Nova Scotia Real Estate Market Update April 2022

Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS®

Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS® MLS® home sales post second highest April as prices continue to rise

Homes Sold

The number of homes sold through the MLS® System of the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS® totaled 1,350 units in April 2022. This was a sharp decrease of 25.5% from the record set in April 2021 but was still the second highest level for the month in history.

Home sales were 12.1% above the five-year average and 31.4% above the 10-year average for the month of April.

On a year-to-date basis, home sales totaled 4,065 units over the first four months of the year. This was down by 24.6% from the same period in 2021.

Average Homes Price

The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) tracks price trends far more accurately than is possible using average or median price measures. The overall MLS® HPI composite benchmark price was $414,100 in April 2022, an advance of 37% compared to April 2021.

The benchmark price for single-family homes was $408,500, up sharply by 37.2% on a year-over-year basis in April. By comparison, the benchmark price for townhouse/row units was $505,400, a significant increase of 40.9% compared to a year earlier, while the benchmark apartment price was $442,600, a jump of 31.9% from year-ago levels.

The average price of homes sold in April 2022 was a record $462,187, an increase of 24.5% from April 2021.

The more comprehensive year-to-date average price was $439,058, a sizable gain of 23.6% from the first four months of 2021.

The dollar value of all home sales in April 2022 was $624 million, falling by 7.3% from the same month in 2021.

New Listings

The number of new listings saw a sharp decrease of 17.9% from April 2021. There were 1,877 new residential listings in April 2022.

New listings were 4% above the five-year average and 9% below the 10-year average for the month of April.

Active Listings

Active residential listings numbered 2,205 units on the market at the end of April, down by 21.1% from the end of April 2021. Active listings haven’t been this low in the month of April in more than three decades.

Active listings were 52.1% below the five-year average and 69% below the 10-year average for the month of April.

Months of inventory numbered 1.6 at the end of April 2022, up from the 1.5 months recorded at the end of April 2021 and below the long-run average of 7.9 months for this time of year. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

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5 Ways to Write a Winning Offer in Today’s Real Estate Market

5 Ways to Write a Winning Offer in Today’s Real Estate Market

 

Our nation is in the midst of a shifting real estate market. But even as the buying frenzy begins to slow, many properties are still receiving multiple offers.1

So what’s the best way to compete as a buyer–especially if you’re wary about overpaying?

While a high offer price gets attention, most sellers consider a variety of factors when evaluating an offer. With that in mind, here are five tactics you can utilize to sweeten your proposal and outshine your competition.

We can help you weigh the risks and benefits of each tactic and craft a compelling offer designed to get you your dream home—without giving away the farm.

 

1. DEMONSTRATE SOLID FINANCING

The reality is, no one gets paid if a home sale falls through. That’s why sellers (and their listing agents) favour offers with a high probability of closing. 

Sellers particularly love all-cash offers because there’s no chance of financing issues cropping up at the last moment. But all-cash offers are rare, and if sellers are assured that financing will come through, buying with a mortgage doesn’t have to be a disadvantage. 

The most important step you can take as a buyer is to get preapproved before you start looking for homes. A preapproval letter shows sellers that you are serious about buying and that you will be able to make good on your offer.2 

It’s also important to consider the reputation of your lender. While sellers may not know or care about a lender’s reputation, their agents often do. Some lenders are much easier to work with than others. If you’re unsure who to choose, we are happy to refer you to reputable lenders known for their ease of doing business. 

 

2. PUT DOWN A SIZEABLE DEPOSIT

Buyers can show sellers that they’re serious about their offer and have “skin in the game” by putting down a large deposit. This, however, is not the same as a down payment. 

The deposit is typically held in a trust account by the seller’s brokerage or lawyer.3 If the purchase goes through, it is applied to the down payment and closing costs. If the sale falls through, however, the buyer could lose some or all of that deposit, depending on the contract terms.

Deposit amounts vary, but offering a higher deposit can help demonstrate to the buyer that you are serious about the property. We can help you determine an appropriate deposit to offer based on your specific circumstances.

 

3. ASK FOR FEW (OR NO) CONDITIONS

Most real estate offers include conditions, which are clauses that allow one or both parties to back out of the agreement if certain requirements are not met. These conditions appear in the purchase agreement and must be accepted by both the buyer and seller to be legally binding.

Two of the most common conditions are:4

  • Financing: A financing condition gives the buyer a window of time in which to secure a mortgage. If they are unable to do so, they can withdraw from the purchase and the seller can move on to other buyers.
  • Inspection: An inspection condition gives the buyer the opportunity to have the home professionally inspected for issues with the structure, wiring, plumbing, etc. Typically, the seller may choose whether or not to remediate those issues; if they do not, the buyer may withdraw from the contract.

Since conditions reduce the likelihood that a sale will go through, they generally make an offer less desirable to the seller. The more conditions that are included, the weaker the offer becomes. Therefore, buyers in a competitive market often volunteer to waive or exclude certain conditions.

However, it’s very important to make this decision carefully and recognize the risks of doing so. For example, a buyer who chooses to waive a home inspection condition may find out too late that the home requires extensive renovations. If you back out of a home purchase without the protection of a condition, you could lose your deposit.5 We can help you assess the risks and benefits involved.

 

4. OFFER A FLEXIBLE CLOSING DATE

When it comes to selling a house, money isn’t everything. People sell their homes for a wide variety of reasons, and flexible terms that work with their personal situations can sometimes make all the difference. For example, if a seller is in the process of planning a significant move, they may appreciate an option to advance or postpone their closing date.

This flexibility can provide a powerful advantage for first-time homebuyers. If you have a month-to-month or easily transferable lease, for example, you may be able to offer a more flexible timeline than a buyer who is simultaneously selling their existing home.

Of course, the value of these terms depends on the seller’s situation. We can reach out to the listing agent to find out the seller’s preferred terms, and then collaborate with you to write a compelling offer that works for both parties. 

 

5. WORK WITH A SKILLED BUYER’S AGENT

In this real estate market, one of the greatest advantages you can give yourself is to work with a skilled and trustworthy real estate professional. We will make sure you fully understand the process and help you submit an appealing offer without taking on too much risk. 

Plus, we know how to write offers that are designed to win over both the seller and their listing agent. The truth is, listing agents play a huge role in helping sellers evaluate offers, and they want to work with skilled buyer’s agents who are professional, communicative, and courteous. 

Once your offer is accepted, we’ll also handle any further negotiations and coordinate all the paperwork and other details involved in your home purchase. The best part is, you’ll have a knowledgeable, licensed advocate on your side who is watching out for your best interests every step of the way.

 

HELPING YOU GET TO THE RIGHT OFFER

In many cases, a competitive offer doesn’t need to be condition-free or significantly above asking price. But if you’re serious about buying a home in today’s market, it’s important to consider what you can do to sweeten the deal.

If you’re a buyer, we can help you compete in today’s market without getting steamrolled. And if you’re a seller, we can help you evaluate offers by taking all the relevant factors into account. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

 

Sources:

  1. Bloomberg – https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-12/home-prices-could-start-to-cool-in-canada-s-hot-housing-market
  2. NerdWallet –
    https://www.nerdwallet.com/ca/mortgages/what-is-mortgage-pre-approval
  3. Nesto –
    https://www.nesto.ca/mortgage-basics/house-deposit-vs-down-payment/ 
  4. Real Estate Council Alberta –
    https://www.reca.ca/2020/02/05/conditional-sales/ 
  5. Loans Canada –
    https://loanscanada.ca/mortgage/what-happens-when-you-walk-away-from-your-offer-on-a-house/ 
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Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS®
Nova Scotia MLS® home sales post second highest March total on record; MLS® benchmark price continues to climb

The number of homes sold through the MLS® System of the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS® totaled 1,203 units in March 2022. Although a large decline of 26.4% from March 2021, sales totals were still well above the historical norm is for this time of year.

 

Home sales were 9.8% above the five-year average and 34.5% above the 10-year average for the month of March.

 

On a year-to-date basis, home sales totaled 2,727 units over the first three months of the year. This was a substantial decline of 23.9% from the same period in 2021.

The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) tracks price trends far more accurately than is possible using average or median price measures. The overall MLS® HPI composite benchmark price was $390,200 in March 2022, a significant increase of 37.4% compared to March 2021.

 

The benchmark price for single-family homes was $384,500, advancing 37.4% on a year-over-year basis in March. By comparison, the benchmark price for townhouse/row units was $491,600, a substantial gain of 45.7% compared to a year earlier, while the benchmark apartment price rose to $421,200, increasing 33.6% from year-ago levels.

 

The average price of homes sold in March 2022 was a record $450,581, up 23.3% from March 2021.

 

The more comprehensive year-to-date average price was $427,005, increased 23% from the first three months of 2021.

 

The dollar value of all home sales in March 2022 was $542 million, declining 9.2% from the same month in 2021.

The number of new listings fell by 21.1% from March 2021. There were 1,622 new residential listings in March 2022.

 

New listings were 2% below the five-year average and 7.5% below the 10-year average for the month of March.

 

Active residential listings numbered 1,857 units on the market at the end of March, a large decline of 27.8% from the end of March 2021. Active listings haven’t been this low in the month of March in more than three decades.

Active listings were 57% below the five-year average and 71.7% below the 10-year average for the month of March.

 

Months of inventory numbered 1.5 at the end of March 2022, down from the 1.6 months recorded at the end of March 2021 and below the long-run average of 8.8 months for this time of year. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

 

 

Recourse : 

CREA

 

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Seller’s Checklist: A Timeline to Prep Your Home for Sale

Seller’s Checklist: A Timeline to Prep Your Home for Sale

 

We’re still in a seller’s market, but that doesn’t mean your home is guaranteed to easily sell.1 If you want to maximize your sale price, it’s still important to prepare your home before putting it on the market.

Start by connecting with your real estate agent as soon as possible. Having the eyes and ears of an insightful real estate professional on your side can help you boost your home’s appeal to buyers. What’s more, beginning the preparation process early allows you to tackle repairs and upgrades that can increase your property’s value. 

Use the checklist below to figure out what other tasks you should complete in the months leading up to listing your home. While everyone’s situation is unique, these guidelines will help you make sure you’re ready to sell when the time is right. Of course, you can always call us if you’re not sure where to start or what to tackle first. We can help customize a plan that works for you.

 

AS SOON AS YOU THINK OF SELLING

Some home sellers want to plan their future move far in advance, while others will be required to pack up on very short notice. Whatever your circumstances, these first steps will help assure you’ll be ahead of the listing game.

  • Contact Your Real Estate Agent

We go the extra mile when it comes to servicing our clients, and that includes a series of complimentary, pre-listing consultations to help you prepare your home for the market.

Some sellers make the mistake of waiting until they are ready to list their home to contact a real estate agent. But we’ve found that the earlier we’re brought into the process, the better the result. That often means a faster sale—and more money in your pocket after closing.

We know what buyers want in today’s market, and we can help devise a plan to maximize your property’s appeal. We can also connect you with our trusted network of contractors, vendors, and service professionals, so you’ll be sure to get the VIP treatment. This network of support can alleviate stress and help ensure you get everything done in the weeks or months leading up to listing.

  • Address Major Issues and Upgrades

In most cases, you won’t need to make any major renovations before you list. But if you’re selling an older home, or if you have any doubt about its condition, it’s best to get us involved as soon as possible so we can help you assess any necessary repairs.

In some instances, we may recommend a pre-listing inspection. Although it’s less common in a seller’s market, a pre-listing inspection can help you avoid potential surprises down the road. We can discuss the pros and cons during our initial meeting. 

This is the time to address major structural, systems, or cosmetic issues that could hurt the sale of your home down the line. For example, problems with the frame, foundation, or roof are likely to be flagged on an inspection report. Issues with the HVAC system, electrical wiring, or plumbing may cause the home to be unsafe. And sometimes outdated or unpopular design features can limit a home’s sales potential. 

Remember, when you’re dealing with major repairs or renovations, it’s best to give yourself as much time as possible. Given rampant labour and material shortages, starting right away can help you avoid costly delays.2 Contact us so we can guide you on the updates that are worth your time and investment. 

 

1 MONTH (OR MORE) BEFORE YOU LIST

Once any large-scale renovations have been addressed, you can turn your attention to the more minor updates that still play a major role in how buyers perceive your home.

  • Make Minor Repairs

Look for any unaddressed maintenance or repair issues, such as water spots, pest activity, and rotten siding. This is the time to take care of those small annoyances like squeaky hinges, sticking doors, and leaky faucets, too.

Many of these issues can be handled by going the DIY route and using a few simple tools. Tackle the ones you can and be sure to call a professional for the ones you’re not comfortable doing yourself. We can refer you to local service providers who can help.

Remember that it’s easy to overlook these small issues because you live with them. When you work with us, you get a fresh set of eyes on your home—so you don’t miss any important repairs that could make a big difference to buyers.

  • Refresh Your Design

This is a great time to think about some simple design updates that can make a significant impression on buyers. For example, a fresh coat of paint is an easy and affordable way to spruce up your home. A recent survey of Canadian agents found that paint and landscaping were two upgrades that offered the highest return on investment.3 

HGTV landscape designer Carson Arthur agrees. According to Arthur, landscaping is the best place to invest your money and has the potential to increase your home’s value by up to 7%.4 If weather permits, lay fresh sod where needed, plant colourful flowers, and add some new mulch to your beds.

Even just repositioning your furniture can make a huge difference to buyers. A survey published by the International Association of Staging Professionals found that staged homes often sell faster and for more than their list price.5 We can refer you to a local stager or offer our insights and suggestions if you prefer the DIY route.

  • Declutter and Depersonalize

Doing a little bit of decluttering every day is a lot easier than trying to take care of it all at once right before your home hits the market. A simple strategy is to do this one room at a time, working your way through each space whenever you have a bit of free time. 

Start by donating or discarding items that you no longer want or need. Then pack up any seasonal items, family photos, and personal collections you can live without for the next few weeks. Bonus: This will give you a head start on packing for your move!

 

1 WEEK BEFORE YOU GO TO MARKET

With just one week before your home is available for sale, all major items should be crossed off your to-do list. Now it’s time to focus on the small details that will really make your home shine. Here are a few key areas to focus on during this last week. 

  • Check-In With Your Agent

We’ll connect again to make sure we’re aligned on the listing price, marketing plan, and any remaining prep. We will be there every step of the way, ensuring you’re fully prepared to maximize the sale of your home.

  • Tidy Your Exterior

You’ve already done the major landscaping—now it’s time to tackle the last few details. Make sure your lawn is freshly mowed, hedges are trimmed, and flower beds are weeded.

In addition, now is the time to clean your home’s exterior if you haven’t already. Power wash your siding, empty the gutters, and wash all your windows and screens.

  • Deep Clean Your Interior

Your house should be deep cleaned before listing, including a thorough deodorizing of the home’s interior and steam cleaning for all carpets. Consider hiring a professional cleaning company to ensure the space smells and looks as fresh as possible. 

In addition to cleaning, take some time to tidy up. Buyers will look inside your closets, pantries, and cabinets, so make sure they are neat and organized. Small appliances and toiletries should be cleared off the countertops.

 

DAY OF SHOWING

Now you’re all set to go and there are just a few small things you need to handle on the day of showings or open houses. Do a final walk-through and take care of these finishing touches to give potential buyers the best possible impression.

  • Pre-Showing Prep

Happy and comfortable buyers are more likely to submit offers! Make them feel at home by adjusting the thermostat to a comfortable temperature. Open any blinds and curtains throughout the house, and turn on all lights so buyers can see all the potential in your home.

Then tidy up by vacuuming and sweeping floors, emptying (or hiding) trash cans, and wiping down countertops. In the bathrooms, close toilet lids and hang clean hand towels. 

Don’t forget to secure jewelry, sensitive documents, prescription medications, and any other items of value in a safe or store them off-site.

Finally, it’s best to have pets out of the house during showings. If possible, you should also remove evidence of pets (litter box, dog beds, etc.), which can be a turn-off for some buyers.

 

DON’T WAIT TO PREP YOUR HOME FOR SELLING

If you want to get top dollar for your home, don’t put it on the market before it’s ready. The right preparation can make all the difference when it comes to maximizing the offers you get. The upgrades and changes you need to make will depend upon your home’s condition, so don’t wait to speak with an agent.

Call our team if you’re thinking about selling your home, even if you’re not sure when. It’s never too early to seek the guidance of your real estate agent and start preparing your home to sell.

 

Sources:

  1. RBC –
    https://thoughtleadership.rbc.com/a-turning-point-more-sellers-enter-canadas-housing-market-in-february/ 
  2. ConstructConnect –
    https://canada.constructconnect.com/canadata/forecaster/economic/2021/07/labour-shortages-high-material-costs-strong-demand-more-pressure-on-house-prices 
  3. RE/MAX –
    https://blog.remax.ca/canadian-real-estate-renovation-trends/
  4. National Post –
    https://nationalpost.com/life/homes/curb-appeal-in-the-business-of-home-ownership-a-little-landscaping-can-go-a-long-way 
  5. International Association of Staging Professionals –
    https://d3oaxt0bwkjnjn.cloudfront.net/documents/home-staging-industry-statistics-2020-min.pdf
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Nova Scotia Housing Market Stats February 2022


Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS®

Nova Scotia MLS® home sales post second highest February total on record; MLS® benchmark price continues to climb​

The number of homes sold through the MLS® System of the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS® totaled 826 units in February 2022. This was a substantial decline of 25.5% from February 2021.

 

Home sales were 3.6% above the five-year average and 21.9% above the 10-year average for the month of February.

 

On a year-to-date basis, home sales totaled 1,528 units over the first two months of the year. This was a significant decrease of 21.6% from the same period in 2021.

The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) tracks price trends far more accurately than is possible using average or median price measures. The overall MLS® HPI composite benchmark price was $367,200 in February 2022, a significant gain of 35.1% compared to February 2021.

The benchmark price for single-family homes was $361,200, an advance of 35.1% on a year-over-year basis in February. By comparison, the benchmark price for townhouse/row units was $466,000, up sharply by 41.4% compared to a year earlier, while the benchmark apartment price rose 30.9% to $404,300.

The average price of homes sold in February 2022 was a record $422,100, up by 23.6% from February 2021.

The more comprehensive year-to-date average price was $408,988, a notable increase of 23.3% from the first two months of 2021.

The dollar value of all home sales in February 2022 was $348.7 million, a moderate decrease of 7.9% from the same month in 2021.

The number of new listings declined by 10.6% from February 2021. There were 1,005 new residential listings in February 2022. This was the lowest number of new listings added in the month of February in more than 15 years.

 

New listings were 10.3% below the five-year average and 17.3% below the 10-year average for the month of February.

Active residential listings numbered 1,594 units on the market at the end of February, a sharp decrease of 32.3% from the end of February 2021. Active listings haven’t been this low in the month of February in more than three decades.

 

Active listings were 60.9% below the five-year average and 74.3% below the 10-year average for the month of February.

 

Months of inventory numbered 1.9 at the end of February 2022, down from the 2.1 months recorded at the end of February 2021 and below the long-run average of 10.3 months for this time of year. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

 

Thanks to www.crea.ca/

Original Article

 

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