Even with the holidays keeping many people busy, the Ottawa housing market had a good month in December.
As most people know and expect, the month of December, when we’re enjoying the holidays and busy visiting with families, is traditionally a slower month for sales than other times of the year. But in good news, the Ottawa Real Estate Board reports that sales in December, 2014 were ahead of December 2013 and slightly above Ottawa’s five-year average for December.
A press release on the board’s website reports that members sold 640 residential properties through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in December of 2014.
While that’s below the numbers for November of 2014 (893 properties), it’s still up from the 609 properties that sold in December of 2013. Those numbers represent an increase of 5.1 %. It’s also slightly above the five-year average for December sales in Ottawa, which is 637.
Looking back at 2014, the total number of residential properties sold through the MLS system was also slightly higher than the numbers for 2013. In 2014, board members sold 13,928 homes, up from 13,871 in 2013. That represents an increase of 0.4 %.
The board reports that sales of non-condo homes in 2014 had a 2.4 per cent increase over 2013, while condo sales for 2014 were down about 7.2 per cent from the previous year. The board says that for 2014, the average price of residential homes, including condominiums, was $361,712. That’s an increase of 1.2 % over the prices in 2013.
David Oikle, president of the Real Estate Board, is quoted as saying that “the listing inventory for both residential and condos trended higher all year. Condo units for sale increased as high as 23% in February and March over the previous year, but settled back down to 2013 levels by the end of December.”
Oikle says that the increased inventory levels “contributed to the market favouring buyers for much of the year.”
What kinds of properties sold in December?
Breaking down the numbers, there were 144 units in the condominium class and 496 in the residential property class.
Condominiums are considered to be any property that is registered as a condominium, regardless of the style (detached, semi-detached, apartment, townhouse, etc.) as well as properties that are co-operatives, life leases and timeshares. The “residential property” class refers to all other residential properties.
The board says the average sale price of all residential properties, including condos, in December of 2014 was $345,449. That’s an increase of 1.6 % over the average price in December of 2013. The average sale price for a condominium-class property in December was $270,236. That’s an increase of 10.1 % over the condo-class price for December 2013.
Excluding condos, the board says the average sale price of a residential-class property in December of 2014 was $367,286, a decrease of 0.7 % over December of the previous year.
The Real Estate board cautions that that although the average sale price for a given month can be useful in establishing trends over time, it 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.
Looking back at prices on the Ottawa market in 2014, the board says the highest number of sales for the year were units priced in the $300,000 to $349,999 range. That range represented 18.8% of the year’s sales. The next highest category were properties priced in the $350,000 to $399,000 range. Prices in that range represented 12.5% cent of the year’s sales. The next highest-selling category were properties in the range of $500,000 to $749,999, which represented 11.6% of the year’s sales. The board says “all three of these price range property concentrations are very similar to the ranges from 2013.”
With the holidays over and our lives getting back to our regular schedules, you might be thinking about buying a property or selling one.
If so, feel free to contact me through my website, nancybenson.com or by calling 613-788-2556. If you’d like to see properties I’m currently selling, have a look at the “listings" section of my website. I currently have a wide range of condo and residential properties in several neighbourhoods, with asking prices starting at $314,900.