Are you ready to turn a new page in your life?
Over the last few years, major cities like Toronto and Montreal have seen a significant population decrease as former residents move to new cities and provinces.
Moving to a new province in Canada can open up new doors and opportunities, helping you earn more money, make new connections, create fresh habits, and get closer to your goals.
Below, I’ll share some tips to help your move go smoother and find profitable job opportunities in your new home.
Uprooting your life and moving across the country to another province can entail major expenses. On average, expect to pay between $1,500 and $5,000 for costs such as:
- Boxes and moving materials
- Hired help and movers
- Moving truck and fuel
- Hotel stays if you’re moving a long distance
- Storage unit
In addition to these primary moving expenses, there are also secondary expenses you should keep in mind, including:
- The security deposit or down payment for your apartment or home
- Setting up utilities in your new home (hydro, internet, water, etc.)
- Time taken off work to pack and move into your new home
Renting a medium to large-sized moving truck can easily cost upwards of $200 a day. On top of this, you’ll need to consider the cost of insuring the truck (so you’re covered for any accidental damage) and fuel. Total fuel costs for a cross-country move can easily set you back hundreds of dollars.
Hiring a moving company to help you pack and load your truck can easily be one of the most costly moving expenses.
Expect to pay a minimum of $650 to hire a small three-person moving team for a day’s work. If you have a larger home, you must hire a bigger team or pay a smaller team for multiple work days.
Is hiring a moving company worth it, though?
It depends on your situation.
For example, if you have a demanding (or high-paying) job and limited time off to take care of packing and loading your truck, hiring a moving company will allow you to take less time off of work.
You should also consider your health.
An injury sustained while trying to move heavy boxes and furniture can set your move back by days or result in you having to take even more time off of work to recover.
On the other hand, if you’re young, healthy, and don’t have many belongings and heavy furniture, packing and moving on your own can save you a lot of money. Consider asking a friend to help you lift your heavy pieces of furniture in exchange for dinner.
Moving to a new province with no money saved can be very challenging unless you plan on living with a friend, family, or sleeping in your car (which comes with its own challenges).
If you have no money saved, then you should have some type of employment set up before moving. Even friends and family will expect you to contribute to utilities, rent, or groceries.
Before moving, I recommend putting together a solid resume and applying to jobs in the city or town you plan on moving to. In your cover letter or resume intro, explain the date you plan on moving to the city and why you’re interested in the job.
You should also mention that you’re open to a virtual interview or phone call, so the hiring manager can get a feel for your personality and experience.
Depending on your age, family circumstance, and income, you may be eligible for various provincial assistance programs, which may provide short-term financial relief.
Some provinces may also offer job placement programs, which evaluate your skills, provide training, and could help you find employment quicker than applying for jobs on your own.
If you don’t have a job and you need to move as soon as possible, here are a couple of ideas to consider.
If you have transportation, sign up for gig services like DoorDash, UberEats, and Instacart, or drive for Uber/Lyft. You can usually get accepted as a contractor within a few days by these services and start working on your own schedule.
If you don’t mind manual labour, temp agencies are often eager to hire hard workers with a positive attitude, even if you have little to no experience.
These agencies offer short-term workers to larger companies that need general labourers. You may even find placement for skilled labour, such as heavy equipment operation or carpentry.
Starting pay with temp agencies is usually low, as they take a cut of your pay. However, if a company you’re working with likes you, they may offer to hire you on for a full-time position with higher pay.
Related Reading: How Much do Uber Drivers Make in Canada?
In addition to the financial setback, moving can be stressful. Here are a few helpful tips to help your move go smoother, reduce stress, and help you get situated in your new home.
First off, I don’t recommend moving anywhere until you’ve had a chance to visit and do some basic reconnaissance. Before selecting a new province or city, start by doing some online research on topics such as:
- The city’s job market (top industries, average pay, etc.)
- The average cost of rent
- Access to public transportation
- Crime rates
- Education (if you have children)
- How friendly the area is to newcomers
- Traffic and average commute times
- Local activities (nightlife, hiking, shopping, etc.)
Numbeo is a great resource for researching the cost of living in a city and typically has accurate price data.
I also recommend making a list of potential rental properties that fit your budget and are available to move in on the dates you plan on moving.
Armed with this knowledge, book a cheap plane or train ticket to your future home.
If it’s close enough, I recommend driving so that you can get a feel for the local roads and explore the area a bit.
Spend a day going through your list of potential rental properties, and do a quick drive-by or property tour of each. Online listings can be deceptive, so it’s always good to see the area for yourself.
It’s also a good idea to return to these areas at nighttime to get a feel for any loitering, loud partying, or potential crime that could influence your decision.
Related Reading: Average Cost Of Living By Province
Take a few minutes to add up your expected moving costs (truck rental, fuel, days taken off of work, moving team) and move-in costs, including your first month’s rent, security deposit, and setting up new utilities.
Once you have this number, budget for 20% more to account for unexpected costs, such as an extra day of moving or having to pull over and pay for a hotel room during a bad storm.
Realistically, you probably won’t return to work as soon as you move. You’ll likely need a few days to unpack, get situated, and decompress from the stress of moving.
If you plan on searching for a new job, remember that you could be unemployed for several weeks.
So, in addition to your moving costs, I recommend having at least four or five weeks’ worth of income saved up, so you can keep up with your bills and expenses while you’re seeking employment.
Over the past few years, Toronto has seen a massive decrease in population. Former residents have flocked to neighbouring cities like Ottawa and London or to provinces like B.C., Alberta, and Nova Scotia, where the cost of living is more affordable, and there are more jobs.
For many, the point of moving to a new province in Canada is to turn a new leaf and pursue a better quality of life. For some, this means finding a better job. For others, this means making new friends, attending school, or adopting better habits.
Before you move, sit down and write out your game plan:
- Why you’re moving
- What your goals are once you move
- How you’ll take steps toward these goals
- Which actions and habits you want to adopt (or leave behind)
Moving is a great time to go through all of your stuff and eliminate clutter from your life. A 2017 study by Springer revealed a strong correlation between household clutter and procrastination.
Selling old or unused items on Facebook Marketplace or Kijiji is a great way to help you save up for your move.
You could also consider donating to qualified charities in exchange for a tax-deductible receipt.
Related Reading: How to Sell on Kijiji in Canada
Your network is your net worth. Before moving to a new city, join a couple of local Facebook Groups in the area. This will allow you to start connecting with locals.
These groups can be incredibly helpful, as you can find local job listings and fun things to do or ask practical questions like “Where is the best/cheapest gym in town?”
- Related Reading: Cheapest Gyms In Canada
To ensure a smooth move, you should have a detailed plan for employment/income, estimate your moving expenses, and have some savings to provide a financial safety net after moving to a new province.
Moving can be much easier if you work online, as they’re typically more flexible. You also won’t have to spend time applying for new jobs in person and can get back to work as soon as you move in and set up your internet.
Looking to make the switch to online work? Keep reading to see the best work-from-home jobs that don’t require a degree!