Real estate is known for its cyclical of ups and downs, and this has never been more evident than in recent times.  As discussed in my last post, “Southern Georgian Bay Real Estate Update: Understanding the Market Shift in April 2024,” several factors have shaped our current market landscape.

From the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on remote work trends to historically low mortgage rates, we saw an unprecedented surge in demand, sales, and home prices across Southern Georgian Bay in 2020, 2021, and early 2022. However, 2023 and 2024 have introduced new challenges, primarily driven by inflation and significantly higher mortgage rates.  Regardless of economic conditions, one constant remains in real estate: price is the key determinant in any transaction.

As a seasoned real estate Broker and Market Value Appraiser-Residential (MVA), I focus on analytically pricing properties to achieve optimal sales results.  REALTORS® are paid for results, not effort, and the ultimate result is a closed sale.  If I cannot justify a Seller’s listing price to potential Buyers or their agents, I shouldn’t have the listing. A thorough Comparable Market Analysis (CMA) serves to determine a property’s market value, but luxury homes typically require additional analysis because often they are incomparable.

Ultimately and as we have seen time and again, a property’s worth is decided by what a willing Buyer will pay and what a willing Seller will accept.  Our role as REALTORS® is to guide the process of negotiation by providing the necessary facts for informed decisions, particularly regarding the matter of pricing.

Market Trends and Inventory Levels

During the peak years of 2020 and 2021, high demand and low inventory meant managing multiple offers and often achieving sale prices well above what the Seller was asking.  Today, we are in a balanced market where justifiable pricing is crucial to satisfy both Buyers and lenders.  Buyers that require financing for their purchase can’t afford to overpay and no lender will mortgage a property beyond a reasonable risk factor especially in a softening market.

As shown in the chart below, MLS® inventory in Southern Georgian Bay is at the highest point we have seen since 2016 and the number of new MLS® listings coming onto the market is increasing monthly.  In most cases Buyers have plenty of choices, multiple offers have all but disappeared so competition is low.  The result?  No one has to overpay.

The year-to-date median residential sale price in April 2024 stands at $721,250, only slightly up from $719,950 in 2023 but significantly down from $889,375 in 2022.  While this indicates a downward trend, it’s essential to understand the broader market dynamics, which I’ll explore further in my next post.

NOTE: The above results are based on total MLS® sales for residential properties in Clearview, Collingwood, Grey Highlands, Municipality of                    Meaford, the Blue Mountains and Wasaga Beach. 

The Importance of Accurate Pricing

In today’s market, accurate pricing is more critical than ever.  Aggressively priced homes during peak years could easily find Buyers, but now, realistic pricing is necessary to attract interest.  Over the past week, there have been fifty-five price reductions in our local MLS® System, with 23% of these properties reduced in price by $100,000 to $1 million.

When evaluating properties, my goal is to “show” Sellers their property’s current market value through a detailed analysis of comparable sales, adjustments are made for home and lot sizes, location, features, finishes, and time of sale etc. This comprehensive approach ensures Sellers have a clear understanding of their property’s worth even if it’s different from their opinion.


Price drives real estate markets, whether strong or weak.  While mortgage rates may stabilize later this year, significant reductions are unlikely to spark a buying frenzy. Canadians should adjust to the idea that 6% to 7% mortgage rates are the new normal, reminiscent of rates seen in the early 1990s.

Whether you’re selling or buying, proper pricing is key to achieving your real estate goals.  Overpricing can lead to missed opportunities, while Buyers need to secure a price that satisfies both personal finances and lender requirements.  In this market, both Buyers and Sellers must proceed with caution and informed decision-making.

For personalized advice and a detailed market analysis of your property, contact me today. Let’s navigate this market shift together and achieve the best possible results.

Note: The author is a Broker, Market Value Appraiser-Residential with Sotheby’s International Realty Canada and a Past President (2008) of the Lakeland’s Association of REALTORS®.