May 2 2018 Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate News

May 2

Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate News

May 2 2018


Wednesday May 2 2018. In this week’s Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate News: the spring market, prices up, mortgage rate up, airbnb income, house flippers, pre-construction buyers, tech news, Peterborough, Scotland, market activity…

Spring is here

Spring arrived late this year and the question on my mind mind is will the spring market follow? I was thinking earlier that Toronto had a real estate party and we got the hangover. It has been start and stop so far this year in Waterloo region’s real estate market. It has been random too. But now that we are into May, we almost always get a stretch of hyper-activity as most people, most families want to move during the summer months and if you want to do that, now is the time to buy. Stay tuned. If May were a day this would be Friday night. 

House prices up 15%

Waterloo Region house prices rose slightly faster over the past year than they did during the red-hot market of 2016-17. The aggregate house price in the region hit $474,437 in the first quarter of 2018 – an increase of 15.4 per cent over one year earlier. There had been a 14 per cent increase between the first quarters of 2016 and 2017.

  • Two-storey houses saw the most appreciation, with median values rising 16.5 per cent to $504,311. 
  • Bungalow prices increased by nearly 12 per cent, hitting $427,155, 
  • Condo prices jumped by 12 per cent to $290,766.

Nationally, the aggregate house price rose by 6.2 per cent, hitting $605,512. 

Toronto-Dominion Bank lifts mortgage rate in ‘biggest move in years,’ RBC follows suit

Banks generally give homebuyers better terms than their posted rates. Canada’s big banks are charging their preferred customers with sound credit quality 3.39 per cent for five-year fixed mortgages and 2.75 per cent for variable mortgages this month. That’s little changed from late January.

Doug Ford plans to open ‘big chunk’ of Ontario’s Greenbelt for new housing

The Ontario PC leader says this would help cut down on housing costs, but critics say the protected area gives future children ‘access to nature’

Owners earn big monthly income on Airbnb

Property owners who offer short-term rentals on sites like Airbnb have the most lucrative type of side gig today, with the majority earning an average income of $1,000 to $5,000 per month.

House flippers and pre-construction buyers

One of my 365 Rules about Real Estate is that you cannot time the market. There were a couple of news stories about those who got caught when the market suddenly shifted.

Two tech stories from Kitchener Waterloo

  1. Google’s new version of Gmail made in Kitchener
  2. To censor the internet, 10 countries use Canadian filtering technology

Meanwhile in Peterborough

This news story could be written about Kitchener-Waterloo, except our prices are about 20% higher. 

Skewing down

Home sales in Canada have slowed in recent months, but prices aren’t actually falling. According to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), the average price of an existing home sold in Canada fell by 10.4 per cent in March, compared to the same month a year earlier, and if house prices were actually falling at this pace that would raise some serious concerns. But that’s not what’s actually happening. What’s happening is that the average price is being skewed by the slowdown in sales in Toronto and Vancouver. Those cities have some of the highest house prices in the country, so when they record fewer sales, the overall average skews down.

40 interesting facts about Scotland

A popular dish in Scotland is a frozen pizza folded in half, dipped in batter and deep-fried. It is usually served with salt and vinegar. And here are 39 other facts.

Slouching toward Nirvana

To have a market, you need interaction between buyers and sellers. You need activity. Activity leads to sales.

As anyone who follows this blog knows, I track everything:

  • number of listings on the market, 
  • traffic to my websites, 
  • and most importantly, the activity of myself and my clients. Without activity, I will not have income.

A few years ago, I started recording all of the homes my clients saw or showed interest in. Every morning, I check in with my spreadsheet and record any new sales that are on the ‘showings and watch’ list. Then I update the spreadsheet and send the relevant results to my clients. It give them a real time view of what is going on in the market.

It also give me a good idea of how busy I am. 

Here are the results from the first four months of this year compared to last year. 

2018: There are 155 homes on the spreadsheet. This represents an average of  38 per month.

2017: There were 193 homes on the spreadsheet at end of April 2017. I was away in January 2017 and did not show my first house until February 5. This represents an average of 64 houses per month.

To be fair, I only showed 27 homes in January this year so if you knock January out this year’s average is 43 houses per month. My activity this year is about 2/3rds of what it was last year. I’m really slouching this year.

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