We are experiencing seasonal trends here in the Bow Valley real estate market. Sales in May were back above 50 transactions – volumes similar to 2017. Overall, the market seems to be transitioning more into a balanced market; sales transactions are down 16% year to date and year over year, active inventory is up 19% to 223 active listings. This is still only 4.4 months of inventory and certain segments of the market remain very strong.
When looking at the shifting market, at this time in 2017 there were 3.4 months of inventory, 2016 7.2 months, and 8.1 months in 2015. The higher level of active properties on the market gives buyer more choice rather than some of the rushed purchasing that was occurring last year. Prices and values are holding steady and continue to increase in some segments of the market. Those listings that are seeing price adjustments were trying to capitalize on the growth of last year and hoping for a sustained rapid increase in values.
There are a number of factors that have resulted in the lower sales volumes, the new mortgage regulations and rising rates are making it even more challenging for first time buyers. The sluggish Calgary market is challenging for buyers looking to move out of the city. And, January through April were the coldest months in 40 years and this resulted in a delayed start to the spring selling season – no one likes looking at homes in a parka.
We would expect to see listing inventory peak in July and August with new inventory being absorbed as the fall market gets going in late August and September. There are a number of new projects being pre-sold in Three Sisters and construction in Stewart Creek bustling. There are also new projects coming to market in Spring Creek, Downtown and Tee Pee Town. Many of these sales are not registered on the MLS which will also result in lower sales stats that we can calculate.