There have been a record number of Americans looking to move to Canada with their family. Be it because of the political climate or just looking for a great place to raise a family, Canada is drawing a lot more people. Canada is a wonderful place to live as it provides a safe and stable environment with a focus on family.
Whether you are looking to move to British Columbia or the Maritime Provinces, Canada has something for everybody. It isn’t as simple as arriving and settling down, however. It takes some preparation to make sure that you are accepted and that you are then able to stay.
In this article, we will go over what it takes to move to Canada with your family.
Arriving in the Country
Americans don’t need a visa to come to Canada, but you do need a visa to work if you don’t have one already. You have a couple of options so you can come to Canada and rent a short term apartment and look for a job. There are short term rentals Markham and everywhere else you can think of all over Canada where you don’t have to sign a lease so you have some flexibility.
Your other option is to find a job before you leave and then get the permits so you don’t have to worry about the time pressure or the possibility of not finding a job that would sponsor a work permit for you.
There are a few different kinds of work permits that you have to choose from. Find the one that you are the most eligible for and then go from there. For instance, there is an International Experience Canada (IEC) that is a good way to gain some work experience while working legally so you can then get a permanent position. This permit is open to people from 36 different countries between the ages of 18 and 35.
For those that already have experience and are looking to work in the same career in Canada, there is the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). This is harder to get but if you are coming with a family, it is the best visa to be shooting for. The problem with this one is that for a company to sponsor you, they have to prove that they couldn’t find a Canadian to fill the opening.
If you have some family in Canada, you may be eligible for the family sponsorship for immigration. If you have close relations living as citizens or permanent residents of Canada, then you may be able to join them if they sponsor you. Eligible relatives would be parents or even children, grandparents, and spouses.
Lastly, there is the Express Entry system in which provinces will seek a certain number of foreigners to work there. Then, you are assigned a point system which will rank you against other candidates. The more points you have then the more likely you are to gain permanent residency.
Cost of Living
It’s impossible to give a fully accurate cost of living since it varies dramatically. There are differences between rural, suburban, and city costs that make it too hard to figure out. However, there are some numbers to keep in mind to get a basic idea of what to expect for how much things will cost where you move.
Toronto is very expensive so a move there will be similar to if you were living in Boston. The cost of a one bedroom apartment to rent is roughly around $1,800 close to the center to give you an idea. Other expensive cities are Vancouver, Montreal, and Ottawa.
That said, other costs will be similar to what you would find in an American city of the same size as the one that you plan to move to. Taxes are higher in Canada as it is how the healthcare system is paid for. Roughly 7,000 CAD of your taxes go toward the healthcare system. Keep in mind that this is limitless and covers everything. There is even an extended coverage for dental so that will cost you less than what you would pay for the same service.
Transportation will cost you more in Canada whether you are using public transportation or driving a car. In fact, gas costs about three times as much as the average in the US so expect to pay more for car ownership.
Though the Canadian dollar is cheaper than the American, you will be getting paid in the local currency so you won’t be enjoying the friendly exchange rate. With healthcare costs taken care of, you may find that you have more disposable income than you expected. Everybody’s idea of comfort is different, but don’t forget that the average Canadian enjoys the same standard of living as the average American.