New market for 'flippers' and 'holders' emerges

by Mark David10 Feb 2014

Those new stats from the Medicine Hat Real Estate Board indicate the southeast Alberta city saw home sales rise a whopping 12 per cent in January from a year ago -- a sharp increase well above the provincial and national averages. Medicine Hat also experienced a 30 per cent jump in average value, as a total of 101 properties changed hands for a total of $26.24 million.

That winning performance represents a sharp increase over sales figures from January 2013, where only 88 sales took place, totalling $20.13 million, reports the Medicine Hat News.

It is also likely to ignite investor interest in the market, not just from those in Alberta but also across the country as they look for cash-flow opportunities but also quick flips as a way of getting in and out within one to two years.

The big attraction may be single-family homes, with those properties accounting for nearly half the properties in sold in january.

Smaller residential units, including apartments, condos and townhouses also saw their sales volume increase, from $1.9 million to $2.3 million.

Medicine Hat Real Estate Board president Devon Felesky attributes the increase in sales to the decrease in mortgage rates, less competition within the market, and warmer weather experienced in January. But the area continues to attract oil workers looking for both long- and short-term accommodations.

Investors are increasingly eyeing farmland surrounding the city as another opportunity to cash in on the demand for rural Prairie land outpacing even the suburban sprawl that feeds it.


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