The Definitive Guide to Moving to Toronto Canada
Are you packing your suitcases because you’re planning international moving to Toronto, one of the most livable cities in the world? Then before you stock up on winter clothing, keep in mind that you’ll experience around 305 sunny days per year, which is not so bad for the Great White North. Take a look at our guide to find out more about all the perks of moving abroad to this metropolis.
Did you always dreamed about moving internationally somewhere far, but still close enough so you can visit your family and keep in touch with friends easily without having to use Facebook? Moving overseas was never easier or closer because Toronto is only 491.1 miles away from New York, and they are in the same time zone. Convenient if you’re from the East Coast. A flight time between New York and the so-called Little York is only one hour and 45 minutes, so indeed, life in one of the friendliest countries in the world couldn’t be any closer. With almost 3 million residents in its core and more than 6 million residents in its metro area, this is the most populous city in CA and one of the most popular among Americans. So let’s try to find out what’s so great about it.
Is Moving to Canada a Good Idea?
Canada has one of the largest American expat communities in the world, and T-Dot has the world’s third-largest population of Americans living outside of the US. So, if you thought about moving to Ontario, one of the ten provinces in CA, living in Toronto, its capital, might be the right choice.
A Word or Two About T.O
Canada does have two official languages, but those relocating to Toronto neighborhoods don’t have to worry about learning a language abroad and breaking the language barrier. Around 86% of people living in T-Dot speak English only, while only 9% of them are bilingual and speak both French and English. By the way, T-Dot is only one of many nicknames of this city. Often you’ll bump into T.O, (O stands for Ontario), The Big Smoke, 416, Hogtown, or The Six/6/6ix, which might sound familiar to those of you who are Drake’s fans. Although Americans have a lot of jokes about Canadians, we are sure that those of you interested in moving to Canada are not really bothered by that, so we’ll just focus on what’s actually crucial for moving internationally to CA.
Things You Should Know Before Moving to Toronto
Getting as much information as possible about your future hometown can help you reduce moving stress, but at the same time, you have to keep it real. Every place has its pros and cons, but eventually, you’ll learn how to love them all. Give yourself some time to adapt and try to embrace everything this city has to offer. Without further ado, here is a brief list of things you’ll love and hate about The Six.
Pros of Moving to Toronto, Canada
- Job opportunities
This is one of the most important hubs when it comes to business and opportunities to excel in your career in CA. Many Americans looking for jobs in Canada find their position right here or move here due to employee relocation, especially in tech-related fields.
- Things to do
You’ll hardly ever have a dull moment in this metropolis because there’s so much to see and do, from sports events, museums to festivals, nightlife, and fairs.
- Multicultural hub
We mentioned that this is one of the most favorite locations for international moving for Americans, but it turns out we’re not the only ones who noticed all the perks of living in T-Dot. This is one of the most multicultural cities worldwide, and more than half of the residents were born outside of CA, so you can’t feel like a stranger there.
- A big city with low crime rates
We are used to the fact that high crime rates go along with large metropolises such as this one, but this seems to be an exception. The crime rates keep dropping year after year, and our fingers are crossed for this positive trend to last.
- Not so harsh winters
Let’s face it, it’s going to be cold. It’s not like you’re moving to Dubai or moving to the Bahamas. But, the climate here is not so extreme as in some parts of CA. You can enjoy pretty mild and totally bearable winters.
Cons or Why You Shouldn’t Move to Toronto?
- Expensive housing
Well, it would be a surprise if it was any different, right? As in any other metropolis, housing is expensive, so plan your budget thoroughly. This is one of the best places to live abroad, and it has a high price to confirm that.
- Traffic jams and commute time
This is another potential problem, especially if you move further to the outskirts. This city has the longest average commute time in the entire province, and it’s 65 minutes, so don’t forget to add overseas car shipping to your list of expenses.
- Hot summers
You probably didn’t see this coming. Most Canadian cities have mild summers, but this is an exception for Canadian standards of hot summers. Here you can’t survive it without AC, unlike those who are moving to Vancouver. It can get boiling hot and humid, with temperatures going from 68°F to 95°F.
- Not a lot of nature
If you’re an outdoorsy type of person who’s moving with dogs, sure you’ll find a park or two where you can walk and jog, but overall there are not many green areas. Proximity to Lake Ontario is, of course, a big bonus, but when compared to other metropolises, T-Dot just doesn’t rank high in this category.
How Can I Move to Toronto as an American?
Before you start packing, you have to think about the documents needed to travel abroad. As an American, there are several ways you can stay and live in CA, but you have to research your options carefully, especially if traveling during the Coronavirus outbreak. So whether you’re moving to another country for love, work, or education, you need to get all information about visas and work permits for Americans.
How to Move to CA From the US: 4 Most Common Ways
Americans can stay up to six months in the Great White North without a visa, but for all longer stays, you need to consider your options. Luckily, CA has more than 80 different immigration programs, so there’s plenty to choose from. However, most people go for one of these programs:
- Express Entry Program
- Provincial Nominee Program
- Family Class Sponsorship
- Applying for a Study Permit
Is Living in T.O Too Expensive?
T.O has a reputation for being one of the most expensive cities in CA, right after Vancouver, but it also ranks high worldwide. And the truth is, the cost of living in Toronto might be a shock for many Americans. So make sure your finances are on point because even if you have a job waiting for you, there are always some unpredictable expenses.
Average Monthly Costs
To help you get an idea of how much you’ll need for comparable living in this multicultural hub, we compiled a list of necessary monthly expenses. This should help you tailor your budget and get a real picture of how much you’ll need to maintain your lifestyle.
|Average monthly net salary after-tax||$3,100|
|How much a single adult needs per month (rent excluded)||$930|
|Monthly rent for a 1-bedroom apt, central location||$1,700|
|Monthly rent for a 1-bedroom apt, outside of the center||$1,380|
|Basic utilities for 914 square foot apt||$115|
|A monthly pass for public transportation||$115|
|Full-day private kindergarten, monthly for one child||$1,150|
Top Hiring Tech Companies in T.O
Did you know that Google, Uber, Shopify, and many more have their offices in this hub? That’s right. This is a mecca for those looking for a job position, so polish your CV and make sure you know all the important relocation questions to ask your employer. The number of tech companies is on the rise, but that is not the only niche ready to hire. Anyone looking to work in finances or the real estate market can expect to find many open positions. Let’s take a look at what are the top hiring companies you should consider:
- Hydro One
- WatchGuard Securities
- Best Buy
How High are the Taxes in T.O?
As Americans, we are used to paying taxes pretty much for everything except air, and unfortunately, relocating to the Great White North won’t spare us from taxes. You pay the same Federal Tax in all CA, but Provincial Tax varies from one province to another. Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) in Ontario is 13% (5 federal and 8% provincial part). Now here’s something that homebuyers are not going to be happy about. If you want to buy a property in T.O, you should count on provincial land transfer tax and municipal land transfer tax, which are calculated based on the property’s area and size. Additionally, homebuyers who are not Canadian citizens have to pay an extra 15% for the property.
Where to Settle Down in Canada’s Most Populous City
T.O is divided into six areas. This leads us to the story about its famous nickname The Six. Etobicoke, North York, Scarborough, York, East York, and Toronto all merged into one metropolis in 1998. Today there are 140 official neighborhoods and many more unofficial. So how to pick the right one? This is one of the best places to live abroad with family, but only if you pick the right area.
Best Neighborhoods in Toronto for Families
Family life comes with specific priorities such as safety and proximity to good schools, so if you’re relocating with kids, consider some of these family-friendly neighborhoods:
- Don Mills
- Deer Park
- Davisville Village
- The Beaches
Best Neighborhoods in T-Dot for Singles and Young Professionals
One major type or group of people who move here are young professionals, and those who move here to excel in their careers. Their priorities are somewhat different, for example, proximity to work and all the good bars for a drink on a Friday night, and a short commute time. Here are some of our picks for those who don’t like to go to bed before 00:00 on weekends:
- Distillery District
- Liberty Village
- The Fashion District
Take a Look at This Video to Get to Know The Six a Bit Better Before Relocating
Want to find out what this city has to offer, besides well-paid job positions? We believe a picture says more than 1000 words, so take a look at this video and see it for yourself.
How Much Does It Cost to Move to Toronto? Finding the Right International Moving Company is the Key
Even though you’re not really moving across the world, it can still cost you as moving to China. The cost of overseas shipping depends mainly on the distance and the amount of stuff you’re taking with you. So whether you’re moving internationally by sea, or moving by air, here are the costs you should count in:
- Packing services
- Overseas car shipping
- Boxes and packing supplies
- Oversized freight
- Renting storage
- Custom crating
Is Moving to Toronto a Good Idea?
If you’re still having second thoughts, it’s time to stop overthinking and schedule a free in-home estimate with a reliable overseas shipping company. It was never easier or closer to live abroad. You don’t have to learn a new language, getting a job is not much harder than in the US, and you’ll get used to the difference in currencies between USD and CAD over time. You’ll get to taste the real maple syrup, and who knows, maybe even accept the local slang. Besides, T.O is one place where you can always feel welcome, it has a large population of Americans and other expats, and there’s still more room for newcomers like you.