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Calgary Market Update: Why Calgary is holding while prices fall rapidly in other major cities

by Corben Grant on 15 Jul 2022

While markets across the country are seeing price corrections amid rising interest rates, the city of Calgary has largely avoided a decline, with home values still holding strong. In its newest monthly release, the Calgary Real Estate Board revealed that both sales and prices are “far above expectations” on a year-to-date basis. What makes Calgary different, and is this an enduring trend or simply a delayed reaction?

To help answer some of these questions, we spoke to Jesse Davies, a top local realtor and investor from the Calgary area. One of the biggest factors that has allowed Calgary to continue its course, says Davies, is its affordability compared to other major cities.

“While the rest of the country was booming for the last five years, Calgary had been relatively flat in some sectors and actually dropped in other sectors like condominiums,” explained Davies.

As a result, Calgary entered the pandemic boom at a very different point than other cities. While prices in other markets ballooned far beyond their fundamentals, home prices in Calgary may only just now be reaching a point where they should have been all along. According to Davies, this positions Calgary well to succeed as other cities may start to waver.

“Couple this with high oil prices, attractive business tax rates, and diversification in different sectors such as alternative energy and tech creating more jobs, and Calgary is set up to potentially outperform the rest of Canada in the years to come.”

From March, when interest rate increases began, to June 2022, home prices in the GTA fell by over 10%, and a similar decline was seen in Greater Vancouver. Calgary, by comparison, saw prices increase 5% over the same three-month period.

However, this doesn’t mean that Calgary hasn’t felt some of the pressure from a receding market. Price growth has slowed relative to last year's rapid pace. Home sales have declined 2.5% from June last year, though they remain at an elevated level compared to pre-2022. At the same time, available inventories are on their way up despite a decline in new listings. CREB predicts further balancing as interest rates rise, though they imply a move towards a balanced market rather than full-on correction. 

“As expected, higher interest rates are starting to have an impact on home sales. This is helping shift the market toward more balanced conditions and taking some of the pressure off prices,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie in their monthly report.

Davies agrees, stating he does not expect a significant downward price action in the city. However, he admits that the effects of a continued interest rate increase and a potential recession are still up in the air.

Overall, the environment in Calgary of increased supply and prices remaining strong may be a good sign for investors. Along with the city's already noted affordability, investors will now find even more options to pick from when trying to choose the right property. Meanwhile, cashflow opportunities in rentals remain very appealing. It looks like now may be an appealing time to invest in Calgary to take advantage of what’s to come.

“The rental market is still very tight in Calgary, and market rents are escalating very quickly,” said Davies.

Looking forward, Calgary seems poised to stand a great chance at weathering turbulence in the housing market and may only increase in appeal in coming years. A strong real estate market combined with an equally strong and diversifying economy makes Calgary a strong choice for those looking to invest in real estate for the long term or to expand their existing portfolio further. The city has recently seen a rush of investors from all over the country as other local markets become untenable to their needs.

Says Davies: “I think both cash flow and appreciation investors have a very high probability of doing very well in the next 5 – 10 years in an affordable and beautiful city like Calgary.”

Are you interested in investing in Calgary or want to know more about opportunities in the city? Find Jesse Davies online at https://jdrealestatecalgary.ca/ and book a free consultation today. Davies and his team of experienced agents have worked with countless clients to help them realize their real estate goals in Calgary and have the skills and experience to help you find the best investments for your needs.



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