?

Faeine Grant:       No, it's not my favorite thing. It's one of the bonuses. Because everybody says, "Oh, we're in Abbotsford, okay, well, let's go and fill up on gas."

Faeine Grant:       Or, they'll go across the border and go fill up and save a lot of money just going to the South side of the border. It's a little icon there.

Faeine Grant:       Yeah, we're probably about 10 minutes away from the Sumas border. Actually, part of Abbotsford is literally connected with the town of Sumas on the US side. So, super-close.

Jennifer Foley:     That's awesome. We're going to talk about what's happening over there in Abbotsford, in relation to the Real Estate markets.

Jennifer Foley:     Tell us a bit about inventory, and what's happening, how many months of inventory do you have, which types of homes are selling? What are you seeing there?

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely. I'm working with the March numbers. It has slowed down, so the momentum has definitely slowed down over April.

Faeine Grant:       Now that we're May 1st it will be really interesting to see what the April numbers show. But going off of the March numbers from our Real Estate board here, detached homes,  we've got two months' worth of inventory in the single-family detached market.

Faeine Grant:       Both townhouses and condos were at a month of inventory, a month's supply. So I feel again, this was taken in a quicker market, and as we get the April numbers we'll see a definite slowdown.

Jennifer Foley:     What are you seeing in terms of appreciation, depreciation, what are you seeing over a year?

Faeine Grant:       Obviously since 2016, that's when things started to go a little crazy, for lack of a better description, but prices have gone up exponentially, and the start was in 2016.

Faeine Grant:       Even in the last 12 months-

Jennifer Foley:     I was just going to ask you, Faeine, when you say 2016 things went a little crazy, what were you seeing back in 2016?

Faeine Grant:       All of a sudden, overnight, the momentum just went from A to Z. It went from being a normal market, or a stable market, balanced market; very quickly, we entered into a sellers' market. 

Faeine Grant:       And all through the summertime, I was joking around because typically in the summertime, that's when we all take our vacations. But nobody took a vacation that year.

Faeine Grant:       We were complaining, but we had a busy summer that year. We thought it was going to maybe slow down come the fall, but it just continued to rise.

Faeine Grant:       We're now at April and May of 2018, and still the prices have gone up exponentially. If you want to look at some percentages, our average price of a single-family detached home now is 814,000, which is up 18.5 percent, versus this time last year, it was 687. So that gives you some idea.

Faeine Grant:       We're looking at the townhouse market, gone up at almost 30 percent. So our benchmark average is $383000 versus 297 last year. All the condo owners are happy people right now.

Jennifer Foley:     Yes. That's a large percentage, to go up over a year.

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely. Well, in the condo, the apartment-style condo, they've gone up 47.8 percent. The average now is 336, and last year it was 226. versus the year before, That was 164.

Faeine Grant:       It's gone up massive amounts.

Jennifer Foley:     That's amazing. Wow.

Jennifer Foley:     Back in 2016 when the market was really fast-paced out in BC, was that a lot of foreign buyer money, or was that local money, or what kind of buyers were you having then?

Faeine Grant:       That's a really good question. So, how the foreign buyers tax works, is that was actually implemented in the greater Vancouver area. Whereas Abbotsford, the cross.. So you have two cities. This would be Abbotsford, this would be Langley, which is one city West of Abbotsford.

Faeine Grant:       The cutoff line was right at the end of Langley. So here in Abbotsford, we still don't have the foreign buyers tax applicable here in Abbotsford, and not in the other city that I work, which is Chilliwack.

Faeine Grant:       But, Vancouver and the greater Vancouver area, there was a lot of foreign money that was coming in.

Faeine Grant:       The single-family detached properties, those were the ones that were selling in multiple, multiple, multiple offers, and at that time, the condos were quite quiet, and same with the townhouses.

Faeine Grant:       But now, since the prices have gone to an unreachable amount, everybody that wanted to originally go into a single-family detached, they're now going into the townhouses, and the people that wanted townhouses, they're now going into condos, and unfortunately there's a lot of first-time home buyers here that have been priced out of the market here and that can't even afford a condo now.

Jennifer Foley:     You and I were talking about, it's a good opportunity though, for those people that have gotten themselves into town homes or condos, that are looking to upsize, because they bought in the last couple of years, it's a great opportunity for them to get into a larger home, because those prices have not appreciated the same way as townhouses and condos, because those are your entry-level homes, right?

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely. Anybody that bought in the 150s a couple of years ago, they can now sell for the 330s, 340s. Yeah, they can move up. They're happy. They can move up to a townhouse or a single-family detached. 

Faeine Grant:       It's a real good opportunity for them, for sure.

Jennifer Foley:     Excellent. So, benchmark prices. What are we looking at for detached homes in your area?

Faeine Grant:       814.

Jennifer Foley:     814? 

Faeine Grant:       814,000. Yeah.

Jennifer Foley:     And that's for a detached, two-story, or detached bungalow, or detached-

Faeine Grant:       Single-family detached. The way our board looks at it is that it just comes at a 1 to 1. So, they look at it as a single-family detached home.

Faeine Grant:       814, again, up 18.5 percent. These used to be city prices, and now we're seeing them here in Abbotsford.

Faeine Grant:       People still can't really believe it. Anybody that hasn't looked at what's happening in the market, or the past couple of years, they still have a hard time digesting the prices that are..

Faeine Grant:       It used to be that Abbotsford and Chilliwack were the more economical places to live, so to speak. Then yeah, people are looking a prices now, and, "Oh, no, it's not worth that!" Well, it is, actually.

Jennifer Foley:     And the funny thing is, a few years from now, it's all going to look cheap again.

Faeine Grant:       I know.

Jennifer Foley:     Those prices will look like wow like we do now, right? We look back three years ago, and exactly what you said, how did it get to this?

Jennifer Foley:     We look to the future, and we're going to be looking back at today's prices and saying the same thing. "Wow, that seemed like a bargain."

Faeine Grant:       Yup. Absolutely.

Jennifer Foley:     Because they're not making any more land, so the price of Real Estate is just going up and up and up.

Jennifer Foley:     I always tell my clients, it's the best way to accumulate wealth, really. You have to live in your house-

Faeine Grant:       Right.

Jennifer Foley:     At the same time, so why not put that money, build it up there?

Faeine Grant:       100 percent. And one thing I should also mention about the land terrain here in the Greater Valley, there's still a lot of green space. We're still ready for development, so it's not like in the greater Vancouver area where there's no space to expand, you have to go up.

Faeine Grant:       That's not the case here. We have tons of green space. There's definitely a lot of sub-dividing, and a lot of new subdivisions that are being built and planned out.

Faeine Grant:       We're going to see some pretty massive changes over the next couple of years here in the Greater Valley. We've all got mixed feelings about that. I know that some people really like the green space here, this is why they moved to the Valley.

Faeine Grant:       It's the way it's going, and it's what's happening. It's one of those things where you can't deny it, you can't fight it. It's expansion, it's growth, and at the end of the day, it's good.

Jennifer Foley:     Yeah. All right. Well, it's been great talking with you, and thanks so much for sharing all that great information about Abbotsford. 

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely.

Jennifer Foley:     We're going to connect again next week on Wednesday, and we'll be talking about what's happening here in my area, and Durham region.

Faeine Grant:       That's right.

Jennifer Foley:     We'll get some market stats for Durham region and Ontario, here.

Faeine Grant:       Awesome! Awesome, that's great.

Jennifer Foley:     Okay, so we'll chat with you next week.

Faeine Grant:       Absolutely! Okay, thanks, you guys!

Jennifer Foley:     Bye.

Faeine Grant:       Bye.

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