December 2/2019: Calgary Housing Market Still Favours the Buyer
City of Calgary, December 2, 2019 – Year-to-date residential sales in the city remain just above last year’s levels due to improvements in the attached sector so far this year.
However, November sales activity eased over last year’s levels, mostly due to pullbacks in the apartment sector.
Meanwhile, new listings eased enough relative to sales to cause inventories to ease and the amount of oversupply to come down slightly compared to last year’s levels.
“Achieving more stable conditions will take time. Sales activity has been settling in at lower levels and is likely being influenced by the economic conditions and uncertainty weighing on our market,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.
“While the amount of supply in the market continues to ease, the persistent oversupply continues to weigh on prices.”
As of November, the citywide unadjusted benchmark price was $419,100. This is just below last month’s levels and two per cent lower than last year’s levels.
Market conditions continue to vary depending on price, location and product type. For example, prices have ranged from a year-to-date decline of nearly eight per cent for row product in the East district to a two per cent increase for semi-detached product in the North district.
Larger price declines are often caused by high supply in the new-home and resale markets relative to demand.
HOUSING MARKET FACTS
- Detached sales improved in November over last year’s levels, mostly due to growth in the $400,000 – $500,000 range. However, sales in November and overall activity remain low by historical standards.
- Despite some recent gains in sales activity, year-to-date sales remain comparable to last year’s levels and 20 per cent below longer-term trends. However, detached sales have improved in both the North West and South districts this year.
- Improving sales, combined with further declines in new listings, helped reduce inventories in this sector compared to levels recorded last year. However, supply levels remained elevated based on seasonal comparisons.
- Like some of the other sectors, the detached market is slowly moving toward more balanced conditions. However, it is still oversupplied, and this trend continues to weigh on prices.
- The detached unadjusted benchmark price was $481,500 in November, slightly lower than last month’s levels and two per cent below last year’s prices.
- Apartment sales pulled back this month, causing year-to-date sales to remain comparable to last year’s levels and 21 per cent below long-term averages.
- The monthly decline in sales was mostly driven by pullbacks in the City Centre, North West and South East districts. However, on a year-to-date basis, sales activity improved in the North, West and South East districts.
- New listings rose across most districts, causing city-wide inventory gains this month. Much of the gains were a result of a rise in new-home listings filtering into the resale market. Despite the monthly shift, year-to-date new listings and inventories remain lower than last year’s levels.
- Weaker sales, combined with rising inventories, pushed November months of supply to over seven months. This is higher than last year’s levels of more than five months.
- Persistent oversupply in this sector caused prices to ease. The year-to-date benchmark price declined by more than two per cent.
- Year-to-date sales remain more than six per cent higher than last year’s levels and just below long-term averages.
- New listings eased this month compared to last year and sales improved. Inventories continue to ease from the monthly highs recorded last year. While the attached market remains oversupplied, the market continues to improve over last year’s levels.
- November semi-detached prices eased by two per cent compared to last year. The largest year-over-year declines occurred in the City Centre district.
- Row prices eased by nearly four per cent compared to last year. Annual declines ranged from more than seven per cent in the North East district to nearly two per cent in the North West and East districts.
REGIONAL MARKET FACTS
- Sales activity continue to improve in November compared to last year. This caused year-to-date sales to rise to 1,146 units, an increase over last year and consistent with long-term averages.
- The rise in sales continued to be met with a pullback in new listings, resulting in inventory declines. This helped reduce the months of supply and November levels are much closer to balanced conditions.
- Easing oversupply has helped reduce the downward pressure on prices this month. However, it was not enough to offset earlier declines. The year-to-date benchmark price in Airdrie was $332,345, three per cent below last year’s levels.
- November sales eased compared to the previous year, but it was not enough to offset earlier gains, as year-to-date sales remained just above last year’s levels.
- The notable adjustment this month was in new listings, which eased enough to offset any declines in sales. This caused further inventory reductions compared to last year. While the months of supply did not shift much this month, year-to-date levels have eased from the previous year and remain just above longer-term averages.
- Despite supply reductions, the market remains oversupplied, which continues to weigh on prices. In November, prices the benchmark price was $394,200, lower than last month and more than four per cent below last year’s levels.
- November sales continued to improve over the low levels of activity recorded last year. The steady gains have caused year-to-date sales to rise above last year’s levels but remain below longer-term averages.
- Inventory levels have also been easing, thanks to a rise in sales and reduction in new listings. While the market remains oversupplied, these adjustments are supporting moves toward more balanced conditions.
- Prices in this market have been slower to adjust. In November, the unadjusted benchmark price was $412,100, lower than last month and over two per cent lower than last year.