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Archive for the ‘Kitchener Sellers’ Category

JANUARY HOME SALES SNOWED UNDER BY LOW INVENTORY

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

The Riz Team January Stats

There were 270 residential sales in January through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR), a decrease of 18 per cent compared to January 2017.

“On the surface, activity appears to be somewhat sluggish in January, says Tony Schmidt, KWAR President. “However if we set aside the past two years, it was a very typical January in terms of the number of sales. What is less typical is that listing inventory is still at historic low levels, and we continue to see multiple offers on properties putting upward pressure on prices.”

Total residential sales in January included 149 detached (down 23.6 per cent), and 70 condominium units (down 11.4 per cent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 27 semi-detached homes (down 18.2 per cent) and 22 freehold townhouses (up 10 per cent).

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The Scoop on Home Inspections

Monday, November 27th, 2017

A home inspection, while not required in all areas, should be an indispensable part of your home buying or selling process. It is worth the cost up front to save you money and headaches down the road.

What a Home Inspection Entails

A home inspector will provide a thorough inspection of the home’s interior and exterior to alert you to any damage that may cause potential problems in the future. He or she will look at the house as a whole and evaluate how the different components work together and affect each other. The inspector will identify any areas that need repairs or are unsafe and advise you on what your next steps should be.

Benefits for a Home Buyer

When you are purchasing a home, you want to know that it is going to be safe for you and your family for many years to come. Obviously, you don’t want to buy a home that is rotting from the inside out. A home inspector can alert you to issues that are minor right now but could potentially become much more serious in the future. Purchasing a home is a major decision. The results of the inspection may lead you to reconsider buying a particular house if it is likely to have a lot of problems in the future. It can protect you from huge unexpected expenses.

Benefits for a Home Seller

If you are the one selling the home, it is a good idea to request a home inspection prior to listing your home on the market. Potential buyers of your home are likely to have an inspection done, and you don’t want there to be any surprises. If there are issues with the house, buyers may rescind their offers or make offers only on the condition that you repair the problems before they finalize the purchase. It is better if you know about any problems in advance. An inspection gives you the opportunity to make sure the house is in its best possible condition when buyers start coming to look at it. This will streamline the purchasing process and make potential buyers feel much more confident that your home is the right choice for them.

When you are ready to buy or sell a home, or have any questions regarding home inspections, get in touch!

Three Space-saving Upgrades

Monday, November 20th, 2017

Giving a Smaller Home a More Roomy Feel

Smaller rooms can create a decorating challenge for homeowners. While some may be dealing with a space that is smaller overall – such as an condo or apartment – others may have just a couple of smaller rooms that look and feel cramped. While enlarging these rooms may not be an option, there may be a few upgrades to consider that can give these rooms a more spacious and open feel.

Light Paint Colours

Dark colours can add dramatic flair to a room, and they certainly will make a bold statement. However, they also can create the feeling that the room is smaller than it is. It is best to paint with light paint colours on the walls or even to choose a lighter colour for the ceiling. In addition to these colours, a lighter floor colour can also add the feeling of depth to the space. If the use of bolder, brighter hues is preferred, consider adding a pattern in combination with lighter colours to the ceiling. Another idea is to use stripes with alternating darker and lighter hues on the walls to create the illusion of space.

Shelving Installed Close to the Ceiling

Storage space is often a concern with smaller rooms, and cabinets and bookshelves can take up valuable floor space in any room. A smart idea for smaller rooms is to install shelving or even cabinetry closer to the ceiling. This can enable the space below it to be kept open or to be used for other purposes, such as for other furnishings that must be kept on the floor.

Recessed or Flush Lighting

Lighting is an important element in any room, and brighter lighting can make a space look larger in many situations. Darker shadows cast about a room can make the space feel closed off. More than that, overhead lights that hang down, such as pendants or chandeliers, can create a visual illusion that makes the room feel smaller than it is.

To achieve the goal of casting light throughout the room more evenly while removing these hanging light fixtures from the space, install recessed or flush lights into the ceiling. These can be combined with small table lamps if necessary to brighten up any areas that may still be dark or shadowy. Avoid tall, imposing lamps when decorating a smaller room.

Decorating a smaller room is rarely easy to do, and there are many things that homeowners can do when decorating that actually may make a smaller room appear to be even smaller. These are a few tips that can be followed to make the space appear to be more roomy and spacious, but there are also other ideas for decorating as well as built-in upgrades to consider. Ideally, the fully decorated room will be stylish and functional as well as appear to be spacious.

With proper research and planning, a homeowner can achieve the desired results.

You Ask, We Answer: When is the Right Time to Upgrade to a Larger Home

Monday, November 13th, 2017

Upgrading to a Larger Home – Are you ready?

Many homebuyers face the question of size when looking for their next home. Do they downsize, stay the same, or upgrade to a larger home? To help answer this question, here are some factors to take into consideration when determining if you should upgrade to a larger home.

 

Affordability

With larger homes come more financial responsibility. Typically larger homes will come with a larger mortgage, repair/maintenance, utilities, and insurance payments as well as increased property taxes. Are you ready financially for these larger expenses? Take into account these estimated expenses when going over your household budget. Remember, ideally you’ll want to be able to maintain a comfortable quality of life and still be able to save for the future when these larger expenses are taken into account with your budget.

 

Down Payments

There is a need in most cases during the property buying process to make a down payment and to pay for closing costs. You should include these expenses in your estimations while keeping in mind that selling the existing property and accessing equity will yield most or all of the funds that are needed to make a new purchase. Working with a real estate professional and a mortgage broker will help you to get more information about these two factors before making a sound financial decision.

When the time is right for you to upgrade to a larger home, you should consider working with an experienced real estate agent to sell your existing property and help you in the process of buying a new home!

Why Use a REALTOR®?

Monday, November 6th, 2017

REALTORS® Streamline the Process of Selling Your Home

So, it is time to move onwards and upwards in life and move house! Moving is a dynamic process that involves much more than a simple transaction. From marketing to proper evaluations and inspections, it is advisable to use the services of an experienced professional realtor to make sure everything goes smoothly.

The following challenges are what a professional can help you avoid when selling your home:

Time Spent on Potential Buyers

Selling a home by yourself will be a significant time commitment that should not be underestimated. Perhaps the greatest commitment to your time will be in scheduling and hosting viewings of your property. Are you ready and able to pick up the phone every time you have an inquiry? Are you able to sift out the simply curious from real potential buyers to avoid unnecessary viewings? Realtors are experienced in asking the kind of qualifying questions that sort out the wheat from the chaff. And how many evenings, weekends, and weekday hours are you able to give up to show interested parties your home? You’ll then have to pro-actively follow up on interest after viewings.

Marketing and Valuation

As well as the time involved in doing your own marketing, there are also practical considerations around how successfully you will get the information out there. Yes, you can list your property on various websites and specialist portals that realtors use. However, realtors also have extended networks of active potential buyers that they will reach out to with information on your property, a channel you will almost certainly not have access to.

You would have to be confident that you could realistically value your property correctly if you chose to put your home on the market yourself. Things you may be oblivious to can be widely considered as flaws by potential buyers. A professional realtor has the experience to point those out and suggest small changes which will make your property more attractive.

Negotiating

Realtors are both objective and experienced, having negotiated hundreds or thousands of real estate transactions. They know how to spot the signs a potential buyer has formed an emotional attachment towards your property and how to leverage that to your benefit. They also know how to spot signs of nervousness that might pose a threat to the eventual sale and how best to allay such fears. They won’t make compromises because they have been charmed by a prospective buyer, or behave irrationally because they don’t like them on a personal level.

Avoiding Getting Sued

This is a genuine concern that owners operating without a realtor must be acutely aware of. There is a lot of paperwork involved in the sale of a property. Getting it wrong can at best delay the sale and at worst lead to putting yourself in danger of legal proceedings. Seller’s disclosure is a particular concern. What can be considered a defect, hazard, or nuisance varies depending on where you live. Realtors know exactly what is required of the seller. If a mistake is made, then they have insurance, ensuring that a seller does not personally suffer.

Selling your home in the Kitchener/Waterloo, Alberta area? Local real estate agent Riz Jadavji can ensure that you have a successful experience selling your home!

Steady Home Sales in August….

Friday, September 8th, 2017

A total of 483 residential sales occurred through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in August. This was 19.2 per cent below August 2016’s record breaking 598 units sold but still ahead of the previous 5-year August average of 473 sales. Residential sales last month brings a year-to-date total of 4,876 residential units, an increase of 3.7 per cent compared to 2016. “I think we’re seeing some stability return to the market” says James Craig, President of KWAR. “Last summer’s record setting sales was unsustainable and created a market that no one enjoyed.”

The Riz Team Market Update August 2017

Over 800 Residential Home Sales in May Sets a New Record

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (June 5, 2017) ––There were 816 Residential properties sold through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in May, an increase of 8.2 per cent compared to May 2016, and a 6 per cent increase compared to the previous month.  This is the second consecutive month unit sales have hit an all-time high.

Home sales in May included 493 detached homes (up 3.8 per cent compared to May 2016), 180 condominium units (up 7.8 per cent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 64 semi-detached homes (up 39.1 percent) and 70 freehold townhouses (up 22.8 per cent).

“With the persistent buyer demand we’ve been experiencing these past several months, it was great to see that spike in residential listings enter the market in May, as we’ve had a severe shortage of inventory,” says James Craig, President of the KWAR.

REALTORS® listed 1,271 residential properties in K-W and area last month, a 38.6 per cent increase compared to May of 2016, and a 29 per cent increase compared to the previous month. It’s the first time in two years that the number of new listings put on the market has exceeded the 1,000 unit mark. The five-year average for new listings in May is 989.

While more homes were listed in May, it continues to be a seller’s market in Waterloo region and across the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) as inventories remain tight at near or less than one month of inventory.

The average sales price of all residential sales increased 31 per cent to $496,664 compared to May 2016. Detached homes sold for an average price of $594,047 an increase of 35.3 per cent, while the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $293,158, an increase of 25.8 per cent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $361,198 (up 30 per cent) and $383,819 (up 29.3 per cent) respectively.

Ongoing demand for homes in Waterloo region has resulted in a shorter sales cycle. The average days on market in May was 12, compared to 24 days a year ago. On a month to month basis, it took two additional days on average from list to sale date in May compared to April.

Addressing the Fair Housing Plan that was announced by the Ontario government in April, the president of the KWAR notes that it is still too soon to know if the measures will have the intended cooling effect on the market.  “For now, home sales are still booming, and prices are going strong. While we continued to see big year-over year price gains in May, the overall residential average price did dip 3 per cent compared to April.” One month does not make a trend Craig concedes, but the spike in listings last month may have contributed to the flatter prices.

The KWAR cautions that average sale price information can be useful in establishing long term trends, but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Those requiring specific information on property values should contact a local REALTOR®. REALTORS® have their fingers on the pulse of the market. They know the questions to ask, the areas to probe and what to look for so that you get a complete picture of the property and community you’re considering.

How to Get Top Value for Your Home

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

This article appeared in the Saturday, May 20, 2017 issue of Waterloo Region Homes.

Knock Knock? Who’s there? Someone who wants to buy your house? Consumer Beware! For most readers this is no newsflash: Waterloo region’s residential real estate market is red hot!

Like many markets across the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH), we in Waterloo region have been experiencing record breaking sales combined with low inventory levels for months now. In other words, it is a sellers’ market.

During the first quarter of 2017, there were 1,532 home sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR). The average price of a residential home during this same period increased a whopping 28.3 per cent on a year-over-year basis to $468,653.

While statistics like this can paint some of the picture, what it cannot tell you is what your home will sell for. The fact is no one really knows what price their home will fetch until it is put to the test of being listed with your Realtor on the MLS® System.

These days we are seeing some sticker shock. For example, when a house priced in the $300,000 range subsequently sells for a hundred-thousand dollars over asking! Does this mean that every home listed for $300,000 will bring substantially more? Absolutely not! In fact, it might sell for exactly $300,000 or even less. Only the market can determine sale price, but the experience of a knowledgeable local Realtor can certainly help predict it.

With a shortage of listings (we have been sitting at less than two month’s inventory or less for the past 12 months) inventory levels are at an unprecedented low and buyer creativity at an all-time high. One strategy some buyers and their Realtors have turned to in these times is good old fashioned door-knocking to find homeowners who could be tempted to sell while the market is hot.

Now, knowing what you do know about today’s market, what would you do if someone came knocking on your door tomorrow, offering you X amount for your house? Would you know if what they were offering was fair market value?

There is certainly nothing wrong with this practice and when it works out it can be a win-win for both buyer and seller. On the other hand, my caution to homeowners is: the person doing the knocking may be offering you a price that sounds attractive, but how can you be sure?

Sometimes in this scenario, sellers are attracted by the idea of a quick hassle-free transaction. They’ve been offered a price that is way more than what they originally paid for their home, and maybe even way more than what they ever dreamed they could ever get.

I have heard a few anecdotes recently where the buyer knocking on the door has actually encouraged the homeowner NOT to use a Realtor (It would be unethical and illegal for a Realtor to do this by the way).

In one case, the gentleman did sell his house without the aid of a Realtor, and the price he sold it for – while far more than what he paid when he purchased it over 30 years ago, was substantially less than what he would have got had he put it on the open market.

I think the Canadian Real Estate Association’s latest advertising campaign says it best: “Live with No Regrets.” Using a Realtor is the most important decision you can make when buying or selling.

On whatever side of the transaction you are on, if you have a Realtor in your corner (i.e. you’ve entered into either a listing agreement or a buyer representation agreement) they have a legal duty to only act in your best interests. Furthermore, they are bound by the Real Estate Council of Ontario, the Canadian Real Estate Association and their local real estate board’s Code of Ethics, rules and regulations.

When your home is listed by a Realtor you get the counsel of someone who understands the market and can guide you on the best pricing and selling strategy. If you’re purchasing, your Realtor will provide you with insight and advice on the home, the neighbourhood, and when it comes to submitting an offer, how many other buyers you are competing against and advice on the price you offer. So what should you do when someone comes knocking on your door? Please take my advice: take their information and then talk to a Realtor. He or she will be able to assist you in reviewing the doorknockers’ offer and help you understand all of your options to ensure you end up with the offer that is best for you.

 

APRIL WAS SHOWERED WITH HOME SALES

Monday, May 8th, 2017

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (May 3, 2017) ––It was another record setting month for home sales as 766 residential transactions were recorded through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR), an increase of 14.3 percent  compared to April 2016.

Residential sales in April included 492 detached homes (up 14.7 percent compared to April 2016), 161 condominium units (down 1.2 percent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 52 semi-detached homes (up 30 percent) and 53 freehold townhouses (up 60.6 percent).

“Homebuyers were out in full force again in April,” says James Craig, President of the KWAR. “The encouraging sign was that we actually saw more listings coming onto the market last month than we’ve seen in quite a while.”

REALTORS® listed 985 residential properties in K-W and area last month, a 17.8 percent increase compared to April of 2016, and the first time the number of new listings put on the market in a single month has come so close to the 1,000 unit mark in two years.

However, with inventory continuing to sit at or below one month of inventory for the ninth consecutive month, there continues to be a lot of pressure on prices.  By the end of April, there were only 652 residential listings still active on the KWAR’s MLS® System — that’s 48.8 percent fewer than the 1,274 available listings that were on the market at the end of April 2016.

The average sales price of all residential sales increased 39.7 percent to $512,656 compared to April 2016. Detached homes sold for an average price of $594,453 an increase of 40.1 percent, while the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $267,455, an increase of 18.3 percent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $377,531 (up 39.3 percent) and $415,709 (up 47.7 percent) respectively.

Vigorous demand for homes in Waterloo region meant homes were snapped up quickly.  The average days on market in April were 10, compared to 33 days a year ago. On a month to month basis, it took four fewer days from list to sale date in April compared to March.

To address the growing concern around housing affordability, particularly throughout the Greater Golden Horseshoe, the province recently announced 16 measures for homebuyers and renters, called Ontario’s Fair Housing Plan. “It’s still too soon to say what kind of impact these change will have on the market,” says Craig. “We don’t support expanding rent controls, or any new taxes – but I was pleased that the government will be creating a Home Ownership Task Force to provide ideas about getting more supply to market.”

The KWAR cautions that average sale price information can be useful in establishing long term trends, but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Those requiring specific information on property values should contact a local REALTOR®. REALTORS® have their fingers on the pulse of the market. They know the questions to ask, the areas to probe and what to look for so that you get a complete picture of the property and community you’re considering.

MOMENTOUS HOME SALES IN MARCH

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

KITCHENER‐WATERLOO, ON (April 4, 2017) ––Residential sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener‐Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) continued their monthly ascent in March with 729 properties sold in Kitchener‐Waterloo and area. This represents a 24.2 percent increase compared to the same month last year, and is the highest March on record.

“This is the first time we’ve seen residential sales come anywhere close to the 700 unit mark so early in the year,” says James Craig, President of the KWAR. “These are exceptionally strong numbers, in fact’ we’ve only surpassed 700 units in a single month three other times: May 2007, and then not again until May and June of last year.”

During the first quarter of 2017, there were 1,532 home sales, 13.4 percent above last year’s result for the same period and 30 percent above the previous 5‐year quarterly average.  On a monthly basis, home sales were 41 percent above the previous 5‐year average for the month of March.

Residential sales in March included 444 detached homes (up 15.0 percent compared to March 2016), 164 condominium units (up 49.1 percent) which include any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 67 semi‐detached homes (up 76.3 percent) and 48 freehold townhouses (up 14.3 percent).

The average sale price of all residential sales increased 32.3 percent to $493,226 compared to March 2016. Detached homes sold for an average price of $583,144 an increase of 35.6 percent, while the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $265,524, an increase of 25.4 percent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $368,554 (up 29.9 percent) and $412,226 (up 49.1 percent) respectively.

Once again in their latest monthly news release, the Canadian Real Estate Association called the disparity between limited housing supply and robust demand in Ontario’s Greater Golden Horseshoe “without precedent”. In Kitchener‐Waterloo, the number of months of inventory has stood at or below one month for eight consecutive months.

Despite the low inventory, Craig notes that people were listing their homes in large numbers last month. “We had 844 new listings processed through our MLS® System in March which is above the previous 5‐year average of 807 for the month of March.” However, due to extraordinary demand, the number of active residential listings still on the market at the end of March was well below normal with only 434 residential properties for sale, way below the previous 5‐year March average of 1,508.

The average days on market in March were significantly shorter than a year ago: 14 days, compared to 35 days. On a month to month basis, it took four fewer days to sell a home in March compared to the month before.

“In the past several months there has been plenty of conversation in the media, in the pubs, and at all levels of government surrounding housing affordability, and it’s a concern I share,” says, Craig.  “Earlier this month the Ontario Real Estate Association alongside the Ontario Home Builders’ Association called on the province to create a taskforce to address home affordability. While homeownership is an investment that has served most Canadians extremely well, it’s also becoming very difficult for those first‐time buyers who are trying to share in that dream and get into the market.”

The KWAR cautions that average sale price information can be useful in establishing long term trends, but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Those requiring specific information on property values should contact a local REALTOR®. REALTORS® have their fingers on the pulse of the market. They know the questions to ask, the areas to probe and what to look for so that you get a complete picture of the property and community you’re considering.


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