Ontario has second highest cost of living after B.C.: Study

Ontario was highest for fruit and veg, home repairs and furniture

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A new study, conducted by Canadian insurance experts Westland Insurance, shows Ontario has the second highest cost of living with B.C. topping the list and Newfoundland and Labrador at the bottom of the country’s 10 provinces.

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The study considered 55 contributing factors, sourced from the National Statistics Office Statistics Canada, and the Canadian Real Estate Association, with each factor sorted into seven categories and assigned a score of ten, including income, property prices, rent, bills, food, transport, health and personal care, and other lifestyle costs.

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Each score was weighted and indexed to produce a total score out of 100, resulting in the final ranking.

Canada’s three territories — Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut — were not part of the study.

Ontario was the most expensive for fruit and veg, home repairs, and furniture while over two-fifths (44%) of factors ranked in the top three, including larger purchases such as renting and purchasing property, buying a car, and household appliances.

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First-time buyers in Ontario will also take some of the longest times to save for a home, with the median house price — $931,870 — almost double the national average.

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Back in B.C., the study found that almost two-thirds (60%) of factors ranked among the top three most expensive nationwide and that almost one-quarter (21%) of British Columbia’s cost-of-living factors ranked as the most expensive in the country, including buying and renting a home, health and dental care, public transportation, and a plane ticket.

B.C. also had the most expensive homes in Canada, with a median price of $996,460, over half the national average of $490,520.

Commenting on the findings, a spokesperson for Westland Insurance said: “It’s clear that the two most expensive provinces have exceptionally high house prices, but general living costs tend to be higher, too. British Columbia ranked among the top three most expensive provinces in every category, except accommodation, bills, and utilities expenses, where it placed fourth.”

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