The Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® (SRAR) experienced a record setting year on many different levels. Transactional volume surpassed $2.1 Billion for the Saskatoon and area market with dollar volume within Saskatoon reaching $1.53 Billion. The number of transactions within Saskatoon in 2014 reached 4,509 eclipsing the all-time high of 4,446 units in 2007. The SRAR processed a total of 13,578 listings in 2014, up 13% from last year while the total number of sales recorded for the association was 6,135, up 8%. Higher inventory levels ensured that pricing remained moderate with a 3% year over year increase to the average sale price which sat at $356,476 at years end. December saw a slowdown in listing activity with only a 2% increase in new listings however buyers were active with 215 sales for the month resulting in a 17% increase over the previous December.
The market surrounding Saskatoon was also very active in 2014 with a 10% increase in listings and a 12% increase in unit sales for the year. "As surrounding cities such as Martensville and Warman begin to offer more amenities they are also experiencing unprecedented growth in both residential and commercial real estate." according to Jason Yochim, CEO with the SRAR. "Buyers don't mind the short commute to certain 'bedroom communities' just outside of Saskatoon if they offer more home for the same money and competitive property taxes." He adds.
According to Yochim the outlook for 2015 should be very similar to last year barring any significant surprises to the economy globally or locally. He warns "In my opinion, three things that pose a threat to another banner year are the potential for interest rate hikes in spring, growing consumer debt and the impact of continued low market oil prices." Low interest rates and increases in property values combined to create equity that is easily accessed by home owners often for consumer debt. Longer term low crude oil prices will have a negative affect but it is uncertain what the extent will be. "There was much talk about an over inflated real estate market in Canada in 2014 and the potential repercussions of that, however one has to keep in mind that this focus is primarily on larger centers like Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary." Some of these markets are overvalued by more than 30% while Saskatoon's average home price increase has maintained a steady 3 - 4% for the past couple of years.