Ottawa realtors record most February home sales in 15 years

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Following a record-breaking 2019 and a minor dip in January, February’s home sales numbers suggest Ottawa’s resale market is back on the rise. 

Ottawa Real Estate Board members sold 1,141 residential properties this February, an increase of 13.9 per cent compared to 2019.

Sales included 835 units in the residential-property class, up 10.9 per cent from last year. Condominium properties accounted for 306 sales, an increase of 22.9 per cent.

The five-year average for total unit sales in February is 1,006.

“Activity overall has gone up with more listings coming on the market (though still well below the five-year average) and the highest number of February transactions in over 15 years,” said OREB president Deborah Burgoyne in a statement.

Meanwhile, housing prices continue to spike in year-over-year comparisons. Average sale prices for a condo-class property increased 21.3 per cent from this time last year to $349,813. The average residential-class property sold for $563,694, an increase of 21.1 per cent from last year.

“These increases are a direct result of the sustained lack of inventory putting upward pressure on prices, and this trend is likely to persist until supply recovers and is bolstered with newly constructed units,” Burgoyne said.

“Multiple offers have become commonplace in certain pockets of the city, and one of the Board’s statistical indicators shows that approximately 58 per cent of properties are selling for over the asking price, compared to 32 per cent of properties a year ago.”

The average days on market for residential properties also decreased to 30 days, down 12 per cent. Condominiums dropped 58 per cent with an average of only 19 days up for sale.

Burgoyne added that in Ottawa’s most sought-after neighbourhood, “sold signs are going up after only one to two days.”

The most-active price range in the residential market was $400,000 to $549,999, which accounted for 39 per cent of total units sold. The most common prices for condos ranged from $250,000 to $399,999, making up 55 per cent of February’s transactions.

Burgoyne suspects that with the upcoming spring months, the market is sure to see a frenzy of action before the weather catches up.