Updated July 2022:
Whether you are a buyer, a seller, a refinancer, or simply a curious individual, you’re not alone in wondering how a shifting Ottawa real estate market will affect you.
Every single one of my buyers and sellers has asked me the same question.
We’ll start from a buyer’s point of view – it’s been purely a seller’s market so as a buyer, you are probably wondering if it’s your turn to be in the driver’s seat. Then we’ll look at how sellers have to work a little bit harder as the market balances out.
Ottawa home buyers are asking:
Q: Should we wait until the market shifts more and prices drop?
A: You can wait a bit and you may have more choice (a less frenzied market means there may be more inventory), but in the last 100 years there was only one year where prices dropped at all, and that was by about 1%… and then they went straight back up. And the year did not look at all like this one.
This week I was in a multiple offer situation with clients where the home sold under asking price. I also sold a home that had two price reductions.
What’s new now is that very few homes are setting offer days, and there may be opportunities for patient buyers.
It’s important for buyers to understand that we are entering a balanced market.
Ottawa home sellers are asking:
Q: Can I still sell my home in this market? Will I get the price I am looking for?
A: Yes and yes (if your expectations are in line with the market). But you may have to be patient. You may not receive multiple offers, and it may take weeks instead of days.
The house will still sell, it just takes patience, hustle from your agent, and potentially time.
Over the last two years, sellers and buyers have gotten used to the strategy of pricing low (usually mid-week), allowing buyers to view the house for about 6 days over a weekend, and then taking offers at a set date and time. This strategy is designed to attract multiple offers and drive the price up.
We are rarely employing this strategy anymore, and we are preparing sellers on how negotiations or conditions may affect the sale of their home.
What happens if I only receive an offer that’s lower than I had hoped?
Before I get into what your agent ought to be doing at this point, let’s explore why you may not have received a good offer:
- Not enough buyers have seen your home due to ineffective marketing or pricing
- Your home attracted a significant number of buyers but there is an objection (that distracting orange wall, or peeling exterior paint) that keeps coming up in the showing agent’s feedback.
- Your home attracted a significant number of buyers, but they expected that the home would sell for more than they wanted to pay and therefore they didn’t even bother to make an offer.
Your agent is responsible for dealing with #1 and together you and your agent can work on #2. They will likely have a plan to drop the price, do some additional marketing and attract more buyers, and help you find ways to mitigate buyer objections.
Now let’s talk about #3:
You had a decent number of showings on your home but had no good offers. What do we do now?
Your agent will get on the phone, text, email with every agent who went through the home or inquired about it. They will let them know that you didn’t receive any offers and ask them if their client would be interested in the home at all – is it perhaps the price that is deterring them? This information is important for strategizing the next steps.
Remember – neither the seller nor the agent gets to decide the ultimate selling price. The market will tell us what the home is worth once we set the right conditions for the home to sell.
Got questions about selling or buying in a shifting market? Please send me an email at Liisa@LiisaVexler.com. I’m here to help.
I'm Liisa and I love helping people moving to Ottawa make their home purchase and transition smooth and seamless. I also love helping sellers get the most for their Ottawa home. Let me know how I can help you make your real estate dreams come true.
613-898-1184 (call or text)