toronto home prices

Ontario home prices are quickly outpacing household incomes

Housing prices have been gradually yet steadily rising in much of Canada for quite some time now, with Ontario experiencing this trend to an even greater degree than most other provinces.

In fact, according to a new briefing note titled "Your House Makes More Than You Do," written by Sal Guatieri, senior economist and director at BMO Capital Markets, housing prices in Ontario specifically are actually beginning to outpace total household annual incomes.

"Normally asset prices start to raise red flags when they consistently outrun growth in underlying income or earnings," reads the briefing note. 

"But across much of Canada, and notably Ontario, house prices are not only rising faster than family income, they are rising more than total annual income."

Guatieri uses Woodstock, Ont. as an example, explaining that benchmark housing prices have risen by $118,200 (31.7 per cent) in the past year. By comparison, he says the median family earned $86,970 in 2018. 

"Draw your own conclusions," reads the note. And that's just for a small town of roughly 40,902 people. 

In Toronto, the country's largest city, demand for single-family homes has increased dramatically over the course of the pandemic, and the city's limited supply has driven prices way up

Detached houses in particular have been driving the increase, with the average price for a detached home in the GTA reaching $1,359,900 in January, according to the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) — representing a 31 per cent increase from the year prior.

And according to a recently-released Housing Affordability Report from the National Bank of Canada, individuals currently need an annual household income of at least $178,499 to afford a "representative home" in the Toronto market. 

Lead photo by

A Great Capture

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