Calgary Herald

Alberta's big cities remain competitiv­ely affordable


The average price of home in Calgary may have been rising to new heights recently, pinching buyers' pocketbook­s, but a new study has found real estate remains affordable compared with many other cities, including the United States.

National realty firm Zoocasa analyzed median home prices in dozens of cities in the U.S. and Canada against their respective median household incomes and the maximum price they could afford based on current, average mortgage interest rates (in the U.S, the average mortgage rate for a 30-year term mortgage was 6.79 per cent versus 4.79 per cent for a five-year fixed rate in Canada).

The study found the largest disparity between median home price and the maximum affordable price based on median income was in San Francisco. There, the median price was US$1,256,500 ($1.71 million Cdn) while median income was about US$137,000. That income, however, would only allow someone to purchase a home priced at about US$612,000, falling short about US$644,000.

Vancouver sat in third spot. There, the median price was about US$877,000 and median income was about US$59,000. Based on that income, a buyer's maximum affordabil­ity would be about US$333,000.

Calgary ranked among the most affordable with a median price of about US$341,000 and household income of about US$64,000. The maximum affordable price was about US$364,000, leaving a buyer with about US$23,000 in additional borrowing capacity.

In Edmonton, the median price was about US$295,000 with household income at about US$62,000. That income would allow a buyer to purchase a home worth nearly US$352,000.

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