BRITISH COLUMBIA

Canada Best Places To Live: Saanich Makes MoneySense List Top 10

03/20/2013 05:46 EDT | Updated 03/25/2013 10:23 EDT
MLS

Saanich — not Vancouver — is the best place to live in B.C., according to a new ranking by a Canadian business magazine.

MoneySense published the results of "Canada's best places to live" on Wednesday, honouring Saanich with the seventh spot out of 200 cities. Vancouver, which is used to boasting about high rankings in world surveys, came in at a staggering 52nd.

Expensive housing is the simple reason for Vancouver's unimpressive showing. An average house in Saanich is valued at $562,115, with residents's median household income at $84,509. Compare that with Vancouver's average house price of $882,000 and median earnings of $81,066.

Story continues after slideshow:

Saanich Real Estate

Aside from income and housing affordability, the MoneySense survey looked at climate, crime rates, access to doctors and hospitals, and the number of people working in arts or sports to assess cultural richness.

Saanich, located north of Victoria with a population of more than 100,000, is convincing in many of those areas: noted for its low violent crime rate, low jobless rate, and high earnings potential.

Saanich was also named the No. 2 best place to retire (behind Victoria) and the No. 8 best place for immigrants.

Calgary came in at No. 1 overall, followed by St. Alberta, Alta. and Burlington, Ont. in the MoneySense list for 2013.

Even though Saanich is technically a municipality of Victoria, the magazine counted it as a "mid-sized city." Saanich improved on its 15th place showing in the 2012 MoneySense survey.