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Report: Montreal among world's best for quality of life

by Steve Randall on 06 Mar 2020

Global real estate firm Knight Frank has published its 2020 Wealth Report which, for the first time, includes a City Wellbeing Index.

This new ranking considers which cities are focused on improving quality of life to attract entrepreneurs and skilled employees, along with helping companies grow and succeed.

The metrics used include personal security, lifestyle, healthcare, crime, work-life balance and access to green spaces.

Montreal makes this inaugural listing at number 9, the only North American city in a top 10 dominated by European cities. Australia and Singapore are the only other cities outside Europe. Oslo tops the list.

The Montreal luxury real estate sector had the highest rate of growth in average sales prices over the past year, according to the latest Royal LePage Luxury Property Report.

Luxury homes
The report also includes Knight Frank’s Prime International Residential Index (PIRI) which tracks the movement of luxury residential prices in 100 cities and second home markets globally for the 12-months to the end of December 2019.

The PIRI shows that European and Asian cities make up most of the top 10 with Houston the only North American city included.

“While growth ranged from double-digit hikes in some markets to significant falls in others, we saw a shift in the trend of moderating growth that has prevailed since 2013,” said Kate Everett-Allen, head of international residential research at Knight Frank. “In 2019, the 100 locations covered by PIRI recorded average price rises of almost 2% – up from 1.3% in 2018, but still some way off the 2.8% recorded in 2013.”

Coronavirus impact
The report notes that the impact of the coronavirus outbreak is not yet certain, but head of valuation and advisory Thomas Lam, says residential sales and property prices are expected to fall in the coming months.

“It is estimated that the luxury residential prices in 2020 will fall by about 10%, while the super-luxury residential market remain relatively stable with a smaller decline,” he said. “Fortunately, with the current owners' strong holding power and low interest rates, we do not expect residential property prices to drop drastically like the 1997 financial crisis or the SARS epidemic in 2003.”

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