Generation Y’s Effect on Retail Property

Image Source: fanboyk

Image Source: fanboyk

All Canadian real estate sectors appear to be performing well, and recent statistics and commentary from leading analysts and industry professionals suggest that Canadian properties are well positioned going forward.

According to a new February 2014 report from The Globe and Mail, investors may be wise to pay more attention to Generation Y’s habits and trends.

In many ways, Generation Y are bringing new dynamics to the market. Although this applies to the wider economy, it is being reflected in the real estate industry. Some may dismiss these trends as just being part of the age gap, while others recognize specific pivots which could have a larger impact on macro cycles.

According to The Globe and Mail feature, Generation Y is redefining home ownership. This generation is characterized by some distinct differences including:

  • They have no interest in owning cars and are proud of it (many are even putting off getting driver’s licenses)
  • They are trending towards living in small city condos due to the convenience of urban living
  • They are shoppers rather than savers
  • They value experiences more than items, and don’t like to be tied down
  • More aspire to start their own businesses and prioritize funding their startups

3 potential side effects from the new Generation Y trends are:

  1. Potential for more gradual home price appreciation as more rent or choose city condos
  2. Challenges for industrial growth due to a resurgence in environmental consciousness
  3. Office trying to find a balance in supply and demand

At the same time, despite the internet, there appears to be a gravitation towards shopping locally and embracing entrepreneurship with a mind for setting up local shops and retail storefronts. In fact, if anything, new technology appears to be enhancing local shopping centers and shopping plazas as it creates a communal experience.