Posted: Monday September 11, 2023
RECORD SALES IN AUGUST, TIGHTEST MARKET CONDITIONS HEADING INTO SEPTEMBER SINCE 2007
Saskatchewan reported a record-high 1,631 sales in August, a year-over-year increase of 11 per cent and nearly 25 per cent above long-term, 10-year averages.
Strong August sales were met with a pullback in new listings, contributing to a decrease in inventory levels for the month. As seen in prior months, the inventory decline was largely driven by homes priced below $400,000, as the more affordable segment of the market remains highly competitive.
“Saskatchewan is once again reporting strong sales despite ongoing inventory challenges, inflationary pressures, and higher lending rates,” said Association CEO, Chris Guérette. “Higher interest rates are pushing more purchasers to seek out more affordable options in the market, and, as a result, we continue to experience significant supply challenges in the lower price ranges of our market. These persistent supply challenges are likely preventing even stronger sales activity in August.”
Record sales and low inventories caused the provincial months of supply to drop below four months – below three months in Regina and below two in Saskatoon – reflecting the tightest market conditions seen heading into September since 2007. Despite tighter market conditions, Saskatchewan’s benchmark price eased slightly in August, primarily due to declines in the more expensive detached and semi-detached markets. Notwithstanding price adjustments following months of steady growth, prices remain comparable to levels reported last year.
“Our province continues to benefit from its affordability advantage, record population growth, and gains in international migration. Unfortunately, when housing supply fails to meet the increased demand, as seen in other jurisdictions across the country, inventory challenges become a real concern, and affordability can be eroded,” said Guérette. “We continue to keep a very close eye on inventory levels, specifically in the more affordable segment of our market.”
Year-over-year sales growth was driven by gains in the Regina, Saskatoon, and Yorkton regions, while other regions reported a pullback in year-to-date sales. Many regions experienced a pullback in year-over-year inventory levels, resulting in tighter market conditions across all larger regions of the province. The Saskatoon-Biggar region continues to face the tightest conditions in the province, with just under three months of inventory.
The benchmark price varied across Saskatchewan communities in August. The Regina, Moose Jaw, Swift Current, North Battleford, Estevan, and Weyburn regions are all reporting year-over-year price declines, ranging from 2.5 per cent in North Battleford to a high of over four per cent in Weyburn and Estevan.
While other regions report price easing, recent monthly price gains in Melfort, Prince Albert, and Humboldt resulted in record-high benchmark prices in their cities.
City of Regina
The City of Regina reported 359 sales in August, a year-over-year increase of nearly 6 per cent and 22 per cent above long-term, 10-year trends.
Rising August sales were met with a pullback in new listings, resulting in further inventory declines and the months of supply dropping below three months. Despite tighter market conditions, the benchmark price in the Queen City eased over last month due to pullbacks in the higher-priced detached sector.
Regina reported a benchmark price of $313,100 in August, down from $319,200 in July and $318,700 in June.
City of Saskatoon
The City of Saskatoon reported 528 sales in August, a year-over-year increase of 20 per cent and over 36 per cent above long-term, 10-year trends.
Increased sales and lower inventories caused the months of supply to dip below two months, the tightest levels reported so far this year. Despite extremely tight market conditions, Saskatoon’s benchmark price fell to $378,300 in August, down from $382,400 in July and $381,400 in June.
While monthly variations are not uncommon, it is important to note that prices in the Bridge City remain higher than levels reported last year, and well above the $364,900 reported in January 2023.