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What made you decide to make the move to Canada

What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:06 pm
  #46  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by seseman View Post
We live in Manchester so the prices arent too bad. I think this is why I am shocked at how much more things are so expensive over there. We have no family ties to Toronto though and could explore other places. The main reason we were focusing on there is because it is one of the best areas for our job field.

Cheshire is actually not that cheap so that further highlights just how much more expensive houses are in Toronto. I guess it is a bit like central London.
Tbh when you factor in council tax and everything else, there isn't all that much difference between living in Toronto versus the better areas of Manchester. I live in Manchester city centre right now and my rent for a 1 bed condo in Toronto would be pretty much what it is in Manchester but the Toronto quality is much higher. I think the only key issues in Toronto are transport and groceries.

The Toronto rental market isn't really stable though. Right now downtown Toronto is absolutely a renters market. The bottom has fallen out of investment and short term let properties as there are no tourists and very few new immigrants, students and business travellers. A lot of people are moving or negotiating lower rents. There's no guarantee that would situation would be the same by the time you arrive though.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:07 pm
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
My family and friends in Cheshire are used to jumping on a plane for $20/$30 flights to Spain and the South of France and getting dirt cheap breaks in Europe. That doesn’t happen here, an internal flight costs hundreds.
I have to admit, that is one thing I would truly, truly miss. You can get some decent deals on breaks in the Caribbean from Toronto if you shop around though.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:08 pm
  #48  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Hello there!


Originally Posted by seseman View Post
Yikes! I am in for a rude awakening. I dont like snow lol. Anytime it snows here it feels like the world is coming to an end. I have a fear of slipping on ice...This for me is one of the major hurdles I will have to overcome to be able to move over there. I keep telling myself I will be able to manage.

Wearing pyjamas under work clothes is not something I would even imagine.

My Canada journey is looking very questionable at the moment....
Snow can start as early as October and last until late April.. although in recent years it's been late November to March, if you don't like snow you aren't going to be happy for a few months initially, but it's a different kind of cold to the UK, and you can wear snow boots with good grips! I know people who only travel between the front door and their car in the drive (or in the garage) and between their car (in the car park) and the door to the business / store / house they are going to, rarely venturing onto streets in winter.

Originally Posted by seseman View Post
oh my goodness $3k per month, $6k per month? no way! those prices are for apartments in what we would call centre of the town right? I think that is what downtown is over there? To cut down costs, especially rent, we were thinking outskirts of Toronto. Are there any areas in Ontario that you can recommend that are good for price and also good for a family? I wouldnt want a rough area. I mean rough in terms of high crime and burglaries and so on. Sounds like my $2k per month rent estimate is way too low and I was already complaining that it was too much.
Hamilton, Burlington, Dundas, Stoney Creek are all cheaper than Toronto and the main GTA. Hamilton is on a commuter route to Toronto - no need to drive in, takes an hour on the 407 bus/coach - or a train from Hamilton GO station. Less time from Burlington, which is why prices are a little higher there near the GO station.

We have some great links for rental sites in our wiki https://britishexpats.com/wiki/Renti...mation_sources
You can get a 3-4 bedroom modern townhouse (like a terrace house) rental in Hamilton for around $2,400
example 1
example 2
A cheaper option, older house Don't be put off, the area is fine - I used to live a few street over

Originally Posted by seseman View Post
I will do more digging around on the forum for price estimates. We spend about £114 a month on groceries and toiletries for a family of 4. With the prices that I am seeing online, we will definitely be spending more than that in Canada.

I wasn't really looking for recognised names. The most expensive were the afro Caribbean food which is a big part of our daily diet. The prices are double what we pay here.
Food prices vary - depending on where you shop. Freshco and Food Basics are a lot cheaper than Metro / Fortino's etc., ideally you check the flyers and see what is on offer that week - then bulk buy. (We also have Costco for bulk buying..) There's the usual grocery stores in Hamilton, but also a few extra ones.. and some will have more options for 'ethnic' foods than others, whether that's asian / african / carribean / or european.. Walmart aren't always the cheapest for everything
https://starskycanada.com/
Nations Fresh Food
https://www.longos.com/
https://freshco.com/flyer/
https://www.wholesaleclub.ca/store-locator/details/0202 (* you can buy through Instacart without being a member)
https://www.redflagdeals.com/in/hami...ies/groceries/
https://www.flyerbox.ca/grocery/?gcl...iAAEgLF0vD_BwE

If you need any info about Hamilton there's a few of us who live here (I've been here for about 20 years)

Last edited by Siouxie; Jan 28th 2021 at 8:47 pm.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:13 pm
  #49  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
My family and friends in Cheshire are used to jumping on a plane for $20/$30 flights to Spain and the South of France and getting dirt cheap breaks in Europe. That doesn’t happen here, an internal flight costs hundreds.
That is one of the benefits of the UK although who knows if Brexit will make it not so attractive and cheap to flight out.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:16 pm
  #50  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by HGerchikov View Post
It sounds like you are taking a very logical approach to your decision, it is not an easy one. The whole process of moving is not easy either and you do need to all be on board. We came because the opportunity presented itself with a company transfer for my husband and we thought it would be an adventure. It has definitely been that, and, on the whole a great move for us as a family - although having elderly parents in the UK that I can't visit is not much fun at the moment. I think if you are not sure about the move it has the potential to be really miserable so come and visit and see what you are getting into, it may be completely different to what you are imagining.
Thank you. I am trying my best to think it through as much as possible. We cant plan 100% and cannot predict how things will turn out. I could end up liking it. We shall see. We have a good length of time to think it through.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 8:37 pm
  #51  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Siouxie View Post
Hello there!




Snow can start as early as October and last until late April.. although in recent years it's been late November to March, if you don't like snow you aren't going to be happy for a few months initially, but it's a different kind of cold to the UK, and you can wear snow boots with good grips! I know people who only travel between the front door and their car in the drive (or in the garage) and between their car (in the car park) and the door to the business / store / house they are going to, rarely venturing onto streets in winter.



Hamilton, Burlington, Dundas, Stoney Creek are all cheaper than Toronto and the main GTA. Hamilton is on a commuter route to Toronto - no need to drive in, takes an hour on the 407 bus/coach - or a train from Hamilton GO station. Less time from Burlington, which is why prices are a little higher there near the GO station.

We have some great links for rental sites in our wiki https://britishexpats.com/wiki/Renti...mation_sources
You can get a 3-4 bedroom modern townhouse (like a terrace house) rental in Hamilton for around $2,400
example 1
example 2



Food prices vary - depending on where you shop. Freshco and Food Basics are a lot cheaper than Metro / Fortino's etc., ideally you check the flyers and see what is on offer that week - then bulk buy. (We also have Costco for bulk buying..) There's the usual grocery stores in Hamilton, but also a few extra ones.. and some will have more options for 'ethnic' foods than others, whether that's asian / african / carribean / or european.. Walmart aren't always the cheapest for everything
https://starskycanada.com/
Nations Fresh Food
https://www.longos.com/
https://freshco.com/flyer/
https://www.wholesaleclub.ca/store-locator/details/0202 (* you can buy through Instacart without being a member)
https://www.redflagdeals.com/in/hami...ies/groceries/
https://www.flyerbox.ca/grocery/?gcl...iAAEgLF0vD_BwE

If you need any info about Hamilton there's a few of us who live here (I've been here for about 20 years)
Hi Siouxie . Thank you so much for the links. I like both example houses that you sent. I wonder how they will verify my credit as I wouldn't have any history in Canada. Does $2450 + utilities mean utility is included or it isn't? I want to make sure I am interpreting it correctly. I think Hamilton would definitely be top of my list if we decide to move. I am loving the prices which could even be lower than $2450 as we would likely just want a 2 bed to start with.

Is it common to find houses such as the ones you linked which are furnished? I think it would be better for us not to buy any furniture till we are settled.

I will do some fake shop in the new shops you linked me to, to see the difference.

There is the possibility that the prices I saw online for the african groceries are inflated online prices which might be lower in stores.

I will keep doing my research and I am sure by the time it is possible for travel to Canada, I will have a good idea which side I am leaning towards.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 9:07 pm
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by seseman View Post
Hi Siouxie . Thank you so much for the links. I like both example houses that you sent. I wonder how they will verify my credit as I wouldn't have any history in Canada. Does $2450 + utilities mean utility is included or it isn't? I want to make sure I am interpreting it correctly. I think Hamilton would definitely be top of my list if we decide to move. I am loving the prices which could even be lower than $2450 as we would likely just want a 2 bed to start with.

Is it common to find houses such as the ones you linked which are furnished? I think it would be better for us not to buy any furniture till we are settled.

I will do some fake shop in the new shops you linked me to, to see the difference.

There is the possibility that the prices I saw online for the african groceries are inflated online prices which might be lower in stores.

I will keep doing my research and I am sure by the time it is possible for travel to Canada, I will have a good idea which side I am leaning towards.
Hello

Mainly they just want to know that you are solvent and have a job... you can use the 'proof of creditworthiness' section for getting a mortgage, but some landlords may not be interested. Although it's illegal for them to ask for anything more than first and last month's rent, sometimes you have to bite the bullet and offer them 6 - 12 months of rental cheques up front - note do not pay them cash or bank transfer for anything more than first and last. - that way you have some leeway if there's any issues! Rentals are for a minimum of 12 months normally.. I can give you details of rental regulations etc., if you decide to come... more info in that wiki link I gave earlier

You can get furnished apartments (very rarely houses) but they are usually aimed at visiting lecturers/business people/doctors 'executive rentals' etc., and are very expensive. You can pick up 2nd hand furniture cheaply - just buy a new mattress for each bed (ikea or even walmart or Amazon). You could also look at FB marketplace and kijiji for items on sale, or wander around the many resale shops, once you have a bed and a couch Lamps, kettles, small appliances and dishes etc., can be bought at a reasonable cost from Walmart / Canadian Tire / dollar stores etc.

Do bear in min that where you live will also determine the school that your children go to.. catchment area.. and if you don't want to move the children then you will need to pick an area that you would like to live in for the next few years when you rent, so you can look for property in the same area when you are ready to buy.

+Utilities mean that utilities are extra - for houses, you will have the account in your name.. and will be responsible for electricity, gas, water, waste water; then cable (t.v) / internet and phone will be whatever you want to subscribe to. (You are in for a shock for that too.. little choice as to providers, it all depends on where you live). If you rent an apartment then heat and hydro are usually included in the rent - you just pay for electricity and cable / phone / internet.

Last edited by Siouxie; Jan 28th 2021 at 9:09 pm. Reason: added
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 10:32 pm
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Siouxie View Post
Hello

Mainly they just want to know that you are solvent and have a job... you can use the 'proof of creditworthiness' section for getting a mortgage, but some landlords may not be interested. Although it's illegal for them to ask for anything more than first and last month's rent, sometimes you have to bite the bullet and offer them 6 - 12 months of rental cheques up front - note do not pay them cash or bank transfer for anything more than first and last. - that way you have some leeway if there's any issues! Rentals are for a minimum of 12 months normally.. I can give you details of rental regulations etc., if you decide to come... more info in that wiki link I gave earlier

You can get furnished apartments (very rarely houses) but they are usually aimed at visiting lecturers/business people/doctors 'executive rentals' etc., and are very expensive. You can pick up 2nd hand furniture cheaply - just buy a new mattress for each bed (ikea or even walmart or Amazon). You could also look at FB marketplace and kijiji for items on sale, or wander around the many resale shops, once you have a bed and a couch Lamps, kettles, small appliances and dishes etc., can be bought at a reasonable cost from Walmart / Canadian Tire / dollar stores etc.

Do bear in min that where you live will also determine the school that your children go to.. catchment area.. and if you don't want to move the children then you will need to pick an area that you would like to live in for the next few years when you rent, so you can look for property in the same area when you are ready to buy.

+Utilities mean that utilities are extra - for houses, you will have the account in your name.. and will be responsible for electricity, gas, water, waste water; then cable (t.v) / internet and phone will be whatever you want to subscribe to. (You are in for a shock for that too.. little choice as to providers, it all depends on where you live). If you rent an apartment then heat and hydro are usually included in the rent - you just pay for electricity and cable / phone / internet.
Thank you. I will definitely be in touch if we decide to make the move. This forum has been so helpful, I appreciate all the responses.

I will start preparing my mind for possibly having to buy furniture.

Good point about the school catchment area, I will keep in that in mind.

I can't imagine how much it would cost to have a similar plan to what I have now, 100GB, unlimited texts and calls every month for £18.

Fun times ahead. I hope we can make the right decision for us.
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Old Jan 28th 2021, 10:58 pm
  #54  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada
I was 34 at the time of the move, my two children were at the perfect age to make the move with the least amount of disruption so it was August 2007 or never! Here I am almost 14 years later and it was the best decision ever.

We came for the adventure if I'm being honest, no jobs lined up, just move over here first and see what happens.


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Old Jan 29th 2021, 12:20 am
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

We've been here over 50 years, came originally because OH got a good job offer, we were young marrieds, and thought it would be fun. We found our "forever" home.

We came "blind", OH came for an interview of 3 days duration, I came with him as I had a close friend already living here ............. I was more interested in seeing her for what might be a very long time than I was in looking around. But the position was only supposed to be for 2 years, then it was extended to a permanent. It meant that we had 2 years in which to look around and really see all the lumps and bumps.

We've never lived anywhere except Vancouver, but have visited every province plus the Yukon, some more than once and at different times of the year.

Some things to remember ....................

People have lived in Canada for hundreds of years, they are used to living in very cold climates during the winter and hot ones in summer.

Almost all apartments and condos, and nearly all new houses have air conditioning installed, retrofitted air conditioning in many older houses.

BC is only "moderate" on Vancouver Island, along the southern part of the mainland coast and for about 100 km inland in the very southern portion. Otherwise it is much the same as the rest of Canada.

In general the winters are drier than the UK (except in southern BC!), and it never feels as cold as it does in the UK.

People are used to, for example, driving and going about their normal business, even if 3' of snow has fallen .............. I always have a laugh when I read online about "heavy snowfall" in the UK, and you can see grass showing.

As a matter of interest, I grew up on the edge of the Pennines, not far from Manchester, and we had some really heavy snowfalls when I was a child. I was still expected to go to school even when the overnight snowfall had reached halfway up the front door and Dad had to clear the path to the street before we could get out. That is what happens here.

Winter clothing here is much better than you would wear in the UK, no need to go out and kill yourself by slipping on ice. Boots and shoes have super ridged non-slip soles, plus you can buy "grippers" that are fixed to your shoes or boots and have usually metal grips. You just slip them on and off as needed.

Thermal underwear is generally pretty cheap, or you can buy lined jeans and trousers.

Hot weather in the summer is common, and you treat it as you might do in warmer areas of the UK or Europe, although NOT holiday-type wear.

My experience over the last 20 years during which we have regularly travelled across Canada in both winter and summer has been that winters are generally warmer and shorter than they used to be. There has been less snow around on the Prairies, in Toronto, Montreal, Halifax etc during the last few years. Summers seem to have been warmer, certainly here in Vancouver.

When we lived in apartments, and when my daughter did so more recently, the joint laundry facilities worked on a system of time slots, you booked one that suited you, and that stayed "yours". Then there would be some free slots when you could use the washer/dryer if you needed to.

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Old Jan 29th 2021, 7:44 am
  #56  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Siouxie View Post
Food prices vary - depending on where you shop. Freshco and Food Basics are a lot cheaper than Metro / Fortino's etc., ideally you check the flyers and see what is on offer that week - then bulk buy. (We also have Costco for bulk buying..) There's the usual grocery stores in Hamilton, but also a few extra ones.. and some will have more options for 'ethnic' foods than others, whether that's asian / african / carribean / or european.. Walmart aren't always the cheapest for everything
https://starskycanada.com/
Nations Fresh Food
https://www.longos.com/
https://freshco.com/flyer/
https://www.wholesaleclub.ca/store-locator/details/0202 (* you can buy through Instacart without being a member)
https://www.redflagdeals.com/in/hami...ies/groceries/
https://www.flyerbox.ca/grocery/?gcl...iAAEgLF0vD_BwE

If you need any info about Hamilton there's a few of us who live here (I've been here for about 20 years)
I think the coupon clipping thing is definitely something that takes a little getting used to in Canada but once you do, the food prices become more affordable. They used to deliver a weekly bag of flyers to the reception area in my apartment building and just after moving in, I saw Shoppers Drug Mart had a good deal on canned tuna. In a British mindset, I thought "oh nice one, I'll pick some up when we go out for lunch tomorrow afternoon" but when I got there they were already gone.

Needless to say, I became accustomed to going out first thing on a Saturday morning to get anything I wanted from that weekly flyer but most of it was canned and dry goods so you could just stock up and then forget about it for a few months. It just takes some getting used to. The supermarkets are far less competitive than they are in the UK and subsequently Canadians tend to shop a bit more frugally than we do.

Food Basics have some decent stuff but I've found it can be a bit depressing at times. It feels more like walking around a Kwik Save in the 90's than it does like Aldi or Lidl. Metro seemed to be a comfortable medium.

Last edited by DigitalGhost; Jan 29th 2021 at 7:50 am.
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Old Jan 29th 2021, 7:49 am
  #57  
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by seseman View Post

I can't imagine how much it would cost to have a similar plan to what I have now, 100GB, unlimited texts and calls every month for £18.
If that's your mobile contract and not home internet then you would need to pay a lot more than that in Canada.
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Old Jan 29th 2021, 9:37 am
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by Danny B View Post
I was 34 at the time of the move, my two children were at the perfect age to make the move with the least amount of disruption so it was August 2007 or never! Here I am almost 14 years later and it was the best decision ever.

We came for the adventure if I'm being honest, no jobs lined up, just move over here first and see what happens.
Thank you for sharing. I am so glad it all worked out for you.

I am so risk averse and not very adventurous so the idea of moving elsewhere is a lot for me to process. Who knows, we might love it as much as you do.
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Old Jan 29th 2021, 9:55 am
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by DigitalGhost View Post
If that's your mobile contract and not home internet then you would need to pay a lot more than that in Canada.
Yes that is just my sim only mobile contract. Home broadband is about £31 per month for unlimited fibre broadband.

Another thing to add to the list of things that will cost more in Canada.
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Old Jan 29th 2021, 9:57 am
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Default Re: What made you decide to make the move to Canada

Originally Posted by DigitalGhost View Post
I think the coupon clipping thing is definitely something that takes a little getting used to in Canada but once you do, the food prices become more affordable. They used to deliver a weekly bag of flyers to the reception area in my apartment building and just after moving in, I saw Shoppers Drug Mart had a good deal on canned tuna. In a British mindset, I thought "oh nice one, I'll pick some up when we go out for lunch tomorrow afternoon" but when I got there they were already gone.

Needless to say, I became accustomed to going out first thing on a Saturday morning to get anything I wanted from that weekly flyer but most of it was canned and dry goods so you could just stock up and then forget about it for a few months. It just takes some getting used to. The supermarkets are far less competitive than they are in the UK and subsequently Canadians tend to shop a bit more frugally than we do.

Food Basics have some decent stuff but I've found it can be a bit depressing at times. It feels more like walking around a Kwik Save in the 90's than it does like Aldi or Lidl. Metro seemed to be a comfortable medium.
Thank you for the tip. I will get my clipping hat on.
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