Blog by Betsy Carstairs

Equality Breakfast with Linda McQuaig

March 10th, 2011
What better way to jump start  the day than by attending Vancouver West Coast Leaf's yearly  Equality Breakfast celebrating 100 Years of International Women's Day. This year the speaker was Linda McQuaig. A excellent knowledgeable speaker on her topic of interest inequality of taxation in Canada. She talked about the massive transferr of wealth to the top elite through laws that show preferen ...

Ishrad Manji, International Womans Day

March 9th, 2011
Yesterday was International Women's Day & what better way to celebrate than to go to dinner with friends & then attend The Unique Lives event featuring Ishrad Manji @ Vancouver's Performing Arts Centre. Ishrad  is a excellent speaker with a sense of humour & stories we could all relate to. She was born in Uganda  & immigrated with her family to Canada when she was 9. As a Muslim woman she sha ...

Hot Water Heaters

March 8th, 2011

I have recently noticed that there are a variety of different domestic water heating systems available on the market as alternatives to conventional water heaters. What are the available types of water heaters, how do they work, and what are the advantages/disadvantages of the different systems?

Other than the conventional tank style water heaters that are found in most homes, there are tank ...

Pricing Rant

March 7th, 2011
Andy Rooney on 60 minutes should do a session on quoted prices in North America....not being what the "ticket "states. It is almost like false advertising! I have just returned from New Zealand & loved the fact that what was noted on the ticket was what you paid down under. Now that I am back home in Vancouver not so. I recently saw a bunch of flowers for sale  the tag said " 3 bunches for $1 ...

Vintage Hydro Electricity Plant

March 6th, 2011

The Indian Arm area where I kayak & sell homes is off the grid ie if you want power you make it. Up The Arm these resourceful cabin owners often use generators so I have become interested in how each resident creates power.  When I was visiting in New Zealand & heard of  Mason Chamber's  hydro electricity plant built in 1892 I was intrigued. With the price of electricity in BC expected to jum ...

Vancouver, Athletes Village False Creek

March 4th, 2011
The Village on False Creek in Vanocuver or formerly known as The Athlete's Village for the 2010 WInter BC Olympics has had the spot light on it. Plummeting values from the overinflated hyped prices of the presale offering have left this prime realestate a ghost town. I went to Bob Rennie's grand opening last month held in The Salt building. Bob was there to weave his magic & introduce the pri ...

Property Tax Grant changes in BC

March 1st, 2011
For 2011 taxation year, the B.C Homeowner Grant threshold is increased to $1.15 million – that means that approximately 95% of all homeowners will be eligible for the full grant. If your home is assessed higher then you will be eligible for a partial grant. The grant allows up to a $570 reduction and an extra $275 for those over the age of 65.
So this will give properties with a value of up to ...