Cost of Living Breakdown: Mississauga Vs. Hamilton

We all know that Mississauga is a great (but expensive) city to live in.

Last month, we released an article that revealed, based on data compiled by Numbeo, that the average person who lives in the city should expect to pay about $2,088.59 a month to get by comfortably.

As the entire GTA has become more costly, many people have looked west towards Hamilton and its surrounding municipalities.

With that in mind, how does life in Mississauga compare to life in Hamilton in terms of affordability?

We cobbled together some numbers from Numbeo (a website that uses crowd-sourcing to compare living costs in various cities) to give you a general idea of how much it costs to live and play in Mississauga vs. Hamilton.

Restaurants

Who pays more to dine out? According to Numbeo, two people can eat at a mid-range restaurant in Mississauga for $55. In Hamilton, it appears that the same dinner at an equivalent restaurant will cost about $60. Mississauga residents also seem to save a little on drinks, paying $5 for domestic beer (Hamilton diners pay $5.50) and $6 for imported beer (in the Hammer, you'll pay about $7).
Groceries

When it comes to groceries, Numbeo data suggests that Mississauga shoppers pay a little more than their west-end counterparts. If you're shopping in Sauga, you might be paying more for milk ($2.07 vs. $1.95), eggs ($3.16 vs. 3.02) and apples ($3.04 vs. $2.39). That said, you might be paying less for white bread ($2.36 vs. $2.65) and rice ($2.16 vs. $2.95). If you're buying beef rounds, you're paying a lot more ($18 vs. $10.41).
Interestingly enough, it looks like you're paying less for a bottle of wine ($12 vs. $15).

Transportation

If you live, work and play in Mississauga, there's a good chance you're driving. If you own or use a vehicle regularly, you are spending a little more than drivers in Hamilton. According to Numbeo, Mississauga residents pay about $1.02 to $1.03 a litre while Hamilton drivers pay about $1.01. You might also be spending more if you're purchasing a car, as a Toyota Corolla will cost you about $20,366 - $20,895 in Mississauga (vs. about $20,166.67 in Hamilton).

If you take public transport, you're spending a little more on one-way fares (MiWay tickets cost $3.50 while Hamilton transport passes cost $2.75) and a lot more on monthly passes ($130 in Mississauga vs. $94.60 in Hamilton).
Utilities

In terms of utilities, Numbeo data suggests Mississauga residents pay more. If you live in a condo/apartment in Sauga, your basic utilities (electricity, heat, water, garbage, etc.) cost you about $216.38-$220.83 a month. If you live in Hamilton, those same services typically cost about $140.42.
All that said, it looks like Mississauga residents pay a little less for internet ($54.58 vs. $62.22).
Rent

Naturally, rent is a lot cheaper in Hamilton (which likely isn't coming as a surprise to you). If you're renting a one-bedroom apartment in City Centre, you're paying somewhere in the neighbourhood of $1,385. If you're living in a one-bedroom in an equivalent area in Hamilton, you're paying about $925. Outside of City Centre, a one bedroom will cost you about $1,088.89 (a Hammer equivalent will be $764.45).

When it comes to bigger units, the difference is pretty apparent. A three-bedroom City Centre apartment costs about $2,188.89 a month (you would be paying about $1,361.11 in Hamilton). Outside of City Centre, a three-bedroom will cost about $1,705.06 (vs. $1,275 in Hamilton).

So, it looks like it's more expensive to live in Mississauga when it comes to rent, transportation and dining. If you're looking to save on groceries and utilities, well, Numbeo data suggests that you're not likely to do that here.

That said, Mississauga does offer closer proximity to Toronto (which probably accounts for a lot of the extra costs), so living here may put you in a better position if you like to work and play in a big city with its own identity and the general GTA.

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