Ben Treger

Selling Under Balanced Market Conditions

Here is something you may not have heard in a while: the Canadian real estate market is inching closer to balanced market conditions.

That’s right. After the buying frenzy in 2020 and 2021, Canada’s housing sector significantly cooled off in 2022, driven by the Bank of Canada (BoC) raising interest rates, which resulted in market uncertainty and many prospective buyers sitting on the sidelines. This allowed for overheating real estate market to get doused by eliminating the easy money era of the last few years.

Of course, one of the primary developments in all of this has been the shift away from the red-hot seller’s market.

According to the RE/MAX Canadian Real Estate Outlook 2023 report, 60 per cent of regions in the country are expected to transition to a balanced or buyer’s market this year.

“In sharp contrast to 2022, most regions analyzed in the report will experience more balanced conditions in 2023 – a trend that’s already starting to materialize as a result of current economic conditions,” RE/MAX stated in the report.

Many major Canadian city centres will see a balanced housing market, such as Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, the Greater Vancouver Area (GVA), and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

“It’s good to see the majority of markets moving toward more balanced conditions, which is typically defined by 45 to 90 days on market. This is a much-needed adjustment from the unsustainable price increases and demand we saw early in 2022,” stated Christopher Alexander, the President of RE/MAX Canada.

But now that the sizzling days of 2020 and 2021 are no more, how does a seller buy when an equilibrium has returned to the Canadian real estate market?

Selling Under Balanced Market Conditions

First, what is a balanced market anyway? This is when the supply of residential properties matches the level of demand from buyers. The two other types of housing markets are buyers and sellers: the former is when an enormous volume of units exceeds prospective homeowners, while the latter is when supply is far outpaced by demand.

Indeed, homeowners easily sold their homes above the asking price for the last couple of years. However, the Canadian real estate market has changed, so selling these homes has become more challenging.

Here are five tips for selling your home in a balanced market:

#1 Set a Competitive Price

Because active or new residential listings are now keeping up with the number of buyers, it is crucial to establish a price that lines up with current conditions. In addition, real estate experts contend that buyers may be a bit more fastidious when the broader housing sector is calm. As a result, it is essential to price your home correctly based on what the neighbourhood is doing and what agents recommend.

#2 Home Inspector

Before listing your home on the market, it is critical to hire a contractor or a home inspector and determine if there is anything wrong with the property, be it something that needs to be repaired or replaced.

During the pandemic-era boom, many buyers had ditched the idea of hiring a home inspector since it might have lost them the single-family house, attached property, or townhome. Today, it is a bit different, and even minor repairs might deter buyers from submitting an offer.

#3 Clear Your Things

When interested parties arrive at your home, they want to envision what their stuff will look like in the living room, bedroom, or kitchen. They do not want clutter to distract them from where they would potentially install their things. Therefore, as a rule of thumb, sellers need to clear at least 50 per cent of their furnishings, decorations, or items from each room. The more space, the better an idea visitors will have of how they will look in the new home.

#4 Add Incentives

While you do not need to go overboard in trying to strike a deal, you may need to add modest incentives to attract buyers. This could consist of new appliances, a new television, or even homeowners’ association dues. The little things can ensure the home is sold faster and without complications or headaches. This might not be necessary for some regions of the national housing market, but it may be imperative in a part of the country with little sales volumes.

#5 Wait and See

In the previous boom, it was almost guaranteed that the listing would sell over the asking prices. Today, everything has been turned upside down, so you will know how much of the actual selling price you will receive once an agreement has been made. This can be difficult if you are in the market for a new home since you do not know how much equity you will possess. Because of this, you may need to wait a while until you can determine what you can afford.

Or course, work with a professional, experienced real estate agent to help guide you through the process, regardless of the market conditions.

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