We at REC are a little biased. Some of us are born and raised in this city, while many of us are from far and wide. We all agree that the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is one of our favourite places to invest from a real estate perspective. There are so many places across the globe that are up and coming or just a safe bet, but not to the caliber here. Toronto is ever expanding and continues to show potential, even in the decades to come. Many have the assumption that there is a lot to build on, which is actually not the case. We have the Green Belt Legislation which states that we need to maintain a certain amount of natural landscape. This has caused us to get creative by focusing on building upwards. We have no shortage of exciting opportunities.
There is an exponential amount of people coming to Toronto year over year. According to Statistics Canada, there are approximately 125,000 – 150,000 people coming into the GTA year over year. Increases in new properties are inevitable when there is so much traffic coming in. The people are so diverse, therefore the needs of housing is as well. It’s not just outside the country. Interprovincial migration is between 25,000 – 30,000 each year. Emigration is a factor, but it doesn’t come close to nearly touching the volume of people entering the city.
There is a lot of demand in Toronto. So much so that it has forced the city into a Manhattanization effect. If you want to see where the city is going to be in 10 years, look at New York now. Buildings are absolutely everywhere. They have complexes with up to 30,000 residents. There are approximately 8.5 million people in NYC (including the five boroughs) and 7 million currently in the GTA. The price per square foot there is an average of $2,980, while it’s around $1,300 in the GTA. We are rapidly expanding and have been for a number of years. We always find ways to fulfill the vast volume of people.
In our opinion, student housing is a safe bet as the GTA has a number of high profile universities and colleges. The academically inclined are coming from all over the country and beyond to attend these post-secondary institutes. There is no short supply of tenants. If there is turn around, there will always be new students coming in to fill the spot. Education is one of the reasons we have so many international people coming in.
We have such a strong and diverse economy, so if it does dip it will go back up quickly. We have the most secure real estate market of anywhere in Canada. Unlike Alberta, which essentially relies on the oil industry to keep itself afloat. A single industry is what keeps the economy thriving, resulting in instability. In Toronto, we rely on the entertainment and business sectors. These factors have multiple layers, we are aren’t just limited to tech or sports teams. Security is guaranteed in these sectors. Vancouver is very similar, as they rely mostly on entertainment, but their price per square foot makes the barrier for entry more difficult to manage.
We have a lot of opportunities for people looking for employment. Not just solely for our booming tech industry which is starting to rival Silicon Valley. We have Google, Amazon, Shopify, Coca-Cola and other corporate giants that are leading the way for more jobs.
There are so many unique opportunities within real estate in the GTA. You can easily diversify your portfolio just in Toronto in the housing market. We could not recommend this highly enough. Our city isn’t solely limited to booming investment properties, sky-rocketing student housing and ever-increasing pre-construction properties.
First things first: do your research. There is potential all across North America, you just need to know what you’re looking for and what to look for. In the surrounding Toronto area, there are so many places that are a comfortable investment. If you have the capital and the know-how, the GTA is one of your safest bets.