Ontario Real Estate News Blog

by Team Forster

Nov. 6, 2020

The 20 Best Restaurants in Brantford Ontario

The Best Restaurants in Brantford Ontario

Brantford’s culinary scene is exciting and diverse. There are so many delicious places to try along main streets like King George Road and many more dispersed throughout the city. Whether you are looking for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a place to chat with friends over a drink, Brantford has something to offer you. In the list of 20 places to try all around the city, there are plenty of options for every occasion.  

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Breakfast and Lunch

Best Breakfast in Brantford Ontario

Start your day off right with any one of these five fine breakfast and brunch menus around Brantford. Whether you are looking for a weekend tradition or the best Sunday brunch in the city, these are the must-try spots:

Kel’s Family Restaurant

https://www.facebook.com/kelsdinerbrantford/

Starting off the category is Kel’s Family Restaurant, a dedicated breakfast and brunch place located on Dunsdon Street in the northern Brier Park neighbourhood. Their standard menu includes Breakfast plates, breakfast wraps and sandwiches, omelettes and a sweet selection of pancakes and French toast. Delicious weekly specials take existing menu items and enhance them with innovative topping combinations and sides. They are announced on the Kel’s Facebook page, so keep an eye out. There are sandwiches, wraps and burgers on the menu that appeal more to the lunch crowd, too. 

Kingswood’s Breakfast & Lunch Restaurant

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Diner/Kingswoods-Breakfast-Lunch-Restaurant-1641687806128043/

Since 1934, Kingswood’s Restaurant has served the Brantford Community. To this day, the family diner continues to offer a homestyle breakfast menu from their Colborne Street location in West Brant. Their menu includes Omelettes, Eggs Benedict, Pancakes and six different breakfast platters, all with the appeal of warm homemade cooking. In addition to the sizable breakfast options, the lunch menu includes savory sandwiches, loaded wraps and a build-your-own 8 oz. burger section.

Angel’s Diner

https://www.angelsdiner.ca/menu-brantford.html

Angel’s Diner is a north Brantford family restaurant located on the section of King George Road north of the 403 in the Mayfair neighbourhood. This family-friendly diner offers a breakfast, lunch and dinner menu. Their breakfast menu includes creative egg dishes like “Eggs Under The Blanket” - scrambled eggs secured under a warm blanket of melted cheese - and “Angel’s Breakfast Poutine” - fries, cheese, gravy, and bacon all covered in hollandaise sauce! They also serve Omelettes, Eggs Benedict, Breakfast Sautées, and Belgian Waffles, French Toast and Pancakes for diners with a sweet-tooth. 

The Olde School Restaurant

https://www.oldeschoolrestaurant.ca/

The Olde School Restaurant, Piano Bar, and Wedding Chapel offers a fine-dining breakfast experience with their special Sunday Brunch. They are located along where Paris Road and Powerline Road meet about halfway between the City of Brantford and Paris, Ontario. Definitely worth the drive, this up-scale restaurant has two brunch sittings on Sunday that feature an all-you-can-eat buffet. The buffet includes a hot table and a cold table as well as Chef-prepared omelettes with versatile fillings.

Stacked Pancake & Breakfast House

https://www.stackedpancakehouse.ca/ 

Stacked is an Ontario breakfast chain serving up classic breakfast plate specials and decadent pancake creations. In Brantford, they are located on the northern end of King George Road on the Mayfair neighbourhood side of the street. Their breakfast menu offers stacks of pancakes in an amazing variety of flavours: Chocolate caramel, Nutella strawberry, white chocolate Oreo, Cinnabun cakes and PB & J are just some of the delicious combinations listed. Other sweet samplings include French toast, waffles and crepes.  

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Dining In

Whether you are looking for an evening with the family, a night out with friends or a memorable date-night, Brantford’s many evening restaurants offer a wide selection of atmospheres and flavours from around the world. Here are a selection of five amazing restaurants to try in the Brantford area:

On the Lam

https://www.onthelamrestaurant.com/

On the Lam promises a great night out enjoying creative hand-crafted dishes, wine and gourmet cocktails. They are located near the corner of Queen Street and West Street in Downtown Brantford. Their menu is frequently changing to take advantage of the freshest ingredients, but the staple categories include a selection of bar snacks, fish - which usually includes raw oysters and a complimentary dip, chef’s choice of meat cuts, delicious sides and a seasonal soup menu. One recurring and very popular side dish is the Beet and Barley Risotto, a colourful one to watch out for to be sure!

Al Dente

https://www.aldentebrantford.com/

Al Dente is the evening destination for classic Italian dining. Once located in Downtown Brantford, this local, family business has been serving Brantford for over 30 years. Their current location along northern King George Street in the Greenbrier neighbourhood specializes in pizza, pasta and grilled entrées like New York striploin and grilled Atlantic salmon. Al Dente stays true to its origins as a cheesecake restaurant and several decadent selections remain on the menu to this day: Coconut cream pie, orange chocolate and caramel bourbon chocolate chip to name a few mouthwatering examples.

The Everest Grill- Fine Indian Cuisine

http://www.theeverestgrill.ca/

The Everest Grill is a traditional Indian restaurant located in Brantford’s southern Echo Place neighbourhood. Their menu offers vegetarian options like Malai Kofta - potato and cheese dumplings - and Chana Masala - a curry made from spices and chickpeas. Their non-vegetarian options include Chicken Seekh Kebab, Tandoori prawn and marinated Lamb chops. You can finish off the meal with a sampling of traditional Indian desserts like the milk dumpling based Rashmalai and Gulab Jamun and Indian-style ice cream called Kulfi.  

Zander’s Fire Grill & Brew Lounge

https://zanders.ca/

Zander’s is a lively restaurant in northern Brantford’s Greenbrier neighbourhood. They provide a package experience with great grilled food, standout service and live music on the weekends. Their food and drink menus are both locally-sourced, showcasing the best of Brantford and the surrounding area. Their menu features sandwiches, wings, burgers, pasta, stir fry and lots to throw on the grill. A popular menu item is the oven-baked beer can chicken which is served covered in a signature homemade BBQ sauce!

Fume RestoBar

https://www.fumerestobar.ca/

If you are looking for a special dining experience in Brantford, then consider the Fume RestoBar and its modern twist on fine-dining. This Holmedale restaurant serves beautiful weekly specials made with locally-sourced ingredients. Watch for their specials and weekend features on social media because you do not want to miss favourites like the Bison Burger or Octopus Appetizers. Their main menu offers a premium take on burgers, ravioli and fish and chips as well as stuffed chicken, duck, beef tenderloin and a venison rack as bountiful entrées.    

 

Takeout and Delivery

Takeout Restaurants in Brantford

TakeOut is a great way to end the day. Sometimes, you don’t want to cook or do dishes and other times you are craving a really specific dish. The takeout and delivery options available in Brantford are perfect for every situation. Here is a list of five must-try orders from around the city.

ZaZa’s Pizzeria

https://zazas.ca/

It wouldn’t be a Takeout list without a recommendation for a pizza place and ZaZa’s is one of Brantford’s best. They are located on Lynden Road in Brantford’s northeastern end. Their menu offers over 20 different flavours of pizza all baked in a proper wood-fire oven. You can try some of ZaZa’s signature combinations like Potato Bacon, Grilled Chicken Canadian, a traditional Capri pizza or you can build your own creation by selecting from their list of toppings. Besides pizza, they serve hot sandwiches, 3-topping panzerotti and pasta dishes. 

Goo’s Takeout and Catering

http://www.goostakeout.com/

Goo’s provides Brantford with Canadian favourites with a unique twist. From their location along Shellard Lane in the southwestern neighbourhood also called Shellard Lane, Goo’s offers a fully-loaded menu of all your classic takeout meals. Goo’s menu offers burgers, sandwiches, wraps, fish and chips and 13 flavours of chicken wings. Another standout menu item is Goo’s selection of poutines which include the traditional fries, cheese and gravy alongside creative combinations like a pulled pork poutine, a big mac poutine and a sweet chili poutine among many others.

Burrito Brothers

https://www.burrito-brothers.com/

Another great way to spice up your evening is gourmet burritos from Burrito Brothers. This takeout place can be found along Dalhousie Street in Downtown Brantford or online with Skipthedishes. Their signature burritos come in 10” and 12” sizes and can be customized with a variety of fresh toppings. In addition, Burrito Brothers offers Burrito Bowls, Nachos, Quesadilla and tacos. They will also bundle several different types of meals together in a Family Deal and a Double-It-Up Special.

The Chinese Sisters

https://www.thechinesesisters.com/

This Downtown Brantford restaurant provides the community with a taste of authentic Chinese cooking and the convenience of takeout or delivery dining. The restaurant is located right downtown along Colborne Street or online with their own online ordering or Skipthedishes. The Chinese Sisters’ menu features plenty of hot dishes from Kung Pao Chicken to fried cauliflower with cumin and ground chicken and so much more! Spring rolls, fried rice and many flavours of noodle dishes are also available. This versatile menu is also complimented by weekly specials announced online and over social media, a great way to try something new.  

Sai Thai Kitchen

http://saithai1.com/

Opened in 2018, Sai Thai Kitchen is Brantford’s hotspot for dine-in and takeout Thai cuisine. They can be found along King George Road in the north Brantford neighbourhood of Greenbrier. Their menu includes noodle dishes, soups, stir-fry, fried rice and plenty of curry options. Their list of appetizers are a great way to start off your meal with a crunch. Standouts include shrimp rolls, crab wonton and golden pouch wonton wraps. All of Sai Thai’s main dishes are made with fresh vegetables and rich, authentic Thai spices.

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Desserts, Cafés and Snacks

Sociable Kitchen and Tavern

This last category is for people looking for a place to order special desserts, to enjoy a brief chat over a cup of coffee or to try local craft brew and share a platter with friends. These five restaurants offer a mix of experiences to appeal to a variety of diners looking for a quick bite in Brantford.

Sociable Kitchen and Tavern

https://www.sociabletavern.ca/home?

Located on King George Road just south of the 403 in the western neighbourhood of Henderson, Sociable Kitchen and Tavern is a trendy spot to enjoy an evening in Brantford. While Sociable also offers burgers, sandwiches, salads and entrées as a part of a dine-in dinner menu, their appetizers and platters are perfect for light snacking during a night out. Their “Sociables'' menu items include an extensive dip platter, loaded nachos, lettuce wraps, wings, and flatbread. On the lighter side, their appetizers pair well with their rotating tap of Ontario-brewed craft beer.   

Healthy Rabbit

https://www.healthyrabbit.ca/feedme/

Healthy Rabbit is an amazing restaurant in central Brantford that offers a huge list of smoothies, drinks, and snacks. They can be found along Brant Avenue in the North Ward neighbourhood. Their smoothies are blends of superfoods, protein, fresh fruit, and exciting flavours. The best part? They sound like desserts: Mocha Cream, Vanilla Chai, and Orange Creamsicle are just some of the options off this tasty menu. Healthy Rabbit serves Kombucha, tea and lattes on the drink menu as well. As for treats, they offer a healthy spin on countless classic desserts like brownies, cupcakes and Cheese Cake, many made Gluten-free, Vegan and Raw. 

Blue Dog Café

https://www.thebluedogcafe.com/

Blue Dog Café has it all: all-day breakfast, lunch and dinner and an entire page of their menu dedicated to specialty beverages. Visiting this central Brantford café is great any time of day. The café is run out of a converted heritage home in Brantford’s North Ward neighbourhood. Stop by and warm up with their “Strong Dog Pressure Brew,” Espresso blends, latte creations or any other specialty blends. Their cold offerings include smoothies, affogato, and a variety of ice coffee drinks. They also double as a board game café, so you can find a new favourite game and a new favourite seasonal drink!

Dairee Delites

https://www.daireedelite.ca/

Dairee Delites is a seasonal treat that opens around March and closes at the beginning of fall. This old-fashioned ice cream shop has been an iconic Brantford dessert stop since the 1950s. It is now located at the Home Hardware Plaza along King George Road in the Terrace Hill neighbourhood. They sell treats like soft-serve cones (with nine available dipped-cone flavours), sundaes, flurries and yogurt pies as well as milkshakes, slush drinks and ice cream floats! For several menu items, their sizes come in child size, regular, large and monster.  

Bell City Brewing Co.

https://bellcitybrewing.com/

The Bell City Brewing Co. specializes in craft beer, but they also open their tap room to guests in order to try their brews in pairings with great food. Bell City is located south of Lynden Road, near the Lynden Park Mall in northeastern Brantford. Their menu includes classic snacks like pretzel bites and mustard dips, sliders, samosas and a charcuterie board to enjoy with friends. Bell City has also crafted a masterpiece bacon-pepper grilled cheese served with sriracha lime ketchup on the side.

Brantford Ontario Real Estate

Posted in Brantford
Nov. 2, 2020

The Best High Schools in Brantford Ontario

 Brantford Collegiate Institute

Between the Grand Erie District School Board and the Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District School Board, there are five secondary schools in the City of Brantford. Each school has a unique combination of programs and activities that make it shine. Where one school might fall behind, it excels in another area, so looking at them all side-by-side is part of making the best decision for a student.

This list will explore program offerings, special academics, and extra-curricular options for students to make the most of their 4 years. Here is the breakdown of what each of the five schools offers students in Brantford, Ontario.

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Assumption College School

Assumption College School

Assumption College is a Catholic High School located in the Shellard Lane neighbourhood in southwestern Brantford. The school’s boundaries cover much of southern Brantford and the rural area to the southwest of the city.

This high school offers a wide variety of special programs for its students including Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Programs (OYAP) - both regular track and an accelerated track for Automotive Services and Cooking. There are also course options for  Advanced Placement and Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM). For students interested in SHSM at Assumption, they can choose from a focus in Business, Health Care, Fitness, Hospitality and Tourism, Visual Art, Instrumental Music, Construction, Communications, Computer Technology, Transportation, Manufacturing, or Child Care and Family Services.

In terms of provincial test scores, Assumption College sports an average Fraser Institute ranking of 6.5 out of 10. Assumption’s most recent ranking of 6.5 comes from a level 2.9 average on the Math EQAO and a 79% pass rate on the English Literacy Test.

Assumption College is also well known for their breadth of student activities. For those interested in performance, the school has excellent Drama and Music Programs. In addition to the school courses, students can participate in the annual theatre production or join the Concert Band or Vocal Ensemble. There are high school teams for football, basketball, volleyball, hockey, rugby and many more. Other clubs and leadership opportunities include Environmental Club, Art Club, Animation Club, Games Club and Student Council.   

Brantford Collegiate Institute and Vocational School

Brantford Collegiate is a Grand Erie School Board secondary school. It can be found just west of Brant Avenue and north of the Grand River. The school’s intake boundaries indicate that they accept students from a lot of the southwestern and central-west side as well as the rural areas south of the city.

Brantford Collegiate offers a few different kinds of programs. For students more interested in hands-on learning, Brantford Collegiate has OYAP, SHSM, and STEP options that help students take their learning outside of the classroom. The SHSM program at Brantford includes an Arts Program for Stage and Screen, Fitness, and Manufacturing with a focus in Welding/Fabrication. For students set on University, Brantford Collegiate offers both Advanced Placement eligible courses and the special Brantford Laurier Program which offers students enriched academics alongside leadership opportunities. Brantford Collegiate also offers both a French Immersion Certificate and an Extended French certificate to students who meet the course requirements upon graduation.

In provincial testing, Brantford Collegiate has an average ranking of 5.4 for the last five years with a much-improved 5.8 being their most recent. This comes from an average of level 3 on the Grade 9 Math EQAO and a 72% pass rate on the English Literacy Test.

Outside of the classroom, students of Brantford Collegiate can explore many different interests during their time in high school. Sports are offered both as seasonal team competitions and regular intramural games. Students looking to get involved in the arts programs can join concert band, jazz band, musical theatre, or a film festival. Brantford Collegiate also runs a Yearbook Club, a Book Club, and an AV club as well as many others throughout the year.    

North Park Collegiate and Vocational School

North Park Collegiate and Vocational School

North Park is a Grand Erie secondary school that services the north end of Brantford. The school itself is located in the Fairview neighbourhood.

The programs at North Park have something to offer every type of student. The SHSM program offers a specialist focus in the areas of Communication Technology, Health and Wellness, Sports, and Architecture and Construction. OYAP gives North Park students a chance to begin an apprenticeship while still in high school. The Dual-Credit program allows students to work toward post-secondary school credits while still finishing their high school diploma. North Park also offers an Advanced Placement program and supports general E-Learning.

During the most recent year of provincial testing, North Park had a level 2.8 average on the Math EQAO and a 72% pass rate on the English Literacy Test. With these scores, North Park got a Fraser Institute ranking of 6.0 out of 10. This score contributes to their five-year average score of 6.3.

North Park has an incredible variety of extra-curricular programs for students to try. In addition to joining numerous sports teams, students can exercise their leadership skills within the Trojan Athletics program. The competition doesn’t stop there as students can participate in science fairs and math contests, too. Music students have the chance to join either the concert band or the wind ensemble. Some North Park clubs include art, drama, chess, and baking among many more.  

Pauline Johnson Collegiate and Vocational School

Pauline Johnson is a south Brantford secondary school located east of the Downtown core in the neighbourhood of Echo Place. The school boundaries encompass much of central and eastern Brantford and expand out into the rural area east of the city’s boundaries.

There are many great programs being offered by Pauline Johnson. For their SHSM, students can choose between a Culinary Arts Focus, a Media Arts Focus, and a special E3 Focus which specializes on studying the environment and is unique to Pauline Johnson. Another unique program is S.O.A.R., an athletic dedication that goes in-depth about fitness and nutrition. Pauline Johnson also offers an Advanced Placement Program and an Enrichment Program which offers enriched core subjects and is capped off with a Legacy Project in Grade 12.

When compared by provincial test scores, Pauline Johnson ranks at an average of 3.6 out of 10 according to the Fraser Institute. Their most recent ranking of 3.3 comes from a combined level 2.8 average on the Math EQAO and a 45% pass rate on the English Literacy Test.

Pauline Johnson is building a reputation for its dedication to athletics. Outside of the unique program opportunities offered by the school, the new Kiwanis Field opened in 2016 is right in the school’s backyard. This game-day-ready field features a full-length field, versatile track space, and bleachers for spectators. Best of all, it  serves as the home field for the Pauline Johnson Thunderbirds! Other extra-curricular activities include bands, clubs, and leadership roles across the school.

St. John’s College

St. John’s College

St. John’s College is a Catholic secondary school located along Paris Road in the north part of Brantford’s Henderson neighbourhood. The wider school boundaries also cover much of north Brantford.

St. John’s offers both experiential learning opportunities and enriched academics depending on what a student would rather focus on. For those who want a smoother transition into an apprenticeship or college program, there is OYAP or Dual-Credits. Students can also choose between a SHSM in Arts and Culture, Construction, Health and Wellness, Hospitality and Tourism, Information Communication Technology, or Sports. St. John’s also offers an Advanced Placement program in STEM courses or in English Literature and Composition.

In the most recent provincial testing St. John’s scored an average level 2.8 score on the Math EQAO and a 85% pass rate on the English Literacy Test. This earned the school a Fraser Institute ranking of 6.5 out of 10 and an average of 6.6 across the last five years.

Extra-curricular activities at St. John’s enhance the classroom learning in every subject or area of interest. For students who enjoy STEM programming, this high school participates in science and math contests as well as the STEM Olympics. Students with a passion for athletics can join any of the school’s sport teams or participate in individual sports like Golf. Other great activities and events include performance groups in Drama and Band as well as a Debate Team and participation in the Mock Trial program.

There are programs to highlight for every high school in Brantford. Whether it’s a specific academic program or a special extra-curricular offering, the best high school in Brantford depends on what a student is looking for.

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If you want to know more about Brantford, Ontario consider our Guide to Living in Brantford. If you want to explore specific neighbourhoods, check out our Best Neighbourhoods in Brantford.

Posted in Brantford
Oct. 8, 2020

The Best Elementary Schools in Brantford, Ontario

Best Elementary Schools in Brantford Ontario

When looking at Brantford neighbourhoods, finding nearby schools is a high priority for families with children. Finding a great local school is even more important. Brantford has a lot of elementary schools to choose from, so the decision can seem overwhelming. We’ve compiled a list of 5 of the best elementary schools in Brantford based on their EQAO test results and their Fraser Institute rankings.

High scores aren’t where our ranking stops. Great schools not only test high once, but do so consistently or improve greatly over a few years. Additionally, the extra-curricular programs, clubs, and teams that a school offers can go a long way in fostering a fantastic school community. Here are our top 5 elementary schools in Brantford, Ontario based on those factors:

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5. Ryerson Heights Elementary School

Quick Facts:

- Morning Bell: 8:35am

- School Day Ends at: 2:55pm

- Grades: JK to Grade 8

- Highlights: Lighthouse Leadership (in recognition of the Leader in Me program)

Ryerson Heights is a forward-thinking Brantford school with good provincial scores and promising community programs. Ryerson Heights strives to inspire all of its students to become leaders by encouraging the “7 Habits of Highly Effective People.” Additionally, the school promotes the environmentally-responsible “Boomerang Lunches” program which teaches students to reduce the waste from their lunches.

Located in the southwest Brantford neighbourhood of Shellard Lane, Ryerson Heights takes students from Kindergarten through to Grade 8. This Grand Erie District School Board school also takes students from the area north of Colborne Street West and south of the bend of the Grand River that is included in its boundaries.

For the last 4 years, Ryerson Heights has shown fairly steady improvement in its provincial test scores. With an average Fraser Institute ranking of 6.2 out of 10, Ryerson is working to exceed provincial averages. In the most recent ranking, they earned a 6.3, continuing to show their growth. 

 

4. St. Peter School

Quick Facts:

- Morning Bell: 8:35am

- School Day Ends at: 2:55pm

- Grades: JK to Grade 8

- Highlights: YMCA After School Program

St. Peter is a tight-knit Catholic elementary school with rapidly rising provincial scores, a range of sports, and a YMCA After School program. As a part of the Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic School Board, students can participate in board-supported sports teams like  Soccer, Volleyball, Basketball, Cross Country, and Track and Field.

St. Peter is located in the Echo Place neighbourhood and services students from much of south-central Brantford and the rural southeast. Students attend St. Peter from Kindergarten to Grade 8.

The provincial scores at St. Peter result in a favourable average of 6.7 in Fraser Institute rankings for the last three years of available scores. In the most recent rankings, St. Peter jumped all the way to an 8.0, showing incredible growth and great scores in Reading and Writing.

 

3. St. Gabriel Catholic Elementary School

Quick Facts:

- Morning Bell: 8:55am

- School Day Ends at: 3:15pm

- Grades: JK to Grade 8

- Highlight: Close to Assumption College School (High School)

St. Gabriel is another elementary school in Brantford that scores well, but this school has the added benefit of being incredibly convenient for students and parents. St. Gabriel Catholic Elementary School not only sports a great average on provincial testing, it is right beside one of the best-scoring secondary schools too, Assumption College. For Grade 8 students of St. Gabriel, the transition to high school isn’t that far at all!

St. Gabriel is an elementary school in the Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District School Board which takes students from Kindergarten to Grade 8. Located in the Shellard Lane neighbourhood of Brantford. The school’s boundaries expand out to include the eastern part of the neighbourhood as well as the western stretch out north of Shellard Lane.

In the last four years, St. Gabriel has built up a solid average of 7.1 in Fraser Institute rankings. This is topped off by a most recent score of 7.3, one of the top 5 scores in Brantford. St. Gabriel has consistently ranked above provincial standards in the subject of Writing across both Grade 3 and Grade 6 EQAO results.   

 

2. École Dufferin

Quick Facts:

- Morning Bell: 8:50am

- School Day Ends at: 3:10pm

- Grades: JK to Grade 8

- Highlight: French Program

As more and more families are seeking out a good French education for their children, schools like École Dufferin become important places to start learning a new language. It combines a good reputation, pleasant neighbourhood, and high recent test scores to become one of the best French Immersion schools in Brantford.

École Dufferin is an elementary school in the Grand Erie District School Board. It offers French Immersion programming for children in kindergarten through to Grade 8. This terrific school is located in the Holmedale neighbourhood on the west end of Brantford. The school’s boundaries encompass the areas along the Grand River and further into West Brant.

In terms of test scores, École Dufferin has had fairly strong results over the last four years. In an increasingly positive trend, École Dufferin’s newest score according to the Fraser Institute was an even 8.0, among the highest in the city. For all scores within the last 4 years, École Dufferin has an average of about 6.9, so this most recent score shows incredible improvement!

 

1. Our Lady of Providence

Our Lady of Providence

Quick Facts:

- Morning Bell: 8:45am

- School Day Ends at: 3:05pm

- Grades: JK to Grade 8

- Highlight: Great Scores - especially in Reading and Writing

Sitting in the top spot is the Catholic elementary school, Our Lady of Providence. This school not only has the best average of test scores in Brantford, but it also had one of the top 5 scores on the most recent provincial testing!

Our Lady of Providence is located right in the northeastern neighbourhood of Mayfair. This Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District School Board school takes children from Kindergarten through to Grade 8. The school’s boundaries also include a section of north-central Brantford and a large area north of Powerline Road. 

Our Lady of Providence has the highest average across the last 4 years of provincial test scores in Brantford. They have an overall average of about 7.2 with their most recent ranking of 7.3 highlighting a positive trend in their scores, too.

 École Dufferin Brantford Ontario

Ultimately, the best elementary school in Brantford, Ontario is the one that meets the needs of your family. With so many neighbourhoods and school programs to choose from, Brantford’s public schools have a lot to offer.

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If you want to know more about Brantford, Ontario, check out our Guide to Living in Brantford, Ontario. If you are looking for the highlights of Brantford neighbourhoods, consider our The Best Neighbourhoods in Brantford, Ontario.

 

 

Posted in Brantford
Sept. 19, 2020

A Guide to Living in or Moving to Brantford, Ontario

Brantford Ontario

Brantford is a medium-sized city in southwestern Ontario that is gaining popularity as an alternative to living in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Located between Woodstock and Hamilton, Brantford’s main claim to fame is as “Telephone City”, the hometown of Alexander Graham Bell. Long-time residents and newcomers to Brantford enjoy a blend of community activities, attractions, and services that make Brantford an appealing and convenient place to live!

About Brantford - Where is Brantford Ontario?

The City of Brantford is in southwestern Ontario, located on the Grand River at the centre of Brant County. Despite being surrounded by Brant County, Brantford is considered politically independent from the rest of the County. In the 2016 census, Brantford had a population of 97,496 and in this growing city, that number is definitely on the rise!

The 403 Highway runs through Brantford, connecting it with Woodstock and the 401, Hamilton, and the rest of the Greater Toronto Area. In terms of distance, Brantford is about 95km east of London, Ontario and 40km west of Hamilton. Brantford is just northwest of the Six Nations of the Grand River, the largest population of First Nations communities in Canada.

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History of Brantford, Ontario

Alexander Graham Bell Memorial in Brantford Ontario

Brantford’s vibrant history is all the more rich because visitors and residents alike interact with it every day. The city was formally incorporated in 1877, but before that it was a part of the land along the Grand River granted to Joseph Brant in 1784. Brantford - originally Brant’s Ford - refers directly to Thayendanegea (Joseph Brant) who led Mohawk and Loyalist forces during the American Revolution and was granted the land around the Grand River. A statue and monument commemorating Joseph Brant and the Six Nations Confederacy can be found in Victoria Park Square. Other famous residents include Alexander Graham Bell, who gave Brantford the title of “Telephone City” when he  invented the telephone and made the first long-distance call from the city. The former Bell family home has been turned into a National Historic Site and museum called The Bell Homestead. Another is Wayne Gretzky, perhaps the most famous hockey player in the history of the sport. He was born in Brantford, Ontario and many streets, buildings, and special events are named in honour of Wayne Gretzky and the contributions of his family to the game. 

Real Estate in Brantford, Ontario

The City of Brantford is seeing the same steady rise in real estate activity as the rest of the southwestern Ontario. So far in 2020, the average sale price of a residential property in Brantford was about $540,000. Despite a trend of higher prices, owning a sizable property in Brantford remains affordable compared to communities closer to the GTA. Some residents are willing to accept that longer commute for lower average prices on detached homes.

The majority of Brantford residents live in single family detached houses. This style of property is also the most popular on the market. Depending on the area of Brantford, there are semi-detached, row style townhouses, and apartment-style condominiums available - especially in areas of newer development. Brand new, detached homes have a higher average starting around $600,000, while townhouses and condos tend to be listed for less than $350,000 at some of the lowest prices in the city.

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Living in Brantford, Ontario

 Brantford Ontario City Hall

Brantford has all the comforts of an expanding southwestern Ontario city. It has an affordable and accessible transportation network, a variety of education streams and programs, and diverse and exciting industries. With all the convenience of larger cities, it’s no surprise that Brantford’s popularity is rising. 

Transportation in Brantford is handled by Brantford Transit - a bus service that operates 15 routes around the city, real-time service communication, and smart card passes. Brantford is also connected to the GO Transit network with a bus route that makes routine trips to nearby Hamilton. For those commuting, Brantford residents have easy access to the 403 Highway which runs through Hamilton     and connects with the GTA. Though Brantford does have a municipal airport for charter flights and events, the nearest airports offering commercial flights are the John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport and the Toronto Pearson International Airport.

Brantford has a diverse range of public school options. The two largest boards are the Grand Erie District School Board and the Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District School Board which manage the majority of elementary and secondary schools between them. French-language Catholic Schools are covered by the Conseil scolaire MonAvenir and  the Six Nations Polytechnic STEAM Academy offers a special curriculum blended with early access to college courses. Outside of public schools, there are many options for private elementary and secondary schools for students in Brantford as well. Post-secondary options in Brantford include campuses for Wilfrid Laurier University, Conestoga College, and Six Nations Polytechnic. With Hamilton only 35 minutes away, students can live in Brantford and commute to McMaster University.

A lot of Brantford’s development has been attributed to its great location along a major Ontario Highway. The 403 provides the city with easy access to many of the largest markets including the Golden Horseshoe area and even access to border crossings with the United States. Some of Brantford’s important industries are Manufacturing (food and beverage, plastic, and rubber), Film, Television, and Digital Media, and Warehousing and Distribution. 

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Things to do in Brantford, Ontario

Brantford Ontario Train Station

Whether its a year-round attraction or an annual festival, the City of Brantford has something for everyone to get excited about. Many of the city’s well-known attractions are the historical and cultural sites, the Bell Homestead, the Myrtleville House Museum, and the Glenhyrst Art Gallery of Brantford. Spending the day outdoors in a community park or along one of Brantford’s many trails is an equally rewarding way to explore the city!

There are so many great Brantford annual festivals to visit and even partake in! Some of the biggest names are the Brantford International Villages Festival - a celebration of the diverse cultural makeup of the city, Brantford Kinsmen Ribfest - a summer gathering of great food, music, and people, and the Brantford International Jazz Festival - a live music festival right in Downtown Brantford. There are even more community events to discover throughout the year as well.

There is a lot to explore in and around Brantford, Ontario, but this blog should give you a good place to start! If you are looking for more detailed information, consider checking our Brantford Neighbourhood Guide or Brantford School Guides for Elementary and High Schools.

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Posted in Brantford
Sept. 19, 2020

Best Neighbourhoods in Brantford Ontario

If you’re planning a move to Brantford, Ontario, the question has probably crossed your mind: which neighbourhood is best for me? The answer depends on what you are looking for in a neighbourhood. Do you need to be close to the Highway? Are you looking for the neighbourhood for a family? Or as a young professional? What about house-age, style, and lot sizes? A lot of factors go into the “Best” Brantford neighbourhoods and we’ve got a list of suggestions based on a few key factors.

The Best Neighbourhoods for Commuters

Brantford Ontario Commuters

The 403 Highway is going to be the most important part of your commute. It runs through Brantford between Woodstock to the west and Hamilton to the east. To cut down on the travel time, many Brantford residents live on the northern end of the city in the neighbourhoods north of the 403. This includes Mayfair, Fairview, Greenbrier, Brier Park, and Branlyn.

Out of those, Greenbrier and Brier Park have the best blend of overall convenience.

Greenbrier is one of Brantford’s northernmost neighbourhoods. It is located to the immediate east of King George Road. Greenbrier is a great choice not only for the commute, but for everyday convenience, too! There is a lot of shopping all along King George Road especially concentrated in the Brantford Commons shopping area in the northeast corner of the neighbourhood. To the south,  residents of Greenbrier can easily connect with the 403.

Brier Park is east of Greenbrier and is full of pleasant and quiet residential streets. The neighbourhood has many detached housing options in a variety of styles. Residents of Brier Park enjoy access to lots of community parks, schools, and are right beside the Wayne Gretzky Parkway which feeds into the 403. 

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The Best Neighbourhood for Nature-Lovers

Brantford Ontario Wilkes Damn

Thanks to the Grand River, good tree coverage, and scenic trails, the Holmedale/Lansdowne area is easily among the most beautiful neighbourhoods in Brantford.

Residents of Holmedale enjoy winding trails along the Grand River and some lovely parks. The standouts include the SC Johnson Trail, Waterworks Park, and the Rotary bike park with cycling trails and a BMX area as well. Some houses even back onto the forest or the Grand River itself - talk about having nature in your backyard!

While the streets themselves are fairly quiet and residential, Holmedale isn’t too far from conveniences with some shopping and dining along King George Road and Brant Avenue to the north and east. The 403 is also less than 10 minutes to the north. To Holmedale’s credit, it has some of the best schools in the city to top it off as a truly winning neighbourhood.

The Best Neighbourhoods for Families

When looking at family-oriented neighbourhoods, important features like community parks, nearby school reputations, and safety are common priorities. Fortunately,  Holmedale, Henderson, and Shellard Lane are all excellent choices for families in Brantford to explore.

Henderson is just north of Holmedale, which was already featured for being great for nature-lovers. Well, Holmedale in addition to the great parks, Holmedale also has some well-regarded schools. Both the French Immersion École Dufferin and Christ the King Catholic School are in Holmedale and they sport excellent rankings. Henderson is included on this list because of the school options it offers as well as the overall quality. École Confédération is another good French Immersion elementary school located in the very north of Henderson. For parents looking for a French Immersion program for their kids, it helps to find one at well-ranked schools!

The southwestern neighbourhood of Shellard Lane is even further west of West Brant. Shellard Lane is a great choice for families looking for great schools and even better convenience. There is a trio of great schools very close to one another: Ryerson Heights Elementary School, St. Gabriel Catholic Elementary School, and Assumption College School - a Catholic board secondary school. If your kids are within walking distance of one, they can walk to all three options! Shellard Lane has some fantastic parks, too:  Donegal Park and Rink, Edith Monture Park and playground, and trail access on the eastern side of the neighbourhood.

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The Best Neighbourhoods for Stylish Houses

Alexander Graham Bell House in Brantford Ontario

Brantford is a city that is expanding quickly, but it’s also a city with deep heritage roots. Whether you are interested in a century-home packed with character, a fixer-upper, or a brand new dream home, there are a few great neighbourhoods in Brantford known for stylist houses.

Terrace Hill

Older homes present a challenge for handy folk, a blank slate for dream-home renovators, or a charming home full of original personality. The Terrace Hill area of Brantford offers a staggering variety for all types of buyers! This mature neighbourhood is just south of the 403 Highway. It features quiet, tree-lined streets, and many houses with beautiful original brick. Better yet, there are several classic homes in the neighbourhood mix. Many older properties on the market have already received interior updates, but there are some out there perfect for a project!

West Brantford

Brantford’s growth means plenty of new housing developments are always popping up! If you are looking for the newest properties with modern exteriors and up-to-date interiors, then consider some of the developments on Brantford’s west side. The first development is Nature’s Grand by LIV Communities, located south of Hardy Road and north of the Grand River. While this development is quite a distance outside Brantford’s core, it is still relatively close to the 403 and offers key access to several riverside trails. It features brand new two-storey, detached homes with floor plans ranging from 1,400 to over 3,000 square feet of livable space. Another new LIV development is called Sienna Woods, planned for Colborne Street West near the Brantford Municipal Airport.

There are even more great neighbourhoods to explore in Brantford outside of this list, but it’s a great place to start. If you want to know more about Brantford, check out our Guide to Living in Brantford, Ontario! For some more information on Brantford Schools, take a look at the Best Elementary and Best High Schools.

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Posted in Brantford
April 29, 2020

Moving to Uplands, London, Ontario? The Ultimate Guide to Living in Uplands, London (2020)

Moving to and living in uplands london ontario

Uplands, London is a modern, thoughtfully planned neighbourhood that Londoners are getting excited about. Its substantial contemporary homes and prime northern location contribute to the area’s growing success. Uplands is an ideal place for anyone to settle down, and for families to upgrade to their dream home. The proximity of the neighbourhood to parts of North London and the Masonville area is a key factor for many residents, who easily commute yet enjoy more seclusion and distance from the urban scene. Uplands Trail runs through the neighbourhood and connects each community, increasing the safety and security of residents. If you’re searching for a bright new area with lots of potential for growth, Uplands should be near the top of your list. We’ll show you more of the main reasons why many are considering the stunning homes here.

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Posted in Buying
April 28, 2020

Relocating in 2020? Follow These Moving Tips for a Stress-free Transition!


Relocating in 2020? Follow These Moving Tips for a Stress-free Transition!

Posted in Buying
April 27, 2020

Moving to Sunningdale, London? The Ultimate Guide to Living in Sunningdale, London, Ontario (2020)

Moving to and living in sunningdale london ontario

Sunningdale, London, Ontario is a remarkably modern community in the north of London, Ontario. It is one of the latest neighbourhoods in the city and is still expanding with sensational new building projects. The area is bordered at the south end by Fanshawe Park Road West, and nearly reaches Arva on Medway Road to the north. The properties here often serve as fantastic upgrades for families, who can soak in Sunningdale’s natural scenery while still enjoying proximity to major locations in North London. Withdraw into these safe, elegant, and green suburbs to discover the perfect home you’ve envisioned.

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Posted in Buying
April 13, 2020

Moving to Byron? The Ultimate Guide to Living in Byron, London, Ontario

living in byron london ontario

The allure of Byron in London, Ontario has been rapidly increasing as more and more Londoners are taken in by its charm. Byron’s small town atmosphere stems primarily from its long history. Though it is now a thriving neighbourhood in southwest London, Byron once stood on its own as a lively village over two centuries ago. This energy has carried through to the present day, and it remains one of the most popular locations to live within the city. Its abundance of green spaces is another irresistible perk that enhances every aspect of family life. With its newer areas as well as long-standing neighbourhoods, Byron is a treasure trove of homes suited to many lifestyles and family needs.

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Posted in Buying
April 9, 2020

Moving to White Oaks? Guide to Living in White Oaks, London, Ontario

Living in white oaks ontario

London’s south end can be as lively and convenient as its northern counterpart, especially when it comes to the favourably located neighbourhood of White Oaks. This residential area has perhaps the widest variety of single family homes, townhouses, and apartment buildings in the city. It is therefore a highly populated area and yields a great opportunity for first-time buyers. Any home here is close to one of London’s prime shopping centres, as well as many restaurants, parks, and community areas. The major Highway 401 lies directly south of the neighbourhood, making it a simplified commute to Toronto or Windsor. With everything within reach and a plethora of options in terms of living spaces, this is an especially practical and comfortable neighbourhood to consider when preparing for a move.

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Posted in Buying