Greater Victoria among hottest luxury markets in Canada

Region has developed a strong reputation around the Pacific Rim

The Greater Victoria region might not sound as illustrious as Sydney or Hong Kong, but if you travel around the vast Pacific Rim, as Mark Roozendaal of Preferred Homes recently did, a clear message emerges: Victoria has a strong international reputation.

“We are like a mini world city,” he said.

This international reputation is one of the reasons why Victoria has seen a 10 per cent spike in the sale of properties over $1 million during the first seven months of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016, according to a report from Re/Max Canada. This development places Victoria in the same category as Calgary, the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and Oakville, Ont. where sales of luxury homes rose by various rates.

First things first. Roozendaal acknowledges a level of price inflation. While homes selling for $1 million and above qualify as luxury, there is luxury and then there is luxury. But even if we raise the luxury threshold, Victoria has seen a spike, said Roozendaal. Between January and July of 2016, 12 homes above $3 million sold in the region, he said. Between January and July of 2017, 20 sold.

Compare these figures to developments in Vancouver, where sales of $1 million-plus single-family detached homes declined 32 per cent during the same period.

The report cited among reasons the foreign buyer tax that the previous provincial government passed in August 2016, as the tax discouraged offshore buyers entering this segment of the market. At the same time, a strong mix of demand from downsizing baby boomers, foreign buyers and affluent younger couples led to an 11 per cent year-over-year increase in luxury condo sales in Vancouver, it read.

Luxury condo sales in Victoria also rose to 38 units from 27 units, said Roozendaal.

Buyers fall into three groups, he said. The first are what Roozendaal calls downsizers, who might have sold their larger homes in more expensive real estate markets like Vancouver. The second are citizens of the United States, who are moving to Canada because of the current political situation in that country following the presidential election of Donald Trump. The third are families who are moving to Victoria from all over the world, as well as Canada, to take advantage of the region’s education system, safety and quality of living.

While buyers from Asia constitute a group of foreign buyers, Roozendaal says the numbers are not as high as people might think.

“We definitely see it in Victoria, but it’s actually a small demographic,” he said.

Overall, Roozendaal expects that Victoria’s luxury segment will continue to grow. Christie’s International Real Estate earlier this year ranked Victoria just behind Toronto in terms of being the fastest growing luxury real estate market in the world.

According to the report, Victoria “witnessed its best year ever for luxury home sales” in 2016.

Victoria, he said, has massive upside potential when it comes to the condo market, he said. Victoria’s large waterfront will also continue to draw interest, he said.

 

This home in the 2900 block of Tudor Avenue currently lists for $1.79 million. A new report says sales of luxury properties over $1 million increased 10 per cent in Victoria during the seven months of 2017 compared to the same period 2016. Wolfgang Depner/News Staff

Just Posted

Clover Point amenities plan for sewage line project projects 50 parking spots lost

New bike path proposed to be built on top of Dallas Road sewer line

VIDEO: Sooke couple’s elaborate Christmas display

Couple has been adding to tiny village display for past 11 years

Otter Point Fire Department hosts 26th Polar Bear Swim

Annual event takes place Jan. 1 at Whiffen Spit beach in Sooke

William Head fence debate a big deal out of nothing says officials

Metchosin Mayor John Ranns met with William Head warden Thursday

CRD divided over fire dispatch, agrees to investigate single site option

‘Saanich taxpayers have been subsidizing fire dispatch in the region for several years’

VIDEO: Average Canadian food bill to rise by $348 in 2018

Atlantic Canada and B.C. will see the most increases for consumers

Debt-to-household-income ratio rises in third quarter

Total household credit market debt grew to $2.11 trillion in the third quarter

B.C. Mountie told to resign after texting teenage sex assault victim

RCMP documents say Const. Brian Eden sent sexually inappropriate photos to 17-year-old girl

Family doctors should learn to treat addiction, not shun patients: scientist

B.C. Centre on Substance Use’s Dr. Evan Wood said efforts underway to change addiction medicine image

Four dog deaths investigated in Cranbrook

One vet suggests a parallel to these deaths and similar ones in 2016

Meningococcal disease outbreak declared in Okanagan

Five cases in last six months among 15- to 19-year-olds, including one in Vernon

Province rejects Ajax mine in Kamloops

KGHM Ajax had proposed a 1,700-hectare open-pit copper and gold mine, just southwest of Kamloops

Border officers rally at B.C.’s Peace Arch

CBSA employees tire of ‘lack of respect’

VIDEO: Colquitz students cram Saanich Police cruisers with food

Food literally burst out of the door from Const. Lisa Bruschetta’s cruiser

Most Read