International Friendship Day was celebrated on July 30th. The test belsimple reminder of what makes some friends your best friends.

Some friends know how to be a polite guest in your home. An authentic friend opens your refrigerator and helps themselves.

Some friends have never seen you cry. A dear friend has shoulders that have been soggy from your tears.

Some friends don’t know your parents' first names. A close friend has texted your parents.

Some friends bring a dish to your party. A real friend comes early to help you cook and stays late to clean up ... and knows where you keep everything.

Some friends hate it when you call after they’ve gone to bed. A humble friend asks why it's been so long.

Some friends want you to be more like them. A true friend loves you just as you are.

Some people think that a friendship is over after an argument. A weathered friend reaches out with a well-timed phone call.

Some friends expect you to always be there for them. A selfless friend knows that they will always be there for you!

Friendship Day is a reason to celebrate all your real friends who allow you to be the same for them

Gino Pezzani
DIEN Realty
604-418-9366
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A primary care physician is your first line of defense in maintaining good health. Finding one you like and trust may take a little effort. Here’s some advice from the Healthline website:

Check your network. Staying within your health plan’s network can save you money. Look through your plan’s documents to locate primary care doctors in your community.

Talk to your family and friends. Ask who they go to, and whether they like and trust them. You can also look to other health care workers you know such as your pharmacist, physical therapist, eye doctor, and other health care professionals.

Consider the location. Is it easy for you to visit the doctor’s office? Ask about public transportation, parking, and other access issues. If your doctor’s office is inconvenient to get to, you won’t go as often as you should.

Check availability. How busy is the doctor? Will you be able to get an appointment when you need one? Are tele-visits an option? You should be able to see a doctor quickly when you need to.

Meet the staff. You’ll be interacting with nurses and assistants, not just the doctor. On your first visit, see if they’re friendly and helpful so you’ll be comfortable sharing your concerns with them.

Group vs. Individual practice. In a group practice, you may not always get to see the doctor you choose. On the flip side, if the doctor is a solo practitioner, their availability may be limited.

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Canadian seasonally-adjusted retail sales increased 1.1 per cent in June, hitting $63.1 billion. Sales grew in 8 of 11 subsectors, but were led by higher sales at gasoline stations and motor vehicle and parts dealers. Core retail sales, which strips out gasoline and motor vehicle and parts dealers, increased 0.2 per cent in June. In volume terms, sales were up 0.2 per cent. 

In BC, seasonally-adjusted sales rose 1.1 per cent in June. Compared to the same month last year, retail sales were up 3.5 per cent in the province. In the Greater Vancouver region, sales rose 1.1 per cent month-over-month and were up 3 per cent year-over-year. 

In June, Canadian e-commerce sales were flat month over month, corresponding to 5.4 per cent of retail sales. This percentage remains elevated relative to pre-pandemic levels, but is lower than during core months of the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. 

Link:  https://mailchi.mp/bcrea/canadian-retail-sales-june-2022

For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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What advice would you give to your younger self? The website of the World Economic Forum shares these insights from some successful female CEOs:

Ellison Anne Williams, CEO and founder, Enveil: “Careers are nonlinear. At each step, choose opportunities based more on what you think you will learn from it than on where you think that it might take you. A diverse set of experiences is invaluable in building a rich career.”

Netta Korin, co-founder, Orbs: “Above all else, dare. Do not let fear get in the way of your success or of your choices. Do not look at your role models and wonder if— or fear that—you are not enough, or that you do not have what it takes.”

Jennifer Holmgren, CEO, LanzaTech: “Be positive. See the potential for good outcomes, while still being aware of the risks. Focus on the prize—if you fail, course correct, learn, and move on!”

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All of us are born with creative minds, but some of us lose the habit. The Entrepreneur magazine website offers these tips for getting your creative mojo back:

Practice mindful observation. You look, but do you really see? Make a practice of observing and appreciating the details of your surroundings. You may see, hear, smell, or feel things you never noticed before, giving you new ideas and insights.

Rev up your curiosity. Make a point of asking questions about everything you see and do, even if you think you already know the answers. Exploring situations more deeply can yield fresh insights into everyday problems.

Free your mind. Forget limitations. When you brainstorm, think beyond boundaries and conventional wisdom. Don’t accept the tried and true—instead, teach yourself to look at what seems impossible. You could find a way to make the impossible come true.

Practice being creative. Don’t wait until a problem erupts to flex your creative muscles. Your mind will be in better shape if you look for opportunities to be creative every day. Imagine a small problem and spend a few minutes thinking of new and different ways to solve it. You’ll be ready when you really need a spark of inspiration.

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Canadian prices, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), rose 7.6 per cent on a year-over-year basis in July, down from 8.1 per cent last month. The deceleration was driven by declining gasoline prices, but price growth remains high among other components of the index. Excluding gasoline, the CPI rose 6.6 per cent year over year in July, up from 6.5 per cent in June. Month-over-month, on a seasonally-adjusted basis, prices were up 0.1 per cent, the slowest rate since December. In BC, consumer prices rose 8 per cent year-over-year, up from 7.9 per cent last month. Average hourly wages grew 5.2 per cent year-over-year in July, indicating a decline in purchasing power. 

July's CPI numbers provided some encouraging signs that inflation may be slowing, particularly in combination with a flat month-over-month data point in the United States for July. However, markets will want to see sustained declines in the rate of inflation over the next several months before mortgage rates decline significantly. Certain bond yields have been softening in recent weeks, but so far this hasn't translated substantially into mortgage rates. Markets are still expecting an aggressive Bank of Canada, singularly focused on bringing inflation back to its 2 per cent target.

Link: https://mailchi.mp/bcrea/canadian-inflation-july-2022

For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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Canadian housing starts rose by 2.9k (1.1 per cent) to 275.3k units in July at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate (SAAR). Comparing year-over-year, starts were up from July of 2021 (0.5 per cent). Single-detached housing starts rose 1.6 per cent to 72.6k, while multi-family and others rose 0.9 per cent to 202.7k (SAAR). 

In British Columbia, starts fell 12.1 per cent in July, declining to 49.2k units SAAR in all areas of the province. In areas in the province with 10,000 or more residents, single-detached starts rose 4.5 per cent m/m to 7.2k units while multi-family starts fell 16.6 per cent to 38.4k units. Starts in the province were 3.6 per cent below the levels from July 2021. Starts were down by 9.1k units in Vancouver, 7.4k in Kelowna, and flat in Abbotsford from last month, while rising by 8.7k in Victoria. The 6-month moving average trend rose 4 per cent to 44.7k in BC in July. 

Link: https://mailchi.mp/bcrea/canadian-housing-starts-july-2022

For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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The origins of some figures of speech are obvious—putting the cart before the horse, for instance. Others are a little more obscure. From Jeff Rovin’s book The Unbelievable Truth!, here’s a look at the explanations behind three common expressions:

Pulling the wool over their eyes. In the 17th and 18th centuries, thieves and robbers would yank their victim's wool wigs down over their eyes so they couldn’t see who was attacking them.

Blackmail. In 16th-century England, mail meant “rent” or “tribute.” Debts that had to be paid in silver were called “whitemail.” A debt that could be paid in any other way— from livestock to property—was called “blackmail.” Because blackmail did not have a set value, the person collecting the debt could extort any amount or anything they wished from the debtor.

Red tape. For centuries, it was British custom to seal important documents with red wax and red tape. Cutting through it was the only way to get at the documents and read them.

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Communication is at the heart of good leadership. Here’s some advice from Forbes on what kind of obstacles to look for and how to overcome them:

Insufficient communication. Employees need information to do their jobs effectively. Keeping them in the dark about what’s going on in your organization and industry prevents them from serving customers efficiently and making good decisions about priorities. Some information is confidential and proprietary, of course, but you should generally strive to share as much as possible.

Too much information. On the opposite extreme, employees can feel overwhelmed if you communicate too much. Don’t send dozens of emails to your entire workforce. Target information to the right people, and keep them short so people can find the point quickly and easily. Make more information available for people who want it instead of dumping everything into one huge message.

Difficult communication structures. Don’t place too many rules on how people communicate. Requiring employees to reach out to other departments only through their managers can slow or even strangle the flow of information. Encourage open communication in all directions throughout your organization.

Not listening to employees. Communication shouldn’t be a one-way street. If you’re doing all the talking, employees will tune out. If you’re not asking questions and listening to people, you won’t know what’s going on in your organization. Get feedback from all levels and pay attention to what people are saying, or you’ll miss important news and developments from the front lines.

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For the complete news release, including detailed statistics, click here.

Vancouver, BC – August, 2022. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 5,572 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in July 2022, a decrease of 42.4 per cent from July 2021. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $923,449, a 3.6 per cent increase from $891,376 recorded in July 2021. Total sales dollar volume was $5.1 billion, a 40.3 per cent decline from the same time last year. 

“High mortgage rates continued to lower sales activity in July,” said BCREA Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “Many regions around the province have seen sales slip to levels well below normal for this time of year.”

As the pace of sales activity declines below normal levels, inventory is accumulating. Provincial active listings rose 28 per cent year-over-year, though from a very low level in July 2021. Inventories remain quite low, but the slow pace of sales has tipped some markets into balanced or even buyers’ market territory.

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 20 per cent from the same period in 2021 to $58.7 billion. Residential unit sales were down 29.3 per cent to 56,801 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 13.2 per cent to $1.03 million.


For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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