What’s Happening In Regina’s Real Estate Market | Inventory, Inflation & Interest Rates
What's in Store for 2024 for Regina's Real Estate Market
This could be a big year for homeowners. Here’s your opportunity to be as prepared as you can be to capitalize or protect yourself. Connect with one of our agents if you are thinking about making a move this year. Armed with the knowledge of Regina's real estate market trends, interest rates, and effective buying and selling strategies, you're ready to navigate the complexities of the housing market. Whether you're looking to buy or sell, make informed decisions that align with your goals.
Inventory has been at a record low this past year, currently hovering just below 700 active listings in our city. Significant drops in single-family dwellings, semi-detached homes, row houses, and apartment-style condo listings have all seen major declines in 2023. Yet, we are still seeing a lot of sales happening… in fact, 24% more when stacked up to long-term 10-year trends in our city. Despite strong sales, prices just aren’t reflecting a seller’s market. They are actually down 4.1% year-over-year. So what’s going on exactly? Inventory, interest rates, and inflation are driving our market and will do so well into 2024.Source: Saskatchewan Realtor Association December 2023 Market Watch
Part of our inventory problem is attributed to incredibly low permits for new builds. The number of builder-grade or custom homes being constructed to sell is startlingly low, and those buildings are already purchased, not hitting the market. Another reason why there are so many fewer listings hitting our Regina market is that people feel unsettled and are not confident with our economy. If they list, where will they go, and for how much? Factors that may be holding people back from purchasing are large consumer debt, and interest rates keeping potential buyers on the sidelines, depleting their purchasing power. We are also hyper-aware that a lot of homeowners in Regina are also small business owners, who are feeling the heavy weight of the looming deadline of repaying back their massive CEBA payments.
We’re all waiting to see what the Bank of Canada will do to determine if moving is even a possibility this year for many. Over 2.2 million Canadians have mortgages up for renewal in 2024, and will start to feel the financial pinch after signing fixed mortgages with rock-bottom interest rates in 2019. Many will experience an increase in payments by as much as 30%. Others will wind up having to extend their amortization to a 30-year mortgage to keep the payments somewhat similar to what they have now. But the reality is that many will be faced with selling and downsizing. This could potentially be a major economic shift, and the Feds will have no choice but to lower the rates for Canadians to find any kind of relief.
So, like many of you, we’ll be watching inflation numbers, which largely impact whether rates will come down. There are many economists who are forecasting rates to drop 2-3 times in 2024. If that happens, we are likely to see more buyers at higher price points making moves this year, which may drive up benchmark home prices once again in Regina. But in the meantime, there are things that you can do to stay informed so you are able to pivot when the timing is right for you.
Talk To Your Lender Sooner Than Later
If you are one of the many who are up for mortgage renewal this year, speak to your lender quickly to figure out all of your options. We're talking up to 90-120 days ahead of time. DO NOT just sign the renewal until you have spoken with a professional about all of the possible scenarios. If you do plan on selling this year or next, locking into another 5-year fixed at these rates will come with a massive pay-out penalty and leave you trapped.
If you can financially swing purchasing rental properties right now, there will most likely be an influx of renters coming out of this financial mess. We are experiencing low vacancy rates and high inflation, which means that rental prices have dramatically spiked. Connect with one of our experienced REALTORS® to help you start your search.
Moving Down The Property Ladder
This might be time to consider downsizing to a smaller mortgage that can give you the ability to have a better financial cushion. Moving from a 2,500sq.ft. home to a 1,000sq.ft. property (whether you own or rent) could potentially save you up to 40% in payments, utilities, maintenance, property taxes, and insurance.
Be In The Know
Read up on what is happening with our economy and stay up to date on interest rate announcements. Try your best to stay out of the media hype, and remember that every market is local. What happens in Toronto and Vancouver does not always impact us the same way in Regina. Reach out to your trusted professionals to stay informed and adjust quickly if you need to.
Be as prepared as possible so you are ahead of the competition this spring. Reach out to your lender now so there are no hiccups or surprises when you are getting pre-approved. Connect with your agent to get on the same page about what you are on the hunt for. Lastly, create a budget for closing costs, such as home insurance, inspections, and property taxes.
Get started on your to-do lists that will maximize your attractability for a potential homebuyer, reach out to your lender and agent ahead of time to discuss strategy, timelines, and pricing, and make sure that you are aware of any pay-out penalties if there are any.
2024 will be a year of many ups and downs in our economy. Don't hesitate to reach out should you have any questions along the way. We're here to help whether you are looking to buy your first home, or ready to say goodbye to your family home. Let's start the conversation today.