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Victoria Real Estate is a Hot Commodity in Calgary

Living and working here in our beautiful city of Victoria, we often forget how lucky we are to live here. To raise our families and to help our clients active their real estate goals. Why is it that so many people move to Victoria? A recent article in the Calgary Herald by Kathy McCormick sheds a bit of light on why so many Albertans are buying real estate in Victoria and British Columbia in general. It reads:

Victoria Rules

Piece of Paradise : Victoria Area

It’s long been a mecca for those looking for a place to play and stay.

The idyllic climate of Victoria, B.C. is perhaps its biggest draw. Who can resist golfing almost year-round, enjoying green grass and flowers when the rest of us are suffocating under mountains of snow and temperatures hovering way, way below zero?

Of course, the beauty of the region assails the senses, with the Pacific Ocean beckoning. There’s sandy beaches, rugged rocks, and all kinds of sea creatures and unique sights.

It’s nature at its best,with opportunities to enjoy a bevy of sports and recreational pursuits year-round.

But it’s so much more.

Like Calgary and a few other favoured spots in Canada, the Vancouver Island city is a huge draw for home buyers, says a report late last year by the Conference Board of Canada. City Magnets: Benchmarking the Attractiveness of Canada’s CMAs (census metropolitan areas) placed the Greater Victoria area within the top five of the most economically dynamic and attractive regions in Canada.

It was topped only by Calgary, Toronto, Vancouver and Edmonton.

The report graded the areas on seven factors: economy, innovation, environment, education, health, society and housing.

That magnetic draw hasn’t weakened, says the latest report from the Conference Board.

“We remain economically strong,” says Dale Sproule, director of real estate for Bear Mountain Victoria, one of the region’s largest developments. “The latest economic forecast for Victoria was released mid-September and stated that Victoria’s economic fortunes are expected to stay healthy in 2008 … and it’s reasonable to be optimistic about the local economy next year as well.”

Even so, sales of projects have slowed, along with the rest of Canada and, indeed, the world’s markets, says Kyle Dunn, vice-president of Sotheby’s International Realty in Canada.

While some projects are showing “signs of real strength,” others are slower, says Dunn.

“There is a differentiation of what will sell and what won’t,” he says. “It has to be fair value and price, and the product has to be unique.”

Still, he’s expecting B.C.’s market to remain strong. “It will continue to be one of the fastest-growing real estate markets in the next 10 years,” he says.

Sproule says the recreation and investment property market is unique in itself. “It is all about a lifestyle purchase.”

Even though sales numbers are down at Bear Mountain, interest is keen, he says. “Our volume of customers contacting us is actually higher this year, but our sales are slower.”

The buyers are from everywhere. “Bear Mountain has become a global destination,” with Canada seen as a safe place to invest and live, he says.

A number of projects are being developed in and around Victoria to appeal to buyers from all price ranges, and with any number of interests.

An 11-part series running from Aug. 16 to Oct. 25:

Aug. 16: Overview.

Aug. 23: Columbia Valley

Aug. 30: Southeast B.C. (Cranbrook, Kimberley, Nelson, Rossland and Fernie).

Sept. 6: Okanagan (Vernon, Kelowna and Westbank).

Sept. 13: Okanagan (Osoyoos, Naramata, Penticton and Okanagan Falls).

Sept. 20: Kamloops, Merritt, Sicamous, Mara Lake and Shuswap Lake.

Last week: Golden and Revelstoke.

This week: Victoria area.

Next week: Comox and Courtenay.

Oct. 18: Tofino and Ucluelet.

Oct. 25: Vancouver.

Whether it’s for skiing in the winter, or golfing and boating in the summer, many Calgarians’ first thoughts are of our neighbouring province to the west.

B.C. has become more than just a tourist destination, however.

Calgarians have voted with their financial hearts as well, buying cottages and condos as investment and recreation properties.

And, while the Okanagan and Columbia Valley continue to be the most popular destinations, Calgarians have also looked further afield throughout Vancouver Island and the lower mainland. As a result, the Herald is undertaking an 11-part series on projects throughout B.C. that our readers might be interested in — whether as a long-term investment, as a place for families to gather and play together or, in the case of many baby boomers, a home to retire to. So join us for our tour of sunny B.C. — Barb Livingstone, editor. End of Article.

The latest sales statistics also shows that now is a great time to purchase real estate in Victoria, BC.

If you are buying and are looking for a specific type of property like a small condo or a prestigious ocean front estate, we have the tools to make your search easy.

Cheers,
Bill

Bill Ethier B.Sc – REALTOR®

Properties in Victoria Professionals– Royal LePage Coast Capital Realty

Bill has been a REALTOR® in Victoria since 2006. Originally from the Vancouver area, Bill moved to Victoria to attend the University of Victoria where he received his Bachelor of Science. Not only does Bill have a wealth of real estate knowledge he is also an active member of the community. He is a member of Triple Shot Cycling Club, Island Road Racers and is the Race Director for the Sooke River 10K.

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