2 Mar 2011

Halladay comes back to Toronto in July

After 12 years of pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays, Roy Halladay packed up his belongings and emptied out his storage unit last year after being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies. And while Halladay likely won't be renting out more storage any time soon, he'll at the very least be packing a bag as he comes back to the Toronto area for the first time since being traded.In July, the Blue Jays will host the Philadelphia Phillies for a three-game series. Halladay talked about the mid-summer meeting with Mike Wilner on Toronto radio station 590 The Fan recently.Asked if he was looking forward to the game, Halladay said, "Yeah, it'll be fun. You know I think it was disappointing last year with what was going on, but you know it'll be fun. I look forward to it. You know I obviously loved my time there and you know get a chance to go back there for a couple of days."Halladay…

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2 Mar 2011

Toronto homeowners can be confident they won't have to relocate their belongings from area storage units this year, as a recent report from Scotiabank reveals real estate sales will hover around the 10-year average."Market conditions are expected to remain fairly balanced, favoring sellers to some degree in the spring and buyers by the fall," said Adrienne Warren, Scotiabank's senior economist at a recent forum held in Toronto. "This, in turn, suggests relatively steady prices, but with more downside risk later in the year."Another executive who is bullish about Canada's real estate market is Phil Soper, president and CEO of Brookfield Real Estate Services, pointing to the economy's resilience despite the worldwide recession."Few advanced countries weathered the global economic crisis as…

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28 Feb 2011

Integrating into a new society can be a difficult adjustment, particularly for immigrants. Not only do they have to find Toronto storage and housing for their belongings in an unfamiliar area, but they also have to adapt to a lifestyle that's probably quite foreign to them. But according to the British Council and the Migration Policy Group, integration of immigrants is something Canada excels at.According to the group's Migration Integration Policy Index, Canada has some of the strongest policies in place to ensure the successful assimilation of immigrants into Canadian culture. Of the 31 countries surveyed, Canada's ranking was third, behind only Sweden and Portugal. The countries with the worst immigration policies, according to the study, are Cyprus and Latvia.According…

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25 Feb 2011

On the heels of an Economist magazine survey revealing the Greater Toronto area to be among the most liveable cities in the world, it's also becoming more affordable.Not only is the Greater Toronto area replete with cheap storage units, but according to a recently released report from the Royal Bank of Canada, housing affordability increased in the fourth quarter in almost every housing category. The RBC says the only exception was among two-story homes, which became "marginally less affordable."Countrywide, the RBC says cost for homes is down considerably, thanks largely to five-year fixed mortgage rates declining."Some of the stress that had been building in the housing market between 2009 and the first half of 2010 has been relieved," said Robert…

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24 Feb 2011

The forecast shows snow showers and temperatures topping out in the mid-30s for the Toronto area in the coming days. But there's another reason Toronto residents should keep their summer cars safely stowed away in their storage units: gas prices.According to Torontogasprices.com, Greater Toronto area gas prices jumped nearly four cents literally overnight.Economists attribute the sudden rise in prices to the ongoing political unrest in the Middle East, particularly in Libya, as several oil-producing companies have shut down their operations amid countrywide protests.The gas-monitoring website says the average price of gas throughout the Greater Toronto area now stands at $1.20 per liter."[High gas prices] will obviously have a rippling effect throughout the economy and put us very near to what…

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23 Feb 2011

As Toronto's population continues to grow and storage units are filled, it's clear that homebuilders are expecting more is on the way, as housing starts rose last month.According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corportation, 170,400 units were started last month, up from 169,000 units in December 2010."Housing starts moved slightly higher in January because of an increase in rural starts," said Bog Dugan, chief economist at CMHC's Market Analysis Center. "Single-detached and multiple starts showed a moderate decline.Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 23,500 units in January, according to the CMHC.The condominium market is particularly vibrant. In an interview with the Toronto Metro, Shaun Hildebrand, senior CMHC market analyst for the Greater Toronto area…

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22 Feb 2011

Those who have recently moved to Toronto but can't help but be uncertain about whether it was the right decision can take heart: It's among the most most liveable cities in the world.Every year, the Economist magazine conducts a sweeping assessment of 140 cities around the world. With ratings from 1 to 100 – 1 being intolerable, 100 being heaven on earth – it ranks cities' liveability based on 30 factors like education, environment, culture, infrastructure and healthcare. And fourth on this year's list is Toronto, with a comfortability rating of 97.2.Canada as a whole fared well, as Vancouver ranked first overall with a score of 98.0, and Calgary fell just short of Toronto as the fifth most liveable city,…

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21 Feb 2011

After a recent spat of automobile thefts in the area, Torontonians may finally be able to take their vehicles out from the safety of their storage units.On Friday, Toronto police arrested a 33-year-old man who is believed to be responsible for causing tens of thousands of dollars in damages to dozens of vehicles around the Greater Toronto area.Police say Darryl Aquino performed a series of smash-and-grab thefts over the past month, breaking cars' windows and windshields and then reaching into the vehicles to steal whatever he get his hands on. The items he stole were usually electronic gadgets, such as GPS devices, cameras and iPods, according to the department's constable.Authorities say the string of car thefts – 60 in total…

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