Investment from Chinese buyers in Canadian real estate is expected to match 2016 levels, with many expected to set their sights outside Vancouver.
"Barring unforeseen circumstances, we expect Chinese real estate investment in 2017 to come close to matching that of 2016. There is no firm data, but National Bank
of Canada hypothesizes that Chinese invest around $38 billion annually in Canadian property,” Charles Pittar, CEO of Juwai.com, said “That's a tremendous boon for the country and is more than double the $16.4 billion annual value of Canada's number one export to China, agricultural products."
Juwai.com, a Chinese international property portal that contains international listings and draws over 2 million visitors a year, teamed up with Sotheby’s to pen its latest report, China to Canada: International Home Buyer Insights
The report found that demand for conventional housing from potential overseas investors outweighs demand for luxury homes.
The vast majority of users search for homes below $500,000, with those inquiries comprising 57% of Vancouver’s searches, 67% of Calgary’s, and 68% of Toronto and Montreal’s.
The study also found Vancouver property searches fell 81% year-over-year in July 2016, one month after the city’s 15% foreign buyer tax was announced.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, interest for pricier homes in Vancouver encountered much less of a decline in interest.
Properties listed at $1 million and above experienced an enquiry drop following the policy announcement, but rebounded to an 18% year-over-year increase in Q4 of last year.
Toronto, meanwhile, experienced a 2% year-over-year uptick in listings searches following the announcement before ending Q4 at +18% year-over-year.
"As political and economic headwinds drive people from around the world to seek lifestyle and financial oases, Canada's major cities are becoming increasingly attractive real estate destinations," says Brad Henderson, President and CEO of Sotheby's International Realty Canada. "This report sheds new light on emerging trends in the motivation, influence and interests of Chinese homebuyers so that future market activity can be better anticipated."
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