Inventory is on the rise again here in the Phoenix market after a sleepy start to the year.
As of the moment there are 16,505 detached homes for sale across Maricopa County; we had fallen below 16,000 homes in late December, bringing a temporary pause to what had been a steady rise over the prior few months.
Now the question is whether buyers are coming along for the ride, a question best answered at the end of February when the solds for that month are available. (For those less aware, solds are a lagging indicator in as much as what closes this month generally went under contract the month before. Since December sales generally are slow, January sold numbers are usually the lowest in any given year.)
Mortgage rates fell ever so slightly in the past week, also reversing the trend, though for those on the fence I’d be more concerned about seeing my interest rate rise than the value of the properties at which I was looking. That’s the bigger variable these days.
Speaking of variables, for the few Canadians who have not yet purchased here, buying power is decreasing … and some predictions are the Canadian dollar is going to continue to shrink against the US dollar after what already was a tough 2013 for the loony.
This shouldn’t be much of a surprise given the Canadian government’s historic desire to have their oddly colored dollar sitting around 85 cents to a greenback. But it also puts into perspective what I’ve seen here the past 12 to 18 months as a lack of motivation on the part of many Canadian buyers who, largely ignoring the past, seemed to believe the Canadian dollar would remain at par or better in perpetuity.
Currency fluctuations take place in cents but those cents represent full percentages which turn into real dollars when dealing with six-figure properties.
True, buying now will be more expensive given the exchange rate but even 91 cents is better than 85. Or 78, as some of my clients received when they purchased during that last severe dip a few years back.
As always, keep an eye on things and if you have any questions, we’re here.