Thanks to its picturesque neighbourhoods, welcoming community, and relatively affordable real estate, Guelph, Ontario is an obvious option for anyone looking to buy a home in an active and desirable location.
Known as the Royal City to those who love the area, there are plenty of reasons to move to Guelph, but here are 5 that will make you eager to start scanning real estate listings.
1. Location, Location, Location:
Ideally located within the heart of Southern Ontario, Guelph is roughly 100 kilometres (62 miles) west of downtown Toronto, a trip that will take you around 90 minutes on the 401 or 407. If you prefer to relax on the train, GO Transit and Via Rail both pass through the core of the city, stopping at the historic Guelph train station.
Guelph is also…
- 28 kilometres (17 mi) east of Kitchener, the home of Google’s largest research and development office in Canada, and James E. Wagner Cultivation, one of the largest cannabis producers in Canada.
- 22 minutes away from the Region of Waterloo International Airport.
- 22 minutes from the gorgeous Elora Gorge.
- 30 minutes away from St. Jacobs and the popular St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market.
- Less than an hour away from Stratford, the location of the Stratford Festival.
- Less than 90 minutes away from Niagara Falls.
2. Arts & Music Scene:
If you love to indulge in art and music — either professionally or recreationally — then Guelph offers seemingly endless opportunities to satisfy your craving for creativity.
Artists should be sure to check out the Guelph Arts Council, the Art Gallery of Guelph, and the Guelph Civic Museum as well as annual events like the Guelph Potters Market and Art on the Street which showcases an array of creations from nearly 100 established and emerging artists as well as live entertainment and a children’s area.
Music-lovers won’t want to miss Hillside Festival, which has been entertaining local fans and visitors from around the world since 1984. The 3-day, multi-stage summer event on Guelph Lake Island attracts notable performers like Arcade Fire, Broken Social Scene, Metric, Feist, Sarah McLachlan, Neko Case, Ani DiFranco, and Walk off the Earth. The festival also features spoken word artists, dancing, drumming, artisans, and workshops all while remaining true to its goal of creating “progressive, environmentally conscious, completely non-commercial community celebrations.”
Fans of music should also stop by the Guelph Jazz Festival each year and will definitely want to get to know the Guelph Chamber Choir, the Royal Ukulele Ensemble, and the River Run Center not to mention the Kazoo! new music series and annual festival.
Those seeking culture should also stop by The Bookshelf and The Bookshelf Cinema as well as the Guelph Little Theatre, Silence, Doors Open Guelph, and Ed Video which fosters “the creation and exhibition of independent media art.”
Whether you have little ones who are in need of daycare or you’re interested in a few advanced courses for yourself, Guelph has a range of educational opportunities that will intrigue anyone keen on learning.
If you have children, there are plenty of daycare centers in the area and school-age kids can either attend the Upper Grand District School Board or the Wellington Catholic District School Board. Parents looking for alternative options can consider the Guelph Montessori School, the Trillium Waldorf School, the Guelph Outdoor School, and the Guelph Homeschool Group.
For higher education, the University of Guelph is one of the top comprehensive schools in the country, according to McLean’s. Home to both the Ontario Agricultural College and Ontario Veterinary College, U of G also offers programs within the College of Arts, College of Biological Science, College of Business and Economics, College of Physical and Engineering Science, and the College of Social and Applied Human Sciences. Further studies include theater, hospitality, tourism, and environmental science.
4. Green Living:
There are two sides to green living in Guelph and both are reasons to consider making the area your new home.
First, the Royal City proudly boasts an abundance of green spaces including Guelph Lake, Riverside Park, Exhibition Park, Preservation Park, and Royal City Park, just to name a few. You can also spend time at the University of Guelph’s Arboretum, which features 400 acres of stunning gardens, walking trails, woodlands, wetlands, and meadows as well as permanent art installations.
Adding to Guelph’s natural beauty, the Speed River runs through the city, eventually meeting with the Eramosa River. You can take full advantage of the rivers’ charm thanks to walking paths, running trails, and photo-worthy bridges including the Covered Bridge which was inspired by the lattice-covered bridges of the 1880s and is one of only two covered bridges in Ontario.
Secondly, in 2018, Guelph, a community known for its environmental initiatives, made history by becoming the first city to elect a Green Party candidate, MPP Mike Schreiner, to a seat in an Ontario election. Schreiner said that he would work to make sure that the planet is livable for future generations and would help the province move towards a clean economy. He explained, “Every government has to listen to the people of Ontario.”
5. A Top Canadian City:
In 2017, Guelph topped the 2017 MoneySense Where to Buy Now list, beating out other high-ranking cities like Oshawa (#2), Brantford (#3), Hamilton (#6), and Peterborough (#9) as well as both Vancouver (#8) and Toronto (#13).
MoneySense made their decision partly based on the fact that Guelph has “one of the healthiest real estate markets in Canada.” They explained that a “strong housing market should offer some income potential, sustained price growth, and a strong economy to support it. Guelph excels in each of these areas.”
This was followed by Point 2 Homes’ 2018 list of top Canadian cities for millennials which placed Guelph in the third spot based on criteria that are important to young adults. Those factors include the unemployment rate, life satisfaction, low crime rate, healthcare, climate, level of education within the general public, and the percentage of millennials in the area.
Guelph was also the only Canadian city to make fDi Magazine’s list of American Cities of the Future 2017/18, ranking tenth best when it comes to foreign direct investment, fourth in regards to lifestyle, and eighth for business friendliness.
With the Royal City proving that it’s a desirable location to call home and the Guelph real estate market continuing to thrive, now is the time to make your move.
Contact me to discuss why you should make Guelph your new home.
(images via MasDom/Flickr, screenshot/ACME Mapper , Ryan Hanes/Hillside Festival, University of Guelph/Flickr, amberaccb/Flickr)