Skip to content

CTV News – Canada’s House Poor Crisis, October 23, 2023

Why are so many Canadians at their breaking point? Clinton Wilkins speaks to CTV news about the financial crisis facing many Canadians in regards to home ownership, and the challenges they face with rising interest rates.

Jason Baxter 00:00
First at 5: house poor.

Maria Panopalis 00:01
That’s what more and more Canadians are as their mortgages become unmanageable due to rising interest rates.

Jason Baxter 00:07
As CTVs Paul Hollingsworth shows us, many homeowners face buyer’s remorse as the cost of living continues to soar. Paul.

Paul Hollingsworth 00:17
Well Jason and Maria it is a very difficult situation for homeowners in general but also a long term troubling situation also for want-to-be homeowners. As he assesses the real estate market, Colin Riggs says trying to become a first time homeowner in 2023 will be very, very difficult. Riggs bought a home five years ago. Since then prices have skyrocketed. Interest rates have gone up. Riggs says many homeowners are struggling and it’s near impossible for young people to even dream of home ownership.

Affordability of homes in Canada

Colin Riggs 00:55
It scares me. When I was their age, when I was, you know, in my 20s it was hard to get a house but it was achievable.

Paul Hollingsworth 01:06
In Vancouver, the income required to buy an average home is $250,000. In Halifax, the required income is more than $117,000 Canadians are now spending an average of 37% of pre-tax income on housing. 62% of Canadians have exceeded the CMHC guidelines to spend no more than 30% of pre-tax income on a home. There are even more troubling stats.

Andy Hill 01:38
51% of homeowners would miss a mortgage payment if they lost their primary source of income, within three months.

Paul Hollingsworth 01:46
Many Canadians are living paycheck to paycheck without much savings.

Andy Hill 01:51
So when you raise interest rates to 20 year highs, people are close to their breaking point.

“Rates rates will go down”

Paul Hollingsworth 01:55
Mortgage broker Clinton Wilkins urges patience and historic perspective.

Clinton Wilkins 02:00
I think the big thing that we need to remember is the rates go up and the rates go down.

Paul Hollingsworth 02:05
According to Wilkins. It’s a double layered pressure point. It’s not only challenging for people who hope to be homeowners

Clinton Wilkins 02:12
But I think it’s even sometimes more challenging for people that own homes already.

Low vacancy rates is making renting less affordable

Paul Hollingsworth 02:15
Wilkins says there is some good news. Maritime housing prices are still more affordable compared to many areas in Canada. And just because homes in the Maritimes are more affordable compared to other areas does not mean they’re still affordable. The price point is still prohibitive for a lot of people Clinton Wilkins also says if there’s an inclination by people out there to think they can rent in the short term rather than own he also said not so fast because of the vacancy rate, the cost to rent on a bi-weekly or monthly basis in many cases is just as expensive as a mortgage payment. Jason and Maria.

Maria Panopalis 02:52
Uncertain times for sure. Thank you Paul. CTV’s Paul Hollingsworth for us in Halifax tonight.