Non-resident engagement in homeownership in British Columbia, Ontario and Nova Scotia is becoming prevalent, according to the Housing Market Insight report released by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) on Tuesday.

Properties with at least one non-resident owner amount to 6.2% in BC, 3.3% in Ontario and 6.2% in Nova Scotia. At the census metropolitan area (CMA) level, non-resident ownership amounts to 7.6% in Vancouver, 3.8% in Toronto and 4.3% in Halifax.

The proportion of non-resident participation is highest for condominium apartments. The share of condos with at least one non-resident owner was 10.4% in BC and 6.1% in Ontario. These shares are even higher in the Vancouver (11.2%) and Toronto (7.6%) CMAs.

In Vancouver, the share of properties constructed in 2016-2017 with at least one non-resident owner is 15.3%, up from 11.2% for properties constructed in 2011-2015.

In Toronto, the share of properties constructed in 2016-2017 with at least one non-resident owner is 6.1%, while the share for residential properties of all periods of construction is 3.8%.

Meanwhile, the proportion of properties with at least one non-resident owner in the Halifax CMA (4.3%) is lower than the rest of Nova Scotia (7.1%), which suggests that non-resident ownership is more prevalent among vacation-oriented properties outside the province’s major urban centre, according to the report.

"In general, non-resident ownership is more frequent in newer and higher-value residential properties,” said Aled ab Iorwerth, CMHC’s deputy chief economist. “The [Canadian Housing Statistics Program] data allows us to better understand the role of non-residents as a component of demand in Canadian housing markets, a topic that is of public interest in terms of the source of funds and the investment behaviour associated with such properties."

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