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2023 was the slowest year for home sales in Ottawa in 13 years

Ottawa’s real estate market had its slowest sales year in 13 years in 2023, as high interest rates and affordability affected the market.

The Ottawa Real Estate Board says 11,978 homes and condominiums were sold in Ottawa in 2023, down 11 per cent from 2022.  The average price of homes sold in Ottawa in 2023 was $667,794, down 5.5 per cent from 2022.

It’s the fewest number of homes sold in Ottawa since 2010. According to the city of Ottawa’s annual development report, there were 11,336 homes sold in Ottawa in 2010.

The real estate board said throughout 2023 that rising interest rates and affordability were factors in the real estate market.

The Bank of Canada hiked its overnight lending rate from 0.25 per cent in March 2022 to 5 per cent in 2023, and held the rate steady in September, October and December.

In December, 556 homes sold across the city of Ottawa, according to the Ottawa Real Estate Board. That’s down 16 per cent from the five-year average.

“Ottawa’s resale market closed out the year in a steady, balanced state,” OREB President Curtis Fillier says.

“This could be an early indication that consumer confidence is returning. We likely won’t see the full impact of rate stabilization until the second half of 2024, but December’s activity bodes well for a strong year ahead in Ottawa.”

The average price of homes sold in December was $632,487, up 1.7 per cent from the year before.

The Ottawa Real Estate Board says there was 3.3 months worth of inventory available in December.

The Royal LePage Market Survey Forecast says housing prices will increase by an average of 4.5 per cent by the end of this year.

The outgoing president of the Ottawa Real Estate Borad says there are positive signs for the market heading into 2024.

“It hasn’t been the easiest market,” Ken Dekker said in a statement. “And while we probably won’t return to the peak levels seen in 2022, Ottawa’s market is poised to recover any ground lost in the past year. Both buyers and sellers need extra patience right now, but solid opportunities are there.”

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