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Foreign nationals continue to flock to Vancouver's homes

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Posted by Ephraim Vecina

on Thursday, 16 November 2017 06:28

iStock vancouverhomes SMALLAccording to the latest property transfer data released by the British Columbia government, the proportion of sales involving foreign nationals in Metro Vancouver inched up between April and September.

The data showed that 5% of the 6,105 property transfers in September involved foreign nationals, up from 2.5% in April.

This remained far below the percentage of foreign nationals buying homes before the former Liberal government implemented a 15% foreign buyers’ tax in August 2016 in an effort to cool the hot housing market, The Canadian Press reported.

The B.C. Finance Ministry previously reported that from June 10 to August 1, 2016, 13.2% of all property transfer transactions in Metro Vancouver involved foreign buyers.

Despite attempts to improve housing affordability, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver said in August this year that the typical price of a home in Metro Vancouver had surpassed $1 million.

Read more: Vancouver condo market in demand

The New Democrat government has said that it is reviewing transaction data along with the foreign buyers’ tax and an interest-free loan program for first-time homebuyers in an effort to decide whether such measures should be kept, revised, or scrapped altogether.

Among municipalities, Richmond saw the highest rate of foreign buyers between April and September this year at 8%, while foreign buyers accounted for 4.3% of sales in both the city of Victoria and the surrounding Capital Regional District.

The tax only applies residential real estate in Metro Vancouver.

There were a total 84,139 property transfers in B.C. between April 1 and September 30. Foreign nationals were involved in 2.8% of those transfers, representing more than $2 billion.


Related stories:
Activity in Toronto, Vancouver continues to recover
Western Canadian commercial real estate trends


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