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Thursday , 18 December 2014

Category Archives: Urban Living

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Features on the downtown scene, events and urban living.

Construction industry needs BIM to spark innovation

Canada has a serious image problem. While the United States is known around the world for being aggressive and proud, and Japan for being avant-garde, Canada is seen as timid, failing to live up to its potential. The country’s industry, particularly its construction industry, is not sufficiently innovative and cutting-edge. Canada is ranked just twenty-sixth of 144 countries for its ability to innovate (World Economic Forum) and twenty-seventh in R&D spending by companies. Pierre Boucher, the newly appointed first president of Canadian Construction Innovations (CCInnovations) believes that we must, and can, change that. It is why CCInnovations was created in 2013. The Canadian Construction Association (CCA) released its own fairly ... Read More »

Lowest rate not the only feature to look for in a mortgage

With regard to real estate, the year 2014 in Canada can be summed up this way: home prices and sales went up, mortgage rates stayed down. The government tinkered with mortgage rules back in April, but those rules affected lenders and insurers more than borrowers, so consumers barely noticed. In May, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) said it would insure fewer high-ratio mortgages, but this had little impact on buyers. That same month Investors Group announced a record-low variable rate mortgage at 1.99 per cent. The summer housing market in Toronto was one of the hottest in the past ten years. Throughout the year, there was a great deal ... Read More »

Household debt higher, net worth too: Statistics Canada

The thing about debt is, as long as you can afford to pay it, it can be a good thing. If consumers had no access to credit, household consumption would fluctuate wildly, causing a range of problems in the wider economy. In Canada, the level of household debt is now at a record-high level. Statistics Canada reports that “leverage,” meaning the ratio of debt to disposable income, reached 162.6 per cent in the third quarter of 2014. This means that we owe $1.63 for every $1 we earn. Should the average Canadian worry about this? It sounds frightening enough, owing more than we earn, until we consider the next part ... Read More »

Execs don’t like texting at meetings: survey

Global technology company Ericsson says that increased connectivity is something people, especially children, want and expect today. A world in which everything is connected through the Internet, and information-sharing can even be done by some form of technology-assisted telepathy, is the world we are moving rapidly towards. But just because “everyone is doing it” does not mean everyone approves. A Toronto management company says there is one area where too much connectivity is not appreciated: the boardroom. Robert Hall Management Resources surveyed managers to find out their opinions regarding the use of smartphones and other mobile devices during business meetings. Is it acceptable for professionals to read and respond to ... Read More »

Consumers want more connectivity in daily life according to Ericsson

Swedish communications technology multinational Ericsson released a list of ten consumer trends that it says will dominate in 2015. The company, which owns a large share of the world’s mobile network infrastructure market, releases an annual report on these trends from its ConsumerLab, which conducts global research to determine what people are thinking about technology. It claims that its results represent the views of 85 million frequent Internet users. Consumers are becoming more comfortable with such things as robots in the home and “mind sharing,” Ericsson says. Mind sharing is not to be confused with “mind share,” a marketing term that refers to how much awareness a brand has among ... Read More »

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