Novem­ber an­other slow month on the re­sale hous­ing mar­ket

Calgary Sun - Homes - - Homes - Myke Thomas CALGARYSUN

With 1,171 sales, Novem­ber was an­other slow month for the re­sale hous­ing mar­ket in Cal­gary.

The ac­tiv­ity last month brought the year-to-date sales t o 15,349 homes, a 14 per­cent de­cline from sales recorded to the end of Novem­ber 2017.

“Re­cent chal­lenges in the en­ergy sec­tor have weighed on con­sumer con­fi­dence over the past month. Com­bined with weak­ness in the em­ploy­ment mar­ket and fur­ther gains in lend­ing rates, this is im­pact­ing own­er­ship de­mand,” says Ann-Marie Lurie, chief economist with the Cal­gary Real Es­tate Board.

New list­ings de­clined by seven per­cent year over year, but in­ven­tory, at 6,501 units, is still well above long-term lev­els.

The city­wide av­er­age benchmark price was $422,600 in Novem­ber, one per­cent lower than Oc­to­ber and more than three per­cent be­low last year’s lev­els.

Are fur­ther price de­creases im­pact­ing sales?

“There are prob­a­bly some buy­ers who will wait to see if prices will de­crease, but mostly the slow mar­ket has to do with a com­bi­na­tion of this past year’s mort­gage rule changes, our un­em­ploy­ment rate, a high list­ing in­ven­tory and con­cern over ris­ing in­ter­est rates,” says Corinne Lyall, bro­ker and owner, Royal LeP­age Benchmark in Cal­gar y. “As buy­ers adapt to the new rules, and the econ­omy and em­ploy­ment rates im­prove, we will see peo­ple mak­ing more buy­ing de­ci­sions. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, re­gard­less of mar­ket con­di­tions, there are al­ways those who are wait­ing for prices to de­cline.”

In the cur­rent cir­cum­stances, Lyall ex­pects prices to con­tinue to be un­der pres­sure.

“Prices will con­tinue to re­ceive some down­ward pres­sure as long as our in­ven­tory lev­els stay high,” she says. “We will ex­pe­ri­ence a sim­i­lar mar­ket to 2018 in at least the first half of next year. There is also the un­pre­dictabil­ity of a pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment change and what will hap­pen in the en­ergy mar­ket.”

If you must sell, do your home­work; if you don’t re­ally need to sell, don’t list, says Lyall.

“If you are try­ing to sell your prop­erty, en­sure you are pay­ing close at­ten­tion to the mar­ket trends in your area — are prices in­creas­ing, de­creas­ing, or flat — and do what is re­quired by your real es­tate pro­fes­sional to help make your home as sal­able as pos­si­ble.

“If you are not mo­ti­vated to sell, and just test­ing the mar­ket, then my ad­vice is not to bother list­ing it. You are sim­ply adding to the high in­ven­tory and your home won’t sell.”

POSTMEDIAFILEPHOTO

Year-to-date sales on the MLS hous­ing mar­ket in Cal­gary reached 15,349 homes to the end of Novem­ber, a 14 per­cent de­cline from last year’s lev­els.

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