Total housing starts in the Regina area are forecast to decline from 2,223 in 2014 to 1,800 units in 2015 and 1,785 in 2016, before bouncing back to 1,800 units in 2017, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation fall housing market outlook.
They say that “Weaker economic activity and employment growth, combined with lower net migration to the region, will reduce housing demand and moderate total housing starts in 2015 and 2016. They also go on to say that a gradual improvement in economic conditions in 2017 will prevent housing starts from declining further, resulting in a slight increase in new construction.
Single-detached starts in Regina are expected to reach their lowest level since 2001, totalling just 500 units in 2015. Again, weaker economic conditions and elevated single-detached inventory for most of this year have moderated building intentions in Regina, while new home builders have also faced competition from increased supply in the resale market.
With employment growth expected to remain muted in 2016, single-detached starts in Regina are forecast to reach 510 units, before edging up to 520 units in 2017, the report said.
After declining in all three Prairie Provinces in 2015, housing starts will continue to decline in Alberta but stabilize in Saskatchewan and Manitoba in 2016, CMHC said. By 2017, increased new construction in expected in all three Prairie Provinces.
In Saskatchewan, a projected decline of 30 per cent in 2015 will reduce housing starts to 5,800 total units. This will lead to a stabilization of activity as starts in Saskatchewan are expected to range between 4,600 and 7,000 in 2016 and between 4,600 and 7,200 in 2017.
“The economic and housing market outlook for the Prairie region continues to be adversely impacted by low commodity prices,” said a CMHC’s regional economist. Lower oil prices have created economic uncertainty in Alberta and Saskatchewan. This will hold back growth in housing starts in both of these provinces in 2015 and 2016 before improving economic conditions provide some gains in 2017.