A local design-build company is helping homeowners unlock the biggest real estate opportunity in Ottawa.
Fares Elsabbagh has spent the last 15 years making Ottawa General Contractors (OGC) a fixture in the city by completing thousands of projects, from home renovations to multi-unit developments.
But a new real estate opportunity — one that could help solve the housing affordability crisis — has captured his attention.
When the Ontario government passed Bill 23 to create more housing supply, Elsabbagh and the team at OGC knew it could help meet the housing needs of the “missing middle”.
How Bill 23 helps the middle class unlock a new real estate opportunity
The new legislation makes it possible for homeowners to turn a single home, townhouse or semi-detached unit into a three-unit building by relaxing zoning rules in urban centres.
The law accomplishes two goals: helping homeowners meet their own housing needs, while creating enough housing supply to lower housing costs for everyone.
“Homeowners have a huge edge right now because of Bill 23,” said Elsabbagh. “Adding two or more units to your home means you can provide adult children their own place and aging parents a comfortable place to live while you care for them.”
Younger homeowners can also leverage Bill 23 to generate supplemental income that reduces the strain we’re all feeling due to inflation, rising interest rates, and the increased cost of living.
That financial help isn’t just about short-term or long-term rental revenue. Additional units can increase your equity, enabling you to refinance and have the funds to pursue dreams like marriage, family, or launching a new business.
How Ottawa General Contractors makes it possible
Elsabbagh was quick to realize that doing it the right way will take more than learning a couple of laws.
Homeowners also need to understand how Bill 23 works alongside current building standards, regulations and local bylaws.
It’s a lot for anyone to take on.
“We’ve become experts in this legislation so we can consult effectively with stakeholders while giving homeowners and real estate investors solid advice,” said Elsabbagh.
Becoming Bill 23 experts was easy for Elsabbagh because he already had a strong foundation for delivering results, and needed to put it into practice for one of his existing properties.
His company, OGC, is a one-stop shop that gives clients a single source of accountability for all their projects. “With 50 real estate and construction professionals on our team, we offer an A-Z solution for all residential construction — from permit and architectural work to turn-key construction,” he said.
The process is truly full-service, from sourcing the land, to financial modeling for project feasibility, acquiring the financing, developing architectural and engineering plans, to the final construction and handing over the keys.
“We’ve brought together and built great relationships with expert vendors in the industry so we can package them up,” said Elsabbagh.
As a one-stop-shop for those interested in tackling a three-unit conversion, OGC can be a true partner throughout the process, helping clients navigate the zoning rules, the financing and the construction process.
Why they do it
Elsabbagh’s passion for building homes was inspired by living in publicly-funded housing as a child, so he knows the difference having an affordable roof over your head can make.
“My family and I came to Ottawa as refugees,” he said. “The affordable housing we lived in made it possible for my mother to raise three children while holding down a job.”
That’s why helping people in a similar situation is very close to their hearts. It led them to work with Matthew’s House and Operation Come Home to build more affordable housing in Ottawa.
With that passion and their client-centered approach as a foundation, they’re poised to help homeowners succeed and be the partner they can count on for years to come.
Thanks to the proven success of their business model, the OGC team has added a new feature to their one-stop shop: educating the public.
Register now for their free online webinar, which combines their newfound knowledge with their years of experience to show you how Bill 23 could work for you.
Have questions? Fares, or a team member at Ottawa General Contractors team would be happy to take your call.