Busted: 8 Vancouver Real Estate Myths!
The Vancouver real estate market is showing no signs of slowing, with sales in August almost 20% above the 10-year sales average. With certainty returning to the market across summer, we’re busting some of the most common real estate myths to help you take advantage of this fast-paced environment!
Myth: You Should Wait Until Spring to List Your Home in Vancouver
One of the most prolific myths of the Vancouver real estate market is the idea that Spring is the best time to list. While Spring signals the start of the busy real estate season, activity is far from finished by the time Fall rolls around. In fact, many buyers who didn’t take the plunge in the Spring or Summer are very motivated to buy a home before the snow hits the ground, which could result in a quicker sale or a higher price!
Myth: Listing at a Higher Price Leaves More Negotiating Room
Generally speaking, over-pricing your home means many potential buyers won’t ever see it. Most homebuyers start their search for a home online, filtering by region, housing type and most importantly, price.
In fact, a recent RE/MAX survey revealed that price was the most important factor when shopping for real estate. This highlights the importance of doing your research of comparable sales in the area when setting your listing price, as well as the importance of setting realistic expectations.
In addition, many buyers will already have a mortgage pre-approval figure on the table when they begin to seriously search for a property. This hard-line figure is often used to set the parameters of their search, and if your property price is above this number, it won’t even feature let alone leave room for negotiation.
Myth: Vancouver Real Estate Is Seasonal
To those who think there’s a right and wrong season to buy or sell a home in Vancouver, there really isn’t. Many factors contribute to property sales, and people are consistently on the move due to work, access to amenities, or the increasing needs of their family.
Although natural lighting may be beneficial in Spring compared to Winter, effective property staging (see more below) can have a much larger impact on prospective buyers.
Moreover, Vancouver property prices depend much more on factors such as supply and demand, which can vary between cities and neighbourhoods. So, rather than season, look to days on market as the best indicator of your negotiating power.
Myth: Under-Pricing to Create a Bidding War Is Always a Good Strategy
This strategy can be successful if the subject property is in a market segment where the is:
A shortage of supply, and
Real/hot demand, AND
Where the subject property appeals to all (or almost all) of those buyers. In other words, the subject property will appeal to the masses.
If your property does not fall into these categories, under-pricing is more likely to lead to lower offers than you want, or that your property is worth.
Myth: Effective Property Staging Is an Expense
In order to achieve the price you deserve on your property, it needs to present well. In our 20 years of experience, effective staging will net a profit and therefore staging should be considered an investment, not an expense.
Myth: The Right Buyer Will Pay What I Want for My Home
A buyer who falls in love with your home may pay a premium stemming from their emotions. However, they are still very likely to perform an analysis of sold comparable’s with their Buyer’s Agent, and/or will still be comparing value given what they have already seen.
Most active buyers nowadays are quite savvy during their search given that they are often seeing a lot of properties – online and in-person- and overpricing may lead to the listing going ‘stale.’ In most cases, if your property has been on the market for an extended period, prospective buyers will wonder what they’ve missed, and may be less likely to make an offer.
Myth: You Can Save Money by Finding a Property on Your Own
One of the more interesting myths in the Vancouver property market is the false belief that struggling through purchasing a property on your own will somehow save you money.
As a buyer, it does not cost you anything to engage the services of a qualified Realtor/ buyer’s agent. When you purchase a home, your agent is paid by the seller’s agency after the purchase is completed- so you don’t have to go it alone!
As Realtors have the first access to new listings, open houses generally occur after private viewings have been completed. Whilst the property may still be opened for viewing, the best ones will have already accepted an offer by that stage (with subjects in place). So without a buyer’s agent- it is very likely that you won’t even be aware of these properties, or have the first opportunity to make an offer.
Myth: Renting Out Your Property Is ALWAYS a Good Investment
There are some key advantages to owning/renting a second property when compared to other investment vehicles. However, it isn’t always a good investment. These decisions are made on a case-by-case basis, and the determining factor usually comes down to whether the right property was purchased at the right price. For more information about property investing please
see “Is Renting Out a Property a Good Investment?“
There are a lot of misconceptions that surround the property industry in Vancouver. That’s where professional Realtor’s can make all of the difference. From listing and staging to sales and contracts, the West Haven Group can help with all facets of the property buying and selling process. For more information about our services, or any advice, please reach out and connect with us!