Affordability continues to be the top concern for buyers in the Durham region, as is the case across much of southern Ontario and particularly in the Greater Toronto Area. This issue is being compounded by low inventory and the subsequent competition among buyers.

Durham region’s key buying demographic is suburban families and move-up buyers, who are purchasing the majority of the properties listed for sale. A strong market is expected to continue into spring, although we have not yet seen the true impacts of COVID-19, which will become more apparent in the coming weeks.

So, what are the best neighbourhoods in Durham to buy a house? RE/MAX explores more than 300 of Canada’s most liveable hot spots in the new 2020 Liveability Report. Here are our top picks for Durham.

10 Most Liveable Neighbourhoods in Durham Region

  1. Central Oshawa
  2. Vanier
  3. Downtown Ajax
  4. Pickering Beach
  5. Town Centre, Pickering
  6. Woodlands
  7. Downtown Whitby
  8. Blue Grass Creek
  9. O’Neill
  10. Lakeview

Some additional up-and-coming neighbourhoods that buyers might want to keep their eye on include Bowmanville and Newcastle, which are both regarded as relatively affordable and driveable. Neighbourhoods such as Brooklin, South Ajax and Duffin Heights are also lauded as some of the most liveable due to being driveable, having close proximity to amenities and nearby public transit.

Durham’s Future Liveability

Durham is expected to see improved liveability over the next three to five years, largely to the credit of improved transportation infrastructure. Increased access to public transportation and more driveable options, such as Hwy. 407, make Durham a great option for first-time homebuyers in the GTA.

Best Places to Live in Canada

Best places to live ranking



Liveability is about quality of life at a local level. A neighbourhood’s dynamism, or lack thereof, involves a delicate convergence between independent small businesses, public institutions, arts and culture, green spaces and housing, to name a few. The COVID-19 tragedy will impact neighbourhood ecosystems differently across the country, just as the virus itself has. Yet, civic/local pride has been proliferating throughout this crisis in inspiring ways, giving Canadians hope that micro-economies, including real estate, have the resilience to be restored in the near and mid-term.

To learn more about liveability in Canada’s biggest housing markets, read the RE/MAX 2020 Liveability Report.