The Calgary real estate market was downgraded to “seriously unaffordable” by the 9th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey that was released last week (download report here)
The report said Calgary “experienced a substantial increase” from the year before as its median multiple jumped from 3.9 to 4.3 in the third quarter of 2012 (Read Calgary Herald article here)
The sales shift to higher end homes (and skewing the average price up with it) can be explained by another report, this one from Statistics Canada, showing Calgary tax filers are breaking into Canada’s top one per cent of income earners more than double the rate they were over 20 years ago (Read HuffPost Alberta article here) and currently have a median income of $293,800.
It’s no surprise then that Calgary is the most unequal city in Canada with regards to income disparity.
This can be nicely visualized by the looking at the sales chart below. You can see that the percentage of home sales of $400k or more have increased year-after-year, while home sales in the sub-$400k category have seen decreases as a total of the sales mix.
The first-time buyer segment is vital to the overall health of the entire market. This trend of fewer lower entry homes selling reflects that the market is getting less affordable to the average Calgarian.