Category Archives: White Rock

How to Pack Up and Move Your Home Office

moving and packing your home office

For many people, a home office isn’t just a place to store all the paperwork that goes with owning a house, nor is it a junk room for dumping all the stuff that doesn’t fit anywhere else. The new home offices are just that—fully functional offices that people use on a daily basis as they work from home. But if you’re planning to move, that means you have more than just furniture being packed up. You’re actually boxing up your livelihood to take with you. That’s why it’s so important to follow these tips for packing up your home office.

Clean up
The first step you need to take is a standard one—sort through all of your stuff and clear out the unnecessary items. If you hire professional movers, you’ll be paying by the hour, so the less stuff you have to move, the better. A lot of the paperwork that we currently have is unnecessary. Sort through and make three stacks—one to keep, one to shred, and one to scan. The keep pile should be pretty obvious, but the others will be items that you don’t need at all or that you don’t need the original copies of. If you don’t need it at all, shred it and toss it. If you do need it, but you don’t need the originals, consider using a scanner to make a digital copy of the item so you can store it more portably on a hard drive. The same scenario can go for books. If you know you’ll never read the book or use it as a reference point again, then donate it to a local library or charity.

Back it up
Before you do any packing, you want to make sure you have your entire computer hard-drive backed up. (We’d even suggest having two back-ups, but we like to be cautious.) It’s possible for a computer’s interior hard drive to become damaged in a move and you don’t want to lose all of your work if that happens.

Make sure it will all fit
Large items like your desk may fit in your current space, but if you’re moving somewhere smaller, it may not fit. Be sure to look over your new office carefully and make sure that you actually have enough room for everything. If you don’t, it may be necessary to look into smaller furniture.

Keep your stuff boxed together
When you get to your new place, you want to be able to move quickly to get your office set up so you can get back in business. To that end, keep all of your computer parts and cords together. It doesn’t make sense to have the computer in one box with the keyboard and mouse in another and your power cables in a third. The only things that should really be packed separately are the monitor and printer. For more packing and storage tips, or to get a free no obligation moving quote contact http://crescentmovingandstorage.com/moving-locations/vancouver/

Pack correctly
If you have the original boxes from your computer, use them. If you don’t, be sure to get boxes that are big enough to hold the materials without being too bulky. Don’t try to cram everything into one box, because you definitely don’t want to have it tear open and see your computer burst into a million pieces on the floor. This goes the same for books and other heavy items. When it comes to how much you should put into each box, less is best. For monitors and other fragile items, use bubble wrap or wrap the items with a furniture pad to prevent the screen from being damaged.

Meeting People in White Rock After Moving

If you have ever moved to a new town or city, then you already know just how stressful and hectic the move itself can be..  From the house hunting in White Rock or South Surrey, to the packing and then finally unpacking, it is very easy to wind up with frayed nerves and stress.  But once the flurry of bustling around dies down, you may find yourself figuratively lost.  Once you move to White Rock you will have to become acclimated to your new surroundings:  finding stores and restaurants, getting involved in local activities, or even just finding shortcuts as you navigate the streets.  This is all eased if you have friends in White Rock, Crescent Beach or Ocean Park, but how to connect with new people may be problematic.  Our movers have compiled a list of ideas you may want to consider to you to help you find new friends when relocating to South Surrey.

When moving to a new neighborhood, get the kids involved! If you have children, White Rock is a great community for kids. Just get out to the beach, a sporting event or school event, and you are going to be thrown into close proximity with other adults that you share interests in.  Certainly, it will be much easier to break the ice and start talking by just sharing about your kids.  Another way to do this is to make sure that you join the local PAC or help volunteer with local sports teams such as the south surrey soccer club

  • Get the local paper.  Check out the Peace Arch News to find out what is going on in the community.  Most papers have a weekend supplement concerning local entertainment and arts.  Also, be sure to look at the ads in the paper to find out about community businesses.
  • Check out these recreation facilities and local libraries:  Surrey Library These will be great places to meet people with similar interests.  You can sign up for classes or lessons and meet a plethora of new people.
  • Visit the White Rock Chamber of Commerce Get to know the people involved in local business and government by visiting these two locations.  You should also ask about businesses that you might be in need of (like the best place to get Chinese take-out).  You can also learn about annual activities and festivals that will give you another chance to socialize and meet people.
  • Go for a bike ride.  Spend a few hours each weekend just getting out and cycling.  If you have your GPS, you don’t have to worry about not being able to find your way home, but you can explore and find locations that you might not have known existed before.
  • Get involved with church or other community groups.  White Rock has over 15 Churches that welcome new members. Additionally there are several community clubs which are a way to meet people and socialize.
  • Meet the neighbors.  It may seem hokey, but just go up to your neighbors and introduce yourself.  Telling them that you just moved in is a great way to break the ice.

 

Moving to White Rock? Lack of Street Parking May Be a Concern

If you are looking at relocating to a new district or neighborhood, then you need to know everything you can about the area so that you can make an educated decision.  Such is the case if you are looking to relocate to White Rock.  One of the concerns a is the lack of adequate street parking in White Rock

One White Rock resident, Steve Holroyd, has raised concerns about safety in his neighborhood because of the lack of parking.  He points out that this is not just a convenience issue for residents, nor is it just an issue for those who are visiting the area.  He says that the congested streets in White Rock are making the area dangerous when it comes to emergency work crews that are trying to do their jobs.

Holroyd states that he has witnessed emergency crews such as paramedics and firefighters responding to calls on North Bluff Road and the surrounding areas of Everall Street, Oxford Street, and Thrift Avenue.  These emergency responders have had to double-park because of the lack of curbside parking.  He has even witnessed paramedic crews trying to load patients into an ambulance in the middle of the street with traffic coming at them.
Part of the issue that Holroyd wants addressed is to see that curbs in front of residential buildings are painted yellow to restrict parking except for emergency vehicles.  He says that this issue is being compounded by several construction projects in the area that are clogging up the streets more than usual with construction crews’ vehicles.  Although Holroyd has been trying to address this issue with the city, White Rock’s director of planning and development services, Karen Cooper, has downplayed the issue.

According to Cooper, the city’s parking and bylaw officer responds to issues regarding parking and safety on the basis of complaints and in the past year, she has spoken to only three residents with such complaints.  In fact, she adds, none of those complaints have been in the past month and the White Rock fire chief has had no such concerns from his staff.   Chief Phil Lemire states simply:  “If we have to block a lane of traffic, we block a lane of traffic.”

Cooper, however, did add that the city is working on a “good-neighbor policy” to address the parking situation with regards to construction.  She cites that major construction sites, such as the Evergreen Baptist campus, are required to create a parking plan such as the use of church lots for overflow for the duration of the construction.

In addition, Irene Fairweather has come forward to say that she has been trying to get the emergency vehicle situation addressed for over a decade.  Fairweather, the manager of Sundial Apartments, has stated that she quit trying over five years ago because the city was unwilling to do anything about the issue, a problem that she says is only worsening as the area continues to develop.

New Home Builders Fees Expected to Increase in White Rock

The City of White Rock has recently been undergoing a major influx of new construction projects. However, this could be largely hindered following a recent proposal to the city council. White Rock’s  director of planning and development services, Karen Cooper, had her staff present two reports to the council regarding an increase in fees for construction planning applications and building permits. White Rock council is expected to vote on and approve these proposed increases on June 15 with what are being described as “significant hikes.”
The two staff reports, which were presented on May 25, suggested an increase in fees to compensate of the amount of time that the staff needed to process these applications. The increases would also make White Rock’s fees closer in alignment with those of comparable cities. Director Cooper has stated that the recent surge in construction is taxing her staff and that the fee increase is necessary. She and her staff have recommended increasing the following fees:

Building permits;
Plumbing permits;
Planning applications

As an example of how much construction in White Rock has increased, Cooper notes the 2014 budget numbers. In 2013, the city brought in $700,000 from these fees. However, that amount almost doubled to $1.2 million in 2014. Because of this increase in applications, the normal processing time of six to eight weeks has also gone up significantly. Cooper states that in order to bring this timeframe back down to its optimum range, the fee increases are needed to “reflect the costs of staff time to review the building permit applications.”

Perhaps the most significant fee increase is in the area of demolition fees. Currently, there is a $100 charge for a demolition permit (for a single-family dwelling). The new fee structure would raise this to ten times the current rate—$1,000. Cooper’s explanation for this is that the current slate of construction projects require such permits and that staff inspections are required of the site that can be “quite extensive.” As a result of the demand for such permits, the fees must be increased to better reflect the time spent by the staff. The other fee increases would go as follows:

Official Community Plan amendments would rise from $2,400 to $5,000;
Amendment of a land-use contract would double from $1,000 to $2,000;
Amendment for a major development permit (or a time extension for such) would increase from $500 to $2,500;
Amendment for a minor development permit (or a time extension for such) would increase from $300 to $1,200; and
Amendment for preliminary layout approval would increase from $100 to $1,000.

 

White Rock Residents Save Trees From New Home Development

OceanPark-Trees-Surrey-clearcutOne of the hardest parts of any urban development plan is finding a balance between the natural beauty of a location with the desire to utilize and develop this space for homes and businesses.  Oftentimes, those residents who wish to preserve this physical splendor find themselves at odds with developers.  They can feel as if they have to wage a war against the clear-cutting of forests and what they see as the destruction of nature.

Such is the case in Ocean Park, where residents have been fighting the expansion of this neighborhood for over a year.  Residents also see one of the main problems for this growth is the exceptionally large size of homes that are being built there.

Recently, the residents of Ocean Park sent an open letter to the city government of Surrey asking for protection of their environment.  Their list of concerns include:

  • The cutting down of Indigenous trees for the sole purpose of building large homes on small lots;
  • The destruction of many trees that are “heritage trees” that are over five feet across, signifying their age;
  • The devastation of natural habitats for a variety of plants and animals, including bald eagles, barred owls, and woodpeckers;
  • The building of giant homes on small properties that will dwarf the smaller, character homes and completely change the landscape of the neighborhood
  • The loss of neighborhood character and park-like setting that is the area’s namesake.The residents call on Surrey’s city government to take action to preserve these trees before they can be chopped down to make room for more homes.  In addition, they are calling on the city to put a limit on the size of those homes that developers are allowed to build.  The residents cite a recent government ordinance that allowed for larger homes to be built in this area as a reason to believe that the neighborhood would lose its charm and beauty.  They wish to place a cap on the homes in the Ocean Park area to a size of no more than 2400 square feet.

    Although no action has been taken as of this writing, the Ocean Park citizens are hoping to hear something shortly from the bylaw officers as several lots are scheduled to be clear-cut soon.

White Rock Opposes Turning Church Into Housing Project

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whiteRockCityOne of the most controversial parts of new housing plans is when existing structures are repurposed or redeveloped with a new goal in mind. If residents of the area have an emotional attachment to a building or an area, then repurposing that property can get people upset, often with them taking action in the courts. One such incident involved the First United Church in White Rock BC

The First United Church is almost sixty years old. It has been used by its congregation as well as White Rock community groups to host everything from concerts and community gatherings to Remembrance Day ceremonies. That is why local White Rock residents are coming together in an attempt to save the landmark church.

Currently, the First United Church is slated to be redeveloped into a housing project. The building would feature four-stories of housing and a small church located inside the complex. The church ministry is being forced to put the property up for development because of financial problems brought on by the downturn in the economy. One of the main reasons why parishioners are upset about this development is that there has been so little consultation with them about the future of their church.

The church’s minister, Rev. Joan McMurtry, has stated that she does not want to lose the church and that it would be sad for many of those affected by the change. However, she also points out that the housing development would provide affordable housing in White Rock, where such a thing is becoming scarcer and scarcer. Additionally, the church would still survive in its smaller incarnation; if nothing is done, the church’s future is not assured.

For more information about moving to the city of White Rock and living in White Rock – visit our blog!

Sold Your Parents’ Home? Advice on Relocation and Inheritance

MovingAndInheritenceHome sales can always seem like a legal and financial quagmire especially when it comes to taxes and tax liabilities.  This is especially compounded if you are selling the home of relative, such as a parent, instead of your own house.  Because of this, it is always a good idea to check with a professional business consultant/tax adviser to see what information best applies to your unique situation.  However, here is some general advice that can give you an idea of what you might be facing in selling a family member’s home.

How (and when) did you acquire the property?  The biggest thing to consider is how you acquired the property and how long ago you acquired it.  These are the general possibilities:

You May Be Interested In: http://estatelawcanada.blogspot.ca/2010/11/am-i-taxed-when-i-inherit-my-dads-house.html

  • Inheritance—If you inherited the home in a loved one’s will and you put it on the market and sold it almost immediately, then there is some good news for you.  You will not have to pay any capital gains tax on the property’s sale.  If you do not sell the house immediately, you will have to possibly have to pay taxes on the profits from the sale and should consult a professional to determine just how much you are liable for.
  • Residence—If you inherited the property and then used it as your primary residence for at least two out of the past five years, then you are eligible for a capital gains tax exclusion.  For a single tax filer the exclusions is $250,000 while a married couple filing together would get $500,000.
  • Investment Property—If you obtained the house and then held onto it for a few years to use as a rental or some other type of investment property, you could owe taxes on your profit when it is sold.  This is where you need to specifically check with a tax consultant to find out all the details of what your financial obligation will be.
  • Assisted Living—If one of your parents is deceased and another has to move into assisted living, then he or she receives what is called a “step up” in basis.  You can then sell the home on behalf of your surviving parent.  If you do this, then your parent would be responsible for paying a capital gains tax on that stepped-up basis.
  • Property Transfer—If the property is not willed to you but is simply transferred over to you, there are multiple tax implications.  You may owe gift taxes on the transfer.  There can also be an inheritance tax on the percentage of the property being transferred to you.  You may also owe capital gains tax unless you have been living on the property for two of the past five years.

Additional Resources: http://www.realtor.com/advice/sold-parents-home-2014-check-tax-advice/

 

3 Reasons White Rock Is A Great City To Live In

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White Rock is quickly becoming a highly sought after destination in Greater Vancouver. Many local Vancouverites love to spend a day a the beach in White Rock – and all those who have visited before will quickly see why. There are two words that best describe the city of White Rock. Enchanting and unique. It is a seaside community that is situated around a sandy beach and warm waters. There are literally hundreds of reasons this city is a great place to live in. As the Vancouver realesate market becomes pricier- more and more families are considering moving out of the city and into the charming town of White Rock. Whether you are moving to White Rock or simply visiting for the day – White Rock is sure to please every member of the family.

Reason #1 The Beaches

Who wouldn’t love waking up every morning to beautiful beaches? I know I would. There are three main beaches that make up White Rock Beaches. They are East beach, Crescent beach and West beach. These beaches offer miles and miles of nothing but beauty. You will be able to go crab fishing, swimming, sailing or just take a nice stroll through the promenade.

There are a ton of artists who choose to make White Rock their home. During the summer months you can walk down the street and hear musicians playing and see artists painting. It is truly a sight to see.

Reason #2 The Accommodations

There is no shortage of accommodations in the White Rock area. You will have access to a variety of different Bed & Breakfasts, five star hotels, RV Parks and so much more. And the best part is all of them are right off the highway for easy access. There is also great shopping. You will be able to shop at department stores, gift shops, malls, trendy boutiques and so much more.

Reason #3 Fun Activities

What good is living somewhere that has nothing fun to do? In White Rock you will never be bored as there are plenty of fun activities for you to engage in. When you live here you will be able to play golf at world class golf courses, play tennis at top of the line tennis courts or just walk around the scenic trails. If you love adventure you will love living in White Rock.

It doesn’t matter if you are taking your family on a summer vacation or you are taking that special someone on a romantic getaway, at White Rock you will find everything you want and need to have a great time.

Organize for Moving Day

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Get Organized for Moving Day!

We all live with stuff. Some of us live with loads of furniture, antiques and mementos. While others prefer a more minimalist approach to their surroundings, living lean and without a lot of “stuff”. If you are the former, it might be time to consider your habits and begin the practice of de-cluttering your home now with these six easy steps:

6 Easy Ways to Organize Before the Movers Arrive

 

  1. Toss the receipts. Unless you need a receipt for tax purposes or a possible return, it’s best to toss the paper or decline a receipt when requested the next time you purchase that coffee. If you must hold onto a receipt, consider having an electronic version emailed to you or scan it in to your computer right away.
  2. Closet clean out. With the change in seasons comes a change in wardrobe. Now is the perfect time to take inventory on what you did not wear at all this past season. If it didn’t leave the closet it’s time for the item to leave your house. Start a donate bag and a consignment bag and as soon as they are full, take care of them and get them out of your house. From now on, for each new clothing item that comes in an old one has got to go.
  3. Bye to books and magazines. For those that love to read, there is sentimentality to holding onto a book we once read or a magazine that had an amazing article. But ask yourself this question: Am I really ever going to read that again? If the answer is even close to no, then recycle the magazine and donate the old books to your library.
  4. Medicine cabinet cleaning. It is probably time to check the expiration dates on all your old medicines. Dispose of the over the counter meds that have expired and take any unused or outdated prescription medications to a local medicine take-back program to safely get rid of them.
  5. Expired electronics. When it is time to upgrade to a new phone, consider how to immediately get rid of your old phone and any outdated chargers. Many places will often buy back old electronics when you are purchasing new replacements. If you do not sell your old phone, then recycle it appropriately. The same goes for VCR’s and other outdated electronics collecting dust in your home.
  6. Plastic bags need to be bagged. It is time to consider getting rid of plastic bags altogether. They breed underneath kitchen sinks and behind cupboard doors like bunnies and before you know it you are swimming in them. Take them all to the local recycle center – some grocery stores collect them near the front door – and make the switch to canvas bags. The environment, and your kitchen cabinets, will thank you.

At Crescent Moving we have professional packers on staff who can help you cull through the clutter and get organized for your moving day. To find out more please contact the professional movers at Crescent Moving 1-855-868-6683

organize before your move

Clear Out the Clutter

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Moving or Not, it’s time to de-clutter

With the change in seasons there often comes a change in our lives, sometimes subtle and sometimes big. Whether you are planning for a big move or planning to get yourself more organized before yet another season goes by, it is probably time to get organized and declutter your home and your life.

organized-491x300Get Organized

If you are looking to overhaul your entire house with a mission to get organized, plan to work on one room at a time. Breaking the task up into smaller projects makes the process manageable and less overwhelming. Oftentimes, the process of organizing creates a mess in the process, albeit temporarily, and having just one messy room at a time is a lot easier to handle. Allow yourself time to sort through each room. Most likely you have a lot of sentimental items and tangible history to work through and it will take more time than expected.

Plan

Create a vision for how you want each room to look and function. With that in mind, sort through everything and only keep what you love and what works for you and your family. Get the kids involved in the process and teach them how to sort their items. It is never too early to get the kids into the good habit of cleaning and keeping a tidy space.
If you are not sure whether something should stay or go, then pack it up in a box and put it in storage. This is good for toys, kitchen items, shoes, games and books. If you need it, you will have to retrieve it from the box. But if that box goes untouched for a period of time – say, six months – then it is time to donate the unused items to a local charity. To keep the family from a pattern of too much clutter, seriously consider a rule of “one item in, one item out” – for every new item that comes into the home, an old item must go. This is particularly important when it comes to keeping your closet free from overflow. If you are not sure clothing items are being worn or not, then hang them on the hanger with the hanger turned the other way (think front of the hook facing you). If the hanger has not been turned around at the end of a season, meaning you have not worn that item, then it’s time to pull it out of the closet. When you are looking to add something into the home, give yourself time to determine if you really want or need that item. If you hesitate, then it is better to hold off on making that purchase for now.

Maintain

The task of organizing and keeping your home free from clutter is an ongoing job. Try to handle your mail just once, file paperwork right away, sort through seasonal items as soon as they come out of storage and tackle messes as soon as they arise. Keep bins on hand at all times where you can continually sort items that need to be fixed, items that need to be donated, and items that need to be sold. Establishing this habit now will help you to continually conquer any clutter.