Revisiting Predictions • Facts vs. Headlines

By: Lindsay Smith

Revisiting Predictions • Facts vs. Headlines


real estate, buy sell love durham, oshawa real estate, durham region, market trends, buyer's market, seller's market, homes for sale near me, keller williams, real estate agent, agent experience, prediction, market evaluation

I spoke with a Buyer last fall, and they shared with me that they were holding off buying until the market bottomed out. If they gathered information from headlines of the major news media outlets, the Buyer may feel they were relying on accurate information or predictions. Alas, that individual would currently be paying about $125,000 more for a home today than in October 2022.

What I have noticed in media reporting on Real Estate trends is a mix of sensationalism and cherry-picking statistics. When people make buying decisions on information provided by individuals who do not have “feet on the ground” in any particular industry the potential for mistakes increases. The Real Estate market tends to move quickly, and it can be easy to misinterpret the statistics. This is one of the reasons people invest in Real Estate brokers, Financial planners and Stock Brokers when they are making decisions about investments.

Most people who comment on Real Estate, be they media outlets, Realtors, Mortgage Brokers or Lawyers have a vested interest in a particular outcome. I tend to share my experience and thoughts with clients I intend on working with for years, so delivering accurate information is of utmost importance.

Last month I penned a blog titled “Standing at the end of a diving board.” In this blog, I made some predictions on where the average sales prices would be in August 2023. I chose this date, allowing for the spring market to be over and the summer holiday season to finish. Here are my predictions and the average price when I wrote the blog post March 20/23:

Location Average Price | March 20, 2023 Average Price | August, 2023
Oshawa $875,000 $975,000
Clarington $891,000 $1,025,000
Whitby $1,133,000 $1,300,000

A quick check this morning shows that the average prices in the 3 communities looks like this:

Location Average Price | April, 2023
Oshawa $976,000
Clarington $1,006,000
Whitby $1,145,000

To date, my predictions for Oshawa and Clarington seem to be fast-tracking the price increases with Whitby moving up at a slower pace. These increases in value are somewhat opposite to what I see coming from the media. Here are a few current headlines in the media today. “Canadian Economists Overwhelmingly Predict Property Price Declines for 2023.” “Toronto Area Home Prices Down 18% From Last February, Sales halved.” Reading headlines such as these would lead a Buyer to believe holding off is better. However, by gathering advice from a Real Estate broker, the information is based more on local facts with no sensational spin.

The bottom of the market in Oshawa was in July 2022. For Whitby, the low point for prices was November 2022 and Clarington for some reason bottomed out later in December 2022. Since then, the values in Oshawa have increased by $161,000, Whitby by $72,000 and Clarington has jumped up $193,000. We are back to a Real Estate market where a Buyer simply cannot out-save the rising prices.

If you are a Buyer, my thoughts would be to get into the market as quickly as you can. The trends moving forward are that prices will be higher month by month. It would appear that a jump in prices of more than $20,000 in a month would be shocking, but looking back to 2021, Oshawa had 5 months where the prices jumped more than $25,000 and in 3 of the months the values jumped up more than $60,000!

The term is “normalizing.” When people see extremes, over time they become accustomed to the new numbers and what once seemed extreme becomes normal. A good example of this would be how in 2021 homes were selling for dramatically over asking and after the market fell early in 2022, Buyers were reluctant to compete, and we saw few homes selling over the asking price. Currently, in Oshawa over the past week 80% of all homes sold, sold for full price or more than asking and the average home sold for 10% over the asking price. We seem to be back to where we were in April 2021 where the values started to increase month by month and Buyers are doing what they have to do to secure a home.

If you are a Seller, my advice never varies. The current market is strong, and we don’t know what the future will bring. If you are planning a sale, my recommendation is to get your home on the market as soon as you can. No one really knows where we will be in a few months, however, the trends indicate the future is bright for the Real Estate market.

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