Third Quarter Whistler Real Estate Market Update

By: Sherry Baker

Third Quarter Whistler Real Estate Market Update

Over the course of 2022, we have seen many changes in the local real estate market. If you have been thinking of buying or selling real estate in Whistler, there is good news and opportunities on both sides.


For Buyers of Whistler Real Estate

The good news for buyers is that buyers will have more time to make decisions and assess their options.
We are no longer seeing highly competitive, multiple offers, bidding wars and, as sales have slowed, the time listings are spending on the market has increased with the averages currently sitting at:
These numbers are significantly higher than those both last quarter and in Q3 I year ago; however, they are relatively normal compared to historical levels. As a result, there is more room for buyers and sellers to negotiate.

The primary sticking point for buyers right now is the cost of borrowing money, which is significantly higher than it was in 2021. The slowdown in real estate sales in the past few months is an indication that Whistler has not been immune to the economic stressors that have impacted real estate across the country.


For Sellers of Whistler Real Estate

The slowing of real estate transactions through Q3 has been the result of a number of factors including buyer hesitancy resulting from higher interest rates (encouraging buyers to take a ‘wait and see' stance), and low listing inventory.

July and September 2022 both ranked among the slowest months for sales volumes in the past decade. There was also a corresponding drop in the overall value of transactions with 102 sales totalling $164 Million in Q3 compared to $406 Million in Q1.

Real estate under $1 Million has remained competitive, chalets and single-family homes are feeling more downward pressure, and the luxury market appears to be mostly unaffected.

Nevertheless, prices remain up year-over-year averaging at:
 
- Single Family Homes: $over $5.1 Million (up from $4.73 Million in Q2)
- Townhomes: $1.6 Million (down from $1.84 Million in Q2)
- Condos: $907,576 (down from $1.16 Million in Q2)
*Note - Please keep in mind that the low number of sales means that one transaction can skew these figures dramatically.


Whistler Real Estate Listing Inventory

Although buyers have more time to consider their options, there are also fewer options to consider. With 234 listings in Whistler, the community’s listing inventory has increased by about 29% but it still falls about 37% below the 10-year average.

In order to classify the Whistler real estate market as a balanced market, we would expect to see closer to 400 listings - approximately double where we sit today.


What to expect going forward

Going forward through the last month of Q4 and into January 2023, we do expect sales to pick up - strengthened by its limited inventory and strong demand as tourists return to the resort for the winter season. Another factor that could play a role is the lack of long-term rentals available for Whistler residents and employees.

It is unlikely that prices will continue to rise but we also don’t expect to see any sharp drops in prices due to the highly desirable nature of Whistler real estate creating high demand with limited inventory on offer.
If you have been thinking of buying or selling real estate in Whistler, reach out to me any time so we can discuss how the current market conditions will impact your real estate decisions.

Newsletter | October 2022

By: Sherry Baker

Newsletter | October 2022

Winter is coming, where is the real estate market going?

Although summer real estate activity was slower than usual, we are seeing an increase in activity as the ski season approaches. Inventory is increasing and sales are staying steady, albeit there are fewer sales than normal for this time of year. With a steady increase in new listings, we find ourselves moving toward a buyers' market with 5 - 7 months' worth of inventory. As with any change in real estate markets, there is always opportunity. We have seen some price adjustments but on average, prices have remained steady throughout 2022.

So what does this all mean? Read my October Newsletter here to find out.

Why does realistic pricing matter in the current real estate market?

By: Sherry Baker

Why does realistic pricing matter in the current real estate market?

The Buyer’s Perspective

As the local real estate market continues to change in Whistler and Pemberton, it is enticing to try and cash in on previous highs and push the boundaries in pricing. However, in the current real estate market, there are a few other considerations to keep in mind:
 
  1. With high median real estate prices, combined with increasing interest rates, many buyers are close to being priced out of the market. Now that inventory is starting to climb, potential buyers have more options, the pressure is off, and many buyers are no longer willing to pay top dollar and/or complete in multiple offer situations.
     
  2. With unprecedented access to real estate data, buyers today are more educated than ever before. They know current market conditions and trends, and they are often unwilling to pay more than fair market value.
     
  3. As inventory increases, buyers know that everything is negotiable, and many are shying away from homes that are outdated or in need of repairs unless they can score a significant deal. As a result, well-staged, well-maintained and updated homes in desirable locations that are competitively priced are the ones that sell.
     
  4. When buyers secure financing to purchase, the bank’s appraiser will verify that the contract price does not exceed current market values, If the price is too high, the bank will only lend to the appraised value and the buyer will need to make up the rest.
     
  5. While cash was not as much of an incentive in the superheated market, now that things are cooling, well-heeled and pre-approved buyers are out shopping for bargains.

Realistic Pricing Strategies

As you consider your pricing strategy, a few ideas to keep in mind:
 
  1. Home prices are very similar to the prices of stocks on the stock market: they fluctuate up and down as market conditions change. The only price that matters for any given stock is the amount an investor is willing to pay on the day you choose to sell. 
     
  2. You might not be getting the same amount you would if you had sold a few months ago, but even though the market has fluctuated downwards, your gains will still be substantial as prices remain at historically high levels.
     
  3. As the market continues to soften, we are moving towards a buyer’s market. As interest rates continue to rise, the short-term projection for the housing market is that prices will continue to slide. The sellers who are currently seeing their homes sell are those who are pricing ahead of the market.  Many who are priced higher either end up lowering their prices substantially to get a sale or end up taking their homes off the market altogether.
As the market continues to change, the bottom line is that although prices soared in the previous overheated market, our new reality means that some of those gains will need to be adjusted to get a property sold.

If you are wondering how this will impact you or what your home is worth in today's market, get in touch!

Newsletter | September 2022

By: Sherry Baker

Newsletter | September 2022

With warm days to enjoy the outdoors and cool evenings to cuddle up under a blanket, September is a wonderful time of year in Whistler! 

In terms of real estate, the market was a little slower than normal throughout the summer. As we enter mid-September, however, we are beginning to see increased activity - a typical trend for our market. 

What does this mean for the coming months? How might it impact your decision to buy or sell? Find out by reading my latest newsletteer HERE.

Re-evaluating Your Needs

By: Sherry Baker

Re-evaluating Your Needs

Many people including me are working more from home and some people are not going to the
office at all anymore.  
 
The pandemic has set us all on a re-evaluation journey. Re-evaluating our lifestyle, our needs and how we spend our time, and where we want to live.  We are all doing “life” differently.  For example, I used to go to the office each day and drop into the grocery store on my way home a few times a week.   Now, I work from home (mostly) and only shop once a week.  Honestly, it’s been great!    No more wandering around the grocery store deciding what to make for dinner!  This is just a small example of the changes we are all facing and decisions on how to adapt during these times.
 
The pandemic has reshaped the meaning of home too. At the beginning of the pandemic, during the lockdown, families began to evaluate the functionality of their physical home space.
 
With social distancing measures still in place and spending more time than ever at home, are you considering moving to better suit your current needs? Do you and your partner both need an office space to work from home? Are your children in need of dedicated space for homeschooling?  Perhaps you require a larger pantry and kitchen for preparing more meals at home?  How about outdoor and recreational space?  Or do you simply want to move from your current location or city?

It’s remarkable how many people are pondering the same questions as they consider how to make this ‘new normal’ as comfortable as possible. People are increasingly putting more importance on health, safety and lifestyle rather than material objects.  As a result, changing lifestyles is sparking relocations.  With people working from home, retiring earlier, homeschooling and other lifestyle changes, a change in location is making more and more sense.

And the allure of Whistler seems to be a hot trend. As you weigh your options, perhaps it’s time to explore solutions with your real estate advisor or search Whistler listings at www.whistlerrealestatesales.com.
Intangibles are the new luxury making  biggest surprise since the Pandemic hit is the luxury market sales volume increase.   Inman News wrote about the Wealth trends shaping real estate today.  
Read the article here.

There are 3 new types of trailblazers emerging and moving wealth out of major centers right now. 

 
EXPLORERS - Explorers are moving to “hidden gem” locations — like exurbs,  prosperous small towns and far-away communities— where their dollar carries them further. Explorers tend to be younger, more active and have a lower net worth.  Explorers come to Whistler for the adventure, outdoor activities, sports and nightlife.  With real estate investments in the price range of 650K to 2M.
 
NEW SUBURBANITES  -  New suburbanites are leading a revival of the suburbs, as they look for more space, property amenities and good schools. Although some can be younger, most are  slightly older than explorers, with school-aged children and net worth falling between $3 million and $5 million.   New suburnbanites are moving to Whistler for a sense of community, and the opportunity to live in a small vibrant town full of adventure and culture.  Their real estate investments are typically 2M plus.
 
RESORTERS - Resorters are those flocking to their favorite vacation spots. They might be either permanently relocating to these areas or temporarily converting seasonal homes into primary residences. They are often in a higher wealth bracket 5+ million and over.   Many are retired or planning for retirement.  Resorters are looking for places to gather their families with enough space for everyone to be comfortable.  They are excited to play with the growing families in the beauty of the Resort Municipality of Whistler and share their mountain lifestyle.  Their real estate investments are typically 4M+.
 
With shifts in travel plans and spending habits, budgets are changing making buying or upgrading your home a viable option. A desire to call Whistler home is a strong draw for people right now.
 
If this resonates, I’d love to explore your current situation with you.  Whether you own or rent, live in Whistler or elsewhere, having the RE/MAX family of agents worldwide on your team will help guide your decisions.  As a starting point, I’d be happy to provide you with a comparative market analysis.  Together we can help you determine what Whistler property is the right fit for you.  Let’s connect for a virtual coffee chat today. 

 

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