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Costs for taxes, utilities, housing compare well with other major centres

Ron Walter looks at how Saskatchewan cities stack up against others across Canada
Bizworld by Ron Walter

Living expenses of Regina residents rate among the lowest of 10 major cities across Canada, according to Saskatchewan budget data.

The data tables do intercity comparisons of taxes, household utility and housing costs in 10 cities for three income levels.

Total tax utility and housing costs for a single person earning $40,000 are third lowest of the cities at $17,812.

Lowest for this income are St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador at $17,477 and Saint John, New Brunswick at $17,757.

That single person pays 44.5 per cent of its income for these essential living expenses.

For a family earning $75,000, Saskatchewan taxes, household utility and housing costs are lowest of the 10 cities at $28,734. That family pays 44.1 per cent of income for these expenses.

For a family earning $125,000 cost of taxes, utilities and housing are lowest of the cities at $34,528.

They pay 23.7 per cent of income on these costs.

Remarkably in Vancouver where the costs are highest, this family would pay $93,414 — equal to 74 per cent of income. No wonder B.C. residents are moving out.

One major advantage of living in Regina is lower provincial income taxes, just over $7,000 for $125,000 earners; $4,200 for $75,000 earners; and $1,648 for $40,000 incomes.

Regina mortgage costs are lowest at $16,734 for $75,000 and $125,000 income. That difference can be attributed to lower house costs.

Home heating bills for these higher income levels at $874 are lowest in the bunch.

Electricity costs of $1,628 are third lowest with Winnipeg and Montreal costs lower. Both these cities have access to low-cost hydro power.

Property taxes at $3,118 are only lower in Halifax and Winnipeg.

Saskatchewan sales tax is the lowest, except for Alberta which has no PST.

Auto insurance in Regina averages $1,249 with government-owned insurers in Winnipeg and P.E.I. close to Regina.

B.C. government-owned auto insurance is one-third higher than in this province.

The 10 cities compared are Vancouver, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, Saint John, New Brunswick, Halifax, St. John’s, Newfoundland and Charlottetown

In general, the cost of these essentials in Regina is among the lowest in this comparison.

Ron Walter can be reached at  

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the position of this publication.




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