Buyers prep for a cooler fall

Great article by Carolyn Ireland in this morning’s Globe and Mail!

The housing market in Toronto has remained remarkable resilient, even as global financial markets have been roiling. Bidding wars through the spring and summer pushed prices higher but economists and real estate agents expect a more moderate pace in the fall.

These seven strategies will help sellers and buyers prepare for the coming months:

Set an offer date – for now. Agents still believe it’s wise for homeowners to hold off receiving offers on a property for sale until a specified date. That way, more potential buyers have a chance to see it and the increased traffic may bring competition.

But some agents are nervously watching to see if offer dates go by without a single bid as the fall market gears up. When that starts happening, agents will recommend switching to a strategy of “offers welcome any time”.

If you’re planning to sell your house eventually, perhaps it’s time to stop procrastinating. In August, the average price of a home in the Greater Toronto Area rose by 10 per cent year-over-year to reach a record high of $451,663. Toronto-Dominion Bank economist Francis Fong is forecasting that sales and prices across Canada will drop approximately 10 per cent from current levels, but he does not think that will happen until the Bank of Canada beings to raise interest rates – likely in early 2013.

Click here for the full article and click here for an interactive map of Toronto home values.