Limited supply couldn't hold back Ottawa's hot housing market in September: OREB

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Ottawa’s realtors had their best September in more than a decade last month, according to the latest sales figures from the city’s real estate board, suggesting that a limited supply of housing stock is doing little to cool down a red-hot market.

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,549 residential properties last month, an 11.8 per cent increase over the 1,386 dwellings that changed hands a year earlier as well as the five-year average for September of 1,385.

“Despite a challenging year of historically low inventory, September’s sales (were) extremely strong, the likes of which we haven’t seen in the past 15 years,” OREB president Dwight Delahunt said in a news release. “It’s quite amazing, with the limited supply, that the market is still moving well with purchasers finding properties that meet their requirements.”

September’s sales boom was fuelled by condo transactions, which jumped a whopping 26.4 per cent from last year to 436. Meanwhile, sales in the residential class ​– which include detached, semi-detached and multi-unit homes ​– rose 6.9 per cent year-over-year to 1,113. 

A dwindling supply of inventory continued to combine with high demand to drive up prices in September. The average condo price rose nine per cent year-over-year to $309,373, while properties in the residential class fetched an average of $487,438, up eight per cent over 2018.

The $350,000-to-$499,999 price range was once again the most popular for residential-class properties, accounting for 43.5 per cent of September’s transactions, with 28 per cent of sales in the $500,000-to-$749,999 bracket. Meanwhile, 56 per cent of all condos sold last month were in the $225,000-to-$349,999 range.

Delahunt said federal election campaigns often tend to put a damper on housing sales, but with the Oct. 21 vote looming, that doesn’t appear to be the case this time around.  

“We haven’t seen that transpire this year, which suggests that consumers are highly confident in our local economy and the Ottawa real estate market,” he said.