Top 25 Cheapest Places to Live in Canada in 2021

It’s obvious why the second world’s largest country (by landmass) is attracting many people to its shores.

From its economy, politics, housing, education, and technology, Canada is growing in all aspects.

As a result, there will be more than a million newcomers to the country from 2021 to 2023. This means more growth opportunities for residents, businesses and the entire country.

However, the cost of living in Canada varies from province to province with some provinces having higher costs than others.

Thus, if you’re under the low-mid-income bracket it’s important to know the cheapest places to live in Canada to enjoy your stay here.

Fortunately, from Ontario to Quebec, you have several options when it comes to finding the cheapest place to live in Canada.

Based on in-depth research and comparison, here I present to you the cheapest places to live in Canada.

The Average Cost of Living in Canada

Before we dive into the cheapest places to live in Canada, it’s important to have a brief background of the cost of living in Canada.

The following table displays the average cost of living in Canada per sector:

SectorAverage Cost
Transportation
Monthly Pass (Normal Price)
1-litre Gasoline
One-way Local Transport Ticket
Taxi 1km (Regular Tariff)
Taxi Start (Regular Tariff)                 
Taxi 1-hour Waiting (Normal Tariff)
90.00 C$
1.17 C$
3.25 C$
2.00 C$
4.00 C$
34.00 C$
Clothing and Shoes
Jeans (1 Pair) Nike Running Shoes (1 Pair Mid-Range)
Men Leather Business Shoes (1 Pair)
Summer Dress in a Chain Store (1 Pair)

63.90 C$
101.60 C$
128.22 C$      
45.24 C$
Utilities (Monthly)                  
Internet (Unlimited Data, 60 Mbps or More, Cable/ADSL)
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local (No Discounts or Plans)                
Electricity, Water, Cooling, Heating, Garbage)            
79.02 C$  
0.34 C$
164.82 C$  
Rent (Monthly)
1 Bedroom Apartment in City Centre
1 Bedroom Apartment Outside of Centre
 
1,331.39 C$
1,123.50 C$               
Childcare
1 Child Monthly Kindergarten, Private, Full Cost
1 Child Annual International Primary School Cost                       
988.51 C$
13,846.03 C$
Sports and Leisure
1 Adult Monthly Fitness Club Fee
1 Hour Tennis Court Rent
1 Seat on Cinema and International Release   
50.94 C$
20.11 C$
14.00 C$

Source: Numbeo.com

The above sectors and others make the national average cost of living in Canada to be 898$/month per single person.

As you can see, the average cost of living in Canada is lower compared to other countries such as the US.

Consequently, our discussion of the cheapest places to live in Canada will reflect the above sectors.

Cheapest Places to Live in Canada

As mentioned previously, the cost of living in Canada varies from province to province. However, even within a province, some places are more costly than others.

In no particular order, here are the top 25 cheapest places to live in Canada:

1. Brockville, Ontario

Brockville, Ontario

 

Formerly known as Elizabethtown, Brockville is located in Eastern Ontario, north of the Saint Lawrence River.

With tourist attractions such as the Brockville Tunnel, Aquatarium and Fulford Place, Brockville is one of the cheapest places to live in Canada.

Furthermore, Brockville has a humid temperature, tight security and friendly neighbourhoods.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1389, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $632.

2. Drummondville, Quebec

 

Drummondville, Quebec

This city is located at Quebec’s Centre-du-Québec and houses the Village Québécois d’Antan. As a result, Drummondville is the destination of Quebec’s attractions and one of the safest places to live in Quebec.

If you’re a French speaker, you may find Drummondville one of the cheapest places to live in Canada. Although there’s English and other languages in Drummondville, French is the major language.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1284, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is also $632.

3. Sherbrooke, Quebec

Sherbrooke, Quebec

This is Quebec’s 6th largest city. Sherbrooke is considered the centre of attraction for Estrie due to its cultural and economic composition.

Sherbrooke is also the major city in Quebec, with the highest number of students spread across its eight educational institutions.

What I like about this city is its outdoor expression which is composed of mountains, ski hills, lakes and rivers that attract tourists worldwide.

That said, the average cost of living here is $937, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $309.

4. Longueuil, Quebec

Longueuil, Quebec

Longueuil is also one of Quebec’s cities located at the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River. It is home to the central city of the urban agglomeration of Longueuil and the Montérégie administrative region.

Furthermore, Longueuil hosts many aerospace companies, the headquarters of the Canadian Space Agency and the John H. Chapman Space Centre.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1123, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $423.

5. Thunder Bay, Ontario

Thunder Bay, Ontario

Popularly known as Lakehead, Thunder Bay is located in northwestern Ontario, and it’s surrounded by national parks and wilderness.

With a population of more than 100,000, Thunder Bay is home to Lakehead University and the famous company, Resolute Forest.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1281, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $505.

6. Bécancour, Quebec

 

Bécancour, Quebec

Bécancour is a city in Quebec located in the Centre-du-Québec region with proximity to Trois-Rivières.

Furthermore, the industrious city has a vibrant culture and hosts a maritime pumpkin race, balloon festival and a biodiversity museum and interpretation centre.

That said, the cost of living here is 30% less than the national average (898$/month per single person).

7. Moncton, New Brunswick

Moncton, New Brunswick

This city is located in the southeastern part of New Brunswick. Moncton is a bilingual city consisting of French and English as its major languages.

Furthermore, nature lovers find Moncton attractive because it sits between national parks and breaches.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1194, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is  $469.

8. Halifax, Nova Scotia

 

Halifax, Nova Scotia

As the capital city of Nova Scotia, Halifax is an eastern Canadian major economic center with significant government services and private businesses.

Furthermore, Halifax is an industrious city made up of industries such as agriculture, forestry, fishing and mining.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1495, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is  $635.

9. Laval, Quebec

Laval, Quebec

This is the 13th popular city in Canada and the largest suburb of Montreal, located at Île Jésus.

With four major industrial parks, Laval economy is driven by technology, retail, industry, and pharmaceuticals.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1252, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is  $475.

10. St. Catharines, Ontario

St. Catharines, Ontario

Seniors and people looking for a modest and affordable city to live in Canada will find St. Catharines as one of the cheapest places.

As the sixth-largest urban area in Ontario and largest city in the Niagara Region, St. Catharines is full of outdoor activities.

Furthermore, St. Catharines is famous for its service and manufacturing industries. It is also close to the renowned educational institutions, Brock University and Niagara College.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1329, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is  $618.

11. Kelowna, British Columbia

Kelowna, British Columbia

This city is located south of British Columbia, at the Okanagan Valley. Kelowna is surrounded by vineyards, provincial parks, mountains and orchards and pine forest.

Also, the economy of Kelowna is driven by the service industry. The city attracts tourists for hiking, boating, biking, gift, skiing and snowboarding.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1510, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $724.

12. Montreal, Quebec

Montreal, Quebec

This is the most populous city of Quebec and Canada’s second-largest economy. Montreal is also the major media and entertainment center 9f Quebec.

Furthermore, Montreal hosts two of the five big banks, namely, Royal Bank of Canada and Bank of Montreal.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1447, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $558.

13. Niagara Falls, Ontario

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Niagara Falls is also one of the cheapest places to live in Canada. Located at the famous waterfalls of Ontario, Niagara Falls is a destination for most tourists.

As a result, Niagara Falls economy is largely based on tourism and the service industries.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1483, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $647.

14. Winnipeg, Manitoba

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Winnipeg is the largest city and capital of Manitoba, with a population of over 700,000.

Winnipeg’s economy is driven by the manufacturing, trade, healthcare, and educational sectors.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1425, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $608.

15. Kitchener, Ontario

Kitchener, Ontario

Kitchener is a city located in Ontario that is famous for its growing modern community and business scene.

The manufacturing and technology sectors drive the economy of Kitchener, making it one of the cities with a low unemployment rate in Canada.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1348, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $599.

16. Lévis, Quebec

 

Lévis, Quebec

Lévis is another cheap place to live in Canada, which has a population of more than 140,000. The majority of the population here speak French as their first language.

Furthermore, Lévis has a diversified economy consisting of large manufacturing, shipbuilding and refinery companies.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1406, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $644.

17. Edmonton, Alberta

Edmonton, Alberta

This is the capital city of Alberta province, located on the North Saskatchewan River. It also hosts the University of Alberta, which is the six-best university in Canada.

Edmonton is nicknamed the festival city of Canada due to its cultural festivals and heritage that attract tourists.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1536, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $633.

18. Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Saskatoon is Saskatchewan’s largest city, with a population of more than 300,0000. With a lot of bridges, Saskatoon is counted among the sunniest cities in Canada. 

Potash and oil are the driving sectors of Saskatoon’s economy.  As a result, the city houses Nutrien’s headquarter, the world’s largest Potash company.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1415, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $588.

19. Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec

Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec

Rouyn-Noranda is a city in Quebec located with a population of more than 42,000. The majority of the people here speak French as the first language.

Rouyn-Noranda is nicknamed the National Copper Capital due to its success on copper, which is the driven sector of its economy.

That said, the average cost of living here is $994, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $331.

20. Kingston, Ontario

Kingston, Ontario

Also known as the “Limestone” city, Kingston is located in the eastern part of Lake Ontario. This city has a remarkable military history, and it shares its name with Jamaica’s capital city.

The sectors that drive employment in Kingston l are health care, public education, public institutions, tourism and government.

That said, the average cost of living here is $994, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $1475.

21. Nanaimo, British Columbia

Nanaimo, British Columbia

Also known as the harbour city, this city is located in British Columbia, and it’s home to the main campus of the famous university, Vancouver Island University.

With the provincial government being the major employer in the city, Nanaimo is one of the cheapest places to live in Canada.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1481, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $661.

22. Regina, Saskatchewan

Regina, Saskatchewan

With a population of more than 200,000, this is the capital city of Saskatchewan, with several parks and attractions.

Regina’s economy is also largely dependent on Potash, natural gas and oil. Its major employers are the health and service sectors.

However, Regina is considered one of the dangerous cities in Canada.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1370, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $612.

23. Red Deer, Alberta

Red Deer, Alberta

With a population of more than 100,000, Red Deer is a city located in Alberta, with most of its population residing in urban areas.

Despite being one of the cheapest places to live in Canada, Red Deer is considered among the dangerous cities in Canada.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1378, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $556.

24. Cornwall, Ontario

Cornwall, Ontario

Cornwall is a city located in the eastern part of Ontario. This city is close to the Saint Lawrence River, where the border with the US starts.

With a diversified economy, Cornwall is also among the cheapest places to live in Canada.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1050, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $398.

25. London, Ontario

London, Ontario

The last but not the cheapest place to live in Canada on my list is London. This Ontario’s city shares only a name with the capital city of the UK.

London is the regional center of education and healthcare, with a population of more than 300,000.

As home to the TD Canada Trust and  Western University, London is driven towards healthcare research and IT.

That said, the average cost of living here is $1333, and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment is $579.

Cheapest Place to Live in Ontario and Quebec

From the above review of the cheapest places to live in Canada, you can see that Ontario and Quebec are leading the list.

However, based on the above review, the cheapest place to live in Ontario is Cornwall, with the average cost of living at $1050 and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment at $398.

On the other hand, the cheapest place to live in Quebec is Sherbrooke, with the average cost of living at $937 and the average cost of 1 bedroom apartment at $309.

Overall, the cheapest place to live in Ontario, Quebec or any place in Canada should be affordable, safe and have the features you need.

Final Thoughts on the Cheapest Places to Live in Canada

As you can see, the cheapest places to live in Canada are small cities spread across Ontario, Quebec and other provinces.

While affordability is a major factor in making a relocation decision, you shouldn’t limit yourself to that. I suggest you extend your evaluation to include other factors such as security, amenities, job opportunities etc.

By reviewing these factors, you can easily choose the cheapest place in Canada that suits your situation.

But if you need any help deciding the cheapest place to live in Canada, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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