Photo: pnwra/Flickr

It’s no surprise that Vancouver has the highest percentage of $1-million-plus home listings in the country, but other smaller BC markets have some of the highest luxury ratios too, even beating out Toronto’s high-end market.

BC’s Burnaby, Coquitlam and Richmond made the top five list of Canadian cities with the highest concentration of luxury homes, placing above 13th-ranked Toronto, according to Point2 Homes’ latest report, published on Monday.

Vancouver took the top spot, as 76 per cent of homes listed in the city at the end of July 2017 were worth at least $1 million or more — the highest percentage by far across the nation.

The international real estate search portal was expecting Vancouver’s ratio to be roughly 50 per cent, and was surprised by the bigger outcome, Cristina Jisa, Point2 Homes’ Communications Strategist and the author of the report, tells BuzzBuzzNews.

In an effort to find which Canadian cities have the highest number of pricey homes relative to their market size, Point2 Homes first looked at listings in the top 50 most populous cities in Canada. Then, for each city, the search portal’s research team analyzed the number of $1-million-plus listings relative to the number of total listings.

Point2 Homes collected data from its own site, along with listings on other real estate websites, at the end of July 2017. 

After tallying all homes worth $1 million or more, researchers calculated a luxury ratio for each city — defined as the percentage of $1 million-plus homes relative to all listed residential properties in a city.

As Vancouver did score the highest luxury ratio out of all cities observed, it’s important to note that the benchmark price of a home in Greater Vancouver hit $1,029,700 last month.

In second place was Ontario’s Richmond Hill with a luxury ratio of 67 per cent.

Rounding out the top five were BC cities Burnaby, Coquitlam and Richmond, with luxury ratios of 65 per cent, 61 per cent and 60 per cent, respectively.

Even though it has been referred to as the hottest market in the nation, Toronto surprisingly did not make the top 10.

The city came in 13th place with a luxury ratio of 29 per cent. This means that out of the 6,232 listings analyzed in Toronto at the end of July 2017, only 1,800 were categorized as $1-million-plus.

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In Point2 Homes’ findings, the top 20 cities are either from Ontario or British Columbia.

Halifax was the first city from another province to make the list, ranking at number 22.

Calgary fell just shy of the top 20, landing at 23 in the national comparison, with a luxury ratio of seven per cent.

As the city recovers from its nearly three-year recession, unstable economic conditions may keep the luxury market from seeing any short-term improvement, writes Jisa in the report.

“A modest, yet notable 26% y-o-y rise in the sales of $1M+ homes in early 2017 brought a bit of optimism into the picture, but it seems that fluctuating oil prices and continued uncertainty in this sector still pose a threat,” she writes.

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