Calgary Real Estate Statistics Show Strong Growth

The 2013 Calgary real estate market 2013 performed well with a “perfect storm” of several factors pushing its growth rate to double this year's expectations.

According to Becky Walters, president of Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB®), the rocketing real estate prices and sales this year can hardly be matched in terms of growth in 2014. This year's exceptional growth was due to a combination of tight rental market, the June flood and influx of newcomers to Calgary.

Year-to-date, Calgary housing sales as of December 29 increased more than 10% from the previous year. The average Calgary home selling price increased 6.5% from 2012 to $456,686 this year. Walters said it was the biggest surprise for Calgary real estate growth rate to double its projection for this year.

A Calgary Realtor® from Royal LePage, Darren Abrahamson, said the 2013 Calgary real estate market performed differently from what's expected. The devastating flood in June caused about 500 secondary suites to be taken from the Calgary market and more than 1,000 Albertans had to look for temporary housing. This led to lower Calgary rental vacancy and a higher demand for homes.

Surprisingly, migration was a rising trend in 2013. From a CREB® report early this year, 15,000 new Calgarians were projected this year. However, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Commission recently reported a net of 30,000 increase in Calgarians by 2013 year-end. The unexpected rise in newcomers contributed to a tightening in the Calgary rental market, driving even higher home sales. However, Calgary housing activity and sales have not reached the extreme levels seen in 2006 and 2007, when there were multiple offers for almost every deal.

Abrahamson stressed that affordability is now a growing concern for Calgary home buyers. But he noted that salaries and wages in Calgary are much higher than in other areas in Canada. Calgary home prices at $450,000 to $500,000 are still affordable for the first-time Calgary home buyers.

Calgary's economy remains strong and growth level may be sustained. CREB® projects a sales growth of 3.5% and an increase in price growth of 4.3% in 2014. According to BMO Economics, the Calgary real estate market is the strongest in the country, beating out Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. With a strong economy and growing population, the Calgary housing market remains healthy, being strongly influenced from the energy sector.



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