Kanata Real Estate Agents

Staying in Touch February 2023 Newsletter

Happy February & Valentine’s Day!

It is so nice to have more daylight hours for many reasons. Showing homes with natural light benefits buyers and sellers, and we all enjoy the extra time to be outside. We have been meeting our clients personally and enjoy our chats about market value and family. Everyone is trying to predict what is going on and weighing the information presented by banks, government and realtors. For the many years I have been in the business there have been cycles when the market goes up and flattens out. Note the Ottawa market has rarely lost very much year over year, see our 50 years of change. We have learned patience is key and selling and purchasing in the same type of market allows you to maintain your investment. Ottawa is recognized as a wonderful place to live and an excellent investment.

If you are thinking of selling or purchasing, it is always good to touch base with your bank and mortgage broker to review your options, terms of your present mortgage & know any new lending rules and rebates for first-time buyers. If you are thinking of undertaking a small renovation, a coat of paint or refinancing, contact us. Everything to do with your home we have it! It is a good time to sell and purchase for many clients.

This month we’ve included:

  • Update on the Ottawa market and Mortgage information on the Requirement of Appraisals.
  • Articles on: The Top 3 Improvements to Consider Before Selling, Market Value of Your Home & Preparing Your Home for Market, Thinking of Buying a New Build Home
  • Market news and Upcoming community events including the Heart Institutes’ Light the Town Red initiative to raise awareness & support for the University of Ottawa Heart Institute.

Enjoy February, Winterlude and the many other winter festivals. Consider making a donation to the Heart Institute if  you can. As always, feel free to get in touch with us with any questions, if you need a professional contact or to chat. We would love to hear from you!

Joan, Victoria & Luc

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Market Update

The Ottawa Real Estate Board reports 606 residential and condominium properties sold in January 2023 compared to 933 in January 2023, representing approximately a 35% decrease in units sold. Year to date (as of  Jan. 31, 2023) residential unit sales declined by 30.1% compared to 2022, and condominium unit sales year to date decreased 46.9% when compared with sales in 2022 for the same time period.

The average sale price for residential properties sold in January 2023 was $676,272 compared to $769,274 in January 2022. The average sale price for condominium properties sold in January 2023 was $412,244 compared to $447,943 in January 2022.

For Kanata, unit sales in January 2023 (residential and condominium) were 47 compared to 74 sales in January 2022 (approximately a 36.5% decrease). For greater Stittsville, unit sales in January 2023 (residential and condominium) were 25 units compared to 35 units in January 2022 (approximately a 28.6% decrease).

In Kanata, the average sale price in January 2023 versus January  2022 decreased 17.6%, for all housing types. For greater Stittsville, the average sale price January 2023 versus January 2022, decreased 5.9%, for all housing types. (Source: January 2023 – Sales by District & Area, Residential and Condominium Property Classes, OREB MLS®, February 1, 2023 – Report#3).

For the full report see “50 Years of Change in the Ottawa Market”

January residential inventory in Ottawa crept up to 1759 homes for sale by the end of the month, about a 1.6% increase when compared to the inventory of residential homes at the end of December 2022, however about a 192.7%% increase when compared to January 2022. Condominium inventory rose to 559 active units at the end of January compared to 522 units in December 2022, representing about a 7.1% increase. When compared to active condos at the end of January 2022, condo inventory in January 2023 increased 149.6%.

With approximately 3.8 months of residential inventory on the market compared to 0.9 months in January 2022, the Ottawa real estate market is a balanced market. Generally purchasers have more time to look at homes and include financing and building inspections in offers. Keep in mind the stats are averages, which means you need to look at specific neighborhoods to see what is really happening. Neighborhoods that are sought after and where supply of homes on the market is still low will be above the average price stats. With it being early in the year, we still need more comparable home sales in each neighborhood to start to see some trends. For purchasers it still means taking the steps to get your mortgage pre-approval and if you have a home to sell, get it ready for market while your looking for your next home. Make a plan to understand your top criteria for your next home and educate yourself on market value of what you are looking for as well as your own home. We can help with this! (Source:  2023 – Ottawa Real Estate Board Inventory by Month – Residential and Condo, Wedneday, February 1, 2023 – Report#7).

Ottawa Inventory - Residential & Condo - Jan 2023

Latest Mortgage Information

Appraisals – what are they and why are they needed

The appraisal world can be confusing as to when, if and why.  Hopefully the information below will provide some clarity.

  1. An appraisal required by a lender is a document that is used to determine the value for lending purposes.  Different lenders have different requirements.  An appraisal completed for an individual may differ from an appraisal completed for a lender and will likely not be accepted by the lender.
  2. Some lenders have policies that require the completion of an appraisal if the value of the mortgage is less than or equal to 80% of the suggested property value (even if that number is as low as 20%!)   Some lenders will run the submitted value through an automated valuation modeling system and if the value is supported then no appraisal is required.
  3. Appraisals are rarely required for high ratio mortgages (down payment less than 20%)
  4. Lenders pay close attention to property details.  Comments that indicate the possibility of issues with a property often trigger an appraisal request.
  5. Appraisals are normally paid for by clients and payment is required prior to the appraisal being scheduled.  The cost varies with location and the nature of the property as well as whether the request is a rush.  It is possible to have an appraisal completed within a 5 day condition period but that would depend on how busy the market is, and may command a higher fee.
  6. Rental properties always require an appraisal.
  7. Appraisal values can be challenged but may not be successful.  A client may challenge if they disagree with the comparables that the appraiser used.
  8. Appraisals can be required at the last minute if the property tax amount submitted differs from the actual property tax (confirming that amount is the lawyer’s responsibility).  Property taxes are linked to MPAC value and a difference puts the property value in question.
  9. The mortgage is based on the lower of appraised value or purchase price.  A lower value does not mean that the mortgage will not be funded but the buyer may need a higher down payment.

Karen Lemieux
Mortgage Brokers Ottawa
Apply online: www.karenlemieux.com
License: 11759

In the Community

February is Heart Month – a time to come together to raise funds and awareness for the University Of Ottawa Heart Institute.

This February, you can support one of Canada’s most distinguished heart health centres by making a donation or raising funds on its behalf. Every dollar makes a difference in the fight against heart disease. It’s giving that goes straight to the heart of care in your community. Every donation is matched by our Corporate Community Heroes. That means your contribution during Heart Month has Double The Impact.

Click here to find out more about how you can contribute.

Things to Do This Month

See more events:
Things to do in Ottawa this weekend & Ottawa Tourism 

Common Questions When Buying

As experienced Ottawa and Kanata real estate agents, we understand that buying a house can be intimidating and full of uncertainties. Whether you’re unsure about what is involved in the process of buying a house, what type of houses to buy or which neighbourhood is right for you, you’re not alone.

Discover Our Tips & Insights.

As part of the buying process our Team will:

  • Screen the available homes in the neighbourhoods you are interested in, to make sure that the houses you view fit your budget and your requirements.
  • Give you important information on local real estate market values, taxes, utility costs, services, and amenities.
  • Guide you through the viewing process showing you features you may not have noticed and problems you may not have spotted.
  • Advise you about your legal and financial options, guiding you on the steps to take to be prepared to make a successful offer.
  • Recommend expert help when needed, such as a mortgage broker, home appraisal, home inspection, legal services and contracting services.
  • Manage your offers and counter-offers, and use our skills and experience as negotiators to make sure you get the best possible outcome.

We have the expertise to help you find a home in the neighbourhood of your dreams! We are experienced KanataStittsville and greater Ottawa REALTORS®  and we would be pleased to help you, a family member or a friend. Feel free to contact us with any questions.


Home Selling Advice

For many people, selling a home may seem simple at first. In fact, there are many elements to consider when selling your home. To help potential sellers see things a little more clearly, we’ve created a home sellers’ guide that is divided into several topics, from evaluating your home to receiving offers. These topics explain what you need to know and do to successfully sell your home.

Click here to learn more about our Seller’s Guide

You can count on The Joan Smith Real Estate Family to help you navigate through the complex process of selling your home. We will review with you all the elements of our Home Sellers’ Guide that will ensure the successful sale of your home. If you are planning to sell your current home and buy a new one, check out our Selling and Buying a Home at the Same Time page for some useful tips and advice.

We are experienced realtors®  in Ottawa and surrounding areas, we know what buyers are looking for and how to highlight the best features of your home and present them to potential buyers. We are here to guide you through the process of preparing your home for market and the steps involved in selling your home!  We are pleased to answer your questions!

Top 3 Improvements

The Top 3 Improvements to Consider Before Selling

Improving the appearance of your home, both inside and out, can contribute greatly to the interest of potential buyers and to the successful sale of a property.

Market Value

Market Value of Your Home & Preparing Your Home for Market

If you were to put your home up for sale tomorrow, how would you determine the market value and what it would likely sell for? and how do you get the most dollars?

New Build Home

Thinking of Buying a New Build Home?

If you are thinking of buying a new build home or condo, there are many reasons to be represented by a realtor® who has specialized expertise and knowledge of Ottawa builders and the procedures in purchasing a new home.

Featured Homes for Sale, Rent & Recently Sold

Market stats from the Ottawa Real Estate Board show that we are heading for a balanced market which is four months of inventory of homes active on the market. We would be happy to answer any of your questions about the market and these beautiful homes.

Contact Us!


It was a pleasure for me to have you working with me on the sale of my home. Thank you for your hard work and expert guidance. I found your team excelled in every aspect of the sale -from market evaluation to negotiations/closing services and everything in between. Your team most definitely surpassed my expectations.