RBC Economics released their latest Housing Trends and Affordability report today. Below is the excerpt for Calgary & Alberta.
Calgary – Back on (an upward) track
The renaissance of Calgary’s housing market has not been a steady process. The generally improving trend in resales was broken on occasion, including in the summer and fall of 2012.
More recent statistics, however, suggest that the softness in parts of last year was indeed a temporary deviation and that the rising trend is resuming. Resales in the area ceased to decline during the first quarter of 2013 and showed month-to-month gains in the February-to-April
The Calgary market continues to benefit from a strong provincial economy, accelerating population growth and attractive housing affordability.
RBC’s affordability measures for the area still compare favourably with both the historical norms in Calgary and the national average. In the first quarter of 2013, the RBC measures increased slightly (by between 0.4 percentage points and 0.8 percentage points) for all housing categories.
This modest deterioration was caused by higher home prices, themselves the result of fairly tight market conditions.
Alberta – Still one of Canada’s housing bright spots
Despite slight erosion in affordability in the first quarter, Alberta’s market continues to be a bright spot in Canada. Resale activity picked up in the first quarter of this year (rising 3.7% from the fourth quarter of 2012), thereby keeping market conditions somewhat tight.
Home prices rose modestly across all housing types. Higher prices are not a hindrance to Alberta homebuyers, who enjoy substantial buying power thanks to their higher income.
In fact, the Alberta market remains among the most affordable in the country because of high household income in the province. In the first quarter, the RBC measures rose slightly by 0.2 percentage points across all housing types. Barring an unexpected shock to the economy, housing market activity should remain brisk in Alberta in 2013.
To read the entire report and see how the rest of Canada’s housing market is shaping up, click here