Best communities in Canada for families 2019
Best communities in Canada for families


(City of Burlington)

When Jonathan Wadham was searching for a place to raise his family, a city with excellent public schools and well-paying jobs topped his list. Burlington, Ont., a city of about 260,000 west of Toronto, offered all that plus a strong sense of community.

“It’s literally a full-time job to find a desirable place that makes sense to raise your family,” says Wadham, who moved to Burlington three years ago from Toronto. “I went to school in Toronto and loved the city, but we couldn’t imagine raising our kids here and providing them with what we were used to when my wife and I were growing up. The cost of living is not manageable with my income.”

PHOTOS: 10 best communities for families in Canada 2019

Less than an hour’s drive from Toronto in the right traffic conditions, Burlington has a vibrant economy, and residents have the option of commuting to the Hamilton-Niagara region as well. And the unemployment rate sits at 4.7 per cent, which is relatively low. However, there are some downsides.

For instance, the average housing price of $888,000 is still higher than most communities nationwide, but it’s about $75,000 cheaper than Toronto’s $963,000. And child care isn’t cheap, with infant day care spots going for about $1,500 a month.

MORE: See the full ranking of the best communities in Canada

Affordability was Burlington’s worst category, but it made up for it by scoring in the top 25 per cent in six out of 10 categories: wealth and economy, amenities, weather, crime, health, and culture and community. Our Best Communities for Families ranking also beefs up the importance of community safety, and the Halton region has the 13th lowest crime severity index in the country.

In fact, Burlington is also the winning city in this year’s overall Best Communities in Canada ranking. And it’s attracting young families with kids—47 per cent of families in the municipality have children, and 17 per cent of the population is under the age of 15.

“When you’re a parent, you always want your kids to find playmates,” Wadham says. “Obviously, it also helps us to socialize with new families with similar priorities, similar goals, and similar challenges. Burlington has been perfect in that respect.”

Canada’s best communities to raise kids by region

Atlantic Canada:  Rothesay, N.B. (no. 67)

Quebec: Blainville (no. 4)

Ontario: Burlington (no. 1)

Prairies: Hanover, Man. (no. 73)

Alberta: St. Albert (no. 13)

B.C.: Oak Bay (no. 43)

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RankCity nameProvincePercentage of population under age 15Percentage of families with childrenMedian monthly infant daycare fees in closest major city/regionMedian monthly toddler daycare fees in closest major city/regionPercentage of population employed in arts and recreationCommunity index (higher is better)Percentage of population that walks to workPercentage of population that bikes to workPercentage of population that takes transit to workDays per year with rain or snowDays per year above 0CDays per year above 20CPopulationFive-year population changeMarch 2019 economic region unemployment rateMedian household incomeAverage household discretionary incomeAverage household net worthAverage value of primary real estateHome price to income ratio
1BurlingtonON17%47%149711562.3%1111.9%0.5%5.0%1362391251973815.40%4.7% $101,448 $63,511 $1,099,461$887,6577.08
2LaSalleON18%52%9988681.2%1080.8%0.2%0.5%150249139318686.00%6.5% $109,208 $61,822 $783,274$407,8883.52
3OakvilleON18%56%137011302.5%1111.8%0.4%8.6%1182221072103507.30%6.4% $122,584 $78,388 $1,737,882$1,243,7607.49
4BlainvilleQC19%52%1751751.6%590.9%0.4%4.9%167199112605307.40%4.7% $95,907 $55,086 $642,113$434,3113.87
5MiltonON25%60%137011301.7%1041.3%0.3%5.2%13919612013250827.80%6.4% $114,275 $60,734 $1,188,971$1,229,2919.42
6RussellON20%51%95510091.6%981.9%0.2%2.4%16421078173916.70%5.1% $115,792 $67,301 $552,088$419,9173.21
7Vaudreuil-DorionQC23%49%1751752.0%771.9%0.5%4.0%1591991114148613.10%5.3% $83,631 $43,630 $437,536$411,7354.58
8Deux-MontagnesQC17%45%1751752.6%592.1%0.8%16.2%169219107180490.90%4.7% $76,065 $42,762 $286,152$285,7863.35
9AuroraON18%57%137011302.0%1091.8%0.2%5.8%165221119600426.30%6.4% $115,191 $69,007 $1,580,178$1,192,1558.1
10OttawaON18%45%95510092.6%1084.6%1.6%12.3%16121611710196937.60%5.1% $92,579 $56,501 $721,100$543,8144.75
11BrantON18%46%149711561.3%1191.5%0.2%0.6%136218125392634.90%4.7% $97,437 $55,360 $902,709$572,7285.59
12GrimsbyON18%45%149711561.6%1141.6%0.3%0.9%163244121286316.80%4.7% $98,669 $60,242 $880,615$682,6145.95
13St. AlbertAB19%48%9758702.0%1031.8%0.4%2.8%11317784702134.00%7.3% $123,659 $81,042 $843,729$426,2572.91
14Saint-ConstantQC19%50%1751751.6%571.6%0.2%8.5%163218117298258.30%5.3% $92,894 $48,974 $338,437$341,2363.5
15RepentignyQC18%43%1751751.3%631.9%0.2%4.4%160201108857961.60%4.7% $82,556 $44,939 $419,604$330,9763.67
16TecumsehON15%46%9988681.6%1141.0%0.4%0.6%150249139242772.20%6.5% $102,159 $64,093 $815,306$426,4743.62
17SherbrookeQC19%37%1901901.4%663.2%0.5%3.4%1871821051711845.90%4.4% $55,057 $36,448 $286,166$273,9584.01
18LévisQC18%42%1901901.4%662.3%0.4%3.5%175195941471033.10%5.0% $80,137 $47,714 $382,895$301,2613.33
19MirabelQC20%48%1751751.7%601.6%0.3%2.3%1671991125698418.90%4.7% $83,109 $42,958 $359,824$389,9704.48
20TerrebonneQC20%48%1751751.5%591.4%0.3%4.2%1662021111168104.70%4.7% $84,870 $44,447 $367,854$336,9383.72
21PetawawaON27%49%95510091.0%912.2%1.0%0.8%170181111181765.00%5.5% $96,831 $52,657 $256,852$311,6513.08
22Clarence-RocklandON19%44%95510091.2%891.7%0.2%4.1%155200113253173.70%5.1% $97,551 $56,560 $444,912$369,3723.51
23RosemèreQC16%50%1751753.1%701.7%0.5%6.5%1662028114169-0.70%4.7% $109,680 $65,973 $1,002,384$451,3913.45
24PrévostQC18%43%1751752.0%651.1%0.3%1.7%144197103136336.20%4.7% $84,610 $50,568 $465,432$300,8913.01
25Sainte-Marthe-sur-le-LacQC22%49%1751751.7%591.0%0.4%9.0%1692191071986713.60%4.7% $87,112 $41,643 $363,236$344,5304.03
26New TecumsethON18%43%137011301.7%1142.7%0.5%0.8%1552161223850414.70%5.0% $95,385 $57,797 $845,233$642,4165.75
27RimouskiQC18%35%1901901.1%723.8%0.7%0.9%16719772501062.90%8.8% $60,850 $40,004 $292,138$214,0782.93
28WhitbyON20%55%137011302.0%1061.5%0.2%6.8%1462391001385636.70%6.4% $112,416 $58,133 $853,148$771,4426.33
29Trois-RivièresQC17%34%1901901.5%682.6%0.5%1.7%1611971041384803.10%5.8% $53,768 $36,303 $283,619$212,3293.14
30Thames CentreON16%47%122911311.2%1201.0%0.2%0.3%168223123140465.10%5.3% $102,267 $62,084 $861,106$513,6524.43
31ChamblyQC22%48%1751752.3%571.8%0.4%9.1%1602031083101211.00%5.3% $91,454 $48,912 $410,406$389,4713.96
32BécancourQC19%39%1901901.1%742.7%0.5%1.1%161197104135254.20%6.5% $65,794 $42,824 $350,183$209,6632.72
33VictoriavilleQC19%36%1901901.2%723.4%1.0%0.7%165194100472303.60%6.5% $55,177 $37,686 $315,433$195,7732.92
34Middlesex CentreON20%51%122911311.5%1291.2%0.2%0.6%157226125186217.90%5.3% $117,724 $67,418 $1,109,584$582,4464.37
35WestmountQC17%45%1751755.1%1398.5%1.9%10.1%163218117212193.80%7.4% $109,019 $120,053 $3,653,100$1,600,0946.32
36ChâteauguayQC18%43%1751751.5%811.7%0.3%7.5%163218117513504.90%5.3% $71,260 $42,936 $324,451$296,3453.62
37KingsvilleON22%43%9988681.0%1071.9%0.3%0.3%129246124224122.60%6.5% $84,104 $49,976 $605,817$388,2394.28
38Mont-RoyalQC21%55%1751753.4%1302.4%1.3%13.0%163218117216136.60%7.4% $118,728 $92,563 $2,588,821$1,209,5865.99
39North GrenvilleON16%42%95510091.7%791.6%0.2%1.0%162202111173167.40%5.1% $100,412 $55,695 $575,107$372,8213.53
40L’AssomptionQC21%45%1751751.7%651.9%0.4%2.3%137211113238419.30%4.7% $77,990 $39,434 $316,709$290,3933.62
41DrummondvilleQC19%36%1751751.4%692.4%0.6%0.9%159210109780194.40%6.5% $54,890 $36,644 $274,460$239,6373.63
42EssexON19%42%9988680.8%1022.0%0.3%0.4%134243138209302.50%6.5% $76,800 $47,015 $495,892$333,7033.92
43Oak BayBC16%39%126012003.2%1134.3%5.2%3.9%17629386182331.20%3.6% $106,589 $82,797 $2,314,752$1,278,8808.23
44BrossardQC18%46%1751751.8%1051.3%0.4%14.4%165206118923479.40%5.3% $77,110 $50,626 $619,834$445,7864.45
45CantleyQC21%53%1901902.3%670.9%0.8%3.8%160203108114699.10%6.4% $119,037 $56,292 $518,258$392,1023.34
46Sainte-MarieQC20%41%1901901.2%762.7%0.3%0.6%15618495140974.00%5.0% $68,513 $43,287 $384,712$228,7692.87
47Norfolk CountyON17%37%149711560.8%1221.9%0.2%0.4%148217122654631.40%4.7% $73,161 $48,333 $604,291$435,5095.04
48Whitchurch-StouffvilleON20%54%137011302.1%1111.3%0.3%3.8%1652211195137616.50%6.4% $111,059 $67,721 $2,410,521$2,263,57316.04
49MarkhamON16%58%137011301.8%1121.0%0.2%7.9%1652211193564167.20%6.4% $94,086 $61,170 $1,594,766$1,407,35711.4
50Notre-Dame-de-l’ële-PerrotQC17%54%1751751.6%760.4%0.3%3.6%151212113107980.40%5.3% $110,189 $56,087 $756,157$518,7254.57
51KingstonON17%37%95510091.6%1065.2%1.4%5.3%159223991352204.50%5.5% $73,007 $47,840 $573,435$427,7334.66
52WilmotON20%47%149511391.6%1131.9%0.4%0.5%128210117220177.60%5.0% $103,877 $58,993 $902,570$690,7266.15
53Haldimand CountyON17%43%149711560.8%1242.0%0.1%0.5%153245117476353.70%4.7% $84,225 $52,322 $629,581$487,6555.21
54PincourtQC18%50%1751751.8%921.1%0.5%4.0%151212113149892.40%5.3% $86,514 $44,503 $429,001$404,8984.48
55St. ClairON16%40%122911310.9%1161.3%0.3%0.3%13823412914488-0.80%6.5% $96,981 $63,395 $523,174$327,9832.84
56ClaringtonON19%50%95510091.5%961.4%0.2%3.2%14621911110123710.00%6.4% $104,053 $53,243 $725,079$677,0036.16
57Halton HillsON18%54%137011301.9%1172.0%0.3%2.5%139196120652364.40%6.4% $115,963 $65,571 $1,300,762$1,182,8098.78
58LoyalistON20%39%95510091.1%1021.4%0.1%1.7%147239103178173.50%5.5% $88,438 $57,148 $550,306$414,5983.94
59Salmon ArmBC19%34%126012001.5%1084.0%0.5%0.8%138214105191538.70%5.3% $76,048 $45,436 $711,346$428,5175.11
60Bradford West GwillimburyON20%55%137011301.8%1012.1%0.2%3.1%1822011124105522.90%5.0% $103,029 $57,911 $847,902$861,9167.38
61Saint-ColombanQC22%50%1751751.4%660.9%0.2%1.5%1441971031771717.50%4.7% $87,035 $42,990 $363,436$369,5844.25
62Richmond HillON16%59%137011302.1%1071.3%0.2%7.6%1652211192092075.50%6.4% $93,500 $58,385 $1,486,850$1,317,02611.05
63ColwoodBC17%42%126012001.4%1021.8%2.1%4.3%14934757176725.60%3.6% $103,632 $53,740 $766,527$785,2237.39
64AmosQC20%37%1901901.1%646.7%0.4%0.3%15116274130890.90%3.6% $68,615 $47,692 $287,802$224,4272.59
65BoisbriandQC18%48%1751751.9%603.0%0.4%4.0%166202111279022.10%4.7% $77,514 $45,189 $374,075$313,6623.49
66NewmarketON18%54%137011302.2%1082.3%0.3%4.9%130211107892724.30%6.4% $102,782 $57,495 $956,210$879,2047.45
67RothesayNB17%44%8687161.5%1102.2%0.1%0.8%15819875118971.40%6.6% $93,778 $71,022 $999,754$402,8092.99
68QuispamsisNB20%51%8687162.0%1081.2%0.1%0.8%166197102186533.50%6.6% $107,885 $60,857 $543,548$324,7132.72
69LakeshoreON18%50%9988681.0%970.9%0.3%0.4%150249139376243.50%6.5% $103,168 $58,643 $748,652$442,9884.08
70Hamilton (City)ON17%45%149711561.6%1042.1%0.5%5.0%1562271205791055.10%4.7% $76,193 $48,102 $625,005$595,5936.54
71AjaxON19%56%137011301.7%981.4%0.3%9.4%14623910013225010.60%6.4% $105,366 $57,281 $877,112$916,9907.8
72Mont-Saint-HilaireQC18%43%1751752.7%671.6%0.5%5.6%155288117189752.30%5.3% $98,119 $61,043 $886,221$456,1773.81
73HanoverMB28%61%6514511.2%1211.5%0.5%0.3%1111661071696510.00%4.4% $83,173 $50,217 $413,709$327,5863.51
74Centre WellingtonON19%44%141112042.2%1133.1%0.3%0.6%179208106295655.60%5.0% $92,275 $56,195 $826,223$599,7835.54
75WeyburnSK22%40%8456501.3%1032.9%0.8%0.5%136169110117954.50%4.7% $85,357 $68,998 $880,193$287,6272.31
76Rouyn-NorandaQC18%38%1901901.2%685.6%0.4%0.9%18316383426341.40%3.6% $69,936 $42,986 $263,686$226,5832.82
77TachéMB24%55%6514511.3%1091.3%0.2%0.6%1121651021257411.10%4.4% $103,200 $56,691 $467,456$363,4803.36
78Central ElginON15%42%122911311.3%1111.6%0.3%0.2%159230128130891.40%5.3% $97,205 $57,845 $671,281$397,8633.71
79BeloeilQC20%42%1751752.2%652.1%0.6%4.0%155206117234156.50%5.3% $84,809 $47,979 $439,803$341,4773.65
80GuelphON18%46%149511392.0%1013.8%1.1%5.1%1672061131411258.10%5.0% $85,416 $49,697 $683,821$678,8496.82
81OrangevilleON20%49%137011301.6%924.1%0.5%1.6%151195105310056.70%5.0% $94,270 $49,633 $598,501$661,8666.58
82Niagara FallsON17%40%149711561.1%1032.0%0.4%1.1%171241124919085.50%4.7% $66,801 $43,143 $517,484$475,9725.91
83Saint-Basile-le-GrandQC21%51%1751752.7%601.9%0.5%9.5%160203108172000.90%5.3% $98,756 $52,717 $450,976$356,6173.35
84LincolnON20%45%149711561.1%1121.7%0.3%0.8%163244121248915.80%4.7% $96,064 $56,048 $975,321$780,6087.56
85Strathcona CountyAB19%48%9758701.6%1061.2%0.3%3.0%105162861044333.60%7.3% $127,368 $86,276 $1,082,581$543,6803.46
86St. ThomasON19%39%122911311.1%1012.8%0.8%0.6%159230128411084.40%5.3% $65,079 $43,370 $302,991$285,7483.56
87Quinte WestON17%39%95510090.8%1102.0%0.4%0.6%153217118453382.70%5.5% $72,963 $45,728 $405,175$358,9274.28
88Carleton PlaceON21%39%95510091.4%933.6%0.5%1.3%154198117110396.60%5.1% $79,465 $49,033 $425,804$349,8513.74
89Niagara-on-the-LakeON15%35%149711561.6%1171.3%0.5%0.3%1512381281865210.90%4.7% $93,425 $62,754 $1,255,495$738,1396.51
90AmherstburgON17%45%9988681.0%1031.5%0.3%0.4%134243138232835.10%6.5% $93,324 $53,515 $576,648$390,7503.88
91WoolwichON23%50%149511391.7%1083.8%0.8%0.6%169209118270839.10%5.0% $108,938 $74,307 $1,300,121$766,2795.47
92MascoucheQC20%46%1751751.6%601.2%0.1%3.2%158205118502659.40%4.7% $84,514 $44,154 $338,301$335,2573.74
93ErinON14%48%141112041.9%1311.8%0.2%1.2%151195105119395.20%5.0% $117,135 $68,943 $1,259,442$932,6966.99
94CalgaryAB19%48%110010301.9%1023.2%1.1%9.7%11217187137219310.00%7.9% $98,309 $72,258 $838,640$540,4924.09
95CaledonON17%57%137011301.8%1151.3%0.1%1.7%1511951057733716.40%6.4% $123,673 $68,082 $1,404,222$1,014,1857.27
96VaughanON18%61%141112041.8%1061.0%0.2%6.8%1372121173301956.50%6.4% $112,903 $64,067 $1,767,338$1,474,06611.07
97TerraceBC21%40%126012001.5%1015.8%2.0%0.8%20724855119350.40%3.8% $88,018 $51,378 $365,498$257,9652.77
98Saint-Bruno-de-MontarvilleQC18%45%1751752.7%662.1%0.8%7.6%165206118272032.60%5.3% $106,066 $61,484 $912,912$450,7003.68
99Saint-LambertQC20%41%1751753.8%762.5%1.5%13.1%165206118224832.70%5.3% $84,211 $56,454 $915,793$535,0964.55
100MagogQC17%31%1751751.2%743.2%0.5%0.6%17419895275663.80%4.4% $55,784 $41,832 $472,120$330,8524.39









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