Blackfalds Market Update January 1, 2021

To say that 2020 was an interesting year would be an understatement.  We started out with high hopes that this was the turnaround year for the Alberta economy and the real estate market; and for at least a couple of months it looked like our hopes were valid.  Then that unwelcome intruder showed up and our hopes dimmed dramatically.  In June, when it seemed we were maybe at the end of the worst of it, things brightened considerably and while the economy didn’t improve much, those CERB payments and historic low interest rates were a boon for the real estate market which ended the year with the number of sales in Central Alberta just 5.6% behind last year’s total.  In hindsight, it was a fantastic year when viewed from our April and May perspective.

Our crystal ball is a little foggy looking ahead to 2021.  Making bold predictions is often a fool’s game, but we are going to step out and say that we expect this year’s real estate market to be much the same as last year’s.  There is a slight difference at this point because we are starting out with much lower inventories than we’ve had in Central Alberta for many years.  Lower inventories combined with robust demand should dictate price increases, but we believe that robust demand will encourage sellers who have been waiting for fair winds and an end to Covid to re-enter the market and keep things in balance.  We believe 2021 will be an interesting year, but in a much better way.

Mid-Month Market Update December 15, 2020

We continue to be amazed.  In spite of recent tougher Covid restrictions, the real estate market marches on with sales in central Alberta in the first two weeks of December up 71% compared to the same time last year.  There is no question that low interest rates are driving some of the demand, but there has to be more.  Could it be that consumer confidence is improving with a vaccine on the horizon in addition to some of the positive economic news we’ve been hearing lately?

While housing demand has been rising, supply has been shrinking in many central Alberta markets, especially in the $200,000 – $400,000 price range.  Those projecting lower prices (including the self-esteemed CMHC) have been completely wrong so far this year.  CMHC predicted a catastrophic price drop of up to 25% in Alberta and, like most eastern institutions, had no idea of the resiliency and determination of Albertans when it comes to their desire to own their own homes.  We believe that desire will continue into 2021 and only get stronger as we move out of the pandemic and back to economic growth.