Permanent Residents

We understand that as newcomers to Canada, setting up your life here is your top priority, and part of that is managing your finances. From opening a bank account to purchasing a home, we have products and services to help you every step of the way.

Prepare for your move

Get ready for your move by following these extra steps, as suggested by the Government of Canada:

  1. Explore pre-arrival services to help you prepare for your move which includes getting your credentials recognized in Canada, finding a job and connecting with additional free services after your arrival.

  2. Consider where you’ll be living when you arrive in Canada. You may want to stay in a hotel temporarily or move in with a relative at first before looking for long-term housing. 

  3. Bring all important documentation to Canada such as a valid passport, immigration visa, and a list of all belongings you’re bringing and their dollar value.

  4. Prepare your proof of funds to meet the minimum requirements if you’re coming through the Federal Skilled Worker Program or Federal Skilled Trades Program.

  5. Find a school for yourself or your kids. Choose between public schools or private schools.

  1. Organize your finances and make sure you can access your money once you arrive in Canada. If you’re bringing more than $10,000 CDN in cash or cash equivalent, it must be declared at the border.

  2. Consider private health insurance options. Canada does offers public health insurance to permanent residents but you may need to wait up to three months for it to start. 

  3. Start looking for employment from job search websites. If you have any credentials that need to be assessed, the Canadian Government can guide you on how to get your credentials recognized in Canada.

  4. Expand your language skills in English and/or French, Canada’s two official languages.  

  5. Prepare yourself for all four seasons in Canada. Depending on the province you choose to live in and the time of year, it can get very cold or very hot, so be sure to pack the right clothes.

Living in Canada as a permanent resident

As a newcomer to Canada, you may already have plans to live somewhere temporarily. But eventually when you become financially ready, you may want to find a place of your own. Whether you choose to stay in the same city or town or move elsewhere is up to you. However, here are some factors to consider:

  • Living expenses and the amount of space needed
  • Employment opportunities
  • Distance from friends
  • Time and money spent on commuting
  • Exposure to similar/different cultures

Cost of living in Canada 

Consider this list of possible expenses when trying to create a budget for your new life in Canada.

  1. Housing expenses:
    Costs vary depending on the size of your home and whether you rent or own it. You'll also want to factor in costs associated with your home such as utilities, insurance, etc.

  2. Basic expenses: 
    Factor in necessities like food and clothes. Eating at restaurants or buying designer clothes can be expensive. To reduce costs, consider making home cooked meals or buy less expensive clothing.    

  3. Health insurance:
    Canada has public healthcare, but some things like vision care, dental care, prescription drugs and wheelchairs are not covered. You may want to buy private health insurance to get more coverage.  

  4. Transportation:
    If public transportation isn't an option, you can purchase a car or lease one (a form of rental). Be prepared for car payments, the cost of gas, maintenance, insurance, etc. 

  1. Pay cheque deductions:
    In Canada, employers will deduct money from your pay cheques to pay for income taxes, employment insurance, union dues (if you belong to a union) or pension plans.

  2. Childcare expenses:
    Childcare costs and subsidies vary by province. Depending on your child's age and your new schedule, daycare or after school programs may be worth considering.

  3. Tipping for service:
    Whether you're paying for a meal at a restaurant or paying for a haircut, tipping for service is a common practice in Canada.

  4. Communication expenses: 
    Paying for a cell phone plan and internet are additional costs you need to account for. Be mindful that prices may be higher than what you've experienced in your home country.

  5. Added sales tax:
    Like many other countries, Canada adds a sales tax to the products and services that you buy. 

Resources to help get you started

More resources for newcomers

  • Explore chequing accounts, savings accounts, credit cards and mortgages.

  • We make it easy to send money to over 200 countries and territories with TD Global TransferTM.

  • Bank online, in person or by phone. Plus, use the TD app for convenient banking on the go.

Get in touch

Have a question? Find answers here