2009 Wasn’t So Bad

Yes, we are still emerging from what many consider the worst recession since the 1930s, but if you looked solely at the Calgary real estate statistics from the last 12 months, you sure wouldn’t think so.

Let’s start with single-family homes. We started 2009 with an average home price of $413,000 – the last time we saw a number that low was in December 2006. Prices made a steady climb all the way to $464,000 in NovemCalgary photober before tailing off in December to $451,000. December is historically quite a slow month, so that number isn’t shocking. However, even taking December into account, that is still a 9.2% increase through the year. The total number of sales for the year was up 7.3% from 2008 to 14,440, but still lower than the three previous years.

The condo market tells much the same tale. January 2009 saw an average condo price of $270,000. That number wiggled its way upwards, making it all the way to $294,000 in November before dropping to $288,000 in December. Again, at 6.7%, still a significant price increase for the year. The total 2009 condo sales were 6,328, up 11.8% from 2008, but again, lower than the levels we saw in ’05, ’06 and ’07.

I’m sure you all remember the days of 2007’s boom. The market peaked at an average single-family home price of $505,920 in July 2007. That puts us currently 10.8% off the peak (only 8.2% off if you take November’s numbers). But, chin up, we were 18% off at the beginning of 2009.

So what does all of this mean? Like most economic reports say these days, we’re not out of the woods yet, but things are certainly looking up. I’d say if you owned a home in 2009, it probably appreciated more then many other investments.

We haven’t seen the market pick up yet in these first two weeks of January but with the threat of interest rates on the rise, it’s likely that we’ll see more buyers enter the market in the weeks to come.