Depending on region, it could be a small condo or a large property with a wine cellar
The pandemic has pummelled many industries in Canada. Real estate isn’t one of them.
House prices are soaring, with the average national price now standing at $716,828, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association’s MLS system. That’s up 31.6 per cent in a year, the biggest annual gain on record. The prices haven’t curbed demand either; sales were up in March by 70 per cent compared to a year ago.
According to Leo Otto, a real-estate appraiser, price hikes are not limited to the hot zones like Toronto. He says the pandemic has unleashed buyers from Toronto and its commuter suburbs and pushed the real-estate frenzy into smaller cities like London, Ont., and Windsor.
So what do you get for nearly three-quarters of a million dollars in Canada?
CBC looked through listings on April 26 and 27 and found homes across the country whose prices sit around the national average. Some city centres had no homes for sale around $716,000. In that case, lower-priced homes were chosen.
Here are pictures of some homes that can be bought with this money across Canada:
Vancouver, British Columbia
For $716,000, buyers will have a hard time finding anything other than a one-bedroom condominium like this one, which was listed for $719,000. Still, the hot market has prompted the province’s real-estate watchdog and regulator to warn buyers to do their research and be aware of risks before making an offer.
The benchmark price — the typical price of a home — in Calgary rose to $441,900 in March. This townhouse, on the market for $719,900, includes four bedrooms and three bathrooms, far more than what could be purchased in Vancouver for a similar price.
With an asking price of $719,000, this property boasts enough space for a workout area, a selling point for many people in the pandemic. Saskatchewan’s market has exploded due to people looking for larger homes during the pandemic. “This past February was the busiest February ever in the history of all Saskatchewan MLS,” said Tanya LaRose, of Royal LePage Varsity.
Winnipeg’s average selling price last month was $318,074, according to the Manitoba Real Estate Association. So for $699,900, a potential buyer could own a large five-bedroom home. The association says that fewer properties are coming on the market, pushing prices upward.
In other parts of the country, $720,000 could get you a large lot. Not so in Toronto, where you are more likely to find a condo like this one, which has a small outdoor balcony. Sales in the area reached a record 15,652 in January, up 97 per cent from 7,945 during the same time last year.
This property is on the market for $699,000. Windsor prices have risen due to the influx of buyers from hot spots like Toronto. Leo Otto, the real estate appraiser, predicts there could be a softening of the market this winter but no major correction.
At 967 square feet, this condo is considerably larger than the ones located in Toronto and Vancouver. It also has a more spacious patio with a view. Still, buyers in Montreal will likely only find duplexes and condos selling for the national average price. This one is listed for $715,000.
Moncton, New Brunswick
Newcomers, who are driving the real estate boom in New Brunswick, will find their dollars go far. For this property, listed at $699,000, the buyer even gets a wine cellar. The province’s real-estate market is so hot that previously ignored vacant land, half-built developments and empty building lots are suddenly being swept up.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
This three-bedroom townhouse, on the market for $695,000, is just a short walk to downtown. The Nova Scotia Association of Realtors says that 1,577 units were sold across the province last month, a new sales record for the month of March and an increase of more than 65 per cent from March 2020.
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
According to data released by the Prince Edward Island Real Estate Association, the average cost of a home jumped 21.9 per cent from last year, frustrating islanders looking to buy their first home. This property has a river view and is listed at $695,000.
St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador
This house, built in 1895, was recently renovated with high-end details and millwork, which can be seen in the living and dining room. It’s on the market for $699,999. The province’s hot housing market persists despite the negative economic outlook. Realtors believe some of this is being driven by Newfoundlanders looking to return from other provinces.
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