Despite 24% rise, Calgary’s January real estate sales remain below long-term average

by REP on 03 Feb 2017
The City of Calgary’s real estate market fared much better in January 2017 compared to the same month a year before, the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB) has revealed.

There were 947 units sold in January – 24% more than the same month in 2016. Sales activity across all product types also improved year-on-year, but only because of the record lows in January 2016. “Last year’s market was one of the weakest on record,” said CREB chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

 "While housing conditions continue to favour buyers, a slow transition toward more balanced conditions is helping to ease downward pressure on home prices… Despite the appearance of a major shift in activity, the transition in the housing market is going to be a slow process," she added.

January’s sales are 21% lower than the 10-year average for the month. "This past month showed how the market never stands still," said CREB president David P. Brown. "The market isn't expected to be as unpredictable in 2017, but it's early in the year and there are still lots of unknowns that will shape decision-making for consumers."

City-wide benchmark prices were $437,400. That’s 0.16% lower than December and 2.82% lower than last year's levels.

CREB expects to see price stability in Calgary’s market this year – but not across all market segments and property types.  Both detached and attached prices remain unchanged over 2016 levels, while apartment is forecasted to contract by another two per cent, the board said.

“The transition in the housing market will be a slow process,” said chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “We are entering the year with high unemployment rates and the possibility that job growth will not occur until the latter portion of 2017. These conditions will continue to weigh on housing demand, but supply is adjusting to weaker sales activity, which will eventually translate into price stability.”

CREB predicts city-wide sales to total 18,335 units this year, a 3% rise over 2016, but 12% below long-term averages.

Related stories:
Affordability survey released
Investors beware: Canadian real estate’s performance to slacken in 2017

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