A Guide to Retirement Care & Senior Living in Burnaby

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Burnaby is located in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, just thirty minutes away from the core of the city of Vancouver. Burnaby is one of Metro Vancouver’s most topographically diverse municipalities, bordered by the Fraser River on the southside and on the northside by the Burrard Inlet. Burnaby is known for its great shopping and restaurants, excellent family-friendly communities, and beautiful outdoor spaces. No matter your preferences when it comes to deciding on a retirement community, let Cared Upon help you find a community in Burnaby to suit your needs. 

Lifestyle & Activities

Older adults can enjoy walking, running, or biking in any of Burnaby’s wonderful urban parks. The Burnaby Lake 10 km loop, or Deer Lake’s 5 km loop are popular outdoor paths enjoyed by residents of all ages and fitness levels. Central Park is also popular for walking, biking, or playing tennis at the numerous available courts. Burnaby is also home to two world-class shopping centers– Brentwood Town Centre and Metrotown, with Metrotown being the largest mall in the province with over 400 stores. For an excellent cultural experience, consider stopping by The Burnaby Village Heritage Museum. The costumed staff in this 1920s-themed village make learning about the history of the area a ton of fun. 

Weather & Climate

Burnaby summers are short and comfortable, while the winters are cold, wet, and cloudy. Over the course of the year, the daily temperature typically varies from 1°C (33.8 F) to 24°C (75.2°F) and rarely falls below -6°C (21.2°F) or rises above 29°C (84.2°F). It rains year-round in Burnaby, with the rainiest month being November with an average rainfall of 259 millimeters. 

Housing Options in British Columbia: Finding the Right Fit for You

Older adults residing in British Columbia have a number of options when it comes to retirement housing, from ageing in place to assisted living. Retirees in B.C. are entitled to care and support through either publicly subsidized care or private pay providers. Older adults that are eligible for publicly subsidized home services can access these services through health authorities and contracted providers once they have gone through a formal assessment to determine the type of care they need. On the other hand, individuals who wish to choose their desired care service can do so by accessing these services directly from a service provider. To search for a care service provider in B.C., visit the search portal on caredupon.ca. 

Cost of Retiring in British Columbia: Budgeting and Financing

The cost of retiring in British Columbia can vary depending on the city you reside in and the quality of care you wish to receive. For instance, the cost of assisted living in B.C. typically starts at $3000, but you may find subsidized options to fit your budget. Factors such as the type of healthcare needed, the lifestyle you wish to have, and how much money you’ll receive from investments and pensions will all impact the cost of your retirement plan. You can access the Canadian Government website as they provide a useful budget planning tool to help set you up for your personal retirement goals.  

Government Funding  

When retiring in B.C., you may also access several financial resources funded by the Government to help you prepare and pay for your retirement. If eligible, you may access funding through Government programs such as the Canadian Pension Plan Retirement Pension (CPP), Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS), Old Age Security Pension (OAS), and the Allowance for the Survivor benefit program. Additionally, low-income seniors residing in B.C. that are entitled to Old Age Security Pension (OAS) and Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) allowances can continue receiving these payments even when moved into a long-term care facility. For more information on Government contributions, visit our care blog

Post-Retirement Income Sources

In the case that you do not meet the eligibility criteria for receiving Government funding, you have several options for post-retirement income sources.  

Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) and Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs): Using a Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) or a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSAs), your post-retirement income is dependent on the amount you put into these accounts when you first began saving and the interest you received.   

Investment accounts: You may prepare for retirement through more common forms of post-income sources using taxable investment accounts. These can include investments from accounts such as stocks and bonds.  

Employer-sponsored pension plans: Under an employer-sponsored pension plan, you and your employer can contribute money over the course of your employment. When you decide to retire, you can access the income directly saved from the plan.   

To learn more about your options for post-retirement income sources, visit our resource centre.   

Access to Healthcare

Planning and supporting the health care of B.C.’s senior population is vital, as it is estimated that by 2029 approximately 30% of Canada’s seniors will be aged 75-84. Health care in B.C is ultimately managed by the Ministry of Health through a public health care system. Seniors residing in B.C. have access to various healthcare programs, such as HealthLink BC, PharmaCare, the Travel Assistance Program, and the Medical Services Plan.   

Medical Services Plan (MSP): To access health care, all B.C. residents are required to sign up through MSP. Through the Medical Services Plan (MSP), British Columbians are insured for medically required services. Some of these medically required services include diagnostic procedures, laboratory services, physician and surgeon services, and approved dental and oral surgery services.   

The Fair PharmaCare plan: Eligible seniors residing in B.C. can receive coverage on prescription drugs and medical supplies through The Fair PharmaCare plan, a health care plan that assists B.C. seniors with medical costs based on their personal income.  

HealthLink BC: HealthLink BC provides British Columbians with 24/7 access to non-emergency health services and information in the province. Their information services cover the topics of health and health care, symptoms you are experiencing, and ways to manage healthy living.  

Travel Assistance Living: The Travel Assistance Program (TAP) offers patients that require transportation to physician-referred, non-emergency services within the province when a specialist is not available in a community surrounding them. Transportation is offered at a discounted rate and is available to those who do not have travel expenses covered by insurance or other government programs.   

Additional Resources

For further information, you can visit and/or contact these sources:   

Fair PharmaCare: 604-683-7151 (Lower Mainland) or 1-800-663-7100 (Toll-free)   

HealthLink BC: non-emergency health information hotline 8-1-1 toll-free or for deaf/hard of hearing patients: 7-1-1  

Seniors Health Care Support Line: 1-877-952-3181  

SeniorsBC - A resource centre for all older adults residing in B.C.  

BC Seniors’ GuideInformation guide to all things healthy lifestyle-related for seniors