What Is The Cost Of Living In Ontario 2021

Many people consider Canada as the best country to live in. However, the cost of living there may vary depending on the province, region, city or even the area in which you live. Therefore, it is very important to study and compare the costs for each city that you shortlist to live in Canada. If Ontario is on your list, then you are reading the right article.

There are many factors to consider while calculating the affordability of a city. In this article, we will talk about the cost of living in Ontario in 2021.

Housing Cost

Real estate prices and rents in Ontario province vary according to city. The cost of an apartment or house in Toronto is different from similar properties in Oshawa, Hamilton and Ottawa. Due to many financial and economic factors and government policies, these prices change every year.

The cost of renting a house in Ontario depends on the house size, location, and condition of the house.

The average monthly rent of a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre comes up to $1,718. The same apartment outside the city centre costs $1,683 per month.

If you plan to purchase a house in Ontario, you may have to pay $5,640 per square meter to buy an apartment in the city centre and $5,426 per square meter if you buy one in the suburbs.

Click here to learn about the cheapest places to live in Ontario.

Transportation Cost

Toronto’s public transportation system includes buses, trams, and subways. GO Transit operates commuter buses and trains in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). However, the entire public transportation system is managed by Toronto Road Traffic Commission (TTC).

You can pay the transportation fees with a Presto card, which automatically collects tolls on public transportation in Ontario (Toronto, Hamilton, and Ottawa).

In 2021, you may have to pay the following charges for using public transport in Ontario:

  • Local Transport one-way ticket: $3.03
  • Monthly Pass: $75.00
  • Taxi Start: $2.80
  • Taxi 1km: $1.86
  • Taxi 1hour Waiting – $25.00
  • Presto adult fare: $3.10
  • Presto one-ride ticket: $3.25
  • Presto two-ride ticket: $6.50
  • Presto day pass: $13.50
  • Monthly TTC pass (adults): $156.00
  • Monthly TTC pass (students and seniors): $128.15

And a litre of Gasoline can cost you around $0.88.

Food cost

The Coronavirus pandemic has significantly impacted living expenses across the globe. Groceries and food prices have increased due to supply shortages and movement restrictions. According to Nutritious Food Basket Calculator, an adult male in Toronto, Ontario has to spend $65 per week to consume healthy food. And a woman of the same age has to spend $50 per week for eating healthily.

Additionally, you may have to pay the following prices if you eat outside the home:

  • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course – $85.00
  • Combo meals at McDonalds – $9.00
  • Domestic Beer (0.5 litre draught)- $4.99
  • Imported Beer (0.33 litre bottle) – $9.00
  • Regular Cappuccino – $4.38
  • Coke/Pepsi (0.33 litre bottle) – $1.94
  • Water (0.33 litre bottle) – $1.47

Entertainment cost

The pandemic has also changed the definition of entertainment for us. Movies and events have adopted the OTT frame, and all that we do in the name of entertainment is ‘Netflix.’ A majority of adults in Ontario likely pay for one or more OTT platforms, staying indoors. Thus, we give you an average cost of these subscriptions that will count as your entertainment expenses in the city:

  • Netflix subscription (standard): $14.99/month
  • Apple TV+: $5.99/month
  • Disney+: $11.99/month
  • Crave: $9.99/month
  • Amazon Prime Video: $7.99/month
  • Apple Music/Spotify subscription: $9.99/month

Healthcare Cost

Like many other countries, healthcare in Canada is covered under the country’s tax system. So you don’t pay any fee for the healthcare services. But, the free healthcare system is currently available only to Canadian citizens and those with a Canadian PR.

Education Cost

In Ontario, Government-funded schools provide free education to children up to 18 years. However, you have to pay to send your child to a private school. A private preschool may charge you a monthly fee of $717 per child.

The college tuition fees in Ontario vary from college to college and program to program. In 2019-20, students enrolled full-time, paid an average of $6463 for undergraduate programs and $7,056 for graduate programs.


Basic electricity, heating, cooling, water consumption and garbage management can cost you $167 per month.

The unlimited data plan and high-speed internet are the lifelines of millennials, and the work-from-home setup has put these expenses on top of the utility bills. The rise in demand and consumption has contributed to the increase in their prices. An unlimited data plan from any service provider will cost you around $80 per month.

How much money do you need to live comfortably in Ontario?

The cost of living in Ontario differs from city to city. Toronto is the largest city in Canada and one of the most expensive to live in the Ontario Province.

Here is the total cost of living in Toronto in 2021:

  • For renters who commute: $3,008.74/month
  • For renters who drive: $3,323.73/ month
  • For homeowners who commute: $4,886.57/month
  • For homeowners who drive: $5,201.56/month

Based on the current tax rate in Canada and Ontario:

  • Renters who commute need to earn at least $36,280 after tax
  • Renters who drive will need to be making $40,199 after tax.
  • Homeowners who commute need to make $58,709 after tax.
  • Homeowners who drive need to make $62,522 after tax to live comfortably in the province.

However, these numbers represent a rough estimate of the cost of living in Ontario based on data from external sources like lowestrates.ca, Statistics Canada, and numbeo.com. Some people may live in the province with less money, and some may need more money to fund the lifestyle they like.


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