Photo: Herb Neufeld/Flickr

Although the BC government announced a range of new measures in February to address eroding housing affordability across the province, British Columbians are still worried about foreign buyers and speculation.

About 86 per cent of British Columbians believe foreign investment and speculative buying are hurting the province’s affordability, according to a new survey by Mustel Group and CBC, released today.

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“As a result, there is broad support for measures aimed at curbing foreign or speculation investment in B.C.’s real estate. A total of 86 per cent support such measures,” reads the report.

The online survey was conducted last month using a random sample of 400 BC residents.

Overall, 91 per cent of participants said they were at least somewhat concerned about housing affordability across the province.

Interestingly, almost six in ten surveyed say it’s time to consider banning foreign investment in BC real estate all together.

“The fallout from this issue has been the creation of divisions along age, economic classes, and to a lesser extent, along racial lines,” reads the report.

About 86 per cent of respondents said the housing affordability crisis created a divide in economic class, followed by 64 per cent for age and 39 per cent for racial lines.

Even BC property owners are on board with taking action to tackle affordability. Seventy-eight per cent said they support measures to address housing affordability, even if it will make their property less valuable.

With BC being the front-runner in economic growth across the country, implementing regulations to limit or eliminate speculation could slow economic growth. But, according to the survey, 73 per cent of British Columbians believe housing speculation can be addressed without having a severe impact on the overall economy.

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