Canada can be a pretty pricey place to live! Toronto ranks in 61st place on the list of most expensive cities in the world, and Vancouver ranks 63rd. If you are living and working in Canada, you can expect to pay some steep fees for taxes, rent/mortgage, and insurance.
But what happens when you are fired and your unemployment benefits run out? How can you survive the high cost of living in Canada when you have no income coming in? We’ve got some tips below that can help you out:
1. Move in with Mom and Dad
This definitely isn’t most people’s first choice, but sometimes it’s the only thing you can do. Instead of being forced out of your home or apartment, why not reach out to your parents and see if you can move in with them?
Multi-generational households are becoming more and more common. More grandparents are moving in with their children, and more children are moving in with their parents thanks to the rising cost of living. If you need help to get back on your feet and have no unemployment benefits to carry you until your next job, it may be time to call on the help of family and friends.
2. Trim Your Expenses
This is a hard saying, but it MUST be done!
The truly necessary expenses include:
- Rent/Mortgage (including utilities)
Other than that, it’s time to look at all of your other expenses, such as:
- Entertainment (partying, eating out, etc.)
- Insurance (life, car, health)
- Credit card spending
- Internet and cable
The truth is that you CAN live without all the extras, so it may be time to start! If you trim your expenses the smart way, you may be able to stretch out your savings for a few more months--hopefully until you get that new job.
3. Take a Minimum Wage Job
You need to start seriously looking around at all job options, no matter how "poorly paid" the jobs may be. At this point in your life, you can’t really afford to not work, even if it means that you are being paid barely above minimum wage. (Minimum wage in Canada is $10.50, which is almost enough to live on if you keep your expenses low.)
Of course, you don’t want to exist on minimum wage for too long, but at least take a low-paying job until you can get back on your feet or find a better-paid job. Consider working at places like:
- Tim Horton’s
- Home Depot
All of these places pay barely above minimum wage, but they ALWAYS have job openings.
4. Kick Your Job Search Into High Gear
While you were receiving unemployment benefits, you didn’t need to invest too much time and effort into getting a new job. After all, you were being paid because you were unemployed!
But now it’s time to get serious about your job search. No more fooling around and enjoying your days of unemployment. Polish your resume, break out that suit, and start applying to every single job ad you find. Start working freelance, taking odd jobs, and doing whatever you can to find a job.
5. Apply for Employment Insurance
For Canadians who are unemployed, the government offers Employment Insurance--short term financial aid.
Who is eligible?
- Anyone who loses their job through no fault of their own
- Pregnant mothers, nursing mothers, parents adopting a new child
- Those unable to work due to sickness or injury
- Those providing care to a loved one who is gravely ill or has a high risk of death
- Parents caring for critically ill or injured children
It’s actually quite easy to apply for the Employment Insurance, as it can be done online. Click here to start the application process...
For more resources to help you survive unemployment, visit the Government of Canada’s Canada Benefits website...
It’s tough to survive in Canada without unemployment benefits, but it can be done! The tips above will help you make it out of your unemployment alive.
Got advice on how to rough it through the hard times? Leave a comment below and let us know how you did it…