Calgary’s resale housing market had its worst September in five years, with the year-over-year decline in sale prices the biggest yet this year.
According to the Calgary Real Estate Board, sales were down 32.4 per cent from last September, to 1,448. The average sale price was $457,658, down nearly six per cent, while the median price was flat at $425,000.
While the market is softening, Tim Mangat, an agent with CIR Realty, believes the market is in transition and a permanent reset in property values is still to come. He also believes in Calgary’s resiliency, as a market and as a community.
“There may be some foreclosures, bankruptcies and failed businesses, however none of it will deter Calgarians’ spirit. We are resourceful and people will find a way to ensure mortgage payments are made, food is on the table and a Flames jersey is hanging in the closet.”
Phil Soper, president and chief executive of Royal LePage, said when a shift occurs in real estate a gap grows between seller and buyer expectations. In a slower market, buyers are fast to react and they expect to see changes in pricing immediately whereas sellers typically react very slowly.
“They stubbornly hang on to perceived value for a longer period of time,” said Soper. “That gap puts pressure on the market and transaction volume slows. That’s playing out in Calgary.”
Mangat believes a rebound is inevitable. “Eventually Calgary will leap to the front of Canadian real estate and we’ll relish every step of the journey.”
It’s getting harder and harder for Calgary’s real estate agents to see the glass as half full, with new stats pointing to tough times ahead, but not everyone is ready to throw in the towel.