Get ready to sell your house this fall or winter?

If you’re thinking of buying and/or selling a home this fall, this is a season that traditionally attracts serious buyers! The first thing you are probably interested in is an update on the real estate market. In short: the real estate market in Durham is expected to remain steady, with prices forecast to rise another five per cent before the end of the year.

There’s also good news for people who were uncomfortable with the ups and downs of the market amid the pandemic and decided to sit on the sidelines. Housing market conditions are stabilizing near current levels. Still, the market will remain challenging because there’s still a lot of demand chasing an increasingly scarce number of listings, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) warns.

HOUSING MARKET IS STABILIZING

Home sales recorded over Canadian MLS® Systems were up 0.9 per cent between August and September. This marks the first month-over-month increase since March. The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of transactions in September was down 17.5 per cent on a year-over-year basis. This is the second highest ever September sales figure by a sizeable margin.

The number of newly listed properties, meanwhile, dropped 1.6 per cent from August to September. The MLS® Home Price Index rose 1.7 per cent month-over-month and was up 21.5 per cent year-over-year. The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price posted a 13.9 per cent year-over-year gain in September.

“The small changes observed in most key housing market metrics over the last couple of months suggest that the worst of the pandemic-related volatility we’ve experienced since last spring is in the rear-view mirror at this point,” CREA’s Senior Economist Shaun Cathcart assures.

DEMAND FOR HOUSES ‘ROBUST’

The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board describes demand for houses as “robust” in September. Many qualified buyers were eager to buy a home if they could find a suitable property.  But with new listings down by one third compared to last year, purchasing a home was easier said than done for many.

Here in Durham Region, 1,006 homes changed hands in September. This is a slight decrease from 1,048 the previous month, the Durham Region Association of Realtors reports. There were 1,314 new listings in September compared to 1,167 in August – an increase of 11.2 per cent. The average selling price of a home in Durham reached $968,136 in September. This is up $734,038 or 31.9 per cent year over year. On average, homes in Durham are selling in just nine days compared to 12 days last year.

Low interest rates, economic stimulus, higher home-buying budgets and a higher savings rate played a pivotal role in creating the current market conditions. Homeowners too scared to sell and lack of new construction are also factors. As you may recall, housing affordability was a key issue in the recent federal election. Many industry players are calling for various levels of government to work together to boost supply by allowing for more construction.

ADD AN EXPERIENCED REALTOR TO YOUR TEAM

Realize though that the estate market can shift! Working with an experienced and knowledgeable listing agent with a finger on the pulse of the area they serve, as well as other emerging trends, is more important than ever. By knowing the type of buyers interested in your neighbourhood, for example, I can target your audience.

Fall is typically a time that attracts more serious buyers. With social distancing measurements still in place, it’s important to make first impressions count. Unsure where to focus your efforts so you get the best return on your investment of time and money? My knowledge of the local market can help you make sound decisions.

With more potential buyers doing their initial searches on their phones and computers, be sure your realtor knows how to leverage technology to give you home the best exposure. My team and I embrace practices that include everything from virtual tours to completing paperwork electronically. We continually pre-qualify interest to reduce the number of in-person visits to only those who are truly invested in a property.

As you weigh your options when it comes to buying and/or selling a property in the Durham Region Real Estate Market, please know I am here to help you make an informed decision that’s best for you and your family. My strength continues to be knowing and being part of this wonderful community.

If you’d like a free home evaluation, click here.

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