Not all housing in BC is expensive, It depends on where you are looking.If you want waterfront property in White Rock, yeah it's gonna cost you.If you go to a quiet urban area the prices aren't so bad.Not all of Canada is as expensive as the upscale areas of BC.
How does the average Canadian afford a BC home? The 'average" Canadian that is buying is a baby boomer retiring or thinking about retirement. Vancouver and Vancouver Island is where a significant number of them want to retire. So they sell their mortgage free home in the major places across Canada such as Calgary and Toronto and willing to pay slightly more for their BC retirement goal. Thus, they drive up prices higher than they would be otherwise. Sure, BC families buy too, but boomers is the extra demand that drives up prices.The US is different as there are a lot more choices such as Florida, California, Texas, Nevada, etc. So is it sustainable? Yes, as there are still a lot of Canadian Baby boomers left to retire for the next 20 years demanding housing in BC.I live on Vancouver Island in an area where housing is affordable. It's because it is NOT in the retirement areas.