Real Estate

Ottawa and Surrounding Area Real Estate market discussion

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 27th, 2021 11:42 am
Member
Jul 15, 2019
387 posts
266 upvotes
MSparrow wrote: Hello Everyone,
Just looking to see what your thoughts are on the Mattamy stacked townhouses in Blackstone south (which was just released); specifically the buttercup model. I am thinking of purchasing one but not very conversant with the area or if its a good buy. Little information about it: its a 2 bedroom, 1.5 bathroom, 1236 sqF, with an approximate condo fee of $150 and it's been sold for 347,990. Would have preffered a freehold townhouse but the prices have "skyrocketed". Any insight would be appreciated.
I am really not a fan of stacked townhomes, they cram so much in these spaces. Everything feels so very small, I know it's all about budget. But, I'd rather get an older resale home with more space than a brand new stacked townhome.
Newbie
Apr 27, 2020
23 posts
3 upvotes
freeman93 wrote: I am really not a fan of stacked townhomes, they cram so much in these spaces. Everything feels so very small, I know it's all about budget. But, I'd rather get an older resale home with more space than a brand new stacked townhome.
Was actually looking to have it rented out. Following the numbers, would only break even. Hoping it won't be difficult to rent out. Its going to be my first investment property.
Member
Jul 15, 2019
387 posts
266 upvotes
MSparrow wrote: Was actually looking to have it rented out. Following the numbers, would only break even. Hoping it won't be difficult to rent out. Its going to be my first investment property.
It’s very hard to find cash-flow positive new builds these days in Ottawa.

I don’t think it would be a challenge to rent out, that’s a good area and probably going to be a good price point for someone early in their careers needing a place to rent.
Member
Feb 7, 2018
286 posts
358 upvotes
MSparrow wrote: Was actually looking to have it rented out. Following the numbers, would only break even. Hoping it won't be difficult to rent out. Its going to be my first investment property.
What is your target rent? FYI there are a large number of 2 bed low rise apartments being built along Livery and a high rise apartment planned between Robert Grant and Livery in the next few years so you might have a lot of competition for renters in that area.
Newbie
Apr 27, 2020
23 posts
3 upvotes
wiab89 wrote: What is your target rent? FYI there are a large number of 2 bed low rise apartments being built along Livery and a high rise apartment planned between Robert Grant and Livery in the next few years so you might have a lot of competition for renters in that area.
I noticed that too. Targeting a rent of $1650
Sr. Member
Aug 14, 2007
524 posts
281 upvotes
Ottawa
MSparrow wrote: I noticed that too. Targeting a rent of $1650
For today market, it is more reasonable for $1500 to $1550 with two bedrooms.....Of course, nobody knows the rental market one year later.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Jun 28, 2003
10239 posts
3314 upvotes
Ottawa
audiorichard wrote: For today market, it is more reasonable for $1500 to $1550 with two bedrooms.....Of course, nobody knows the rental market one year later.
I agree richard. A great market if you are looking to sell your house. Not so so great if you are looking for quality tenants. At least that's based on my experience so far fielding about 100+ inquiries over a 4 weeks period with about 10+ showings under my belt.

We have to manage expectations and keep rent in line with the economy.
Member
May 6, 2012
381 posts
228 upvotes
KANATA
William W wrote: $495k for an end unit TH at Carleton Place.

https://www.redfin.ca/on/carleton-place ... /172687173

Looking at the listing, it looks like the seller accepted a $20k over asking bully offer.

I suppose there is some merit to the story here.
https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-ne ... l-underway
A double garage end unit with 4 bath was sold for the same price about 10 days before this one was sold in Miller crossing. So roughly 15k increase in about 10 days.

https://www.redfin.ca/on/beckwith/1-Rid ... /172586672
Member
Nov 10, 2014
414 posts
589 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
MSparrow wrote: Was actually looking to have it rented out. Following the numbers, would only break even. Hoping it won't be difficult to rent out. Its going to be my first investment property.
I'm not a fan of the development for few reasons.

First I don't think land in Kanata is valuable enough yet to justify buying condos, especially that price point. You can get similar priced condos (albeit smaller) within the downtown area. You are probably looking at 370k after basic upgrades from the builder, and another 5~10k in appliances, AC, window coverings, etc. That money gives you a lot of choices among condos within the green belt.

Second the parking situation is often a shit show for these buildings as they only provide 1 parking space per unit, but most working couples in the burbs have two cars. Having one parking space is OK within the greenbelt where transit is usually much more accessible. It is often a deal breaker for the burbs where commuting by transit alone is asking for a rough time. Communities packed with townhouses are pretty bad for this as well as new towns only provide one car length driveways, and most people have junk in the garage. The excess cars just get spilled onto the streets. These condos will often have no parking signs on all the narrow roads in and around the condos.

Third is I'm not sure what niche that these buildings serve in the rental market. Couples with children prefer 3 beds+2.5 baths towns with 2 parking spaces. Younger DINKs that are OK with smaller spaces tend to want places closer to downtown. Retirees and downsizers typically have money to buy instead of rent, and these aren't attractive as rentals anyways compared to bungalows and condos with elevators. Good litmus test for owning a rental is if I (or a younger version of myself without kids) would live there, and the answer for suburban condo town is a no.

Lastly, these things are not cheap right now whatsoever. Yes, 2 story towns ballooned in price in the last couple of years, but so has these. Resale condo towns along Strandherd and Longfields in Barrhaven (market that I am most familiar with) were available for ~200k in 2018. These went up as much as, if not more in percentage wise as 2 story towns. IMO these have no business selling at 350k+.
Last edited by Tadalafil on Aug 18th, 2020 7:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
Member
Nov 10, 2014
414 posts
589 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
Just a general observation- investing in Ottawa RE for cashflow now has such a high bar for expertise and skills that it might as well be dead for the average mom and pop investor. I freely admit it is well beyond my capabilities to add cashflowing properties to my portfolio.

The rental market is much weaker (renters typically work lower paid jobs which were more affected by Covid) yet the resale prices keep climbing. Airbnb and student boarding houses, the two go-to strategies for squeezing every last income potential out of a property, burned many investors and turned investments into liabilities.

Think "investors" looking to get in right now would be served well by reminding themselves that they are speculating instead of investing. Speculation is not necessarily a dirty word, and returns on speculation can be very handsome as seen in many markets. My personal returns so far on appreciation trumps returns from cashflow by many factor .However strategies for investing and speculating should be different, and it is best not to confuse the two.
Newbie
Apr 27, 2020
23 posts
3 upvotes
Tadalafil wrote: I'm not a fan of the development for few reasons.

First I don't think land in Kanata is valuable enough yet to justify buying condos, especially that price point. You can get similar priced condos (albeit smaller) within the downtown area. You are probably looking at 370k after basic upgrades from the builder, and another 5~10k in appliances, AC, window coverings, etc. That money gives you a lot of choices among condos within the green belt.

Second the parking situation is often a shit show for these buildings as they only provide 1 parking space per unit, but most working couples in the burbs have two cars. Having one parking space is OK within the greenbelt where transit is usually much more accessible. It is often a deal breaker for the burbs where commuting by transit alone is asking for a rough time. Communities packed with townhouses are pretty bad for this as well as new towns only provide one car length driveways, and most people have junk in the garage. The excess cars just get spilled onto the streets. These condos will often have no parking signs on all the narrow roads in and around the condos.

Third is I'm not sure what niche that these buildings serve in the rental market. Couples with children prefer beds+2.5 baths towns with 2 parking spaces. Younger DINKs that are OK with smaller spaces tend to want places closer to downtown. Retirees and downsizers typically have money to buy instead of rent, and these aren't attractive as rentals anyways compared to bungalows and condos with elevators. Good litmus test for owning a rental is if I (or a younger version of myself without kids) would live there, and the answer for suburban condo town is a no.

Lastly, these things are not cheap right now whatsoever. Yes, 2 story towns ballooned in price in the last couple of years, but so has these. Resale condo towns along Strandherd and Longfields in Barrhaven (market that I am most familiar with) were available for ~200k in 2018. These went up as much as, if not more in percentage wise as 2 story towns. IMO these have no business selling at 350k+.
Thank you so much for taking your time to break this down like you did. Given me so much to think about. Although I had initially tried to justify them.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Jun 28, 2003
10239 posts
3314 upvotes
Ottawa
Tadalafil wrote: Just a general observation- investing in Ottawa RE for cashflow now has such a high bar for expertise and skills that it might as well be dead for the average mom and pop investor. I freely admit it is well beyond my capabilities to add cashflowing properties to my portfolio.

The rental market is much weaker (renters typically work lower paid jobs which were more affected by Covid) yet the resale prices keep climbing. Airbnb and student boarding houses, the two go-to strategies for squeezing every last income potential out of a property, burned many investors and turned investments into liabilities.

Think "investors" looking to get in right now would be served well by reminding themselves that they are speculating instead of investing. Speculation is not necessarily a dirty word, and returns on speculation can be very handsome as seen in many markets. My personal returns so far on appreciation trumps returns from cashflow by many factor .However strategies for investing and speculating should be different, and it is best not to confuse the two.
Excellent summary! Just to add another angle to your post: The LTB (Landlord and Tenants Board) currently has a backlog of 30K eviction cases! per the story below

https://torontosun.com/news/local-news/ ... acefe1745/

Current and future landlords should continue to do their due diligence vetting tenants, more so in this extraordinary time I might add, or you could be in for a world of hurt.

This post is not to mean to scare anyone off from pursuing his/her goals, just the reality of the current situation we are in.
Deal Addict
Dec 4, 2016
1871 posts
891 upvotes
Tadalafil wrote: I'm not a fan of the development for few reasons.

First I don't think land in Kanata is valuable enough yet to justify buying condos, especially that price point. You can get similar priced condos (albeit smaller) within the downtown area. You are probably looking at 370k after basic upgrades from the builder, and another 5~10k in appliances, AC, window coverings, etc. That money gives you a lot of choices among condos within the green belt.

Second the parking situation is often a shit show for these buildings as they only provide 1 parking space per unit, but most working couples in the burbs have two cars. Having one parking space is OK within the greenbelt where transit is usually much more accessible. It is often a deal breaker for the burbs where commuting by transit alone is asking for a rough time. Communities packed with townhouses are pretty bad for this as well as new towns only provide one car length driveways, and most people have junk in the garage. The excess cars just get spilled onto the streets. These condos will often have no parking signs on all the narrow roads in and around the condos.

Third is I'm not sure what niche that these buildings serve in the rental market. Couples with children prefer 3 beds+2.5 baths towns with 2 parking spaces. Younger DINKs that are OK with smaller spaces tend to want places closer to downtown. Retirees and downsizers typically have money to buy instead of rent, and these aren't attractive as rentals anyways compared to bungalows and condos with elevators. Good litmus test for owning a rental is if I (or a younger version of myself without kids) would live there, and the answer for suburban condo town is a no.

Lastly, these things are not cheap right now whatsoever. Yes, 2 story towns ballooned in price in the last couple of years, but so has these. Resale condo towns along Strandherd and Longfields in Barrhaven (market that I am most familiar with) were available for ~200k in 2018. These went up as much as, if not more in percentage wise as 2 story towns. IMO these have no business selling at 350k+.
On a per square foot basis, condo towns have much lower fees than high rise condos, as wood structures below 4 stories are generally much cheaper to maintain than concrete structures.

As for rental target audience, I'm assuming these are for co-op students and junior engineers who just relocated to Ottawa from Toronto/Montreal/Vancouver. It's cheaper than renting a one bedroom apartment, and more comfortable than sharing a two bedroom basement apartment. The biggest concern is indeed parking. If your tenant works in Kanata, he/she will likely drive. I don't see one income families renting these stacked towns.
Newbie
Jun 14, 2020
24 posts
5 upvotes
I was just informed by my builder that my stittsville single will be delayed by about 3.5 and now close in March. Now that they’ve started delays, do they typically respect the new deadline or can I expect delay after delay now?
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5875 posts
1933 upvotes
Ottawa
gohabsgo1 wrote: I was just informed by my builder that my stittsville single will be delayed by about 3.5 and now close in March. Now that they’ve started delays, do they typically respect the new deadline or can I expect delay after delay now?
Our new build was delayed 2 or 3 times and I believe we moved in about 9 months after the original date but I don't know if that's normal.
Member
Jan 10, 2012
220 posts
64 upvotes
Ottawa
Asking for opinions. We are offered a lookout basement for our new build for 3k. The premuim includes larger basement windows, a 6x8 ft deck for the main floor and around 7 to 8 steps. Unfortunately making it a walkout is not an option. With the lookout change, we would get a fairly flat backyard which otherwise would have a larger slope. From price point of view, it is a good value IMO. But is lookout basement advantageous over regular one?
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5875 posts
1933 upvotes
Ottawa
raaaaam wrote: Asking for opinions. We are offered a lookout basement for our new build for 3k. The premuim includes larger basement windows, a 6x8 ft deck for the main floor and around 7 to 8 steps. Unfortunately making it a walkout is not an option. With the lookout change, we would get a fairly flat backyard which otherwise would have a larger slope. From price point of view, it is a good value IMO. But is lookout basement advantageous over regular one?
Personally, I think it's definitely worth the $3k as you'll get a lot more natural light in the basement. Also depending on the size of the windows with / without the lookout, it might give you the option of building a conforming bedroom in the basement (with egress window).
Last edited by michelb on Aug 18th, 2020 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Member
Jul 15, 2019
387 posts
266 upvotes
gohabsgo1 wrote: I was just informed by my builder that my stittsville single will be delayed by about 3.5 and now close in March. Now that they’ve started delays, do they typically respect the new deadline or can I expect delay after delay now?
Unavoidable delays are just that unavoidable, unfortunately nothing you can do and it could be delayed further. We have a material shortage, and due to covid builders have had the ability to make use of the unavoidable delay clause.

Sometimes if it’s just a builder being slow, they don’t delay often due to the delay closing compensation they have to pay out.
Member
Aug 22, 2016
400 posts
210 upvotes
raaaaam wrote: Asking for opinions. We are offered a lookout basement for our new build for 3k. The premuim includes larger basement windows, a 6x8 ft deck for the main floor and around 7 to 8 steps. Unfortunately making it a walkout is not an option. With the lookout change, we would get a fairly flat backyard which otherwise would have a larger slope. From price point of view, it is a good value IMO. But is lookout basement advantageous over regular one?
flat backyard seem great. This lookout basement option sounds good but it all depends on the size of your backyard and your preference for the size of deck. 6X8 seem good just for a bbq, beyond that you will need to plan whatelse you will need in your backyard.

I have a slopy backyard with regular basement option but the depth of the backyard is 80ft. For the first 25 ft, there is a level deck and then 3 steps to the area of swimming pool.

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