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Most Metro Vancouverites making sacrifices to live here: new poll

A Canadian flag waves in the wind as the sun sets on the city skyline. Robert Giroux/Getty Images

A new poll shows that most Metro Vancouver residents are making sacrifices to live where they do.

The poll, conducted by Angus Reid Global for Vancity and the Vancouver Sun, polled 1,100 residents on affordability issues.

26 per cent of residents have had to cut back on retirement savings in order to afford where they live, and 22 per cent of people have stopped saving for retirement completely.

Almost one-quarter (23%) of people report working in a job they don’t like, just to live here.

An average of 18 per cent of people say they have lived in a space that’s too small for them or their family.

The number of people who report living in small spaces, but who say they are where they want to be location-wise, rises to a high of 29 per cent in the City of Vancouver, to a low of nine per cent in Surrey.

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In order to afford to live here, residents report cutting optional expenses such as extra-curricular activities for their kids (10%), gym memberships (12%) and their own post-secondary education (9%).

Not surprisingly, almost half (45%) of Metro Vancouver residents view value for money in the housing market as “poor” or “terrible.”

In Vancouver, 66 per cent of people “strongly agree” that they would like to own a home, but can’t afford to buy one. That drops to 51 per cent in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge.

67 per cent of people in Vancouver also “strongly agree” that housing prices are too expensive for the average resident. Only 21 per cent of residents in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge feel the same, where housing prices are much lower.

Some Vancouverites (28 per cent) say they have strongly considered moving out of the city due to affordability issues.

But even with Metro Vancouver’s high housing prices, 61 per cent of residents strongly or somewhat agree that “it’s worth every penny to live where I live.”

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