Perhaps the Beginning of a Market Shift

Toronto market can change on a dime… Perhaps we are seeing start of a shift.

In the fall, listings sat on the market with no showings. One was lucky to get an offer. Market was tough. Towards the end of the year and the beginning of 2024 – houses that had been sitting, slowly started selling. Early January, in houses started gating a lot more showings. In many cases, buyers “woke up” and started buying. It appears that to some extent confidence in the real estate market is being restored. In hot areas where there has been little product there is pent up demand – in some cases multiple offers are back. We had a listing in a central area that ended up with 8 offers within 4 days of being listed and sold well over list.

It is not certain how this trend will continue. The high end now has a luxury tax – how this tax will influence the market is still to be seen. It is hard to say how condos will fare.

Hoping for a Brighter Real Estate Market

Hoping for a brighter 2024. This fall has been one of the slowest time periods in the real estate market that we have seen in many years. Showings on listings are down 60% from the previous time last year. As agents – we are feeling it. Homes that should have sold quickly are still sitting on the market with few showings. Buyers are out there but they are hesitant to jump and many are opting to wait to see what the new year brings.

High Demand + Low Supply

Higher interest rates and inflation are in the forecast. Everyone is asking how this will impact the real estate market. The answer is we have no idea. Yes higher interest rates and living costs should impact affordability but with such high demand and low supply of housing we are not sure how it will all go. We are not really seeing supply go up substantially and we aren’t seeing demand subside. Increasing supply of housing is not an easy fix as much as government would like to make it so. Perhaps solutions need to be more creative and out of the box.

Housing Hot Election Topic

Housing is a hot topic for this upcoming election – a key election issue. Toronto and surrounding areas just don’t have enough houses for the demand. This includes many parts of Canada. The Government is trying to make housing more accessible by putting more money in buyers hands. However this does not address the need for more rentals and more ownership of housing. Perhaps it may be helpful if there is incentive and less bureaucracy to create rental and homes for purchase – a better plan to create density in certain areas. Understanding that density has to be strategic and neighbourhoods have to be preserved, we just need more. Maybe more effort and money to reassess what we currently have and what we need.

Real Estate Sales 101

Many buyers are fed up with blind bidding but no one forces anyone to bid high or low. The house will sell for whatever the market will bear ie whatever the buyer wants to pay. Its stressful for buyers but its also stressful for sellers who often need the money to purchase something else. Or they have already purchased something else for a high number. As agents representing sellers we are under contract to get the most we can for them. We have to follow the rules but situations are not always clear cut. There is more to the sale than just the number. There is closing date, conditions and sometimes a feeling of comfort with the buyer. Most agents we deal with are ethical. Its stressful for listing agents as well. It’s definitely not an easy market for anyone these days. Having a good agent working for you is important.

To Bid Or Not To Bid…

Bidding on homes is difficult to guide in todays market. The challenge for buyers in today’s market is to know if a house that comes on the market is actually within their budget or if it will go substantially higher. The list price is often just a starting point. When a house comes out clients will often call me and ask “What do you think it will sell for. Should we go look at it?” Some houses are selling for what we think they should, some are going a lot higher and some are actually not getting to where we thought. This makes it difficult for buyers to decide what to do and difficult for agents to guide their clients. It’s basically trial and error. This makes for a lot of work for everyone and a lot of up and down emotion for buyers. Not easy..

Market Frenzy

So much activity in the market – the desire to move during the pandemic has not died down. Market frenzy continues and now condos are in low supply and high demand. It looks like prices of condos are starting to bounce back up to where they were. Hard to find a bargain. We are expecting a surge of immigration after the pandemic and we anticipate that they will join in the buying frenzy. Hence we anticipate prices of homes and condos to continue to rise this year.

Higher End Real Estate Market is Really Moving!

Higher end real estate market is really moving and prices are going up. There was a time when it wasn’t so easy and fast to sell a listing over $5 million. Now the process can be quick and these homes can attract multiple offers, selling for record prices. This is definitely a pandemic induced situation when the comforts of home are becoming so much more important. Costs of renovating continue to rise. What cost $50,000 a couple of years ago is now $75,000 – 50% more. That translates into $100s of thousands on a build. It’s tough to swallow but people are paying.

Busy Market!

The house and condo market is extremely busy with so many in multiple offers. We listed a house and a condo last week. In 4 days the house has received over 90 appointments. The condo is also very busy. Both are not taking offers until later this week. Sellers used to look at pre-emptive or bully offers but in the current market most aren’t looking at offers until the offer date. It’s just too busy and most times it pays off to wait. The frenzy is exhausting for buyers, sellers, and for agents. We expect it to be quite busy through this year. The pandemic has spurred a lot of movement and we aren’t done yet.

Happy new year to all!

Happy new year to all! I think this year many of us have reflected on the silver linings that the pandemic has given us. We are grateful for what we have. Sometimes it’s all about the little things. This winter our cauldron and pizza oven gave us much joy. I never knew that pizza in front of a fire in the winter could be so much fun.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all my clients and friends who have supported us through the pandemic. Our team has had a record year and I am grateful for that.

Here is to 2021 – may we transfer all that we have learned for a better year.

Reach out below to learn more

Interested in Learning More?