Categories > Guides and Tips

The Pros and Cons of Living in Toronto

The Pros and Cons of Living in Toronto

An ever-buzzing city, Toronto that seems to have everything a person could want—or does it? The good times and the bad times; the highs and lows, they all come with living in a big city like Toronto.

Toronto is generally considered an expensive city to live in as the cost of living is high due to high demand for housing, and high taxes.  In addition, other disadvantages of living in Toronto include traffic congestion, and a crowded city. 

Nevertheless, Toronto is a vibrant and diverse city with a lot to offer. as it is a cultural hub. The city is also known for being safe and friendly, with a high quality of life. 

So read on as we’ll discuss more of these below to help you figure out whether or not you should move to Toronto.

Living in Toronto
Endless Job Opportunities
• Top-Notch Universities
Diverse Neighbourhoods
• Low Crime Rate
High Cost of Living
Traffic Congestion
Crowded Downtowns
High Taxes

Pros of Living in Toronto

Toronto is a city of great diversity, with a wide range of neighbourhoods and cultures. It’s also a city that attracts people from all over the world because of its reputation as a safe place to live, work and play.

There are many things that make Toronto a great place to live, including:

1. There are endless job opportunities in Toronto

There are endless job opportunities in Toronto

In-demand Jobs in Toronto

There are several in-demand jobs in Toronto, across various industries. Here are some of the most in-demand jobs and their average salaries:

1. Software Developer 

Average salary: $80,000 to $120,000 per year

2. Nurse Practitioner 

Average salary: $100,000 to $130,000 per year

3. Data Scientist 

Average salary: $80,000 to $120,000 per year

4. Electrician 

Average salary: $60,000 to $90,000 per year

5. Marketing Manager 

Average salary: $70,000 to $110,000 per year

6. Business Analyst 

Average salary: $70,000 to $100,000 per year

7. Sales Representative 

Average salary: $50,000 to $90,000 per year

8. Construction Project Manager 

Average salary: $80,000 to $120,000 per year

9. Financial Analyst 

Average salary: $60,000 to $100,000 per year

10. Registered Nurse 

Average salary: $60,000 to $90,000 per year

Please note that these are rough estimates and salaries can vary based on factors such as experience, education, and the company or industry you’ll work for.

One of the golden things about living in Toronto—job opportunities! I’m talking full-time and part-time, in offices and at home. 

You can find anything from professional positions to entry-level jobs. Whether you want to be a lawyer, an accountant or a barista, you’ll have no shortage of opportunities in this city.

And if you thought that was great – just wait until I tell you about the work culture here. If you love being surrounded by hard working individuals with innovative minds, then Toronto’s your jam. 

With so many different tech companies popping up, it’s practically a playground for creative thinkers and entrepreneurs alike. Talk about diversity!

In Toronto, you’ll never feel stuck in one specific industry due to the wealth of opportunities across different fields. Though here’s a tip: be prepared for long job applications, interviews after interviews and plenty of cover letters. 

From UNTV News and Rescue

2. There are many top-notch universities in Toronto

There are many top-notch universities in Toronto

Attention all future Torontonians: if education is on your list of must-haves, Toronto has you covered. Home to the University of Toronto, the city provides students with access to world-class academics. 

And it doesn’t stop there—there are plenty of other options for higher education, including Ryerson University and York University. But what about younger students? 

No worries, because the public school systems in Toronto are also top notch. And you don’t have to sacrifice quality for quantity either—with so many options in different neighbourhoods and districts, there’s an option right for your family’s needs.

Plus, there are other options available including private and faith-based schools, as well as a range of specialised learning experiences suited to various interests and talents like music, art or sports. 

Top Universities in Toronto

Here are some of the top universities in Toronto:

1. University of Toronto – The university has a diverse student population and offers a wide range of academic programs across three campuses. 

The university is known for its strength in research, particularly in the fields of health sciences, engineering, and social sciences.

2. York University – The university has a strong focus on social justice and offers a range of academic programs across various faculties, including liberal arts, business, health, and science.

3. Ryerson University – The university offers a range of academic programs, including programs in business, engineering, and journalism. 

Ryerson is also located in the heart of downtown Toronto, providing students with easy access to the city’s business and cultural centres.

4. OCAD University – The university offers a range of undergraduate and graduate programs in various areas of art and design, including fine arts, graphic design, and digital media. 

The university is known for its commitment to fostering creativity and innovation in its students.

5. University of Guelph-Humber – The university offers a range of academic programs across various faculties, including business, media studies, and justice studies. 

The university is known for its focus on experiential learning and providing students with practical, hands-on experience in their chosen field.

These universities are ranked highly for a range of reasons, including academic excellence, research strength, innovative programming, and commitment to student success.

3. There’s a wide variety of neighbourhoods in Toronto

There's a wide variety of neighbourhoods in Toronto

Living in Toronto offers many advantages, one of which is that you can find a wide variety of neighbourhoods to fit whatever lifestyle you desire. Ask any Torontonian, and they’ll tell you—you’re not just living in Toronto; you’re living in your own little corner of it.

If you’re someone who loves being surrounded by all the action, consider the downtown core. You’ll be in the heart of the city, with quick and easy access to restaurants, entertainment venues, stores and green spaces. 

Plus, some of Toronto’s gems like Kensington Market, Graffiti Alley and St. Lawrence Market are literally just outside your door.

wide variety of neighbourhoods in Toronto

Maybe hustle and bustle isn’t quite your style (and who could blame you). Perhaps an outer suburb or nearby city would be more your speed. Don’t worry—Toronto has plenty of options there too! 

Whether it’s Unionville, Etobicoke or Mississauga, there are neighbourhoods that offer all the amenities of a major city but with a bit more breathing room.

So if you’re thinking about relocating to Toronto soon—or even just for a visit—know that no matter what type of neighbourhood or lifestyle you prefer, Toronto has something for everyone!

neighbourhoods in Toronto

4. Toronto has a low crime rate.

Toronto has a low crime rate
Crime Rates in Toronto
Level of crime46.65 (Moderate)
Home invasion36.16 (Low)
Car robbery33.14 (Low)
Drug addicting or dealing54.78 (Moderate)
Property crimes48.30 (Moderate)
Data sourced from: Numbeo
Safety Index in Toronto
Safety walking alone during daylight74.87 (High)
Safety walking alone during night52.82 (Moderate)
Data sourced from: Numbeo

Living in Toronto is an incredibly safe experience, especially when you compare it to other cities around the world. According to Statistics Canada, Toronto had the lowest crime rate out of major Canadian cities in 2018. 

This is great news if you’re a fan of breathing easy on a daily basis. Toronto may be one of the safest cities out there but don’t worry, there’s still enough excitement around to keep your blood pumping! 

What’s more, Toronto has a long tradition of welcoming immigrants and refugees from all over the world – in fact it’s often dubbed ‘The World Within A City’. 

Whether you choose to work or study in one of Canada’s most populous cities, you can rest assured knowing that it will be an unforgettable experience. 

Cons of Living in Toronto

One of the biggest con is probably the cost of living. It’s expensive to live here, especially if you’re used to paying less for rent or food. 

The cost of living in Toronto is high

The cost of living in Toronto is high

Living in Toronto requires a certain level of financial planning—mainly because it’s not the cheapest place to live. Rent prices are high, utilities are expensive, and food costs can quickly add up. 

But that doesn’t mean it’s a no-go for those who don’t have deep pockets—you can still enjoy the best of Toronto living on a budget.

Expensive Rental Costs

Expensive Rental Costs
Apartment Costs in Toronto
Apartment Rent (1 bedroom , monthly) in City Centre$2,448.24
Apartment Rent (3 bedrooms, monthly) in City Centre$3,925.49
Apartment on Sale inside the city (Per Square Metre)$12,653.21
Data sourced from: Numbeo

Rental prices vary depending on where you live, but it’s safe to say that rent in this city is generally higher than in other parts of Canada. It goes without saying that rent will likely be one of your highest monthly expenses. 

One bedroom apartments range from $2,000 – $2,500 a month with most falling in the middle range. Of course, getting into a nicer apartment or one that’s closer to the city core will cost more.

But if you’re looking for some good news: there are ways to save money and still find a place that meets your needs. 

Research rental sites for deals, use roommates to split the cost, and consider renting outside of downtown—these tips can help you find something expensive yet affordable.

2. High Utility Bills

High Utility Bills
Utilities Costs(Monthly) in Toronto
Electricity, Water (w/heater), Garbage ( for 85m2 Apartment)$190.68
Internet (60 Mbps or more)$76.52
Data sourced from: Numbeo

It’s important to factor in utility costs when budgeting for life in Toronto. That said, many landlords offer discounts if you sign up for an entire year’s worth of utilities at once. 

And setting up regular payments helps with budgeting too! You might also save some money by switching providers or opting for specific types of plans or packages that suit your lifestyle and budget.

3. Higher than Average Food Prices

Higher than Average Food Prices
Food Costs in Toronto
1 litre of regular Milk$3.70
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g)$3.47
Beef Round (1kg) $18.08
Banana (1kg)$1.69
Chicken Filets (1kg)$16.03
Data sourced from: Numbeo

Food prices in Toronto vary depending on whether you shop at big box stores or smaller ones. Generally speaking, a large grocery bill for one person is around $150 – $200 per month while a smaller bill could be as low as $75-$100. 

It all depends on what type of products and how often you shop for groceries throughout the month. Grocery shopping on a budget can be tricky but there are lots of ways to make it work in Toronto! 

Try buying in bulk at wholesale stores like Costco or No Frills, using coupons and taking advantage of meal-kit delivery services. You can also shop at ethnic markets or go through local grocery-saving apps that offer discounts.

Toronto has the worst traffic congestion.

Toronto has the worst traffic congestion

It’s no secret that Toronto is notorious for its traffic congestion. If there’s one downside to living in this beautiful city, it’s the rush hour gridlock that many Torontonians reluctantly endure on a regular basis.

Whether you’re heading to the office or picking up your kids from soccer practice, spending countless hours stuck in traffic will take a toll on your sanity. But if that hasn’t deterred you yet, let me share some stats with you. 

According to the CBC News Canada report, Toronto is the 3rd most congested city in North America and 7th globally.  In fact, drivers spend on average 81 extra hours driving as a result of traffic congestion each year. 

That’s almost two entire days! And it gets even worse during rush hour: drivers spend around 51% more time stuck in traffic between 6am and 9pm compared to non-rush hour periods.

Needless to say, living in Toronto comes with its fair share of gridlock—it pays to be prepared for a few extra hours on the roads each week.

From CityNews

Toronto has a very crowded downtown

Toronto has a very crowded downtown

Living in the financial capital of Canada definitely has its perks. You’re always close to a Starbucks, have access to amazing museums, and can explore the best food scene in Canada or even North America. 

But with all those benefits comes one not-so-great consequence: downtown Toronto can be crowded. From the moment you step out of your house or condo, something is bound to be happening. 

Whether it’s a street performance or a massive crowd taking photos in front of the CN Tower, you don’t have to wander far from your doorstep for some lively entertainment. 

And unless you’re heading up to one of Toronto’s many rooftop bars (which I highly recommend!), you’re likely going to encounter more than one person on your walk—and that’s just how it goes!

So while downtown Toronto can be overwhelming at times, if you make use of all that this incredible city has to offer then it will always reward you with priceless memories in return!

Toronto has high taxes

Toronto has high taxes
Income Tax Brackets in Toronto
Tax RateTax Bracket
5.05%$46,226 or less
9.15%$46,227 to $92,454
11.16%$92,455 to $150,000
12.16%$150,001 to $220,000
13.16%more than $220,000
Data sourced from: OntarioTurboTax

Living in Toronto comes with a lot of great perks, but it also means dealing with the high taxes. But don’t stress—it’s worth it when you realise what you’re getting for your money.

Think about it: when you pay higher taxes, it’s like giving yourself a “Toronto Taxation Package.” You get access to a world-class healthcare system, plus public education, employment opportunities and more. 

You’re also helping pay for strong initiatives that support the arts and community outreach initiatives, making Toronto such a vibrant city to live in.

Benefits of High Taxes

And if that wasn’t enough to soften the blow of those high taxes, here are some of the other benefits:

  • The Ontario government provides property tax credits for seniors and people living with disabilities.
  • There are income tax credits available to residents who own their homes as well as renters.
  • Young adults may be eligible for education and training tax credits.
  • Single parents may qualify for provincial tax deductions that can help make ends meet.
  • And there are even programs and incentives available to those who want to go green.

Sure, paying more in taxes isn’t fun—especially when you have bills to worry about—but living in Toronto gives you access to some pretty sweet benefits that can help make up for it!

Our Verdict: Is Toronto a Good Place to Live In?

Our Verdict Is Toronto a Good Place to Live In

The pros of living in Toronto definitely outweigh the cons for. From fantastic job opportunities to exciting events and great food spots, there’s really something for everyone here. 

Ultimately, Toronto is a great city to live for anyone who is looking for unique experiences, diverse people, and delicious food. The city has its flaws, like any other city, but if you’re willing to take on the challenges of living here, it’ll be worth it in the end.

Plus the city is constantly growing, which means never ending opportunities to explore and find something new. Whether you’re planning on living in Toronto or just visiting, the biggest piece of advice I can give is to be prepared. 

Bring a jacket in the summer, an umbrella in the winter, and always have some extra money saved up in case you need to buy a round of poutine for your new friends. I promise it will be worth it.

FAQs about Living in Toronto and its Costs

Related topics