For years we were told that Alberta was the best place to invest in Canada.
How the movement of Canadians out west would continue for years.
Before that, we were lead to believe that if you weren't investing in the U.S.A. you weren't playing in the big leagues. That somehow you were playing in the B-League by buying property in Canada instead of the mighty U.S.A.
We've had people tell us about Arizona, Florida, and Atlanta as the best places to buy in America for all sorts of wonderful reasons.
And who knows, maybe they're right. Maybe these places are fantastic. Many likely are.
We truly don't know because we don't know those areas well.
But you know what we do know?
We know the Golden Horseshoe. We know the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. We know it pretty well.
These two Mississauga boys have been watching it all develop.
And you know what?
We think we've been underselling ourselves for years.
We've got Lake Ontario preventing us from building anything on the south side of Toronto and north side of Hamilton.
We've got the world's largest greenbelt surrounding the rest of the city, with almost 2 million acres of protected land. (Source)
Two million acres!
With water on one side and the greenbelt surrounding the other side, it creates an "island effect" where there's only so much land to build on before you have to jump the greenbelt.
There are also all sorts of new highway and transportation developments throughout the area.
We're sure there's a need for even more based on how long it took me to drive to Yorkdale Mall in Toronto from Oakville for some Christmas shopping a little while back but that's another story ... that's a first world problem. 😉
But seriously, there new GO developments, everything from new bus service to new train service, right across the Golden Horseshoe.
They've even published this beauty of a map outlining their strategic vision:
This is literally like a road map of where to invest in property.
As real estate investors understanding the land limitations and transportation developments are super important to us.
This area also gets a constant influx of new people.
Ontario gets almost 40% of all new immigrants that enter Canada.
And a boat load of them land in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area.
In fact, we wrote a whole post about the sheer volume of people coming into this area just a few months back titled:
Attention Ottawa: The Hidden Demand for GTA Real Estate (click here to read it)
We showed that this area may get more immigrants than any other metropolitan area in North American right now.
We shared the demand that international students, specifically from China, are putting on real estate here right now ... this topic is rarely discussed at all.
What's also not often discussed is the quality of immigration that we get in Canada.
It's slowly trickling out in the mainstream, though.
Check out these two paragraphs from a recent Maclean's article on January 13, 2017 (Source):
But there’s something that complicates the picture of Canada as the friendliest country on Earth: it’s not just immigration supporters who have been looking to us as an example. Immigration opponents also like to point to Canada as an example of immigration done right—and at least one of those fans may be in the Trump administration. After the U.S. election, the Washington Post talked to an anonymous Trump aide who “cited as a model Canada’s system of awarding points to immigrants based on education, job skills, language proficiency, age and other criteria,” as opposed to the U.S. system’s emphasis on reunifying families.
Canada’s emphasis on high-skilled immigration, and its relatively easy entry for people who already have jobs lined up in the country, may make it harder to stereotype immigrants as not contributing to society. That could be why Canada is celebrated not just by immigration liberals, but conservatives who want a moderate regime of immigration restriction. Michael Brendan Dougherty, The Week’s conservative columnist, called for U.S. states to “imitate Canada’s provinces in making known the kinds of workers or employment that are in demand.” F.H. Buckley, a Canadian-born U.S. law professor who supported Trump, wrote an article calling for the president-elect to look to Canada, particularly the way Canadian immigration levels are “tailored to the needs of different industries in different parts of the country.” It could be that one reason Canada hasn’t had a Trump-style immigration revolt is that we already have a moderately Trumpian immigration system.
The bottom line is this...
Last time we checked the consistent arrival of more people in a defined area kinda sorta increases the demand for both rental properties and starter homes.
So there's a defined area to build.
There are more and more transportation improvements being built.
And there's a consistent stream of immigrants increasing the population base.
Those are all good things if you own property in the area.
So what's next...
What about jobs and income in this area?
Did you know that Ontario's GDP is $857 Billion? (Source)
That's pretty big!
And just how big is it you ask?
Well check out the GDP of various countries around the world:
Ontario, on its own, has a larger GDP than Poland, Belgium, Sweden and Switzerland among others.
Not bad eh?
In fact, it would seem, that Ontario is more than a third of Canada's entire GDP.
Although Ottawa plays a role in adding to Ontario's GDP the Golden Horseshoe is the bulk of it.
What about the future?
The Golden Horseshoe's population is almost 9 million people. (Source)
That's pretty big in a country that has a population of 36 million.
The current forecast, according to Ontario's Ministry of Municipal Affairs, is for the population to grow by 50% by 2041. (Source)
Let's think about that for a moment.
If you bought an investment property today, in the Golden Horseshoe, with a 25-year mortgage on it ...
... by the time it was paid off there would be 50% more people in the area.
That's likely a good thing for demand we think.
Ontario's Golden Horseshoe has a lot going for it.
But when it comes to real estate investing nothing is guaranteed.
None of this means that property investing in this area is a sure bet.
You still have to find the best communities in this area. You still have to focus on cash flow. You still have to plan for corrections.
And by writing this blog post, who knows, we may have just called the top of the market 😉
Heck, we didn't even talk about the influence Chinese money inflows have in this area or the interest rate and trade policies of the U.S. going forward and how they can impact us or any possible financial crisis' that seem to pop up every ten years or so.
So it's by no means a perfect place.
But wow, we think we've been taking it for granted a little bit.
The rest of the world would likely envy a lot of what's going on here.
Until next time ... Your Life! Your Terms!