You can buy a lot of things with US$1.6 million: a fancy car, a big house and maybe even an early retirement. It’s a one-way ticket to the good life.
When Larry Connor made that sum over eight days of coronavirus volatility in the stock market, he decided to give it back to his employees.
Connor, the owner and founder of The Connor Group, an Ohio-based real estate investment firm, captured the shock and gratitude of employees during his video announcement of the bonuses.
The company, which employs roughly 400 associates, has continued to keep its luxury apartment communities open as an essential business during the Covid-19 outbreak.
“These are challenging times, but the way our people have responded has been nothing short of heroic,” Connor said in a company news release. “Our No. 1 core value is ‘Do the right thing.’ So when I think about how I made the money compared to what our associates do on every day, to me, (paying the bonuses) was the right thing to do.”
The company will pay out the bonuses, which range from $2,000 to $9,000, to all “non-highly compensated associates,” according to the company news release.
The payouts were calculated on a tiered system based on position and longevity, said company spokeswoman Amanda Brown, adding that associates who made more than $150,000 were not eligible. The median salary of associates who received bonuses is roughly $42,000, she said.
“Family comes first. I love that about this company. That’s what keeps me here,” said Memo Alba, a partner and a senior maintenance technician who is nearing his 13th year at The Connor Group. “They’ve always made me feel that they care not only about me, but about my family’s health and well-being. They’re always there to help.”
Alba said he will be using his $6,000 bonus toward remodeling his house, a future trip to Florida with his wife and four children and a dinner date with his wife.
Brown said the $1.6 million was the net amount after tax. Beyond the bonuses, The Connor Group committed to paying unexpected childcare expenses for all employees and expanding its associate loan program. The program allows employees to get short-term pay advances that can be paid back via payroll deductions, Brown said.
“We believe in leading from the front,” Connor said in the release. “And in trying times, that means more than just talking about the problem. It means taking action.”
ON THE BRIGHTER SIDE
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Douglas Todd: China's real-estate investors down on Vancouver, but not out – Vancouver Sun
Huawei CEO Meng Wenghzou must stay under mansion arrest following this week’s court decision in Vancouver. China’s authorities rage, while continuing to unfairly jail Michael Spavor and Michael Korvig and drastically cut imports of Canadian canola.
Rival ethnic Chinese groups clash in the streets of Vancouver over Beijing’s clampdown on Hong Kongers’ freedoms. COVID-19 kills more than 6,800 across Canada and lockdown virtually ends international travel, sending home many of China’s foreign students, especially from Toronto and Vancouver.
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China-Canada relations are at their lowest ebb in decades, particularly according to China’s pervasive regime-backed media outlets, which this week called Canada a “pathetic clown.”
And that has implications for Metro Vancouver’s housing market.
This region of 2.6 million is feeling the impact of soured relations with China, even while polling suggests the city continues to retain some of its traditional allure to the world’s most populous country as a desirable place to experience and invest in.
Ontario Real Estate Association hands down new guidelines as folks begin looking back into housing market – Barrie 360 – Barrie 360
While officials are expecting the Canadian housing market to take a real hit because of the COVID pandemic, Ontario realtors are still taking steps to protect those who want to buy or sell a home.
The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) has issued a series of guidelines to protect the health and safety of not just those in the market to buy or sell, but the realtors doing the deals too.
Most home showings have been done virtually since the emergency was declared in Ontario, and the OREA says that should become standard practice for now. Documents, forms, and acknowledgments should be processed electronically according to these guidelines. The OREA asks that physical home showings should be preceded by thoroughly disinfecting surfaces, and a physical distance should be maintained while interacting with clients directly. The OREA asks that personal protective equipment be used when distancing isn’t possible. A complete list of the OREA’s recommendations can be found on its website.
Now that the Ontario Government has announced a phased reopening, the OREA feels many consumers are looking to get back into the market in person. “The health and safety of our Realtors and their clients is OREA’s top priority during this pandemic,” says Sean Morrison, President of OREA. “As Ontario’s economy reopens, many Ontarians are looking to get back into the real estate market. Realtors are here to help make home buyers and sellers feel comfortable and safe while they work to find their dream home. OREA’s guidelines have been informed by up-to-date information from public health, best practices from the industry and experiences in jurisdictions across North America.”
RELATED: HOUSING MARKET TO BE HIT HARD BY COVID PANDEMIC THROUGH TO THE END OF 2022, ACCORDING TO CMHC HOUSING OUTLOOK
On Wednesday, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released a housing market outlook that shows the impacts of COVID-19 will be felt on the industry right through to the end of 2022. Housing starts, sales, and prices within Ontario will be more impacted than some, including B.C. and Quebec, but less than those of oil-dependent Alberta or Saskatchewan.
Quebecers love the 'burbs, real estate poll suggests – Montreal Gazette
A survey conducted by the RE/MAX Québec real estate firm suggests that 46 per cent of respondents — particularly those with young children — could see themselves buying a home in the suburbs.
The poll, carried out just as the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak were beginning to be felt across Quebec, found that 28 per cent would like to settle in the city while 21 per cent preferred the country.
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Among potential sellers, the Léger poll found 58 per cent would put their homes on the block to move somewhere with more land, while 55 per cent would do so for a larger home.
A large proportion of respondents ages 55-64 would sell in order to move to a less expensive home.
RE/MAX Québec vice-president Sylvain Dansereau said the polling dates were not changed despite the health crisis, adding that a second phase of the survey will be carried out this autumn to measure the effects of the outbreak on the real estate buying and selling preferences of Quebecers.
Quebec’s real estate industry received government authorization to resume operations on May 11.
The poll was conducted March 17-29 with 1,400 respondents in six regions of Quebec and has a 2.6-per-cent margin of error 19 times out of 20.
Creators of 6ixBuzz possibly doxed via social media – insauga.com
B.C. health officials say quick steps taken to help protect care homes – Prince George Citizen
Calm before the storm for Japan suicides as coronavirus ravages economy – The Province
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