LETHBRIDGE, AB – If you’ve been shopping for a new home in Lethbridge lately or trying to sell your property, you may have noticed things have been busy.

Even during an ongoing pandemic and in the middle of winter, the local real estate market continues to be red hot.

After coming off what was the best year for sales in more than a decade, there’s been little downtime for local real estate agents.

Cathy Maxwell with the Lethbridge and District Association of Realtors says the busy year that was 2020, seems to have carried over.

“We hit the best January sales since 2008,” says Maxwell. “We’re sitting at a 20% increase year-over-year. So 2021 is starting off with a bang.”

Last year, Lethbridge was only city out of the province’s largest communities to record this magnitude of annual sales.

Maxwell says the hot real estate market here lately has been unlike anywhere else in the province. When asked about why sales in Lethbridge have been so strong over the past 10 to 12 months, she says it could have to do with a few things.

“I think people do have some money and they’re not using it for travel. Their home is becoming a prime place for daily activity and they’re putting money towards that,” Maxwell stated on Thursday. She feels perhaps people spending more time at home this past year has given some folks a chance to think about changing things up and maybe moving into something different.

She also notes that very good interest rates at the moment are likely a contributing factor to a jump in sales.

Maxwell says it’s become a very balanced market here for both buyers and sellers too, with about 4 to 5 months of inventory. At this time last year, the local home inventory was at a 7 to 9 month backlog.

The average selling price for a home in Lethbridge right now has gone up to around $307,000 which is about an 8% increase from this same time a year ago.