British Columbia

Vancouver millennials have lowest discretionary income in Canada after buying property: Vancity

Most millennials who buy homes in Metro Vancouver will go deeper into debt every year, according to a Vancity survey released Wednesday.

Report found Vancouver millennials spend more on housing, and earn less than others

A Vancity report found that Vancouver is the hardest place for millennials to make ends meet, especially if they buy property. (Getty Images/Westend61)

Most millennials who buy a home in Metro Vancouver will go deeper into debt every year, according to a Vancity survey released Wednesday.

The report found a typical millennial couple in Vancouver will accumulate $2,745 in debt each year — including additional expenses — if they buy property. It found Vancouverites aged 25 to 34 have less pocket money than their counterparts in 10 other Canadian cities.

"We found...Vancouver was the hardest place for a millennial to set down roots and have disposable income left over after paying for the key expenses and be able to have a high quality of life," said William Azaroff, vice president of community investment at Vancity.

He hopes this data will push the conversation of affordability forward.  

"We want to present some data to get the conversation going at a deeper level because it's a stage in life when people are setting down roots. We want people in this cohort to set down roots in Vancouver."

The numbers

Vancouverites aged 25 to 34 have the least amount of pocket money compared to their counterparts in 10 other Canadian cities, according to a Vancity report. (Rafferty Baker/CBC)

Researchers found the average cost of owning a home in Vancouver is about $44,354 per year. The average Vancouver millennial couple earns $72,291 a year, which is the second lowest in the country, according to Vancity.

When researchers took into account other expenses like taxes, clothing, healthcare, food, public transportation, and utilities, households were in the red.

The report states millennial couples who buy condos are better off, acquiring an average of $16,422 in disposable income.

The situation becomes much more difficult if couples want to raise children. In that case, the report shows only by living in a condo, can an average family make ends meet.

The report uses data from Statistics Canada. 

With files from Deborah Goble