Hamilton vs. Toronto: Where Should You Live?

Matthew Kelly | eXp Realty 
3 Dec 2022

Toronto vs Hamilton. Where Should You Move to?

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Hey there, future homeowner! Are you caught in the age-old dilemma of choosing between Hamilton and Toronto? You’re not alone. Both cities have their unique charm, but which one is the right fit for you? In this blog, we’ll dive deep into the nitty-gritty details of living in both cities, covering everything from the cost of living to education, transportation, and even parks. And hey, don’t forget to download our FREE Hamilton Home Buyers Starter Kit to make your decision-making process a breeze!

General Overview


Hamilton, with a population of around 771,000 as of 2021, sits on the tip of Lake Ontario. It’s about an hour away from the U.S. border and—guess what—just an hour from Toronto too!


Toronto, on the other hand, is Canada’s largest city, boasting a population of approximately 2.8 million. It’s also perched on Lake Ontario but a bit more to the northeast.

Cost of Living​​​

When it comes to the cost of living, Toronto takes the cake for being pricier. According to data from the Economic Research Institute, living in Toronto is about 14.5% more expensive than in Hamilton. Whether it’s food, transportation, housing, or healthcare, you’ll feel the pinch more in Toronto. But hey, Toronto’s food scene is to die for!



Hamilton scores a 50, and Toronto a 61 on the walkability index. Both cities offer great walking experiences in their downtown cores, but Toronto takes the lead as you move away from the center.

Public Transit

Hamilton’s public transit score is 45, while Toronto’s is a whopping 78. Toronto’s TTC subway system gives it a significant edge, making it one of the best cities for public transit.


For the cyclists among us, Toronto scores a 61, and Hamilton a 50 on bikeability. Whether it’s biking down country roads in Hamilton or commuting to work in Toronto, both cities have got you covered.


Hamilton has historically been the more affordable option. Whether it’s detached homes, townhomes, or condos, you’ll find that real estate in Hamilton is generally less expensive.


Elementary and High Schools

  • Hamilton has 111 elementary schools with an average Fraser Institute score of 5.64 & High schools in Hamilton average a score of 5.47, 

  • While Toronto has 199 schools with an average score of 6.72. and in Toronto’s High schools it’s 5.89

Post-Secondary Schools

Hamilton is home to McMaster University and Mohawk College, while Toronto boasts the University of Toronto, Toronto Metropolitan University, and George Brown College.

Professional Sports

Whether you’re a sports fan or not, both cities offer a variety of teams to cheer for. Hamilton has the BullDogs, Honey Badgers, Toronto Rock, and Tiger Cats. Toronto has the Argos, Raptors, Maple Leafs, Blue Jays, and FC.

Green Spaces & Parks


Hamilton is the “Waterfall Capital of the World,” with over 50+ waterfalls. My personal favorites are Spencers Gorge, Confederation Park, and BinBrook & Other Conservation Areas.


Toronto offers iconic parks like High Park and unique spots like Toronto Island & Beaches and Bluffers Park.

Other Similarities

Both cities offer top-notch healthcare and abundant job opportunities. Plus, international airports make both cities globally accessible.


So, Hamilton or Toronto? The choice ultimately boils down to what you prioritize—affordability, education, or maybe even bikeability. Whatever it is, both cities have something special to offer. And remember, our FREE Hamilton Home Buyers Starter Kit is just a click away to help you make that decision.



✅ Buying vs Renting.. What’s Different?
✅ First Steps To Stress-Free Home Buying
✅ Top Home-Buying Mistakes to Avoid
✅ Understand What to Look For In a Home
✅ Discover The Hidden Closing Cost & How Much?
✅ Complete Moving Checklist


✅ Understand Pros & Cons of Hamilton
✅ Discover Best & Worst Neighbourhoods
✅ What & Where the Top Schools Are
✅ Cost of Living in Hamilton
✅  Learn About Top 10 Parks in Hamilton
✅  & More About the Surrounding Cities 

Moving to Hamilton

MADE EASY AS 1, 2, 3!

Start simplifying your home buying journey with Matthew today…

Artboard 1Vault and Book

Step 1: Hamilton Starter Kit

Read the Hamilton Home Buyers Handbook and Watch the Living in Hamilton Vault to start to prepare for your move.

Real Estate Strategy Call

Step 2: One on One Call

Schedule a call with me to answer any questions and create a custom step-by-step plan to move to Hamilton

Real Estate Goals

Step 3: Find Your Home

Get help searching both online and in person for homes that fit your family’s lifestyle 


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