September 28, 2006



Anonymous said...

Calgary's different: really.

It's because of oil sands. Huge money is moving into Alberta, and they have a worker shortage. Wages are going up very quickly.

Why else live in Alberta?

David said...

Yeah but Calgary has always been a boom or bust town. Its booming now creating a mass immigration into the city but booms don't last forever. One day it will end and all the extra labour in the province will leave and go somewhere else.

Like you said, why else live in Alberta. If one day, the jobs dry up, and it WILL happen, RE prices will come down hard, especially in the outskirts of the city.

Anonymous said...

i agree....seriously Calgary is the new Saudi will only get easier and more lucrative for oil sand as technology develops and oil remains high

O Canada

David said...

To add to my comment: The Canadian RE market is still strong compared to the US market. If the US market takes the Cdn market down, there would likely be a 6-18 month lag (just a pure guess). Also, I should add that the fundamentals of the oil and gas industry remain fairly strong right now, but a RE downturn in the US could result in lower oil prices if recession hits.

Anonymous said...

Oh, it's different in Calgary all right. We've had a Boom/bust cycle in recent enough history that the locals can remember it. I own a house in Calgary, and even its assessed value has gone up at bubble rates. The RE market is pretty strong right now, but there's a lot of inventory coming on now, and there should be some major reductions in prices.

I'm sure someday soon the boom will end, and a bunch of overextended home buyers will have their asses handed to them on a platter, but that's how it goes. It probably won't even affect my taxes too much unless the assessment on the house makes it worth disproportionately more (or less) than other houses.

IIRC, the assessed value of the house is around $230k CAD, and we pay around 1600 per annum for property/school tax.

anecdotally, a friend of my wife sold their house in Tuscany for around 600k. A 3 bedroom bungalow in Brentwood sold after its price was dropped to 397k, but it needed some work. I see lots of for sale signs though, and I think they're lasting longer than they were before.

They're "condofying" this small office building in Varsity Estates next to the golf course, but it's been taking a long time to complete. They had a difficult time getting the required variances for the height of the structure, and the number of hoops they had to jump through to get the permits was substantial. Maybe the bubble is still on here, but I'd be concerned about getting projects done, with the market cooling and winter coming and all.

Anonymous said...


OT on this particular topic but relevant to your earlier post regarding should you write a book.

If you recall, I suggested you contact John Rubino, who has authored several books on the dollar, housing, and other subjects.

Well, I found his e-mail address should you wish to follow up with him:

Again, I urge you to get in touch with John, have him view your site (if he hasn't already) and try to cut a deal for your book idea.

Good luck with your endeavor. I believe you would do well if you use the same style of writing and graphics as on this site.

Take care,


Anonymous said...

supply, meet demand

could those two charts be more discongruent?

Paul E. Math said...

Funny you should mention Calgary as I was just there visiting my brother.

Yes, it's about supply and demand. With high oil prices, lots of high-paying jobs and the employees who filled them there was a surge in demand for homes in Calgary. Because of how long it takes to get approval, clear and develop a package of land, the supply curve is highly inelastic over the short-term. So the equilibrium price just keeps rising.

However, in a place like Calgary with plenty of land for development along its outskirts, the supply curve is highly elastic over the long term. When supply catches up to demand you have a much lower equilibrium price.

Calgary is unique, but not different. The laws of supply and demand still function and their home prices are also heading for a fall as you see the homes for sale numbers coming back up.

Anonymous said...

Canadian Real Estate

Buildable Land = Larger than the USA total land mass.

Population = About that of California.

Anonymous said...

they changed the CPI index several times since the charts beginning.

the "real dollars" concept is misgiven

Anonymous said...

Let's all wait to see what borkafatty's got to say about this topic!

Anonymous said...

I like Bork the Dork, but I like Butch more. Kiss Kiss

David said...

One other th..the topc graph is a biingt misleading. I bet in all Canadian markets, due to the weather, there is a strong seasonal component. I would prefer to see a graph that analyzes inventory over a few years rather than intra-year.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget that 90% of the Canadian Population lives with 100 miles of the South Canadian/US border.

Trevor Cordes said...

As a Canadian 2 provinces over from Calgary, I can certainly confirm the housing bubble mania is just as crazy in Canada as it is in the USA. My city's a relative nothing town in the middle of nowhere and our prices are going through the roof. Front page headlines in the paper at least once a month about new record prices/sales.

The only difference I can see is that exotic mortgages are relatively rare in Canada. Everyone here does fixed 5y term 10/15y am and monthly-var. No option-arm, neg-am, no-doc, no-dp loans here from what I can gather from chatting with all my recent-home-upgraded friends. Hmm, but HELOC's (probably mostly var) are very popular here.

But perhaps since Canadians are so big on the continuous-variable (read: no lag from rate rise to payment pain), that will make up for the lack of neg-am/no-dp. I think we're as "friggin doomed" (as Mogambo would say" as our friends to the south.

The inventory and exponential-price-curve pics Keith posted were eye-openers to me. We're farther along (and closer to the USA) than most think! I'd give it a 6-8mo lag at most compared to USA.

Anonymous said...

How about this:

The boom in Calgary is over as you can see from the article.

I was seriously considering to go to Calgary this spring as I heard about a boom. However, when I spent 3 weeks researching, it turned out I'd be paid less than in Ottawa that is officially more stagnant (and I tried many places plus have contacts there); my rent would be higher. And I am in the industry they say is booming: hi-tech.

People who were coming to Ottawa from Alberta (due to different reasons) told me about difference in their wages (they were paid much less in Calgary).

Here is vancouver:

Here is Montreal:

New Brunswick (only on property tax so far ;):

It is starting and will hit Canada a bit later than US.

I've been seeing so many "for sale" signs that were there for months (Ottawa). Seeing "new price" signs was very good - haven't seen it in ages.

FBs are still in denial, but it's coming regardless whether they want it or not.

David, and oil prices are already down, check it out.