If you’re tired of big city life in Vancouver, and are looking for a new suburb to move to, we’ve got an idea: White Rock. In this article, we’ll discuss pros and cons of living a White Rock lifestyle.
The pros of moving to White Rock, B.C.
Here is a list of reasons why you would want to move to White Rock:
It’s got a beautiful beachfront. The beach and promenade are probably what most Vancouverites identify with White Rock. And maybe the actual, white rock on that beach. The area is reminisce of a California beach haven – so much so, the TV show Psych is filmed there to represent Santa Barbara! There are plenty of seafood restaurants, funky cafes and artsy tourist stores along the shore. And that wonderful, limited, long-walk pay-parking you associate with a tourist destination.
The beach promenade is probably losing its rails. Who thought of putting a train track there, right? It’s dangerous, and politicians are recognizing that. This would have been in the ‘cons’ section, but since motion is happening on the matter, we figure now is a great time to move to enjoy the beach without trains running through it.
It has development plans. If you’re planning to move to White Rock as an investment, or as a retiree, now may be the time to do it. According to this article, senior living is about to improve, and expand greatly in the White Rock town centre. You can also check out upcoming city development projects here.
It is close to the U.S. border, and other nearby communities in Canada, reachable by public transport.
The school district is joined with Surrey, and offers several programs. If you have a preference for French Immersion, fine arts or other educational focuses, the school district White Rock is a part of may be just right for you.
It’s got lots of arts and culture. White Rock hosts yearly community events like the Tour de White Rock and the Taste White Rock festival. It also has artistic events, such as those listed on the city’s website here. And, guess what? Street performers are encouraged!
And, here are some cons that may make you think twice before moving to White Rock:
The shoreline businesses have had some serious departures. It’s a problem that needed a task force: businesses started leaving White Rock a few years ago. But this article says revival is on its way, and probably from foreign investment.
There are some local bylaws you may not like, depending on your lifestyle. For example, while most B.C. residents are used to smoking bylaws, any international movers to the area should know that smoking in public places, or near public places, can get you up to a $2,000 fine. And, on page 15 of this bylaw document, you can read that homeowners must remove snow from sidewalks bordering their home by 10 a.m. except on Sundays! Dogs are also not allowed on most promenade areas (which the business improvement association feels is a problem), and you can only have two dogs per residence.
It’s far from the big city. Depending on your feeling of what’s ‘far’ for you, the drive to the city in Vancouver can be prohibitive if you want to work there, and live in White Rock. But that said, for some, it is so worth it. Here is the story of one couple who opted out of a downtown Vancouver condo, for a beachside home in White Rock, and they loved it.
Not sure where to move? Remember, White Rock is close to other communities!
If you just can’t stand the bylaws and the idea of brown water, but also can’t settle for busy Vancouver streets, remember that White Rock is near other communities. So, if you want to be close to a beach, you can opt for a South Surrey home. Or, ditch the beach idea and consider moving near farms in Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Langley. Vancouver and the Fraser Valley have a lot to offer!
See our other articles on places to move in the Metro Vancouver area
When you run a commercial retail food establishment, moving is not as simple as when you move house. And it’s also quite different than moving an office or other type of business. Before making the decision to move – if you have the choice – you’ll want to realize how many parts of your business can be affected. Your list of things to do will be vast – probably more work than when you set up your business to begin with.
In this article, we’ll go into some considerations when doing a commercial move for a coffee shop or cafe in Vancouver.
Licensing your coffee shop or cafe when you move to a new municipality
If you move your coffee shop or cafe to a new city or municipality, your licensing fees and terms may change. Different cities in Metro Vancouver will have different rules for businesses. Be sure that you have the appropriate license to operate, before you open at your new location.
Marketing material updates when you move a business
As we discussed in our article on preserving SEO when you move a business, your address updates will be important. This is not something you want to leave on the back burner. You’ll want to change your address on all your marketing material, and all website mentions. In today’s age of Yelp searches for local eats, you can’t afford not to do this for a coffee shop or cafe business that is moving.
To avoid confusion, also update your print material (such as business cards) or any paraphernalia.
You may also want to alert local newspapers, in the hopes you can get some press coverage out of it too.
Send out an e-newsletter, if you have one, to let your subscribers know where to find you at your new location.
Of course, for practical reasons, you’ll also need to update your address with all your service providers, suppliers, banks, licensors, insurers and so on.
Moving your cafe or coffee shop equipment and re-installing at your new location
It’s probably a fair guess that your operating equipment will be the biggest headache when moving a coffee shop or cafe. Moving a commercial espresso machine, for example, can require ensuring proper water and electrical hook-ups at your new location.
You may need a professional to come and install the espresso machine. And, while you’re at it, any maintenance that needs to be done should also be checked when it arrives at your new location. You’ll want to ensure all working internal parts are still functioning after transport, and before you open.
This article explains how to clean a commercial coffee machine.
We also have articles on our blog for moving household appliances. While moving commercial appliances may have more implications, you can get a read up on some basic principles regardless:
Moving food for a commercial business can be harder than moving food in a household kitchen. In our article on this topic, we talk about minimizing food you’ll take with you by using it up before moving day. But when doing a commercial move, your focus will be on minimizing the days your coffee shop or cafe has to close for business. You will, at the same time, not want to run out of supplies to meet your current customer demands in the days leading up to the move. Also, large inventories can’t just be thrown out without costing you a lot in operating budget.
Considering that this will likely be a short distance commercial move, you may have no choice but to take your food stuffs with you, if possible. Take advantage of commercial packaging of unopened items, and move them safely in your car. Unfortunately, moving companies often can’t move food for you (plus the weight of doing so may not be worth it). So you’ll likely end up doing this yourself.
In the time leading up to the move, ask your supplier to deliver part of your inventory to the new location, if there is any possibility of doing so. If your new location will be undergoing renovations before moving day, you won’t want food sitting in the way.
Refrigerated items will need to be handled carefully. Remember your food safety rules for things like milk and frozen foods. Do not let them cool below their recommended storage temperatures!
For coffee, flour and dry goods, be sure you won’t be storing them in moisture-rich areas where condensation can build up and ruin them. Stale or mouldy ‘dry’ foods are not great for business.
In the event you can’t transport your food inventory, consider donating to a local food bank or charity. The rest will have to be tossed out.
Costs of opening a new space for your food establishment
This article describes the costs of opening up a coffee shop from scratch. While most of those initial costs will simply transfer over to your new location, you won’t want to forget that your new location may come with new budget necessities. Your new lease, for example, may not be the same as your old one. And foot traffic can also change, affecting your profits.
There will also be costs to set up your POS system at a new location, transferring Internet and phone hook-ups, and other utilities.
Aside from that, your new space won’t be outfitted the way your old place was. This can be good or bad. Either way, you have an opportunity to re-decorate (and possibly donate old furniture to charity!). And that can involve more purchases. If you need more tables and chairs, lamp pendants, or new flooring – it can all add up. If you decide to install new commercial appliances because of space allowances, consider how that can affect your utility and maintenance bills in the long run (weighing out the benefits of profitability, of course).
Anything that happens to get damaged along the way during this commercial move will need to be replaced. Ensure your professional moving company has insurance for the items they will be transporting. If you move items yourself, see if your business insurance will cover it, just in case.
See this page with videos on how to move espresso machines, if you choose to ship them to your new location.
Also, since you’ll be moving computer equipment, you’ll want to ensure you have backups of all your data – no insurance company can help you retrieve years of records on your hard drive, if it gets lost along the way. See our article on moving an office in the digital age for more on this topic.
Hiring and training new employees
Depending on how far you move, your new location may be a dealbreaker for existing employees. And, even if they all go with you, your new location may get busier, or have longer opening hours, thus requiring more staff.
Hiring and training new staff is time-consuming and costly. Be sure to plan ahead for this before you move your business. Try to get existing staff to let you know well in advance if they will be able to commute to the new location, and possibly to work the extra hours.
Hire a trustworthy, professional commercial moving company
If you’re thinking of moving away from city life to a rural area in B.C., you may want to consider a hobby farm. Moving to a hobby farm in B.C. is possible, since you can buy acres of land specific to the needs of farmers – even within Metro Vancouver.
However, there are things to know about moving to a hobby farm in B.C. Even if you think you already have a green thumb, or a good understanding of animals, a hobby farm can entail more than the joy of organic food, rural life and part-time homesteading.
Before we get started on the things you should know about moving to a hobby farm, be sure to check out our following articles which can complement this topic:
Understand how the government classifies hobby farms in B.C. and Canada
This is important because it can affect your taxes. A hobby farm is not meant for producing income, though it can. You’ll need to know when you are producing enough income from your farm that it could count as a commercial enterprise. Here is a document that defines this more:
Then, the article below explains the way one family had to fight for their farm status, proving the initial assessment wrong. They were able to recover taxes as a result. Their case is important to learn how farms, or farms-to-be are classified and taxed in B.C., whether or not you’re not planning on starting a commercial enterprise:
Know how much moving to a hobby farm in B.C. will cost you
Hobby farms, again, are not businesses. They are mainly for enjoyment, your own benefit, and perhaps to serve some neighbourhood purpose. You can sell food from a hobby farm, and you can eat your hobby farm food. But you shouldn’t expect it to meet all your nutritional needs or income requirements.
That said, when you start a hobby farm, there will be upfront costs that you may not recover as an ‘investment’ per se, such as when starting a commercial farm operation.
So you need to be aware of what it costs not just to buy land, animals and agricultural products. You need to also consider the costs of tractors, mowers, fencing, water consumption, upkeep, vet and health costs and perhaps hired hands to help you when you can’t devote your time to it. You can’t just go on vacation and expect your animals to feed themselves, no matter how wild you think they are! Farm animals are domesticated; they need humans to survive.
The Financial Post article below breaks down the long term costs of moving to a hobby farm for retirement, and is an excellent read for what you should expect when planning your finances for such a venture:
As the article above states, you may want to turn the hobby farm into something that can become taxable, or a tax deduction to account for losses. That means producing enough for yourself, and to sell. This is in accordance with an article we linked to above.
The other thing to consider is the re-sale value of your hobby farm, and the home upkeep of the shelter you’ll live in on the land. This Australian-based article explains more about it, and the financial considerations associated with a hobby farm (the principles of which still apply to B.C. residents):
If you plan on starting a hobby farm from scratch, instead of buying into one that others are selling, you’ll need to find a good patch of land. While you may normally think of agricultural land being more common in areas like Chilliwack, or the interior of B.C., keep in mind that Metro Vancouver cities also have farm lands you could move to.
In fact, the ‘farm status’ is becoming controversial in places like Richmond, where mega mansions are being built on what should be farm land. But since the sales requirements for farm income are so low, people can get away with using the land’s spaciousness for non-farming enjoyment, and as a tax loophole.
You may also want to check out our article on saving money on real estate agents when you want to sell or buy. This is because there may be other avenues of finding property when you want to start your lifestyle farm. Here is the link:
Know what it takes to operate and move to a hobby farm
Like we mentioned above, moving to a hobby farm means commitment. You need know what you’re getting into. How to choose your animals, how to handle crops, how to keep records, where you want to live…it can all affect your lifestyle in the long run.
Here is an article on thespruce.com, which links to more resources on this topic:
To conclude: do your research before moving to a hobby farm
Moving to a hobby farm is no small feat. It may pay off in terms of letting you enjoy a lifestyle you’ve always wanted to live. But if you’re accustomed to city dwelling, paying strata fees to have someone else take care of maintenance, or simply haven’t lived rural life before, you may be in for a shock. Hobby farms don’t just involve the love of the farm; the finances and bookkeeping need to be kept in check as well. You’ll also have ongoing costs related to upkeep that you may not have thought of. And your land choice can affect you in the long run, especially if you decide hobby farming is not for you, or if you outgrow it. You’ll want land that can be resold easily. In short: do your research!
Moving is expensive. And so is selling your home. However, when you are moving in Canada, you have some options when it comes to saving money on real estate services. These savings can come in many forms, and during different steps in the process. In this article, we’ll explore some of these options.
Sell your home using the FSBO method
FSBO stands for “For Sale By Owner” and it refers to the private sale of a home. Websites like this one are out there to help people do this. The world of real estate may seem like a mystery. Or you may think there is a big, and good reason why real estate agents pay a few thousand dollars to take a real estate course, and then more to join a broker firm.
However, there are home sellers who do all the work that real estate agent does, saving themselves the commission fee they would normally pay a sales agent.
But according to this article, don’t be fooled into thinking there are no fees with this method. It just means you take on the costs of selling the home, including the real estate lawyer fees. It also means you do all the work, and will have to learn the ropes when it comes to negotiations on your home price. This isn’t exactly like listing your patio furniture for sale on Craigslist. There is more that goes into selling a house when you are moving in Canada.
Some are calling the real estate agent service a rip off, for the amount of work they do. Selling your home by doing the listing and marketing of it yourself may be a piece of cake for you. Other times, you may find it’s harder to sell house than it looks (even if you pay to list in the MLS without a broker). If you are already stressed by moving in Canada, and need help to buy a home too, a real estate agent may be worth the investment, given how much more efficiently they can work.
Use a FinTech Real Estate Company
FinTech companies are companies using technology to cut out middle-men in financial services. FinTech real estate companies are entering this field. In some ways, they can save on the lending and borrowing of a home buying plan, like a mortgage. Or they can get you a quick credit rating for home buying. Other times, they can help you find buyers outside the MLS that you can speak to directly. Or, they might just be able to help you list your home without a real estate agent or broker service when moving in Canada.
FinTech companies are online-based, however. That means a lot of DIY for you, and a familiarity with web-based services. Most of the work will be done by you, on your computer. If technology intimidates you, this may be something you’d want to avoid. Then again, if you like robo investor sites and the like, then these services may be your cup of tea when trying to save money on the sale of your home.
Look for lower-cost real estate agents and brokers
Canada has a booming real estate agent marketplace. The number of people helping others buy or sell homes is increasing, along with the growth in profits to be earned thanks to current housing prices. This can mean there are fewer houses for more real estate agents to sell, resulting in (hopefully) more competitive prices on their services, or the cuts they’re willing to take to get your listing.
But how can real estate agents compete on price? Good question. It’s actually one that has brought up controversy lately.
To understand how ‘cheaper’ real estate sale services work, you first need to know how real estate commissions are earned and calculated in the traditional sense. This article does a great job of that for Canadian home buyers and sellers (mainly for the Vancouver, B.C. market though): https://youngandthrifty.ca/real-estate-agent-commissions-decoded/
As you read the article above, you’ll see that there are two sides to the story. And depending on your case, you may or may not find the value in real estate services to be worthwhile when planning a move in Canada.
To conclude: moving in Canada doesn’t have to be as expensive as always
If you’ve moved a couple times, or have bought and sold houses more than once, you may feel more comfortable taking the non-traditional routes noted above for your relocation. Either way, it helps to be educated about how the real estate sales industry works.
Even if you do get a full-service, full-commission real estate agent to help you when moving in Canada, you should know if you picked a good choice, and are earning the wage you pay them. The resources above can be an aid in ensuring you are getting the best service for the best price too.
After your home is sold or bought, feel free to call us and we’ll help you with the moving truck and movers!
Call Ferguson Moving & Storage in Moving in Canada.
With its enviable, picturesque geographical location and small town feel, Chilliwack has a lot to offer new residents planning to move there. Here are 3 reasons that will make you want to pack your bags, call your local moving company, and head to Chilliwack!
Chilliwack is perfect for your inner outdoorsman
Chilliwack is ideally located among a plethora of natural attractions. Instead of living in the big city and travelling a couple hours to get to the wilderness, moving to Chilliwack will feel like nature is waiting on your doorstep.
Since Chilliwack isn’t completely nestled in the interior of BC, it still experiences a fairly moderate climate similar to Vancouver– as in, most sites will be accessible year round. You can go camping near Chilliwack at a number of different parks or explore the popular ‘fun-destinations’ Cultus Lake and Harrison Hot Springs (20-30 min drive). You can also try hiking in Chilliwack, and get lost in the many trails and hiking paths both within and surrounding the city.
Move to Chilliwack for the epitome of an accessible, small town lifestyle
As in, you’re not completely in the middle of nowhere, but it can certainly feel like it when you move there. Chilliwack has a population of around 78,000, so don’t worry, you aren’t moving into a place where you have to travel for necessities. It is well equipped with enough shopping options to settle in your new home after you’ve moved in– AND you’ll be sure to easily find a no-pay parking space!
The City of Chilliwack is primarily a great city to move to because it is simplistic– as in, half of the GDP stems from retail and the service industry. There is less of an entrepreneurial ‘hustle’ like what you would find in Vancouver. All good things though, more time for leisurely activities! However, if you are akin to the entrepreneurial spirit, $40.00 will get you a business license so you can start your venture!
For other forms of leisure, if you move close to Mill Street, you’ll find a quaint strip of shops and cafes. You can also visit the nearby Honeyview Farm where you can pick up some local honey.
Move to Chilliwack because it boasts affordability
When you move to Chilliwack, you’ll be pleasantly greeted with overall affordability. Car insurance, gas, housing– these are all things that if you are moving from Vancouver to Chilliwack, you’ll welcome with open arms. Want to do your own cost comparisons?
Compare 3 bedroom housing listings here for Chilliwack and here for Vancouver.
However, depending if you are going to be working in Chilliwack or not, you might have to factor in the expenses of a commute– some people certainly make daily trips into surrounding cities. If you’re not keen on driving, the Fraser Valley Express will be a way to ensure you can get around.
So you moved into a greater Vancouver house with asbestos
The Metro Vancouver area is filled with many houses that have long, intriguing histories. It’s no wonder many people jump at the chance to move into an older house! But there are sometimes a few challenges that can arise. Probably one of the biggest issues is that building regulations were different decades ago. That meant it was okay for houses to be constructed with materials that we now know are harmful. Asbestos is one example of this. In this article, we’ll discuss what you should doifyou’vemovedinto a house with asbestos.
Why you should be concerned ifyou’vemovedinto a house with asbestos
According to Thisoldhouse.com, asbestos was once prized as a building material because it is a durable, fire-resistant material that also happens to be a great insulator. Asbestos is also good at stifling sound, allowing people in separate rooms to enjoy privacy and quiet. These qualities made it one of the prime choices for building homes up until the 1970s. However, in more recent years, it has been discovered asbestos can create lung problems. Prolonged exposure can result in lung diseases such as cancer. The problem lies in the fact that tiny asbestos fibers can be inhaled, damaging lung tissue.
Locate asbestos in your home
Ifyou’vemovedinto a house with asbestos, locating the material is often the first step to removing it. However, before we go any further we should mention the province says in HeathLinkBC.ca removal is not always the answer. Sometimes disturbing asbestos — especially if it’s behind a wall — will only exacerbate the problem. Do not disturb asbestosifyou find any in your home. Instead, call a trained a professional to handle it.
Asbestos was a popular building material, so it may be found in many places. Vinyl floor tiles, glue, linoleum, window caulking, roofing material, insulation, cement…the list goes on and on. We’d recommend checking up sites likeThisoldhouse.com to help you determine where asbestos might be located. The Environmental Protection Agency also has a great site for this as well. And the City of Vancouver offers services that allow you to find your house’s history. This can give valuable insight if and where asbestos was used to build your home.
Make smart choices when hiring an asbestos professional
Before hiring asbestos professionals, it’s best to learn a little bit about the professions — particularly the difference between an inspector and a remover.
Asbestos inspectors are qualified to examine and test material to see if it contains asbestos.
Asbestos removers are qualified to handle, remove and dispose of asbestos.
The difference between these two jobs is important. Removers should not be called in to inspect and vice versa because different qualifications may be needed for each job. This rule is not set in stone and can vary depending on where you live. But to play it safe, use the following information as a guideline. Generally speaking, removers may not be qualified to identify hazardous asbestos — lab training is often needed to do this. Likewise, inspectors may not be qualified to remove harmful materials such as asbestos.
However, some businesses may be qualified to inspect and remove asbestos. But you might want to avoid those companies because of conflict of interest. Inspectors who work with a removal company will have plenty of incentive to prescribe an expensive asbestos removal which may not be necessary.
As a starting point, the B.C. government has provided a list of companies who are experienced in dealing with asbestos.
Ifyou have just moved in and discovered asbestos in your home, stay calm — it is not always harmful. If undisturbed (e.g. not chipped, peeling, etc.), asbestos is not hazardous because it will not be airborne, according to B.C. government website HealthLinkBC.ca. Also take note the province says that whether or not asbestos is a problem depends on the length of your exposure, your health history and the type of asbestos. Ifyou suspect an area in yourhouse has asbestos, stay away from it. Contact an inspector who can help you make an informed decision.
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