Halifax has a rare combination of high growth, low unemployment and a low cost of living. Is Halifax Canada’s not-so-hidden gem?
Much of the attention around the cost of housing revolves around the astronomical housing prices in Toronto and Vancouver. This is for a good reason, as only people with enormous incomes can even consider buying a house in those cities. Real estate prices have led to an exodus from those cities and towards surrounding suburbs. Some of the cities surrounding Toronto and Vancouver rank among the fastest growing in the country.
Numbers clearly show that Canadians aspire to own a home. Mississauga and Burnaby are among the largest cities in Canada for this exact reason.
As Halifax begins to emerge as a more significant player on the Canadian scene, I suspect we will see an influx of people moving here from more expensive cities. I also expect immigrants to continue arriving in increasing numbers from every corner of the globe, enriching our culture and creating businesses. Halifax real estate will almost certainly go up in value, but Halifax will probably remain a place where average families can afford to buy a house. Communities like Sackville and Cole Harbour will build new, affordable real estate, while the prices on the Halifax Peninsula and Downtown Dartmouth will continue to rise.
Side Note: Halifax should seriously look into investing in LRT (Light Rail Transit). Waterloo, Ont is a similarly sized city with a full-fledged LRT system, and Gatineau, a town about half our size, is getting it. Let’s do it now before the cost to build it skyrockets!