In an effort to offset Vancouver's high increases in property cost, the city introduced a 15% levy on foreign investors. This new tax has pushed Asian buyers to look elsewhere for property in order to remove their funds from their unstable economy. Seattle’s real estate market now has an added variable of demand: an immediate and high increase of Chinese investors looking for homes to buy.
The shifted focus to Seattle is in part due to the stunning waterfront views, as well as the proximity to Toronto, one of the world’s finance capitals. These investors tend to favor higher end properties, and Seattle has jumped to meet this demand. Chinese investors represent the largest group of foreign capital, and their strong interest in investing in real estate has created an enormous increase in real estate cost, across the board.
In speculation of how this influx of foreign investors will continue shape Seattle – the city has already seen a 50% increase in real estate prices in the past 5 years; a trend that is sure to continue while uninhibited by any sort of deterrent levies.