Mar­ket ‘ bal­anced’

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - KATHY MCCORMICK

Good things come to those who wait. The prici­est condo to sell from April to June was in Ram­say, go­ing for $1.1 mil­lion — but it took 255 days be­fore the “sold” sign was put up.

Al­though homes and con­dos are pick­ing up steam, the mar­ket is still a bit hes­i­tant — peo­ple are “cau­tious now” and need to en­sure their con­dos are priced right to sell, says Chris Za­harko, real­tor with Royal LePage Foothills.

On av­er­age, con­dos through­out the city sold in 54 days from April to June, says the Cal­gary Real Es­tate Board.

Low­ell Martens, bro­ker owner of Re/Max Real Es­tate Moun­tain View, says the “ba­si­cally bal­anced mar­ket” is based on price. “The big­gest in­ter­est from buy­ers is in the lower-priced con­dos, which are at­tract­ing first-time buy­ers, es­pe­cially with the low in­ter­est rates,” says Martens.

That is good news for buy­ers: 25 com­mu­ni­ties had an av­er­age sell­ing price be­low $200,000 from April to June.

“The cat­a­lyst is the first-time buyer,” says Za­harko. “Prod­uct in the $200,000 range is the most pop­u­lar.”

The most af­ford­able av­er­age price for con­dos in Cal­gary was in the board’s zone A, which in­cludes most of the city’s north­west. Five sales dur­ing the pe­riod in High­land Park av­er­aged just $127,400, with the me­dian price — the mid-point of all sales — at $125,000.

The good news, too, is the fact that most buy­ers are those in­tend­ing to live in their new homes, he says.

At the same time, that sus­tained in­ter­est in the lower end has put “a bit of up­ward pres­sure on the lower-priced homes, both con­dos and the sin­gle-fam­ily sec­tor,” says Martens.

The busiest zone dur­ing the pe­riod was C, which cov­ers most of down­town, Belt­line and south­west Cal­gary. It posted 1,075 sales for the three-month pe­riod and had the high­est av­er­age sale price at $294,227.

Con­naught in the Belt­line area of zone C was the busiest com­mu­nity in the city, with 94 con­dos chang­ing hands at an av­er­age price of $280,008 and a me­dian price of $275,000.

McKen­zie Towne, in the south­east’s zone D, was next with 68 sales at an av­er­age price of $250,370 and a me­dian price of $247,500.

Af­ter the $1-mil­lion-plus condo sale in Ram­say, the next prici­est condo av­er­age was Eau Claire — where 13 sales av­er­aged $698,476 — fol­lowed by Pump Hill, where one condo sold for $605,000. Both are in zone C.

Of the con­dos that sold be­low $200,000 on av­er­age, most were in zone B, with For­est Lawn as the most af­ford­able. The three sales there av­er­aged $150,666 ($155,000 me­dian).

Ac­tiv­ity has only height­ened in the sum­mer months, says Martens — some­thing that is tra­di­tion­ally un­usual. “The jury is not in yet for the fall, though. We are still in a re­ces­sion, al­though from the real es­tate per­spec­tive, things are looking much bet­ter than most other sec­tors.”

Cal­gary Her­ald Archive

Lower-priced re­sale con­dos are at­tract­ing buy­ers, say real­tors.

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