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“Alberta’s Major Urban Centers Maintain Competitive Affordability Compared to U.S. Cities”

Despite recent increases in home prices in Calgary, a recent study reveals that real estate in the city remains comparatively affordable, especially when compared to numerous cities in the United States. The analysis, conducted by national realty firm Zoocasa, scrutinized median home prices in various U.S. and Canadian cities in relation to their respective median household incomes and the maximum affordable price based on prevailing mortgage interest rates.

In the U.S., where the average mortgage rate for a 30-year term mortgage stood at 6.79 percent, the study uncovered significant disparities between median home prices and maximum affordable prices based on median incomes. San Francisco emerged as the city with the most substantial gap, with a median home price of US $1,256,500, far surpassing the maximum affordable price based on a median income of about US$137,000. Similarly, Vancouver ranked third in terms of the largest price differential, with a median home price of approximately US$877,000 and a median income of about US$59,000, resulting in a substantial shortfall in affordability.

Contrastingly, Calgary was identified as one of the most affordable cities, boasting a median home price of about US$341,000 and a median household income of approximately US$64,000. This relatively lower cost of living positions Calgary favorably in comparison to other urban centers, allowing buyers an additional borrowing capacity of around US$23,000 beyond the maximum affordable price. Edmonton, too, emerged as one of the more cost-effective markets, trailing only behind St. John, N.B., and Saskatoon. With a median home price of about US$295,000 and a median household income of approximately US$62,000, buyers in Edmonton could purchase homes worth nearly US$352,000, providing a substantial margin below the median price.

These findings underscore the relative affordability of housing in Alberta’s major cities, particularly when juxtaposed with their counterparts in the United States. Despite fluctuations in the real estate market, Calgary and Edmonton offer prospective homebuyers a more favorable landscape, characterized by a more balanced relationship between home prices and household incomes.

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