FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE from the Calgary Real Estate Board


2021 record year for home sales
City of Calgary, Jan. 4, 2022 – Thanks to exceptionally high sales in December, 2021 was a record year for home sales. Calgary sales reached 27,686 units this year, nearly 72 per cent higher than last year and over 44 per cent higher than the 10-year average.

“Concerns over inflation and rising lending rates likely created more urgency with buyers over the past few months. However, as is the case in many other cities, the supply has not kept pace with the demand, causing strong price growth,” said CREB® Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

As of December, the unadjusted benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent over last month and was sitting over 10 per cent higher than last year’s figures. Overall, the 2021 benchmark price rose by more than eight per cent compared to last year for a total of $451,567, just shy of the annual record high set back in 2015.

We are entering 2022 with some of the tightest conditions seen in over a decade. As of December, inventory levels are nearly 25 per cent lower than long-term averages for the month. This will have an impact on our housing market as we move through 2022. More details on the housing market forecast for 2022 will be released on Jan. 25.
HOUSING MARKET FACTS
Detached
With 17,038 sales in 2021, home sales remained slightly lower than the record high set in 2005. While a new record was not set, sales are still over 40 per cent higher than long-term averages and supply challenges likely prevented stronger sales this year. New listings rose, but it was not enough to offset sales, causing inventories to ease. In the detached sector, average inventory levels were over 23 per cent lower than long-term trends. With only 898 units in inventory in December, we are entering 2022 with the lowest detached inventory on record.

Strong sales relative to inventory levels caused the months of supply to dip below one month, which is tighter than levels recorded in the spring market. Tightening conditions over the past several months once again weighed on prices. The detached benchmark price rose by nearly one per cent compared with last month and is nearly 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels. Overall, the detached sector has recorded the largest annual price gain at nearly 10 per cent, not only recovering from the 2015 annual high, but exceeding it by nearly three per cent.


Semi-Detached
In 2021, there were 2,571 semi-detached sales, an annual gain of 55 per cent and over 47 per cent higher than longer-term trends. Relative affordability and less supply choice in the detached sector caused many to consider semi-detached properties. However, like other property types, semi-detached sales growth outpaced new-listings growth, especially at the end of the year, causing significant declines in inventory levels and the months of supply, which has remained below two for the past three months.

Tight conditions have caused further price growth, as December prices were nearly 10 per cent higher than last year. Overall, on an annual basis, semi-detached home prices improved by eight per cent, reaching a new record high. However, prices have not recovered across all districts, as the City Centre, North East and South districts have not seen full price recovery,


Row
Over the past few months, row properties have increased in popularity, reporting strong sales growth that has outpaced the growth in new listings. This has created much tighter conditions and is supporting stronger price growth.

Inventories were not as much of a challenge earlier in the year, so the pace of price growth was not as high as the growth seen among some of the other property types during that time. However, benchmark prices rose by six per cent on an annual basis, supporting some price recovery. Despite the gains, prices remain nearly nine per cent lower than the previous high.


Apartment Condominium
Record sales in December were not enough to support annual record-high sales for this property type. Unlike the other property types, the apartment condominium sector has not experienced many supply challenges, as inventories this year generally remained above historical levels. However, the growth in sales was enough to help shift the market from one that favoured the buyer to one that was relatively balanced.

The balanced conditions did support modest annual price growth of just over two per cent. Each district saw some improvement in price this year, varying from less than one per cent growth in the City Centre to over six per cent growth in the West district. Despite these price gains, prices are still recovering across all districts and citywide prices remain 14 per cent lower than previous highs recorded in 2014.

REGIONAL MARKET FACTS
Airdrie
December sales reached record levels despite further reduction in new listings. The strong sales have caused inventory levels to drop to a mere 82 units, which is the lowest they’ve been since 2005. Overall, Airdrie recorded a record 2,299 sales this year. This is 78 per cent higher than activity recorded over the past 10 years and is 36 per cent higher than the previous record set in 2014.

Airdrie’s strong growth in housing demand could be related to the relative affordability of detached homes there compared to Calgary and less concern among consumers over commute times, as some companies shift toward hybrid work options. Bringing on new supply has been a challenge in Airdrie, and this has driven some significant price gains in the city. Overall, annual benchmark prices hit a new record at $380,867 in 2021, nearly 12 per cent higher than last year’s levels and two per cent higher than the previous annual record.


Cochrane
Despite persistently low levels of new listings relative to sales, Cochrane’s sales reached record levels in 2021. However, the sales-to-new-listings ratio has exceeded 100 per cent for four of the past six months, causing inventories to drop to the lowest levels seen in over a decade.

This has caused further tightening in the market, as the months of supply has remained below one month over the past two months. The exceptionally tight conditions, especially over the past few months, have caused further price gains. As of December, the benchmark price was nearly 10 per cent higher than levels reported last year. Overall, on an annual basis, the benchmark price has increased by seven per cent, reflecting a new record high for the town.


Okotoks
Despite persistent challenges with supply levels, sales in Okotoks reached record levels in 2021. However, the strong sales weighed on inventory levels, which on average eased by 41 per cent this year and remain over 50 per cent lower than what the market typically has available.

Easing inventory and strong sales left the months of supply at record-low levels in December with less than one month of supply. With sellers’ market conditions throughout the year, there have been some significant gains in prices. On an annual basis, the benchmark price hit a new record high at $474,842, which is an annual gain of nearly nine per cent.

Read full post

Every time realtors work with offers they are dealing with many issues that affect both the Buyer and the Seller. The contract is complex and many believe it is just fill in the blanks. If you've been around contracts as much as I have in the past 23 years, you'll know that is very far from the truth. 

When your realtor represents you as the Seller, and you are completing the listing contract, there is a section discussing what chattels you are leaving. The section looks like this:


1.1 including the following goods not attached to the land and buildings: This section is important for you. You are agreeing to leave items like a fridge, stove, washer, dryer, etc!!! These are called chattels. 

__________________________________________________________________


and all goods attached to the land and buildings, except: This section is the section too often missed, but is highly important. You need to decide are you leaving items like a water softener, a chandelier, cabinets, etc!!! These are ATTACHED GOODS. 

__________________________________________________________________


Have this discussion with your realtor. When the offer gets negotiated, you cannot forget items like your water softener. If you think you are going to take it when you move, you may have a buyer leave their legal options open to sue you for the taken items. 


The same goes for the Buyer, On the Offer to Purchase, make sure you include all chattels, and anything you want that is deemed attached. If you don't tell your realtor, then you may be upset on possession when it's all gone. 


The Real Estate Council of Alberta Defines:

Attached & Unattached Goods

 

Attached goods are items you cannot remove from the property without causing damage or that are physically attached to the property via pipes, screws, bolts, or nails. Attached goods stay with the property unless there is a specific exclusion in the listing agreement or in a buyer’s offer to purchase. These include:

  • garburator
  • water softener
  • kitchen cabinets
  • built-in appliances
  • central vacuum system
  • garage door opener

Unattached goods are movable items. Sellers usually take unattached goods from the property before the buyer takes possession. These include:

  • wall art
  • area rugs
  • drapes hooked on curtain rods
  • attachments for central vacuum system
  • remotes for a garage door opener
  • movable kitchen island

Attached goods are typically included with the property while unattached goods are not.

A good example of how attached/unattached goods can be confusing is a wall-mounted TV. The wall mount is attached to the property, and is an attached good, but the TV itself is only attached to the wall mount, and is an unattached good. In the absence of specific inclusions or exclusions indicated in the listing agreement or in a buyer’s offer to purchase, attached goods are typically included in the property while unattached goods are not. If a buyer wants an unattached good included in the purchase of the property, such as the garage door opener or the attachments for the central vacuum system, they need to list it as an inclusion in their offer to purchase. As the seller, you would have to agree to such an inclusion as part of your acceptance of their offer. If you plan to take the unattached good, you need to put that in a counter offer to the buyer.

NOTE: In commercial transactions, everything other than the four walls is typically “unattached” (e.g. equipment, hoists) and should be specified in a Purchase Contract.

Issues at possession

If a buyer is worried about inclusions and exclusions as the possession date nears, they can ask their real estate professional to include a term in the offer to purchase where the seller agrees to let them do a walk-through of the property before possession. This would give the buyer an opportunity to see the condition of the property and ensure inclusions or exclusions meet the terms of the agreed-upon contract. If they see a problem, they can negotiate a mutually satisfactory resolution before possession.

When there is a problem with attached or unattached goods after possession, and the seller does not cooperate, the buyer’s only remedy is legal action. You need to think about the value of the missing goods in relation to the costs of legal action to decide if it’s worth pursuing.

Your real estate professional will help you consider and write exclusions and inclusions when drafting agreements and offers to purchase. If you’re ever in doubt about whether something is attached or unattached, include it in the agreement or contract anyways. When in doubt, write it out.

 
Read full post

I had a call the other day, it was a young man trying to see a home before Calgary's December 2020 lockdown Government of Alberta's website.

He said he needed to see two specific houses before Sunday or he would have to wait until after the lockdown was over. 


Real Estate is considered an Essential Service, during Covid 19 Greater Calgary Realtors® will proceed with showing homes in Alberta. The latest measures Realtors® will be following are:


  • No in-person open houses for REALTORS® as professional service providers.
  • Masks are mandatory
  • Face-to-face interaction should be avoided whenever possible and when not possible, extreme caution should always be exercised. 
  • Ask your agent if they utilize online meeting tools such as Zoom and Skype to interact with you.
  • Ask your realtor if they have online tools which allow you to explore the market from the comfort of your home.
  • Realtors® and yourself, prior to going into a home will be required to complete Covid assessment forms determining if you have the onset of a fever, cough, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat, conjunctivitis, gastrointestinal symptoms, or any other cold or flu-like symptoms, stay home for 10 days. Should you continue to feel unwell after 10 days, continue to self isolate. Use Alberta Health Services   online assessment tool to determine your next steps.
  • The Government of Alberta has released a mobile contact tracing app called ABTraceTogether, learn more on their website.
Read full post

Teams are definitely an option when you are considering a real estate career. There is something positive to be said about working with a quality team. 

Each team should be broken down to specialites. After all, you can't all be doing the same job every day. Having an inbound process with customers perfecting Marketing, Sales or Service is key to success. This will tune your team like a well oiled engine. 

 

When interviewing teams here are 5 Key Questions to be asking. 


#1. The contractual agreement you are going to sign to be on the team. 

  • Of course agreements can be tricky, and for someone who has never worked with a self employed team, there are many factors to consider. 
    • Get agreement in writing, know the intricacies of what you are agreeing to. 
      • Team break ups can be very disappointing for you, and you may come out of it not owning any of the business you brought in, or worked hard on. 
    • Know your role and the expectations that go with it
    • Break down your costs
      • What are you paying the broker (flat fee or commission splits and deal fees)?
      • What are the extra fees for being part of that brokerage?
      • What are you paying the team leader (flat fee or commission splits)?
      • What are you paying out of pocket to do the teams business (vehicle, gas, insurance, time, signs, costs for mls use, marketing costs, business cards....?
      • At the end of the day, what is in your pocket? I've analyzed some costs of teams and  have been able to break down the team members wage to $17.50/hr. A lot of work for little to own nothing to pay your bills
      • Or, is there profit sharing?
    • Who owns the ability to work with the client once you leave the team? Remember, most of the time you will be doing double the work for the same amount as an individual realtor, with hopefully knowing you will receive more leads.
    • What are the possibilities someone on the team can sue you? This has been known to happen. 
    • Do listings go in your name, or the team leads or both?
    • Who is paying you? Is the brokerage responsible for paying you? Or the team leader?
    • Brand awareness 
      • Are you able to market yourself? 
      • Or just the team? 
      • Or just the team leader?
    • Training
      • Is there someone on the team to train you? What does this training include?
      • What technology are they using? Are you going to learn the technology?
      • Are they using a proven system? 
      • Is the brokerage or team leader in control of a CRM (Contact Relationship System) that you have no access to? Or you have access to but they control all the access?
      • are you learning all aspects of the team, or are you just doing your job?

#2. How many hours are you expected to work?

  • Some teams are very structured and expect you to be at the same location daily doing your job. So it's best to be very clear what hours you are expected to work depending on what part of the inbound process you are in ie. Marketing, Sales or Services

#3. What if you want to go on a holiday?

  • Most teams are structured to realize that everyone needs a holiday, but best to make sure this team is running smoothly, even while you are gone. And how many weeks of holidays do they feel is appropriate for the team?

#4. Online agent reviews 

  • Take the time to read the reviews about the team. Are they good reviews, fake reviews, handle complaints professionally. 
#5. Call the team members, ask what are the best and worst eperiences they face on the team. 

 


         


Read full post

Before Cannabis legalization, the real estate industry was always on high alert for what we used to call a “grow operation” in homes we took part in selling. At the time, we were told “once a grow op, always a grow op”. This meant that at any time, spores could grow and spread throughout the home, even if “remediated”. It was highly recommended we discuss disclosure with the owner, in case this were to happen in the future. Mainly because, on the offer to purchase, including the contracts of today, the owner is to disclose known material latent defects. Material Defect means a defect in the property that is not discoverable through a reasonable inspection and that will affect the use or value of the property. 

At the time, we were taught that due to Alberta having no regulation around remediation, so there was no certain way to say each remediation company did the same work. 


As of October 17, 2018, adults were allowed to grow cannabis at home; up to four plants per household (not per person) for personal consumption. the https://www.alberta.ca/cannabis-legalization.aspx


A realtor today should be using a schedule for both parties to a contract asking for disclosure:

ILLEGAL DRUG MANUFACTURE/MARIJUANA GROW OPERATION

the Seller(s) hereby expresses, to the best of my/our knowledge and belief, the premises and property have not been used for the manufacture of illegal drugs or used as a marijuana grow operation.


Marijuana Grow Operations (MGO’s) are not always disclosed. Ideally, the seller will know, but not always. An MGO premises is usually subject to an order and a Notice of Health Hazard registration or maybe a police registration on title. It is best to pull the historical title. But this is not necessarily so either. Sometimes a google search can help. Or, just knocking on a door and asking a neighbour. Now, obviously most do not knock on doors, but, if something may be suspected, then yes, knocking on neighbours doors and asking if they know anything may be your best bet. 


https://albertahealthservices.ca/assets/wf/eph/wf-eh-marihuana-growop-repair-rehab-remediation-requirements.pdf 


Are remediated grow ops safe to live in? Many say they are better than a re-sold home. Alberta, to this day, does not have a remediation regulation in place for MGO’s. Alberta Health Services has a detailed list of requirements for repair/rehab/remediation. 


***The risk will still be, like a nagging worry in your mind, did they get it all out.*** 

Read full post
Data is supplied by Pillar 9™ MLS® System. Pillar 9™ is the owner of the copyright in its MLS®System. Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by Pillar 9™.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.