Interest in Canadian real estate is back up among Chinese homebuyers. However, a new report found that properties in Canada’s biggest cities, Toronto and Vancouver, are no longer the highest in demand.

Chinese buyers are now flocking to properties in Halifax and Calgary, according to a report by Juwai.com, a real estate portal that connects Chinese buyers with international real estate. In 2018, interest in Halifax shot up by 394%, while interest in Calgary grew by 234.4%.

“With steep foreign buyer taxes and high prices in Vancouver and Toronto, we have seen an increasing number of Chinese buyers shift to other cities in Canada,” Juwai CEO Carrie Law said in a statement.

Interest in Canadian real estate fell among Chinese nationals after the introduction of the foreign buyers’ tax in Vancouver and Toronto. Initially, a 15% tax was imposed on non-resident purchases in the Metro Vancouver area in 2016. However, the tax increased to 20% in 2018, and its geographic restriction expanded to include areas like Fraser Valley and Nanaimo Regional District.

In 2017, the Ontario government also imposed a 15% tax on non-resident purchases in the Greater Golden Horseshoe area, which includes the GTA.

Besides the foreign buyers’ tax, there are other reasons why Chinese nationals are now looking to Halifax and Calgary for Canadian property, Law said.

“[Canadian real estate businesses] are successfully marketing local real estate in terms of affordability, lifestyle, and educational institutions,” the CEO explained. Hence, cities similar to Halifax and Calgary are finally on the radar of prospective Chinese buyers.

Source Credit: Isabelle Khoo (torontostoreys.com)