Pandemic hits some B.C. residents hard financially, while others thrive: survey - InfoNews

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Pandemic hits some B.C. residents hard financially, while others thrive: survey

FILE PHOTO - Canadian $100 bills are counted in Toronto, Feb. 2, 2016.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
May 15, 2020 - 2:13 PM

If you find the pandemic has left your wallet as empty as your social calendar, you’re not alone.

British Columbians are feeling the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, with more than two-thirds saying they have depleted their savings, according to recent survey by Insight West.

The market research firm found a significant number of people in the province are finding it difficult to make mortgage payments, pay rent or buy groceries.

The survey found 31 per cent of those asked are finding it more difficult to pay their household bills, and 21 per cent are finding it harder to put food on the table.

Almost 30 per cent of homeowners are finding it difficult to pay their mortgage, and the study found that 12 per cent have deferred mortgage payments. For those who rent, 41 per cent have had a hard time coming up with the cash.

Insight West said paying for necessities is growing more difficult and financial situation is looking bleak for some B.C. residents.

The poll found around five per cent of the population has lost more than $100,000 during the pandemic. An additional seven per cent have lost somewhere between $50,000 and $100,000 and more than a quarter of respondents have lost up to $5,000. About six per cent are likely to declare personal bankruptcy.

One-third of those asked report no change to their financial situation whatsoever, while others are experiencing a more positive financial situation because of the pandemic.

Over a quarter of British Columbians have saved money during the pandemic, according to the survey. Those between the ages of 18 and 34 account for 40 per cent of those who said they had saved money.

The study also found that slightly more women than men had noticed a positive impact.

The survey was done online over two days in early May and collected data from 747 individuals. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.6 per cent 19 times out of 20.

How has the pandemic impacted you financially? Let us know in the comments.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Jenna Wheeler or call (250) 819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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