Relocating During the Pandemic
By Alterna Team
January 18, 2022

The pandemic has affected every Canadian in one way or another. Whether personally, professionally, or financially, we have all been forced to adapt. Many Canadians used the increased time at home to renovate. Others realized they need more out of their homes and decided to move from larger, more expensive locations to more affordable properties, towns or cities.


The shift to working from home has allowed some Canadians to choose a quieter life – moving to a more affordable home or more comfortable location. If these times have highlighted a need to find a home that works better for you, we are here to help guide you to make the best choice for this new reality. 


The great migration


According to Statistics Canada, the province of Ontario lost 85,000 residents between July 2020 and July 2021, with most heading to the more affordable, Maritime provinces. Even with this migration, housing prices in large centres continue to rise and, with many workplaces allowing employees to still work from home, this hot market is not likely to cool anytime soon.


If you're considering a move, there are a few things to think about.


Cost of living


Rising housing prices, global supply chain issues and inflation have impacted everyone's standard of living. However, not every city manages these variables the same way. The average Toronto lifestyle costs about $6,500 per month (this includes all basic necessities and living expenses), but you can enjoy a similar standard of living in Ottawa for $5,900 per month. Considering a coast-to-coast move? Vancouver will cost around $6,900 monthly for the average homeowner but Prince Edward Island will be closer to $5,600.


Gas prices alone, vary drastically among provinces, with prices currently 20 cents a litre higher in Newfoundland than they are in Manitoba.


Property taxes


While moving out of the city will give you an overall lower cost of living, you may see a significant increase in your property taxes. It seems counterintuitive at first, but larger cities, like Toronto, can actually offer lower taxes because of the high population and the number of taxpayers contributing.


Will the grass be greener?


While leaving the city for a quieter, less expensive life may be appealing, there are other factors to consider that can affect lifestyle and cost.




Smaller communities may not have banks, pharmacies, or grocery stores within walking distance, or have a reliable (or any!) transit system to help you get around. Adding a car, if you didn’t have one in the city, will increase your monthly expenses and you may miss the conveniences your urban lifestyle provided.




Smaller communities have the benefit of smaller schools, which can provide smaller class sizes, etc., But, depending on the availability of space or proximity to schools nearby, your children might be on long bus routes, or require alternate transportation you will have to arrange yourself.


Access to healthcare


If you have young children or older family members living with you, you will want to consider access to healthcare. Having to drive long distances for dentists, doctors or urgent care can add up in time, money, and stress.


Personal network


Moving can be both exciting and daunting. Losing easy access to your social network can get lonely. If you have close friends and family on whom you rely with some regularity, ensure that you moving to a neighbourly community that can help fill those gaps.


We know it’s a big decision to move and we are here to help you every step of the way. Once you’ve decided to make the move, give us a call! Our competitive rates, convenient service and flexible options can help you get you in your new dream.