Luxury Real Estate in 2020

In 2020, real estate experts anticipate that January will be an excellent time to buy, with minimal competition and low mortgage interest rates. Prices are also more favourable in the first month of the year. Another factor in play in 2020: Fears of an economic downturn have diminished, and buyers at the high end are ready to return to the market.

This past year (2019) was a particularly slow year for luxury real estate due to an excess of supply in major markets and concerns about a looming recession. But now there are signs of a bounce back, even in the midst of the traditionally quiet holiday season.

In the first three quarters of 2019, activity in the luxury real estate markets slowed significantly. The sales of homes listed at $2 million and above dropped by 16% in the first quarter from the prior quarter, while inventory went up by 14%. However, by the third quarter, luxury sales prices rose slightly for the first time since mid-2018, and brokers say they are now fielding more new inquiries from buyers then they have all year.

The west coast, too, experienced a slowdown in 2018 and 2019, where luxury real estate prices dropped 13% earlier this year. But experts forecast a bounce back in the early months of 2020, with inventory diminishing and competition increasing.

Buyers are beginning their home searches earlier each year, thanks to higher prices, lower inventory, and fiercer competition. Whereas most buyers should get in early to avoid bidding wars, investors at the high end could still find plentiful options and discounts in some luxury markets.

Investors from overseas have taken note of discounts on luxury properties in North America, and this cohort, coupled with domestic buyers who typically look in the spring, should make for a busy 2020.

In the U.K., where price growth has been sluggish, and inventory low amid the question of how Brexit will be handled, buyers seem to be returning to the market. The recent general election may have helped alleviate some uncertainty. There is pent-up demand, and people want to get on with their buying and selling decisions. Where the recently re-elected Prime Minister Boris Johnson (in the U.K.) has the support of a Conservative majority for a January Brexit, the settling of trade agreements is expected to boost buyer confidence. And in fact, more buyers are registering already.

In the U.S., uncertainty around the upcoming presidential election could have a slight chilling effect later in 2020. But if interest rates stay low, buyers may not be deterred by potential political changes.

Sources: Mansion Global

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