Thinking of moving to Hamilton? There are plenty of features that make Hamilton a great place to live and a safe investment of your home-buying dollars, as you will discover below, along with advice on what to look for when buying a Hamilton home.
Hamilton’s Real Estate Market
As the Greater Toronto Hamilton Area (GTHA) continues growing, Hamilton’s real estate market has performed similarly to other popular local markets.
Housing prices and sales have sagged everywhere; however, Hamilton homes are currently selling at 96% of the listing price, with an average sold price of $796,000.
Getting Around Town – Transportation in Hamilton
Hamilton does have a viable public transportation service, especially in the downtone core. Despite not having run any streetcars since 1951, local transit buses are operated by the Hamilton Street Railway Company, HSR for short. They have been providing public transportation services in Hamilton since 1874. It currently has approximately 40 routes and annual ridership of around 21 million yearly passengers.
There are two GO Stations located in downtown Hamilton. More are on the way, with plans to connect to East Hamilton, Grimsby, Stoney Creek, St. Catharines, and Niagara Falls. Check out GO Transit’s future transit page for the latest updates.
Many Hamilton neighbourhoods are within close proximity of two major Ontario highways, the QEW and the 403, making them accessible to Hamilton’s many commuters. Driving downtown is tolerable, but its many one-way streets do get congested regularly.
If you’re considering a move to Hamilton, or anywhere else in Ontario, visit the government of Ontario’s highway programs website to find out if there are any future transportation projects planned in the area.
Hamilton’s Educational Systems
If you’re planning on living in a Hamilton home long-term and either have school-aged children or are planning to, the quality of the neighbourhood schools is an important consideration. You can search the Frasier Institute website to learn where the top-ranking Hamilton schools are and to find out how schools in a local area are ranked.
Hamilton is, of course, home to renowned post-secondary colleges and universities, including McMaster University – which is a coveted acceptance for international students studying Engineering, Medicine and Computer Sciences. Hamilton is also home to many other respected institutions like McMaster Divinity College and Mohawk College.
Post-secondary institutions have a heavy influence on their communities and vice versa, drawing employers from around the world who set up shops nearby and develop critical infrastructure and services.
The quality and accessibility of local schools also impact property values in the area.
Plan Your Move to Hamilton Strategically
The real estate market has its hot and cold seasons, and if you can wait until there is less activity on Hamilton’s market, you can save on several expenses, including the cost of your home, renovation expenses, furnishings and moving costs.
Southern Ontario’s real estate cold seasons are typically during the holidays and the summer. Unfortunately, because there aren’t as many buyers, there aren’t many sellers. You will not have the options you do in the summer, but if you’re lucky, you may find a home you love at a good price from a motivated seller.
If you are that fortunate and are closing in the winter, you can save a bundle on expenses and services that are also cheaper when fewer people are buying or selling real estate, moving or renovating their homes.