Homes are starting to move. Fixed rates are trending down. It feels like things are picking up.
My work is feeling a little different than it did over the last two or three years.
I am seeing a bit of a shift from the desperation clients were approaching the home buying process with to a more strategic, considered approach to purchasing a home.
I am still seeing multiple offer situations and tight turnaround on subject removal dates, but I am not seeing (with my clients at least) offers that are crazy amounts over the asking price. I am not seeing clients taking the same risks with subject-free offers.
I had a great conversation with one of my realtor referral partners this week. Her client had negotiated to try to buy a home about a month ago. The home was right at the top of her price range and needed a considerable amount of updating and potentially some structural work.
In that case the seller absolutely refused to budge on the list price. The house has been on the market for almost a year. She was disappointed but unwilling to pay the asking price. She decided to walk away and wait.
Last week another home nearby popped up on MLS. It was priced at $10,000 less than the first home she had written an offer on. It was completely renovated and move-in ready with a lovely yard. She wrote an offer at the full asking price and was thrilled when the seller accepted her offer.
The offer included a subject to financing condition which allowed my client time to do her due diligence and get her ducks in a row. With rates trending down we were able to find a great fit for her mortgage.
This may seem like a normal thing, and indeed it used to be the way we did business.
The last few years have been incredibly stressful for all involved in the housing markets. Realtors were putting ridiculous time into showing homes and writing offers on property after property. Clients were on high alert for new listings and on edge waiting to see if their offer was accepted. Offers were written without conditions which was stressful all the way around.
Rushing in at the top of a client’s price point often does not leave much room for error.
It does make my heart happy that people are not panic buying like they were. More thoughtful decisions will (ideally) lead to better long-term outcomes and financial positions for clients.
My last few columns have talked about refinancing options for people who have equity in their homes. Many people are living pretty close to the line week after week.
I have a friend that recently started volunteering at one of the local food banks. Before she started there I hadn’t really thought about exactly how fortunate I am to have groceries in the fridge.
I am not exactly sure of the statistics, but my understanding is that the need for support from the food bank is up over fifty per cent from last year. The food banks are in desperate need of additional donations to help support our communities.
With Easter upon us, if you are blessed to have extra please think about either a cash or food donation to your local food bank.
Wishing you a most joyous Easter.
This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.