"The other London"
Whenever London is mentioned, it’s always introduced as “London, Ontario” or “the other London” as a way to differentiate it from its more famous British counterpart. That’s always giving London the feeling of being overshadowed. But the city is worthy of its own spotlight, being a major Canadian education and health centre. The education side is one of the reasons London is becoming increasingly popular with young families. The city even has the highest ranking high school in Ontario – London Central Secondary School. On the health care side, many leading Canadian medical experts are based in London. London may be all about health now, but it has a weirdly dark past: Between 1959 and 1984, London had the highest concentration of serial killers in the world. Since then? London has undergone a number of redevelopment projects. Now it holds the title of one of Canada’s most livable cities and is considered a prime retirement spot.
Don’t want to live in Toronto and deal with the sky-high rents, but still want to be in a city? London’s a great option. Rents here are lower than Hamilton, Kitchener, and Toronto’s many bedroom communities. That makes it perfect for seniors, students, and families with limited incomes. There is one problem, though – you get what you pay for in London. So while you may get a deal – it’ll likely be for a basement apartment. Still, if you need a couple of bedrooms at an affordable price, you can still find it in London.
Typical housing type:
Detached homes and a ton of basement apartments.
London’s strength in education extends to the University of Western Ontario’s professional programs, including the law school and medical program. If you’re looking at going to law or medical school, London’s worth considering as the programs are well-respected and the city is affordable – even for students.
Avg. rent by housing size:
Avg. rent compared to other Canadian cities
London is 3% lower than the Canadian average
Apartment hunting in London, Ontario? Hunker down with your favourite rental websites, a good map, and maybe even a stiff drink. You’ll probably need it because, with the glut of listings for London, you’re looking at a heck of a lot of result sifting.
Upside is, you’ll have no problem with finding rental options over any size, from a studio through to a 3-bedroom.
London can be rough in places, so check out rentals’ locations on your handy-dandy map and read up on the neighbourhoods your favourite houses or apartments are in. Be extra careful when searching for low-cost places, especially those under $1,000.
London’s population is on the older side, with a significant portion being over 65. While many of these seniors had kids, most have grown up and moved out, leaving most of this population living alone or with a partner. If you’re widowed or divorced, you’ll have plenty of company in London. There’s also a growing number of young families in the area, including a solid percentage of single parents. You know what that means – it’s easy to date with kids here! While there are a lot of health care professionals in the area, the average income in the area is pretty low, with a huge divide existing between the richest and poorest locals.
Perfect for: Retirees, especially those who need great medical care.
Not-so-perfect for: Swinging, young singles.
Life & Style
London’s serial killer heyday may be long gone, but there’s a tough edge that’s remained in the city. Locals eye each other up, still worried about what kind of predators could be hiding in the neighbourhood. It doesn’t help that London still has a high rate of violent crime. The fear residents have of one another keeps them mostly focused on their own circles, really only trusting their family and friends. So how to locals spend their time? They generally build routines: work or school, spend time with family or friends, sleep, repeat. It may not sound that exciting, but it works for those with their own families and communities to focus on.
There are a number of schools in the area, including Fanshawe College and the University of Western Ontario. White Oaks Mall and Masonville Place are best for shopping. Outdoor lovers should check out the many trails and parks, including Victoria Park which hosts Sunfest. London has some of Ontario’s best hospitals and clinics. There are loads of activities for kids, with Storybook Gardens being a favourite. For more educational activities, head over to Banting House or the London Museum. More of a big kid? Delaware Speedway has car races every Friday night between April and September!
Covent Garden Market
Thames Valley Trail
London Regional Children’s Museum
Fanshawe Pioneer Village
St. Peter’s Cathedral Basilica