RBC Study: Rising prices, Mortgages Making Real Estate Unaffordable for Many

RBC’s latest research on the portion of average household income needed to maintain a home shows that affordability deteriorated over the summer of 2013, the second consecutive drop in as just as many quarters.

According to a new report from the Royal Bank of Canada, higher prices and an increase in mortgage rates have made home affordability more of a problem for the average Canadian family.

In Canada, the average household would have needed to devote 43.3 per cent of its pre-tax income to service the cost of owning a small house or bungalow at current market values, including mortgage payments, utilities and municipal taxes. The higher that rating, the less affordable a home is to any particular family, who also may have other bills, including car payments.

Owning a condominium is the most affordable option for families in most regions of Canada, where the cost measures only 28 percent of pre-tax income and also has the most stable percentage point from the previous period, only variating just 0.1 percent.

For two-storey homes, the affordability reading rose 0.6 or a percentage point to 48.9 percent in the July-September period, the most expensive type of single-family homes for middle class citizens.

“Affordability in Vancouver is uncomfortably strained and the city’s housing market still remains, by far, the most costly in Canada,” said Craig Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC in a press release.

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