American Realtors Target Canadian Home Buyers

By: Kyle Ware

Canadian home buyers are now picking up American real estate as the loonie continues to appreciate. American real estate was once viewed as expensive by Canadians when the Canadian dollar was about 10 percent lower than its American counterpart. Now that the Canadian dollar has almost achieved parity with the US currency American housing has become much more attractive.
Mike Kent, a realtor who sells homes in Birch Bay, Washington says that "about 70 percent of our buyers, for the last three, four months have been from Canada - Vancouver in particular." Kent says that Canadians are following an American trend of purchasing retirement homes and renting them out until they're ready to use these homes.



Another force driving Canadians to shop across the border for second homes is that Canadian real estate prices have soared astronomically in many areas while US home prices have begun to soften. Many Canadian buyers find that they can find a comparable home in the US for one-third to one-half the price of a Canadian home.

Retiring baby boomers are interested in purchasing vacation and rental properties. These properties can be used to earn income to supplement their pensions during their retirement years. It seems prudent for such investors to look beyond their own border for real estate opportunities. Average home prices in cities such as Vancouver have now topped the $800,000 mark. This exceeds the average price of most American cities. The real estate and oil boom in Western Canada have resulted in many home buyers being able to afford a second home. The rising Canadian dollar coupled with sharp increases in Western Canada's real estate market will continue to drive more Canadian investors into the American housing market.

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