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This Florida Condo Developer Is Taking The Loonie At Par

HuffPost Canada logo HuffPost Canada 2016-03-28 Daniel Tencer

Let’s hope it’s the start of a trend. With Canadians bailing out of the Florida property market due to the low loonie, a Florida developer is taking the weakened Canadian dollar at par for condos in a posh new Miami Beach development.Better than at par, in fact: The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Miami Beach, is offering a 35-per-cent discount to Canadians.

The loonie is only 25 per cent lower than the U.S. dollar at present.“ No other developers have done this type of deal before,” a spokesperson for the developer said in a statement. There are, of course, a few catches. The first is price: As you might imagine, a place named “Ritz-Carlton” isn’t a downscale building. Units run between $2 million and $40 million, a hefty price tag even in Canadian dollar terms. So yes, that prices most of us out.

But if you’ve read this far and you’re still in contention, the next catch is this is a one-night only deal. Interested parties are requested to appear at the Ritz-Carlton in Toronto on Wed. March 30, 2016, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. It's "first come, first serve" so don't be late. You can also put it an offer by phone, through realtor The Condo Store. 

The decline of the loonie has prompted some U.S. businesses to try inventive new ideas to lure back Canadians. A number of businesses in Myrtle Beach, S.C., have announced they’re taking the loonie at par. But the declining loonie has also impacted south Florida’s real estate market. The loonie’s fall from parity with the U.S. dollar to around 75 cents U.S. over the past few years amounts to a 30-per-cent increase in the price of realty in the U.S. for Canadians buying in Canadian dollars.

That has had a large impact on some California real estate markets where Canadians were major buyers, and it has had arguably an even bigger impact on Florida, where Canadian snowbirds have long been a significant part of the economy. The Miami Association of Realtors says 11 per cent of foreign buyers in 2015 were Canadian — down from 32 per cent a year earlier. While Canadians were long the number-one foreign buyers of Florida homes, that honour has now shifted to Venezuela, whose citizens bought 26 per cent of all foreign-bought homes in Miami. Chinese nationals were in second place, with 14 per cent of sales.

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