How real estate sellers in Canada are prepping their homes for homebuyers amidst Covid-19

Canada’s real estate market has been on a tear of late, fuelled by stupendous real estate sales, ultra-low mortgage rates, and a swathe of confidence among homebuyers. The property market is enjoying an upward trajectory ever since nationwide lockdown measures have been relaxed and the economy reopened in phases.

The growing confidence of the Canadian public in the economy is reflected in the Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index, a measure of financial health and economic expectations, which rose up to 52.8 last week from 51.7 a week before. The index is now at the highest since mid-March, signaling the fact that Canadians are shedding their pessimism and buying the idea that the worst has gone, and the economy will strengthen within the next six months.

Realtors’ mood on a high

The uncharacteristically quiet spring market has made a surprising return with June and July figures exceeding the pre-assumed estimates. Housing sales recorded 150% above where they were in April. The number of listings went up by another 49.5% in June compared to May.

Realtors in Canada are ecstatic about how things have gone so far. Though there is a decrease of 5-6% in the number of sales compared to last year, property agents attributed that dip to low inventory levels. The demand for new homes hasn’t waned a bit though and this has led to the price appreciation of properties across Canada.

A seller’s market

The increase in the number of listings and the tsunami of queries coming in from homebuyers have kept realtors extremely busy at the onset of fall, a time when usually real estate sales taper off. Real estate agents have opined that they have never seen such a buoyant sellers’ market during this time of the year, with most listings getting sold off within a couple of days.

A lot of new additional buyers have entered the market post lockdown. Most of them are working professionals who have understood the need for functional indoor and outdoor spaces. Besides bigger properties, buyers are also factoring in the price element as well.

Sellers go for renovation and home-staging ideas

Most new homebuyers are listing off their properties at more competitive and realistic price notes after doing a few renovations and putting some staging ideas to make their properties look attractive for open-home buyers.

The demand for starter homes is on the rise as most buyers, especially students, couples, families are looking for anything affordable. The fact that they can winterize the properties for now after buying and then sell off later when the real estate market is stable, has dawned on most homebuyers.

Detached and semi-detached homes with a garage and a few stairs are selling like hotcakes.

The renovations are mainly focused on bathrooms and kitchen since a renovation on these two areas can fetch almost 75-100% of the investment. Other sellers who have the time, money and capability are doing cosmetic upgrades of their house to increase the aesthetic value of their properties. From changing the design of the hallway and adding a new room to revamping the porch and the driveway, sellers are leaving no stone unturned in fetching a good deal.

Since staging a home professionally is important to make a good statement on buyers, many homeowners are asked by realtors to do a paint job, place rugs on the floor, add some décor on the tables, and dress the bed, to elevate the appeal of their homes. Some sellers are going the extra mile by walking buyers through their homes and making suggestions regarding paint, de-cluttering, furniture placement, and so on, to give them an idea of how they can fit in their house.