Location, location, location: 3 things Canadians look for when buying a house

Credit: Photo by Chris Gonzalez on Pexels

While 30 percent in Vancouver value closeness to transit, only 5 percent prioritize cyclist-friendly locations

“Close to transit” might just be the best three words a family can hear when searching for a house. Real estate powerhouse Sotheby’s International Canada and market research firm Mustel Group released the results to its Family Home Ownership Trends Report: Neighbourhoods “in Transit,” which sought to investigate location factors that are important to Canadian homebuyers.

At the top of the list, however, was safety. While Canadian cities are relatively tame compared to our neighbours to the south, 45 percent of Lower Mainland-dwellers reported safe neighbourhoods as their highest priority when shopping for a house, far above all other considerations.

You know what they say: location, location, location. Behind safety, proximity to the workplace was among the top three factors for Vancouverites, with 33 percent citing it as a priority. Having said that, it’s no surprise that 81 percent of respondents in the West Coast city reported they were either “very satisfied” or “somewhat satisfied” with their commutes to work, with 59 percent having a commute of 29 minutes or less.

Next stop, the friendly but sometimes untimely blue bus. The report showed that transit-friendly locations are a must-have for 30 percent of homebuyers in the city, the highest among those surveyed (Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal). In contrast, access to parking and major arteries came in at a measly 13 percent, and, surprisingly for the two-wheel enthusiast city, a pitiful 5 percent of homeowners cited cycling friendliness as a priority.

Whether due to increasing gas prices or concern for the environment, the results show a clear shift in landscape as a large chunk of Canadians prioritize public transportation over easy car access. Either way, good news for sellers with a bus stop near the house!