Residential home sales in central Alberta were down 15.7 per cent for the first two months of the 2019. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Home sales decline in central Alberta

15.7 per cent down compared to 2018

Central Alberta home sales fell 10 per cent in February, compared to the same month last year, while sales activity for the province as a whole declined 8.6 per cent.

Sales reported through the MLS system of the Central Alberta Realtors Association showed 217 units were sold last month in central Alberta.

For the first two months of the year, sales were down 15.7 per cent, with 393 units sold.

Richard Pochylko, Central Alberta Realtors Association president, said the decline in sales is exactly what the group expected.

“We anticipate the volume of sales in central Alberta through 2019 will be lower, or pretty close to what it was in 2018, which is about 40 per cent below what it was in 2015,” Pochylko said.

He said demand is weak, so the volume of sales is down and so are prices.

The value of homes have declined drastically since 2015. The value has dropped easily by 10 per cent, but a lot of homes have come down as much as 20 per cent, he said.

“It’s going to take a long time to recoup the equity that you’ve lost in the past three years. It won’t be back in a year.”

Pochylko said more inventory should be coming onto the market between now and the middle of June. Typically, spring has the strongest listing months of the year.

Central Alberta had 573 new residential listings in February, a decrease of 16 per cent on a year-over-year basis.

Active residential listings numbered 3,143 units at the end of last month, a drop of 1.3 per cent from the end of February 2018.

“It’s been a buyers’ market for the last three years and the trend continues to be so,” Pochylko said.

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