Category Archives for "Urban Economics"

Jan 13

How many ways are there for Canadian real estate entrepreneurs to get screwed?

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Entrepreneurship , Finance , Real Estate , Real Estate Investment Coaching , Urban Economics

[The problem with low appraisals] I am frustrated that Canadian real estate entrepreneurs have so few options when it comes to financing their projects. My friend, Matt Slobodian from Canada ICI wrote this: The regulatory framework in Canada focuses on safety and soundness (it is federally regulated via OSFI, which implies higher standards) whereas the […]

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Dec 27

Animate a whole town

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Business Coaching , Business Models , Design , Entrepreneurship , Ideas , Investing , Real Estate , Real Estate Investment Coaching , Urban Economics

The story of Tamworth, a small town in Ontario “Animation” is a term I use to describe ways of adding new revenue streams to an existing property. For example, clients of mine are adding storage sheds, backyard workshops, basement apartments, backyard coach houses, play areas (things like outdoor ping pong tables), private patio areas, outdoor […]

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Dec 25

The last 3%

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Business Coaching , Business Models , Design , Ideas , Real Estate , Real Estate Investment Coaching , Urban Economics

Substantial completion (aka, substantial performance) in real estate is usually defined this way: When approximately 97% of work outlined in a construction contract is done. This milepost is crucial in this industry for a number of reasons: a) so, a contractor can get paid out without having absolutely everything done, b) so, an owner can […]

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Dec 21

What are the best (legal) businesses to be in?

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Design , Entrepreneurship , Finance , Real Estate , Real Estate Investment Coaching , Sales & Marketing , Sports & Entertainment , Urban Economics

(Excerpt from Don’t Back Down, the real story of the founding of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators and why big leagues matter) The most profitable businesses are either illegal (like drugs) or government-owned like property taxes, alcohol distribution (at least in Ontario and Quebec), utilities and lotteries (plus drugs, if you count legalization of cannabis in […]

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Dec 15

Getting rid of a bad tenant in Ontario is easy

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Real Estate , Real Estate Investment Coaching , Urban Economics

Yeah, right. In an alternate universe, maybe, but in Ontario, land of the RTA, residential tenancy act, it’s hard for landlords to acquire vacant possession. On behalf of a coaching client, I recently reached out to Brian Dagenais, founder of Dagenais Properties, and an expert property manager, for his advice on this subject. Here’s the […]

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Dec 06

Do you feel like you are part of TEAM OTTAWA?

By Bruce Firestone | Architecture , Design , Real Estate , Urban Economics

City of Ottawa Official Plan Poll Results and Analysis by Bruce M Firestone, PhD Decisions by municipal government can be even more important to individual residents than those made by higher levels—provincial, state or federal agencies. Noted urbanist Jane Jacobs called this the “subsidiarity” principal by which she meant that the closer government is to […]

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