Bid-ask spread and different points of view on the Quebec market

Bid-ask spread and different points of view on the Quebec market June 4, 2024

(Extract from Espace Québec - Vol.30 - #1 - 2024)

By Marie-France Benoît (MBA), Principal, Director Market Intelligence,
and Marie-Claire Laflamme Sanders, Principal, Senior Vice President and Practice Lead, Capital Markets

Both nationally and locally, the year 2023 was characterized by a significant slowdown in investment transactional activity, caused by rising interest rates and volatility in the debt market. Indeed, according to the most recent data from RCA/MSCI, which brings together transactions of more than $5 million, there is a 35% drop in the volume of real estate investment between 2022 and 2023 across the world. Canada fared better for this same period, with a drop of 20% while the United States fell by 50%. The Quebec market, however, only declines by 6%, from $315 million in 2022 to $296 million in 2023.

An extensive “price discovery” exercise contributed significantly to this investment slowdown. The gap between the perception of the risk for which the buyer wants to be compensated and that of the seller regarding the potential return and the quality of his building was at the heart of this exercise, and is well illustrated by the transactional dynamics of Quebec


For 20 years, Quebec City has experienced impressive and sustained growth, due to its advantageous geographic location, its lower than average operating costs, and a highly qualified workforce. While the provincial public service plays a major role, Quebec has a diversified economic profile supported by a keen entrepreneurial spirit. In addition to the great historic flagships – Caisse populaire Desjardins, Industrielle Alliance, Davie Shipbuilding – are Hôtels Germains, Maison Simons, Biscuits Leclerc, Taleo, CGI, Tanguay, and several others.

This entrepreneurial fiber also underpins a local real estate sector which is dynamic and ambitious and whose names include Immostar, S.I. Bélanger, Groupe Patrimoine, Logisco, Douville, Moffet & Associés, Immeubles Simard, Groupe Trudel, of the Dallaire Group, and Immeubles Roussin – to name a few – make up its strength and reputation.

Quebec therefore offers an excellent opportunity to acquire quality products in a stable and predictable market. Over the last decade, we have seen many outside groups make their entry, both private capital from Montreal such as the Mach Group, Cromwell, and the Forum Group, as well as REITs and institutional groups from outside of the province: Akelius, Pure REIT, Manulife, Nexus REIT, Greyspring, BTB REIT, Centurion, etc.

Click here to read the full article (French only)