13 Canadian Cities Among Most Affordable Housing Markets in World

Commentary, Housing Affordability, Frontier Centre

WINNIPEG, January 28 –A major new study released today ranks Thunder Bay, ON, Saguenay, QC, Saint John, NB and St. John’s, NL, as among the most affordable housing markets in the world.

The 4th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, compiled by Wendell Cox, a consultant and Senior Fellow at the Frontier Centre for Public Policy, and Hugh Pavletich, a property investment manager in New Zealand, also ranked Kelowna, Vancouver and Victoria, all in BC, as three of the least affordable housing markets in the world. In all, 227 cities in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States are included in the survey.

The report identifies government restrictions on the supply of residential land as the chief reason why markets become inaccessible to purchasers.

In Canada, 13 markets are identified as “affordable, while eight are “moderately unaffordable.” Three markets are rated “seriously unaffordable” and four markets are rated “severely unaffordable.” All four of the “severely unaffordable” markets are in British Columbia.

To help make housing more affordable, the report recommends that governments:

    1. Allow housing to be built on low-cost land on the urban fringe and;
    2. Remove unreasonable infrastructure charges on home buyers.

The report uses a measurement tool called a “Median Multiple,” which identifies the median household income and the median house price of individual urban areas and expresses affordability by the number of years it would take median household income to purchase the median-priced house.

To download a copy of the report, click here, or copy and paste http://archive.fcpp.org/main/publication_detail.php?PubID=2036.