Real Estate blog Calgary


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December sales activity rises again, but so does supply

Sales activity for all product types improved in December and pushed monthly sales to long-term averages for the second month in a row.

However, new listings also rose, keeping inventory elevated compared to typical levels for December. With more supply remaining compared to sales, benchmark prices edged down for the fifth consecutive month.

“Many of the economic indicators continue to post modest improvements, including improving sales. However, demand gains have not outpaced the additional supply coming into the housing market. This is creating some of the bumpiness in terms of price recovery,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie, who added that prices have stayed comparable to last year.

The gap between detached supply and demand closed in the first half of 2017 and supported early price growth. As prices improved, this was perceived as a signal for many who delayed selling their home, and caused a late rise in inventory that limited price growth.

Overall, the detached benchmark price in 2017 averaged $504,867, 0.63 per cent above last year’s levels.

Challenges continue to face the apartment sector, with elevated supply in the resale market. The new-home and rental markets weighed on this sector. The excess supply caused average annual benchmark prices to decline by four per cent this year. This is a total annual adjustment of nearly 12 per cent since the start of the recession.

In the attached sector, the first half of the year saw an improvement in sales relative to inventory levels. This supported stronger price gains in the second and third quarter. However, a late rise in inventory levels took some of the momentum away from price growth. On an annual basis, attached prices totalled $332,325, comparable to last year’s levels.

“This year, we saw a rise in the number of consumers willing to purchase in the market with the expectation that the economy had already shifted. There were also many who waited to list their property until prices showed more stability,” said CREB® president David P. Brown.

“Those who acted were typically driven by long-term plans that best suit their current lifestyle. We are ending the year with stronger sales in the last quarter, but supply levels are holding back price gains. The year played out as expected, with a transition from price declines to general price stability in most sectors of the market.”

For more information on the 2017 housing market, CREB®’s 2018 Forecast Conference & Tradeshow ( will be on Jan. 31.


Creb Calgary : A transition in the making

by Stewart J Lowe & Associates

Detached sales activity boosts February housing market

After the first two months of the year, Calgary's detached sector continues to drive a slow transition in the housing market. February sales totaled 1,342 units, which is still 19 per cent below long-term averages, but an improvement over the past two years.

As sales kept trending upward, detached inventory levels continued to ease in February. These conditions caused months of supply to fall to 2.4 months, putting less downward pressure on pricing. Unadjusted detached benchmark prices totaled $501,900 in February, which is one per cent lower than prices recorded last year, but slightly higher than January figures.

"There seems to be a new sense of optimism these days," said CREB® president David P. Brown. "Some home selling guide are feeling upbeat about the changing landscape and the improved chances of selling their home. Other people are looking at the spring market with caution and wondering if we're going to see a higher than expected surge of listings. While there's less product on the market right now, sellers still need to be realistic with their pricing."

The amount of excess inventory eased in the overall market in February, setting the stage for a transition to a more stable market this year. Months of supply totaled 3.4 months, down from five months over last February. At the same time, the sales-to-new-listings ratio trended from a near record February low of 39 per cent last year to 55 per cent this February.

With sales improving and new listings and inventories contracting—two key measures of market balance, there's good evidence to show that the housing market has started a trend toward more balanced conditions.

 "The transition in the housing market appears to be underway," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lure. "However, it is important to note that this change is primarily being driven by improvements in the detached market and stability in the labour market."

"It will take some time for these conditions to translate into all housing segments and achieve price recovery," said Lurie. "But all indicators continue to point toward a slow transition from a contracting market toward one that is stabilizing at lower levels."Lurie. "But all indicators continue to point toward a slow transition from a contracting market toward one that is stabilizing at lower levels."

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package. 

The full Calgary region monthly stats package will be available later today on

Calgary home sales soar in January compared to last year

by Stewart J Lowe & Associates

The Calgary resale housing market is off to an impressive start for 2017.

Three weeks into January and MLS sales in the city of 566 are up 24.12% compared with the same period a year ago, according to the Calgary Real Estate Board website. Also, pending sales of 96 have risen by 18.52%.

Prices have also increased with the median going up 3.65% to $424,450 and the average rising 1.85% to $468,888.

Increased demand combined with fewer listings is having an impact on prices no doubt.

New listings of 1,613 so far in January are down 14.57% from last year while active listings of 4,157 are off by 16.21%.

Mario Toneguzzi - Calgary Herald





Overall sales activity was down again in August, totalling 1,567. However, this figure does not reflect the big differences in activity between the detached sector, versus the high density apartment and attached segments of the market.

“While overall sales have eased for detached homes, so too has the amount of new listings on the market preventing inventories from reaching previous highs and limiting the downward pressure on pricing,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “This is not the case in both the attached and apartment sectors which have recorded inventory levels near August highs.”

The detached benchmark price totaled $503,200 in August, 3.3 % below last year, but similar to levels recorded last month. Meanwhile, condominium apartment prices continue to decline totaling $274,900 in August, 7% below last year and are at levels comparable to figures reported at the end of 2013.

Price declines were higher in the apartment sectors, due to the more pronounced imbalance between supply and demand. On average, apartment inventories rose to levels well above historical norms. At the same time, sales are at their weakest level since 2003 causing months of supply to average over 6 months so far this year.

“It is very important for both buyers and home selling guide to pay close attention to the data in their particular area, segment, and price point,” said CREB® president Cliff Stevenson. “We are clearly seeing a significant difference in the performance between our detached, and our attached and apartment segments of the market, making it very difficult to use city-wide housing data for decision making purposes in today’s market.”

Trends in the attached segment of the market tend to resemble the apartment sector. However, the extent of the pullback was not as severe in the attached sector mostly due to the semi-detached product within this segment. On average, this year benchmark prices declined by 2.6% for semi-detached product compared to the 5.7 % decline in row style properties.

Source: Creb


Market moves toward balanced conditions

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay

For the first time since December 2014, Calgary’s residential unadjusted benchmark prices improved over the previous month. Within the city of Calgary, housing prices totaled $454,100 in May, a monthly and year-over-year increase of 0.55 and 0.96 per cent.

“For the third month in the row, new listings have eased compared to last year, helping push the market toward more balanced conditions, despite the current environment of slower sales activity,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “This has helped prevent further declines in the unadjusted benchmark price.”

New listings in the city of Calgary totaled 3,161 units in May, a 27 per cent decrease over last year. Meanwhile, total inventory levels for the month were 5,342 units, 16 per cent higher than last year, but eight per cent lower than May levels recorded over the past five years and three per cent lower than average levels over the past 10 years.

Two measures of balance are the months of supply and the sales to new listings ratio. In May, the months of supply decreased to 2.43, while the sales to new listings ratio was 69 per cent, both within the norms for balanced conditions.

“Back in January, higher inventory levels relative to sales activity caused months of supply to rise above five months,” said CREB® president Corinne Lyall. “While some challenges continue to exist for home selling guide, depending on the property type, price and location, the decline in the months of supply points toward more stability for both buyers and sellers.”

Year-to-date the detached sector recorded the largest decline in new listings at eight per cent. While overall inventory levels are 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels, they remain well below the five and 10 year averages for May.

Detached sales activity in May totaled 1,366 units, with the majority of transactions occurring below $500,000. While conditions are not as tight as last year’s market conditions, which favoured the seller, over the first five months of this year activity in this price range has remained relatively balanced.

“This segment of the detached market continues to have a good amount of consumer activity, as many have taken advantage of the improved selection compared to last year,” said Lyall. “While some have waited for steeper price declines, to this point it just hasn’t happened across all areas of the market. This is partly related to activity in the under $500,000 segment.”

Meanwhile, year-to-date apartment sales and new listings totaled 1,383 and 3,229 units respectively. The May apartment benchmark price of $294,800 increased by 1.20 per cent compared to last month, but remains 0.2 per cent below May 2014 figures.

The apartment sector continues to remain the only sector where prices have contracted relative to last year’s figures.

“While the resale market has recorded an easing of upward inventory pressures, the new home sector has started to record some gains in inventory,” said Lurie. “Current new home inventories remain relatively low. However, the overall impact on Calgary’s housing prices will ultimately depend on the duration of the economic slowdown and the amount of inventory build-up in the new home sector.”

Source: Creb

Aspen Woods Real Estate Market Report - May 1, 2015

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay


Click on the picture to take you to the report.

Please email us at for your own community or personal Market Report!!

#calgarydreamhomes #aspenwoodsrealestate #yycrealestate #calgaryrealestate #calgaryswcommunity


Economic Update March 2015

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay


With global economic trends that transpired recently, most notably the dramatic drop in oil prices, there is concern that 2015 and 2016 will herald significant downturns to Canada’s housing market. Yes, there will be some regions impacted; however, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) in their recently released Housing Market Outlook, Canada Edition for the first quarter of 2015 forecast that much will not change in terms of housing market trends for 2015 and 2016.

In addition, several factors will also ensure that the Canadian housing market remains relatively stable in the coming years:

• With no indication of rising interest rates, mortgage rates are expected to remain at historically low levels;
• Employment rates across the country are expected to rise slightly in 2015 and 2016; 

• Due to the economic growth expected this year and the next. income is subsequently expected to rise modestly in conjunction. In addition, this economic growth will result in net migration levels to remain above historical levels; thus driving the demand for housing; 

• The decline in the growth rate of the Canadian population aged 25-34 is expected to begin a longer-term decline. This demographic change, along with an aging population will impact the demand on the type and tenure of housing demand; 

• Despite modest overvaluation in Canada’s resale market, market conditions and house prices remain relatively balanced and consistent with underlying demographic and economic factors at a national level;

• Although above the historical average, the stock of completed and unabsorbed units has been declining since May 2013.



Forecasted for 2015 & 2016: what we can expect in Canada’s housing market

Housing Starts:

- 2015: 154,000 - 201,000 units

- 2016: 148,000 - 203,000 units

Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) Sales:

- 2015: 425,000 - 504,000 units 

- 2016: 410,000 - 505,000 units 

Average MLS® Resale Prices:

- 2015: $384,000 - $428,000

- 2016: $388,000 - $438,000

Provincial Spotlight:


Due to the drop in global oil prices, oil-producing regions in Canada, most notably Alberta, will experience a slowdown in housing start activity this year. However, these lower oil prices will likely lead to increased housing starts in regions that will benefit from lower oil prices, particularly Ontario, where businesses are expected to benefit from lower oil prices, lower interest rates, and a lower Canada/U.S. exchange rate.


Although much of Canada will be experiencing a marginal decrease in housing starts this year, some regions will be experiencing an increase. Due to improving employment trends in Quebec and positive economic growth in British Columbia, these provinces can expect to experience increased housing starts.

Source:CMHC’s Housing Market Outlook, Canada for the first quarter of 2015

Mike Harvey amp

Mortgage Planner





CREB® forecasts price stability amid easing demand

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay

Housing sales are forecasted to ease by four per cent this year, due to market uncertainty and changes in economic climate, while prices are expected to remain relatively stable with a modest increase of 1.58 per cent on an annual basis, CREB® said today in its annual forecast.

Although sales levels are expected to ease, previously tight conditions throughout 2014 indicate that rising supply would push the market into more balanced conditions, supporting price stability in 2015. However, CREB® warns there are multiple risk factors attached to this forecast, which estimates a total of 24,503 homes will be sold in the city this year.

“The housing risks lie mainly with employment levels and net migration, both of which can be more severely impacted by a prolonged period of weakness in the energy sector,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “There is also the impact that energy prices have on consumer confidence. If energy prices stay low throughout the year, concern regarding job stability could cause consumers to delay unnecessary changes regarding housing.”

The report notes that while sales activity is expected to ease in 2015, it remains consistent with long-term levels. By comparison, sales in 2014 were nearly 15 per cent higher than the long-term trends for the city.

“The economic situation is far better today than what is was in 2009, where the fallout of the financial crises resulted in a U.S. recession, weakness in energy sectors, a pullback in investment and ultimately job losses in Calgary,” said Lurie. “With economic indicators remaining more positive in this period, the pullback in housing is not expected to mirror activity during the 2009-2010 period.”

CREB®’s forecast also notes that housing activity can vary significantly depending on location, price range and property type. For example, in 2014, there were less detached homes within city limits available in the lower price ranges. This caused many consumers who were looking for lower priced product to move to the attached and apartment sectors within city limits as well as other surrounding areas. Many consumers turned to the larger surrounding areas of Airdrie, Cochrane, Okotkoks and Chestermere, which all recorded record levels of sales in 2014.

“With more supply in the market expected this year, buyers will likely have more alternatives in all price ranges,” said 2015 CREB® president Corinne Lyall. “It’s a nice scenario for buyers, but it also means that home selling guide will likely have to adjust their price expectations and be realistic about the amount of time their home will be on the market.” 

“A REALTOR® can help navigate market conditions and real estate options, which are always unique to each consumer,” said Lyall. “While challenges in the market can raise concerns for buyers and sellers, it really comes down to their personal situation and knowing what’s right for them. Real estate is truly local.”

For the entire CREB® forecast, visit:


Nearly 40 % spike in million dollar homes over last year

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay

Nearly 40 per cent spike in million dollar homes over last year!

There are nearly 40 per cent more millionaire homeowners in the city in 2015 compared to last — at least, if you don’t count what’s left on their mortgages.

According to newly released city assessment figures, 14,207 single-home properties across Calgary were assessed at $1 million or more, a whopping 39 per cent spike from last year’s total of 10,227.
And still holding the crown for the city’s most highly valued property at a colossal $19.6 million is the now-famous home of Alfred Balm on Pump Hill Close S.W., a massive 91-room, 15,450-square-foot mansion.

Joining the list of the top five most valued properties are some newcomers, listed in both mature, inner-city communities as well as newly built, exclusive suburbs. Taking a somewhat-distant second-place is a home on Aspen Ridge Heights S.W. in the new community of Aspen Estates, assessed at $11.2 million.

Third place is on Crescent Road N.W. atop the city’s historic Crescent Heights ridge looking out onto the downtown, assessed at $10.3 million. And fourth and fifth place are also inner city properties, with homes on 4th Street S.W. assessed at $8.7 million and 7th Street S.W. assessed at $8.32 million.
But while the total number of million-dollar homes has spiked, individual values have come down in some cases, including the Balm residence which was assessed at $19.7 million last year and as high as $22 million back in 2008.

“Lots of people can play in the $500,000 market, but only a few can play in the $2-million-plus range, so you’re going to see a lot more volatility in those higher-priced properties,” said city assessor Nelson Karpa.
Felicia Mutheardy, prairies and territories spokeswoman for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., says she’s not surprised to see such a huge jump in million-dollar homes over the last year, with Calgary’s growth continuing to surge, including demand for new homes and new home starts.

As well, Calgary’s employment sector continued to see success over the last year, with high employment rates at high salaries.

In fact, between January and November of last year, Calgary’s weekly average earnings were $1,102, significantly higher than the national average of $922.
But with plummeting oil prices in the last few months, she admits the next several months could be extremely unpredictable for Calgary real estate.
“These numbers were seeing came from last year, when we were still looking at oil above $90 a barrel.
“We were still expecting employment growth to come down somewhat this year due to labour shortages, but now with oil prices so low, it could pose a downturn risk in housing.”
Mutheardy added, just because someone owns a million-dollar home isn’t a guarantee that they in fact are millionaires.
“You could just be looking to move up, capitalizing on equity gains, but it’s hard to tell really what your financial situation is in terms of total equity and salary.”

Last year’s figure of 10,227 million-dollar homes is also up from the previous year of 2013, when 9,001 single-family homes were assessed at $1 million or more. That compared to 7,997 in 2012 was a 13 per cent increase.

The previous record of 8,262 homes was set in the early part of 2008, just before the economic collapse later that year.

This year, two more communities, Mayfair and Scarboro were also added to the list of nine neighbourhoods where the typical house is assessed at $1 million or higher.


ALL SOLDS 2014 Housing Statistics for Aspen Woods & Springbank Hill SW

by Stewart J Lowe and Anne M Lindsay

ALL SOLDS 2014 Aspen Woods & Springbank Hill South West Statistics




Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 14




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Stewart J. Lowe & Associates
Real Estate Professionals Inc
202 5403 Crowchild Trail
Calgary AB T3B 4Z1
Direct: 403-850-0669
Fax: (403) 476-7608