BC incomes dropping

Thanks to ‘exx’ for posting the link to this story – According to statscan the median income in BC has been steadily dropping despite the ‘boom’ we’re currently in.  Younger Canadians in general are now earning much less than their parents did and paying a greater percentage of their income for housing.

New census data this morning shows the median income for full time workers in BC is a little over $42,000 a year, which is a drop of over 3% since 2000 and it’s down 11% since 1980 when you take inflation into account.

That’s surprising given BC’s higher than average employment growth. Statistics Canada says young people seem to be having a harder time finding full-time work after getting out of school, and those who do tend to make lower wages.

So more people are at work, but they’re earning less money at a time when housing, energy and food costs are spiraling out of control. How is this going to all work out and what effect will it have on future real estate prices in Vancouver?

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@Patiently Waiting I would agree it is hard to compare Vancouver to those cities. What i meant to say (I also forgot to identify myself) was that Vancouver is similar in the way that all of those cities are the "beautiful-but-you-make-less-money-than-another-city" kind of place. However,now that I think about it, Brighton is cheaper than London, Nice cheaper than Paris, Venice cheaper than Milan, etc. Ironically, Vancouver is more expensive than anywhere else in Canada! I really don't want to come back, as it is just too expensive. When you consider that if you are a worker with children (as i am), you spend most of your time in an office, commuting and just dealing with your family. Not a lot of spare time for "skiing in the morning and windsurfing in the afternoon." so it would be easier to bare… Read more »

Patiently Waiting

Is Vancouver really such a nice place to live?

I think you forget this place is dark and wet for half the year.

Also, there is no cultural intensity here. More like a cultural vacuum

I've never been to these other cities, but I find it a bit much to compare Vancouver to Brighton, Nice, Berlin, Venice and Geneva.


I moved from Vancouver to Dublin 2 years ago, and the separation and occasional visits have given me a good perspective on this issue. With respect to wages and wage growth, Vancouver has the same problem as cities like Brighton, Nice, Berlin, Venice and Geneva. they're all nice places to live, but they in their respective countries, none of them are the place to go to make money or focus on a career (London,Paris,Frankfurt,Milan,Zurich in those countries). You can go there as a maverick, self-employed, business owner or if you are independently wealthy. Because the lifestyles there are enjoyable (ocean,lake, cultural intensity) people will accept lower wages just to "enjoy" being there. however, most people in cities are employees. And most small business in cities need large business for their services. If these big companies don't exist, then it is… Read more »

Tony Danza

Could you be any more irrelevant?


Could you people be any more cynical?



Why go through the stress of attracting world class businesses here that pay good wages when we already have world class condo towers with some very fine hotels?

You see, we just import the high wage earnings, if only for three days at a time.


There is wage resistance in Vancouver and it's to the detriment of the long-term success of businesses here. I'm in the marketing industry (no surprise) and many firms simply will not pay people what they're worth. I've worked in firms where the top four performers quit within six month of each other because of management unwillingness to move on wages. Two moved overseas and doubled their salaries; the two that stayed in Vancouver took jobs that pay roughly the same but involve less overtime and less stress. I once had a boss who gained most of his experience in L.A. and New York. He told me that Vancouver workers lack the drive and commitment to hard work that he's seen in those cities. I think Vancouver has that top talent but because the salary situation is so dire, many throw… Read more »


The news about income inequality is not a big surprise. Vancouver enjoys a reputation for affluence that was never deserved, when one actually looks at median incomes here compared to other Canadian cities. Well, we have a RE crash, declining incomes, and lots of people in deep debt. Best place on earth, indeed.


"The bulls here and on the Alberta blogs are getting angrier by the day! This reminds me of when tech stocks were crashing and angry investors were screaming about how it was the short sellers fault! Now angry RE investors are blaming the blogs!"

Kinda like Fox News and Rush Limbaugh blaming the liberal media for the US recession (in order to ensure a Dem in the Oval Office). Couldn't be wacked fundamentals, could it? Some people never learn…


What happened to the guy who kept ranting and raving about gold?

You mean Michael Randalblowhard? Typical troll. When gold was going up, he loved to come here and brag about how smart and successful he was. Now that gold is tanking, he's disappeared. The same thing will happen to krrish and the other RE bulls. Once VanRE tanks, they will disappear also. We'll miss you krrish!!


So much of the business that happens here in BC was predicated on a weak Cnd dollar in comparison to the US dollar (when a US parent co. was at the helm). Setting up a web dev, video game dev or animation studio here (not to mention major motion picture filming here) had its obvious advantages in: a.) Talent Pool b.) Built-in discounts on operations costs Today is a new day though. Talent pool is shrinking up rapidly (wage-earners can't afford to stay or are demanding more than they ever have) & since the dollar has hovered at par, we've lost the competitive operations advantage. I predict that business will move elsewhere….it doesn't make sense that companies will take the hit on the bottom line to stay here. Lots of smugness on the radio yesterday laughing at Ottawa's #1 place… Read more »

not rob chipman

-A-, Now I'm not saying, but your comment "and has offered them a place by his right side" makes me think about cults. Hmmm.


The script that auto-fills the "Name" in the comments section is a bit squirrelly . Not a general WordPress bug though – maybe the theme Pope is using?


alexcanuck, I was about to say that wasn't me, but then I realized it looked like something I might say, so I was OK with it.


Sorry, that last Alberta wage growth was me. Don't know where punface came from.





If you need a good laugh visit Rob's blog.

Its right out of a WWF script, Rob is defending his honor, and that of the Vancouver press, he is also extending an olive branch to the prodigal son/daughter COCO / and VHB

And has offered them a place by his right side where they can be guest posters.

Perhaps it has become necessary for a public televised inquiry to get to the bottom of this,

It’s of historic and national importance that this matter or Rob not been fully quoted in the Vancouver Sun be cleared up before any other official business can be conducted.


Re: Alberta wage growth. Been to Fort MacMurray lately? Or ever? Hell hole was invented for that place. Only way to get people up there is to pay those wages, and the way the tar sands are going they need people badly. Not saying it's a good thing, but it does explain the wages. As soon as they can they move away again, back to "The best place on earth", which Vancouver does resemble after that wasteland!



you are on 20% discount from krrish2,a approved appreciation for vancouver r.e.since-03.


Krissh why are you posting as TIME?



I am sure you did not pick up the right graph here i got it for your eyes only


anonymous – I'm in communications – and I need big head offices for full-time employment. Out of province – salaries are ranging from 65k – 80k; here the most I can hope for is $40k.

read on


commiserations, but I very much doubt it will turn around any time soon. as you know the film/tv industry was hammered by the writer's strike and the dollar, and why would the americans send work back here for the new season since the whole rationale (ie: cheaper due to the $ difference) has vapourized?


I work in TV animation, which used to be pretty busy around Vancouver – a year or so ago it seems like everyone I knew in the industry was working, but thats all gone to shit over the last year. I know more people looking for work than working now. I don't know if its the exchange rate or what but it sucks. I'm lucky to have a short contract now so hopefully it will turn around in the next couple of months so I'll have something new to move onto. I don't need a raise I just want to be able to earn the same amount of money as last year. stupid recession.


What happened to the guy who kept ranting and raving about gold? $850 today, sucks for those who rushed out and bought it all up at $1000+. I recall someone out there overlapped gold with VAN RE and it was remarkably similar.

Current Gold Prices – have a look at the 5 year graph, though it obviously hasn't been updated yet since it looks like the dip is at ~$880.