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MARKET UPDATE – May 15, 2018

May 23rd, 2018 by gordingrealestate

MARKET UPDATE – May 1, 2018

May 10th, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Our assumption that the cold and snowy March played a part in a slower real estate market may have been correct since April was busier in showing activity, new listings and sales.  Central Alberta sales were up a whopping 25% in April compared to March while the number of active listings were also up dramatically.  While weather almost certainly played a part, some increase from March to April is normal.

Another contributing factor is the improving economy.  There is no doubt that our economy runs on energy and despite all the other challenges we are facing, we are seeing the benefit of oil prices hitting almost $70US for West Texas Intermediate and the gap narrowing for our own Western Canada Select.  The additional profits from higher priced oil are funding more jobs and adding to the government’s coffers.

Increased consumer confidence is the product of a more stable economy.  That added confidence is a big contributor to increased housing market activity.  People need to feel confident to make big decisions.  Continued good news for buyers however, increased sales normally means higher prices, but higher than normal inventories in almost every central Alberta market will keep prices where they are for now.

 

MARKET UPDATE – April 15, 2018

April 27th, 2018 by gordingrealestate

MARKET UPDATE – April 1, 2018

April 4th, 2018 by gordingrealestate

The number of residential MLS sales in central Alberta in the first 3 months of 2018 was equal to the first 3 months of 2017.  Local markets vary, with Red Deer and Ponoka up year over year, while Sylvan Lake, Lacombe, Blackfalds, Penhold and Rocky are down.

The biggest challenge we face as realtors is the public’s assumption that economic recovery means an immediate return to increased sales and higher prices.  In fact, the real estate market recovery will lag two to three years behind this economic recovery, which is weaker and slower than past recoveries.

Further proof is that the combined median sale price of homes in eight central Alberta municipalities reached its lowest point in five years in the first quarter of 2018.  The previous low was reached two years after the last economic recovery was announced.

Overpricing is the single biggest mistake a seller can make in a market where there are far more sellers than buyers, and it leads to longer sale times, lower prices and seller frustration.  Less than 2 out of 10 homes listed on the MLS are selling each month in every central Alberta market.  The one or two that sell will be homes that are priced according to local market reality.

MARKET UPDATE – March 15, 2018

March 22nd, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Sales in the first two weeks in March were down compared to the first two weeks of February in every market except Sylvan lake.  Sales were also down slightly compared to the first two weeks of February 2017 in most markets.

The number of active listings are up substantially in every market compared to last month and are also higher than last year at this time.  We attribute some of the extra listing activity to consumer confidence that the economy has turned and their desire to move after 3 years of slower markets.

It does seem busier although that hasn’t translated to hard sales yet.  A resolution to the conflict between Alberta and B.C. over the pipeline would go a long way to improving consumer confidence and market activity.

MARKET UPDATE – MARCH 1, 2018

March 22nd, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Most central Alberta markets we serve are keeping pace with last year while Red Deer is showing signs of improvement.  We can’t see it in all the numbers yet, but there is no doubt that we are feeling more  public optimism than we’ve experienced for much of the last three years.

The reasons for optimism include stable oil prices above $60US, 55,000 new jobs in Alberta in 2017 resulting in lower unemployment, and the general feeling that the recession is behind us.

The number of active listings is up in all central our Alberta markets.  More people wanting to sell in a recovering market suggests more confident consumers with a different motivation than we saw a couple of years ago when people were selling because they had to.  Now, they may be selling because they want to.  More listings will put the brakes on any price inflation they may be anticipating.

We have consistently stated that the real estate market takes time to recover once the economy has turned around.  We’ve also said that it’s hard to time the market perfectly and the recovery can sneak up on you.  All of our central Alberta markets favor buyers at the moment.  Interest rates are still relatively low and future increases are possible.  It’s a great time to take advantage of low prices and ample inventories.

MARKET UPDATE – February 15, 2018

February 23rd, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Sales in the first two weeks in February were up over the same period in January in most central Alberta markets.  Sales were down slightly or about the same as the first two weeks of February 2017 in most markets.

The number of active listings is up in every market compared to last month which is normal for this time of year.  Some of the listing activity is old listings that didn’t sell last year coming back on in time for spring.

It does seem busier although that hasn’t translated to hard sales yet.  A resolution to the conflict between Alberta and B.C. over the pipeline would go a long way to improving consumer confidence and market activity.

MARKET UPDATE – February 1, 2018

February 8th, 2018 by gordingrealestate

January sales in Red Deer brought some sunshine into the market, something we don’t usually expect to see until March or April, although the number of active listings remains stubbornly high for this time of year, keeping the demand/supply ratio in buyer’s territory.  Some January sales may be the residual of last year’s activity to get ahead of the new mortgage rules, so we’ll have to wait and see what February brings before we declare the market back to normal.

Where is the housing market going in 2018?  The provincial government has announced an end to the 3 year recession – very good news, but there are still some challenges lurking, including another potential delay to the Kinder Morgan Pipeline by the BC government.  While it’s nice to see West Texas oil trading in the $65US range, Alberta producers are only getting about half that much right now because we have only one customer to sell our oil to – the US.  With the likelihood of more delays to that pipeline, capital and equipment are moving south to a friendlier U.S. environment and some of those jobs we had back may disappear.

The Alberta economy runs on energy and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.  The energy industry needs access to new markets to generate investment and the jobs that come with it.  Jobs create population growth and wealth.  Population growth and wealth creates housing market activity.  A quick resolution to the pipeline delay will help get our housing market back on track.

MARKET UPDATE – January 15, 2018

January 22nd, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Sales were lower in most central Alberta markets in the first two weeks of January compared to December, probably, as a result of extra activity in December caused by the mortgage rule changes. Sales were on par with the first two weeks of January 2017 in most markets, but up significantly in Red Deer.  Hopefully that is an indication that the market is indeed turning.  The active listing count is still higher than normal which will keep prices stable for now.

MARKET UPDATE – January 1, 2018

January 18th, 2018 by gordingrealestate

Sales in Red Deer in December were down compared to November, but up compared to December 2016.  The number of active listings is down but still substantially higher than this time a year ago.  The supply of homes relative to the demand in 2017 has kept the market firmly in buyer’s territory and some buyers have taken advantage.

The Alberta economy grew at more than 4% in 2017 which means that we made up some of the ground lost in 2015 and 2016.  The economy is predicted to grow again in 2018, but a little slower at about 2%.  It’s likely those two years of growth will contribute to a more stable real estate market.  No one is predicting a boom, but it is highly possible that prices have hit bottom.

There are signs that interest rates have the potential to increase some more over the next year.  Combined with the new mortgage rules, that could make it more challenging for buyers who wait.  Predicting the future is a fool’s game.  The only way to know the market has turned is to see prices going up, which means you’ve missed the bottom.

We know that owning a home is one of the best investments you can make.  For those who are thinking about buying their first home or moving up, the signs suggest that now might be the opportune time to act on those thoughts.

The data included on this website is deemed to be reliable, but is not guaranteed to be accurate by the Central Alberta REALTORS® Association. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.
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