Calgary Alberta Real Estate Update For January 2nd 2015

Yearly records set as monthly sales decline

by CREB on January 02, 2015

It was another record setting year for Calgary’s condominium apartment and townhouse sectors, as sales reached new annual highs despite year-over-year residential sales declines of 7.5 per cent in December.

Single family sales totaled 708 units in December, a year-over-year decline of 8.3 per cent. Meanwhile, total condominium sales also declined by six per cent over the same time frame, but overall activity remained consistent with long-term averages.

“Changes in the economic climate are expected to cool housing market conditions in 2015, and December activity may be the first indication of this shift,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “However, any pullback that may occur needs to be kept in perspective as 2014 housing activity far exceeded our expectations.”

City of Calgary sales and new listings totaled a respective 25,664 and 36,329 in 2014. The 13 per cent growth in new listings outpaced the nine per cent growth in sales, contributing to an overall rise in inventory levels.

With more availability in the market, residential benchmark prices continued to level off in December. However, annual average benchmark gains remained above nine per cent. Unadjusted benchmark prices for single family, condominium apartment and townhouse properties all remained similar to levels recorded in November.

Single-family sales totaled 17,185 in 2014, an annual increase of 5.5 per cent. While the single-family sector represents the largest component of sales at 67 per cent, the growth in sales in both the condominium markets has outpaced activity in this sector.

“The activity that we’ve seen in the condominium sectors is, in part, is related to product availability in the lower price ranges,” said Kirk. “The under $400,000 segment of the single-family market within city limits has been declining. With the bulk of condominium products available for under $400,000, more consumers have been turning to these sectors for their housing needs.”

Strong demand for condominium apartments was also met with rising supply levels. New listings totaled 7,297 units in 2014, a 30 per cent increase over the previous year.

While rising listings helped take the pressure off prices, on an annual basis, unadjusted condominium apartment and benchmark prices have recovered and exceeded previous highs recorded in 2007.

The above information is provided by the Calgary Real Estate Board.

Now the rest of the story… Oil prices are down and many people are uncomfortable… net migration into Calgary last year was still about 35,000 new full-time residents… interest rates are still at the lowest levels of the history of mortgage rates in Canada. What does this mean? Since 1986 I have had the privilege of helping people buy and sell Real Estate and in that time there have been 4 corrections. Early in 1990 interest rates got up to 14.75% people got very nervous including myself and locked in for 5 years. In 1995 the Meech Lake Accord was voted on in Quebec (thank goodness our neighbours are still part of this great country)and again 4 months before the vote the telephone stopped ringing. The year 2008 will go down as the biggest adjustment since the NEP (the National Energy Policy in the early 80’s). And now we have today… as history has shown over the past 35 some odd years markets change and then recover. Well this time the results will be similar and when the tide will turn is yet to be determined. I believe we live in the best place in the world and am certain of a bright future.

Authors are:

The Calgary Real Estate Board// Rod Forsythe Keller Williams Premiere Realty Calgary Alberta