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Practical information about living in the Northwest Territories.

Housing and food cost questions for living in the Northwest Territories are answered here.

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Johanna's Story - Yellowknife

I live 30 km outside of Yellowknife, with my husband and 9 year-old son. We originally came here from Edmonton for my husband’s career, not knowing anything about the NWT. I was able to apply my post-secondary education in an unrelated professional setting, which lead me down an unexpected career path. I developed new strengths and quickly became sought after for these strengths. A year and a half ago, I started my own event planning and communications business, which is thriving. I am really proud to have built something for myself here and I love the work I am doing.

We lived in the city for 1-1/2 years before we decided to move to Prelude Lake. Now, each day after work is like driving to the cabin. People ask if we mind the drive, but I say, “There are no traffic lights, we yield only to wildlife, and once you leave work, you really leave work.” Our friends come to visit us, sometimes staying for the weekend, and share our love of nature, freedom, peace and quiet.

Our community of about 20 nearby homes is called Prelude East. We have a fully functioning house, and are pretty much self-sufficient. We have propane (for the fridge, stove and dryer) and diesel (for the generator) delivered, and provide the rest ourselves. We have 4 efficient solar panels which charge the batteries so we rarely run the generator in the summer (24-hour sunlight!). In the winter, the generator charges the batteries for the house so we can run TV, lights and power off them. We pump our water from the lake, and heat our home with a wood stove using dead wood my husband cuts (or whoever is selling it!). Our telephone, Internet and TV are like everyone else’s but based on satellite technology. In the summer, we grow vegetables in an amazing greenhouse and garden, swim in the lake and spend endless days playing outside. In the winter, we snowmobile, ski, snowshoe and toboggan right from outside our doorstep. Our son is highly tuned to his surroundings, and understands the important value of respecting Mother Nature and all she provides. Our walks in the woods remind him (and us) how lucky we are to live in such an extraordinarily pristine place.