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Home Values Continue To Rise The Royal LePage House Price Survey released in April 2011 showed the average price of a home in Canada increased between 3.5 and 4.3 percent in the first quarter of 2011, compared to the previous year, as markets continued their post-recession recovery. While the rate of yearover-year price appreciation slowed slightly in the first quarter, home values continued the upward climb, which first began late in the second quarter of 2009. Low interest rates and a recovering economy continued to fuel activity in Canada's housing markets over the past year, which has led to country-wide increases in average home prices. In the first quarter of 2011, the national average price of a detached bungalow rose 4.3 percent year-over-year to $341,355, while standard twostorey homes rose 3.5 percent to $379,388 and standard condominiums rose 4 per cent to $237,919. “The rate at which Canadian homes are appreciating may well have peaked for the next year or so,” said Phil Soper, president and chief executive of Royal LePage Real Estate Services. “We expect house prices will continue to creep up, but most of the excess demand created by the initial drop in interest rates has been satisfied, and affordability continues to erode slowly, allowing the listings supply to catch up. In most markets, lower single
digit percentage increases are more likely for the balance of the year.” “Canada's real estate market has maintained momentum coming out of 2010, indicating that the post-recession recovery is continuing,” Soper added. Ottawa's first-time buyers continue to drive the housing market as the region saw year-overyear price appreciation ranging between 5.2 to 5.9 percent across all housing types surveyed this quarter. The Royal LePage House Price Survey is the largest, most comprehensive study of its kind in Canada, with information on seven types of housing in over 250 neighbourhoods from coast to coast. A complete database of past and present surveys is available on the Royal LePage Web site at www.royallepage.ca.
April sales return to pre-HST levels Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board (OREB) sold 1,536 residential properties in April 2011 compared with 1,814 in April 2010, a decrease of 15.3 percent. There were 1,232 sales in March 2011. “Sales in April 2010 soared well above average in advance of the implementation of the Harmonized Sales Tax in Ontario last July. Normally in Ottawa, we see a brisker sales period beginning at the end of April or early May, but last year’s spring market started earlier by about three months due to the HST. That surge in sales pushed April’s five-year average up significantly; it’s not out of the ordinary for about 1,500 homes to be sold in April in our market,” said OREB's President. “Home prices still continued to rise at the usual moderate rate last month, demonstrating a solid demand for resale homes in Ottawa. Re-sale housing inventory is up 17.2 per cent from this time last year, indicating that Ottawa is clearly in a healthy, balanced market,” she added. The average sale price of residential properties, including condominiums, sold in April in the Ottawa area was $351,226, an increase of 5.4 percent over April 2010.
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REAL ESTATE NEWS
CHECKLIST: Get Your Home Ready For Spring Get inspired by the nice weather and the promise of summer. Prepare your home for spring by using the following checklist.
Inspect the roof for winter damage: leaks, missing or broken shingles or tiles. Inspect flashing, eaves, and soffits.
Create storage for sporting goods, camping equipment and garden tools in your garage.
Gutters & Downspouts
Clean out gutters; inspect and repair weaknesses; check for proper drainage.
Inspect, clean and repair
Call exterminator if needed.
Check for Termites & Insects What areas need painting? How about a new color trim?
Siding & Trim Inspect and clean siding. Check all wood surfaces for weathering and paint failure. Check for loose nails.
Exterior Caulking Inspect caulking and replace if deteriorating. Caulk any leaks or cracks in basement walls and seal.
Windows Label and store removable storm windows and doors.
Security Make sure all doors and windows close and lock properly.
Window & Door Screens Wash windows, put up screens and patch any holes. Clean screening and repair or replace; repair any loose or damaged frames and repaint; replace broken, worn, or missing hardware; tighten and lubricate door hinges and closers.
Window Sills, Door Sills & Thresholds
Windows Open windows to ventilate.
Cleaning Give entire house overall cleaning.
Deck & Porches Check decks, patios, porches, stairs and railings for loose members and deterioration.
Drain Waste & Vent System Flush out system.
Hot-Water Heating System Lubricate circulating pump and motor.
Evaporative Air Conditioner Clean unit; check belt tension and adjust; replace cracked or worn belt.
Heat Pump Lubricate blower motor.
Fill cracks, caulk edges, repaint; replace if necessary.
Check foundation walls, floors, concrete and masonry for cracking, heaving or deterioration.
Remove all debris from the yard. Clear away any remaining dead foliage and weeds from flowerbeds and lawn. Cut back and trim vegetation and overgrown bushes from structures.
Flashing Check flashings around all surface projections and sidewalls.
Antenna Check antenna and satellite dish supports.
Sprinkler Check sprinkler system for leaky valves and exposed lines.
Water Well Have well water tested for safety.