By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald December 7, 2011
 
 
Fuelled by low interest rates and job security, demand for residential real estate in Calgary is on the upswing, says the Re/Max Housing Market Outlook 2012 report published Tuesday. And the real estate firm says Calgary will be a Canadian leader next year in the annual growth rate for MLS sales.
 
By year-end 2011, 22,500 homes are expected to change hands, an eight per cent increase over the 20,801 sales reported in 2010, it said. And the average price in Calgary is forecast to appreciate as well, rising a "modest" one per cent to $405,000 in 2011, up from $401,186 one year ago.
 
The report forecasts the average MLS sale price will jump by three per cent in 2012 to $417,000, while sales will rise by five per cent to 23,600 units.
 
Lowell Martens, of Re/ Max Real Estate (Mountain View) in Calgary, said any hesitation on the part of some buyers in the city is more than likely a direct reflection of the uncertainty in the European economic situation. He said commercial realestate construction taking place in Calgary "tells us the long-term feeling out there is very positive for Calgary."
 

"We have a very stable market over the next little while. We don't anticipate any big upswings, but at the same time we don't anticipate any big downswings either. It's going to be very stable," he said.

Buyers in the city are cautiously optimistic after more than two years of recession, making their moves while interest rates are at historic lows and housing values are affordable, said the report.
 
"Single-family homes remain most popular with purchasers, representing close to 60 per cent of total residential sales. Demand is greatest for entry-level product, priced between $350,000 and $450,000," it said. "Con-dominium apartments and town houses have also experienced solid momentum in recent months, with the lion's share of activity occurring from $200,000 to $300,000. Luxury home sales - priced over $1 million - have been particularly brisk, up approximately 25 per cent over 2010 levels."
 
While global concerns still loom, the market appears to be gaining some traction moving into the new year, said the report. Re/Max said Canadian residential realestate defied conventiona l logic and outperformed expectations in 2011, posting another solid year of housing activity virtually across the board. The trend is expected to carry forward into 2012 as Canadians "continue to demonstrate their faith in home ownership, despite concerns over the European debt crisis and its impact on the global economy."
 
"What 2011 proves is that real estate continues to have momentum," said Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president, Re/Max of Western Canada, in a statement
.
"The economic underpinnings support ongoing demand, particularly as job creation efforts continue and unemployment rates edge down further."
 
Read full post

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Housing Market Outlook 
 Date Released: Fourth Quarter 2011

Alberta Overview
Alberta’s housing starts are forecast to increase by 15.3 per cent to 29,200 units in 2012, following a 6.5 per cent decrease in 2011 to 25,325 units.
  
 These robust gains are a result of a number of factors. Firstly, the economy is projected to show relatively strong growth over the forecast period. In 2011, real gross domestic product is expected to rise by 3.1 per cent, followed by 3.5 per cent in 2012. Note, however, a pullback in oil prices during the summer, along with various wildfires, briefly slowed economic conditions, but these effects have dissipated.
  
 Secondly, employment growth is projected at 3.4 per cent in 2011, lowering the unemployment rate from 6.5 per cent to 5.6 per cent. By 2012, the unemployment rate is expected to be lowered to 5.1 per cent. As a result, this will put upward pressure on Alberta’s housing sector.

 

Finally, the demographic outlook for Alberta is positive. With an improving economy generating jobs, it is expected more migrants will choose Alberta as their home. Last year was a 15-year low for migration to Alberta.

 

Moving forward, expect significant growth in migration this year with further gains in 2012. These gains are also expected to put upward pressure on the demand for housing within the province.

 

In Detail

 

 
Single Starts: Single-detached starts are projected to decline about ten per cent in 2011, as builders mitigate the risk of rising inventories. Over the balance of the forecast period, demand for single-detached homes will improve with a growing economy and job creation. In 2012, single-detached starts are expected to rise by over 15 per cent to 18,400 units. The number of single-detached units under construction in August was at approximately half the level reported five years ago. However, with the inventory of complete and unabsorbed units up from the previous year, builders have been cautious about expanding production.

 

  
Multiple Starts: More affordable condominium projects are now competing with the resale market and enticing some renters to move into new condominium units. After a slow start to this year, the pace of multi-family starts has picked-up and is expected to edge past last year’s level of production. In 2012, demand is expected to improve with rising incomes and new household formation, raising the level of multi-family production by 14.6 per cent to 10,800 units.

 

  
Resales: The number of MLS® sales in Alberta is projected to increase by over six per cent in 2011 to 52,800 units. In 2012, MLS® sales are projected to rise to 53,900 units.

 

  
Prices:   Most of Alberta’s major urban centres remain in buyers’ market conditions as indicated by a sales-to-new listings ratio that has fluctuated around 50 per cent this year. The average resale price in 2011 is expected to rise fractionally above last year’s average, with much of the price movement attributed to compositional effects. As Alberta’s economy generates employment and attracts more migrants, demand will rise and improve market balance. The average resale price in Alberta is projected to rise by more than two per cent in 2012 to $362,700.
Read full post

 
First year-over-year increase in monthly condominium sales since April 2010

 

Calgary, July 4, 2011 – According to figures released today by CREB® (Calgary Real Estate Board), residential sales surged in the month of June 2011 to 1,979 units. While this indicates a third more sales than June 2010, the year-todate increase proved a moderate 2 per cent. Strong monthly increases does not imply a housing boom, as it is important to put into perspective that sales

activity remains below long term averages. While the single family market has shown signs of improvement throughout the first half of this year, this is the first time since April 2010 that condominium sales have recorded a year-over year increase.

 

“Improved housing demand is being fueled by a younger demographic and, with the affordability of homes in Calgary, we are continuing to see young Calgarians pursue ownership over rentals,” says Sano Stante, president of CREB®.

 

“Historically, Calgary’s average family income has been higher than the national average and a younger more mobile demographic has been attracted to good paying professional jobs in Calgary. As the economy continues to build momentum, we expect this same trend will support a balanced and healthy

housing market in the second half of 2011 and into 2012.”

 

With 581 sales for the month of June 2011, the condominium market improved by 31 per cent over June of 2010, however year-to-date figures show a 5 per cent decrease over the same period last year.

 

“Condo sales bounced back this month, and we now have less than four months of supply on the market. Stronger condo sales, combined with a decline in inventory, will lend more balance to this market in the months to come,” says Stante.

 

After the first half of the year, average prices of condominiums are still slightly lower than levels recorded last year, as more buyers bought condominiums under $200,000 in 2011 compared to 2010 for the same period.
 

“Buyers in this market expect value and many are taking advantage of some affordable buys in both the single family and condo markets. It highlights using a skilled REALTOR® to properly price your home for your unique market area,” says Stante.

 

The single family market recorded 1,398 sales in the month of June 2011. This is an increase of 32 per cent when compared to June 2010 when 1,059 single family homes sold in the city of Calgary. With a total of 7,231 sales after the first half of the year, year-to-date single family sales are 6 per cent higher than last year.

 

“While new listings are still lower than levels recorded last year, the rate of decline has eased. With the market shifting to more balanced conditions in recent months, sellers are feeling more confident to list their home. Overall our absorption rate has remained relatively stable, staving off any significant rise in

prices,” says Stante.

 

Year-to-date average price of a single family home in Calgary is $472,330, while the median price is $410,000, virtually unchanged over levels recorded in the previous year. The distribution of sales by price range has not shown any significant shift compared to last year, pointing to continued stability in the market.
 

“After the first half of the year, it appears the recovery in the housing market is starting to find its footing.

This gradual leveling has been fueled by growth in employment, and in particular growth in full time jobs. Improved job prospects, combined with an increase in the number of people moving to Calgary, will give lift to our housing market for the remainder of this year and into the

next,” says Stante.

 

Read full post

Calgary, February 1, 2011
 

– Single family home sales in the City of Calgary edged upwards month-over-month and showed the first yearover-year increase since April  2010, according to figures released today by CREB® (Calgary Real Estate Board).

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of January 2011 were 787, compared with December 2010, when sales were 734— an increase of about 7 per cent. The number of condominium sales for the month of January 2011 was 297. This was down from the 320 condominium transactions recorded in December 2010.
 
Year-over-year, the number of single family homes sold in January 2011 in the city of Calgary increased by just over 3 per cent. In January 2010, single family home sales totaled 762. Condominium sales saw a decrease of 21 per cent from the same time a year ago. In January 2010, condominium sales were 376.
 
“More affordable housing will continue to attract homebuyers to the inner-city, particularly as employment in the city of Calgary continues to improve,” says Sano Stante, president of CREB®. “Single family homes in the city are currently driving this gradual recovery, and we are seeing an uptick in the sale of homes below the $350,000 price point. This may suggest more first time homebuyers are entering the market, providing the fuel needed for a sustained housing recovery.”
 
The average price of a single family home in the city of Calgary in January 2011 was $454,287, showing a 3 per cent increase from December 2010, when the average price was $441,341, and a 3 per cent increase from January 2010, when the average price was $441,217. The average price of a condominium in the city of Calgary in January 2011 was $287,954, showing a 2 per cent increase from December 2010, when the average price was $282,768 and a 2 per cent increase over last year, when the average price was $282,639.
 
The median price of a single family home in the city of Calgary for January 2011 was $390,000, showing a slight increase from December 2010 when the median price was $389,000. This was a 2 per cent decrease from January 2010, when the median price was $398,000.
 
The median price of a condominium in January 2011 was $255,000, showing a 1 per cent decrease from December 2010, when the median price was $258,500, and a 4 per cent decrease from January 2010, when it was $265,000.
 
“The recovery in 2011 will be incremental and gradual. Nonetheless, at the moment Calgary is offering buyers a great deal of affordability, low interest rates and a large selection of inventory,” says Stante. “Overall the first quarter of 2011 will show modest improvements in sales which will lay the foundation for the return to a more balanced market,” he adds.
 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of January 2011 totaled 1958, an increase of 169 per cent from December 2010 when 728 new listings were added, and showing an increase of 7 per cent from January 2010, when 1822 new listings came to the market.

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Housing sales in December declined from November, and the median house price has dropped 3% in comparison to 2009. Following are excerpts from the most current news release from the Calgary Real Estate Board.
 
Home and condo sales in Calgary and area remained relatively unchanged in December 2010, indicating that a full-fledged recovery in the housing market has yet to take hold, according to
fi gures released today by the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).
 

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of December 2010 were 734, compared with

November 2010, when sales were 891—a decline of about 18 per cent. The number of condominium sales for the month of December 2010 was 320. This was up from the 310 condominium transactions recorded in November 2010.

 
Undoubtedly housing markets in Alberta and Calgary underperformed in 2010, as sales recoveries did not materialize as forecasted. In many ways, re-sales in 2010 showed a repeat of 2008, with a short lived resurgence in the  fi rst few months, when confi dence returned to the market,” says Diane Scott, president of CREB®.
 

 

“Employment and net-migration have been slower to pick up here in Calgary—and these are key drivers of our housing market. The good news is we arenow seeing marked improvements in investment and employment in the energy sector. We believe these green shoots in our economy, supported by improved affordability and low interest rates, will eventually translate into a gradual recovery of our housing market as we move into 2011,” adds Scott.

 

“Supply outstripped demand in the second half of 2010, establishing conditions for a buyers’ market. Overall we did see significant improvements in affordability in the Calgary market in 2010—and I think the message to prospective buyers is that this is a great time to buy if you’re looking for good selection, specific locations and price points. The median price did indeed decline in 2010, signaling a year-over-year price correction of about 2 per cent for single-family homes, just over 4 per cent for condos and 6 per cent for the outlying towns,” adds Scott.

 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of December 2010 totaled 744, a decrease of 44 per cent from November 2010 when 1,318 new listings were added, and showing a decrease of 8 per cent from December 2009, when 806 new listings came to the market.

Condominium new listings in the city of Calgary added for December 2010 were 369, down 42 per cent from November 2010, when the MLS® saw 632 condo listings coming to the market. This is a decrease of 17 per cent from December 2009, when new condominium listings added were 444.
 
To read the entire report and see the latest statistics, visit http://www.creb.com/public/documents/statistics/2010/package/res-stats-2010%20December.pdf
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Calgary job seekers could close the year on a happier note, with one in five Calgary companies planning to hire within the next three months, a sign the city's economy is stabilizing after a rocky patch, economists say.
 

"It's all very positive news," said Randy Upright, CEO of Manpower's Alberta region, adding only four per cent of employers expect to cut back their labour force between October and December.

He added that the numbers show a "more conservative kind of survey" than those seen during boom times.
 
As well, the number looking to add employees is double what it was in the same period last year, when only 11 per cent were in that position.
 

And it's an eight percentage point increase over July to September when 15 per cent planned to hire.

With 71 per cent anticipating the status quo until the end of the year, "there's a continuing sense of stability overall," said Upright. "That's what we're really happy about."
 
In 2009, hiring intentions in Calgary sank to their lowest levels in 15 years.
 
Todd Hirsch, senior economist with ATB Financial, speaking generally about Calgary's economy, said stable is good after a couple years of volatility.
 
"The phrase I've been using lately is sunny with a chance of showers," he said to describe the situation in the city.
 
With some uncertainty still in the air, Hirsch said employers aren't rushing to add staff they may have to lay off should things take a turn.
 

Citing fluctuating oil prices and the low price of natural gas, "it's enough to rattle people," he said.

Manpower Canada's employment outlook survey released today, which includes 1,900 employers across the country, found 23 per cent in Calgary are looking to hire, compared with 21 per cent nationally. Across Canada, the number planning to cut jobs was seven per cent, with both figures are better than during the same period last year.
 

Manpower said it's the strongest national outlook in almost two years.

A Robert Half International employment report, which canvassed more than 1,000 executives in Canada about their hiring at the professional level, found a net 10 per cent plan to add jobs, a two percentage point increase over the previous three months.
 
Calgary has seen its unemployment rate start to decline, hitting 6.9 per cent in July, down from 7.5 per cent in June.
 
Hirsch said it looks worse than it is because Calgarians have been used to a rate of about three per cent.
 
However, while the province added 9,000 jobs in July, on top of 5,700 added in June, all those were attributed to the creation of part-time positions and in both months there was a decrease in full-time jobs.
 

In July, Canada added 129,700 part-time jobs but lost 139,000 full-time positions.

According to the Manpower Canada survey, the most optimism for job creation was seen in the mining and manufacturing-durable goods sectors, the best in a decade.

On Friday, the United States reported job gains of 67,000 in the private sector, which was better than expected, with the economy losing 54,000 jobs overall -- better than the 120,000 predicted.

 
Story provided by:


Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/five+Calgary+companies+plan+hiring+Economists/3488156/story.html?cid=megadrop_story#ixzz0yyIlhWth
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By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald December 7, 2011
 
 
Fuelled by low interest rates and job security, demand for residential real estate in Calgary is on the upswing, says the Re/Max Housing Market Outlook 2012 report published Tuesday. And the real estate firm says Calgary will be a Canadian leader next year in the annual growth rate for MLS sales.
 
By year-end 2011, 22,500 homes are expected to change hands, an eight per cent increase over the 20,801 sales reported in 2010, it said. And the average price in Calgary is forecast to appreciate as well, rising a "modest" one per cent to $405,000 in 2011, up from $401,186 one year ago.
 
The report forecasts the average MLS sale price will jump by three per cent in 2012 to $417,000, while sales will rise by five per cent to 23,600 units.
 
Lowell Martens, of Re/ Max Real Estate (Mountain View) in Calgary, said any hesitation on the part of some buyers in the city is more than likely a direct reflection of the uncertainty in the European economic situation. He said commercial realestate construction taking place in Calgary "tells us the long-term feeling out there is very positive for Calgary."
 

"We have a very stable market over the next little while. We don't anticipate any big upswings, but at the same time we don't anticipate any big downswings either. It's going to be very stable," he said.

Buyers in the city are cautiously optimistic after more than two years of recession, making their moves while interest rates are at historic lows and housing values are affordable, said the report.
 
"Single-family homes remain most popular with purchasers, representing close to 60 per cent of total residential sales. Demand is greatest for entry-level product, priced between $350,000 and $450,000," it said. "Con-dominium apartments and town houses have also experienced solid momentum in recent months, with the lion's share of activity occurring from $200,000 to $300,000. Luxury home sales - priced over $1 million - have been particularly brisk, up approximately 25 per cent over 2010 levels."
 
While global concerns still loom, the market appears to be gaining some traction moving into the new year, said the report. Re/Max said Canadian residential realestate defied conventiona l logic and outperformed expectations in 2011, posting another solid year of housing activity virtually across the board. The trend is expected to carry forward into 2012 as Canadians "continue to demonstrate their faith in home ownership, despite concerns over the European debt crisis and its impact on the global economy."
 
"What 2011 proves is that real estate continues to have momentum," said Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president, Re/Max of Western Canada, in a statement
.
"The economic underpinnings support ongoing demand, particularly as job creation efforts continue and unemployment rates edge down further."
 
Read full post

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Housing Market Outlook 
 Date Released: Fourth Quarter 2011

Alberta Overview
Alberta’s housing starts are forecast to increase by 15.3 per cent to 29,200 units in 2012, following a 6.5 per cent decrease in 2011 to 25,325 units.
  
 These robust gains are a result of a number of factors. Firstly, the economy is projected to show relatively strong growth over the forecast period. In 2011, real gross domestic product is expected to rise by 3.1 per cent, followed by 3.5 per cent in 2012. Note, however, a pullback in oil prices during the summer, along with various wildfires, briefly slowed economic conditions, but these effects have dissipated.
  
 Secondly, employment growth is projected at 3.4 per cent in 2011, lowering the unemployment rate from 6.5 per cent to 5.6 per cent. By 2012, the unemployment rate is expected to be lowered to 5.1 per cent. As a result, this will put upward pressure on Alberta’s housing sector.

 

Finally, the demographic outlook for Alberta is positive. With an improving economy generating jobs, it is expected more migrants will choose Alberta as their home. Last year was a 15-year low for migration to Alberta.

 

Moving forward, expect significant growth in migration this year with further gains in 2012. These gains are also expected to put upward pressure on the demand for housing within the province.

 

In Detail

 

 
Single Starts: Single-detached starts are projected to decline about ten per cent in 2011, as builders mitigate the risk of rising inventories. Over the balance of the forecast period, demand for single-detached homes will improve with a growing economy and job creation. In 2012, single-detached starts are expected to rise by over 15 per cent to 18,400 units. The number of single-detached units under construction in August was at approximately half the level reported five years ago. However, with the inventory of complete and unabsorbed units up from the previous year, builders have been cautious about expanding production.

 

  
Multiple Starts: More affordable condominium projects are now competing with the resale market and enticing some renters to move into new condominium units. After a slow start to this year, the pace of multi-family starts has picked-up and is expected to edge past last year’s level of production. In 2012, demand is expected to improve with rising incomes and new household formation, raising the level of multi-family production by 14.6 per cent to 10,800 units.

 

  
Resales: The number of MLS® sales in Alberta is projected to increase by over six per cent in 2011 to 52,800 units. In 2012, MLS® sales are projected to rise to 53,900 units.

 

  
Prices:   Most of Alberta’s major urban centres remain in buyers’ market conditions as indicated by a sales-to-new listings ratio that has fluctuated around 50 per cent this year. The average resale price in 2011 is expected to rise fractionally above last year’s average, with much of the price movement attributed to compositional effects. As Alberta’s economy generates employment and attracts more migrants, demand will rise and improve market balance. The average resale price in Alberta is projected to rise by more than two per cent in 2012 to $362,700.
Read full post

 
First year-over-year increase in monthly condominium sales since April 2010

 

Calgary, July 4, 2011 – According to figures released today by CREB® (Calgary Real Estate Board), residential sales surged in the month of June 2011 to 1,979 units. While this indicates a third more sales than June 2010, the year-todate increase proved a moderate 2 per cent. Strong monthly increases does not imply a housing boom, as it is important to put into perspective that sales

activity remains below long term averages. While the single family market has shown signs of improvement throughout the first half of this year, this is the first time since April 2010 that condominium sales have recorded a year-over year increase.

 

“Improved housing demand is being fueled by a younger demographic and, with the affordability of homes in Calgary, we are continuing to see young Calgarians pursue ownership over rentals,” says Sano Stante, president of CREB®.

 

“Historically, Calgary’s average family income has been higher than the national average and a younger more mobile demographic has been attracted to good paying professional jobs in Calgary. As the economy continues to build momentum, we expect this same trend will support a balanced and healthy

housing market in the second half of 2011 and into 2012.”

 

With 581 sales for the month of June 2011, the condominium market improved by 31 per cent over June of 2010, however year-to-date figures show a 5 per cent decrease over the same period last year.

 

“Condo sales bounced back this month, and we now have less than four months of supply on the market. Stronger condo sales, combined with a decline in inventory, will lend more balance to this market in the months to come,” says Stante.

 

After the first half of the year, average prices of condominiums are still slightly lower than levels recorded last year, as more buyers bought condominiums under $200,000 in 2011 compared to 2010 for the same period.
 

“Buyers in this market expect value and many are taking advantage of some affordable buys in both the single family and condo markets. It highlights using a skilled REALTOR® to properly price your home for your unique market area,” says Stante.

 

The single family market recorded 1,398 sales in the month of June 2011. This is an increase of 32 per cent when compared to June 2010 when 1,059 single family homes sold in the city of Calgary. With a total of 7,231 sales after the first half of the year, year-to-date single family sales are 6 per cent higher than last year.

 

“While new listings are still lower than levels recorded last year, the rate of decline has eased. With the market shifting to more balanced conditions in recent months, sellers are feeling more confident to list their home. Overall our absorption rate has remained relatively stable, staving off any significant rise in

prices,” says Stante.

 

Year-to-date average price of a single family home in Calgary is $472,330, while the median price is $410,000, virtually unchanged over levels recorded in the previous year. The distribution of sales by price range has not shown any significant shift compared to last year, pointing to continued stability in the market.
 

“After the first half of the year, it appears the recovery in the housing market is starting to find its footing.

This gradual leveling has been fueled by growth in employment, and in particular growth in full time jobs. Improved job prospects, combined with an increase in the number of people moving to Calgary, will give lift to our housing market for the remainder of this year and into the

next,” says Stante.

 

Read full post

Calgary, February 1, 2011
 

– Single family home sales in the City of Calgary edged upwards month-over-month and showed the first yearover-year increase since April  2010, according to figures released today by CREB® (Calgary Real Estate Board).

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of January 2011 were 787, compared with December 2010, when sales were 734— an increase of about 7 per cent. The number of condominium sales for the month of January 2011 was 297. This was down from the 320 condominium transactions recorded in December 2010.
 
Year-over-year, the number of single family homes sold in January 2011 in the city of Calgary increased by just over 3 per cent. In January 2010, single family home sales totaled 762. Condominium sales saw a decrease of 21 per cent from the same time a year ago. In January 2010, condominium sales were 376.
 
“More affordable housing will continue to attract homebuyers to the inner-city, particularly as employment in the city of Calgary continues to improve,” says Sano Stante, president of CREB®. “Single family homes in the city are currently driving this gradual recovery, and we are seeing an uptick in the sale of homes below the $350,000 price point. This may suggest more first time homebuyers are entering the market, providing the fuel needed for a sustained housing recovery.”
 
The average price of a single family home in the city of Calgary in January 2011 was $454,287, showing a 3 per cent increase from December 2010, when the average price was $441,341, and a 3 per cent increase from January 2010, when the average price was $441,217. The average price of a condominium in the city of Calgary in January 2011 was $287,954, showing a 2 per cent increase from December 2010, when the average price was $282,768 and a 2 per cent increase over last year, when the average price was $282,639.
 
The median price of a single family home in the city of Calgary for January 2011 was $390,000, showing a slight increase from December 2010 when the median price was $389,000. This was a 2 per cent decrease from January 2010, when the median price was $398,000.
 
The median price of a condominium in January 2011 was $255,000, showing a 1 per cent decrease from December 2010, when the median price was $258,500, and a 4 per cent decrease from January 2010, when it was $265,000.
 
“The recovery in 2011 will be incremental and gradual. Nonetheless, at the moment Calgary is offering buyers a great deal of affordability, low interest rates and a large selection of inventory,” says Stante. “Overall the first quarter of 2011 will show modest improvements in sales which will lay the foundation for the return to a more balanced market,” he adds.
 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of January 2011 totaled 1958, an increase of 169 per cent from December 2010 when 728 new listings were added, and showing an increase of 7 per cent from January 2010, when 1822 new listings came to the market.

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Housing sales in December declined from November, and the median house price has dropped 3% in comparison to 2009. Following are excerpts from the most current news release from the Calgary Real Estate Board.
 
Home and condo sales in Calgary and area remained relatively unchanged in December 2010, indicating that a full-fledged recovery in the housing market has yet to take hold, according to
fi gures released today by the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®).
 

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of December 2010 were 734, compared with

November 2010, when sales were 891—a decline of about 18 per cent. The number of condominium sales for the month of December 2010 was 320. This was up from the 310 condominium transactions recorded in November 2010.

 
Undoubtedly housing markets in Alberta and Calgary underperformed in 2010, as sales recoveries did not materialize as forecasted. In many ways, re-sales in 2010 showed a repeat of 2008, with a short lived resurgence in the  fi rst few months, when confi dence returned to the market,” says Diane Scott, president of CREB®.
 

 

“Employment and net-migration have been slower to pick up here in Calgary—and these are key drivers of our housing market. The good news is we arenow seeing marked improvements in investment and employment in the energy sector. We believe these green shoots in our economy, supported by improved affordability and low interest rates, will eventually translate into a gradual recovery of our housing market as we move into 2011,” adds Scott.

 

“Supply outstripped demand in the second half of 2010, establishing conditions for a buyers’ market. Overall we did see significant improvements in affordability in the Calgary market in 2010—and I think the message to prospective buyers is that this is a great time to buy if you’re looking for good selection, specific locations and price points. The median price did indeed decline in 2010, signaling a year-over-year price correction of about 2 per cent for single-family homes, just over 4 per cent for condos and 6 per cent for the outlying towns,” adds Scott.

 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of December 2010 totaled 744, a decrease of 44 per cent from November 2010 when 1,318 new listings were added, and showing a decrease of 8 per cent from December 2009, when 806 new listings came to the market.

Condominium new listings in the city of Calgary added for December 2010 were 369, down 42 per cent from November 2010, when the MLS® saw 632 condo listings coming to the market. This is a decrease of 17 per cent from December 2009, when new condominium listings added were 444.
 
To read the entire report and see the latest statistics, visit http://www.creb.com/public/documents/statistics/2010/package/res-stats-2010%20December.pdf
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Calgary job seekers could close the year on a happier note, with one in five Calgary companies planning to hire within the next three months, a sign the city's economy is stabilizing after a rocky patch, economists say.
 

"It's all very positive news," said Randy Upright, CEO of Manpower's Alberta region, adding only four per cent of employers expect to cut back their labour force between October and December.

He added that the numbers show a "more conservative kind of survey" than those seen during boom times.
 
As well, the number looking to add employees is double what it was in the same period last year, when only 11 per cent were in that position.
 

And it's an eight percentage point increase over July to September when 15 per cent planned to hire.

With 71 per cent anticipating the status quo until the end of the year, "there's a continuing sense of stability overall," said Upright. "That's what we're really happy about."
 
In 2009, hiring intentions in Calgary sank to their lowest levels in 15 years.
 
Todd Hirsch, senior economist with ATB Financial, speaking generally about Calgary's economy, said stable is good after a couple years of volatility.
 
"The phrase I've been using lately is sunny with a chance of showers," he said to describe the situation in the city.
 
With some uncertainty still in the air, Hirsch said employers aren't rushing to add staff they may have to lay off should things take a turn.
 

Citing fluctuating oil prices and the low price of natural gas, "it's enough to rattle people," he said.

Manpower Canada's employment outlook survey released today, which includes 1,900 employers across the country, found 23 per cent in Calgary are looking to hire, compared with 21 per cent nationally. Across Canada, the number planning to cut jobs was seven per cent, with both figures are better than during the same period last year.
 

Manpower said it's the strongest national outlook in almost two years.

A Robert Half International employment report, which canvassed more than 1,000 executives in Canada about their hiring at the professional level, found a net 10 per cent plan to add jobs, a two percentage point increase over the previous three months.
 
Calgary has seen its unemployment rate start to decline, hitting 6.9 per cent in July, down from 7.5 per cent in June.
 
Hirsch said it looks worse than it is because Calgarians have been used to a rate of about three per cent.
 
However, while the province added 9,000 jobs in July, on top of 5,700 added in June, all those were attributed to the creation of part-time positions and in both months there was a decrease in full-time jobs.
 

In July, Canada added 129,700 part-time jobs but lost 139,000 full-time positions.

According to the Manpower Canada survey, the most optimism for job creation was seen in the mining and manufacturing-durable goods sectors, the best in a decade.

On Friday, the United States reported job gains of 67,000 in the private sector, which was better than expected, with the economy losing 54,000 jobs overall -- better than the 120,000 predicted.

 
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Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/five+Calgary+companies+plan+hiring+Economists/3488156/story.html?cid=megadrop_story#ixzz0yyIlhWth
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