I am not going to pretend I know what is going to happen, but with so many people asking me, it's only fair I try. I mean, I have my opinions, and I will continue to make my personal decisions when it comes to real estate and investing based on them - and when my clients ask, I will share how I feel.
So, how do I feel about the real estate market?
Well, actually pretty good.
And how did I feel last month?
Well, pretty good.
What about a month from now?
Yes, pretty darn good.
How can you feel good about something that so many are feeling bad about?
Well, I am not quite sure that the owning of real estate, or the homes people want, or the investments they hope to make have people feeling bad; I imagine it is more about the new interest rates.
Let's look at the investment of real estate first. Whether you are renting it out or living in it, it is a choice of what to do with your money. For the people that are living in it, it's great to know that it is an investment, because you have to spend money on housing regardless.
When we look at any investment we always ask ourselves, “Does this make sense?” The simplest way I can look at real estate and answer that question is to say, I have a product and the people that want and need this product are growing, and the availability of this product does not seem to be doing the same.
Describing it this way helps make the most sense to me. I guess I could say the same thing about Coca Cola, but there is Pepsi, Sprite, water, beer, and this Prime drink that my kids won’t stop talking about (don’t get me started). So real estate as an investment makes sense, as there is no alternative to housing.
What about everything I am reading about prices going down?
Well, real estate prices are going down now, since the rates people use to afford them have gone up. When the rates go down, you know the prices will start to climb again.
The market is very healthy - I have been saying this for months.
The reason we’ve noticed some homes not selling is due to the sellers adjusting their price expectations downwards slower than the buyers are. The sellers are still willing to accept the price of a spring ago, but the buyers are the ones calculating the interest rate. When rates go up that quickly, it's hard for sellers to accept things fast enough, so buyers wait, and one by one new sales prices give data to sellers that say “You see, these are the new prices,” and a reluctant decision takes place by way of a price adjustment and then another sale happens.
In the spring market of 2022 prices rose but when interest rates started to climb prices fell. Although real estate goals still existed, and people still wanted to invest, the falling prices is what grabbed the headlines, so that healthy underbelly lies just below the surface.
Now here we are, in the early part of the year and what can sometimes be the barometer of how our real estate market will perform.
How is it going?
Well, the supply and demand levels have once again tipped in a slight favour of the seller, but buyers armed with a different interest rate are taking a more calculated approach instead of having a fear of missing out.
To conclude, a properly priced home will sell, an underpriced one will sell for over asking, and an overpriced home won’t sell at all. You see, nothing to see here, just a regular old spring market in Guelph.
Thanks for reading, and I thought this quote would be fitting.
“When the market is greedy, I get scared. When the market is scared, I get greedy.”
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