Vancouver Housing Market Recap and 2021 Predictions

The real estate industry fluctuated throughout the 2020 year, finishing strong during the fall and early winter months. The last Garbutt and Dumas recap was done in June 2020 which marked an uncertain time with little data to help with future predictions.

Fortunately, there was an increase in activity and September was a record-breaking month for the Garbutt and Dumas realtors (with November being a close second). Rates are low, higher priced properties are starting to move, and land value is increasing.

In September:

  • Single-family homes went from slow-selling to outrageously active
  • Condos remained relatively slow unless they had a strong selling feature (like great view or good neighborhood)
  • Big trend towards upsizing. Buyers are wanting more space!
  • Multiple offers for certain listings (depends on how saturated the market is in that area)
  • The number of homeowners moving out of downtown Vancouver to the surrounding cities is still increasing
    • Driven by affordability
    • Includes Langley, Tsawwassen, Sunshine Coast, and the Okanagan
    • Communities with little population will double in a relatively small amount of time
    • This movement will keep the market busy for years to come
  • Downtown Vancouver market remained slow
    • Buyers finding larger and newer condos in Brentwood for the same price

What makes the market climb?

The real estate market will climb when there is a shortage of supply. When there are limited properties on the market, more buyers are looking at each one. Real estate agents may receive multiple offers on a listing, however only one can purchase the house. The other buyers must continue looking and place an offer on another property when it becomes available. As more buyers enter the market, it can become more competitive, pushing the prices to increase.  In a hot market, the offer that is subject free and has a deposit attached will be a real contender.

There is a definite upward trend in the real estate market and here are the numbers to prove it!

A sales ratio breaks down how many sales were completed in each month compared to the total number of listings available. Townhouses had the highest sales ratio with 40% and condos had the lowest sales ratio with 20% – both are significantly high. Townhouses are in high demand and it is estimated that we will see an approximate increase in price of 10-15% by summer.

Low interest rates have also played a role in the real estate market climb. More people can now afford a mortgage and are entering the real estate market. This increases the competition and can help to boost prices. HSBC announced a 0.99 rate. This will put pressure on other big banks like RBC, TD, and Scotia Bank to make their rates more competitive. It looks as if rates will remain low!
A great tool for finding out what type of rate you will qualify for is Talk to your bank or an independent mortgage broker for a better idea on your specific situation.

our predictions for 2021:

  1. The market will be active – lots of up-sizers (due to low interest rates and wanting more space) and down-sizers (due to high prices)
  2. People will continue moving out of Vancouver into smaller cities and suburbs
  3. Port Moody, Langley, Maple Ridge, Squamish, Tsawwassen, North Vancouver, and East Vancouver will see record-high prices and sales activity
  4. Townhouses and detached houses will be hot! Value of property will continue to increase
  5. Condos will increase in price (but less so compared to houses and townhouses)
  6. More investors will be coming back

Denny’s advice: buy a house now or you may never own one!

There is a limited amount of land available for single-family/detached homes to be built on. With a decreased chance of a newer house being built in your community, there are fewer properties to compare to when looking to sell. This leads to less competitive pricing, which will in turn increase selling price over time.

It is hard to know for sure if all of our predictions will come true, but one thing is for certain: the Garbutt and Dumas realtors are looking forward to helping you navigate through all things real estate in 2021!

Listen to The Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast: 2020 Greater Vancouver Market Recap – What’s Happening Now and What to Expect Next Year episode to listen as James and Denny discuss more about what trends they have seen and their predictions for 2021.

Do you have questions regarding low-interest rates, the upsizing trend, the popularity of apartments and townhouses, and the growing appeal of moving out of the city and into the surrounding areas? We would love to hear from you – contact us and we can help you with some of the specifics.

Blog: Supporting Local with PoMo Life

Monica Harmse and Lucas McCann live and work in the beautiful city of Port Moody. They created the vlog PoMo Life about two years ago to create a genuine resource for information about what is going on in the community, new shops or breweries opening, or to find great restaurant recommendations.

Denny Dumas caught up with Monica and Lucas to learn more about PoMo Life and see how things have changed since it was first created.

Why did you start the vlog and how has it evolved?

  • Wanted people to see more of Port Moody and learn about us through where we love to spend our time most
  • We wanted more real estate business in the area that we are passionate about
  • Had to change our process in the last 10 months because of COVID-19 restrictions: cannot go into as many shops, not as intimate, and harder to do interviews
      • Focused on how the pandemic has affected businesses – heard their story of hardships and survival
  • Not shooting as much, focusing more on Instagram and Facebook
      • Reposting what local businesses post to help with a larger reach
  • Do not need to have both of us in every post/get each other’s permission for everything
      • Trust each other; be a part of the team, hold each other accountable for our own responsibilities

What have you learned?

  • After about 1 year in, we realized that not many people knew we were real estate agents so had to start posting more about that
      • We did not want to advertise ourselves, we wanted to interact with the community and show our personalities
      • Recognized we had to share what we did for a living so that our followers could use us as a resource for real estate as well
  • Finding balance in work life and personal life is so important
      • The intention is to get as much content out as possible but must realize that we are busy professionals and have other priorities that need our time
  • Our most successful posts are created when we have fun with our content and show things that most others are not posting about (going into dark crawl spaces, etc.)
      • Do not let fear or ego hold you back; we are all learning and do not know the answer to everything
      • Do not overanalyze! This could stop you from moving forward personally and professionally

How do you measure success with PoMo Life?

  • Hearing from shop owners that our followers stopped by after we posted about their business
      • Owners love it – free exposure, a great way to get their business out there
      • Businesses have started reaching out to us about upcoming events or promotions
  • Starting to see more real estate referrals – the more people who know you, the more likely you are to get a recommendation
  • Starting to feel like we are a part of the community

What are your long-term goals with PoMo Life?

  • In 5 years, we want to build something that people trust and find entertaining
      • Bring more business to the local shops and showcase our community
  • Build referrals
      • Feel more fulfilled working in Port Moody
      • We want to get busier in this area to decrease the amount of travel done for work all around the lower mainland
  • Become real estate experts in Port Moody
      • When buyers or agents walk into our properties, we want them to already know who we are, could be advantageous in deals or in creating long-lasting relationships
Lucas and Monica join Denny to discuss all things Port Moody

Tell us about Port Moody and why people love it:

  • It is such a cool city to live in!
  • Consists of a mostly younger demographic (25 to 45-year-old adults), newlyweds or young families
      • Great community feel, you get to know your neighbors and see the same people every day
  • Beautiful backdrop – mountains, water, and great trails
  • The amount of PoMo businesses increased within the last 5 years to cater to the families moving here
  • Connected to surrounding cities by Skytrain
  • Housing prices are more affordable here compared to comparable properties in other areas (North Vancouver, New Westminster, etc)
      • Large variety in types of real estate available: luxury homes to small condos
      • No new detached homes being built in Port Moody, so will not have a better newer house than yours 5 years down the line
      • Long term value in Port Moody, real estate value is constantly going up
  • There is a misconception that Port Moody is so far from everything else, but it takes on average about 25 minutes to get to North Vancouver or downtown
  • One area of the city that needs more attention is the amount of infrastructure available to accommodate the population growth
      • More roads and better traffic signs need to be put in place before the city gets too big and too much is built
      • Certain parts of the city are difficult to get to or have not seen any road updates recently
Monica and Lucas are excited to see where year three of PoMo Life takes them! Follow them on Instagram @pomolifebc to stay up to date with their adventures.

Listen to The Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast: Supporting Local with PoMo Life episode to hear more from Lucas and Monica about their love for the city of Port Moody and PoMo Life.

Do you have questions regarding buying or living in Port Moody? We would love to hear from you – contact us and we can help you with some of the specifics.

Market Update: What’s Hot & What’s Not


Home sales remain steady as each month the market continues to become more active. In June, homes sales in Greater Vancouver were near typical levels, and sales volume was up 65% from May. People still want to move, and some absolutely need to. Some buyers want room for a home office now, and others need more space for a growing family. On the sales side, REALTORS® have adapted with social distanced showings by having less people in a house at a time, and using sanitizer and face masks. We’re also finding that buyers are putting in more work pre-qualifying homes prior to viewing them. We’re also now able to show more of a home as the real estate board has increased the number of photos permitted on the MLS to 40. We’re often using videos and floor plans to better showcase properties as well. Overall, we’re finding that most people have adapted to the new 2020 summer market and it is busier than this time last year. Some properties are hot, some are not, it really depends on the city, property type and price point. For the properties we typically sell, most are experiencing more of a seller’s market and quicker sales close to list price. However, this also means that many buyers, particularly young families, are experiencing frustrating ‘bidding wars’ and multiple offer situations. It really is a case by case situation as we’re experiencing multiple markets behaving differently in the same city.

– James Garbutt

REBGV – July 2020 Stats


Detached houses that are well suited for young families in more affordable price points, and entry level two bedroom condos near a skytrain.


East Vancouver

• In the last 90 days, the average sale price for a detached house was $1.59 Million. These sales went for 99.5% of the list price on average, which indicates a strong sellers market with many multiple offer situations.

• The hottest sub areas were Fraser & Knight, with Renfrew being close behind. In all 3 of these markets the average sale price was above the list price. The Knight sub-area led the way with an average sale price to list price at 104%, and the median days on market for these sales were 7. If these trends continue, expect prices to rise in these areas.

New Westminster

• Price point and location lead to a strong demand in this city. In the last 90 days, the average sale price for a detached house was $1.30 Million, they sold for 98.2% of their list price with a median days on market of 10. Currently, there is high demand for houses under $1.3 Million and low supply at the moment.

• Hot spots include Glenbrooke North, Queens Park and the West End where in the last 90 days over 30% of the sales went for above the list price. Queens Park had the highest average sale price at $1.86 Million and the highest sale at $2.425 Million in the last 90 days.

436 Third St. New Westminster 3 Bed | 3 Bath | 3,903 SF List Price: $1,850,000 *sold in April 2020, GD represented the buyer














• Affordability and central location bring a strong demand for family homes in this market as well. In the last 90 days, the average sale price for a detached house was $1.29 Million, and the median days on market for these sales were 12.

• Hot Spots include Central Coquitlam with 28 sales in the last 90 days, and Burke Mountain with 25 sales. In Central Coquitlam the average house sold for $1.41 Million, and for 98.2% of it’s list price.


Port Moody

• Mountains, water and affordability make this city one of the most desirable places to live in Great Vancouver.

• In the last 90, the average townhouse in Port Moody sold for $773,000 and 99.5% of it’s list price. Over 30% of the townhouses sold for full list price or above. This is more of a seller’s market as there is currently strong demand from young families.

• Port Moody Centre has been a hot spot! In the last 90 days, 2 bedroom condos sold for $640,000 and 99.8% of their list prices on average, with the median days on market at just 7. This indicates a strong seller’s market.


Luxury suburb homes are the most obvious property type. There just aren’t enough 2+ Millionaires in the suburbs looking for homes at the moment. Of course there are exceptions to very rare and desirable properties or locations. Here we’ll take a quick look at some of the slowest markets we’re seeing in the areas we work.


• Anmore is a beautiful community that is full of luxury homes on large properties, but currently the supply is in excess. Recently this area has averaged 2.5 homes sold per month, but currently there are 27 homes listed for sale. This indicates a buyers market, and is largely due to the current high average list price of $3.1 Million.

• Anmore is home to one of the highest sales in the Lower Mainland this year. 1080 Uplands Dr. is a gorgeous custom built 8000 sqft house that sold for $6.2 Million in May, see photo above.

1080 Uplands Dr, Anmore – Sold May 2020 for $6,190,500

Burnaby Luxury Homes

In the last 90 days the highest sale price recorded in Burnaby was $2.29 Million (which is surprisingly low) and there are

currently 93 listings above $2.3 Million. Burnaby is expensive and the demand for expensive homes is lower than the supply at the moment

Top tier neighbourhoods like Deer Lake or Buckingham Heights have not registered a single sale on the MLS in the last 90 days, and there are currently 16 active listings.

In the last 90 days, the average sale price of a North Burnaby detached house was $1.55 Million. Lower price points are much more active than higher price points.

Epiosode #20 – Vancouver Real Estate Market Update

The real estate market in Vancouver was hot in February until COVID-19 changed everything. Now as BC begins it’s restart plan and we move to a new normal, many people are wondering what the housing market may look like over the next couple of months. James and Denny go through what they think will happen and what you should be aware of as COVID restrictions continue to ease. This episode will focus on what’s going on in the current real estate market and will cover how different markets have been affected, potential low supply of housing, how to stand out whether buying or selling, new construction and what open houses will look like.

Watch and listen to the Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast below and follow us on SpotifyiTunes & Youtube.

Episode #17 – New Westminster: Development, Real Estate and the Community

New Westminster is a historic suburb Of Vancouver and is known for its heritage communities, city events, restaurants, and the Westminster Quay. Jamie does a solo podcast to share his personal experience living in the city and reasons it won him over. The episode will cover why New West is a great place to settle, who it’s suited for, neighbors and the community feel, the real estate landscape, city development, and the direction the city is heading.

Watch and listen to the Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast below and follow us on SpotifyiTunes & Youtube.

EPISODE #16 – Burnaby Developments and How the City has Changed

Burnaby is a beautiful suburb of Vancouver and is known for its parklands, lakes, schools, and mountain. It has also seen huge changes in its real estate landscape over the last 15 years. James and Denny share their personal experiences living in, selling property, and being part of the community. This episode will cover the four main hubs in Burnaby: Brentwood, Lougheed, Edmonds, and Metrotown and the changes that have happened over the past 10 years as well as what we think the direction is for the future.

Watch and listen to the Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast below and follow us on SpotifyiTunes & Youtube.


Support Your Local Small Business!

We know it’s been a tough time for small businesses everywhere, but we are so proud of our community for their resilience and how they’ve adapted! We gave some of our favourite local businesses a call to see how they’re doing and we asked them how they have adapted to the social distancing regulations. Watch the video below to meet the incredible people behind these local businesses!

James spoke with Jordan Foss over at Steel & Oak. They have adapted by offering online ordering and home delivery service. You can order online here.

Denny spoke with Evan Moore over at Fit First Footwear. They have adapted by offering virtual shoe fittings. Schedule a zoom call to set up your own virtual fitting here.

Monica spoke with Riley Ableman at the St. James Well. You can still support them by ordering online for pick up or delivery! Order your next dinner here.

Adam spoke with Daniel English at Driftwood Athletics. Get in that home workout with one of their online crossfit classes. Contact them through their instagram page or check out their website here.

Lucas spoke with Amanda at Wow1day Painting. They are now offering free live virtual consultations! If you have any painting questions give them a call or visit their website here.

Make sure to support local and and if you check out one of these awesome businesses tell them we say hello!


How To Get Rid Of Unwanted Furniture And Junk

Getting a new home means you’re going to be moving. We’ve got some moving tips that will help make moving day easier and more enjoyable before the pizza and beer arrive.

Moving can be a stressful time especially if you’re packing and organizing your belongings in addition to working. One of the most stressful, and sometimes expensive, tasks are getting rid of unwanted items and large furniture.

To avoid some of the headaches we have compiled a list of the ‘go- to’ organizations and companies that will accept your donations, as well as some tips to help you sell your unwanted items.

Do you have a great company or organization that has helped you out, but isn’t on our list? Let us know.


The best ways to sell your items is an online website like CraigslistKijiji, or Ebay.

• Make sure to include a brief description & photos of the items. That will eliminate e-mails or calls from prospective buyers wanting more info or pictures.
• Add ‘OBO’ (Or Best Offer) if you are flexible on the price.
• Update your post daily (if possible) to keep your ad current. Don’t forget to take it down once your items are sold
• Beware of scammers!! Especially on Ebay. Always be careful opening attachments. If you think something smells fishy… it probably is.


Donating or giving away your free items can be quite painless. But ridding yourself of larger items can be a challenge.
Fortunately, one person’s clutter is someone else’s treasure or an organization’s need.
Here are some great companies and organizations that will take your unwanted items (in good condition) whether by drop-off or home pick-up!

Click on the company logo for their website.

 Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver will provide pick-up service which you can book online. They also have convenient drop-off bins around the Lower Mainland. You can also book a pick-up online. Click here for items they accept.



 Developmental Disabilities Association accepts items like clothing, books, small housewares and bottles. They operate a number of donation bins around Metro Vancouver, and you can also book a pick-up online.



 Aunt Leah’s Place helps kids transitioning out of foster care and young mothers. They accept small apartment sized furniture, home decor, accessories, jewelry, and clothing. Donations go to support individuals and they also operate an Urban Thrift Boutique at 177 East Broadway in Vancouver. For information to donate, click on their donation guide.



 The Canadian Diabetes Association operates a Clothesline donation program that accepts gently used clothing and footwear as well as small household items and electronics. Click here for all the information you need to be able to make a donation or schedule a pick-up.


Monarch Place is a local transition house for abused women and families. They are often in need of gently used clothing for women and children, bedding and linens, kitchen utensils and small appliances.  Click here for more information on how to help.



Champagne Taste is the go-to furniture consignment store in Metro Vancouver. They are located on the corner of 11th St and Royal Avenue in New Westminster. They were the winners of 2010 Best Consignment Store and Best Customer Service so you know the ladies know their furniture.  For all the information on consigning, what they accept, and how to start click here.




The Salvation Army has convenient drop bins and thrift stores where you can donate clothing, household items, even furniture. They also offer a pick-up service.  For accepted items click here.



The Treasure Chest is a great local thrift store located in New Westminster. All donation revenue goes to the Canadian Mental Health Association. For more info and how to donate click here.




BASES Family Thrift Store BASES is a new thrift store in Burnaby that assists at-risk children and families in the Edmonds area. Proceeds from the thrift store will go towards programs at area schools such as breakfast and after-school programs, sports, music, arts and summer camps. They accept donations of clothing, household goods, countertop appliances and small furniture items, which can be dropped off at 7825 Edmonds St.



Of course, not everything can be donated or is even worth donating. That’s where recyclers can help.

Metro Vancouver has a great site that allows you to input in the items/material you need to recycle and your location to provide you with a custom solution.




Getting rid of an old mattress can be difficult. This Richmond company will break your mattress down and recycle up to 90 per cent of its components.  Mattresses and box springs must be dropped off. They are located at 11571 Twigg Place. Click here for their current prices.


Canadian Mattress Recycling is based out of Annacis Island in Delta. They recycle mattresses, box springs, and metal bed frames as well as furniture like couches, armchairs and desk chairs. Items can be dropped off at #140-715 Eaton Way. Or pickup can be booked online.


The City of Burnaby offers a curb side pick up service for residents looking to dispose of large furniture items and appliances. The city also operates a large eco-centre for recyclables like scrap metal, plastics, cardboard boxes, paint, and batteries.



Vancouver Landfill rates and information

Metro Vancouver transfer stations/landfills.

Episode #14 – COVID19’s Current Effects on Residential Financing

COVID-19 is affecting all aspects of life, so what exactly is it doing to the residential financing world? Alex McFadyen from Thrive Mortgage CO and the YVR REMO Show joins James and Denny to talk about how this pandemic is affecting mortgages and how to government plans to help. This episode will focus on BC mortgages, prime rate changes, fixed rates vs variables, renewals, renter situations, how people are reacting and what may happen in the near future.

Watch and listen to the Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast below and follow us on Spotify, iTunes & Youtube.

Episode #13 – COVID19 Current Effects on the Local Real Estate Market

As Vancouver settles into accepting social distancing and staying at home as the current norm, the real estate industry moves along but with some changes. James and Denny share how COVID-19 has affected their day-to-day lives and how they have adapted to keep the team going. If you have any interests in current real estate dealings, local market activity, real estate financials or ways of developing your business in the downtime please give us a listen!

Watch and listen to the Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Podcast below and follow us on Spotify, iTunes & Youtube.