Re/Max says a low Canadian dollar is attracting more foreign buyers into the country’s cottage market.
The real estate company says a cheaper loonie is leading foreign buyers to “well-established recreational property markets across the country including Whistler, Tofino, Muskoka, Shediac and P.E.I.”
Re/Max also maintains a drop in the loonie is forcing more domestic buyers to stay in Canada because their dollars will go further.
“We are seeing Canadians who took advantage of the downturn in the U.S. property market in 2008 selling their U.S. recreational properties, which have increased in value over recent years, and taking advantage of the low Canadian dollar to purchase their dream cottage or cabin in Canada,” said Gurinder Sandhu, executive vice-president of Re/Max Integra Ontario-Atlantic Canada Region, in a release. “This is a trend that we expect to continue.”
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Cottages have become so important to Canadians that many are willing to sacrifice the size of their principal residence to get a recreational property. Re/Max found almost 68 per cent of Canadians would rather spend a long weekend at the cottage or cabin over a big city getaway.
“In our recent survey of Canadians, we looked at what they would consider sacrificing to afford their dream cottage or cabin, giving up destination vacations was listed as number one on our list,” said Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president at Re/Max of Western Canada, in a release.
The same survey found 21 per cent of Canadian homeowners would downsize their main residence in order to purchase a cottage, cabin or ski chalet. “The cottage and cabin lifestyle is very much in-demand and Canadians are looking for alternative ways to finance their dream property,” said Ash.
One way Canadians are paying for cottages is renting them out. A survey of Re/Max brokers and agents found almost half of the regions reported an increase in buyers looking to rent out their recreational properties part-time or full-time with the trend most common in Ontario and British Columbia.
Re/Max says it is better able to compare prices in large markets because of larger sample sizes and says most regions have had year-over-year price increases with the exception of P.E.I.’s coastal properties where prices remained flat. Muskoka, Whistler, the Kawarthas, Haliburton, and Wasaga.
Peterborough and the Kawarthas had a 27.9 per cent increase in the median sale price with the real estate company attributed to “a surge of sales in the upper-end of the market” from Toronto buyers.
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