While there may be more signs of cooling in Metro Vancouver's housing market, experts say significant relief is unlikely for shoppers at the market's lower end.
Sales are well below the 10-year average, according to figures released this morning by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, and the price of a detached home actually dropped marginally last month in half of the areas tracked.
Some of the biggest price drops have been in the most expensive neighbourhoods, including the West Side of Vancouver and West Vancouver, which have shown four per cent decreases in prices over the past six months.
That's not surprising to Cameron Muir, chief economist for the B.C. Real Estate Association, who says the top of the market is always the most volatile part.
Along with new taxes on foreign buyers, speculators and empty homes, for a detached home costing more than $3 million owners will also pay both the new school tax and the extra property transfer tax if they sell, Muir notes — and all that is cooling sales in the upper price range.
But he says the effect of those taxes will be limited since "only three per cent of homes sell for over $3 million."