Raising a family

Raising a Family in the City

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When thinking of raising a family – many young couples look to recreate a version of their childhood. In many cases, those childhood memories from the not-too-distant past included a house with a yard, and hours after dinner running through the neighbourhood with the other kids. Even the mention of raising kids in a city seems sacrilegious to some.

However, increasing real estate prices are helping to highlight the advantages to city living.

Listed below are some of the most prominent advantages to raising kids in the city.

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Danny Chow

The Biggest Backyard

It’s commonly the first thing a person will say when thinking of raising kids in apartments or townhomes – there’s no yard. It’s a somewhat short-sighted position though, since cities, like Vancouver, have parks around every corner. No backyard, no problem. And, putting grassy places aside – there is still an abundance of activities available at your doorstep; some of these include museums, art galleries, aquariums, libraries, science world, even community centres, etc. Even watching float planes take-off and land while walking along the seawall, rather than a special treat – can be a regular activity. When raising kids in the city – you truly have the biggest backyard.

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John Tsai

More Time Together

Those living in suburbia often face big commute times. Many commuters spend an hour, either way, getting to and from work. That’s 2 hours a day, five days a week essentially wasted. For those living in the city, the commute – if you live and work downtown – is next to nothing. The savings on time leaving you with more time to spend with your loved ones.

More Environmentally Friendly

When living in the heart of the city – it’s common to have nearly everything you need within walking distance. From groceries to daycare, and everything in between, you might ditch your car. From savings on work commute time to the commute time not needed for daily life – you stop contributing to emissions, perhaps having no need for a car at all. And, for the times you do need transportation – you have access to the sky train and bus systems, and services like Car2Go and Evo – reducing your carbon footprint by ride-sharing with others.

RennieBlog_Hero_617-5598-ormidale-street-vancouver_PhotoCredit_Rennie and Associates
Derek Kai and Susan Chow

Immersed in Culture

Cities are a melting pot of culture and personalities. Where some children have a limited scope – engaging only with family members and those they encounter through school, children raised in cities are immersed and able to interact with individuals from every type of culture.

If you’re looking to raise kids in the city, here are a few things to consider:

· The catchment area – where you live will ultimately determine the school your child must attend. It can be beneficial to investigate the school of your choosing, and, if possible, find housing in that catchment area.
· Consider Older Housing – some feel the need for space when having kids. Generally speaking, older properties will have lower rent/prices, when compared to newer properties of the same size; if you need more space, consider older properties.
· Walkability – ensure that the property you’ll live in is walkable for things like fitness, parks, groceries, and school too.

When looking for space in Vancouver BC, here are some areas worthy of your consideration:

· Fairview
· West End
· Strathcona & Commercial
· Renfrew Heights
· Yaletown
· Coal Harbour
· East side

The Bottom Line

City living is what you make it. If you’re interested in providing an endless backyard exploration for your child – you’ll be hard pressed to explore everything there is to explore in the heart of a city. You’ll spend much more time together eliminating the need to commute, and you’ll stay healthier as you walk to and from all the amenities surrounding your home.

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