A work in progress

Market sees modest inventory gains, but overall prices inch up 

Sales exhibited stable growth through the first half of the year in the Calgary housing market, but the number of transactions slowed slightly in July compared to last year.

Citywide sales totaled 1,637 units, six per cent below July 2016 levels. Year-to-date sales activity totaled 11,957 units, nine per cent above last year.

“Sales growth exceeded expectations so far this year. Clients were re-entering the market after delaying decisions until there were some signs of economic improvement,” said CREB® president David P. Brown.

“However, this recovery will require patience. There continues to be many new and resale ownership options available. This reduces the sense of urgency for many consumers.”

Easing sales were met with higher new listings, causing further gains in inventory levels. Citywide months of supply rose to four months, as inventory levels reached 6,675 units this month. This is 17 per cent higher than last year, but still below July highs recorded in 2008.

“Modest improvements in the labour market and net migration were necessary to support the turnaround in the housing market,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“However, current inventory levels and changes in the lending market continue to weigh on housing demand. Easing demand growth combined with elevated levels of supply will slow the pace of price recovery in our market.”

“Sales growth exceeded expectations so far this year. Clients were re-entering the market after delaying decisions until there were some signs of economic improvement.” – David P. Brown, CREB® president

Driven by detached and attached housing sales, citywide prices in July improved over the previous month and the previous year. However, it is nearly four per cent below previous monthly highs. Year-to-date benchmark averages remain 0.44 per cent below last year’s levels.

Despite the current month activity, the detached sector continues to demonstrate conditions that are more balanced compared to last year.

Apartment condominium product continues to face oversupply in the resale and new home sectors, causing further price declines. In July, the apartment benchmark price was $266,200. This is a three per cent decline over last year and nearly 12 per cent below peak prices.

For a full analysis of the Calgary housing market in 2017, please refer to CREB®’s 2017 mid-year update, to be released in mid-August.

Regional Market Facts

Airdrie
Despite some early signs of improvement, the overall market in Airdrie has not changed significantly compared to last year. Increased competition from the new home sector in Airdrie and Calgary is likely weighing on resale activity.

Cochrane
Year-to-date sales activity increased by 10 per cent for a total of 408 units in Cochrane. Rising sales have been met with growth in new listings, keeping inventories at similar levels to the previous year.

Okotoks
Despite recent gains, year-to-date new listings in Okotoks totalled 627. This is three per cent lower than levels recorded last year. Sales activity improved by two per cent over the same time frame and is helping to reduce some of the inventory in the market.

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