The Ontario government introduced the Fair Housing Plan on April 20, 2017 to slow down the heated real estate market. Although there was no real data available, the “foreign buyer” (or non-resident owner to use proper terminology) was blamed for much of this. In the Vaughan real estate market, many touted the foreign buyer was responsible for at least 10% of purchases. Was this reality? Or was the foreign buyer just a boogeyman made up to complain about rising home prices?
On Dec 19, 2017, Statistics Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) released a joint report to address this lack of data. The Canadian Housing Statistics Program Report looks at foreign ownership rates in the Greater Toronto Area and the Greater Vancouver Area.
Foreign Ownership Rates in Vaughan and Toronto
So, what is the ownership rate in Vaughan for non-residents? A mere 1.8%. The city of Toronto for comparison is 4.9%. The highest municipality in York Region is Richmond Hill with a mere 3.6%. The Toronto CMA (an area commonly described as what we call the Greater Toronto Area) is 3.4%.
Unfortunately, what the report can’t show is properties purchased by Canadian residents with funds coming from overseas.
What are foreign buyers buying?
The report shows some interesting stats. For example, CMHC says that overall, foreign buyers owned less than one per cent of the condo stock in 17 metropolitan areas across the country. However, in the Toronto CMA specifically, about half of non-residents owned properties classified as condominiums.
Again, in the Toronto CMA, the average value of non-condo properties tends to be higher for non-residents than residents
Want to read the full report? You can find it here