September 07 eNewsletter

Welcome to the latest issue of my Real Estate Market Update newsletter! The basic data comes from the Toronto Real Estate Board’s “Market Watch” report (see link at left). The rest is my ‘editorial commentary’* on the state of things. Enjoy the report, and feel free to contact me with any follow-up questions or comments!

Modest Price Increases keep houses affordable
For some time now the Toronto real estate market has been described as a “sellers’ market”. In recent years, the market has been driven by first-time buyers, aided by historically low interest rates. With so much attention paid to ‘bidding wars’, and “Sold Over Asking” marketing, the thought of participating in the market may seem daunting. However, as I have pointed out before, real price gains are not nearly as high as they seem. As I mentioned in my last report, April ’07 prices averaged just 3% higher than April ’06. May ’07 prices were up 5% over May ’06, but the average sale price remained basically flat through June. Among other factors, increased supply has helped keep homes affordable. That allowed the market to set a new record for number of transactions in a month (11,146 sales in May) without a price spike. In June, 10,451 sales set a new record for that month, too. The moral of the story? Don’t believe the hype – and yes, you can afford to buy a house!

CONDOS: New or Used?
Market still strong
As many of you know, I was leary of the condo market for some time. However, despite the obvious boom in condo construction in and around Toronto, prices have posted modestly higher gains than houses. The best condo investment – if you can stomach the long delays and pricey upgrades – might be new construction. The builder shares the risk with buyers by selling for a lower price. (The buyer’s main risk is those long wait times.) Once you move in, you might still have to wait for title to be transferred into your name. (Don’t worry, your lawyer will make sure everything works out!) Then, watch as those temptingly low monthly fees start to climb! It’s all part of the game. By contrast, when you buy resale you have a better idea of what you are getting into – plus you have a fixed price and a set possession date. Whatever route you take, make sure you sign up with your Agent first. Builders love nothing more than a buyer without his or her own Representative!
Family news

We are extremely fortunate to have 3 great little boys (Owen, Foster and Shannon). In just a few months we’re going to even up the numbers with the addition of Milberry Baby #4. Who knows – maybe Owen will get the baby sister he’s been asking for…? Stay tuned – and keep those referrals coming! If it is a girl, Amanda is going to have to build a new wardrobe from scratch! 😉

Speaking of referrals, I greatly appreciate the clients that you send to me! The next time you hear of a friend or family member who wants to buy or sell real estate, just call or email me and I’ll do my best to take great care of them!

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