Real Estate Word -- The Principles of Pricing October 2018   

 
As I write this newsletter on this Thanksgiving weekend, I am reminded of all the things I am grateful for.  You, my clients, are high on that list!!  I hope that you have had a wonderful long week-end doing the things you love to do, surrounded by friends and family. 

Selling your home involves many important decisions, one of which is determining the right asking price. This month's article explains why overpricing your home can potentially lead to disaster.

There are also a few tips that'll come in handy if you plan on flying with your kids as well as some great ideas on how to build a bit of community spirit this Halloween.

As always a favorite family recipie is included and we hope that you will enjoy the old fashioned apple crisp.  

Thanks so much for checking out this month's newsletter. Please get in touch if you have any questions or comments regarding the articles, or real estate in general -- it'd be great to hear from you!

Best Regards,
Henry

In this issue...
Average Home Sale Price Declining 
Year to date the average price of $332,700 for a home in Saskatoon represents a decline of 4% from a year ago. By comparison in the past three years, the third quarter average price was $347,165 in 2017 and $352,103 in 2016. Although much focus in real estate is on the average price, the average can be misleading and is easily skewed. A better indicator of what is happening with home prices is the Home Price Index. 

The Home Price Index establishes attributes for a typical single family home with a base value in 2005. From that starting point, changes in value are recorded over time to get a better sense of what is happening to pricing and where prices are trending. The value for the typical single family home in January of 2005 was $140,400. This value reached its peak in May of 2015 at $329,500. Currently this value is at $312,200 which is the highest level for 2018 and is virtually unchanged from a month earlier. The Benchmark price for a typical Townhouse style property in Saskatoon was $219,700 last month, this is the lowest point since April of 2007 when the value was $205,300. For apartment style properties, the Benchmark value of $176,200 in September was the first increase since December of 2007 when the value was at $190,600. For more information on HPI go to saskatoonrealtors.ca .

Active listings in Saskatoon continued to shrink with year over year decline of 7%. In Saskatoon at the end of September there were 1,944 active listings compared to 2,082 a year ago. Active listings are higher in the region surrounding the city which includes the cities of Martensville and Warman. At the end of September there were 1,161 available properties compared to 1,086 for the surrounding area. The decline in available properties is mostly attributable to an overall decline in new listings coming on the market. Year to date, there were 6,521 properties listed in the city of Saskatoon, a decline of 11% compared to 2017. In the month of September, there were 648 new listings in Saskatoon. 

By comparison in September of 2017 there were 767 new listings and 779 in 2016. Currently we are in a buyers market with elevated levels of inventory and downward trending prices for most properties.

In the month of September there were 268 residential sales on the MLS®. This is similar to September of 2017. The total number of sales for the first three quarters of 2018 was 2,679, a 5% decline from last year. By comparison, in the first three months of 2016, there were 2,935 sales in the city of Saskatoon.

Statistics from: Jason Yochim CAE, CRAE 
Chief Executive Officer – Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® 


The Principles of Pricing 
Your asking price can either make or break your sale.

Pricing your home correctly is critical to a successful sale as it will help ensure that your home sells for the most amount of money, in the shortest amount of time.

Determining a home's asking price involves comparing similar homes in nearby areas that have recently sold while also taking past, present and future market trends into account.

Although you may have your own personal opinion of what your home's worth, it's important to be unbiased and realistic. At the end of the day, it’s the market that determines your home's true value.

There's always a huge buzz when a new property hits the market but if the price is too high, it will quickly become stale and there won't be any incentive for buyers to make a swift, strong offer. Worse yet, if it sits on the market too long, it’ll develop a stigma. We’ve all walked past a home that’s sat on the market for ages and wondered, “what’s wrong with it?”

Having your property sit on the market is also very inconvenient as you'll constantly have to keep it in a show-ready state which can be extremely stressful, not to mention exhausting. Furthermore, carrying costs such as mortgage interest, insurance, taxes and utilities will quickly add up if you get stuck carrying two homes at once.

Overpricing your property will actually help your competition as buyers will see other homes in your area as much better deals since they're less expensive. If, on the other hand, your home is priced close to fair market value, those same buyers will consider your home much more seriously.

Pricing a home is part art and part science. Market factors such as the economy, time of the year and interest rates can all make a huge difference. Your home only gets one chance to make a great first impression so it's important to enlist the services of a highly-qualified real estate agent to help you get things done properly from start to finish. Please don’t ever hesitate to ask if you have any questions!

Things to Know when Flying with Kids in Tow 
When you take to the skies with little ones, be prepared for anything!

If you have young children, flying has likely taken on a whole new meaning, and fun probably isn't a word that springs to mind!

Flying with little ones can be somewhat bearable though if you're properly prepared. Here are a few handy tips to keep in mind:

  1. Call Ahead - Get details on seat selection and stroller storage. Reserve the bulkhead section if you're traveling with an infant and ask for a cot.

  2. Supply & Demand - Bring extra snacks, a variety of sticker books, lots of crayons and a few small toys to help hold their interest.



  3. Back-up Pack-up - Pack diapers, wipes and a few extra clothes in a separate, smaller bag so you don't have to lug your entire backpack to the bathroom.

  4. Get a Move On - Keep them on the move before the flight to tire them out so they won’t end up kicking the seat in front of you the whole time.

  5. Fasten Your Seatbelts - Have a few important items on hand in case you’re unable to access the overhead compartment and always have a drink ready to help relieve their ear pressure.

It always takes a little longer to do anything with kids so be sure to allow a bit of extra breathing room. Also, flying definitely isn’t the time to worry about your kids being on their screens so bring along a fully charged device (and a portable charger) to help distract them during the flight. Oh, and don’t forget the headphones!

Some Halloween ideas! 
Halloween's a great way to get to know the people on your street!

It’s not often that the people on your block are out roaming around in full force so why not use Halloween as an opportunity to build some community spirit! Here are a few fun ideas to consider:

  1. Scariest House on the Block - Hold a competition for the best-decorated house, get everyone involved by voting and have a small prize for the winner.

  2. Open House - Forge new friendships by hosting an open house. Serve a few simple drinks and snacks and invite everyone on your block either before, after or during trick or treating.

  3. Grossest Grub - Have all the families on your street bring a Halloween-themed food item and then vote on the grossest, scariest food to see who wins!

It’s easy to avoid contact with those who live close by, so this Halloween, why not help build up your community with some spooktacular fun and make some new friends!

Old Fashioned Apple Crisp 

Ingredients

5 pounds McIntosh or Macoun apples

Grated zest of 1 orange

Grated zest of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the topping:

1 1/2 cups flour

3/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup oatmeal

1/2 pound cold unsalted butter, diced

 

Directions


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 14 by 2-inch oval baking dish.
  2. Peel, core, and cut the apples into large wedges. Combine the apples with the zests, juices, sugar, and spices. Pour into the dish.
  3. To make the topping, combine the flour, sugars, salt, oatmeal, and cold butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the mixture is crumbly and the butter is the size of peas. Scatter evenly over the apples.
  4. Place the crisp on a sheet pan and bake for 1 hour until the top is brown and the apples are bubbly. Serve warm.





PS Are you frustrated by scouring the paper and MLS sites looking for homes? Tired of playing telephone tag with agents only to hear the home's already sold?  Sit back, relax and let me do the work for you!  Just visit my website and check off the features you're looking for.   Whenever a home matching your criteria hits the market, it'll be automatically flagged and emailed to you so you'll never have to worry about missing your dream home. This service is free and there's no obligation! Click here to get started.

Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.