Saskatchewan Real Estate Finishes 2020 on a High

January 7, 2021

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January 06, 2021
For immediate release: Regina-City-and-Region-MEDIA-December-2020

The Saskatchewan real estate market had another strong month and ended 2020 at levels not seen since 2014. Across the province, sales were up over 58% from last December, going from 590 to 935, new listings were up close to 13%, going from 1,005 to 1,132, and the median sale price was up over 1%, going from $253,750 to $257,500. Inventories were also down in all 19 markets that the SRA tracks.

Despite increased restrictions coming into effect in December to help reduce the rising spread of COVID throughout the province, the market continued to show considerable strength. “We’d already reached over 33% of last December’s sales in the first week of this December,” said SRA Economic Analyst Chris Gbekorbu, “so I figured we’d have another strong month to finish off the year.”

Median sales prices were up (or flat) in 11 of the 19 markets that the SRA tracks (with Melfort and Yorkton seeing the strongest declines while Moose Jaw and the Moose Jaw region saw the greatest increases), while the number of sales were up in all 19 markets.

It’s been a crazy year for real estate across the country. With large-scale lockdowns in place in March and April, many analysts expected real estate to suffer. But that clearly hasn’t been the case. “2020 started off about as strong as 2019, and then the pandemic hit, and as expected, the market suffered” said Gbekorbu. But with the safety protocols that the SRA put in place to help protect the public while buying and selling real estate, by the end of June, sales had returned to their 2019 levels, despite two months of virtually no activity.

“Although it’s still too early to tell if we’ve got a new trend forming, COVID has certainly changed the features that people currently want in their homes and spaces. And as a result, people have been eager to buy homes that meet their new needs.”

For the year, sales were up an average of 24.5% across the province and up in all markets that the SRA tracks except for Melfort (a drop of 19.0%) and the Melfort region (a drop of 1.7%). Weyburn saw the smallest increase in yearly sales at 6.7%, while Estevan saw the largest increase in sales at 62.4%. New listings were down an average of 5.8% across the province in 2020, with Swift Current seeing a modest drop of 0.7%, and Weyburn seeing the largest drop at 13.6%.

Although median prices increased an average of 1.2% across the province over the year, there was considerably more variability in prices. Only nine markets saw a price increase, with Moose Jaw seeing the largest yearly price increase at 7.7%, while Melfort saw the largest yearly price drop at 14.1%. The variation in price changes that we’ve seen across the province reflect the fact that real estate is highly local.

Regina

Sales in Regina were up 44.9%, going from 138 in December 2019 to 200 in December 2020, and up 48.2% in the overall region, going from 164 to 243. In Regina, sales were 43.9% above the 5-year average (and 32.0% above the 10-year average), while in the larger region, sales were 47.1% above the 5-year average (and 38.7% above the 10-year average). Year-to-Date (YTD) sales in Regina rose 17.0% over last year, increasing from 2,594 to 3,036, while YTD sales in the larger region rose 22.0%, going from 3,081 to 3,758.

Sales volume was up 45.7% in the city, going from $38.2M to $55.6M in 2020 (36.7% above the 5-year average, and 23.4% above the 10-year average). YTD sales volume in the city was $926.8M, an increase of 18.5% from last year. In the region, sales volume was up 23.7%, going from $925.2M to $1,144.3M (42.9% above the 5-year average and 32.6% above the 10-year average). YTD sales volume increased 23.7% in the region, rising from $925.2M in 2019 to $1,144.3M in 2020.

In Regina, the number of new listings in December 2020 rose 48.4%, going from 157 to 233 (17.8% above the 5-year average and 17.6% above the 10-year average), while in the region, new listings rose 42.6% from 195 last year to 278 this year (13.7% below the 5-year average and 14.5% above the 10-year average). YTD new listings in the city fell 1.6%, going from 5,080 to 4,997, while in the larger region, the number of new listings to date fell 3.1%, going from 6,428 to 6,227. Active listings fell 23.2% in Regina (down from 1,179 to 905) and fell 27.5% in the region (down from 1,624 to 1,177).

Inventory in Regina stood at 4.5 months (which is 47.0% below the level last year and 46.5% below the 5-year average), while the sales to listing ratio was 85.8%, suggesting that market conditions favour sellers. Inventory in the larger region stood at 4.8 months (which is 51.1% below the level last year and 50.9% below the 5-year average), while the sales to listing ratio was 87.4%, suggesting that market conditions favour sellers.

Homes in Regina stayed on the market an average of 58 days in December—down 18.3% from 71 days last year (but below the 5-year average of 62 days and above the 10-year average of 53 days). Homes in the region stayed on the market longer than homes in the city at 64 days on average in 2020, but also down from an average of 76 days last year (and 5.3% below the 5-year average).

Median home prices in Regina went from $266,104 to $271,000 (an increase of 1.8%) and were approximately 5.5% below the 5-year and 6.3% below the 10-year average median price. The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI)—a more accurate measure of house price trends—is up 6.5% from $267,300 to $284,700. Year-to-date, the median home price in Regina was $289,340 which is 1.1% above the $286,230 price from the same time last year. Median home prices in the region went from $265,000 to $274,900 (an increase of 3.7%) and were approximately 3.4% below the 5-year and 3.7% below the 10-year average median price. Year-to-date, the median home price in the region was $287,575 which is 1.2% above the $284,208 price from the same time last year.