Canada’s motor city has geared up
Like its sister city, Detroit, Windsor was all about manufacturing and industry. When the automotive industry crashed, it looked like the city was going to die a slow and painful death. Unlike Detroit, however, the City of Windsor was determined to turn the tide, throwing money into a number of revitalization projects. And they worked! The city has been revived, drawing young artists and creative types and giving everyone hope for the future. While this is great for the area, real estate agents are warning that rents are likely to skyrocket. So if you want to move to Windsor, best get on finding a place now – or you risk being priced right out of the market!
The Windsor housing market is set to explode, with prices expected to have the highest increase in the entire country this year. Why the sudden jump? It’s partly due to the millennials flocking to the city, spiking demand for housing. It’s also partly due to a growing interest from businesses and individuals looking to take advantage of Windsor’s prime location by the American border. With all the talk of how rents will shoot up over the next year, now is the perfect time to get into a place in Windsor, locking in the current deals that are available.
Typical housing type:
Single-family, detached homes.
In the past, Windsor hasn’t been the most diverse or welcoming place. That’s all changing now, though. There is a strong Middle Eastern community, as well as a growing Eastern European population. Basically, if the lack of diversity has pushed you away from Windsor in the past, it may be worth giving it a second look at this point.
Avg. rent by housing size:
Avg. rent compared to other Canadian cities
Windsor is 22% lower than the Canadian average
Windsor, like Detroit, is a haven for affordable and cheap rentals. You can easily find units in houses and basement apartments for rent here for under $1,000 per month.
There’s a more limited supply of apartments in buildings and condos, but they cost a hair more and are largely limited to the downtown area. If you can find a unit, though, you can probably get hydro or utilities in general included.
Planning to apartment hunt in Windsor? Get going on it as soon as possible as prices are sliding up for long-term rentals!
Windsor is in an interesting moment of transition. There’s an older population, who have often lived in the area for years. These locals are generally working class and were part of the previous automotive workforce. We’re talking tough as nails, salt of the earth types who have seen Windsor through it’s roughest times. On the other hand, there’s a vibrant young population that’s recently relocated to the city. This group is filled with millennials with post-secondary educations and who work in more creative fields. There are a lot of singles and single parents in the area, making the dating scene lively. Income levels are still on the low side, with a significant portion of the population earning less than $20,000 per year.
Perfect for: Young creatives looking to make their mark somewhere affordable.
Not-so-perfect for: Families with significant disposable income who love the high life.
Life & Style
The culture in Windsor is feeling some growing pains. There is a growing arts and trendy scene in the city, catering to the millenials who are moving in. At times, though, this can leave the older locals feeling pushed out of what they see as their city. They want to keep the down-to-earth vibe of the past, worried that the city could start to feel too hip. Hopefully Windsor will find its new balance, turning into a salt of the earth city with an cutting edge, hipster twist. In the meantime, though, there’s a touch of tension in the city.
The most noticeable feature is the Ambassador Bridge, which connects Windsor to Detroit. In terms of public transit, buses run throughout Windsor – and cross over into Detroit. There are a couple of malls, as well as several outlet stores in the area. It’s also common for locals to hop over to the States for shopping though. There are a few school options – and the University of Windsor is in the area. One of the most visually interesting places is the Windsor Sculpture Park, which is right on the water. Looking for light exercise? A stroll by the waterfront is a scenic way to get some fresh air. For more outdoor sports, head to Mic-Mac Park, which has a baseball field, trails, and even a pool. Over the next two years, other parks in the area will be getting facelifts, having accessible play spaces built within them. In the meantime, there’s no shortage of play spaces for adults at the local casino – Caesars.
Windsor Sculpture Park
Art Gallery of Windsor
Ojibway Nature Centre
Olde Walkerville Neighbourhood
Our Lady of Assumption Church
Pelee Passage Lighthouse