The Montréal 2020 Real Estate Market: Attractive Advantages
Motion design Mark André Martel


The 2020 real estate market headlines for Montreal were accurately predicted in our 2019 update, and now, they are flooding our newsfeeds. The Montréal real estate market is surging, with appropriate, and intelligent, regulation softening backlash; and, property sales are raging. Prices are climbing.

In the last three years, all eyes have turned from Vancouver and Toronto’s inflated, and inhumane, real estate markets, toward investment into Montreal’s steadily-growing real estate. The buyers are balanced well; from within, and from without. Investors, and new community members, are flying in from other parts of the world, often to take part in frenetic bidding wars which have emerged of late; a boon to local couples, families, and retirees, who are transitioning from one type of dwelling, or investment, into something more appropriate to their changing phases of life, their changing needs, or their growing economic muscle.

Yes, Montreal’s real estate market is booming, so much so that the whole of Greater Montréal is beginning to look quite attractive to a lot of buyers. Montréal has acquired the coveted glowing reputation as a top-tier city to live, conduct life and business, and to invest; it is culturally diverse, it offers great quality of life, with low unemployment rates, currently at 6%, and an affordable cost of living. Montreal has reputable schools and universities, political stability, and above all, it feels safe.

Montréal is alive again. Its population has been growing since 2013, and so has its economy.

New construction is being built, constantly. Both smaller units, and higher buildings;
even in neighbourhoods that had been long neglected. The tech growth, tourism, and shipping industries have created an abundance of new high-paying positions, in sectors that had been alienated from the Québec landscape for generations. Young professionals are able to buy into new developments, just as readily as they are eager to purchase a fixer-upper in order to transform struggling blocks into the homes and communities of their dreams. People are starting business, families, and careers, with faith and optimism, even as wealthy retirees are demonstrating their loyalty, and investment, in the city of Montréal.
In aid of their deeply human ambitions, competitive mortgage rates, maintained by the Bank of Canada for 2020, continue to mean there is no time like the present to enter the market.

All in all, we are expecting a 5% increase in median price in 2020, up from 2019, as well as a 6% increase in the volume of sales.
Montréal has developed multiple “cores”, each with all the amenities required by a full modern life; but, each with a distinct flavour, and character. Even for those for whom the downtown Ville-Marie is still out of reach, the nearby, and surrounding boroughs offer a plethora of attractions, and home price ranges, which will allow a broad segment of the working, or retiring, population the chance to make, or grow their city life. First, Westmount, Outremont, Le Plateau, and Ville Mont-Royal, are not for the faint of heart in terms of pricing and growth. These historically significant neighbourhoods tend to attract families with tasteful and traditional architecture, expansive average square footage, and generous lots.

Our second higher-priced property area is the West Island, with its enviably reputable schools.

Third on the list of attractive neighbourhoods is the rapidly growing Grifftintown and The South West, sporting, among the other givens throughout the city, The Lachine Canal, which is being constantly improved, and supported by impressive public works projects, and investments in access, leisure, and usability. The South West provides a wide variety of parks and public recreation facilities; and so, buyers are flooding in. This area is experiencing the beginning of a steep growth and development curve; and, in our observation, is bringing in the most accelerated returns for owners and investors alike.

An active real estate market means Montréalers can enjoy better looking, and more active neighbourhoods, attracting and sustaining independent retail development, and consequently a stimulated local economy. Montréal neighbourhoods are special in their ability to create some of the most vibrant local economies, with consumer dollars circulating between local business and local citizens at a far higher rate than other Canadian cities. The percentage of multi-national chains, and outside corporate footprint, is very low in the heart of Montréal, and has continued to create a very healthy brick-and-mortar retail and service economy, with more dollars remaining in the communities, to stimulate wealth maintenance and creation. Add to this dynamic an increase of municipal investments in community services and amenities, such as public pools, parks, and recreational facilities, etcetera, and the recipe is in place for continued, and healthy, urban growth.

Increasing luxury stock in condo development, accompanied by the emerging 20-20-20 regulations, will mean that community value will increase, while community safety, and stability, will not degrade. This is likely to leave room for first-time buyers to climb the economic ladder without closing the door behind them. Sustainable growth in both the housing stock, and housing values, will allow Montréal to avoid the fate of some urban housing markets; markets which have suffered through financialized housing schemes, and hollowed communities.

Montréal’s history of being slightly out of step with most North American urban markets, has created an opportunity that is uniquely primed for growth in personal fortunes, for those who are prepared to enter, or expand, their position in the real estate market. The political stability, paired with the moderate but sensible regulatory framework implemented in the city, will allow the artificially suppressed property values to tick up quickly, but avoid the “externalities” so many cities have seen blight their communities. Sustainable growth, and secure investments is the reputation Montréal has, and is, building for herself, from the local press to Bloomberg Business; and, there is no time like the present to enter such a promising market, with such vibrant communities held intact; enhanced by exciting new investments, enterprises, and locals.
With this said, we hope, and press for, decisions and regulations which will be reasonable, and allow for sustainable growth. And in the meantime, it will be equally important to keep the following in mind for 2020:

  • Expect a slight slowing down of the broader North American economy.
  • Exports have gone down 25%, and are expected to remain lower, given the backdrop of the current international climate, particularly due to tensions between the US and China.
  • New regulations from the City for co-ownerships could have a negative effect, as costs for developers may increase.
  • The decrease in buyability for first-time buyers: Even though the economy is currently healthy, and salaries are higher than they’ve ever been in Montréal, the prices of homes are also at an all-time high, and are currently growing faster than income/revenues. This creates an attractive environment for investment, but this widening gap could create a barrier to local purchasers in the coming years.
  • Single family homes prices have increased 7% on the island.
  • Condo prices have increased 10% on the island.
  • Plex prices have increased 8% on the island.

In such a climate, both sellers, and buyers, should do their homework to avoid speculative, or inflated pricing; because, while buyers may be eager, they are more and more savvy. Our team of dedicated, expert brokers are tuned to the broader market, but also tuned into the block-by-block market. Consultation with our team will put you on the right track to find the right home, the right investment, the right opportunity, and the right community for your specific needs.


Talk to our team to make your best move in 2020.

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