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Canada - British Columbia

British Columbia is the most westerly of all Canadian provinces; it is bordered by the Yukon and Northwest Territories, Alberta, and the US states of Alaska, Washington, Montana and Idaho. The capital city of British Columbia is Victoria, although the largest city in the province is Vancouver. Other major cities in the province include Vancouver Island and New Westminster. British Columbia is the 5th largest Canadian province in terms of area and the 3rd in terms of population. The climate of British Columbia is varied depending on location. The interior and northern regions of the province tend to be much colder with severely cold winters. Summers tend to be hot and dry. The coastal regions tend to have a more stable climate, although the northern coast often experiences heavy rainfall.

British Columbia – Employment

British Columbia has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Canada and falls well below the national average. The website of the state government has advice and links aimed at those who are looking to move to the country. There is advice on how to apply for the relevant visas and permits as well as information on finding suitable employment. The economy in British Columbia is currently very strong and continuing to grow.

As with all states there are opportunities for those who have particular skills and teachers, nurses, doctors, electricians, plumbers and other skilled migrants have a good chance of being accepted for visas. Major industries in the state include tourism and there are many opportunities for those who are interested in establishing their own business.

British Columbia – Property

The city of Victoria is the capital of the state and has a number of neighbourhoods which would be of interest to newcomers to the area. The district of Oak Bay Village has a very British feel to it and is just a few minutes drive from the downtown area of the city. The properties have many period features and this is reflected in the prices, which are a little higher than the average for the city.

The James Bay area has many Victorian houses and is closer to the downtown Victoria area. As with Oak Bay Village, there are many period features in the houses and the prices are high when compared with some of the other neighbourhoods. The area has good schools and shopping areas. The Rockland and Fairfield district is home to a number of large mansions, many of which date back to the 19th century. Property prices in the area are high, mainly due to the size of the properties and the demand.

The Uplands district is a very exclusive area and many of the residents are extremely wealthy. There are some properties which are suitable for those who want something smaller and cheaper, but these are still very expensive, due to the locations.

The city of Vancouver also has many areas that would be of interest to an expat. The West Point Grey area has many streets with large houses. These attract high property prices and are much in demand. The area has a small community of expats, with the British and Chinese forming the majority of these. Around one third of properties in the area are rented and there are some apartment buildings for those who do not require a family home. More than half of the properties are single family homes. There are several good schools in the area which also helps to keep the area in demand.

The Dunbar-Southlands area has a large number of single family homes as well as farmland areas and large mansion houses. Expats in the area are also well established with the Chinese forming a small community. The schools in the area have a good reputation so it is the ideal part of the city for a family to settle in.

In contrast, the district of Kitsilano appeals to the younger generation. It has a number of beaches and is close to the University so has a large student population. Rental properties account for more than half of all property in the district, but prices are lower than the average for the city. Apartments account for more than half of all the accommodation available. Expats in this part of the city are mainly Europeans, with Germans, Greeks and French forming small communities.

Read more about this country

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