If you want to buy property, whether it's from the Scarborough condos or the ones here in Vancouver, you need to have a proper understanding of how real estate markets work if you want to get the best possible deal. Since markets are continually under flux, we can't simply tell you how to deal with Vancouver's market. Instead, we'll teach you to understand it so that you can look at what's going on, now or in the future, and know what to do.
The terms "buyer's market" and "seller's market" come up a lot in trade talk among North York real estate agents and hearing these terms can give you instant insight into a market. In a buyer's market, there are more houses for sale than buyers who want them. Sellers compete with one another for the attention of buyers. This gives buyers the opportunity to bid lower than the asking price and still get the property, giving them the advantage.
In a seller's market, exactly the opposite is true. There are fewer houses on the market than there are people who want to buy property, so anyone in the market for Toronto townhouses in a seller's market situation will likely have to compete with other buyers to win the property. This creates what's known as bidding wars, which drive up the prices of homes, thus giving the seller the advantage.
Statistics and averages can help you get a snapshot of the market at the current moment. You can find these types of statistics online through the Canadian Association of Realtors and other organizations, or you can ask a Richmond Hill real estate agent. The most illustrative figure that you can get is the average price per square foot, which will allow you to calculate the average you personally will be looking at paying by plugging in the size of house you want.
While you're looking at statistics, take a look at what the values were in the past as they can help you make a guess for the future. Have averages been steadily rising? Then you can expect them to continue. Have more people been taking out a mortgage in Ontario? That means it's a very popular market. Many statistics compilers also generate projections, which are guesses for the future. It can be helpful to look at these to figure out whether to hold off on buying or selling until a later date.