Canada’s condo market to dodge hard landing as population, job gains drive demand: study
A contractor walks along the outer edge of a condominium under construction in downtown Vancouver. Ben Nelms/Bloomberg
If you are sitting on the sidelines hoping for the condo market to crash, the Conference Board of Canada says you’ll have to wait.
The report, funded by Genworth Canada, the largest private provider of mortgage default insurance in the country, says the sector will avoid a major downturn because of population growth and employment gains which will drive demand and soak up supply.
“Whether it’s first-time homebuyers entering homeownership, empty-nesters looking to downsize or professionals seeking a shorter commute, condos appear to remain a popular option for urban Canadians,” said Brian Hurley, chief executive of Genworth Canada, in a release.
Critics suggest the condo market has already pulled back in some markets and could slide further as more units are built.
“It was financed by Genworth,” said Ben Rabidoux, president of North Cove Advisors Inc. about the report which he says has been over optimistic about employment gains. “Quebec in general is falling off a cliff right now.”
Mr. Rabidoux says the prairies might avoid a crash because population growth is much stronger than in Ontario and Quebec. He says condo inventory levels are already very high in some markets in the east.
“Toronto doesn’t look terrible right now. It’s down from all-time highs,” said Rabidoux, about unsold inventories. “Ottawa/ Gatineau is the fourth largest