Big Box Store Convenience Puts The ‘Dream’ In Dream Home

Riverdale / Playter Estates, The Danforth


Welcome to my blog on housing, culture, and design! I’m Steve Fudge and I’m celebrating over 3 decades as a realtor and property consultant in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

It’s been decades since prospective purchasers of property can take a deep breath and process their shelter priorities instead of falling prey to the Fear Of Missing Out. When a market is in overdrive and prices are going up every day, it’s easy to make compromises if the possibility of being shut out of the market is real. The Bank of Canada started increasing interest rates in March 2022 in an effort to curb inflation, and it put the brakes on our hyper-competitive market. Speculators from around the globe have departed for greener pastures and Buyers can breathe easy.

So what do Buyers entering the market right now prioritize? I put this question to three sets of Buyer clients and the consensus was, that even though consumer culture fuels the desire for pretty, pragmatic considerations are more important than aesthetics. Buyers want a home that meets their spatial needs and supports their lifestyles. This is what puts the ‘dream’ in Dream Home.


It’s All About Location Location Location

Whether you’re a property investor or a devoted HGTV viewer, almost everyone is familiar with the popular real estate idiom: “Location, Location, Location”. It means even if a dwelling is the same size, built in the same year, and has the same features, its value will vary depending on its location. The saying is repeated three times for dramatic flourish, and because it’s the Number 1 rule in real estate. Its importance can underestimated. Or overlooked. And sometimes even ignored. But not on my watch. Although in fairness it also means different things to different people.

Finding safety and solace on Prince Edward Island during the pandemic – when the authorities had a record of everyone who was on the island at any given moment – one of the value-added benefits I discovered living in Charlottetown was having Canadian Tire six minutes away. This amazed me. I could not shut up about it. On multiple occasions I shared my experience of having a porch light bulb burn out in front of me at 8:45 pm one evening and, being a perfectionist victim of OCD, I drove to Canadian Tire to find light bulbs in Aisle 19 and 3 staff at their tills ready to check me out. The result? I was screwing in a new one at 9 pm on the dot! Welcome to my heaven.

Although I make it a priority to ‘Buy Local’ and support Mom & Pop shops – because this IS important!  I discovered that once I confessed my love for the convenience of Big Box Stores and how much they simplify my life, the more at ease others were to share this sentiment. In retrospect, I understand this because it’s very easy to get all judgy about someone’s choices. In fact, ordering anything online from Amazon is more convenient than going to a Big Box Store,  but I just can’t pull the trigger and make this a habit after I ordered four items at the same time to have them arrive in three separate deliveries in cardboard boxes of varying enormous sizes stuffed with air-pillow filling. According to a report by ocean advocacy organization Oceana, Amazon’s plastic footprint increased by nearly a fifth (18 per cent) between 2020 and 2021. That’s 321 million kilograms of packaging waste which, if laid out, would circle the earth more than 800 times. WTF?

Not to finger-point.



The short and sweet of it is that convenience is really important to Buyers! And that the drama of daily living – is finding ourselves needing to resolve issues that are usually unplanned but need immediate action, such as:

– Fido’s feed bag is empty, and you realize that you forgot to buy a backup.

– Your darling child announces they have a school project due in the morning and have just presented you with their supply list.

– You are experiencing a minor plumbing emergency, which is easily fixed with a part or tool that you don’t have on hand.

– You are hosting a dinner party for friends this evening, and one of your key ingredients has spoiled, which you discover during your prep.

– The first snow of the season is forecast tomorrow and you can’t find your gloves anywhere. Anywhere.

– Your partner isn’t feeling well and needs a sleep-aid quickly so they can retreat to bed.


… Do any of these situations happen in your household?



Day-to-day dramas need solutions quickly because, let’s face it, most households are oscillating between chaos and calm every waking moment. It’s a universal truth. When I was a kid, when my siblings or I would unravel my mother, she would smile and say “I may appear to be laughing, but it’s what I do to prevent myself from becoming hysterical. You should try it.”

Beyond the emergency errands, everyday To-Do lists on their own can become exhausting and feel overwhelming. For urbanites who love their Bright Lights Big City lives, being in proximity to a selection of ‘Big Box Stores’ can really save the day. Especially when they’re within walking or cycling distance from your home. After all, if you can save time doing the mundane, you can spend time having fun.




Choosing where you purchase a home should factor in having all the necessities you need on a daily basis nearby. The less time traveling to, erranding, and traveling back creates more time to enjoy.

This means whatever it is you’re after, gets done sooner. Problem solved.

That dear reader, is the adulting formula to work-life-live-play balance.

It’s not elusive.



That’s one of the appeals of the big box store. Ubiquitous, yes. But undeniably convenient, stocked, and often competitively priced, all of which matter in pursuit of efficiency when it comes to errands. And it’s easier to resolve when you know exactly where to get it. Just like I know light bulbs are in Aisle 19 at Canadian Tire.

It’s easier to look for deals, comparatively speaking, especially between grocers, hardware, and electronic dealers, when you can do research side by side before leaving home. But for budget-conscious folks, this can help with meal planning, creating meals from what’s on sale, and what’s in season, which will reduce waste and costs.

It’s handy to have a Shoppers or a Walmart for your drug store needs and to have grocers located conveniently, such as Metro, Loblaws, and No Frills, so that you can decide what to buy where if you aren’t getting all your goods in one spot. Don’t forget to stop at the LCBO and the Beer Store. And familiar, helpful faces at Home Depot and Canadian Tire are a welcome sight. Don’t forget about your furry friends, who need their supplies from Pet Smart or Pet Valu.

Bulk Barn is a cost-effective spot for snacks and supplies. Michael’s is helpful for crafty ideas and rainy-day supplies.

So, YES, when you can – shop local. Support the smaller Mom & Pop shops that bring flavour and dynamism to every neighbourhood. (The Danforth, in particular, is an excellent district to shop ‘the little guys’). But don’t be ashamed if the convenience of a Big Box Store allows you more time to help your child do their school project.



Have you thought of your dwell hunt in terms of not where you will live, but how you will live?

Convenience matters!



Consider this fantastic Urbaneer listing that offered truly easy access to well-known retailers!

When you live on Tennis Crescent, the prime retailers for day-to-day essentials are close by! Loblaws has almost everything, and it’s just around the corner – a 4-minute walk up Broadview Avenue. A 10-minute walk will bring you from this property to Shopper’s Drug Mart on the Danforth, and two doors down from that is the LCBO. All your pet needs are only 8-minutes away at Global Pet Food. Plus, if you take a 22-minute stroll through the picturesque, verdant streets of Riverdale toward Gerrard Square, you can take advantage of Walmart, Home Depot, and Food Basics (alternatively just 6 minutes from Tennis Crescent by car).

A Smash Hit Trophy In The Making On Tennis Crescent In Riverdale – NOW SOLD!

Well-situated, well-proportioned, and welcoming, this family-friendly residence is an ideal opportunity for those seeking customizable space (and a lot of it!) in a superb coveted neighbourhood. Check it out!




Here’s another convenient dwelling!

Primely situated in the New Urbanism development of St. Clair West Village, we call it: Sizzle & Spice In The Junction’s St. Clair West Village Enclave

It’s a semi-detached, 2-storey, 3+1bed dwelling with a finished lower level that offers just under 1800 square feet of intelligently designed family-functional living space, in addition to a sunny, fully-fenced low-maintenance garden! Boasting a host of upgrades and improvements, and inclusive of 2-car parking (1 surface space via laneway + 1-car detached garage!), this hot commodity is NOW SOLD!




If you’re a lover of village vibes and the pedestrian lifestyle, Leslieveille is probably your jam.

Check out our listing with an awesome hardscaped rear yard! It’s a great place to gather friends for drinks after work, host a Saturday barbecue, or enjoy a glass of wine with a sweetheart under the stars!

We call it: Living Well & In Wonder In Leslieville, now SOLD!





Looking for the services of a real estate team led by a seasoned realtor who has been a consistent Top Producer for over 3 decades? It would be my pleasure to introduce your services to you.

Serving first and second-time Buyers, relocations, renovators, and those building their long-term property portfolios, our mandate is to help clients choose the property that will realize the highest future return on their investment while ensuring the property best serves their practical needs and their dream of “Home” during their ownership.

Are you considering selling? We welcome providing you with a comprehensive assessment free of charge, including determining your Buyer profile, ways to optimize your return on investment, and tailoring the listing process to suit your circumstances. Check out How Urbaneer’s Custom Marketing Program Sold This Handsome Edwardian Residence In East York to learn more about what we do!

Consider letting Urbaneer guide you through your Buying or Selling process, without pressure, or hassle.

We are here to help!




Thanks for reading!


-The Urbaneer Team

Steven Fudge, Sales Representative
& The Innovative Urbaneer Team
Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage – (416) 322-800


– we’re here to earn your trust, then your business –

Celebrating Thirty-Four Years As A Top-Producing Toronto Realtor


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*Love Canadian Housing? Check out Steve’s University Student Mentorship site called Canadian Real Estate, Housing & Home which focuses on architecture, landscape, design, products, and real estate in Canada!


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