A Guide to Retirement Care & Senior Living in Kingston

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Kingston is located on the east end of Lake Ontario at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River, midway between Toronto and Montreal. Its central location gives residents access to major Canadian cities, as well as the U.S border into New York state, allowing you to experience the best of Canada and the states. This historic city is nicknamed the "Limestone City" for the many heritage buildings constructed using local limestone, is also the hometown of Canada’s first Prime Minister, John A. Macdonald, and was Canada’s capital for three short years from 1841-1844. No matter what you hope to explore, let Cared Upon help you find a community in Kingston that suits your retirement needs.  

Lifestyle and Activities

For seniors looking to keep active, Kingston has many hiking trails to catch a breath of fresh air and get to know the local flora and fauna; Rideau Trail Association, Lemoine Point Conservation Area, and Trailhead of K&P Rail Trail Connector are among the most popular. Cyclists rejoice! Kingston has been voted one of the most bike-friendly cities in Ontario, with sprawling city streets, wide pavements and plenty of bike lanes to make the city a breeze to explore by bike.  

Aligned with the active nature of the city, Kingston is also a hub for everything sports. The city is famous for many of their teams and players in hockey, rugby, golf, and curling, and have had many locals become Canadian and American football stars or play for internationally renowned soccer teams. With free public sporting events peppered throughout the year, dusting off your team spirit is a great opportunity to make new friends, no matter your age. 

Weather and Climate

Kingston has a moderate humid continental climate, with cooler summers and colder winters than other parts of Southern Ontario. Summers in the city are temperate, and the winters are cold, snowy, and very windy. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from -11°C (12.2°F) to 25°C (77°F) and is rarely below -22°C (-7.6°F) or above 28°C (82.4°F). 

Housing Options in Ontario: Finding the Right Fit for You 

You may find that as you age, your home care and retirement needs will change. From assisted living to adult lifestyle communities, Ontario offers seniors a range of housing options to fit their lifestyle and health needs. Although the location of your retirement community in Ontario will directly affect the cost, you can typically expect the cost of assisted living to start at $2000-$3000 per month.  

Although a large portion of retirement housing is privately owned and paid for, the government allows you to claim the costs of nursing homes or long-term care facilities through the Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC). Depending on the type of care you require and the facility you choose to call home, you can choose to claim for the costs which will be determined by your personal income. To learn more about the Medical Expense Tax Credit, visit the GGFL website

Cost of Retiring in Ontario: Budgeting and Financing

In terms of retirement budgeting, you’ll find that the cost of retiring in Ontario will vary depending on the city you choose to settle down in. For example, as Toronto is one of the most vibrant and liveable cities in all of Canada, you may find that the cost of living is higher than the national average. However, seniors living on a low to moderately low income wishing to retire in Ontario may be eligible for various income support programs.   

Ontario Trillium Benefit (OTB): The Ontario Trillium Benefit is a program that provides eligible seniors with payment from a combination of the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, Northern Ontario Energy Credit, and the Ontario Sales Tax Credit.  

Government Funding  

Seniors residing in Ontario may also access several federally provided financial resources to help them prepare and pay for their retirement. If eligible, you may access funding through federal programs such as the Canadian Pension Plan Retirement Pension (CPP), Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS), and the Old Age Security Pension (OAS). For more information on Government contributions and your eligibility, visit our care blog

Post-Retirement Income Sources

For seniors not eligible or looking for government funding, there are several different ways they can look to fund their retirement.   

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) you may save up for your post-retirement income, which will be dependent on the amount put into these accounts when you first began saving and the interest you received.  

Investment accounts: Taxable investment accounts, such as stocks and bonds, is a more common form of saving up for a post-retirement income source.   

Employer-sponsored pension plans: You may be eligible for an employer-sponsored pension plan through your employer. This plan involves your and your employer contributing money towards your retirement over the course of your employment.  

To learn more about your post-retirement income source options, visit our resource centre

Access to Healthcare

All residents of Ontario must sign up with the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) to receive free health care and health services. As health care is publicly funded, under OHIP residents are entitled to coverage on health services such as visits to your doctor, hospital stays, medical surgeries, dental surgeries, ambulance services, eligible optometry services, and even travel for health-related services. While these are the standard services covered under OHIP, seniors 65 and up receive extended coverage on optometry services and prescription medication. You can find information on extended prescription medication coverage through the Ontario Drug Benefit program (ODB) on the Ontario Ministry of Health website.  

Additional Resources

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

Ontario Senior Living Guide: A comprehensive guide to all things senior living and program-related in Ontario.  

Telehealth Ontario: Call 1-866-797-0000 Toll-free to get access to a confidential health information line.