Author Topic: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)  (Read 8106 times)

nereo

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #150 on: September 26, 2018, 12:04:00 PM »
One thing that always struck me living in Quebec compared to places like Boston or Buffalo is the scarcity of very large snowfalls but the consistency of lighter ones.

Boston gets Nor'easters and Buffalo/Syracuse/Rochester get lake effect snow. London gets the same kind of lake effect snow from proximity to Lake Huron.
Exactly.
Expect lots of small snowfalls around the Montreal/Ottawa area.  Expect fewer but much more massive snowfalls in places like London.

Prairie Stash

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #151 on: October 05, 2018, 04:02:35 PM »
We are starting to think seriously about moving to Canada as well. We qualify for PR and need to spend time actually getting the PR. I'm loving this thread since it has thrown light on more cities and their pros and cons. Our first choice is still large cities like Vancouver and Toronto (nothing in Quebec due to lack of French) but I think we need to look into Windsor, London and Victoria (milder weather is a big draw).

For those with kids, how easy it is to bring up kids  there? Has anyone moved from US to Canada with kids? How has the transition been? Mine are four and one.

Also any pointers on how to position finances where income=expenses+rrsp+tfsa would be appreciated. We are not looking for adding to our stash but would love to not touch the stash for a few more years if possible.
Don't forget the Prairies :) Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg all have advantanges you won't find elsewhere. The prairies have colder extremes but lower humidity, that means it doesn't feel as cold. A -20 in Ottawa is the equivalent of -30 on the prairies. It's a fun rabbit hole learning how humidity can change how a temperature feels.

Its easier raising kids in Canada, from everything I read on this forum. University is inexpensive; I'm saving $40,000 for each child (20% of the principle is government grants). Healthcare isn't an issue, if my child breaks her arm my only concern is her well being (not insurance). Daycare is the same price as the USA, except we get a year off work for maternity/paternity leave...so the first year was free for both my children. My lifetime cost of Daycare will be lower then the typical american cost (I only need it for 4 years until they turn 5 and start school).

The best part of kids in Canada in is the CCB, up to $6500/kid/year under 6 and then its $5500/kid until 18. Its income tested so the more you earn the less you receive, its designed to give basic support to all children. So in a $40k/year FIRE situation the kids will get $10K to cover their expenses, $5000 of which is used to save for University (to get the 20% grants) and $5000 to cover childhood expenses like food and clothing. My FIRE budget ignores their teenage food costs, how does that compare to the American FIRE budget?

TFSA and RRSP are Roth and 401K equivalents, with a few twists. No age limitations, that's a stupid american rule (whats the point if it anyways?). We do rollover of contributions room to allow catch up, but we have lower annual limits. We have friendly tax rules, I have RRSP/TFSA/Taxable accounts, the rules mean I'll pay nothing on withdrawal from my taxable accounts (I plan on under $40k/year living expenses). My wife could also pull money from a taxable, its not combined so hers can also be tax free from the taxable accounts.

Basically Canada is easier to live the FIRE lifestyle; no healthcare insurance concerns and kids receive generous support.  What Canada lacks is massive income disparities, our 1% don't earn as much, if you're among the US 1% you'll earn more south of the border.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #152 on: October 08, 2018, 04:34:08 PM »
Don't forget the Prairies :) Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg all have advantanges you won't find elsewhere. The prairies have colder extremes but lower humidity, that means it doesn't feel as cold. A -20 in Ottawa is the equivalent of -30 on the prairies. It's a fun rabbit hole learning how humidity can change how a temperature feels.

Basically Canada is easier to live the FIRE lifestyle; no healthcare insurance concerns and kids receive generous support.  What Canada lacks is massive income disparities, our 1% don't earn as much, if you're among the US 1% you'll earn more south of the border.

My Mom grew up on the prairies and said she was so much colder in Toronto, because the winters were humid.  But even at a dry -40 your nose freezes shut.

To me not having massive income disparities is a plus.  I had never seen a gated community until I visited the US - It was the Coachella valley where there is almost nothing but gated communities.  Surreal.

Paul der Krake

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #153 on: October 08, 2018, 06:56:11 PM »
To me not having massive income disparities is a plus.  I had never seen a gated community until I visited the US - It was the Coachella valley where there is almost nothing but gated communities.  Surreal.
I've lived in the US for nearly a decade, visited a good dozen states, rubbed elbows with the 1% on a regular basis, but I've never seen a gated community, let alone been in one. Most wealthy people here are very accessible - in fact you probably couldn't tell who they are from seeing them on the street and you're quite likely to sit next to them on the subway or at a sporting event.

Don't let a flashy minority distract you.

nkt0

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #154 on: October 09, 2018, 06:01:43 AM »
To me not having massive income disparities is a plus.  I had never seen a gated community until I visited the US - It was the Coachella valley where there is almost nothing but gated communities.  Surreal.

Nationally, Canada isn't much better on inequality than the US. It ranks 23rd of 34 OECD countries.* The US is 31st. Of course, this doesn't account for local variation: Does where I want to live (major cities) have more or less equality than the country as a whole? My guess in Canada: more. In the US, it varies. I currently live in the poorest big city in America, where my SO and i can live well on a single modest income. If i lived in one of the HCOL areas, that would not be the case. I'm not sure we can score the same quality of life in any of the major cities in Canada on the exact same income (let alone lower Canadian wages).

Now of course there are other tradeoffs and everyone's value system is different.

* https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_income_equality#Gini_coefficient,_after_taxes_and_transfers

GuitarStv

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #155 on: October 09, 2018, 07:10:15 AM »
Don't forget the Prairies :) Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg all have advantanges you won't find elsewhere. The prairies have colder extremes but lower humidity, that means it doesn't feel as cold. A -20 in Ottawa is the equivalent of -30 on the prairies. It's a fun rabbit hole learning how humidity can change how a temperature feels.

Basically Canada is easier to live the FIRE lifestyle; no healthcare insurance concerns and kids receive generous support.  What Canada lacks is massive income disparities, our 1% don't earn as much, if you're among the US 1% you'll earn more south of the border.

My Mom grew up on the prairies and said she was so much colder in Toronto, because the winters were humid.  But even at a dry -40 your nose freezes shut.

When the temperatures get cooler there is certainly a bit of a learning curve.  I never had my nose freeze shut at -40, although we regularly hit those temperatures when I was living in Northern Ontario.  I did however get frostbite on by eyeballs once (protip:  Blink a lot if you're out for a long time on a windy -40 degree day).  :P

nkt0

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #156 on: October 09, 2018, 07:39:30 AM »
Huh? At your link for OECD countries Canada is #4 and the US is #34. That's basically top and bottom of list for income inequality.

Sort by something other than alphabet. :D

Retire-Canada

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #157 on: October 09, 2018, 07:43:06 AM »
Sort by something other than alphabet. :D

Ha! Got it. Thanks.

debbie does duncan

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #158 on: October 09, 2018, 11:06:35 AM »
We have a gated community in the Cowichan Valley. Just over the Malahat .https://www.arbutusridge.ca/

TrMama

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #159 on: October 09, 2018, 12:16:46 PM »
Don't forget the Prairies :) Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg all have advantanges you won't find elsewhere. The prairies have colder extremes but lower humidity, that means it doesn't feel as cold. A -20 in Ottawa is the equivalent of -30 on the prairies. It's a fun rabbit hole learning how humidity can change how a temperature feels.

Basically Canada is easier to live the FIRE lifestyle; no healthcare insurance concerns and kids receive generous support.  What Canada lacks is massive income disparities, our 1% don't earn as much, if you're among the US 1% you'll earn more south of the border.

My Mom grew up on the prairies and said she was so much colder in Toronto, because the winters were humid.  But even at a dry -40 your nose freezes shut.

When the temperatures get cooler there is certainly a bit of a learning curve.  I never had my nose freeze shut at -40, although we regularly hit those temperatures when I was living in Northern Ontario.  I did however get frostbite on by eyeballs once (protip:  Blink a lot if you're out for a long time on a windy -40 degree day).  :P

I've never experienced -40C, but at -30C my teeth ache; just like when you eat ice cream too fast. Pro tip#2: Breathe through your nose and wear a face warmer.

nkt0

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #160 on: November 05, 2018, 11:12:19 AM »
Just returned to the States from a quick weekend in Victoria, BC. Here are some impressions.

Pros:
* Dense, walkable urban core with decent bus service to downtown.
* Lots of nice neighborhoods within walking distance of downtown.
* Good parks and tons of coastline to explore. I guess that's island life.
* Pretty good urban cultural stuff: arts, music, theater, etc.
* Good inter-urban bike trail system to connect with other nearby parts of the island,.
* Very friendly mustachian community! :D
* Left-leaning political views

Cons:
* Very touristy in places, especially downtown. Can't even imagine what it's like during peak season.
* Not a lot of industry (other than tourism)…finding a job seems like it would be very difficult if you weren't involved in government or tourism.
* Lots of older folks–i guess more neutral than con, but still…they tend to drive up the prices of stuff.
* Housing prices

My experience was more positive than i initially expected. It would be a massive lifestyle change from living in a large megalopolis to moving to island life. I'm not sure the move would be worth it, especially with the major expense of the move itself and the increased ongoing housing costs. I think i could really enjoy living on the island, but not enough to mortgage my future/finances or completely change our life focus.

Overall, this process has been illuminating. It has made me appreciate our quality of life in Philly much, much more. There are aspects of our life that cannot be reproduced in Canada (at least not for an affordable price). Luckily we don't have to decide yet…we still have 6-24 months before our immigration app is approved.

nkt0

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #161 on: November 16, 2018, 06:38:23 AM »
Next places on our list of candidates are: Kingston and Ottawa.

elaine amj

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Re: Moving to Canada (aka I need more maple syrup in my life)
« Reply #162 on: November 28, 2018, 10:27:30 PM »
Looking forward to hearing your impressions of each :)

Sounds like you are learning a lot about what you like/dislike. And interesting to hear that you are discovering things about your current life that you'll miss. Perhaps the grass isn't greener on the other side? But perhaps it is - it's fun hearing your thoughts as you try to figure it out :)

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