Sales Commentary February sales on the Toronto Real Estate Board were up by 5.7% over February of last year – a slower increase than any month in almost a year. Is this a sign of a slowdown in buyers? No. The problem is a continued lack of listings to buy. At January month end, we had 5,000 ‘active listings’ and by month end for February we were at 5,400. When you factor out those listings that will never sell and you look at 12,000 buyers per month for the spring market, you see a problem. Continued price increases that show no signs of easing. In the downtown condo market, sales were up by 12.8% in February and in Humber Bay, sales were up by 35% over the same month last year. But more concerning is the drop in ‘active listings’ in these two markets – down 64% and 70% from ...
Toronto Condo Market Report March-April 2017
March 22, 2017
Conditional Clauses when Buying a Property
March 15, 2017
Every offer usually has some sort of conditions and they're all written for the benefit of the buyer. Take financing for instance, why is it written as "financing satisfactory to the buyer"? What does that mean, a 0% interest rate or 100% financing? No, the clause should state what type of financing is being arranged, not a clause that's open ended for the buyer to change their mind and walk away. What about a status certificate? It usually reads "to be approved by the sole option of the Lawyer". You know, most Lawyers can't even read a Status Certificate. I had one Lawyer tell me that he did not want his client to buy a condo, so he would not waive it. Once again, the clause is not to be used as an 'out clause', but rather to insure that the Condo Corporation can meet its financial obligations. Why not ...
What's In Store for Toronto's Crazy Real Estate Market?
March 6, 2017
Everyone is talking about our crazy real estate market, and in particular prices, they're up 20% in just 4 months. You know I've been in this business for over 30 years (can't you tell) and I've never seen anything like this. But, I'm not alarmed about the level of today's prices, rather the rate of increase. Toronto prices are not out of line with other major cities in the world. Will prices level off? Yes, they always do. Will prices fall? No. The only time prices fall are when people are forced to sell when they can't afford their mortgage and mortgage rates are not rising anytime soon. If you think individuals have a problem with their debt levels, just look at our Governments, they're in even worse shape. We live in a high tax country. The average person stores their wealth in their property, just look at Europe ...
How to Compete and Win in a Bidding War
February 27, 2017
Today's market is dominated with multiple offer sales. Many people have to make 6-8 offers to finally land that property. So, how do you compete and win in this market. Here are 5 easy steps to follow. 1.Market Analysis First, realize that many properties are under priced to attract multiple offers. You should first do a market analysis to determine the market price of the property. 2. No Conditions Secondly, you need to go in with no conditions. Get a home inspection or status certificate ahead of time. Make sure you have financing for the price you want to pay. 3. Big Deposit Come in with a big deposit. The norm is 5% so come with 10%. 4. Save Some for Round Two Usually there will be two rounds of bidding. Save something for the second round. 5. Pick a Maximum Number Pick a maximum number you will pay for ...
Market Report February-March 2017
February 21, 2017
Sales Commentary The Toronto Real Estate Board no longer publishes mid-month sales numbers hence we are forced to guess the market going forward, based only on January results. In January, overall sales were ahead by 12% over January of 2016, but active listings were 49% lower than the 2016 number. We are starting to see all listings sell at over the list price. Some by as much as $200,000 which is scary! In terms of the downtown condo market, January sales were up 23% over the same month last year but ‘active listings’ were down by 57% from last year. The result is the same as the overall market, multiple offers and most sale prices above the list price. This is the first time, we have been concerned over the state of the market. This imbalance has caused prices to spike by over 20% in the last twelve months. But ...
Buying & Selling Assignments
February 10, 2017
The Assignment market for condos is making a big come back. There are two reasons for this: First, there is a lack of resale condos to buy, forcing many people to look at the assignment market. Secondly, with tougher mortgage qualifications, many investors who bought pre-construction condos 3 to 4 years ago may not be able to close and will want to sell. While the opportunities are great and you can probably avoid the multiple offer scenario, the market is hard to track. Assignments are not usually found on MLS but are exclusive and the contracts can be difficult. Assignments are not really selling a property, it may look like that, but really it's just selling the paper. The paper is, the right to buy an option to close on a sale with a developer made 3 or 4 years earlier. Trying to buy or sell an assignment on your ...
Can You Believe How Few Sales Most Agents Do?
January 30, 2017
When the public tries to negotiate the commission down or tries to get a buyer rebate, their assumption is that all agents are the same. If all Agents were the same, then picking the agent who agreed to your request would net you the most money, but they are not! Did you know in 2016, there were 48,000 agents in the Toronto Real Estate Board? Did you know almost 13,000 agents did not do even a single sales end? And, there are two sales ends to ever sale, a list end and a buyer end. Did you know 25,000 agents, or over half the members of the Toronto Real Estate Board, did two sale ends or less in 2016? These are the agents that will offer you the type of deals you're looking for. Who do you want to represent your interests when buying or selling a property in Toronto ...
The Perfect Market for that Less than Perfect Condo
January 23, 2017
Never have I seen a market with such little market inventory - properties for sale. Many owners, myself included, have said 'If you don't need to sell, sit on it", the market is still rising. But, this is also the best time to unload what I call, 'less desirable properties' and put them up for sale. In a normal market, these properties are difficult to sell and they sell at a discount. However, in today's market, they will sell at full value and quickly. So what do I mean by less desirable properties? Sell that condo on the second floor overlooking the garbage bins. Sell that condo on the fifth floor that sits beside the Gardiner with windows that are never allowed to open, and sell that condo gets no sunlight. You know what I'm talking about. Never has there been a better time for sellers to unload a property ...
2017 Toronto Real Estate Market Forecast
January 10, 2017
Share of Total Condo Apartment Sales By Bedroom Type (All Areas) Source: Toronto Real Estate Board Q3 Many forecasters or pundits get bogged down in irrelevant statistics. Past experience has shown that the view from ‘the street’ has been more accurate than the ‘view from the executive floor’. In real estate, lower sales do not automatically translate into lower prices. And the average price to average income ratio for valuing property prices over a number of years is also of little value when you consider the impact of immigrants, non-residents, and self- employed buyers in today’s market. If you want further proof, just read our 2016 Forecast versus what actually happened in 2016 on our website. GTA Year Over Year Summary 2016 2015 % Change Sales 113,133 101,213 11.8% Average Price $729,922 $622,121 17.3% Average DOM 17 22 -22.7% New Lisitngs 154,266 160,520 -3.8% FACTORS AT PLAY ...
3 Predictions for Toronto Real Estate in 2017
December 19, 2016
With 2016 drawing to a close, everyone wants to talk about the Toronto market for 2017. So here are my preliminary thoughts; Lower Sales than in 2016 We predict lower sales than we've seen in 2016. Why? There is no product available and listings are way down. Secondly, the new mortgage rules will make it harder to qualify for everyone. For first-time Buyers, many will not even qualify at all, which will put a drag on the move-up market as well. Prices will not be falling No, prices will not be falling, but don't expect price increases of 20% for houses and 12% for condos that we saw this year. Rather, 10% and 5% will be more the norm. Increase in Housing Demand Finally, thanks to Justin Trudeau who wants to encourage 400,000 immigrants per year rather than the 250,000 we're having, many of which end up in Toronto ...