September housing prices ease as anticipated

Posted by Justin Havre. on Thursday, October 1st, 2015 at 8:33pm.

The Calgary Real Estate Board reports that after four months of virtual stability, September saw a relaxing of unadjusted benchmark pricing, coming in at $456,300 – just .26% less than Sept 2014. 

The sharp decline in apartment prices as a result of well above-average inventory in Calgary precipitated the majority of aggregate moderation.  The market now heavily favours buyers with excellent selection and more attractive price points. 

Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB chief economist breaks down the September statistics and says general sales activity in connection with new property listings meant overall absorption rates softened in the market.  Therefore, inventory was up, pushing prices down. 

Sales in residential housing in the detached, attached and apartment/condo sectors Calgary was 1,448 units, which is 32% less than this time last year.  Calgary sales so far in 2015 are as much as 26% below the 5 and 10-year averages.  Factors in the moderate decline include the continued rise in unemployment and consistent weak points in the economy, not only in Calgary but Alberta as a whole.  Lurie states that earlier in 2015, consumers were either reacting to or bracing themselves for uncertainty, whereas now, the economy itself is driving the activity. 

No segment of the market is immune to the perceptible drop in the radio of sales-to-new listings.  However, attached properties including apartments experienced the largest declines.  Ratios dropped to 40% while supply rose as high as 4.95%.  High inventory levels in multi-family units are due to moderate declines of listings relative to sales.  Apartment/condo sales have fallen by 32% while numbers of listings have shrunk by only 7%.  That has resulted in the apartment benchmark coming in at $290,600 in Sept 2015, a drop of 1.19% over Aug 2015 and a decline of 2.71% over this time last year. 

Detached homes experienced a ratio around the 50% mark in Sept 2015 and months of supply position at 3.32. 

While the apartment buyer is definitely in a sweet spot this fall, consumer should not be completely driven by price. The condition of apartment buildings along with the age and life cycle status need to be part of the decision in this type of market. 

Even with more months of supply on the books, typical prices in both detached and attached homes remained unchanged last month.  Looking at statistics in the downtown of 2008/09, current inventory levels in Calgary are still below the highs recorded at that time.



Source: Calgary Real Estate Board

September 2015 YTY Comparative Analysis 


Sales:  1,448 (-32%)
New Listings: 3,081 (-4.9%)
Active Listings (Inventory):  5,526 (+ 21%)
Median Sale Price: $425,000 (no change) 
Average Sale Price: $457,658 (-6%) 



Sales:  906   (-26%)
New Listings:  1,771 (-5%)
Current # of Listings:  3,012 (+17%)
Average Days on Market: 37 (+4.48%)
Median Sale Price:  $475,000 (-4%)
Sept 2015 Average Sale Price:  $523,188 (-8.9%)
YTD Median Price:  $482,000 (- $1.13%)



Sales:  259 (– 40.46%)
New Listings: 656   (-5.2%)
Current # of Listings: 1,282 (+19%)
Average Days on Market: 49 (+25.15%)
Median Sale Price:  $265,000   (-10%)
Average Sale Price: $296,694   (-9%)

YTD Median Price: $272,250 (- 4.47%)

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