REGINA — Regina was one of only six major markets to see a year-over-year decline in housing prices out of 26 Canadian cities surveyed, according to statistics released by the Canadian Real Estate Association Monday.
Average home prices in Regina fell 5.6 per cent last month, compared with a national average increase of 5.3 per cent. Year-to-date increases in average prices have been an anemic 0.7 per cent in Regina, compared with a 7.0 per cent average increase across Canada during the first eight months of 2014.
Home sales also fell 5.9 per cent year over year in August and declined 1.2 per cent for the year to date at the end of August.
Nationally, home sales are up 2.1 per cent year over year and 4.3 per cent for the year to date at the end of August.
The executive officer of the Association of Regina Realtors said housing prices and sales in Regina have been soft in 2014 and a good portion of 2013. But the biggest change is the large number of homes listed for sale.
What’s really changed over the past year is on the supply side. Listings are at 20-year highs with 1,433 listings at the end of August versus 644 during the same period two years ago. There’s more supply on the market, so that’s slowed down the velocity of the market.
As a result, homes are taking longer to sell, selling at a lower percentage of the asking price and prices have been coming down.
Home builders have as many as 300 unsold new homes on the market, not including condos. So when you put that together with what’s happening on the MLS market, there’s a lot of supply out there.
We’re not seeing pricing falling off the cliff, by any means. It’s been in the one to two per cent range year over year as far as the price decline is concerned. It’s indicative of what’s happening on the supply side. There’s a lot of choice out there.
Similarly, home sales were 2,039 to the end of August compared with 2,152 for the same period in 2013 — a 5.3 per cent decline. The market is still grinding sales out, albeit at a slightly lower level, but the increased supply has really had an effect on pricing.