Best places to retire in Ontario

Top 5 best places to retire in Ontario with the Best quality of life – 2024

Studies
Canada Ontario

If you’re coming close to retirement age, you might be thinking about where exactly you want to downsize and retire. Upon retirement, you are not obliged to remain in the city. You may want to live in an area that is peaceful and comfortable like Ontario.

Beyond welcoming communities, there are other aspects to consider when deciding where to retire. With this in mind, we have compiled a list that includes factors such as excellent health care facilities and affordable housing market that contributes to an overall lower cost of living, without compromising the high quality of life.

Read on to find out the top 5 best places to retire in Ontario with the best quality of life in 2024.

Top 5 best places to retire in Ontario - 2024

Methodology

Due to “Best” being a subjective word, below is our methodology to compile the best places to retire in Ontario with the best quality of life.

We based our ranking on three criteria: housing affordability, number of health facilities nearby, and percentage of seniors (People 65 years and over).

Affordability takes into account the prices of properties for sale and apartments for rent. Statistics come from the Canadian Real Estate Association’s average property pricing for November 2023 and Zumper’s 1-bedroom average cost of rent for January 2024. The number of health facilities nearby refers to the place with the most number of hospitals and healthcare facilities in the target area. The number of seniors refers to the demographics of seniors residing in a specific neighborhood.

The “Best quality of life” aspect is measured based on feedback from real people who have moved to this area in our database or real people from trusted online forums. More specifically, we look for positive feedback on health, pollution, green space and recreation, and climate. These factors played vital roles in determining the overall appeal of these retirement locations.

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Best places to retire in Ontario

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1. Chatham-Kent

Apartments in Catham-Kent
  • Population: 104,316
  • Proportion of seniors: 26.40%
  • Median 1-bed apt rent: $1,652
  • Median property buying cost: $398,433

With its affordable lifestyle, Chatham-Kent is a hidden gem in the “Banana Belt” of southwestern Ontario. There are four distinct seasons here, although the weather is mild. The community is situated between Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair. 

With a population of 104,316, 26.40% are seniors who appreciate the scenic views of Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair. In addition to activities like attending the Chatham Retrofest, it’s no wonder this city is known as the Classic Car Capital of Canada. Moreover, residents benefit from its proximity to border crossings such as the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel and Ambassador Bridge.

As of December 2023, the median property price is $398,433 and as of January 2024, a 1-bedroom apartment rents for $1,652. It is common to find many retirement communities located nearby, with the closest hospital being Chatham-Kent Health Alliance (CKHA).

Statistics Canada (Nov 2021), CREA (Dec 2023) & Zumper (Jan 2024)

Chatham-Kent, ON

2. Collingwood

Apartments in Collingwood
  • Population: 24,811
  • Proportion of seniors: 34.40%
  • Median 1-bed apt rent: $1,825
  • Median property buying cost: $575,400

Collingwood is an ideal retirement destination with easy access to outdoor activities. It’s perfect for those seeking an affordable and serene environment with abundant parks, beaches, and golf courses. The town’s population of 24,811 includes 34.40% seniors benefiting from Raglan Village, an adult and retirement community designed to fit various lifestyles.

Many residents can be found relaxing at Wasaga Beach during their downtime, where locals can sail and appreciate the natural beauty of Collingwood. In the winter, Blue Mountain becomes a ski destination, drawing families together on weekends. As of December 2023, Collingwood’s median property price is $575,400, and as of January 2024, a 1-bedroom apartment rents for $1,825.

Statistics Canada (Nov 2021), CREA (Dec 2023) & Zumper (Jan 2024)

Collingwood, ON

3. Peterborough

5. Peterborough, Ontario - Top 5 Best places to retire in Canada with the Best quality of life – 2024
  • Population: 128,624
  • Proportion of seniors: 27.90%
  • Median 1-bed apt rent: $1,193
  • Median property buying cost: $644,900

Peterborough is located between Ottawa and Toronto and has gained recognition for hosting some of the greatest retirement communities, with 27.90% of the population being seniors. The city boasts over ten different retirement homes, including the highly rated Applewood Retirement Residence.

The area offers its elderly residents an abundance of activities to partake in, including a visit to the Art Gallery of Peterborough or the Canadian Canoe Museum. If you enjoy fishing or boating, these activities are available at the Trent-Severn Waterway. Looking for a nice walk outdoors? Peterborough has its own Rotary Greenway Trail where walking, hiking, and cycling can be enjoyed.

As of December 2023, the median property price is $644,900 and as of January 2024, renting a 1-bedroom apartment costs $1,193.

Statistics Canada (Nov 2021), CREA (Dec 2023) & Zumper (Jan 2024)

Peterborough, ON

4. Brighton

Apartments in Brighton
  • Population: 12,108
  • Proportion of seniors: 36.40%
  • Median 1-bed apt rent: $2,250
  • Median property buying cost: $717,900

Brighton is a town in Northumberland County known for Presqu’ile Beach. In winter, residents enjoy activities such as skiing at resorts, while summers provide opportunities for fishing, boating, paddleboarding, and swimming in its lakes. The town is also equipped with its own golf course known as Timber Ridge Golf Course. Brighton is also a 25-minute drive to the Northumberland Hills Hospital. 

Locals love to unwind by enjoying the sunset on the shoreline of Lake Ontario. For food lovers, Brighton has its own Northumberland Fine Foods where residents can enjoy a tasting lounge with charcuterie samplers. As of December 2023, the median property price in Brighton is $717,900, while renting a 1-bedroom apartment costs $2,250 as of January 2024.

Statistics Canada (Nov 2021), CREA (Dec 2023) & Zumper (Jan 2024)

Brighton, ON

5. Brampton

Best Brampton moving companies
  • Population: 656,480
  • Proportion of seniors: 13.70%
  • Median 1-bed apt rent: $2,072
  • Median property buying cost: $1,081,300

If you love being near big cities, Brampton is the perfect place to settle. Located in Ontario’s Greater Toronto Area, the city can be a home for anyone, with a population of 656,480, 13.70% are seniors. Locals love to travel to the downtown center of Brampton to visit the Rose Theatre which puts on local shows known as Brampton On Stage

The city is surrounded by natural areas such as Eldorado Park and sports fields like Sandalwood Sports Field.Brampton is also a 22-minute drive to Mississauga or a 6-minute commute via GO Transit. The closest hospital is William Osler Health System’s Brampton Civic Hospital. 

Most private retirement homes in Brampton offer a continuum of care that allows residents to live in one type of accommodation for some time and then move to another as their needs change. Despite this change, you can maintain social ties with peers and friends and participate in activities and events that strengthen your connection with the community.

As of December 2023, the median property price is $1,081,300 and as of January 2024, 1-bedroom apartments rent for around $2,072.

Statistics Canada (Nov 2021), CREA (Dec 2023) & Zumper (Jan 2024)

Brampton, ON

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Conclusion

On your quest to find the best places to live in Ontario, it is important to acknowledge the varying costs of living across different states. The places highlighted in this article not only consider aspects such as affordable housing, and abundant outdoor recreation, but they also involve a comprehensive look at the housing market, real estate trends, and the availability of social security benefits. 

By consulting this list, you can make an informed decision tailored to your preferences and that aligns with your lifestyle. If you are moving soon, don’t forget to explore in advance the best long movers in Toronto,ON to make your move as smooth as possible.

 

Last year’s ranking (2023)

  1. Peterborough
  2. Chatham-Kent
  3. Collingwood
  4. Brampton
  5. Brighton 

 

Our rankings are meticulously curated, considering housing affordability, number of health facilities nearby, quality of life, and percentage of seniors (people 65 years and over). It’s important to highlight that certain places may have changed from last year’s lists due fluctuations criteria used in our methodology. We encourage readers to weigh these rankings in light of their individual needs and preferences for a more informed decision-making process.

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Ann Nacario

The author

Meet Ann – our head writer with a knack for making moving and city living a breeze. From the many details of moving to picking the perfect moving company, she’s your guide. Ann has a friendly yet detailed approach to ensure your move goes off without a hitch. When she’s not writing about relocation, it will always be on her mind, but you’ll catch her spending time with her three furry friends.

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