Owning a house should be on the top of everyone's to-do list, because as Lex Luthor taught us (the Gene Hackman version, not Jesse Eisenberg's manic-hacker take on the character), real estate is one of the safest ways to invest your money.
Now, no one recommends causing a nuclear disaster in order to make a barren stretch of dessert into the "new west coast" like Lex would (watch the original Superman if all that went over your head), but you could buy a house in a major Canadian city and get in the real estate game.
The thing is, you need a fair amount of money to put a down payment on a house and get approved for a mortgage (unless you have hundreds of thousands of dollars just lying around) and not everyone has that kind of income.
But before you get down on your salary, note that in certain Canadian cities, you may be making more than enough to get in on some prime real estate. Vancouver may be out of your price range but Quebec City could be the perfect fit.
So how much does it cost to buy a house in every major Canadian city? Apartment and real estate search engine website RentSeeker.ca has answered that question in one easy-to-understand map infographic, which you can find below.
Comparing the yearly difference in each metropolitan housing market (so how much prices went up/down from 2015-2016), the map is also pretty handy in tracking which cities will be a better investment.
Below, you can find a quick rundown on the average cost of a house in most major Canadian cities (from most expensive to cheapest), with the detailed RentSeeker map following.
Boucherie Slovenia, a boulevard Saint-Laurent institution for 50 years, will soon serve its last spicy sausage.
The iconic home of enormous Eastern European-style sandwiches — Slovenian sausage and towering cold-cuts were staples — will close its doors forever on January 29, said the owners, Lourdes Rodrigues and Jean Teixeira, in a Facebook post.
"Thank you to all our loyal customers, for the wonderful years," they said.
With a menu overflowing with huge, yet affordable, meat and mustard sandwiches — sauerkraut, pickles and Cherry Cokes were also standard — Boucherie Slovenia is the latest of the Main's iconic old-school institutions to close.
The beloved Moishes steakhouse announced its closure under the strain of the pandemic in the summer of 2020.
The Boucherie Slovenia Facebook post asks readers to share their memories of the restaurant and butcher shop, with many offering childhood stories of visiting for a pepperette sandwich or their "underrated" smoked meat, which is "the best in the city," according to one commenter.
Many apparent long-time customers said they wouldn't know where to go to find dishes comparable to Boucherie Slovenia's treasured menu items.
Others remarked on how yet another classic Montreal restaurant is closing its doors. "Nothing replaces these fantastic old shops," said one person. "It's a loss. The rich character of the boulevard is disappearing."
Montreal is certainly no stranger to a traffic jam, which makes taking public transit a more viable option to not only get around faster but do more good for the environment.
As Canadian cities take the initiative to improve their transit systems and reduce their carbon footprints, Montreal has become one of the country's greenest metropolitan areas when it comes to transport, according to one ranking.
A December report from Kijiji Autos analyzed green transport options in Canada's most populated cities, evaluating their use of electric cars, bikes, scooters, and the number of electric charging stations.
With its metro and bus systems, BIXI rentals, bike lanes, and availability of electric cars, Montreal found itself in third place among Canadian cities that offer the greenest transport with a score of 5.5/10.
Although Vancouver and Ottawa/Gatineau snagged the top two spots, Montreal takes the lead as the most bicycle-friendly city in all of North America, with a total of 2,163 bicycle paths, says the Copenhagenize Index.
Montreal's third-place ranking is encouraging news, said McGill University Assistant Professor of Geography, Grant McKenzie, who specifically boasted about Montreal's metro system, "especially compared to other Canadian cities," as well as its "substantial investment towards electric buses."
While McKenzie said "we can always do better" and bemoaned the city's ban on e-scooters, he called the popularity of the BIXI and the inclusion of electric bikes in its fleet an "excellent move in the right direction."
As for electric cars, Kijiji Autos looked at new registrations of electric vehicles in the first quarter of 2021, as well as total charging stations. Montreal landed second to Toronto with a total of 3,633 new registered electric cars, and 1,258 electric charging stations throughout the city.
Kijiji Autos also looked at the number of hybrids and electric vehicles for sale on their platform. Montreal led the way with 1,063 hybrid vehicles and 375 electric vehicles, states the report.
With the province of Quebec offering residents a rebate for the purchase or lease of electric cars, Quebec estimates that there will be 1.5 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030.
According to Quebec-specific data that was shared with MTL Blog, in 2020 and 2021 compared to 2019, there was an immense rise in certain home-related search terms in our province, including "realtors near me," "cheap homes for sale," "mortgage refinancing," "rent assistance" and "eviction moratorium."
So, in a nutshell, it looks like homebuyers were looking for cheap real estate and realtors around them to help them buy, homeowners were trying to figure out how to refinance their mortgage, and renters were looking for assistance and learning about their rental rights when it comes to eviction rules during COVID-19.
As for Canadians' housing preferences at large, here were the main findings:
Homebuyers' common searches in 2021 saw a rise in terms such as "houses for sale near me," "realtors near me" and "movers near me." Other common searches like "cheap homes for sale" and "how to save money for a house" doubled during the period between 2019 and 2021.
For renters, 2020 and 2021 saw increased popularity in search terms like "rent relief" and "eviction moratorium." Other renters' searches that went up over the last two years were "renting with pets," "apartments for rent near me," and "apartment with balcony."
Homeowners were also looking to upgrade their living space, according to Point2's report. During the pandemic, there was an increase in search terms like "home office design," "how to paint kitchen cabinets," "flip house" and "house renovation."
Clearly, Google Trends provides good insight into what people want to know during a certain period of time. Wonder what the new search trends will be in 2022...
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
Women will lead five of Quebec's eight largest cities following the 2021 municipal elections.
The biggest headline of the night may have been Valérie Plante's triumph over old foe Denis Coderre in Montreal, but across the province, the faces of municipal politics have become more gender-balanced.
According to the latest counts and projections, France Bélisle (Gatineau), Catherine Fournier (Longueuil), Évelyne Beaudin (Sherbrooke) and Julie Dufour (Saguenay) are all also on their way to their respective (and figurative) city hall corner offices.
In Quebec City, it seemed for a while like Marie-Josée Savard would join them. Multiple outlets had even called the election for her until the vote count for her opponent surged into the evening. Bruno Marchand ultimately claimed victory.
Mayor Plante commented on the historic nature of her second mandate in her victory speech Sunday night.
"Four years ago, Montrealers elected the first woman mayor in the history of the City of Montreal," she said.
"Tonight, they told us again, 'yes, this mayor, we're going to continue to work with her, we trust her!'"
This year, for the first time, Montrealers will have two women leading the city, as Projet Montréal's Dominique Ollivier is set to take over as president of the Executive Committee.