Just Listed – 2126 Rice Ave – $549,900

Gorgeous and charming sun filled home located seconds from the Ottawa River.  This four bedroom, two bathroom plus loft includes deep baseboards, original refinished hardwood, high ceilings, open concept living, and large yard with pool.   The cozy main floor family room has a gas fireplace and side entrance.  Bike and walking path located just across the street.  Walk to the beach.  Turn this into your dream home today!  For more pictures and additional information click here.


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$100 Moxie’s Gift Card Winner

Today was the day where the winner of the $100 Moxie’s Gift Card was chosen.  Marnie Bennett herself joined me to draw the lucky name.  Thank you very much to those who have subscribed to my blog.  For those who haven’t, stay tuned for more information on the next one.  Watch the video to find out who won!

Can’t We Just Arm Wrestle for the Difference?

        At some point during the negotiation process when buying or selling a home, the buyer and seller will get to a point where neither side wants to give an inch. Of course the seller doesn’t want to feel like they have left money on the table and the buyer doesn’t want to feel like they have over paid.  Money is money and for the majority of us $5000 is a lot of money, I know it is for me.  What I want to do is give you a quick example of how by “over paying” $5000 will really at the end of the day, have a negligible effect on your over all investment.       Scenario: A first time buyer is looking to purchase a brand new condo.  The unit is built but has never been lived in.  The seller purchased the unit through the  builder at the pre-construction stage and has now decided to sell.  The builder is selling their remaining units at $388.41/sqft (the average new construction condo will sell for $465/sqft), plus $30,000 for underground parking and a floor premium of $3000 minimum per floor.  There is a comparable unit on the third floor so we will add $6000 in floor premiums. The unit you are looking at is 834sqft, on  the fifth floor, with south and west views.  If we use those numbers to come to a price, we get:

834 (sqft) x 388.41 ($/sqft) = $323,939

$323,939 + $30,000 (parking) = $353,939

$353,939 + $6000 (floor premium) = $359,939

      So for argument sake, we will say that the market value of the condo is $359,939, which is almost unheard of for a condo like this. The seller originally had the condo listed at $374,900 and has dropped the price through negotiations to $365,000.  The buyer is only willing to pay $360,000.  For the seller to drop the price again by $5000 is a lot harder for the seller to do than it is for the buyer to come up.  The seller is literally giving up $5000 of profit immediately, while the buyer can pay that $5000 over 25-30 years.  Your monthly payment on $360,000 at 3% over 25 years will be $1618/month assuming 5% down.  A $365,000 mortgage at the same rate, amortization period and down payment, will cost you $1641/month, a difference of $23 a month.  I get that $23 is $23 but over the year, that unit will appreciate $21,600 if you use the Ottawa average rate of appreciation of 6% a year.  In one year you will pay an extra $276 for the unit if you paid the extra $5000, however your unit will be worth $21,600 more, giving you a yearly profit of $21,324.

       At the end of the day of course money is money, but you will make up that extra $5000 in the first three months of living there.  So are you really going to lose your perfect home for $5000?

SOHO Champagne Floor Plans

Ever since the launch of SOHO Champagne, it seems like the market has kicked into high gear.  Now I know it sounds a little crazy but I swear it is because of the weather.  By the end of the month, when the Ottawa Real Estate Board releases the stats, I will let you know if the market really did pick up in the month of June or if it was just my business.  Due to the increase in traffic, it has taken me a little longer to get the SOHO Champagne floor plans up than I would have hoped, but I guess it’s better late than never.   My favourite one bedroom unit is the D-The Birch and my favourite two bedroom unit is the J-The Ironwood. Here are the floor plans for all of the released units, excluding the town-homes and penthouses.  For availability and an up to date price list, please send me an email or give me a quick call.

Why Little Italy?

     Quickly emerging as one of Ottawa’s hottest neighbourhoods, Little Italy is seeing fantastic growth.  Since 2000, home values in Little Italy have increased 154%.  This neighbourhood has had significant improvements made to its infrastructure in that ten-year period with the addition of three high-rise business towers, the reconstruction of the sewage system and a face lift to the streets and store fronts.  With an abundance of trendy shops, yoga studios, restaurants and immediate access to public transportation, Little Italy is quickly becoming the place to live in Ottawa’s down core.  Closer to the Byward Market and Parliament Hill than Westboro, arguably Ottawa’s most desirable neighbourhood, Little Italy’s location allows for its residence to walk to both of these major attractions and that’s exactly what people want.  When I meet my clients, most want the same thing, the ability to walk down town, without having to live in the hustle and bustle.  They are also demanding high-end luxury finishes that are only offered in very few homes in the area.   Enter SOHO Champagne.

       I know I write a lot about the SOHO product, it’s because I think it’s the best in town. SOHO Champagne is one of a kind.  Located in Ottawa’s Little Italy, this condominium will offer hotel inspired design, amenities and living.  With 15,000 sqft of amenities, this place is a resort.  Need to relax?  Head to the gym, hot tub, pool, steam room, sauna, wine room or the state of the art 24 person theatre.  Going to be home late from a road trip and want some clean sheet?  Call the 24hrs concierge and he can make that happen.   If you have ever wanted to live in a five-star hotel, now is the chance.

     Apparently a lot people do want to live in a hotel.  The launch of SOHO Champagne was the most anticipated condo launch of 2011. On June 2, the owner, Bruce Greenberg, held a Friends and Family Night.  Invitees who were hand selected by the owner himself scooped up 25 units of their own, mostly two bedroom units.  June 4 was the launch to the public.  On this day, the prices of the units were reduced by 2%.  When the doors opened at 12:00pm, over 200 people were already waiting.  The first person arrived at 11:30pm the night before.  When the doors closed at 4:00pm, 230 reservations had been made for 150 units, and not one two bedroom remained, confirming the hype, that SOHO Champagne is going to be the address in 2014.  When complete, this project will only increase demand for this area, making now a great time to buy in.  Let’s take a look at what we can expect moving forward.

      Greg Blok, Senior Investment Specialist with the Bennett Real Estate Professionals, writes in his article, “A Case for Urbanization”, “The Ottawa housing market has increased in value by 7% per year since 2002.  This 9 year period is slightly higher than the 50 year annual average increase of 6.33%.  In the condo market, in 2002, a new condo was priced on average at $250/per square foot, meaning a 1,000 sqft condo was $250,000, whereas today new condos are priced at $460/sqft meaning a 1,000 sqft unit is $460,000.  That means the 9 year annual increase in condo price is 9.3%.

     That means that condos have really only outpaced the complete housing market by 2.3% annually.  This is not a very significant outpacing, in dollar terms, it means an extra $5750 per year.  That does not seem that significant, but considering the fact that most condos take 3 years to build, that is now a $17,250 increase, a much more significant figure. 

     If you were buying a condo today, based upon the pattern over the past 9 years, the condo you buy today at $460,000 would be worth $588,340 upon completion in 3 years.  That appreciate is quite impressive.”  For the full article click here.

       Let’s say that on the day of the SOHO Champagne launch, you secured a J model, a two bedroom unit, on the 12th floor .  I have selected this floor plan as an example because I believe that this particular unit will outperform the other two bedroom floor plan.  Its over 40ft of wall to wall/floor to ceiling windows will not only make this unit highly desirable in this building but city-wide.  You would have also secured the 2% discount mentioned above.  Your unit was held at $447,000 and if the unit is released it will be sold for $459,000. You would have made $12,000 in one day by purchasing this unit, not to mention the potential growth mentioned above. 

     Little Italy is a fantastic spot for Gen Y, the Baby Boomers and everybody in between.  With all of the new development happening over the next three to five years, expect property values to rise quickly.  For a complete list of all of the available real estate in Little Italy, feel free to give me a call or send me a quick email.

SOLD – 2797 Glenwood

2797 Glenwood Drive is located in the lovely town of Metcalfe.  This large, custom, three plus one bedroom, high ranch home is located on 0.67 acres of land. This home also includes a spacious kitchen, new hardwood floors and a water filtration system which provides more pure, better tasting water. The large finished basement includes brand new carpet and a gas fireplace. Perfect for families. This home won’t last long!  For more information about this home and to see more photos click here.

Another Happy Client

“We began our journey to home ownership with a basic idea of what we wanted to purchase; a centrally located condo.  We had a fairly tight budget of approximately 300k but felt optimistic. Tyler showed us a few units and we then became a little worried about finding something that best suited our needs but was also within budget.  After some discussion, we then realized that we did not have a clue what we wanted.  With patience, Tyler took us to visit a wide variety of homes; those centrally located that required some updates and some new homes in the suburbs.  Nothing really spoke out.  After all those visits and us giving our feedback, Tyler knew just the place for us. 

We visited the model and thought it was too good to be true.  We had to be sure and therefore actually returned to the model half a dozen times.  We were finally convinced it would be the perfect “starter” home for us.  It has the storage we need, the lifestyle of condo living without the fees and is centrally located.

Tyler was patient, flexible, respectful and his knowledge about the market trends, neighbourhoods was refreshing.  He made this somewhat overwhelming process easy and stress free.  We would definitely use Tyler again.”

Jeff Duffy and Vittoria De Caria