Investing in Windsor Ontario

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There is a lot of economic development going on in Windsor right now, so I've started this thread to keep people up to date on all the latest news.  As we all know, economic development is directly correlated with real estate prices; keeping track of the latest news should help all us be better real estate investors.  Check back regularly for updates!


Bridge construction is starting soon at a cost of $5.7 billion.  Driving on the city's west-end, I'm starting to see a lot of construction happening.  $5.7 billion is a lot of money for a relatively small city like Windsor, and I'm expecting it to have a big impact on Windsor's real estate market!

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/breaking-gordie-howe-bridge-will-cost-5-7-billion

@Philip Robbins You’re welcome Canada is set to welcome 1 million immigrants over the next few years. I’m guessing a large percentage of these will be attracted to the low prices here in Windsor. This may put additional strain on the supply/demand imbalance we are already experiencing. https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/immigration-canada-2018-1.4371146

Electronics firm sets up in Windsor with promise of 148 jobs

Windsor's economy continues to diversify.  In this case, our proximity to the largest economy in the world clearly played a role in their decision to set up shop in Windsor:

Key Exerts:

“Following meetings with municipal and provincial representatives, local business professionals and others, APAG chose Windsor-Essex. This decision was in part due to the proximity of the international border and the government incentives that could be made available.”

"Naidu also said that the 148 new jobs could be just a starting point. APAG is a strong player in its field with lots of experience, he said."

“I think the 148 number in five years is a very conservative estimate.”

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/electronics-firm-sets-up-in-windsor-with-promise-of-148-jobs

NAFTA Renegotiated!

This is big news for Windsor and should help alleviate the uncertainty hanging over investors.  The new agreement includes an increase in North American made content in manufactured vehicles which should be a boon for the parts manufacturers in Windsor.

“It means companies better be ready to invest in people and equipment to meet the demand,” said Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association.

“The deal is the first time in the history of trade negotiations between two auto-producing nations that they’ve raised the regional vehicle content for cars and manufacturers. It’s a significant development for auto cities like Windsor.

“Automakers are going to buying more parts and content from current suppliers (in North America). It’s going to get busy.”

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/windsor-to-profit-from-new-north-american-trade-agreement

The University of Windsor is expanding their campus to downtown. 2 historic buildings have already been converted and there are more developments to come. This is a great opportunity for investors to get ahead of the curve as this area will become another student area over the next few years. 

Details about the new downtown campus:

http://www.uwindsor.ca/campustransformation/326/do...

Thanks Scott for starting this thread, great idea!!

@Hai Loc A lot of people have made a lot of money on their multi-family investments and may simply be taking advantage of elevated prices. I don’t think it’s a bad thing because rents are still high enough and prices low enough to generate cash flow from most multis that I see listed.
Windsor lands German auto parts firm's North American HQ with 325 jobs

"APAG is currently investing $11 million to renovate the former Fed Ex building on Rhodes Drive — vacant since Fed Ex moved to the cargo hub — and bring in new equipment for a new headquarters that will have research and development space, office space and production facilities."

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/windsor-lands-german-auto-parts-firms-north-american-hq-with-325-jobs

Originally posted by @Scott Innocente :

NAFTA Renegotiated!

This is big news for Windsor and should help alleviate the uncertainty hanging over investors.  The new agreement includes an increase in North American made content in manufactured vehicles which should be a boon for the parts manufacturers in Windsor.

“It means companies better be ready to invest in people and equipment to meet the demand,” said Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association.

“The deal is the first time in the history of trade negotiations between two auto-producing nations that they’ve raised the regional vehicle content for cars and manufacturers. It’s a significant development for auto cities like Windsor.

“Automakers are going to buying more parts and content from current suppliers (in North America). It’s going to get busy.”

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/windsor-to-profit-from-new-north-american-trade-agreement

This is great news for industrial real estate as well

Originally posted by @Mike Lambert :

@Hai Loc Where do you see the multifamily listings?

I notice there is a bit of construction of condos and chic towns in surrounding Montreal. What is your input on the rental market in Montreal?

Trudeau hopes to accelerate opening of Gordie Howe International Bridge:

It looks like things are proceeding here nicely with a bridge that's likely to add 2500+ jobs to the Windsor economy for the next 7-10 years as well as countless spinoff jobs.  The housing market in Windsor is already very tight and we could see upwards of 2000 more people looking for housing in the near future.

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/trudeau-and-snyder-mark-official-start-to-gordie-howe-international-bridge

Originally posted by @Mike Lambert :

@Hai Loc Yes there is a lot of construction going and the market is hot. As a result, it's difficult to make the numbers work but there are always deals to be had, like everywhere else.

Are you getting negative cash flow with 20% down?

Another major development in the local Windsor real estate market as Detroit multi-billionaire Bringing Quicken Loans to Downtown Windsor. This job is likely to attract high-paying software engineering talent to the city and further bolsters the revitalization of the downtown Windsor core.  It appears that the motivation behind this decision was the immigration policy in Canada vs the US.  It is simply easier for Quicken to attract international engineering talent to the Canadian office vs the US office.  I expect this trend to continue which speaks to the importance of being a city bordering the US.

Excerpt: "Gilbert said this summer he learned a lot about the advantages of Windsor through the two-city bid to attract Amazon.

He expressed concern at the time that many highly qualified tech specialists with international backgrounds may have difficulty entering the U.S. given tighter border restrictions and that was a primary advantage to being located in Windsor."

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/detroit-billionaire-gilbert-quicken-loans-move-into-windsor

Job hiring ramps up for Gordie Howe bridge project

Key excerpts:

At its peak, the massive construction effort will see up to 2,500 workers at the construction site on both sides of the border, she said.

Full construction on the bridge project will be noticeable by late next summer with a completion date of fall 2024.

There will also be countless other spinoff jobs created locally through businesses that will benefit from supplying goods and materials for the bridge project, said Mark Butler, spokesman for the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority which is assigned to oversee construction on behalf of the federal government.

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/howe-bridge-projects-job-hiring-ramps-up

City Backs Move To Allow Basement Apartments, In-Law Suites

The City of Windsor is backing a proposal to make basement suites legal in Windsor without having to apply for re-zoning. 

There are a number of rules to follow.

  • The apartments must be self-contained with their own kitchens, bathroom facilities and entrances.
  • Parking must be provided except in the downtown core where bus service is readily available.
  • Basement apartments wouldn't be allowed in flood plains.

The secondary units can also be created above garages and in secondary structures.

Investors should take note as adding an in-law suite, or converting a garage can add to cash flows.

http://www.iheartradio.ca/am800/news/city-backs-move-to-allow-basement-apartments-in-law-suites-1.8327690

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/windsor/housing-apartments-bylaws-zoning-official-plan-1.4740122

New technology startup company chooses Windsor for global headquarters

Windsor’s emergence as a growing tech hub continues to gain momentum as a new e-commerce startup company, Shopovio, will launch its headquarters on the edge of Walkerville.

“We found Windsor has more qualified people than it gets credit for,” said Jasper Sidhu, the company’s head of product development. “We looked at the Toronto area, but a lot of qualified people don’t want to be in a big city. You now have more tech hubs coming to Windsor.

Shopivo will initially begin operations in the 1700 block of Walker Road with 25 employees — primarily high-end engineers, web designers and customer service jobs — with hopes to quickly expand.

https://windsorstar.com/news/local-news/new-technology-startup-company-chooses-windsor-for-headquarters

https://www.shopivo.com/