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Barrie Market Report For June 2022

Although the average sale price went up, home sales continued to decline in June, with activity remaining slightly below what would be considered typical levels for this month. The market has been turned on its head – less than six months ago we were facing some of the tightest conditions in history, with demand outpacing supply by an extraordinary margin, and now those trends are beginning to reverse. In addition to sales dropping below average levels, new listings returned to the market at the fastest rate for any June in history. The current level of available listings on the market also popped up above 1,000 for the first time since October 2019.

Find out what your property is worth in today’s Market at https://forsaleinbarrie.ca/index.php/whats-my-property-worth/

Stats are correct as of Thursday July 14th. Based on June 2021 v June 2022

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Barrie Market Report For May 2022

Recent interest rate increases have taken a bite out of demand, with more moderation expected in the face of the most recent and sizeable hike at the beginning of June. Our market is very well supplied at the moment, with the highest number of new listings in any May in history bringing some much-needed relief to the supply side and restoring balance to the market. With conditions finally appearing to move out of the unprecedented tightness of the past two years and available listings on the market rising from historical lows we might begin seeing previously sidelined buyers return to the market.

Find out what your property is worth in today’s Market at https://forsaleinbarrie.ca/index.php/whats-my-property-worth/

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Barrie Market Report For April 2022

Sales activity declined from last year’s astronomical record to the lower end of the average range for this time of year. New listings, on the other hand, posted a record showing for the month of April. With sales down and new listings up this meant that some much-needed supply flowed back into the market. If sales activity remains subdued compared to the red-hot activity of the past two years in the face of more interest rate increases on the horizon, we will likely see a rebalancing of the market over the remainder of the year to a point where potential buyers can finally see a more normal availability of listings from which to choose.

Find out what your property is worth in today’s Market at https://forsaleinbarrie.ca/index.php/whats-my-property-worth/

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Barrie Market Report For March 2022

Home sales were down considerably from last year’s unprecedented March record but still came in well above typical levels for this time of year. A substantial influx of new supply was a very welcome sight in March. Overall inventories had previously dropped to the lowest levels on record with little relief in sight, and although the market is still experiencing some of the tightest conditions in history at least we have a bit more breathing room. The resurgence of supply may be an early start to the spring market, so we’ll see how much more of this comes to market and to what extent buyer appetites absorb this new inventory.

Find out what your property is worth in today’s Market at https://forsaleinbarrie.ca/index…/whats-my-property-worth/

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5 Signs Of A Rental Scam

Sadly, across Ontario and even our communities, Rental scams are becoming more and more common place. We’ve put together some information that will help you understand how the scam works and what to look out for. 

If you’re on the hunt for a new rental home, you now need to be vigilant about a new type of rental scam proliferating online. Fraudsters are finding new ways to trick would-be tenants into falling for phony online ads. This scam can bilk prospective tenants out of money and time, plus cause undue stress to owners of the properties being listed fraudulently.

How The Scam Works

Basically, these rent scammers are taking photos of properties that are already online, on housing sites like MLS or realtor.ca, and using those photos to create fake rentals ad. They usually offer the rental well below market rates to attract interest, making it one of those “too good to be true” scenarios. 

When curious tenants start inquiring about the ad, the fraudsters will likely give suspicious reasons why they can’t meet you in person. For example, they are “out-of-town” and unable to show you the vacancy. The fraudsters will then ask you to send them a security deposit or the first month’s rent via wire transfer. They might even pressure you by saying other applicants are interested in the property. Sometimes the scammers will entice you with a discount if you send more than the first month’s rent.

The money requests are usually to be transferred via MoneyGram, Western Union or even a gift card. But once you send that money out of the country – say goodbye because it will be virtually impossible to get back.

Rent scams on the rise

According to a 2020 report, an Ontario man had his home unknowingly put online by rent scammers using photos of his property, which was in the process of being for sale. Would-be tenants began knocking on his door asking about the property and one even said they already sent a $1,000 deposit. 

It’s all part of a disturbing trend of rental scams taking advantage of tenants looking for a home. The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre says that Canadians have lost $1.4 million in the last three years to these online rental scams. The Better Business Bureau claims that 50% of those looking for a rental home will likely encounter these types of online scams on sites like Craigslist, Kijiji and Facebook.

5 red flags of a rental scam 

  1. The first red flag to watch for is the price. If this is a nice property, way below the market rate, it could be a scam. Of course, it could be a great deal too, but make sure you should investigate it thoroughly.
  2. The “owners” of the property say they are out of the country, or out of town. Remember: it’s highly unlikely a landlord would list a rental and then leave town.
  3. If the listing’s photos are vague, and only show the outside of the property, it could be a scam. A good landlord will post quality images of the inside and outside. And if you see a “for sale” sign in the photo, you should probably avoid it.
  4. Any requests for security deposits or first-month instalment, without a formal rental agreement, should be met with deep skepticism, especially if it’s through a wire transfer like MoneyGram or Western Union going outside the country. Gift cards are another major red flag.
  5. If the alleged owner wants to communicate with you outside the rental platform or direct you to a website asking for personal or financial information, then you should turn and run away (virtually). 

How to stay safe from rental scammers

Searching for a rental home can be challenging on its own without having to deal with scam artists trying to steal your money. Here are some tips on how you can protect yourself from these online vultures.

  • Research the property in-person, if possible, and insist on meeting the landlord at the address. Take the time to visit the rental listing and see if it’s accurate and truthful to its online ad. If you cannot see it in person, ask a friend or family to view it for you.
  • Double-check the address isn’t being used elsewhere online. Google search the address to see if it’s been used in a duplicate post, or reverse image search the photo.
  • Request a lease or contract before you consider sending a deposit. Review it thoroughly and make sure it is legitimate. 
  • Know your rights as a tenant. The Government of Canada provides information on the rental process and which provincial housing ministries you should be aware of. Also, you should contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (1-888-495-8501), the RCMP or your local police if you have information about this type of online rental scam.

Of course the safest way to find your next rental property is to contact a For Sale In Barrie agent who will be with you every step of the way!

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Top Interior Design Trends To Watch Out For In 2022

It’s been two years since the pandemic started, and many of us are still working remotely from our homes, whether it’s out of our makeshift office in the kitchen, living room, or whatever space is conducive to productivity. As we continue to navigate forward this year, be sure to carve some time out of your busy schedule to find ways to enhance and elevate your home. Lucky for you, we curated a list of the hottest interior design trends that will not only give your space a much-needed makeover but also restore a sense of hope and optimism about what lies ahead in 2022.

Remember: There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to embellishing your space, so use the following trends as inspiration, not prescription. If you’re looking to sell your home in the near future, speak with your For Sale In Barrie agent to find out how you can leverage these trends to appeal to home buyers.

50 Shades Of Green

Green represents new beginnings and growth, so there’s no better colour to herald the upcoming spring season. To create an uplifting and revitalising environment, you could use a pop of jewel-toned greens. Whether it’s adding a plush velvet green couch to your living room or adorning your dining room with a jade vase, your options to bring nature indoors through furniture and decorative pieces have never been easier. Before you know it, your home will become the ultimate destination for relaxation and restoration among friends and family.

Old-School Charm

What’s old is new and what’s new is old. Antiques and vintage items pay homage to the past and add extra personality and eclectic style to your home. They also preserve the memories of those who once had the great fortune of owning beautiful, one-of-a-kind pieces to embellish their space. To add some retro charm to your home, bring out your grandmother’s antique floral porcelain vase and place it in the centre of your dining table. Or add some brilliance to your living room with an art-deco table lamp. No matter what era you’re partial to, there’s a piece of furniture or accessory that will help you create an entirely new look.

Stay Ahead Of The Curve

Whereas straight lines and sharp edges lend a sleek, modern feel, rounded shapes add softness to an interior space, giving it a warm ambiance. Going beyond circles, rounded shapes also include egg shapes, ovals, arches, and more. If your space looks too much like a geometry worksheet, try breaking up the harsh edges by adding a curved swivel chair or coffee table in your living room. Or add some oomph in your hallway with a beautiful, oval-shaped mirror to reflect a sense of freshness and relaxation that can’t be seen with a traditional square or rectangle mirror.

Bright And Colourful Kitchens

Last year, neutral palettes reigned supreme in the realm of home decor. While this trend will remain popular for the foreseeable future, it’s time to break out of the tried-and-true colour scheme and embrace bold, vibrant colours. Liven up your kitchen with a splash of colour; whether it’s painting your walls a beautiful, seafoam green or experimenting with geometric prints and patterns, add some joie de vivre to the space. After all, your kitchen should inspire you to experiment with different recipes and come up with culinary masterpieces that rival those of your favourite Michelin star chef.

Little Black Accents

There’s nothing quite like black accents to add a touch of sophistication and beautiful contrast to your home. This is especially true if your home is alight with natural wood tones or other organic materials. The same sentiment can be extended if you prefer a more minimalist space. Look around your house to see where you can incorporate some edge. Could your white sofa use a small, black side table to accentuate your living room’s best features? Or perhaps you can add a couple of black throw pillows to make your sofa the room’s centrepiece. No matter how you want to incorporate this timeless colour into your home, know that a little goes a long way.

Illuminate With Style

Equal parts function and fashion, statement lamps are making a comeback this year and they’re poised for a bright future. Coming in all shapes, sizes, and colours, decorative lamps can put a spotlight on different areas of your home (especially rooms that don’t get a lot of natural light). On the quest for a stunning architectural piece? Try perching a sculptural-metal table lamp on your coffee table. If you’re looking for something more subtle yet still striking, a Grecian-bust table lamp on your nightstand might just be the inspiration you need to fulfil your New Year’s resolution to read 30 pages of a novel every night before bedtime.

Tell us what’s worked in your home, we’d love to know! 

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February 2022 Market Report

This month’s data showed an overall year-over-year decrease in the number of units sold, a decrease in new listings, and a large increase in average sale price. The price of residential units sold continued to rise, now sitting at $963,554 which is a 36% rise compared to last year. This evidences that, the supply of homes still cannot keep pace with the demand right now.

Active residential listings numbered 135 units on the market at the end of February, a huge drop of 65% from the end of February 2021.

As prices rise and the theme of low inventory continues, now is the time to take advantage of the market and achieve maximum price for your property. As more interest rate hikes loom on the horizon now is a great time to sell your property.

Trust your local experts to guide you through the process and take advantage of the current market.

All data correct as of March 10, 2022, data gathered by the Ontario Collective based on February 2021 vs February 2022.

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Bank Of Canada Raises Interest Rates To 0.5%

The hikes are here; Bank Of Canada raises target rate to 0.5%, but what does that mean? We break down the info and what it means for homeowners, buyers and sellers. 

For about two years, the interest rates in Canada have been at all-time low levels as the Bank of Canada attempted to help the economy weather the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Though low rates were enjoyed by many, it has been widely understood that they would not be here to stay. Now, amid the highest inflation rates in three decades, the Bank of Canada has finally increased its key interest rate to 0.5% with more hikes expected to come this year.

Previously, the key rate had been held at just 0.25% since the pandemic first broke out in early 2020. This current hike now marks the first increase in interest rates since 2018. Forecasts have predicted that interest rates will continue to increase by a few percentage points through to the end of this year.

Beyond inflation, interest rate increases can have a large effect on the housing market. The Bank of Canada interest rate is a major influence on how banks set their prime rates, which in turn, impact the cost of borrowing and will lead to a growth in variable mortgage interest rates.

Homeowners
Many have already chosen to lock in their variable-rate mortgages with hopes to avoid rising payments as rates go up.

How will the Real Estate Market react?
There are also hopes that rising interest rates can help cool off the incredibly hot real estate markets seen across the country. With rates so low, many were able to afford to borrow much more which had some influence on the rising prices seen in the last two years. With increased interest rates, people will be able to borrow less and some will not be able to afford mortgages at all. The combined effect is fewer buyers in the market with less money to spend. 

Buyers And Sellers
However, if you are looking to buy this year, don’t get your hopes up for significantly decreased home prices. As mentioned before, the effects of gradual rate increases will take a while to be truly felt and there are many other factors driving the real estate market beyond just low-interest rates – particularly lack of available inventory.

If you’re looking to buy right now, although rates have gone up, with more hikes on the horizon, right now it’s still possible to save on future increases and maximize your buying power. 

If you’re thinking of selling your home, it’s still a great time to list. We think a more important factor on the market than rate hikes is the record lows of inventory. There just isn’t enough inventory for the amount of buyers looking in our communities. 

Do you have concerns or questions about what this means for you and your real estate goals? Let us know, we’re here help and will be with you every step of the way.

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January 2022 Market Report

This month’s data showed a slight decline in sales year-over-year, down 5% compared to last January. This is most likely attributed to the lack of inventory. However, the price of residential units sold continued to rise, now sitting at $936,353 which is a 35% rise compared to last year. This evidences that, the supply of homes still cannot keep pace with the demand right now.

Active residential listings numbered 186 units on the market at the end of January, a considerable drop of 15% from the end of January 2021. Active listings haven’t been this low in the month of January in more than 25 years.

As prices rise and the theme of low inventory continues, now is the time to take advantage of the market and achieve maximum price for your property.

Trust your local experts to guide you through the process and take advantage of the current market.

All data correct as of February 11, 2022, data gathered by the Ontario Collective based on January 2021 vs January 2022.

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Buying In A Seller’s Market

You keep hearing “it’s a great time to sell your house”… and it is! However, if you’re trying to purchase a home right now you are facing more challenges than ever before. That doesn’t mean that it’s impossible! Your For Sale In Barrie agent is here to help smooth out any bumps in the road and will be with you every step of the way. 

With the majority of the Canadian housing markets being identified as Seller’s Markets, this means that most buyers, here in Barrie and Nationally, will likely be up against limited housing supply, lots of competition, and the same question on their lips; how do you buy a home in a seller’s market, with the cards stacked against you. 

We’ve identified some buying strategies to employ that will help you find a home in a seller’s market.

Be Informed

Having a handle on market conditions is a key first step in a successful transaction. This is the case regardless of market conditions, but especially if you’re trying to buy a home in a seller’s market. Remember, real estate is very local, so what is happening in one community might be different in another. Here’s where it helps to tap into a professional, experienced real estate agent. Every For Sale In Barrie agent will be able to empower you with all the information you need to help make informed decisions. 

Know Your Budget

How much can you afford to spend on a home? This is different from a mortgage pre-approval. Take into consideration your lifestyle, and what sacrifices you’re willing to make. If you’re planning to buy more home, you might have to curb your spending elsewhere. If you won’t be making any lifestyle changes in interest of home ownership, you may have to lower your home-buying budget or make some other concessions, such as the size of the home or the community.

Really Important Tip… GET PRE APPROVED! 

Get pre-approved for a mortgage. This gives you an idea of how much a lender is willing to finance, and how much you can spend. A pre-approval also locks in the current interest rate for up to 120 days, so you can shop with the peace of mind that you’re insulated from rate hikes in the near future. If the rate drops, your lender should honour the new lower mortgage rate when you’re ready to make your purchase.

Be Prepared To Act Fast

If you’re hoping to buy a home in a seller’s market, you’ll need to take quick and decisive action when you find a property that interests you. For every home that you’re interested in, so are many other buyers. 

Make A Strong Offer

In a seller’s market, you may only get one chance – and it’s not always about the money. A real estate transaction can be complicated with a lot of moving parts. With all other things being equal between your offer and someone else’s, one that’s tailored to the seller’s needs (such as a short or long closing) can tip the scales in your favour. Aside from conceding to the seller’s wishes, an offer in a seller’s market should have as few conditions as possible. This is where you will really benefit from the experience and knowledge of your For Sale In Barrie agent. Every transaction is different and they will be able to guide you on what to include and what not to include based on the property that you’re interested in. 

A conditional offer means that certain terms must be met in order for the offer to be valid. Some common conditions include:

  • Conditional on financing: This is a common condition for first-time homebuyers, which requires the mortgage lender to sign-off before the deal can go through. The buyer has a few days to get this, and the process will include a home appraisal. If the lender does not agree to finance the property, the buyer will notify the seller and the offer becomes null and void.
  • Conditional on home inspection: A home is the biggest purchase most people make in their lifetime, so a satisfactory home inspection is generally recommended. This ensures the house is in good condition before the deal can go through. If it isn’t up to par, the buyer can return to the seller and request repairs, a reduction in the price, or can rescind the offer entirely.
  • Conditional on the sale of a home: If a prospective homebuyer already owns a home, he or she may want to ensure that it is sold before agreeing to purchase a new property.

Offer conditions aren’t ideal for the seller, as each one has a potential domino effect. But buyer beware! You may be tempted to remove the “conditional on financing” or home inspection condition in an effort to beat the competition. For your own protection, we recommend keeping these as part of your offer but once again, your For Sale In Barrie agent will guide you through the process and react to each different situation.

Be Prepared To Pivot

After the last couple of years, you’re likely already accustomed to this as a key Pandemic survival strategy. And if you’re hoping to buy a home in a seller’s market, you’ll need to keep it up. As we all know, market conditions can change on a dime. Have a back-up plan in place, in case you need to delay the purchase – or need to jump on an opportunity sooner than expected!

Work With A Pro

Homebuyers always have the option to handle their transaction on their own, or to work with a professional real estate agent. Working with an experienced agent can ease much of the stress associated with finding and buying a home in a seller’s market. Not to mention, most of the time your agent’s commission will come from the seller’s end of the transaction thus not costing the buyer anything. Your For Sale In Barrie agent will help explain this to you when you meet. Just some advantages include:

  • better access to homes in and out of the local market.
  • knowledge of neighbourhoods and market conditions.
  • negotiating skills (not usually a factor in a seller’s market, but good to have in your back pocket!)
  • we handle the paperwork – enough said.
  • guidance and support in the biggest buying decision of your life.

Have Thick Skin

Last but not least, don’t take rejection personally. Instead, learn from the experience and keep trying. Homebuyers who have been living in persistent seller’s markets know the pain of rejected offers and being “beat” by another buyer. Working with the right real estate agent helps buyers see new listings as soon as they hit the market, so you can jump on “the one” when you find it. At For Sale In Barrie, we’re with you every step of the way. 

“Where will I move to??”… Where do you WANT to move to? Let’s talk!