Barring any major governmental interference or major adjustments in the interest rate (not likely), I anticipate a steady 2011 and a fairly balanced market for buyers and sellers with the typical seasonal patterns.
We saw the weather play a big role in the seasonal patterns last year (in addition to the HST) and given the mild winter we’re having, I’m getting the feeling that the ‘spring market’ will hit sooner than later.
In fact, if you or anyone you know is considering selling this year, I’m a big fan of hitting the gates early.
I can already sense the momentum building by the number of calls into our office. After the winter doldrums and the holidays, there is pent up demand but very little inventory. If you have a marketable home this can be a really great time to list when people are ready to shop but have nothing to buy.
Even if you are considering the spring, don’t underestimate the amount of time you should be taking to prepare your home, and the benefits of us pre-marketing it to buyers who are waiting in the wings with baited breath.
In terms of the overall market trends according to The Toronto Real Estate Board, the average home price in 2010 was up nine percent compared to 2009 and the average annual rate of growth was five percent.
Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis says, “Expect the average selling price to grow at or below five per cent in 2011. With this type of growth, mortgage carrying costs for the average priced home in the GTA will remain affordable for a household earning an average income.”
From an overall perspective on the economy, the Globe & Mail, “Canada’s economy added more jobs than expected in December…while the unemployment rate unexpectedly held at 7.6 per cent. The December gain, reported Friday by Statistics Canada, marked the end of a year that saw the economy recoup all of the jobs lost during the recession and suggests companies are increasingly ready to drive the recovery as the impact of government stimulus fades.”
For those of you thinking of buying, the biggest question is, when is the best time?
It depends. (don’t you love it when people say that?) How picky are you? How flexible are you?
If you won’t settle for anything less than a home that has absolutely everything on your wish list in a very specific neighbourhood, you should be ready to shop when inventory is at its highest and be prepared to pay at least market value for it, and prepare for some competition.
If you have some flexibility and can make some compromises, you can get some great values in the summer when the spring market has passed and most sellers are motivated by other reasons to sell in that season.
Bottom line, stand by what you absolutely want that is realistically within your value range and you will find it.
Check out these additional market reports for more details…