Author Topic: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!  (Read 7499 times)

The_Captain

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60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« on: October 18, 2014, 08:30:29 AM »
So someone ended up asking the Mayoral candidates in Toronto about how much a family needs to earn in Toronto to live comfortably, and the left wing candidate responded with 60K, while the more conservative candidates threw out numbers like 75K and 100K. But of course, when I went to the discussion thread on reddit I found it in need of some face punches, because everyone was whining about how even the 100k number was lowballing it, and how it's just so hard to live here.

In light of the fact that the median household income in this city is 71K and I'm not seeing a bunch of people rioting about how they can't afford food, I imagine the pampered complainers on reddit just have no sense of how families might get by on less than all the money ever.

If anyone wants to groan and roll their eyes, or maybe inject some sense into the discussion, particularly fellow Toronto Mustachians, thread is here: http://www.reddit.com/r/toronto/comments/2jjk82/how_much_money_do_you_think_a_couple_needs_to/

daverobev

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2014, 08:44:56 AM »
Yeah, it's classic 'I have $X, I don't know how people live on less!'

Well, they don't have a car payment, the most expensive cable package, designer clothes, watches, expensive cell phones...

fb132

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2014, 12:58:58 PM »
Whenever I say what you just said, I get looked at like I am the crazy one.

Gerard

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2014, 07:39:18 AM »
The current Toronto Life profiles four people getting by on minimum wage in Toronto, next to an article about how couples earning $80K a year need their parents to buy a house for them. Apparently "not buying a house" is not an option.

CanuckExpat

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2014, 11:16:02 PM »
So anyone have any links to good posts on case studies / budgets in Toronto from the forum? Strangely enough I was just discussing this today.

GuitarStv

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2014, 06:33:25 AM »
I think 30k in Toronto would be quite a squeeze for your typical mom/dad/kid setup.  60 is easily doable.

daverobev

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2014, 08:19:10 AM »
So anyone have any links to good posts on case studies / budgets in Toronto from the forum? Strangely enough I was just discussing this today.

Well the first thing is housing.

http://www.kijiji.ca/b-2-bedroom-apartments-condos/gta-greater-toronto-area/c214l1700272

Lots of places available under $1500. $60k after tax is something like $4k a month, right? Yes 2 bed might be smaller than you'd want but you could be comfortable.

Food - $100 a week, say $450 a month. Phones, well, Wind is pretty awesome with roaming rates, say $40-60. Internet $30.

What else? Car insurance is horrible round TO, I know that much.

So you're at $1500+$550 so far, leaving ~$2k for everything else. Save $1k, leaving $1k for car/transport/clothes.. maybe electric depending on where you'd rent but I'd assume for $1500 you would be all in.

Kaspian

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2014, 11:39:01 AM »
The glaringly obvious:  If you need $60K+ to live in a certain city. move elsewhere because that number is ridiculous.  People just don't understand math.  They don't seem to get it that if you get paid $60K in a big city you actually might be better off making $40K in a smaller, more affordable place to live.  It's all about what you get to have left over in your wallet at the end of the month.

fb132

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2014, 11:50:22 AM »
It is also a problem of spending. Everyone thinks its normal to have a cell phone, a huge mortgage, car payments and cable and then whine they don't have enough money. They go on to blame the goverment and everyone else for being in debt. 

Kaspian

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2014, 11:43:25 AM »
It is also a problem of spending. Everyone thinks its normal to have a cell phone, a huge mortgage, car payments and cable and then whine they don't have enough money. They go on to blame the goverment and everyone else for being in debt.

Amen!  Items people see on shows like "The Kardashians" have become the new normal.  We didn't used to see rich people stuff in entertainment as much so people didn't crave things they didn't even know existed.  The new "normal" to strive for is probably what's actually a "rich" or at least "upper-middle-class" existence.

CanuckExpat

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2014, 01:54:35 PM »
So anyone have any links to good posts on case studies / budgets in Toronto from the forum? Strangely enough I was just discussing this today.

Well the first thing is housing.

http://www.kijiji.ca/b-2-bedroom-apartments-condos/gta-greater-toronto-area/c214l1700272

Lots of places available under $1500. $60k after tax is something like $4k a month, right? Yes 2 bed might be smaller than you'd want but you could be comfortable.

Food - $100 a week, say $450 a month. Phones, well, Wind is pretty awesome with roaming rates, say $40-60. Internet $30.

What else? Car insurance is horrible round TO, I know that much.

So you're at $1500+$550 so far, leaving ~$2k for everything else. Save $1k, leaving $1k for car/transport/clothes.. maybe electric depending on where you'd rent but I'd assume for $1500 you would be all in.

I'm not saying it's impossible, I was mainly curious if there examples of detailed budgets from people here. We have lots of case studies posted, but I couldn't find any from Toronto. I did a quick search in the forum on "Toronto case study" and the only hit was someone who mentioned they would post one soon. I thought people in this thread from Toronto might have good enough memory to point me to one or more, since these would presumably be examples of living the good life cheap in Toronto.

This post and earlier discussion got me curious, so I went digging through some old spreadsheets (seems to be a recurring theme), when I lived in Toronto, it looks like my spending was about $1000/month. Mind you, that was a few years ago and on a grad student budget, but I remember it being a great life full of luxury.
I'd love to see more updated numbers for a variety of different living situations.

As an aside, I looked at the link you posted about housing, and most of the affordable options didn't seem to be in what I would consider actually Toronto :) Snide remark aside, I suppose housing is the tough part. I imagine rents are still somewhat affordable, but it looks like the cost to buy has sky rocketed. Wierd buy/rent ratio going on..
« Last Edit: October 23, 2014, 01:58:26 PM by CanuckExpat »

Spudd

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2014, 03:16:20 PM »
Torontonian here. We (2 adults, no kids) spend about 50k a year living in a 3 bedroom house in North York. This is based off our last 3 months spending since before that we owned a house and it would really mess up trends to include both owning & renting.

Budget:
Rent: 1880/mo
Shopping: 890/mo
Food & dining: 470/mo
Health & fitness: 260/mo (orthotics, glasses, dentist)
Auto & transport: 165/mo (no car, rent cars when needed & use zipcar, TTC)
Utilities: 123/mo
Pets: 67/mo (we had a vet visit, would normally be lower)

The rest is pretty small so I won't bother to list it out.

Goldielocks

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2014, 12:55:43 AM »
Okay then,

The average income for a family in the region, minus about 10 to 20% is usually what most people think is the minimum possible to live on.  In fact others, such as the "Living Wage" calculations, deliberately put their baseline right about there, too.

Stats Canada states that a Two parent family with children in Toronto averages : in 2011  (most current year!)
$89k- single earner
$129k - two earners.


Therefore, assuming 20% less than this is bordering on folks' "its impossible" notion, (to live in Toronto and not be "poor" compared to others) that means that a family has trouble on $71k per year or even more.... depending on your sensitivity.
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a26?lang=eng&retrLang=eng&id=2020403&paSer=&pattern=&stByVal=1&p1=1&p2=37&tabMode=dataTable&csid=
« Last Edit: October 24, 2014, 01:01:11 AM by goldielocks »

Tai

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2014, 03:55:33 AM »
You totally could do 60k with a family of 4 in Toronto, we live on less, albeit in North York, and there's 2 of us. But the kicker is that I believe the original question was live downtown with a family of 4. So housing would be the key factor. We rent, and if you have a big enough apartment with a reasonable rent you'd be ok, or owned a house that was bought before the rise in real estate. You don't need a car at all, especially downtown. My teen goes all over on TTC. At 60k you would not (could not) be in a position to buy any real estate, or run a car. It would be tight.

The callers for the CTV show where they asked viewers about this were saying things like "my son NEEDS his hockey and it costs so much money" and even the anchorman was saying "how could you afford all the latest iphones and gadgets on that money? and that teens NEED those things." It was pretty appalling.

Chow is from an immigrant family, so that may explain why unlike the other two silver spoons, why she thinks 60k is possible. Too bad she was widely mocked for it.

fb132

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2014, 05:14:50 AM »
You totally could do 60k with a family of 4 in Toronto, we live on less, albeit in North York, and there's 2 of us. But the kicker is that I believe the original question was live downtown with a family of 4. So housing would be the key factor. We rent, and if you have a big enough apartment with a reasonable rent you'd be ok, or owned a house that was bought before the rise in real estate. You don't need a car at all, especially downtown. My teen goes all over on TTC. At 60k you would not (could not) be in a position to buy any real estate, or run a car. It would be tight.

The callers for the CTV show where they asked viewers about this were saying things like "my son NEEDS his hockey and it costs so much money" and even the anchorman was saying "how could you afford all the latest iphones and gadgets on that money? and that teens NEED those things." It was pretty appalling.

Chow is from an immigrant family, so that may explain why unlike the other two silver spoons, why she thinks 60k is possible. Too bad she was widely mocked for it.
That is society of today, not just Toronto. People justify the crap they buy, but will blame the goverment for their financial failure.

Gerard

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Re: 60K in Toronto? IMPOSSIBLE!
« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2014, 10:08:30 AM »
I lived a fairly pleasant 2-adult-2-kid life in Toronto on $32K net. Now that was ten years ago, so housing prices have gone up, but I was also in a hugely overpriced rental condo in the Annex, so it probably cost about the same as sensible housing would today.

With a post-Mustachian perspective, I could easily do it today on much less. Toronto still has neighbourhoods that are safe and clean and have decent schools but have bad reputations based on what they were like years ago or, frankly, racism.

Actually, I lived in TO full-time during my sabbatical (2012-13), with two kids part-time, and that cost me about $19K for the year.