Ottawa’s resale real estate market in February saw continuing low inventory, quick sales and rising average prices because of competition for the limited properties on the market, the Ottawa Real Estate Board reports.
The numbers continued the trend we’ve seen in our market for many months.
In a nutshell, it’s a great time to be a seller. And if you’re buying, you need to be prepared, know what you want, and ready to act quickly when you see something you like.
In February of 2021, members of the Ottawa Board sold 1,390 residential properties through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) system. That’s up 23% over the properties sold in February of last year, and it’s well above the five-year average for February sales, which is 1,101.
“Resale properties are virtually flying off the shelves,” Ottawa Real Estate Board President, Debra Wright, said in a statement.
“Even though our inventory is significantly lower than 2020 _ a combined 46% decrease in housing stock for residential and condos _ we witnessed a record number of sales in February, 2021. How is that possible? Simply put, properties that come onto the market are selling very quickly,” she said.
“With less than a month’s supply in both categories, residential homes, in particular, are experiencing the quickest turnarounds.”
In fact, the average number of days on the market for residential homes dropped to just 14 days in February compared with 30 days in February of 2020, the Board reported.
The average number of days on market for condo properties increased slightly, to 22 days from 19 days in February of last year, “likely due to the fact that the condo market was thriving and moving very quickly prior to the pandemic spread in Canada,” Debra Wright said.
However, she added, “it is clear the condo market has stabilized and is starting to rebound, with a 19% increase in transactions compared to last year at this time.”
Not surprisingly, the continuing demand for properties pushed average sale prices up in February.
Summarizing Ottawa’s market, Debra Wright said “with supply constraints continuing to place upward pressure on pricing, there is no doubt that this economic fundamental is driving the price increases.”
The low inventory, she said, “combined with buyers’ willingness to pay and compete in this market will continue to drive up sales prices.”
Spring will arrive officially on March 20, and with spring we usually see more properties listed on the market, especially among family homes.
“However, the question is whether it will be enough to meet demand,” Debra Wright adds.
“Having a sound strategy, whether you are buying or selling, is the key to success. In this complex and fast-paced market, it is essential to utilize the skills and experience of a Realtor with negotiation skills and the market knowledge to act quickly on your behalf.”
As I’ve been telling my clients, the market is definitely in your favour if you are considering selling. With my professional staging and photography and my marketing and negotiating skills, I will help you show your property at its best to maximize showings and strong offers.
If you are hoping to buy in coming months, the current market poses challenges. But as I’ve advised in recent posts, you just have to approach it with some planning and preparation.
It helps to be financially pre-approved and to have a clear idea what your must-haves are and what you can live without. You also must be ready to move quickly when we find something that ticks the boxes.
It also helps to give me some advance notice before you want to start searching, so that I can do some networking and approach my contacts to help find a property that matches your needs.
As it always does, the Ottawa Board cautions that while average sale prices for a specific month can be useful in establishing trends over time, they should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. As with any city, prices in Ottawa vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.
If you are considering buying or selling property in the Ottawa area, I’d love to chat about the Ottawa market and conditions in your area.
With more than 30 years of experience as a Realtor in this region, I have helped clients sell and buy in a wide range of market conditions and can help you navigate the market with proven strategies.
You can read more about me on my site, www.nancybenson.com.