Sales activity in the Saskatoon real estate market continued to edge upwards this past week as local agents reported 56 firm residential sales to our MLS®. That number puts us up by just six sales from the previous week and matches the number of firm trades reported during the same period a year ago.
New listing activity moved lower as 132 residential properties were added to the Saskatoon multiple listing service® for a weekly drop of eight and an annual decline of 11. This is the fourth consecutive weeks during which new listings fell on an annual basis.
The inventory of real estate listings on the local MLS® once again failed to gain much ground. Total residential listings within the city of Saskatoon sit at 1536 today, up just 11 units from the close of the previous week, and down by 91 when looking back at numbers recorded at the close of the same week last year. Today, there are 812 detached single-family homes for sale on the Saskatoon MLS®, roughly the same number as last week, but down from a year ago by 44. Condo inventory remains high at 631, up 18 from a week earlier, and ahead by four compared to numbers recorded a year ago.
The most significant “inventory” change can be seen in the new condominium construction numbers. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) prepares a detailed report of the residential construction each month. The most recent CMHC report provides a detailed overview of where we are at, as of November 30, 2017. There are two numbers that I find interesting to watch, and that provide a bit of insight into how inventory may shape up in the future. The first is the number of condominiums that are currently under construction. There were 497 such units at 11/30/17, down 30 percent from a year earlier when builders were working on 712 units. The second telling stat is the number of units that are already completed but not yet occupied. There are now 311 units which meet that criteria, down 25 percent from a year ago when there were 433. This inventory is clearly being absorbed. We may even be on the home stretch in finding some balance between supply and demand, given that the season of highest demand is now just around the corner.
The numbers for new single-family homes are virtually unchanged from a year ago. Meanwhile, new housing starts are up just a touch suggesting that a reasonably good balance between supply and demand already exists in this category.
With fewer sales in the mix during these early weeks of the year, prices continue to bounce around. This week, there were far fewer sales at the entry level and much more activity at the upper end. This change drove the weekly average sale price of a Saskatoon home sharply higher to $366,323. The weekly median went in the same direction closing the week at $339,500. The six-week average price edged up nearly five thousand dollars from the week before to reach $342,468 for an annual increase of roughly 2K. The four-week median price closed the period at $330,000 showing no weekly change and recording an annual decline of seven thousand dollars.
Once again, overbid sales were non-existent. On the other hand, 52 of this week’s closed deals were reported to have sold below the asking price with a hefty average discount of $15,990, one of the highest we’ve seen in awhile. This is at least partly attributable to a large number of expensive homes that traded. They often produce the largest discounts skewing that number higher.
Here is a breakdown of what the sales to listing price ratio looked like on this week’s sales. Please note that those sales that do show a sale price that is greater than the list price are all new properties that spent some period of time on the market, and most likely included additional improvements that were not reflected in the original list price. We report these to you as “at list price sales”, which is likely too generous in some cases, but it’s simply not practical to obtain the full details of each sale.
More weekly stats and numbers for those who love them.