Home prices down, but not out
by CREB on July 04, 2016
Calgary home prices continue to slide in most areas of the market, but not at the rate that many might expect. This is partly due to June’s resiliency in the detached and semi-detached sectors of the market, where sales compared to new listings and standing inventory started returning to more balanced levels.
“The detached market has been gradually moving towards more balanced conditions, helping to prevent price levels from declining at the faster rates we saw in the previous two quarters,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “While this is welcomed news for sellers, it’s very likely that pricing challenges will persist in the housing market until economic conditions start to improve.”
Detached benchmark prices totaled $502,400, which is 0.4 per cent higher than last month, but 3.4 per cent lower than last year’s levels. This is the first time in eight months that detached prices recorded a monthly gain, helping ease the quarterly decline from 2.2 per cent in the first quarter to 0.7 per cent in the second quarter.
Overall sales activity remained relatively weak in June, falling by seven per cent to 2,028 units. Inventory levels went in the other direction and continued to climb in June to 5,973 units, 16 per cent higher than last year. Both the attached and apartment segments of the market have recorded inventory gains around 30 per cent, far greater than the year-over-year increase of five per cent in the detached sector.
Higher inventories and weaker demand continue to have a larger impact on pricing in the apartment and row sectors. June apartment prices slid by another 0.1 per cent over last month, pushing the average year-to-date benchmark price down 5.3 per cent below last year. Attached product experienced a monthly slide of 0.3 per cent, mostly due to steeper price declines in row style product.
“The price adjustments that we’ve seen in the past year have allowed some buyers to get into homes that were previously unattainable,” said CREB® president Cliff Stevenson. “This is especially true for homeowners with financial stability and a good amount of equity in their home. With so much choice out there, it’s giving consumers an opportunity to find their ideal home at a price they can afford.”