is the Langley Real Estate market as cold as our Weather?
Welcome to Winter 2022! A few weeks ago, I was in shorts sitting on my patio enjoying a late summer considering the madness of the Langley real estate market, and now I’m scraping my windows every morning and making plans for Christmas. Is the Langley real estate market as cold as our mornings?
“Mortgage qualifying continues to be a significant hurdle for many potential buyers as interest rates rise.” – BC Real Estate Association
With these relentless interest rate raises, many buyers are being pushed off price bands they previously qualified for. This explains why total sales last month were 812 compared to 801 in the previous month and 1760 in October 2021. 54% less volume year over year! In some cases, Sellers are pulling listings off the market in hopes of a better future.
With such low volume, active listings for some home types are stacking up. There were 4231 active listings in October 2022 compared to only 2322 active listings last year at the same time. That works out to an 82% increase in active listings from last year and more than double the listings of October 2020. I should mention that many of the “active” listings are stuck on Spring pricing and Buyers are uninterested when they have sharper-priced options.
It’s not all bad news! The median sale price in the Fraser Valley was $962,000 in October, which has been flat since August! This should lead to Buyer confidence heading into 2023, especially if we see an end to interest rate increases after the likely hike in December.
How do we time the bottom as Buyers?
Generally, in Langley real estate, the home-buying process takes an average of three months to qualify and find a property. Unfortunately, it’s never clear when the actual bottom is in without hindsight. Still, even if there were an announcement that the market has shifted, most people would miss the bottom as they scramble to qualify themselves and find the correct property as other latecomers compete in the scramble to ride the wave up. Hard to hit a bullseye when you need to release the arrow three months before the target shows itself. Our recommendation for Buyers is to qualify before the next interest rate hike and begin discovering the home-buying process. Price may stay flat for the immediate future, but rent is skyrocketing.
Should Sellers wait till Spring?
Generally, Spring brings more volume to the market. However, with interest rates increasing rapidly this year, we expect Spring’s new listings to outweigh the sales volume. This could keep the sales-to-active ratio low. If your home is ready to sell, we recommend starting your Spring sale early, as days on the market are higher than in recent memory, and many homes are taking a few months to sell. Wouldn’t it be great to have your home sold and many options to shop through for your purchase?
Your situation could be completely different than I’ve described because some pockets of the market are still getting multiple offers while other property types have had 0 sales in months. If you’re considering entering this market as a Buyer or Seller, you must prepare yourself with an intelligent plan limiting your risk. Our team understands that each situation is different, so we tailor our real estate strategy to you.