How Has 2018 Been for Real Estate So Far?

If you or your friends are looking for up-to-date information1 on our local housing market, then here you go:

1) Fort McMurray REALTORS® Are Busier This Year

In the urban market area that we normally study2, we have noticed that more sales are happening so far this year. Here’s a table:

Number Of All Property Types In The Urban Market Area In The Last 10 Januaries (2018 is unclear)

As you can see, the total number of transactions so far this year is up. This is likely a response to lower prices. It may also be related to increasing interest rates, which incentivises buyers to bring forward their purchases to lock in in the 90-120 days before their pre-approval expires.

2) New Listings Are Down

In our area of study, the number of properties hitting the market was down this January (159) compared to the number listed in January 2017 (230). That’s a 31% decrease in the rate of homes hitting the market. In our experience “on the ground”, these are more likely to be foreclosures and rebuilds than last year’s new listings.

3) North Of The Bridge Still Most Popular

If we remove the seven lot sales, then we can plot January’s sales on a map as follows:

map of fort mcmurray home sales in january 2018

Map Of Non-Lot Sales In Fort McMurray in January 2018

You can see that Eagle Ridge and Timberlea are proving most popular so far this year. If this trend continues as 2018 continues, then it could have an impact on the distribution of prices of homes north versus south of the bridge. That could provide opportunities for buyers south of the bridge and sellers north of the bridge.

By the way, if you want to know your RMWB winter maintenance zone to avoid getting a parking ticket, you can find that out in the above map, too. You’re welcome! 😉

4) Expiries Down

As you can see in the chart below, the number of expiries is down this January vis-a-vis last January. A couple of possible explanations is that these listings are instead selling, or because sellers are more determined to keep their listings marketed as opposed to expiring.

Number of Monthly Expiries Over The Last Two Years

5) High-End Sales Up

A sign of confidence – luxury sales can be quite interesting. In January this year, there were 3 sales for homes over $900,000. Last January there was only 1.

Conclusions?

It’s important, I think, not to draw too many conclusions because it’s early days, and the dataset is small. It will remain to be seen if these changes are temporary or more significant. The market is looking and feeling more balanced though. Subscribe to the blog, or check back through our social media. We’ll keep you posted!

Tom Albrecht

Tom Albrecht

Tom Albrecht leads The A-Team with his wife, Breanna, and is a Buyer’s Agent. He holds a Masters in Economics for Developing Countries from The University of Oxford.
Tom Albrecht

Footnotes

  1. The interpretations of the MLS® data are my own and don’t reflect the opinions of the Fort McMurray Real Estate Board or its members. There is plenty of my opinion in here, but the data we are using is super accurate. Not intended to solicit clients currently under contract with a competing real estate brokerage.
  2. The data covers sales of all property types only the following areas: Abasand, Beacon Hill, Dickinsfield, Downtown, Eagle Ridge, Grayling Terrace, Henning Ridge, Parsons North, Prairie Creek, Stone Creek, Thickwood, Timberlea, Waterways and Wood Buffalo.

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