Each year MoneySense Magazine reviews the best cities to live in Canada under categories including ‘Best Places for Kids’, ‘Best Places to Find a Job’, and my favorite being ‘Best Places to Retire.’ Why does, ‘Best Places to Retire’ jump out at me? Probably because looking ahead to retirement doesn’t seem as dull as it did 25 to 30 years ago. Today’s retirees are painting a new more colorful picture of life as a senior.
In the 2012 review of Best Places to Retire, MoneySense lists 190 cities from which municipal statistics and data were gathered. The cities were rated on climate, affordable housing, sports/hospitals/universities, health, crime, population growth, walk/bike to work and taxes.
Top five Canadian cities to Retire
Kingston, ON – The beautiful city of Kingston usually makes the top when it comes to lists of cities people love to live in. This year it’s number one for the low crime rate, low taxes, ease of walking or biking to work and around town, and proximity to sports centres, hospitals and universities. Independent living in the Holiday retirement community of Kingsdale Chateau is just of the many reasons that folks love Kingston for retirement life.
Halifax, NS – Being on the Atlantic coast would be the attraction to Halifax for me; but the Nova Scotia capital got high scores for low crime, the ability to get around as a pedestrian (or biking), low taxes, and like Kingston, access to athletic centres, hospitals and universities. Halifax is a city with a high availability of services and retirement communities. From HomeInstead Senior Care, a provider of Homecare and caregiving, to the ORCA approved Berkeley and the Gem Health Care group, Halifax places a high value on their senior care. These are just a couple of examples of what’s available in senior housing, independent living and retirement communities in Nova Scotia.
Saanich BC – It’s not surprising that Saanich BC ranked number one out of 190 cities on the list in the climate category. Saanich is just minutes from downtown Victoria BC and shares Victoria’s mild temperatures rarely rising above 30°C in summer or dipping below −2°C in the winter months. All styles of retirement home are available in and around Victoria. Independent living in a Holiday Community such as the Victorian on Feltham Road or the Victorian at McKenzie, are beautiful examples of a convenient all-inclusive lifestyle for seniors.
Victoria BC – The climate of Victoria makes this city a desirable retirement destination. Victoria also receives good rankings in the categories of health care, taxes and proximity to hospitals, sports centres and universities. Being known as the ‘City of Gardens’ means residents have beauty and sanctuary nearby not to mention the perfect photo ops at the famous Butchart Gardens.
Ottawa ON – I’m never surprised to see Ottawa on the list of top cities in Canada to retire! The people of Ottawa love walking and biking, and the city’s pedestrian paths make getting around on foot a pleasure even in winter. The low crime rate and high population of seniors make Ottawa a senior-friendly place to live. Sunrise of Erin Mills in Mississauga is one of the many Sunrise Retirement homes across Canada. They offer independent living, assisted living, and additional levels of service in a continuum of care that many seniors today are looking for.
Whether you’re consulting the yearly lists of ‘best places to live’ or doing your search for a retirement community on foot, seniors have more to choose from today than ever before. Take your time, search wisely and only make your move to a retirement residence when you’re one hundred percent ready.
By Alice Lucette
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