2013 Stellar Year for Calgary’s Luxury Home Market – 2014 Expected to Follow Suit

Posted by Alan Zunec on Monday, February 3rd, 2014 at 8:50pm.

Sales in Calgary’s luxury home market for 2013 went through the roof. The city showed a 34 percent increase in sales over 2012, a close second to Vancouver which came in at 36 percent. Considering that Vancouver has been Canada’s most expensive market for several years now, that’s quite an achievement. Those in the know expect that sales in the Calgary market for 2014 may even top that performance.

The Re/Max Upper End Report, just released, is highly optimistic about luxury home sales not only in Calgary but in 16 other Canadian metropolitan areas, of which 75 percent saw gains in luxury home market sales. Eight of those markets saw gains of more than 10 percent.

As already mentioned, Greater Vancouver took the top spot with a 36 percent increase, with Calgary coming in with a respectable 34 percent. Edmonton came in third, with a 32 percent increase. Going east we find Hamilton-Burlington sitting at 31 percent, followed by Kitchener-Waterloo posting a 27 percent increase in sales. Winnipeg came in at 26 percent; Toronto saw an 18 percent gain and Saskatoon garnered a 15 percent increase in that market. These cities, along with Regina, London-St. Thomas, Quebec City and St. John’s also set luxury home market sales records.

Calgary, for example, saw 732 homes changing hands with price tags of $1 million or more. Seven of those homes were valued at over $4 million, more than triple the number sold in 2012.  Realtor Tamara Pilipchuk, who is with Re/Max in Calgary, noted that the prices are being driven up because of the lack of availability in the upper end market. Thanks to the energy industry, Calgary is enjoying a booming economy, as are other locales in Alberta. Good paying jobs are available, mortgage interest rates are very low and people are still migrating into the province from across Canada and beyond. Calgary is also seeing an increase in foreign investors buying property, something that helped Vancouver’s real estate market become such a powerhouse.

The luxury retail home inventory is so tight that it is giving new construction projects a boost. People are buying available lots in anticipation of development. Now the builders just have to catch up. This isn’t all that surprising since Calgary has seen sales of luxury properties increase by 115 percent since 2009. Sales in 2009 numbered 340 and that number has steadily increased, ending up at the 732 seen during 2013. None of those years saw sales numbers fall into negative territory.

Calgary also broke another record in 2013. A home in Crescent Heights changed hands for a cool $11.1 million. Altogether 2013 was a stellar year. Each month, with the exception of January and this past December showed record sales. So far 2014 is showing promise. Up until January 26 there were already 32 luxury homes sold, each with a price tag of over $1 million.  That’s just shy of the record set in 2007 with 36 homes, and the month isn’t over yet.  

The luxury condo market in Calgary is also quite healthy. Re/Max’s report noted an 88 percent increase in sales in the luxury category in 2013 compared to 2012. In fact the number almost doubled, with 68 units sold this past year and 36 in 2012. Calgarians are riding the wave of success, and it shows.

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