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Calgary Real Estate Market: April 2014

Home Prices Reach New High for Calgary Real Estate Market

Calgary Real Estate Market

May, 2014 – Calgary Price Gains Encouraging New Listings according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).

The benchmark price of single- family homes reached a new high of $452,900 in April, as market conditions that favour the seller finally drove prices above the unadjusted peak in 2007.

“It’s really encouraging to see that the Calgary market remains strong,” said Becky Walters, CREB® President.  “It’s reassuring to both buyers and sellers to see that this area is outperforming many parts of the country.”

Single-family sales totaled 1,611 in April; nearly two per cent higher than the previous year, but year-to-date figures are similar to levels recorded in 2012.  Sales growth in the first part of the year was stifled by a shortage of new listings and inventory.  However, the year-over-year increase in new listings of 5.4 per cent helped support sales growth in April.

“Declining selection in the lower price range and market conditions that favour the seller in the overall single-family market has resulted in a boost in demand in the condominium market and surrounding towns,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.  “Inventory levels declined across all of these segments. However, surrounding towns remain in balanced territory, as they experienced the effect of previously elevated inventory levels.”

After the first four months of the year, condominium apartment sales totalled 1,259 units, an 11 per cent increase over the previous year.  Sales growth outpaced the number of new listings, causing inventory levels to decline to 871 units.  This pushed the market into sellers’ territory.

Tighter market conditions supported a year-over-year condo apartment benchmark price growth of 7.35 per cent.  Unlike the single-family sector, however, condo apartment prices remain well below unadjusted highs recorded in 2007.

Walters said a move to a sellers’ market will encourage those who have been waiting for price recovery to put their homes on the market.  This will offer more choices for buyers.

“New listings have been declining for the last few years as prices had not recovered,” she said.  “People who did not have to sell chose to hold off.  Price improvement can encourage new listings, easing some of the tension on the supply levels.”

There were 3,476 new residential listings in the city, a seven per cent increase relative to 2012.  Sales activity also increased to a total of 2,381.  Residential year-to-date sales improved by nearly four per cent compared to the same time in 2012.  Meanwhile, citywide benchmark prices totaled $406,000 a seven per cent rise over the previous year.

“Calgary’s housing market continues to defy national softening trends as gains in the employment sector, migrant growth, rising wages and low interest rates are translating into growing demand for housing,” said Lurie.

For the first time since 2007, conditions favour the seller.  However, economic conditions today are vastly different, making it unlikely that Calgary will see a repeat of those conditions, said Lurie.  Our economy faces some challenges this year, and consumers still have options in both the new home market and surrounding towns, all factors that will temper price growth.

Our monthly Newsletter contains the full Calgary Real Estate Market report for April 2014 in addition to the article “Preparing a Home for Show with Kids in Tow”, and it’s is available on our website!

The full Calgary Real Estate Market Stats from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family homes, and Towns are available for April and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Real Estate Market: March 2014

Housing Market Continue to Favor Sellers in Calgary Real Estate Market

Calgary Real Estate Market graph

April, 2014 – Housing inventory in the Calgary Real Estate market is declining and contributing to a very tight market for single family homes – according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).

Residential sales activity improved across all sectors in March.  However, declining new listings in the single family sector combined with further gains in sales activity decreased single family inventory to the lowest March level since 2006.

“There are several factors contributing to the growth in housing demand, including the inflow of people to our province over the past two years, strong gains in employment and tight rental conditions,” says CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“However, supply conditions vary amongst the different property segments, impacting the number of sales and price growth.  If supply constraints persist in the single family sector, prices are expected to record further gains as we move into the spring market.”

Single family sales at the end of the first quarter totaled 3,901 units, a 9.5 per cent increase over the same period last year.  Meanwhile, the amount of new listings declined by nearly five per cent.  As sales growth outpaced the amount of new listings growth in the market, inventory levels dropped to just over 2,000 units.

Persistently tight market conditions prevented any relief in terms of price gains.  The unadjusted single family benchmark price totaled $490,600 in March, a 9.9 per cent increase over the previous year and monthly increase of 1.6 per cent.

“With tight market conditions, particularly in the single family market, purchasers should ensure they have a clear understanding of what they can afford and what they are willing to pay for a home,” says Bill Kirk, CREB® president.  “However, both sellers and buyers need to be aware that conditions are dependent on the community and price range that you are targeting.”

Condominium apartment sales totaled 1,062 after the first quarter.  Sales growth was strongest in this sector due to the availability of listings.  New listings after the first quarter totaled 1,722, an 18 per cent increase over the previous year.  While demand continued to outpace listing growth, keeping market conditions relatively tight, inventory levels are similar to the previous year.

“Nearly 50 per cent of new listings in the apartment sector are priced in the range of $200,000 – $299,999, providing options for those looking for affordable product,” says Kirk.  “However, there are far fewer options for those looking to spend less than $200,000.  After the first quarter, apartment product priced below $200,000 has dropped from over 16 per cent of the market last year to 6.4 per cent.”

Condominium apartment and townhouse prices totalled a respective $287,200 and $313,100.  Condominium apartment price recorded a year-over-year increase of 11.5 per cent and are the highest relative to the townhouse and single family sector.  Despite strong price gains across all sectors, overall the condominium sector continues to record price levels below peak records. “

Some easing of the supply pressure in the condominium market is expected as new construction projects are completed,” says Lurie.  “However, thanks to Calgary’s strong economy, it is expected that most new supply can be absorbed without risk of oversupply and condominium price correction.”

Our monthly Newsletter contains the full Calgary Real Estate Market report for March 2014 in addition to the article “Selling vs. Renting – What Makes Cents?” and it’s is available on our website!

The full Calgary Real Estate Market Stats from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for February and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Real Estate Market: February 2014

Sales Growth Boosted by Condominium Activity for the Calgary Real Estate Market

Calgary Real Estate Market

March, 2014 – Housing Inventory in the single family sector for the Calgary Real Estate Market continues to decline while condominium sales surge according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).

Following double digit gains last month, sales growth in the city of Calgary totaled 1,854 units, or an 8.68 per cent increase over the same period in 2013.

Slower sales growth resulted in a reduction of listings in the single family sector.  However, single family sales still totalled 1,230 units, a 1.9 per cent increase over the previous year.

“Demand growth in the single family sector has been restricted by the availability of product,” says CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.  “New listings in this sector fell for the second consecutive month, causing further tightening in an already undersupplied market.”

Despite the pull back in the single family sector, condominium sales continue to surge.  After the first two months of the year, both condominium apartment and townhouse sales increased by 28 per cent compared to last year.

“Consumers who are in the market for single family homes priced below $300,000 do not have many options, and when product does become available, it typically does not stay on the market for long,” says CREB® President Bill Kirk.  “However, nearly 54 per cent of the new condominium apartment listings this year are priced below $300,000, which is providing options for consumers looking for affordable product.”

The condominium market benefited from significant gains in new listings.  Year-to-date, condominium apartment and townhouse listings improved by a respective 17 and four per cent for a combined total of 1,737 units.

“As we move into the spring market we expect that listings will improve in all sectors,” says Kirk.  “The rise in listings will help ease some of the tightness in the market, with price growth impacts varying by community and property type.”

With no significant additions to the housing supply, resale prices continued to rise.  The unadjusted single family benchmark price totalled $482,800 in February, a 1.28 per cent increase over the previous month and a 9.1 per cent increase over the previous year.

Meanwhile condominium apartment and townhouse prices totaled a respective $283,400 and $309,700.  Condominium apartment price increases remain at double digit levels this month with a year-over-year gain of 12.4 per cent.  Despite the strong gains in condominium prices, overall benchmark prices in both the apartment and townhouse sector continue to remain below peak records set back in 2007.

“Resale market conditions have favoured the seller, and this has translated into price gains, which is strongest in the condominium sector,” says Lurie.  “However, it is important to note that condominium prices have not yet risen above previous highs, whereas single family prices recovered last year.
Our monthly Newsletter contains the full Calgary Real Estate Market report for February 2014 in addition to an article “Is the housing market going to cool down, level out or gain steam?”, and is available on our website!

The full Calgary Real Estate Market Stats from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for February and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Real Estate Market: January 2014

Sales activity and prices in 2014 up for the Calgary Real Estate Market

Calgary Real Estate Market

February, 2014 – Calgary Real Estate Sales are in line with long-term trends but growth continues at double digit pace in January 2014 according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).

On the heels of a strong year of sales growth, January sales in the city of Calgary totaled 1,440 units, a 17 per cent increase over the previous year.

“Sales growth continues at the double digit pace seen over the later portion of 2013, mostly due to the gains in the condominium sector,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.  “While these are the highest January sales levels since 2008, total sales transactions are in line with long-term trends.”

Condominium apartment and townhouse sales totaled 466 units in January, a 33 per cent increase over the same period in 2013.  This is relative to the 974 sales in the single family sector, only a 11 per cent increase over the previous year.

“Consumers looking for more affordable product turned to Calgary’s condominium market, which was the only sector to record growth in new listings, compared to January 2013,” explained CREB® president Bill Kirk.  “The improvement in listings helped ease some of the tightness in the condominium market, however overall conditions continue to favour the seller.”

New listings in the condominium apartment and townhouse market totaled 809 units, a combined increase of six per cent.  Meanwhile, the single family sector lost momentum with new listings recording an eight per cent year-over-year decline.  Overall market conditions continue to remain tight with months of supply remaining below two months.

“Two consecutive years of strong migration levels are expected to support improving housing demand this year, but at a slower pace,” said Lurie.  “However, with no significant change in the supply situation this month, prices continue to rise at higher than expected levels.”

The unadjusted single family benchmark price was $476,700 in January, a 0.95 per cent increase over the previous month and a 9.1 per cent increase over the previous year.

The availability of lower price single-family product continues to decline, resulting in a shift in sales distribution.  In January, 29 per cent of the single family sales activity occurred in the $400,000 – $499,999 price range, making it the category with the highest share of sales.  In previous years, the majority of the single family transactions occurred in the $300,000 – $399,000 range.

Condominium apartment and townhouse prices totaled $280,600 and $308,100 respectively in January.  On average, year-over-year price growth in the townhouse market totaled just more than 8 per cent, compared to the apartment sector increase of nearly 12 per cent.

While year-over-year condominium apartment price gains have pushed into double digit growth territory, the unadjusted benchmark price remains 5.5 per cent lower than levels recorded during the high.  Kirk noted that “While supply pressures have not yet eased in the market, it is important to note that we are in one of the traditionally slower months of activity in our housing sector as many consumers are waiting for the more robust spring market.”

Our monthly Newsletter contains the full Calgary Real Estate Market report for January 2014 in addition to some exciting new home trends this year and it’s is available on our website!

The full Calgary Housing Market Report from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for January and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Housing Market Exceed Expectations: December 2013

Sales Volume and Tight Market Conditions in 2013 support price growth

Market Graph photo

January, 2014 – December’s Calgary Housing Market capped a phenomenal year for Calgary Real Estate. “Sales enjoy second consecutive year of double-digit growth” according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®)’s news report.

December’s eight per cent year-over-year increase in sales volume in the city of Calgary capped a year that saw an 11 per cent growth in sales volume for the entire 12 months.

City residential sales totaled 1,172 units in December, bringing total sold units for 2013 to 23,489.  Prices for the year were up by 8.6 per cent over 2012.

“Sales growth exceeded expectations in 2013, pushing above long-term trends,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB®’s chief economist.  “Two consecutive years of elevated levels of net migration, combined with an improving job outlook and confidence surrounding long-term economic prospects, supported the demand growth.”

As expected, both new listings and transactions in December eased over the previous months because it is typically a slower time of the year for sales.  However, sales activity for the month was in line with long-term averages, despite poor weather conditions just before the holiday season.

“Typically, fewer sellers list their homes in December,” said Becky Walters, CREB® president.  “There were more new listings this year than in 2012 because some sellers saw the continued price gains and decided it was the right time to list.”

Market conditions favoured the seller for much of 2013, causing price gains in both the single-family and condominium sectors in the city.  The single family benchmark price was $472,200 in December, a 0.3 per cent increase over the previous month and an 8.6 per cent increase over the previous year.  On an annual basis, unadjusted single family prices grew by more than seven per cent in 2013, exceeding previous highs.

“Prices have recovered in the single-family market, but sellers need to keep in mind there are differences between communities and types of homes,” said Walters.  “Higher-end homes (priced above $500,000) have recorded slower price growth than those in the lower-price segment.  And there are many communities where prices have not surpassed previous highs.”  There were 16,302 single-family homes sold in 2013, an eight per cent increase over the previous year.  Meanwhile, the 22,569 new listings were nearly one per cent higher than in 2012.

Condominium apartment sales totaled 4,007 units in 2013, more than 14 per cent higher than in 2012.  Condominium townhouse sales totaled 3,180 units a 22 per cent increase over 2012.  “The condominium market is more affordable than single family, and that is attractive to first-time buyers who are weighing rising rental costs against ownership costs,” said Walters.  “Investors are also attracted to condos, because prices have not yet fully recovered to their previous highs.”

Condominium apartment and townhouse prices totaled $278,600 and $307,100 respectively in December.  On average, annual benchmark price growth in the townhouse market totaled just more than six per cent, compared to the apartment sector increase of nearly nine per cent.

“In 2014, both sales activity and prices are expected to improve, but not at the same pace recorded this year,” said Lurie “While factors influencing demand will support growth in 2014, rising listings and increased competition from the new home sector should alleviate some of the supply pressure in the market.”  Those factors, combined with potential increases in long-term lending rates, should take some of the steam off the exceptionally strong price growth recorded in 2013, said Lurie.

The full Calgary Housing Market Report from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for December and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Housing Market Sales Growth: November 2013

Rise in new Listings Boost Calgary Real Estate Sales

Market Graph photo

December, 2013 – The November Calgary Housing Market saw another month of strong sales activity according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).

CREB® President Becky Walters said it appears that several factors are motivating buyers. “Many first-time home buyers appear to be moving now to get ahead of any further increases in home prices, rent hikes, or an increase in lending rates,” she said. “And current owners are taking advantage of the recent price gains to upgrade to a home that better fits their lifestyle.”

There were 1,823 new listings in the city in November. While this is an 12 per cent increase over levels recorded at the same time in 2012, listings remain below long-term trends and total inventory levels is lower than normal for this time of year.

“Tight market conditions have resulted in higher-than-expected price gains in all sectors of the Calgary market,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, Chief Economist. “However, these increases need to be put into context.”

Citywide, only the price of single-family homes has fully recovered and started to push above unadjusted levels recorded in 2007. Meanwhile, condominium apartment and townhouse prices remain below peak, Lurie said.

Single-family benchmark prices totaled $470,600 in November, 8.5 per cent higher than one year ago. Meanwhile, condominium apartment and townhouse unadjusted benchmark prices totaled a respective $279,600 and $305,700 in November, 6 per cent below 2007 peak pricing.

Year-to-date, single-family sales totalled 15,533 units, eight per cent higher than the previous year. The higher-than-expected rise in sales activity is due to stronger activity in the second half of the year.

Tightness in the condominium apartment market eased in November, as the year-over-year growth in November new listings of 23 per cent outpaced the sales growth of 20 per cent. While overall inventory levels remain 26 per cent lower than levels recorded in 2012, this is an improvement over the declines recorded throughout recent months. Year-to-date sales activity totaled 3,787 units, a 15 per cent increase over the previous year.

Condominium townhouse sales totaled 3,002 units after 11 months, a 21 per cent increase over the previous year. While this sector remains the smallest out of the Calgary housing types, it has recorded the largest gains in sales.

“Overall, sales growth in surrounding communities outpaced the city,” said Walters. “They offer the family friendly attractions of small towns, and they’re more affordable.”

Lurie noted the vibrant employment market has encouraged a large number of net migrants into the city over the past two years. “This, combined with tight rental conditions and optimism over the long term outlook of the city, has supported the significant growth in housing demand this year. Lurie said that concerns over affordability are often linked to potential house price corrections, but, “despite recent gains, Calgary’s housing market is still more affordable today than it was six years ago.”

The full Calgary Housing Market Report from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for November and includes graphs.

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Housing Market Price Gains: October 2013

Rise in new Listings occurs with Price Gains in Calgary’s Real Estate Market

Market Graph photo

November1, 2013 – The Calgary Housing Market experienced price gains in October and according to the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®) it was the “Fourth consecutive month of year-over-year new listings growth.”

1,953 properties were sold in October in Calgary, an 18% rise over October 2012. Year-to-date sales remain far below sales recorded between 2005 and 2007.  Homes are sometimes selling over list price so the sales price-to-list ratio has increased, but it is still lower than levels recorded 7 years ago.

New Listings increased 9% over the previous year and while the rise in listings wasn’t large enough to affect inventory growth, it was the 4th consecutive month of gains when compared year-over-year.

According to Ann-Marie Lurie, chief economist for CREB®, “Price growth and tighter market conditions have encouraged some of the recent rise in new listings. This is a trend worth noting as the rise is easing some of the tightness in the market. Despite some movement, seller’s market conditions persist.”

According to the November CREB® news release (links to whole report including graphs are below):

“A total of 14,340 single-family homes sold after the first 10 months of the year, a 7 per cent increase over the previous year. Sales growth has exceeded expectations mostly due to the recent rise in new listings, which was limiting growth potential in the first half of the year.

“Year-to-date, 3,482 condominium apartments and 2,774 condo townhouses were sold. While condominiums remain a smaller segment of the market, year-to-date sales are 18 per cent higher than last year.

“Unadjusted benchmark prices in the city of Calgary increased in October relative to both September of this year and October 2012. Single-family prices benchmarked at $468,000, while the benchmark price for condominium apartment and townhouse were a respective $276,100 and $302,200 in October.

“Apartment-style condominium prices have been increasing at a faster pace than single-family home prices. However, unadjusted condominium prices remain 7 per cent below peak levels, while single-family prices have risen above previous highs.

“Single-family and condominium townhouse prices recorded year-over-year increases of eight per cent, while condominium apartment prices increased by 11 per cent.

“‘Employment growth, strong net migration, lack of rental product and low mortgage rate has contributed to the rise in housing demand over the past two years,’ said Lurie.

“‘Meanwhile, supply levels have not kept pace, causing prices to push up.’

“While upward price pressure is expected to persist in the near term, she said, it is unlikely we will face the same spike seen in 2006. That’s because economic conditions are quite different today than they were in that time period.”

The full Calgary Housing Market Report from the Calgary Real Estate Board for Condominiums, Single Family, and Towns is available for October and includes graphs.

 

 

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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Calgary Towns: Real Estate Housing Market Sales – 3rd Quarter 2013

Real Estate Booms for Airdrie, Cochrane, and Okotoks

Market Graph photo

October, 2013 – Residential Home Sales in Calgary area towns 22% higher in the 3rd quarter of 2013 than 2012.

The tight Rental Market in Calgary, combined with the additional demand created by Calgary’s June floods, and increasing net migration has resulted in rising real estate housing market sales in Airdrie, Cochrane and Okotoks.

Home Sales reached record highs in the surrounding towns for the third quarter, mostly driven by gains in the single-family sector. The declining supply of affordable single family homes within the city of Calgary has encouraged home buyers to consider surrounding areas such as Cochrane, Okotoks, and Airdrie.

In September, the typical single family home in Calgary was $463,700, compared to $351,400 in all surrounding towns. While conditions in surrounding towns vary, single family homes in Calgary’s bedroom communities tend to provide newer and larger homes at a lower cost relative to homes in Calgary. Lot sizes are often larger as well.

Benchmark Real Estate Prices averaged $388,933 in Okotoks, $405,933, in Cochrane, and $365,100 in Airdrie, surpassing the 2007  high recorded for that town.

OKOTOKS

Year-to-date residential sales activity showed a 13% gain over 2012.  However, the number of new listings on the market fell by nearly 13%.  Supply has tightened from 2012, when there was an average of four months’ supply, to less than three months’ supply in 2013. Single family benchmark prices averaged $388,933 in the third quarter, a 4% increase over the third quarter of 2012. While single family prices have been on the rise since the last quarter of 2011, prices remain just shy of unadjusted peak levels.

COCHRANE

Sales activity showed  7% increase over 2012. However, new listings in the area have improved significantly in the third quarter, preventing erosion of inventory levels. This increase in listings is in part a result of the higher share of new homes listed on the resale market in the third quarter. New product represents more than 20% of the MLS® transactions recorded in Cochrane, higher than figures in Airdire, Okotoks and Calgary.

The months of supply, one measure of balance in the market, has been trending down this year. However, with just over than three months of supply, Cochrane’s market is not as tight as Airdrie or Okotoks. Prices are recovering but remain below peak. Single-family third-quarter benchmark prices averaged $405,933, a 5% increase over the previous year.

AIRDRIE

Residential sales showed a 14% increase over the previous year. Sales growth over the first two quarters had been dampened by overall declining listings, but it surged in the third quarter as the level of new listings was significantly improved. Affordability is one factor drawing in consumers. In Airdrie, single family homes account for nearly 80% of the sales activity, of which more than 60% of those sold this year were priced below $400,000.

The rise in listings did not keep pace with the rise in sales, causing inventory levels to fall and tightening the market. With conditions that favour the seller, homes are on the market for less time and they are selling closer to list price. Tight market conditions have supported year-over-year price gains of more than 7%. In September, the benchmark single family home price reached $365,100, surpassing unadjusted highs recorded in 2007.

The Calgary Real Estate Board’s 3rd quarter Housing Report for Surrounding Towns is downloadable from our dropbox.

 

 Selling Calgary Group     Elke Babiuk
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