Ottawa's 2020 Real Estate in Review

After a very unprecedented year, let’s take a look back at the market trends leading up to the end of 2020.

Last month, Ottawa’s real estate market maintained its resilience in spite of the pandemic, seeing record sales in Ottawa, and eclipsing last year’s totals. It’s believed this is in part thanks to low borrowing costs and enthusiastically competitive buyers.


Meanwhile, buyers in the condominium market were able to take advantage of more choice and reasonable pricing late in the year, with double the number of listings in November compared to the same time last year.

Suburban areas all over Ontario are seeing an uptick in sales, based on reasonable prices for detached homes. As working from home becomes more prevalent, a home that is not in the heart of downtown becomes more enticing.

And more people stayed put in 2020. With borrowing rates remaining low, renovations were also more popular this year.

"With people spending more time at home... we saw a 28% increase in the number of renovation permits this year as people invested in making improvements to their homes," said MPAC's president and chief administrative officer, Nicole McNeill.

Looking forward, the Canadian Real Estate Association forecasts housing market activity will “remain relatively healthy through 2021”, with the national average house price increasing by 9.1%. In a news release on December 15, the CREA noted that Ontario in particular “has seen strong demand for several years,” and that strength of demand will “drive the average price higher.”


Mortgage rates should remain relatively stable in 2021 as well, with the Bank of Canada’s commitment to keep interest rates low into 2023.

2020 has been a difficult year for far too many people. But it’s reassuring that we still see stability in the real estate market. Let’s take this little bit of good news, and hope for an even better 2021.