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Economic Viewpoint

Quebec’s Non-residential Real Estate Market: The Extent of the COVID-19 Jolt

October 15, 2020
François Dupuis, Vice-President and Chief Economist
Mathieu D’Anjou, Deputy Chief Economist • Hélène Bégin, Senior Economist

While the non-residential real estate market has been on a roll in recent years, driven mostly by the strength of Quebec’s economy and the resurgence of Montreal, the shock caused by COVID-19 has upended the situation. The conditions in different markets have evolved differently. Shopping centres were deeply affected, and this happened in a flash. Office buildings began to feel the impact of telework on a broad scale. In the industrial sector, however, occupancy remained high and rents increased. The exceptional performance in recent years has mitigated the effects of the pandemic across all market segments. Some are doing better than others and investors are positioning themselves accordingly. That said, the non-residential real estate market in Montreal and Quebec continues to compare well with other Canadian CMAs.