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Economically Speaking

Blog by Patrick O'Donnell PREC* | May 11th, 2013

Here are your figures for the first four months of 2013.  The West Vancouver market is broken down into 35 different areas. From the British Properties to Furry Creek. 

Altamont – Predominantly estate like properties, mostly greenbelt views with some ocean, lots of privacy, huge square footage, gated entries, certainly not a ‘wonder years’ neighbourhood!

2013 -    8 sales. Average sale price $2,617,000
2012 -    5 sales. Average sale price $5.5 million.
2011  - 16 sales Average sale price $2,715,000 

No, the prices have not increased and then decreased 100% in this area. 2011 sales were mostly building lots; you will see lots of new homes being built in this area, many of which will hit the market late 2013, early 2014. 2013 so far the sales have been older homes which probably will be torn down.  Obviously there is a long term confidence in the West Vancouver market – particularly in this area. 

Ambelside – Predominantly 50 to 60 wide lots, high residential density. Generally more value to the south side of the street than the north side and lots more value to a property with a good view. There is an opportunity for more of a neighbourhood feel, although over the last year many of the sales have been to off shore buyers, which does not generally equate to ‘street hockey’ 2013 a severe drop in the # of sales. Ambelside and Dundarave has generally been the pulse of West Vancouver, based on 2013 sales figures, this market is on life support! 

2013 -  29 sales, Average sale price $1,688,000
2012 – 52 sales. Average sale price $1,705,000
2011 – 67 sales. Average sale price $1,533,500 

Dundarave – The prettier sister to Ambelside. Slightly larger lots, 60 to 70 wide lots. Just a nicer feel, with easier access to the village of Dundarave. More of a sleepier feel. This is ‘The’ place to live for the baby boomers that do not want to go in to a condo. 

2013 – 18 Sales – Average price $1,877,500
2012 – 23 Sales – Average price $2,100,000
2011 – 41 Sales – Average price $1,970,000 

Queens – This area runs across the top of Ambelside and Dundarave and has spectacular views. Although many of the homes are dangerously close to the highway. This area has experienced a few unbelievable sale prices. A question of monkey see – monkey do – but isn’t that the way most of the real estate markets work? It is one person’s confidence to purchase that allows another to be brave! 

2013 – 4 sales – Average price $1,839,000
2012 –9 sales – Average price $2,885,000
2011 – 22 sales – Average price $2,019,500 

Bayrdge – Predominantly older homes 50’s/60’s. Ripe for new construction. Decent lot size, some parts can be dark with steep driveways. However, generally a good location for the kids, schools and easy access to the highway. 

2013 – 13 Sales Average price $1,250,000
2012 – 9 sales.  Average price $1,525,000
2011 – 11 sales. Average price $1,150,000 

Westmount – A lovely area, if you can find something on the right side of the street, away from the highway noise, the views are breathtaking. Interestingly all three sales for 2013 were on one street – Mathers – stunning views – a history of luxury properties in this part of town 

2013 – 3 sales – Average price $3,610,000
2012 -  10 sales – Average price $2,190,000
2011 -  14 sales – Average price $2,080,00 

British Properties/Glenmore – A real mixed bag of tricks. Large lots, old homes, new homes, great views, no views. 75% of the sales in 2011 were made to off shore buyers. Many of whom will probably regret their decision if they survive the winter. I really get the feeling that these huge homes are not always going to be the trend. I am not sure how 7,000 sq.ft. is going to be environmentally justified for just two or three people! 2013 - Lots of listings in these areas, many of which are from the same buyers from 2011 that have now found out that they cannot get out of their driveway in the winter 

2013 - 32 Sales.  Average price $2,225,000
2012 – 45 sales. Average price $2,070,000
2011 – 93 sales. Average price $1,550,000 

Cantebury/Chartwell/Chelsea Park/Westhill/Whitby Estates/Panorama Village/Deer Ridge – an extension of the B.P’s . The views from most of these homes are the best in town. All above the highway, some of the lot prices are through the roof.  British Pacific Properties sells big property here.  Nicely designed, beautifully finished and ready to move in 

2013 – 18 sales. Average price $4,014,000
2012 – 21 sales. Average price $3,400,000
2011 – 58 sales. Average price $2,852,500 

Caulfeild/Upper Caulfeild & Rockridge – The reason I have lumped these three areas together is because as a buyer you would certainly look at each as they offer similar benefits. Although Rockridge does tend to have a higher average sale price.  A lovely location, with its own shopping centre, great schools and a very nice neighbourhood. Many of the homes have spectacular views. Rockridge is especially beautiful. 

2013 -  21 Sales. Average price $1,750,000
2012 – 31 sales. Average price $2,071,080
2011 – 45 sales. Average price $1,470,000 

Cedardale/Park Royal – a central location, close to everything, older homes, but no so old that they need to be knocked down. A few are close to the highway, but this is one of the last areas where the kids actually play on the streets and the neighbours take the time to chat. Could this area be any more stable with regards to the number of sales? The worst year ever (2012), saw a nice increase in the average price. 2013 back to a more normal average price for the area. 

2013 – 9 sales – Average price $1,220,000
2012 – 9 sales – Average price $1,892,000
2011 – 9 sales – Average price $1,230,000

Cypress/Sandy Cove/West Bay – Such of lovely location. Just past the bayridge/Westmount area. Nice access to Stearman beach. Lots of nice cul-de-sacs, Erwin Drive, Travers & Radcliffe – take a drive and drool! Still very affordable around the Marine Drive area 

2013 – 7 sales – Average price $2,161,000
2012 – 13 sales – Average price $1,838,000
2011 – 15 sales – Average price $1,880,000

A very solid, consistent – yet still affordable neighbourhood. 

Cypress Park Estate – an area that was originally considered by many to be the poor cousin of Caulfeild. It’s above the highway; many of the homes were built in the 70’s so are now ready for a major reno – maybe even a tear down depending on the view, size of lot or availability of sunshine!  This is a nice area, which offers a buyer an entrance to the West Vancouver market. Easy access to Rockridge high school and easy access to the highway. Cannot believe that there have been no sales so far in 2013 

2013 – ZERO sales in 2013 – Freaky!
2012 – 8 sales – Average price $1,632,500
2011 – 7 sales – Average price $1,312,500 

Gleneagles/Eagleridge – one of the most under estimated locations in West Vancouver. Fantastic views from many of the homes. Good size lots, unusual architecture. Lots of old post and beam homes (good bones – easy to renovate) close to everything that West Vancouver has to offer – this is a sleeper neighbourhood. 

2013  - 9 sales – Average price $1,915,500
2012 – 9 Sales – Average price $1,500,000
2011 – 14 sales – Average price $1,580,000 

Horseshoe Bay/Whytecliff Park – another area that has been overlooked in the last couple of years. The lower part of Horseshoe bay is still going through some teething problems, but that is starting to change. Whytecliff is a jewel of an area, if you can get the views, the lot and the sun – you are made in the shade (just not too much shade!) 

2013 – 4 Sales – Average price $1,045,000
2012 – 10 sales – Average price $1,270,000
2011 – 10 sales – Average price $955,500 

Old Caulfeild/Eagle Harbour – The reason I have put the lower part of Caulfeild with Eagle Harbour is because they are just so close to each other. Great size lots in these two area and still affordable – relatively speaking 

2013 13 Sales – Average price $1,290,000
2012 – 6 sales – Average price $1,320,000
2011 – 26 sales – Average price $1,332,000 

So there you have it. Not every area has been mentioned in this summary. If your area has not been mentioned and you would like further details on the first four months of 2013, do not hesitate to give me a call. 

Statistics can be manipulated to say pretty well whatever you want them to say. These are the raw facts as per the sales reported to the Real Estate Board of Great Vancouver. It is clear without too much more digging, that while the prices are good, the numbers of sales are down in many of the areas. Let’s see how this translates as we enter what should be a buoyant spring market. 

All the best and speak soon – Patrick