According to the World Happiness Report 2023, Canada ranks 13 out of 137 in terms of happiness levels, outranking the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and many others.
But not all cities within Canada are equally happy, so Point2Homes took that research a step further and narrowed down the happiest cities in Canada based on economy & real estate, location & demographics, health & well-being, and community & environment.
One element the research didn’t consider was average home prices, a factor that any potential homebuyer can attest to being influential on their happiness. So in order to find the most affordable cities of the happiest cities, Zoocasa analyzed the average home prices for the top 20 happiest cities in Canada and found the rate of price growth for each.
Enjoying our content? Subscribe to our free weekly newsletter to get real estate market insights, news, and reports straight to your inbox.
Benchmark prices were sourced from the Canadian Real Estate Association, the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, the Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers, and the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board. For the purpose of this report, Repentigny, Blainville and Terrebonne (which ranked 11, 12, and 13 on Point2Homes list) were combined and represented by the singular North Shore of Montreal. Home price data for Granby, QC and Strathcona County, AB were not available and thus were not included in this report.
Halton Region Cities Ranked the Happiest But at a Cost
Money can’t buy happiness but it certainly can buy you a home in one of the top five happiest cities in Canada, all of which have an average home price above $900,000 and three of which are in Halton Region.
Caledon was ranked the happiest city in Canada but it also has the highest average home price of all of the top twenty cities, with an average price of $1,401,951 in October 2023. Compared to other top-ranking cities, Caledon’s 3-year and 5-year price growth is moderate at 13.5% and 44.2% respectively.
Milton and Halton Hills followed, both with an average home price above $1,000,0000, though Halton Hills stands out at having a 5-year price growth of 58.2% which is the third-highest rate of growth among the cities we analyzed. This means that Halton Hills homeowners can expect to build a significant amount of equity there, potentially more than in both Caledon and Milton.
The most affordable city in the top five and the most affordable Ontario city to make the list is Clarington, which at $914,233, has an average home price still out of reach for what many homebuyers can afford. Despite this, Clarington had the second-highest 5-year price growth at 69%, meaning homebuyers here can more quickly build equity.
Only four cities outside of Ontario and Quebec made it into the top twenty happiest cities list, with all four coming from the Greater Vancouver area. Of those, Port Coquitlam is the most affordable with an average home price in October of $954,500.
Quebec Takes the Crown for Both Happiness and Affordability
With an average home price of $255,000, Saguenay takes the title of being the most affordable city of the happiest cities. Located around 200km north of Quebec City, Saguenay ranked 9th of the happiest cities in Canada and for good reason; average home prices in Saguenay are almost $100,000 cheaper than the next most affordable city, Lévis, and $476,100 cheaper than the national average in October.
As the second most affordable city and the 6th happiest in Canada, Lévis is another good option for homebuyers looking to live in a more urban area without sacrificing their budget. The average home price in October 2023 in Lévis was $340,000 and it is the only city we analyzed that experienced a 3-year price drop, decreasing by 23.6% since 2020.
The North Shore of Montreal, which includes Repentigny, Blainville, Terrebonne, and Laval followed with average home prices of $487,000 and $538,750 respectively in October. The North Shore of Montreal has experienced significant price growth in the past five years, with prices jumping by 80% since 2018 and 34.5% since 2020, indicating how strong housing demand is here. In order to meet this growing demand, the federal government announced on November 16 that it is investing over $925 million to build nearly 3,000 rental homes across Montreal.
If you’re looking to enter one of these markets, it’s important to speak with a local realtor who can give you specific information and guidance about the local real estate market. Give us a call today to discuss your home-buying plans.
Want to find a home in one of Canada’s happiest cities?
Mackenzie Scibetta is a seasoned Content Marketing Specialist at Zoocasa, where she brings her expertise to the world of real estate. As a dedicated real estate writer, Mackenzie's primary goal is to equip home buyers and sellers with the most up-to-date market insights, enabling them to navigate their real estate ventures with confidence.
Mackenzie's writing is characterized by its depth and breadth, covering a wide range of topics related to the real estate industry. From exploring the intricacies of mortgages to meticulously tracking and analyzing trends in local markets across Canada and the U.S., Mackenzie is known for her comprehensive and data-driven reports. Her commitment to providing valuable information is evident in the consistent quality of her work.
Mackenzie's research and insights have earned her recognition from prominent media outlets. Her expertise has been featured in BNN Bloomberg, CTV News, the National Post, The Globe and Mail, and even The New York Times. These accolades underscore her position as a trusted authority in the field of real estate.