Even doctors and lawyers may not be able to afford Vancouver’s home prices: a new report paints yet another picture on the extent of how housing ownership in Vancouver is out of reach to not just lower- and middle-income earners but even high-income earners.
Data published today by real estate website Zoocasa shows Vancouver home buyers must be at least within the top 2.5% income tier — equivalent to an annual income of at least $205,475 — to be able to buy a single-family dwelling, based on the city’s current benchmark price of $1.441 million.
Even condominiums, which are typically deemed as entry-level housing, are out of reach to most Vancouver income earners, with an income of at least the top 25% — $93,527 per year — required to afford the benchmark apartment unit price of $656,900.
With its higher average incomes and lower benchmark housing prices, Toronto fares slightly better, coming in just behind Vancouver in the national ranking.
In Toronto, individuals within the top 10% income group can afford to buy a single-family dwelling at a benchmark price of $873,100. When it comes to apartments, Toronto income earners will have great difficulty with attaining the ownership of an apartment unit with a benchmark price of $522,300 if they are below the top 25% income group of at least $74,476 per year.
Victoria came in third place, with a top 10% income ($105,661) and top 25% income ($70,883) required to own a home and apartment, respectively. The benchmark price for a single-family dwelling in Victoria is $741,000, while the benchmark price for an apartment is $497,100.
In Calgary, where housing prices have been depressed from the continued effects of the recession, income earners must be within the top 50% ($66,677) to own a benchmark single-family dwelling price of $476,600.
Unlike the West Coast and Toronto, apartments in Calgary are relatively affordable for lower-income earners of $35,549, which is within the top 75% income group.
But single-family dwellings are still more affordable to more income earners in Montreal, where income earners within at least the top 50% ($53,472) can afford a benchmark single-family dwelling price of $375,000. However, when compared with Calgary, Montreal apartments are slightly less affordable: income earners must be at least within the top 50% ($42,293) to attain a benchmark apartment price of $296,600.
The major Canadian city that bottomed out in the list was Regina, where income earners must be within the top 75% ($39,342) to own a benchmark single-family dwelling price of $275,900 or a benchmark apartment unit price of $160,200.
Zoocasa’s findings are based on Statistics Canada income tax filings, benchmark home prices from real estate boards, and the minimum income required to qualify for a mortgage, assuming a 20% down payment, 3.75% mortgage rate, and 30-year amortization.