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Where to live? Thoughts?

Where to live? Thoughts?

Old Aug 4th 2021, 1:51 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by Lychee View Post
The problems you are trying to avoid in the UK are the same problems you will find in Canada.

Given where you currently live, it sounds like you may like living on the Sunshine Coast, Sooke, the Cowichan Valley, or the Comox Valley of British Columbia. Alll these areas provide access to rural countryside with seaside immediately nearby. However, with most of Canada's major cities unaffordable to the average resident, those idyllic mix of rural/seaside communities in Canada are in a real estate boom with people, such as yourselves, wanting to move there and buy up the houses. Prices have skyrocketed, especially in the past two years. Growth is everywhere in the west right now. Houses are being built everywhere. You're not going to escape it here either. Plus, you'll then have the culture shock to deal with of moving to Canada, with different values, foods, ways of socializing and relating (or not relating) to others, preferred hobbies, pop cultural references, infrastructure, conveniences (or lack thereof), etc. compared to the lifestyle you may be used to in the UK. I do recognize these are first world problems, but are you truly wanting to make a serious lifestyle change?

I also agree that if you are wanting the seaside, Alberta and Ottawa are about as far away from the seaside as Moscow is (and share a similar continental climate). Kelowna is about a 4-hour drive away from the sea, though it has a lovely lake and vineyards and arid Spain-like climate. However, Kelowna is the definition of suburban sprawl these days.
Very good points and if it's not built now you'll often have more buildings later. I remember when we came to Ireland 10 years ago and our favourite beaches were empty. Now some of these beaches are packed (for our standards) and new buildings popping up like mushrooms. Brexit, Covid and the fine weather has also added to the problem this year but if the motorway and houses are already there, you at least know what to expect. I suppose not even Canada is free from development.
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Old Aug 5th 2021, 7:11 am
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by Ljh93 View Post
Hi,

My husband and I have recently discussed moving to Canada in a year or so (we want to give ourselves time to be sure on our decision). However, I have done a lot of research into the process and the only thing I keep getting stumped on is where to go. We have looked at Alberta, Ottawa and Kelowna.

We come from a small seaside town, however seems very busy and over populated. Houses being built left right and centre with the countryside just dissipating. We love the countryside and also love seeing the ocean (can be substituted for lakes). We like a fairly quiet life, but within an area where there are still things going on, good work opportunities and not too expensive to like. We aren't keen on busy burley cities.

Anyway, would anyone recommend anywhere, what would you say about the above locations I've mentioned? Thank you!
Haven't read all the replies so apologies if I am repeating some points.

We did IEC in 2013. We couldn't get 'career jobs' even though we are quite well educated and experienced. The visa seemed to put employers off for any "career" role as I suppose as soon as they had trained us up etc we would be thinking about leaving in their eyes.. which is understandable. Just our experience and probably depends on your profession.

We ended up deciding on doing lower stress jobs and travelling between jobs and treating it more like a working gap year (remember that in Canada annual leave is much lower so this may impact on personal life and what you want to achieve if you take a permanent role somewhere, you'll find yourself in work A LOT and it may defeat the object of the move). We had a great time with lots of adventures doing it the way we did and went from west coast to east coast in that year and worked to pay for it all.

We do have PR now but are currently still in the UK.

The only place we really loved and could see ourselves living long term was Nova Scotia based on our love of the coast and countryside, however when we researched jobs, we struggled to find much, and pay is much lower. After going back and forth of options for many months, we decided that we are probably better off in west Wales if we are totally honest with ourselves.

If you want a change, you could have an adventure on an IEC visa, explore and enjoy - it may lead you to the perfect location with the perfect role, or you may be like us and think 'that was fun' but decide a full time move may not be the best option. You don't have much to lose in trying. Just don't take the move too seriously and be flexible on jobs.

If you fancy an alternative change, you could look at a move within the UK. We only realised when we returned, but there are so many lovely places in the UK and with your role you are in a great position to move into a more rural setting and have a better life here. Travelling around Canada gave us this perspective that moving countries doesn't always solve the problem and often solutions are right on the doorstep.

Canada however was a fun and friendly place. We had lots of adventure and we do have lots of great memories.

As others have said, Ontario may be a good option, but we didn't go there so can't comment on personal experience.

Last edited by AJ_2021; Aug 5th 2021 at 7:21 am.
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Old Aug 5th 2021, 11:54 am
  #48  
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by AJ_2021 View Post
Haven't read all the replies so apologies if I am repeating some points.

We did IEC in 2013. We couldn't get 'career jobs' even though we are quite well educated and experienced. The visa seemed to put employers off for any "career" role as I suppose as soon as they had trained us up etc we would be thinking about leaving in their eyes.. which is understandable. Just our experience and probably depends on your profession.

We ended up deciding on doing lower stress jobs and travelling between jobs and treating it more like a working gap year (remember that in Canada annual leave is much lower so this may impact on personal life and what you want to achieve if you take a permanent role somewhere, you'll find yourself in work A LOT and it may defeat the object of the move). We had a great time with lots of adventures doing it the way we did and went from west coast to east coast in that year and worked to pay for it all.

We do have PR now but are currently still in the UK.

The only place we really loved and could see ourselves living long term was Nova Scotia based on our love of the coast and countryside, however when we researched jobs, we struggled to find much, and pay is much lower. After going back and forth of options for many months, we decided that we are probably better off in west Wales if we are totally honest with ourselves.

If you want a change, you could have an adventure on an IEC visa, explore and enjoy - it may lead you to the perfect location with the perfect role, or you may be like us and think 'that was fun' but decide a full time move may not be the best option. You don't have much to lose in trying. Just don't take the move too seriously and be flexible on jobs.

If you fancy an alternative change, you could look at a move within the UK. We only realised when we returned, but there are so many lovely places in the UK and with your role you are in a great position to move into a more rural setting and have a better life here. Travelling around Canada gave us this perspective that moving countries doesn't always solve the problem and often solutions are right on the doorstep.

Canada however was a fun and friendly place. We had lots of adventure and we do have lots of great memories.

As others have said, Ontario may be a good option, but we didn't go there so can't comment on personal experience.

Thank you for your reply, this sounds very much like how I expect it would go for us. After reading all the comments etc, I do worry if I am just "running away". So i think we may enjoy a long trip to Canada and potentially move within the UK instead. Issue is, everywhere has their problems and downfalls. I actually have a good work life balance. We both adore Cornwall everytime we go, so may look into moving down there, which is only 2hrs max from where we are now.
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Old Aug 5th 2021, 12:48 pm
  #49  
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by Ljh93 View Post
Thank you for your reply, this sounds very much like how I expect it would go for us. After reading all the comments etc, I do worry if I am just "running away". So i think we may enjoy a long trip to Canada and potentially move within the UK instead. Issue is, everywhere has their problems and downfalls. I actually have a good work life balance. We both adore Cornwall everytime we go, so may look into moving down there, which is only 2hrs max from where we are now.
Cape Breton. Looks like Cornwall but is, relatively, cheap to live. Cabot Trail goes around it and is a nice tour in a convertible or on a bicycle (with electric assist). No money there, of course. In Canada the difference between areas with good pay and impossible rents and areas with cheap property and poverty wages is stark.
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Old Aug 5th 2021, 1:18 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Not trying to put you off but maybe worth looking at UK solutions like Pembrokeshire. Farrrrrr cheaper than living in somewhere like Nanaimo or similar but similar benefits.

All you could ever need is nearby, decent transport links, is very safe (I am ex-police so I know this first hand), job situation isnt that bad, depending on professon. Some jobs are in desperate need here, like NHS roles. Far cheaper than Cornwall.

You wil most likely have a better quality of life in Pembrokeshire than you would have anywhere in Canada.

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Old Aug 5th 2021, 9:48 pm
  #51  
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
Cape Breton. Looks like Cornwall but is, relatively, cheap to live. Cabot Trail goes around it and is a nice tour in a convertible or on a bicycle (with electric assist). No money there, of course. In Canada the difference between areas with good pay and impossible rents and areas with cheap property and poverty wages is stark.
Lovely, yes. Not much work though, even for those who've been there for generations. We toured ariud there in October, around Thanksgiving Day for the winter which can be long and brutal.

Lots of lovely Celtic music, kitchen parties, etc.
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Old Aug 5th 2021, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by scilly View Post
Lovely, yes. Not much work though, even for those who've been there for generations. We toured ariud there in October, around Thanksgiving Day for the winter which can be long and brutal.

Lots of lovely Celtic music, kitchen parties, etc.
Yeah, I met a guy there who was from Toronto. He scraped a living operating a tour boat in the summer and being the barman at the Legion in the winter. He said people would kill for the latter job and there was no hint of a joke.
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Old Dec 29th 2021, 10:16 am
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Just chiming in here. I think that your sense of adventure is wonderful! My parents moved from the UK as newly-weds, and Canada was a great place for them. Other Brits who have moved to Canada have had wonderful experiences and work opportunities in Canada. Partly that is because they bring different skills than the Canadian-born and educated. And partly it is due to the fact that, in England at least, management opportunities are given at a far younger age than in Canada (speaking from a government and private industry perspective). So the Brits coming over have an edge on experience. Canada may be your golden egg. HOWEVER, there are many other things to consider that the UK has over Canada.

First is quality of environment and food. The forest fires are yearly now, and BC had the worst air quality in the world during some of last summer. This translates to breathing issues. There is less control over pesticide usage (which gets into the food chain) across the country, limited regulation on off-gassing from oil wells throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan, and possibly other provinces. This has terrible consequences for humans and animals. Birth defects...who is going to tell the farmer next door that his/her pesticide is responsible for your children's ill health? And food is genetically modified...not an issue unless you want good food in your system. Then, when you look deeper, it is a system that does not take care of its people in the way that the UK does. Ever heard of a house-visit from a doctor in Canada? No. Alberta just lost one of its Emergency Responders because they couldn't get an ambulance to him in time. I could go on...

Another point to refute one of the other contributor...the rest of Canada is not one homogenous white race...not anymore than the Irish being the same as the English, or the Welsh the same as Scottish. It has people from around the world, and is really more a multitude of countries under one umbrella. This is the conclusion that I came to after driving across the country at least 4 times. Never again! Half the time was spent driving through Ontario! (Note: The northern route is the best for driving, and very beautiful.). As far as the Kootenays go (Creston and area), it is very beautiful, but cut-off via mountain ranges going west. The wild west, once outside of the lower Mainland, is truly isolated, with mountain range after mountain range. The floods in BC just a couple of months that cut off the mainland from the east of the province demonstrated how fragile the link is. So, all said, go for it if you have an inkling. It may work out well for you. Know, too, as another contributor wrote, that there are many amazing places closer to home...in the UK. I would add that is the same for other areas in the EU. All the best!
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Old Jan 1st 2022, 3:31 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Sorry to drag up an old thread.

myself & my wife, we did IEC In 2013-2015.

we had never been Canada, but had spent a lot of time in America, and although we were told Canada was just as nice but the people even nicer, we decided to go for it!

we quit our good jobs (I worked for the police) rented the house out & sold the cars!

we spent first year in Whistler BC. A ski resort. We wanted low stress jobs so we could snowboard & explore.

we spent lots of time exploring and on the mountain.

whistler was and I believe still is an awesome place to live, however it’s classed locally as Adult Disney Land.. and I’d agree! Quite easy to get low paid seasonal jobs, harder to get a good paid job, full time! Rent was expensive (we paid $1500 for a 2 bedroom basement suite) and I’d expect it’s even worse now! But what a great place to live, in a ski town with hikes all around you and lots to do!
towns either side are Squamish and Pemberton, both lovely and worth considering. Plenty of lakes around, and Vancouver 1/2 hours away.

we travelled around all Summer, visiting many places across the country, namely Toronto and the areas close by. We didn’t enjoy it, too “concrete jungle” for us. People not as friendly, very flat with no mountains etc around.

so, We settled for Banff for our second year, and stayed for 9 months -($1700 a month for a small 2 bed basement suite that we competed against 9 other couples to get) it was Again, another ski town. But that’s what we wanted. Lovely scenery, lakes, mountain, ski resorts close by etc. People lovely. There is a town called Canmore near by, it is a beautiful town that’s not too busy, lots to see and do and appears a very outdoorsy way of life there. Again, I struggled to find jobs other than seasonal, but having a trade or profession would potentially have helped!

id 100% recommend Canada.

we unfortunately didn’t qualify at the time for our jobs, and we could have put in PR applications or whatever the option was 8 years ago (can’t remember) but upto $5000 each to apply,
we didn’t have that money to potentially lose.

we are going back next year on vacation tho!

the job I have now, I Wouldn’t want to give up. Plus I wouldn’t get similar work life balance moving to Canada to do it.. and it’s no more money to do it over there either.

it’s a beautiful country and at the very least, experience as much as you can on a vacation.

Last edited by richfoz84; Jan 1st 2022 at 3:40 pm.
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Old Jan 5th 2022, 11:59 am
  #55  
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

I recently finished listening to a podcast called 'Canada's Calling'. It follows Mike and Ashley, whom explore all 13 provinces, each given their own 45 minute episode. It really helped me to get a flavour for what each province is about. They interview locals and business owners, try different cafes and restaurants, and discuss the different landscapes and cultures of each province. Now, you won't be an expert after listening to a 45 minute episode but it does give you a really good base to do further research.

Here's a link to the website - https://uk-keepexploring.canada.trav...alling-podcast
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 4:49 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

We're in Nova Scotia. Closest to the UK for when you want to go back to visit family. House prices are very affordable but rising. There is a very big uplift in the economy and lots of jobs around, especially in the health care sector. I work in construction, it is going wild out here and a massive skills shortage. Wages have improved drastically in the last year.
The people here are friendly and so helpful. Last night some friends dropped by for a "cup of tea" with 2lb digby scallops and their home-grown bacon, we ended up having a kitchen party until the wee hours. This morning we woke up to snow, a massive storm surge in the Atlantic giving the most beautiful white horses when I look out across the bay. Three hours later and the wind has died down and the road is clear. I'm off for a drive along the coastline to the city. This place is heaven.
There are various Facebook groups to join, I use "British Expats in Nova Scotia". There are others for all the other provinces too. Join up and ask people what they like and some suggestions.
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Old Feb 3rd 2022, 8:16 pm
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Short answer to fundamental original question asked: recommendations.

Answer in my opinion: Okanagan. (Summerland, Peachland)
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Old Feb 7th 2022, 7:32 am
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Default Re: Where to live? Thoughts?

Originally Posted by sidjoloo View Post
We're in Nova Scotia. Closest to the UK for when you want to go back to visit family. House prices are very affordable but rising. There is a very big uplift in the economy and lots of jobs around, especially in the health care sector. I work in construction, it is going wild out here and a massive skills shortage. Wages have improved drastically in the last year.
The people here are friendly and so helpful. Last night some friends dropped by for a "cup of tea" with 2lb digby scallops and their home-grown bacon, we ended up having a kitchen party until the wee hours. This morning we woke up to snow, a massive storm surge in the Atlantic giving the most beautiful white horses when I look out across the bay. Three hours later and the wind has died down and the road is clear. I'm off for a drive along the coastline to the city. This place is heaven.
There are various Facebook groups to join, I use "British Expats in Nova Scotia". There are others for all the other provinces too. Join up and ask people what they like and some suggestions.
Nova Scotia is probably the best choice in the Atlantic playground. Halifax also has a good and well connected airport and pre-Covid had flight connections to a couple of major European airports. I am guessing these flights will be reinstated once the pandemic is really over.

I would have my hesitations to move to Newfoundland. People are nice there as well, almost a bit "Irish", but the connectivity, unpredictability of the ferry connection and high seas in winter may make it a bit isolated at times. Of course one can only fly in and out, but again, sometimes one needs the car to go somewhere to another province.

I would honestly try to avoid Toronto and the whole GTA for the reason, it's gotten too big, too sprawling and mostly too expensive, unless a job offer with a salary of 75 to 80 k came along.

Last edited by OrangeMango; Feb 7th 2022 at 7:37 am.
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