Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A Tale of Two Cities - How Real Estate Markets In The GTA Can Be So Drastically Different

In recent months I have had the privilege to work with some clients who were both looking for the same type of property, a family home that they could move into and grow their families. While their budgets and areas were different, their desires were both the same, somewhere to call home for the long term. One set of clients were looking in the upscale area of Forest Hill in the Bathurst and Eglinton part of Toronto, while the others were looking in a newer development in Aurora around Bayview and St. John’s Sideroad.

As their searches began, it became quite apparent how each set of clients would have to act differently, as the markets in each area were trending in very different ways. Forest Hill is, and has been for a long time, one of Toronto’s most active and most competitive markets with a constant demand for a limited supply of homes. On the other hand, while the homes in this part of Aurora were desirable, there was more supply than demand causing a totally different effect.

With the Forest Hill clients, it was imperative to ensure that they were able to see each property the day it came on the market to allow them the opportunity to make the decisions, rather than the decisions being made for them. In a lot of cases, houses in this area would have offer dates, meaning the listing agent was looking for a bidding war and for the properties to sell for over the asking price. It is not uncommon in this area, and is almost an accepted practice despite it making it much more challenging for prospective buyers. For buyers, it can almost be a more disappointing experience than a rewarding one as there may be many properties that they are interested in selling for prices higher than they would pay. While patience may be a virtue, it is something that is tested regularly in this type of market.

Shifting gears to Aurora demonstrated that while both of these areas could be considered part of the GTA, they might as well be in different time zones. The supply of homes for my clients was so plentiful, that making a decision was more difficult in their favour. Houses were being listed at reasonable prices on an almost daily basis, while competing properties were dropping their price almost just as fast. Unlike Forest Hill where houses were sold within 1-7 days, houses in this part of Aurora were sitting on the market for weeks at a time before they sold. This is not a slight on the area, which has a large amount of new infrastructure already providing great services to its residents; it just shows how demand can affect the market in such a drastic way.

While the news paint a broader brush stroke on the fluctuations of the market on a weekly, or even daily basis, the many different markets in the GTA each have their own changes that real estate professionals have to be aware of. While you may have 2 clients, looking for the exact same property, with a similar budget, the areas that they choose to look in may ultimately determine what type of property they may or may not be able to afford. At Hive Realty, we pride ourselves on understanding the trends in specific areas to ensure that our clients not only understand what is available, but why prices may be different for the same property depending on where you look. Working with one of our sales representatives can only benefit you in ways that you may not have thought of before.

By : Darryl Greenberg

Sales Representative

Hive Realty



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