Report Reveals Harsh Reality Millennials Face When Saving For A Home

Photo by Tiago Rodrigues on Unsplash

Owning a home in Canada has become an impossible dream for many due to high house prices. But now a recent report demonstrates how harsh that reality truly is. 

Generation Squeeze, an advocacy group for young Canadians, released a report in June to show just how long it will take a millennial to save for a down payment. In Toronto, that number is 21 years, in Vancouver, it’s a whopping 29. 

READ: How To Save For A Down Payment In Toronto When You’re Single

This is staggeringly high compared to the average time it took someone aged 25 to 34 to save back in 1976. At that time, it only took a mere five years for a full-time worker to come up with 20 per cent of their down payment, the report notes. 

But Toronto and Vancouver aren’t the only cities where it will take millennials an extended amount of time to save. Housing markets across Canada are getting increasingly tougher. Victoria (17 years), Kelowna (13 years), Kitchener (12 years), and Montreal (11 years) are some cities where affordability is becoming a growing problem as well.

READ: Millennials Make More Money, But Have More Debt Than Gen Xers

Today, the average Canadian millennial will need at least 13 years to come up with the money for a down payment. 

The key issue is that the rise of house prices have outpaced average earnings considerably. According to the report, the salaries of millennials would need to nearly double to $93,400 in order to make housing affordable. Or, on the flip side, house prices would need to drop by $233,000, which is nearly half. 

READ: Real Estate Over Retirement: Funding The Canadian Dream

These findings are similar to a previous study conducted by Zoocasa. It found that only 10 per cent of Toronto’s top earners and 2.5 per cent of Vancouver’s top earners could afford a home in their prospective cities. 

“This illustrates just how elite a level of income you need to purchase a benchmark home in these cities,” said Penelope Graham, Zoocasa’s managing editor. “It really highlights that house prices have not kept pace with incomes in these cities.”

READ: Ask An Agent: What’s The Most Affordable Way To Enter The Toronto Real Estate Market?

Paul Kershaw, the lead author of the Generation Squeeze report, is now calling on politicians to take action. 

“This struggle underscores the need for decision-makers at all levels of government to prioritize action on housing affordability and the enduring challenges facing younger – and many other – Canadians,” he wrote.

READ: Real Estate For Millennials: The (Un)Official Guide To Getting Your First Home

The federal government is trying to address affordability issues in Canada’s housing markets. In addition to their 10-year, $40-billion national housing strategy, they will launch their First-Time Home Buyers Incentive on September 2. 

Additionally, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation plans to make all homes affordable for Canadians by 2030. The corporation said they will look to governments and the economy to make this happen.

More from Isabelle Khoo

Kawhi Leonard Denies Rumours He Owns Toronto Real Estate

Looks like Kawhi Leonard doesn’t officially own any Toronto real estate —...
Read More