Hamilton has been named one of the top investment markets in Ontario in an annual report released by the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN). 

The industry think-tank's 140 page report analyzed current and future prospects for real estate investment and Hamilton ranked second, topped only by Kitchener/Cambridge.

Top Ontario Investment Towns:

  1. Kitchener and Cambridge
  2. Hamilton
  3. Barrie
  4. Waterloo
  5. Brampton
  6. Ottawa
  7. Vaughan
  8. Durham Region
  9. Toronto
  10. Milton
  11. Orillia

"Several years of record breaking building permit values and exponential population growth have done wonders to change the city's reputation," says the report, which is available through the REIN website.

According to the study, Hamilton's building permits topped $1 billion in 2013 for the third straight year.

Among the perks for investors is the city's short drive to the U.S. border crossings, its busy port and access to the Pearson International Airport, and easy access to the 400 series highways.

According to the report, Hamilton also appeals to those working in other parts of the Greater Toronto Area who are drawn to the city because of lower housing prices.

REIN said that while those housing prices are starting to "limit cash flow opportunities within the city...Hamilton still offers diligent investors with plenty of investment opportunities."

This year marks the third straight year Hamilton has been named by the REIN as being among the top municipalities in Ontario.

The think-tank predicts the city's economic opportunities and investment potential will continue for the next five years.

"Hamilton's leadership has been very innovative with their revitalization plans throughout the city," the REIN study says.