BMO Financial Group

BMO Financial Group
BMO Bank of Montreal

BMO Bank of Montreal

May 30, 2013 13:51 ET

BMO Condo Buying Report: One-Third of Home Buyers in Some Major Cities Looking to Purchase a Condo by 2018

- Buyers in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver are the most likely to be eying a condo for their next purchase

- Intent in Toronto up significantly, while demand in Vancouver wanes

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 30, 2013) - As cranes continue to crowd the skylines of major cities across Canada, a new BMO Bank of Montreal report released today shows that plans to buy a condo in the next five years among homeowners in Toronto and Calgary are on the rise, while buyers in Montreal and Vancouver are reconsidering the prospects of high-rise living.

The report, conducted by Pollara, examined intentions to buy property in the next five years among homeowners in four of Canada's major city centres, and revealed:

  • Toronto: One-third (31 per cent) of prospective buyers in Toronto plan to purchase a condo in the next five years, up 11 points from the fall.
  • Vancouver: Intent to buy condos in Vancouver has dipped by five points, from 33 per cent in the fall to 28 per cent.
  • Calgary: Prospects for condos among home buyers in Calgary has risen 8 points from the fall (33 per cent versus 25 per cent), while intent to buy a traditional home has dropped from 71 per cent in the fall to 58 per cent.
  • Montreal: 24 per cent of buyers in Montreal will be opting for condo living, down 3 points. However, intent to buy a house has risen sharply by 16 points, from 46 per cent in the fall to 62 per cent.

Frances Hinojosa, Mortgage Expert, BMO Bank of Montreal, noted that the convenient condo lifestyle offers benefits for a number of demographics, from first-time buyers to baby boomers.

"For many first-time buyers, particularly in high-priced markets like Toronto and Vancouver, condos represent an affordable stepping stone into the housing market," said Ms. Hinojosa. "On the other side of the spectrum, many in the baby boomer demographic may be looking to downsize from the family home - leading some to consider the condo market as well."

Ms. Hinojosa added that the report shows prospective buyers of the age 50 and over are more likely to be planning to purchase a condo than those under the age of 50 (30 per cent versus 17 per cent).

"Condos remain an affordable alternative to the pricey detached market in some major cities," added Sal Guatieri, Senior Economist, BMO Capital Markets. "For example, a typical Toronto condo today requires just 22 per cent of a median family's income to service; Vancouver condos - while more expensive - are still affordable at 28 per cent of income.

"Downsizing baby boomers and upsizing - from the parents' basement - echo boomers are likely to support the condo market in the coming decade," said Mr. Guatieri.

The BMO Housing Confidence Report was conducted by Pollara. Survey results cited in this report are from online interviews with a random sample of 1,008 Canadian homeowners, 18 years of age and over, conducted between February 21st and 27th, 2013. A probability sample of this size would yield results accurate to ± 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20. Data has been weighted by region, based on the most recent Census figures, so that it is representative of Canadian homeowners.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $555 billion as at April 30, 2013, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

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