Residents of Vancouver and Toronto are feeling the strain of inflamed housing price growth more than ever, with a significant proportion of the population now seeing affordability as an overriding concern, a recent Angus Reid Institute poll found.
“It is a progression of pain for both regions, where Vancouver really seems to be settling in, resigned to living with this chronic pain,” Angus Reid executive director Shachi Kurl stated, as quoted by CBC News.
The survey reported that nearly 75% of Vancouverites polled believed that housing costs have become “unreasonably high”. 20% of respondents said that prices need to drop by 30% or more, and 29% indicated a belief that a 10% decline would bring homes closer to their budgets.
For those living in Vancouver, the top 3 factors driving price growth were foreign buyers, wealthy investors, and the market’s desirable location.
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Meanwhile, “the people of Greater Toronto are certainly more alive to [red-hot price growth] than they were three years ago,” the Angus Reid report stated.
56% of the city’s residents said that they are burdened by current housing prices, with 13% adding that they would like costs to fall by 30% or more, and 22% appreciating a 10% price decline.
Toronto’s location was cited as the leading factor fuelling price growth, followed by low interest rates and foreign investors.
In both cities, residents stated that they would very much like federal and provincial governments to step in with more policy changes aimed at addressing the perceived causes of home price growth. Among their preferred measures are hard limits on the number of properties that foreign nationals are allowed to buy, and speculation taxes for those who don’t pay provincial taxes.
“The consistent message here … is that this is an important issue that needs to be addressed,” according to Tsur Somerville, senior fellow at the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Urban Economics and Real Estate.
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