15 Jun 2012

Popularity of “Storage Wars” drives up interest in...

Self storage facilities have been in the spotlight recently thanks to the craze started by the A&E series "Storage Wars." The popular program follows a group of people who bid on the contents of storage units whose owners have defaulted.Many self storage facilities sell units and their contents in order to recoup losses once the owner stops paying the storage rates. Before the show hits the airwaves, it was a somewhat small group of people who bid on these units. In most cases, the bidder only gets a glimpse of what's inside the unit and has to offer their best guess for what's inside. Sometimes there's valuable items, while other times it's mostly junk.As the show has gotten more popular – nearly 5 million tuned in for the third season premiere, according to Broadcasting & Cable – the number of people bidding on these units has grown in popularity as well. Now, people hoping to score hidden treasures make storage…

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13 Jun 2012

Real estate prices in major Canadian cities such as Toronto and Vancouver have been high for some time, but they may begin a gradual descent soon, says TD Bank.According to Moneyville.ca, TD Bank's latest report shows real estate prices for Toronto and Vancouver declining 15 percent, but it may be some time before that comes to fruition. TD Bank says the decline in prices will be very gradual and may take two to three years to complete. This is in stark contrast to real estate prices in many parts of the U.S., which recently saw a sudden 30 percent drop.The bank's report shows the housing market for both cities is overpriced. However, low interest rates and a stable economy are…

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29 May 2012

The Toronto real estate market has been booming as of late, and many of those moving to the region have been using self storage facilities in order to hold onto their items before they get moved in. However, a recent report indicates the popularity of the city may be causing real estate prices to rise.A new report by RBC Economics shows the city's "affordability index" declined in the first quarter of 2012, and early projections show prices will either continue to increase or hold steady through the end of the year. The cost of the average detached home in the city was equal to 53.4 percent of pre-tax income for the quarter."The seller remains king in the Toronto-area housing market…

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23 May 2012

Ontario legislators are planning to strengthen existing nursing home laws to prevent abuse of seniors following the findings of a task force who say the government isn't doing enough to help.The Toronto Star recently uncovered abuse at a number of senior care facilities in the area, prompting an investigation into the territory's laws regarding senior abuse. While the existing laws are strong, the task force convened in the wake of the scandal found numerous areas where they can be strengthened.The task force reportedly made 18 recommendations to the legislature, many of which are related to inefficiencies in the system. Eliminating needless paperwork can allow senior care staff to spend more time with patients, which should lead to managers and others…

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22 May 2012

A number of people from all over the world have been moving to Toronto recently as the city's real estate market continues to boom, but the city welcomed its most high-profile visitors yet when Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles visited several famous landmarks on May 21.The heir to the throne and the Duchess of Cornwall were welcomed by various politicians from the city for the annual Victoria Day celebrations. Prince Charles is the great-great-great-grandson of Queen Victoria, the namesake for the Canadian holiday. According to the Toronto Star, Charles and Camilla attended a private celebration honoring the city's firefighters and police officers.The duo arrived in Ashbridge’s Bay aboard an RCMP vessel, where they were greeted by thousands of gathered…

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11 May 2012

Prices on Canadian real estate continue to rise, as the most recent report from Statistics Canada shows an overall jump of 0.3 percent in the month of March.For the twelfth-straight month, prices for Canadian housing rose. The 0.3 percent increase was ahead of a 0.2 percent jump expected by analysts, according to Reuters. The figure was also a full 2.6 percent higher than March of 2011, outpacing a 2.3 percent year-on-year gain in February.Some cities saw a bigger price increase than others. The city of Toronto is widely acknowledged as the hot real estate market of the moment, and the numbers back that up, as the city rose 0.6 percent in price for the month. Several other cities cooled off…

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27 Apr 2012

Smartphones and iPads are just about everywhere nowadays, and one of the chief reasons consumers are buying these devices are the broad range of applications that come with them. These apps can do everything from play games to check the weather, but they can also allow users to save money in some pretty clever ways, reports Moneyville.ca.There are several apps on the market that allow the user to scan the barcodes of items using their phone's camera. The app can then identify the product in question and check prices online instantly. This can help buyers avoid overpaying for an item they see in a store. The app will tell the user if there's a better deal online or if they…

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26 Apr 2012

For those who have just recently graduated, managing money can be one of the biggest challenges of living independently. Moneyville.ca recently offered some tips for new graduates to keep bank accounts healthy while they begin planning for the future.The top recommendation is to simply live within your means. Many youngsters get their first credit card and hit the malls, but this is a good way to rack up debt and ruin your credit score. Others may live paycheck to paycheck, ignoring the conventional wisdom to save 10 percent of each check in order to build up savings.Many students may have loans that they'll need to start paying off. It's important to come up with a strong debt repayment strategy. Due…

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25 Apr 2012

It's long been talked about, but it appears that the province of Quebec is moving closer to eventual independence, according to comments made by ex-politician Michael Ignatieff.Ignatieff gave an interview with the BBC regarding the state of Scottish independence in the United Kingdom. The ex-Liberal leader compared the situation to that of Quebec. The U.K. recently gave Scotland more autonomy, as Canada did Quebec, but Ignatieff calls this a "temporary solution."Ultimately, the former politician contends that Quebec and Canada have become too different, and the optimism he had for a united country years ago has fallen by the wayside."The problem here is we don’t have anything to say to each other anymore," he reportedly said. "There’s a kind of contract…

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17 Apr 2012

The Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs has run several mock evacuations at nursing homes throughout the province in recent weeks, and the organization reports that most failed, according to the Toronto Star.The group is pushing province legislators to make sprinkler systems mandatory in all senior centers, and also want better training for staff members in nursing homes."We have a legal and moral responsibility to make sure the residents are safe," Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs spokesperson Jim Jessop told the news source.One option for seniors moving into nursing homes to consider is the use of a self storage facility. This will allow the senior to hang onto his or her personal items without taking up space in their new home.…

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13 Apr 2012

The real estate market in Toronto is booming, and bidding wars have become "the norm" for those seeking to buy a house in the city, reports Moneyville.ca.Brothers Jaff and Brad Robertson have seen this phenomenon firsthand. The two professional real estate developers frequently have to compete with other buyers in order to get homes at the price they want, according to the news source.Bidding wars can result in a major windfall for those selling the house, as was the case for one homeowner who got $110,000 more than the asking price after eight bidders began fighting over it. Those selling their house need to stage their homes correctly in order to get the best price possible.This is where self storage…

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11 Apr 2012

Toronto is already home to a number of famous Canadian landmarks, such as the CN Tower, making it one of the best cities in Canada to visit or live in. The city was recently recognized by National Geographic for its diverse cuisine as well – specifically, the food offered at the St. Lawrence Farmers' Market.In a profile listing the Top 10 Food Markets in the world, the St. Lawrence Market was singled out as the absolute best. The magazine praised the market's diverse offerings as well as the setting. Originally started in 1803, the market area has been revived in recent years and local businesses from across the city come together to offer their food and drink. The market runs…

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23 Mar 2012

A majority of Canadians would rather renovate their home than sell it if it turned out their abode needed major work, according to the 19th Annual RBC Homeownership Poll.According to the survey, 83 percent say they would rather make major improvements on their home than go through the process of listing it and finding a new place to live."Canadians are more likely to customize their homes based on their personal preferences rather than buying new. Setting a strict budget can help you stay on track," said Richard Goyder, vice-president of Personal Lending at RBC.Homeowners indicated that the bathroom and kitchen were the rooms most likely for renovation, although the basement was also a common answer. Renovating a room inside a…

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21 Mar 2012

NFL safety Roy Williams retired recently, but that doesn't mean he's out of a job completely. The football star is spending his newfound free time bidding on storage units, a practice that has become popular due to the reality show "Storage Wars."In fact, the former Dallas Cowboys player showed up on a recent episode of "Storage Wars Texas." When two of the bidders found a storage container full of signed sports memorabilia, they took the goods to Williams in order to ensure that they were legit. Williams helped them out, but asked if he could tag along with them to a few storage auctions in the future.The NFL star will reportedly be featured in future episodes, according to DFW.com. Unlike…

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19 Mar 2012

Jiffy Self Storage is giving away an iPad 3 and other cool technological gadgets through its new Famous Landmark contest.The contest is amazingly simple to enter. Simply go to Jiffy's official site and watch a quick video showing some famous landmarks from around Toronto. On the next page, each entrant will be asked to match up audio cues from the video with the landmark in question. Qualifying entries will be entered to win an iPad 3 and a Dell Laptop.It's worth entering right away, as there's a bonus Early Bird Prize available for those who complete their entries as soon as possible. These contestants will be entered to win a Kindle Fire tablet computer.Contestants can also earn bonus entries by…

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6 Mar 2012

Controversy over the purchase of a self storage facility in Idaho has led the state's legislature to draft a new bill that would restrict the government from buying up businesses in the future.In 2010, the Idaho Land Board bought a self storage facility in order to generate revenue for the public endowment, reports The Associated Press. However, the act raised questions of fairness, as a state-run company could have an unfair advantage on the open market compared to privately run facilities.The state bought the self storage company because it was a sound investment that would continue to make money during the recession. Self storage businesses have been performing well even during the economic downturn due to the fact that almost…

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27 Feb 2012

The self storage industry continues to rise even in less than stellar economies in the U.S. and Canada, and the latest trend is helping interested buyers find auctions with ease, The Times Union reports.According to the source, the site StorageAuctionBoards.com is aiming to become the biggest online storage outlet in the States and around Canada as it hopes to provide a one-stop type of shopping for people interested in finding potential hidden treasure behind storage unit walls. This industry is becoming a profitable one, as it's estimated that every day more than 10,000 storage auctions take place in the U.S."People love hearing stories about finds or experiences had at storage auctions," Hunter Carr, the website’s administrator told the publication. "Those…

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16 Feb 2012

Even amidst financial hardships worldwide, one industry that continues to prove its worth in terms of stability and longevity is the self storage market. According to Inc. Magazine, the housing market has faced a huge crisis in the U.S. and Canada, but storage facilities continue to see a profit.Some experts believe that more people have been trying to sell their homes in order to downsize and the best way to show a presentable home is to remove clutter and trinkets. These items must be stored somewhere, so many opt for convenient and safe affordable self storage in Toronto or anywhere else.The Self Storage Association reports that there are currently 2.21 billion square feet of self storage in the U.S. alone. Inc.…

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14 Feb 2012

The self storage industry continues to grow despite many countries around the globe facing financial hardships. China is the most recent country to adopt the Western practice of storing excess items outside of the home and many are taking to it with ease, China Daily reports.Chen Yu, the executive customer manager at a Yangpu district storage facility, told the news outlet that since its doors opened last August, business has been booming. People come in to keep everything from household items to products for their businesses."Sometimes our clients store their household wares here so that they could rent out an extra room," Chen told the publication. "We've got both individual and corporate clients, and the majority of our customers are…

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