Brokers in Alberta will likely continue to feel the pressure of in-migration – not from the tens of thousands of workers expected to move there this year, but from the out-of-province mortgage professionals looking to follow their lead.
"Calgary and the Alberta markets are looking quite positive, with the region leading the country in economic growth over the next year and continuing into the future," said Charron Ungar, president of the local chapter of the Canadian Homebuilders' Association in underscoring the strength of the Alberta market. "And despite the continuing strength, we still have a high level of affordability in Calgary."
That phenomenon hasn’t been lost on brokers both in and outside Alberta, especially as market forecasts for B.C. and Ontario suggests slowing sales for 2013.
In fact, a growing number outside the province are better targeting Alberta rate shoppers online. Data from provincial regulators also suggest that a growing number of brokers are taking advantage of a streamlined protocol introduced last year to become dually licensed.
The lure of Alberta may be obvious.
The oil-rich province, even despite weak global demand for that natural resource, is expected to buck that trend.
"We're looking at an expected net migration numbers of 18,000 people coming into Calgary this year,” said Ungar. “By 2017, just under 120,000 people will have chosen to call Calgary home."
But some Alberta brokers caution that those numbers haven’t yet translated into a spike in originations for brokers, still clawing their way back from an earlier correction.
They’re also confident that their hometown advantage will limit an loss to out-of-province competitors elbowing in on their turf.
Those numbers are staggering for our marketplace, and we are going to face some challenges in housing supply.