Open House Day – Sunday January 25th

1. Open House 693 St. Paul Street, South Kamloops 11:30am-12:30:  South Kamloops home on a corner lot. 2 bedrooms on the main and 1 partially finished bedroom & den down (needs flooring).  Large Kitchen with newer flooring. Basement is partially finished. 693 St Paul Street

2. Open House 1143 Surrey Ave, North Kamloops 1:00pm-2:00pm: Priced to sell! Nicely updated 3+2 bedroom, 2 bath home.  Original hardwood floors on main. Newer kitchen w/laminate floors. 5 appliances included. New hot water tank.  Bathrooms are being reno’d & will be finished.

surrey-ave-front

3. Open House 1725 Clifford Ave, Brocklehurst 2:30pm-4:00pm:  RIVERFRONT fixer-upper mini estate w/indoor pool. Over 5,000 sf,  4 bdrms plus den.  Bachelor suite w/sep entrance.  Needs TLC, Definitely worth renovating. clifford-pool

Financial Post Article: No Real Estate Crash Here?…

I found this article recently by the Financial Post and thought it was worth posting…..

I’ve been hearing a lot of soothing sounds of late coming from the real estate and construction industries. “All is well,” they seem to say. “Don’t panic,” they encourage.

Two days ago, the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, a lobby group, insisted “there is absolutely no merit” in drawing a parallel between the U.S. real estate meltdown and the “cooling” market we are currently experiencing.

In mid-December, meanwhile, the Canadian Real Estate Association announced that national averages aren’t down as much as previously thought, and that it would be changing the methodology by which it calculates home prices, taking into greater account the rural homes that haven’t depreciated as quickly.

Taken at face value, these recent press releases might suggest that now was a great time to buy a house — a convenient conclusion for home builders and real estate agents.

But don’t you believe them. Maybe it’s appropriate that the CREA is changing its methodology to be more inclusive, but now seems to be an awfully convenient time to be doing so. And while it’s true that the Canadian housing boom was not propelled by the loose lending practices and low interest rates seen in the U.S., that doesn’t mean our boom was any less heated. In Canada, housing prices skyrocketed alongside a commodities boom that brought enormous wealth, in particular to western provinces.

So what do you suppose might happen when such a commodities boom crashes down to earth, as has happened over the last four months? If you’re still not convinced, take a look at the numbers below. They show six years of annual housing prices, leading up to their respective peaks, in the United States, as well as four Canadian cities. Also included are the most recent prices, to give you a sense of how far we’ve come down so far. Numbers are from the U.S. Census Bureau and the CREA — before they decided to revise their methodology.

United States
March 2002 – US$227,600
March 2003 – US$233,100 (2.4%)
March 2004 – US$262,900 (15.5%)
March 2005 – US$288,500 (26.8%)
March 2006 – US$305,300 (34.1%)
March 2007 – US$322,100 (41.5%)

Vancouver
May 2003 – $319,783
May 2004 – $370,545 (15.9%)
May 2005 – $418,757 (31%)
May 2006 – $518,176 (62%)
May 2007 – $591,722 (85%)
May 2008 – $624,639 (95.3%)
Most recent – $510,465

Calgary
July 2002 – $196,472
July 2003 – $209,932 (6.9%)
July 2004 – $220,978 (12.5%)
July 2005 – $245,704 (25.1%)
July 2006 – $357,831 (82.1%)
July 2007 – $436,739 (122.3%)
Most recent – $384,243

Toronto
April 2003 – $292,783
April 2004 – $321,131 (9.7%)
April 2005 – $342,032 (16.8%)
April 2006 – $366,683 (25.2%)
April 2007 – $379,025 (29.5%)
April 2008 – $398,687 (36.2%)
Most recent – $368,582

Montreal
July 2003 – $190,402
July 2004 – $218,313 (14.7%)
July 2005 – $222,972 (17.1%)
July 2006 – $253,420 (33.1%)
July 2007 – $263,018 (38.1%)
July 2008 – $277,703 (45.9%)
Most recent – $263,734

Understanding Market Conditions

real-estate-market

Numerous factors affect the real estate market. There may be more buyers than sellers. There could be more sellers than buyers. Interest rates, employment statistics and pricing. The supply of resale and new homes are also considerations when selling a home. Generally speaking, there are three types of markets that affect the sale of your home. Understanding each of these can make a difference to your bottom line.

Buyers’ Market
Description: There is an abundance of homes on the market. Supply exceeds demand.
Characteristics: Many homes available for sale. Fewer buyers than homes. Homes remain on the market longer. Stable prices. Prices may also drop.
Impact: Less panic in buying. Buyers shop longer for homes. Upon negotiation, they often have more leverage.

Sellers’ Market
Description: There are more buyers than homes available.
Characteristics: Few homes on the market. Many buyers. Homes are sold quickly. Prices often rise.
Impact: Home prices are higher. Homes prices often rise. Buyers purchase quickly, and tend not to shop as much. Multiple offers are common. Sellers may prefer offers with no-conditions.

Balanced Market
Description: There are roughly the same amount of buyers, sellers and number of homes on the market. Supply equals demand.
Characteristics: Demand equals supply. Sellers accept reasonable offers. Homes sell within a reasonable time period. Prices generally remain stable.
Implications: There is less tension among buyers and sellers. There is a reasonable number of homes to choose from.

We have seen exponential growth in the Kamloops real estate market over the past five plus years. Often buyers would have little time to place an offer to purchase a property because of the sense of urgency in the market. Multiple offers was commonplace at that time. This fortunately for buyers has changed recently with the economic downturn. Buyers have time on their side and an abundance of homes to chose from. Today in the Kamloops real estate market we are seeing a strong buyers market. It will not be a buyers market forever, but it is expected that it will be this way for a while. Eventually, the market will cycle into a balanced market, which we have not seen in quite a number of years.

Selling Your Home: For Sale By Owner

What is your home worth? Click here for a free online home evaluation.

FSBOMany people don’t realize that selling a home is a complicated, time-consuming process. With numerous factors to consider such as open houses, advertising, pricing, negotiating and handling the numerous kinds of inquiries, it can be very exhausting and even worse – unfruitful. Many homeowners report the familiar grief after an open house: “I got lots of people, but most were just looking.” “They wanted it for next to nothing.”

You may be thinking, “Why would I need a Realtor to sell my home?” Let me give you just a few of the key reasons why a For Sale By Owners need Help in today’s difficult market:

1. Without working day in and day out in the real estate market it is quite unlikely that a FSBO will have complete understanding about pricing. Often a seller is forced to reduce the price and may have to accept less money for the home than the seller would have received had he or she started at the right price. When a Realtor goes to work with you, they ensure you will receive the most current market stats along with a thorough market analysis report to place your home  in a solid market position.

2. A property depreciates the longer it is on the market. Many owners fail to take advantage of this excitement by limiting the market to their immediate contacts and advertising.  Ensure your home is advertised 24 hours a day until it is sold. Realtors use a home selling system that is constantly being tested and improved to ensure your home is exposed to the largest pool of QUALIFIED buyers.

3. The two most common people who prey on FSBO’s are:

– #1. Investors / Bargain Hunters: these are people who are looking to capitalize on a FSBO’S lack of negotiating experience and market knowledge to score their next deal. Any time a buyer doesn’t buy from a store or through a sales person they expect to pay substantially less. In a sense they would expect to save the sales commissions or profits that would normally go to a sales person or store owner. Why should someone do all the work a salesperson would do and still pay the same price? For example if the seller is trying to save six percent and the buyer is trying to save six percent, now they are 12 percent apart!

– #2. People who can’t qualify to buy your home: These people will often approach FSBO’s because they have had previous financial difficulties and would want the owner to finance them. While for the right person, this could be a profitable investment, most sellers need to pull as much equity out of the property as possible to be able to move on with their next home.

4. It is important to ensure that only prospects who can qualify are introduced to your home. This eliminates the hassle of “lookers” and non-serious buyers and reduces the chance of strangers who may have activities in mind other than buying a house will come. Realtors often also have some of the best mortgage brokers in the industry working with their team who can pull the necessary strings to help finance a purchase.

5. Did you realize that any time a private seller is away from home, the home is off of the Market? It is important that someone will always be available to handle and follow up with inquiries during both peak hours and off-peak hours.

6. A seller selling privately can expect to put a minimum of 80 hours “work” into the project, without a guaranteed result. This does not account for out-of –pocket expenditures such as advertising, lawn signs, etc. Selling a home can be extremely stressful! Often FSBO’s don’t have the time available to take care of the details, from the first step of marketing to the final sale, because you have a life outside of the sale of your home.

In past markets it was very easy for a For Sale By Owner to sell their home. By all means, if you can do it on your own, go for it! Don’t wait around for a prolonged period of time and For Sale By Ownerhope for that qualified buyer to walk in your door. I have found in the past few months many FSBO’s have had a lot of inquiries about Rent to own options. This sometimes is possible and works for the seller, but not often.

For Sale By OwnerThere are a lot of sellers trying to sell their homes today, that have the advertising power and exposure behind them because they are listed on the MLS with a Realtor. The majority of buyers begin their search on the internet, including FSBO sites, unfortunately the bulk of the current listings exist on the MLS. Once buyers begin their search they often pick a Realtor to help them, they do this because Realtors are free for buyers. Buyers do not have to pay a fee to work with a Realtor and often Realtors have the most qualified buyers.

Selling your home For Sale By Owner is difficult, but can be done. Give it a try and if you get frustrated interview Realtors and find the right one for you.

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