In the port city of Hamilton, housing prices are on the increase but the availability of full time employment is also decreasing according to a report from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). Hamiltonians are being driven away from their homes as a result of high home prices, combined with a rise in the level of unemployment.
People are moving to tier reasonable areas in search of affordable homes and full time jobs. Some of the areas that attract the majority of Hamiltonians are Brantford, St. Catharine’s and Caledonia. According to a senior market analyst with the CMHC, this exodus is not showing signs of abating anytime soon much like the progression of inflated housing prices that have been observed in the recent past.
In a reversal of this trend, it is projected that the cost of real estate, especially those of the residential sort will decline in the coming year. That being said, it still does not come as a good news for Hamiltonians as there is not enough full time jobs in the city to render these decreasing costs affordable. This mismatch between the employment level/income of its residents and the housing costs has lead the CMHC to declare it an unfavorable year for Hamilton.
For all their housing cost woes, it is important to note that the prices in Hamilton pale in comparison to that of Toronto which has consistently been featured as one of Canada’s most expensive urban areas to live in. This is especially true when it comes to housing costs. To put it into perspective, there was a massive difference of $79,081 between a house in Toronto and a similar house in Hamilton in 2001 but this figure now stands at $228,557. As a result of the great differences in the housing prices of these cities, Hamilton will continue to experience an increase in home prices in the foreseeable future.
For some, the present high price of Hamilton homes is an inevitable market correction made on its low housing prices in the past years. However, for affordable housing promoters, the current situation is a cause for concern as many Hamiltonians are low income earners. If this trend continues to occur, even as already anticipated, many people in Hamilton especially first-time buyers will be forced to move away in search of affordable housing.