Market Watch - February 2019

Greater Toronto, March 5, 2019 – Toronto Real Estate Board President Gurcharan (Garry) Bhaura announced that Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 5,025 homes sold through TREB’s MLS® System in February 2019. This sales total was down by 2.4 per cent on a year- over-year basis. Sales were also down compared to January 2019 following preliminary seasonal adjustment.

“The OSFI mandated mortgage stress test has left some buyers on the sidelines who have struggled to qualify for the type of home they want to buy. The stress test should be reviewed and consideration should be given to bringing back 30 year amortizations for federally insured mortgages. There is a federal budget and election on the horizon. It will be interesting to see what policy measures are announced to help with home ownership affordability,” said Mr. Bhaura.

Despite sales being down year-over-year, new listings actually declined by a greater annual rate. This suggests that market conditions became tighter compared to last year. Tighter market conditions continued to support year-over-year average price growth.

Both the MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark and the average selling price were up modestly on a year-over-year basis in February 2019. The MLS® HPI Composite Benchmark was up by 2.4 per cent year-over-year. The average selling price for all home types combined was up by 1.6 per cent over the same period. Price growth was driven by the condominium apartment segment and higher density low-rise home types. On a preliminary seasonally adjusted basis the average selling price was down compared to January 2019.

“Home sales reported through TREB’s MLS® System have a substantial impact on the Canadian economy. A study conducted by Altus for TREB found that, on average, each home sale reported through TREB resulted in $68,000 in spin-off expenditures accruing to the economy. With sales substantially lower than the 2016 record peak over the last two years, we have experienced a hit to the economy in the billions of dollars, in the GTA alone. This hit has also translated into lower government revenues and, if sustained, could impact the employment picture as well,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis and Service Channels.

3 Crucial Tips For Avoiding Rental Scams

IMG_0233.JPG

Before purchasing  a home, many people opt to rent an apartment or property to live in. This gives them time to save up and learn how to live independently. Rental properties can also come with a number of other benefits like free wi-fi, maintenance, and repairs.

However, despite the numerous merits of renting a property, there are numerous details that people need to go over beforehand. One of the most important pieces of information that they need to learn is how to avoid rental scams. People fall victim to rental fraud all the time; even in major cities like Toronto.

Before potentially wasting hundreds or thousands of dollars on a rental scam, people should know how they work and how to avoid them. By doing so, renters can differentiate between a real opportunity and a swindle.

Tip #1 - Learn How Rental Scams Work

Although rental scams are an old tactic, the internet has changed the landscape. Modern scammers will often take photos and information from people on the internet. The scammers will then use what they have gathered to create fraudulent posts on websites like Kijiji or Facebook rental groups. In general, the end goal of the scammer is to obtain the first month’s rent and a downpayment from unknowing renters.

Tip #2 - Watch Out For Prices That are “Too Good To Be True”

When it comes to renting an apartment, house or any other type of property, renters can never be too suspicious; especially when it comes to aspects like pricing and screening. If the rental property is listed at a price that is too good to be true, then renters should be wary. This is due to the fact that is could be a fake ad. Scammers will often list the property at a rock-bottom price. They do this to entice more potential renters.

Additionally, renters need to be cautious if the “landlord” doesn’t require screening beforehand. Many legitimate landlords won’t let a tenant into their property without being screened. This is due to the fact that they want to rent to people that they can trust.

Tip #3 - Meet the Landlord In Person

Many landlords want to meet their potential tenants before they move into the property. This gives the landlord a better idea of how the potential tenants behave. If the landlord can’t meet in person, they may be a rental scammer. To ensure that the rental agreement is legitimate, renters should always set up a meet with their potential landlord. It is even better if the landlord can meet with the renters at the apartment or property.

Renting an apartment or property is a satisfying and exciting part of a person’s life. However, before rushing into it, everyone needs to learn how to avoid rental scams. Thankfully, there are numerous things that renters can do to avoid rental scams. Some of these things include knowing how rental scams work, always being suspicious and meeting the landlord in person.

Get in touch if you have any more questions. I’ll be happy to help.

3 Things That All Homeowners Should Look For When Selling Their Homes

toronto real estate

Many homeowners will overlook the difficulty of finding the perfect home. Sadly, the same homeowners will also forget how difficult selling a home is. Naive homeowners think that as soon as they put a “for sale” sign in their lawn, they will have dozens of potential buyers knocking down their door. In reality, this isn’t often the case. With this in mind, homeowners should learn a few tricks of the trade before putting their home up for sale. One of these tricks is knowing what to look for when selling a home. Knowing these things will make the house selling process quicker and easier.

#1 - Current Average Price of Nearby Homes

Chances are, there are other homeowners nearby that are also trying to sell their homes. Before putting their home up on the market, it is wise for homeowners to learn what these prices are. To do this, homeowners can do research online or contact the real estate agency that is selling the home. Homeowners that can’t access this information can look at closed sales in the neighborhood. Once a house sale has closed, homeowners can easily find the final asking price. Knowing this information can help a homeowner pick the right price the first time.

#2 - Necessary Repairs That Need to Be Made

Before a homeowner puts their house up for sale, they should look for any repairs that need to be made in or around the house. By doing this, the home will look amazing and all of its features will work to their full potential. If the homeowner is still nervous about hard-to-find damage, they may want to invest in a pre-list inspection. In this process, a professional inspector will analyze every aspect of the home. Afterwards, they inform the owner if there is anything wrong. Getting a pre-listing inspection can also prevent any surprises during the post-listing inspection.

#3 - Strange Smells

Every home has its own unique smell. However, nobody wants to purchase a home that reeks of unpleasant odours. To prevent losing buyers, homeowners should go through their home and clean any particularly smelly areas. This includes drains, wash bins, vents, cooking equipment, carpets and heavily used furniture. By cleaning these aspects of the home, potential buyers will able to admire the house without having to plug their noses.

Although the house selling process may seem like an uphill battle at times, there are ways to make it easier. One of the best things that a homeowner can do is tackle a list of to-dos before putting the house on the market. This includes doing research on other listing prices, making necessary repairs around the house, and getting rid of strange smells in the home. However, these are not all of the issues that need to be dealt with. Homeowners might need to get creative in order to handle their house’s unique issues.

Get in touch to learn more.