https://martinelder.ca/ Thoughtfull Agent in Ottawa comments of the Ottawa East, Cardinal Heights, Beacon Hill areas:
We last spoke before Christmas when the lawyers were on holiday. I hope your questions about family and the house have been answered. About Power of Attorney documents, Capital Gains tax, Inheritance and Principal Residence Status. All this legal stuff is painful when a parent is suddenly lost.

Here is a little update on the residential market since you returned. Market listings sat in December and increased in number. There were few buyers with two elections, a challenge to the Canadian government and a falling stock market. The US people elected a popular leader and world gas prices dropped faster than most people could hope. Consumer confidence was very low. So have things changed since last December?

Sales in Ottawa have picked up pace in January and appear to be increasing for February as if there was pent up demand from a poor fall in 2008. The government has pitched in with incentive plans to help homeowners maintain their homes and the mortgage interest rates have crept downward to the 3.5 – 4% range for short term rates. All this augers well for a strong spring market in Ottawa which is a distinctly Ottawa phenomena as the rest of the country is experiencing a much slower housing market. I suggest prices in Ottawa will see a year to year increase of 4% whereas Toronto has not been as fortunate. Housing sales volume will decrease, suggesting steady demand but only the better homes selling while others languish on the market and some moving toward the rental side. This means well prepared homes will do well. Staging and fresh paint will be helpful in the sale strategy. Vacancy rates have also decreased.

Cardinal Heights has several bungalows for sale. One renovated Crownhill home sold at $284K but there are three other recent homes just on the market. The Ottawa bus strike was a costly and painful experience for people here. With the increased employment at the NRC a lot of people will be looking for a home closer to work. Currently cars park along the streets all day because the NRC parking lot full. I guess the parking bylaws are being suspended for now. I feel there are plenty of 3 bed bungalows in the neighbourhood but not many with usable bedrooms and bathrooms. Your’s is special. There is a demand for good bungalows and your home will command a premium.

I hope you are well. I enjoyed a great skate along the Rideau Canal last week end. There was a cheerful air about the thousands and thousands of eager skaters. Saw one vintage soldier from Parks Canada firing his flint lock musket to the delight of skaters. There was lots of colourful sights along the Landsdown stretch of open ice.