This Week’s Top Stories: The New Foreign Buying Threat In The US, Vancouver’s Deteriorating Mortgages, and Toronto’s Luxury Buying Soars

This Week’s Top Stories - The New Foreign Buying Threat In The US, Vancouver's Deteriorating Mortgages, and Toronto’s Luxury Buying Soars

Didn’t have time to read everything this week? No worries, because we have you covered. Here’s our weekly cheat sheet for the most important information on Canadian real estate you need to know. The main points are there, but if you want a deeper dive we’ve linked to the original article.


The US Has A Foreign Buying Problem, And It’s Not China

The US is seeing a flood of foreign buyers, and they’re not from China. Canadians, formerly the number one foreign buyers of US real estate, topped the list of search inquiries looking for US property in 19 out of 20 markets. The other market, they came in second. In fact, Chinese buyers didn’t even rank in the top 5 markets for search in March 2016.

While that’s not too surprising, we did find an interesting stat from the National Association of Realtors. Canadians are almost twice as likely as Chinese buyers to be non-residents, leaving the property empty most of the year. Oh yeah, and these aren’t snowbirds either – they’re mostly buying suburban property in markets reporting unusual levels of foreign buying activity.

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Average Home Price In Canada Is Up Over 19% From Last Year

If the price of real estate is related to density issues, why are prices up across the country? The average home in a Canadian urban centre is up over 19% from the same time last year. The steepest climbs were observed around the GTA, even in towns surrounded by farmland. This is starting to look less like a demand issue, than a d**k measuring contest to see who can pay more.

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Vancouver Had More Detached Homes For Sale Than Condos Last Month

Vancouver’s detached homes are often considered “rare,” and a dying commodity. So what does it mean when there’s less condo units for sale than detached units? Condo listings, the now unicorn of the Vancouver real estate market, fell below the level of detached inventory. This pushed prices higher, even with a decline in sales.

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Vancouver Mortgages Are Rapidly Deteriorating In Quality

High-ratio buyers in Vancouver are stretching themselves thin for real estate, even more so than usual. According to the Bank of Canada’s calculations, in 2016 the average loan-to-income of high-ratio buyers is now dangerously high in 3 out of 4 postal codes in the city. This is a rapid deterioration in quality means there are a lot of people that are extremely vulnerable to even a slight correction in prices.

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Toronto Condos See Price Gains, More Sales In April

Toronto’s condo market saw the average sale price rise faster than any other type of housing. The average condo price across the Greater Toronto Area is now $541,393, a 32.1% increase from the same time last year. Listings declined from the same time last year, and sales increased. One thing worth noting is sales declined from the month prior, which doesn’t typically happen this early in the year.

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Toronto Luxury Sales Up Almost 75% In April

Many buyers might be hitting the pause button on Toronto real estate, but the city’s wealthiest appear to be less likely to do so. Despite declining sales, and more new listings in the detached market, the luxury segment is booming. In April, sales of Toronto real estate over $2 million increased by 75% from the same time last year. Rich folks problems, am I right?

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