Safety Is Crucial To Home Buyers

Safety, perceived value and a location close to shopping or transportation are the most important factors Ontarians consider when buying a home, according to new research commissioned by the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA).

The survey shows that 93% Ontario residents say safety (e.g. low-crime area, building security) is important when considering properties, 85% list perceived value of the home (i.e. considered a good buy based on market and amenities) as a top consideration and 80% want the home to be close to amenities (e.g. shopping, transportation, etc.).

“Security, both physical and financial, is top of mind for Ontarians,” says Ron Abraham, president of the OREA.

Other findings from the survey:

  • 65% of respondents age 18-34 rank quality of local schools as an important factor when buying a home, while less than half (48%) of people aged 35-54 said it is important.
  • 80% of younger Ontarians (ages 18-34) say a property close to work is an important factor when buying a new home, dropping to 65% for those in the 35-54 age group.
  • Of those who specifically plan to buy a home in the next year, safety and perceived value are top factors, but 85% also indicate ongoing home maintenance required for a property (amount of yard work, fees for condo management, etc.) is an important consideration.
  • When asked which type of home they’d prefer to buy, more than a third say they’d prefer a resale home that’s move-in ready (39%); 26% say they’d like a home needing only minor renovations; and only 5% say they would want a home that needs a major renovation.
  • Across Ontario, 19% say they would want a newly built home; this number rose to 24% for people in the GTA.



“If you have a number of must-haves when looking at homes, it will inevitably increase the price of your purchase,” says Abraham. “Homebuyers should have a frank conversation with their realtor about what is vital and what would be nice to have.”