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Montreal vs Quebec City: A Comparison for Real Estate Investors

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  • Both Montréal and Québec City have a healthy economy, expected to grow by 1.9 per cent in 2018.
  • Québec City experienced a slump in 2015 and 2016, but is expected to rebound
  • Montreal was rated the third best city for real estate investments after Toronto and Vancouver.

Quebec City: Overview

Quebec City’s economy is expected to grow 1.9% in 2018,  with major non-residential real estate projects contributing most heavily to the growth in this industry. Among these is Quebec City’s three-year infrastructure plan, which pulled in an investment of $587 million in 2017. Quebec City is a hot spot for Canadian tourism, and has a thriving rental property market. However, inventory has remained high over the past two years, causing a slump in new residential project starts. Quebec City is currently seeing a densification in its office-space market.

Montreal: Overview 

The Montreal economy is also expected to grow by 1.9% in 2018. Young Montrealers prefer the convenience of living in the downtown core, which has led to a boom in new condo projects in the city. Many real estate players are divesting stock properties to focus on attracting the millennial and seniors’ market, both who prefer turn-key living and fully equipped amenities.

Survey respondents interviewed by PWC were optimistic about real estate in Montreal, ranking Montreal the No. 3 market to watch in Canada for investment prospects after Toronto and Vancouver.

Montreal vs Quebec City: Real Estate Prices 

Quebec city is expected to be a balanced market for single family homes in 2018. However, supply still outpaced demand in the condominium market, which means that buyers will be favoured in the upcoming year. This will affect condo prices, which are expected to decrease around 5% in the next 12 months. The price of single family homes will remain stable.

Median prices on Centris (November 2017): 

  • Single Family Home: $243,500
  • Duplex: $255,000
  • Condominium: $190,000

Montreal has already swung towards a sellers market, especially for single family homes and plexes, with prices and residential sales increasing across the island. This has led to an increase in prices across the board. The prices of ‘plexes and single family homes both grew by 5% in the third quarter of 2017. The prices of condos increased by 1% in the third quarter of 2017.

Median prices on Centris (November 2017): 

  • Single Family Home: $445,000
  • Duplex: $475,000
  • Condominium: $293,000

Top Real Estate Investment Opportunities in Montreal >> 

Quebec City vs Montreal: Sales

Sales in Quebec City grew by 9% in the third quarter of 2017, with 1384 transactions. Of those sales, the majority consisted of single family homes (963 transactions), followed by condos (310 transactions).

Average Sales on Centris in 2017 per property type:
(Note: 2017 sales are up until November 2017, while 2016 sales include all months in 2016): 

  • Single Family Home: 3,873 in 2017, compared to 4,524 in 2016.
  • Duplex: 127 in 2017, compared to 165 in all of 2016
  • Condominium: 767 in 2017, compared to 823 in all of 2016

In Montreal there were 8845 residential real estate transactions concluded in Q3 of 2017, a 9% increase year over year. Condos registered the largest increase, at 18%. All 5 metropolitan areas saw sales growths, with Laval leading at 13%, and Island of Montreal next in line at 12%.

Average Sales on Centris in 2017 per property type:
(Note: 2017 sales are up until November 2017, while 2016 sales include all months in 2016): 

  • Single Family Home: 5,421 in 2017, compared to 5,940 in 2016.
  • Duplex: 1302 in 2017, compared to 1352 in 2016
  • Condominium: 10,512 in 2017, compared to 10,486 in all of 2016

Quebec City vs Montreal: Best investment opportunities

In Quebec City, there is a surplus of single family homes, since locals are eager to trade their homes for condos or rental apartments. In Montreal, young families are moving out to the suburbs to find detached homes, since there is very little single family home development in the city’s core.

Rental properties perform well in both cities. Young professionals and empty nesters in Quebec City and Montreal both favour centrally located condominiums where they can benefit from a live/work lifestyle. Montreal’s rental property market is so strong that mid-sized commercial developers are considering moving into the market.

Best areas for land appreciation in Quebec: 

  • Charlesbourg (+3% in 2017)
  • Les Rivières (+3% in 2017)
  • St Augustin (+3% in 2017)

Best areas for land appreciation on the Island on Montreal:
(See the best Montreal boroughs for condo investments here)

  • Island of Montreal (+8% in 2017)
  • North Shore (+8% in 2017)
  • South Shore (+7% in 2017)

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