Some economists with CIBC World Markets don’t necessarily see a cooling in housing prices across Canada as a bad thing. If you are looking for less expensive real estate, especially as a first-time buyer, this cool down may actually help you get your foot in the proverbial door. It will take less time to come up with that down payment, and financing would get easier. Basically, a new home would move into your affordability column.
The firm released its report this past Thursday, citing that while the slowdown will reduce housing starts and sales in related industries like appliance and furniture marketers, overall it may benefit the Canadian economy. Avery Shenfeld, a chief economist from CIBC, noted that a gradual slowdown is much preferred to a steep fall happening all at once.
In Calgary, home prices have seen increases below the national average during the last five years. The widest gap was in 2008, when home prices fell roughly 15 percent. At the same time retail spending was higher than that national average.
Up until the 28th of November, the Calgary Real Estate Board noted 1,346 sales through the MLS system, which is a 6.49 percent increase over the same time period in 2011. The average sales price came in at $434,839, an increase of 5.16 percent.
Statistics Canada showed that in September, Alberta was at the top of the pack as far as retail sales growth. The province accounted for $5.9 billion worth of sales, which is 8.5 percent more than seen last year. Looking at the national picture, some $39.1 billion in sales showed an increase of 1.8 percent.
So far in 2012, MLS sales prices for the single family category averaged $480,296. That compares with the $466,506 seen in 2011, the $461,420 seen in 2010 and the $442,826 experienced in 2009.
British Columbia’s housing market led the nation in price increases for quite a while. The reverse is true now, with the decrease percentage in prices leading the nation. Much of this is attributed to the affordability issue. More people are leaving the province now than arriving, again a reversal. Once Canada’s premier retirement location, prices for real estate would have to realign themselves with the other parts of Canada to regain that title.