Anshu Arora LLM, MSc, PMP

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Institutional investors and developer partnerships increasing in Vancouver’s tight property market

Vancouver has become a draw for major institutional investors seeking to invest in the city’s real estate market, and increasingly, the way in is to partner with local developers, say industry experts.

Institutional investors are companies that invest money on behalf of clients, such as hedge funds, pension funds, mutual funds, insurers, or real estate investment trusts (REITs) and typically seek real estate holdings in robust urban markets.

With its growing job market, low vacancy rate with high rents and resilient real estate market, Vancouver is becoming increasingly attractive to big investment. Real estate is also seen as a safe harbour, particularly after COVID-19 struck and the stock market showed its volatility.

Allied REIT, which specializes in office properties, has made it a goal to add significant Vancouver real estate to its portfolio, according to a press release the company released in April. The company has partnered with Vancouver-based developer Westbank Corp., best known for its high-profile residential projects on several mixed-use developments, including the distinctive new 24-storey tower in downtown Vancouver at 400 W. Georgia St., which is Deloitte’s new headquarters. Apple and co-working company Spaces are also tenants.

Vancouver’s mid-size developer PC Urban Properties Corp., which develops all types of properties, entered into its first partnership with a major institutional investor when it recently closed a deal to purchase a 9.7-acre industrial property with Toronto-based private equity real estate investment firm KingSett Capital. The Richmond property, Viking Way Business Centre, is fully occupied, but the owners have plans for redevelopment, to be announced this fall!












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