Ottawa Versus THE WORLD

A recent trip to New York City and a brief conversation with one of its residents, has inspired me to look a little a deeper into the world’s real estate markets.  Boy am I happy to be living in Ottawa.  The average cost per square foot in down town Ottawa is roughly $465.00, making a 550 sqft space approximately $255,750 with out parking.  Now let’s take a look at what that 550 sqft of space would cost you around the world.

So next time you out looking for a home and begin to think that the prices are little unreasonable for such a small space, take a deep breath and think back to this post.  For a complete list of all homes under $300,000 in Ottawa, please send me an email.  Thanks for reading.


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!

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.

May in Review

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,659 residential properties in May through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® system compared with 1,686 in May 2010, a decrease of 1.6 per cent.

Of those sales, 369 were in the condominium property class, while 1,290 were in the residential property class. The condominium property class includes any property, regardless of style (i.e. detached, semi-detached, apartment, stacked etc.), which is registered as a condominium, as well as properties, which are co-operatives, life leases and timeshares. The residential property class includes all other residential properties.

According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) in their Spring 2011 Ottawa Housing Market Outlook, the Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) transitioned from a seller’s market to a balanced market in 2010 and will remain in that territory in 2011. CMHC analysts define Ottawa’s resale housing market as balanced when between 35 and 55 per cent of the number of homes listed for sale (new listings) in a given month are sold.

“Sales numbers for May were virtually unchanged from 2010, but prices continued to rise at about the same rate as we have seen for the past few months, demonstrating solid demand for resale housing in our area,” said Board President Joanne Tibbles. “A balanced market offers no distinct advantage to either buyers or sellers, so I’d advise anyone thinking of buying or selling to work with a local REALTOR® to help them achieve their goals. There are different strategies for marketing a home or making an offer to purchase in a balanced market versus a buyer’s or seller’s market. An Ottawa REALTOR® can help make the process easier for consumers,” Tibbles added.

The average sale price of residential properties, including condominiums, sold in May in the Ottawa area was $352,347, an increase of 5.6 per cent over May 2010. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $261,871, an increase of 6.4 per cent over May 2010. The average sale price of a residential-class property was $378,228, an increase of 6 per cent over May 2010. The Board cautions that average sale price information 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 average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold.

Sold – 95 Beech Unit 210

Just listed and not on the MLS.  This is a very rare, gorgeous and completely renovated corner end unit located in the Heart of Little Italy! Unit 210, a one bedroom, one bathroom, open concept loft, includes 11ft ceilings, exposed brick and duct work, expansive windows which allow plenty of natural light, gas fireplace and so much more. Call me today  to book your private showing!! Won’t last long!!  For more information click here.