Everyone willing to come to Canada considers which place would be best for them, also looking at the financial side of things. Especially when they have a family and kids. We obviously care about expenses most then and want to be prepared to the trip as well as possible.

I’m going to present average monthly expenses here, mainly in Winnipeg (MB). If any information is inaccurate, please let me know.

The below amounts are the average gross costs:

  • C$1050 – a flat with 2 bedrooms, Vancouver and Toronto: around C$1800 for 2 bedrooms;
  • C$120 – 2 mobile contracts with data transfer packages;
  • C$40 – home Internet;
  • C$90 – one monthly pass for public transport, almost C$150 in Toronto;
  • C$160 – car insurance, C$350-400 in Vancouver and Toronto;
  • C$150 – monthly cost of car fuel, in Vancouver and Toronto (due to bigger distances) this amount can easily reach even C$500;
  • C$800 – food and cleaning supplies for a family of 4. Here it depends a lot on your family’s nutrition and consumption 🙂
  • C$650 – preschool (in Vancouver and Toronto it’s C$1300-1800)

For a family of 4 it adds up to almost C$2500 for: one car, 3 monthly passes for public transport (incl. 2 discounted ones), phones, Internet, flat rent and your kids are attending school. In order to feel comfortable, we need to earn min. C$3000 altogether (in Winnipeg). In metropolises such as Vancouver and Toronto this amount can be higher even by C$2000.

Gross hourly rates:

  • C$11/h – shops and fast food chains (those jobs always mean country minimum wage)
  • C$12-13/h – factories, producing e.g. furniture
  • C$14/h – jobs like fitter, metal assembler etc.
  • C$16/h – construction works, truck drivers within cities (this is the starting rate, without any experience)
  • C$18/h – roofing jobs

If you don’t have any additional diplomas/certifications, the construction/roofing jobs can get you up to C$28/h. In worse paid jobs, if we don’t get promoted, the pay increases very slowly.

If you have an hourly rate of 11 C$/h, it adds up to almost C$1,400 per month. So two people working on country’s minimum wage are able to support a family but it will not be easy, especially if any unexpected expenses show.

Once you have PR, you are eligible for child benefits – the amount depends on your income. If you are on IEC, you are NOT eligible for benefits so it could get pretty difficult if only one person in the family is going to work.

It is worth noticing that in Canada schools operate from 9am to 3.30pm and there is lunch in the middle of the day. Not all schools have before and after school care centres and and leaving the child at school during lunchtime is paid extra.

Please see below some links that may help in the search for a place in such a huge country as Canada:

  • A comparison site about living costs here;
  • A post on Notable about living costs of young professionals in Toronto here;
  • Calculating your net salary depending on the province here;
  • Job offers, cars for sale, flats to rent and many others: kijiji;
  • Housing, jobs, community ads: Craigslist;
  • Real estate: Remax and Realtor;
  • Renting a flat or room for a short period of time: or;
  • Job offers and information about official hourly rates: jobbank;

If there is anything missing in this post, let us know. We hope we helped you a bit 🙂

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