Rezoning and Calgary's Spring Outlook for 2024

First of all, I want to talk about Blanket Rezoning, the rage in conversation in Calgary right now. I personally don't think it's going to go away and while the negatives: density, parking seem to outweigh (to current residents) the positives, the backlash against it will have minimal impact.

This is a reality that has hit Vancouver and Toronto a while ago, and it is a typical prototype of many great European cities.

With the cost of building, it's unlikely prices will come down (at first) because right now what we're seeing is the soaring cost of knockdown houses/lots. That, coupled with all else, the price of new units will be high.

The sad fact is that a lot of these will be rental units (a federal government initiative that is very short sighted). Upper and middle class inner city will definitely feel the impact. I think, ownership would have been the key here but that opens up a whole new can of worms (current government, inflation, debt etc).  However, the city simply can not afford the cost of expansion and therefore I see this as the outcome of that problem. 

Maybe we'll think twice about getting that second car as parking will become a major issue. More on this in the next newsletter. 


As we continue to feel the lingering effects of winter on the weather, in some ways the vibrant winter market has continued into an even more blustery Spring Market.  Sales and Prices are up and the city housing market seems, at times, like a runaway train.  And with the Transmountain pipeline FINALLY starting up, it seems that the current run will never end.

In general, sales have increased across the board from this time last year by over 7% and new listings are helping; up by 11.4%. But active listings continue to fall (because of course - the quick sales). They are now down 16% from the ridiculous low of last year and by over 40% from 2 years ago. In total, Calgary has 2737 listings when a normal spring market would have 5000 to 6000! Benchmark price is up 10% from last year, median price almost 13%, and average price 11%. Days on Market (DOM) continues to drop 17% -- now at a measly 20 days average for all sales.


Sales are finally slowing a bit here. Up only 1.4% while new listings are up over 10%. Still there's not many listings, down by almost 17% from a scant few last year and half of what there was in 2022. Benchmark price is a solid 13% up, median almost 11% up, and average price 9.3% up. The high prices on detached are affecting where people buy, choosing to go for a bit lower priced units. DOM for detached is down 13.6% at 19.


There are not many of these around; all the new ones selling quickly. Sales are up nearly 10% but new units available are down over 10% Active listings are down a whopping 27% with barely over 200 units on the market. The benchmark price is up 13%, the median price way up at over 18% and average price up nearly 16%. The reality is building these are costly due to high costs of lots, and the surge in price is reflective of that. Even older units have increased a lot as a result of this. DOM is down 12% to 22 days.


Total Sales are up over 16% and new listings are increasing by 18.5%.  This statistic will soar in the next year as the blanket rezoning initiative will bring about the building of a huge number of townhouses in the inner city at first, then spreading outward. As of today, Active listings are still down by nearly 15% from last year because of the brisk sales. Prices continue to fly -- up pretty much 20% across the board. Just a little reminder that house prices everywhere else in Canada at this time are barely rising more than a few percentage points. DOM for townhouses averaged 19, down nearly 14% from last year. Just a note about what might happen in the future: most of the townhouses hitting the market next year will be new and with building costs, labour and supply chain continuing to be an issue, it's likely we'll keep seeing these massive price increases in this type of housing.


Condos have become the accepted entry level purchase in Calgary. Once shunned, they now form a respectable part of the market. While people in Toronto continue to pay nearly a million for a one or two bedroom inner city unit, these in Calgary are still relatively cheap. We're seeing a 12% increase in sales; 11.5% in new listings and active listings are still down under 12.5%. The Benchmark price is up nearly 18% and both median and average price are up around 21%. DOM is down 15%. Condos are a reality of the Calgary market for people who want to get in.

I'm seeing a bit of sign of cooling -- mostly because there are more houses coming on the market which might cool prices in the short term.  It's a seller's market and will remain so for a while. Buyers will be wise to note prices will continue to increase so now is a good time to buy unless you want to wait a long while. Interest rate drops are just around the corner and that should add gasoline to an already hot market fire.


Calgary's Market Report for March 2024

Greetings! Today is cold - next week will be warm, but through it all, the Calgary housing market remains HOT!

There really has been little slow down in certain markets over the winter and we're now kicking into spring!  With interest rates likely staying where they are for a few months, but eventually dropping, it's likely Calgary will see brisk, steady sales straight into summer.

It's no secret there is HUGE migration into the province, both from across Canada and outside of the country. Between the "investment" type of buyers and the "first time home owners" certain markets are targeted.  Notably the 400K to 600K market which sees huge activity in condos, townhouses and to a lesser extent, older duplexes.

The "flipping" market now stretches above the 600K range so while it remains active, investors/buyers are beginning to back off a bit. Of course, the reason for this is if you're paying 650K to gut a house it better be in superb inner city communities to warrant the million plus price tag needed to sell and turn a profit.


In general, the market continued to be brisk in February with 23% more sales than February of last year.

New listings were up by nearly 14% as prices influenced sellers to get on the market. Benchmark price was up over 10%.

The real eye opener was the median price which nearly reached increases of 20%, indicating that buyers have accepted the prices as they are and are willing to pay more for the houses they want.

More houses were being bought in a higher price category.  Average price was also up over 15%. Days on the market (DOM) for all markets continues to drop, averaging only 24 days or more than a 25% drop.


Sales here were up a surprising 20% while new listings were up only 5%. Active listings continue to drop near the 1000 mark, down by a huge 17% - the lack of inventory absolutely contributing to the price gains.  Benchmark price increased over 13%, median price up nearly 18%, and average price up well over 14%.  DOM for detached is down to 25 days or nearly a 20% drop.


Total sales here are UP a whopping 36.5% but a lack of inventory still keeps sales well below Feb 2022 levels. New Listings are finally hitting the market, up 16% from this time last year. Active Listings is still down well over 11% - we still have a ways to go to get to normal levels here.  Benchmark price is up nearly 13%, median price is up 11.5%, average price up 14%. All healthy gains, but lagging other markets.  DOM down 28%, selling in 26 days.


This market continues it's amazing trend from last year with many still affordable options now driving the investment and first time home owner market. Total sales are up over 12% from this time last year but new listings are up too - nearly 27%. We'll likely see prices start to moderate here with the new inventory, though  a caveat is that active listings are still down by 5.5%.  Massive gains are seen across the board; benchmark price up by 19%, median price up an incredible 25% year over year, and average price is up over 20%. DOM is down over 41%. The townhouse market continues to be the main driver of the housing market!


This market also continues its massive gains.  Total Sales are up 30% from February of last year, New Listings finally climbing a bit - up over 20%. Active listings are still down well over 11%.  Huge gains in all prices are seen: Benchmark up over 17%, Median up 20%, Average prices up nearly 18.5%.  DOM is down 28%, with it now taking only 26 days to sell the average condo.  Five years ago, this figure was as much as 5 months!

In general, it's obvious that the winter market bucked any stand still.  Multiple offers persist in flips, inner city knockdowns, and nicely renovated houses listed under 800K. Virtually any type of house in any community in the 500 to 600K price range seems to be selling quickly.  The spring market is about to hit and activity will only increase, despite no respite in interest rates.  There's a lot of money/investors out there and with an increasing need for housing countrywide, Calgary seems to be the destination of choice.

Long Term Outlook

Long term? Perhaps a slowdown in the fall, perhaps a levelling off next winter, but if interest rates come down significantly, even that might not likely happen. As a buyer, sitting on the fence and waiting for the Calgary market to correct does not seem prudent at this time.

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