(TORONTO, ON) – The West Coast is home to beautiful mountains, majestic seas and, apparently, wealthy Canadians. A new report from Environics Analytics found that B.C. is leading the country in household net worth.
The report, which credited improved stock portfolios and rising real estate values, placed B.C. well ahead of its fellow provinces:
|Net Worth||Increase year-to-year|
Jeff Schwartz, executive director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, says increased net worth is a positive but British Columbians should still be cautious –
“The B.C. real estate boom is good news,” says Schwartz. “But British Columbians shouldn’t treat this wealth like winning the lottery as real estate and the stock market are notoriously unstable and volatile.”
Despite the high net worth of B.C. residents, a separate report from BMO indicated British Columbians are also carrying nearly $100,000 in household debt – which places them as the second most indebted households in the country.
Consolidated Credit offers the following tips to B.C. residents about how they can remain financially successful –
- Stay frugal – It is tempting to increase spending when asset values increase, but this could lead to financial turmoil down the road should market conditions fluctuate. Continuing to save money and boost your emergency funds will ensure you are able to survive an economic downturn.
- Stick to your budget – A well thought out budget is the best tool for maintaining financial stability. Your house value may have changed, but without a corresponding increase in your salary, you are not actually bringing in any more money on a monthly basis. Keep track of your spending, pay off your debt and avoid frivolous purchases.
- Consider downsizing – If you are living in a home that is bigger than what you need, it may be a good time to considering downsizing. Moving to a smaller, less expensive property will allow you to cash out while home prices are high. A smaller home may decrease your utility costs and property taxes. Depending on your mortgage, the difference in price might actually allow you to become mortgage free!
- Sell high – If you have seen large gains in your stock market portfolio, now may be a good time to cash out. Liquefying your investments or transferring them to more stable investments may be the best strategy to hold onto your wealth for years to come. By selling when times are good, you’ll avoid the financial turmoil that a market correction can cause.
“Don’t count your chickens before they hatch,” says Schwartz. “Assets may not be liquid and can not necessarily be counted on to retain their value. Spending responsibly and budgeting properly are the only sure fire ways to ensure a healthy financial future.”
About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.:
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance.
For more information or to request an interview with Jeffrey Schwartz, please contact:
Public Relations Coordinator
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.
T: 416-915-7283 ext.1041