Study finds nearly one-third of Canadians ready to leave the city behind

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A new report shows 31% of Canadians are considering moving to a rural location because of the pandemic.

Leger Canada produced the How We Live report for Aviva Canada and asked Canadians about their lives currently and post-COVID-19

The report shows Canadians are considering moving to more rural locations and prioritizing backyard renovations but are not protecting their homes as much as they should — despite spending more time in them than ever before.

“The past year has been one like no other, with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to be felt across the world, in our communities, and our homes,” said Phil Gibson, managing Director, Personal Insurance & Data Science at Aviva Canada.

“This report examines different facets of our lives in these times and how people have adapted — and not just temporarily,” he said. “It shows that for many, they hope that some of these changes will be more permanent, truly changing how we live.”

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The report found many people have purchased a vehicle because they fear using public transit and 60% say they are unlikely to use it again.

Although some may want to leave their urban homes, many are staying and have made renovations during the pandemic.

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Seventeen percent have made renovations and improvement with the average homeowner spending $4,525 and the most popular jobs being in the backyard.

The priciest changes are on average $10,880 to renovate a basement or add an entertainment space.

“With people spending so much time at home, it’s no surprise Canadians are changing their spaces to fit their current needs,” Gibson said. “For those planning to make major changes to their home, they should know that renovations like finishing a basement, removing structural supports or building an addition could impact their insurance coverage.”

“These renovations may change may the homes rebuild value. It’s always good practice to check in with your insurance broker or agent when considering renovations so you are adequately covered,” he added.

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