86% of British Columbians want to curb foreign and speculative investment

Six in 10 survey respondents think it’s time to consider a foreign buyer ban on B.C. real estate

Western Investor
May 8, 2018

real estate
Photo Dan Toulgoet

The vast majority of British Columbians support measures to curb foreign and/or speculative investment in B.C. real estate, according to a poll released May 7.

The Mustel Group survey of 400 B.C. residents, in partnership with CBC, found that 86 per cent of respondents agree with policies aimed at reducing foreign ownership of B.C. homes and real estate speculation. The same proportion said they think that speculative investment is damaging to the province.

Of the latter group, 65 per cent said speculative investment is having a significant impact on local real estate, while 33 said it is having some impact and just two per cent said that they think it is having no real impact.

Nearly six in 10 respondents (58 per cent) agreed with the statement that it is time to consider an outright ban on foreign buyers of B.C. real estate.

Mustel group support spec investment measures fb ban
Source: Mustel Group

The general perception among respondents was that such measures would not be harmful to B.C.'s economy. Most British Columbians (73 per cent) said that they think speculation can be addressed without impacting the overall economy.

Mustel group concern property owners
Source: Mustel Group

Mustel Group also separated out answers from homeowners, and found that 78 per cent of home owners support measures to address housing affordability, even if those measures make their home or property less valuable.

British Columbians answering the poll agreed that the hot-button issue of real estate and foreign ownership has created division between local residents. Again, 86 per cent said that it is creating division among economic lines, while 64 per cent of respondents said there was division between age groups. Just under 40 per cent believe that it is creating division between different racial groups.

Mustel group division among lines
Source: Mustel Group

More than 90 per cent of respondents are concerned about housing affordability in B.C. – a figure that is highest among Metro Vancouver respondents and lowest in the B.C. Interior.

Mustel group concern affordability by region
Source: Mustel Group

Joannah Connolly is editorial director of Glacier Media Real Estate, Glacier Media's real estate division. Joannah writes and curates real estate news for Glacier Media's local newspaper websites, including the Vancouver Courier, Times Colonist, Prince George Citizen, North Shore News, Burnaby Now, Tri-City News and others. She also writes and oversees editorial content in Real Estate Weekly Homes, West Coast Condos & Homes, Western Investor and Glacier's special real estate publications. A dual Canadian-British citizen, Joannah has 23 years of journalism and editing experience in Vancouver and London, with a background in construction, architecture, healthcare and business media. Joannah has appeared on major local TV outlets as a real estate commentator, has moderated and spoken on various industry panels, and spent two years hosting the Real Estate Therapist talk radio show on Vancouver's Roundhouse Radio.
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