Moving to a new city is no light decision. There are plenty of things to take into consideration before packing up your life and hauling it across the country to somewhere new. For many people, the decision to move comes with the prospect of better opportunities such as career advancement, better schooling and education, access to better healthcare and an overall higher standard of living. 

Toronto is no exception when it comes to offering newcomers a higher standard of living, paired with a vibrant energy and an eclectic mix of local and international residents, Toronto has become one of the most livable cities in the world. 

Today, Toronto is growing faster than ever before. With an influx of new residents coming from abroad and many Canadian residents choosing to live here instead of anywhere else in the country, the city is expected to see its population swell to more than four million before the turn of the decade. 

As the city expects to add thousands of new residents in the coming years, individuals looking to move here are often left with several burning questions, one being, what is the average cost of utilities in Toronto? 

Before packing up your belongings and signing that new lease with a Toronto real estate agent, it’s important to calculate what you are expected to pay each month for utilities in Toronto. 

This page will help you navigate the potential costs associated with living in Toronto and can be used as a guide for your initial planning. 

Average Cost Of Living In Toronto 

Like many other popular cities around the world, the cost of living in Toronto has skyrocketed in recent years due to an overall increase in goods and services and years of elevated inflation. 

Toronto has been classified as one of the more expensive cities to live in North America, with the cost of living roughly 23% higher than the average of Ontario and 28% higher than the national average of Canada

Though Ontario’s utility costs, which include electricity bills, gas bills, internet services, and water bills, among others, may be higher compared to other provinces, however, the overall standard of living tends to be better.

Expenses such as housing, including rent, transportation, both private and public, and utilities, have seen significant increases over the past couple of years as inflation, paired with higher demand and supply chain constraints, have added to the overall rise in the cost of living in Toronto. 

Fortunately, despite seeing the cost of everyday essentials being higher than before the pandemic, Toronto is still often considered to be more affordable than Vancouver, British Columbia, New York City, New York and Los Angeles, California. 

Knowing what to expect can help you plan more effectively and ensure that you have dedicated enough of your budget to covering various expenses, including basic necessities such as rent, transportation and utilities and other monthly utilities.

Below is a breakdown of the average monthly cost of utilities in Ontario for a four-person household”

Type of Utility Bill In OntarioAverage Monthly Cost
The average cost of Electricity in Ontario$170.91
The average cost of Water in Ontario$92.40
The average cost of Gas in Ontario$226.12
The average cost of Internet (wifi) in Ontario$70.52
The average cost of Cell Phone Plans in Ontario$44.00
The average cost of Landline or Home Phone in Ontario$18.00
The average cost of Cable in Ontario$53.56
Total average of Utilities in Toronto (all bills included)$675.51
Total average of Utilities in Toronto (gas excluded)$449.39
Total average amount for a single family household of four individuals.
Sources: City of Toronto, Ontario Energy Board, Numbeo, WhistleOut

How Much Are Utilities In Ontario

Before calculating the average monthly cost of utilities in Toronto, let’s first list the basic utilities that you can expect to pay when living in Toronto, Ontario:

  • Electricity
  • Gas
  • Garbage removal
  • Heating and cooling 
  • Water and sewage 
Additional utilities:
  • Repairs and maintenance 
  • Garden services
  • Snow removal 
Optional utilities:
  • Internet (Wi-Fi) 
  • Cable TV 
  • Subscription services 
  • Landline phone connection 

Keep in mind that not everyone will have the same usage for each of these utilities, and for those living in apartment buildings, repairs and maintenance costs will often be covered by the building supervisor. Additionally, if you’re deciding to move to an apartment, it’s unlikely that you will be paying for utilities such as garden services or snow removal unless otherwise stipulated in your lease agreement. 

Electricity and Hydro 

Renting

One-bedroom apartment: CAD$ 70 per month.

Three-bedroom house: CAD$ 125 – CAD$ 200 per month.

Homeowner

1000 kWh for one household of four: CAD$ 225 per month.

Unlike other parts of the country, electricity in Toronto tends to be somewhat more expensive due to several factors: 

  • Time of use.
  • Tiered pricing system.
  • Difference in service providers compared to other Canadian provinces.
  • The type of electricity used i.e. coal power, solar energy or hydro. 
  • Distance from generation sources. 
  • Use of energy-efficient appliances.

Hydroelectricity is currently the second-largest power source in the city, with Toronto Hydro being the second-largest municipal electricity distribution company in Canada. 

For more accurate calculations it’s best advised to visit the Ontario Energy Board website for more precise cost measurements of your expected monthly electricity bill. 

Gas 

Renting

One-bedroom apartment: CAD$ 22 – CAD$ 50 (depending on supplier).

Homeowner

Four person household: CAD$ 120 – CAD$ 200 (depending on supplier).

Gas prices can be a mixed bag, seeing as prices can be influenced by the supplier, usage, and whether the cost thereof will be included in your monthly rent. More than this, the total rate paid per year will include additional charges such as regulated transportation costs and delivery charges.

Other things, such as taxes, can raise the average utility bill for natural gas on a monthly basis. Whether you’re living alone or sharing household utilities, it’s important to consider how much utilities cost in Toronto compared to other cities and whether you can get the best deal and value for money when living in Canada.

Gas prices provided by suppliers and retailers are not regulated by the Ontario Energy Board.

Garbage removal 

Renting 

The cost of garbage removal might already be included in your monthly rental bill. It’s important to review your lease agreement before signing, as some buildings or corporate leasing agents will bill you separately for garbage collection and removal. 

Homeowner

Garbage bins and removal fees are calculated based on the size of the bin that you decide to use for garbage collection. Currently, the City of Toronto categorizes fees associated with garbage removal as follows:

  • No Bin Bag Only: CAD$ 189.05 rate/year or CAD$ 15.75 per month.
  • Small Bin – 1 regular-sized bag; 75 litres: CAD$ 295.29 rate/year or CAD$ 24.60 per month.
  • Medium – 1½ regular-sized bags; 120 litres: CAD$ 358.47 rate/year or CAD$ 29.87 per month.
  • Large – 3 regular-sized bags; 240 litres: CAD$ 486.86 rate/year or CAD $40.47 per month. 
  • Extra-Large – 4½ regular-sized bags; 360 litres: CAD$ 564.71 rate/year or CAD$ 47.00 per month. 

For more information regarding garbage removal costs you visit the City of Toronto website. 

Heating and Cooling 

The average monthly cost of both heating and cooling (A/C) will depend on how frequently a person uses the system and the type of season. Costs are typically included as part of the monthly energy bill. 

However, being frugal with your heating and cooling system could set you back between CAD$ 75 and CAD$ 100 per month on top of other electricity costs. Households that frequently use their heating and cooling systems might see their bills being closer to CAD$ 150 and CAD$ 200 per month. 

Additionally, keep in mind that some apartments and homes do not own the existing HVAC systems, and will need to be covered as part of either the monthly rental or a direct rental fee paid to the service provider. 

Water and Sewage 

Calculating the exact cost of water and sewage will be different for every household, including for residents living in apartments, and the final monthly cost will depend on several factors such as: 

  • Monthly usage. 
  • On-time or late payment. 
  • Overdue fees. 
  • Outstanding utility fees. 
  • Ownership change. 
  • New account set up.
  • Water collection field visit.
  • Water consumption statement.
  • Wastewater fees. 
  • Annual seasonal meter activation.
  • Fire hydrant testing.

There are plenty of additional fees and costs that may be present on your monthly water bill. For accurate readings and more information, take a look at the City of Toronto water fees website. 

Be aware that in older apartments, leaky faucets and toilets can increase the average monthly cost of your water bill. When moving in, take note of any taps or toilets that may not be in proper working condition, and report this to the building landlord or supervisor. Being aware of these small things can help bring down the price of your monthly bills.

Repair and Maintenance

Renting

Repairs and maintenance that may be required for your rental apartment can include:

  • Servicing the furnace
  • Gutter cleaning
  • Roof repair where applicable
  • Duct Cleaning

Homeowner

For households living in standalone homes, similar repairs and maintenance may be included in annual household budgets. 

Though it’s not possible to exactly determine how much a person might be spending on repairs and maintenance seeing as the cost will vary depending on type of service, the scope of repairs, service provider, and whether these costs will be partially covered by insurance. 

Take note, that in some instances maintenance costs will be included in the monthly rent for apartments, and a landlord will usually estimate the cost of repairs and maintenance to be between 1% and 3% of your annual rent.

Garden Services and Snow Removal 

Renting

Individuals living in apartment buildings will most likely not be subject to pay gardening services and snow removal fees. Landlords or the body corporate in charge of the apartment building will most likely take up the cost of these services seeing as these fall under common areas. 

Areas such as lawns, gardens, parking garages, parkways, driveways and sidewalks will likely be under the jurisdiction of the landlord or body corporate and they will outsource these maintenance services. 

Homeowner

As a homeowner, the situation is slightly different, and you will most likely be in charge of footing the bill for garden services and snow removal. 

Garden services can cost anywhere from CAD$ 100 to CAD$ 500 per month, depending on the size of the garden and services rendered. Additionally, some service providers may charge per hour and rates can start as low as CAD$ 25 per hour and be as high as CAD$ 75 per hour. Similarly, snow removal can set your back between CAD$ 200 and CAD$ 500 per month. 

Internet 

Your wi-fi and internet bills will depend on several factors: 

  • Service provider. 
  • Type of package. 
  • Size of internet connection. 
  • Availability of service in your area. 

Low end cost: CAD$ 25 per month 

High end cost: CAD$ 147 per month

Other bills 

Other utilities such as cell phone packages, cable TV and entertainment subscriptions can cost at the low end CAD$ 45 per month and the high end CAD$ 150 per month as a combined total amount. 

These service packages may be different depending on the type of provider, and subscription prices can vary depending on the type of package you’re willing to pay for. 

Wrapping Up 

Knowing what you are likely to pay for utilities in Toronto can help you plan and budget more efficiently, but also help set the tone for what to expect once you decide to move to Toronto in the coming months. 

It’s your responsibility to plan ahead, and to make cutbacks where you feel is necessary should your utilities become too expensive to pay month to month. Keep in mind that these costs are only an estimate, and some bills might be higher than suggested here. 

By maintaining best practices, knowing what you’re using, and shopping around for the most affordable services, you can keep your utilities bills low, and make the most of living in Toronto.