Foreign buyers could be snapping up a quarter of Canada's luxury real estate: survey

Dec 19 2017, 9:49 pm

As Canada’s luxury home segment continues to grow, a new survey from Royal LePage suggests most realtors believe it’s due to buyers from China, and one realtor says foreign buyers are a “significant” factor driving up prices in Vancouver.

“The typical luxury property buyers in Vancouver are affluent, business-oriented and well-educated couples, and the region will always be one of the most sought-after in the world,” says Jason Soprovich.

Beyond that, 95% of B.C. realtors believe China is one of the top three countries in which foreign buyers originate.

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Nationally, More than half of real estate agents surveyed cite China as the main international region generating home purchases in the country, and another 60% predict more foreign buyer activity this year.

A quarter of realtors believe foreign buyers could be snapping up as much as 25% of Canada’s luxury properties.

President and CEO of Royal LePage Phil Soper notes, however, that while the impact foreign buyers have on Canada’s housing market as a whole is still minimal, it’s growing.

“Canada’s stable political and financial systems, along with a tradition of cultural tolerance and openness to immigration and diversity, make our country an ideal destination for wealthy international purchasers looking to invest in real property. Recently, a lower Canadian dollar has made this proposition even more attractive,” he says in a release.

And those surveyed agreed. Luxury real estate purchases in Canada have increased since January of 2015, according to nearly 70% of realtors, and they believe that’s in-line with the long-term trend.

In some of Vancouver’s most luxurious neighbourhoods, such as West Vancouver and Point Grey, prices have increased 135% from 2005 to 2015.