Who wants to visit open houses when it's 32 degrees outside?! I have to say, the thought of being drenched in sweat while touring from one place to another isn't exactly my favorite way to spend a weekend, but there are some reasons why it might be worth braving the punishing temperatures.
1) Interest rates are on the rise...again: Yes the Bank of Canada raised interest rates again in July by 25 basis points and that's lead to higher rates for mortgages. Rates have been raised 4 times in the past year and may continue to do so if the BoC believes the economy will continue to pick up. If you are thinking about buying in the near future, talk to your mortgage broker of choice and get a rate hold. Let me know if you or a friend of yours needs help finding a broker.
2) Up-size potential: Tired of hearing the kids fight in that broom closet sized "bedroom?" Are your living room, bedroom and kitchen all the same room? You may be reaching the point where it's time to start thinking about an up-size. Currently, the market softens the higher up the price ladder you go. You can see in the market update that the sales ratio for detached homes is much lower than for attached housing options. This makes it a great time to sell your sought-after condo and take advantage of the slower detached market. In addition, the spread between detached housing and attached housing is getting smaller, so food for thought if you're in the financial position to upgrade.
3) Less competition: Jokes aside, I've noticed fewer buyers at open houses and most of the listings I inquire about are still available and have had no offers. Interest rates are up, lenders are making it difficult to get financing and affordability all play a part. Compared to the same time last year, booking buyer tours is a lot easier now and opportunities to negotiate-down prices are becoming much more common.
4) There is uncertainty in the market: Has the bubble finally popped? This question comes up every time the market slows down even for a few months. I'm not going to pretend I know the answer to this, but I will say that every time people get nervous, the natural reaction is to take a step back and "see what happens." If most people step back, those who come forward will have an emptier, and more favorable playing field. There's a risk, no doubt, in being bold but there could be good opportunities for those who don't wait.