When moving to Canada, one of the first things to look for is a job. Getting one, especially when you’re not in Canada yet, can be quite tricky. But it’s also important to not rush into accepting any offer that comes your way without knowing if the wages would be sufficient for you. So, is 50k a good salary in Canada?
The average salary in Canada is around $50k, but many earn above it. As a single person, 50k is a good salary, especially as net pay. But it’s not sufficient for a family, whether as a gross or net salary. Regardless, if you find yourself earning this low, you need to know how to manage your salary.
Whether a 50k salary would be enough for you or your household will depend greatly on location. Those living in affordable parts of Canada may manage this income. But it’s near impossible to do that in expensive cities. This article discusses if 50k is a good salary in Canada and how those with low income can survive.
Is 50k Salary Enough for A Single Person
A 50k annual salary might be enough for a single person living alone in Canada, especially if it’s an after-tax salary. In most cases, a single person only needs around $40,000 to meet their yearly expenses regardless of where they live. Thus, such a person can still survive comfortably on a 50k salary. But doing so will mean being able to manage living expenses.
Is 50k Salary Enough for A Family
50k salary isn’t enough for a family of 4 living in Canada. The average cost of expenses for a family of 4 is over $70,000 annually. Even if the family is less than 4, the salary would still be far from sufficient. But if it’s an after-tax salary, it’s likely manageable depending on the location. For example, a family in Toronto, Vancouver, or even Calgary can’t live sufficiently on a 50k annual salary. But there are few affordable places within the country where such a salary might be manageable. Even in those places, a 50k salary would still be considered low.
How To Manage Low Salary in Canada?
Money management is essential for everyone, but it’s more important when your income is barely sufficient to meet your needs. In this case, managing your money might require some creativity. But it’s still very possible and here are the ways you can do that.
1. Prioritize Housing
Accommodation takes a big chunk of your income no matter how much you’re earning, and you must get it out of the way as soon as possible. Make sure you make your rent on time as this is non-negotiable, and not settling it can lead to more serious problems. Even if your landlord is considerate, still make sure that you test their patience. Your rent should be the first thing that comes out of your income.
Whether you’re earning millions or below $50,000, having a budget is a key part of how you manage money and not spend beyond your means. Human wants are limitless, but your resources are limitless. Without a budget, you can finish your resources without meeting your basic needs. Having a budget allows you to prioritize your needs, know what’s essential, weed out the frivolities, etc.
Generally, your expenses will keep growing as you have more money available. But even with limited resources, there are still basic expenses that you need to meet. With a budget, you’ll be able to know how much you need monthly and factor this in when asking for a raise or applying for another job.
3. Reduce Expenses on Food
Food is one area where you can make significant savings by simply paying attention. Most times, you’re overspending on food without even noticing, and some of the food you overspend on aren’t even that healthy. Fast food, wastage, high-cost health food, etc., are just a few examples of overspending that you may not notice. You can cut these costs through various means such as
- Use coupons and checkout flyers when you have access to them
- Getting generic food items instead of name brands which are more costly even with little difference in quality
- Use cost-friendly stores where you can get all the food items you need in one place
- Buying non-perishable food in bulk to save money while only restricting food with short shelf lives to the bare minimum you need for a particular period, so they don’t spoil and lead to wastage
- Tracking your food expenses and using a food planner can also help you reduce costs.
4. Use A Grocery List When Shopping.
It’s not enough to budget. Make sure you go to the grocery store with a list in hand. Buy everything on the list and leave. This can help you save money and avoid wasting time in the grocery store as you try hard to remember what else you need to buy.
5. Review Your Mobile Phone Usage and Plans
Many people spend hundreds of dollars on cell phone plans without even noticing. Assess your plan and compare it with other service providers to see better options. It doesn’t hurt to also reduce the time you spend on social media, other options for the internet such as Wi-Fi, etc. If your home has a landline, you might consider canceling it, since you can use your phone for the same calls.
6. Reduce Expenses on Entertainment and Hobbies
You should have fun, but you don’t always have to spend to have fun. Games, TVs, and streaming subscriptions might eat deeper into the money that you guessed. It’s always good to review those expenses and, if possible, remove some that seem unnecessary. For example, you can cancel your cable and use a streaming service. Instead of having home internet, you can opt for an unlimited mobile phone plan and stream with your phone to your TV. It’s all about doing sufficient research to find the best options.
Earning a 50k salary might be tough if you have a family. Even single people might find it difficult to survive on this in some locations. But there are still many families that earn around or even below this. In such cases, money management is necessary.