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Toronto is a bustling city, one ofCanada’s busiest urban centres with a wealth of greenspace, a hotbed of arts and culture, and close proximity toLakeOntario andTorontoIsland. The city boasts lots of amazing downtown and midtown neighbourhoods, from east to west and south towards theshore ofLakeOntario, influenced and anchored by a number of historic enclaves, university campuses, and artistic communities. An impressive public transportation system snakes through the city, providing excellent bus, streetcar and subway service for the 5.5 million residents ofToronto and the Greater Toronto Area. It’s not cheap, butTorontois a clean, safe city, with excellent health care, entertainment and schools.

We understand that moving toToronto is an exciting prospect, but that it can be overwhelming, with many things to take into account. If you’re considering a move toToronto, the Thompson Team has compiled an overview of tips and advice to ease the relocation process.


Choosing the Right Neighbourhood

Often seen as numerous mini-cities in one,Toronto boasts an astonishing variety of neighbourhoods, each with its own unique feel. If you’re relocating school-aged children, a number of residential neighbourhoods including Leaside, Willowdale,BenningtonHeights,Deer Park andMoorePark offer multiple public and private schooling options, excellent amenities and parks. Rosedale, Forest Hill andLawrencePark are ideal choices for affluent families looking for a luxury lifestyle. Up-and-coming areas likeRoncesvalles, Leslieville and Corso Italia are favored by trendy young families. As well, the multicultural character ofToronto and the GTA means that if you’re looking for a neighbourhood where you feel at home, there’s a place for you here.Torontoincludes strong and prosperous centres of Chinese, Korean, Indian, Greek, Italian, Portuguese and many more cultures from all over the world.

Toronto offers a wide range of public and private schooling options, including French immersion, arts schooling and other special programs. You can get started by visiting the Toronto District School Board’s comprehensive website. When you speak with the Thompson Team, they’ll discuss how your prospective home is situated within its neighbourhood in terms of amenities. What’s your highest priority? Do you need to be close to your children’s elementary or high school, or do you require easy access to public transport or highways? Playgrounds or parks? Shopping and dining? Whatever your requirements, we’ll help you find a neighbourhood inTorontothat works for you.

Familiarize yourself with the Greater Toronto Area’s highway and road system and, for non-drivers, our public transit system (including the TTC and the Viva Bus system), Via Rail, and Go Train, and plan routes both for your commute route and the route your children might travel to school if they’re old enough. Google Maps is a great and straightforward tool, and its zoomed-in setting show nearby schools and amenities.

The Greater Toronto Area, which comprises Scarborough, Mississauga, Thornhill,Markham,Brampton,Oakville,Richmond Hill and other satellite cities, are generally clean and quiet and provide their own distinct feel. While these areas do offer job opportunities, if you’re looking to settle in the suburbs but work in the city, downtownToronto is easily accessible by Go Train and car – generally the commute to the city adds an extra half hour by car, though longer forOakville andBrampton.Richmond Hill,Oakville, and Thornhill especially are gaining traction as family-friendly centres all their own, pleasantly removed fromTorontobustle.

Toronto is packed with all-ages, all-seasons entertainment, providing multiple indoor and outdoor education centres (start with the Science Centre and Evergreen Brickworks, respectively) numerous museums and galleries, including our internationally renowned Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), and countless options for plays, operas and live music.TorontoIsland boasts beautiful beaches and plentiful restaurants and parks, and just outside the city you’ll find everything from thrill-a-minuteCanada’s Wonderland to the peaceful Whittamore’s Berry Farm.


Once You’ve Chosen Your New Home…

While many aspects of our lives are increasingly conducted online, many important documents are still mailed. You must make sure to notify Canada Post and inform them of your address change. (In the same phone call, you can ensure the delivery of your curbside recycling and garbage collection calendar.) You must also update your address change everywhere you can remember, from your driver’s license to your Amazon account – writing a list might help. Set up your hydro, phone, cable ahead of time; consider the season and plan accordingly – from icy winters to sweltering summers,Canada’s distinct seasons present unique relocation challenges.

We’ll advise you of a reputable moving company and we can recommend pleasant temporary accommodations if you need to move here before you buy a new home. You can get started with storage here. Start packing early, as you want to do it well – children can be trained to help wrap small items, even delicate ones. Especially when packing delicate objects, make sure each box has six inches of soft material lining the bottom – try scrunched recyclable paper. Avoid newsprint for easily stained objects, as you’ll need to clean everything afterwards; consider using popcorn or rolled-up strips of cereal and cracker boxes instead. When making boxes, choose packing tape over duct or masking tape; to minimize waste, you can find a method for tape-free boxes here.

Throughout the busy move-in process, and perhaps on an ongoing basis afterward, you might require childcare services – you can get started here.Toronto provides the best healthcare, from pediatrics to cancer care, inCanada; learn about your Ontario Health Insurance Plan (O.H.I.P.) card here, and learn about interim health insurance options here.

We hope this guide has been helpful. For compassionate and expert assistance with every aspect of your move toToronto, get started with the Thompson Team by calling or emailing us today!