If you are like a lot of people, the start of a new year is the time for new beginnings. Health, fitness, moving in together, moving out, buying, selling, saving… Despite the ups and downs of the last few years, it appears that 2019 will pose a greater uncertainty about the stability of the real estate market.
On just about everything, we are quite familiar with the “fake news” we hear from our southern neighbour. To a lesser extent, the media reporting on the real estate market in Toronto has an element of wide based analysis that can be very deceiving to the average homeowner.
Take the numbers that came out yesterday – according to TREB there was a 16% decline in the number of transactions for all home types in all areas. This number gets into peoples’ heads when in fact, that number for your particular neighbourhood and home style could be much better or worse.
Here are a couple of examples of areas I’m working in right now.
These are detached homes comparing 2018 number of sales to 2017
So what…sales are down – what do these number mean to me?
It means that perhaps the neighbourhood is over valued compared to what buyers are prepared to pay. Maybe there is a lot of inventory and only AAA properties are selling. It could be there is a real glut of properties for sale and there aren’t enough available. Each neighbourhood has it’s nuances and a deeper look at the data will offer great insight.
Pricing is an entirely different issue. GTA is down 4.3% — That doesn’t mean your neighbourhood is down. Yours could be up and the one across the city is down double digits. There is so much more to consider and blanket numbers do not help any of us when making decisions to buy and sell. You really need to dive into the data to see the specific trends for your location. I’m very proficient at the analysis and happy to provide this information for you.
THE MILLION DOLLAR QUESTION –
DO I BUY OR SELL THIS YEAR???
As a Buyer – There is a great opportunity right now. There is not a huge amount of inventory to choose from but sellers who are on the market now, probably need to be (they likely have a reason to sell and aren’t just “testing” the market) and you may be in a position to NEGOTIATE … yes, we get to use that word again!
As a Seller – Now is the time to get your home ready for sale. Painting is the number one refresher that will garner ROI. Choose a neutral colour. Updating lighting – another very inexpensive way to make a huge difference. It is the time to pack those holiday decorations away and get them out of the house in preparation for your move – you won’t need them again until you are in your new home.
As a realtor I offer my seller clients a couple of unique services to help them stand out. A few hours of HouseLife Services support – from packing and decluttering to furniture reorganization – whatever it takes to help showcase the home in its best light. I also cover the cost of a home inspection AND my handyman husband will take care of minor maintenance items that show up before the home hits the market.
As a Seller and Buyer
My recommendation to those who are both buyers and sellers:
If you find your dream home and can financially handle a bridge loan then go for it.
If you are downsizers and looking for that perfect condo, buy it. Some property types don’t come up for sale that often.
If you are looking to upsize – sell first and be sure of your budget – there will be more properties for sale in the Spring. Competition is good for you!!
There are exceptions – and let’s chat …but generally these would be my suggestions.