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Sunday , 24 May 2015

Category Archives: Urban Living

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Features on the downtown scene, events and urban living.

Realtors better be social media savvy to reach Gen Y home buyers

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Given their enormous economic clout, estimated at as much as $700 billion in spending power in the US, it’s not surprising that the millennial generation, also known as Generation Y, is so studied and scrutinized. Everybody, especially every marketer, wants to know what the millennials think, like, prefer, believe, assume, reject, as well as how they spend, shop, save, invest, make decisions, choose and plan. Interest in this group of twenty- and thirty-somethings is particularly keen among real estate professionals. Generation Y comprises the largest share of home buyers at 32 per cent, according to the National Association of Realtors in the US, and the largest share of first-time buyers ... Read More »

Household debt no worry, we’re managing: Fraser Institute

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Canadians, it seems, are constantly being beaten up by economists, bankers and government ministers, as well as scared by “alarmist” headlines, for the large, even irresponsible, amount of consumer debt we carry. Do we deserve the beating? Not according to the Fraser Institute. Its latest research bulletin states that there is “little evidence” that Canadians are being irresponsible in our willingness to take on debt. In fact, though debt load is increasing, assets and net worth are increasing faster. As a matter of fact, it’s governments who need to learn about debt management, not the average household. The Fraser Institute paper says it wants to put Canadians’ household debt in ... Read More »

Ontario consumers support public registry of tradespeople: OCOT

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If you had to hire an electrician or a plumber to do work in your home, would you care whether they were qualified to do it? Most likely you would, especially if you didn’t know the person. To make sure, Ontario’s somewhat controversial College of Trades (OCOT) commissioned a poll. It found that indeed a sizable majority of Ontario consumers want to know whether the electricians and plumbers they hire to work in their homes are actually qualified to do that work. Support was very strong for the College’s use of a public register of its members. The register lists all skilled tradespersons with their qualifications. More than nine in ... Read More »

Lower housing costs would add $1 trillion to US economy: report

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What’s good for Toronto is good for the country. We hear that often, especially during election campaigns. With GDP equal to about one-fifth of the country’s, Toronto is an important economic engine. But could it be even more so? Could it be as simple as making more housing available so that more people could move here? Not exactly. But a pair of academic economists in the US have concluded that making more housing available in key cities like New York and San Francisco would have a $1 trillion impact on US GDP. The economists looked at the relationship between cities and the national economy in terms of economic output and productivity ... Read More »

City seeking input on heat/cooling by-law for rentals

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Canadians like to be comfortable, and we consume a lot of energy in pursuit of that comfort. Very few countries, on a per capita basis, use more oil, gas and electricity than Canada. One result of this high rate of consumption is that, even with our extreme climate, mortality rates in Canada are relatively consistent from one month to another. The average number of daily deaths in August was 546, according to Statistics Canada (2006); in January, the number rose to 656. That made for 5,650 excess winter deaths, or EWDs, that year. In comparison, England, with a population of about twice Canada’s, has about 25,000 EWDs each year. A ... Read More »

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