The Canadian Real Estate Association’s latest monthly report showed nationally sales were up 1.2%, but in Ottawa, they were down 2.4% from 1,233 in September to 1,203 in October.
Residential-class properties also dropped 1.5% in average price in October compared to a year earlier, and the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association noted new home sales were down 16.3% from 404 in September to 338 in October.
Many of these changes were highlighted in an article this week in the Ottawa Citizen, which had a title that said “Ottawa home sales see big drop,” citing concerns about decreasing affordability and concerns by federal employees over proposed cuts to programs, services and jobs.
But monthly changes can often be more seasonal than an indication of any shift in the overall market of a location. The Ottawa Real Estate Board summed up the market as more stable, with the biggest trend being an increase in sales and price of condos in October. As in other major cities in Canada, Ottawa is seeing a shift in demand from single family homes to condos.
“Condos were the main driver of resale home sales in October, with condo sales up 14.5% from the same month in 2010, whereas residential property sales numbers were near-identical to last year’s,” said Board President Joanne Tibbles.
“We’ve been hearing a lot about the rising popularity of condos in Ottawa, and these numbers certainly support that, but it’s just one piece of our steady resale market, with sales very near the five-year average for October. Also, listing inventory and days on market are both up slightly as we move towards the end of the year.”
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