5 Year Benchmark

Up until now, we’ve only looked at individual examples of properties selling for a loss. I’m sure many people question if these examples are cherry-picked exceptions, or whether these losses are common.

Today I thought we’d do something different and look at a hypothetical five year situation. What would be expected if someone bought a Vancouver condo five years ago and sold today?

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) tracks the price of a “benchmark” condo. The benchmark is intended to measure the price change for comparable properties over time. Similar to the Teranet HPI, or the Case-Shiller Index in the US, it should provide a better estimate for a given property than the average or median price.

According to the REBGV website:

The HPI benchmarks represent the price of a typical property within each market. The HPI takes into consideration what averages and medians do not – items such as lot size, age, number of rooms, etc. These features become the composite of the ‘typical house’ in a given area.

Each month’s sales determine the current prices paid for bedrooms, bathrooms, fireplaces, etc. and apply those new values to the ‘typical’ house model.

Five years ago (July 2008) the benchmark condo price was $381,687. The latest figure is $368,300.

  • July 2008 Benchmark: $381,687
  • July 2013 Benchmark: $368,300
  • Property Transfer Tax: $6,634
  • Real Estate Commission: $16,391
  • Loss: ($36,411)

The typical condo purchased five years ago and sold today would lose $36,411 – or 9.54%.