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

By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald August 25, 2010

 

A high inventory of homes for sale combined with a softening demand from potential homebuyers is starting to put downward pressure on Calgary MLS prices.
 
Preliminary and unofficial data for August month-to-date indicates prices are dropping from levels of the past few months in both the single-family and condominium market.
 
"We have almost the same number of buyers that we had in December but we have so many more listings," said Gary MacLean, a realtor with Re/Max Real Estate Central. "It's like having a Safeway that got two times as big but only has the same number of customers coming in the door and in order to get rid of the inventory they have to reduce the prices.
 
"It's a supply and demand issue. There's an oversupply of houses not only here but all across Canada and the number of buyers are decreasing."
 
For example, at the end of December one of every 1.6 houses listed for sale were selling. In July, that ratio jumped to one for every 6.6 listings. The month-end inventory of properties for sale in Calgary metro at the end of December was 3,258. It was 7,982 at the end of July.
 
MacLean said the inventory is starting to shrink but it's not as a result of increasing sales. Many people have simply taken their homes off the market.
 
According to preliminary, unofficial data on the website of realtor Mike Fotiou, of First Place Realty, there have been 661 single-family home MLS sales in Calgary for an average price of $441,469 month-to-date until Tuesday.
 
In July for the entire month, there were 915 sales for an average of $464,655 and in August 2009 there were 1,277 sales for an average of $454,130.
 

The average MLS sale price peaked this year in May at $483,240.

The condominium market is showing a similar story with sales so far this month at 271 for an average price of $283,485. In July, there were 396 condo transactions averaging $291,168 and in August 2009 there were 632 sales for an average price of $283,330.
 

The average MLS sale price for a condo peaked this year in May as well at $304,662.

Diane Scott, president of the Calgary Real Estate Board, said supply and demand is playing a role on current average prices but there's also the factor of luxury home sales.

"Homes sold over $1 million are down in numbers from last year for the same period," she said. "June to August last year we had 98 sales over $1 million. This year we've had 87 ... That will drive the average price down as well for sure."
 

On Wednesday, the Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index showed Calgary was lagging behind other major Canadian centres in the rate of change for home prices.

The index is estimated by tracking observed or registered home prices over time using data collected from public land registries and all dwellings that have been sold at least twice are considered in the calculation of the index.
 
The report said in June Calgary prices rose by 0.2 per cent on a monthly basis behind Ottawa (2.7 per cent), Toronto (2.4 per cent), Montreal (1.4 per cent), Halifax (1.3 per cent) and Vancouver (0.8 per cent). The national average was 1.5 per cent, the 14th consecutive month of increases.
 
On a year-over-year basis, the national average was 13.6 per cent growth led by Vancouver at 16.3 per cent and followed by Toronto (16.2 per cent), Ottawa (12.0 per cent), Montreal (8.7 per cent), Calgary (8.3 per cent) and Halifax (7.1 per cent).
 

mtoneguzzi@theherald.canwest.com



Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/High+inventory+cooling+sales+pressure+house+prices/3440610/story.html#ixzz0yyLPwgI0
Read full post

Now might just be the best time to lock into a fixed-rate mortgage, especially for those homeowners on a tight budget, according to an expert broker.
 
The Bank of Canada hiked its overnight lending rate by 25 basis points Wednesday, and variable mortgage rate products offered through major lenders are expected to rise in step.
 
Despite Wednesday’s increase, variable rates -- hovering between 2.05% and 2.25% these days -- still offer savings compared to fixed-rate plans in the near term.
 
But there is an argument for locking into a fixed rate sooner rather than later, said Gary Siegle, a Calgary-based regional manager at Invis.
 
The rate for the popular five-year fixed mortgage has recently dropped to a commonly available 3.89% and is as low as 3.6% in some cases.
 
We haven’t seen rates this low in recent memory, Siegle said.
 
“There are lots of people out there who are saying: Why would you overlook the fact that we haven’t seen five-year rates this low in a long, long time?
 

“Why would you not take advantage of historic low interest rates?”

Unfortunately, the answer isn’t clear-cut, Siegle said.
 
Some people are choosing to overlook low fixed rates because the variable options are still cheaper and may be for some time.
 

However, mortgage holders do need to consider that variable rates do change eventually.

“And the direction everyone is predicting that they’ll go is up. It’s a question of how much and when,” Siegle said.
 

Floating rates have historically been the cheaper option over the entire life of a mortgage but not everyone can stomach the often dramatic swings in monthly expenses.

“It’s a question also of psyche,” Siegle said.
 
People who are generally nervous or who are on a tight budget might be better off locking in now, he said.
 

“Even though they are giving up that 1.25%, they are gaining a lot of peace of mind.”

Homeowners considering the switch to a fixed plan could look into whether there is penalty for switching mid-term, Siegle said.
 
Either way, both variable and fixed-rate mortgage holders can take advantage of current borrowing prices by paying down as much of the principal amount as quickly as possible. That way, as rates go up, total debt burden will be lowered come renewal time.
 

Whereas the central bank influences variable rates, the bond market influences fixed-rate mortgages.

The slower-than-expected economy has fuelled investor interest in the bond rally, pushing yields down and allowing banks to offer attractive fixed-rate products.

Read full post

By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald September 2, 2010

An increase in active listings, combined with a cooling in housing demand, has started to push prices down in Calgary's residential real estate market.
 
Data released Wednesday by the Calgary Real Estate Board show single-family home sales fell by just over 32 per cent in August compared with a year ago while condominium transactions plunged by more than 42 per cent.
 

And the average MLS sale price in both markets dropped from what they were in July.

"If (buyers) don't have to buy they're just not doing it right now. There's just too much unrest," said CREB president Diane Scott.
 
"We know the traffic in the open houses has picked up in the last two weeks. We've been monitoring it very closely and the traffic is there, but the buyers are just a little leery."
 
Scott attributes that cautious sentiment to negative economic news and reports continuing to come before the public which create plenty of uncertainty in the marketplace.
 

"It's the economic situation that we happen to find ourselves in and the negative reports that keep popping up and buyers are kind of standing back, thinking it's going to go down lower," she added.

According to CREB, there were 867 single-family home sales in the city in August, down from August 2009's 1,277 sales and slightly down from the 915 sales recorded the previous month.
 
The average MLS sale price for a single-family home fell to $445,617, down 4.1 per cent from July and also off 1.9 per cent from a year ago. The year-over-year decline was the first month since July 2009 in which single-family home prices were lower than the previous year.
 
In the condominium market, sales dropped from last year as 364 properties were sold in Calgary for an average price of $286,384. The average price decreased by 1.6 per cent from July, but was up 1.1 per cent from August 2009.
 
"The rise in mortgage rates, more prudent lending practices and weaker net migration has contributed to the decline in sales," said Richard Cho, senior market analyst for Calgary for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. "In addition, the pent-up demand that helped fuel sales activity earlier in the year has also eased.
 
"In the last several months we have seen an uptick in the number of homes being listed on the market, providing consumers more choice and time. This, combined with the moderation in sales, has moved the market into buyers' conditions, softening price growth."
 
The month-end inventory of single-family homes for sale was 5,046 at the end of August, up from 3,296 in August 2009.
 
The month-end inventory of listings in the condo market was 2,255 in August, increasing from 1,479 last year.
 
Scott said the elevated level of listings plus the slowdown in sales is bound to have an impact on the average sale price.
 
The monthly peak for MLS sale prices was in May this year with single-family homes selling for an average of $483,240 and condos selling for $304,662.
 
"It's a downward type of trend. It's certainly not drastic but it is downward that I think we're going to see probably for the rest of the year," said Scott. "I think we'll have a little bit more activity as for the number of sales in September. Typical. It's seasonal and I think we'll see that in September."
 
In the MLS market of towns outside Calgary, sales dropped by just over 23 per cent to 312 from 406 a year ago and the average sale price increased by 0.3 per cent to $355,238 from $354,175.
 
The country residential market, which includes acreages, saw sales decrease by just under 17 per cent to 50 from 60 in August 2009 while the average sale price dropped by just over two per cent to $747,580.
 

mtoneguzzi@theherald.canwest.com

- - -

Calgary Home Sales Continue To Slide



Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/health/Calgary+housing+sales+tumble/3472287/story.html#ixzz0yyMrfLrE
Read full post
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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

By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald August 25, 2010

 

A high inventory of homes for sale combined with a softening demand from potential homebuyers is starting to put downward pressure on Calgary MLS prices.
 
Preliminary and unofficial data for August month-to-date indicates prices are dropping from levels of the past few months in both the single-family and condominium market.
 
"We have almost the same number of buyers that we had in December but we have so many more listings," said Gary MacLean, a realtor with Re/Max Real Estate Central. "It's like having a Safeway that got two times as big but only has the same number of customers coming in the door and in order to get rid of the inventory they have to reduce the prices.
 
"It's a supply and demand issue. There's an oversupply of houses not only here but all across Canada and the number of buyers are decreasing."
 
For example, at the end of December one of every 1.6 houses listed for sale were selling. In July, that ratio jumped to one for every 6.6 listings. The month-end inventory of properties for sale in Calgary metro at the end of December was 3,258. It was 7,982 at the end of July.
 
MacLean said the inventory is starting to shrink but it's not as a result of increasing sales. Many people have simply taken their homes off the market.
 
According to preliminary, unofficial data on the website of realtor Mike Fotiou, of First Place Realty, there have been 661 single-family home MLS sales in Calgary for an average price of $441,469 month-to-date until Tuesday.
 
In July for the entire month, there were 915 sales for an average of $464,655 and in August 2009 there were 1,277 sales for an average of $454,130.
 

The average MLS sale price peaked this year in May at $483,240.

The condominium market is showing a similar story with sales so far this month at 271 for an average price of $283,485. In July, there were 396 condo transactions averaging $291,168 and in August 2009 there were 632 sales for an average price of $283,330.
 

The average MLS sale price for a condo peaked this year in May as well at $304,662.

Diane Scott, president of the Calgary Real Estate Board, said supply and demand is playing a role on current average prices but there's also the factor of luxury home sales.

"Homes sold over $1 million are down in numbers from last year for the same period," she said. "June to August last year we had 98 sales over $1 million. This year we've had 87 ... That will drive the average price down as well for sure."
 

On Wednesday, the Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index showed Calgary was lagging behind other major Canadian centres in the rate of change for home prices.

The index is estimated by tracking observed or registered home prices over time using data collected from public land registries and all dwellings that have been sold at least twice are considered in the calculation of the index.
 
The report said in June Calgary prices rose by 0.2 per cent on a monthly basis behind Ottawa (2.7 per cent), Toronto (2.4 per cent), Montreal (1.4 per cent), Halifax (1.3 per cent) and Vancouver (0.8 per cent). The national average was 1.5 per cent, the 14th consecutive month of increases.
 
On a year-over-year basis, the national average was 13.6 per cent growth led by Vancouver at 16.3 per cent and followed by Toronto (16.2 per cent), Ottawa (12.0 per cent), Montreal (8.7 per cent), Calgary (8.3 per cent) and Halifax (7.1 per cent).
 

mtoneguzzi@theherald.canwest.com



Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/High+inventory+cooling+sales+pressure+house+prices/3440610/story.html#ixzz0yyLPwgI0
Read full post

Now might just be the best time to lock into a fixed-rate mortgage, especially for those homeowners on a tight budget, according to an expert broker.
 
The Bank of Canada hiked its overnight lending rate by 25 basis points Wednesday, and variable mortgage rate products offered through major lenders are expected to rise in step.
 
Despite Wednesday’s increase, variable rates -- hovering between 2.05% and 2.25% these days -- still offer savings compared to fixed-rate plans in the near term.
 
But there is an argument for locking into a fixed rate sooner rather than later, said Gary Siegle, a Calgary-based regional manager at Invis.
 
The rate for the popular five-year fixed mortgage has recently dropped to a commonly available 3.89% and is as low as 3.6% in some cases.
 
We haven’t seen rates this low in recent memory, Siegle said.
 
“There are lots of people out there who are saying: Why would you overlook the fact that we haven’t seen five-year rates this low in a long, long time?
 

“Why would you not take advantage of historic low interest rates?”

Unfortunately, the answer isn’t clear-cut, Siegle said.
 
Some people are choosing to overlook low fixed rates because the variable options are still cheaper and may be for some time.
 

However, mortgage holders do need to consider that variable rates do change eventually.

“And the direction everyone is predicting that they’ll go is up. It’s a question of how much and when,” Siegle said.
 

Floating rates have historically been the cheaper option over the entire life of a mortgage but not everyone can stomach the often dramatic swings in monthly expenses.

“It’s a question also of psyche,” Siegle said.
 
People who are generally nervous or who are on a tight budget might be better off locking in now, he said.
 

“Even though they are giving up that 1.25%, they are gaining a lot of peace of mind.”

Homeowners considering the switch to a fixed plan could look into whether there is penalty for switching mid-term, Siegle said.
 
Either way, both variable and fixed-rate mortgage holders can take advantage of current borrowing prices by paying down as much of the principal amount as quickly as possible. That way, as rates go up, total debt burden will be lowered come renewal time.
 

Whereas the central bank influences variable rates, the bond market influences fixed-rate mortgages.

The slower-than-expected economy has fuelled investor interest in the bond rally, pushing yields down and allowing banks to offer attractive fixed-rate products.

Read full post

By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald September 2, 2010

An increase in active listings, combined with a cooling in housing demand, has started to push prices down in Calgary's residential real estate market.
 
Data released Wednesday by the Calgary Real Estate Board show single-family home sales fell by just over 32 per cent in August compared with a year ago while condominium transactions plunged by more than 42 per cent.
 

And the average MLS sale price in both markets dropped from what they were in July.

"If (buyers) don't have to buy they're just not doing it right now. There's just too much unrest," said CREB president Diane Scott.
 
"We know the traffic in the open houses has picked up in the last two weeks. We've been monitoring it very closely and the traffic is there, but the buyers are just a little leery."
 
Scott attributes that cautious sentiment to negative economic news and reports continuing to come before the public which create plenty of uncertainty in the marketplace.
 

"It's the economic situation that we happen to find ourselves in and the negative reports that keep popping up and buyers are kind of standing back, thinking it's going to go down lower," she added.

According to CREB, there were 867 single-family home sales in the city in August, down from August 2009's 1,277 sales and slightly down from the 915 sales recorded the previous month.
 
The average MLS sale price for a single-family home fell to $445,617, down 4.1 per cent from July and also off 1.9 per cent from a year ago. The year-over-year decline was the first month since July 2009 in which single-family home prices were lower than the previous year.
 
In the condominium market, sales dropped from last year as 364 properties were sold in Calgary for an average price of $286,384. The average price decreased by 1.6 per cent from July, but was up 1.1 per cent from August 2009.
 
"The rise in mortgage rates, more prudent lending practices and weaker net migration has contributed to the decline in sales," said Richard Cho, senior market analyst for Calgary for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. "In addition, the pent-up demand that helped fuel sales activity earlier in the year has also eased.
 
"In the last several months we have seen an uptick in the number of homes being listed on the market, providing consumers more choice and time. This, combined with the moderation in sales, has moved the market into buyers' conditions, softening price growth."
 
The month-end inventory of single-family homes for sale was 5,046 at the end of August, up from 3,296 in August 2009.
 
The month-end inventory of listings in the condo market was 2,255 in August, increasing from 1,479 last year.
 
Scott said the elevated level of listings plus the slowdown in sales is bound to have an impact on the average sale price.
 
The monthly peak for MLS sale prices was in May this year with single-family homes selling for an average of $483,240 and condos selling for $304,662.
 
"It's a downward type of trend. It's certainly not drastic but it is downward that I think we're going to see probably for the rest of the year," said Scott. "I think we'll have a little bit more activity as for the number of sales in September. Typical. It's seasonal and I think we'll see that in September."
 
In the MLS market of towns outside Calgary, sales dropped by just over 23 per cent to 312 from 406 a year ago and the average sale price increased by 0.3 per cent to $355,238 from $354,175.
 
The country residential market, which includes acreages, saw sales decrease by just under 17 per cent to 50 from 60 in August 2009 while the average sale price dropped by just over two per cent to $747,580.
 

mtoneguzzi@theherald.canwest.com

- - -

Calgary Home Sales Continue To Slide



Read more: http://www.calgaryherald.com/health/Calgary+housing+sales+tumble/3472287/story.html#ixzz0yyMrfLrE
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