Kaz Novak/torstar files
Here’s the second part of my overview of the different areas our great city has to offer. Last week I covered downtown, Markham, Stouffville and North York. This week it’s time to spread our wings and fly a little further from the city’s core.
For many families, Richmond Hill has been the “perfect” yet somewhat unattainable neighbourhood. Richmond Hill has prestige, beautiful, large housing and decent schools, though not the best the city has to offer. Proximity to the Yonge line and the 404 make it a convenient location and regardless of where you work, much like North York, you’re equally close. While housing is not inexpensive, expect it to keep its value. The main knock used to be the lack of entertainment facilities but with the increasingly flourishing 404/7 entertainment and shopping district, even that concern is not so valid anymore.
Those who have grown up here, swear by it. Housing prices are varied and, in most areas, safe. Affordable real estate is available to just about everyone, regardless of their comfort-price zone. There is ample shopping and entertainment as well as a solid business infrastructure — it’s not far fetched to expect to find a job there. Proximity to downtown is another plus as the QEW can get you there within 45-60 minutes even during rush hour, depending on how deep into the city you go.
Oakville has quickly become the most prestigious place to live in the west end of the GTA. Home to a number of the more privileged young professionals and young growing families, Oakville attracts those people who don’t mind the trek to work downtown, though it’s a bit tougher to get to Richmond Hill or North York from there. Oakville is home to many fine, new communities and boasts schooling of equally strong quality. Things to do and see are coming along and Mississauga is a short drive away. Downtown by public transit is feasible, although the drive isn’t something I would personally enjoy, especially from the outer reaches of the city.
From the west to the north, Newmarket offers a unique situation for many younger homebuyers as well as more mature families. New communities and schools are available but the trek to downtown Toronto, much like Oakville, is one that is doable by transit but tough by car. Not the largest city, nor that of highest luxury, Newmarket boasts affordable, quality housing and some very attractive, young neighbourhoods and communities. Again, housing values are safe.
The point is that the GTA offers advantages and disadvantages in any given area. The key isn’t determining which area is the best, but rather which area is the best for you.
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