Welcome to winter!!! As we write this, Mount Norquay is getting set to be the first ski resort opened in Canada for the 2017-2018 season. 2017 has flown by as we are now in the last two months of the year. This is the time of year when we see sales start to slow as fewer properties are on the market. We are looking forward to getting on our skis and seeing you out there this season.
The fall market sizzled in October with 61 transactions, the highest level in 2017, with over $55,000,000 in sales. In addition to the strong sales numbers, the number of active properties for sale in Canmore and area have fallen back below the 200 level. Currently, there are only 3.2 months of inventory available across all segments of the market; this is very much in sellers’ market territory. The highest level we have seen in 2017 was 5.5 months of inventory. Year over year, sales on inventory are very similar for the month of October with 57 sales in 2016 and 183 active listings at this time last year.
As the fall real estate market comes to an end, we expect to see a continued decline in active listings on the market and a seasonal slow to the level of sales transactions. The spring market kicked off this year in February while it wasn’t until summer where we saw inventory starting to rise. Inventory remains scarce with only 3.3 months of townhouses, 2.6 month of apartments, and 3.2 months of detached and semi-detached properties available; a balanced market would be in the five to eight-month range.
There continues to be upward pressure on values as both the luxury market and low levels of inventory bring up both the average and median price. The average price for a detached / semi-detached property in Canmore is now $1,173,000 while the median is $985,000. The average for a townhouse is $637,000 while the median is $607,000. Apartment condominiums have an average sale price of $465,000 with a median of $375,000. We expect to see a continued increase in values over the near term as sales remain strong and inventory remains low; we do not expect to see the same increases in values on the lower end of the market as we have experienced over the past two years.
There has been much talk about the new mortgage rules coming into effect in January. We do not foresee these changes having a major impact on the market. The rising levels on mortgages rates will have an impact on the affordability of the lower end of the market as even the entry level is a significant investment.