As of January 1st, 2023, the Canadian Federal government has imposed a 2 year ban on property purchases by foreign buyers. However, this ban does not apply to the real estate markets in Whistler or Pemberton. There has been some confusion on whether the foreign buyer ban applies to these two communities, with some media outlets incorrectly reporting that all vacation properties are exempt from the ban.
Census Agglomeration and Census Metropolitan Areas
To clarify, the wording of the ban specifies that communities outside of any census agglomeration or census metropolitan areas are exempt from the ban. Whistler and Pemberton are both outside of these designated areas, which is why they are exempt from the ban. On the other hand, Squamish is part of the Squamish Census Metropolitan Area, which means it IS subject to the ban.
It's important to note that Whistler being exempt from the ban does not necessarily mean that all vacation properties are exempt. Many vacation properties are located in more remote areas outside of these designated Census Metropolitan Areas or Census Agglomerations, and as such are exempt from the ban by default just by their "further out" nature.
For example, cottage country area of Muskoka, north of Toronto, is also exempt from the ban because it lies outside of any Census Metropolitan Area or Census Agglomeration. The closest would be Barrie, Ontario but it's just outside of the official "Barrie" census metropolitan area.
Real Estate Investment in Canada
If you're a foreign buyer looking to make a real estate investment in Canada, it's worth considering communities like Whistler and Pemberton, which are not subject to the foreign buyer ban. Both of these communities offer a beautiful lifestyle and are a solid bet for real estate investment.
For more information on the foreign buyer ban and the Census Metropolitan Areas and Census Agglomerations, you can visit the StatsCan website and view their interactive maps. This will help you understand which communities are subject to the ban and which are exempt.