Barrie Ranked One Of The Unhappiest Cities In Canada

That's because there aren't enough ice rinks, lol!

It turns out that Ontario has some of the happiest cities in Canada. But unfortunately, Barrie isn’t very high up there

Point2Homes, which is an online real estate research portal, measured the level of happiness of Canada’s largest 100 cities by analyzing 30 metrics organized into 4 “happiness dimensions” or categories:

  1. Economy and real estate
  2. Location and demographics
  3. Health and well-being
  4. Community and environment

The metrics that were taken into consideration range from complex dimensions such as perceived health and a sense of belonging to the simplest practical factors like commute time, rainfall, and air quality.

The data showed that there’s no such thing as absolute happiness, with none of the top cities scoring high in every metric. In fact, a happiness index of 67 out of 100 was the highest score and that was in Caledon, Ontario.

The good news is, researchers found that seven out of the top 10 happiest cities are in Ontario. But Barrie wasn’t one of them.


#1 Caledon, ON
#2 Milton, ON
#3 Halton Hills, ON
#4 Clarington, ON
#5 Burlington, ON
#6 Lévis, QC
#7 Oakville, ON
#8 District of North Vancouver, BC
#9 Saguenay, QC
#10 Aurora, ON

In Ontario, Newmarket, Vaughan, and Ajax round out the top ten places to live and be happy! The median after-tax income in the Top 10 Ontario Cities ranged between $94,000 and $108,000. hovered around $107,000, with an average of just over $83,000. This is well above the national median of $68,400. Over 85% of residents in Caledon, Clarington, Halton Hills, and Vaughan own their own homes and most spend less than 30% of their income on housing. Perceived health and mental health are above 60% in each, while perceived stress came in at 20.7% or lower.


On the flip side, 8 of the top 10 least happiest cities are located in Ontario!

#1 London, ON
#2 North Bay, ON
#3 Windsor, ON
#4 Sault Ste. Marie, ON

#5 Saint John, NB
#6 Sarnia, ON
#7 Medicine Hat, AB
#8 Welland, ON
#9 Belleville, ON
#10 Barrie, ON

Barrie is ranked #10 unhappiest city in Canada (at least we’re the best of the worst …)! In Ontario, Barrie is #8, followed by Brantford and St. Catherines.

London is the unhappiest city in the province and the country.

Toronto also ranked low for major Canadian cities, coming in at 72 out of 100, largely due to its poor economy and real estate ranking.

Interesting Stats About Barrie

In Barrie:

  • 67.68% of people own homes with 73% spending less than 30% of income on housing
  • The median after-tax income is $82,000
  • Life expectancy is 81.6 years (Aurora, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, and Vaughan all tie for first place on this metric at 85.7)
  • Perceived health and mental health are both above 60%
  • We have the highest perceived stress of all the cities at 29.8%
  • Our sense of belonging is 71.2% (for comparison the highest is 77.1% in Thunder Bay and the lowest is 69.2% in London)
  • We have the 5th greatest snowfall out of the ranked Ontario cities but 8th lowest amount of rainfall
  • There are more spectator sports per 10,000 residents than in Toronto and the same number of heritage institutions and amusement parks & arcades (though, depending on who you ask, they may not be as impressive)
  • Crime severity is below the average of the cities studied
  • Commute time is about 4 minutes longer than the average of the cities studied
  • Divorce rates are about 2.2% higher than the average of the cities studied

To take a look at all of the rankings, you can find the study results here.