As Canada grapples with the impact of foreign investors in the country's two hottest real estate markets, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says international purchasers have very little impact on housing prices in Canada's second largest city – Montreal.
According to the report released Wednesday, about one per cent of condominiums in the greater Montreal area were owned by people whose primary residence is outside of Canada.
Most properties acquired by foreign owners were condos, marking 73 per cent of purchases by international buyers, followed by single-family homes (23 per cent) and plexes made up of two to five units (4 per cent). Housing investments made by international buyers were primarily concentrated within the city of Montreal, with 80 per cent of all purchases made within the municipality.
CMHC also found that generally foreign investors are purchasing condos for a higher price than local residents. In the Ville-Marie neighbourhood, international buyers paid about 10 per cent more on average for a condo.
However, given the small number of foreign investors in Montreal, CMHC says the risks related to the presence of international buyers are limited.
In a separate report, the Teranet-National Bank house price index showed that, nationally, home prices in Canada rose 2.3 per cent in June from May. In Montreal, the gain was less than the country-wide average, but still strong at one per cent.
Foreign ownerships has been a growing focus of attention among those concerned about surging prices in markets such as Vancouver and Toronto.
CMHC has been taking a closer look at the role of foreign buyers on the Canadian real estate market in recent months. According to a report released in December, the share of units owned by foreign investors rose in six major cities. CMHC found 3.3 per cent of condos in the Toronto metropolitan area are owned by people whose primary residence is outside of Canada, up from 2.4 per cent last year.
In the Vancouver metropolitan area, the figure rose to 3.5 per cent from 2.3 per cent in 2014.