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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!

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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.

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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.

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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!

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Spaw Boutique

Spaw Boutique is a place for true pet lovers, those of us that would treat an animal as if they were part of our family! When you want the best for your furry little loved ones, it’s going to call for a specific type of service – one that actually cares about the well-being of your pets! Dogs and cats will receive spa-like treatment at Spaw Boutique, which is why so many people are raving about the brand new service. They have a retail space available that gives you access to an abundance of pet-related accessories, things like dog walking leashes and treats would apply here. You could also even go about purchasing new water and food bowls if you feel it’s necessary! They have you covered in every single aspect in terms of pet-care products. These products apply to both cats and dogs, meaning it would apply to both types of people! It’s great when you’re a pet boutique and actually appeal to an abundance of different needs. Some people prefer dogs and others prefer cats – so why not make it so they can shop for either?

There’s a raw food section available as well, which is perfect for when you really want to treat your dogs. The biggest attraction would be the incredibly intricate grooming space they have available, with an abundance of tables to choose from – you’ll always be accounted for! The dog dryer room makes it so that the grooming process is short and sweet, while the cat bathing room is another addition that makes cat grooming easier (and much more relaxing). Tons of places that offer up pet grooming services don’t have the right equipment or staff to work with, but that isn’t the case here. They’re trained professionals that are equipped with industry-standard pet grooming equipment! The grooming check-in area has tons of cool stuff to look at, as well as toys and such to purchase for your pet. They really thought of everything when it comes to Spaw Boutique, keeping customers in front of just about anything they’ll need that’s pet care related.

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All About Home Ownership: Millennials

Being a millennial means you’re not only blessed with youth (for now!), but it also means that you’re going to go through quite a bit of trouble when looking to purchase a home in the future. Living in Toronto is one of those things that people take seriously. The cost is high, but the amount of culture and other types of richness that you experience is simply intriguing. It’s what brings so many people to the city, after all. With that being said, Millennials need to curb their expectations when it comes to living in a single-family, low-rise home; there simply isn’t enough land in place to allow that. If you could build entire homes on top of one another, I’m sure they’d allow it! BMO conducted a survey during the month of April, and it told us that around 70% of Millennials hold owning a home as quite important. Although it’s important to them, they are still willing to wait until they can afford one they’d enjoy.

It might not just be a matter of waiting until you can afford it, as opposed to just adjusting your expectations in general. When land values are rising, you need to curb your enthusiasm – property is one of those investments that requires a lot of money. Frank Clayton, who is a senior researcher at the Centre for Urban Research and Land Development (Ryerson University) stated that: “This is a ‘905 problem’”. The city and surrounding areas just don’t have the sheer number of housing units needed to account for everybody, especially Millennials. Some researchers argue that laneway housing in specific neighbourhoods could be the way to save space, but only time will tell how successful we are able to be with our endeavours. This is a boom, as opposed to a “bubble” – you can expect these prices to stick around for quite some time. If you’re serious about living in a low-rise home, you may have to move around the country a little bit. In order to get serious about your property needs, you’ve got to understand the industry at its core. Millennials are pretty much forgotten about when it comes to purchasing/owning a home, because it’s so far out of reach for most. If you start saving up now (and understanding the real estate market), you should still be in pretty good hands.

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Rail Deck Park & Condo Pricing

The new Rail Deck Park proposition is supposed to bring a new vibe to the town of Toronto, but what does that mean for the condo prices in surrounding areas? Condos are already relatively expensive in the Toronto area, but this new Rail Deck Park implementation could very well raise their prices up to 10%. The proposal is supposed to support the building of a huge, 21-acre park on top of the CN Rail corridor. It’s a great concept, and it will definitely provide a new sort of feel for the city. It’s always nice to get something new, but the fact that it’s going to raise surrounding condo values has people questioning the decision.

“It will definitely raise the value of the whole neighbourhood, because it will be much more interconnected” stated Alex Balikoev, who is a realtor himself. The bump in value for these properties may seem like a blessing to some, as there’s always investors and condo-owners that are looking to make a sale. 10% in profit for doing nothing at all is great, regardless of how you look at it. If you’re someone who’s looking to make a move into Toronto, however, it could pose as a problem. The average price of a home located in Toronto rose to around $746,546 during the month of June, which is 16.8% higher than it was during June of last year. Condo prices have jumped 7.7%, and that’s without the implementation of Rail Deck Park. Inclusionary zoning is the way they go about balancing property values within the city, in which developers have to take a specific number of units and allow them for low (or even moderate) income homes.

Most of the available properties you’ll find in Toronto are going to be condos, and when the price is increasing, it means that it’s somewhat unavoidable. It’s said that an even stronger inclusionary zoning process will take effect next year (on a provincial level), which is said to allow the creation of up to 12,000 new and affordable homes for Toronto.

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Toronto Housing Prices Soar Through the Roof

The amount of money people pay to live in Toronto and such is astounding, but what about the GTA area? When you want to find a home in the GTA area, it’s going to be much pricier than it has been in the past – but that’s what happens when the supply of high-quality homes starts to run dry. During the month of July, there was actually an abundance of sales records being broken within the housing industry. With that being said, there is a particularly harmful trend that is creeping it’s way into the region. When it comes to the amount of homes being put up for sale, the number has become increasingly lacking as of late. This applies to detached homes, especially! There are tons of condos available, but not nearly enough “ground-based” housing projects to be considered. The lack of detached and townhome options is playing a part in the increased sale prices of homes, because the supply is much lower than the demand.

Frank Clayton, who is a senior researcher at Ryerson University’s Centre for Urban Research and Land Development, had taken a look at recent consumer surveys. He noticed that although there are provincial policies in place that would lean towards the production of condos, people whom are looking to buy property still want a home for themselves. Detached houses just seem like a much safer bet, as well as being looked at as the traditional way of living. If you’re a millennial, odds are you’ll be a little more interested in condos – but even the numbers themselves state that a low-rise house is much more suitable. When researching the numbers, low-rise houses had actually made up around 66% of all the homes sold within the region last year. When you look at this number compared alongside the 34% that condos made up, you realize the importance of having a decent supply of traditional homes (for sale, of course). Townhouses are always going to be a reasonable choice for renting, but owning a home is the ultimate goal in life.

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Toronto Plays Home to a Brand New Dinner Theatre (Candyland)

There’s no shortage of quality restaurants in the Toronto area, but when it comes to dinner theatre, there isn’t exactly a specific venue that you would keep in mind. Well, seeing as there is an abundance of food attractions to choose from all over King West, it’s nice to introduce something brand new. Candyland is a dinner theatre project that’s looking to change the way people look at King West. It’s going to remind you of other relatable locations, such as “The Box” in Manhattan, or even the “Cirque le Soir” in London. These are locations that are well-renowned and sought out, which means this addition to Toronto could mean quite a bit. Throughout the night, you’re going to be graced with three or four separate performances. Each one will be around 10 to 15 minutes a piece, and will cover a variety of different topics and platforms. Some of these are going to be circus acts (like a ring dancer), or even just a blues band playing a quick song – sketches are also a very big part of the entertainment schedule.

Candyland is a concept that we haven’t exactly seen in Toronto before, which makes it something interesting to check out. It’ll draw in a crowd on a nightly basis, and if the food is as good as they say, it should be a location that sticks around for a long time. It may even become a crucial part of the local Toronto community! The option of having live entertainment available while you eat isn’t open all too often, so it’s a cool thing to experience when you dine at Candyland.

The food is going to be just as important as the entertainment, which is why Chef Frank Parhizgar (whom is the mastermind behind “Franks Kitchen”) will create a menu that consists of luxurious snacks and smaller plates. The cover price is $20, and the cost of food as well; of which is served until relatively late! If this is something you think you’d enjoy, check out Candyland at their new location on 619 King St. W!

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Ontario Government Looking to Regulate Home Inspectors

As a consumer, you’re going to rely on a lot of services throughout your life. This means that the right home inspector could very well save you some money on a property purchase, as well as help you out with plenty of other things. One thing to keep in mind, is that the home regulation industry hasn’t exactly been efficient these days; certifications and licenses are hard to come by these days. As a result, the Ontario government is finally taking it upon themselves to inspect the home inspection industry (and quite thoroughly, might I add!). There is a brand new licensing process being introduced, which is meant to protect buyers from the illegitimate claims certain home inspectors could make.

The fact of it all is that a home inspection is a key component to the home buying process. If you have an inspection report that is lackluster, odds are you’re going to go about making a bad investment. You could be left with unexpected repair costs when it comes to fixing your home, or even just losing a sale – if that wasn’t bad enough, it could even go as far as having a serious impact on your health and safety. Ontario is doing a great thing by implementing a brand new licensing process, as it calls for a much more professional approach within the industry.

All home inspectors that are operating within the Ontario region will need to be licensed, as well as overseen by their respective administrative party. This has been something in which it took 3 years in total to complete, but it’s finally done! Home inspection isn’t mandatory by any means, but it’s definitely one of the things you should be going through before selling a home. Not only will it ensure that the home is fit for sale, but it also lets potential buyers know that there isn’t anything to fear. This change is going to have people looking at house inspection reports differently! Knowing you can trust a professional opinion is worth its weight in gold.