There’s no question that the real estate market in Toronto has changed over the last few months. The pace has slowed considerably, and the rabid buying frenzy seems to have softened. You can no longer assume that your listing will get multiple offers or start bidding wars. However, contrary to what you may have heard, it is still an excellent time to sell a home. Resetting your expectations may be necessary as you simply will not earn as much from selling now as you would have back in February. But you’re also not going to have to pay record-high prices to secure your new home either. The market has become far more balanced, and that’s good news for everyone.
What Do The Current Stats Say?
In June, real estate sales decreased 41.4% from last year, and inventory levels have increased to 2.5 months worth of supply. As time goes on, we’ll likely see even more listings become available. Some people are hearing whispers about a buyer’s market, but only because they are comparing it to last year, which was far from typical.
Five years ago, if “only” 2.5 months’ worth of inventory were available, we would have considered it a robust seller’s market! The fact is that sellers still have the advantage, even as the market cools off from its scorching hot peak earlier in the year.
The average price of a house in Toronto now stands at $1,146,254, down from February, but still 5.3% higher than last year.
Homes are still selling, and at higher than normal prices. It may take a little more work on your part, but the market remains on your side.
A successful sale now depends on preparing your home properly and understanding what buyers want.
Looking for some ideas to attract buyers and add value to your sale? Here are some more posts to get you started:
- How To Prepare Your Home When You Have No Time
- Tips To Make Your Home Appeal To Younger Buyers
- Redesign Your Home Decor With One Trip To Your Local Hardware Store
There Are Different Types Of Buyers
There’s never a one-size-fits-all when it comes to real estate. You’ll find a few buyers who want top-of-the-line luxury and are willing to spare no expense, but these are few and far between. On the opposite end of the scale, you have buyers who are bargain hunters who practically want you to give away your house. As demand and prices escalated, most bargain hunters removed themselves from the market.
Currently, you’ll find that most buyers fall somewhere in between these two extremes. For some, budgets are stretched to the max, and they can only afford the least expensive condos or townhouses. If they have the skills, they might be interested in a fixer-upper that they can work on over time. Others are willing to spend more for a turnkey property, but only when they see tangible value.
Since the market has become less competitive, buyers have more options, and you’ll have to work harder to make your listing stand out.
The first step is to determine what kind of buyer would be most interested in your home. The second step is to decide how much time and money you’re willing to invest to increase the value of your house.
Features Every Buyer Loves
While individual buyers have many different priorities, human nature dictates that certain features are always desirable. Consider the common complaints you hear about. For example, there’s never enough space to do the things you love, not enough privacy and everything costs too much.
It makes sense that any home upgrades you do should address these common concerns. What features can we safely say nearly every buyer wants in Toronto?
Anyone who has a car and lives in Toronto will tell you how stressful it is to find available parking. It costs a fortune to park anywhere in the city, especially downtown. That’s why a house with a garage is the gold standard for a potential home buyer. If a garage isn’t possible, a driveway that can hold multiple vehicles is the next best thing.
Private outdoor space is an absolute luxury in Toronto, and is becoming even more precious as condos pop up all over the city. A detached home with a fully fenced yard may be the ultimate dream, but many townhouses offer some outdoor space. If you’re lucky enough to have a house with a yard, do whatever it takes to make the most of it.
Invest in some beautiful patio furniture and make sure your lawn is well-maintained. A private yard means you’re sitting on a goldmine. Buyers will pay a premium, and you haven’t even touched the interior of your home yet!
Updated HVAC System
Unlike a modern kitchen or fully renovated bathroom, upgrading your HVAC system doesn’t necessarily add significant monetary value. However, an old inefficient unit can severely hurt your chances of a successful sale.
When considering your home, the monthly maintenance costs weigh heavily on a buyer’s mind. No one wants a staggering high heating bill or expensive repairs a month after they move in. In addition, younger buyers tend to be far more environmentally conscious, and new HVAC systems use 30% to 50% less energy than those built in the 1980s.
Now is also the perfect time for investors to get into the market. Here are some ideas to think about:
- How To Be A Successful Landlord
- 5 Up And Coming Neighbourhoods In The West End
- The Importance Of Location In Real Estate
A Second Bathroom
A second bathroom is on the must-have list for many buyers in the Toronto area, especially if more than one person plans to live there. Having more than one bathroom means less stressful mornings as everyone scrambles to get ready for work and school. And a bathroom on the main level can clinch the sale since there is no need to trek up and down the stairs whenever nature calls.
A Modern Kitchen
The kitchen is widely regarded as the heart of the home, and a few upgrades can make your listing instantly more appealing. A local real estate professional can advise you as to what renovations will give you the most bang for your buck in your area. However, standard features buyers want are:
- Plenty of storage space
- Energy-efficient appliances
- High-quality countertops like granite or quartz
- Attractive yet functional light fixtures
A few inexpensive kitchen updates can attract the attention of buyers, help you sell your home faster, and may even raise the price of your home.
Do you want to know more about selling your Toronto home? We can help! We handle everything from small condos to luxury estates. Find out more about our process here.