Real Estate

Ottawa and Surrounding Area Real Estate market discussion

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Deal Addict
Jul 7, 2007
1137 posts
718 upvotes
michelb wrote: I'd be curious to know what others think but personally I put very little value in school test scores. I really don't think it makes any difference in he end.
Will be having kids soon.... For us, school scores definitely important. Just speaking of my own personal immigrant story, my parents bought in Kanata Lakes specifically so that I could attend Earl of March Secondary School which was ranked top 3 in Ottawa at the time and had the most AP courses of any HS in Ontario. That school had/has a strong Asian presence where the majority of Asian kids had tiger moms that pushed that them to succeed. Looking back, I'm grateful to have grown up in that environment. The school population was generally high performing. Among my circle of friends, it was hyper competitive and we worked our asses off to get top marks. It definitely instilled the work ethic and other fundamental values that drives to this day. #immigrantmentality lol. If I went to another school where the majority of kids were slackers/underachievers for whatever reason (lack of support/effort by their parents), who knows what social circle that I would have hung around with and how it would have impacted my future. All I know is that I'm grateful to have attended a nice HS where most kids tried to overachieve. The gameplan for our future kids is the same, we'll definitely send them to schools that have the best environment for them to succeed.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Mar 30, 2010
2824 posts
580 upvotes
Kagaaruk, NU
OttawaGardener wrote: What? lol... My brother's house in Kanata is worth the same as our bungalow in Alta Vista, and my other brother's house in Cardinal Heights is even less expensive. I don't consider any of the places I mentioned "the core", nor did I focus on prices.
Well if I decide to buy, I'm pretty much relegated to Orleans or maybe even Gatineau, because those are the only two areas close to downtown that are still within my price range for the type of home I'm looking for.
Member
Nov 10, 2014
389 posts
534 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
I suspect the quality of schools (specifically high school) will become more important in coming years as Asian buyers become a larger force in the Ottawa market. I remember schools like Earl Haig in North York added a huge premium to houses in its catchment area, and I suspect it is still the case now.
Deal Addict
Nov 13, 2013
2364 posts
1152 upvotes
Ottawa
michelb wrote: I'd be curious to know what others think but personally I put very little value in school test scores. I really don't think it makes any difference in he end.
The small differences maybe aren't so indicative but you can get a good idea about especially elementary schools from the percentage not passed for example. The best schools are in Kanata and the elite areas adjacent to downtown. This is not surprising and rich and/or attentive parents will of course have kids that achieve more. Is this important? It is hard to say. I certainly don't buy the Fraser Rankings argument that this has anything to do with the teachers or principal. They can also vary from year to year.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 26, 2004
2709 posts
929 upvotes
OttawaGardener wrote: What? lol... My brother's house in Kanata is worth the same as our bungalow in Alta Vista, and my other brother's house in Cardinal Heights is even less expensive. I don't consider any of the places I mentioned "the core", nor did I focus on prices.
The question is whether it is of similar age and size when you try to compare the homes in Kanata and Alta Vista. Most likely the house in Kanata is a 2 stories 2500 sq ft less than 15 years old home and a similar home in Alta Vista/Faircrest Height will cost roughly double the one in Kanata.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5845 posts
1902 upvotes
Ottawa
michelb wrote: It looks like it's just the market price for that area. Looking at sales on that street for the year, there are a few similar ones that sold on the street for $535k and $540k but both showed very well from the pictures and had kitchen renos (possibly others). Other sales have been between $440k-476k
In case anyone is curious, I noticed that this one did sell for $513k so it did go above asking price.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5845 posts
1902 upvotes
Ottawa
cyberfreak123 wrote: You're talking about this house for sale. asking price at 485K? That stayed on a market for a month? But then suddenly it was sold over asking?
https://purplebricks.ca/on/ottawa-and-s ... -d21408244
Yup, it's a pretty common method in a hot market; if it doesn't sell quickly, you can pull it off the market and they try it again a few weeks later and to buyers who don't dig too deep, it looks like a new listing and creates excitement. Looks like it worked in this case.
Deal Addict
Sep 24, 2010
1921 posts
215 upvotes
Applesmack wrote: That is very surprising. Doesn't make sense to be honest. The house even comes with a finished basement that is kitchen-ready. I think Mattamy's larger 30' single garage homes were going for 480k. Must be something wrong with it? I mean if I wasn't broke AF I'd view it :(
michelb wrote: Yup, it's a pretty common method in a hot market; if it doesn't sell quickly, you can pull it off the market and they try it again a few weeks later and to buyers who don't dig too deep, it looks like a new listing and creates excitement. Looks like it worked in this case.
People have herd mentality. They follow what others are doing and lose money generally doing it. There's gem in the market but they'll be ignored cuz it involves some work.
Member
Nov 10, 2014
389 posts
534 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
ahato wrote: People have herd mentality. They follow what others are doing and lose money generally doing it. There's gem in the market but they'll be ignored cuz it involves some work.
Where do you find these said gems? From what I've seen, average prices of houses that looks awful have gone up in price with the market. Many of fugly houses listed these days don't have enough of a discount to justify the time and costs of renovating them.
The discounts on fugly houses were always there, and will always be there. I just find that the discount is actually smaller now than couple of years ago as there are many buyers who are desperate to get into something.
Last edited by Tadalafil on Dec 28th, 2019 2:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Jr. Member
Aug 15, 2007
148 posts
57 upvotes
Tadalafil wrote: Where do you find these said gems? From what I've seen, average prices of houses that looks awful have gone up in price with the market. Many of fugly houses listed these days don't have enough of a discount to justify the time and costs of renovating them.
The discounts on fugly houses were always there, and will always be there. I just find that the discount is actually smaller now than couple of years ago there are many buyers who are desperate to get into something.
I agree with this. A few years ago, those tiny townhouses in fallingbrook (tiny bedrooms, no ensuite bath, unfinished basement), really outdated were on the market for months. In the last year, there were multiple that had over 10 offers on them and 4 people paid for an inspection before having an accepted offer.
Newbie
Sep 29, 2019
42 posts
4 upvotes
Just thought I'd throw this question out in the Ottawa forum for advice. I've decided I need to sell one of my rental properties and was wondering which one people think would be the best to hang on to between the two.

Rental Property A: Single home in Mechanicsville. We own half of a semi. Very old home, but in decent shape.
Rental Property B: Duplex in Overbrook near North River Road. Built in 50's. Main unit was recently gutted and renovated to be very nice/modern.

Without considering the monthly cash flow of each, which area do people think is in line for the most appreciation in the future? Seems like Mechanicsville has stalled a bit and Overbrook (especially West of the Vanier Parkway) has really taken off from what I can see, but I know Mechanicsville still has a lot of upside with development.

If I'm considering cash flow, etc. then the Overbrook property is much more profitable as the Mechanicsville one currently rents for slight loss every month which isn't good.
Member
Mar 20, 2017
261 posts
548 upvotes
Stuntman2625 wrote: Just thought I'd throw this question out in the Ottawa forum for advice. I've decided I need to sell one of my rental properties and was wondering which one people think would be the best to hang on to between the two.

Rental Property A: Single home in Mechanicsville. We own half of a semi. Very old home, but in decent shape.
Rental Property B: Duplex in Overbrook near North River Road. Built in 50's. Main unit was recently gutted and renovated to be very nice/modern.

Without considering the monthly cash flow of each, which area do people think is in line for the most appreciation in the future? Seems like Mechanicsville has stalled a bit and Overbrook (especially West of the Vanier Parkway) has really taken off from what I can see, but I know Mechanicsville still has a lot of upside with development.

If I'm considering cash flow, etc. then the Overbrook property is much more profitable as the Mechanicsville one currently rents for slight loss every month which isn't good.


If you want a real answer then people need to know your monthly rent (income), overhead (taxes & maintenance), and current estimated value of property.
Newbie
Sep 29, 2019
42 posts
4 upvotes
E39M62 wrote: If you want a real answer then people need to know your monthly rent (income), overhead (taxes & maintenance), and current estimated value of property.
Ok not a problem.

Property A
Current rent: $2036/month. $200 of that is parking
Estimated value: 550-600k? Complete guess because things have been crazy in that area so it could be even more
Property Taxes: $4200 annual
Overhead: after insurance, property management fees, etc. it has a negative cash flow of $190/month. Not great, but I imagine we could increase the parking quite a bit to cover this loss

Property B
Current rent: $1425 for the basement apartment. We currently live in the upstairs which is much, much bigger/nicer than the downstairs. Given the comparables in the neighbourhood I think it could be rented for 3k/month
Estimated value: 750k
Property Taxes: $5800 annual
Overhead: after insurance, utilities, property management fees, etc. it would have a positive cash flow of $581/month using the estimated rental income above

Thanks
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 26, 2004
2709 posts
929 upvotes
Stuntman2625 wrote: Just thought I'd throw this question out in the Ottawa forum for advice. I've decided I need to sell one of my rental properties and was wondering which one people think would be the best to hang on to between the two.

Rental Property A: Single home in Mechanicsville. We own half of a semi. Very old home, but in decent shape.
Rental Property B: Duplex in Overbrook near North River Road. Built in 50's. Main unit was recently gutted and renovated to be very nice/modern.

Without considering the monthly cash flow of each, which area do people think is in line for the most appreciation in the future? Seems like Mechanicsville has stalled a bit and Overbrook (especially West of the Vanier Parkway) has really taken off from what I can see, but I know Mechanicsville still has a lot of upside with development.

If I'm considering cash flow, etc. then the Overbrook property is much more profitable as the Mechanicsville one currently rents for slight loss every month which isn't good.
For what it is worth, I will probably keep the one in Overbrook. After all, you own the entire plot of land, so aside from owners/occupants, there will always be developers interested in buying the property as a redevelopment opportunity when it comes time to sell.

OTOH, with your other property in Mechanicsville, redevelopment is much harder as both neighbours has to agrees to sell, therefore, when it is time to put the property up for sale, you're more or less restricted to owner occupants who doesn't mind living in a very old home.
Member
Nov 10, 2014
389 posts
534 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
I personally would be inclined to sell Property A.

1- Difference in holding a cash flow positive vs negative property is huge. Among other things, it could be the difference on whether you will qualify for another mortgage down the road or not.
2- The fact that the Mechanicsville one is a semi hinders the value of the land that it is sitting on. I imagine the lot of Property B is larger than A, and may have the potential for severed lot play down to road when it comes time for redevelopment. This makes it a lot more attractive for developers as well. Semis are much more difficult to redevelop (the neighbour and you need to be on the exact same page), and the upside of doing so is much smaller.

I would say the future increase in desirability of the area is a toss up. I very much like Mechanicsville right now, and don't care for Overbrook at all. That being said, upside in Overbrook can be huge if the area and its neighbouring area improves on drug and homelessness issues.

With that being said, I don't know your full situation and I am mostly talking out of my ass. Interview a few good realtors and see what case they make.
Newbie
Sep 29, 2019
42 posts
4 upvotes
William W wrote: For what it is worth, I will probably keep the one in Overbrook. After all, you own the entire plot of land, so aside from owners/occupants, there will always be developers interested in buying the property as a redevelopment opportunity when it comes time to sell.

OTOH, with your other property in Mechanicsville, redevelopment is much harder as both neighbours has to agrees to sell, therefore, when it is time to put the property up for sale, you're more or less restricted to owner occupants who doesn't mind living in a very old home.
Good point. Thanks!
Member
Nov 10, 2014
389 posts
534 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
Now that 2020 is around the corner, what are everyone's predictions and plans for the new year?

My guess is that 2020 will be a continuation of 2019 with low inventory, out of town investors/speculators, and FOMO. Prices will increase faster than local incomes and market rent, making investing for cash flow even more difficult. I don't think market rents will increase with the combination of rental purpose buildings being completed all over the city, Air BnB regulations, and lack luster increase in local incomes.

I plan on sitting on the sidelines, and live vicariously through others in this thread who have more appetite.
Sr. Member
Aug 6, 2011
590 posts
261 upvotes
Stuntman2625 wrote: Just thought I'd throw this question out in the Ottawa forum for advice. I've decided I need to sell one of my rental properties and was wondering which one people think would be the best to hang on to between the two.

Rental Property A: Single home in Mechanicsville. We own half of a semi. Very old home, but in decent shape.
Rental Property B: Duplex in Overbrook near North River Road. Built in 50's. Main unit was recently gutted and renovated to be very nice/modern.

Without considering the monthly cash flow of each, which area do people think is in line for the most appreciation in the future? Seems like Mechanicsville has stalled a bit and Overbrook (especially West of the Vanier Parkway) has really taken off from what I can see, but I know Mechanicsville still has a lot of upside with development.

If I'm considering cash flow, etc. then the Overbrook property is much more profitable as the Mechanicsville one currently rents for slight loss every month which isn't good.
It seems to me both locations are desirable and have good chance of appreciation, but it's hard to predict which one will perform better in a near future. I like better Mechanicsville because of the good transit.
Prop B sit on its own land and cashflow well, so I'd keep this one. All my properties are detached in established neighborhoods and I plan to keep them long time. It's very likely one of them will be good for infill development.

How big is your land plot?
Member
Mar 20, 2017
261 posts
548 upvotes
The only thing I'm going to say is that by the time you add your income tax on the rental income, which is taxable at 100% of your income, your cashflow is a lot less than you think.

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