Canadian home sales plunge lower in February 2019: CREA

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), released national sales statistics for February of 2019 this week.

According to the report, “Home sales via Canadian MLS® Systems plunged 9.1% month-over-month in February 2019 to the lowest level since November 2012. The month-over-month decline was the largest recorded since the B-20 stress test came into effect in January of last year.”

The number of homes trading hands was down from the previous month in three- quarters of all local markets, including all major cities.”

Highlights of CREA’s report

  • National home sales plummeted 9.1% month-over-month (m-o-m) in February.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was down 4.4% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes fell 3.2% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) was virtually unchanged (-0.1% y-o-y).
  • The national average sale price fell by 5.2% y-o-y.

Read the entire report on Canadian MLS® sales for February 2019.

Read also: CREA’s updated housing forecast for 2019.

I’m always happy to answer your Saskatoon real estate questions.  All of my contact info is here. Please feel free to call or email.

Norm Fisher

Royal LePage Vidorra

Listings drop while home sales rise in Saskatoon region, February 2019: SRAR

Despite the very cold temperatures in February, Saskatoon and region home sellers found a little warmth as new listings dropped 7% and sales rose 6%.

The Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® (SRAR) reported 731 homes were listed, down from 783 in the same month of last year, while sales rose to 296 from 280.

The dollar volume of homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) rose 4%, to $95.8 million from $92.4 million.

Year to date, listings dropped 7% to 1,591, sales were up 1% to 570, and the dollar volume was down a marginal 1% to $180.8 million.

Excluding the region, new Saskatoon listings were down 8.6% in February to 478 — the fewest since 2013 — while sales held steady with last year, rising by one to 211. Months of inventory dropped to 6.7 from 7.5 last February.

City homes listed to date in 2019, at 1,033, are at their lowest level in nine years. February statistics indicate a change in a market that has been declining for four years.

“Sales have stabilized somewhat, and inventory levels are coming down,” said Jason Yochim, CEO of SRAR (Norm’s note: The inventory of active residential listing available to Saskatoon home buyers is at its lowest point in four years for the end of February). “As an optimist, I believe and hope it will continue. However, people have to be confident that the economy is improving before committing to the purchase of a home.”

He noted that while some sectors of the economy, such as potash mining, are doing well, others are less robust. “It’s not that people aren’t working; they are. But they won’t upgrade unless they have confidence in their situations.”

The average price in Saskatoon also recovered slightly to $338,268, up 2.3% from last February. Yochim cautioned that average prices can be misleading because the basket of sales in any given month can be very different from another. For example, if two or three high-priced homes sell, that can significantly skew the average. A better gauge, said Yochim, is the Home Price Index (HPI), which tracks prices over time based on a benchmark determined 15 years ago. Saskatoon’s overall HPI, including apartment-style condos, was $282,600 last month, down 3% from last year. The most expensive category, two-storey single-family homes, was down 1% at $356,000.

Saskatoon remains a buyers’ market, with a sales-to-listing ratio of 44; but the ratio has risen from 34 in January, for a year-to-date ratio of 40. A ratio of 50 is a balanced market, while a ratio of 60 denotes a sellers’ market.

“Even in a buyers’ market, sellers can successfully sell their homes,” said Yochim. “The most important aspect to achieving a sale is pricing a specific property to match the current market conditions. This is where the assistance of a REALTOR® comes in. Not only do REALTORS® have the knowledge to help a seller arrive at a realistic price, but they are also professionals who subscribe to a strict code of ethics. They can guide sellers, and buyers, through the process, and help them make the best decisions.”

Jason Yochim, CEO, SRAR

Canadian homes sales improve in January 2019

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), released national sales statistics for January of 2019 this week.

According to the report, “Home sales via Canadian MLS® Systems climbed 3.6% in January 2019 compared to December 2018. The number of homes trading hands was up from the previous month in half of all local markets, led by Montreal, Ottawa and Winnipeg.”

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales were down 4% from year-ago levels and turned in the weakest January since 2015. They also came in below the 10-year average for the month on a national basis.”

Highlights of CREA’s report

  • National home sales rose 3.6% between December 2018 and January 2019.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was down by 4% from one year ago.
  • The number of newly listed homes edged up 1% month-over-month in January.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) rose 0.8% year-over-year (y-o-y) in January.
  • The national average sale price fell by 5.5% y-o-y in January.

Read the entire report on Canadian MLS® sales for January 2019.

I’m always happy to answer your Saskatoon real estate questions.  All of my contact info is here. Please feel free to call or email.

Norm Fisher

Royal LePage Vidorra

Saskatoon home prices show annual declines in January 2019: SRAR

Average Saskatoon home sale prices were down 12 percent year-over-year in January to $302,412. By comparison, the average price in January of 2017 and 2018 was $341,260 and $344,720 respectively. The challenge with averages is that the numbers can be skewed in a given period and are therefore not a reliable reflection of pricing. For this reason, the Canadian Real Estate Association created the MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) for major cities to give a more accurate reflection of pricing trends. The HPI establishes attributes for a handful of typical housing styles; Single Family, One Storey, Two Storey, Townhouse, Apartment and a composite of all five. It then establishes a base value to each with the starting point of 2005. From that starting point, changes in value are recorded over time to get a better sense of what is happening to pricing and where prices may be trending. For example, the MLS® HPI value for a typical single-family home in January of 2005 was $140,400. This value reached its peak in May of 2015 at $329,500. At the end of January 2019, this value is at $304,300, down from $307,300 last January. This indicates a less drastic decline in year-over-year values than the average price of a sold Saskatoon home would suggest.

The total MLS® dollar volume for sales in the Saskatoon Region for January was $84 million, down six percent from a year ago and comparable to 2017. In spite of this dollar volume decline, January home sales on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) in Saskatoon declined by only one percent in January to 199 transactions. The region surrounding Saskatoon had 60 MLS® sales in January, only five fewer than last January and 18 percent more than in January 2017.

Residential MLS® listing totals for January were the lowest in the past six years with 555 new listings introduced to the market, down ten percent from last January. For the market surrounding Saskatoon, the number of new MLS® listings was unchanged from a year ago with 216 units listed for sale. “New listings to the market are not always houses being introduced for the first time to the market,” comments Jason Yochim, CEO of the Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® (SRAR). “Many new listings are homes that did not sell in the initial listing attempt and are relisted, often at a revised price.” The total number of active listings as at the end of last month was 1,450 compared with 1,529 last year. “It’s positive to see the overall number of active listings decline to prepare the way for prices to recover,” adds Yochim. “Some price ranges still have a good supply to choose from while others do not.

For further information, please contact:

Jason Yochim CAE, CRAE
Chief Executive Officer – Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS®

Canadian homes sales post weakest annual numbers since 2012: CREA

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), released national sales statistics for December of 2018 today.

According to the report, “Home sales via Canadian MLS® Systems fell by 2.5% in December 2018 compared to November, capping the weakest annual sales since 2012. Monthly declines in activity since September have fully retrenched its summer rally and returned it near the lowest level since early 2013.”

“Transactions declined in about 60% of all local markets in December, led by lower activity in Greater Vancouver, Vancouver Island, Ottawa, London & St. Thomas, and Halifax-Dartmouth, together with a regionally diverse mix of other large and medium-sized urban centres.”

Highlights of CREA’s report

  • National home sales fell 2.5% from November to December.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was down by 19% from one year ago.
  • The number of newly listed homes was little changed from November to December.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) was up 1.6% year-over-year (y-o-y) in December.
  • The national average sale price fell by 4.9% y-o-y in December.

Read the entire report on Canadian MLS® sales for December of 2018.

I’m always happy to answer your Saskatoon real estate questions.  All of my contact info is here. Please feel free to call or email.

Norm Fisher

Royal LePage Vidorra