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Old 08-21-2014, 12:28 AM
 
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Is Montreal considered an expensive city to live in? I understand the rent is really low, and real estate is affordable for a city its size, but when you factor things like the taxes, lower wages, and other expenses like gas, food, clothing, etc is Montreal an affordable place to live or would it be considered an expensive city? What about when compared to Toronto? On a recent survey it said Montreal was the third most expensive city in Canada after Vancouver and Toronto, surpassing Calgary. I was shocked when I saw that but is it true that it's an expensive place to live once you factor things like the taxes and job opportunities? Is it really more expensive than Ottawa and similar to the cost of living of Toronto?
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Old 08-21-2014, 04:47 PM
 
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Went to that site n u m b e o and compared Montreal with Calgary, Vancouver, Ottawa, Halifax and St. John, NL.

The unexpected result is that living on the ocean coastal regions costs you dearly. Vancouver is of course notorious, but not many know that Halifax and St. John's on the opposite ocean make lives of their citizen's miserable. The capital's of Newfoundland local purchasing power is 116% lower than that of Montreal!! This effectively means that this city, for its citizens, is more expensive than NYC or Sidney!

Halifax and Vancouver have comparable LPP. Ottawa, Halifax, Vancouver, Toronto, and Calgary have higher Cost of living index than Montreal.
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Old 08-23-2014, 03:52 PM
 
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Rent is cheap in Montreal but there's mostly old wooden buildings.
There's not as many brand new condos as in Toronto and Vancouver, and those tend to be more expensive.
I still think they're cheaper than in other cities.

Regarding job opportunities, it depends on too many factors relative to yourself. But the economy is for sure slower than in Toronto. Can you speak French? If you don't you will have to give up MANY job opportunities here.

Salaries are usually lower than in Toronto. I would say 10k to 15k lower for the salary range 50k-90k.

Taxes are indeed a big expense. It's hard for me to compare because I know only Quebec but a friend who moved in Toronto tells me he gets to keep 10% more of his gross salary.

If the survey you mention considered taxes and salary levels, Calgary could indeed be cheaper. But I think Montreal has a more diverse economy.
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Old 08-25-2014, 07:24 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
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Even with lower taxes places like Toronto or Vancouver aren't really a significant bargain compared to Montreal. You need to get a pretty good raise there in order to live the same way you would in Montreal, and an awesome raise in order to live way better (materially).

The real cost-effective alternatives to Montreal in Canada would be places like Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton.
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:28 AM
 
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Here is one of the articles I found from this July.

Vancouver tops list of most expensive cities in Canada again - Business - CBC News

What Acajack said would be spot on with this list, at Vancouver being the most expensive, second Toronto, then Montreal, then Calgary, then Ottawa. I just always thought as Montreal as a cheap city but when you factor everything it isn't really. For a city its size at second largest in Canada I guess it could be considered a cheap city especially when you compare it to Toronto and Vancouver.
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:33 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArrongantParisian View Post
Rent is cheap in Montreal but there's mostly old wooden buildings.
There's not as many brand new condos as in Toronto and Vancouver, and those tend to be more expensive.
I still think they're cheaper than in other cities.

Regarding job opportunities, it depends on too many factors relative to yourself. But the economy is for sure slower than in Toronto. Can you speak French? If you don't you will have to give up MANY job opportunities here.

Salaries are usually lower than in Toronto. I would say 10k to 15k lower for the salary range 50k-90k.
Of course you can learn French when you come to Quebec. But even if people speak French I've heard stories that some companies only hire francophone's whose last names are french in Montreal. Not sure if anyone knows if this is true or common? On top of that the economy is already not the best and even francophone's have a hard time finding a job. Then of course salaries are lower, taxes are higher, etc.
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Old 08-25-2014, 10:43 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,775 posts, read 27,190,919 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GM10 View Post
Here is one of the articles I found from this July.

Vancouver tops list of most expensive cities in Canada again - Business - CBC News

What Acajack said would be spot on with this list, at Vancouver being the most expensive, second Toronto, then Montreal, then Calgary, then Ottawa. I just always thought as Montreal as a cheap city but when you factor everything it isn't really. For a city its size at second largest in Canada I guess it could be considered a cheap city especially when you compare it to Toronto and Vancouver.
When it comes to overall purchasing power, the lower cost of rent and housing and some other things puts Montreal about even with a place like Toronto even when you factor in slightly higher salaries and lower taxes in Toronto. It's even more true when it comes to families given all the programs Quebec offers for young families with children.
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Old 08-25-2014, 10:46 AM
 
Location: The land where God created :)
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Montreal is one of the most affordable large cities in CAN and in the western world.
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Old 08-25-2014, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,775 posts, read 27,190,919 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GM10 View Post
Of course you can learn French when you come to Quebec. But even if people speak French I've heard stories that some companies only hire francophone's whose last names are french in Montreal. Not sure if anyone knows if this is true or common? On top of that the economy is already not the best and even francophone's have a hard time finding a job. Then of course salaries are lower, taxes are higher, etc.
You hear this all the time but I see plenty of evidence of people who are not "French Canadian" in Montreal and elsewhere in Quebec who have good jobs.

I think a lack of good, professional French language skills is a much bigger factor. A lot of people can speak French well enough to order dinner and even shoot the sh1t in street French with the boys while watching hockey, but these people tend to overestimate how fluent they are. Can they send a comprehensible professional email in French? Can they write a report in French? My experience in the workplace over the past couple of decades is that a lot of people who claim to be bilingual cannot do this, and therefore may overestimate their employability as allegedly bilingual professionals.
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