Photo: Darryl Darwent/Flickr
For the fourth straight month, Calgary home sales were down by more than 20 per cent year-over-year. According to data from the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB), 1,957 homes changed hands across the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in April, down 22 per cent from the same month a year earlier and nearly 15 per cent below April’s long term average.
Broken down by property type, the single-family home market saw a 25.05 per cent drop in sales, condo transactions were down 22.91 per cent and townhome sales fell by 14.23 per cent year-over-year.
The upside to the decline in housing activity? It puts the Calgary housing market at “low risk” of a correction, according to the country’s national housing agency. In a report released April 30th, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation said the decline in MLS home sales has pushed the market into buyer’s territory, which “is expected to place downward pressure on house price growth,” lessening the risk of overvaluation in Calgary.
Year-over-year, Calgary’s benchmark price for all property types inched up 1.85 per cent in April to $451,600. The breakdown: single-family benchmark home price rose 1.88 per cent to $510,200, townhome price climbed 3.36 per cent to $353,300 and the benchmark price of a condo fell 0.17 per cent to $291,300.
So, is the worst over? The Calgary Herald interviewed RBC senior economist Robert Hogue who had this to say:
“The sense I get is that things appear to be stabilizing. On a year-over-year basis, over the last two, maybe three months, it doesn’t look like things are getting any worse in terms of the decline relative to last year. There might be, on a month-to-month basis, some kind of more stability. Maybe the market has found some kind of bottom. I’m not suggesting they’re going to be booming back up but at least the big letdown might be over for the time being.”
For more on the April housing data, the CREB statistics can be found here.