North Shore On Parallel Up-Trend With Metro Van

Our discussion last month of a return to a more balanced market led to a realization that one person’s idea of balance can very easily differ from another’s. Just as individual visions of the future, our current position in a cycle and, yes, even one’s hope for the lot of mankind may differ.

That last statement may seem overly dramatic, but it depends, I guess, on one’s level of comfort (no, I don’t mean in the sense of luxury) with their individual current status and belief in their particular future. Balance comes, not only from the belief of a dominant player or team of players (buyers or sellers) but also a rational belief in the correction of cycles. This pendulum-like motion is definitely a necessary and healthy thing.

Enough philosophical musing! Summertime is fast becoming a reality, a time when we traditionally see a lessening in the number of residential sale transactions. My personal belief is that we’ll see a steady level of sales and that, when the “pent-up buyer” returns from their break come September, volumes of sales will start (continue?) to rise. Reasonable …or just another of my delusions?

The ‘up-trend’ mentioned in our headline, which we are sharing with the aggregated numbers for

Vancouver, is of a gradual nature price-wise and, as most market watchers would agree, has a greater stabling influence (likely more sustainable) on a market than does rapid growth.

‘SnapStats’ (what price ranges are selling and which are not) is being very well received. I’m now forwarding the past 12 month trend for not only N and W/Van but ALL available metro neighbourhoods, as many w requested. If any locations are not of interest, please ignore those areas.

So, visit my website to see and “hear” the new developments.  I continue my commitment to keep you… www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca – the “go to” site for N/S R/Estate analysis and jump-off point for FULL market information.

Join those wishing to get the e-mail version of the “update” and SnapStats  – send a request to alanskinner@shaw.ca; phone (604) 988-7368 or visit www.OnTopOfTheMarket.ca and you’ll be added.

June 2013 Numbers

Again to our ‘Year to Date’ figures for 2013. We now have the first 5 month figures 2013 vs. 2012. Better statistical information to help “define” our current year.  North Van detached homes sold, down 8% from last year, attached (t/hses) down 12% and apartments down by 26% from 2012. Detached average prices down 2% and inventory now up by 22% [NB – last month it was up by 43%].  Average prices down 4% (t/hses) and up 1% for (apts). Inventory (t/hses) 19% higher than May 31st 2012 and (apt) down from the same date by 6%. The numbers here now reflect the activity over 5 months and figures are becoming more meaningful.

In West Van, detached number of sales YTD for 2013 has dropped by 23% from May 31st 2012.  Average price of what has sold is virtually unchanged and inventory up 22% over May 31st 2012. On the condo side – attached (t/hses) sold 2013 are down 36% from 2012 at 28 vs. 44 units with an increase of 5% in average price. Active listings are up year over year from May 31st 2012 by 18% (59 vs. 50).  Apartments reflect 68 sold in 2013 vs. 83 by May 31st 2012; with average price up 3% from May 31st 2012 and active listings up 9% from May 31st 2012.

Overall North Shore demand has been moving up a little month over month this year with overall inventory still higher than last year (exception – N/V apts at 6% lower). I continue using average YTD prices which is now becoming more meaningful as we get more months’ stats to compare.

Podcast

North Shore Real Estate Radio

On an ongoing basis I pledge both my continued personalized service and a commitment to my reduced  business ecological “footprint”. A significant part is the radio (podcast) library which I’m continually 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 and 1-800-665-1455.

Click on the “Podcast” Icon in the top right of this article to listen now.

North Vancouver Real Estate

Reducing Stress In Your Home Buying Search

 

A few pointers

Considering buying a house in a new neighbourhood? Why would you rely solely on the Listing Realtor’s description of the location?  Drive the main streets; seek out the parks; visit the recreational facilities. Find out about crime levels from the local police department, pick up the local newspaper and visit the local grocery store. You can find out a lot about an area by doing some of these things.

Before going to look at any new home, make a list of all the features you/ your partner would like in a home, and make sure to list them by priority. This is because you may not be able to find a home that fits every one of your wants and needs, but you would like to find one that has at least the most important ones. The “must haves” and “would be nice if…”s need to be understood.

Get pre-approved for a mortgage loan before you even begin looking. This way you can rely on facts rather than emotions once you start going through houses and start wanting what you may not be able to afford. Having a good idea of your own affordability figures helps you to be more efficient when the shopping begins.

To save money when buying real estate you may wish to look for an existing home. New construction is down but the builder still needs to make a profit which may limit how much they can negotiate on the price. Those reselling a home may have much more room to manoeuvre. This is often referred to as their motivation.

When looking to purchase a home in a neighbourhood, take into consideration the size of the house. Houses vary in size in neighbourhoods. If resale value is important in your purchase, do not buy the biggest house on the block. The homes nearest to yours will be used when determining fair market value. If most of the houses are smaller, they may bring down the value of the larger home.

If you are interested in buying a home it is important to know exactly what you are spending your money on. A home inspection is an important option and you should have a trained expert go through the house to ensure that items are in working order and in good condition. You don’t want to buy the home and then have to spend a lot of money replacing the roof, heating, or other systems. Spending a little money up front can potentially save you a lot in the long run.

It is paramount that you get a licenced Realtor with a good level of experience to represent you and point out the pitfalls that need to be avoided.  Make sure you find someone that will stand up for what you want AND has the experience in negotiating the best price and the important conditions that MUST be included in the buying contract.

These are but a few of the pointers that will help you in your house hunting and reduce that stress. Remember, the housing market can be volatile, so the more you ask questions and do research before making decisions, the better off you will be.