New Housing Starts still declining in Saskatchewan
A new report by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation which was released today shows that new housing starts in Saskatchewan have declined significantly in the past couple of years.
The CMHC Report shows that new housing starts in Saskatchewan have dropped from 4,152 in the first quarter of 2017, to 3,738 i the first quarter of 2018, and to just 1,602 in the first quarter of 2019. That’s a drop of about 60 percent in just 2 years.
The CMHC doesn’t speculate on reasons for the drop, but it is widely thought that Canada’s tougher new mortgage rules have had a significant impact, and in Saskatchewan, the Provincial Government’s decision to add the 6% PST to the price of new homes hasn’t helped new home builders, or buyers, either.
As you can see from the numbers below, despite a growing population, housing starts in Saskatchewan’s two largest cities are down significantly in the past couple of years. Housing starts dropped from 2,581 in March of 2017 to just 721 in March of 2019 in Saskatoon, and from 1,361 in March of 2017 to 704 in March of 2019 in Regina.
With Construction being one of Saskatchewan’s largest private sector employer’s, it’s no surprise that the Provincial economy continues to feel sluggish at best.
Dwelling Starts – Seasonally Adjusted at Annual Rates
Saskatoon January February March
2017 1,121 1,507 2,581
2018 1,405 1,084 899
2019 1,278 711 721
Regina January February March
2017 1,532 2,271 1,361
2018 3,759 1,800 529
2019 696 377 704
If there is a bright sign to the numbers above, it might be that there is less to choose from for buyers that are looking to enter the market right now. We’ve been hearing good feedback from our sellers recently that showings are up, and prices seem to be holding fairly steady.
While there isn’t the frenzy in the housing market that we saw during Saskatchewan’s boom years of 2008 and 2009, there are still a lot of people moving to Saskatchewan, and everyone needs a place to live. Hopefully the market slowdown doesn’t last for too long. Maybe things will start to turn around this spring!