According to a study by Royal LePage, newcomers to Canada make up 21 per cent of home buyers.
If the current international migration level stays the same, immigrants to Canada are projected to purchase 680,000 homes over the next five years.
“In addition to supporting Canada’s economic growth, newcomers to Canada are vital to the health of our national real estate market,” Phil Soper, president and CEO of Royal LePage, said in a news release.
“The combined demand for affordable housing among younger Canadians and new Canadians can be met through housing policies that encourage smart and sustainable development, with a focus on protecting and developing green spaces in our urban centres. Canada’s economy and labour markets are expanding and it is crucial that housing supply keeps pace,” he added.
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For the study, newcomers to Canada were defined as people who moved to Canada within the last 10 years. Respondents include immigrants, students, refugees and people here to work. The national average for the duration of time respondents have spent in Canada is four years.
“It is not surprising that newcomers see a home in Canada as a good investment. Having lived abroad myself, I have seen first-hand the challenges of relocating a family to a new world. It takes courage and commitment. Newcomers are doing more than investing in Canadian real estate, they are investing in their family’s future,” Soper continued.
However, despite their desire to purchase a home, the homeownership rate for new Canadians is only 32 per cent, compared to 68 per cent for all Canadians.
Upon arriving in Canada, 64 per cent of newcomers choose to rent, while 18 per cent choose to live with family or friends for little to no cost, and 15 per cent purchase a home.
Additionally, 54 per cent of newcomers believe Canada choose to immigrate here because they believe Canada is a good place to work and live; 75 per cent do not even consider moving to the U.S. According to the survey, 31 per cent said they chose Canada over the U.S. because they believe they would be more welcomed here, and 26 per cent made the choice because they consider Canada a safer place to live.