Conflicted

Old Jan 15th 2022, 8:56 am
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Default Conflicted

My family and I made the decision to move away from the UK in the summer of 2020. We’d had 2 days of beautiful sunshine, followed by a few weeks of patchy rain. That was our ‘summer’. We wanted something different. No longer did we want to cram a summer in to a few dry days in July. We wanted to take summer at our leisure. To know that if we planned something for the weekend, you’re not having to keep an eye on the weather for fear of it being a wash-out. It’s the same for winter. If you’re gonna have a winter, let’s have the snow and all that comes with it. The snowshoeing, skiing, ice skating, sledding etc. Yes, the snow can also be a hazard but so can the ice back in Blighty.

So we knew Australia was out of the question, as we wanted the snow. The flight time and cost is also an issue if you have to pop back last minute. So Canada it was.

We did our research and decided on BC, the Okanagan more specifically. It gives you the warm, dry summers and the winter fun, without the 6 foot of snow and -30 temps. We’ve looked at the visas, what we’d have to do to register with the accrediting bodies of our professions etc. But I wonder whether our dream is dead before it’s even started. As much as the pay is handsome, the property prices are just astronomical, especially when you compare what you can get for your money in Calgary, for example. And I know prices have been historically high in BC but even over the last year property prices have increased by 30%. It’s madness!

Is there anywhere else, in any of the 4 western provinces (tied due to work issues), that gives us what we’re looking for? Are we asking too much? Warm (+22 degrees) dry summers, winter fun without the extreme cold, and property prices that don’t make your eyes water!

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Old Jan 15th 2022, 2:16 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by mdonald1987 View Post
My family and I made the decision to move away from the UK in the summer of 2020. We’d had 2 days of beautiful sunshine, followed by a few weeks of patchy rain. That was our ‘summer’. We wanted something different. No longer did we want to cram a summer in to a few dry days in July. We wanted to take summer at our leisure. To know that if we planned something for the weekend, you’re not having to keep an eye on the weather for fear of it being a wash-out. It’s the same for winter. If you’re gonna have a winter, let’s have the snow and all that comes with it. The snowshoeing, skiing, ice skating, sledding etc. Yes, the snow can also be a hazard but so can the ice back in Blighty.

So we knew Australia was out of the question, as we wanted the snow. The flight time and cost is also an issue if you have to pop back last minute. So Canada it was.

We did our research and decided on BC, the Okanagan more specifically. It gives you the warm, dry summers and the winter fun, without the 6 foot of snow and -30 temps. We’ve looked at the visas, what we’d have to do to register with the accrediting bodies of our professions etc. But I wonder whether our dream is dead before it’s even started. As much as the pay is handsome, the property prices are just astronomical, especially when you compare what you can get for your money in Calgary, for example. And I know prices have been historically high in BC but even over the last year property prices have increased by 30%. It’s madness!

Is there anywhere else, in any of the 4 western provinces (tied due to work issues), that gives us what we’re looking for? Are we asking too much? Warm (+22 degrees) dry summers, winter fun without the extreme cold, and property prices that don’t make your eyes water!
You need to move for more than weather, in my opinion anyway.

What seems ideal quickly comes with issues of it’s own; here in Muskoka, Ontario, lots of snow/outdoor activities but it’s been as low -20 fir most of this week and feels like -36. The wind chill today is between -30 and -40. There is no spring in this neck of the wood; it rapidly goes from winter to summer and the that’s when the bugs come out; mosquitos and black flies which just love British skin. The mosquitos don’t usually disappear until August, and obviously still come out at dusk. There is a reason Muskoka rooms are a thing on Canadian houses.

Summer can be lovely; I get up at 5.30am to run at 6am when it’s usually just below 20 and humidity isn’t too bad. It’s lovely if you get to hang out by water all day, but even taking the dog for a walk can leave you super sticky. Some people love that though.

I love fall, but it’s usually just a few weeks and by Halloween we’ve had our first snowfall.

Houses prices are insane here. We’re about to head back to the UK, and will be marketing our house for roughly $700k more than we paid for it 4 years ago, on the advice of a couple of agents. It will probably go over that price too. We’re actually expecting to go back to the UK mortgage free with the equity from our house, and move a couple of rungs up the ladder from when we left.

The market is still expected to rise until the fall, I think before levelling off but probably not dropping.


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Old Jan 15th 2022, 2:37 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Calgary *might* fit your criteria, though the winters are colder, summer time you get plenty of sun, the most sun in the entire country from what I understand. You could also take a look at Vancouver island which can be cheaper than the Okanagan depending where you look.

The reason property prices are so high right now is nobody is selling due to covid, and we already had a supply shortage in BC to begin with due to numerous factors. The limited inventory plus the fact people have access to very cheap mortgages (1% interest) means we’ve seen some insane price growth.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 4:49 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Do you have visas in place? I’m curious about the time line these days.What professions are you in that keep you on the west coast?

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Old Jan 15th 2022, 6:15 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by rivingtonpike View Post
Do you have visas in place? I’m curious about the time line these days.What professions are you in that keep you on the west coast?
No, we haven’t made any applications yet. I’m a tight Northerner, so I don’t want to spend a penny unless I know it’s certain. We know what visa programme we’ll apply for (BC PNP Healthcare) and what we need to do.

We’re both in healthcare. My Wife is a mental health nurse and these aren’t recognised as distinct occupations in the Eastern provinces. If we were to move there, it would be likely that my Wife would have to complete an expensive and time-consuming bridging programme.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 6:18 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by CanadaJimmy View Post
Calgary *might* fit your criteria, though the winters are colder, summer time you get plenty of sun, the most sun in the entire country from what I understand. You could also take a look at Vancouver island which can be cheaper than the Okanagan depending where you look.

The reason property prices are so high right now is nobody is selling due to covid, and we already had a supply shortage in BC to begin with due to numerous factors. The limited inventory plus the fact people have access to very cheap mortgages (1% interest) means we’ve seen some insane price growth.
Yes, I was looking at Calgary. The houses we could get there (not sure of area) are so much more substantial than we could get in BC. Not sure re visa programmes though.

It’s likely we’ll not be moving for a couple of years yet, so things could change with the real estate market.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 7:26 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by mdonald1987 View Post
Yes, I was looking at Calgary. The houses we could get there (not sure of area) are so much more substantial than we could get in BC. Not sure re visa programmes though.

It’s likely we’ll not be moving for a couple of years yet, so things could change with the real estate market.
If you're not planning on moving for a couple of years then yes, time is certainly on your side. House prices around us (Vancouver Island) have certainly gone up substantially in the last 18 months. Our property tax assessment has increased 49% on last year!!!!
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 7:55 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by mdonald1987 View Post
Yes, I was looking at Calgary. The houses we could get there (not sure of area) are so much more substantial than we could get in BC. Not sure re visa programmes though.

It’s likely we’ll not be moving for a couple of years yet, so things could change with the real estate market.

I wouldn’t bank on it going down though; just back to a more steady increase. Calgary I believe is a different housing scenario. Subject to the demands of the oil industry in Alberta. It dropped substantially a few years ago I believe. I have friends who moved from there, and sold their house just before it dropped.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 8:43 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by Tirytory View Post
You need to move for more than weather, in my opinion anyway.

What seems ideal quickly comes with issues of it’s own; here in Muskoka, Ontario, lots of snow/outdoor activities but it’s been as low -20 fir most of this week and feels like -36. The wind chill today is between -30 and -40. There is no spring in this neck of the wood; it rapidly goes from winter to summer and the that’s when the bugs come out; mosquitos and black flies which just love British skin. The mosquitos don’t usually disappear until August, and obviously still come out at dusk. There is a reason Muskoka rooms are a thing on Canadian houses.

Summer can be lovely; I get up at 5.30am to run at 6am when it’s usually just below 20 and humidity isn’t too bad. It’s lovely if you get to hang out by water all day, but even taking the dog for a walk can leave you super sticky. Some people love that though.

I love fall, but it’s usually just a few weeks and by Halloween we’ve had our first snowfall.

Houses prices are insane here. We’re about to head back to the UK, and will be marketing our house for roughly $700k more than we paid for it 4 years ago, on the advice of a couple of agents. It will probably go over that price too. We’re actually expecting to go back to the UK mortgage free with the equity from our house, and move a couple of rungs up the ladder from when we left.

The market is still expected to rise until the fall, I think before levelling off but probably not dropping.
I disagree. People have their reasons and I don’t think there are right/wrong reasons. The weather in and of itself is not the reason we want to move, but the opportunity that it presents us. It’ll be good for our well-being to spend more time outdoors and with the plethora of activity on your doorstep in the Okanagan, it makes sense. There are many other reasons that we want to make the move: adventure, to experience a different culture, the right wing Tory government etc.

I know everywhere comes with its difficulties and I’m not naive to think it will be all sunshine and roses but if we don’t give it a go, it’ll be a huge regret. I just want to get it right when we do it. I do appreciate it when people share their difficulties, as it helps to keep my feet on the ground but I think I have to make my own mistakes and learn from them.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 10:07 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by mdonald1987 View Post
I disagree. People have their reasons and I don’t think there are right/wrong reasons. The weather in and of itself is not the reason we want to move, but the opportunity that it presents us. It’ll be good for our well-being to spend more time outdoors and with the plethora of activity on your doorstep in the Okanagan, it makes sense. There are many other reasons that we want to make the move: adventure, to experience a different culture, the right wing Tory government etc.

I know everywhere comes with its difficulties and I’m not naive to think it will be all sunshine and roses but if we don’t give it a go, it’ll be a huge regret. I just want to get it right when we do it. I do appreciate it when people share their difficulties, as it helps to keep my feet on the ground but I think I have to make my own mistakes and learn from them.

You know if you move to Calgary, it would be the equivalent of moving to Texas? Alberta is red neck country and I think the government there is pretty conservative or right wing thinking- albeit I don’t live there. We have our own right wing government in Ontario.

The culture I would say is materialistic. It’s all about stuff so if you can afford a snow mobile in the winter, ski equipment, a boat for the summer etc then you should be golden. Canadians are up there with the highest carbon footprint and lots of debt to go with it.

Sure I get that re experiences and trying it out should definitely be considered. I just wouldn’t come thinking things are rosier here, they’re just different. Weather is different, not better or worse per se. It used to be that housing made Canada a better place to live. I think that’s gone now unless you go out East. It’s quite expensive to live here. Food is ridiculous.

Are you pretty outdoorsy where you are now?

Last edited by Tirytory; Jan 15th 2022 at 10:14 pm.
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Old Jan 16th 2022, 3:28 am
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This might help you understand the geography of Canada. It's more complicated than east and west
https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration...s-regions.html
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Old Jan 16th 2022, 11:45 am
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by Tirytory View Post
You know if you move to Calgary, it would be the equivalent of moving to Texas? Alberta is red neck country and I think the government there is pretty conservative or right wing thinking- albeit I don’t live there. We have our own right wing government in Ontario.

The culture I would say is materialistic. It’s all about stuff so if you can afford a snow mobile in the winter, ski equipment, a boat for the summer etc then you should be golden. Canadians are up there with the highest carbon footprint and lots of debt to go with it.

Sure I get that re experiences and trying it out should definitely be considered. I just wouldn’t come thinking things are rosier here, they’re just different. Weather is different, not better or worse per se. It used to be that housing made Canada a better place to live. I think that’s gone now unless you go out East. It’s quite expensive to live here. Food is ridiculous.

Are you pretty outdoorsy where you are now?
Yeah, I’m aware that Alberta is like that and it does concern me. One of the reasons we decided on Canada, and BC in particular, is that it appears to be inclusive, multicultural, left-leaning but as with most places, you’ll always get your conservative populations.

In regards to outdoors, I spend a lot of time outdoors as I’m a keen gardener but I’m not as active as I’d like to be. One of the reasons we opted for the Okanagan, is that I think we’d be more inclined to do the paddle boarding, hiking, snowshoeing etc. if it’s on our doorstep. I’m hoping the move will be a lifestyle change for us as a family. I think what stops us now is that there aren’t many hiking trails on our doorstep where we are now and for the most part, the rain puts us off. And in the winter, we rarely get snow but it continues to be rainy and there isn’t a lot to do. If we’re to live within walking distance/short drive to Lake Okanagan for example, I think we’d invest in paddle boards and spend a lot of time by the lake in those dry summer months. And then in the winter, rather than hide away in Jan/Feb as we do now, there’ll be ample opportunity to do those recreational winter activities that just aren’t available to use in the UK.

Again, I’m aware that all of that sounds lovely and I know it won’t be as simple as that. There’ll be new sources of stress/irritability that we have here, like the cost of food, bureaucracy, having to shovel the snow etc. but I do think that on the whole, we’d have a better quality of life.

I just don’t know whether we’re already priced out of it. From our extensive research and speaking to others, we’d be earning approx $70,000-$90,000 a year each and it beggars belief that we’d struggle to find somewhere suitable. Which is why my original question was whether we could get the same climate as in the Okanagan, with the same activities, but without the extortionate house prices.

Last edited by mdonald1987; Jan 16th 2022 at 11:50 am.
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Old Jan 16th 2022, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by bats View Post
This might help you understand the geography of Canada. It's more complicated than east and west
https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration...s-regions.html
Thanks for this.

I was aware of most of what was in there, thanks to a podcast I’ve been listening to, I did link to it on another thread. It follows a Canadian couple of who visit each province/territory and meet the locals, talk about the history/culture, food and activities on offer. It’s invaluable to someone that hasn’t yet visited Canada.
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Old Jan 16th 2022, 2:54 pm
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by mdonald1987 View Post
Yeah, I’m aware that Alberta is like that and it does concern me. One of the reasons we decided on Canada, and BC in particular, is that it appears to be inclusive, multicultural, left-leaning but as with most places, you’ll always get your conservative populations.
Hmm, I don't live in BC but I get regular reports from my champagne socialist daughter who does live there. "You have to remember" she says "that the province is run by a bunch of red neck yahoos who suddenly got rich when the Chinese dumped their money here". I have the impression that BC has a veneer of liberalism whereas Alberta is overtly conservative but they're not, in fact, widely different politically. Alberta seems bloody awful. I've been to Calgary a couple of times without seeing the need to return and I understand Edmonton to be "like the GTA, without Toronto" which is, to say, like Milton Keynes. BC does have the weather, that makes it more attractive than Alberta but Vancouver's not a cheap place; for that kind of money you could almost live in London.
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Old Yesterday, 7:32 am
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Default Re: Conflicted

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
Hmm, I don't live in BC but I get regular reports from my champagne socialist daughter who does live there. "You have to remember" she says "that the province is run by a bunch of red neck yahoos who suddenly got rich when the Chinese dumped their money here". I have the impression that BC has a veneer of liberalism whereas Alberta is overtly conservative but they're not, in fact, widely different politically. Alberta seems bloody awful. I've been to Calgary a couple of times without seeing the need to return and I understand Edmonton to be "like the GTA, without Toronto" which is, to say, like Milton Keynes. BC does have the weather, that makes it more attractive than Alberta but Vancouver's not a cheap place; for that kind of money you could almost live in London.
Thats surprising. Although, forming an impression from so far away is difficult and not an exact science 😂

I’ve been taking a look at a few of the smaller towns/cities in the Okanagan, such as Salmon Arm, Fintry, Lake Country etc. and there appears to be a little more value outside of Kelowna and Vernon.
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