Archives for category: Living

 
I think people don’t realize it exists. If you’re just walking down the street, a co-op looks exactly like any other apartment building.
 

 
More than 2,000 non-profit housing co-ops — from buildings with four units to complexes with hundreds of apartments — exist in Canada. There are 263 in B.C. alone. Most were created with federal and provincial funding from the 1970s to the 1990s, according to the Co-operative Housing Federation of B.C.

A non-profit co-op is like a democratic country: residents have a vote in how it’s run as long as they live there. And because it’s not trying to make money, the co-op can charge lower rates than average private rents.

 
Lore Krill Co-op

CO OP Housing A1
CO OP Housing 2
CO OP Housing 3

 
Connaught Co-op, Vancouver
The Connaught Co-op has 63 two-bedroom units that are 797 sq. ft. The monthly charge is $1005 with a minimum income requirement of $38,5000.

CO OP Housing 4
CO OP Housing 5

Creekview Housing Co-op

The Creekview Housing Co-op is an eight-storey building with 103 units on Granville Island. It has an on-site daycare.

CO OP Housing 6

 

Amicae Housing Co-operative, Vancouver

CO OP Housing 7

 
Housing co-ops in Vancouver Eastside

CO OP Housing 8

CO OP Housing 9

CO OP Housing 10

CO OP Housing 11

CO OP Housing 12

CO OP Housing 13

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

These vintage posters bring us back to a simpler time in Alberta — when vacations were long, luxurious and had far fewer tourists.

Vintage Ads 3
Vintage Ads 1
Vintage Ads 2

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 


 

 
POTHOLES 1

POTHOLES 2

POTHOLES 3

POTHOLES 4

POTHOLES 5

POTHOLES 6

POTHOLES 7

POTHOLES 8

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

If you’re happy and you know it, a new report suggests you might be from Canada.

The Centre for the Study of Living Standards says more than 90 per cent of Canadians surveyed report they are either satisfied or very satisfied with their lives.

The centre tracked numbers collected by Statistics Canada in its community health survey between 2003 and 2011.

Canadians have stayed happy through that entire period, with 91 per cent reporting life satisfaction in 2003 and 92 per cent saying so last year.

SEE: Canadian cities ranked by their increase in happiness, according to the report :

 
#1:   Montreal
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.7
Per cent change since 2003: 3.4 increase
#2:   Peterborough
Life satisfaction in 2011: 94.2
Per cent change since 2003: 3.2 increase
#3:   Saint John
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.6
Per cent change since 2003: 2.9 increase
#4:   London
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.2
Per cent change since 2003: 2.5 increase
#5:   Vancouver
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92
Per cent change since 2003: 2.3 increase
#6:   Quebec City
Life satisfaction in 2011: 95.4
Per cent change since 2003: 1.9 increase
#7:   Toronto
Life satisfaction in 2011: 90.9
Per cent change since 2003: 1.8 increase
#8:   Saskatoon
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92.6
Per cent change since 2003: 1.7 increase
#9:   Ottawa – Gatineau (ON)
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92.4
Per cent change since 2003: 1.6 increase
#10:   Saguenay
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.5
Per cent change since 2003: 1.6 increase
#11:   Trois-Rivières
Life satisfaction in 2011: 95
Per cent change since 2003: 1.6 increase
#12:   Ottawa-Gatineau (General)
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.2
Per cent change since 2003: 1.5 increase
#13:   Regina
Life satisfaction in 2011: 94.3
Per cent change since 2003: 1.5 increase
#14:   Ottawa – Gatineau (QC)
Life satisfaction in 2011: 95.1
Per cent change since 2003: 1.3 increase
#15:   Moncton
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.5
Per cent change since 2003: 1.0 increase
#16:   Oshawa
Life satisfaction in 2011: 91.4
Per cent change since 2003: 1.0 increase
#17:   Hamilton
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92.1
Per cent change since 2004: 1.0 increase
#18:   Edmonton
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92.5
Per cent change since 2003: 0.7 increase
#19:   Calgary
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.3
Per cent change since 2003: 0.5 increase
#20:   St. Catherine’s – Niagara
Life satisfaction in 2011: 91.7
Per cent change since 2003: 0.3 increase
#21:   Guelph
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.0
Per cent change since 2003: 0.1 increase
#22:   Halifax
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.3
Per cent change since 2003: 0
#23:   Kelowna
Life satisfaction in 2011: 90.5
Per cent change since 2003: 0 change
#24:   Thunder Bay
Life satisfaction in 2011: 91.4
Per cent change since 2003: 0.2 decrease
#25:   Sherbrooke
Life satisfaction in 2011: 94.2
Per cent change since 2003: 0.3 decrease
#26:   Victoria
Life satisfaction in 2011: 91.9
Per cent change since 2003: 0.4 decrease
#27:   Windsor
Life satisfaction in 2011: 91.1
Per cent change since 2003: 0.4 decrease
#28:   St. John’s
Life satisfaction in 2011: 93.3
Per cent change since 2003: 0.6 decrease
#29:   Fredericton
Life satisfaction in 2011: 92.8
Per cent change since 2003: 0.9 decrease
#30:   Barrie
Life satisfaction in 2011: 90.9
Per cent change since 2003: 1.1 decrease
#31:   Greater Sudbury
Life satisfaction in 2011: 90.2
Per cent change since 2003: 1.4 decrease
#32:   Winnipeg
Life satisfaction in 2011: 90.1
Per cent change since 2003: 1.5 decrease
#33:   Abbotsford
Life satisfaction in 2011: 89.8
Per cent change since 2003: 2.1 decrease
#34:   Brantford
Life satisfaction in 2011: 88.9
Per cent change since 2003: 3.1 decrease
#35:   Kingston
Life satisfaction in 2011: 88.4
Per cent change since 2003: 3.9 decrease
#36:   Kitchener
Life satisfaction in 2011: 87.2
Per cent change since 2003: 4.4 decrease

The centre says a Gallup world poll taken in February 2012 rated Canada as the second most satisfied nation, ranked only behind Denmark.

Centre executive director Andrew Sharpe said the numbers tell a compelling story about the standard of living most Canadians enjoy.

“We do have high levels of income. We have weathered the financial crisis better than other countries of the world,” Sharpe said in a telephone interview. “We do have a good health system. We complain about it, but at least there’s full coverage of all Canadians … We do have a lot of advantages as a country.”

“I think the goal should be to improve happiness. It sounds trite, but what’s it all about? It’s about the life satisfaction of Canadians,” Sharpe said.

“I don’t want to go to complacency. ‘Oh, aren’t we great,’ therefore there are no problems in Canada. That’s not where this is going,” he said. “We can do better.”

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Where Canada stands in the three-parent debate
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Are Canadians paying more for products than Americans?

The price gap between Canadian and U.S. goods is shrinking, but it’s still too high. Despite a dip of six per cent from last year, products are still 14 per cent less expensive in the U.S.

With data from BMO Capital Markets, here are the goods Canadian consumers are paying more for.

*All U.S. prices have been converted to Cdn. dollars, unless otherwise noted.

Books

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.)7%

For years, the price gap on books has taunted Canadians from the back flap, where the retail tag for both Canadian and U.S. prices are printed for all to see. Yet consumers north-of-the-border should also know it’s not just in-store they’re getting ripped off. While BMO Capital Markets found a random sampling of in-store books cost seven per cent more in Canada than they did in the U.S., a similar price discrepancy exists online. On Amazon.ca, for instance, the housewife-approved Fifty Shades paperback trilogy costs $38.51. On Amazon.com? Just US$28.71, or $29.43 in Canadian dollars.

Running shoes

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 37%

Of a random recent sampling of name brand running shoes in the U.S., BMO Capital Markets found the average cost of five pairs came to $106.73. Yet the average cost of those exact same shoes, when observed at Canadian retailers, skyrockets to $145.99. At a price gap of 37 per cent, no other goods studied by BMO cost more in Canada when compared to prices in the U.S.

Blu-rays

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 8%

By the most recent numbers, Canadian residents take more than 50 million visits to the U.S. each year. And who could blame us? Even simple items like Blu-ray movies cost less in the U.S. The real-dollar difference may be only a few bucks per high-definition movie, but on a percentage basis Blu-rays lay claim to a Canada-U.S. price gap even larger than that of books.

Cars

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 11%

It isn’t just small items costing Canadians more. There has been plenty of ink spilled on whether it makes sense for Canadian drivers to buy cars south of the border, but BMO Capital Markets’ numbers make a compelling case to make the trip. According to a random sampling of seven vehicles, the bank’s study found an 11 per cent price gap on cars between countries. On an auto costing in the low-to-mid $30,000s, that’s the equivalent of a nearly $3,500 difference on the retail tag.

Birthday cards

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 9%

Even celebrating a birthday appears to cost Canadian consumers more. At a low cost of $5.45 each at many stores, Canucks aren’t exactly breaking the bank on birthday cards each year. But at an average cost of nearly 50 cents less per card in the U.S., birthday cards are just another example of Canadian shoppers spending more on trivial goods than their American counterparts.

Gap shirts

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 19%

BMO’s Capital Markets’ survey does not just cover generic goods. As many cross-border shoppers note, items found at stores that exist in both Canada and the U.S. are often much cheaper in America. A recent sampling of a kids t-shirt at clothing retailer Gap found a sizeable price discrepancy, despite being the exact same garment on both sides of the border. The shirt, according to BMO, costs nearly $5 less in the U.S.

Lawn mowers

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 32%

Effective June 1, new duty-free limits were implemented, effecting how much Canadian shoppers can purchase in the U.S. On visits lasting more than 24 hours, consumers are now able to bring back $200 tax-free (up from $50), and on visits lasting more than 48 hours, consumers can bring back $800 tax-free (up from a two-tiered system that previously allowed between $400-$750 before). That ought to ensure more big-ticket items like lawn mowers — BMO recently found a 32 per cent price gap on the same Toro lawn mower — are brought back by Canadians shopping abroad.

Golf balls

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 12%

Cross-border price gaps are tied to exchange rates, so as the loonie goes often the difference between Canadian and U.S. goods goes, too. Today’s 14 per cent price gap may seem large, but once upon a time it was nearly twice that. In the fall of 2007, goods in Canada cost a stupefying 25 per cent more than they did in the U.S. At that rate, golf balls would have cost as much as 21 per cent more in Canada than they do in the U.S. — nine per cent more than what BMO observed them at in its most recent study.

Magazines

Increased cost in Canada (as compared to U.S.): 17%

It would appear the printed word simply costs more in Canada than it does south of the border. Books, as we covered earlier, are much cheaper in the U.S., and so too are magazines, which cost as much as 17 per cent more in Canada. Such price discrepancies extend to subscriptions, too. Before tax, a yearly subscription to Sports Illustrated costs $39 for U.S. readers. For Canadians, that same subscription costs more than $66 each year (though there is a small premium included for international shipping).

Source: Money MSN

Gold diggers, prepare to travel.
 
The company SeekingArrangement.com argues sugar daddy dating “is a fast growing trend and lifestyle in Canada.”
 

10. Winnipeg
Winnipeg has 0.63 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $2,704, ranking it 10th in generosity.
 
9. Halifax
Halifax has 0.91 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $2,741, ranking it ninth in generosity.
 
8. Victoria, B.C.
Victoria has 0.93 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $4,947, ranking it first in generosity.
 
7. Montreal
Montreal has one sugar daddy registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $3,867, ranking it sixth in generosity.
 
6. Ottawa
Ottawa has 1.02 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $4,038, ranking it fifth in generosity.
 
5. Edmonton
Edmonton has 1.13 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $2,861, ranking it eighth in generosity.
 
4. London, Ont.
London has 1.47 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $3,716, ranking it seventh in generosity.
 
3. Vancouver
Vancouver has 1.51 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $4,113, ranking it third in generosity.
 
2. Calgary
Calgary has 1.71 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $4,209, ranking it second in generosity.
 
1. Toronto
Toronto has 1.98 sugar daddies registered with SeekingArrangement.com for every 1,000 men. The average monthly budget spent by a sugar daddy is $4,027, ranking it fourth in generosity.
 

Four in ten of the Canadian sugar daddies on the website are married, according to a survey of its customers that the site recently carried out. They have an average income of just under $250,000 a year, and an average net worth of $5.3 million. They typically throw down about $4,000 a month on their sugar babies.

The company says the men who become sugar daddies are growing younger. In 2007, shortly after the site launched, the average age for a sugar daddy in Canada was 44; it’s now down to 40.

Sadly for the gold diggers, this means sugar daddies’ average income is dropping as well — from $291,000 in 2007 to $247,000 today.

About one-fifth of them are high-level executives; about an eighth are business owners. Bankers represent 12 per cent of the sugar daddies active on the site, lawyers 7 per cent, and doctors 6 per cent.

Though the company bills itself as a dating site that builds “mutually beneficial relationships,” there is plenty of evidence to suggest that many sugar babies see it as a job. University students, for instance, use the site to pay for tuition.

But you don’t have to be a woman to be a sugar baby; or a man to be a sugar daddy. The website says one in 25 of its relationships are same-sex.

There’s something about government towns and extramarital affairs.

A new study by Ashley Madison — a dating website for people who want to cheat on their significant others — found that Ottawa leads the nation in the number of people looking for a little something on the side.

And according to the website’s research — which is based on its subscription rates —the same is true in the United States, where Washington leads the pack.

Ashley Madison said: “Ottawa is a city filled with people holding government jobs that are considered mundane and filled with red tape and bureaucracy … Adding this to their boring marriage or routine sex life may push them over the edge to seek excitement outside their relationship.”

That capital cities lead the pack in cheating should not come as a surprise. It’s about what kinds of people get into this kind of work. Power corrupts! I wonder if we could find something similar in capitals around the world.

Western Canada is experiencing a boom in Ashley Madison subscribers. Of the top 10 cities for cheating, five — including Vancouver, Edmonton and Winnipeg — are in Western Canada

Saskatoon, Calgary and Edmonton came in second, third and fourth, respectively.

That western trend extends to the U.S. as well, where San Antonio, Texas, took second spot after Washington, followed by Phoenix, Salt Lake City and Oklahoma City — all western cities.

10. Vancouver
9. Toronto
8. Hamilton
7. Winnipeg
6. Brampton, Ont.
5. London, Ont.
4. Edmonton
3. Calgary
2. Saskatoon
1. Ottawa