Even at a time when it seems like the market has changed dramatically, there are still exciting prospects out there for investors looking for opportunities to invest in commercial, residential and industrial real estate. One of the most exciting places for real estate investing in Canada is Welland. Known for its proximity to Niagara Falls and its connection to trading centers throughout North America, Welland promises unique opportunities for real estate investors—especially those interested in industrial properties.
Table of Contents - Benefits of Real Estate Investing in Welland
Welland - A hub of transportation and industry
Welland, with a present-day population of over 52,000, developed around its waterways including the Welland Canal and the Welland River. These valuable waterways and the city’s railways have defined Welland as a place where trade, industry and transportation converge in a thriving economic hub. Welland is located within eight hours of 60 percent of the population of the United States, and 62 percent of the Canadian industrial market.
What’s more, Welland is linked to ocean ports across the world, including places like Hong Kong, Europe, South America and the Pacific Rim. Welland is connected to the rest of the world by planes, railways, waterways and roads, making it incredibly accessible for trading. The accessibility of Welland has made the city the major industry hotspot that it is today.
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Welland has Diversified industries
Part of what makes Welland such a strong economy is its diversified industries. Welland’s key sectors include advanced manufacturing, food processing, business services and sports tourism. These industries are supported by skilled labour with training from several local institutions including Niagara College, Brock University and the Vineland Research Institute. Welland has a labour force of over 25,000 to support its growing economy. Welland’s diversified industries and dynamic economy provide countless opportunities for investors of all experience levels.
A market for investors
Welland is on track to become Ontario’s next industrial real estate powerhouse, thanks in large part to its incredibly favourable tax rates and a large supply of shovel-ready industrial land. The industrial tax rate in Welland is just $1.25 per square foot, which is less than half the tax rate for industrial property in Hamilton and Oakville. The tax rate for office property is just $2.21 per square foot. The tax rate for the land is $1,278 per acre—a fraction of the land tax rate in Hamilton. These low tax rates make Welland incredibly cost-competitive and have helped attract innovation, development and new industry to the city.
Real estate in Welland
Residential real estate costs in Welland are low compared to the rest of Southern Ontario and the Niagara average. The average residential property cost in Welland in August 2020 was $389,100, while the Niagara average was $482,600. On average, homes in Welland spend 28 days on the market, compared with Niagara’s average of 35 days. Compared with places like Hamilton, where the average home price is $662,257, Welland offers a relatively low entry cost for residential real estate investors who want to benefit from the opportunities offered by Southern Ontario without breaking the bank on exorbitant home prices.
A streamlined approach to development
To make the area more friendly to investors, developers and business owners, Welland has created a streamlined approval process making it easier for developers to obtain site plan approvals and building permits. Through close collaboration and cooperation with developers, city officials in Welland have worked to make sure that projects in Welland get through the construction phase faster than anywhere else.
One secret to Welland’s streamlined development process is its utilization of the Development Team Approach. The Development Team Approach provides investors and developers with services from representatives to help with building, planning, engineering, utility management and economic development. By providing all of these services as part of one coordinated package, the development process is far more intuitive, quick and convenient. As any developer or investor knows, time is money, so this streamlined approach to development has the potential to cut costs and maximize ROI significantly.
Through its many efforts to streamline and incentivize development, Welland has succeeded in attracting a record-breaking number of new projects to the city. In 2017, Welland issued 726 construction permits worth $164,548,600 in new development.
The City of Welland, in coordination with the Regional Municipality of Niagara, offers great incentives to developers and entrepreneurs who wish to develop certain areas within Welland. There are three specific categories of incentives which are laid out in Community Improvement Plans (CIPs). The first, the Gateway CIP, incentivizes property owners who engage in development, redevelopment and construction on employment lands within the Gateway CIP project area.
Through the Gateway CIP, the City of Welland hopes to generate 1,073,570 sq. ft of new commercial and industrial space and a total of $380,198,033 in private sector investments. The Gateway CIP is expected to generate or retain 600 jobs. The specific incentives offered through the Gateway CIP include property tax reimbursement, development charge exemptions and planning application fee grants.
The Brownfield CIP incentivizes the development of brownfield sites in Welland. The incentives offered through the Brownfield CIP include environmental study grants, property tax assistance, property tax reimbursements and development charge exemptions. There are even more incentive programs offered through the Downtown and Health and Wellness Cluster CIP. These incentives include grants to cover the cost of urban study and design, facade improvements, building improvements, residential development, and tax increments.
A city full of potential
With a diversified economy, thriving industries and a development landscape that’s tailor-made for the needs of developers and entrepreneurs, Welland offers a unique opportunity for investors. Low home prices make it easy for investors to get started with a residential investment portfolio and incredible development incentives enable investors to maximize returns on industrial and commercial development projects. No matter what kind of real estate investment you’re looking to add to your portfolio, Welland is a growing city that’s worth looking into.
Real Estate Professionals in Welland
We have searched high and low for real estate investing professionals in Welland. Below, you can find professionals we have researched and can confirm they specialize in working with Real Estate Investors.
To ensure the maximum success in real estate investing in Welland, or any city, you should always use professionals who understand and work with investors, your income depends on it.
This list may not fully list all the professionals in the area, but the ones we have personally investigated and that we would refer our clients to.
If you’re a real estate professional and would like us to consider adding you to the list, please contact us.
Welland, Ontario: Downtown Driving Tour
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