March 2024 new-home sales show small signs of improvement

We continue to see incremental improvement, but March 2024 new-home sales show that there’s still a way to go.

Ottawa new-home sales in March hit 313, which is up 58 per cent compared to March 2023, when there were 198 sales, according to the latest report prepared by industry analyst PMA Brethour Realty Group on behalf of the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association. But that’s still well below the 10-year average of 428 sales for the month.

March 2024 new-home sales ottawa pma brethour realty
Source: PMA Brethour Realty Group

“The Ottawa new-home market is percolating with potential sales activity, with market recovery expected to be strong but gradual,” says PMA Ottawa president Cheryl Rice. “Even as interest rates come off this spring and summer, we should hold an attitude of cautious optimism, as world events are unpredictable and have the potential of swaying recovery off course.”


Sales of single-family homes continue to be low, with townhomes picking up the slack.

“Diminishing sales of single-family homes have been a casualty of the affordability crisis, with new townhomes capturing the majority of market share for at least the past year,” says Rice, noting that condo towns and freehold townhomes combined captured “a significant 71 per cent of the total market” in March.

For first-time buyers, the federal government’s 2024 budget “may be throwing them a lifeline with proposed measures to make it easier for buyers to save for a down payment and qualify for a mortgage,” she adds. Some of those measures include an increase in RRSP withdrawals allowed under the Home Buyers’ Plan (jumping to $60,000 from $35,000), extension of the repayment grace period to five years, and extending the amortization period for insured mortgages to 30 years for first-time home buyers purchasing new-build homes.


Interestingly, the south end of the city, which has dominated the market share by region for some time, often capturing more than 50 per cent, slipped in March, garnering a 40 per cent share with the west end close behind at 36 per cent.

For the year to date at the end of March, there have been 872 new-home sales, which is up 84 per cent compared to last year, when sales were at 473. The five-year average is 1,242.


About the Author

Anita Murray All Things Home Ottawa homes

Anita Murray

Anita Murray is the co-founder of All Things Home Inc. and owner of Three C Communications. The veteran journalist has covered the Ottawa housing industry since 2011 and recently won a national award for her in-depth look at Ottawa’s rental market.



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