I remember about 4 years ago, Darren and I sitting in the office mid-April, in what was supposed to be the heat of the “Spring Market”, that marketplace that we look forward to all year as Realtors, anticipating that 40% of our business would be done in just two short but busy months. Well, we sat there, and contemplated whether or not we were going to have to find new careers as we listened to only the soft buzz of the electronics in the “Krause Wing” (yes Re/Max gave us our own sound proofed wing), which was supposed to be filled with the ping of text messages, the ring of phones and the constant clicking of keyboards responding to online inquiries. Insert. Panic. Here. That Fall we did 40% of our business in just two short but busy months. That October/November will be one that I never forget. That Fall Market showed me that there was no longer that “Spring Market”, that Sellers waited for as they had done for the first 22 years of my Father’s real estate career. That Fall Market told me that there would no longer be a cycle to this madness. This was the first indicator that not only the Real Estate market had changed, but everyone else had too.
Cut to Q1/Q2 of 2017 and we are grateful that we tend to be listers (realtor lingo for a salesperson that represents more Sellers than Buyers). The sizzle was back in the office and we were counting our commissions before the properties even sold, because we knew that they would, with competing offers and for 10’s of thousands over asking. We would have little wagers about how much over asking these properties would sell for and how many offers would be on any given property. But, Buyers suffered. We as Realtors couldn’t do “our job” and properly represent our Buyer. Buyer’s would ask “What do I need to do in order to get this property – we’ve lost out X amount of times!”, our response, “Pretty much throw caution to the wind, take out the financing and home inspection and hope and pray that you get financing and that the house isn’t going to fall down. Oh, and go in tens of thousands over asking”. I hated having to give that advice and I secretly crossed my fingers too – hoping that the house wasn’t going to fall down. Then May came and the taps were suddenly turned off and we were back to a balanced and fair marketplace where Sellers received 97-98% of asking and Buyers were able to do their due diligence. That Fall the GTA saw the highest number of homes not close that were purchased in the panic of the first part of the year. Moral of the story, don’t count your chickens before they hatch.
This year, I can’t go anywhere without someone asking me, “What’s going on with the market?”. My response, until Monday of the week was this; “There doesn’t seem to be any sense of urgency from Buyers. They just aren’t pulling the trigger. Although, for the most part, we are getting good traffic through our listings. Also, Seller’s have gone through price improvements to make their homes more appealing to Buyers, but, Buyers are in control right now and they just aren’t making a move”. It has been this way all of Q2 2018.
Then Monday morning I opened up my computer while having my morning coffee out back and I had a string of inquiries on numerous listings in my inbox. I had DM’s on social media platforms asking to view listings of ours. I had text messages from people relocating from Montreal and needed to buy a home ASAP and others wanting to see our Two Million Dollar listings and I even have a second showing on one of them today! So, if you asked me today, “What’s going on with the market?”, my response would be quite simple, “I have no clue…but my inboxes have been full since Monday morning…”.