Edmonton’s real estate market has been called a buyer’s market, meaning that sellers are catering to buyers, not the other way around. While this is great news for people who want to buy property, buying in a buyer’s market also comes with specific challenges of which everyone should be aware. Here are just a few things to do and watch for when buying property in a buyer’s market.
1. Take Your Time
Buyer’s markets often come with a strange pressure put onto buyers: the pressure to finish a deal quickly. Many sellers are eager to sell in any economy or situation, but many get extra desperate to sell in a buyer’s market. With that added pressure, many buyers will often settle on something that they don’t really want. But if you take your time by going over listings, working with a real estate agent to find more listings, and thoroughly inspect any homes you may buy, you can avoid making a quick decision. If you’re feeling extra pressure to buy, simply take a step back and think things over. The place is unlikely to vanish like it would in a seller’s market.
2. Learn to Spot Motivated Sellers
The flip side of people who want to sell fast is they will often be willing to negotiate things like price and beyond. In a buyer’s market, everything is up for grabs, which means you could get appliances and fixtures included in the sale. The trick is to look for motivated sellers: people who’ve been sitting on their homes for an extended period of time, or have already vacated the premises. These people are often a gold mine for bargain hunters.
3. Watch Out for Encumbered Properties
With hard economic times comes tough financial decisions. Sometimes, sellers will unload their homes on bad faith, wrapping liens from contractors, service providers, banks or other lending institutions into the sale of the home. If this happens to you, you’ll find yourself in debts you didn’t know existed, which is a big problem for your financial stability. Always ensure you know about the financial situation of the home before signing, and be on the look out for liens that could add to the cost of the home.
4. Learn to Walk Away
A buyer’s market means there are plenty of homes around. You don’t have to settle for the one in front of you. In fact, you don’t have to settle at all. Always look around at multiple homes and balance their benefits and disadvantages. And if you’re feeling pressured, or if you end up in a bidding war, don’t be afraid to simply walk away. It could leave you open to a better home in the very near future.
A buyer’s market is great for buyers, but it does come with unique challenges. Always be thorough in any major purchase you make, no matter if the market forces are in your favour or not.