Market tries to stop the exodus

by Grainne Burns17 Oct 2013

A number of those would-be politicians are declaring big plans to halt the mass exodus of young professionals and families from the city with promises of financial assistance for those who cannot afford to get into the market.

The exodus of people from Montreal Island to the suburbs – around about 22,000 people in 2012 – has sparked a huge debate amongst officials, with Coalition Montreal leader Marcel Côté saying the region “should not become a city of condos.”

Speaking to CREW, Paul Hatfield from Royal LePage Village in Montreal says such proposed moves are not meant to discourage investors from entering the market but to ensure the city is accessible and populated with young people. According to the Institut de la statistique du Québec, between 2006 and 2011, the city of Montreal added 900 families, while 38,000 were added to the suburbs.

“The city has lost a lot of young professionals who are moving out because it’s cheaper. That is a concern for the officials,” he says. “There are a number of financial incentives to help buyers but this is coming out of the taxpayer’s pocket so it’s hard to get the right balance for everyone involved.”

In August, the city unveiled a three-year, $136-million plan that offers families financial aid for the purchase of new homes worth up to $350,000 in certain neighbourhoods. Critics, however, say that figure is too low considering the media selling price is $362,500.

Once all of the elections are completed, both local and Federal, Hatfield says they are expecting more sales activity as “buyers want the market stability to invest in.”

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