Saturday, September 08, 2012

Fall Sales Rebound in Greater Vancouver?

The mantra I sometimes hear in early September is that there is a "summer lull" and that sales in the fall, once buyers return from vacation, will improve relative to the summer. To put this to the test I pulled Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver monthly sales volumes from the last 13 years and measured the percentage change in sales from the month of August to the months of September through November to see if sales volumes do pick up in the fall. To show this I have binned the percentage changes of these three months in 5% increments and plotted them in a histogram below

Compared to August, the months of September, October, and November have had:

"Worse" < -5%
  • September 5/13
  • October 6/13
  • November 7/13
  • Total 18/39 (46%)

"About the same" -5%-5%
  • September 7/13
  • October 2/13
  • November 5/13
  • Total 14/39 (36%)

"Better" > 5%
  • September 1/13
  • October 5/13
  • November 1/13
  • Total 7/39 (18%)

In other words only 18% of the fall months in the past 13 years have been "better" than the previous August's numbers. 46% are "worse", and 36% are "about the same".

If you're looking for a sales trend to lead to increased sales in the fall, using August's sales as a gauge, it's not looking so good. Further, though I didn't display the numbers, if you are predicting at least one month in September through November with sales at least 5% better than August, you would be right 5/13 times. 

We can look at average monthly sales change of September through November from August to see how persistent fall sales are:

Only 3 of the last 13 years saw average monthly September through November sales increase over August by at least 5%.

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