Despite an uptick from previous months, sales in May through the Regina and area MLS® System continued at below historical levels, said the Association of Regina REALTORS® Inc.
There were 365 sales recorded during the month in all geographic areas, down 2.7% from last year when 376 sales occurred. This is below both the 5-year average of 388, the 10-year average of 390 and is the third lowest number of sales in the past ten years. There were 294 sales posted in the city, a decrease of 5.5% from 2017 when 311 sales were posted. The number of sales in the city was also below the 5-year average of 319 and 10-year average of 326.
For the May year-to-date there have been 1,210 sales recorded in all areas, a decrease of 6.3% from 1,292 in 2017. In the city, there have been 990 sales compared to 1,072 last year, down 7.7%.
For May, the MLS® Home Price Index (HPI), a much more accurate measure of housing price trends than average or median price, reported a composite benchmark residential price of $276,500 and index of 256.2 in the city, down 6.2% from $294,700 one year ago. This was up slightly from April’s $275,600 but is part of a price loss trend that began in 2017, and is now 9.4% below the composite price reported in 2013 of $305,200. The majority of this price loss has occurred in the last twelve months due to slowing demand and elevated supply levels. 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 sales dollar volume of $115.6M posted in all geographic areas for the month was down 5.8% from 2017’s $122.1M. Dollar volume in the city of $95.1M was down 7.1% from 2017’s $102.3M.
In the city, there were 1,734 active residential listings on the market at the end of May, an increase of 18.4% from 2017’s 1,464. This is likely the largest number of active listings at the end of May in any year. There were 959 new listings placed on the MLS® System during the month in all geographic areas, up 5.4% from 2017’s 910. In the city, there were 696 new listings recorded, up 5.9% from 657 in 2017.
The ratio of sales to new listings for the month was 42% in the city and 38% in all geographic areas. These comparatively low sales to list ratios point towards buyer’s market conditions. Balanced market conditions are generally in the 40-60% range. Below 40% is considered to be more of a buyers’ market while above 60% is considered to be a market favouring sellers.
Homes that did sell in the city sold in average of 56 days in the city and 58 days in all areas. These compare to 34 and 38 days respectively last year.
“Although the number of sales in May was the highest so far this year it continued a trend of below historical levels that has been occurring since 2017. A weaker level of local economic growth having a cooling effect on demand, coupled with record high inventory levels has slowed the market down”, said Gord Archibald, Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Regina REALTORS® Inc.
“We also believe that a second round of federal mortgage stress rules introduced at the beginning of the year is also having a dampening impact on demand locally, causing many buyers to leave the market altogether as they are not able to meet the higher standard for mortgage financing. Although this measure was taken primarily to address the overheated Toronto and Vancouver markets, it impacts every market in the country, including ours, whether needed or not”, concluded Archibald.