Vancouver - Post Report Question and Answers
What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?
This is an LQA post for us so we found our own housing, within the guidelines provided. It was great picking our own home but setting everything up cost us a lot of money out of pocket. I will not willingly choose to do another LQA post. Most families choose to live in North or West Vancouver to be closer to the schools. Singles and couples live downtown and have great access to work, restaurants, night life, etc. - May 2017
You are responsible for finding your own housing. There are plenty of locations downtown, but it is very expensive. - Aug 2015
This is an LQA post and as others note it can be very expensive and a hassle on many fronts. It can work out great and you might secure desirable accommodations that suit your personal taste, but be prepared to pony up a lot of $ up front, comply with security and other requirements, and to do paperwork and reconciliation. I loved my housing but it was a pain, too. Not sure I'll do LQA again as a result. Consulate employees are spread throughout Metro Vancouver in a mix of houses, condos and apartments, It requires your own legwork. Those with kids tended to be on the North Shore over the Lion's Gate Bridge in either West Vancouver or North Vancouver. Some were in Kitsilano or Coal Harbour. Singles and those without families tended to be in the downtown or nearby areas like Yaletown and Kits. Commute times varied but I don't think they exceeded 30 minutes for anyone and could be as little as a five minute walk if you chose Coal Harbour. Some people rode bikes over the bridge or took the Seabus from the North Shore. - Jun 2014
Flats downtown, detached houses Westside, multiple-unit houses Eastside. Construction quality is very poor, considering the rent they charge. - Mar 2012
Singles usually find an apartment downtown. Families with kids usually find a house outside of downtown in a surrounding suburb like North or West Vancouver. - Jun 2010
Singles and small families usually live in downtown condos or townhouses, which are expensive and very small compared to what you could get in an American city. Beware of ads that say 1,000 sq. feet, it will feel like a closet. Downtown housing in Coal Harbour, West End, or Yaletown will be within walking distance to work. Larger families live farther afield, usually in North or West Vancouver, where the houses and yards are much larger. Commutes from there depend on traffic but not anything close to say a Falls Church to downtown DC commute. - Oct 2008