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5 Bullet Friday...5 Rate Pauses in a Row!

David Kurt

What made you decide to get into real estate? I was one year into working a “real job”; the type you study hard and go to University for when I re...

What made you decide to get into real estate? I was one year into working a “real job”; the type you study hard and go to University for when I re...

Mar 8 5 minutes read

Welcome back Sudbury! 👋

Here are my 5 takeaways this week:

📈We saw listings increase for the first time since Early February this week. That was due to a small pullback in sales, as well as conditional deals, with new listings getting back to the seasonal norm. When I compare sales to this week versus the last few years, we are only seeing a fraction of what we usually see for the first week of March. In the last 5 years, that first week of March has averaged sales in the 50’s and were sitting in the low 30’s.  

🏡It feels like we are seeing the market catch up to the stale listings. Early in a transition, we see a lot of stale listings (homes that have been on the market for a long time). The buyers are saying that the homes are overpriced for the current market, so often these homes sit without an offer. As prices start to increase, we see these homes slowly start to get offers. This is what I feel like we see playing out, especially this week with some of the sales.  

🌸As we shift into March this week, this is the unofficial start to the spring market. These next 3 months is when we see the market emerge from the winter hibernation and set the pace for how the rest of the real estate year will play out. We are still seeing lower sales volumes than past years, but at the same time, the consumer confidence seems to be higher now than it has been recently. 5 Bank of Canada rate pauses in a row has made people feel a bit better about the future of mortgage rates. Many of the big banks are predicting rate decreases in the 1-1.5% range which, if this plays out in the second half of 2024, will only add fuel to a fire of what should be a strengthening real estate market. I think we will see much smaller decreases in the rates, which will still make mortgages cheaper… but not as cheap as many people are hoping and predicting. The biggest unanswered question will be, is consumer confidence and the market improving based on where people think rates are going to? And what happens if the rates stay higher for longer than a lot of people are predicting?

💼I was in a real estate conference over the last few days, and I keep hearing people get excited and hype up the next big thing. I know AI will have a place and make an impact on the entire world around us. It will change the way we do work and the entire economy. But for the time being, embracing ChatGPT to help listing agents write real estate descriptions has been the biggest impact it's had on the real estate industry. The more I think about it, I think the biggest tangible impact will be in consumer search. There is no checkbox button that a listing agent selects if a home has a white kitchen, or is open concept; we will see AI impact our business with the ability for consumers to describe what they are looking for, and the AI bot will search the photos, floor plans or scan the listing details and put together listings that match exactly what a consumer is looking for. AI isn’t going to sell houses, but it will simplify the consumer search process in the near future.  

💰I get the feeling that we are a few weeks away from seeing offer dates again locally in our marketplace. As we hit the unofficial start of the spring marketplace, it feels like consumer demand continues to pick up. With showings and buyers confidence both increasing, I think this plays out in agents (especially on listings under 500k) going back to the old world of offer dates and not considering preemptive (or bully) offers. Even as multiple offers have returned, (especially in the lower price points) the buyers have refused to pay the premiums they were in the COVID marketplace. That will be the most interesting trend that plays out, if the ‘holding off offers’ strategy results in buyers willing to pay the premiums that sellers experienced in the last market run up or if the buyers are gong to push back and see the strategy as greedy sellers. Time will tell, but I feel like this strategy returned for sub-500k listings shortly after the March break week.  

That’s it for this week, let's connect next Friday for another Sudbury Market update!

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