Vancouver housing ranks high in world’s most unaffordable housing

Potential want-to-be Vancouver homeowners… perhaps it’s time to rethink and move to Detroit?

There’s one dubious honour the city of Vancouver could be poised to win one day – having the most-unaffordable housing in the world. Currently we’re sitting second, right behind Hong Kong.

A report by Demographia, a U.S.-based consultant company that focuses on urban planning issues, put together a list of 337 world cities comparing real estate affordability. Their report takes into account the median house price and compares it to the median household income of the people living in those markets.

The average price of a home in Vancouver is $620,000 and the median household income is roughly $65,000 – giving it a number two ranking.

Thirty-five Canadian cities were included in the ranking and our country’s overall ‘median multiple’ was 3.6, which is slightly increased from last year’s 3.5 – enough to make Canadian real estate “moderately unaffordable.” Housing had been affordable overall in Canada as late as 2000, Demographia says.

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Overall Canada has eight affordable markets, 17 moderately affordable markets, four seriously unaffordable and six severely unaffordable markets. The severely unaffordable markets were in: Abbotsford, Kelowna, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Victoria.

Sydney, Australia is the third most unaffordable city followed up by San Jose and San Francisco, California for the top five spots. Whilst the most affordable city is Detroit, MI where a house costs roughly $75,000 and the average income is around $50,000.


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