Foreign home ownership in Metro Vancouver has been a hot topic for years, with many owners, politicians and realtors citing buyers from outside the country as one of the main reasons prices in the region are so high.
For the first time, Statistics Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation have released a joint report breaking down the percentage of homes owned by individuals not living in Canada, and the results of this report may be surprising to some. According to the report, 4.8% of homes in Metro Vancouver are owned by non-residents of Canada.
“Many have blamed foreigners – mainly the Chinese – for the sky-high prices that have surged in the past three years,” said Sherry Cooper, chief economist for Dominion Lending Centres. “A voter backlash spurred provincial governments to introduce a 15% tax on non-resident buyers in Vancouver (August 2016) and Toronto (April 2017), though earlier available data showed that foreign purchases were only between 5%-10% of all home sales.”“In both regions, the tax slowed housing activity mainly by changing psychology.”
The breakdown varies widely depending on municipality. The biggest percentage was found in Vancouver (7.6%), followed closely by Richmond (7.5%).
A breakdown of the top 10% highest percentages of foreign ownership, by municipality:
- Vancouver: 7.6%;
- Richmond: 7.5%;
- West Vancouver: 6.2%;
- Lions Bay: 5.6%;
- Burnaby: 5%;
- Belcarra: 4.9%;
- Coquitlam: 4.7%;
- Bowen Island: 4.2%;
- Anmore: 4.2%; and
- Greater Vancouver A/UBC: 4.1%.
￼The percentage also varied widely by home type. Non-residents own 7.9% of condos in Metro Vancouver, according to the report. By comparison, only 3.2% of single-detached Vancouver homes have foreign ownership.
The report found that the average value for single-family homes was much higher for non-resident-owned homes than it was for resident-owned properties. The average home of this type owned by non-residents was $2.3 million, compared with $1.6 million for resident-owned houses. The biggest difference was found in the Greater Vancouver A subdivision (UBC), with non-residents’ single-family homes averaging around $8 million, compared with $5.3 million for non-residents.
To view the complete report, visit here.