In a Wednesday (March 16) town hall organized by NDP MLA David Eby, hundreds of Vancouver locals voiced out their pressing concerns on the issue of affordability, amid several years of continuous real estate price increases in the city.
With year-over-year average costs rising by as much as 30 to 40 per cent, the region has seen its fair share of middle class households being gradually pushed out of the market.
Among these is the family of 48-year-old Anne Delgiglio, who recently completed the sale of their North Vancouver property.
“We were trying to downsize, but there was nothing really to downsize to. We didn't know the market was going to go crazy,” Delgiglio said in the forum, as quoted by CBC News
“I don't know how local people are paying for it. I just don't understand,” she added.
These concerns seemed to be representative of a majority of long-time Vancouver residents like 50-year-old Michel Leblanc, who said that he is seriously contemplating living off the grid or on a boat after foregoing his previous plans of purchasing a home in the city.
“The prices have just been going up and up and up, so I pretty much abandoned any prospect in the past year or so,” Leblanc said. “It's hard to know if there's even any incentive to stay in Vancouver.”
Others, like 68-year-old Barb Sutherland, mentioned that they were fortunate to have purchased their homes early on, but are extremely apprehensive about the next generation’s prospects.
“My two children cannot afford to live in Vancouver, and I think it's really important we be able to live in our own communities and work in the same communities. As a retired person, I've watched this huge growth in what my house is worth, and I would be very willing to have the house prices go down somewhat if it meant that young families could move in,” Sutherland said.