The History of Waterdown
The area that we now know as Waterdown was originally inhabited by Algonquin-speaking Aboriginals. In the 1600s French explorers and missionaries discovered the area, eventually driving out the Chonnonton Nation. After the fall of New France and the local indigenous tribes formed an alliance with British settlers and the area became known as part of the province of Quebec.
During the American Revolution, the area became home to many Loyalists fleeing the republic and Quebec was broken into Upper and Lower Canada. In the 1800s, Waterdown was settled and given its name by entrepreneur Ebenezer Culver Griffin.
Waterdown truly found its footing as a community throughout the Industrial Revolution. Mills lined Grindstone Creek and by 1869, the population of Waterdown grew to about 1,000. Waterdown remained its own municipality for over 100 years after that, eventually becoming incorporated into the Township of Flamborough.
Waterdown was part of the amalgamation plan to incorporate Flamborough and other local municipalities to the City of Hamilton. This decision was opposed by some, since Waterdown is essentially “sandwiched” between Burlington and Hamilton. However, the plans went ahead and Waterdown officially became part of Hamilton in 2001.
Where is Waterdown?
Waterdown is a Hamilton neighbourhood located at the very top of the Niagara Escarpment, about 60km west of Downtown Toronto. The village of Waterdown is just north of Hamilton proper and is located close to major highways including Highways 5 and 6 and the 403.
Slightly removed from the urban centre of Hamilton, Waterdown feels more rural than other neighbourhoods, but its location and proximity to transit make it great for moving around the GTA.
What started as a mill village, the area of Waterdown (as well as most of Southern Ontario) was mostly logged out by the mis 1800s. Today, Waterdown is less driven by industry and more so driven by heritage and tourism.
The Mill Street Heritage District located near Mill Street and Dundas is known for its historic homes, commercial buildings, businesses, and more–all featuring interesting architecture from the 1800s.
Waterdown is also known for its prominent small businesses including restaurants, shops, cafes, spas, specialty stores, and more. This creates a quaint ambience and a charming vibe that places great value on supporting local.
According to the 2021 census, the population of Waterdown is about 23,000. This has grown about 40% since the last census. The majority of the population growth in Waterdown occurred in the newer subdivisions in the area.
Waterdown is a family-friendly community. The average age of Waterdown residents skews slightly younger than Hamilton, with the majority of residents comprised of married couples or young families with children at home.
Education in Waterdown
Waterdown is part of the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board and Hamilton-Wentworth District Catholic School Board. As an extremely family-friendly community, Waterdown students have an excellent variety of highly-rated schools to choose from. Some of the schools in Waterdown include:
- Allan A. Greenleaf Elementary School
- Guy Brown Elementary School
- Mary Hopkins Elementary School
- Thomas the Apostle Catholic Elementary School
- Guardian Angels Catholic Elementary School
- Waterdown District Secondary School
- St. Mary Catholic Secondary School
- St. Thomas More Catholic Secondary School
- Waterdown Montessori School
As a small town, Waterdown is well-served by both public and private transit options. The Hamilton Street Railway (HSR) system includes a Waterdown route with access to both the Aldershot Via Rail and GO Station. Waterdown also has the HSR myRide program, an on-demand bus service that adjusts routes based on the needs of clients and can be accessed by an app. The area is also easily accessible by many major highways including Highway 5, 6, and the 403.
Waterdown residents have access to many healthcare facilities, walk-in clinics, and more. In terms of hospitals, there are a couple nearby. Closest would be Joseph Brant Hospital and Emergency Room in Burlington, but there is also the Hamilton General Hospital and St. Joseph’s Hospital in Hamilton too.
Arts and Culture in Waterdown
As a quiet and quaint area, many people visit Waterdown when they are looking to enjoy some rest and relaxation. With its downtown core consisting of primarily charming shops, fine dining options, locally-owned cafes, galleries, and spas, Waterdown is idyllic, convenient, and primed for enjoyment.
From fine dining to casual eateries, Waterdown has a variety of places to enjoy a culinary experience. The one thing that most places have in common is they are locally-owned, serving up local fare. Head over to Mill St. & 5 American House for some live music and casual comfort food or make a special reservation for date night at Lord Byron Steak & Seafood House. Waterdown is also home to some incredible bakeries and cafes including Beanermunky Chocolate and the iconic Waterdown Tea House to name a couple.
Waterdown is home to make specialty stores and locally-owned and operated shops. These pillars of the community bring a lot of business to the area, for their quality products and expert staff. Waterdown Goldsmith is a popular jeweler in the town, offering beautiful unique pieces as well as recreational goldsmithing classes. Art and music lover will appreciate True North Gallery, and Bicycle Works is perfect for avid cyclists looking for the latest and greatest gear and accessories. Waterdown also hosts a Farmer’s Market from May to October with vendors selling everything from freshly prepared food to organic eggs and artisanal wares.
With such a lovely downtown core, it’s easy to forget that Waterdown is actually perfectly poised directly on the Niagara Escarpment, offering exceptional hiking and outdoor activities. The Waterdown Trail, Bruce Trail, and Smokey Hollow Falls are all must-sees for outdoors enthusiasts.
In addition to dining, shopping, and hiking, Waterdown also offers a lot in terms of activities. Check out the Flamboro Downs for harness horse racing or visit the Mill Street Heritage District to learn all about the history of the area. West Avenue Cider House is also a popular spot thanks to its fascinating architecture and cider production (and the cider too!)
Waterdown is an active and friendly community. In addition to the weekly Farmer’s Market in the summer, there is a full calendar of events throughout the year. From the Scarecrow Walk in the fall to Ribfest in the summer, there’s always something for the whole family to enjoy.
Waterdown Real Estate Affordability
Waterdown real estate affordability sits slightly higher than the average for Hamilton. We can cite the area’s heritage homes, larger lots, new constructions, and its appeal as a village as just a few of the factors that cause prices to be higher. The average prices for homes for sale in Waterdown, Ontario in 2021 were:
Most Common Property Types in Waterdown
Waterdown is comprised of a more traditional, older downtown core with rural properties found around the outskirts of the village. It’s common to see many rural properties with significantly-sized lots and multiple bedrooms. However, there is also an abundance of modern new construction homes, townhouses, and condos found in more built-up areas. Although home prices in Waterdown are, on average, higher than the rest of Hamilton, there is significant value here since the properties are unique, spacious, and close to amazing amenities.
Waterdown Homes for Sale
When it comes to Waterdown real estate for sale, the most prominent homes for sale include single-family detached homes with 2-4 bedrooms. These homes range from properties built over the past 20 years to properties that have been build as part of new construction developments.
Real estate in Waterdown, Ontario is varied and there are a variety of homes available for many different needs. Learn more about Waterdown homes for sale here:
Waterdown Condos For Sale
Condos for sale in Waterdown and townhouses in the area are also common to see. Although Waterdown is considered more rural than other parts of Hamilton, it is still popular among first-time buyers and buyers who are looking for a smaller space and maximized convenience. With new developments popping up in Waterdown and the area becoming more gentrified, it’s possible to see even more Waterdown condos for sale in the future. Learn more about condos for sale in Waterdown here.
Waterdown Real Estate Services
As a sought-after location with a ton of potential, Waterdown is a competitive real estate market. Working with a dedicated Waterdown real estate agent on your next home purchase or sale in Waterdown is your best bet at success in the market.
Michael St. Jean Realty has over 40 years of experience helping buyers and sellers navigate the real estate market in Waterdown.
Buying a Home with Michael St. Jean Realty
Buying a home is a big decision. At Michael St. Jean Realty, we understand the gravity of the situation and help you find the right home at the right price.
When you work with Michael St. Jean Realty as your buyer agent, you get:
- One of the top real estate teams in Canada representing you and protecting you.
- Access to real-time MLS listings before the general public.
- Access to power of sales and estate sales
- Insider access to new developments before they’re open to the public.
- A team available to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to show you properties before missing out
- Expert negotiation to help you get the property you want at the best price.
- Access to the best financing rates and terms available.
Discover our buying process here:
Selling a Home with Michael St. Jean Realty
As one of the biggest financial decisions you can make, selling your home with a Waterdown real estate expert is the best way to maximize the profit of your home sale and ensure you get the best possible price for your property.
At Michael St. Jean Realty, you get the power of our entire team behind your sale. Our marketing resources and industry reach are unmatched in the area. Whether you are selling a large family estate or your first condo, we have the expertise, resources, and experience to bring you the best results.
Learn more about our selling process here:
Although the real estate in Waterdown is slightly more expensive than other parts of Hamilton, the community can work for retirees. With many new construction projects on the go and a vibrant and accessible downtown area, Waterdown is popular for those seeking a slow and quaint lifestyle.
Known predominantly for being family-friendly, Waterdown real estate is absolutely great for families. The rural areas combined with new home constructions, amenities, access to transit, and great schools make Waterdown a top choice for families.
Waterdown real estate is features many new condo and townhouse developments, which can be perfect for investors. However, it’s important to note that Waterdown is not close to many of the region’s post-secondary schools, so the majority of your tenants would likely be families and retirees.
Waterdown is a quick 15-minute drive by car to Hamilton. Drivers can hop on the 403 and easily access downtown Hamilton. There is also the Hamilton Street Railway (HSR) that can provide direct access to Hamilton via public transit.
Compared to other parts of Hamilton, real estate in Waterdown, Ont. is slightly more expensive than the average. However, the thing to note is that home values in Waterdown are also high and there is a great quality to the homes in the region, which qualifies the price.
Traditionally, spring and fall are the best time to sell a home in Waterdown. However, we would argue that the best time to sell a Waterdown house is whenever you are ready. Especially in today’s competitive market, and with Waterdown being a sought-after community, there are almost always buyers looking for Waterdown houses for sale.
We recommend that all clients get pre-approved before buying a home in Waterdown. Getting pre-approved not only helps determine your budget and helps refine your home search, but it will also let sellers know you are a serious buyer.
Much like the rest of Hamilton, prices have gone up year-over-year, however, for 2022 the prices seem like they are beginning to either stabilize or rise at a slower rate than past years. However, many experts are saying that over the next 5 years, prices will continue to rise in the area.
Thanks to its proximity to the 403 and other major roadways, Waterdown works for commuters who are either commuting to Hamilton, Burlington, or other parts of the GTA.
Whether you are buying or selling real estate in Waterdown, it’s best to work with a Waterdown real estate agent. Local expertise and experience in this unique market will help refine your search or appeal to buyers in the area. At Michael St. Jean Realty, we are your local Waterdown real estate experts.