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Old Aug 14th 2017, 3:42 am   #1
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Default British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

Hey everyone,
I'm originally from England, moved to Brantford, ON 6 years ago, and it's not for me...I've tried to settle but it's too 'city' for me I think! I lived in NZ for 2 years before moving here, and being surrounded by the mountains and ocean was amazing!
I'm now thinking (and just doing a lot of research first) of moving out west to Calgary or somewhere similar.
I'm 35, single, own a house and a dog so I'd be going alone, so it won't be a quick easy decision, I've been out west a couple of times (not recently) and loved it, but I need to know more before making a move!!
House prices seem low out there, what about jobs? Are they easy to come by? I work as reception in a vet clinic right now, and I've worked/lived on min wage for a long time, but is it more expensive to live out there?
I guess I just want to know what people think of life in Calgary?
I love the outdoors and hiking so that side of Calgary is a huge attraction!!
Thanks in advance
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 3:52 am   #2
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

Quote:
Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Hey everyone,
I'm originally from England, moved to Brantford, ON 6 years ago, and it's not for me...I've tried to settle but it's too 'city' for me I think! I lived in NZ for 2 years before moving here, and being surrounded by the mountains and ocean was amazing!
I'm now thinking (and just doing a lot of research first) of moving out west to Calgary or somewhere similar.
I'm 35, single, own a house and a dog so I'd be going alone, so it won't be a quick easy decision, I've been out west a couple of times (not recently) and loved it, but I need to know more before making a move!!
House prices seem low out there, what about jobs? Are they easy to come by? I work as reception in a vet clinic right now, and I've worked/lived on min wage for a long time, but is it more expensive to live out there?
I guess I just want to know what people think of life in Calgary?
I love the outdoors and hiking so that side of Calgary is a huge attraction!!
Thanks in advance
I thought you meant properly out west, to the land of milk and honey, not the Wild West..
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 1:30 pm   #3
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

Calgary certainly has mountains close by, but still about 1,000 km from the ocean so only one of your requirements would be fulfilled there.
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 1:34 pm   #4
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by plasticcanuck View Post
Calgary certainly has mountains close by, but still about 1,000 km from the ocean so only one of your requirements would be fulfilled there.
Oh I understand that...I guess I'm just wondering what it's like to live in Calgary overall or suggestions of similar places
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 1:56 pm   #5
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

Quote:
Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Hey everyone,
I'm originally from England, moved to Brantford, ON 6 years ago, and it's not for me...I've tried to settle but it's too 'city' for me I think! I lived in NZ for 2 years before moving here, and being surrounded by the mountains and ocean was amazing!
I'm now thinking (and just doing a lot of research first) of moving out west to Calgary or somewhere similar.
I'm 35, single, own a house and a dog so I'd be going alone, so it won't be a quick easy decision, I've been out west a couple of times (not recently) and loved it, but I need to know more before making a move!!
House prices seem low out there, what about jobs? Are they easy to come by? I work as reception in a vet clinic right now, and I've worked/lived on min wage for a long time, but is it more expensive to live out there?
I guess I just want to know what people think of life in Calgary?
I love the outdoors and hiking so that side of Calgary is a huge attraction!!
Thanks in advance
I lived in Calgary for 6 years before moving to an acreage 15 minutes south of the city. I still work downtown.

I think that Calgary is likely to be able to provide you with all you need, with the exception of easy access to the sea.

There are lots of communities within easy travelling of Calgary on all sides of the city that will enable you to live outside of the city, but still work in the city, if that is what you want to do. You will, of course, need to take care by choosing such a location that will provide easy access to where you work.

There are loads of veterinary practices in Calgary, and in all of the communities around Calgary both small and large animals, so I don't think it will be too hard to secure employment. I have no idea what they pay for receptionists but both of my daughters were able to easily find work as helpers for rural practices over the last few summers. They paid them slightly more than minimum wage (17 year old and 13 year old).

If you provide us with specifics of what you are seeking, I am sure that many on here will be able to provide you with guidance that you may find useful.
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 2:49 pm   #6
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

OP, location, location ...

So, is there anything stopping you from going 'west', if not, then do it, go for it, research it ...do post back when you've decided or done it.
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 3:43 pm   #7
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

Quote:
Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Hey everyone,
I'm originally from England, moved to Brantford, ON 6 years ago, and it's not for me...I've tried to settle but it's too 'city' for me I think! I lived in NZ for 2 years before moving here, and being surrounded by the mountains and ocean was amazing!
I'm now thinking (and just doing a lot of research first) of moving out west to Calgary or somewhere similar.
I'm 35, single, own a house and a dog so I'd be going alone, so it won't be a quick easy decision, I've been out west a couple of times (not recently) and loved it, but I need to know more before making a move!!
House prices seem low out there, what about jobs? Are they easy to come by? I work as reception in a vet clinic right now, and I've worked/lived on min wage for a long time, but is it more expensive to live out there?
I guess I just want to know what people think of life in Calgary?
I love the outdoors and hiking so that side of Calgary is a huge attraction!!
Thanks in advance
Surely you should be looking at quieter parts of Alberta?

Calgary is a bigger city than Brantford probably by some what I'd guess.
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 4:01 pm   #8
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
Surely you should be looking at quieter parts of Alberta?

Calgary is a bigger city than Brantford probably by some what I'd guess.
I completely get what you're saying, but Brantford is surrounded by cities, and hiking is almost like a foreign word down here...or a walk to the local park is a hike, and shopping is the main activity, i understand you get that everywhere, and I may sound like I'm hoping for too much but I'd like the best of both worlds in that respect...does that make sense?
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 4:05 pm   #9
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by Almost Canadian View Post
I lived in Calgary for 6 years before moving to an acreage 15 minutes south of the city. I still work downtown.

I think that Calgary is likely to be able to provide you with all you need, with the exception of easy access to the sea.

There are lots of communities within easy travelling of Calgary on all sides of the city that will enable you to live outside of the city, but still work in the city, if that is what you want to do. You will, of course, need to take care by choosing such a location that will provide easy access to where you work.

There are loads of veterinary practices in Calgary, and in all of the communities around Calgary both small and large animals, so I don't think it will be too hard to secure employment. I have no idea what they pay for receptionists but both of my daughters were able to easily find work as helpers for rural practices over the last few summers. They paid them slightly more than minimum wage (17 year old and 13 year old).

If you provide us with specifics of what you are seeking, I am sure that many on here will be able to provide you with guidance that you may find useful.
Thank you so much, what is the cost of living there? i.e hydro, water, insurances, is it fairly standard? I've heard Vancouver area is really expensive to live/rent etc, and was just wondering if Calgary is similar in that respect!
As for jobs, I worked in Timmies too for years, so I know I'm not 'fussy' about where I work, as long as it pays the bills and gives me a little spending money! I'm fairly low maintenance in that way!
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 4:06 pm   #10
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by not2old View Post
OP, location, location ...

So, is there anything stopping you from going 'west', if not, then do it, go for it, research it ...do post back when you've decided or done it.
Thanks I will let you all know
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 4:49 pm   #11
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Thank you so much, what is the cost of living there? i.e hydro, water, insurances, is it fairly standard? I've heard Vancouver area is really expensive to live/rent etc, and was just wondering if Calgary is similar in that respect!
As for jobs, I worked in Timmies too for years, so I know I'm not 'fussy' about where I work, as long as it pays the bills and gives me a little spending money! I'm fairly low maintenance in that way!
Living on an acreage, I don't a company for water or sewage as we have a well and a septic field. We don't use gas at all between spring and fall and, as we have wind and solar power, we actually make money from the utility companies for the electricity that we provide to them.

From memory, when living in the city, our water was around $80 a month and, averaged over a year, our gas was $125 a month and our electricity was $125 a month too. That was for a 1600 sq ft two storey detached house. However, I will leave it for others to confirm those figures as my memory is not what it used to be.
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 8:34 pm   #12
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Thank you so much, what is the cost of living there? i.e hydro, water, insurances, is it fairly standard? I've heard Vancouver area is really expensive to live/rent etc, and was just wondering if Calgary is similar in that respect!
The information below is for a 1080 sq ft home built in 1971-72 in northwest Calgary.

These are average monthly payments for the first seven months of this year.

Electricity: $77.48
Natural Gas: $106.23
Water: $43.58
Sewer: $62.63
Basic Cable, High Speed Internet and Phone (landline): $142.70
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Old Aug 14th 2017, 10:28 pm   #13
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by Tinpusher63 View Post
The information below is for a 1080 sq ft home built in 1971-72 in northwest Calgary.

These are average monthly payments for the first seven months of this year.

Electricity: $77.48
Natural Gas: $106.23
Water: $43.58
Sewer: $62.63
Basic Cable, High Speed Internet and Phone (landline): $142.70
Thanks for this...looks fairly similar to Ontario prices, except the sewer bill....are most places sewer?
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Old Aug 15th 2017, 2:40 am   #14
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Thanks for this...looks fairly similar to Ontario prices, except the sewer bill....are most places sewer?
I think that there are a couple of nice areas
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Old Aug 15th 2017, 7:52 am   #15
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Default Re: British living in Ontario...thinking of moving out west

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Originally Posted by Almost Canadian View Post
Living on an acreage, I don't a company for water or sewage as we have a well and a septic field. We don't use gas at all between spring and fall and, as we have wind and solar power,

It sounds like you're living my dream!


Quote:
Originally Posted by mush77 View Post
Thank you so much, what is the cost of living there? i.e hydro, water, insurances, is it fairly standard? I've heard Vancouver area is really expensive to live/rent etc, and was just wondering if Calgary is similar in that respect!
As for jobs, I worked in Timmies too for years, so I know I'm not 'fussy' about where I work, as long as it pays the bills and gives me a little spending money! I'm fairly low maintenance in that way!

I'm also aiming for Calgary. From the Alberta Labour report it seemed there were a lot of unfilled jobs in the service sector.


Myself and my girlfriend are planning on starting downtown, this way we won't need a car straight away when we're trying to find work and will have access to the C-Train for wherever we end up working. The downtown part of the C-train is free too and we found the C-train pretty good when we visited. Eventually we hope to live the same life as AlmostCanadian by the sounds of things!


But anyway, I've been looking at rentals and they're more expensive than some Canadian cities but less than Vancouver and Toronto (on like for like comparison). For 1200+ you can get a reasonable apartment/condo/duplex downtown area with all bills included. $1200 seems to be the minimum you'll pay for something you want, the further away from downtown the more square meters you'll get. There seems to be more utilities not included when away from downtown too. Houses seem to be $1900+ for something I consider nice but I also consider $1900 pretty expensive by UK standards.


It may be worth checking out Cochrane and Okotoks too, Cochrane seems to have a bit more going on though and is closer to the mountains. Both are more suburban family type places so a bit more expensive.
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