Tucked away on Montreal's South Shore, Boucherville is an unassuming suburban city that doesn't get much national attention. But in the eyes of MoneySense magazine, Boucherville is Canada's "best kept secret."
Boucherville, located about 20 kilometres from Montreal, beat out 209 cities and towns in Canada to win the magazine's title of "Canada's Best Place to Live."
"Boucherville was the dark horse," said Mark Brown, MoneySense managing editor. "It was neck and neck with Ottawa, but looking at a number of factors, it came ahead."
Moneysense, a magazine which focuses on personal finance, ranks cities based on 34 categories. Criteria such as unemployment, income levels, housing prices, weather and the number of local doctors all combine to determine a community's ranking.
Boucherville jumped five spots on this year's list, leaping over last year's best place to live, St. Albert, Alta. The bedroom community outside Edmonton was dethroned primarily due to an economic slowdown tied to the low price of oil, according to Brown.
Montreal comes in at number 161 on the list. Brown admitted it might surprise some people to hear that Boucherville ranks higher than its metropolitan neighbour, but he said Boucherville scores better with the magazine's ranking system, in particular when taking into account Montreal's average income and unemployment rate.
Brown said while he's never been to Boucherville, the magazine did interview residents to get their perspective.
Three other cities in the province made the top 10: Blainville came in fifth, Lévis ranked eighth and Quebec City was number 10.