High prices grow T.O. condo demand

The BMO Bank of Montreal report shows that plans to buy a condo in the next five years among homeowners in Toronto and Calgary are on the rise, even as buyers in Montreal and Vancouver reconsider the prospects of high-rise living.
The report, conducted by Pollara, examined intentions to buy property in the next five years among homeowners in four of Canada's major city centres, and revealed:
•         Toronto: One-third (31 per cent) of prospective buyers in Toronto plan to purchase a condo in the next five years, up 11 points from the fall.
•         Vancouver: Intent to buy condos in Vancouver has dipped by five points, from 33 per cent in the fall to 28 per cent.
•         Calgary: Prospects for condos among home buyers in Calgary has risen 8 points from the fall (33 per cent versus 25 per cent), while intent to buy a traditional home has dropped from 71 per cent in the fall to 58 per cent.
•         Montreal: 24 per cent of buyers in Montreal will be opting for condo living, down 3 points. However, intent to buy a house has risen sharply by 16 points, from 46 per cent in the fall to 62 per cent.

“For many first-time buyers, particularly in high-priced markets like Toronto and Vancouver, condos represent an affordable stepping stone into the housing market,” said Frances Hinojosa, with BMO. “On the other side of the spectrum, many in the baby boomer demographic may be looking to downsize from the family home - leading some to consider the condo market as well.”

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