From plumbing to roofing in Calgary, owning a house is not cheap. As a result, a new report looked into the ‘Canadian Dream’ of owning a house, and noted that it’s waning in major metropolitan areas in the country, save for one place: Calgary.
The report, Mustel Group and Sotheby’s International Realty Canada’s 2018 Modern Family Home Ownership Trends Report: The Evolution of the Canadian Dream, noted that the majority of young families actually want to own a single-family detached house, but only a few of them can actually afford it.
According to Sotheby’s International Realty Canada’s President and CEO, Brad Henderson, Calgary is bucking that trend. He says that varying amounts of people across the country had given up on the ‘Canadian Dream’, but some people in Calgary were still holding on to that, more than in Vancouver, due to the fact that homes in Calgary are much more affordable.
Sotheby’s launched the study in order to discern whether millennials and younger generation Xers were moving away from single, detached home by choice. He says that a lot of people characterize this group as part of the sharing economy and that they don’t really ascribe to the typical values of owning a house and being under the thumb of mortgage.
So the survey was held in order to see if that was true, or whether it was a function of necessity. Among those surveyed, 83% of young families preferred a single family home, something they can spruce up themselves with plumbing, furnishing and roofing in Calgary, among others.
In other words, many of the families wanted a single home, but simply couldn’t afford it, with those indicating that a single family home was desirable, only about 56% bought one while 43% currently own real estate, but not a detached home, had given up on it.
The survey of 1,743 families across Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal markets, noted that Vancouver had the most giving up on owning a detached home, at 55%.
The flipside, however, is that people in Calgary are less optimistic that real estate will do as well or better than their financial investments. Among cities, 64% of Calgary respondents thought their home would perform as well or better than their financial investments, compared with Toronto’s 83%, Montreal’s 77%, and Vancouver’s 79%. Most believe that their investment in real estate will do well, one in every five families in Calgary expressed belief that real estate would underperform other assets.
Henderson notes that this is a reflection of the city’s struggling economy, as home ownership in Calgary is much more accessible due, in part, to depressed prices from the downturn.
According to the study, 63% of modern families in Calgary bought their home for less than $500,000, compared to Vancouver’s 17%, and Toronto’s 44%. However, Montreal was the most affordable, with 80% of respondents buying their property for less than $500,000.