September 22, 2016

Moving to Canada: Stable Real Estate Market and Low Interest Rates Prevail

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Moving to Canada: Stable Real Estate Market and Low Interest Rates Prevail

Posted by: Linda LaChapelle, Director, Mobility Solutions

Canada has been enjoying a strong, stable real estate market for some years, with near historic low interest rates. I would like to share Cartus’ recent Canadian Real Estate Market Overview, prepared by Coldwell Banker Canada Operations ULC, which provides current market information and forecast data for the rest of 2016 and looking forward to 2017.

How Do Canadian Real Estate Trends Impact Your Relocation Program?

According to the latest industry forecast from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national sales activity and average prices reached new heights in the first half of 2016 amid a growing supply shortage of single family homes in the provinces of British Columbia (BC) and Ontario.

Most regions of Canada are expected to be positively impacted from low interest rates, and Canada’s immigration-friendly climate will continue to drive a near-record number of immigrants, so relocating employees will need to have that in mind when searching for homes.

Important New Legislation in British Columbia

In July, new legislation was introduced by BC’s provincial government to tax foreign buyers of homes in Metro Vancouver. This was designed to curb speculative buying in response to a growing affordability crisis in the region’s housing market. The new 15% tax, which went into effect in August, applies to the sale of all residential properties within 22 communities in Metro Vancouver and applies to buyers moving to Canada who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents. Since this was a surprise move by the provincial government and only applies to one metropolitan market, its impact cannot be predicted at this early stage. This and other regional disparities underscore the importance of dealing with a local real estate professional.

Highlights of Canadian Real Estate Market for 2016 and 2017

Following are a few highlights just in from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). For the rest of 2016, national sales activity is forecast to rise by 6.1%, representing a new annual record. Forecasts are for BC to have the largest annual sales increase, and demand remains high in Ontario, but will be constrained by lack of inventory. The national average price forecast has been revised upward to a 10.8% increase over last year.

Looking forward to 2017, national sales activity is forecast to remain virtually unchanged from this year, and the national average price is forecast to remain stable.

Visit us at the 2016 Canadian Employee Relocation Council (CERC) conference, being held from September 25-27 at the Westin Bayshore in Vancouver, BC. I will be co-presenting Relocation’s Biggest Challenges: A Look at Trends and Best Practices with my colleague Amy Blaskovich, exploring the ever‐changing mobility landscape and discussing key findings from Cartus’ Biggest Challenges survey.

Be sure to read Cartus’ Canadian Real Estate Market Overview which provides valuable information for companies relocating employees to and within Canada. And please feel free to email me at with any questions on the Canadian market.

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Posted By

Linda Lachapelle

About Linda

Linda is director, mobility solutions working in Canada. She has more than two decades of domestic Canada and global relocation experience, specializing in consultative sales, account management, and strategic market planning.

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