Monthly Archives: September 2019


Condos in Ottawa have a hierarchy to them. There is the best, the most popular, the “ok” ones, the “oh no way in hell” ones, and the “what is that”? The Confederation Line of the O-Train isn’t just making the best buildings shine, it’s making the less obvious ones start to look like diamonds in the rough. Here are the top three condo buildings to benefit from the O-Train:

SoHo Parkway | 201 Parkdale Av:

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Parkdale Ave, the Parkdale Market or the busy corner of Parkdale Ave and Wellington St? Parkdale Avenue was supposed to become the next to be condo corridor in Ottawa (think of Rideau Street), but it didn’t materialize. Parkdale Avenue is turning into rentals, one huge lot is for sale, and one developer is still waiting to see what happens. That said, there is one newer building on the street that bears mention, SoHo Parkway | 201 Parkdale Av. The forgotten child of the SoHo family (SoHo Lisgar, SoHo Champagne, and the ‘coming soon’ SoHo Italia), SoHo Parkway | 201 Parkdale Av offers similar amenities (minus the concierge and hotel) and same finishes the SoHo brand is known for. The building has had a history of condo fee issues, but those seem to be subsiding and stabilizing. One-bedroom units in the building are selling at an average of $289,846. Compare that to standout buildings in the Mechanicsville / Westboro area, such as 150 Caroline Av with an average sale price of $323,300 and One Thr3e One | 131 Holland Ave at $348,208, and you’re looking at price difference of 10% and 16% respectively. Considering SoHo Parkdale has the shortest walk (just six minutes!) to the O-Train at Tunney Pasture of all three buildings SoHo Parkway seems to have great value.

East Market Phase 3 | 179 George St:

The hustle and bustle of the Byward Market has been dampened over the last few years by the closure of Rideau St and the persistent issue of people wandering through the street. Anyone care to wander down Waller Mall alone at night (or during the day for that matter)? Fortunately, things are looking up in the market! Rideau St is starting to open back up, new condo developments are being announced, such as Claridge Royale, and the Salvation Army is set to move out of the Byward Market and into Vanier. One of the prime buildings to benefit from all of this is East Market Phase 3 | 179 George St. East Market Phase 3 has been a slightly forgotten project with the recent developments of Claridge Plaza, The Galleria, and 90 George St. As the only soft loft in the market, East Market Phase 3 caters to a specific condo clientele. The rejuvenation of the Byward Market could create massive value buying opportunities at East Market Phase 3. Currently, the average sale price of a one-bedroom condo in the building is $269,575. That’s 15% lower than Claridge Plaza Phase 1 | 200 Rideau St and The Galleria Phase 2 | 238 Besserer St! With a quick 5-minute walk to Rideau Station, East Market Phase 3 is poised to be a renewed hot condo building.

The Pinnacle | 445 Laurier Ave W

Centretown saw a massive condo boom from 2014-2016 with new buildings such as Hideaway |340 McLeod St, SoHo Lisgar |300 Lisgar St, TriBeCa | 179 Metcalfe St, The Slater | 199 Slater St, Gotham | 224 Lyon St, and Cathedral Hill | 428 Sparks St. Since then there has been a big lull in new developments, with the exception of SoBa | 203 Catherine St, which was completed in 2019. With not a lot in the condo pipeline, a few of the older buildings are going to get a second look; primarily the Pinnacle. It was built back in 2007 and generally has larger floor plans than the newer builds. The average sale price of a one-bedroom unit is $290,214, which is 8% less than the Mondrian | 324 Laurier Av W and 18% less than Gotham | 224 Lyon St. With a 4-minute walk to the Lyon O-Train station, the building could provide great value for Centretown condo buyers.

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Until recent years, when considering investing in real estate, long term renting has been the primary option for most owners. While in most cases the rental income covers expenses, mostly it was about the building of equity. No longer is this the only option, and in fact some might argue it is now the least attractive route. Enter short term rentals. We sat down with Scott Clement of breathebnb Vacation Rental Management to dive in to their thoughts on the rising popularity, what investors can expect to earn on their rentals, and the misconception that short term renters treat properties more poorly than long term tenants.

Breathebnb hit the Ottawa scene in 2016, the first company of its kind in this area, and has since launched in Quebec, Muskoka, Prince Edward County, Calabogie, Kingston and Gananoque regions. Their units range from urban apartments to luxurious waterfront homes, and their homeowners are earning between 1.5 to 4 times more than a typical long term tenant would pay. The company recognized that not all homeowners would be happy simply building equity, and would need cash flow on top of it.

“When we began breathebnb,” Scott says, “Airbnb and other short term sites really hadn’t made much of an impact locally, but we knew the potential was there. Add to the fact that we’d always heard horror stories from homeowners coming back to a long term rental which was destroyed by its tenant, we knew there would be a market for this platform, with Airbnb’s free insurance covering most, if not all, of any potential damages. While the news loves to play up the parties and craze around Airbnbs, the fact is those are few and far between. We’ve successfully hosted thousands of groups these past 3 years and they’re all just like you and me, looking for a family getaway or taking a business trip.”

One attractive aspect to working with an experienced BNB manager is the fact that the homeowner can come with zero knowledge of the industry and receive dedicated support in purchasing and designing a suitable property, designing for optimum nightly rates and occupancy, listing online, working with guests, cleaning, and everything in between.

“Our goal is to achieve a scenario where our homeowner gets paid monthly and can relax fully in our care, trusting that we and our team of 35 are working tirelessly to earn them as much as possible, keep their property in excellent condition, and create a memorable experience for all their guests.”

So: let’s talk numbers. A strong portfolio is full of high quality and well-designed properties, which Scott advises can up to triple the earnings of an outdated property with no cohesive décor. Their team also includes an interior designer specific to short term rentals, which gives their properties an edge over the competition. Assuming the property is well located (but not necessarily just in a typical tourist area) and parking is included:

One bed unit can expect to gross $3 to $4k monthly vs Standard Rental $1.6 to $2.3k

Two bed unit $5.5 to $6.5k vs Standard Rental $2.2 to $3k

Three bed unit $6 to $7k vs Standard Rental $2.8 to $3.5k

Four bed unit $6.5 to $7.5k vs Standard Rental $3.5k+

The larger the home, the more important free onsite parking becomes. A waterfront property close to the city (Crystal Beach, for instance) could see a 30% increase on those numbers.

We asked Scott why homeowners would want to work with breathebnb, rather than hosting on their own and keeping all the income in their pocket. Scott laughs. “That is a question we get all the time. And you can tell the person asking it has probably never been a host, or at least not for very long. Aside from organizing cleanings, guest entries, responding to phone calls night and day, plumbing emergencies, etc, listing under our portfolio ensures repeat guests across properties, who are willing to pay more because they trust our name. We also earn almost double the short term rental average per property, because of our pricing strategy and Superhost status.”

Visit for more details and to find unique rental units.

Follow Breathebnb on social media:


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Ottawa’s real estate is heating up. We’re seeing low inventory, rising prices, and frustrated Buyers… but Sellers are happy. With this recent swing in the market, multiple offers are becoming more common on listings. A multiple offer scenario occurs when there is more than one offer on a property at the same time. As a result, the offers will compete against each other to woo the Seller into selecting their offer. Now you may think, ok I’ll just bid higher than the other person and I’ll win, right? Wrong!

Multiple Offer Best Practices

There are many best practices and strategies involved n the multiple offer process. We’ve put together an overview to give you insight into what the process is like.

1. Set an Offer Presentation Date

Offer presentation dates are becoming more popular in today’s market to due to low inventory, rising prices, and a hungry group of Buyers. One way that Sellers are taking advantage of this is with offer presentation dates. These dates are intended to create a multiple offer scenario (or bidding war for all the Million Dollar Listing viewers 😊). Typically, the presentation date is 10 days after the unit has been listed.

2.Offer Presentation Process

Once all offers have been submitted prior to the Offer Presentation time, the Listing Agent will review each offer with the Seller. During this process, the number of offers submitted must be disclosed. Any specifics of each offer can not be disclosed to the other Realtors® or Buyers, only the Listing Agent and Sellers know all the offer details.

3.Select the Best Offer

The Sellers will rank each offer based on their personal needs; typically, they are looking for the most money possible (shocker!), no conditions (for a firm sale), and their preferred closing date. Once the Seller decides on the winning offer, the Listing Agent will be informing the winning Realtor® of the goods news and will be the bearer of bad news to the Realtors® that lost out.

Tips to Winning a Property in Multiple Offer Scenarios

Be Decisive

If you see a place you like, be prepared to go all in on the property or forget about it.

Have Your Financing in Order

The #1 killer of any offer in an offer presentation scenario is a financing condition. It shows the Seller that Buyer is not prepared in a hot market.

Complete a Pre-Inspection

For the Buyer, it gives a complete picture of the property and what needs to be fixed, allowing a Buyer to make a more informed decision on the final price they are willing to pay for a property, all things considerd. From a Seller’s perspective, it shows a Buyer’s level of interest and makes that offer more competitive

Review Market Data

Review the sales data in the neighbourhood or building to get a grasp on the historical sales to ensure the most informed decision prior to submitting, or accepting, an offer.

Write a Love Letter

Write a little note to the Seller about who you are, your background, why you love the home, and what life milestones you want to accomplish in the property. It’s small details like these that can make you stand out.

Determine How Much Over Asking You Are Willing to Pay

The more offers there are, typically the higher the final selling price. Wherever you sit on the motivation spectrum, it’s important to know how much above asking price you are willing to pay.

Know What Number to Walk Away At

A common mistake most Buyers make in the process is not offering their top dollar. After they take all of their motivations into consideration, they tend to offer less than what their maximum. The best piece of advice I can give you, which I give to all of my clients, is to put the highest offer in that you are comfortable knowing if you lose you can go to sleep that night knowing you put your best foot forward.

Stalk the offer presentation spot!

A preface to my following point, stalking is not cool or legal! Now that’s out of the way, here’s why you should stalk the location of where the offer presentation is being held. First, you can present your offer with your Realtor® in person. Next, it gives you the flexibility to change your offer on the spot. If you’ve been told there are only three offers on hand before the presentation and last second three other offers come in, you are there with your Realtor® and ready to re-submit. Finally, it makes you available to the Seller. If you’re the only Buyer outside the offer presentation and closest to the Listing Agent, they are almost always coming to see you first.

Multiple offers create a unique dynamic between Buyers and Sellers. Typically, Sellers hold all the cards and Buyers are forced to accommodate Sellers during the process. Hopefully these tips can put more control back in the Buyers hands to get the condo that fits their lifestyle.

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Have a look at the August 2019 Market Statistics for Condominiums in Ottawa.

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 431 condominium-class properties in July 2019, an increase of 8.8% from August 2018.

Even though the numbers are up, Ottawa continues to undergo issues with inventory as the limited supply persists.

The average sale price for a condo in Ottawa was $308,781, an increase of 11.5% from August 2018.*

The most active price point in the condominium market has increased again in 2019 to $250,000-$399,999, accounting for 50 per cent of the units sold.

Curious about August 2019 market statistics for residential-class properties in Ottawa as well? Click here to read the full story.

*Average sale price can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The calculation of the average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold. Price and conditions will vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

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