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Sunday , 21 September 2014

Category Archives: Urban Living

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Features on the downtown scene, events and urban living.

MasterCard sponsors effort to attract girls to tech careers

When was the last time the techie who showed up to work on your computer network at the office was a woman? More than likely, never. Fewer than one in five of those who consider a career in technology in Canada is a woman, and many of those who do choose it drop out. More than half of women who were asked about pursuing a career in technology in an Angus Reid Forum sponsored by MasterCard expressed no interest at all. MasterCard, together with an organization called Ladies Learning Code and the University of Waterloo, is now launching a campaign to try to change that, offering free introductory classes in coding ... Read More »

Rosy outlook for Ontario economy: CIBC

A couple of relatively optimistic reports from Canada’s big banks, one from RBC the other from CIBC, will likely give Ontario’s finance minister, Charles Sousa, reason to smile. The two brief reports call for “accelerated growth” (that’s RBC) and a “notable resurgence” (CIBC) in Ontario’s economy to continue into 2016. Of the two, CIBC’s report is markedly more sanguine about Ontario’s prospects, going as far as to forecast an additional $4–5 billion in revenues for the province in the next two years. Given a deficit of $12.5 billion and an apparently impossible promise to achieve a balanced budget by 2017, those extra billions couldn’t come at a better time, from ... Read More »

Banker says it’s up to Ottawa to control consumer debt

The household worth of the average Canadian grew 2.3 per cent in the second quarter of this year, mainly on the strength of household real estate. Canadians also did well by their shares and equities, life insurance policies and pension assets. On a per capita basis, according to Statistics Canada, household net worth rose to $227,000 in the second quarter. Unfortunately, household debt, including credit cards, mortgages and non-mortgage loans, also rose. At the end of the second quarter it stood at $1.79 trillion, of which $513 billion was consumer credit debt. Because debt growth outpaced the growth in disposable income, household “leverage” reached 163.3 per cent. This is high, ... Read More »

Gen X homebuyers don’t want to be house poor


It’s often said about Generation X that they want it all. It looks like that could be true, and why not? A new TD survey finds that most Gen X-ers want “budget flexibility” so that they can afford not just a home but the other things in life that they value as well. No “house poor” young people they, sitting at home in front of the television while their non-mortgaged friends have all the fun. This group, according to TD, is the “House-Plus” crowd, overwhelmingly preferring to have the house plus the travel and the discretionary spending as well. Wanting to avoid being a “House-All” buyer, one who goes to ... Read More »

Judge’s ruling a warning to condo boards: never ignore a court order

“Directors of a condominium corporation may believe they know the best course of action for the corporation. However, as reasonable as that belief may be, it does not give them the right to act in defiance of a court order.” These are the opening words of a recent Ontario Court of Appeal ruling in the case of the contemptuous condo board (otherwise known as Boily v. Carleton Condominium Corporation). The board members were “well-intentioned but ultimately contemptuous” wrote the judge, and they could have avoided the whole to-do if they had used a little more common sense. As is so often the case, the origin of the legal dispute that resulted ... Read More »

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