A city of culture, history, and charm, Montreal is a very desirable place to live and boasts cheap real estate and great quality of life. Located in the province of Quebec, Montreal is Canada’s second-most populated city with a population of 1.7 million. The city covers 431,000 sq.km, and generally enjoys distinctive seasons, with hot and humid summers and contrasting cold, snowy winters.
First inhabited by First Nations natives almost 4,000 years ago, Montreal was officially named a city in 1832 and has since blossomed into a bustling metropolis, while also preserving its heritage and charm. Referred to as the “Cultural Capital of Canada”, Montreal is a hub for all things arts and culture. The city regularly hosts events and festivals – including the Canadian Grand Prix – and has a blossoming music, dance, and theatre scene.
Montreal is officially a French-speaking city, with over half of its residents noting to speak both French and English. Second only to Paris, it’s the largest primarily French-speaking city in the world. In terms of the economy, Montreal enjoys a strong and stable labour market and is a hub for aerospace, finance, commerce, film and television. In fact, the city has the second largest economy in Canada. It’s also home to organizations of the UN, and was once named as the commerce capital of Canada.
Popular areas in Montreal include: Ahuntsic, Anjou, Cartierville, Chinatown, Verdun, Vertu and Villeray.
Montreal’s real estate market is fairly strong, stable, and cheap, and there is a huge selection of neighbourhoods and properties for buyers to choose from. In comparison to other major cities such as Vancouver and Toronto, Montreal’s housing market is very desirable and is led primarily by local buyers rather than international investors. In addition, the average house price is roughly half what it is in Toronto, so more people are seeing Montreal as an attractive option, since prices are so low.
The market is generally stronger for those selling detached properties, as there is a smaller supply but larger demand. It’s a buyer’s market for condominiums, as they’re generally selling for lower-than-average prices. Investment properties from foreign buyers such as French and US citizens tend to be in the downtown areas, and are normally condominiums. Montreal offers very affordable prices and a strong labour market, so first-time homebuyers are in a strong position, especially those between the ages of 25-44. Montreal’s market is thought to continually increase over the coming years, but a rapid spike similar to what’s happened in Toronto and Vancouver doesn’t seem likely.
There is an abundance of cheap real estate in Montreal, and conditions are favourable especially for first-time buyers entering the property market. This is due to low-interest rates and high levels of employment, and a high inventory of cheaper properties such as condominiums. Stats are generally down for condo sales and detached homes are generally in a stronger position, but for first-time homeowners this is a positive, and there is a large selection of condos to choose from. Montreal is known as one of the cheapest major cities in Canada in terms of real estate, as it boasts low rent and housing prices alike.
The city is comprised of 19 boroughs which are divided into neighbourhoods. Ville Marie is a central and popular area and includes the Downtown, Old Montreal, Chinatown and the Latin Quarter. Mile End is known to be very affordable, and one of the most diverse areas of the city. McGill Ghetto is home to a large University student and faculty population.The Plateau is known to be the most creative neighbourhood in Montreal due to its popularity among artists, and Saint Henri and Little Burgundy are traditionally more low-income neighbourhoods.