Market Shifts

By: Keith Williams & Lisa C. Follows

Market Shifts

Tags: housing market shift, house prices

Nothing lasts forever nor stays the same. The only constant is change and so it is with the real estate
market.
Market shift has been on the lips of a lot of realtors lately yet no one knows exactly what it is or what it
means. The media has yet to really pick up on it. But when you’re working in this business every day and
often 7 days a week, you notice the subtleties pretty quickly. And the latest subtlety presents a slight
change in buyer behavior. 

Our Brokerage at RE/MAX Jazz is very good at tracking weekly activity so we can quickly pinpoint
changes in the number of sales, new listings, and the number of showings. Lately, it has been a change in the
level of showing activity. Amazingly enough, it seemed to coincide with the war in Ukraine, the upward
nudge in interest rates, and the stupendous rise in gas prices. This begs the question is it going to
continue or be a blip? How long will it sustain or deep will it go? We can accurately predict the past, but
the future eludes us!

We have gone through almost 2 years of record activity and huge price increases. At some point,
behavior has to change and it only needs an impetus. There’s been plenty, as mentioned above. War,
inflation, interest rates, gas prices, buyer fatigue, more inventory slowly coming online yet we’re still
seeing folks paying premium prices for properties. Just not for every property. That’s the difference. So
whether a property didn’t price or present properly, some are not getting offers on Offer Day. And that’s
a shock both for some agents and their Sellers.

Could the shift be temporary or the sign of more to come? No one knows for sure but we don’t think the
sky will fall. When the media grabs hold of the story they will inevitably craft it into something that sells
headlines but may not quite tell the whole story. Surprise! The fact of the matter is markets don’t like
uncertainty and we have some of that now. On the other hand, the fundamentals haven’t changed all
that much. Money is still cheap and rates can’t skyrocket (or we’ll all be doomed). Immigration is still
robust, housing is in short supply. Perhaps the playing field, which has been tilted to one side for so
long, is just beginning to even out a little. That’s not such a bad thing! We’ll be watching the numbers
closely, as we always do, and making any needed adjustments along the way.

Whether you’re buying or selling, that’s the value of having a professional on your side to confide in.
Rather than getting all your information from the web or media, talk to people in the industry. Sure
there are agents who always paint the rosy picture but most I know are realistic and are happy to share
their honest opinion. Speak to several and get different opinions and then make your own judgments.
We may not have all the answers as to what the future holds but we can crunch the data and we should
know how to interpret it.

This brings me to my last point; that it’s not just having a lot of information. Tons of people have tons
of information but are they interpreting it correctly and in the right context? Opinions not supported by
critical thinking are cheap indeed and as someone once told me, they’re like assholes in that everybody
has one. That much remains a fact. Stay tuned for more historical interpretation and if you have any
questions about the market, call my wife. She knows way more than I do. Ask for Lisa at 905-442-5847!

 

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