Saskatoon real estate week in review: March 21-25, 2011

Saskatoon real estate week in review: March 21-25, 2011
Sales surged higher during this first official week of spring, even as winter-like conditions persisted. Saskatoon real estate agents reported eighty-four condo and house sales to the local MLS® system, for the highest volume sales week so far this year. Unit sales were up by fourteen over last week but fell short of the ninety-four properties reported sold during the same week a year ago.

At the same time, the pace of new MLS® listings continued to slow. Agents brought just 111 house and condo listings to the multiple listing service®, a decline of five compared to last week and down twenty-one compared to the same period in 2010. Recent weeks appear to show some signs of a changing trend with new listings. While seven of the first eight weeks of the year produced listing volumes that were up on a year-over-year basis, three of the last four weeks have been down when compared against last year.

Click the image for a larger version of the graph.

Total active MLS® listings (residential) continued to grow at a fairly sluggish pace gaining just fifteen units over the week to close at 1173, up from 1016 at the same time last year. That’s an overall year-over-year gain of fifteen percent, half of what it was just weeks ago. The next eight to nine weeks typically see the largest volumes of new listings for the year, so it’s certainly too early to know just were inventory is headed, but right now, it’s starting to look more like last year’s levels than the higher volumes we saw the two previous years. That could turn suddenly, and dramatically, but at this point, there’s nothing really alarming going on with inventory levels.

As of this morning there are 669 single-family homes and 435 condominiums available for sale within the city limits for a weekly gain of just six and five, respectively. Last year at this time there were 595 single-family homes and just 368 condos for sale on the Saskatoon MLS® system.

Click the image for a larger version of the graph.

Cancelled and withdrawn listings stayed steady at twenty-three units with fifteen of those relisting the same day, at a new price. An additional fifty-seven home sellers adjusted their asking price through the course of the week.

Entry-level sales remained strong through the week pushing the weekly median sale price to its lowest point this year at just $257,500 for a decline of nearly thirty thousand dollars. Still, a dozen sales above the $400K mark kept the weekly average from tumbling nearly as much. It slid about $10,600 from last week to $290,429.  The six-week average sale price saw its first weekly gain in five weeks, edging higher by just under one thousand dollars to $295,904 for an annual gain of roughly $10K. The four-week median sale price slipped lower by about the same amount to close at $284,950. That number is up about thirteen thousand dollars on a year-over-year basis, but at its lowest point for the 2011 year.

Again, as I mentioned last week, the unusual strength in entry-level sales probably reflects a last minute rush to beat the new mortgage rules that came into effect last Friday. Most of the transactions reported sold this week would have gone under contract during the previous week when thirty-five year mortgages were still available.

Click the image for a larger version of the graph.

Overbid activity continued to be weak with just three deals being reported as having sold for more than the asking price, at an average overbid of just $1,766. The balance of this week’s eighty-four deals closed at a price below asking, by an average of $8,307 for a discount of just less than three percent.

Click the image for a larger version of the chart.

Our Saskatoon home search tool offers MLS® listings from all real estate brands with the most detail and information available anywhere. Check it out here.

I’m always happy to answer your Saskatoon real estate questions.  All of my contact info is here. Please feel free to call or email.

Norm Fisher
Royal LePage Vidorra


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