Vancouver or Toronto: A Cost of Living Comparison

Vancouver vs. Toronto Cost of Living

Vancouver and Toronto are more than 4,000 km apart but share the dubious honour of being the two most expensive cities in Canada. Despite this, they are highly desirable places to live, scoring high on all international standard of living indices. They are clean, safe and secure, and offer newcomers vibrant, multi-cultural communities willing to embrace immigrants.

Toronto is the business capital of Canada and home to many company headquarters. Vancouver, however, has the fastest growing tech industry in North America surpassing Silicon Valley and Toronto in 2019. Needless to say, if you have the right skills, finding a job in either city shouldn’t be too difficult. Unemployment rates are low, education and healthcare systems are excellent, both are culturally vibrant and boast world-class restaurant scenes. These are model Canadian cities so you can’t really go wrong choosing either one.

We’ve partnered with Van Sweet Home, a relocation company providing personalized service to people moving to Canada, to provide readers with relevant cost of living comparisons to help you make an informed decision if you are considering a move to either of these two Canadian cities. You will see they are very close.

Consumer Price Comparison

The Basics:

* has a quick and easy tool to figure out energy costs. Compare fixed rate, variable rate, fixed cost monthly plans.
** will compare a variety of household costs from gas to cable to mortgage rates and credit card fees.

Other Essentials:

Vancouver Neighbourhood Rental Rates

Rental rates in the Greater Vancouver area vary considerably. Downtown and nearby neighbourhoods like Kitsilano, Main Street, Cambie Village etc. command significantly higher rents than homes in nearby suburbs. When choosing where to live, you would be wise to consider other factors besides just the cost of rent. How much time are you willing to spend commuting? Will you rely on transit? Is a yard important? These are all questions that will help you determine where to look for housing.

November 2019 Averages

Toronto Neighbourhood Rental Rates

Like Vancouver, downtown Toronto and neighbouring areas command higher rents than places in the suburbs. Most of these suburbs are viable options, however, thanks to an extensive subway and commuter train network.

November 2019 Averages

Vancouver vs. Toronto Rental Rates

In a nutshell, the average cost of a downtown Toronto apartment is more expensive than the average cost of a downtown Vancouver apartment. The cost discrepancy also extends to comparable suburbs. However, when you look at other costs, the 2 most expensive cities in Canada are almost identical. We wholeheartedly recommend visiting each city before you decide to move to either one. Know that they are both expensive so the deciding factor will likely be something less tangible – the look, the feel, the nightlife, the culinary scene (both thriving!), recreational opportunities, and more.

For more details on rental rates, check out our latest Rental Reports:

November 2019 Vancouver Rental Report

November 2019 Toronto Rental Report

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Kristina Ikavalko

Kristina Ikavalko

Creative Content Creator for Liv, based in Vancouver. Fan of field hockey, food, fashion & politics.

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