Leave a treasure hunt for future homeowners

Lynda Cox

During this time of COVID lockdowns when our thoughts cannot safely turn to vacations, large family gatherings, reunions, big weddings etc., many Ottawans are finding themselves dreaming of a renovation to hopefully give them additional space for home offices and possibly a recreation room for cooped up kids learning online. Or perhaps the need is for a new and expanded kitchen which, during this time of stay-at-home orders, is running at maximum capacity with more storage and counter space needed. If you are a DIYer, you might have already started your project. If not, I’m sure you are surfing the net for design ideas and watching every home makeover show you can find.

If this is your plan, I have a suggestion: leave your mark; leave a surprise; leave a memento of your time in the home for the next owner to discover. What do I mean? There are many stories of Canadians finding treasures behind walls, under floorboards or in basement or attic crevices. Yes, some have been worth lots of money but more have been worth a value of a different sort, a value that cannot be measured.

It could be as simple as a Ziplock bag or shoebox with a few items, like before and after photos, newspaper clippings, a letter, a few labelled family photos, etc., from your years in the home, or it could be a USB stick filled with the same. A progressive time capsule if you will. If you are artistic, how about painting a mural or some messages on the basement wall before the drywall goes up or under the new flooring. Handprints, pawprints, get creative. The next owners/renovators will get such a happy surprise.

I’d love to hear what you have already found or what you are planning to leave. Drop me a line at


Now for an update: December 2020 was a record year surpassing 2019 in number of sales and sale prices. Residential home prices were up 20% and condominiums 19%. Compare that to 2019 of approximately 9%, 2018 from 3-5%, and 2017 from 3-7%. “We feel that Ottawa is just coming into its own as a national capital city,” commented the president of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. Combine that with low interest rates and low inventory and voila! it is indeed a good time to sell.

Sandy Hill Real Estate update 
November 6, 2020 – January 24, 2021

Active  1

Sold  8

2 selling over list price from $100 to $51,000 over



Active  40

Conditionally Sold  1

Sold  22

2 selling over list price from $10,000 to $12,000 over