Census data for investors

The recently released census revealed an interesting trend of housing demand, and it’s one investors should take note of.

For your next investment, you may want to target a smaller, developing market, according to one real estate professional.

“It’s interesting to see all the areas that are growing. It’s more than just the main centre cores. We do have a lot of the main centre cores that are growing but we also do seem to see a lot of the outskirts, the suburbs are really increasing at a pretty good rate,” Shawn Zigelstein, a representative for Royal LePage, told Canadian Real Estate Wealth. “People are moving out of the main centres and going into smaller towns, for example Oshawa is outpacing Toronto.

“Barrie being very close to the top of the list (with growth over the) Canadian average is an important thing to look at.”

People are increasingly forsaking living in city cores for outlying areas, according to Zigelstein, and that has to do with affordability.

Interestingly, Oshawa saw its population increase (+6.6%) at a higher percentage than Toronto’s (+6.2%) and Victoria’s (+6.7%) outpaced Vancouver’s (+6.5%) from 2011-2016, according to the latest census.

Other small markets that saw significant population booms were Sylvan Lake, Alberta (+19.6%), Wasaga Beach, Ontario (+17.9%), and Steinbach, Manitoba (+17%).

Canada’s population grew by 1.7 million between 2011 and 2016.

And that means increased demand for real estate.

So which parts of Canada are enjoying the largest population boom?

The West, for starters.

Alberta grew at twice the national average between this census and the last and Manitoba’s population increased by 5.8%.

Manitoba’s mark surpassed the national average for the first time in 80 years due, in large part, to immigration.

Nearly one-third of Canadians now live in the West

Further east, Quebec’s population surpassed eight million and Ontario’s reached 13.4 million.

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