Calgary taking a hit as pipeline freezes
September 13, 2018
With the delay—even potential ending—of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline extension that was to deliver more Alberta crude to tidewater, Calgary’s housing market is taking another hit.
Slowing sales, higher listings and elevated inventory levels continued to stunt Calgary’s recovery in the housing market in August, confirmed the Calgary and District Real Estate Board (CREB).
In late August, a federal appeal court ruling on a First Nations challenge had stopped all work on the pipeline—idling 8,000 workers mostly in Alberta.
Calgary benchmark home prices had already edged down over the previous month by 0.8 per cent and were 2.4 per cent below last year’s levels.
“Calgary’s employment market has persistently high unemployment rates at 7.9 per cent and recent job losses in full time positions. The struggles in the employment market are one of the factors weighing on our local housing market,” said CREB chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.
“A slow recovery in the energy sector combined with tighter lending conditions and competition from the new home sector are also contributing current housing market conditions.”
City-wide sales totalled 1,490 units in August, down nearly 7 per cent from last year and 14 per cent below long-term trends.
Detached house benchmark prices were $497,000 in August, down 2.6 per cent from August 2017.