One of our TFB readers, Ottawa Guy, asked me a few weeks ago what is the difference between living in Quebec and the rest of Canada. His main question was how can he cope with the high level of taxes in Quebec?
For those who don’t know, we are probably the most taxed province/state in North America. Therefore, most sane folks will think twice before moving to The Belle Province to start a new life here. Why would you bother with the ridiculous level of taxes when you can live in Ontario or Alberta? First, you can’t be a Leafs fan so we will forget about Toronto . Now, let’s go with the reason why it is nice to live in Quebec:
We have an amazing program where kids aged between 6 months and 5 years old can go to Government controlled and sponsored daycare. They offer high quality daycares at only $7 per day. Plus, if you can’t find a place right away, private daycare costs are partially reimbursed by the government.
The Quebec government sponsors parental leaves up to 1 year for the mother and 5 weeks for the father. How cool is that to be more than one month with your spouse to take care of the kids? I have benefitted from this program and I can tell how much smoother things go when your newborn arrives.
Depending on where you live, this could be of great interest to you. In Quebec, we have nationalized our hydro electricity power company. The whole province is powered with hydro electricity and it is really cheap. For example, I have a 3,600 square foot house and I pay about $200 per month for my power bill (including heat during winter).
While the cost of living is similar, property costs is by far cheaper than any other province (compared to other big cities). You can have a very nice cottage with a garage for $300k in the Montreal suburbs. In my case, I preferred to move further from Montreal (80km away) in order to have a much bigger house and a lot more land. However, even living in Montreal is affordable when compared to Toronto, Vancouver or Calgary. Since salaries are about the same (slightly lower), you can easily afford a property in Quebec!
All right, this is far from being a financial argument. But cheering the Habs at the Bell Center is an amazing feeling .
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