Saskatchewan is in a current economic boom, and expanding in population and GDP. It was relatively unaffected by the global recession and almost seems to be its own acclimatized economy. From the charts below we can see that we are the leading province in GDP growth, unemployment rates; resulting in good investments and a large labor pool (Stats Canada, 2012).
Saskatchewan's strong economic situation is directly benefiting our residential real estate industry. Both sales and dollar volume are up 8% since last year. Not to mention that selling prices have gone up 5 percent for the last three years consistently. This 5 percent is also reflective in our 6 month rolling average of sale price; essentially meaning that our market has little fluctuations with seasons.
Saskatoon is a rare city in which mortgage payments are usually less expensive than rent payments. Of course there is risk for unexpected expenses and repairs, but the potential for large earnings has increased the market demand for houses with revenue potential. Buyers should be aware that most homes with suites are usually not permitted suites; if mismanaged, the suites could be shut down by the city.
Interest rates are historically low, which has a major influence on real estate investments. Low interest rates results in more people qualifying for larger mortgages, driving prices up, because individuals are paying more principal than interest through each payment. Interest rates have a major influence on the size of monthly mortgage payments. Interest rates are not guaranteed to stay this way, and it is likely we will see small increases in the years to come. It's a good time for buyers to go and get approved and lock in a lower interest rate.
Saskatchewan saw a 2 percent increase in population in 2012, gaining 21,117 people in the short year's time, most of these people are moving to Saskatoon as well. When ages are split in to five year increments for Saskatoon's population, the two largest samples are ages 20-24 and 25-29; with over 45,000 people in that shared age group (Stats Canada, 2011).
I see Saskatoon as a balanced market; good for both sellers and buyers. Funding is available for mortgages, and there is opportunity in both selling and buying a home at this time.
Blogpost written by Spencer Chilliak