The Immediate Future Unfolds

The Immediate Future Unfolds

With almost half of 2009 under our belts and a strong surge locally during May, we are seeing a healthier and more confident market emerging on the North Shore.

Last month’s interest rate discussion was a call to action to many who had been sitting on the sidelines and rewarded those who obtained financing pre-approvals and rate guarantees. So, announcements by the majority of lenders (banks, credit unions and trust companies) in the early days of June that all were increasing their mortgage interest rates – anything from 0.15% to 0.35% depending on the “lock in” term involved – had no negative effect on them. Further gradual increases may come over the next few weeks, so, if you have not obtained a “rate guarantee”, do so – remember, it costs nothing other than your time and does not commit you to having to draw down any mortgage. I would call it “free insurance”.

I believe that the most significant occurrence in the past few months (notably during May) is the shrinking of supply (i.e. inventory) of homes for sale.  Simple refresher – if demand stays healthy (or grows) and supply diminishes – prices will increase. We are seeing some of that with a steady rise in the average prices. For example the YTD average prices for detached properties in N/Van show this trend in the last few months of  2009  –

Feb $749k; Mar $773k; Apr $825k and May $824k. Yes, I will grant that certainly, fewer units are selling than this time last year but they are changing hands at an increasing price level. Prediction: this summer will be relatively more active (sales wise) than the average summer.  We are seeing a number of examples of the unsuccessful seller of mid to latter ’08 re-listing this year and meeting with success.
Again, visit my website to see and “hear” the new developments.  Continue my commitment to keep you… www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca – the “go to” site for North Shore Real Estate analysis and jumping off point for FULL market listing information.

To join the group getting the e-mail version of this “update” – send a request now toalanskinner@shaw.ca and you’ll be assured receipt; phone me at (604) 988-7368 or visit www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca

Alan

June 09 Numbers

January 09 Numbers

Now let’s look at the YTD 5 mth 2009 vs. 2008 figures for our North Shore. North Van detached homes sold down by 17% from last year, attached (t/homes) down 7% and apartments down by 23% from ‘08.
Detached average prices -18% and inventory May 31st, down by 19%. Average prices down 12% (t/hse) and down by 16% (apts). Inventory (t/hse) 2% lower than ’08 and (apt) down from ‘08 by 5%.  As mentioned above, all N/Van inventory is lower than last year. Demand and the general level of sales continue to increase month by month.

In West Van, detached number of sales YTD has dropped, as of May 31st by 30% from ‘08. Average price down 21% and inventory May 31st down 3% from ‘08. On the condo side – attached (t/hses) sold has dropped to 11 vs. 31 units last year; average price down 29%.  Active listings are down from ‘08 (41 vs. 43).  Apartments sold reflect a 27% drop YTD vs ‘08; with average price down 21% and active listings up 38% from end of May ‘08.

Overall North Shore demand maintains its improving trend (confidence certainly returning) and with almost all inventories dropping from this time last year the seller has a better (and quicker) chance of selling . Again I mention that the “bargain basement” purchases evident in the past few months are drying up. A few of the luxury end homes are now making it to the sold stats and this is again persuasive evidence of a return of confidence.

Again, visit my website to see and “hear” the new developments.  Continue my commitment to keep you… www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca – the “go to” site for North Shore Real Estate analysis and jumping off point for FULL market listing information.

To join the group getting the e-mail version of this “update” – send a request now toalanskinner@shaw.ca and you’ll be assured receipt; phone me at (604) 988-7368 or visit www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca

Alan

Podcasts

North Shore Real Estate Radio

This year I pledge to continue my personalized service and further reduce my business ecological “footprint”. A new initiative is the radio (podcast) library which I am creating.

All North Vancouver Real Estate “Updates”, reports and information articles, checklists etc. will be archived on my website and available for download or desktop listening 24/7. You can access the information you seek when the spirit moves and not when someone pushes yet another flyer into your mailbox. I am most excited about these developments. Input as to the topics for “programming” you feel would be of interest is strongly sought. Please e-mail This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or call me 604 988-7368

Click on the “Launch Podcast Player” Icon in the top right of this website to listen now

North Vancouver Real Estate

Podcasts

Selecting Your Real Estate Agent

Selecting Your Real Estate Agent

Selecting Your Real Estate Agent. The Agent brings the market to you. The market decides the price.

The right Agent is the one who knows the market and can get you the best price possible – not the one who promises you the highest price just to get you to list with them!
Many of the same questions, hesitations and strategies connected with seeking out professional assistance in any field – whether you’re looking for a doctor, dentist, lawyer or accountant – come into play when you’re selecting a real estate agent.

Some people find an agent through a family member or friend. This is often a reliable approach. However, you might not always find the most compatible assistance this way. In a transaction as important and intensive as buying and selling a home, that can be critical.

A referral from a family member or friend doesn’t guarantee a perfect match. Just think of something as simple as a movie or restaurant recommendation. Your close friends rave about a new Chinese food place downtown – so you check it out. Could this possibly be the same restaurant they were describing? Mediocre service. No chopsticks. Bland flavors. It’s the same restaurant. Same cook. Same waiters. Just different perceptions.

Regardless of how you get an agent’s name, it might be worth interviewing at least a couple before you make a final decision – or at least arming yourself with some criteria to go over with any agent who has been recommended to you.

A few things to look for:

If you’re looking for an agent to list your home, be wary of anyone who suggests they can get an unreasonably high sales price. An agent might use a high listing price to secure a contract, only to seek a lower price later, after little traffic is generated at the initial price level.

Meanwhile, you’ve lost what can be the most critical time period in selling a home – the first weeks immediately after it’s listed.

Check on experience and productivity. As with most professions, experience pays in real estate.Experienced agents know the market and the marketing process. They’ll have the best chance of quickly and smoothly helping you to buy or sell your home.

The number of transactions an agent is handling monthly or yearly is going to give you an indication of how committed the agent is to the profession. Is the agent a part-timer who’s just dabbling in real estate sales – or is the agent a full-time professional whose livelihood depends entirely on an ability to successfully and repeatedly close real estate transactions?

Does the agent know the market ?

Is the agent part of a national network? This can be especially important if you’re selling in one city in preparation of moving to another. Your selling agent can refer you to a professional,compatible agent in your destination city – and keep in close contact with that agent so both your selling and buying efforts are closely coordinated. It is no secret that Re/Max sells more North Shore property than any other realty company; many of those buyers coming directly from Re/Max agents in other geographic locations.

And a final point: Does the agent seem primarily interested in sharing expertise and market knowledge in an honest and straightforward manner? Or does the agent seem more interested in telling you what you want to hear ? Or worse still are they getting you to sign up with them just to pass you off to an assistant who will deal with the “trivia” of actually selling your home ? The worst time to secure the services of a “yes-man” or an agent who seems to have too many irons in the fire is when you’re entering a transaction involving something as important as your home. You need straightforward, reliable information – even if it’s not necessarily flattering – regarding the home you’re selling – or very encouraging regarding a home you think you might want to buy.

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