Budgeting Spreadsheet & Cost of Living in Halifax


Working with a Budget

Worried about getting through university on next to no income, or just keen to learn how to make your Student Loan stretch further? You're in the right place.

Budgeting might seem pretty boring and dull but there are so many benefits to tracking and controlling your spending.  Your basic budget is as simple as listing all the money you've got coming in, tracking how much you spend, and seeing how they balance out.  Use this helpful budgeting spreadsheet to support you on your journey!

Use our online budget tool to get a detailed estimate of your costs while studying at Dalhousie.

Cost of Living in Halifax

A low cost of living and a high quality of life make Halifax an enjoyable and affordable place to live. Whether you live on or off campus, it’s a good idea to work out a monthly budget.  Below is a sample* of some common living/lifestyle expenses to give you an idea of the cost of living in Halifax.

*All costs are provided as estimates only and listed in Canadian dollars.

Examples of some major expenses

Rent for a 2-bedroom apartment  $1,165 - $1,617/month (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation - January 2021) depending on location. 
Rent for a 1-bedroom apartment  $1,430/mo (Zumper, 2021)
Electricity/home heating $178/month for a 2 bedroom apartment
Telephone Basic smart phone with data $50-100 a month
Internet $70-135/month
Meal for one at an inexpensive restaurant  $10-21
Average cost of groceries $275-325/month

Bowden, O. (2020, January). The best cellphone plans in Canada: Which deals are worth your money? Retrieved from Global News: https://globalnews.ca/news/6453599/cheapest-cellphone-plans-canada-2020/
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. (2021, January). 2020 Rental Market Report. Retrieved from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/blog/2021/2020-rental-market-report
Expatistan. (2021, July). Cost of Living in Halifax, Canada. Retrieved from Expatistan: https://www.expatistan.com/cost-of-living/halifax
Numbeo. (2021, July). Cost of Living in Halifax. Retrieved from Numbeo: https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/in/Halifax
Zumper. (2021, August 13). Halifax, NS Rent Prices. Retrieved from Zumper: https://www.zumper.com/rent-research/halifax-ns

Do your research! Explore more detailed information online about average costs for things like restaurants, entertainment, transportation and groceries. 

Consider living on campus

  • You're close to classes, friends, meeting places and athletic facilities
  • There are plenty of people nearby to help you adjust to university, and succeed in school
  • Your meals are prepared for you
  • Internet, cable and local phone are included - no monthly bills to worry about
  • Some of your neighbours will become lifelong friends
  • For more information, visit the Residence & Housing website