It's been another crazy year for Real Estate in the Durham Region. There are many questions surfacing because of this new dynamic market so I figured I'd share some of the most common questions I'm asked as a Realtor. I hope you enjoy and if you want any additional information, call me at 905-576-5200 or Email: Ryan@ryanthomashomes.com

1. What is the point of those "Coming Soon" Signs?

These signs were unheard of or at least rarely seen before housing prices skyrocketed. The hot housing market itself is what created a need for “Coming Soon” signs. If you take a closer look, the sign actually reads “Coming Soon to MLS”. The house may or may not be ready for a showing but the listing agent has the exclusive right to market and show the property if they choose to. The only thing they can’t do is upload it on the MLS system for the time being. These signs can serve many purposes, some of which include:

  • Creates a "Buzz"
  • Exclusive sales (Potentially reducing commission costs)
  • Extends the marketing time-frame

Nowadays, a properly priced home doesn’t even last a week on the market before some lucky buyer snatches it up.  The extra few days give the Realtor a better chance to reach a greater number of potential buyers.

2. Is the Market going to crash?

Nothing like getting right down to business… This has to be the most common question I’m asked, almost daily. It’s surprisingly the first one that comes up too. It’s funny how we tend to think in such a pessimistic way sometimes. Ex. “The housing market is doing really well, therefore it must be getting ready to crash, right?” Unfortunately there is no true consensus; everyone from economists, bankers, media, government officials and real estate agents will give you a different answer. Perhaps a better question to ask is “Will housing prices continue to increase at these high levels of growth?”  I think with a question like that you’ll start to see some consistency in the answers you get. It would be very unlikely and near impossible for our housing market to continue long term gains like we’ve seen over the past two years.  I’m not saying that housing prices will decrease, but think of it this way - If we were to sustain a growth rate of 12-17% per year, the current detached home in the GTA now worth $952,983 (Aug 2016) would more than double in 5 years. It would grow to an unprecedented worth of $1,916,789 by August 2021.

3. Can I make money flipping houses like on T.V?

Of course there will always be money in flipping houses but building a plan and proper due diligence is required. Keep in mind, with a hot market, there are many buyers out there with the same plan as you and multiple offers exist on these properties too. Don’t let yourself get carried away during offers and stick to your budget. Have a Realtor help determine the value of the property before and after your budgeted renovations by using quality comparables and research. There will always be some risk involved. Unforeseen costs and market conditions are a couple to keep in mind. Like any investment, be sure to involve professionals that have an expertise such as Contractors, Realtors, Accountants and Lawyers.

4. What did “that” house on my street sell for?

This question comes as no surprise, we are human beings, we're curious. Whether you want to know “just because” or you’re considering selling in the near future, it’s important to keep up-to-date on your local housing market. We often look to the news as our first source for market updates. Keep in mind the housing market in Downtown Toronto is significantly different than the market in North Whitby, or South Ajax. Housing prices don’t all move at the same rate of growth. Ask a Realtor for the information that will help you understand your local market or Sign up for Monthly/Quarterly Newsletters to help stay updated. It’s good to be curious!

5. What’s causing prices to rise so quickly?

There are multiple factors at work causing these price gains. Here are a few big reasons:

  • Technology & Television creating increased demand
  • Cheap Financing + High Rental Rates = Increased Demand
  • Low Supply caused by a lack of new listings
  • Demographics are creating a higher level of demand
  • Mega Projects

The demand heavily outweighs the current level of supply and therefore continues creating a price surge. For a closer look into each of these factors, CLICK HERE to read more.

6. How are first time home-buyers getting into the market these days?

They do it with a little help and by knowing their limits. Let’s face it, today’s market isn’t easy to jump into but with high rental rates it continues to look like an attractive option for many. The government has created incentives to help out first time home-buyers such as a $2000 rebate on provincial land transfer tax and creating rules that allow them to withdraw from their RRSP’s, tax free. Families have always been known to lend a helping hand, after speaking with a mortgage broker I found out this is a much bigger component to the equation nowadays. If you are a first time home-buyer your first step is finding a mortgage specialist or broker to help you understand whether or not you are able to jump into the market, and if so, at what level.

7. I want to move out of the “City”. Are there affordable homes with a little bit of land available?

This is one question that I’m starting to get more and more. Everyone asks it from first time home-buyers to "downsizers". Seems to be a popular trend, which is likely causing rural home prices to rise too. Yes, there are affordable homes out of the city that will give you that slice of land/heaven you’re looking for. Are there as many Rural listings as Urban? No, unfortunately the search may take a little longer to find your dream home but rest assured, it’s attainable.

If you’re looking for some help in finding your dream home, give me a call today at 905-576-5200. I’d be happy to help however possible. Also, if you have any more questions that weren’t mentioned, email me at ryan@ryanthomashomes.com. I’d be happy to get you some answers. Have a great day and thanks for reading!