London, Ontario Guide

London, Ontario is situated between Lake Erie and Lake Huron and has a population of 378,000. The city is a manufacturing hub for different industries, including steel, automotive, and others.

History

The city grew in an area of three former villages, Ojibwe, Odawa, and Neutral, which were inhabited by Indigenous people. In the 18th century, the current Lieutenant-Governor John Simcoe chose the location of the settlement, which became an administrative center of Toronto (then York).

Doing Business in London

There are plenty of opportunities to do business in London, Ontario, with established businesses in the fields of biotechnology, medical research, information technologies, manufacturing, and others. Some 300 companies working in the technology sector also operate in London. The well-developed public transit and road transportation contribute to continuous growth and development.

Universities and Education

The University of Western Ontario was founded in London, Ontario in 1878. Today, the university offers graduate and undergraduate programs in a diverse array of disciplines and fields, including Nursing, Health Sciences, Engineering, and Arts and Humanities. Students can choose from various programs such as English Language and Literature, Classical Studies, Art History, Green Process Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and many others. Moreover, prospective students can choose between second-entry and first-entry programs. There are plenty of things to do and get involved while in college, from student clubs and fieldwork to externships and internships, international exchanges, and a lot more.
The Fanshawe College is also found in London, Ontario and offers part-time and full-time studies in a variety of disciplines such as Applied Mechanical Design, Agri-Business Management, Broadcasting, Broadcast Journalism, and Entrepreneurship and Management to name a few. Students can choose from degree and open programs while graduate studies are also offered.

Housing, New Starts, and Market Outlook

When it comes to housing in London, Ontario, prospective buyers can choose from condos and homes, and there is also social housing. According to reports, construction and new starts decreased in number in 2016 because of the larger number of unsold properties. The problem is partly related to the cost of mortgage carrying and the higher mortgage rates. Fewer borrowers are able to meet the criteria for mortgage financing which results in less demand on the housing market. This is the reason why builders are forced to decrease the number of new starts. At the same time, employment levels are stable in London which means that price levels will remain stable in the short term. Speaking of the rental market, research highlights the fact that there is a higher vacancy rate this year. A larger number of renters are expected to purchase a home and move from rented units.

What to do in London, Ontario

There is plenty to do and see in London, Ontario, from parks and gardens to museums, bookstores, restaurants, and a lot more. You can visit the Royal Canadian Regimen Museum, Wortley Village, the Banting House National Historic Site, or Museum London. Wortley Village, for example, is a neighborhood worth visiting, buzzing with eclectic cafes and stores. The Royal Canadian Regimen Museum features themed rooms such as the centennial and quiet rooms and exhibits dedicated to the World War I, the Cold War, Afghanistan, and other major events. The museum partners with different institutes and bodies such as the London Heritage Council, the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, and others.

In addition to museums and historic sites, you can also visit parks and gardens such as the Storybook Garden, Victoria Park, or Springbank Park. There are plenty of green spaces that are family-friendly and are fitted with splash and play areas and rides and offer children the chance to see different animals. If you want to play golf, then you can visit the East Park Golf Gardens and Wally World. The facility includes waterslides, mini golf, driving range, and 18-hole golf course. Other places to visit in London, Ontario, include the Labatt Memorial Park, the Budweiser Gardens, the Original Kids Theatre Company, and many others. The Budweiser Gardens are the place to watch the games of the Ontario Hockey League team as well as theatre performances and concerts.

Restaurants and Cafes

London takes pride in having a busy and bustling food and bar scene, with plenty of cafes, diners, and fast food joints to frequent while in town. There are restaurants offering Thai and Vietnamese cuisine, Middle Eastern food, local, seasonal food, Korean and Indonesian cuisine, and a lot more. There is something for everyone, whether you are up for a hamburger and coffee, want to try new foods and tastes, or are looking for a fine dining restaurant to spend the evening with someone special. Pizza places, pasta bars, vegetarian restaurants, and vegan restaurants are also frequented by locals and visitors alike.

Alternative lenders in London, Ontario

Alternative lenders are a common choice for people with financial problems, those with fair and tarnished credit, and persons who need cash urgently. Customers are offered bad credit loans and credit cards with higher than average rates because they are regarded as less creditworthy. Some lenders in London also offer reverse mortgages and HELOCs, the latter of which work like an adjustable rate mortgage.

Payday Loans

Payday lenders in London offer short-term loans to customers from all walks of life and regardless of their credit history and score. This is because repayment is ensured by being linked to the customer’s paycheck. While almost everyone gets approved and many providers advertise instant approval, the interest rates are quite high (in same cases they range between 300 and 400 percent). Still, a payday loan can be an option for borrowers who need urgent cash to pay for medications, prolonged hospital stays, medical emergencies, utility bills, etc. On the positive side is also the fact that this type of loan is unsecured. You don’t risk losing an asset such as your house or car if you are unable to repay the loan.

HELOCs

This is an alternative solution for borrowers with poor credit provided that they have home equity to offer as collateral. The problem is that customers with low incomes and those with financial problems risk losing the collateral. If you use your home as a loan guarantee, it is better to invest in some asset of value or a major item or project, whether home improvement, college education, or anything else. Home equity lines of credit usually offer a lower interest rate but it is unwise to use the money for day-to-day or unnecessary expenses. While there are no restrictions or limitations on what to spend your money on, it is best to use the HELOC only to add value to an asset and to pay urgent expenses (medical bills, car repairs, and the like).

Keep in mind that the closing costs add to the cost of borrowing. Your lender might impose penalty fees if you choose not to use the HELOC. Finally, your financial institution may cancel your line.

Bad Credit Loans

Some lenders also offer bad credit loans with higher than average rates because they deal with high-risk customers: https://www.creditavenue.ca/getting-a-personal-loan-with-bad-credit-in-canada/. In fact, some providers offer very high interest rates which makes borrowing quite expensive. Not only that, but there is a limit on the amount you are allowed to borrow. On the positive side, alternative lenders advertise quick approval, and it is much easier to qualify compared to standard loans.

Credit Unions

If you are a union member in London, Ontario, you might want to try your luck there first. These financial institutions have a more lenient approach when dealing with regular customers. What is more, unions often have more relaxed criteria and standards when it comes to customers with less than perfect credit. There are additional benefits for borrowers, one being the fact that credit unions tend to impose fewer penalties and fees than other lenders. The best part is that they extend unsecured loans to borrowers with blemished credit. Keep in mind that there are some limitations if you have poor credit. One is that poor credit often means a smaller loan because you are still considered a higher-risk customer. The repayment period is also shorter for unsecured loans. While there are some cons to keep in mind, the good news is that unions offer lower rates compared to banks and non-traditional lenders.

Peer to Peer Lenders

Peer to peer loans are yet another option for customers with tarnished credit because they are easier and quicker to obtain compared to standard lenders. This can be a good choice provided that loans come with fewer fees and penalties, and the rates are usually lower. Many peer to peer lenders are also willing to extend higher amounts than banks and credit unions.

Reverse Mortgages

Lenders in London, Ontario also offer reverse mortgages to elders, and payments are not due until the property is sold or the homeowner passes away. Read more at: www.creditavenue.ca