Winnipeg Real Estate Riddle: Prices Spike in January!

with Stacey Burrows – Remax Executives Real Estate

Well, January was a bit of a surprise 'cause typically January is a quieter month for us. However, we were up on almost all indicators in the market.

The Winnipeg real estate market, often as unpredictable as a jungle, has recently given both buyers and sellers plenty to contemplate. Stacey Burrows from RE/MAX Executive Realty, an expert in the field, shared some valuable insights on Winnipeg Weekends, revealing a January full of surprises.

January is typically a subdued period for real estate; however, the early months of 2023 flipped this trend. The market witnessed increases across the board, with the average home price landing at $397,000, a slight decrease from December’s $406,000 but up from the $375,000-$380,000 range in the fall. It’s worth noting that while the average home price saw fluctuations, it generally crept upwards due to a surge in sales volume.

What’s fascinating is the juxtaposition of rising home prices and robust sales amidst a backdrop of higher interest rates and reduced inventory. It defies the traditional market logic, where increased costs usually lead to slower activity. Detached houses and condominiums saw an increase in sales and newly listed properties. The elevated purchase prices, particularly noticeable when compared to January of the previous year, suggest a market that isn’t slowing down.

Despite the higher interest rates, there’s a consensus that now isn’t the time for hesitation. This stems from the belief that real estate prices are more likely to maintain or increase rather than decrease. While January was not reflective of a seller’s market’s frenzy with multiple offer situations, the data projected a balance where 74% of homes sold under the asking price, indicating room for negotiation.

Moreover, Stacey offers a daunting yet realistic forecast for the market as the year progresses. Buyers are encouraged to act rather than wait for potential rate reductions, as the market is hinting at a return to a seller’s dominated playing field. The concern is, even with a promised rate cut, the window to secure a good deal might close swiftly, leading to a more competitive and pricier market.

Even as Winnipeg encountered seven sales over a million dollars in January, which is fairly remarkable for such a typically calm month, it might be an early indication of price trends to come. And with inflation rates on an upward climb, these figures could become less sensational and more of an expected norm.

Stacey advises sellers, like the hypothetical Kevin Burgin, to be proactive in preparation. Effective decluttering, staging, and an in-depth understanding of the local market are key to standing out in a potentially saturated market come the busier seasons. Equally, buyers are urged to remain vigilant, seize fitting opportunities, and employ strategic tactics in multiple offer scenarios.

The Winnipeg real estate market presents an intriguing blend of challenges and opportunities, with January’s performance hinting at an active year ahead. Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, staying informed and working with experienced professionals like Stacey Burrows can help navigate the complexities and hopefully, lead to successful real estate adventures in the heart of the prairies.