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Study finds B.C./Ontario with the highest cost of living

By Randy Thoms Oct 20, 2023 | 5:21 PM

Reading Tom / CC

Those looking to escape the high cost of living may want to look to the Maritimes.

A study by Westland Insurance finds Newfoundland and Labrador with the lowest cost of living in the country.

It benefits from cheap housing costs and a high average income.

“Half of all living costs rank among the cheapest three provinces, such as child care, pet expenses, rent, eye care, dental services, car buying, and restaurants, compared to just one in five (18%) which rank most expensive,” states the report.

Nova Scotia and New Brunswick sit in the middle of the rankings.

Nova Scotia was found to have the lowest food costs but has the fifth highest housing costs and low wages.

The buying power in New Brunswick was among the strongest, but the province still has some of the highest gas and electricity prices in Canada.
British Columbia and Ontario ranked as the most expensive places, in part, due to housing costs.

“Despite having similar house prices and median income to British Columbia, at $931,870 and $41,690, Ontario ranks most expensive for just three factors: fruit and vegetables, home repairs, and furniture. Over two-fifths (44%) rank in the top three, including significant factors such as renting and purchasing property, buying a car, and household appliances.”

Westland Insurance considered 55 factors, ranking each province in each category to determine a cost-of-living score.

Canadian provinces with the highest-to-lowest cost of living.

Province / Territory Ranking (Most to least expensive) Final score (/100)
British Columbia 1 79
Ontario 2 71
Alberta 3 67
Manitoba 4 61
Saskatchewan 5 60
Nova Scotia 6 56
New Brunswick 7 55.4
Quebec 8 55.2
Prince Edward Island 9 51
Newfoundland and Labrador 10 20