If you’re thinking of selling your home, now is a really, really good time to do it. Historically, homes sell best when the final snow leaves the ground, but the spring selling season started earlier than usual this year.
There was a 28 percent increase in the number of residential properties that sold this past March when compared to March 2016. Home sales this year were well above average for the month. The market is hot!
With so many homes selling, chances are really good that yours will, too, if put your home on the market right now and make sure you have the right price.
You’ll want to build on the momentum and excitement that the Ottawa real estate market is now generating. Plus, April has always been the start of a great time to sell for a few reasons, so selling your home in the spring is always a good idea.
Why Is Now a Good Time to Sell?
Ottawa is in an enviable spot in terms of the real estate housing market. According to the Globe and Mail, public servants are feeling more confident about the stability of their jobs with the current government in power — which is contrary to the cutbacks that were invoked during the former regime.
Public servants feel that they have more money to spend on big-ticket items such as homes since their future looks more secure. As well, government incomes are rising in Ottawa and there are more retirees with savings. Mortgage rates are still at near-historic lows, too, and people can afford to buy houses.
Ottawa is also seeing investment in key infrastructure projects, such as the building of the light rail network downtown and throughout the east end, and the new Royal Canadian Mountain Police and Department of National Defence headquarters in the west end. That kind of investment is boosting demand for homes in those areas of the city.
That means your chances of selling your house are excellent in this market — if you have a reasonable asking price.
People Look for Homes in Spring
Selling your home in spring is easier, too, because that’s when people traditionally start looking. Fewer people want to tour around and look for a new home in winter, with all that snow that’s usually on the ground. It’s important to have a real estate agent in your corner if you’re considering selling your home in the winter.
With spring, however, people can see your landscaping, and tell what condition your roof is in — which they can’t do in January. If that wasn’t enough, your home looks better in listings photos in the spring, too. People can actually see blue sky and flowers, not blah winter doldrums. All of these things enhances spring’s appeal for buying homes.
What About in Ottawa?
An Ottawa Citizen article points out that people tend to buy condos in the city mostly between April and October.
Why? It seems that people of retirement age are doing extensive travelling during winter for the first time in their lives. On a particularly peaceful and relaxing trip, they might start to envision taking up a snowbird lifestyle.
Naturally, when they come back to Ottawa they wanted to start looking for a new home to fit their new lifestyle. Factoring into this was that they didn’t want to have to worry about yard work and home repairs anymore, especially if they were going to be away for half the year. So they would look at condos, and start to look in the spring.
That’s great news if you’re a couple with children or are planning to have children. In downsizing, these retirees are opening up potential homes to families for you to buy right now. All the more reason to sell while the iron is hot.
Other Benefits to Selling Now
If you’re selling your home now, you’re probably going to need to buy a new home right away, too. This allows you to organize your move in the summer, which doesn’t disrupt your kids’ schooling (if you have any kids, that is). You’ll also likely need to register your children in a new school if you’re moving to a new neighbourhood, too, and the sooner you can start that process, the better your chances that they’ll get in.
Plus, other people are going to be putting their houses on the market right now, too, because they want to get settled into their new homes they plan to buy before summer vacation starts. This gives you way more choice in finding your next home. Worried about juggling selling and buying for the first time? This article will help you when it’s time to do both.
There’s another really good reason to get off your duff and put your home on the market today. Did you know that the end of July and the months of August (and September, too) are traditionally the second slowest time of the year after January to sell your home? Sales are going to level off soon as people think about hitting the beach or cottage, and you’ll be left holding the bag during a sluggish sales month or two.
That being said, there’s more competition in spring. Your home has to look nice and tidy because buyers can be a fickle lot. They don’t want fixer-uppers. They just want to hire the moving truck, get unpacked and, pardon the pun, move on with their lives.
This all means that you have to look at selling price data when deciding the price you’re asking for your home. Even in this seller’s market, prices that are too high simply will not sell, even if prices are still going through the roof in neighbourhoods such as the Glebe and Westboro.
Why It’s Essential to Get a Good Realtor
If your home is on the market for too long, people will think something’s wrong with it. A good realtor knows the market inside and out, and can help you come up with a price that will help your home sell faster and prevent market value erosion.
It’s not about having a sky high price and then bringing it down to earth when the home doesn’t get sold. It means going lower and getting the home into the hands of a new buyer faster. You will probably get a higher price than you might have been expecting that way.
Paul Rushforth Real Estate offers free home appraisals to let you know how much your house is really worth. There is absolutely no obligation to list your home with us. We can, however, let you know what you should be asking if you want your home sold in days, not weeks.