B.C. real-estate sales to foreign buyers relatively low and stable since tax introduced in 2016

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      The provincial government’s latest batch of data on residential-property sales to foreign nationals shows figures have remained steady for more than a year now.

      In December 2017, 4.2 percent of Metro Vancouver transactions involved foreign buyers. That compares to 4.4 percent in November, 3.1 percent in October, and five percent in September.

      For the province as a whole, those numbers were 3.2 percent in December, 3.2, 2.5, and 3.6 in September.

      Monthly data is detailed in the chart below.

      TRAVIS LUPICK / B.C. MINISTRY OF FINANCE

      The provincial government began tracking sales to foreign nationals on June 10, 2016.

      A 15-percent tax on sales to foreign nationals was announced on July 25, 2016 and then came into effect on August 2, 2016. That means the first reporting period in the graphs, which covers June 10 to July 30, 2016, captures a short time when there was likely a rush of foreign nationals purchasing property in Metro Vancouver ahead of the tax’s introduction.

      Across all of B.C. but excluding Metro Vancouver, sales to foreign nationals have similarly remained fairly constant.

      They accounted for 2.2 percent of sales in December 2016, two percent in November, 2.1 in percent October, and 2.5 percent in September.

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