Montreal now a budding luxury real estate powerhouse—Sotheby’s

Sotheby’s rejects the idea that this growth is precipitated by foreign buyers fleeing from Vancouver and Toronto taxes

Montreal now a budding luxury real estate powerhouse—Sotheby’s
Montreal is emerging as a luxury real estate “hot spot”, while Vancouver and Toronto sales should pick up this fall after somewhat sluggish times, according to a new report from Sotheby’s International Realty Canada.

The city is expected to continue on its current trajectory “as a strong leader on Canada’s luxury real estate landscape this fall,” the report stated, as quoted by The Canadian Press.

Sotheby’s International Realty Canada CEO Brad Henderson rejected the idea that Montreal’s growth is primarily coming from foreign buyers who have shifted away from the newly-taxed Vancouver and Toronto markets, although the study cited some anecdotal evidence of “an uptick in interest from foreign buyers seeking residences.”

Henderson emphasized that Montreal is an attractive place to live and work, with the added bonus of having comparatively less expensive real estate prices.

The Sotheby’s report also predicted “a brisk and active” market for luxury real estate in Toronto this fall and for Vancouver to regain momentum as a strong Canadian economy.

The rosy outlook came amid a slew of policy changes—including some from Ottawa and a couple provincial governments—designed to cool the country's hot housing markets.
“The psychological confidence that people had in the marketplace was shaken by all of the different factors that were put in there,” Henderson said, in reference to a recent drop in sales in properties of more than $1 million in Toronto.

In July and August, sales of condominiums and houses over $1 million in Toronto fell 27 per cent compared to the same months the year before, according to Sotheby’s. Transactions of properties over $4 million in the city fell by nearly the same amount (28 per cent).

Part of that drop came as buyers and sellers in Ontario grappled with a new 15 per cent tax on foreign buyers of properties in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Region, which includes Toronto and several nearby areas, introduced by the provincial government in late April.

Related stories:
The state of the Canadian high-end property market for the first half of 2017
There is now better foreign buyer data than ever before