We are planning to move to Vancouver sometime next year (Covid permitting!). We plan on renting for a while to build credit and then buy a home. I keep on reading about the super expensive real estate in and around Vancouver BC.Currently I am doing research on different suburbs around Vancouver.I have the following questions;
1) Ideally we would like to buy a townhouse or single family home with a small yard in a good school district ( we have a preschooler). What is the avg price (CAD) of such houses in suburbs around Vancouver?
2) How competitive is the real estate market? Usually how is the bidding process?
3) Are houses easily available for a family of 3? When I try to find on Zillow, I can find either really huge houses ( 5 or 6 beds) or apartments ( 1 or 2 beds).
4) Do you guys have any other advice? Should I be researching something else before beginning the process of home buying?
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Make sure you’re also shopping around for mortgages, get pre-approved so that you’re prepared to put down offers. Talk to brokers who can find good rates based on your situation.
Get a realtor who can advise you. Talk to friends, professional network… get a referral for someone competent and trust-worthy.
Buying property in many urban areas is typically a bidding war, but there’s a chance things might have slowed down and turned in your favor due to covid (just look at the condo market in Toronto). However detached homes are more limited in supply, and the needle have hardly moved in this case. The recent trend shows people moving out of downtown and into suburbs and smaller townships (remote work FTW).
Based on what I’ve heard and seen (at least in GTA area), good houses don’t last for more than a few days; I have seen cases where good houses that get listed are already gone (the delay in listing can be a couple of days and they get scooped up in that time!). Even overpriced houses in good areas can go into a bidding war and get marked up and sold to people who will sometimes have liquid funds ready for the entire amount! I have heard cases when prospective buyers are asked to make a short presentation for the owner so the owner can decide whom to sell to!
Long story short, everything should be ready (you, your realtor, mortgage approvals and what not) when you are ready to buy a house.
- Prices vary a lot; in GTA in most areas, we cannot expect anything below 650k these days (townhouses and above). Covid has not had significant impact on house prices.
- VERY competitive, esp in Summer (HIGH demand, Moderate supply) and even in winter (Moderate demand, LOW supply).
- Houses are always available (semi-detached 3 bedroom for e.g.); whether they’re in the desired areas at desired price is the key.
- Always try to use a realtor who is local to the desired neighborhood. It will go a long way. And always shop for mortgage rates. Also see tip above.
Well said. Here in KW houses are marked well below their actual value to encourage more viewings (and therefore bidding). Buyers here typically need to go 100k over asking with an unconditional offer.
btw what’s with the sellers asking for presentations (lol)? This is bizarre considering that they will look for the top dollar anyway.