Here's how much you'll need to buy a home (or condo) in Vancouver

Feb 5 2021, 8:49 am

Anyone hoping to afford to buy a home in Vancouver better be willing to save for quite a few years.

According to a new National Bank of Canada data report on housing affordability, prospective condo buyers will not only need a minimum household salary of $127,663 to be able to put a down payment on the average Vancouver condo — priced at $633,030 — but they’ll need to save up for almost five years to be able to afford it.

And anyone who was hoping to avoid living in a Vancouver condo and instead buy an actual house will need more money and a lot more patience.

The National Bank of Canada has priced the average non-condo residence in Vancouver at a whopping $1,342,184. To afford that, buyers will need an average household income of $230,488 and about 409 months’ savings — that’s just over 34 years.

These lengthy savings times were calculated based on the assumption that buyers would be saving 10% of their annual income and paying the minimum possible downpayment.

If an individual had a higher income or was to set aside a larger percentage of their salary, it would significantly change the time needed to save up.

real estate vancouver

National Bank of Canada

When compared to other major Canadian cities, unsurprisingly, Vancouver ranked first, followed by Toronto, as the most expensive city for buying homes.

According to the report, overall housing affordability — a ratio of housing costs to total household income — actually went up in Canada during every quarter of 2020. However, the trend does appear to be slowing down thanks to soaring real estate prices.

“The improvement this quarter was much less impressive,” the report reads. “Higher incomes and record low-interest rates were almost completely offset by a substantial rise in home prices.”

So if we all start saving right now and stop with our avo-toast obsessions, maybe we can afford a home in Vancouver by the time we retire.

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