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Sales remain stronger than pre-covid levels

October sales eased compared to last year’s levels, mostly due to slower activity in the detached sector. However, with 1,857 sales this month, levels are still stronger than long-term trends and activity reported prior to the pandemic. Year-to-date sales have reached 26,823 and with only two months to go, 2022 will likely post a record year in terms of sales.

“Calgary hasn’t seen the same degree of pullback in housing sales like other parts of Canada, thanks to persistently strong demand for our higher density product,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “While our city is not immune to the impact that inflation and higher rates are having, strong employment growth, positive migration flows and a stronger...

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Cochrane

A pullback in new listings relative to sales activity caused the sales-to-new-listings ratio to push up to 90 per cent once again, causing inventories to trend down relative to last month. While overall inventories still remain higher than the exceptionally low levels seen last year, levels are still well below what is typically seen in the market.

While prices have eased off recent highs, at a benchmark price of $507,000, prices remain over 16 per cent higher than last years levels. Price growth has been mostly driven by the detached and semi-detached sector which have reported year-over-year gains exceeding 18 per cent.
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2021 record year for home sales

City of Calgary, Jan. 4, 2022 – Thanks to exceptionally high sales in December, 2021 was a record year for home sales. Calgary sales reached 27,686 units this year, nearly 72 per cent higher than last year and over 44 per cent higher than the 10-year average.

“Concerns over inflation and rising lending rates likely created more urgency with buyers over the past few months. However, as is the case in many other cities, the supply has not kept pace with the demand, causing strong price growth,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

As of December, the unadjusted benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent over last month and was sitting over 10 per cent higher than last year’s figures. Overall, the 2021 benchmark price rose by more than eight per cent compared to last year for a total of $451,567, just shy of the annual record high set back in 2015.

We are entering 2022 with some of the tightest conditions seen in over a decade. As of December, inventory levels are nearly 25 per cent lower than long-term averages for the month. This will have an impact on our housing market as we move through 2022. More details on the housing market forecast for 2022 will be released on Jan. 25.

 

Detached

With 17,038 sales in 2021, home sales remained slightly lower than the record high set in 2005. While a new record was not set, sales are still over 40 per cent higher than long-term averages and supply challenges likely prevented stronger sales this year. New listings rose, but it was not enough to offset sales, causing inventories to ease. In the detached sector, average inventory levels were over 23 per cent lower than long-term trends. With only 898 units in inventory in December, we are entering 2022 with the lowest detached inventory on record.

Strong sales relative to inventory levels caused the months of supply to dip below one month, which is tighter than levels recorded in the spring market. Tightening conditions over the past several months once again weighed on prices. The detached benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent compared with last month and is nearly 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels. Overall, the detached sector has recorded the largest annual price gain at nearly 10 per cent, not only recovering from the 2015 annual high, but exceeding it by nearly three per cent.


Semi-Detached

In 2021, there were 2,571 semi-detached sales, an annual gain of 55 per cent and over 47 per cent higher than longer-term trends. Relative affordability and less supply choice in the detached sector caused many to consider semi-detached properties. However, like other property types, semi-detached sales growth outpaced new-listings growth, especially at the end of the year, causing significant declines in inventory levels and the months of supply, which has remained below two for the past three months.

Tight conditions have caused further price growth, as December prices were nearly 10 per cent higher than last year. Overall, on an annual basis, semi-detached home prices improved by eight per cent, reaching a new record high. However, prices have not recovered across all districts, as the City Centre, North East and South districts have not seen full price recovery,


Row

Over the past few months, row properties have increased in popularity, reporting strong sales growth that has outpaced the growth in new listings. This has created much tighter conditions and is supporting stronger price growth.

Inventories were not as much of a challenge earlier in the year, so the pace of price growth was not as high as the growth seen among some of the other property types during that time. However, benchmark prices rose by six per cent on an annual basis, supporting some price recovery. Despite the gains, prices remain nearly nine per cent lower than the previous high.


Apartment Condominium

Record sales in December were not enough to support annual record-high sales for this property type. Unlike the other property types, the apartment condominium sector has not experienced many supply challenges, as inventories this year generally remained above historical levels. However, the growth in sales was enough to help shift the market from one that favoured the buyer to one that was relatively balanced.

The balanced conditions did support modest annual price growth of just over two per cent. Each district saw some improvement in price this year, varying from less than one per cent growth in the City Centre to over six per cent growth in the West district. Despite these price gains, prices are still recovering across all districts and citywide prices remain 14 per cent lower than previous highs recorded in 2014.

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With December sales of 1,199, this is the highest December total since 2007.

“Housing demand over the second half of 2020 was far stronger than anticipated and nearly offset the initial impact caused by the shutdowns in spring,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“Even with the further restrictions imposed in December, it did not have the same negative impact on housing activity like we saw in the earlier part of the year.”

Attractive interest rates, along with prices that remain lower than several years ago, have likely supported some of the recovery in the second half of the year. However, it is important to note that annual sales activity declined by one per cent compared to last year and remains well below long-term averages.

New listings in December...

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With many people trading in their downtown commute for a home office due to the COVID-19 pandemic, proximity to the city centre has been less of a priority for house hunters this year.


In fact, a new emphasis on creating comfortable, productive workspaces within the home and the reduced importance of living anywhere near the office have increased buyer interest in areas just outside Calgary’s city limits – where prices are lower and space is plentiful.


While overall year-to-date home sales in Calgary are down compared to the same time in 2019, Airdrie, Cochrane and Okotoks have all recorded an uptick.


Resale activity grew by 12.5 per cent in Airdrie and 10 per cent in Cochrane, while Okotoks followed with a one per cent gain, according to data from CREB®.


Sales in these areas...

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For the sixth month in a row, sales in the Calgary market recorded a year-over-year gain.

Sales growth over the past several months has been the strongest seen in the past five years, but the activity has not been strong enough to offset the pullbacks from the spring. Year-to-date sales remain over three per cent lower than last year’s levels.

New listings continue to slow, reducing inventory in the market. On a year-to-date basis, new listings have eased by nearly ten per cent and are at the lowest level recorded since 2001. This has reduced the oversupply that has been impacting the market for nearly five years.

“The gains in sales in the latter part of this year have been a bit surprising considering the job losses and unemployment rate in our city,” said CREB® chief...

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How Mortgage Payment Penalties Work

What we find most surprising when dealing with Sellers is that they rarely know how a mortgage prepayment penalty works. Either it was never explained to them. By either the mortgage broker, their bank, or their lawyer. Or, they never took the time to understand this important factor of mortgage payout penalties, when they first mortgaged their property.


In today’s interest rate environment, our clients are seeing some very severe penalties. This is due to a little-known clause on prepayments. The mortgage penalty is  applied on the basis of the greater, of the payment of 3 months of mortgage interest. Or applied as the interest rate differential – the IRD.

Closed Mortgage

When you elect to have a closed mortgage there are limited prepayment...

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With strong gains in the detached sector, October sales in the city reached 1,764 units. This is a 23 per cent increase over last year and well above longer-term averages.

The gain in citywide residential sales outpaced the growth in new listings, supporting tighter market conditions and improving prices.

“Over the past several years, higher lending rates and the stress test pushed many out of the detached housing market. However, recent declines in rates, combined with prices that are lower than several years ago, have brought back some of that demand,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“This is helping support more balanced conditions and price improvements in the market. However, price improvements are not occurring across all product type and price ranges...

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Total residential sales in August were relatively stable compared to last year with year-over-year gains in the detached and row sectors.These gains offset declines in the apartment and semi-detached sectors. The 1,573 sales recorded in August are consistent with levels over the past five years. Year-to-date sales activity remains nearly 13 per cent below last year.

“Recent national reports have shown a bounceback to new record levels over the past several months. Calgary has seen improvements over the lows recorded during the lockdowns, but is far from record levels,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “We have started to see improvements in the job market compared to previous months, as some jobs start to return. The situation in Calgary has been slightly...

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1) INJECT SOME COLOUR


If you’re going to be spending a lot of time in your yard, some visual interest is key. Bold colours are great for the outdoors and there are many ways to incorporate them into your space. Flowers are one of the cheapest and most popular ways to add colour, whether in the form of annuals in pots or perennials in your garden beds that will come back year after year. You can also add colour through your furniture and accent choices, including seat cushions, throw pillows, outdoor rugs, and painted pergolas or trellises.


2) UP-GRADE YOUR FURNITURE

If your patio set is a couple decades old, it might be time for an upgrade. Opt for new patio furniture with weather-resistant cushions, whether you’re looking for a dining set or bench seats for lounging. Brightly coloured...

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After three months where COVID-19 weighed heavily on the housing market, sales activity in June continued to trend up from the previous month, totalling 1,747 units.


Caution remains necessary, as monthly sales are nearly two per cent lower than activity recorded last year. However, this represents a significant improvement compared to the past several months, where year-over-year declines exceeded 40 per cent.


“Recent price declines, easing mortgage rates and early easing of social restrictions are likely contributing to the better-than-expected sales this month,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“However, the market remains far from normal. Challenges, such as double-digit unemployment rates, will continue to weigh on the market for months to come.”


New...

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After the first full month with social distancing measures in place, the housing market is adjusting to the effects of COVID-19.

April sales hit 573 units, a decline of 63 per cent over last year. “The decline in home sales does not come as a surprise. The combined impact of COVID-19 and the situation in the energy sector is causing housing demand to fall,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “Demand is also falling faster than supply. This is keeping the market in buyers’ territory and weighing on prices.” Sales activity eased across all price ranges, but the largest declines were for homes priced above $600,000.


With a greater share of the sales occurring in the lower price ranges, the average price decline was more than eight per cent. Prices for...

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After a strong start to 2020, economic conditions have dramatically changed, as COVID-19 is impacting all aspects of society.

The economic impact is starting to be felt across many industries. This includes the housing market.

March sales activity started the month strong, but quickly changed, as concerns regarding the spread of COVID-19 brought about social distancing measures. This had a heavy impact on businesses and employment.

“This is an unprecedented time with a significant amount of uncertainty coming from both the wide impact of the pandemic and dramatic shift in the energy sector. It is not a surprise to see these concerns also weigh on the housing market,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.


By the end of March, sales activity had fallen 11 per cent compared...

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Iconic status was off in the future for the 22-year-old winger. The bushy moustache had yet to grow out and become a trademark.


“We bought our first home year three in Toronto,” said Lanny McDonald, reminiscing. “We’d just gotten married. The house was out in Port Credit. Mineola Street, I believe. A bungalow that had a bonus room up above the garage and it was the scariest thing in the world. Oh my gosh. I think it cost $125,000. We were making a good living, certainly no complaints, but buying a first house is frightening. Luckily, it turned out to be absolutely awesome."


“Darryl (Sittler) lived just down the way, on Mississauga Road. Wendy (Sittler) and (my wife) Ardell became great friends. Darryl and I would drive into the games and practices together. We had...

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This month saw a double-digit gain in sales, but last February was one of the slowest levels of activity since the late ’90s.

With the extra day this February, monthly sales totaled 1,197 units.  A combination of these two factors resulted in a 23 per cent improvement over last year, but sales remain well below longer-term trends and consistent with the lower levels reported over the past five years.

“However, this should not diminish the fact that conditions are still improving,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“Calgary is continuing to see slow reductions in the amount of oversupply in the market, from modest changes in demand and reductions in supply. This needs to occur before we can see more stability in prices.”

The overall unadjusted...

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While lower Months of Inventory will lead to more balanced markets and stabilized pricing, we have noticed that the properties being sold have had an increased average price of 4% in Alberta to $375,649 from $361,131 in January 2019. Since the current Months of Inventory, and the number of sales in January do not support a market where we would see significant movement in price, it is primarily due to movement in the higher price ranges that is having this effect on pricing. The 6.3% increase in the average price for sales in Edmonton, and a 4.8% increase in the average price for sales in Red Deer had a big part in that jump upwards for the Province.
 
The sales activity in the higher price points is consistent with the showing activity that we have had for CIR's listings....
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For the past few years there has been talk about developing the property of The Nimmons Residence one of Calgary's historic houses. Located in Calgary's Bankview neighborhood, The Nimmons Residence is a 120 year old house that sits along side 14th street at 19th ave nestled in around low rise apartment buildings. A new proposal by Calgary's Brava Developments calls for the house to be moved to the opposite corner of the lot to make way for an 'L' shaped multi-family residential building.


Designed by Casola Koppe Architects , the residential building dubbed, Nimmons Court would be a 5 storey, 84 unit building that would flank The Nimmons Residence on the north and west sides, with the Nimmons Residence moved to the southeast corner of the property. The building is a modern styled design...

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Secondary suites make homeownership more affordable for cash-strapped buyers

Homes with secondary suites have been a hot topic in Calgary for years, but their appeal for homebuyers looking to generate extra revenue is only growing amid adverse economic conditions.


It is important to find out whether the secondary suite in a home is legal before making any purchase, which can be done by going to the City of Calgary’s website, www.calgary.ca/suites.

If a suite is illegal and a neighbour complains about noise or parking from a tenant, then a bylaw officer can come out and shut you down, meaning you’d have to tell your tenants to leave.


The best place to buy a home with a suite is typically near large employment centres, such as commercial or industrial areas, hospitals, universities,...

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The improvement of the Calgary housing market continued in December with further stability capping off a stronger second half of the year.

New figures from the Calgary Real Estate Board show that activity returned to levels close to those seen in the past five years with annual sales up 1%.

“Price declines, lower mortgage rates and some modest improvements in full-time employment helped support some demand growth in the city. Reductions in supply are also contributing to the slow adjustment to more stable conditions in the housing market,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

Annually, the attached homes segment was the star performer with sales up by nearly 7% for a total of 3,780 sales. Apartments just outpaced year-ago levels with 2,672 units sold, while detached sales...

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Sometimes your recyclables require a little more TLC to ensure that what you are setting out for recycling actually gets recycled, and to prevent problems in the processing facility. Here are some common holiday wrapping materials that people often wonder about:


WRAPPING PAPER: While most wrapping paper can be included with your paper recyclables, please remove ribbons and bows, and exclude any wrapping materials
that are foil-lined. Tissue paper used to wrap presents or fill gift bags can also be included in your paper recycling bag or bin.


GIFT BAGS: Paper gift bags can be included with your paper recyclables. Be sure to remove handles, metal grommets and decorations such as bows and ribbons. Similar to wrapping paper, gift bags with
foil lining or non-paper decoration are not recyclable as...

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