Saturday, March 26, 2011

1 in 5 Canadians interested in buying U.S. property

MONTREAL – March 25, 2011 – A new survey from BMO Bank of Montreal and conducted by Leger Marketing finds that one in five Canadians would now consider purchasing property in the United States. Lower home prices and a strong Canadian dollar have sparked their interest in purchasing U.S. property.

Overall housing prices in the United States have fallen by 30 percent over the past four years. However, prices in traditional Canadian snowbird destinations have dropped even more. For example, prices in Tampa are down 44 percent, Phoenix fell 54 percent, Las Vegas 57 percent, and Miami 49 percent.

“Now, with the American economy and employment gaining strength, home sales should pick up and put a floor under soft prices,” said Sal Guatieri, senior economist, BMO Bank of Montreal. “We expect prices to rise over time as the overhang of unsold homes eases.” He also expects the American dollar to strengthen, which would add to the investment potential for Canadians who jump into the real estate market now.

Other survey findings:

• Men are more likely to consider purchasing a U.S. home, 29 percent compared to 16 percent of women.

• Regionally, residents of Alberta (31 percent), British Columbia (28 percent), and the Prairie Provinces (27 percent) are most interested in buying U.S. property.

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