Moving from Toronto to Edmonton: Top Tips

January 6, 2022

Top Tips: Moving from Toronto, Ontario to Edmonton - Featured Image

In recent months, a trend has emerged in Edmonton’s housing market: homeowners from Toronto are leaving stress and excessive commute times behind to move to Edmonton in search of a more balanced lifestyle.

If you’re currently living in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and are also contemplating relocation, we offer you these top tips on a) why Edmonton is an ideal destination and b) how to get started in your move.

Shorter Commute Times

If there’s one common complaint about living in Toronto, it’s the seemingly endless hours spent commuting. Two hours each way leaves very little personal time to go to the gym, visit friends, or wind down after a long workday. Before you know it, you’re already getting up to prepare for another long day of driving and working.

Commute times in Edmonton are far shorter than those in the GTA. On average, depending on how far you live from work, you can expect to spend anywhere from 10-40 minutes one way. Weather and accidents will affect these times, of course, but Edmonton is laid out on a grid with an efficient perimeter road to get you where you need to go fast.

More Affordable Housing

When considering the cost of a home in the GTA, it is unfathomable how the average citizen affords to pay rent or a mortgage! According to the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board as of December 2021, the average home price in Toronto reached an incredible $1.12 million. The average condo price reached $703,698, a purchase amount not achievable by so many first-time buyers in the area.

Homeownership seems out of reach in the GTA, and even if you could find a way to take out a mortgage for that amount, you’d likely be house poor until retirement.

By contrast, in Edmonton the average price of a single-family home as of January 5, 2022 was only $462,000 and $217,000 for a condo, according to the REALTORS Association of Edmonton. Imagine having a mortgage payment that’s a fraction of the amount of that in Toronto. Buying a single-family home in Edmonton for nearly half of the price of a condo in Toronto is just one great reason to relocate.

Edmonton Toronto
Average Single Family Homes $462,000 $1,200,000
Average Price of Condo $217,000 $703,698

Cost of Living Comparison

It’s not only house prices that you’ll save on when you move to Edmonton – you can also save in many other areas as well, such as:

Edmonton Toronto
Provincial Taxes 5% 13%
Grocery Cost (Average per month) $300 $535
Car Insurance $1,427 $2,000
Transportation $100/Month (ETS Pass) $156/Month (TCC Pass)
Average Monthly Utilities $350/Month $471/Month
Health and Fitness (Monthly) $55.40/Month $60.88/Month

Click here to browse new homes for sale in Edmonton. 

Top Tips: Moving from Toronto, Ontario to Edmonton - Nature Image

Edmonton is a Nature-Driven City

Not only does Edmonton feel more like a small, quiet city (even though its population is 1.4 million in the metro area), but it offers hundreds of kilometres of nature trails in the river valley and various parts of the city, dozens of recreational parks, and a four-hour drive to the Rocky Mountains.

Locals spend time year-round participating in recreational and sporting activities, fully embracing the hot summers and cold winters. In addition, Edmonton is rich in cultural facilities and is known as the Festival City for its various events held each year throughout the area.

Edmonton’s four quadrants also provide diversity in culture and a wide variety of communities to choose from. If you’re looking to reduce the amount of time spent commuting to work, all areas of the city have desirable communities in which to live while still being closer to your workplace. 

Additionally, there is a huge selection of neighbourhoods to suit your lifestyle needs. If you prefer to spend your time outdoors, choose a community with nature trails, parks, and water features. If you like to travel, you can choose a community in proximity to the major freeways leading out of the city. The Rocky Mountains are just a few hours away, both directly west toward Jasper, and south through Calgary toward Banff.

Top Tips: Moving from Toronto, Ontario to Edmonton - Festival Image

Living in Edmonton’s Surrounding Areas

While the City of Edmonton offers a diverse selection of communities and cultures, it also offers a half dozen unique bedroom communities in the surrounding area, all within commuting distance. If you’re looking for an even quieter lifestyle, these communities could be something to consider.

These cities include Sherwood Park (east), Fort Saskatchewan (northeast), Beaumont (southeast), Leduc/Nisku (south), Spruce Grove/Stony Plain (west), and St. Albert (northwest.)

In these surrounding areas, you’ll find additional natural reserves with plenty of trails, parks, and green spaces. Beaumont has a rich French culture, and St. Albert residents spend most of the year outdoors along the river and their seemingly endless trail system.

Top Tips: Moving from Toronto, Ontario to Edmonton - Surrounding Areas Image

Getting Ready to Move

Moving to Edmonton from Toronto is no small feat. Choosing the right community will make the difference in how you feel about this major relocation, so do plenty of research on the various areas of the city and which ones may suit your lifestyle, your needs, and your commute best.

Ask yourself important questions before deciding on where you’ll find a new home in Edmonton.

  • Are you moving alone or with someone? This may help you choose a community that suits you and others moving with you.
  • Do you want to rent a place first to get a feel for the city before committing to a home purchase?
  • Are you moving with kids and need to find a community with good schools?

Asking yourself the important questions before doing your research will help you narrow down the best options for you when finding a new place to live.

Finding a Moving Company

If you’re using a moving company to relocate, you’ll want to choose one that will make the long trip easier for you and your family.

Be sure to choose a moving company that’s licensed and accepts all forms of payment (not just cash.) When obtaining quotes, inquire about whether the estimate leaves out hidden costs. You’ll want to make sure the final bill isn’t much higher than you expected. And be sure to choose a moving company that has not only been around for a while but also has a solid reputation. Check into their reviews and be diligent in your decision-making.

The cost to move can vary based on the size of the home and the volume of goods you’re moving. According to Three Men and a Truck, the cost to move from Toronto to Edmonton is estimated to be around $6,500 depending on a variety of factors. Of course, this is a rough estimate, and it’s advised to obtain multiple quotes from various movers to find the best solution.

Pack only what you absolutely must take with you. Moving is already a stressful task without having to find ways to relocate large amounts of furniture or personal items. The cost to move bulky furniture items may actually be higher than that of repurchasing new ones once you arrive in Edmonton. Make sure you have a checklist to ensure you keep all your tasks in order.

Moving from Toronto to Edmonton is a major decision, but one that may change your life for the better. If you’re looking to leave the long commutes and concrete jungle behind, consider moving to Edmonton’s quieter, greener lifestyle. The first step is understanding what is available. Start your journey by browsing available homes. 

Originally posted Aug 16, 2017, updated Jan 6, 2022

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About the Author:

At Sterling Homes, our mission is to provide the opportunity for affordable homeownership without compromise. Over the last 70 years, Sterling Edmonton has quickly become one of Edmonton’s most popular builders. We bring more than seven decades worth of exceptional customer service, superior design and unparalleled craftsmanship to the greater Edmonton area. As a member of the Qualico Group, Sterling Homes focuses on greater Edmonton’s finest family communities, while being able to offer some of the region’s most family friendly prices thanks to volume purchasing power for materials, trades and land. This has not only made Sterling one of Edmonton’s bestselling, move-up builders, but also one of the industry’s most respected home providers. It is through our uncompromising commitment to our customers that we proudly deliver the Sterling Advantage – that’s why each and every home we build includes a 10-year home warranty, a completion guarantee and new home warranty excellence rating. Our Advantage is our pledge that, when you build your dream home with Sterling, we will deliver a timely, well-built home you’re sure to enjoy for years to come.

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