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January's Record Breaking Snowfall & 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.

“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.

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