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Here’s how much income is needed to buy a home in major Canadian cities



Although average home prices in most major cities have dropped over the last year, this doesn’t mean residential properties have become more affordable for Canadians, new data shows.

Statistics released by on April 17 reveal that more income is required to purchase a home in cities such as Toronto and Vancouver as of March 2023, compared to the same time last year. co-CEO James Laird says buying a home has become more expensive year-over-year due to rising mortgage and stress test rates.

“Even though home values are down in nine out of 10 cities we looked at, affordability has actually gotten worse because rates have increased so much that Canadians now qualify for less compared to a year ago,” co-CEO James Laird said in a press release.

While average mortgage rates in Canada have begun to creep downward, they remain higher than they were a year ago.


This is the result of an aggressive rate hike campaign implemented by the Bank of Canada throughout 2022, which drove up interest rates and, in turn, mortgage costs. Increasing its key interest rate has been part of the central bank’s attempt to tame inflation.

Canada’s annual inflation rate has since cooled to 4.3 per cent in March, down from 5.2 per cent in February. In its latest interest rate announcement on March 8, the Bank of Canada also decided to hold its policy rate steady at 4.5 per cent. Despite this apparent progress in bringing down inflation, a lack of affordable housing remains a concern among Canadians.

Based on MLS home price index benchmark prices released by the Canadian Real Estate Association on April 14, the average price of a home in the Greater Toronto Area, for example, was $1,118,500 in March 2023, compared to $1,335,000 in March 2022. Despite this drop, the minimum annual income required to buy an average home in the city has increased by $6,250 within the same amount of time, due to a rise in average mortgage rates.

The additional required income is calculated using a mortgage rate of 5.54 per cent in March 2023 and 3.14 per cent in March 2022. These figures represent an average of five-year fixed-rate mortgages offered by Canada’s five largest banks at the time, according to They also take into account stress-test requirements that must be met before obtaining a mortgage.

The data is also based on a mortgage with a 20-per-cent down payment and amortization period of 25 years. Additionally, $4,000 in annual property taxes and a monthly heating bill of $150 are included in the final calculations.

Data compiled by shows homebuyers must make between $5,650 and $21,360 more per year to purchase a home in major Canadian cities in March 2023, compared to March 2022.

Residents of Vancouver are seeing the largest change in income required to purchase a home, while Hamilton was the only city in the report to see a drop in the minimum annual income required to purchase an average home year-over-year. As of March 2023, $165,940 was needed to buy a home in Hamilton. Exactly one year prior, an annual income of $170,400 was required to purchase a home.

According to Laird, a limited supply of new listings, combined with strong demand from homebuyers, means housing affordability is unlikely to improve in the months to come. has compiled a list of homes currently on the market in major Canadian cities, as well as the minimum annual income needed to purchase a home in these areas.


(ONIKON Creative / Pouria Sadeghi, eXp Realty)

Type: Apartment

Price: $1,099,000

Year Built: 1993

Property Size: 88.56 sq. m

Lot Size: N/A

Minimum annual income required (as of March 2023): $221,580

This renovated penthouse is situated in Vancouver’s Yaletown neighbourhood and offers panoramic views of the city. The open-concept floor plan includes a kitchen with an oversized island, wood cabinets and stainless steel appliances. The apartment building is located near stores, restaurants and public transit, offering quick access to the downtown core.


(Matt Lawson, All In One Real Estate Photography / Veronica Crha, Re/Max Camosun – Oak Bay)

Type: Apartment

Price: $875,000

Year Built: 2006

Property Size: 127.56 sq. m

Lot Size: N/A

Minimum annual income required: $168,750

On the main floor of this Victoria penthouse is a combined kitchen, dining and living area with three large picture windows. Also on the main level is a bedroom and four-piece bathroom. An additional bedroom and bathroom are located on the upper level and at the top of the unit is a rooftop deck.


(Dylan Hunt, Calgary Photos / Wendy Niefer, Re/Max Realty Professionals)

Type: House

Price: $539,000

Year Built: 1966

Property Size: 92.90 sq. m

Lot Size: 536 sq. m

Minimum annual income required: $110,430

Recently renovated to include a suite on the lower level, this Calgary bungalow has a total of five bedrooms and two bathrooms. On the lot is a fully fenced backyard with a concrete patio and a separate two-car garage. The house is situated near schools and playgrounds, and remains a short drive away from downtown Calgary.


(Square Feet Photography / Wendy Hamel, Re/Max River City)

Type: House

Price: $399,900

Year Built: 2020

Property Size: 150.66 sq. m

Lot Size: 222.12 sq. m

Minimum annual income required: $81,950

Built in 2020, this two-storey home in Edmonton has three bedrooms and three bathrooms across more than 150 square metres of space. Recent upgrades include new quartz countertops and vinyl plank flooring throughout. The main level offers access to the garage, and on the upper level, the primary bedroom leads to a five-piece bathroom with two sinks and a soaker tub.


(Eric Curt Peters, UnReel Creative / Jesse Carlson, Royal LePage Prime Real Estate)

Type: House

Price: $349,900

Year Built: 1911

Property Size: 104.05 sq. m

Lot Size: 457.18 sq. m

Minimum annual income required: $75,650

In addition to three bedrooms and two bathrooms, this Winnipeg home also includes a kitchen as well as dining, living and family rooms on the main level. In the finished basement is space for a recreation room or home office. Outside the home, the backyard is fully fenced and a detached garage has room for two cars.


(Hagop Anjrkouchian, Koush Media / Russell Willer, Willer Real Estate Group, Royal LePage Signature Realty)

Type: Apartment

Price: $1,100,000

Year Built: 2018

Property Size: 71.91 sq. m

Lot Size: N/A

Minimum annual income required: $217,000

Located in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood, this one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment also features a den that can double as a home office. Hardwood floors run throughout the unit, which also features a balcony with access from the living room and bedroom. Building amenities include rooftop gardens and the unit is situated near parks, schools and public transit.


(InsideOut Media / Irina Popova, The Agency Ottawa)

Type: Apartment

Price: $699,900

Year Built: 2012

Property Size: 92.9 sq. m

Lot Size: N/A

Minimum annual income required: $127,350

This two-bedroom, two-bathroom corner unit is approximately 93 square metres and located southeast of Ottawa’s downtown core. Attached to the main bedroom is a walk-in closet with custom built-ins, while the main bathroom has a walk-in glass shower. Building amenities include a fitness centre and courtyard.


(Will Stewart / Paulo Ribeiro, Re/Max Real Estate Centre)

Type: House

Price: $899,999

Year Built: 1935

Property Size: 161.37 sq. m

Lot Size: under 0.2 hectares

Minimum annual income required: $165,940

Originally built in 1935, this single-detached home in Hamilton has since been updated with a new kitchen, staircases and flooring. Three bedrooms and three bathrooms are situated across more than 160 square metres of space. In the basement is space for a recreation room and in the backyard is a concrete patio overlooking Hamilton Harbour and Pier 4 Park.


(Corey Kaminski, MTL Interiors / LJ Aguinaga, LJ Realties-LJ Immobilier)

Type: Apartment

Price: $550,000

Year Built: 2006

Property Size: 80.2 sq. m

Lot Size: N/A

Minimum annual income required: $107,310

This corner apartment in Montreal includes two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Large floor-to-ceiling windows run throughout the unit, allowing sunlight into the combined living, dining and kitchen area, as well as the main bedroom. Located near the Old Port, this apartment unit is also situated near restaurants, shops, and other amenities.


(Sean McMullen / Jake Hubbard, Viewpoint Realty Services)

Type: Apartment

Price: $499,900

Year Built: 2010

Property Size: 96.15 sq. m

Lot Size: under 0.2 hectares

Minimum annual income required: $104,660

In this 96-square-metre apartment unit are two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Throughout most of the unit are new vinyl floors, and the kitchen has been upgraded to include new tile flooring, cabinetry and quartz countertops. The apartment overlooks Nova Scotia’s Long Lake Provincial Park and is a short drive away from downtown Halifax.

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Real eState

Interest rate hikes and how they'll affect Canadians: This week's top real estate stories – The Globe and Mail



Open this photo in gallery:

This week in real estate, the Bank of Canada’s latest interest rate hikes and how they’ll affect fixed- and variable-rate mortgagesEdwin Ham Photography/Edwin Ham Photography

Here are The Globe and Mail’s top housing and real estate stories this week, with the lowest mortgage rates available in Canada today, commentary from our mortgage expert and one home worth a look.

Bank of Canada raises interest rate by a quarter percentage point

The Bank of Canada raised its benchmark interest rate by a quarter percentage point on Wednesday, restarting its campaign to tighten monetary policy after it paused in January. The move is in response to stubborn inflation and surprising resilience in the Canadian economy, reports Mark Rendell. Canada’s policy rate is now at its highest level since 2001.

Higher interest rates are coming for more than just mortgage borrowers

The central bank’s decision to increase its trend-setting rate to 4.75 per cent will immediately affect Canadians, writes Erica Alini. It will likely drive an uptick in consumer delinquencies and weigh on a recent rebound in home prices, experts say. It could also have ripple effects in the rental market, forcing some landlords to off-load investment properties. The first people to feel the sting will be those with debts that have variable interest rates: adjustable-rate mortgages and those who have lines of credit.


Floating your way into Vancouver’s housing market

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The Lilypad, home of Jen Abrams.The Agency Vancouver

Open this photo in gallery:

The 978 sq. ft. floating house is moored at Richmond Marina.The Agency Vancouver

Vancouver real estate is famously expensive, but there are some non-traditional ways into the market, writes Kerry Gold. Jen Abrams has lived for seven years in a 978-square-foot float house called the Lilypad, moored at Richmond Marina and walking distance to the SkyTrain station, which brings her downtown in 15 minutes. The Lilypad, one of three dozen float homes in the marina, is two floors, with kitchen, laundry room, dining and living rooms, one bedroom and den, patios, garden, storage and light filled rooms.

Home of the week: A converted church near Toronto’s High Park

  • Home of trhe Week, 202 – 384 Sunnyside, TorontoEdwin Ham Photography/Edwin Ham Photography

    1 of 20

384 Sunnyside Ave., unit 202, Toronto

In 2009, a century-old church building in Toronto’s leafy High Park neighbourhood was transformed into 24 residential lofts. This unit provides approximately 1,836 square feet of living space on two levels. The primary bedroom retains some of the character of the old church with wood rafters and a large arched window. There’s also a guest bedroom and a powder room on the main level.

What do you think is the asking price for this house?

a. $1,999,990

b. $2,299,990

c. $2,999,990

d. $3,199,990

a. The asking price is $1,999,990.

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Surreal Estate: $28 million for a humongous North York mansion off Bayview with a 40-seat home theatre



Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: kitchen

Neighbourhood: Silver Hills
Price: $28,800,000
Size: 21,000 square feet
Bedrooms: 5
Bathrooms: 11
Parking spots: 12
Barry Cohen

The place

A massive Silver Hills estate on Old Colony Road (a short walk from Bayview), with its own cellular antenna and underground filtration system. Nestled on a one-acre lot surrounded by greenery, this fortress—designed for a wealthy buyer who loves both entertaining and privacy—has so far piqued the interest of business moguls, celebrities and members of the Toronto Raptors. The mansion is loaded with over-the-top amenities: a family room the size of a dance hall, a Cineplex-grade home theatre, a 360-degree camera system, built-in face-recognition technology and voice-activated locks. In total, the place has over 15 kilometres of wiring within its walls.

The history

Architect and designer Lisa McCann considers this state-of-the-art marvel her magnum opus. She spent the past six and a half years on the project, collaborating with her husband, Michael McCann, as well as more than 100 tradespeople. “I didn’t want this to be a subdivision on steroids,” she says. “I wanted to bring as much functionality as possible so that residents would never want to leave.”


The tour

Mature trees help camouflage the brick fortress in the summer, making it barely visible from the street.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: facade

A four-inch-thick front door intersects an elegant stone wall.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: foyer

The foyer gives way to this Gatsby-like living room. The floor is limestone, and the outlets are painted custom off-white to hide even the smallest imperfections.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: living room

Moving through the space reveals the voice-activated fireplace, which can be turned on from any room. Modernist floor-to-ceiling windows lead to the side-yard tennis court.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: fireplace

The tennis court has an adjacent patio.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: tennis court

The family room’s south wing is really a 20-foot atrium, equipped with a wall-to-wall walk-out to the sprawling backyard.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: atrium

Here’s a view of the atrium from the landing above. The McCanns say it’s ideal for a library or meditation space.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: landing

Next to the atrium on the main floor is the kitchen, which features rows of Lutron pot lights, laminate white cabinets and funky fluorescent counters. The glowing island anchors the room.

The main-floor bathroom comes with a ceiling grid light and dual powder stations with Boffi faucets sourced from Italy.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: bathroom

The glass-and-oak staircase serves as the home’s spine, contrasting with the rustic stone wall.

Toronto, Real Estate, Surreal Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: staircase

Upstairs, there are multiple walk-outs to the 72-foot wrap-around balcony.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: balcony

Lisa’s favourite room on the second floor is what she calls the Frank Lloyd Wright office, inspired by the architect’s love of looking out at nature while working from his desk.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: office

Down the hall are the two main bathrooms. First, the man cave: a grout-less porcelain wonder with a glass shower and a nine-foot vanity featuring Versace detailing.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: main bathroom

And here’s its feminine counterpart, with a soaker tub, tons of storage and veined marble everywhere.

Here’s one of the house’s five bedrooms, each large enough to fit a king-sized bed, an entertainment unit and an office.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: bedroom

The main bedroom features a huge oak cloakroom with bespoke cabinets.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: cloakroom

The wine room is something you’d expect to find in a Yorkville restaurant, built with help from Halpern Enterprises. Naturally, it fits 1,000 bottles.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: wine room

Behold: the basement bathroom, with heated porcelain floors, a quartz vanity and black-and-grey mosaic tiles.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: basement bathroom

Finally, the showstopper—an 8K Cineplex-grade theatre with a 177-inch screen, surround sound, a space-themed ceiling and capacity for 40 people.

Toronto, Surreal Estate, Real Estate, Silver Hills Mansion: theatre

Have a home that’s about to hit the market? Send your property to [email protected].  



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Real eState lays off real estate team and shutters business unit



Digital mortgage lender is exiting the real estate business.

The struggling fintech startup laid off its real estate team on June 7, multiple sources confirmed to TechCrunch. The company is said to be shifting from an in-house agent model to a partnership agent model.

One person who was impacted by the move told TechCrunch that the agents had received “little to no severance…after getting a more than 50% salary cut in November in order to ‘ensure’ our jobs to come.”

TechCrunch reached out to, which declined to comment on the record. It is not clear how many people were impacted.


The news is not shocking considering that rumors of’s plans to exit the real estate business have swirled for some time as the housing market has experienced a major slowdown driven by rising mortgage interest rates. As early as April of 2022, TechCrunch reported that it was suspected that all of Better Real Estate could be scrapped. The unit was at one time the “baby” of the company, sources said, and where a big chunk of investment dollars were going to go toward in 2022.

Better had been vocal about its desire to build out its purchase experience and move beyond digital lending to help people find and purchase homes — hence changing its name from Better Mortgage to just Better. It was also working to expand value-added offerings like title and homeowner’s insurance as part of its product suite.

“They wanted to touch every part of home ownership,” a source close to the company who preferred to remain anonymous told TechCrunch at the time. “The company invested resources in building out consumer experiences and agent-facing tools for the Better Real Estate business, including its first native mobile app, not all of which came to fruition, given the trajectory of the business.”

Better Real Estate aimed to be competitive with the likes of Zillow and Redfin, and the company had reportedly followed the same salaried-agent model. has been making headlines for its layoffs since it first gained notoriety by laying off about 900 employees over Zoom on December 1, 2021. It  has since been laying off smaller groups very systematically, say sources. Last August, TechCrunch also reported the fact that had conducted its fourth round of layoffs since the previous December.

The company is not exactly known for its tactful approach to letting employees go. In less than a nine-month period, it let go of thousands of workers, saw numerous senior executives step down and delayed a SPAC that it still claims to be working toward.

In March, TechCrunch reported’s SPAC deal with Aurora Acquisition Corp. got a new lease on life, extending its timeframe to close the transaction through the end of Q3 2023.



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