Moving to Edmonton: 12 Things To Know (2024 Guide)

Posted by Edmonton on Monday, January 2nd, 2023 at 10:30am.

Moving to Edmonton, AB Living Guide

Living in Edmonton, AB

As the capital of the province of Alberta, Edmonton is naturally a centre of commerce and culture in the area. Also known as Canada's Festival City, the community was founded in 1795. It was later incorporated as a city in 1904 and named for Edmonton, London. As of 2016, the city's population was 932,546. However, only a few years later, the municipal census of 2019 noted that 972,223 residents called the locale home.

Outside the city proper, the metro area has a bit over 1.3 million residents, meaning that nearly 74% of the area residents choose to live within the specific Edmonton jurisdiction. The combination of steady growth and the focus on the central city often means a strong economy and pleasant living conditions. As part of this reality, the median income per family in 2011 was $88,075. The average income per household was also fairly high at $103,856.

More people consider relocating to Alberta's second-largest city every day, but each potential new resident should consider a few important elements before deciding. Read on for a few things to know before moving to Edmonton's new homes or scouting Edmonton's condos.

Cost of Living in Edmonton

One of the first things to consider before relocating to a new community is the expected cost of living in Edmonton. Understanding the price level can help predict the kind of lifestyle and quality of living. The average housing cost in Edmonton is around $337,000, which is nearly $359,000 lower than the national average. The average throughout Alberta is about $439,000, which is also a bit higher than Edmonton.

The lower home costs in Edmonton are potentially important because they mean a new resident may buy more space in this community than in other places in Canada. It might be possible to afford upscale homes here for the cost of less luxurious homes in other cities. But real estate purchases are not the only cost to consider.

Renting a studio apartment in the community will cost about $900 each month, adding another $100 for a one-bedroom. Renting a three-bedroom, single-family home will cost about $1,700. The largest four-bedroom house rentals will average about $2,000 monthly. Meanwhile, opting for a two-bedroom Edmonton townhome generally costs about $1,400. As with real estate in all communities, these costs can vary widely based on the condition of the rental and the neighbourhood.

New residents to the community can also expect to pay anywhere from $150–$250 each month to cover electricity. Utilities such as water, sewer, and trash will require another $80–$120, with another $50 covering basic internet. Choosing to bundle internet, television, and phone bills together will result in monthly charges between $120 and $180. Depending on the size of the house and level of desired coverage, expect home insurance to add another $1000 a year.

As for food, Edmonton residents pay between $200 and $400 for groceries each month. This cost, of course, is flexible because brand labels and types of food consumed can change with the budget level and tastes. Restaurant meals are generally more expensive than the home-cooked varieties, with fast food packages around $10 and sit-down meals starting at about $17. Getting to the diner without a car requires up to $3.75 for a taxi or $3.50 for the bus.

Edmonton Job Market

The cost of living for a city is, of course, only part of the financial picture. Higher salaries and better career opportunities can often justify living in a community with a higher cost level. However, it is important to grasp Edmonton's major employers and industries to indicate what the career culture might be like. The largest employer in the community is Alberta Health Services, with 123,000 on staff. The organization serves as the primary health care provider for the province. Services include everything from public health considerations to acute and emergency care. They also provide long-term assistance with various concerns.

The Government of Alberta is the second-largest employer in the community, with around 27,000. They provide various services, including supporting the environment and public parks, regulating industries such as energy, and planning infrastructure. Stantec, with 22,000 employees, provides professional services relating to architecture and engineering. The company serves clients worldwide, focusing on public and private organizations in North America.

The fourth-largest employer in the area is the construction group PCL Employee Holdings Ltd. They represent a large assembly of independent contractors providing construction services across North America and Australia. The company averages $9 billion each year in construction volume. Rounding out the top five, the University of Alberta is next with 15,000 employees. The school is one of the top 100 higher education institutions globally, with a wide variety of academic programs and research institutions.

Outside of considering the largest employers, the most popular industries within a community can also provide a vital component of the economic layout. Edmonton has several industries supporting the local economy. As the owner of the third-largest oil reserves globally and various natural gas deposits, petrochemical-related industries are thriving throughout Alberta. Opportunities abound related to mining, refining, and transporting many products stemming from these raw resources. In addition, around 40% of the province's metal and machinery manufacturing occurs in Edmonton partly because of the energy industries.

The transportation industry employs around 140,000 people and contributes more than $12.3 billion to the local economy each year. The specific resources include rail, roads, pipelines, and Edmonton International Airport.

Things to Do in Edmonton

Activities & Entertainment in EdmontonLet's face the facts: a great economy is not enough to create a great quality of living. A community must also have fun activities that match the favourite pastimes of the new resident. Fortunately, Edmonton has a great variety of enjoyable pursuits. Shoppers can spend hours enjoying the West Edmonton Mall, including a water park and amusement area. Visitors may opt to start with the High-Level Bridge Streetcar, which is a great way to see the city for the first time.

Outdoor Activities

For those who thrive best in the fresh air, Edmonton has lots of wide-open spaces. Elk Island National Park offers woodland views and prairies less than an hour from the city. Camp for the night and watch the elk herds and listen to the coyotes howl. Watch the sky all night at the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve, intentionally created as a place to avoid light pollution.

Those who prefer walking trails will enjoy one of the many paths in William Hawrelak Park. These routes are relatively short and a great place for amateurs or those with younger hiking companions. The Grandin to Groat Loop is about 5.5 km of tree hidden trail just minutes from the city skyline. This is a great place to get away for a moment's peace. Of course, less adventurous outdoor types can rotate between more than ten unique golf courses within the city.

Restaurants, Breweries, and Bars

What's for dinner? Edmonton's residents not in the mood for home cooking can enjoy a great diversity of options for supper. Order a pound of original or boneless wings and a buttermilk fried chicken sandwich at The Pint Downtown. Situation Beer is a microbrewery offering a wonderful craft brew experience with a pub environment. Don't forget to enjoy a house-smoked beef brisket sandwich with your Declan's Dry Irish Stout.

Those in love with protein can enjoy the Meat restaurant. They specialize in Texas-style barbecues like Maple Chili Ribs, with side options like potato salad or dirty rice.


Dance the night away in Edmonton. Star Night Club offers the hottest disco in the area and a welcoming environment. The Aviary serves as a frequent site for theatre, art shows, and music events. Visit the website frequently to check the upcoming events tab.

Party-goers looking for a more luxurious experience should visit the Ice District to find Privé Ultralounge. This is the place where everyone can get the VIP experience for a night of fun.

Edmonton Climate

Weather & Climate in EdmontonNew residents will definitely want to bring some warm clothes for the climate in Edmonton. From October through April, average overnight low temperatures are below freezing. From mid-November through the end of February each year, even the high temperatures are below 0 ºC. The warmest times of the year for the community occur between mid-May and mid-September, where the temperature maintains an average high above 18 ºC. On average, the hottest day of the year is July 25th, where temperatures peak at about 24 ºC.

The best time to visit the community for outdoor activities is during the warm season between May and September. Additionally, the three months between June 15th and September 15th tend to offer the clearest skies of the year.

Edmonton Traffic

New residents to the community from Vancouver, Toronto, or Montreal will likely find the traffic within Edmonton very mild. As expected, the heaviest flow occurs toward the downtown centre in the morning and away from the centre in the evenings. Except for the University of Alberta and downtown areas, parking is free and plentiful throughout the city. Travellers to those two sections of the city should leave early to account for time spent finding a parking location.

During the best hours, driving from West Edmonton Mall to Sherwood Park takes a half hour. However, both the morning and evening rushes can extend this time to as much as 40 minutes. The trip between downtown Edmonton and the International Airport takes about 32 minutes without traffic and up to 45 minutes during rush hours.

Alternative Routes

For the most part, Edmonton is built using a grid system that provides multiple alternatives for almost any trip. Highways 16, 14, and 2 all provide east-to-west routes across the area. Highway 2 also provides a southern route away from the community. Highway 216 performs a loop around the entire city. Each of these major routes is mirrored by several surrounding surface streets providing alternative routes around traffic jams.

The only potential problems are around the North Saskatchewan River, which cuts a jagged path through the community. However, the city has around eleven bridges crossing at different points, and more than half of those are in or around the downtown area.

Edmonton Public Transportation

The Edmonton Transit Service is the best way to get around the town. Fares for bus services start at $3.50 per trip, but it is possible to purchase a book of 10 for $27.75. Reduced fares are available for youth and those over 65 years old. The service offers dozens of routes covering the entire city.

Ride-sharing app Uber also currently operates in the community, to be eventually joined by Lyft. An Uber trip from downtown to the International Airport starts at $43.64 a trip. Those leaving the community also have the option of rail service. VIA Rail Canada provides transportation to Vancouver for as little as $169.

Edmonton Schools

Schools & Education in EdmontonThose with young children will need to get acquainted with Edmonton Public Schools. The organization manages K-12 education for around 105,000 students. They accomplish this through about 213 separate schools, including 13 specialized programs. With 9,200 staff positions, they are one of the largest entities in the province, with an annual budget of over $1 billion.

As for higher education, the community also boasts several local universities. The largest is the University of Alberta, with more than 40,000 students. MacEwan University is another major public institution in the area, educating more than 19,600 students. They offer 10 bachelor's programs and more than 40 certificates. Founded in 1965, NorQuest College is another large publicly funded local institution with around 11,000 pupils.

Discover Edmonton Today

With its strong and diverse local economy, Edmonton is rapidly growing into one of the most popular communities in Canada. The thriving energy, transportation, and manufacturing industries provide a strong job profile for the foreseeable future. Visit the city soon to decide if Edmonton is home.

If you're looking to make your home in Edmonton, contact in partnership with Justin Havre at (780) 665-4888 to get in touch with an Edmonton real estate agent and discover your ideal Edmonton home today.

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