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The Second-Hottest Canadian Condo Market

15 June 2013

You can’t go anywhere these days without hearing of the overheated condo market in Toronto. And the numbers in the future forecast don’t look much better. So where’s the good news for investors? Are condos completely out now as an investment altogether? It’s important to remember that while areas like Toronto and Vancouver were once the place to be (and still are for some,) there are other condo markets around the nation. We’ll spend this weekend looking at the two other hot markets that don’t come with near the risk. And the runner-up for the hottest condo markets for investors is Montreal.

Montreal is currently seeing some of the lowest condo prices in the nation, with the average sitting around $219,000. The vacancy rate is also one of the lowest at 2.8 per cent, which means that the renters there are desperately trying to find something; and rents can become high due to that tight supply and high demand. Good news for the investor looking to turn a high rental profit. Of course there’s also all the European and Old World charm that comes with the city, the incredible nightlife, and some of the best shopping in the world, but all of those things are just bonuses.

So what are the best types of properties to invest in? While duplexes and triplexes once ruled the Montreal investor market, due to the fact that they could be scooped up very cheaply and then rented out – and sometimes the beginner investor could even live in one themselves all the while. But those properties are quickly disappearing from the Montreal landscape, leaving investors to turn towards the lucrative condo market.

“Good-quality condos can be purchased at reasonable prices within the neighbourhood that attract renters. This is a unique situation in Montreal that a prudent investor can take advantage of,” says Paul Hatfield, real estate agent at Re/Max in Quebec.

“We are seeing softening in overall pricing for condos due to the overflow of investors and we are not seeing the huge year-over-year gains we have seen for the last few years in the condo market,” he continues. “What this means is that the increase in values is cooling short term, giving the market time to catch up. This is a healthy situation. If an investor can get in the condo real estate market now, he can take advantage as prices level out before they begin to jump in value again.”

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