The best places to live in Waterloo
Finding the right area or suburb is one of the initial challenges expats face in their search for a home in Waterloo. While it is a relatively small city, new arrivals should find that various neighbourhoods will meet their requirements.
It is generally more desirable to live within Waterloo city itself, but many expats choose to settle in Kitchener or the wider Tri-City area and commute to Waterloo each day.
Here are some of the areas and suburbs of Waterloo that are popular among the expat community.
Popular expat neighbourhoods in Waterloo
Situated on the Grand River on the northeast edge of Waterloo, Eastbridge is a family-friendly suburb that offers several good public schools and plenty of activities for children. There is easy access to Waterloo’s city centre via public transport and road links. Most of the housing in Eastbridge is modern, but the plots are relatively small.
This is one of Waterloo’s most desirable suburbs. Beechwood is home to excellent schools such as the Mary Johnston Public School, the Centennial Public School and the Sir John A. Macdonald Secondary School. The area is close to malls and restaurants, as well as all the facilities in Uptown Waterloo. Properties in Beechwood are large traditional family homes, many of which are on streets lined with beech trees.
Westmount is situated between Downtown Kitchener and Uptown Waterloo and retains a strong village feel, with character homes and tree-lined streets. The Westmount Golf and Country Club is highly popular, along with nearby Belmont Village and Waterloo Park.
Colonial Acres is right in the centre of Waterloo and is one of the oldest and most desirable neighbourhoods. There are no schools in the immediate vicinity but buses take children to nearby suburbs. Colonial Acres is generally more popular with single professionals and young couples with higher disposable incomes who wish to live closer to their place of work and entertainment facilities.
Those with a car who are prepared for a slightly longer commute could also look at houses in the rural villages and more distant suburbs of Waterloo. The countryside to the city's northwest is stunning and features Mennonite farms with men driving horse-drawn carriages. Naturally, the properties here are larger and residents experience a more relaxed pace of life.
Expats can find Victorian properties located along leafy streets in Downtown Kitchener and the rents are more reasonable compared to those in other parts of Waterloo. While the area is a little run down, there is a greater range of budget accommodation and it can be a good option for those looking to save money during their time in the city.