I Have a Confession to Make

AND I NEED YOU TO KNOW

Blogging has not been my strength and so this is officially a work in progress.  I have some big plans for the blogging page in the foreseeable future so I ask for your patience as I venture into this side.

2021 record year for home sales


City of Calgary, Jan. 4, 2022 – Thanks to exceptionally high sales in December, 2021 was a record year for home sales. Calgary sales reached 27,686 units this year, nearly 72 per cent higher than last year and over 44 per cent higher than the 10-year average.

“Concerns over inflation and rising lending rates likely created more urgency with buyers over the past few months. However, as is the case in many other cities, the supply has not kept pace with the demand, causing strong price growth,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

As of December, the unadjusted benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent over last month and was sitting over 10 per cent higher than last year’s figures. Overall, the 2021 benchmark price rose by more than eight per cent compared to last year for a total of $451,567, just shy of the annual record high set back in 2015.

We are entering 2022 with some of the tightest conditions seen in over a decade. As of December, inventory levels are nearly 25 per cent lower than long-term averages for the month. This will have an impact on our housing market as we move through 2022. More details on the housing market forecast for 2022 will be released on Jan. 25.


 


HOUSING MARKET FACTS


Detached

With 17,038 sales in 2021, home sales remained slightly lower than the record high set in 2005. While a new record was not set, sales are still over 40 per cent higher than long-term averages and supply challenges likely prevented stronger sales this year. New listings rose, but it was not enough to offset sales, causing inventories to ease. In the detached sector, average inventory levels were over 23 per cent lower than long-term trends. With only 898 units in inventory in December, we are entering 2022 with the lowest detached inventory on record.

Strong sales relative to inventory levels caused the months of supply to dip below one month, which is tighter than levels recorded in the spring market. Tightening conditions over the past several months once again weighed on prices. The detached benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent compared with last month and is nearly 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels. Overall, the detached sector has recorded the largest annual price gain at nearly 10 per cent, not only recovering from the 2015 annual high, but exceeding it by nearly three per cent.


Semi-Detached

In 2021, there were 2,571 semi-detached sales, an annual gain of 55 per cent and over 47 per cent higher than longer-term trends. Relative affordability and less supply choice in the detached sector caused many to consider semi-detached properties. However, like other property types, semi-detached sales growth outpaced new-listings growth, especially at the end of the year, causing significant declines in inventory levels and the months of supply, which has remained below two for the past three months.

Tight conditions have caused further price growth, as December prices were nearly 10 per cent higher than last year. Overall, on an annual basis, semi-detached home prices improved by eight per cent, reaching a new record high. However, prices have not recovered across all districts, as the City Centre, North East and South districts have not seen full price recovery,


Row

Over the past few months, row properties have increased in popularity, reporting strong sales growth that has outpaced the growth in new listings. This has created much tighter conditions and is supporting stronger price growth.

Inventories were not as much of a challenge earlier in the year, so the pace of price growth was not as high as the growth seen among some of the other property types during that time. However, benchmark prices rose by six per cent on an annual basis, supporting some price recovery. Despite the gains, prices remain nearly nine per cent lower than the previous high.


Apartment Condominium

Record sales in December were not enough to support annual record-high sales for this property type. Unlike the other property types, the apartment condominium sector has not experienced many supply challenges, as inventories this year generally remained above historical levels. However, the growth in sales was enough to help shift the market from one that favoured the buyer to one that was relatively balanced.

The balanced conditions did support modest annual price growth of just over two per cent. Each district saw some improvement in price this year, varying from less than one per cent growth in the City Centre to over six per cent growth in the West district. Despite these price gains, prices are still recovering across all districts and citywide prices remain 14 per cent lower than previous highs recorded in 2014.


 


REGIONAL MARKET FACTS


Airdrie

December sales reached record levels despite further reduction in new listings. The strong sales have caused inventory levels to drop to a mere 82 units, which is the lowest they’ve been since 2005. Overall, Airdrie recorded a record 2,299 sales this year. This is 78 per cent higher than activity recorded over the past 10 years and is 36 per cent higher than the previous record set in 2014.

Airdrie’s strong growth in housing demand could be related to the relative affordability of detached homes there compared to Calgary and less concern among consumers over commute times, as some companies shift toward hybrid work options. Bringing on new supply has been a challenge in Airdrie, and this has driven some significant price gains in the city. Overall, annual benchmark prices hit a new record at $380,867 in 2021, nearly 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels and two per cent higher than the previous annual record.


Cochrane

Despite persistently low levels of new listings relative to sales, Cochrane’s sales reached record levels in 2021. However, the sales-to-new-listings ratio has exceeded 100 per cent for four of the past six months, causing inventories to drop to the lowest levels seen in over a decade.

This has caused further tightening in the market, as the months of supply has remained below one month over the past two months. The exceptionally tight conditions, especially over the past few months, have caused further price gains. As of December, the benchmark price was nearly 10 per cent higher than levels reported last year. Overall, on an annual basis, the benchmark price has increased by seven per cent, reflecting a new record high for the town.


Okotoks

Despite persistent challenges with supply levels, sales in Okotoks reached record levels in 2021. However, the strong sales weighed on inventory levels, which on average eased by 41 per cent this year and remain over 50 per cent lower than what the market typically has available.

Easing inventory and strong sales left the months of supply at record-low levels in December with less than one month of supply. With sellers’ market conditions throughout the year, there have been some significant gains in prices. On an annual basis, the benchmark price hit a new record high at $474,842, which is an annual gain of nearly nine per cent.


 



Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package.

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package.


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Persistent sellers’ market conditions drive up prices


City of Calgary, Dec. 1, 2021 - Driven by growth in demand for all property types, there were 2,110 sales in November, just shy of the record for the month set in 2005.

“Lending rates are expected to increase next year, which has created a sense of urgency among purchasers who want to get into the housing market before rates rise,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“At the same time, supply levels have struggled to keep pace, causing tight conditions and additional price gains.”

New listings in November totalled 1,989 units, which was fewer than the number of sales this month. With a sales-to-new-listings ratio of over 100 per cent, inventory levels dropped to 3,922 units and the months of supply dipped below two months.

It is not unusual to see new listings and inventories trend down at this time of year, but slower sales are also typical. Instead, sales have remained at roughly the same levels seen since August.

Persistent demand and slow supply reaction caused the benchmark price to trend up this month to $461,000, an increase compared with last month and nearly nine per cent higher than levels recorded last year.

HOUSING MARKET FACTS


Detached

Conditions in the detached home sector continued to tighten in November, with a sales-to-new-listings ratio that pushed up to 118 per cent and the months of supply dropping to 1.2 months. These are levels not seen since the spring.

More than half of sales occurred in the $400,000 – $600,000 price range, but the largest sales gains occurred for properties price above $600,000. This is, in part, related to more supply choice in the upper end of the market compared with the lower end. On a year-to-date basis, homes priced above $600,000 now reflect nearly 31 per cent of all sales, far higher than the 23 per cent recorded last year.

Benchmark prices rose to $542,600, a new monthly record and nearly 11 per cent higher than last year’s levels. Year-over-year price gains have occurred in every district, with the strongest growth occurring in the West, where gains exceeded 13 per cent. The City Centre remains the only district where prices remain below 2014 highs.


Semi-Detached

Another record-high month of sales pushed year-to-date sales to 2,436 units. This is not only a year-to-date record, but also 13 per cent higher than the annual record set in 2014.

With less supply choice in the detached sector, many buyers have shifted their focus to semi-detached homes. However, like the detached sector, semi-detached supply levels have been struggling to keep up, as the months of supply dipped below two months in November.

So far this year, most sales have occurred in the $300,000 – $400,000 range, but activity has increased at the upper end of the market, where semi-detached homes priced above $700,000 now reflect more than 20 per cent of all sales. This is a significant shift compared to last year, where this segment represented only 15 per cent of semi-detached sales.

Thanks to gains in all districts, the semi-detached benchmark price rose to $429,800, which is nearly nine per cent higher than last year. On a year-to-date basis, prices have recovered in all districts except the City Centre, North East and South.


Row

Row properties have not faced the same supply challenges as semi-detached properties so far this year. As a result, the row sector has seen the largest growth in sales, which have already surpassed the annual record high.

Row properties often offer a more affordable alternative to detached homes for consumers who are looking for more space than an apartment condominium. Nearly 83 per cent of all sales that occurred in this sector were priced below $400,000.

While row supply levels have not been as tight as in the detached or semi-detached sectors, strong demand has caused inventories to fall. This is contributing to tighter market conditions in this segment as well.

With less supply/demand pressures for this property type, prices have not experienced the same gains seen among detached or semi-detached homes. On a year-to-date basis, the benchmark price was six per cent higher than last year, but it remains lower than previous highs set in 2015.


Apartment Condominium

The apartment condominium sector recorded another month of strong growth, contributing to year-to-date sales of 3,834. Sales remain far from record highs, but this is still the highest level of activity seen since 2014.

Improving sales led to slightly tighter conditions in this market, but inventory levels were high relative to historical levels, making this segment an outlier compared with the other property types.

Supply challenges have not been as prevalent for apartment condominiums, so prices growth and recovery in the sector have remained far lower than the other property types. However, on a year-to-date basis, prices have improved by more than two per cent in a reversal of the steady annual decline recorded since 2015.


 


REGIONAL MARKET FACTS


Airdrie

November sales reached record levels despite limited inventory in the market. There were only 106 new listings this month compared with 144 sales, driving the sales-to-new-listings ratio up to 136 per cent. This caused inventories to fall to 137 units and the months of supply to drop below one month.

Airdrie has faced sellers’ market conditions since the middle of last year and this has had a significant impact on prices. On a year-to-date basis, benchmark prices have risen by nearly 12 per cent, with the strongest gains occurring in the detached sector.


Cochrane

Like Airdrie, Cochrane experienced another record month of sales in November. Year-to-date sales reached 1,163 units, which is double the long-term average for the town.

Like many other areas, Cochrane’s housing supply is struggling to keep up with demand. New listings eased this month, pushing the sales-to-new-listings ratio above 146 per cent, and inventories fell to 77 units. This caused the month of supply to drop below one month, the lowest ever recorded for November.

Persistently tight conditions continue to impact prices. On a year-to-date basis, prices have risen by nearly seven per cent, with gains recorded for every property type.


Okotoks

New listings were higher this month than last year’s levels, but they could not keep pace with sales. The sales-to-new-listings ratio remained above 100 per cent for the second month in a row, causing further declines in inventory levels and the months of supply.

Persistently strong demand and easing supply levels have ensured the market continues to favour the seller. This has resulted in upward pressure on prices. Driven by strong gains in the detached sector, prices have improved by nearly nine per cent on a year-to-date basis.


Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package.

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package.

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Winter is coming and so it makes perfect sense to start today on your winter home maintenance list.

Using a simple checklist to get all the tasks organized is easy so here are the essentials to look out for:


Clean Out The Gutters and Downspouts

With the leaves now off the trees in Calgary, it's safe to say that they have either landed on your lawn or in your gutters.  Clearing out your gutters prevents any debris from clogging up your eavestroughs and allows for proper drainage.  *safety is key in this task so call a professional if you unable to use a ladder or access your eavestroughs safely.


Have Your Furnace Checked and Ready

Temperatures are dropping quickly and now is the time to get your furnace in tip-top shape for the long winter.  Call a furnace technician or hire a professional to have your furnace checked and given a proper tune-up.  As a bonus, having your ducts cleaned increases efficiency and reduces the amount of dust that will accumulate in the next few months.


Hibernate Your Air-Conditioner

Admit it, you won't be using your A/C for a good six months so now is the time to focus on tucking it away properly for the winter.  Most A/C units come with an easy disconnect to prevent it from accidently being turned on.  Purchase a cover to protect it from the elements and if it's a window type, you should remove it so it doesn't cause a draft.

 

Chimney & Fireplace Check

Before you dream of roasting marshmallows or cuddling by the fireplace, it's important to have your chimney and fireplace in good working condition.  Dangerous gasses can build up inside a chimney so be sure to have a professional inspect your chimney to prevent fires and keep you and your family safe.  


Smoke Detector & Carbon Monoxide

It's always good practice to check both your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors a few times in the year.  Before cozy evening by the fireplace happen and the furnace gets set for the winter, be sure to check ever detector on all levels of your home.  If you don’t have smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors on each level, now is the time to go shopping for them.


Windows and Doors

Higher heating bills are imminent in the winter months but see if you can help keep them lower by following a few easy steps.  Replace worn weather stripping and fill any gaps your feel near your windows and doors, pipes and faucets.  This not only prevents heat from escaping but can also stop cute little critters from calling your place home for the winter.


Lawn Care

An easy, fool proof way to care for your lawn before snow arrives is this:  rake up all your leaves, mulch them and spread on flower and garden beds for good nutrients or compost them in your green bin.  Putting a fall/winter fertilizer on the lawn before the snow hits is a good idea and can help give you a head start in the spring time to a lush, green lawn.  


Bring out the machines

It's inevitable: shovels are the new fashion accessory.  At our home, we each have one, even the kids.  I suggest for easy clearing to purchase ones with the metal edger to help clear right down to the sidewalk.  Getting an ice chipper is also a good investment since the City of Calgary bylaw requires ice to be cleared down to bare cement. Having a bag of sand or kitty litter and salt to help melt the icy patches is always a good idea too.


Don't forget your vehicle

Now is the time to throw that snow brush and windshield scraper in the trunk and top up with antifreeze washer fluid.  We have a golden rule in our house as well that no matter what, the gas tank must always stay above half in the winter.  You never know in Calgary when you will be stuck in traffic and having your tank filled is a good habit in the colder months.


Last but not least,  enjoy it while it lasts.  Sure, it can be a bit of a nuisance to head out to shovel or feel bundled up for six months of the year, but that being said, winters are beautiful in Calgary.  Wear proper clothing, plan some day trips to the mountains and smile when ol' Jack Frost appears in the early mornings.  Most of all, stay warm!

Cheers,

Steven


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Did you know that a career in real estate is one of the most stressful careers there is?!    Well, I sure do!

And recently, Toby Welch of Real Estate Magazine asked my thoughts on how to perform at a high level and manage all the stress that comes along with it.

Remember, this is a commission based career, so I see the way the great Billy Jean King said it, "Pressure is a privilege" .

Take a look and let me know your thoughts....



Advice for Agents

How to deal with career stress

 
Read The Full Article Here
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Market continues to favour the seller in October



City of Calgary, November 1, 2021 –
There were 2,186 sales in October, a record high for the month and over 35 per cent higher than longer-term averages. Year-to-date sales are on pace to hit new record highs and are currently 61 per cent higher than average activity recorded over the past five years and 42 per cent higher than 10-year averages.

“Moving into the fourth quarter, the pace of housing demand continues to exceed expectations in the city,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“Much of the persistent strength is likely related to improving confidence in future economic prospects, as well as a sense of urgency among consumers to take advantage of the low-lending-rate environment.”

New listings have improved relative to last year, but stronger sales caused further easing in inventory levels, which remain 16 per cent lower than last year and longer-term averages for the month. Supply levels have struggled to keep pace with demand, but much of the decline in the months of supply has been related to the strong sales levels. As of October, the months of supply dipped to just over two months.

Persistently tight market conditions did cause some benchmark price gains this month. The benchmark price in October reached $460,100, slightly higher than last month and nearly nine per cent higher than the $422,600 recorded last October.

HOUSING MARKET FACTS

Detached
Thanks to gains in most districts, detached home sales improved by 17 per cent compared to last year. The strongest sales growth this month occurred in the North East and East districts, which are the most affordable districts in the city.

New listings improved relative to last year’s levels, but with 1,350 new listings in October and 1,333 sales, the sales-to-new-listings ratio for detached homes rose to 99 per cent, inventories fell to 2,063 units and the moths of supply dipped below two months.

Further tightening in the detached market resulted in upward pressure on home prices. In October, the detached price reached $540,900, up nearly one per cent compared with last month and over 10 per cent higher than levels reported last October. On a year-to-date basis, price growth has been the strongest in the North and South East districts, where prices have increased by over 11 per cent.

Semi-Detached
Sales continued to improve this month, contributing to the year-to-date record high. However, new listings eased and the sales-to-new-listings ratio rose to 98 per cent as inventories fell. The months of supply, which has trended down over the past several months, once again placed upward pressure on prices in the sector.

The semi-detached benchmark price rose to $427,800 this month, nearly nine per cent higher than last year’s levels. So far this year, sales have improved across every district, but the tightest conditions have been in the South East and North districts. These two districts have also seen the highest year-to-date price gains, which have exceeded 10 per cent.

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WORLD'S BEST CITIES

A new report published in 2021 by Resonance Consultancy shows our beautiful city of Calgary in the Top 50 out of 100 best cities in the world.

Is anyone not surprised by this????

Calgary is a fabulous city to live and thrive in and one of the many reason that I have never left!  

Back to the report that was featured in this Calgary Herald news article in September, our Calgary placed 49th out of 100 for best cities, beating out Edmonton, Lisbon, Osaka, and Denver.   

The Consulting organization looks at 6 categories when making the list:  including prosperity where Calgary placed 31st and people where Calgary placed 13th (no surprise there as we Calgarians are a diverse and educated bunch).

It clearly shows how resilient we are, despite a struggling economy and an increase in unemployment rates, there is still plenty or reasons to love and enjoy living in this wonderful city. 

My favorite part of the article was this quote:

"People here walk with the velocity of New Yorkers and cut to the chase like Texans."

If that doesn't perfectly describe this diverse community, filled with entrepreneurialism then my guess is, you aren't from around here.  

READ HERE for the report  

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CREB®’s Q3 2021 Housing Report released

City of Calgary, Oct. 19, 2021 –

For the full report, please download CREB®'s Q3 2021 Calgary & Region Quarterly Update Report here.

The pace of growth and level of sales have eased from the record highs seen in the second quarter, but with 6,628 sales, this was the best third quarter since 2014.

Much of the strength in demand was likely driven by the low-lending-rate environment and increased savings among those whose incomes were not impacted by COVID-19 shutdowns.

"Sales have slowed from the record pace seen earlier this year, but some of this slowdown was likely related to limited improvements on the supply side of the market," said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

"Supply-demand balances improved for buyers compared to what we saw in the spring, but the market continued to favour the seller in the third quarter". 

The number of new listings coming onto the market has increased compared to last year. However, the quarterly decline in new listings outpaced the pullback in sales, causing supply levels to trend down in the quarter and remain lower than last year's levels.

"Persistently tight conditions have supported price gains in the market, with new record highs set in both the detached and semi-detached sectors," said Lurie.

"However, with fewer supply challenges facing the apartment sector of the market, price gains there have not been enough to erase the declines recorded over the past six years."

In Calgary, the residential benchmark price rose by one per cent compared with the previous quarter and sits over nine per cent higher than prices recorded in the third quarter of last year.

Meanwhile, many of the areas outside of Calgary city limits have seen exceptionally strong sales and supply that has not kept pace with demand. For many of these areas, lack of supply has contributed to steeper price gains than what has been seen in the city, narrowing the price gap between the two. 


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City of Calgary, October 1, 2021 –

Residential sales totalled 2,162 in September, nearing the record high for the month recorded in 2005. Further gains in new listings likely supported some of the sales growth that occurred this month.

“While sales activity in the fall tends to be slower than in the spring months, the continued strong sales are likely being driven by consumers who were unable to transact earlier in the year when supply levels had not yet adjusted to demand,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “The market continues to favour the seller, but conditions are not as tight as they were earlier this year.”

Inventory levels in September eased to 5,607 units, keeping the months of supply below three months. However, there is significant variation depending on property type and the tightest conditions continue to be in the detached market, with under two months of supply. At the same time, the apartment condominium sector is not facing the same level of supply challenges, with nearly five months of inventory available based on current demand levels.

Supply adjustments have helped ease the upward pressure on home prices. Prices have eased slightly relative to a few months ago, but they remain well above levels recorded earlier in the year. As of September, the total residential benchmark price in Calgary was $457,900, over eight per cent higher than levels recorded last year.


HOUSING MARKET FACTS

Detached
Calgary recorded 1,268 sales this month, a significant gain relative to last year and 30 per cent higher than longer-term trends. Sales this month improved across all price ranges except homes priced under $400,000. However, the decline in sales in the lower price range is likely related to limited supply choice.

On a year-to-date basis, prices have improved across all districts, with gains that range from a low of five per cent in the City Centre to nearly twelve per cent in the South East. The City Centre is the only district where prices remain below previous highs. The September detached benchmark price of $537,500 has trended down slightly from the record high set in July, but this has not erased earlier gains, as it remains nearly 10 per cent higher than last year.

Semi-Detached
With less supply choice in the lower price ranges of the detached market, many consumers have turned to the semi-detached sector. With 2,005 sales so far this year, year-to-date sales are over 45 per cent higher than long-term trends and have reached new record highs. The improvement in sales was, in part, related to the improvements in new listings. The sales-to-new-listings ratio in this sector has averaged below 70 per cent over the past several months. This is nowhere near as tight as the detached sector, which has averaged 80 per cent.

While conditions have not been as tight in the semi-detached sector, there have still been substantial price gains this year. As of September, the benchmark price was $424,900, slightly lower than last month, but over eight per cent higher than last year’s levels. Like the detached sector, the semi-detached sector’s slowest price growth has occurred in the City Centre. On a year-to-date basis, prices remained below previous highs in the City Centre, North East and South districts.

 
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Following record-shattering sales across major markets through the first half of 2021, Canada’s metropolitan luxury real estate markets continue to reflect unprecedented circumstances leading into fall 2021. With an unsatiated undercurrent of demand across every major market and a new wave of prospective real estate consumers imminent, rising prices and steady activity are forecasted for fall.


Key Influences

  • Severe inventory deficit sparks price gains, undermines potential sales
  • Return to city living ignites urban sales and condominium demand
  • Job gains bolster top-tier real estate sales
  • Gap between luxury and conventional housing trends widen

 
Calgary’s luxury residential real estate market, which had gained steady traction since the start of the year, evolved into a true seller’s market over the summer and is poised for more balanced market conditions this fall.


Vancouver’s luxury market is poised to see some relief from the extraordinary pace and price gains experienced over its prolonged seller’s market but continues to confront the challenges of the region’s chronic and significant deficit of conventional and high-end housing supply.
 
After a brief seasonal sales slowdown, Montreal’s market rebounded swiftly in early fall, pointing to a dynamic and active season ahead. In face of strong consumer demand, the city is set to face the twin challenges of a significant provincial deficit of conventional and luxury housing, and price acceleration in turn.

Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is positioned to see continued price acceleration in an active fall market, even as the region’s acute shortage of conventional and luxury housing supply caps overall activity. GTA’s luxury condominium market strengthened as confidence in urban living continues to rise.


READ THE FULL REPORT HERE

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In the past year, we have witnessed a wave of change that has engulfed every aspect of everyday life, accelerating technology, business, culture, society – and real estate. In our latest issue of Insight: The Art of Living magazine, we invite you to explore some of these trends and changes in a futuristic era that has now arrived.

Learn how four major urban real estate markets weathered the pandemic storm, and how the popularity of multi-generational homes and family-friendly communities have risen in a year that has been about bringing everyone and everything into your immediate orbit.
 
 
From luxurious cabins to stylish urban townhomes, you’ll also discover how the long-promised future of prefabricated buildings is finally here. Enterprising architects and designers are finding ways to use prefab’s advantages in a variety of settings.

Explore some of Canada and the world’s most appealing travel and vacation home destinations, including Prince Edward County’s newest simple and stylish waterfront retreat, Wander the Resort. The property taps into the nostalgia of family vacations, camping with your family, or renting a cabin on the water. It is also the only Canadian property to make the 2021 Hot List at Condé Nast Traveler.
 
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