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Community of Choice... for Business

Business Costs

Choose Whitby for lower business costs than most US centres and competitors

Whitby's business costs are competitive with significant real estate savings placing Whitby ahead of its northern and western GTA competitors for industrial land, office/industrial lease rates and residential housing.

  • Office lease rates approx. 20% lower
  • Industrial land prices approx. 75% lower
  • Detached house prices are approx. 30%-45% lower

Canada is ranked second, as the most cost effective location, among 10 industrial countries in the 2014 Competitive Alternatives KPMG study. This study examined 7 business-to-business service sector operations and 12 different manufacturing sector operations.  The overall cost comparisons for each country and city are based on the average results for these two sectors.

Business costs are lower than most US centres and key competitors with the biggest savings on skilled labour and land costs. Canada's cost index of 95.0 represents a 5.0% cost advantage over the United States baseline (US=100).

Whitby's business costs advantages include:


For information on average wages for over 450 occupations in the GTA, visit the Government of Canada's Wage Report.


Whitby's hydro, natural gas, waste and water and sanitary services are very cost competitive. Whitby's utility providers have solid reputations for quality and service. Visit Utilities for detailed information on approximate charges, user rates, and more.

Labour Costs

Of the G7 countries, Canada has the lowest total labour costs. Total costs per employee are lowest in the United Kingdom, Canada and France.  Canada has a 7% average per employee cost advantage over the United States (Source: 2014 KPMG The Competitive Alternatives).

All citizens and permanent residents in Ontario can access universal health care services under the Ontario Health Insurance Plan, which covers the full cost of doctor examinations, medical testing, emergency care and hospital care. 

On average, Ontario employers enjoy health costs at half the cost of their counterparts in the United States.

LocationThousands US$


Note: Typical firm defined as having approximately 93 employees.

Source: MMK Consulting, 2012

Visit Labour Costs for information on the benefit costs for Ontario's employers. 

Tax Rates

Ontario's corporate income tax rate (provincial and federal combined) is lower than any US state.

  OntarioMichigan  New YorkUS Average 
 Federal 15% 35%35%  35%
 Province/State 11.5% 7.1% 6% 4.3%
 Combined 26.5% 42.1% 41% 39.3%

At 26.5%, Ontario's combined federal-provincial corporate income tax rate is lower than the average of G8 and G20 countries.

  • G8 average 31.6%
  • G20 average 29.5%

Ontario's employer payroll tax rates (pension, health and unemployment in total) are also the lowest of all G7 countries.

The 13% Harmonized Sales Tax (HST), introduced on July 1, 2010, also provides tax credits for sales tax paid on many capital investments.

For more information, visit Taxes & Development Charges.

Real Estate


Whitby has the lowest median home sale prices when compared to GTA communities to its west and north. Visit Housing for housing prices in Whitby compared to neighbouring communities in the GTA.


Office lease rates in GTA East, which includes Whitby, are lower than other parts of the GTA. The following table illustrates comparative office lease rates in GTA East, GTA North and GTA West:

Office Lease RatesGTA East (includes Whitby)GTA North GTA West
Cost per sq. ft.  (net)$12.00 $17.42$15.50

 (Source:  CBRE, Q4 2014)


Similarly, Whitby's industrial lease rates and inventory of Class A industrial space makes it competitive with other GTA communities.  The following table illustrates their comparative industrial lease rates:

 Industrial Lease RatesWhitby GTA North

GTA West

Cost per sq. ft. (net)$3.01$5.53$5.55

(Source:  CBRE, Q4 2014)

Industrial land prices in Whitby are approximately 75% lower compared to Markham and Mississauga.  Comparative industrial land costs in Whitby, GTA North and GTA West (cost per acre) are illustrated below:

Industrial Land (serviced)WhitbyMarkhamMississauga
Cost per acre$160,000 $800,000$800,000

Building Permits

Construction value of building permits in 2014 was almost $200 million.  For information on building permit construction values from 2008-2014, visit Building Activity. Download an online building permit application at or call Whitby's Building & By-Law Services Division at 905.430.4305.

Financial Incentives

Financial incentives can help offset hiring and job training costs for your labour force. Visit Financial Incentives for information on a range of programs that assist employers in hiring qualified individuals, and applying for reimbursements for eligible expenditures or refundable tax credits.

Development Charges

In November 2012, Whitby lowered its Non-Residential Use (Industrial) Development Charges to give it a competitive advantage over other GTA municipalities. For more information, visit Taxes & Development Charges.