Oasis Realty Brokerage, Ottawa Real Estate
Gord McCormick Ottawa, ON K2S0H6
Phone: 613-435-4692 Mobile: 613-371-9691

Fed spending/headcount continue to hike home sales in Ottawa

October 2016 yielded another pretty good month in Ottawa real estate, buoyed by continued growth in Federal government headcount and spending.  Sales were positive in the month of October with new home sales and condo’s leading the way.

New home sales up 18.5% year-to-date:
The new home segment has seen a major surge this year and that is good news for builders.  Some of these sales may challenge the resale market which is pretty flat in average price this year, although the number of residential units sold is up 6.0% so far this year. Average selling prices are ahead only .9% overall for residential at $396,109.

Condo sales much better this year, up 9.1%
Condo sales on MLS® (which also includes some new construction sales but not all)  where up a whopping 27.2% in October and are showing a 9.1% increase year-to-date but average prices are again pretty flat with the average price sold at $259,925 unchanged compared to 2015.

Listing inventory pullback has helped the market:
The number of new listings this year is down by about 7% overall and current inventories show the number of residential listings down 16.7% at the end of October and condo listings down 14.1%.   Rental listings were also down by 28.9% at month’s end.
This has moved us away from some very high listing inventory levels experienced over 2014 and 2015 and keeps us in a much more balanced market.

How long does it take a property to sell in Ottawa?
Our days-on-market to sell the average property has increased slightly to 58 days for residential properties (up from 55) and 73 days for the average condo (up from 68 days last year).  This is a key statistic for those considering a sale to study in detail for their own area, as it is critical in assessing both marketing timelines and listing pricing.  A Realtor can provide up to date and detailed information in this regard.

Most popular pricing categories:
The $300,000 to $400,000 price category is the most active/popular range, followed closely by the $200,000-$300,000 price category.
Overall, 80% of residential sales in Ottawa are done at lower than $500,000 and 75%+ of condo sales are done at less than $300,000. These types of ratios are important for sellers to consider when listing, as it determines the size of the potential market for their property.

What’s next?
We are entering the quieter period for real estate in Ottawa and while sales should continue strong vs previous years, the months of November-February are our 4 slowest months of the year.  Sellers will want to carefully review pricing and competitive factors prior to listing their property for sale during this period.

May be best time to buy new construction for 2017 delivery:
Buying new construction may be optimal at this time of year for closings in summer 2017, as those with existing homes to sell, will be able to sell in the busy spring market.
First time buyers will have more months to save and also possibly be able to use their 2016 tax year RRSP contribution for their down payment, in addition to getting the 2016 tax break.

Ottawa sales and inventory moving nicely in 2016, prices...not so much..

The Ottawa market has been seeing some very positive unit sales increases since April of this year and the excess inventory problem of the last two years has diminished significantly.  One Ottawa Real Estate Board recent press release even wondered if we were on the verge of a “sellers” market, something we haven’t seen in many years here.

Overall Sales Picture through September 2016:
Residential unit sales have increased 6.8% on a year to date basis but average selling prices are only .6% ahead to $396,400.
Condos have seen positive sales growth of 7.4% but prices are also flat at an average of $260,218 which is only .1% higher than a year ago.

Listing Inventory a good story this year on an overall basis:
After a couple of years of heavy listing inventory, we have seen some pretty dramatic decreases over the course of 2016, especially the last 6 months.  The number of new listings YTD is down 6.9% and at the end of September residential listing inventory is 18.8% lower than last year and condo inventory is 12.5% lower.
So this is positive news for those considering a listing or sale in the near future, although competitive pressures will vary with each property and location.

Will new mortgage rules impact the market?
There are some opinions saying that the recently announced new mortgage rules from the Federal Government in early October will eliminate up to 15 or 20% of first time buyer but this remains to be seen.  If this were true it would certainly have a ripple effect on the overall market. 

New Federal Government Relocation fee structure cuts Realtor rates come Jan 1.
The new Federal government rate for Realtor listing fees in Ontario is dropping from 4.1% on the current contract to 3.7% starting January 1, 2017. (this rate was as high as 5% only a few years ago)  There was much opinion and concern about this move on a Realtor only facebook group administered by the Ottawa Real Estate Board until the Board cut off further comment.  (Commission discussions or other controversial topics, including anything that could be deemed anti-competitive are verboten in organized real estate)  If someone you know is potentially moving on the Government’s Integrated Relocation Program (IRP) administered by Brookfield Relocation Services, have them contact us and we are happy to discuss how these changes may affect their next move and how our programs can ensure there is no negative impact to their home sale.  (not intended to solicit those with existing representation agreements) 613-435-4692

Gord McCormick, Broker of Record
Dawn Davey, Broker
Oasis Realty Brokerage
613-435-4692 oasisrealty@rogers.com

Recent Posts