Calgary

Home sales tick upward in Calgary as oversupply eases, real estate association says

Home sales in the Calgary region were up last month by more than seven per cent compared to July of last year, according to the latest numbers from the Alberta Real Estate Association.

'We’re at least starting to see some turn in the market'

The Alberta Real Estate Association says the housing market in Calgary still favours the buyer despite a boost in sales activity in July. (Robson Fletcher/CBC)

Home sales in the Calgary region were up last month by more than seven per cent compared to July of last year, according to the latest numbers from the Alberta Real Estate Association (AREA).

The boost in sales was likely due to the combined effects of higher full-time employment rates, home prices easing downward, and lending rates being relatively stable, the association said.

There were 2,118 sales in the Calgary region in July of this year, compared with 1,974 in July 2018.

Provincially, there were 5,774 sales this July, compared to 5,471 in the same month last year, a 5.54 per cent increase.

AREA chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie says the numbers represent a slight but notable change.

"It's been a challenging market for some time, and so we're at least starting to see some turn in the market, and that is what we're really looking at," she said.

"We're starting to see that shift, which needs to happen before we hit into a recovery stage."

The red bars in this chart show the number of monthly home sales in the Calgary region since 2005 and the black line indicates the trend in sales activity. (Alberta Real Estate Association)

A reduction in the number of new listings — which dipped by 7.43 per cent — also helped alleviate the oversupply in Calgary's market and steer it toward more balanced conditions.

"However, the market continues to favour the buyer, causing prices to ease compared to last year," AREA said in a release.

"Nonetheless, if the supply adjustments continue, it will help reduce the oversupply in the market and support more stability in pricing by the end of the year."

The average selling price for a home in Calgary in July was $439,577. That's down five per cent from the same month last year, when it was $462,769.

The light-blue bars in this chart show the year-over-year change in average selling price for homes in the Calgary region each month since 2005. The dark-blue line indicates the average selling price for a home and the grey line shows the trend in prices. (Alberta Real Estate Association)

The average price of a house across Alberta was $376,363 in July, down 1.95 per cent from a year ago.

Province-wide, year-over-year inventories eased for the fourth consecutive month, helping reduce the oversupply in the Alberta market. The inventory reductions were concentrated Calgary, Edmonton and central Alberta.

"We are starting to see those supply levels come down, but it's going to take some time before we become more balanced conditions," Lurie said, adding she expects the oversupply to continue to ease off through the year.

"If the economy continues to improve, and nothing changes, then we should be in a far better position as we enter 2020, where we maybe start talking about recovery," she said.

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