Perhaps one of the most common questions any real estate agent receives is “When is the best time to buy a home”? (The other question is “What’s a great time to sell my home?”). If home buyers have the choice, they should try to buy a home at the most opportune time. But WHEN is that?
When everyone else is selling…..buy
A wise man, British Rabbi and philosopher Johnathan Sacks, coined the phrase : “When others are selling, buy! When others are buying, sell!”
In Winnipeg’s real estate market, it is well documented that the spring months are the most active for home buyers. This is of course the most common time for ‘bidding wars’, and it’s a great time to sell your house or condo.
Over the summer, lots of new listings come to the market, and then towards the fall time, buyer activity levels off. This often means that unsold homes remain on the market, making the fall time a prime time to buy a home.
Take a look at this chart:
Lets take a look at the difference between April 2018 and October 2018
In the entry-level homes for 100-250K, we have nearly 50% MORE homes available in October, while the buying level is around the same (143-156). Check out the ‘Days of Inventory’, which jump from 69 days to 90 days in October.
The next price range, houses between 250K and 500K, show an even more pronounced difference. 644 available homes in April, but 922 in October. And sales actually DROP from 345 in April to 326 in October. So wayyyy more listings, for fewer buyers. This causes the ‘Days of Inventory’ to jump from 58 to 85.
And luxury homes are perhaps the biggest difference in all. 70 more available listings, for 23% fewer buyers. Inventory levels jump from 174 to 279.
But what are ‘Days of Inventory’?
If you ask the question: “How long would it take to sell ALL homes on the market, assuming NO NEW LISTINGS were being added?” The answer is ‘Days of Inventory’. So for luxury homes, it would take 279 days to sell all remaining homes at the current rate of sale.
Naturally, the higher that number, the better for home buyers.
Generally speaking, Winnipeg’s real estate market follows a predictable path over the year. Buyer activity picks up in the early spring and runs hot thru the early summer, before pulling back over the fall and nearly disappearing over December-January.
Listings follow suit, becoming more plentiful between April – July, before slowing down over the fall time.
As Mr. Sacks noted: “When others are selling…buy”. In Winnipeg’s real estate market that means September, October, November and possible early December are the best times to buy a home.
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