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Business in Vancouver

British Columbians increasingly think they will leave province

Insights West poll shows 78 per cent think they will stay in Canadian province forever; down from 84 per cent in 2014

PUBLISHED : Friday, 29 July, 2016, 6:08am
UPDATED : Friday, 29 July, 2016, 11:45am

Soaring real estate prices in Metro Vancouver are likely part of the reason why an increasing number of British Columbians believe that they will move out of the province before they die.

An Insights West poll taken last week and released July 28 revealed that 78 per cent of those surveyed said that they thought they would not live in BC forever. That’s down six percentage points from 2014, when the polling company last conducted this survey.

When respondents were asked if their children are likely to reside in BC for the rest of their lives, there was an even starker 10-percentage-point drop, to 56 per cent, compared with 66 per cent in 2014.

“If you’re a generation Xer who is trying to move into a bigger place because now you have a family or if you’re a millennial who is trying to stop renting to become a home owner, you’re definitely having a tougher time,” said Mario Canseco, who is vice-president of public affairs at Insights West.

“I think that’s definitely one of the reasons for the drop.”

Broken into age groups, only 61 per cent of those aged 18 to 34 believed that they would stay in BC for the rest of their lives while 95 per cent of those who were aged older than 55 thought that they would.

Of course, younger people also have many more potential years of life to consider moving somewhere else.

Insights West surveyed 820 people who were distributed across BC in a representative way. The subjects were not asked where they were likely to move if they did leave BC.

A Vancity study in May found that millennials in Vancouver were forced to make sacrifices, such as living in a smaller house, in order to stay.