How to navigate the rising cost of living in Canada

How to navigate the rising cost of living in Canada

As Canada continues to welcome an ever-increasing number of newcomers, inflationary pressures and a rising cost of living continue to raise questions regarding the expenses that newcomers will face when settling in their new home.

Fortunately, through a combination of federal and provincial government supports, and resources available to individuals, newcomers to Canada have options to navigate the rising cost of living in the country. Read on to learn what government assistance is available, and what tools and resources you can use to manage costs and save money.

The current situation

In the 2022 Consumer Price Index (CPI)—a survey program (conducted by the Canadian government) that is used as a measure of price increases through comparison of a fixed basket of goods and services—Statistics Canada reported the largest ever increase in the CPI (i.e.: increase in the price of goods and services in Canada) since 1982.

Another recent report released by Statistics Canada found that nearly one in four Canadians was unable to meet an unexpected expense of $500 CAD, with 44% of Canadians raising additional concerns about the rising prices of food and gasoline.

Federal Government Supports

In response to these inflationary pressures (and following the 2022 Fall Economic Statement), the government of Canada has introduced and maintained several policies to aid residents in addressing their expenses. Many of these policies have been instituted through the Affordability Plan, which encompasses several measures representing the federal government’s $12.1 billion CAD investment in aiding affordability.

One of programs is the Goods and Services (GST) Tax Credit, which is being doubled for a six-month period beginning November 4, 2022. This modification affects approximately 11 million Canadians who are considered to have low or modest income. Single individuals without children can expect an additional payment of up to $234 CAD, while a couple with two children may receive as much as $467 CAD or more. On average, seniors (aged 65 and over) will receive an extra $225 CAD.