Archive for the ‘Real Estate Statistics’ Category

Fall 2015: Thinking of Buying or Selling a Home?

Friday, October 9th, 2015

Fall 2015:  Thinking of Buying or Selling a Home? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamLots of people in the Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County and Edmonton region are nervous about the Alberta economy and the impact of the upcoming federal election. If you are one of those people, and are holding off on buying a new home or putting your current home on the market, recent statistics from the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton might ease your stress a little.

Selling prices are down somewhat, the number of homes on the market is up a fair bit, and homes are taking a little longer to sell than a year ago, but there is still plenty of room for optimism on both the buying and selling sides. Here’s why.

In September 2014, the selling price for an average single family home in the Edmonton area was $436,429. In September 2015 the price had dropped to $432,150, a decrease of just .98% from the previous year. This seems to suggest that value is there for buyers, while sellers can still expect to receive a fair dollar.

In September 2014 a single family home stayed on the market for an average of 47 days; this year the time has increased, but only slightly, to 51 days. Last September saw 1,568 residential units being sold; this year that number dropped by 6.76% to 1,462. A slower market this year, but still plenty of movement.

A year ago, there were 4,812 units in the residential inventory for the Edmonton area. By September of this year, that number had increased to 7,108, a jump of 47.71%. This means that buyers have considerably more choice when considering their purchase. Sellers have more competition and so may have to put more time and effort into getting their properties ready to sell. But home owners who keep their property well maintained and have reasonable expectations for a selling price should not find this to be a problem. A seller was once the buyer of the property they now have on the market. I continually tell my buyers to consider the resale value of whatever property they are thinking of purchasing. Once they own that property, they should never forget that eventually they will want to sell, and a home that is well maintained and offered for the right price will find a buyer, even if the market seems to be less than ideal.

No matter what the housing market is doing, the best time to buy or sell is when the time is right for you! I’m always available to help you buy or sell. Call or text me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here.

January May Be the Best Time to Buy a New Spruce Grove or Stony Plain Home

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

January May Be the Best Time to Buy a New Spruce Grove or Stony Plain Home | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamUsually I tell my clients in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County and the Edmonton region who are looking to buy a home that the best time to buy is when they’re ready, regardless of what the market is doing. But some new statistics from TheRedPin.com suggest a certain time of the year is better if you want the lowest price, while another time during the year offers the best selection.

The infographic “5 Year GTA Breakdown – The Best Time to Buy and Sell Your Home”  contains some interesting data. The infographic is based on Toronto home sales, but there is reason to believe things are not so different in our part of the country.

You’ll find the best housing prices in January.

In Toronto at least, the price difference was huge: $16,000 less than the next least expensive month (July) and a whopping $60,000 less than the most expensive month (May). There may be several reasons for this:

• Fewer people are looking to buy a home in January, maybe due to the cold weather or to after-Christmas bills. Fewer buyers = less competition and therefore lower prices.
• Sellers who list their homes in the winter usually do so because they have to sell and may be willing to negotiate a lower price.
• January listings may have been on the market for a while and sellers may feel pressure to sell for a lower price.
• Much smaller inventory of homes on the market means lower prices for buyers.

Highest prices (and best selection) in May.

Reasons for this?

• Better weather means it’s easier to get around, more pleasant to view houses, and easier to move one’s belongings. That means more people shopping for a new home.
• Buying a house in May means a move can happen during the summer, which is generally the choice for families with children needing to change schools. This is equally true for sellers with children and is certainly one of the reasons so many people list their home for sale in the spring.
• More buyers, more homes on the market, more competition all spell higher prices.

House prices correlate inversely with days on the market.

Months that show the lowest prices also generally show the longest time on the market. This can mean good news for buyers; a house that’s been on the market for many months may be owned by someone desperate to sell and willing to look at lower offers.

House prices also correlate with the number of homes on the market.

This almost seems counter-intuitive but the data show that the greater the competition (that is, the more homes there are on the market and the more people looking for homes), the higher the price. Conversely, fewer homes on the market = lower price.

I still recommend to my buying clients that their first consideration should be their personal circumstances, but it doesn’t hurt to be aware of trends such as these!

I’m happy to help you find your new home at any time of the year. Call or text me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here.

What’s the Housing Market Like These Days?

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

What's the Housing Market Like These Days? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamWhen people ask me if it’s a good time to buy a home in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County or the Edmonton region, I usually tell them that the best time to buy is when they’re ready.  And that answer is true whether the market is up or down and whether the market favors buyers or sellers.

But sometimes it’s useful to take a look at current market statistics if you’re still trying to decide about becoming a homeowner.

The Real Estate Weekly regularly publishes information about residential home sales in our area.  The November 13, 2013 issue has an intriguing title for the most recent summary of market activity:  “Youthful buyers continue to drive housing sales in October”.  Darrell Cook, president of the Realtors® Association of Edmonton, points out that Edmonton residents are a youthful demographic with an average age of 36 and good job prospects so demand for housing remains high.  This translates into a brisk housing market.  In fact, Mr. Cook points out that “total annual sales are the highest they have been for five years and we had the best October in five years as well”.

And what about house prices?  In October 2013, the average single family home sold for $397,613, up 2.5% from a year ago.  The selling price of the average condo, at $235,680, was up 2%.  The total number of residential units sold in October was up a big 7% over the same time last year, while total number of units available for sale was down 3.8% from a year ago and those sold on average 6 days faster (on the market for 54 days compared to 60 days a year ago).

Good news for sellers, yes.  But still a reasonable market for buyers as well.  Buyers at present may need to be a little more organized (mortgage pre-approval in hand), as well as ready to act promptly when they find a house that suits them, but it’s just as possible to find your dream home now as at any other time.

Looking to sell your home?  I’d be happy to do a free home evaluation and advise you on getting it ready to sell.  If you’re in the market to buy a home, let me help you find just the right one!  Call or text me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here

Housing Market Boom or Bust in Alberta?

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

 | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamHousing Market Boom or Bust in Alberta?My clients in the Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County and Edmonton area often ask me if “now” is a good time to buy a new home.  My answer to that question usually involves telling them that the best time to buy is when they feel ready to do so, no matter what the market is doing.  That may sound like a weasel answer but I believe people’s own finances and their needs and wants in housing are better for decision-making than any attempts to time or predict the market.

But “now” is an interesting time to be dealing in real estate in Alberta.  You’ve probably seen the gloomy news reports that the Canadian housing market is due for a major correction with house prices set to fall by about 20%.  That is not the case here!

In a recent article in the Edmonton Journal entitled “Alberta’s housing market still hot, whatever the media say”, Gary Lamphier reports on a conversation with Don Campbell, senior analyst and founding partner with the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN).  Mr. Campbell advises would-be sellers and buyers to “chill out”, suggesting that there is no such thing as a Canadian real estate market, but rather that each locality has its own unique market and conditions.  He goes even further when commenting about the Alberta market, saying that economic and demographic factors here are ripe for another housing boom, not bust.  He notes Alberta’s population continues to grow as workers come into the province while apartment vacancy rates shrink.  Many of these workers will decide to make Alberta their permanent home and that means they’ll be buying houses sometime in the next 2 to 7 years, fueling demand for houses and the subsequent rise in prices.

You may have heard or read that prices in Alberta have flat-lined so how can the dream of a new housing boom be true?  Mr. Campbell says Alberta’s boom-bust economy and the accompanying anxiety in people’s minds is to blame for this skepticism, along with tougher mortgage qualification rules and the negative national news.  He points out that Alberta’s population growth in 2012 was nearly triple the national average, putting a strain on housing capacity.  This situation tends to cause prices to rise.  While the average price of a house in Edmonton (about $401,000 in February) is still not as high as the peak prices in 2007, prices are definitely on the rise, according to another article entitled “Home prices flirt with record highs of ‘07”.

All of this suggests to me that now is indeed a good time to buy!

Let me help you find the home that’s just right for you.  Call or text me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here.

Good Time or Bad Time To Buy a Home?

Friday, January 6th, 2012

Good Time or Bad Time To Buy a Home? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamMost people considering the purchase of a home, whether in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County, the Edmonton region, or elsewhere, get around to asking the important question:  “Is now a good time or a bad time to buy a home?”  It sounds flippant or evasive if I respond with “Yes” or “That depends”, but both answers are correct!  For most people, buying a home is one of the most significant events in their lives, and it naturally comes with many positives and negatives based on individual situations.  Once people have made the decision to invest in a home, the best time to buy becomes “now”, no matter what the market is doing.

But the market at the moment in the Edmonton area is making the decision to buy much easier.  An article in the January 5, 2012 Edmonton Journal entitled “Real estate market healthy, agents say” contains some very encouraging news.   In spite of crises elsewhere (Europe’s money woes, the US housing market), prices and sales in our region remain steady.  The article quotes a statistic from the Realtors Association of Edmonton:  the average price of homes sold through MLS in 2011 was $325,457.  This is down slightly from $329,019 in 2010, but prices are not undergoing the wild swings we’ve experienced in the past or the ups and downs felt elsewhere.  The article also points out that 827 properties were sold in December 2011, compared to just two more the previous December.

Is right now, just after New Year’s, a good time to buy?  Sure, why not?  The article mentions that the market usually picks up in the summer, with April and May being peak months, but there is always an inventory of homes waiting for the right buyer, and the current market stability, combined with continuing low mortgage rates, all suggest the time is never better!

I’d love to help you find that perfect home!  Call me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here.

Recent Canadian Home Prices

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Recent Canadian Home Prices |Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamMost of us wonder from time to time what our home in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County or the Edmonton area is worth in today’s real estate market, and we may also wonder what prices are like elsewhere in Canada.

From the Canadian Real Estate Association:

“Each month, The Canadian Real Estate Association compiles the statistics of existing homes and properties sold through the Multiple Listing Service®. This provides an overview of the existing housing market in Canada, and tracks market trends for prices and properties sold.”

Here are CREA’s latest home price comparisons: 

October 2010 October 2009
British Columbia $521,871 $493,328
Alberta $344,569 $351,768
Saskatchewan $234,147 $230,958
Manitoba $224,439 $204,606
Ontario $347,788 $337,410
Quebec $257,456 $239,240
New Brunswick $152,087 $151,218
Nova Scotia $194,578 $189,570
Prince Edward Island $150,091 $155,028
Newfoundland/Labrador $231,039 $196,847
Yukon $304,800 $296,738
Northwest Territories $352,869 $363,435
National Average $343,747 $341,232

 

Can we draw any conclusions from this data?

We probably knew already that the highest home prices are to be found in BC, but we can see a few other things:

  • In October 2010, only 4 provinces/territories had prices above the national average:  BC, NWT, Ontario and Alberta, in that order.
  • The average selling price in October 2010 for a home in BC was roughly 3 ½ times that of a home in the area having the lowest average price in Canada, PEI.
  • Average prices were higher in October 2010 than the previous year in every area of Canada except Alberta, PEI and NWT.

The interactive map on this page of the CREA website also allows us to compare average selling prices for a few of the major cities in Canada.  For Edmonton and Calgary this is what we find:

October 2010 October 2009
Edmonton $317,096 $351,768 -$34,672
Calgary $399,679 $393,574 +$ 6,105

 

Now why, we might ask, did Edmonton prices drop close to 10% during the one-year period between October 2009 and October 2010 while Calgary’s increased more than 1.5%?  The data provided by the Canadian Real Estate Association provide only the bare facts.  Chances are, we’d discover many complex reasons for this disparity:  things like types of property sold (single family homes vs. multi-family dwellings, condos, etc.), the number of homes on the market, along with features of the properties, such as age, size, condition, location, amenities, and many more.  Average home selling prices also don’t tell us about historical price gaps between Calgary and Edmonton, with Calgary prices usually being $50,000 to $60,000 higher than Edmonton.  In the end, determining a home’s value is a complicated business!

Interested in a free home evaluation?  Give me a call today at 780-910-9669 or email me at barry@barryt.ca.

Is Real Estate a Good Investment?

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Is Real Estate a Good Investment? |Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamWhether in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County, the Edmonton area or elsewhere, REALTORS® love statistics.  We like to know how many and what kind of properties are being listed and sold, and for how much.  We also like to examine trends over time because this helps us help our clients determine realistic property values when they buy or sell a home.

We often hear about the ups and downs of the real estate market, but what does this really mean?  Is real estate a good investment?  Does real estate always appreciate? 

Answers to these questions can be seen fairly easily by looking at a few statistics, especially when these are presented in graphic format.   If we look at the average residential selling prices for homes in the Edmonton area from 1962 to 2009, we’ll see some interesting trends.  Even more interesting is that these trends tend to repeat themselves.

From 1962 to 2009 the average selling price of a residence in Edmonton increased from $12,556 to $320,392 – an increase over 47 years of 24 times the starting value!  Does this mean that the value of one’s home doubles every few years?!  Well, sort of…  Examining the numbers year by year, we see that while the overall price trend has been ever higher, the movement is not always steady and not always upward.  There were a number of times during those 47 years when the average selling price in one year, or even for a series of years, was lower than the previous year.

Prices stumbled in 1964, recovering the next year.  Steady, and in some cases significant growth, continued until 1981.  Looking more closely at the gains during those 16 years, and doing a little math, we discover that double digit percentage gains over the previous year occurred in 1967 (12.3%), 1968 (12.9%) and 1969 (17.7%).  During the next 3 years prices continued to increase but at a more modest rate.  1973 saw prices take another leap (14.6%), and that was followed by 3 more years of huge year over year gains (1974 – 28.2%; 1975 – 26.4%; 1976 – 32%).  A house that sold in 1972 for $24,777 was suddenly “worth” $59,450 only 4 years later.  By 1981 the average selling price had risen to $91,438, a gain of 369% in just 9 years.  Many people buying and then re-selling property during this time made substantial financial gains.

But the sometimes cruel nature of the real estate market took over in 1981.  A person buying a home in 1981 would have seen prices drop for the next 4 years, and then increase modestly for another 4 years but still not rebound to the price paid in 1981.  A hard lesson perhaps.

By 1990 the average residence sold in Edmonton for $101,014.  Prices rose for 5 years, fell in 1995 and 1996, and then rose for the next 11 years, up to 2007.  This is eerily reminiscent of the trend mentioned above starting in 1964.  Several of the 11 years between 1997 and 2007 saw a price gain that was dramatic.  In 2002 and 2003 percentage increases were 12.6% and 10.2% respectively.  In 2006 prices rose 29.4%.  This was followed in 2007 by the largest one-year percentage increase since these statistics began:  34.7%, or a rise to a dollar value of $338,009.  Most people are probably aware of what happened to the housing market in the US during this period of time and its effect on house prices throughout North America.  The average selling price of a home in Edmonton dropped 1.5% in 2008 and 3.7% in 2009 but appears to be trending upward so far in 2010.

These trends are even easier to spot in a chart like this one:

Is Real Estate a Good Investment? |Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry Twynam

Looking at the proverbial big picture, we see the following:

  • The average annual price increase is roughly 7.8%
  • The average 5-year price increase is about 49%
  • Only 9 years between 1962 and 2009 showed price decreases
  • If you held a property for 9 years, you would always see an increase
  • Edmonton values appear to double every 9 years, on average, since 1962

Statistics and facts suggest that yes, real estate is definitely a good investment, and yes, it does appreciate over time.  

What about right now in the marketplace?  Are we once again in the trend of a couple years of soft prices followed by a decade of increases?  Are prices going to continue to fall before they recover as they did in the 1980s and 1990s?  Is now a good or bad time to buy and sell?  Hard to predict and impossible to know.  This is, of course, exactly what makes real estate interesting!

Interested in learning more about the real estate market in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County or the Edmonton area?  Phone me at 780-910-9669, email me at barry@barryt.ca, or contact me here.

Barry Twynam, Realty Executives Leading
#1 14 McLeod Avenue, Spruce Grove, Alberta, T7X 3X3
Tel: 780-962-9696 Cell: 780-910-9669 Fax: 780-962-9699
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