Ottawa’s Resale Market “Steady as She Goes”


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 2,146 residential properties in October through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,604 in October 2019, a year over year increase of 34 per cent. October’s sales included 1,665 in the residential property class, up 38 per cent from a year ago, and 481 in the condominium property category, an increase of 22 per cent from October 2019. The five-year average for October unit sales is 1,515.


“We are heading into the colder months, the second wave of the pandemic is upon us, and yet Ottawa’s resale market continues to hold steady,” observes Ottawa Real Estate Board President Deb Burgoyne.


“While the October average price gains, number of sales, and new listings coming onto the market were all down from September, demand persists, and the number of sellers choosing to enter the market remains strong. With 1,937 residential listings and 708 condo units added to the housing stock in October, this is a 48% and 70% respective increase in new listings over last year at this time,” she adds.


October’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $368,936, an increase of 16 per cent from this time last year, while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $603,253, an increase of 25 per cent from a year ago. With yearto-date average sale prices at $579,026 for residential and $361,666 for condominiums, these values represent a 19 per cent percent increase over 2019 for both property classes.*


“The condominium market is on our watchlist. Inventory for condo units increased 15% over last October, while inventory for residential properties is down 46%. This is an inverse relationship compared to the beginning of 2020 when condo supply was depleting much quicker than residential,” reports Burgoyne.


“The shift in the condo market occurred around June. There has been a lot of speculation about changing buyer behaviour and preferences due to our pandemic reality with homeowners wanting home offices and gym space, for example. One could extrapolate or conclude that buying preferences may be shifting towards a desire for properties with more square footage than this property type offers. Particularly, due to the sheer number of employees working remotely for the foreseeable future, commute times may continue to be less of an issue.”


“As the chillier weather and upcoming holiday season approaches, it will be interesting to see how the market calibrates. Typically, we start to see a slowdown in home sale activity. Whether that actually transpires is something we can’t predict given the topsy turvy year that is 2020. What I can tell you is that this is not the time to navigate the market on your own; there is too much at stake to venture in without the knowledge and guidance of an experienced REALTOR®,” Burgoyne concludes.


In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,829 properties since the beginning of the year compared to 2,334 at this time last year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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What Will Homes Look Like In A Post-pandemic World?


A lot has changed in just a few months, and for many that includes the idea of what a 'dream home' looks like. Not long ago, buyers were showing preference toward smaller homes and open concept spaces conducive to gathering. After a few months cooped up inside, those features don't seem so appealing - and developers have taken note.

"While the coronavirus still rages on, it's hard to predict what post-pandemic abodes might look like," according to Barrons. "Yet, developers around the U.S. are already rethinking projects, anticipating residents' needs and preferences that Covid-19 would spur. In doing so, they are re-evaluating current in-unit aesthetics and in-demand amenities."



Here are just a few areas of home design where trends may shift in the coming years:

Home size
Homes had been trending smaller, but that may be over. With so many families spending (way) more time around the home lately, there's never been more need for personal space. Expect homes to grow in size accordingly.

Prioritizing the home office
As more and more businesses relax work-from-home policies, or shift to full-time remote work entirely, the home office will become a near-essential for many buyers. A space that was once an after-thought now will need to offer privacy, good lighting and be pre-wired for telecommuting.

Return to the closed-floor plan
For some buyers, the appeal of the open-floor plan was already trending down prior to 2020, and the past few months have only made the reasons why more evident. Sharing more time and space at home demands privacy for school work, hobbies, and entertainment. With more meals being cooked at home, an open concept kitchen becomes noisy epicenter practically all day long. Builders expect a rise in demand for closed floor plans, where rooms are partitioned for purpose.

Smart technology
This is already one of the fastest growing trends in home design, but smart home technology will soon move from a 'plus' to a 'must'. Temperature and lighting control can now be voice or motion-activated. Touchless faucets, once thought superfluous, are now an inexpensive and health-conscious upgrade. Systems that filter air and monitor air quality will become more common and affordable.


Thinking about making a move? Contact us today. We can help you to find the right place.

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March Residential Resales Withstand Pressure of World Crisis

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,525 residential properties in March through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,507 in March 2019, an increase of only 1.2 per cent. March’s sales included 1,170 in the residential-property class, up 3.3 per cent from a year ago, and 355 in the condominium-property category, a decrease of 5.1 per cent from March 2019. The five-year average for March unit sales is 1,465.


“Our results show that the Ottawa real estate market seems to have withstood the pressure of a worldwide economic event in March, however in context with our market’s performance up to this point, we can see the underlying effect. Before the pandemic, monthly unit sales were increasing between 10-16% from 2019, while March’s sales were just on par with a year ago. This is an indicator that there has been a slowdown in the real estate market due to Covid-19.” reports Deborah Burgoyne, Ottawa Real Estate Board President.


“Much of March’s activity likely began in the first two weeks of the month before the State of Emergency order was put into place. In fact, we had a head start on the spring market that was heating up earlier than expected, but activity seemed to fall off as physical distancing measures took effect,” she adds.


“Once the Ontario State of Emergency began, our Members and Brokerages rightly began to make all adjustments necessary for the health and wellbeing of our clients and customers. We welcomed the government’s declaration of real estate as an essential service so that transactions in progress could be completed. However, it was not and is not business as usual for our Members. They are heeding government and public health authority warnings and advice and are being diligent in taking extra safety precautions. All this, while still doing their best to help their clients successfully conclude or close real estate transactions that were already in progress,” Burgoyne acknowledges.


March’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $369,311, an increase of 27.3 per cent from this time last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $559,739, an increase of 16.5 per cent from a year ago. Year to date figures show an 18.8 per cent and a 23.2 per cent increase in average sale prices for residential and condominiums, respectively.*


“Our Members are evolving and adapting their business practices by leveraging the use of technology with virtual tours, live streaming, social media, and becoming more creative in their methods to facilitate the needs of their clients who may need to buy or sell right now because of their circumstances.”


“However, for those buyers and sellers who are not in that urgent position, our Members recognize the health and safety of our community is paramount. They are consulting with these clients on a case by case basis and may advise that they should delay the listing of their home or a purchase. They are doing what’s best for their clients in the context of government advisories,” affirms Burgoyne.


When asked about the impact of Covid-19 on the number of new listings on the market, Burgoyne speculates, “The shortage of inventory has driven down the number of new listings for the past several years, so we cannot accurately state that the decrease in March was due to Covid-19 where we saw 1,579 new residential listings and 469 for condos. The 5-year average is 2,217 and 665, respectively. I believe that April’s number will provide a truer and more legitimate reflection of the impact of Covid-19 on our local real estate market.”


“In closing, I would like to say that we are grateful to have been granted the essential service designation and are working closely with all levels of government and our provincial and national associations to ensure that we implement the necessary steps and protocols to flatten the curve and remain the trusted advisors that the public have come to expect from the REALTOR® profession.” In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 746 properties since the beginning of the year compared to 550 at this time last year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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January Resales Lose Momentum


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 780 residential properties in January through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 817 in January 2019, a decrease of 4.5 per cent. January’s sales included 558 in the residential-property class, down 8.4 per cent from a year ago, and 222 in the condominium-property category, an increase of 6.7 per cent from January 2019. The five-year average for January unit sales is 713.


“2020 is off to a slower start as the shortage of inventory is now impacting market momentum,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board’s President Deborah Burgoyne. “Although we have higher sales than the five-year average, due to increased condo sales, the persistent supply challenges seem to have finally caught up with us. Furthermore, the number of new listings that came on the market in January (1,082) is well below the average (1,651).”


“We don’t expect this trajectory to change anytime in the foreseeable future,” Burgoyne acknowledges. “The supply chain needs to be buffered at all points along the continuum from first time and move-up buyers, to downsizing boomers as well as renters. They are all interconnected links in the housing chain.”


January’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $338,077, an increase of 19.1 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $516,229, an increase of 19.3 per cent from a year ago. Compared to last month, however, the average price for residential-class properties increased by a modest 3.2 per cent and the average price for condominium-class units was 8.8 per cent higher.*


The Board’s Housing Price Index (HPI), which is another data point of price trends based on the specific housing stock in neighbourhoods, indicates that the overall benchmark price for Ottawa has increased by approximately 13.75% from last year.


The most active price range in the condominium market was $200,000 to $349,999, accounting for 55 per cent of the units sold while $400,000 to $549,999 represented the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 40 per cent of January’s transactions.


“The fact is Ottawa’s market has always been steadily increasing at a reasonable pace and is sustainable. If buyers are waiting for prices to decline, based on historical trends, it’s not likely,” Burgoyne cautions. “Although supply may pick up eventually—if you need to get into the market, don’t wait. It’s a challenging market for everyone. Hire a trusted professional to ensure you are protected and well informed in your home buying or selling transaction.”


In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 243 properties in January 2020 compared with 169 in January 2019.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood

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Record-Breaking 2019 Closes out Decade

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board (OREB) sold 761 residential properties in December through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 660 in December 2018, an increase of 15.3 percent. December’s sales included 534 in the residential property class, up 13.9 percent from a year ago, and 227 in the condominium property class, an increase of 18.8 percent from December 2018. The five-year average for December unit sales is 720.


“December’s statistics reflect the same story we’ve seen all year - historically low supply yet higher unit sales than in previous years. Days on market continued to decline, especially in certain pockets of the city, as properties that came on the market were snapped up by prepared buyers,” states Dwight Delahunt, Ottawa Real Estate Board’s 2019 President. “Unit sales in the condominium class consistently led the way, offering lower price point options for homebuyers that simply weren’t available in the residential category,” he adds.


The total number of residential and condo units sold throughout 2019 was 18,622, compared with 17,467 in 2018, an increase of 6.6 percent. Residential property class sales went up by 4.7 percent with 14,038 properties exchanging hands last year compared to 13,411 in 2018. Condominium property class sales increased 13 percent with 4,584 units sold in 2019 versus 4,056 in the previous year.


“2019 was a record-breaker in both the number of sales as well as average prices, with the residential property class reaching $500K in several months during the year. This price growth is warranted due to the fundamental economic principle of supply and demand playing out, with limited supply putting upward pressure on prices. However, even with these increases, Ottawa’s real estate market continues to remain one of the most affordable and sustainable in the country,” Delahunt stresses.


December’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $310,675, an increase of 11.5 percent from a year ago while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $500,306, an increase of 10.3 percent from December 2018. Year-end figures show an average sale price of $486,590 for residential class properties in 2019, an 8.9 percent increase from 2018 and $304,203 for condominium properties, up 9.3 percent from last year.*


OREB’s 2020 President, Deborah Burgoyne, forecasts Ottawa will continue to experience limited supply and reasonably increasing average prices this year. “Supply issues will surely persist into 2020, and I don’t expect the inventory will be able to recover in the near future,” she suggests.


“Builders do seem keen on constructing luxury rental units, which is something we haven’t seen much of before. These could potentially add inventory to the residential class, as boomers will have decent options if they are considering entering a different lifestyle than homeownership. However, even if supply increases, high demand has shifted market values upwards in various neighbourhoods and prices are unlikely to go back down – this is our new reality,” concludes Burgoyne.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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Weather Isn't Cooling the Resale Market

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,288 residential properties in November through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,161 in November 2018, an increase of 10.9 per cent. November’s sales included 958 in the residential-property class, up 10.5 per cent from a year ago, and 330 in the condominium-property category, an increase of 12.2 per cent from November 2018. The five-year average for November unit sales is 1,133.


“Even with the typical winter slowdown, Ottawa’s home resale market still experienced a relatively brisk pace in November. Our inventory is not having a chance to build as it is being absorbed as quickly as it comes on the market. That’s why there are so many sales every month even though the supply stock is low,” explains Dwight Delahunt, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board.


November’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $313,734, an increase of 9.8 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $501,201, an increase of 16.9 per cent from a year ago. Year to date figures show an 8.9 per cent and 9.1 per cent increase in average sale prices for residential and condominiums, respectively.*


“Prices have increased, and therefore there is shortage of units available in the lower end price range of both condos and residential properties,” reports Delahunt. “That being said, the Ottawa market still remains strong and sustainable with reasonable increases in year to date average prices of 9% in both the residential and condominium property classes.”


The most active price range in the condominium market was $225,000- $349,999, accounting for 57.5 per cent of the units sold while $350,000 to $499,999 represented the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 38.8 per cent of November’s transactions. Residential properties in the $500,000 to $749,999 range increased to 32 per cent of all residential resales.


“As for the higher end of the market, we are seeing substantial increases in the number of properties sold in those price ranges as well. In the $750K-$1M range, 65 units changed hands last month compared to 24 sales last year at this time,” reveals Delahunt. “Further, the homes in the $1M+ plus range have increased to 29 sales last month from 15 sold in November 2018.”


“Year to date totals show the larger picture with a 41% increase in the $750K-$1M range from 610 to 861 unit sales, and a 30% increase in the $1M+ range from 266 to 345 transactions compared to this time last year,” he adds.


In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,559 properties since the beginning of the year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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October’s Whirlwind Resale Market


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,607 residential properties in October through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,375 in October 2018, an increase of 16.9 per cent. October’s sales included 1,211 in the residential-property class, up 15 per cent from a year ago, and 396 in the condominium-property category, an increase of 23 per cent from October 2018. The five-year average for October unit sales is 1,319.


“New listings are down, inventory remains scarce, and yet more homes changed hands this October than in the past decade and a half,” reports Dwight Delahunt, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. “It’s perplexing at first; however, when you consider the current breakneck transaction pace in the Ottawa resale market, often requiring homebuyers and sellers to make swift decisions, it makes sense.”


“October’s average Days on Market (DOM) for residential properties decreased by 10 days to 33 days, and the DOM for condominiums decreased to 28 days from the average 47 days experienced this time last year. Year to date figures show 31 DOM (down 8 days) for residential properties and 35 DOM (16 fewer days) for condominiums. Products are flying off the shelves, so to speak.”


October’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $319,208, an increase of 18.3 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential class property was $483,405, an increase of 7.6 per cent from a year ago. Year to date figures show an 8.3 per cent and 9.1 per cent increase in average sale prices for residential and condominiums, respectively.*


“We are seeing slightly above-average climbs in home prices this year, and the equity in many properties is undoubtedly increasing, which is great news for homeowners. Still, the growths are reasonable considering the state of the market and Ottawa retains its reputation of being one of the country’s most affordable cities where residents can enjoy a high quality of life,” Delahunt acknowledges.


The most active price range in the condominium market was $225,000- $349,999, accounting for 53 per cent of the units sold while $350,000 to $499,999 represented the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 43 per cent of October’s transactions. Residential properties in the $500,000 to $749,999 range increased to 30 per cent of all residential resales.


“We are noticing a significant uptick in residential properties sold in the $500-750K price range. This price point now represents almost 1 in every 3 home sales.”


“Even though there are incidences of multiple offers and homes sold for over market value, the reality is that approximately 36% of homes are selling over asking, compared to 21% at this time last year. It is a phenomenon that is affecting specific pockets of the city, but certainly not every neighbourhood or property type.”


“Sellers should use the knowledge of a REALTOR® to understand the complexities of their home’s positioning. Buyers require timely guidance on how to put in an attractive offer in this fast-paced market — and both parties must understand the intricacies of the contracts they are signing,” Delahunt advises.

In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,334 properties since the beginning of the year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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Sizzling Summer Continues into August


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,731 residential properties in August through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,581 in August 2018, an increase of 9.5 per cent. August’s sales included 1,300 in the residential-property class, up 9.7 per cent from a year ago, and 431 in the condominium-property category, an increase of 8.8 per cent from August 2018. The five-year average for August unit sales is 1,522.


“August’s ten percent increase in unit sales from 2018 is over twice the percentage increase experienced last year and three times higher than the previous August,” reports Dwight Delahunt, Ottawa Real Estate Board President. “However, although the numbers are up, Ottawa continues to undergo issues with inventory as the limited supply persists.”


August’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $308,781, an increase of 11.5 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $484,921, an increase of 11.8 per cent from a year ago. Year to date figures shows an 8.4 per cent and 7.9 per cent increase in average sale prices for residential and condominiums respectively. *


“Year to date average prices, which are more reliable indicators than monthly average prices, show steady, reasonable, and sustainable increases. We don’t anticipate there will be a major correction in the foreseeable future,” Delahunt maintains.


The $350,000 to $499,999 price range was the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 42 per cent of August’s transactions while 27 per cent of residential sales were in the $500,000 to $749,999 range. The most active price point in the condominium market has increased again in 2019 to $250,000-$399,999, accounting for 50 per cent of the units sold.


“As to be expected, now that the units in the lower end of the condo market have been acquired, there appears to be another upward movement in the prices of available condominiums,” Delahunt points out. “Statistics show the higher end of the residential market has picked up with the doubling of unit sales in the $750K to $1M price range from this time last year,” he adds.


When questioned about the government’s First-Time Home Buyer Incentive (FTHBI) which came into effect on September 2, Delahunt cautions, “It’s too early to tell what the impact will be or if there will be any impact in Ottawa’s market – these measures are not helping the supply side. We continue to call on all three levels of government to implement actions to increase supply which will facilitate restoring balance to our local real estate market.”


“Coming into the fall months, which are typically busy, we expect the market will continue to pick up steam,” he speculates. “Your home purchase or sale is not a DIY project; there’s too much at stake. Be sure to find a local REALTOR® with the depth of knowledge and experience that is warranted in one of the biggest investments you will make in your life.”


In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 1,906 properties since the beginning of the year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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Hot Market in a Scorching July!

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,842 residential properties in July through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,605 in July 2018, an increase of 14.8 per cent. July’s sales included 1,382 in the residential-property class, up 12.3 per cent from a year ago, and 460 in the condominium-property category, a rise of 23 per cent from July 2018. The five-year average for July unit sales is 1,579.


“Typically, after the busy spring, July tends to be a slower month as people take vacations and spend more time with their families, but there was no slow down this past month,” observes Dwight Delahunt, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. “In fact, we recorded the highest number of July sales in 15 years.”


“Also, for the first time in 2019, there was an upsurge in new listings which has slightly improved housing inventory. Although this is encouraging news, it is not enough to keep up with demand. In order to bring about a more balanced market, there needs to be at least a three-month supply of listings. Currently, Ottawa is closer to a one-month supply,” he adds.


“In this type of market, it is vital that Sellers utilize the experience and advice of a REALTOR® to maximize your property’s potential — and if you are a Buyer, to guide you through the complexities this intricate market presents,” Delahunt recommends.


July’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $299,665, an increase of 6.8 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $487,308, an increase of 10.4 per cent from a year ago.*


“Residential house prices continue to increase; however, these are reasonable gains and are not creating a bubble by any stretch,” Delahunt maintains. “Condo prices have now recovered, and the oversupply in that sector no longer exists. Ottawa has a healthy condo market and with major developments coming online in the future, we expect these too will be absorbed in due course.”


The $350,000 to $499,999 price range was the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 42 per cent of July’s transactions while 28 per cent of residential sales were in the $500,000 to $749,999 range. The most active price point in the condominium market, $225,000-$349,999, accounts for 52 per cent of the units sold.

When asked about how the upcoming federal election might affect the real estate market, Delahunt emphasizes, “We continue to believe the stress test is negatively impacting our housing market and look forward to hearing about how the various parties intend on addressing this contentious issue as the election approaches.”


In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 1,619 properties since the beginning of the year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.


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4 DIY Things You Can Do to Lower Your Energy Bill This Summer!


If you live in a place where summer heat is an issue, this time of year can mean substantially higher energy costs. Here are four low-cost, high-impact changes you can make on your own to save money and keep your home more comfortable this summer.

Clean your window sills
A few seasons worth of dirt and soot can prevent your windows from closing all the way. Even a little air getting in can make your AC less efficient and raise your electric bill. Drafty windows are the top energy leak in a typical home, accounting for up to 25% of a home's energy loss.
DIY level: Easy. You can even make this a chore for the kids!

Install a door sweep
"A common place where air leaks occur is under the door leading from the house to the garage because they are often not as well sealed as doors leading directly to the outside," says Energy Star. Install a door sweep to seal the gap between the bottom of your door and the threshold to prevent cold air from escaping your home.
DIY level: Easy. Use a drill to make holes in the door and screws to attach the sweep.



Caulk your windows
Window air leakage can be reduced by applying a continuous bead of caulk around the window trim where it meets the wall, at the mitered joints of the trim, and between the trim and the frame. Make sure the caulk is intended for indoor use and can be painted. Using Charlotte, NC as an example, the Department of Energy estimated that the average homeowner could save 14% on heating and cooling costs each year with proper air sealing and insulation.
DIY level: Medium. Caulk can get messy, so go slow.

Check your ducts
Ducts are used to distribute AC and heat throughout houses with forced-air systems "In typical houses, about 20% of the air that moves through the duct system is lost due to leaks, holes and poorly connected ducts." says Energy Star. "The result is an inefficient HVAC system, high utility bills, and difficulty keeping the house comfortable, no matter how the thermostat is set." You can check all the ducts you can access, such as those in the attic, crawlspace, or garage. Look for holes and tears, and seal them using mastic or metal tape.
DIY level: Medium. It's just taping, but you'll likely be dealing with tight spaces and a few creepy-crawlies.

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Condo Sales Continue to Dominate Resale Market


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 2,105 residential properties in June through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 2,064 in June 2018, an increase of 2 per cent. June’s sales included 1,612 in the residential-property class, on par with a year ago, and 493 in the condominium property class, a rise of 8.8 per cent from June 2018. The five-year average for June unit sales is 2,002.


“Year to date residential resales are virtually the same as this time last year with 7,565 transactions so far,” announces Dwight Delahunt, Ottawa Real Estate Board President. “Increasing by 8.3%, condo resales are the driving force for the upturn in units sold in the first half of 2019. Combined residential and condo year to date sales of 9,876 show a 1.8 per cent increase from June 2018,” he adds.


June’s average sale price for a condominium class property was $308,482, an increase of 6.2 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $500,716, a rise of 11.4 per cent from a year ago. *

“Although, the percentage increase in average price for a residential property climbed into the double digits in June, year to date figures indicate a steady growth of 7.6 per cent and 7.5 per cent for residential and condominiums respectively.”


“In the past decade, we have seen an approximate 52% increase in average prices for residential properties and 34% for condominiums, indeed an excellent return on investment for homeowners,” states Delahunt. “With a population reaching one million residents according to the City of Ottawa, we truly enjoy a high quality of living and remain one of Canada’s most affordable major cities – that’s no small feat.”


The $350,000 to $499,999 price range was the most prevalent price point in the residential market, accounting for 43 per cent of June’s transactions while 29 per cent of residential sales were in the $500,000 to $749,999 range. The most active price point in the condominium market for the third straight month, $225,000-$349,999, accounts for 55 per cent of the units sold.


“Some areas of the city are experiencing multiple offers, and the competition for well-priced and positioned properties is brisk. Even though 39% of properties this month sold above the asking price, the vast majority of properties are still being sold at or below the listed price,” Delahunt points out. “A professional REALTOR’S® market knowledge and neighbourhood expertise are invaluable whether you are a buyer or a seller,” he maintains.


“This is not a speculation market. Going forward, we anticipate there will be a high demand in the foreseeable future due to increasing population and strong employment in the area. We are pleased to see all levels of government starting to address the supply side issue, but we feel there is still work to be done. We will be watching the upcoming federal election closely to gain insight as to how the various parties intend on addressing attainable homeownership issues,” Delahunt concludes.


In addition to residential sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 1,314 properties since the beginning of the year, and our Commercial Members continue to be very active in our marketplace.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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2019's Hottest Home Decor
By Barbara Pronin


Comfort is trending for 2019, a consensus of home decorators agree, with more people seeking warm colors, intimate spaces, and a casual but sophisticated lifestyle.

Designers looking to pair physical coziness with emotional comfort forecast seven decor trends:



Scaled down furnishings - After years of favoring large furniture and open spaces, consumers are aiming for a ‘nesting’ environment and choosing smaller pieces arranged in more intimate settings.

Wall coverings - The return to traditionalism brings with it a return to wallpaper, fabric wall coverings and murals. Expect to see plenty of rich shades of green in fabric and wallpaper patterns.

Color changes - While blues and indigos have been huge in recent years, green is the new blue for 2019 and is likely to be used in everything from upholstery patterns to kitchen furnishings.

Color ‘pops’ - People are ditching beige minimalism in favor of fun colors, especially in family-friendly spaces. Yellow is the hottest color for small accent pieces–from ceramics to lamps to sofa pillows.

Warm woods and traditional styles - Antiques and even second-hand items are having their moment again, with consumers looking for skirted tables, wooden chests and other wood pieces with a sense of history.

Indoor and outdoor fireplaces - The coziness trend favors indoor fireplaces, working or not, with homey hearths as a nice spot to gather. Outdoors, fireplaces are preserving the joy of summertime barbecues.

Crafts and artisanal accents - In a world of increasing mass production, there has been a shift back to artisanal and boutique choices in pillows, wall hangings, quilts and other accent pieces all around the home.

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January's Record-Breaking Home Sales


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 820 residential properties in January through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 708 in January 2018, an increase of 15.8 percent. January’s sales included 611 in the residential property class, a rise of 14.2 percent from a year ago, and 209 in the condominium property class, an increase of 20.8 percent from January 2018. The five-year average for January sales is 683.4.


“January is typically one of the slowest months of the year for local real estate. Yet, in spite of the record cold and snowfall, unit sales are up almost 16%. This is the highest number of January transactions we have experienced in decades,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board’s 2019 President, Dwight Delahunt.


“Buyers are extremely motivated, despite the weather, and properties are moving very quickly as days on market continue to decline,” he adds. “If you’re thinking of selling, you don’t have to wait for spring. A REALTOR® is in the best position to assist in this active market where buyers are waiting for the opportunity.”


The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in January in the Ottawa area was $432,829, an increase of 1.5 percent over January 2018. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $283,990, an increase of 7.7 percent from this month last year.*


“Even though inventory is at its lowest level in years, Ottawa’s home prices reflect reasonable appreciation. New builds are helping prices remain stable with homebuilders adding enough supply to keep the market equitable. We don’t have the supply constraints of Toronto and Vancouver because we have serviceable lots within a 20-minute drive,” Delahunt points out.


“Similar to the fact that you don’t need to own a BMW to get where you want to go, some of the more expensive neighbourhoods in the city are a lifestyle choice. The fact is there is quality affordable housing available for almost every level of homebuyer in Ottawa.”


The $300,000 to $449,999 range continued to represent the most active price point in the residential market, accounting for nearly 42.5 percent of January’s sales while 22.7 percent of sales were in the $500,000 to $750,000 price range. Between $175,000 to $274,999 remained the most prevalent price point in the condominium market, accounting for 54.1 percent of the units sold.


When asked what he forecasts for the upcoming year, Delahunt speculates, “Based on last month’s sales, I’d say we go with Wiarton Willie’s prediction – it will likely be an early spring for the real estate market as well.”

In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 169 properties in January 2019.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhoodto neighbourhood.

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Becoming a Home Maintenance Pro: Tips for Homeowner


Many homeowners don't think about home maintenance until something breaks, but that's not the best way to take care of your home. Whether you’re a new homeowner or have been settled for years, it’s never too late to cultivate some home maintenance habits. Here are three tips to help you protect your investment and keep your property in good shape for years to come:

Create and Follow a Home Maintenance Schedule
A good place to start is by following a home maintenance schedule. Just as your car needs to have an oil change, your home and yard will need some regular maintenance. Home maintenance schedule apps such as HomeZada and Centriq are an easy way to get yourself on track.

You'll need to mow your lawn, clean your gutters and perhaps even top your trees from time to time. For pest control, you may need to spray or have ground treatment performed a few times a year, too. When it comes to appliances, make sure to send in any warranties and follow the maintenance recommendations in your owner’s manual. For older appliances, many documents can be found online.

Don't be afraid to do some research and speak with professionals about maintenance specific to your location.

Have All of Your Home Systems Checked Regularly
It's important to get your electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems checked annually to keep them in good shape. Some of these tasks can be done yourself; for instance, you might need to clean your air filters, remove debris from the vents and flush out your water heater.

For more technical inspections, check customer reviews on Yelp, Google, Facebook, and the BBB when searching for a new company. Always go with one that is experienced, licensed, bonded and insured.

Follow a Cleaning Schedule
Home maintenance often focuses on repair work, but keeping your home clean can be just as important. In addition to once a week tasks such as vacuuming and dusting the shelves, deep cleaning every month or so can save you big in the long run. Moving furniture around, pulling out the washer and dryer to clean behind them and clearing out the garage gives you a chance to inspect for pest problems, water damage and similar issues that can quickly escalate into expensive repairs.

Being a homeowner is very rewarding on many levels, but homeownership comes with a great deal of responsibility. As long as you put in some effort on a regular basis, you should have no problem keeping your home in good repair.


Article by: Dixie Somers

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Another Stellar Year for Ottawa's Real Estate Market


Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 663 residential properties in December through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 765 in December 2017, a decrease of 13.3 percent. December’s sales included 471 in the residential property class, a drop of 15.7 percent from a year ago, and 192 in the condominium property class, a decrease of 6.8 percent from December 2017. Year to date activity increased by 2.4 percent from 2017.


The total number of residential and condo units sold throughout all of 2018 was 17,476, compared with 17,065 in 2017. Residential property class sales decreased slightly to 13,418 from 13,478 in 2017 and condominium property class sales were up 13.1 percent with 4,058 units sold in 2018 versus 3,587 in the previous year.


“For the last decade, we have experienced steady growth in our real estate market from volume to prices; however, the past two years have jumped significantly in activity with a 12.6% increase in unit sales from 2016. Ottawa and its surrounding area has excellent employment numbers and has proven to be one of the most affordable larger cities in the country,” proclaims Ralph Shaw, Ottawa Real Estate Board’s 2018 President.


“What has come to a head in 2018 is the overall shortage of inventory which is extreme in certain pockets of the city. While this has caused unit sales to slide in the residential market, it has fueled the condominium market which has recovered and carried us through much of 2018. We have been predicting this will bode well for new construction in delayed high-rise projects,” he adds.


“Another significant factor affecting the market in 2018, and first-time homebuyers, in particular, is the mortgage stress test – an attempt by the federal government to cool two major markets in the country. It has also unfortunately made move-up buyers less likely to take that step and free up entry-level options, which is an important part of the resale market,” Shaw points out.


The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in December in the Ottawa area was $453,011, an increase of 4.7 percent over December 2017. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $278,295, an increase of 9 percent from this month last year. Year-end figures show an average sale price of $446,661 for residential-class properties in 2018, a 5.1 percent increase from 2017 and $278,316 for condominium properties, up 3.2 percent from last year.*


“In 2019, we expect the economic fundamentals of supply and demand to be at play with upward pressure on prices due to limited supply and increasing demand. Buyers do have affordable options in outlying communities if they are willing to commute – or they will simply have to pay more provided they can qualify. New builds and purpose-built rental housing could help ease some of the pressure, particularly if builders are able to provide a variety of quality options allowing for more movement in the market,” Shaw concludes.


The $300,000 to $449,999 range continues to represent the most active price point in the residential market, accounting for nearly 45 percent of December’s sales while almost one in four sales were in the $500,000 to $750,000 price range. Between $175,000 to $274,999 remained the most prevalent price point in the condominium market, accounting for 55.7 percent of the units sold. Year-end figures echoed these dominating price points holding 45.6 percent of the residential market and 49.8 of the condo market respectively.


In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,713 properties since the beginning of the year down from 2,977 from this time last year.


* The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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4 Easy Ways to Add Colorful Curb Appeal
By Eliot Ward


Update your home's curb appeal with pops of color that add a cheerful touch this time of year.



Get a Step Up with Railings
Chipped, tired railings can make a home look outdated and unkempt, but making those pieces look new again is a relatively quick and easy project. Keeping the railing monochromatic in a color that complements the rest of the house's paint and trim creates a clean look. If you want to add some variety, use a secondary shade in the same color family and apply it to the main posts or the spindles.

Create DIY Doormats
An affordable and unique way to create a "wow" moment at your home’s entry is to craft a DIY doormat with spray paint. A chevron pattern is an easy way to make a statement by simply using painter's tape and two different colors of spray paint.

Put the Spotlight on Light Fixtures
Small splashes of color can go a long way, especially with a feature like exterior light fixtures. For light fixtures to stand out against a neutral-colored home, try spray painting them a bold hue, such as bright yellow, for a burst of color.

Refresh Patio Furniture
Over time, patio furniture loses its luster. If it's still in good shape, you can bring it back to life with a fresh coat of spray paint. All the angles can make it difficult to cover every surface, so choose a product that promotes easy application. Remember to tilt furniture back and apply color to the feet and legs for an all-over finish that's ready to weather the season.

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After a long winter cooped up indoors, spring is the perfect time to start reimagining your home and making upgrades that create a fresh, welcoming vibe. These project ideas—some big, some small—can help breathe new life into your home so that you're ready to enjoy your favorite rooms to the fullest.

 

Air it out. Months of closed windows and doors can make any room feel dusty and stale. As soon as temperatures allow, throw open the windows and skylights to let the fresh air chase away the remnants of winter. It's also the perfect time to launder window treatments and clean area rugs. If you're considering an update to the overall décor, changing out these textiles is an easy and affordable way to create a new look.

Paint to perfection. Over time, once cheerful walls can grow dull. Create a livelier ambiance with a fresh coat of paint, either in the same shade or something completely new. If you're not sure exactly where to start, tackle the project room by room. To choose the right hue, select a favorite item in the room, such as an heirloom throw blanket or a piece of wall art, and consider color shades that complement the item.

Make what's old new again. Sometimes a fresh perspective is as simple as rearranging a room to better fit your needs. Over time, furnishings can become almost an afterthought because they've been in place so long. Try moving things around to create new conversation groupings or to highlight a piece that has been tucked away in the shadows.

Get earth smart. With all of the new growth and hues of green that abound during spring, it's natural to be more mindful of the environment. Earth-friendly upgrades like switching out inefficient lighting or installing low-flow toilets and shower heads can make a sizable difference.

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Low Inventory Can Leave Buyers Out in the Cold!

OTTAWA, Feb. 5, 2018 -  Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 712 residential properties in January through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 664 in January 2017, an increase of 7.2 percent. The five-year average for January sales is 638.



“While January is typically the month we see the lowest number of listings come onto the market, the numbers for this month are very low,” Rick Eisert, 2017 President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board, observes. “The five-year average for new listings in January is 1,396 for residential and 500 for condominiums. January   2018’s   listings   were at   994   and   406   respectively.”


“We saw this trend throughout 2017, and the result is our resale market is being challenged by decreasing supply in both the residential and condo markets. Furthermore, as the supply continues to be reduced, it will tend to put an upward pressure on prices. This is simple supply and demand economics,” he adds.


The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in January in the Ottawa area was $427,487, an increase of 8.8 percent over January 2017. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $263,744, a decrease of 8.6 percent from January 2017. The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

January’s sales included 173 in the condominium property class and 539 in the residential property class.

“Sales in the residential property class this month were on par with January 2017 with a minor decrease of 1.1 percent. Unit sales in the condo market, however, have seen an increase of 45 percent from 119 units sold in January 2017 to 173 units in January 2018,” Eisert explains.

“The most active price point in the residential market is the $300,000 to $449,999 range, accounting for 47.5 percent of the market. While the most active price point in the condo market, between $150,000 and $249,999, accounts for 55 percent of the market,” states Eisert. “There is a marked increase in the number of condo units sold in the lower end of the market specifically. This is likely due to the attractive lower price point and the fact that the demand is there.”


“For homeowners thinking of selling, this is a good time to get your property on the market before spring,” Eisert advises. “Since inventory is currently low, sellers will certainly get attention because selection for buyers in some areas, in particular, is quite limited.”


In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 166 properties since the beginning of the year.


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November Blues? Not in the real estate market.....

 

OTTAWA, Dec. 5, 2017 - Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,239 residential properties in November through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System compared with 992 in November 2016, an increase of 24.9 per cent. The five-year average for November sales is 1,001.

“November numbers are upholding the robust year we have been experiencing in the real estate market in 2017,” Rick Eisert, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Boards states. “Both residential sales and condo sales continue to steadily increase.”

November’s sales included 294 in the condominium property class and 945 in the residential property class. “This is not surprising though,” Eisert remarks. “The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institution’s (OSFI) announcement regarding the new stress tests for low- ratio borrowers may have buyers rushing into the market before the stricter mortgage regulations come into play in January 2018. If this keeps up, I expect December could be a busier than usual holiday season for REALTORS®.”


The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in November in the Ottawa area was $418,354, an increase of 3.2 per cent over November 2016. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $257,212, a decrease of 7.6 per cent over November 2016. The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased ordecreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions  will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

“It is crucial in a market that is moving quickly, such as the one we areexperiencing, to ensure you are pricing your property correctly. Having the guidance and market knowledge of a REALTOR® is essential for home buyers and home sellers,” suggests Eisert.


“The most active price point in the residential market is the $300,000 to $450,000 range, accounting for 46 per cent of the market. While the most activeprice point in the condo market, between $150,000 and $275,000, accounts for 66 per cent of the market,” says Eisert. “In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,821 properties since the beginning of the year.”


Photo by Jacob Ufkes on Unsplash

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Leave might be falling,but the real estate market is not!

 

 

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,243 residential properties in October through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,214 in October 2016, an increase of 2.3 per cent. The five-year average for October sales is 1,165.


“As we enter the 3rd quarter of the year, we continue to see the resale market outpace last year’s performance, which was also a stellar year,” says Rick Eisert, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. October’s sales included 261 in the condominium property class, and 982 in the residential property class.  Condominium sales continue to drive the overall residential sales market, with a year to date increase of 21.4 per cent over the same time period last year.”


“The fall market is brisk and could be fueled by the impending tightening of mortgage regulations,” says Eisert. “Properties continue to sell nmuch faster in comparison to this time last year with the average days on market for residential properties down 17.7 per cent from 55 to 45 days. Our market could still be described as balanced, though in some areas it continues to trend towards a Sellers’ market.”


Eisert adds “Slow but steady growth best describes Ottawa housing prices.” The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in October in the Ottawa area was $425,256, an increase of 7.7 per cent over October 2016. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $269,604, an increase of 6.7 per cent over October 2016. The Board cautions that the average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.


“In the residential market, the $300,000 to $399,999 range remains the most active price point, accounting for 33.3 per cent of the market. While in the condo market, the most active price point is between $175,000 and $249,999, accounting for 45.2 per cent of the market,” says Eisert. “In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,607 properties since the beginning of the year.”

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