Where to invest: The West and the Prairies

Vancouver, the top market in the West, has no doubt hit a hot streak, leading some to worry that it might be getting overheated. The benchmark for residential properties was up 19 per cent in April over the same month a year ago, but as prices continue to rise there, investors can still find worthwhile buying opportunities in the rest of Western Canada if they look in the right spots.

The key is to stay in areas that are both still affordable, but also convenient in terms of reaching employment, especially with public transport, says Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president, Re/Max of Western Canada.

The Prairie Region has been a starkly different market than B.C., coming off a recent downturn in the market in Calgary especially. From an investment point of view, buying now has allowed for greater buying power and choice than during the economic boom time.

We summarize some of the best places to invest in both markets, taking a cue from the Real Estate Investment Network’s 2010 picks for top Western investment towns.

For the full article highlighting market trends in British Columbia and Alberta, pick up a copy of the July issue, on newsstands now.

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