Life in Nova Scotia – Wonderful place for your settlement

Life in Nova Scotia – Wonderful place for your settlement

November 17, 2019

Nova Scotia is among the four Atlantic provinces of Canada and home to over one million people. Located on Canada’s east coast and almost completely surrounded by ocean, the province of Nova Scotia is a place where you can feel your pace fall in sync with the rhythm of the sea, as the clean salt air breathes life into an afternoon. Halifax, with a population of over 400,000 people, is Nova Scotia’s largest city and its political capital. It is also one of Canada’s major seaports and a main gateway to the Atlantic Ocean. FDI American Cities of the Future ranks Halifax, Nova Scotia in the Top 10 for Best Human Capital and Lifestyle (2019/20). That’s why it is said that life in Nova Scotia has a second to none quality.

Nova Scotia Economy and Employment

Nova Scotia has a very diverse economy including key industries in the service, manufacturing and mining sectors. Traditionally, many Nova Scotians made their livings from fish stocks of the Scotian Shelf. However, the fishery suffered a sharp decline due to overfishing in the late 20th century. The collapse of the cod stocks and the closure of this sector resulted in a loss of approximately 20,000 jobs in 1992. Recently, the Nova Scotia economy has successfully diversified, and with retraining, many of those who had lost their jobs with the decline of the fisheries have found new jobs in Nova Scotia’s growth industries. 

Nova Scotia has a highly developed forestry sector as well as a highly specialized commercial agriculture sector. The mining sector is dominated by coal production. The province of Nova Scotia has recently begun to benefit from the extensive exploration of offshore oil and gas has been undertaken in the past decade.

In addition, tourism is also an important sector in the provincial economy. Nova Scotia welcomes almost two million visitors each year and most of them are foreigners.

Nova Scotia Standard of living

The average income for Nova Scotia ranks among the highest in terms of Maritime Provinces. The average family income for Nova Scotia is $67,910. For the Halifax area, the average family income is a fair bit higher, at $80,490, well above the Canadian average.

The cost of living in Nova Scotia is quite affordable, falling below the Canadian average. Combined with the comfortable average salary in the province, Nova Scotians can afford a very high standard of living. Provincial personal income taxes are approximately 15.8%. This is a reason why Nova Scotia attracts many newcomers moving to this province.

Residential Housing

One of the key elements of Nova Scotia’s low cost of living in affordable housing. The average price to buy a house in the Halifax area is only $281,000, while a similar-sized home in some of Canada’s other major cities can be expected to cost up to twice that amount. Suitable and affordable housing is available. The average percentage of household income taken up by ownership costs is among the lowest in the country and varies between 21-32%, depending on the type of home involved. There are multiple different housing options across Canada for you to choose so you can find it easy to settle in Nova Scotia.

Nova Scotia Culture

Nova Scotia is famous for having a friendly and welcoming culture that is a fusion of the many cultural communities that call the province their home. In particular, some of the long-established groups that have left indelible marks on Nova Scotian culture include Scottish, French, Gaelic, Mi’kmaq, and African-Nova Scotian. The result is a mixture that is distinctly Nova Scotian.

Nova Scotia is also home to modern cities that support bustling artistic communities. A unique blend of Celtic music originated in the province with such famous performers as Natalie McMaster and the Rankin Family. Halifax is home to a thriving modern music and theatre scene, producing many acts that have become quite popular across Canada and internationally.


All Canadians under the age of 20 are entitled to free education up to the end of secondary school provided by the provincial government and parents have the option of performing home-schooling, but they must follow specific guidelines and courses.

The Government of Nova Scotia provides free schooling from kindergarten through to Grade 12, available in both English and French. As with other jurisdictions in Canada, all teachers in Nova Scotia’s public education system have a university degree as well as advanced teacher training and follow a provincially regulated curriculum.

Nova Scotia has a comprehensive system of post-secondary education consisting of universities, technical colleges, and apprenticeship programs. Nova Scotia’s undergraduate tuition fees are the highest of any province, at an average of approximately $5,500.

Nova Scotia’s post-secondary education facilities offer a full range of programs through its 11 universities and 13 professional colleges. Among these are Dalhousie University (the largest), University of King’s College, Saint Mary’s University, Mount Saint Vincent University and the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, all in Halifax; and the Universite Sainte-Anne (Francophone) and Cape Breton University in Sydney.

Health Care

Canada has been rated as one of the best places to live because of its health care program. All residents of Canada have access to medical care. This is based on their need and regardless of their ability to pay.

Under Canadian Law, all provinces and territories must provide universal, publicly funded health care to all citizens and legal residents of Canada. In other words, most basic health services in Canada are offered at no direct cost to the patient. Certain procedures that are not deemed necessary (such as elective cosmetic surgery and a number of dental care procedures, for example) are generally not covered, but the list of services paid for publicly varies from province to province.

Like all other provinces in Canada, Nova Scotia provides a publicly-funded health services program. The Nova Scotia plan ensures eligible residents of Nova Scotia for all medically required physicians’ services provided in the doctor’s office, at home or in hospital.

Nova Scotia Immigration

Immigration plays an important role in Nova Scotia’s past, its present and its future. Close to 2,500 immigrants settle in Nova Scotia each year, a figure that the province is aiming to increase in the future. Nova Scotia helps to attract skilled immigrants who wish to settle in the province by speeding up their applications through the Nova Scotia Nominee Program.

The province’s program has various streams, including skilled workers, those who want to work in a family business and those with strong ties to a community in Nova Scotia. Recently the province has also begun strong efforts to encourage international students who graduate from the province’s universities to stay and work in this province. If you want to have a life permanently in Nova Scotia as an immigrant, you must first meet all the criteria for the program. Like all provincial selection systems, if you are nominated for permanent residence to Canada by the province of Nova Scotia, then you must apply to Citizenship and Immigration Canada for permanent residence. For more detail, you can find out here in order to have a life in Nova Scotia.


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