Real Estate Market Update March 3, 2012

The Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB) have released their February numbers along with many new stats associated with the new Home Pricing Index (HPI).  The numbers confirm what we have been seeing in the market and that is increased sales compared to last year and a quick start to the spring market. Multiple offer situations are increasing and some amazing properties have sold so quickly they didn't even make it to the public MLS system.
The increase in sales has been coupled with lower inventory numbers from last year. Some areas of the city have very little inventory so new listings see a lot of attention. Buyers are saavy and been experiencing a buyers market for some time so the value must still be there for sellers to realize a sale. Within Calgary, we are now in a balanced market in a general sense for single family homes and still in a buyer's market in the condo market.
The stable growth in our area has been predicted and expected to continue throughout this year and into 2013 and beyond. The federal government is however, reviewing additional changes to mortgage rules so we are expecting a slow growth in prices rather than a sudden surge.
What does all this mean to sellers and buyers?
Sellers: A focus on clean, well presented homes will continue to add to the bottom line. It has been a buyers market for some time so the shift will be slow and appropriate pricing is necessary. Many current buyers are first time buyers or folks moving to Calgary in support of our strong economy. They are looking for move-in-ready homes so take the time to make yours stand out.
Buyers: Preparation is needed to recognize a great value when you find it. Buyers need to have their financing pre-approved and be prepared to make an offer as the days on market are reducing and multiple offer situations are becoming more common.
An interesting note is that I am seeing more developers/professional renovators back looking for property. They have been absent for a while, but now see the potential in redeveloping older homes.

As always, give me a call if you are ready to make a move.

Some numbers from the CREB press release:
Single family sales and condominium townhouse sales were the bright lights in the city of Calgary, while condo apartments continue to lag in volume of sales. There were 1,284 single-family homes sold in February 2012, a 10.9-per-cent increase over last-year figures, and a 5.6-per-cent year-to-date increase. Condo townhouses gained 11.4 per cent year-over-year in February sales.
Meanwhile, condominium apartment sales totaled 248 for February 2012, an 11.7-per-cent decline over last-year figures.  Despite the 12.7-per-cent year-over-year decline in new listings, inventory levels rose to 1,031 units.
Fewer new city listings are coming to the market, with a year-over-year decline of 10.2 per cent.  Inventories also fell by 8.5 per cent over last year’s figures, with a total inventory of 4,736 for the month.  The opposite is true in the surrounding towns, where listings recorded a year-over-year improvement of 12.1 per cent and no significant change in inventories.
Pricing showed modest improvement in February 2012 over January, with the single-family MLS® Home Price Index increasing by 1.0 per cent after several months of relatively flat pricing. Single-family prices rose by 3.2 per cent over February 2011.  While prices continue to remain below peak levels, the improvement points to stable price growth.
The apartment index rose by 2.1 per cent over January figures, and increased by 0.7 per cent over last year’s levels. Prices remain well below peak levels, but are trending into positive territory, pointing towards recovery in this market. Overall index levels for townhomes remain similar to levels recorded in January 2012.
Despite the variances in the specific property types, all indicators in the Calgary region continue to point towards stable growth in Calgary’s overall housing sector. 

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Data supplied by CREB®’s MLS® System. CREB® is the owner of the copyright in its MLS® System. The Listing data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by CREB®.
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