Canada’s homeownership rate declining

housing purchase stock photo

Ontario Construction News staff writer

Canada’s homeownership rate is on the decline, according to Statistics Canada.

The latest census report released last week shows 66.5% of Canadians owned a home in 2021, down from a peak of 69% in 2011.

It also showed that between 2016 and 2021, over half of the homes built in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal were condos. Millennials made up the largest share of the approximately 4.3 million Canadians living in condos in 2021, with nearly three in 10 condo-dwellers being in that age cohort.

Statistics Canada says while the median household income grew by 18% between 2016 and 2021, the average value of an owner-occupied home rose by 39.6%.

“When the price of buying a home grows faster than household incomes, it becomes more difficult for people to afford buying a home,” the report said.

The decline in homeownership rates between 2011 and 2021 was the largest for younger Canadians, with the rate falling to 36.5 from 44.1 for those between the ages of 25 and 29.

For Canadians between the ages of 30 and 34, homeownership rates fell to 52.3% from 59.2%.

The report also showed the number of Canadians renting homes grew at more than twice the rate of owner households between 2011 and 2021.

Statistics Canada shows that newly built homes are increasingly likely to be occupied by renters, with 40.4% of new homes built between 2016 and 2021 now rented out.

The median monthly shelter cost for renters went up 17.6% between 2016 and 2021, outpacing inflation, as the consumer price index rose by 9.5% over that same period. For homeowners, the median monthly shelter cost went up 9.7%.

According to the Canadian Real Estate Association, the national average price of a home sold in August was $637,673, down 22% since February and the most recent consumer price index report showed rent was up 4.7% in August compared with a year ago.


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