Are you thinking of moving out of Toronto? Did you know nearly 100,000 people left Toronto in just one year? That’s right, according to Statistics Canada data and the Financial Post, 78 per cent settled in other parts of the province. If you’re one of those Toronto residents who are looking for Greener Pastures… literally… let’s talk about Moving out of Toronto to Blue Mountain. Don’t consider purchasing a home in Collingwood or The Blue Mountains without knowing these 5 things you might hate about it. I’ve spent most of my life in Blue Mountain but lived in Toronto’s downtown for 8 years, so I know all about moving to an Ontario small town from the big city. And make sure you stick around to the end where I share my favourite thing about living in Southern Georgian Bay.
Number 1: Fewer retail chains, restaurant options and services
Living in Toronto or any larger city center, you have access to a huge array of dining options and retail chain stores. No matter how unique your personal style is or how crazy the craving, you can find exactly what you are looking for in the city. Moving to Southern Georgian Bay, which is made up of a collection of small villages and towns with Collingwood being the largest hub,, we just don’t have the same plethora of retail chain stores and restaurant options. So if you have insatiable cravings for rare Cuisine, consider yourself a Mall Rat, or rely heavily on Uber Eats, you might feel like a fish out of water. While you won’t find every chain imaginable, we have many cafes and award winning restaurants. Plus, our boutique shops offer a unique shopping experience that beats any mall.
Number 2: Lack of Anonymity
It is true what they say about small towns: Even if you don’t know what you’re doing, everyone else does. What I’ve heard from a lot of Toronto Residents who have moved to the smaller towns in Southern Georgian Bay like Meaford and Thornbury, is that they were surprised at the lack of Anonymity. Small populations mean that we notice the new guy; and small town culture means we’ll probably go out of our way to say hi. This can be jarring when you’re just trying to run to the grocery store in your pajama pants for munchies. But the flip side is that you can feel like a true part of the community.
Number 3: Transportation
Transportation is a bit different here. Our rural setting means you’ll need a car – or sometimes 2 depending on your family’s needs – there is some public transportation in Collingwood but anyone used to jumping on the subway will find it limited. The good news? Traffic is a breeze, and you’ll always get where you’re going on time.
Number 4: The Weather
The Blue Mountains is no doubt one of the few small Ontario Towns that does a happy dance when the weather turns bitterly cold and the snow starts to fly. It means the Ski Hills can open! But for those “Inside Cat” personalities, our winters on the shore of Georgian Bay can be long and bitterly cold. School closures due to bus cancellations and road closures due to inclement weather are the norm from December to March. There’s not much you can do about this one: When you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em… by getting yourself a 5×7 ski pass at Blue Mountain Ski Resort.
Number 5: The Slower Pace
When I first moved back to The Blue Mountains from Toronto, the slow pace of country living was jarring. I’d walk into a coffee shop ready to jostle in line and realize that the barista was chatting to a regular and no one was in a rush for their Venti seven-pump, no foam, extra-hot, vanilla latte. It took a few deep breathing exercises but I got used to it – and hey, isn’t that why you want to move out of Toronto anyways?
So I’ve shared the 5 things you may not like about moving from Toronto to Southern Georgian Bay and its smaller communities, you might be wondering if there are any redeeming qualities about this area and YES, there are many reasons Collingwood is one of the fastest growing towns in Canada and Blue Mountain continues to be a destination for young families moving out of the city. Tune in to my next blog post where I’ll share why I LOVE living in The Blue Mountains (and why you will too).
If you have any questions about moving to Collingwood and The Blue Mountains or any other Southern Georgian Bay neighbourhoods, feel free to drop a comment, send me an email or give me a call.