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Is Toronto Expensive? The Cost of Living in Toronto 101

is toronto expensive

Is Toronto Expensive? The Cost of Living in Toronto 101

In 2021, Toronto was ranked as the 13th most expensive city in the world to live in. The average cost of living in Toronto for an individual renting a home is around $4,000 a month.

The biggest concern is housing, with the average rent reaching almost $3,000 a month in recent years. Apart from being the most expensive city in the country, the cost of living in Toronto is also more expensive than 82% of cities in the world.

Here’s a breakdown of how much it costs to live in or visit TO.

Is Toronto Expensive? The Cost of Living in Toronto 101

How much is the usual salary in Toronto?

How much is the usual salary in Toronto
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The average annual salary in Toronto is much higher than the global average. Given the city and the country’s thriving industries, plenty of opportunities are available to everyone.

Toronto’s average annual salary is around $71,000. To give you a range, C-level executives earn close to $170,000 a year while cashiers only earn about $28,000 annually.

Here are some popular job titles in Toronto and their median annual salary:

Job Type Median Annual Salary
Physician$119,548
Attorney$96,518
Data Scientist$92,688
Hardware Engineer$83,806
Interior Designer$59,226
Web Developer$58,502
Copywriter$47,069
Chef$42,834
Bank Teller$42,361
Receptionist$31,839

Housing in Toronto

Housing in Toronto
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Canada’s average price per square metre of an apartment (in city centre) is significantly lower than Toronto’s. Renting’s no different, Toronto’s rates can be as much as $1,000 more than some rates from other cities. 

The average price for a detached home is just under $1.2M. Meanwhile, renting a 1-bedroom apartment in Toronto costs around $2,500 a month while a 2-bedroom apartment costs around $3,300 a month. 

Here are some examples of apartments for rent and their rates:

Name Size Rate
Donlands ApartmentsStudio (443 sq ft)$2,229
E18HTEEN1-bedroom (635 sq ft)$2,735
FourFifty The Well2-bedroom (850 sq ft)$3,819
The Parker3-bedroom (886 sq ft)$5,030

Food in Toronto

Food in Toronto
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The average food price in Toronto is almost identical to the rest of Canada. Toronto is slightly more expensive in some categories, e.g. three-course meals from mid-range restaurants. 

Due to inflation, you should be ready to pay around $360 each month for groceries. This estimate assumes that you buy your supplies weekly and you purchase staple food items like milk and meat.

Eating out will definitely cost you more than if you made your meals at home. A mid-range restaurant will charge around $50 per person while cheaper restaurants will charge closer to $25 per customer.

Here are the average food costs in Toronto:

Expenses Cost
Food Supplies
Milk (regular), (1 liter) $3.71
Loaf of fresh white bread (500g) $3.62
Beef round (1kg) (or equivalent back leg red meat) $18.89
Eggs (regular) (12) $4.54
Apples (1kg) $5.37
Two-Person Meal in a Restaurant
Asian restaurant $74
Chinese restaurant $59
French restaurant $97
Italian restaurant $82
Japanese restaurant $102
Mexican restaurant $52

Transportation in Toronto

Transportation in Toronto
(Image: https://www.destinationtoronto.com/)

Using public transit and purchasing a new car are priced very similarly between Toronto and the rest of Canada. The only outlier is Toronto’s monthly pass which costs around 50% more than in other cities. 

Going around the city with public transportation is quite convenient with a Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) Monthly pass. Adults just need to pay $156 per month to use the transit system as much as they want.

Owning your own car is undoubtedly more expensive since you have to consider other expenses like insurance and maintenance costs. Typically, purchasing a new car costs around $28,000.

Healthcare in Toronto

Healthcare in Toronto
(Image: https://torontosun.com/)

There are now 152 (out of 195) countries in the world that offer universal healthcare and Canada is one of them. However, those who aren’t legally residing in the country must have their own health insurance or pay their fees. 

Canada’s free healthcare is mainly funded by tax revenue and federal transfers, meaning all residents enjoy the benefits without having to pay for anything.

Prescription drugs may cost a few dollars but they’re generally inexpensive and affordable to most people. There are also public programs that help low-income individuals, children with disabilities, and the elderly with prescription drug costs.

For visitors, Canada will not pay for your hospital or medical services. It’s advisable to secure your health insurance before entering the country.

Education in Toronto

Education in Toronto
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Private schools in Toronto charge higher fees than schools from other cities in Canada. Thanks to the city’s great location, its specialised schools are constantly in demand.

If you live in Toronto, sending your kids to a public school’s completely free. Private schools on the other hand, typically charge between $17,000 to $26,000 a year.

If you’re looking to acquire a degree, colleges cost a little over $3,000 a year on average. Universities are a bit more expensive, with an average annual tuition of $9,000.

Utilities in Toronto

Utilities in Toronto
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Basic utilities, including electricity and water, cost nearly the same in Toronto and the rest of Canada. The rates aren’t overly expensive unless you consume a lot of excess.

Utility costs vary depending on what you want or need. You might want to get internet without cable, or maybe going for a mobile plan so you don’t have to worry about paying each time you call a friend.

Here’s the average range of monthly utility costs for Toronto homes:

Utility/Home Type Studio Condo 1-Bedroom Condo 2-Bedroom Condo 3-Bedroom Condo 3-Bedroom House
Hydro/Electricity$40-60$50-100$80-130$100-250$150-350
Water$10-20*$15-30*$30-50*$40-80*$70-200
Heat/GasN/AN/AN/AN/A$50-250**

*Included in rent for most Toronto Condos. **Depending on season.

FAQs on Toronto’s Cost of Living