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I get asked this question a lot right now, from friends, family and plenty of potential clients,



What is the market like right now?



Heading into the Christmas season and the new year is typically a bit of a slower spot in the Winnipeg real estate market, however in 2020 it wasn’t and now again in 2021 it is not looking that way.



The market situation we have here is that the mortgage rates are still fairly low compared to recent years which is allowing purchasers to leverage more money towards a purchase. The other big factor in the market is that there are limited options for houses, as the inventory on the market is coming and going so quickly it requires quick decisions and often an increased purchase price significantly higher than the list price to secure the property.



In the past few months (not unlike the past year and a half) many of my clients are competing with 5-20 offers on each home that they decide to write offers on.  While I understand this is not the same for every property on the market it does represent a large proportion of the options available to many clients. If it is a single family detached home that presents well and appears to have little to no required work necessary then you will generally see offers flooding the property on the offers date. This is also the first year in my career that I have been involved with multiple offer situations for purchasers and vendor clients when working with Condominium sales!



So, what do I say? Honestly, I tell people that it is CRAZY! The prices we are seeing some houses sell for literally blow my mind.  As a professional Realtor my job is to analyze the market and identify what properties should be worth in the given market, but many times there just isn’t a number that you can place on how badly someone wants a home. I have personally had clients offer on up to 10 houses, losing them all in multiple offer situations. Doing everything in their power to make offers more attractive: over list prices, no conditions, vendors ideal possession dates, and still being outbid by tens of thousands of dollars. It usually comes to a point in the process where they just say we will pay just about anything to get this house! And that is one of the reasons we are seeing such large price increases in our market.



When you are up against 10-20 offers there are not a lot of options to make your offer stand out.  It usually comes down to purchase price, as the other top offers in consideration will more than likely be written without purchase protection conditions and anything else the vendors want.



What I am saying is that the vendors do hold a lot of the cards right now, making it a strong seller’s market.  BUT with all of these bidding wars and increased prices happening I will say that I find many buyers to be more in tune with the process and more educated.  There are still clients who are new to the home purchasing game and those ones are generally a much longer learning experience than they used to be, but there are a lot of people who have been paying attention to the market over the last year and understand what is required to secure a property right now.



Some things that are not selling quite as well right now are:


  1. Flips. If people can see that you purchased a property a year ago (I think the shortest turn around I have seen for a flip is 3 WEEKS!) did some work to it, didn’t pull any permits and the work done looks sloppy then they are not inclined to offer quickly. Alternatively, if there are permits in place, and the work is done well then people will pay a pretty penny for them.
  2. Homes with serious structural issues.  A fact in Winnipeg is that there are a lot of homes that require some form of structural repair.  They can be big or small, but due to our substrate there are a lot of homes that have some need for a structural or foundation repair.  This dry year only proved how many actually do need some work.
  3. Overpriced homes. As I said above people are much more attuned to the market, and if a property is trying to stretch a list price in the current market they are not moving as quickly, the issue here is that a lot of vendors are going with extremely low list prices instead, which also adds to the amount of offers coming to a home as there are many people who can not actually afford the home if it was listed more accurately to begin with.



So, would I recommend buying a house right now? I guess it’s a bit of a complicated question, if you are the type of person who is a major saver and likes to get a deal then 100% NO, this is not the market for you. If you are in need of something different for your family or life situation and you need to purchase a home then again, it’s not exactly a great time, but Winnipeg’s market has never really had a BEST time to buy a house.  We are typically pretty stable and slightly increasing year over year. Here are some tips to help with the purchasing process right now:



  1. My best advice would be to get a good feel for the market early if you are going to be purchasing.  Watch what homes are listing for and what they are selling for you likely need to be in contact with a realtor to get the inside scoop on the selling prices.  But knowing them will let you see the difference between what things APPEAR to be selling for and what they are ACTUALLY selling for.
  2. Have a solid deposit saved up.  While your deposit goes towards the down payment for your home purchase, having a larger deposit to give with your offer gives the impression that you have strong finances and may shoot your offer to the top of the pile.
  3. Speak with your lender! Let them know the situation, while a pre-approval is good giving an in-depth assessment of the home you want to purchase and asking for a quick 1-2 day turn around may give you an edge if it is necessary to have a financing condition on your offer.
  4. If you need a home inspection to feel comfortable then pay the money up front to do a pre-inspection on the home prior to writing an offer.  It will allow you to get all of the information that you would get from a typical home inspection but you would be paying it out of pocket whether you get the home or not.  It will allow you to make a more informed decision on how much you would be comfortable paying for the home and will likely alleviate any surprises on possession day. Also, an offer with a home inspection condition right now is like a kiss of death, the vendors will likely move to another offer if they see that you have a home inspection in your offer.
  5. Write a letter. If it is the home you feel to be the perfect home then write a letter to the vendors, it doesn’t always work as there is very rarely a vendor who will choose a nice letter over $10-20K more dollars, but if your offer is one of the top offers it could push it over the edge as the winner.


Again, I will re-iterate that the market right now is CRAZY but if you want to talk more about your options for buying or selling, I would be happy to take your call, text or email and have a candid chat about what could work best for you.



Top realtor in Winnipeg Logan Queen

#AgentLogan


Logan Queen

Tel: (204) 226-1261
Email: Logan@JenniferQueen.com

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I LOVE goal setting. Every year in November, I begin to plan out goals for both myself and my team for the following year.  This past November was a bit trickier – 2020 was a year that nobody could have anticipated, and it has kind of clouded my ability to think proactively about what to plan for in 2021. After many discussions with the team, we have decided that 2021 will be a year of getting out of our comfort zones.  For the majority of us, this means putting our faces out there more. And by putting our faces out there, I don’t mean the perfect, photoshopped, and pretty side of us.  I mean the raw, vulnerable, imperfect shots that show just who we are at our cores. To that end, here is an imperfect shot of me and our son, Asher, born June 30, 2020.

Realtor Mom in Winnipeg Manitoba





This year, we plan to put out a lot more video content.  Answer me this, does anyone actually like being on camera?  I sure don’t!  It took me 8 years and about 100 comments that I didn’t look like my original head shot from when I started in the business, to finally agree to take a second round of headshots.  We did a new round of these headshots and family photos in 2019 and now have a goal to do them annually with 2020 being an exception because, well, social distancing of course! Toward the end of 2020 we hired Simon, who has a background in Broadcast and Television.  For people that don’t like having their photo taken, trust me, being on film is a whole new ball game.  He has already had us each film 15 different segments which are going to be airing throughout the year across our various social media platforms.  It is funny how easy it is to talk to someone in person, but the second lights and a camera are pointed at you, you can’t even remember your own name!



This year, we also plan to give back to a community that has done so much for us.  It almost seems unfair, that our businesses were booming in 2020 when so many within the community suffered.  We have all increased our efforts to support small businesses whether it be regularly ordering take-out from our favourite local joints, creating jobs for those that were impacted within their own industries, curating prize baskets and closing baskets from local artisans - but it truthfully still doesn’t seem like enough for us.  In 2021, we plan to highlight many of the small businesses so that they too can have a booming year.  We rise by lifting others, right?  So, if there are any businesses out there that you feel may be suffering and could use a spotlight on our social media, let us know. 



This year we also plan to work more heavily on the education component side of our business.  In some of our discussions we discovered three things:

  1. We handle a lot of relocations to and from Winnipeg.
  2. There are a lot of unknowns out there for both the selling and buying process
  3. Some people find Realtors kind of scary and intimidating.  Like if you give them your number, they will never stop calling you.


Realtor Family in Winnipeg ManitobaTo that end, we plan to generate more content that helps to address all of these concerns.  For instance, in the works currently is: a series on what it is like to live in Winnipeg, an educational segment highlight FAQ’s for buyers and sellers alike, and more in-depth interviews with our agents just to demonstrate that we sincerely do have your best interests in mind and won’t spam the heck out of you if you reach out!  Are there any questions you would like addressed by us?  Please reach out.  We plan on generating content that our current and future clients will find useful, and always appreciate the input!





This blog is admittedly scattered, pretty much as scattered as 2020 was, so I do apologize. In trying to sort what my takeaways were from the past year, I did find a few recurring themes. Going into 2021 I hope to take some lessons learned in 2020 with me.  Namely:

-          Money can’t buy what matters the most

-          Slowing down is not a bad thing

-          Time with family should be treasured

-          Hugs are underrated

-          We are all more resilient than we give ourselves credit for



We have set some pretty big goals for 2021.  While the world may look a little uncertain right now, I am cautiously optimistic that we will achieve those goals no matter how bumpy the road may be. So, cheers to the year gone by and to the upcoming year: 2021 … we got this!



Happy New Year, everyone!



Top Realtor in Winnipeg Manitoba, Jennifer Queen

#AgentJen


Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945
Email: Jennifer@JenniferQueen.com

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They’re here! They’re here! All of your photos with Santa, Anna, and Elsa from the Queen Team Client Appreciation event are ready for download courtesy of Brian at Empire Photography!  



Realtors in Winnipeg ManitobaThanks again to all our clients for coming out to Landmark Cinemas, Grant Park to make this a memorable day! It was so wonderful to see all of you, enjoy some treats, watch a couple good movies, and catch up. We were completely overwhelmed by the positive response and it has left us wanting to do this again, perhaps more than once a year!  Thank you as well to everyone that brought a non-perishable food item for Winnipeg Harvest.  Your donations led to a truck full of food for some very grateful families.  Thank you again to you all.  We truly do believe that we have the best clients, and you all proved that yesterday! We love you! We’ll see you all again next year!


Realtors in Winnipeg Manitoba


Agent Ashton Augert in Winnipeg ManitobaRealtor Client Appreciation PartyRealtor Amy McDermid Top Real Estate Team


Top Real Estate Agent in Winnipeg#AgentJen


Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945
Email: Jennifer@JenniferQueen.com

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Welcome to Winterpeg! If you have lived in Winnipeg for a length of time then you can understand why the nickname Winterpeg sticks with our great city.  If you are new here you may have heard people joke that Winnipeg can get cold in the winter and our winters are the longest season.  Now you may have prepared for this and have come ready with long johns and a warm parka but have you considered some of the implications of purchasing a home in the winter months?  There are going to be certain parts of a home that you will want to know about when purchasing that will not be readily visible in winter, for example a roof covered with snow.


To help out with a purchase in Winnipeg between November and March I will lay out a few pros and cons of purchasing a home in the winter season.


Pros

1. Less competition

Winnipeg is known for having a pretty stable market with a mix of both buyers and sellers markets throughout different areas of the city.  When buying a home in the winter months there tends to be less competition as you head into the new year. As people prepare to settle in for Christmas there is usually slow down with their searches of homes and start to wait until the next year. Families who are searching for homes usually slow down their searches until the end of winter because they do not want to move their children in the middle of the school year. This can be a great time for you to purchase! If you happen to find a house that you love then the odds are good that you will have less competition than you would have if you were searching for a home in the spring and summer months. 


2. Listings

Buying a home in Winter in WinnipegAs the year comes to a close you tend to see less movement on the MLS.  Houses are listed less and the ones that are tend to stick around a bit longer than usual.  Just because most people choose to list in the Spring and Summer months doesn’t change the fact that some people still need to list in the winter.  Maybe they have purchased another house and need to sell the one they are currently in, maybe they need to downsize, the point is that houses still need to be sold in the winter but with less competition from buyers this can lead to a better bargaining position and may help you get a better price for the house you want.


3. Purchase price

Winter months can have an effect on the purchase price of a home.   As listed above there are many factors that will depend on the sale price of a home, but generally the longer times on market in the winter and less buyers looking for homes usually give you the ability to negotiate easier than you could in the summer months.  It is not always the case but usually people are willing to negotiate more to ensure they can enjoy the holidays not worrying about the sale of their home.



Cons

1. Viewings

Something that is harder to come by in Winnipeg in the winter months is daylight.  With most people having to view homes in the evening and the sun going down around 4:30pm it makes viewings in daylight more challenging.  Daylight is important for viewing a home, there are things that you will definitely miss about a property when viewing it in the dark.  Whether that be the paint colours showing up different or portions of the property you simply miss because it is too dark.  Seeing a property in daylight is an important part of the process.


2. Snow cover

Winter House Hunting in WinnipegWhen purchasing a property there are things you want to be able to see around the home when viewing it and a heavy amount of snow can hinder this process.  Shingles covered in snow cannot be seen, grading and landscaping can be completely covered by a blanket of snow.  Disclosure statements are especially important when purchasing in the winter as you will need to have the comfort of knowing what you may have to deal with in the spring.


3. Outdoor fixtures

When purchasing a home in the winter it is important to get the proper information and documentation on outdoor fixtures of the home.  When I say outdoor fixtures I mean things like the central A/C system, hot tubs (if included in the sale), pools, etc.  These are systems that cannot be tested in winter, a winterized pool may look fine but come spring could show signs of necessary repair.  An A/C unit cannot be tested in the winter as it will cause damage to the system.  There are ways to protect yourself when writing an offer to purchase in regards to outdoor fixtures so always ask your Realtor how to insert the proper conditions.


Hopefully this has been a quick guide to purchasing a home in the winter.  There are plenty of great reasons to get out there at look at some homes that have been on the market for a while, especially if you want to be in a new place before Christmas.  If you have any questions about buying in winter or want to know more about what to look for give us a call we would be more than happy to lead you in the right direction.


Logan Queen Top Winnipeg Realtor

#AgentLogan


Logan Queen

Tel: (204) 226-1261
Email: Logan@JenniferQueen.com

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