A bundle of festivals, good food, and joy
Montreal has long been established as one of Canada's top cities and cultural hubs. The city is located on the Island of Montreal, and centers around the famous Mount Royal. It's one of the largest bilingual cities in the world, with most residents speaking both French and English. From cobblestone streets, to historic architecture and stylish restaurants, Montreal is heavily influenced by European culture.
If you’re looking for Montreal apartments, it's a good idea to get acquainted with some basic facts about the city first. Renting is the preferred living arrangement of many residents, making apartments for rent in Montreal a hot commodity. Let’s discuss the ins-and-outs of the Montreal apartment market, and some key things to consider if you plan on moving to Montreal.
While there has been a recent flurry of media reports claiming that Montreal's real estate market is on the rise, a Business Insider report reveals that the claims can be misleading. Housing prices have gone up, but not to any significant degree. This is good for Montreal apartment hunters!
Apartments for rent in Montreal also tend to be affordable in comparison to most major metropolitan areas. The Huffington Post claims that since Montreal's business center isn't as large as that of Toronto’s, that housing prices are likely to remain conservative.
That said, this past August did see a marked rise in housing sales on the island, with an increase of 12 percent. Anyone looking for apartments in Montreal should strike while the iron is hot and lock in a lower rental rate.
According to an article in the Montreal Gazette, the average age of a Montreal resident is 40. Since the same study shows that children outnumber seniors by a small percentage, it's clear that the majority of these residents are parents, making the city a good choice for families. And, 26 percent of the city's population is made up of people of non-Caucasian ethnic backgrounds; if you're looking for ethnic diversity, you'll find it here.
It’s also the reason why Montreal is the best foodie destination in the world, according to a 2016 survey.
More good news: apartments for rent in Montreal tend to be much less expensive than their Canadian counterparts. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Lonely Planet said Montreal is one of the "10 Happiest Places in the World.”
But keep in mind that Montreal is in the province of Quebec, which is primarily French-speaking, so while searching for Montreal apartments it's a good idea to brush up on your francais.
Here are some of the pros of choosing Montreal:
- Affordable cost of living compared to other Canadian cities
- A thriving cultural and art scene
- Beautiful parks and cycling trails
- Well-maintained public transportation system
- Strong multiculturalism
- A plethora of dining opportunities (best in the world!)
Specifically, public transit is consistently ranked as one of the best reasons to seek out Montreal apartments, as a resident can easily survive without a car. The bicycle-sharing system is also practical, aided by the natural beauty of the city's bike paths.
As far as restaurants go, there are too many to list -- perhaps even to visit -- but one can't mention Montreal without bringing up the famed dish of poutine, that delectable combination of crisp fries, warm cheese curds, and rich gravy that makes the region a culinary destination.
Not-so perfect for . . .
In a word? Construction. Even if you don't travel by automobile, the near-constant improvement projects are likely to cause detours for cyclists as well. Anyone who has spent time in Montreal will say the same: the construction is the worst!
Those looking for a calm and quiet place to settle down should perhaps look elsewhere, or look at the Montreal suburbs. With a vibrant entertainment culture and club scene, Montreal is not known for its quiet downtown core. If you’re from a small town, then maybe visit before committing to an apartment in Montreal.
Life & Style
Residents of the island are known for their strong devotion to environmental causes, as well as a fondness for all things cultural. The city is home to a number of fine museums and music festivals, including the Montreal International Jazz Festival. With a crime rate that's been dropping consistently over the past 15 years, it also provides a safe and fun atmosphere for raising a family.
A recent CNN article lists the top three most interesting Montreal neighbourhoods as Old Montreal, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, and Mile End. Any of these would make a good starting point in your search for Montreal apartments.
Fodor's, on the other hand, makes strong cases for Chinatown (access to great restaurants and fresh produce), Cote-des-Neiges (for a quieter, residential feel), and Downtown (where you'll be in the middle of the action).
If you're looking for a more suburban lifestyle, then the communities of Pointe-Claire and Brossard are rated highly by Maclean's. Rounding out the list are northern neighbors Les Coteaux and Gore; although they aren't located in the city proper, they offer high quality of living at affordable prices.
Check out the following resource for more on current Montreal apartments available across various neighbourhoods.
There's no shortage of stunning architecture and cultural landmarks in the city of Montreal. Admire the intricately carved pews and soaring dome ceilings of the Notre-Dame Basilica. Take a stroll down the cobbled streets of Old Montreal.
Meander through the greenery at La Fontaine Park. Get up close and personal with Mount Royal, icon of the city's skyline. Catch a hockey game at the Bell Center, or visit a piece of hockey history at the old Montreal Forum.
There’s no shortage of fun to be had in Canada’s second largest city. If you’re looking for an apartment to rent in Montreal, you’ve made a great choice!