Last year was a year of retraction in our local markets, with sales volume and pricing both retracting progressively as the year went on. If you have been watching houses and wondering why they haven't sold, or what may be wrong with them, the answer is nothing. We simply had more Sellers than Buyers, so not all of the houses can sell when it is like that.
If you are a Seller in this market and want to be successful, you have to either offer more than other houses in your price category, or address it directly with price. This can be as simple as keeping the paint and flooring fresh, or more in depth, but be cautious, you may be the one that sells, but you may not see a positive return on your upgrades. Paint and trim is inexpensive and provides the best bang for your buck as a Seller, as does making the presentation on approach a positive one. Clean up the yard, and make it look as neat and appealing as possible. You want a Buyer to feel they can move right in and feel comfortable.
If you are a Buyer, look at a wide variety of properties, you can take the time to be discerning, and rely on the best advice from your Realtor. Interest rates are still favorable, there is selection, and there will be more as the spring market unfolds. This is a great time to buy.
As far as the market goes, it is showing some positive signs of recovery. We have had a fairly strong winter market with 9 sales coming firm in December 2016, compared to jsu 4 for December 2015, and January staying strong for the season. Drivers for this are some of the Jobs in the mining sector are starting to affect our market, particularly Brucejack Mine, with them to ramp up hiring as they transition from construction to production this spring, and Red Criss ramping up as well. The Chinese group at the airport industrial park are putting bodies on the ground as they clear land and extend the road into their lands this spring. They did geotech work last year for ground stability and compaction. A factory start would be fantastic for our long term economy, and provide an anchor for years to come. The local sawmill is currently upgrading and is looking to add a second shift. Any one of these things would be a positive in the market, any combination of them should at least halt the slide and should put positive upward pressure. This year look for a stable market, and as inventories decline and correct, some potential upward pressure on pricing.