A seven-year real estate bubble has burst in the greater Vancouver housing market.

Sales of homes in 2008 dropped by over 35 per cent, compared to 2007 sales of more than 38,000 homes.

Dave Watt, president of the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board, says the last half of 2008 showed a consistent drop in prices.

At one point the market was so overheated that buyers would enter into bidding wars for properties and forgo inspections just to undercut other potential purchasers.

Prices have dropped almost 11 per cent between December 2007 and the end of 2008, and Watt says the perception is that prices are still falling so it's hard to identify the bottom of the market.

The cost of a single-family detached home in December 2001 was almost $360,000 and grew to about $650,000 by last December.