‘Millionaire cities’ attest to ever-growing household wealth—report

Along with the meteoric rise in the national economic growth rate, and increasing proportion of Canadians are now gaining access to significant wealth via their residential properties.

This, according to the latest edition of the “Wealthscapes” report from Toronto-based firm Environics Analytics. Among the study’s most noteworthy findings was that nationwide net worth went up by 12 per cent in 2016 compared to the previous year, with house values accounting for much of the rise.

The study also found that nearly 20 per cent of the nation’s homes are now located at neighbourhoods with average net worth of above $1 million, attesting to the increased wealth that Canadians are enjoying amid a vibrant economy and exciting prospects of further growth.

“For the most part, 2016 was a good-news financial story,” Environics Analytics vice president of demographic and economic data Peter Miron said. “Strong performance in the stock market buoyed Canadian investments. The biggest housing markets experienced strong real estate appreciation. And many Canadians increased their saving rates. This is the wealthiest Canadians as a whole have ever been.”

Vancouver’s net worth stood at $1,217,630, representing a 19.4-per-cent growth rate from 2015 to 2016. Meanwhile, Toronto households gained 17-per-cent net worth in the same time frame (up to $1,154,107), and Victoria saw a 15.4-per-cent increase (up to $1,055,468).

Also, despite the oil industry remaining on shaky ground, Calgary gained 9 per cent in its household net worth average (up to $1,039,607).

The report added that despite the growing risk of asset overvaluation, majority of households are moving towards creating a solid financial footing for the future. Canadians increased their savings and investments last year—by 5.6 per cent to $95,710 and by 13.2 per cent to $182,238, respectively—while moderating consumer and credit card debt, which grew by 2.6 per cent and 3.3 per cent, respectively.

The full report on the “Wealthscapes” survey results can be viewed here.

Related stories:
$35M mansion up for grabs in Toronto’s Bridle Path neighbourhood
Vancouver residential sale prices reach mind-boggling heights

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