How Much Does It Cost to Live in Halifax?

The beautiful city of Halifax is the capital of the province of Nova Scotia. The city is now part of the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) as is recognized as a major economical center in Atlantic Canada. The city has an estimated population of 440,332 with a total land area of about 5,490.3 sq. Km, making it the 14th largest municipality of Canada as well as the 13th largest metropolitan area. Halifax has a major concentration of government services as well as it contains a substantial number of major private sector companies. 

The city of Halifax is also famous for the Halifax Shipyard, Saint Mary’s University, and Dalhousie University. Other major economic generators include various levels of government along with the Department of National Defense being situated in the city. Additionally, there are many resource industries located in Halifax.

Cost of living in Halifax - 2021

Housing Cost in Halifax

Given below is a table that lists down the prices of different types of apartments and their costs.

City DistrictStudio1 Bedroom2 Bedroom3 + Bedroom
Downtown Halifax$975$1315$2165$2200
West End$945$2535
Rockingham$1350$1692
Dartmouth Centre$1795$2550$3198
East Dartmouth$639$720
Clayton Park West$875$1255$1465$1590

Housing

Average rent price for 1 Bedroom apartment

$1216

(* Zumper)

Average Cost of Utilities

Electricity, Energy, Water and more

Being situated in the province of Nova Scotia, the average rate of electricity for the city of Halifax is the same as for the whole province i.e. 15.0¢/kWh, which is one of the modes rates in comparison to provinces like Nunavut standing at 37.5¢/kWh and Northwest Territories at 38.7¢/kWh. If your apartment or house is averagely consuming around 1000kWh, your electric bill will come around $120. Other provinces providing similar or even cheaper rates of electricity include Ontario, Manitoba, and Quebec.


For an 85m2 apartment, the collective bill of all the utilities is averaged around $103 which includes heating, cooling, garbage, water, etc. Electricity may or may not be added to this figure depending upon the rate of consumption.

Home Insurance Rates

As for monthly home insurance rates, throughout the province of Nova Scotia, if you own property, you are likely to pay an insurance of about $780 on average.

Whether you are living in a rented apartment or a condo, you will require some form of insurance coverage for your dwelling. In terms of property coverage, you have a few options.

Home Services

Type of Coverage

Coverage amount

Dwelling building

Replacement cost of your home

Detached Private Structure(s)

10% – 20% of replacement cost

Personal Property

70% – 80% of replacement cost

Additional Living Expenses

20% – 30% of replacement cost

Housing

Average monthly cost for Utilities + Insurance

$587

Cost of Public Transport and Parking Rates

The city of Halifax provides its residents with a number of ways to travel around the city conveniently with the conventional mediums including buses, ferries, and Access-A-Buses. Then there is the regional express metro traveling on routes 320, 330, and 370.

The fares can be seen in the table below.

For the average cost of public transport in the city of Halifax, consult the table below.

 

Conventional Mediums

Fare category

Cash to fare

10 tickets

Monthly pass

Transfer 

Children

Age 0-12 years

Free

N/A

N/A

N/A

Youth/Seniors

Age 13-17 years

$2

$18

$60

Free 

Adults

Age 18-64 years

$2.75

$24.75

$82.50

Free

 

Regional Express

Fare Category

Cash Fare 

X Pass

Ticket, Monthly Pass, U Pass, or transfer

Children

Age 0-12 years

Free 

N/A

N/A

Youth/Seniors

Age 13-17 years

$3

$90

$

Adults

Age 18-64 years

$4.25

$127.50

$

 

Cost of The Public Bicycle Sharing System

In terms of the public bike-sharing system, you will find that the beautiful metropolitan city of Halifax still lags behind many other cities that have their own bike-sharing systems whether introduced by the local government or even private vendors. But there are many active moments on social media urging the government of Halifax to take the initiative of introducing a public bike-sharing system.

 

Car Parking Rates

The city of Halifax has upgraded its paid car parking system from individual meters to pay stations which consists of pay-by-plate and pay-by-zone systems. Despite this, there will still be a mixture of a permit, paid, and hourly parking in the parking zones. The rates for parking vary by zone and there is a daily 4-hour maximum. The parking rates are as following:

  • For Zone A-G: $2 for the first two hours, $6 for hours 3 and 4 up to a maximum of 4 hours in any zone.
  • For Zone H, $1.50 for the first two hours and $4 for 3rd and 4th hours up to a maximum of 4 hours in any zone.

Car Insurance Rates

Car Insurance Rates

Car insurance rates in Canada vary from one province to another. It’s a good thing that the rates for car insurance in the city of Halifax, Nova Scotia is substantially affordable in comparison to many other provinces, landing at an average of $891. The collective average for all the provinces comes to a total of $1151. Therefore, it is still substantially more affordable. 

Transportation

Monthly Pass

$82.50

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Entertainement

Halifax is full of beautiful locations, museums, sports centers, cinemas, and activity centers along with a number of restaurants, so it is quite affordable and easy to remain entertained in this city. Considering the essentials only, the average cost of entertainment around the city of Halifax includes:

  • Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant: $15.00
  • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course: $75
  • Domestic Beer (0.5-liter draught): $7
  • 2 tickets to the cinema: $26
  • Taxi trip on a business day, basic cost, 8 km. (5 miles): $20
  • Cocktail drink in the pub: $10

Considering at average cost, if you have had 4 beers, 1 restaurant visit with friends, visited the cinema 2 times, and have had 4 regular restaurant meals per month, that can cost you about $188.

Entertainement

Monthly Cost

$188

Grocery Cost in Halifax

Grocery includes items such as fruits, vegetables, meat, eggs, milk, and others. Cost for some regular groceries that may averagely be purchased include:

Items (1 kg)

Prices

Milk (1 Liter)

$2.56

Loaf of bread

$3.03

Rice

$5.65

Dozen Eggs

$3.72

Local Cheese 

$12.40

Chicken 

$14.94

Beef round 

$15.52

Apple 

$6.49

Banana 

$2.19

Orange 

$4.76

Tomato 

$4.60

Potato 

$4.92

Onion 

$3.98

Head of Lettuce

$3.66

Water Bottle 1.5L

$2.33

Cigarette 20 Pack

$18.25

Grocery

Monthly budget for 1 person

$250

Phone and Internet

There are plenty of internet service providers in Halifax as well as cellphone service providers with different packages that are sure to meet everyone’s needs. Considering a general 60 Mbps connection with unlimited download, it will cost you around $90-$100 on average. Finding the best Internet Plan will be easy as there are so many Internet providers available. Whereas 1 minute of the prepaid cost with no plan or discount will cost you around $0.23.

Phone and Internet

Phone with unlimited talk, text and data (Internet is included in Utilities)

$90

Fitness and Personal Care

In terms of fitness and personal care, a one-month fitness club fee averages around 55-60 $ per month. As for healthcare, you are covered with Canada universal healthcare. Having personal insurance is still highly recommended for other personal care services such as the dentist and the optometrist.

Health and Fitness

The average cost of a Fitness membership

$55

Provincial Taxes (Sales, city, and Income taxes)

There are three types of sales taxes in Canada. In the province of Nova Scotia, they have HST that is set at about 15%. Applicable tax on the taxable income includes:

  • 8.79% on the first $29,590 of taxable income, +.
  • 14.95% on the next $29,590, +.
  • 16.67% on the next $33,820, +.
  • 17.5% on the next $57,000, +.
  • 21% on the amount over $150,000.

Conclusion

If you plan on moving to Halifax, then you can calculate the average cost of living in the city using the provided table and selecting the rates along with respective items, and finding the total sum which may vary from one person to another.

 

Average Monthly Cost of living in Halifax

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Category

Description

Cost

Housing

Average rent price for a 1 bedroom apartment + Insurance + Average utility cost

$1216 + $45+ $103

Transportation

Monthly Pass

$82.50

Food

Regular grocery basket for one person

$250

Phone

Unlimited mobile plan

$90

Entertainement

Monthly cost (see above)

$188

Health and Fitness

The average cost of a Fitness membership

$55

Total

Sum

$2029.50

Note: If you are sharing cost with someone, it will be significantly lower. Also, if you are budgeting for a family, you’ll need to add the cost of each family member.

This is an approximation. Price will vary.

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