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L'Île-des-Sœurs, November 6, 2017 - The Greater Montréal Real Estate Board (GMREB) has just released its most recent residential real estate market statistics for the Montréal Census Metropolitan Area (CMA), based on the real estate brokers’ Centris® provincial database. In total, 3,270 residential sales were concluded in October 2017, a 7 per cent increase compared to October of last year. This was the most active month of October in eight years.
Sales by geographic area
Published on: October 5, 2017 Montreal Gazette
The number of residential properties sold in the Montreal area — and the prices those properties sold for — was up in September, when compared with September 2016.
A total of 2,893 residential properties were sold across the region during the month, according to the Greater Montreal Real Estate Board.
That’s a six-per-cent increase from September 2016.
The GMREB says this was the busiest September for residential property sales in eight years.
However, sales were down slightly from the month before, when 2,899 properties were sold.
The late real estate developer Robert Campeau’s home hit the market again Tuesday and, while it has the most expensive price tag in Canada of currently publicly-listed properties, the agent who will be marketing it worldwide doesn’t think the province’s foreign buyer tax will impact a sale.
The house at 68 The Bridle Path is listed for $35 million, up from the $25 million it was priced at two years ago when a sale was not completed, but this time Ontario’s non-resident speculation tax could hit an out-of-country buyer with an additional $5.25 million fee. At $35 million, the regular land transfer tax that everybody pays in the city of Toronto would be more than $1.7 million.
“I think the 15 per cent tax has proved to be the cost of doing business,” said Barry Cohen, a broker with Re/Max Realtron, who has the listing.
Ontario brought in its foreign buyer tax in April as one of 16 measures to cool the housing market, a move that came in the wake of reports that would-be overseas buyers in Vancouver were eyeing the Toronto market after the British Columbia government brought its own 15 per cent additional land property transfer tax on foreigners in August 2016.
“I think when they put in the tax, the decision was let’s not buy Vancouver, let’s buy Toronto,” said Cohen. “But now it’s in Toronto, so the 15 per cent is just part of migrating to Canada.”
Campeau, who died in June, built one of Toronto’s most iconic homes in a tony suburban neighbourhood known as the Bridle Path. The French Chateau, housed on four acres of land, has more than 30,000 square feet of living area, and includes 10 bedrooms, 14 bathrooms, a state-of-the-art gourmet kitchen, an indoor, two-storey 50-foot swimming pool with a structural floor that converts to a ballroom, a tennis court and formal manicured grounds.
The house was once blessed by Cardinal Gerald Emmett Carter, Toronto’s Archbishop between 1978 and 1990, and guests have included politicians such as the late prime minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau and actor Jane Fonda. It has also been used in numerous film shoots.
The couple who have lived in the house, lawyer and venture capitalist Hal Springer and his wife Sari, who is the Canadian managing partner of Littler, the largest labour and employment law firm in the world, are empty nesters and need less space. They put the house on the market two years ago for $25 million and they had many offers, some acceptable, but couldn’t find another house they wanted to live in.
“It had fallen somewhat into disrepair as it was neglected after Robert Campeau left. It was a labour of love to restore a French Loire (Valley) chateau,” said Hal Springer, about the house that was purchased in 2002. “It’s just time to pursue a new chapter in our lives. We may have multiple residences that require a little less time.”
The increase in price is just indicative of how much the market has gone up, said Cohen “The luxury market performed very well,” he said. “Past offers have been a mix of local and international buyers. This time we are taking it to a higher level in the international markets.”
Springer isn’t worried about international buyers being scared off by any tax. “Relative to other international properties, Paris, London, the Toronto real estate values in my humble opinion are significantly undervalued at the high end of what this property represents relative to 20 minutes next to downtown Toronto.”