“September was stronger than we thought it was going to be, for sure,” says Allan Melbourne, president of the Central Alberta Realtors Association. (THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward)

“September was stronger than we thought it was going to be, for sure,” says Allan Melbourne, president of the Central Alberta Realtors Association. (THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward)

Central Alberta real estate market starts fall strong

Red Deer has most September house sales in five years

Central Alberta real estate markets continue to make up lost ground from a tough spring and summer.

To the end of September, 3,245 sales were made in central Alberta, not far off the 3,296 sales over the same nine months in 2019, according to Multiple Listing Statistics in a market update released by the Central Alberta Realtors Association.

The numbers were helped by the best sales September since 2015.

Last month, 484 properties were sold, up 23 per cent from the 392 sold last year. It is also the best year in the past five.

Sales prices also are on the rise in central Alberta. Through September, the average sale price was $318,364, compared with $295,583 a year ago.

Red Deer’s real estate market continues to play catch up. There were 940 sales to the end of September, compared with 1,033 over the same period last year, 1,087 in 2018 and 1,085 in 2017.

“While sales have been improving over the past three months, it has not been enough to offset the pullbacks faced in early spring, and year-to-date sales remain well below last year’s levels,” says a regional market analysis from the Alberta Real Estate Association.

However, the local market is coming off a strong September with 140 sales, up from 118 last year, 105 in 2018 and 125 in 2017.

“September was stronger than we thought it was going to be, for sure,” said Allan Melbourne, Central Alberta Realtors Association president.

“I don’t think anyone said back in August that September was going to be better or as good as August.”

Halfway through October, the market remains — if not hot — at least warm.

“It seems to be carrying right on. It doesn’t seem to have slowed down,” said Melbourne, who is a realtor with Re/Max Real Estate Central Alberta.

Forecasts of snow could have a chilling effect in more ways than one.

“If we do get some snow, it always cools down things,” he said.

The Alberta Real Estate Association says Red Deer’s strong September was driven by sales in the $200,000 to $299,000 range.

The average detached house price is $345,412, up four per cent from last year. Semi-detached prices are up 12.4 per cent to $251,218.

Row homes declined slightly, down 1.4 per cent to $206,236. Apartments were the hardest hit, with average prices down 22.9 per cent to $175,741 year over year.


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