CREB® March 2014 Statistics

Calgary, April 1, 2014 – 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 totalled 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 totalled $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 totalled 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 totalled 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.”

CREB® February 2014 Statistics

Calgary, March. 3, 2014 – 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 4 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.”

CREB® January 2014 Statistics

Calgary, Feb. 3, 2014 – 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.

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.”

CREB® December 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Jan. 2, 2014 – 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 8 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.

CREB® November 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Dec. 2, 2013 – City residential sales totaled 1,730 units in November, a 19 per cent increase in sales volume over the previous year. Following another month of strong activity, year-to-date sales totaled 22,322 units, 11 per cent higher than long-term trends. CREB® President Becky Walters said it appears that several factors are motivating buyers.

“Many first-time homebuyers 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.”

CREB® October 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Nov. 1, 2013 – Residential sales activity totaled 1,953 units in October, an 18 per cent rise over 2012 and pushing year-to-date volume increases to just over 10 per cent.

However, on a year-to-date basis, city wide sales remain far below transactions levels recorded throughout 2005 – 2007.

“Some people have noticed that properties are selling quicker, and at times above list,” said Becky Walters, CREB® president.“But, in spite of very positive signs, we are not seeing a repeat of 2006.”

Year-to-date, the average residential home was on the market for 37 days before selling. That’s 16 per cent less time than last year, but much longer than the 20 days recorded in 2006. In addition, the citywide sales price-to-list price ratio has increased, but is lower than the levels recorded seven years ago.

New listings within the city of Calgary totaled 2,522 units in October, a nine per cent increase over the previous year.

While the rise in new listings was not large enough to result in inventory growth, it is the fourth consecutive month of year-over-year gains.

“Price growth and tighter market conditions have encouraged some of the recent rise in new listings,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, chief economist. “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.”

A total of 14,340 single-family homes sold after the first 10 months of the year, a seven 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 seven 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.

CREB® September 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Oct. 1, 2013 – City of Calgary residential sales totaled 1,923 units in September, 19 per cent higher than last year and 14 per cent higher than long-term averages for the month. While sales activity over the past three months has been above long-term trends, it was less so in September than in July and August.

“The impact of the floods likely boosted sales throughout July and August, and it appears as though some of that additional demand is starting to ease,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB® chief economist. “Nonetheless, sales growth remains strong, in part because net migration has been stronger than anticipated and rental product is in short supply.”

As Calgary’s market remains in seller’s territory, a notable shift is occurring with new listings. While monthly levels of new listings have been declining since 2011, over the past three months the levels of new listings have improved. The growth was not enough to cause any significant changes in inventory levels, but it has helped prevent further tightening in the market.

“The increase in new listings has given buyers more choice,” said Becky Walters, CREB® President. Activity varies by community, property type and price. Consumers searching for lower-priced single family homes often have to adjust expectations or consider alternative communities or property types. While many buyers think the seller’s market conditions should lead to a significant price premium for their property, consumers remain price sensitive.

“Selection is limited in the lower price ranges, but choice has improved for higher prices homes,” said Walters.

Condominium apartment and townhouse sales totaled a respective 3,147 and 2,494 after the first three quarters of the year. Year-to-date sales growth is more than double the levels recorded in the single family sector.

“The condominium market offer affordable options for consumers in the city, and the growth reflect that,” said Walters. “But keep in mind condominiums still represent less than onethird of residential sales within city limits.” Single family sales totaled 13,006 units after the first three quarters of the year, a 6.7 per cent increase over the previous year. Single family sales increased in the third quarter, while the first two quarters were on pace with activity in 2012.

“Tight market conditions have supported price growth in the Calgary market,” said Lurie. “But the pace of unadjusted monthly growth has eased in September.

“While prices show strong year-over-year gains, if the level of new listings continues to improve relative to sales activity, prices should level off for the remainder of the year.” Condominium apartment prices totaled $272,900 in September, a 9.5 per cent increase over 2012 and 0.9 per cent higher than August figures.

Meanwhile, single family and condominium prices totaled a respective $463,700 and $299,100, similar to unadjusted levels recorded in August and more than seven per cent higher on a year-over-year basis.

CREB® August 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Aug. 30, 2013 – City Residential sales within city limits totaled 2,196 units, an 27.5 per cent increase over 2012 and 8.7 per cent on a year-to-date basis.

The level of transactions was well above long-term trends for the month, mostly due to improved activity in the single-family sector. However, on a year-to-date basis, activity is only slightly higher than expectations.

“The sales have been limited by the need for more resale listings,” said CREB® President Becky Walters. “However, August did see more new listings than last year, giving buyers more choice.”

August new listings recorded a year-over-year improvement of 7.4 per cent. While seller’s market conditions persist and total inventory levels keep falling, improvement in new listings helped prevent further tightening in the market despite the sales growth.

Single-family sales totaled 1,517 units in August, a 30 per cent increase over the previous year. Despite strong sales in the past couple of months, year-to-date sales activity has grown by 5.4 per cent, slightly stronger than anticipated.

“Lack of choice, particularly in single-family homes, has limited single-family sales growth,” said Walters. “However, improved new listings in the higher end of the market have created an opportunity for those looking to upgrade.”

Year-to-date condominium apartment sales totaled 2,823 units, a 13.7 per cent increase over the previous year. Unlike the single-family market, new listings are declining, causing the market to become tighter than levels recorded in the previous month. Meanwhile, the condominium townhouse market, like the single-family market, not only recorded strong sales growth but also saw a rise in new listings, helping ease some tightness in this market. Year-to-date sale and new listings increased at a respective 21.4 and 2.6 per cent.

“Housing demand has been supported by another year of strong migration levels, improving employment and wage growth,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB® Chief Economist. “Last year’s mortgage rule changes did not reverse the sales growth in our city, but did redirect demand to more affordable product.

“While recent increases in lending rates may require purchasers to adjust their expectations, Calgary remains a relatively affordable Canadian city. Our affordability, combined with a positive economic outlook is expected to support demand growth for the remainder of the year.”

Single-family benchmark prices reached $464,700 in August, a 7.4 per cent rise from the previous year and a 0.7 per cent increase over July. Meanwhile, condominium apartment and townhouse prices totaled a respective $270,600 and $298,500 in August, increasing by more than seven per cent compared to the previous year. “Price appreciation typically reflects the level of supply and demand in the market,” said Lurie. “Tight market conditions have supported stronger-than-expected price growth in the city, but this price appreciation needs to be taken into context.

“While citywide single-family benchmark prices have risen above unadjusted highs by $13,400, as of August both c-ondominium apartment and townhouse units are a respective $26,400 and $32,300 below the unadjusted highs recorded in 2007.”

CREB® July 2013 Statistics

Calgary, Aug. 1, 2013 – City of Calgary residential sales totaled 2,268 units in July, a 17 per cent increase over the previous year and up more than six per cent so far this year.

The flood that devastated the Calgary area on June 20 likely contributed to pulling forward sales activity, said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB® chief economist.
“Some of this activity is related to the displaced renters and owners seeking other accommodation,” said Lurie. “But those consumers already searching for a home may have sped up their purchase decision, in response to concerns regarding the impact tight supply levels would have on prices.”

The Calgary resale market is firmly in sellers’ territory, supporting price growth. While citywide prices are nearly seven per cent higher than levels recorded in July 2012, the unadjusted monthly gains have been easing. The benchmark price for the city of Calgary totalled $414,100 in July 2013.

“Some sellers have been waiting for prices to recover before listing their homes,” said President Becky Walters. “Current market conditions have encouraged listing growth this month, for single-family homeowners.” A total of 1,575 single-family homes sold in July, a 14 per cent increase over the previous year. Year-to-date, the growth is 2.5 per cent. While year-over-year new listings increased in July to 1,958 units, it was not enough to ease supply pressures in the market. Overall, active listings declined to 2,917 units, nearly 20 per cent lower than already declining levels recorded in 2012.

A total of 693 condominium apartments and townhouses sold in the month, a combined increase of 26 per cent over the previous year, and a year-to-date growth of 16 per cent.

Stronger sales growth in the condominium market relative to the single-family market is in part related to availability in the affordable price ranges. Year-to-date, there have been more new listings priced under $400,000 in the condominium sector than in the single-family market.

“Clients looking for affordable homes are considering community, product and price,” Walters said. “While there are affordable single-family homes in some communities, some may prefer condominiums in the same price range so they can live in a preferred community or get a home that requires less
renovation.”

The growing demand for condominiums has also led to a tightening of supply. July active listings in the apartment and townhouse segment declined to 768 and 407 units respectively.

Tight market conditions supported price growth for all categories in July. However, unadjusted monthly gains were strongest in the apartment sector. Apartment prices totaled $267,600 in July, a 1.4 per cent increase over the previous month and nearly eight per cent higher than the previous year. The benchmark price for single-family and townhouses were a respective $461,600 and $294,500 for the month.

“While the flooding will alter sales, listings and price trends in the affected areas, the impacts on the entire resale market will likely play out over the coming months,” said Lurie. “July sales growth has been stronger than year-to-date trends and longterm averages. However, if the level of new listings continues to rise, this could help ease tight market conditions.”

CREB® June 2013 Statistics

Calgary, July 2, 2013 – Sales activity in June exceeded growth expectations.

City of Calgary monthly residential sales totaled 2,317, a six per cent increase over June 2012 figures, and nearly five per cent higher than levels recorded in the first half of 2012. However, the impact of recent flooding is expected to trickle into the housing statistics over coming months.

“While sales and prices continue to show improvement, the city and residents of communities impacted by the recent flooding will face significant remediation challenges over the coming months,” said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB® chief economist. “Until the extent of the damage is known, it is difficult to accurately assess the full impact this will have on the city’s housing market.”

The level of new listings totaled 3,003 units in the city, a nine per cent drop over the previous year. The rise in sales, combined with the drop in listings, is keeping overall market balance in favour of the seller.

Active listings totalled 4,584 units in June, of which more than 660 units are listed in flood-affected areas. Active listings are nearly 20 per cent less than last year.

“In the coming months, flood victims, particularly those who were planning on selling their homes, will have some big decisions to make,” said Becky Walters, CREB® President. “Will they take a discounted price? Or will they stay and fully remediate the property? Either way, in the short term, housing supply will likely be relatively tight.”

Condominium sales growth outpaced gains in the single family sector, as less availability of single-family homes priced at less than $500,000 have improved the demand for the relatively affordable condominium market.

After the first six months of the year, condominium apartment sales totalled 2,034 units a 9.5 per cent increase over 2012. Meanwhile, year-to-date condominium townhouse sales amounted to 1,672 units, up from 1,374 sales recorded in the first half of 2012.

“The tighter market conditions are placing upward pressure on pricing in all city sectors,” said Lurie. “While the areas affected by the flood may face some short-term impacts on pricing, any adjustments occurring are unlikely to outweigh the impacts on the overall city wide price growth.”

The benchmark price for condominium apartments and townhouses were a respective $264,000 and $295,000 for the month of June 2013. Condominium prices have increased by more than six per cent on a year-over-year basis, but remain below unadjusted peak levels.

Single-family sales activity totaled 1,638 units in June, a two per cent increase over 2012. However, after the first two quarters, single-family sales totaled 8,573 units, a one per cent increase over last year.

The single-family market moved into seller’s territory ahead of the condominium market, supporting stronger price growth. As of June the single-family benchmark price reached $459,700, a 6.7 per cent increase over the previous year.

“Prior to the events of the flood, our market was demonstrating tight supply levels, particularly for lower price product,” said Lurie.

Meanwhile economic indicators supported the growing demand in the city. Both the economic fallout and housing impact are yet to be seen. However, long-term economic prospects remain favourable for Calgary.

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