Saskatoon home sales jump ahead of mortgage rules

Home sales activity in the Saskatoon area jumped 13% in December compared to a year earlier, and Realtors say tighter mortgage underwriting rules which are now in force are likely to have contributed to the rise.

Sales were 11% up year-over-year but Saskatoon Region Association of Realtors says that new listings were down 18% compared to December 2016.

“This decrease in listing activity could be the result of seller’s fatigue from having been on the market for an extended time period without securing an offer.” according to Jason Yochim, CEO SRAR. “The increase in December sales and decline in hew listings is a positive for decreasing high inventory levels”

Although the year ended on a high, the full-year figures for the region reflect a slowdown in the market, with overall sales volume down 9% year-over-year to just short of $1.6 billion. It’s the third consecutive year of decline.

Listings for the year were down 3% but inventory remained elevated creating downward pressure on prices. The Home Price Index (HPI) composite benchmark value declined by 3.7% in December to $295,100, its lowest point since March of 2012.

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