It may be a small-scale study, but the statistics are sobering: One association says a large portion of buyers in Vancouver over the past six months are likely mainland Chinese.
An academic case study, entitled “Ownership patterns of single family home sale on selected west side neighbourhoods in the city of Vancouver,” by city planner Andy Yan, found that 70% of buyers in west-Vancouver neighbourhoods over the past half-year are likely from mainland China.
The study employed name analysis methodology commonly used in public health, political science, and Asian American studies to identify the origin of names. According to that methodology, “non-anglicized Chinese” names suggest newer immigrants or Chinese nationals.
The study found that 70% of homes purchased in the area over the six-month period were done so by people with non-anglicized Chinese names.
Not exactly the most concrete evidence, but the author of the study is confident in the methodology.
“There may be some mis-categorizations as an Anglicized Chinese name could be someone who is a new immigrant and a non-Anglicized Chinese name could be a locally born citizen, but after an external review, we feel this is minimal,” Yan writes in the study.
The most interesting finding for brokers, perhaps, is that most of the properties were purchased with mortgages – defying conventional thinking that these foreign-owned homes are usually purchased outright.
According to the study, only 18% of the 172 home purchases were not mortgaged by banks.
It may not come as a surprise to some brokers, though.
“I had a request from a foreigner who wanted to purchase 20 condos and I was able to find a lender for that buyer,” Walid Hammami, a broker with Dominion Lending Centres
, told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “I didn’t go through with the transaction … in the end I didn’t want to get involved.”
to access the study.