20% of Canadian households are in ‘millionaire neighbourhoods’

Canadians are getting wealthier and more households than ever are in neighbourhoods where the average net worth is above $1 million.

The staggering figure is revealed in the latest Wealthscape report from Toronto-based Environics Analytics, which shows that nationwide net worth was up 12% in 2016 compared to the previous year, with house values accounting for much of the rise.

Despite rising debt, Canadians with their own homes and other investments had a good year and four Canadian cities emerged with average household net worth of above $1 million.

Vancouver remained at the top of the list with net worth of $1,217,630, a rise of 19.4% year-over-year but three other cities joined it in the 7-figure league.

Toronto households saw a 17% increase in their net worth to $1,154,107 and Victoria gained 15.4% to $1,055,468.
Calgary gained 9% despite the continued soft oil industry and entered the millionaires club with household net worth averaging $1,039,607.

There could be more cities joining the top 5 in a year’s time with strong gains for Oshawa (17.3%) to $852,689; and Hamilton (15.1%) to $891,924.

The report highlights three cities with housing bubbles looming: Vancouver, Toronto and Victoria.

Environics Analytics vice president of demographic and economic data Peter Miron, says house price growth in the three cities would appear unsustainable but there were no signs of the bubble bursting as 2016 ended.

“Both provinces have attempted to cool their housing markets,” says Miron, “but it’s unclear whether they’ll give up some of their 2016 gains in 2017.”

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