How Much Do CPAs Make?

There are several reasons to consider a CPA designation. Many people choose it for its career versatility and job security, but the earning potential also appeals to many candidates. So, how much does a CPA earn in Canada? And what’s the average salary of an entry-level CPA?

CPA Canada surveyed CPAs across the country about their positions and compensation. The results are in, and across the board, CPA salaries reflect the expertise and value that they bring to organizations.

In this post, we’re covering median salaries for different types of CPAs, where to find the highest-paying CPA roles, and what factors determine how much a CPA earns.

What is the average CPA salary?

The average CPA salary in Ontario is $185,000, while the median salary (a more accurate indicator) is $130,000. Keep in mind this number includes entry-level CPAs, top-earners and everyone in between.

When it comes to CPAs at the beginning of their career journey, the median starting salary is $86,000 (nearly 40% higher than the overall median income for Ontarians between 25-54 years old).

As CPAs continue their career development, gain experience and explore different industries, their salaries will continue to grow and reflect the value that they bring to different organizations. After 25 years of experience, the median CPA salary is $180,000. This places them in the top 2-5% of earners in Canada.

What are the highest paying CPA jobs?

The highest paid CPAs in Ontario are partners and business owners. Partners make on average $376,000 with a median of $275,000. Business owners make on average $368,000 with a median of $210,000. CPAs in executive management roles often earn a salary between $200,000-$300,000.

According to CPA Canada’s report, the five highest paying roles fall under the following categories:

  • investments
  • marketing/sales
  • strategy and governance
  • business development
  • consulting

Not sure which career path is the right fit for you? Explore 7 Career Paths for CPAs.

What factors impact CPA salaries?

Like any position, CPA salaries are impacted by number of years of experience, specialization, company size and industry. But rest assured, whatever your role, you’ll make a comfortable salary along your CPA career journey.

Here are examples of median CPA salaries for different industries:

  • Technology/IT & Financial Services: $150,000
  • Marketing/Advertising: $133,000
  • Retail: $126,000
  • Professional services: $123,000
  • Not-for-profit: $113,000

Whatever interests and dreams you pursue in your CPA career, you can be assured that as a CPA you will earn a comfortable and rewarding salary. Compensation is just one of the many reasons to become a CPA. And, contrary to what people believe, accounting is a varied, growing and accessible career.

Learn about how to become a CPA as a student or current accountant.