Vancouver Real Estate Agent Dan Miller & www.GreaterVancouverHomes.ca
Foreign students drive market
As more people get exposure to Canada as an offshoot of globalization, the overseas investor market will rise, Hlinka said. As an instructor at George Brown College in Toronto, he has seen an explosion in the number of foreign students.
“When their parents come to visit, they get an idea of what real estate costs here, and they can’t believe how cheap it is. They want to buy because they think it’s a bargain.”
In addition to China, investors pouring money into real estate are flocking to Canada from the Middle East, Korea, Russia, India and the Philippines as well, said Tony Ma, who owns HomeLife Landmark Realty in Markham.
About 65 per cent of Ma’s agents are Chinese and the bulk of his business comes from Chinese clients. Most are new immigrants to Canada, but about 20 per cent are foreign investors, including parents overseas who buy on behalf of their children studying in this country.
Fewer than five per cent are pure investors with no ties to Canada, said Ma, a former neurosurgeon who moved to Toronto from Zhengzhou, China, in 1998.
"Most of our buyers are part of Canadian culture. I don’t think they are going to push local Canadian people out of the market. When immigrants come to Canada today, they have money, not like when I came to Canada 20 years ago. I didn’t have money."
Last year, buoyed by his strong ties to the mainland China market, Ma’s agency sold 263 homes priced at more than $1 million, with about 40 per cent of those being all-cash deals with no conditions attached