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Yearly records set as monthly sales see slight decline

Yearly records set as monthly sales see slight decline

Condominium and townhouse sales set a new record for 2014

It   was a record setting year for Calgary’s condominium apartment and townhouse   sectors, as sales reached new annual highs despite year-over-year residential   sales declines of 7.5 per cent in December.

Single   family sales totaled 708 units in December, a year-over-year decline of 8.3   per cent. Meanwhile, total condominium sales also declined by six per cent   over the same time frame, but overall activity remained consistent with   long-term averages.

“It   is not unusual to see slower activity in the month of December as consumer   focus often shifts toward the holiday season,” said CREB® president Bill   Kirk. “While monthly sales activity has slowed, it is consistent with   December activity over the past several years. Overall, annual sales activity   has actually increased by 9.3 per cent over last year.”

Yearly   condominium apartment sales totaled 4,742 in 2014, an 18 per cent increase   over the previous year. Meanwhile, townhouse sales totaled 3,737 units, a 17   per cent annual increase. Both sectors recorded record years of sales activity.

“Changes   in the economic climate are expected to cool housing market conditions in   2015, and December activity may be the first indication of this shift,” said   CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “However, any pullback that may occur   needs to be kept in perspective as 2014 housing activity far exceeded our   expectations.”

City   of Calgary sales and new listings totaled a respective 25,664 and 36,329 in   2014. The 13 per cent growth in new listings outpaced the nine per cent   growth in sales, contributing to an overall rise in inventory levels.

With   more availability in the market, residential benchmark prices continued to   level off in December. However, annual average benchmark gains remained above   nine per cent. Unadjusted benchmark prices for single family, condominium   apartment and townhouse properties all remained similar to levels recorded in   November.

Single-family   sales totaled 17,185 in 2014, an annual increase of 5.5 per cent. While the   single-family sector represents the largest component of sales at 67 per   cent, the growth in sales in both the condominium markets has outpaced   activity in this sector.

“The   activity that we’ve seen in the condominium sectors is, in part, is related   to product availability in the lower price ranges,” said Kirk. “The under   $400,000 segment of the single-family market within city limits has been   declining. With the bulk of condominium products available for under   $400,000, more consumers have been turning to these sectors for their housing   needs.”

Strong   demand for condominium apartments was also met with rising supply levels. New   listings totaled 7,297 units in 2014, a 30 per cent increase over the   previous year.

While   rising listings helped take the pressure off prices, on an annual basis,   unadjusted condominium apartment and benchmark prices have recovered and   exceeded previous highs recorded in 2007.  

In   addition to these monthly figures for December, it should also be noted that   full details of CREB®’s 2015 forecast will be released on January 14, 2015 at   our annual Forecast Conference and Tradeshow.