Reviews and recommendations are unbiased and products are independently selected. Postmedia may earn an affiliate commission from purchases made through links on this page.
The number of house sales, along with property property prices, soared in the National Capital Region last year and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down.
The trend looks set to continue in 2020, but comes at a time when the region is grappling with a lack of affordable housing.
“Each quarter, the properties have increased in value,” said Angelo Toscano, a real estate agent based in Orléans.
One of the biggest factors driving the increase is market demand.
“We started the year fairly stable. We were looking at about three buyers for each property. Now we have eight buyers per property,” said Toscano.
This demand often results in bidding wars between buyers, with the winner often paying above the list price.
A similar trend is also happening in Gatineau, Que., according to the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).
Last year was the fifth straight year that sales grew in the city, according to Lukas Jasmin-Tucci, a spokesperson for the corporation.
The forecast for 2020 is similar, with prices expected to increase 10 to 12 per cent, he said.
That’s putting strain on first-time home buyers who can find themselves priced out of the market.
Young people are less likely to enter the real estate market these days, according to the CMHC. Instead, many of them continue renting.
As real estate continues to become more expensive, this trend will continue, said Jasmin-Tucci.
Affordable housing shortage
While the real estate market is going strong, the region is also struggling with a lack of affordable housing.
Many organizations have been sounding the alarm for months. The CMHC estimates that Ottawa’s rental housing vacancy rate was at 1.6 per cent in 2018, the last year for which there is data.
Across the Ottawa River, the vacancy rate in Gatineau, Que., sits at 1.2 per cent, the lowest in the province. The Quebec government has put in place an emergency assistance program to help people who are homeless, as well as to assist cities that are coping with a housing shortage.
While the price of homes in the region continues to grow, advocacy groups persist in their push for investments in affordable housing.
There are approximately 10,000 people on the waiting list for social housing in Ottawa, according to data from the City of Ottawa.
Canada’s Real Estate Bubble Is So Big Even The Mother of All Crashes Can’t Fix It – Better Dwelling
Lack of listings pushes Alberta real estate into a sellers' market – Calgary Herald
Amid the success of the real estate market is a sore spot that could drive up prices more than expected, and that’s low inventory in the coming year, according to one national realty firm.
While the pinch of low supply is most acute in larger centres like Toronto and Vancouver, Alberta is also “feeling the inventory pinch,” says Rachel Rehkopf, spokesperson for Zoocasa Realty Inc. in Toronto.
She points to December total sales rising by 27 per cent in Alberta while new listings remained stagnant.
That “pushed the entire province into sellers’ market conditions.”
The province sits at 2.5 months of residential inventory. That essentially means if no new homes came to market over the next two and a half months, and current demand for housing continues, Alberta would have no more homes for sale.
It’s a scenario that’s unlikely to happen, of course, and the overall supply-demand picture is better in Alberta than other parts of the country, she adds.
In Ontario, for example, supply is 0.6 months while the metric is 1.7 months in British Columbia.
Yet Alberta’s supply is significantly lower than last year when it had four months of supply, she says.
Calgary is the tighter of the two large markets in the province with only 1.5 months of supply, while Edmonton actually added new listings in December, growing by about 10 per cent, year over year. Still, sales in Edmonton outpaced new listings, resulting in a 14 per cent decrease in inventory.
Overall, high demand in both cities paired with continuing low supply will likely drive prices higher in the year ahead, she notes.
Welcome to Real Estate Friday! – theberkshireedge.com
Here’s what we have for you this week in The Edge Real Estate section:
- Property of the Week – Janet Kain of TKG Real Estate offers the opportunity to live in a stunning home, lovingly cared for and perfectly located for year-round enjoyment of the Berkshires.
- Transformations – Designer Jennifer Owen and her clients imagined a calming space to relax while listening to the Boston Symphony Orchestra Live from Tanglewood on the radio!
- Weekly real estate transactions for Berkshire County, Northern Litchfield County and, now, Columbia County
- Market Perspective – Updated this week: The 2021 year-end real estate report from the Berkshire Board of REALTORS. What does it tell us?
- The Self-Taught Gardener – How does Joan Didion’s approach to life and to her art inform our Self-Taught Gardener on how to garden?
- Gardener’s Checklist – The holidays are over and the winter doldrums have set in. What’s a gardener to do to lift his spirits in these dark days?
Apple poised as Peloton's saviour among news the company is pausing equipment production – MobileSyrup
Bitcoin falls 9.3% to $36,955
Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard Buy Is Not A ‘Metaverse Bet’ – Forbes
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Europe kicks off vaccination programs | All media content | DW | 27.12.2020 – Deutsche Welle
Iran anticipates renewed protests amid social media shutdown
Business10 hours ago
Canada Dec retail sales seen down as COVID restrictions bite
Sports12 hours ago
Canadiens' Allen to miss eight weeks with lower-body injury – TSN
News10 hours ago
Canada rushes to crush more canola despite crop crunch
Sports24 hours ago
Blue Bombers, QB Collaros agree to one-year contract extension – TSN
News14 hours ago
Blend of optimism and caution highlights Canada's COVID-19 forecast – CTV News
Tech15 hours ago
Xbox boss wants to revive old Activision Blizzard games – Rock Paper Shotgun
Economy6 hours ago
Launching Zero Waste Economic Transformation Lab – guelph.ca
Politics17 hours ago
Opinion | The Mental Health Toll of Trump-Era Politics – The New York Times