A report released on Wednesday by the Canadian Real Estate Association shows how significant the decline in home prices has been in Calgary and Edmonton following the collapse in oil prices in late 2014.
The MLS Home Price Index Benchmark Price of $411,100 in the Calgary region in April was down 4.95 per cent year over year. It was also down 5.17 per cent from three years ago and off by 6.2 per cent from five years ago.
The Edmonton region’s benchmark price of $320,900 fell by 4.02 per cent on an annual basis, by 4.81 per cent from three years ago and by 5.89 per cent from five years ago.
Nationally, the composite benchmark price of $621,700 – which is skewed by lofty prices in Vancouver and Toronto – was off by 0.34 per cent year over year. But it has risen 20.47 per cent from three years ago and is up 39.55 per cent from five years ago.
CREA’s report said home sales recorded via Canadian MLS systems rose by 3.6 per cent month over month in April.
“After having dropped in February to the lowest level since 2012, the rebound in sales over the past two months still leaves activity slightly below readings posted over most of the second half of 2018,” it said.
Sales activity was up 4.2 per cent year over year, the first annual gain since December 2017 and the largest in more than two years.
“Housing market trends are improving in some places and not so much in others,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s president, in a news release.
“Sales activity is stabilizing among Canada’s five most active urban housing markets,” added Gregory Klump, CREA’s chief economist.
“That list no longer includes Greater Vancouver, which fell out of the top-five list for the first time since the recession and is well into buyers’ market territory. Sales there are still trending lower as buyers adjust to a cocktail of housing affordability challenges, reduced access to financing due to the mortgage stress test and housing policy changes implemented by British Columbia’s provincial government.”
– Mario Toneguzzi