November 23, 2022
While Canada is widely considered a great country to live in, there are many aspects of Canadian living that compare unfavourably with the rest of the developed world. One of the foremost problems Canada faces today is the cost of living crisis.
Immigrants coming to Canada seeking a better life often find that the insane monthly costs of living in any province can quickly outweigh the positive aspects of Canadian living. Among the most egregious examples of high living expenses in Canada are the in-store prices for food. Even in areas in close proximity to the US, the average monthly food cost can be significantly higher than it is across the border.
Keep reading to find details on the cost of living in Canada's provinces and territories, as well as a breakdown of the cost of living in major Canadian cities.
Canada’s Average Monthly Costs Compared To The Rest Of The World
In order to find cost-per-month comparisons between Canadian provinces, it's necessary to look at Canadians' median household income. Although overall prices in the US are the same or higher, the median salary in the US is higher than in Canada, skewing the cost of living somewhat.
The Canadian cost of living is the 25th most expensive worldwide. Since there are over 100 countries, the ranking for Canada has become quite impressive. Some cities in Canada, such as Vancouver, consistently rank among some of the most expensive cities in the world to live in.
This isn't so bad if you have the income to manage it, but with close to half a million immigrants coming into the country every year, wages are severely suppressed and the labour markets are strained. This also contributes to high housing costs due to chronically increased demand.
In 2021, Canada's living costs were the 30th most costly on the planet. The pandemic, supply-chain issues, and inflation have caused high Canadian living costs most recently, but the issue of affordability in Canada is long-standing and complex.
Rent and Housing Costs In Canada
The CMHC provides an annual summary of average annual rental rates in Canada, and the most recent report shows that the average rental cost is higher in urban locations compared to less populated areas and urban areas.
Rents average $2730 per month throughout Canada. This price is anticipated to continue increasing dramatically in the coming years. Compared to the median monthly income of $3,142, this is a huge portion of monthly spending that most Canadians must dedicate just to living spaces.
The Cost of owning a house is much worse, especially in some areas. Although prices have begun to fall in the wake of rate hikes at the Bank of Canada, home prices in places like Toronto and Vancouver have a long way to go before they come back into the affordable range for the average Canadian.
In 2019, the Housing Affordability Index for Canada was sitting at 0.42, indicating that the average Canadian home-owning family would have to spend 42$ of their disposable income on housing-related expenses. This is the worst it has been since the 90s, just before the dot com crash.
The Average Monthly Cost Of Living In Canada: Comparison
Canada has a comparatively high national average cost of living, with many factors driving the expense. That being said, Canada has more happiness than most of America. The Great White North can be considered a good place to stay despite its high living costs.
The national average cost of living in Canada is increasing due to the present levels of inflation. Where you choose to live depends heavily on your understanding of how much it will cost you to live in various cities and provinces in comparison to the average and median income in those areas.
The cost of living may eventually have an impact on the net worth of the average person, so it is crucial to understand how much it costs to live compared to how much is earned. A person won't be able to save as much money if the cost of living is high, which would slow the rise of their net worth.
The most expensive province to live in is currently Ontario. Alberta also has a high cost of living, but Alberta is also one of the most productive provinces in Canada in terms of GDP, and median incomes there are higher than in many other areas. By comparison, Saskatchewan is a significantly cheaper province to live in, but also boasts a higher median income than provinces like Ontario or British Columbia, where the costs of living are much higher.
Average Monthly Cost Of Living In Ontario
With more than 14.7 million residents, Ontario is the largest province in Canada and one of the most costly. Ontario has the highest housing cost compared to Canada's national average, particularly in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), where 48% of Ontarians reside.
Over the coming years, rising mortgage rates are predicted, which would raise many Ontarians' cost of living.
With food, power, and communication services costing, respectively, $398, $104, and $169 on average, the province is able to offset its exorbitant rentals through its other more affordable prices.
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