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Real Estate Round-Up March 5-18

Posted by Ryan MacDonald on Thursday, March 20th, 2014 at 8:16am.

Read all about it here! Don't miss the latest Calgary real estate news from March 5-18. Compliments of the Calgary Home Team.

Spring Housing Inventory Will be Absorbed by Hot Market, Calgary Herald

Although additional resale housing inventory is expected to hit the Calgary market in the spring, a new real estate report says it will be absorbed by strong consumer demand. The report by Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, released March 18, said the outlook for Calgary’s real estate market is positive based on key economic indicators and demand is being “driven by low interest rates, tight rental and resale real estate markets and strong economic fundamentals.”

Ross McCredie, president and chief executive of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, told the Herald Calgary’s marketplace demand is due to a number of factors including high incomes and strong net migration to the city. According to the Calgary Real Estate Board, month to date from March 1-17, there have been 1,264 MLS sales in the city, up 13.26% from the same period last year. But new listings of 1,782 are down by 1.44% and active listings of 3,126 are off by 20.17%.

Meanwhile, the median price has jumped by 9.0% to $433,000, while the average sale price has risen by 6.25% to $482,307. And the average days on the market to sell a home has dropped to 27 from 35 last year.

The report said Alberta in the year ahead is expected to lead the country in total capital investment growth driven largely by oil and gas extraction and pipelines.

First-Time Buyers Not Afraid to Break Bank, Calgary Herald

The percentage of first-time home buyers in Calgary who are willing to break their budget for the right house is the highest in Canada, according to a new report by BMO. The 2014 First-Time Home Buyers Report, released March 18, said 54% of those in Calgary would do so compared with the national average of 33%. They are also expecting to pay more.

The report said 50% of Calgary buyers say their time line has been delayed due to rising real estate prices and 68% have made cutbacks to their lifestyle in order to save for their first home. The BMO survey found that first-time buyers in Calgary have a budget of $363,400 for a new home. For Canadians, their budget this year is $316,100 which is up from $300,000 the year before. The BMO report did not look at budget expectations on a city level for its survey last year.

Calgary Homes Still Third-Most Expensive in Canada, CTV

The average price of a Canadian home spiked to more than $400,000 due in part to a rebound in some of Canada’s most expensive markets, the Canadian Real Estate Association said recently. February numbers released by CREA found that prices are now 10% higher than what they were a year ago. The national average price for a home sold last month was $406,372. But, prospective home buyers and sellers should take note: The gains are not distributed evenly from coast to coast. “A year ago, you had fewer sales in some very active and expensive markets, which have since rebounded,” Gregory Klump, chief economist at the CREA, told CTV.

Driving the hefty gain was an increase in pricing in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto. Average house price:

  • Vancouver: $846,978
  • Toronto: $553,193
  • Calgary: $460,338

There wasn’t a jump everywhere, however, as prices fell in Regina, Quebec City and Winnipeg.

Calgary Housing Starts Trending to Near-Record Levels, Calgary Sun

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) says housing starts in the Calgary Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) are trending to reach 15,000 units this year, using its six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR). If builders reach 15,000, it will be the second highest number of annual starts ever in the CMA, eclipsed only by the 17,046 starts recorded in 2006.

Builders started 1,270 new homes in the CMA in February, a 41.7% increase over February last year, supported by positive economic factors, says Richard Cho, CMHC’s senior market analyst in Calgary.

“Continued growth in employment, strong net migration and declines in new home inventories have supported the rise of new construction,” Cho told the Sun.

The number of people coming to the area put the Calgary CMA’s population at 1,364,800 as of July 1, 2013.

Ryan MacDonald, B.Sc. Real Estate Professional

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