Huge Increase in Luxury Home Sales in Edmonton
More Albertans living in luxury: report
Last updated Jun 21 2006 02:21 PM MDT
Luxury home sales are soaring in Alberta as a record number of affluent residents demand upscale properties, according to a survey by a real-estate organization.
"Million-dollar home sales are climbing at a rate never before seen in major centres across the country," Michael Polzler, executive vice-president of Re/Max Ontario-Atlantic Canada, said in a release.
"If the market continues at this pace, existing sales records for all types of real estate, including upscale properties, will be shattered by year end."
The real-estate company established different thresholds in each city for what constituted a "luxury" home.
In Edmonton, where the threshold is $500,000, 144 luxury homes have sold this year, a 177 per cent increase over this time last year. The most expensive sale was $1.6 million.
In Calgary, 206 homes have sold for more than $1 million in 2006, up 124 per cent. The most expensive home sold in 2006 was $3.4 million.
The Re/Max Upper End report said luxury home sales in 12 of 13 major markets in the first five months of this year were higher than last year's often much higher. Windsor was the lone market to see luxury home sales fall.
Sales figures were taken from Multiple Listing Service reports in each city.
Re/Max officials say the luxury boom is the result of a strong economy, solid consumer confidence, limited inventory at the top end of the market, and consumers cashing in on big equity gains to reinvest in more expensive properties.
In addition, they say, more infill housing is being built in established areas close to downtown cores, "creating new upper-end enclaves."
There are also more Canadian millionaires. A report by Merrill Lynch Cap Gemini published on Tuesday estimated the number of Canadian millionaires (at least $1 million US in assets, excluding their principal residence) has risen 7.2 per cent in the past year.
Figures from the Canadian Real Estate Association said the average price of a resale home in Canada's major markets topped $300,000 in May for the first time ever.