Residential market sales in February exceeded 2015 levels but were still below recent years based on activity reported through the Regina and area MLS® System, said the Association of Regina REALTORS® Inc.

There were 210 sales reported during the month in all geographic areas, up 8% from 2015 when 195 sales were reported. The number of sales was below both the immediate past five-year average of 232 and the ten-year average of 239. There were 176 sales reported in the city, up 2% from 2015 when 172 were posted.

For the year-to-date, 355 sales have occurred in all areas compared to 353 last year – virtually identical.

For February, the MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) – a much more accurate measure of housing price trends than average or median price – reported a composite residential price of $281,700 and index of 263 in the city, up slightly from 2015’s $281,400 and 262.7. This indicates that residential property values are very comparable to what they were one year ago. The HPI measures residential price trends based on four benchmark home types, with the index set at a base of 100 for January 2005.

The average sales price in all market areas for the month was $308,946, an increase of 1% from $306,254 recorded in 2015. The average in the city was $309,474, down slightly from last year’s $309,998.

The YTD average price in all areas was $309,067, up 2% from $302,426 in 2015. In the city, the YTD average was $307,423, also up from 2015’s $308,864.

Sales dollar volume of $64.9M was posted in all geographic areas, an increase of 9% from 2015’s $59.7M. Dollar volume in the city of $54.5 was up 2% from 2015’s $53.3M.

For all MLS® System geographic areas there were 1,773 active residential listings on the market at the end of February, down marginally from 2015’s 1,797. In the city there were 1,121 homes for sale, an increase of 2% from last year’s 1,099. About 30% of active listings in the city are condos.

There were 611 new listings placed on the MLS® System during the month in all geographic areas, up 5% from 2015’s 580. In the city 467 listings were added, an increase of 4% from 448 in 2015.

The ratio of firm sales to new listings for the month was 38% in the city and 34% in all geographic areas. The low sales to list ratio tends to point to buyer’s market conditions. Balanced market conditions are generally in the 40-60% range – below 40% is considered to be a buyer’s market – above 60% is considered to be a market favouring sellers.

“There were some encouraging signs in February with sales being up over 2015 and prices beginning to level out after many months of decline. There is generally lots of choice for buyers but we are hearing anecdotally from members that there’s a shortage of good single family detached listings in some areas of the city,” said Gord Archibald, Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Regina REALTORS® Inc.

“As we begin the approach the busy spring period of the year we should see a noticeable ramp up in market activity,” concluded Archibald.