How much will working cost me in Toronto versus Montreal?
As you all may have read, I gave up a $250,000 contract in another city to stay local and at home every night with Baby Bun.
I was pretty bummed about the whole situation, but I do feel that I’ve made the right decision because I love seeing Baby Bun grow by leaps and bounds (even if I am currently still itching to go back to work ASAP..)
(As a side note, sometimes, I even think he understands what I am saying when I tell him it’s time for babies to nap or go to sleep.)
Anyway, I thought I’d do a financial comparison of freelancing in Ontario versus Quebec.
Since I don’t have a car (donated my last one to charity), I have the option of taking public transit (if possible), or buying a car.
I did the preliminary budgets for both, and the two major budget busters are DAYCARE and CAR INSURANCE.
- Rent, Food and “Other” (the rest of the budget stuff) stays the same between both cities
- Everything is my half, my partner pays for the other half, so the daycare amounts you see for instance, are my half only
- My income is not a factor in this because it fluctuates, but suffice it to say, it’s worth it for me to work.
TAKING PUBLIC TRANSIT
PRIVATE DAYCARE VERSUS GOVERNMENT DAYCARE
Yes, the rest of Canada, EAT YOUR HEARTS OUT.
In Quebec, they have government daycares at $7/day, which is about $154 a month. It sounds great and all, but the waiting lists are LONGGGGG. People sign up to be on these lists while they’re pregnant or sometimes EVEN BEFORE they get pregnant.
I had no idea, so I didn’t even look into this stuff until after Baby Bun was born, and I signed up for every $7 daycare within a reasonable radius of where we’re living, but it looks like private daycares are where it’s at until I can find a spot for him.
Private daycare in Quebec can cost the same as in other provinces, at around $1425/month or on average $65/day, but the government acknowledges that it’s ridiculous and subsidizes it based on your income:
I am a freelancer who controls her income, so I can choose to take out as much or as little as I want in any given year. I am planning on staying under the income range listed there to get the maximum advantage of that 75% subsidy until I can find a $7/day daycare for Baby Bun.
We’re going to try and keep our household incomes under $34,000, but even if we go up higher, it isn’t so bad, even at the $93,000 range. 60% subsidized means at $1425/month, it will only cost us $570/month or $285 each.
Depending on if I have to buy a car or take the bus, I may need to take out more money, and subsequently, receive a lower daycare subsidy.
Not too shabby.
TAKING THE CAR
I’m also exploring the possibility of having to buy a car and drive it to work because it may be located in the middle of nowhere (so I can’t use public transit)… or just because I don’t want to take the bus in the dead of winter.
Aside from having to also spend about $2000 – $10,000 on buying a used car, this is what it’ll cost me on a monthly basis:
So here’s another great perk of living in Quebec, the car insurance is way cheaper.
I guesstimated my insurance would be about $300 a month, and comparably speaking in Quebec, it would only be around $28 a month, or $300 a year for basic car insurance.
You just can’t beat that.
I’ve only really had car insurance in Quebec so I’ve never had to feel the pain of paying anything over $300/year, but I’ve heard horror stories.
Even if it’s only $150 a month, it’s still way more expensive than in Quebec.
So.. those are my budgets. I can expect to spend about $1700 – $2100 a month in net living expenses.
The $500/month for “other” is actually quite low, considering household expenses, household equipment, and Baby Bun needs, but I can make it work if it means I get to work.
If my partner is not working, I’m going to transition having him stay at home with Baby Bun (unless we manage to snag a $7/day daycare spot), and save the cost of daycare there.
There you have it.