No Comments

5 Things You Must Know About Vancouver

5 Things You Must Know About Vancouver

Credit: Paolo Macorig

Vancouver, British Columbia is one of the coolest cities on the face of the earth. It’s known for it’s aromatic coffee scene, the eclectic night life, and for being surrounded by gorgeous islands.

But if you plan on moving to Vancouver, there’s some lesser-known facts that are only really known to the locals.

Here are five things that you should know before you move to help you feel like a local on day one.

Stanley Park: An Environmental Mecca

Vancouver is known for being a haven for outdoor lovers and environmentalists alike, but did you know that the city’s first ever green space is one of the largest urban parks in North America? Stanley Park is 1001-acre’s large and is home to many fun attractions and walking paths, making it perfect for a day out away from the bustle of the city.

It’s Known As “Hollywood North”

The amount of movies and TV shows which have been shot in Vancouver is impressive. Between the government providing tax credits to producers and a favorable exchange rate from the USD to the CAD, it enables producers to film movies here on the cheap. A few notables made here are the tv shows Arrow, The Flash, and The 100. It was also the location for Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.

Everyone Knows About Diamond and Diamond

The Diamond and Diamond Law Firm has been a recent phenomenon in Vancouver. They originally started in Toronto, but now Diamond and Diamond are in Vancouver. Having recently opened up their law firm here, they have put ads all over the city, making it difficult to go anywhere without catching a glimpse of Jeremy Diamond and crew.

The Great Fire of Vancouver

In those departed days of 1886 when the city had only been founded for a few months, the city was completely burned down and this is known as the Great Fire of Vancouver. Out of the entire blaze, less than five buildings survived the demolition. It’s estimated that around $1.3 million was lost in property. This prompted the town to raise money for their first firehall.

We’ve Held The 2010 Olympic Games

To top all of this off, the city of Vancouver also held the 2010 Winter Olympics. These games featured 82 countries and more than 2,500 athletes. The games lasted for 17 days and was watched by an astounding 3 billion people on television. The games took place all over Toronto and created an exciting atmosphere across the city.

Vancouver is hands down one of the neatest places on earth. It’s an eclectic city with a personality all it’s own. It’s been home to contest by Olympians, large fires, and some of the biggest shows on TV.

No Comments

5 Benefits of Living In Vancouver

5 Benefits of Living In Vancouver

(Attribution Not Required)

If you’re thinking of moving to Vancouver, then you’re on the right path. Vancouver is an exciting city that holds a lot of opportunity for the people who move there. Everyone in this bustling city is able to find comfort in the city of Vancouver and make it their own.

Unlike a lot of big cities, Vancouver has a homey feel to it that so many other places lack. So what makes Vancouver such a great home? We spoke with one Vancouver personal injury lawyer to find out her thoughts.

Hop Into Nature

Vancouver is the perfect mix of scenic nature and eclectic city. To one side of the city you have the vast and expansive Pacific Ocean, which seems to sprawl on forever. On the other side, there are the stunning Rocky Mountains, which tower above the city. This creates an atmosphere for the weekend warrior to get out to one of the nine beaches in the city or go for an exciting hike through the hills.

Incredible Weather

Unlike many other areas of Canada, Vancouver prides itself on not having any snow. The weather in the city is incredible, which makes for warm summers and comfortable winters that don’t leave you freezing. There’s a fair amount of rain in the city, but that’s just a good excuse to pull out a book and enjoy the coffee.

The Coffee Scene

The coffee scene in Vancouver is one of the highlights if you’re a coffee lover yourself. The city holds itself to a high standard to produce quality coffee that keeps you going through this lively city. You won’t struggle to find a cool and unique coffee shop to sit back and people watch, catch up with friends, or power through some work.

Top Notch Public Transport

The public transport in Vancouver is reliable and affordable, making it a preferable way to travel through the city instead of with a vehicle. The main feature of the public transport is the sky rail, which is a subway that takes people above the city, instead of underground like many rail systems are designed in other cities.

A Young and Vibrant City

There is a prevailing youth culture within Vancouver that keeps the city fresh and exciting no matter the season or time of day. You can be sure that there’s always something fun going on that you won’t want to miss.

Living in Vancouver will be one of the best decisions you can make for yourself, especially if you live an active lifestyle. Between the nature and bustling city life, great public transport, and weather compared to other Canadian cities, what’s not to love?

No Comments

4 Tips On Finding The Perfect Office Space

4 Tips On Finding The Perfect Office Space

Credit: Marc Mueller

If you’re about to purchase a retail space for your new office, it’s important to understand what to look for. Here at Condo Move we want to help you find an office space that’s comfortable, professional, and has enough room for you to grow as a business. Here are some of our best tips on what to look for in your new office.

Space to Grow

If you’re a new business, you need to make sure there’s space for you to grow. For instance, if you’re a firm of injury lawyers in Vancouver, then you need to be able to handle increased client loads by hiring more staff. Where you’re moving, is there enough office space available to allow for more staff?

Location, Location, Location

Discovering the right location for you can be a bit of a challenge. You need to juggle price ranges, traffic volumes, and the nearby competition. Wherever you move, make sure that you’re nearby a lot of foot traffic so that you can be sure enough people will see your building to develop increased brand awareness.

You should also research how close competition is for your services and products. If competition is too, it may negatively impact sales so that it’s difficult to afford both fixed and variable costs.

Remember Your Tax Deductions

Come tax time you’ll be able to file for tax deductions for new businesses, so don’t forget as this can be a large sum of income for your business to continue to grow. Tax deductions are viable on many business expenses such as office equipment and occasionally even payments regarding your rent such as utilities.

Sublease Some Office Space

If you do take up some extra space to give your business that extra room to grow, you can sublease it as additional office space in the mean time while you’re not using it. This will allow you to receive an additional income and it helps give you more potential options for leasing office space because you’re not as worried about a space being a little too big.

Work With a Trusted Agent

A trusted agent will be able to show you all the best spots in the city so you know that you’re taken care of. Before you hire an agent, look into their background in order to see what people have to say about them. The better agent you find, the better experience you’re going to have while shopping for your new retail space.

Finding an office space to lease is an exciting time, but one that can be pretty stressful. By focusing on these tips, you’ll be more fully prepared to take on your new task!

No Comments

The Vancouver housing market is in trouble with a 40% plunge in sales – prices are expected to follow the same downward trend

The Vancouver housing market continues to show signs of anxiety with only 444 detached homes selling in January and prices down more than six per cent in the past six months. The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver said Thursday there were 1,523 sales in January 2017, down from 2,519 sales a year ago and a drop of 11.1 per cent from the 1,714 sales in December. The January sales figures were 10.3 per cent below the 10-year average for the month. Metro Vancouver’s detached properties are thought to be highly sought after by overseas buyers. However, the slower pace of sales, represented a 57.6 per cent decline from a year ago. This leads us to believe that the Vancouver region’s real estate market could be headed for its first year of price declines since 2012 as home sales extend their slide. New principal tax rules surrounding capital gains exemptions could also create further tension within the real estate market. David Rotfleisch, Toronto Tax Lawyer, quotes “If you don’t fall into the non-resident category, your headache will be the new reporting requirements on the sale of property. Not doing this right will open you up to audits and bring the risk of significant penalties.”

As far as prices are concerned, the board said its MLS Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver was $896,000 in January, a 3.7 per cent decline over the past six months and a 0.2 per cent drop from December, 2016. The falling numbers come as Vancouver continues to deal with the impact of a 15 per cent foreign property transfer tax the province began imposing in August.

“From a real estate perspective, it’s a lukewarm start to the year compared to 2016,” Dan Morrison, president of the board, said in a statement. “While we saw near record-breaking sales at this time last year, home buyers and sellers are more reluctant to engage so far in 2017.”

Supply of new housing units on the other hand appears to be ramping up quickly. The total number of new listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver was 4,140 in January, 2017. That figure represented a 6.8 per cent decrease from a year ago but was up 215.5 per cent from December, 2016. The total number of homes listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service in Metro Vancouver climbed 9.1 per cent over the last year to 7,238 in January, 2017. Total listings jumped 14.1 per cent from the 6,345 listings in December, 2016. The sales-to-active listings ratio of 21 per cent in January, 2017 was 21 per cent, the lowest ratio for the region in two years.

“Analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months,” the board said in a statement.

Morrison said property type is defining activity in the Greater Vancouver market. “The townhome and condominium markets are more active than the detached market at the moment,” Morrison said, adding while detached home prices are falling, townhome and condominium prices are holding steady.

 

 

No Comments

Just Move Into Your New Toronto Apartment? Reward Yourself

Just Move Into Your New Toronto Apartment Reward Yourself

Credit: VV Nincic

Here at Condo Move we know how stressful moving can be and our aim is to help make the move as stress free as possible for you. However, there’s nothing like a relaxing afternoon to get you into the groove of Toronto life. So whether you’re new to the are and are looking for a way to treat yourself for your new condo buy or you’re a seasoned local who knows the area well, here are some suggestions to relieve the moving stress.

Get A Massage

Find a Toronto massage company to get things started off by getting a deep tissue, prenatal (if you’re pregnant), or a comfortable Swedish massage. There are plenty of great Toronto-based massage companies and from the hot beds, calming aroma, and hot tea it’s hard to deny the comfort this place provides. It may even just be the best massage of your life.

The Rage Room

Are massages too gentle for you? If you prefer to smash things, the Rage Room is surely the place for you. It’s also perhaps one of the most unique business models in the world. For a $20 bill you can grab some weapons and safety equipment to smash random objects for nearly an hour. You get the pleasure of crushing things and making a huge mess that you don’t have to clean up so you can de-stress the chaotic way.

The Salt Cave

Another really unique experience is something in Toronto known as the Salt Cave. The Salt Cave is full of salts and minerals that have therapeutic qualities to them. It’s a great way to relax and unwind in what feels like a natural environment. Inside there is also plenty of comfortable chairs to lounge in, yoga sessions, massages, and more.

The House of Yoga

If you’re keen on yoga and smoking marijuana, then why not head over to The House of Yoga? Enjoy the yoga sessions while in an ultimate state of relaxation. This yoga studio offers plenty of different classes for you as well.

The H20 Float Spa

What’s a float spa? A float spa is a sensory deprivation chamber that will revolutionize your definition of relaxation. This ‘pod’ is filled with water that has been saturated with Epsom salts, so your body will float without you putting in any effort. You just have to lay back and relax. If you’re like the full experience you can do your session in total darkness and in silence to get the sensory deprivation experience.

Toronto has so many unique ways for you to relax, so whatever your fancy is, you’ll find something that intrigues you. Welcome to the wonderful city of Toronto!

 

 

No Comments

A Recent Development Reveals Toronto’s Rich History

Toronto’s historic North Market is about to receive another makeover as the single-story farmer’s market is torn down and replaced with a five-story city-owned market. The famous site, located on the corner of Front and Jarvis, has been home to numerous structures over the years, all dedicated to food, making this celebrated spot a monument to Toronto’s foodie tradition.

Thanks to Toronto’s 2004 archeological management plan, construction on the storied site will not be undertaken lightly. In fact, 2.7 million dollars are expected to be spent on demolition and excavation as the site is properly studied prior to building. Right now, the archeological investigation is literally unearthing new evidence to not only support the claim that this site has been dedicated to food for centuries, but also to shed some light on the practices and lifestyles of Toronto’s past residents.

The team, including senior archeologists Peter Popkin and David Robertson, have discovered several long-buried structures, including the foundations of two of the previous buildings, tunnels and cellars used by butchers for draining and storage, and shards of ceramic that likely belonged to pottery used for serving.

The North Market was designated as an area for food serving by the British in 1803. However, historian Bruce Bell theorizes that the spot had significance for food long before that among native Indian tribes that would fish in the area. Bell suggests that the site could have been designated as a food serving and eating area for as long as 5 thousand years.

Regardless, it’s importance was unmistakable for the roughly 9 thousand residents of the colonial outpost that was early Toronto. At that time, this spot was likely the only place to trade for or buy food. It also once contained not only the only marketplace, but also Toronto’s first ever city hall, further emphasizing the significance that such a place had for settlers.

The first structure was built on that spot in 1820 and, since then, there have been four others, all of them serving a similar purpose. The recently demolished farmer’s market has enjoyed the honour since 1968. While many may be sad to see it go, they can rest assured that the new building will honour the overall history of the spot.

After a projected two years of construction and between 60 and 90 million dollars, the new five story building will include panels on the first couple of floors in accordance with the Heritage interpretation plan set in place. These panels will pay homage to the history of the site and the many celebrated structures that came before.

Despite how many may view budding construction projects, the new market is not an affront to Toronto’s history but rather part of a long-standing tradition. Just like its predecessors, the new market sees the old replaced with the new while maintaining the overall integrity and value of a treasured historic locale.

No Comments

Thor Espresso Bar

Espresso bars are often conceived as being a novelty of sorts, only appealing to people who are very serious about their coffee needs. While that still remains relatively true, it doesn’t mean that it’s limited to only that variety of person – Thor Espresso bar in King West is really looking to change the way people approach businesses like these. The co-owners Patrick Tu and Tom Junek has become absolutely accustomed to the “Slayer”, which is their beast of an espresso machine (and easily one of the coolest ones you’ll ever find on this planet). The machine itself is gigantic, and there’s a paddle that will adjust the water pressure, according to the espresso pull being input. The levels vary from one to nine, while most retail espresso machines only work with nine all the way through. When you go from one to nine, the taste/flavour of the espresso is much richer – not only that, but the fragrance is much more appealing as well.

To be specific, this is the 77th espresso machine of this kind that has been built on the planet, and it’s the only one you’ll be able to make use of in Toronto. Whether you want a Latte with a beautiful image embroidered into the foam, or just a dark and hard cup of espresso, they’ve got you covered. That’s not the only thing they’ve got to offer up, though, as they also have a variety of pastries and other snacks to pick from. It’s like your traditional café, except with a little more enthusiasm put behind the entire process. Panini’s are readily available due to the panini press, and all of the pastries are sourced from both Desmond & Beatrice/Circles & Squares.

This Scandinavian influenced café (hence the ‘Thor’ reference) is sure to draw a crowd when people begin to find out about it. It’s really just a matter of time before Torontonians get out there and experience what the Thor Espresso Bar has to offer for themselves!

No Comments

Fort York Bridge Looking to Rise Up Once Again

When it comes to building a $19.7 million bridge to be used by cyclists and pedestrians, there’s really only one way to do it – the Torontonian way! Stanley Park and Fort York can finally connect seamlessly, as the Fort York Bridge is looking to make a comeback. The two-part bridge that links the King St. West Liberty Village and Fort York Neighbourhood is going to take one year to construct; it’s said to begin being built during Spring of 2016. Walking and cycling is a relatively big deal in Toronto, as driving your car all over town isn’t exactly the most effective way to get around. One bridge is going to spread across the Southern extension of Stanley Park, bringing it over to the Northern side of Ordnance Triangle Park. The second bridge is going to link the Southern side of Ordnance Triangle Park with Fort York, giving you two-way access to both locations. Dufferin Construction has stated that this is the very first stainless steel bridge (of this variety) in North America, and will be much cheaper to maintain when compared alongside to traditionally manufactured bridges. The original bridge that was being proposed was supposed to cost up to $26 million, and was initially supposed to be opened up during July of 2012. Stanley Park and Fort York were seemingly meant to be connected, as the bridge has drawn a lot of positive response from the community. If you’re a local and enjoy walking or cycling around town, this bridge is going to make things much easier for you.

Mayor John Tory stated that the city building effort was going great, and that there are going to be an abundance of different attractions for potential tourists to take a look at – but it’s more so focused on the building of local communities and such that makes everything so great. Torontonians can finally get to Fort York and back as they please, without having to navigate around the roads.

No Comments

Insurance Rates: Comparing Rental and Owned Properties

Home insurance is crucial when you’re trying to live a stress-free life. You never really know when a problem is going to come up, and when it’s house-related, you never really want to deal with it. It’s kind of like a wart that won’t go away! Not only that, but they’re going to make up a relatively large portion of your insurance budget. Living without a roof over your head isn’t ideal by any means, which means finding a reasonable rate for your house insurance is critical. When you’re a renter, the average insurance rates that you’ll pay are going to vary. There is a minimum of $160, an average of $250 and a maximum of $410. You shouldn’t expect to pay any more than $410 if you’re renting. With that being said, there are a few different types of insurance to be considered. Rental premiums include stuff like:

Liability Insurance – If you somehow cause damage to another party and they decide to sue you (let’s say a mailman slipped on icy steps or you flood a neighbours unit by accident), you’ll be covered.

Contents Insurance – The contents of your home are going to be accounted for with this insurance. If you ever go through a house fire or get burglarized, you’ll still be in great hands.

Additional Costs – Insurance is going to cover any fees that may be associated with your home.

For homeowners, the insurance premiums that you pay for are going to vary. You’ll have all of the included components above, but it also covers the cost that comes along with fixing or repairing your property. Coverage is going to vary from policy to policy, and there are even some relatively “out there” policies available. If you live in a tornado-prone region, natural disaster coverage is ideal; cost is much different, though.

The cost will be determined by the price of your home. If a house is worth around $100-300k, home insurance could cost around $860 per year. More expensive homes ($300-700k) would be about $920 per year, while $700k to $1.5m is about $1,400.

No Comments

Nepal Pari Nail SPA

When you’re looking to get a pedicure or manicure done (or anything related to your nails at all), you want to make sure that you’re going to the right place. Most of the time it’s going to cost a decent amount of money, so you always want to know who’s going to be handling your needs beforehand – that’s why people tend to get into the habit of seeing the same spa’s over and over. Nepal Pari Nai Spa is one of the best nail spas and treatment centers you’ll find around King West in Toronto, and that’s because they’re your “complete solution for beauty”. Anybody who has been there personally will tell you that the job they do is quite good, and they really don’t cut any corners.

They offer up both foot and hand care, which means your toe and finger nails are always accounted for. They’ll wash, cut and finish your foot with ease, and even go as far as giving you an amazing facial. They can help out with any acne treatments or anti-aging processes you may be interested in, as well as microdermabrasion. They specialize in massages, including hot stone and aromatherapy! Not only that, but Swedish is included as well – the body wraps and body exfoliation processes they offer up are also a nice thing to take into account. Body wraps are something a lot of people are seeking out these days, but they can be tough to find (at a reasonable price, anyways); but that’s not the case anymore! Nepal Pari Nail Spa offers up body wraps and cellulite treatments, all at an affordable rate.

If you want to look your best, Nepal Pari Nail Spa can help you out. Depilation and Lipo Laser treatments are easy obtainable, and all of the other services are going to be handled by only the most professional workers around. If you want a relaxing experience, you’ll want to come to Nepal Pari Nail Spa!