The Covid-19 has changed the way we live our daily lives, and it has upended countless business sectors, including our real estate market. Real estate agents, buyers, and sellers are struggling to do business when it’s anything but business as usual. This is a day-to-day situation. We are currently living through history. For Canada’s housing market the immediate future is uncertain. We are trying to find solutions in the era of social distancing and mandatory quarantines. However, we are seeing some steady activity as some appear undeterred. In fact, some buyers have taken encouragement from recent rate cuts implemented to combat the crisis. Lower interest rates can serve as rocket fuel for home prices, but that might not likely be the case this time.
It’s the first week of the “new normal” for everyone after it was announced that ‘Ontario is under a state of emergency’ which is currently in effect until March 31st. We are settling in and are adjusting day-by-day. Most real estate companies have put protocols in place.
• Open houses are cancelled
• Strongly advise the Seller to move out during its listing on the market
• One group of buyers at a time and try not to bring your children
• Don’t touch surfaces only if the agent has provided gloves and wipes
• Limit your showings to 30 minutes
Buyers are still out there, but the market could swing either way. If supply falls, prices may be pushed higher. Home sales in the GTA in February were growing by over 40% compared to last year and prices were growing by just under 20%. Even if some buyers decide not to buy right now, we would still have a competitive market with approximately 2.5 months of inventory. Homes are still selling quickly but instead of getting 10 plus offers on offer night, there may only be 1-3 offers. People still need to buy homes to live in and will still buy and sell for the traditional reasons – divorce, death, desire and relocation.
Stay safe everyone.