Come for the great outdoors, stay for the dumplings
The fourth largest city in BC, Richmond offers picturesque mountain views and soothing waterfront walks. The city has its own history and culture, heavily influenced by Asian immigration. Today, there is a significant Chinese population, and many business signs are first in Chinese, second in English. Richmond has become a food hotspot. Its so-called “Dumpling Trail” – which is a group of 20 restaurants that are famous for their dumplings – has even made the CNN list of the world’s best food and drink trails. Now, Richmond is most famous for being a film and TV hub. Ultimately, though, Richmond is more than a historical and cultural hub for locals. It’s also a haven for young families and seniors, offering an ideal blend of kid-friendly events and outdoor activities.
While prices in Richmond are significantly higher than average for Canada, there are options that are well below the average price of housing in Vancouver. That makes Richmond a desirable town for those who can’t manage a backyard in the big city. Finding the rents here out of reach, too? There’s also a range of affordable housing in Richmond. More will be coming too, as the town just put $12 million more into new affordable housing initiatives last year.
Typical housing type:
A blend of detached homes, low-rises, and row houses.
It’s common for Richmond residents to treat the town as a bedroom community for Vancouver, but you don’t need to. There’s enough to do in Richmond – and there are enough jobs – that you can live and work without crossing Richmond’s borders.
Avg. rent by housing size:
Avg. rent compared to other Canadian towns and regions
Richmond is 29% higher than the Canadian average
Like much of the greater Vancouver area, Richmond offers chic rentals… but they come with a hefty price tag. That said, if you’re willing to pay through the nose, you can get almost anything in Richmond from whole houses with yards and dishwashers, to luxury apartments and condos, with pools and laundry onsite.
You can even find furnished rentals, if that’s what you want.
Only searching for furnished places? Head straight over to peer-to-peer rental websites where listings are created by owners directly (AKA the Craiglists of the worlds). Just a heads up, most of these place won’t be right downtown. For that, go for a high-end townhouse, apartment, or condo.
There are a couple of main population groups in Richmond. The first group are seniors, especially those in their 60s. The second group is young families and young couples who are aiming to soon start families. There’s also a growing number of singles who are choosing to make Richmond their home, being priced out of the Vancouver housing market. Like Vancouver, Richmond is highly diverse. There are a number of strong Asian communities in the area.
Perfect for: Young families and seniors trying to escape the high rents of Vancouver proper.
Not-so-perfect for: Yuppies.
Life & Style
Richmond residents tend to enjoy outdoor activities and sports. Younger locals love to cycle the city’s many trails, while older residents take strolls through the picturesque parks. There are even geocaching walks for those who like their outdoor activities with a side of tech! On the weekend, it’s common for locals to pop over to the beach or up into the mountains. When not outdoors, locals enjoy trips to the many historical sites and arts spaces – or grabbing a meal at one of the area’s many foodie-oriented restaurants. Basically, Richmond offers much of the same type of life and culture as Vancouver… but with housing you can actually afford.
Check out Richmond’s trail system, as well as the many parks and beaches it connects. A favourite is Garden City Community Park, which hosts an arboretum with over 100 varieties of trees. There are a number of local historic sites that focus on the fishing industry. For food, head over to Alexandra Street (aka “Food Street”). For late night dining, pop over to the famous Richmond Night Market. There are a handful of elementary and secondary schools in the town. There are three malls, including the Richmond Centre, as well as the McArthurGlen Designer Outlet. For a day out with the kidlets, consider going whale watching or having fun at the Extreme Air Park.
Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site
Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site
Terra Nova Bird Sanctuary
Vancouver International Airport