Real Estate Markets Are Like The Weather
I remember years ago when Anderson Cooper was trying desperately to be the next big thing in news. During a hurricane he tied himself to a streetlight post and continued to report, first hand, exactly how strong the winds were, how much rain was falling, and how many flying objects could kill him at any second.
Well, consider me your Anderson Cooper - risking his life tied to the Calgary real estate market to give you a first hand account of exactly what's like out there.
Most of us rely on our phones, computers, or TVs to tell us the weather outside. Just like most people rely on the TV news, the newspaper, or Huffington Post, to tell us how the real estate market is doing. The media doesn't have much time. They know you get bored easily and you care way more about Kate Middleton's pregnancy than the investment you'll be paying off for the next 25 years. So they give you the board strokes. But the big picture can be really deceiving.
Real estate markets are a lot like the weather.
It can be snowing in Toronto but sunny in Calgary. It can be pouring rain in SIlver Springs but only a light sprinkle in Mackenzie Town.
In Vancouver it's always raining, and house prices are always ridiculously high.
If you only see the national statistics you'll think the real estate market could in trouble. If you live in Montreal or Toronto, or a condo in Vancouver, you're probably right.
If you read the local news you'll think that Calgary's market is really heathy. Well, it is if you're selling a house, not as great if you're buying (but low interest rates will help you out), and it sucks if you're a renter.
Single detached houses in most suburbs are increasing in value and selling quite high. Townhouses in some neighbourhoods, like Lynnwood and Queensland, are still quite low (and I really like both of those neighbourhoods). One favours sellers, one favours buyers. So when people tell me, 'it's a sellers market out there' - in a big picture since they're right. But that doesn't hold true for every property, every neighbourhood, or every style of home.
Later this week I'll post my first installment of How's the Market These Days. You'll get a 'tied to a streetlight' account of exactly what the market in Calgary is doing and all of the flying objects you'll need to avoid.
Who knows, maybe this will propel me to my own daytime TV show. I’ll need a better haircut first.
by Tim Olynik