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04 May 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Keeping Silk Flowers Fresh as a Daisy in an Oakville Rental

If your home for rent in Oakville is made beautiful by a bouquet of silk flowers, you probably love that they last longer than the real thing.  However, even silk flowers will droop and, yes, gather dust.  With a bit of preventive care, though, you can keep your bouquet looking fresh and new.  Read on for three simple steps to beautiful flowers and become the envy of your neighbours in Oakville apartments.

Keeping Silk Flowers Fresh as a Daisy in an Oakville RentalStep 1: Rice is Nice

Place your bouquet in a plastic shopping bag or a large zippered storage bag.  Add half a cup of white rice, close the bag and then shake it for about 60 seconds.  The rice will become statically charged, and the dust will be attracted to the rice.  Some people have used salt instead of rice, but salt can be too hard and can scratch the flowers. White rice is softer, so there is no danger of damage.

Step 2: Fluff Away

Now hold the bouquet by the handle, turn it upside down and give it two or three good shakes, letting the rice drop back into the bag. This will clear out any leftover dust, as well as loosen any rice caught in the flowers. It will also “fluff” the flowers, returning them to their original shape.

Step 3: Plump and Tease

Make sure all the flowers are in the right position by gently pushing them with the back of your hand.  Go around the back of the bouquet to do this.  Once you are happy with the general shape, tease the flowers into the correct position by lightly pulling and pushing on the individual flowers and petals until they are correctly placed.

There it is!  Follow this routine every three to six months and your silk flowers will always be the pride of Oakville rental properties.

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02 May 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Seven Tips for Making your Property Business run Smoothly in Oakville

A rental property business in Oakville can be a sound and profitable venture. However, careful management is required to minimise problems and avoid unnecessary financial losses and administrative headaches.  Here is a checklist of actions every responsible landlord must take.
advice for landlords in oakville

  1. Due diligence: Take great care when screening prospective tenants for your Oakville property. Make sure you check credit history and references properly. Never take short cuts; you will regret it later if you get “the tenant from hell”. If in any doubt – check criminal and eviction records. Always use a written rental application.
  2. Written agreements:  Use a written lease or month-to-month rental agreement to set out the terms of your relationship with tenants including complaints, repairs, notice, landlord access and the like.
  3. Repairs and maintenance: Don’t get behind with routine maintenance on your Oakville property and do repairs when tenants ask for them. If you have good tenants then it makes good business sense to keep them happy.
  4.  Notice before entry:  Know the parts of the Canadian Residential Tenancies Act covering tenants’ rights to privacy. Notify your tenants whenever you plan to enter the rental apartment, and provide as much notice (minimum 24 hours) as possible.
  5. Security: Keep your Oakville property secure. Take steps to increase the security and safety with good lighting and well-kept grounds. If you own a large multi-occupancy block, consider installing a surveillance system.
  6. Hazards: If there’s a hazard such as lead or mold on the Oakville property, you must warn your tenants about it. Landlords are increasingly being held liable for tenant health problems resulting from exposure to environmental toxins in rentals.
  7. Insurance: Make sure you are sufficiently well covered by liability and other property insurance. A good policy can protect you from lawsuits by tenants for injuries or discrimination and from losses to your Oakville rental property caused by events such as fire and storms and or even burglary and vandalism.

More Information

Landlord and Tenant Board


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30 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Why Residents of London Rentals Should Clean Out Their Medicine Cabinets

Now that you have diligently cleaned your London rental from top to bottom, there is one last chore you need to tackle.  Yes, you need to go through that medicine cabinet and get it in shape!  Why, you say?  Well, aside from making room for items needed for spring and summer, you should get rid of outdated and possibly dangerous medicines.  Whether you live in one of the apartments or houses for rent in London, keeping your medicine cabinet well-stocked and up to date is a must.  Read on for tips on what to toss and what to buy.

medicine cabinets, clean out medicine cabinets, london rentalsWhat to Toss:

  • All expired medicines – they are less effective and can become dangerous.
  • Almost empty bottles – these clutter the medicine cabinet and may not even have enough medicine left for a full dose.
  • Anything that was not sealed or stored properly – the medicines may have partially evaporated, which means they are more concentrated and potentially harmful.
  • All duplicates of items that are not used often – these add to the clutter.  Store them in a larger closet in the bedroom.
  • Outdated or partially used prescriptions – check with your doctor if you have questions.

What to Add:

  • Sunscreen with the appropriate SPF for your skin and activities.
  • Aloe vera to treat burns, rashes and other skin irritations.
  • Bug repellent to keep the critters away when you spend time outside of your home for rent in London.
  • Insect bite relief for when you get bitten.
  • Gel packs to relieve the sprains and aches from having too much fun outdoors.
  • Allergy medications to combat hay fever, etc.
  • An updated First Aid kit with bandages, antiseptic spray, ointment, etc.

Act now to free up your medicine cabinet for the items your family will need this spring.  It is time well spent!

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28 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Pets and Liability: Advice for Toronto Renters

“Even the tiniest Poodle or Chihuahua is still a wolf at heart.”
Dorothy Hinshaw Patent, Dogs: The Wolf Within

Your gorgeous spaniel ‘Snoopy’ shares your Toronto rental and is your best friend in the world. But what if he bit one of the neighbors, or someone making a delivery? Would you be liable and do you have insurance to cover you if anything like this should happen?

pets and liability, toronto rentals, advice for rentersThe statistics are sobering. According to the Canada Safety Council, there are 42 Canadians bitten every hour by a dog and statistics show that around 500 Canada Post delivery personnel are bitten each year.

In Ontario, if a dog bites you, you may bring a civil action against the dog’s owner for damages. The Dog Owners’ Liability Act (DOLA) states that the owner of a dog is liable for damages resulting from a bite or attack and that liability does not depend on the owner’s “fault, negligence or knowledge of the propensity of the dog to bite or attack”. This means that, if Snoopy bites someone in your Toronto apartment block, you cannot avoid responsibility by saying that he had never bitten anyone before and that you had no idea that he could be dangerous.

Under the Act, the person who was bitten by Snoopy can start court proceedings. During the proceedings, the victim could ask for a court order demanding that Snoopy should be muzzled or leashed or even destroyed. A terrible prospect!

Renters’ insurance policies typically cover dog-bite liability. If you keep a pet, do make sure that you are covered up to a reasonable amount. Limits usually start at $1,000,000 although lower and higher limits are often available. Remember, if you do not have insurance and an incident involving your pet occurs, you will become personally liable.

Don’t take the risk. Check your Toronto renter’s insurance today. Your dog may be the sweetest creature in the world, but humans can be cruel and irresponsible. There may be someone in your Toronto rental who has no respect for animals and taunts Snoopy to the point where he snaps.

More Information

Landlord and Tenant Board


Living in Toronto


Responsible Dog Owners of Canada (RDOC)


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27 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

How Residents of London and Toronto Rental Properties Can Go Green

Residents of homes for rent in London and Toronto, do you feel guilty whenever anyone mentions saving the environment?  Are you ashamed that you do not know how to follow the three Rs of reduce, reuse and recycle?  Fear not, it is easier than you think!  No matter where you live, whether it is one of the many Toronto apartments or London houses for rent, there are plenty of things you can do as an individual.  Read on to learn how to become an eco-warrior.

  • save environment, go green, reduce, reuse, recycle, save environmentBuy recycled products and items that have the least amount of packaging.
  • Carry cloth shopping bags.
  • Reuse those plastic bags lurking in your closet rather than throwing them away.
  • Reuse scraps of paper (envelopes, junk mail, etc).
  • Compost your leftovers.  If you do not have a compost bin, find someone who does!
  • Know your local recycling program – acceptable items, how to segregate your rubbish, etc.
  • Avoid using disposable plates, glasses and cutlery in your London or Toronto rental.
  • Exchange or donate items you no longer use through communities like Freecycle.
  • Reduce your energy usage at home and in the office. For example, do you really need the air conditioners set at Arctic Blast?
  • Plant a tree, whether at home or in a public space.  Trees reduce greenhouse gas emissions, secure soil in order to prevent erosion, and provide homes for a variety of critters.  Oh, and they provide shade!
  • Convert old items into interesting objects rather than tossing them out.  For instance, turn an empty jam jar into a pen holder.
  • Learn to love rechargeable batteries.  Do make sure to have them recycled when they can no longer be used.

Spread the word about recycling.  Do your bit today and sleep easier at night!


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Freecycle London


Freecycle Toronto


Toronto Blue Bin Recycling Program


TRY Recycling Inc.


London Garbage Depots


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24 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Tips on Having an Eco-Friendly Home Bar in Your Mississauga Rental

Going green can be more fun than you imagine!  Yes, it is even possible to have an eco-friendly bar in Mississauga rental properties.  So before you plan that next party, think about how you can protect the environment.  We have a few ides to consider:

    • Tips on Having an Eco-Friendly Home Bar in Your Mississauga RentalRecycle plastic bottles and reuse the glass ones for homemade mixers, such as basic syrup, sour mix, etc.
    • Go retro – use a soda siphon instead of buying bottled soda water.
    • Avoid disposable plastic barware and use items made from recycled materials, such as cotton bar towels, linen napkins, stainless steel straws, bamboo olive picks and cutting boards.
    • Use fresh squeezed juices rather than buying packaged products.
    • Be aware of how much ice you use and how much goes to waste.  If the refrigerator in your home for rent in Mississauga has an ice maker, unplug it when the bin is full.  Then switch to ice trays, preferably those not made from plastic.  Use only as much ice as you need and use cubes, which melt slower, for mixed drinks.
    • Check the seal on your refrigerator door.  The easiest method is to put a dollar bill in the door and close it.  If you can easily pull that bill from the door, the seal needs replacing.
    • Switch to non-electric appliances, such as juicers and ice crushers.
    • Save water by hand washing all bar tools and glassware.  If you must use a dishwasher, do not select the pre-rinse option.
    • Establish the appropriate mood by using candles instead of lights.  For those times when you do need more light, such as clean up, use Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) in place of standard bulbs.

Now spread the word among your friends and neighbours of Mississauga apartments for rent that going green is for all occasions!






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22 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

How to Keep your Ottawa Apartment Fragrant

Scientific studies have shown that our sense of smell is strongly linked to our emotions. Pleasant smells can induce feelings of well-being, so why not increase the homeliness of your Ottawa rental apartment by making sure that it always smells fresh and fragrant?

keep your ottawa apartment fragrantA common sense point is that in order for your Ottawa apartment to smell sweet, it’s important not to have any bad odors around! There is nothing worse than fragrant oils and sprays being used to cover up an underlying pong.

Always make sure there’s nothing lurking in the refrigerator that’s past its sell-by date, your garbage bins are regularly emptied and drains kept clean. Unpleasant pet smells can be eliminated by applying vinegar to any problem patches. Musty smells are caused by moisture and mold. To cure mustiness, first find the offending damp area, then use an antimicrobial spray to stop mold growth. Open the windows in your Ottawa rental wide on dry days to allow air to circulate.

There are various ways to introduce pleasant fragrances to your Ottawa apartment, for example:

  • Pot pourri: An old fashioned but gentle method for adding fragrance to a room.
  • Essential oils: There are all sorts of ways to diffuse sweet scented oils into the air. Reed diffusers, in which a reed stem is infused with the chosen oil, work very well and have a subtle effect. Light bulb rings are also effective. Oil drips onto the ring and the bulb’s heat diffuses scent throughout the room. Another good method is to have a nebulizer which blows scented steam into the air. If your Ottawa apartment tends to be dry, a nebulizer is a good choice as it also acts as a humidifier.
  • Air freshener sprays: Various synthetic air fresheners are available but should be avoided except in toilets or emergencies. They have a strong smell when first used but the effect fades rapidly and the chemicals in them can affect people with allergies.
  • Scented candles: These are a popular choice for some people but candles are a fire hazard and the landlord of your Ottawa apartment may not allow them.

If you have a small balcony or deck in your Ottawa rental apartment, why not add to the fragrance by growing scented plants? Examples include lavender, scented geranium, honeysuckle, and jasmine. Or try sweet-smelling herbs such as basil, lemon balm, mint and rosemary.

Image By: Kai Hendry

20 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Look Before you Buy! Tips for Landlords on Buying London Rental Properties

Investing in real estate can be very rewarding financially as long as you take the proper precautions. If you are thinking of buying London apartments for rent it pays to do your research carefully. You can either do the work yourself or employ a specialist letting agent to help you.

tips for landlords on buying london rental propertiesIf you do your homework properly, London rental properties are a good investment. The city has a well-balanced economy that is showing steady growth, especially particularly the auto parts sector.

If you are doing your own research on London rental properties, here are hints and tips for things to do or think about.

  • Talk to agents in the locality you are interested in. Ask about the success enjoyed by existing landlords, what tenants are looking for and how much rent they are prepared to pay. If possible, use a real estate agent who is also an area investor.
  •  Check out the area where you’d like to buy. Is it in decline or on the way up? If chains like Wal-Mart, Tim Hortons and Home Depot are moving in, that is a good sign. These companies put a lot of effort into researching demographics and income.
  • Who will your target market be? Families, professionals or students?
  • Think carefully about the best size for your London rental property. Are two-bedroom places in demand or are tenants looking for gardens?
  • Will you let the entire London property to one tenant (or family), or will you let individual rooms to different tenants?
  • Investigate transport, parking, shops, schools and recreation facilities – all of which may be important to your tenants.
  • When you find a potential property make a careful calculation of all the costs – for example loan repayments, taxes, letting agent/management fees, lawyers ‘ fees, insurance fees, repairs, furniture and fittings, utility bills.
  • Obvious but important – do not let personal taste influence your choice of house or apartment. Always look at the London property from a purely commercial perspective.

More Information

To get the national picture on vacancy rates check out settlement.org, a federally funded website aimed at immigrants wanting to settle in Canada.

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18 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

How to Deal with a Clogged Dishwasher in your Ottawa Rental Apartment

If the dishwasher in your Ottawa rental is not draining properly, it may be clogged by food scraps or grease. Like many other items of modern equipment, dishwashers are a wonderful addition to our lives until they go wrong. When they do go wrong we feel extremely irritated because we have come to rely heavily on these efficient household machines!

how to deal with a clogged dishwasher, home remedies for a clogged dishwasherThe most common places for clogging to happen is under the drainage basket (or screen), the drain hose to the sink or garbage disposal, or in the air gap. (The air-gap is the device that looks a bit like a mushroom which sits at the back rim of a kitchen sink).

Before calling in a local Ottawa plumber to sort out your dishwasher there are some simple steps you can take to try to fix the problem yourself.

As a safety precaution, turn off the dishwasher before going inside it with any tools. Then reach inside the machine and unscrew the draining basket. Take the basket out and check underneath to make sure there are no large bits of debris lurking there. Rinse the basket carefully and replace it.

The next step is to make a pourable paste of baking soda and vinegar – say about a quarter cupful – and pour it down the dishwasher drain. Follow it with a cup of neat vinegar. Wait for about 20 minutes then pour about a pint of boiling water down the drain. This treatment should clear most clogs caused by grease. If it doesn’t work on the first occasion, repeat the process.

If the baking soda and vinegar trick is unsuccessful then you have probably got some kind of a solid clog in your Ottawa dishwasher.

This may be the point at which you call in an Ottawa plumbing company. Otherwise, if you are a practical sort of person you could check the drain line or air gap yourself.

Get a bucket and some old towels and put them under the sink. Disconnect the drain hose from the air gap using a screwdriver and empty the hose into the bucket. If there is no obvious clogging, unscrew the air gap from the sink and take the top off. You can then see if there are any food scraps (like chunks of carrot) which may be causing the problem.

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16 April 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Herb Gardening in Mississauga Apartments for Rent

Despair not, you who dwell in apartments for rent in Mississauga!  Yes, you can have a flourishing indoor herb garden.  Read on for tips on developing your green thumb.

Herb Gardening in Mississauga Apartments for RentWhat should you plant?  Dill, basil, chives, mint and parsley are annual herbs that thrive indoors.  If you want to experiment, try growing sage, oregano and rosemary, which are also happy being grown inside Mississauga apartments.  You can either buy cuttings or seeds from a nursery, greenhouse, or grocer.

The ideal place for your garden in a Mississauga rental is a west or southwest facing window.  If you do not have one, then look for herbs that need less sunlight or invest in grow lights.

Now make sure that there are no extremes in temperature – herbs do not like draughty windows, radiator hot spots or super heated air.  To make your herbs even happier, place a small fan nearby to provide circulation.  This will prevent bugs and diseases from attacking your plants.

For planting, use quality, well-drained soil or a mix of vermiculite, peat and perlite.  Use a handful of gravel at the bottom of the pots to help with drainage.

When it comes to watering, make sure the soil is moist but not drenched.  A hand-held mister is the ideal tool for achieving the proper balance.  Be careful not to over water – root rot is all too common in potted plants.

The next step is fertiliser.  You can use a water soluble fertiliser or a fish emulsion that can be added to water.  Apply once a week after you have thoroughly watered the plants.  A monthly flushing, where you take the plant to the kitchen sink and water it until the water flows out of the bottom, will remove excess salt and minerals.

Get growing!  And let us know all about your bumper crop!

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