In my eight-plus years selling homes in Lethbridge, 2020 was easily the strongest real estate market to date. In the early days of Covid-19, economic impacts were largely unpredictable. Today the picture is clearer, at least for the foreseeable future. While there continue to be definite winners and losers in this pandemic, real estate is clearly winning.
Initially, real estate screeched to a halt in March, as consumers and agents alike tried to discern what was safe or not safe. However, within weeks, governments across Canada declared real estate an essential service. By early summer, we saw a slingshot back to normal or better-than-normal activity levels.
Real estate defied early pandemic predictions and embraced the v-shaped recovery like a champ.
Lethbridge consumers were more than eager to make up for time lost during early lockdowns, with residential sales increasing, year over year, by a whopping 9%. Average home prices also increased by 4% year over year. Broadly speaking, there are three drivers for this boost to the Lethbridge real estate market:
- Reduced inventory. Builders pulled back on permitting over the past few years. There is less overall inventory to choose from, and sellers are no longer competing with so many new-construction homes in their neighbourhoods.
- Interest rates. Homebuyers who were ‘on hold’ due to sweeping mortgage rule changes a few years ago, rushed back into the market, taking advantage of the lowest interest rates in Canadian history. First time homebuyers also felt more confident to ‘jump in.’
- Lockdowns. Home owners and renters alike are spending more time at home than ever before. As such, psychology dictates that Canadians are placing increasing importance on the style and function of their living spaces. Combine this with low interest rates and you have an increase in motivated home buyers.
Watch my video below to learn more about your local Lethbridge market and then contact us to get going on your next real estate move!