Cost of Living in Ottawa and Buying a Home

Wondering what it costs to live in Ottawa these days? 

Let’s take a look, while Ottawa is considered one of Canada’s more affordable real estate markets due to a high median household income we know that real estate is hyper-local and people come from a variety of income bands. 

Here’s what it could mean for you. 

As of July 2020, the average cost of a freehold home was $554,000 and condos $351,000. 
We’ll use those numbers to help you understand the cost, but for perspective; 

  • 50% of Freehold Homes fall between $450,000 and $650,000 
  • And 50% of Condos fall between $300,000 and $400,000 

Cost of a Freehold Home in Ottawa 

In order to afford the average freehold price of $554,000 you would need a minimum of $30,426 in down payment saved up and should have an additional $13,100 for closing cost like land transfer tax and other fees. 

Your total mortgage including CMHC fees at 5% down would be $545,000, which works out to roughly $2,370 a month, and an additional $555 in property taxes and roughly $200 for utilities for a total monthly cost of $3,125

Based on mortgage calculations that limit these costs to 32% of your gross income your total household income before taxes would need to be about $117,000. 

So what would $554k buy you in Ottawa? 

  • East: A single 4 bedroom, 2 bath home across from a park in Ottawa’s Pineview neighbourhood right by LRT & shopping at Gloucester Center. 
  • West: A 3 bedroom, 3 baths single with garage on a 139ft lot with a primary bedroom ensuite in the Kanata neighbourhood of Katimavik close to Kanata Centrum. 
  • Central: A century townhome in Wellington Village with 2 bedrooms + den & 1 bathroom, balcony overlooking the street, off the primary bedroom. 
  • South: A Bungalow in Barrhaven’s Stonebridge community with 4 bedrooms and 2 baths with the option of a lower-level in-law suite. 

Cost of a Condo in Ottawa 

In order to afford the average condominium price of $351,000 you would need a minimum of $17,568 in down payment saved up and should have an additional $7,255 for closing cost like land transfer tax and other fees. 

Your total mortgage including CMHC fees at 5% down would be $347,136, which works out to roughly $1,510 a month, and an additional $704 in property taxes & condo fees and roughly $100 for utilities for a total monthly cost of $2,314

Based on mortgage calculations that limit these costs to 32% of your gross income your total household income before taxes would need to be about $86,775. 

So what would $351k buy you in Ottawa? 

  • East: A Riverview Park/Alta Vista condo apartment with 2 bed / 2baths & 2 balconies. 
  • West: A 2 bed/2bath condo apartment near Carling & Richmond with amenities like gym, tennis, hot tub, workshop, rooftop terrace and more. 
  • Central: A 1 bedroom pied-a-terre by Dow’s Lake in a designer building with easy access to LRT. 
  • South: An upper level stacked townhome in Barrhaven/Strandherd with 2 bedrooms and 3 baths (2 en-suites!!!), walking distance to shops, theatres & restaurants. 

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