Alberta house prices remain soft: survey

House prices in Red Deer area dropped about five per cent compared to last year

Red Deer realtor Richard Pochylko sometimes finds house sellers need a bit of a reality check.

People who bought their existing homes 20 or 30 years ago, could easily have seen the value double or nearly triple since then.

But the market has been correcting for several years now, and the new house value number is sometimes an eye opener, said Pochylko, president of the Central Alberta Realtors Association.

“There are still a lot of people who haven’t been thinking about house values,” he said. “If you talk to them, they’re literally shocked by what you tell them.”

The days of houses soaring in value in a few short years are gone — at least for the foreseeable future.

“We’re having some problems adjusting to the fact that this province has a changing economy that isn’t going to be as boom-y as it was before. It’s going to be different.

“We will see better days ahead. But we’re not going to see — for a long time, anyway — crazy boom times, where your house just escalates rapidly.”

Pochylko said the drop in house prices should be put in perspective, however.

“It’s not like we went back to houses being worth $115,000 to $150,000. When I started in Red Deer 21 years ago, most of the houses were selling between $95,000 and $140,000. They weren’t selling at $250,000 or $300,000.”

Pochylko says it is a good time to buy, but don’t expect a financial windfall if you sell in a few years, is the message.

“I think five years from now, you’ll start to see a minor growth in value. You won’t buy a house for $300,000 and sell it in five years for $500,000.”

“You’ll buy one now for $300,000, and in five years, you’re going to sell it for $325,000 or $320,000, and that’s going to be a pretty good increase.”

A Century 21 survey of house prices across Canada released on Wednesday estimates single detached house prices in Red Deer fell in the first six months of the year by about six per cent year over year — to $262 per square foot from $276. That would see a $414,000 home reduced to $393,000.

Pochylko says that number is not far off the mark. In Red Deer, between 2017 and 2018, house prices dropped about 5.5 per cent and are heading toward a seven per cent drop this year.

Multiple Listing Service statistics for all of central Alberta show that year over year median house prices have dropped 2.2 per cent to $318,000, continuing — with a few spikes along the way — a downward trend from the first quarter in 2015, when the median price was $350,000.

This region’s experience reflects the housing market in much of Alberta. Through six months, Calgary prices were down 3.59 per cent and Edmonton 5.55 per cent. Some communities did better, with High River prices up 11 per cent and Lethbridge seven per cent.

“This is the second consecutive year our survey found soft home prices in Alberta, obviously because of the economic challenges in the oil and gas industry,” says Brian Rushton, Century 21 executive vice-president.

“For buyers, the good news is that means Calgary and Edmonton remain a bargain compared to other major markets like Vancouver and Toronto.”



pcowley@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Carl’s Jr. in Red Deer area closed

Co-owner of Carl’s Jr. in Gasoline Alley was caught using his bare hands to handle sauce in 2017

Cattle Show set to return to Stettler Jan. 31st and Feb. 1st

“Stettler, historically, has been a very strong cattle community. It was a real hub for the cattle industry.”

Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says non to Tory leadership

OTTAWA — Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says he’s decided not to enter… Continue reading

Studies question assumptions on industrial damage to Wood Buffalo park

New research suggests Canada’s largest national park is not drying out from… Continue reading

WATCH: Canadian kid shovelling snow video goes viral

Rory might just be Canada’s most popular toddler right now, thanks to… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Jan. 22 Downtown House Senior Center (5414 43 St.) in Red Deer… Continue reading

Hikers rescued after frigid night on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.

COQUITLAM, B.C. — Five hikers stranded on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.,… Continue reading

SpaceX launches, destroys rocket in astronaut escape test

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — SpaceX completed the last big test of its… Continue reading

Canada’s Jeff Smith wins way back to PDC pro darts tour via qualifying school

WIGAN, England — Canadian Jeff Smith has won his way back to… Continue reading

Skate Canada to wait on final decision for world championship team

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Ice dancers Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier headline the… Continue reading

Canadian golfer Lee finishes in fifth place at Singapore Open, Kuchar wins

SINGAPORE — Canadian golfer Richard T. Lee shot 1-over 71 on Sunday… Continue reading

Armed Forces being mobilized to help Eastern Newfoundland dig out

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The federal government is mobilizing the Armed Forces… Continue reading

Couple together for nearly 65 years die on the same day

ARNOLD, Mo. — A couple who had been together for nearly 65… Continue reading

Most Read