Strata Takes Over as the Dominant Style of Living

Our data confirms that the sales of single family homes compared to strata title homes in only five years has reversed in majority percentage.

In 2015, sales of single-family detached homes were about 61% of Fraser Valley’s residential sales while combined sales of townhomes and condos they were about 39%. Now in 2019, sales have reversed. The Combined sales of townhouses/condos is now 61% and single family homes is 39%.

Some of the factors are geographic constraints in the lower mainland, between oceans and mountains make land a scarcer and more valuable commodity. This combined with the agricultural land freeze has encouraged greater density to meet the continuing population growth.

Affordability is a large factor, the government’s mortgage stress test from early 2018 created many buyers now having to qualify for about 19-21% less home value now versus then before the stress test. Where a buyer may have qualified for a $920,000 home before they are now looking at about $700,000 to purchase their new home.

Now, your choice is to increase your down payment or look at less expensive homes which strata titled is, the fact the percentage of strata sales is growing is likely to continue. The more the population grows in the valley, the more demand for increased density will happen, even with single family lot developments this has all changed, lots are about 25 to 50% smaller in size then 10 years ago. Not only are single family lots becoming so expensive, the new culture of city planners is to want more density to accommodate growth to support the tax base.

Development land is becoming scarcer, the trend to more strata property is only going to continue as the home with the big lot becomes scarcer the pressure on their value will go up.