Record Sales! But Is That The True Story Of The Calgary Market?

Record Sales! But Is That The True Story Of The Calgary Market?

My update is a bit late, and I’m truly sorry for the delay. 

But after all the market headlines like the one above from our Calgary Real Estate Board and all the media outlets celebrating the record of sales in our city, I think it is a bit out there to completely gloss over what is really happening in our market amidst the higher rates, inventory levels, and overall sentiment we as realtors are seeing our market currently.

It’s one thing to see the numbers, it’s completely another thing to see what is happening with buyers and sellers in our market currently. 

So even though this update is late, I hope you still find some great value and possibly a different insight into what is happening in our market.


Those of you who have been using this update as a resource know that I have been tracking the absorption rates since 2019. The graph above will show you the true picture of how our real estate market has been doing comparing the market last year to this year as well as previous years.

And there are a few takeaways I’d like to point out before we start going through the numbers.

  1. Seasonality is real and has been evident in each year since I have been keeping track of the market

  2. In 2023, we are seeing elevated numbers, but this is the second drop in activity we have seen in the market this year.

In the month of September, we generally see a drop in activity. Although not as significant in previous years as 2023, we see a slight adjustment for people who are settling into their routines, back to work and school, and their focus is not on buying and selling a home.

This year, this adjustment was exaggerated with the significant increase in the 5-year bond market which leads the 2-year fixed mortgage interest rate.

In September, we saw the absorption rate drop by 9% to 69%. A balanced market in real estate is usually between 40 and 60%.

This decline is attributed to a drop, yes a drop in sales, of 10% from the previous month. While this drop in sales had occurred, we had an increase in inventory of listings increase by 1%.

Year over year, our inventory has declined by 355 while our sales have increased by 22%.

When we look at the median prices, we see an interesting trend over the last quarter.

Month over month, pricing across the segments had an average change of an increase of 1%. Townhomes showed a decline in prices while duplexes showed the highest gain of 2%.

We are higher from this same month last year by an average of 18% and for the year higher by an average across all segments of 11%

In the next section, we will break down these numbers and look at what the real sentiment has been in our market over the last month.


If we revisit the absorption rate analysis we have a decrease in demand and an increase in supply. My Intro to Economics class at the UofC two decades ago tells me that that will drive prices to be suppressed.

Which is what we have been seeing in our median prices above.

When the articles that have been released blast the headline of record sales for the month, it’s a bit misleading because it gives the impression that our market is pushing forward without any issues.

Higher rates lately have caused a lot of slowdowns in the market.

Personally, I have had buyers lose their purchasing power to a point where they cannot buy anymore because their qualifying rate is way too high for them to purchase a home that they want.  

I’ve also had sellers second guess their sales in today’s market because they are worried about the carrying cost of the next home with the higher rates they are now exposed to.

Not to mention, there are those who are worried about the renewal cost of their home down the road who have added to the inventory levels just out of fear of not making their mortgage payments at renewal because they are in variable-rate mortgages.

The prices in Calgary have stayed somewhat consistent over the last quarter of the year across almost all segments. Which, if the headlines were true, would not be the case and prices should be skyrocketing.

Our market is also now seeing many listings have price adjustments down to adjust for the higher cost of rates that buyers are subjected to.

If a buyer can only afford so much in a market, they are forced to wait until that property becomes available. A seller, not wanting to sell, but in need to sell, will have to adjust their pricing to allow for that buyer to have the ability to buy.

If drastic changes like a lower BOC announcement or an increase in federal programs to allow for significantly more development occur, our market could see a shift. But until then, we are very close to our new balance of market.

The current prices, amount of inventory and number of buyers are close to our new balance of a market.


I hope you found this update useful. I try and value where I can and hopefully this slightly different perspective can give you another lens to see our market.

If you are in the market to buy, or even just have questions about the process or mortgages, I’d love to connect. Please feel free to give me a call or send me an email at

And if you are considering to sell, let me work to give you a market report about your home to start. Its quick and no trouble for me at all. I actually tell clients I enjoy doing the evaluations because it helps me get better with my pricing. Please feel free to shoot me a note or fill in the form with your property details by clicking here.

Thanks again and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your families. Take care,


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