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February 2017 News Release

(Published on - 3/9/2017 4:13:01 PM)

Positive Indicators in Saskatoon Home Market

Saskatoon. March 2nd, 2017.

Year to date, the Saskatoon home market shows positive signs in a few of the key indicators. “There are a few key statistics that we watch ever month to get a sense of where our market is at and where it may be headed” according to Jason Yochim, CEO of the Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® .“We keep a close eye on the number of transactions, the inventory levels and the change in pricing.” He adds.

Year to date home sales are up 4% over 2016 with 558 unit sales. This is comparable to the number of home sales in 2015. The total dollar volume for those sales was just over $186 million, representing a 2% increase over last year. At the end of February, the inventory level for available residential property on the MLS® system in Saskatoon was 1,659 units, 5.4% lower than last year. The lower inventory levels are largely due to a significant drop in the number of new listings added to the MLS® system. So far this year there have been 1,337 new listings in the system compared to 1,410 last year. When comparing new listings for the last month, there were 15.7% fewer properties added to the market this past February than last February.

A decline in new listings coupled with an increase in sales resulted in a sales-to-listing ratio of 37.4%in February. This is a significant increase from last February where this ratio was 30.9%. A market with a sales-to-listing ratio below 40% is considered to be a solid buyers market. This indicates a positive move towards a more balanced market. “Although we are seeing these positive indicators quite early on, these statistics indicate a shift in the marketplace in a positive direction,” comments Yochim.

Home prices remain relatively unchanged year to date with the average price down a mere 0.7% to just under $340,000. The median price of $320,000 represents a slight drop of 1.6% year over year. The Home Price Index (HPI) is considered to be the most accurate measure of home values and where the market prices are trending. The HPI composite price is an aggregate of various residential home types in a particular market and is a measurement of change in value over time. A composite value was established with a base year and has been indexed on a monthly basis. The composite value in February was $297,900 representing a 1.2% decrease from a year ago. This value had been on a downward trend since mid-2016 which is not surprising considering elevated inventory levels through the year and a buyers market.

The average number of days for a home to sell in Saskatoon was 54 days. This is only slightly longer than in 2016 with an average of 52 days. Because today's real estate buyers are well educated on the market, homes are selling at 97% of their asking price which is consistent with last year.

“The best advice I can give a seller in any market is to get professional advice when dealing with your largest asset” adds Yochim. The Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® has a membership of just over 600 licensed and knowledgeable REALTORS® who can provide sound market advice. REALTORS® also subscribe to a strict code of ethics and are dedicated to developing professional standards and continuing education in the real estate profession.


Positive Start to 2017 Home Sales

(Published on - 2/12/2017 8:47:36 PM)

Positive Start to 2017 Home Sales

Saskatoon. February 2nd, 2017 Home sales in January were cause for optimism for the year ahead with a 6% increase year over year. Home sales of 185 units last month represented the highest January total since 2014, the five-year average for January is 195. Another positive indicator is the number of homes available for sale. At the end of January, there was a combined total of 1,592 homes for sale in the Saskatoon market, representing the second lowest monthly total in almost two years. The lowest inventory level was December of 2016 with a total of 1,443 properties on the market. “An increase in sales in a typically quiet month is very encouraging” comments Jason Yochim, CEO of the Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® “especially in the wake of the tougher mortgage qualifications introduced last October.” At current inventory levels, anticipating no increase in demand and no new properties listed for sale, it would take over eight months to liquidate the current inventory of properties. The five-year average for available inventory in the Saskatoon market is just under five months. The “sales to listing ratio” is an indicator of whether we are in a buyers or sellers’ market. It is determined by dividing the number of sales by the number of new listings for a period of time. When this ratio is at 50%, the market is considered balance. The last couple of years has favored buyers in the marketplace with an average sales to listing ratio of 40%. January typically has an uptake of listing activity and quieter sales activity which is reflected in a sales to listing ratio at 26%; the five-year average is 30%. Homes priced below $400,000 saw a much-needed increase in activity compared to last January with 143 sales between $200,000 and $400,000, a 20% increase year over year. The average sale price for January of $341,800 represented a 4% decrease compared to last year. In 2016 a steady number of sales over $750,000 helped stabilize the average price in spite of a 5% decline in sales. This emphasizes that using an average to determine the true market picture is easily misleading. The median price for last month was $318,500 which was the lowest median price in almost five years. A more reliable indicator of the market is the MLS® Home Price Index® (HPI). It is considered to be the most accurate determinant of where a real estate market is trending. The HPI composite benchmark price has also been trending downward, although very slightly for several months.  In January, on average it takes 54 days to sell a home in Saskatoon which is consistent with the five-year average of 51 days. This compares to 45 days which is the average of the past 5 years. “In any market, a home that is priced to current market conditions should sell in even less time, often within a week or two.” comments Yochim. “Buyers are well educated on the market and are not fooled by optimistic sellers. However, they are willing to pay market price for the right home in any market. For homes that are selling, the sale prices are being realized within 97% of the asking price.”


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