Ottawa Real Estate News from Ron DeCaen April 2014   
  Real Estate News

Ron DeCaen
Sale Representative

Action Power Team Ltd. Brokerage
15-1420 Youville Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
613.797.9366 (cellular)
613.837.3800 (office/24/7 pager)

When homeowners upsize, they sometimes consider turning their old home into a rental property.  This month's article offers some insight if you’re facing this difficult decision.

There are also some body language tips that’ll help you tell if someone’s lying as well as some ideas for upcycling old household items into something new and beautiful!

Thanks so much for checking out this month's newsletter.  Please get in touch if you have any questions or comments regarding the articles, or real estate in general -- it'd be great to hear from you!


In this issue...
Ottawa's Spring Real Estate Market Is Coming Into Bloom 
Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,126 residential properties in March through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® system, compared with 1,160 in March 2013, a decrease of 2.9 per cent.

“Sales picked up month over month, with 256 more properties switching hands in March than in February,” says Randy Oickle, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board.  “That’s a 29.7 per cent increase, which is to be expected of a spring market.”

March’s sales included 230 in the condominium property class, and 896 in the residential property class.  The condominium property class includes any property, regardless of style (i.e. detached, semi-detached, apartment, stacked etc.), which is registered as a condominium, as well as properties which are co-operatives, life leases and timeshares.  The residential property class includes all other residential properties.

“A total of 2,776 properties were listed in March, indicating that sellers were getting ready the busy spring market,” explains Oickle.  “The average days on market stood at 49 for the month of March, lower than the average of 61 days in January and February, indicating that properties are starting to move faster as we enter the second quarter of 2014.”

The average sale price of residential properties, including condominiums, sold in March in the Ottawa area was $359,051, an increase of 0.3 per cent over March 2013.  The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $251,381, a decrease of 2.1 per cent over March 2013.  The average sale price of a residential-class property was $386,690, an increase of 0.2 per cent over March 2013.

“It’s a great time to buy or sell real estate,” says Oickle.  “Talk to an Ottawa-area REALTOR® today for help with buying and/or selling a home, and you will have an ally from start to finish, and everything in between.”

Selling vs. Renting What Makes Cents? 
If you’re not ready to sell your home, you may have considered renting it out instead.

Sometimes a temporary work contract forces you across country or perhaps market conditions and exceptionally low mortgage rates mean it’s a great time to buy but you don’t want to sell at a loss.

As with any major decision, you should carefully weigh up the pros and cons based on your own unique situation.  You'll want to do an in-depth financial analysis as well as consider more personal factors.  Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Tax Talk - There may be tax implications so contact your tax advisor as laws vary depending on individual circumstances.

  2. Money Matters - Make sure to have extra money on hand if the rent doesn’t cover your mortgage, taxes, utilities, insurance, etc.

  3. Step Away - Being a landlord isn't always easy.  You’ll need to detach yourself emotionally from your old home.

  4. Playing the Market - You may be able to increase your equity as the market gains strength but if it tanks, you could come out on the losing end.

  5. Be Prepared - The future's uncertain so be prepared for unexpected repairs or if your tenant suddenly falls behind on their rent.

  6. Raucous Renters - Tenants won't treat your home with the same level of care, so your home may be in poor condition when you decide to sell.

Renting out your home is a huge decision so make sure you consider all of the scenarios.  If renting's a viable alternative, you'll need to treat it like a business so evaluate the rental market and research landlord/tenant laws before starting the process.

If on the other hand, you decide to put your home on the market, make sure you have a professional real estate agent on side to advise you on how to sell your home quickly and for top dollar.  Please don’t hesitate to call if you have any questions regarding this decision or any other real estate related matters.

The Language of Lying 
Being able to tell if someone’s lying is an invaluable skill!

One of the most effective ways to determine if someone’s lying is to examine subtle gestures.  Here are a few tips that'll help turn you into a human lie detector:

  1. Liars Look Away - A deceptive person avoids making eye contact.

  2. Um, Err - Liars mispronounce words and stutter due to tension.

  3. Working Overtime - Deceptive answers usually take longer than truthful ones.

  4. Hands Up - Covering the mouth and rubbing the nose and eyes can indicate lying.

  5. Fade Away - Their body will take up less room and any movement will be stiff and limited.

  6. Switch It Up - Liars welcome a change in conversation resulting in their body language becoming more relaxed.

  7. Pick Pocket - Showing palms is a sign of honesty so people who are lying will often put their hands in their pockets and fidget.

Detecting deceit isn't always easy as some people are better liars than others but body language almost always tells the truth.  People will occasionally exhibit some of the above behaviour when they're telling the truth so individually they're only indicators but when combined together, it’s likely that they’re lying.

Reduce, Reuse, Upcycle 
The junk in your garage, basement and attic may be a treasure chest!

Upcycling is a popular trend where existing items that would normally make their way to the curb are transformed into something useful and stylish.  Here are a few creative ideas to inspire you:

  1. Stylish Shelf - Turn an old ladder into a bookshelf or fix it to the ceiling and hang photos or lanterns from the rungs.

  2. Picture Perfect - Love a painting but don’t have anywhere to hang it?  Just add some handles to create a chic, unique serving tray.

  3. Door Designs - Salvaged doors can be upcycled into tables, headboards, a storage bench or fix a few together to create a folding screen divider.

The opportunities are endless!  Give old items a new lease on life and put your own creative twist on them.  You’ll save money and the environment while you’re at it!

PS Are you sick of scouring the paper and MLS sites looking for homes? Tired of playing telephone tag with agents only to hear the home's already sold? Sit back, relax and let me do the work for you! Just visit my website and check off the features you're looking for. Whenever a home matching your criteria hits the market, it'll be automatically flagged and emailed to you so you'll never have to worry about missing your dream home. This service is free and there's no obligation! Click here to get started.

Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.