Real Estate

Ottawa Real Estate market discussion

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  • Nov 28th, 2020 4:42 am
Member
Jan 29, 2020
305 posts
328 upvotes
I'm not saying Kanata is crappy, at all. I'm saying the price of the cheaply constructed townhomes is a little high given what's available lifestyle-wise, except if you have to be in an office there in the morning. The traffic problems are real, look at Kanata Centrum, or try to get anywhere on the highway on game night.

On Barrhaven, there is no downtown attractor and when I did test commutes from my downtown office building, the traffic stacked up on Greenbank made me decide to stop looking there. The planners let everyone who lives there, down.
Deal Guru
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Jun 28, 2003
10126 posts
3226 upvotes
Ottawa
Cashforlife wrote: I'm not saying Kanata is crappy, at all. I'm saying the price of the cheaply constructed townhomes is a little high given what's available lifestyle-wise, except if you have to be in an office there in the morning. The traffic problems are real, look at Kanata Centrum, or try to get anywhere on the highway on game night.

On Barrhaven, there is no downtown attractor and when I did test commutes from my downtown office building, the traffic stacked up on Greenbank made me decide to stop looking there. The planners let everyone who lives there, down.
Did you ever think for a second that some or actually many of the people who chose to live in Barrhaven (or any other part of the city for that matter) did so not because they wanted to be closer to work?

Maybe they prefer to be closer to family and friends who are already in Barrhaven or surrounding communities (Kanata/Richmond etc)? Maybe they got a good real estate deal that trumped the commute? Maybe they work closer to Barrhaven and not downtown?

You can bring up the pros and cons of living in any part of the city and debate until you are blue in the face. I think our time and energy are better saved for more productive things.

Full Disclosure: I lived in *Farrhaven* (and yes that joke was so 2006 :) for over 10 years before relocating downtown couple of years ago. Pros and cons for both areas but I have no interest in debating them.
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Jr. Member
Jun 11, 2013
127 posts
63 upvotes
Toronto
Just curious where do you guys consider good areas in Ottawa to live in then...I was looking into Kanata, Stittsville and Barrhaven because the prices are decent and still in proximity to most things but open to other suggestions for areas
Sr. Member
May 23, 2017
815 posts
545 upvotes
Again agree with canabiz, there are pros and cons to all areas. It depends on what is important to you. I have lived all across the city and beyond--as far east as Rockland, west to Kanata, south to Barrhaven, and several places in between within the Greenbelt (did not own in all places though, rented in several). And I do own properties scattered across the city, though concentrated in West end as that's where I live currently. Honestly I've enjoyed living in all the areas (ok maybe not Rockland, frankly that was just too far out for me--still a nice community but I simply prefer being closer to the city so for example I would never move out to Carleton Place either although both are solid choices for many, again depending on personal preference).

For me, proximity to work was always top priority so I moved accordingly (and is why I live in Kanata now since I work there). Now, a nice community to raise my family probably takes precedence. While it definitely isn't for everyone, I do like living in the "closer" suburbs as they usually tend to have nicer/newer neighbourhoods, more space for less cost compared to within the Greenbelt, tons of amenities, and still decently close to downtown for when I want to go there.

But maybe you enjoy being closer to the "action" so a smaller place closer to downtown or Westboro might be a better choice. Or maybe you like the suburbs but work closer to Orleans so that'd be your pick. Personally I feel like all areas of Ottawa are "good areas" except for Vanier, some parts of South Keys and some parts around Bayshore (notoriously the "sketchiest" parts of Ottawa). If you like Kanata/Barrhaven/Stittsville buy there, don't let someone calling it "Farrhaven" sway your opinion. (And as you can guess I personally think all 3 are great places to live in general, though you'd really need to provide more info about yourself to get more specific advice...e.g. obviously if you work in the east end maybe these aren't the best for you!)
Member
Jan 29, 2020
305 posts
328 upvotes
canabiz wrote: Did you ever think for a second that some or actually many of the people who chose to live in Barrhaven (or any other part of the city for that matter) did so not because they wanted to be closer to work?

Maybe they prefer to be closer to family and friends who are already in Barrhaven or surrounding communities (Kanata/Richmond etc)? Maybe they got a good real estate deal that trumped the commute? Maybe they work closer to Barrhaven and not downtown?
Probably the most important thing you can do is live close to work. If you live in Barrhaven and work downtown, you are wasting 10 hours of your life commuting every week. You are working 6 days a week, not 5. Certain truths have been obtained about urban planning, and Barrhaven is not a shining example of good practice. People working with me downtown and living there, call it Farrhaven because it is! We work for the largest employer in the city, and the country. My colleagues drove until they qualified otherwise they would all be living in Westboro or the Glebe. You live there because you have no other options, people are not relocating there from Paris or London because it is a dream place to live.
Deal Guru
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Jun 28, 2003
10126 posts
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Ottawa
Cashforlife wrote: Probably the most important thing you can do is live close to work. If you live in Barrhaven and work downtown, you are wasting 10 hours of your life commuting every week. You are working 6 days a week, not 5. Certain truths have been obtained about urban planning, and Barrhaven is not a shining example of good practice. People working with me downtown and living there, call it Farrhaven because it is! We work for the largest employer in the city, and the country. My colleagues drove until they qualified otherwise they would all be living in Westboro or the Glebe. You live there because you have no other options, people are not relocating there from Paris or London because it is a dream place to live.
You do realize your very first statement that I highlighted doesn't hold much water in this day and age with a multitude of options (especially for government employees like many of the posters on here) such as work-from-home, compressed work week, leave with income averaging (if you don't know what it is, look it up!)

and if people don't work for the government, your argument also holds little value because people change jobs and job locations all the time.

But like I said earlier, I am not here to debate which part of town is better. If you want to denigrate *Farrhaven* or *Crappy Kanata*, be my guest. I got better things to do, my friend.
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Deal Addict
Sep 2, 2009
1097 posts
770 upvotes
Ottawa
Cashforlife wrote: You could also see the price gap between Ontario-side and Quebec-side housing close.
I think the healthcare disparity, difficulties (not impossibilities) uni-English, and taxation difference create a good chunk of this gap as well.

In ON, someone making 75k, would pay 18.7k vs 22.8k in taxes (not counting other deductions). That is approximately 350/month. If you are a couple making 75k each, without kids in daycare, that is almost 180k worth of mortgage payments.
Member
May 6, 2012
250 posts
144 upvotes
KANATA
cloak wrote: I think the healthcare disparity, difficulties (not impossibilities) uni-English, and taxation difference create a good chunk of this gap as well.

In ON, someone making 75k, would pay 18.7k vs 22.8k in taxes (not counting other deductions). That is approximately 350/month. If you are a couple making 75k each, without kids in daycare, that is almost 180k worth of mortgage payments.
If they pool money together and build a bridge across the river to Kanata, would their property value increase significantly? I know many people working for Kanata high tech but live in Gatineau side
Deal Addict
Sep 2, 2009
1097 posts
770 upvotes
Ottawa
welcomelm wrote: If they pool money together and build a bridge across the river to Kanata, would their property value increase significantly? I know many people working for Kanata high tech but live in Gatineau side
Better connectivity definitively wouldn't hurt. Getting from Gatineau to Ottawa in the morning is not a fun drive (bike as much as possible to avoid that mess).
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5708 posts
1769 upvotes
Ottawa
welcomelm wrote: If they pool money together and build a bridge across the river to Kanata, would their property value increase significantly? I know many people working for Kanata high tech but live in Gatineau side
Are you suggesting that residents pool together and try to build a bridge privately? The various governments have been talking about building another bridge for 40 years and nothing's happened. The owner of the ferry in Cumberland tried to get permission to build an an inter-provincial bridge, that he would pay for, where his ferry operates and he owns the land on both sides and couldn't make it happen.

Where would you even put this bridge? Kanata is not on the water, the river is basically at it's widest there and there's no real obvious place to put it on the Aylmer side either.
Member
May 6, 2012
250 posts
144 upvotes
KANATA
michelb wrote: Are you suggesting that residents pool together and try to build a bridge privately? The various governments have been talking about building another bridge for 40 years and nothing's happened. The owner of the ferry in Cumberland tried to get permission to build an an inter-provincial bridge, that he would pay for, where his ferry operates and he owns the land on both sides and couldn't make it happen.

Where would you even put this bridge? Kanata is not on the water, the river is basically at it's widest there and there's no real obvious place to put it on the Aylmer side either.
Probably this is supposed to happen nowadays in west world. Something that would benefit most of people would never happen.
Member
Jul 15, 2019
364 posts
255 upvotes
jk9088 wrote: Again agree with canabiz, there are pros and cons to all areas. It depends on what is important to you. I have lived all across the city and beyond--as far east as Rockland, west to Kanata, south to Barrhaven, and several places in between within the Greenbelt (did not own in all places though, rented in several). And I do own properties scattered across the city, though concentrated in West end as that's where I live currently. Honestly I've enjoyed living in all the areas (ok maybe not Rockland, frankly that was just too far out for me--still a nice community but I simply prefer being closer to the city so for example I would never move out to Carleton Place either although both are solid choices for many, again depending on personal preference).

For me, proximity to work was always top priority so I moved accordingly (and is why I live in Kanata now since I work there). Now, a nice community to raise my family probably takes precedence. While it definitely isn't for everyone, I do like living in the "closer" suburbs as they usually tend to have nicer/newer neighbourhoods, more space for less cost compared to within the Greenbelt, tons of amenities, and still decently close to downtown for when I want to go there.

But maybe you enjoy being closer to the "action" so a smaller place closer to downtown or Westboro might be a better choice. Or maybe you like the suburbs but work closer to Orleans so that'd be your pick. Personally I feel like all areas of Ottawa are "good areas" except for Vanier, some parts of South Keys and some parts around Bayshore (notoriously the "sketchiest" parts of Ottawa). If you like Kanata/Barrhaven/Stittsville buy there, don't let someone calling it "Farrhaven" sway your opinion. (And as you can guess I personally think all 3 are great places to live in general, though you'd really need to provide more info about yourself to get more specific advice...e.g. obviously if you work in the east end maybe these aren't the best for you!)
Why did you feel Rockland was too far for you? it's about 2-3min longer drive to DT than Stittsville, and 5-6min longer than Barrhaven. I understand you were saying personal preference, I have just been so curious why some people find it so far. I talk about Rockland to many and having lived in Stittsville my whole life... talking with people from there they always have this idea Rockland is so far from Downtown, yet it's almost identical in commute time to someone who lives in Stittsville.
Newbie
Feb 24, 2020
6 posts
2 upvotes
Cashforlife wrote: I'm not saying Kanata is crappy, at all. I'm saying the price of the cheaply constructed townhomes is a little high given what's available lifestyle-wise, except if you have to be in an office there in the morning. The traffic problems are real, look at Kanata Centrum, or try to get anywhere on the highway on game night.

On Barrhaven, there is no downtown attractor and when I did test commutes from my downtown office building, the traffic stacked up on Greenbank made me decide to stop looking there. The planners let everyone who lives there, down.
Barrhaven is probably the only suburb that the City has a plan to construct a "downtown" (central community area is a better term) which is great for young families to live in. Itll probably take 10 years to fully prosper into one but we are all here to look at the long term right? http://webcast.ottawa.ca/plan/All_Image ... 20Plan.PDF
Newbie
Nov 2, 2019
17 posts
7 upvotes
302 St. Andrew street sold in August 2019 for 405k, re-listed now for 625k. Even if this was renovated that gain seems rich. Were homes going undervalued back in August?
Sr. Member
May 23, 2017
815 posts
545 upvotes
freeman93 wrote: Why did you feel Rockland was too far for you? it's about 2-3min longer drive to DT than Stittsville, and 5-6min longer than Barrhaven. I understand you were saying personal preference, I have just been so curious why some people find it so far. I talk about Rockland to many and having lived in Stittsville my whole life... talking with people from there they always have this idea Rockland is so far from Downtown, yet it's almost identical in commute time to someone who lives in Stittsville.
It's not just about distance to downtown though, it's about distance to all amenities in general. So maybe I should have said it was because of the much smaller population in Rockland, though I find that as you get further from the city these communities tend to naturally be smaller than the closer suburbs since most people prefer living as closer to the city core. Clarence-Rockland has about 25k people combined, Kanata-Stittsville is at about 150k. Barrhaven probably close to 100k. That means these areas have the population to support things like movie theatres, wide variety of restaurants including fine dining, large community sports complexes and centres, more activities, wider range of stores, etc etc. right in the community.

When I lived in Rockland I would have to drive into the city just to see a movie with a friend or have AYCE sushi, but in Kanata or Barrhaven I can enjoy all those and more just a few minutes away from my house. Basically, if you don't want to leave your neighbourhood you could still have everything you need at your fingertips. Meanwhile in Rockland, you have a nice community right by the Ottawa River and necessities like grocery/pharmacy, but there are sooo many things you need to drive into town for. (Granted it's been a number of years since I've lived there, perhaps things have changed, though I doubt it will ever have as many amenities as the closer suburbs.)

So I actually don't find myself needing to drive downtown now that often since I can find almost everything I need much closer (really I only go once in awhile to events like a show at the NAC or to check out food festivals etc), whereas if I lived in Rockland it would necessitate me to drive into town way more often (if not downtown at least to Orleans or Gloucester). So it's actually not a good benchmark to just compare distance to downtown.

(Again, this is my personal experience because I already lived close to work in both cases--for people who mainly are concerned about their commute downtown for work, maybe then the different areas would be on a more level playing field and perhaps they would be just as happy in Rockland as Kanata/Barrhaven.)

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