Knowledge and Learning

So we had our first snowfall this week, combined with the adjustment of daylight savings time the week before, and the welcoming of Christmas decorations in stores.

That’s a LOT to take in, and it usually means the start of the winter real estate market.

We’ve talked about the benefits of the winter season for buyers AND sellers in a previous post – the truth is… the winter is actually a LOT of fun to help people.

There may be less buyers out there compared to the Spring, but the ones that are shopping are usually pretty serious about finding a home.  Those buyers benefit because some of the “lingering” homes from the Fall season are REALLY ready to sell.

Sellers can also benefit because the competition goes down, and inventory goes down to about half of the active listings from the Spring.  Lack of competition is one of the best predictors of success in ANY market.

Our team has broken many records for sale prices over the winter season.  While we like to think we’re pretty good at what we do, we’re not too proud to admit that SOME of the success came from being one of the only options available to buyers.

We love this time of year because there are often really nice deals that come together between buyers and sellers that both need to be moving.  Like they just seem to fit together really well… and generally people are in good spirits because of the festive nature of the season.

There’s no one-size-fits-all advice about the best time to buy or sell.  It can depend on your situation – where you are, and where you want to be.

But if you’re interested in having a conversation about your next move, what you can expect from us is brutal honesty.  If we don’t think the time is right, or if we sense that something good will happen in the future, we’ll let you know.

Speaking of which… here’s a bonus story!

Some of our favourite moments over the last two decades in the real estate market happened when we talked people OUT of doing something!

Around 2005 or so, Chuck met with a couple that interviewed FIVE other real estate agents to sell their home.  They pitched their services, talked about the latest home sales, and why the clients should work with them to sell.

Chuck sat down with them with a blank sheet of paper and said, “What’s important to you about selling?”

Turns out that the family hadn’t had a vacation in nearly 10 years, and they wanted money from the sale of their home to finance a trip to Disney.

But after working out the numbers, including real estate fees, lawyer, land transfer tax, and their budget to buy their next home, it was clear that the move didn’t make sense.  Chuck helped the clients figure out where they could save money each month, so that they had a plan to take their trip within a year of the meeting.

He walked out of the meeting with no home to sell, but a very happy client for life.

So… is winter the right time for you to buy or sell a home?  That depends on whether you’ve been on vacation recently.  🙂