Housing starts in Saskatchewan are expected to increase 8.3 per cent to 6,400 units in 2011, with a slight moderation to 6,000 units in 2012.
Economic conditions continue to support Saskatchewan's housing sector. Saskatchewan's economy is expected to rise by 3.6 per cent in 2011 followed by growth of 3.4 per cent in 2012. Further stimulating housing will be employment in 2012, which is expected to grow at 1.5 per cent. Labour market conditions will continue to draw people to Saskatchewan, especially from outside of the country. Net migration is expected to remain elevated over the next two years, further supporting the housing sector.
Single Starts: The economic expansion, along with persistently low mortgage rates, will help maintain demand for single-detached homes across Saskatchewan. Provincial homebuilders have increased construction of single-detached homes, building upon last year's performance. Anchored by a strong first half, single-detached starts are projected to rise by almost six per cent in 2011 to 4,050 units. In 2012, provincial homebuilders will maintain the strong performance of the last two years by starting 4,000 units.
Multiple Starts: Following a two-fold increase to 2,077 units in 2010, multifamily starts are expected to remain elevated as provincial builders initiate 2,350 units in 2011. Increased rental apartment construction, particularly in the province's major centres, contributed to the gains last year and will help maintain elevated production of multi-unit homes over the forecast period.
Resales: Low mortgage rates, job and wage growth, and increased household formation will support heightened demand for resale homes over the next two years. Resale transactions in Saskatchewan will increase by about six per cent this year, rising to 11,500 units. Increased job and wage growth, along with more muted price gains will maintain elevated levels of resale activity in 2012 with sales reaching 11,700 units.
Prices: While buyers still have considerable choice of homes, the increase in sales in 2011 will fuel an estimated 5.7 per cent increase in the average price of a resale home to $256,000. Next year, resale price growth will moderate, constrained by the combination of elevated new and existing home supply. Expect prices to rise by about two per cent to $261,000.