The fury of the 2011 spring real estate market has faded in Barrie. Many homes were sold yet many more remain on the market picked over by buyers much more knowledgeable of the market than the average Barrie buyers of the last decade.
It was pretty much taken for granted in the first eight or so of my eleven years as a Realtor, that on any given weekend there would be hundreds of excited home buyers coming up from the Greater Toronto Area to take advantage of the lower priced homes they had heard about in our market. Many over that time would come up and buy in the same day which allowed for many over priced homes to find a buyer. Once an over priced home sold it set a new president on price for any comparable homes yet to be listed and this in effect is what drove home values up by double digit percentage rates again and again in the last decade. While it was happening here it was (and still is) happening at even greater rates in many parts of the GTA.
With a combination of increasing fuel costs, a softening of economic growth and the reduction in consumer confidence brought on for the most part by the US real estate crash, Barrie has seen a quieting of the market and fewer commuter purchasers in the last two or three years. Interestingly enough though, the still growing imbalance between rising GTA home prices and more stabilized Barrie area prices more than makes up for today's costs of commuting back and forth from Barrie. The net savings today is even greater than it was in any of those boom years.
Today an invitation to list a home by an ambitious home owner who insists their property is worth ten thousand dollars or so more than what the market value evaluations shows is likely to be turned down by most seasoned Realtors. It is inevitable today that an overpriced listing will grow stale as the Realtor pumps hundreds of dollars into marketing it and spends their Sunday's holding openhouses.
It does the Realtors reputation no good either when other homes in the neighborhood are listing and selling while their lawn sign is developing a permanent lean to one side . 95% of buyers make use of the services of the MLS that Realtors in Canada provide to the public to compare and know when fair value is being represented on any given listing. There are some who will take over priced listings still, possibly happy just for the potential sale, however remote the chance, but most Realtors today would rather take a pass.
There is a second alternative these days for sellers who insist their home is worth more than any Realtor will advise and that is the for sale by owner company. For a small fee you get to put a sign on your lawn and make like your own real estate professional. Barrie has dozes of such listings waiting on the possibility of an unsuspecting buyer. Some eventually sell, whether they get the price they wanted is to be questioned. Many more of these private sellers gain a little respect for work it takes and the values to be had in hiring a professional and end up listing with one.
What ever your option, establishing a list value for your home that reflects the current market is vital. Just ask anyone who has had their home up for sale since the snow on their lawn was three feet deep.