Housing Prices Are Through the Roof in These 10 Cities

By Lee J Miller/ Wei Lu / Bloomberg | October 8, 2018 12:07 PM SGT
Photographer: Hot Digital Dog/ First Light via Getty Images
Oh Canada! The first two words of that country’s national anthem are also what many people in Toronto and Vancouver must be saying when they pay their rent or mortgage.
Toronto’s costs posted the biggest jump from a year ago in the annual Bloomberg Global City Housing Cost Index, which analyzes more than 100 municipalities worldwide. Canada’s financial hub surged 18 places to rank 28th globally in the survey, while Vancouver had the second-largest leap: 16 spots to 16th overall.
Canada was a bargain, though, compared to Hong Kong and San Francisco -- which maintained their positions as the world’s two most-expensive cities, based on four equal-weighted factors that comprise the index: the average monthly mortgage on a 1,000 square-foot home downtown, payments for a similar unit in the suburbs, and rents for a three-bedroom apartment in the city-center and on the outskirts of town.
“Over the course of the last five years, house prices in major cities have increased by 35 percent on average," UBS Group AG said in a report on prospects for property bubbles in 20 territories, and ranked Hong Kong, Toronto, Munich and Vancouver most at-risk. “Even for highly skilled workers, property ownership is now out of reach" in Hong Kong, where prices have risen about 10 percent annually in the period, according to the report.
New York, London, Geneva and Singapore rounded out the Top 6 in total costs, though there was minimal movement from a year ago in the top tier.
But no city was close to Hong Kong for breaking the bank accounts of loan-assisted buyers.
A typical 1,000 square-foot home (93 sq.m.) -- cozy but not spacious for a four-person family -- in the city center commanded an average mortgage payment of nearly $8,000 per month, according to Bloomberg-analyzed statistics from Numbeo.com,...