Chinese investment surge hits Metro Vancouver housing market

March 1, 2011

Below is an excerpt from a Vancouver Sun article published by Brian Mortan dated February, 28, 2011.When real estate entrepreneur Cam Good hosted a group of predominantly mainland Chinese investors this Wednesday at a White Rock condo showing, he was tapping into a market that’s surging across much of Metro Vancouver.

Good, president of The Key, a Vancouver-based sales and marketing firm that’s focusing on a new wave of Chinese buyers, figures he’s sold more than 500 homes to mainland Chinese investors and immigrants in January and February in Vancouver and Toronto.

He’s also opened an office in Beijing’s business district -The Key China -where Chinese buyers can purchase Canadian condos from a presentation centre and view videos that showcase various condo developments and the virtues of Canada.

There’s an über-wealthy upper class forming and there’s a strong middle class growing in China. Across the Lower Mainland, especially Richmond and Vancouver’s west side, mainland Chinese buyers and immigrants are becoming a major part of the market, in some cases competing with each other through multiple offers.

“Some of the most expensive [Vancouver] real estate is only being marketed to Chinese buyers. The demand for Vancouver properties appears to be fuelled by many factors -including, ironically, a crackdown on property purchases in mainland China that may be moving much of that investment overseas, particularly to Canada.

As well, local Vancouver area Chinese-language newspapers are being used by realtors and agents to specifically target mainland Chinese buyers, citing Canada and Vancouver’s stability and strong local real estate returns.

The China Daily report also said buyers from the Chinese mainland represent between 40 and 50 per cent of the current market for pre-sale projects in Vancouver.
But China’s effort to cool an overheating market is just one reason investment is pouring into Canada.

Richmond MacDonald Realty realtor David Lindsay said: “January and February has been almost exclusively mainland Chinese buyers of big lots, with a house of little value on it. “Vancouver is an extremely desirable place to be.”

Meanwhile, Bosa Properties announced this week that its 34-storey Sovereign tower in Burnaby’s Metrotown sold out immediately, surpassing the single day sales record in the Burnaby market by selling $98-million worth of real estate.

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