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Old 09-17-2015, 08:52 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
430 posts, read 676,619 times
Reputation: 618

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Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardsyzzurphands View Post
Thank goodness someone finally said this. It makes no sense to compare tax rates, because no one ends up actually paying that rate at the end of the year.
It's true in both countries, which both have an insane number of income tax deductions. And it certainly doesn't makes sense to compare rates without including FICA taxes, which are much higher in the U.S. and make the overall tax burden higher in the U.S. until your income is above $118,500 (C$155,000).

To summarize, people who make less than C$155,000 are taxed less in Canada. People who both make over that amount and own a house on mortgage, are possibly taxed less in the U.S. The tipping point number is much higher for the self-employed.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:20 AM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,260,811 times
Reputation: 7581
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeyyc View Post
For someone who travels as much as you do, this post is out of character. With the exception of San Francisco, New York, etc, of which there is no Canadian equivalent anyways, it is significantly cheaper to live in the U.S. and have an equal lifestyle.

The tax rates may be similar, but in the US there are major deductions to be had on the basis of home ownership or State taxation rates. It has been beaten about several times, but as someone who has lived and owned homes in both countries, the US is much easier on my pocket.
The US is cheaper because it has 9 times the population. Simple as that. Outside NYC and SF, is Boston cheap? Is Los Angeles cheap? Is Seattle cheap? Rent in those cities is probably 50% more than Toronto/Vancouver and 100% more than Montreal. I wouldn't want to live in Chicago, Philadelphia or Washington DC due to the crime rates.

OK, let's talk about "equal lifestyle". My lifestyle is a highly walkable downtown life. I walk to everywhere, don't own a car and hardly even take transit because I rarely need it. My family doctor/dentist is about 700m away from home, office 8 minutes walk, 3 movie theatres within 10 minutes, grocery stores 10-15 minutes, a dozen bank branches, hundreds of restaurants and shops nearby, a large market place (St Lawrence), plenty of interesting events all year round, tennis courts, gyms, everything you can imagine. All this within walking distance, and quite safe (I took a long walk with friends for an hour and half until 11pm last night)

Let me know how much this kind of lifestyle will cost in the US and whether it will be easier on the wallet.

Yes, if one choose to live in a suburb 30 miles from a urban centre to own a suburban house with nothing but other people's houses with garages nearby, such as Mississauga or Brampton, it will be cheaper in the US near Houston or Philadelphia, but that kind of life isn't attractive, and I definitely didn't come to North America to endure that kind of boredom. To have more disposable income and being able to buy more isn't equivalent to better life.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:25 AM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,593 posts, read 11,074,156 times
Reputation: 10301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blimp View Post
I doubt this. Why? Because you are paying higher payroll taxes in the U.S., and it's not even close. No to mention that you are paying co-payments and premiums for health care in the U.S. The "Social Security" payroll tax is already at a lower rate in Canada, and caps out at C$51,000 ($38,000) whereas the U.S. one, at a higher rate, doesn't cap out until $118,500.

The weight of your additional payroll taxes in the U.S. is far larger than your mortgage deduction.
You can doubt whatever you like, but you're wrong. After deductions, and including healthcare my marginal tax rate is well under 20% in Texas. My rate in Alberta, when I was making less money was 28%. Taxes alone don't tell the whole story. The COL is probably 20% less across the board before taking home ownership into the equation. So I'm keeping more of my money, and I can buy more with every dollar.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:28 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
430 posts, read 676,619 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
The US is cheaper because it has 9 times the population. Simple as that. Outside NYC and SF, is Boston cheap? Is Los Angeles cheap? Is Seattle cheap? Rent in those cities is probably 50% more than Toronto/Vancouver and 100% more than Montreal. I wouldn't want to live in Chicago, Philadelphia or Washington DC due to the crime rates.

OK, let's talk about "equal lifestyle". My lifestyle is a highly walkable downtown life. I walk to everywhere, don't own a car and hardly even take transit because I rarely need it. My family doctor/dentist is about 700m away from home, office 8 minutes walk, 3 movie theatres within 10 minutes, grocery stores 10-15 minutes, a dozen bank branches, hundreds of restaurants and shops nearby, a large market place (St Lawrence), plenty of interesting events all year round, tennis courts, gyms, everything you can imagine. All this within walking distance, and quite safe (I took a long walk with friends for an hour and half until 11pm last night)

Let me know how much this kind of lifestyle will cost in the US and whether it will be easier on the wallet.

Yes, if one choose to live in a suburb 30 miles from a urban centre to own a suburban house with nothing but other people's houses with garages nearby, such as Mississauga or Brampton, it will be cheaper in the US near Houston or Philadelphia, but that kind of life isn't attractive, and I definitely didn't come to North America to endure that kind of boredom. To have more disposable income and being able to buy more isn't equivalent to better life.
Agree with all you said and want to add that Washington, D.C., even with all its crime, is more expensive than Los Angeles and much more expensive than Canadian cities. If you want a walkable U.S. city that is cheaper than cities in Canada, you are limited to two choices: Chicago and Philadelphia.

Both of which are pretty cheap, but both of which also have 10x the murder rate of any large Canadian city.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:31 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
430 posts, read 676,619 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeyyc View Post
You can doubt whatever you like, but you're wrong. After deductions, and including healthcare my marginal tax rate is well under 20% in Texas. My rate in Alberta, when I was making less money was 28%. Taxes alone don't tell the whole story. The COL is probably 20% less across the board before taking home ownership into the equation. So I'm keeping more of my money, and I can buy more with every dollar.
The math doesn't add up, so you'll have to give more details of your salary, etc., in each location and we can do the arithmetic. And you are making the fallacy of assuming that the USA is all like Texas as far as COL.

In reality, Texas has the cheapest large cities in the U.S. (Dallas and Houston) but neither of them have the cultural amenities that east/west coast Americans and most Canadians would be looking for. What they do have is far more crime and far more poverty than Canadians are used to living near.

You're also not accounting for the fact that property taxes are higher in Texas than in Alberta.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:32 AM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,260,811 times
Reputation: 7581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blimp View Post
Agree with all you said and want to add that Washington, D.C., even with all its crime, is more expensive than Los Angeles and much more expensive than Canadian cities. If you want a walkable U.S. city that is cheaper than cities in Canada, you are limited to two choices: Chicago and Philadelphia.

Both of which are pretty cheap, but both of which also have 10x the murder rate of any large Canadian city.
yes, rent in Washington DC is through the roof now. I went there a few years ago, and the street life can't even compare to Toronto. Much of their downtown is either sterile like Ottawa's CBD, or downright scary. Georgetown reminds me of Toronto though.

And you are exactly right about Philly and Chicago being the only cheaper options and no, I can't walk at 11pm in their downtown without feeling scared.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Montreal
579 posts, read 468,241 times
Reputation: 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blimp View Post
Agree with all you said and want to add that Washington, D.C., even with all its crime, is more expensive than Los Angeles and much more expensive than Canadian cities. If you want a walkable U.S. city that is cheaper than cities in Canada, you are limited to two choices: Chicago and Philadelphia.

Both of which are pretty cheap, but both of which also have 10x the murder rate of any large Canadian city.
It seems that Minneapolis isn't as walkable as I initially thought; yes, it is cheaper than Chicago, but bikeability =/= walkability.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:45 AM
 
Location: London, UK
3,458 posts, read 4,007,397 times
Reputation: 2661
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blimp View Post
It's true in both countries, which both have an insane number of income tax deductions. And it certainly doesn't makes sense to compare rates without including FICA taxes, which are much higher in the U.S. and make the overall tax burden higher in the U.S. until your income is above $118,500 (C$155,000).

To summarize, people who make less than C$155,000 are taxed less in Canada. People who both make over that amount and own a house on mortgage, are possibly taxed less in the U.S. The tipping point number is much higher for the self-employed.
From my experience, the US tax code can be manipulated even more than the Canadian. Just from doing my own taxes in both countries. As I said, this is so individual that its a very difficult to make such a broad comparison.

Personally I am another one like mikeyyc that has seen an uptick in my disposable income, in a city like Boston vs Toronto. Of course salaries have to come into play as well. Also my HC costs are not a huge issue as I pay $160 a month for a family of 3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blimp View Post
The math doesn't add up, so you'll have to give more details of your salary, etc., in each location and we can do the arithmetic. And you are making the fallacy of assuming that the USA is all like Texas as far as COL.

In reality, Texas has the cheapest large cities in the U.S. (Dallas and Houston) but neither of them have the cultural amenities that east/west coast Americans and most Canadians would be looking for. What they do have is far more crime and far more poverty than Canadians are used to living near.

You're also not accounting for the fact that property taxes are higher in Texas than in Alberta.
How can you say the math doesnt add up if you dont have his personal information. I am willing to take him at his word.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:47 AM
 
1,746 posts, read 4,633,760 times
Reputation: 1166
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeyyc View Post
You can doubt whatever you like, but you're wrong. After deductions, and including healthcare my marginal tax rate is well under 20% in Texas. My rate in Alberta, when I was making less money was 28%. Taxes alone don't tell the whole story. The COL is probably 20% less across the board before taking home ownership into the equation. So I'm keeping more of my money, and I can buy more with every dollar.
You forgot to mention that Texas has no state income tax.

You're only taxed on the federal level.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:49 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
430 posts, read 676,619 times
Reputation: 618
For those keeping score, there have been 162 murders in Houston this year as of back in July and only 20 murders in Calgary as of today. Extrapolate to today and there have probably been about 190 murders in Houston so far versus 20 in Calgary in 2015 as of this moment.

That's 190 murders out of 2.2 million people in Houston, compared to 20 out of 1.1 million people in Calgary. The murder rate in Canada is one-third the murder rate in the USA, but the difference is even more stark between Calgary and Houston.

Houston has five times the murder rate of Calgary. You could almost call it an order of magnitude.
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