Victoria BC Ranked Second-Best Place To Live In Canada

While it’s no secret to those that live here, report contains some surprising data.

Victoria, BC

There was a story in the Times Colonist this morning about a recent survey in MoneySense magazine in which Victoria came in ranked #2, behind Ottawa, for the best place to live in Canada.

But what surprised me most about this survey is that it still took housing costs into account. It would seem that if you left out housing costs, Victoria would be a clear leader, if not a winner. From this survey, however, it seems that high housing prices are offset by all the good things that the region offers.

Examined in the survey were water and air quality, housing, household income, discretionary income, new cars, unemployment, the percentage of people who walk or bicycle to work, population growth and crime.

Based on what’s been going on in the local community in the past few years, we can immediately see where Victoria would have high marks: the population has been exploding in recent years, we have record-low unemployment, and we’re one of the most bike-to-work-friendly regions in Canada. Our supply of water is clean and plentiful, and the constant sea-breezes keep the air quality pristine. Victoria also scored high for number of doctors.

The report examined housing, and stated the average price for Victoria as $465,000 – it must have included condos. Despite the average wage-earner requiring 6.64 times their annual income to purchase a home here, it seems that we’re still a very desirable place to live.

I wonder if Sooke real estate was used in the calculation of the averages? We have many affordable options in this town for working families to get into the market. $300,000 can buy you a decent home here.


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Tim Ayres

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Published by Tim Ayres

Tim Ayres is a Sooke and Victoria BC REALTOR®, with Royal LePage Coast Capital Realty. Tim is actively involved in helping clients buying and selling real estate in the southern Vancouver Island region. Tim is an active member of the Victoria Real Estate Board and served seven years (2009-2015) as a director, including serving as President in 2014.

10 thoughts on “Victoria BC Ranked Second-Best Place To Live In Canada

  1. Recently I have read quite similar study. I am specialized on selling Vancouver condos so I have a good survive about prices and about condos market in Vancouver. I was very surprised about numbers revealed in the report. They were far a way from to be accurate. Problem is that these studies are not always made by analysts who are not always using best available figures. We should be careful when we’re evaluating these reports.

    1. Hi there,

      Thanks for your comment on my blog. Victoria proper (the city of Victoria only) has a population of about 78,659, while the surrounding metro area has a total population of about 337,411.

      If you have any more questions, please let me know!

  2. If working in downtown Victoria it seems like Sooke is a bit too far of a commute. Is there a significant population that commutes to downtown Victoria for work?
    I’m curious about people’s perspectives on this.

    1. Hi Greg, thanks for dropping by.

      Lots of people commute from Sooke to Victoria or Esquimalt (Navy base) for work. Most of the people I know have at least one member of the household who commutes to Victoria. The commute in the morning rarely takes more than 45 minutes. The nice thing about the drive, is that although it’s a little longer than from other areas to Victoria, most of the way is along Sooke Road, which has no stop lights until Langford – so you cruise along without stop and go traffic. I often cut through Humpback Road to the highway, avoiding Langford and the “Colwood Crawl” altogether. I estimate that shortcut saves around 10 minutes if Sooke/Jacklin, Veteran’s Memorial Parkway, and the Colwood strip are busy.

  3. My girlfriend got a job in Duncan, and I will be relocating there with her. I work in the tech industry, I have seen numerous jobs out there, but all in Victoria. Do you know what the commute is like time wise from Duncan to Victoria? I was looking at the bus, but wonder the drive time and traffic. I am an avid road cyclist and also am looking at riding to work (bus part way, bike part way). any info would be greatly appreciated!


  4. Nevertheless, some people saying that if somebody tells you that Vancouver is the best place to live it means you’ve never been anywhere else or that guy is a Realtor, I would rank Victoria as NO 2 behind Vancouver.

  5. We are interested in possibly relocating to Victoria from Texas.  I have many questions.
    First I was startled to read the remark above that $300,000.00 only buys a decent home in Victoria… is it for Millionaires only?  I thought it was not an expensive place to live?

    How are Americans who have relocated there treated?

    1. hey summer, did you move to victoria?  how do you like it?  what research have you been able to find?

      i too am considering a move there and am doing lots and lots of research. 

  6. Greater Victoria has a culture (social, economic, political) that is uptight, cliquey, mental, cold, fake, aloof, and blocked in all ways. The jobs, pay, promotions, prospects suck all the way up and down the entire job market in all levels and industries. You will have no friends, no money, huge debts, and no appreciation from the cheap and greedy Victoria region employers. Many employers have been dragged before the government labour board for work regulations violations or got internet rated poorly. The Victoria employers are more interested in lying to the Federal Government about finding no citizens to employ so they can import Temporary Foreign Workers, slave labour. Victoria BC (Bring Cash & your own friends) is only good to visit for vacations, not live long term. Read the opinions on, (Victoria, BC, Canada),,, Yahoo Answers, BBBs, “Why Some Immigrants Leave Canada”. and others.

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