Saturday, July 28, 2007

What is news... Part 2

Real estate has again made it on to the front page of the Times Colonist. Jack Knox has made an attempt to present the "other side" of the coin. He did bring up the affordability issue caused by today's prices, which can be appreciated. And, of course, the old cliches "Victoria is the place people want to be" and "It's paradise here" were thrown in. I can't totally disagree with those cliches, but they do discourage me. If the housing market does not change, Victoria may become a modern day setting of the apocalyptic movie "Children of Men", where the youngest person in the city is around 20 years old. Families can't afford to live here, and yet, having been caught yesterday afternoon in the horrendous Colwood crawl, I'd hate to live in the Western Communities or up Island if a daily commute into downtown Victoria were required. Better mass transit or a couple overpasses on that highway are long overdue! What a sad state of affairs.

Quick check on what level of income is required to purchase that house. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. With an asking price of $325000, how about a 20% down payment ($65000) to avoid CMHC. Then using an amortization period of 25 years, with a 5 year fixed term of 6.18% (from RBC), on a mortgage of 260000. This equates to a monthly payment of $1687.

If the mortgage payment is 32% of pre-tax income, monthly income required is $5272. Annual income required is $63264. It looks like it would be possible for a young family to purchase that home, but I can't see them being happy there for long.