Buyers, Strike While the Weather is Cold!

When people think of Ottawa in February, some have visions of the Rideau Canal, Winterlude and Beavertails. Others see this city as a truly frigid and unbearable place where the only way to survive it is to head for warmer climates.  Savvy home buyers on the other hand, are seeing dollar signs.  Like the seasons, real estate markets across Canada and around the world are cyclical, where the average sale price for homes fluctuate from month to month.

With January coming to end, the coldest month statically is almost behind us. Unlike the weather though, Ottawa’s housing market is entering the one month where typically things are the coldest.  The average sale price for homes in February is less than any other time throughout the year, making the next six weeks a great time for you to buy a home.

Based on statistics compiled by the Ottawa Real Estate Board, the average selling price for a residential home in Ottawa in 2010 was $327,225.  Since 2005, February sale prices for residential homes typically fell below average yearly sale prices 3.96%, further than any other month (January = 3.27%).  For example, using the average sales price from 2010, $327,225, and the average drop in sales price for February, 3.96%, one can potentially save a staggering $12,958.11 when purchasing in February, rather than in a hotter spring market.

For more information on the best times to buy and other market trends please do not hesitate to send me an email at


New Listing – 200 Besserer Unit 1209 – $394,900

Walk to the Byward Market in minutes.  Located on the penthouse level of The Galleria, this north-west facing, 745 sq ft, one bedroom plus den condo has fantastic views of the Byward Market. With 12 foot ceilings, hardwood throughout, upgraded ceramic flooring in the entrance, kitchen and bathroom, this unit is a real 1o!   The Galleria features salt water pool and exercise room.

Developer Applies to Construct Ottawa’s Tallest Building

An artist's concept of the Soho Italia, a 35-storey condominium tower. (Roderick Lahey Architect Inc.)Mastercraft Starwood Group wants to build "Soho Italia" just behind the archway of Little Italy on the site of an old parking lot on Preston Street.

Condominium developer Mastercraft Starwood, is seeking to construct a 35-storey tower in the heart of Ottawa’s Little Italy that, if completed, would be the tallest building in the city.

Last week, Mastercraft Starwood pitched the idea to mayor Jim Watson and the ward’s city councillor, Diane Holmes, as well as Peter

Hume, the chair of the Planning and Environment Committee. An official zoning change request has not been filed yet.

An artist’s conception for the project from architect Roderick Lahey shows a slim glass and concrete tower that resembles a stack of plates. The design also includes a ground floor dedicated to a museum of Italian culture.

Lahey said he’s excited about the project, and describes it as a fluid design that’s supposed to look like water moving, inspired by the Aqua Tower in Chicago. The Ottawa building would house about 220 residential condo units. If completed, it would likely edge out tower C of Place de Ville, the 29-storey, 112 metre building, and the 32-storey, 108 metre-tall Minto Metropole in Westboro, as the tallest building in Ottawa.

The spot is currently zoned for 19-storeys for a commercial building and 22-storeys for a residential building, according to a spokesperson with Mastercraft Starwood. The company has also met with the local business improvement association and is expecting to meet with community groups to discuss the plan.

Local residents, businesses and politicians CBC spoke with expressed surprise at the sheer size of the planned building, with some questioning its height while others worry that it is too wide for the available lot.

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