How can you tell if it’s the right time to buy a condo?
First of all, there is not an exact formula that determines if now is the time. There are some important things to consider, but no black and white answer.
There are many ways you can get an idea of the state of Toronto’s real estate market at the time you’re hoping to buy. Then, you can see if buying is a solid option for you at this time.
What ways can I tell if now is a good time to buy a condo?
Talk to a professional realtor who specializes in condos. Start by asking them about the current market picture.
• What are they noticing right now?
• Are they helping clients successfully purchase condos?
• Are listings selling for way over-asking price or under-asking price?• Are there many bidding wars?
• Do some areas have more inventory than others?
You can also check out the Toronto Real Estate Board’s website and read market statistics for the previous month. It can give you an idea of how the current market for each home type compares to a year ago, or a month ago. Your agent will have this information as well.
How can I tell if it’s a “buyer’s market” or a “seller’s market”?
For all the information read our detailed answer to the question: Buyer's Market and Seller's Market: What's the Difference? (Where we get into what each scenario means for buyers and sellers)
In a nutshell:
Buyer’s Market: Means there are more listings than there are buyers.
Seller’s Market: Means there are more buyers than there are available listings.
Of course the first scenario is a preferable one for a potential buyer. With higher inventory you know there are more options so you don’t have to make offers as quickly or even agree to all of the seller’s terms. You can present conditions of your own, if you’d like to. Also, you may be able to buy a property for under-asking.
In any market, an experienced Realtor gives you an advantage in your search.
Whether it is a “buyer’s market” or a “seller’s market” it doesn’t mean you can’t find what you’re looking for if the overall market is trending one way.
You’ll simply need professional guidance to really hone in on your expectations, come up with a strategy, and delve into what is possible for you in the market.
Then you can start looking, and see for yourself whether right now is the right time for you to buy.
Either way, consider:
Is now the Time for YOU to buy a condo?
Now that you know the current market, and have found a Realtor who can help you as a buyer in the specific market, it’s time to ask yourself some questions:
Starting with: Am I financially able to take on condo ownership?
You’ve saved what you need to buy, including a downpayment, and have figured out the monthly costs. That is an impressive first step.
However, there are some other scenarios you should consider:
"If interest rates go up do I have room in my budget to keep up with higher payments?..How much higher?"
"Is it a newer building? If so maintenance fees could go up to pad the reserve fund. How much monthly increase can I afford?"
"How secure is my job?"
"Do I plan on having children soon?"
"How long am I planning to live in Toronto?"
Wait...Breathe! These questions aren’t meant to scare you. Just prepare you. Buying a condo is a fantastic investment. Toronto is also a city with many job opportunities, a steady influx of incoming residents, and therefore a real estate market known for resiliency.
However, whether or not “now is the time to buy” doesn’t only have to do with the state of the market.
It has to do with your life and your finances too. So, simply take the time to weigh your options purposefully, with a top Toronto condo Realtor, knowledge of the real estate market and clarity about your own plans.