Victoria market to benefit from inbound migration - real estate official

by Ephraim Vecina on 16 Jan 2017
Victoria home prices might very well experience a healthy upward climb in 2017 as a result of inbound migration from other Canadian provinces, according to the province’s outgoing real estate board chief.
 
“There’s more buyer demand than we can supply right now,” Mike Nugent told the Toronto Star. “In Victoria, because we’ve got so few places available — all our projects are sold out — and because of the shortage of inventory even though sales will be less, we expect prices to continue to keep inching up.”
 
Migrants from other parts of the country are taking advantage of Victoria’s strong fundamentals, the official said. In particular, baby boomers from Vancouver are trading their B.C. properties for similar (or even larger) homes that can be acquired for much less.
 
“Our economy is one of the best in the country right now,” Nugent explained. “We’ve got lots of jobs happening in all sectors. That’s attracting everybody.”
 
However, contrary to initial predictions, the Victoria real estate segment has yet to see a surge of overseas capital following the imposition of a 15 per cent foreign buyer’s tax in B.C. in mid-2016.
 
“There’s certainly no evidence so far of showing a big shift of foreign buyers to Victoria,” Nugent said. “As soon as [the Metro Vancouver home tax] was implemented everybody phoned and said, ‘what are the numbers like? You must be getting an avalanche.’”
 
Numbers from the provincial government showed that 90 property transfers involving foreign buyers pushed through in Victoria from June 10 to August 1, just prior to the implementation of the B.C. tax. Meanwhile, November 2016 figures indicated that only 39 deals involving overseas capital were completed in the city throughout that month.


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