There are some things that even a global pandemic can't change. For example, Canada's house prices continued to rise, despite demand dropping early this year. However, even with prices going up, some major cities are still actually pretty cheap.

The onset of COVID-19 across the world appeared to have a direct impact on home sales in the country.

According to data released by the Canadian Real Estate Association this month, home sales saw a precipitous drop early in the year before shooting up 63 percent in June.

Some markets even reported that sales were 150 percent higher than they were in April.

The highest spikes were in Greater Vancouver, the GTA, and Montreal.

On top of that, the MLS housing price index for the entire country rose half a percentage point from last month, and still managed to increase by 5.4 percent from 2019. 

The average price for a house in Canada now sits at $538,831.

Half a million dollars may not seem quite as expensive when compared with some of the prices in major markets like Toronto or Vancouver (where a home can cost an average of $863,700 or $1,025,300, respectively), but it's still a hefty chunk of change.

However, there are still some major cities in Canada where you're more likely to find houses that cost less than $300,000, including:

  • Saskatoon: $291,700
  • Winnipeg: $281,100
  • Thunder Bay: $267,537
  • Regina: $265,000
  • Quebec City: $254,700
  • Moncton: $207,400
  • Saint John: $200,961
  • St. John's: $146,600

For instance, on the east coast, you'll find some truly affordable homes in New Brunswick, particularly Saint John. Buying a house there will, on average, set you back just $200,961. 

Even in the province's most populous city, Moncton, the MLS Benchmark price is only slightly higher at $207,400.

Buying a home in the similarly named St. John's (which also has tons of cheap rentals) is even less expensive, with houses costing around just $146,600.

Surprisingly, Ontario has one of the cheaper markets in the country, although you'd have to head north to get there. 

A house in Thunder Bay will go for an average price of $267,537.

Quebec City and the surrounding area also have an MLS benchmark price of $254,700.

Further west, Winnipeg, Regina, and Saskatoon all have homes on offer under 300 grand.

Finding an affordable home in Canada isn't impossible, but getting something that won't break the bank seems to depend on where you'd prefer to live.

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