We all know that Vancouver is an expensive place for people looking to own homes. Here's yet another study confirming this.
The ninth annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, put out by the Winnipeg-based Frontier Centre for Public Policy, ranks Vancouver as the second most unaffordable major market in the world, after Hong Kong. It calls our housing market "severely unaffordable" and "grossly overvalued".
The survey relies on a measure of housing affordability known as the median multiple (median house price divided by gross before tax annual median household income). Vancouver recorded a median multiple of 9.5, based on a median house price of $621,300 and a median household income of $65,200, in the third quarter of 2012.
With a median multiple of 13.5, Hong Kong had a median house price of $3,810,000 and a median household income of $282,000. According to the survey, the most affordable major market is Detroit due to its "extreme economic decline". In B.C., Victoria, Kelowna, and Abbotsford were also cited as unaffordable.
The Frontier Centre uses its survey results to criticize "urban containment" regulations, also known as "densification," “smart growth,” and "livability" policies. The "not right-wing" think-tank prefers "liberal" land use regulations.