“How’s the Market?”, particularly in Laurelwood...
written by Julie D. Martin, Real Estate Salesperson and Member of Laurelwood Neighbourhood Association
How's the market? People love to ask Realtors this question! Most answers reflect the personal performance of the Realtor more than the true state of the market. And most of the enquirers don’t realize that there’s much more to “the market” than can be given in a simple answer to a not-so-simple question. Truth is, if you were to pose this question to me right now, I could respond in a number of different ways because the answer really does depend on a number of different factors. Do you want to buy? Thinking of selling? Looking to invest in a rental property? Rather than dig too deep, I think I’ll just give you a little taste of what’s going on in our neighbourhood.
Looking back to November and December of 2008, there were 6 detached homes that sold, ranging from $320,000 to $530,000. During the same months of 2009, the sales of detached homes doubled with a slightly higher starting point of $325,000 ranging up to $735,000. So far this year, from the first of November through the middle of December, there were 7 sales of detached homes, the lowest sale price being a few thousand dollars lower than the previous year, which either reflects a slightly cooler market or may just be reflective of that particular house; I’d say it’s safe to assume the former. The good news is that the highest house sale in Laurelwood so far this year is nearly $40,000 higher than the previous year.
So, have you noticed anything? It doesn’t really look like the market has taken the plunge that we’ve been hearing about in the news. I’m really not surprised. Creating a stir helps news ratings! The truth is, there are parts of Canada that have had some issues on the real estate front, but not the type of major issues that have plagued our neighbours to the south.
The region has fared quite well overall, with a strong diversification of business sectors, and in Waterloo, in particular, we are blessed with not one, but two, major universities and strong employers in technology, insurance and other industries.
Waterloo's newest condominium project, Reflections at Laurelwood, to be built on Laurelwood Drive, in close proximity to Abraham Erb Public School and Sir John A. MacDonald Secondary School, has published properties starting at $179,900. At the same time, there continues to be higher end homes built off Erbsville Road. Those living in higher end homes in Laurelwood – whether established or brand new –need not worry about the resale values here. I believe that the expansion of our neighbourhood, to include condos, increases its diversity and makes it possible for people to move into our area and give them opportunity to move up within the neighbourhood, keeping the Laurelwood community a desirable place to live. A major drawback to having too many homes within the same range is the increased possibility of creating a bubble, which negatively impacts all property owners. To learn more about the Reflections at Laurelwood project, visit http://www.urbanerahomes.ca/reflections/
Should you decide to stay in Laurelwood for a long time (and hoping that you do!), you may want to know what you can do to increase your property values further while you are here. The best return on investment can be found in the following – replacement of siding and windows, additions of wood decks and kitchen remodels.
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