Going Car Shopping in Toronto

If you live in Toronto you have probably realized how expensive it has become in recent years. This year alone, house prices rose over 30% since last year. With that in mind, it’s no wonder people need to be very frugal with their purchases. Along with a home, a second big investment is transportation. Now, if you’re lucky enough to not have too long of a walk to public transportation, taking the subway, bus or streetcar is a great alternative to a car. But if you absolutely need a car and want to save some money, getting a decent used car is your best bet. You don’t need to buy anything old, because remember as soon as a new car drives off the lot, it loses 30% of its value instantly. I am sure you have heard that before. So, in this article we will discuss how to get a good second hand car that still looks new and won’t break the bank!

The Steps to Take Towards a Used Car Purchase

You’ll want to decide what type of car is good for you. Do you want a luxury brand? Or, do you have a family and need the extra room? You’ll want to make sure that your needs are met before deciding what type of vehicle to buy. Also to consider, since you live in Toronto you’ll need to drive all year round, so even though a sports car can have snow tires, do you really want to drive a sports car in the winter? As a second car sure, as long as you can store it over the winter months. But, if you need a car for all year round you need to think of the changing seasons.

Luxury Does Not Need to be Expensive

We looked at the websites of some of the leading luxury/European used car dealers in Toronto and realized that you can find some cars quite cheap. If you’re looking to buy a used BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi or Porsche, Dupont Auto Centre in Toronto has some sweet deals on these kind of cars that are usually no older than five years. It’s amazing what you can pick up a Mercedes-Benz or BMW for that is only a few years old. To someone that doesn’t know much about cars, they may think that you bought new. Why spend the extra money when you don’t have to right? Here’s the link to a page of their current inventory – https://www.dupontautocentre.com/used-cars-toronto/.

Financing is a Great Option

If you found a car at the many used car dealers in Toronto, then most of the reputable ones will have in-house financing. They should work with a variety of banks to get you the best deal possible. In some cases it just takes a few minutes to find out if you have been approved. You could literally walk into a dealership and an hour or less later walk out having sealed a deal on a car. Leasing is also an option with used cars and you can take the lease over a used car by using Lease Busters. With this service they will help you find a car that is currently on lease with an owner and you simply take over the payments. It’s not a bad option if  you are looking to lease a car for cheap.

Choose Wisely

Getting back to my original point, you’ll want to make sure that the car you decide to buy is the right one for you. A car is a big purchase and even if you get a great deal, think twice before you buy. Are you buying because the sticker price is so enticing you can’t pass it up or are you buying because it’s the right car for you? The latter is so much more important. Don’t be swayed by a “too good to be true” offer. This leads me to my next point, the condition of the vehicle is probably the most important.

Risks Involved

Sure, you save thousands buying a used car but you also inherit some risk. If you aren’t careful, you could be buying someone else’s problems. Have the car checked out by a friend or mechanic if you are not sure what to check for. There are lots of things that cannot be overlooked so you really need to know what to look for when buying a used car. Here’s a link to a YouTube video that can help. Watch it carefully and take notes. It can help you avoid a disaster when searching for a used car in Toronto.

 

 

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Toronto Road Construction

If you live in Toronto one thing that many Canadians value is the start of spring. The birds are chirping, flowers blooming, people look happier now that it’s warmer. There’s also a downside – road construction. Yes, road work usually starts in the spring and you can guarantee many road closures and traffic for quite some time. In the winter it’s almost impossible to work on the roads due to the cold since asphalt doesn’t bond so well when it is cold so the construction crews are out in full force once it starts to get warm. This can be a huge headache for many Torontonians that either want to get to work, head out for some food or just going for a leisurely drive.

Every spring the DVP (Don Valley Parkway) closes down completely for the weekend. We recently went through this closure and wow was the traffic ever crazy. This is because people are forced to use alternate routes thus making the roads very busy. Then on top of that, you many have crews working on those roads that are being used as an alternate from the DVP closure! When the DVP is closed they have about 200 workers cleaning the highway on a 14 KM stretch.

The work that is done includes the resurfacing of the highway, inspections and repairs to any signs, railings and much more. Not to mention cleaning of course.  So as you can see, it’s a time to avoid using your car on weekends like this. It’s best to avoid driving at all costs and if you’re a 905’er, don’t even bother to attempt driving into the city on the weekend where the DVP is closed.

Road Construction Costs

It is said that in this year alone 310 Million will be spent in the upkeep and construction of Toronto roads.  This can obviously escalate if other problems are found.

Gardiner Off Ramp

The exit at York-Bay-Yonge is over 50 years old and will be demolished this year. The replacement will be a much shorter ramp.  Mayor John Tory insists that this is a much needed job, as it will bring benefits to the city once complete. This is just another place you’ll want to avoid at all costs. Unless you don’t mind sitting in traffic!

Dealing With Traffic

Before you leave to drive somewhere in your car, one thing you should always do is make a last minute trip to the bathroom! I know that sounds crazy but I am sure that you have been in a situation where you had to pee while in the car and stuck in traffic. It’s not easy to find a bathroom in the downtown core let alone while driving in traffic. Also, and almost as important, make sure your car has enough gas! It’s bad enough that you have to be stuck in traffic but why make it even worse by running out of gas idling in stopped traffic. Do yourself and others a favour by ensuring you have enough gas.

 

 

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Marketing Your Business in Toronto

If you’re a small business owner in Toronto chances are there are plenty of other businesses that offer the same service as you. Standing apart from the crowd can get frustrating and with increasing rent in the city, if you are renting space you need to ensure you’ll be able to survive the next rate increase should there be one.

Having a business that offers something unique is a great asset, provided people know about it. For example, if you’re a coffee shop owner your success will come down to a few things. Location is one – if you’re in an area that doesn’t have much traffic or in an area that is not in the business district, you’ll probably get by but would certainly not outperform a coffee shop that is near the business district. Think about it, I am sure that you yourself have grabbed a coffee at your local coffee shop along the way to work or when going on a drive somewhere. Location is important for any business and of course the better the location, the higher the cost for rent.


Competition

If you’re competing with other businesses that are near to you, this will thin out your customer base. Passer by’s will see your business but will also see a similar shop just down the road. The key here is to just get them in the door just one time and when you do, make sure you give a lasting impression. By nature, we are loyal (at least most of us) and if you show that first time customer a lot of respect, offer a good product/service and most importantly, are very friendly, they’ll probably come back for more. A similar shop might not have a chance and if they go there and have a bad experience, then it will even solidify their loyalty to you. Make a great first impression and treat everyone that walks in your door the same – as a first time customer that you want to impress.

Forms of Marketing

Back in the day you could advertise your business in the Yellow Pages and get a good response. Nowadays the Yellow Pages are not nearly as effective because no one uses it, at least not like before. Now, people will “Google” it – I am sure you have heard that before. So, if your business is not showing up in Google, then you are missing out on so much more business.  If you have a potential customer that lives near you, your business should come up in the maps section which is a “box” that shows up on the first page containing businesses near you. You’ll need to register your business with Google My Business to get in there. If you haven’t done this yet, this is your first step to marketing online.

Get Your Brand Name Going

Setting your brand and making it popular can be an enormous feat. If you have any experience with search engine optimization or, SEO as it is commonly referred to, then you need to get your business listed in the search engines. You could source a friend or someone that knows SEO but be warned, if they are not familiar with the latest tactics then it could make things worse for you. Better yet, this local SEO Expert – Goliath Marketing can help your company build your brand and get ranking in the search engines to people can find you. If you’re not found, you are losing out on so much business.

Conclusion

As a business owner in Toronto you’ll need a healthy advertising budget to keep your company relevant. Whether you choose to do SEO, paid advertising, radio spots or commercials, your best bet is something that is long term. Things like print ads and radio spots are temporary but getting your business in Google is probably your best bet for long term exposure. If your budget doesn’t allow for SEO, then i’d suggest doing paid “adwords” for the meantime just to see how they perform for your business. You need to keep on top of your advertising whichever way you put it. Oh and don’t forget what I previously mentioned – make sure your customer service is top notch. Your advertising dollars will be wasted if new customers have a bad experience in your business.

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Toronto, One of the Best Canadian Cities

Dynamic, cosmopolitan and multicultural, Toronto can be compared to the city of New York. Sheltering the quarter of the population of Canada, the city established itself as the financial and cultural capital of the country.

The atmosphere which reigns in Toronto is enchanting and intense, but also “modern, liberal and eclectic”, describes Charlotte Santry, author of the blog Toronto Newbie. To live and visit in this city is an experience.

The icon of the city, the CN Tower does not go unobserved. From the top of its 553 meters, the monument dominates the city and gives an incomparable panoramic view. The center of the tower includes a restaurant and further up is the observation deck. Shivers are guaranteed also by venturing on the famous transparent glassy floor, which culminates at 342 m of height. Under your feet, above space, you will be able to admire the splendid Rogers Center, a stadium that is equipped with a rectractable roof. Home of the Toronto Blue Jays (major League Baseball) and of the Argonauts. The Air Canada Centre is nearby which is the home of the Leafs and Raptors.

A day of fine weather, a trip up to the islands of Toronto becomes simply compulsory. The children will appreciate the attraction park in the city center , which offers around thirty games and carousels. Adults can take in the many different bars and restaurants available throughout the city. Tour buses are also available to take you around to show you the sights.

A tour in the Distillery District must also appear on your to-do list. This district was done up on the site of ancient Gooderham and Worts Distillery, sublimely restored and renovated. With many art galleries, restaurants and bars, it’s definitely an adults playground and great place to hang out on a sunny afternoon as well. It is a very compact and historical district, everything needed to create a very warm ambience.

Queen West is a trendy and very nice district to be explored. You will be able to stroll in the discovery of its independent shops and its many galleries.

What and where to eat?

Many bars and restaurants are found in the city and if you’re up for some Chinese food, then yes like any major city, Toronto has a China Town. Many restaurants line the streets ready to satisfy your taste buds. With Toronto being a very diverse and ethnic city, representing many different cultures and backrounds around the world, it’s hard not to find a restaurant that caters to your tastes. Representation not only from China, but Italy, Portugal, Brazil Vietnam and so on is all across the city.

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