Calgary Sets Average Sales Price Per Home Record for 2012

Posted by Alan Zunec on Wednesday, January 9th, 2013 at 1:03pm.

Calgary’s real estate market had a good year in 2012. Average home prices reached record levels, even surpassing those from the boom days in 2007. The Calgary Real Estate Board noted that 21,207 homes changed hands through the MLS system, bringing an average price per home to $428,655. Prior to that, the record was 26,611 sales with an average price of $423,770 seen in 2007.

Chief economist from the CRBC, Ann-Marie Lurie, noted that the sale price was boosted by a considerable number of homes in the luxury market being sold. Multi-million dollar sales were up, showing 544 such homes exchanging hands in 2012. The month of May saw the highest number of sales worth $1 million plus, 80 homes sold in total. Before that, the record was 458 for the year, again seen in 2007.

CMHC senior analyst Richard Cho of the Calgary branch noted that the city’s price growth has been quite steady. More people are buying property, bringing the market supply down. But the price gain is also helped by the higher number of pricier homes being sold.

Lurie noted that the benchmark price, which takes things like lot size, square footage, how many bedrooms, property age, basement improvements and location into account, is a bit different. Benchmark prices in Calgary averaged $381,408 for 2012, which was higher than the $361,758 seen at the end of 2011. The record is still $404,950, recorded at the end of 2007. Lure noted that the benchmark price is expected to stabilize in the coming year.

MLS sales records show that 2006 still holds the record for most sales, with 27,426 homes changing hands. Sales in 2002, 2004 and 2005 also had higher numbers. Sales numbers for 2012 did outshine those in 2011 which numbered 18,496 for Calgary. Lurie notes that sales levels are within the ten year average and that Calgary is seeing more normal sales levels.

The Real Estate Network’s Don Campbell, a senior analyst from that firm, believes that 2013 will be a strong year for Calgary. His firm has been of the same opinion for the last 18 months. Campbell predicts that the influx of new residents will impact the resale market the most in 2013, with a shift towards the new home market in 2014. That shift may happen as early as the second half of 2013.

Consumer confidence is up, rents are higher, making investors happy and also incentivizing people to get into the housing market.  Campbell expects that the entry to mid-level market will see the most growth which might affect the average sale price, but he predicts the actual number of sales to be very strong, perhaps even record setting.

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