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Interprovincial migration helps fuel tight Calgary housing market as inventory falls



Amidst the backdrop of bustling activity in Calgary's real estate realm, March ushered in a flurry of home sales, signaling a robust 9.9 percent surge compared to the previous year. This uptick in transactions, as reported by the Calgary Real Estate Board, underscores the palpable impact of interprovincial migration, with Alberta emerging as a magnet for newcomers seeking residential abodes.


In the throes of this dynamic market, a total of 2,664 residential units changed hands last month. Echoing this fervor, the benchmark price for homes of all types escalated to $597,600, marking a noteworthy 10.9 percent escalation from the corresponding period last year. Furthermore, this benchmark witnessed a two percent uptick from February, signifying sustained momentum in the housing sector.


Remarkably, the realm of more affordable housing alternatives, encompassing row and apartment-style dwellings, emerged as the torchbearers of substantial year-over-year price appreciation. This trend underscores a broader shift in buyer preferences amidst evolving market dynamics.


However, against this backdrop of heightened demand, the supply side of the equation paints a contrasting picture. New listings witnessed a modest decline, dipping by 4.3 percent to reach a tally of 3,172. In parallel, inventory levels witnessed a precipitous drop, plummeting by 22 percent compared to the previous year. The prevailing inventory, amounting to 2,532 units, stands at a stark half of the levels conventionally observed during the month of March. Notably, this decline was most pronounced for properties priced below the $500,000 threshold, further accentuating the scarcity of affordable housing options.


Offering insights into this intricate interplay of supply and demand, Ann-Marie Lurie, chief economist at CREB, underscores that the prevailing conditions mark the tightest observed since 2006. This temporal reference is particularly poignant as it harks back to a period characterized by similar levels of interprovincial migration, reinforcing the nexus between population influx and housing market dynamics.


Against this backdrop of heightened activity, the tempo of transactions has quickened significantly. Properties spent an average of 20 days on the market before being snapped up by eager buyers—a notable 24.3 percent decrease from the corresponding period last year. This accelerated pace underscores the heightened competitiveness within Calgary's real estate landscape, further underlining the imperative for prospective buyers to act swiftly.


As the confluence of interprovincial migration and robust market conditions continues to shape Calgary's housing landscape, stakeholders navigate a terrain characterized by both opportunities and challenges. Amidst this flux, the resilience and dynamism of Calgary's real estate market remain hallmarks of its enduring appeal.


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