7 Places You Need To Visit In Edmonton’s Warehouse District

Fri, 29 Jul by TruHome Inc


We’ve all heard of the Ice District and the Brewery District, but did you know that Edmonton has a district dedicated to warehouses? If you are familiar with downtown, it is likely that you have been in the Warehouse District without even knowing it. A little background on the Warehouse District: during the first decade of the 20th century, the Hudson’s Bay Company began selling its land holdings in this area, and businesses were quick to move in. Between 1909 and 1914, no fewer than two dozen warehouses were constructed.

Located between Jasper Avenue & 104th Avenue & 103rd Street and 109th Street you will find Edmonton’s iconic Warehouse District—filled with, you guessed it, warehouses. Even though it may not sound glamorous, Edmonton developers have turned these buildings into one-of-a-kind spaces that are filled with iconic restaurants, bars and local companies. Here are 7 places you need to visit in Edmonton’s Warehouse District!

1. Warehouse Park

Downtown cores in any city often lack greenery, and Edmonton is no exception—for now. Coming soon, the areas between 106th Street and 108th Street will be turned into an inclusive, multi-use green space featuring large, open areas that invite citizens and visitors to reflect and explore. This new park will expand across a large portion of the Warehouse District, covering 1.47 hectares.

This space will be an “urban oasis” and is destined to be adored by Downtown residents and workers. If you would love to learn more about this incredible project and its timeline, visit this link.


2.  Mercer Warehouse

This building is a not-so-well-kept secret that is home to many incredible businesses. Owned and operated by Gather Co., here is what you can find in the Mercer Warehouse:


Home and Away  is a sports bar that is originally from Calgary. This restaurant will be home to Oilers games, great food, drinks and good times!

Rostizado is an elevated, creative Mexican cuisine restaurant served in stylish surroundings accented with brick & exposed wood.

Baijiu is an Energetic, hip outlet offering sharable Asian-inspired plates & cocktails in a dimly-lit space. This restaurant serves some of Edmonton’s best cocktails!


Small Businesses:

Weekly – Trim True is a laid-back hair salon that is well-known in the hair industry. Some of Edmonton’s top hair stylists work out of the Mercer Warehouse location

Shoe Shine Shack is a shoe shining service. Bring in all kinds of shoes—they are experts at them all!

HypeFetish is a clothing and shoe store. Shop brands such as Supreme, Bape, Off White, Yeezy and many more.

dealcloser is a legal technology software company with its home base located right here in the Mercer Warehouse. If you’re a lawyer, check out this software!

Betable is a London-based company that develops and markets a real-money gambling platform for the social gaming industry. Their Edmonton office is located out of the Warehouse District!

Communatio YEG is Edmonton’s one and only car sharing service, allowing you to rent cars by the minute through an app!

Todoruk Designs is a fashion designer (Kathleen Todoruk) who has a unique design and a passion for textiles.


3. Metals Building

Located in the Metals Unlimited Erecteo building on 104th Street and 101 Avenue, DOSC (which stands for Drunken Ox, Sober Cat) is a funky local option for informal daytime dining, freshly mixed cocktails & a range of steaks. During the day, you will find business people working while drinking coffee or friends catching up over some baked goods. In the evening, DOSC is known for its one-of-a-kind cocktails, great atmosphere and meat-forward dishes.


4. Cecil Place

After many changes to the exterior of this building, you may not even notice that Tiffin is located in one of Edmonton’s oldest warehouses, now called Cecil Place. Until 2014, this location was home to Sobey’s. Now, it is one of Downtown residents and workers’ favourite places to grab a meal. Trust is, if you are a fan of Indian food, this place is a must try!


5. Icon I and II

Though the name of this warehouse is unknown, the residential condo buildings Icon I and II are built on top of old warehouses. At its base, this warehouse is home to several local Edmonton businesses—here are a few:

Evoolution is an olive oil and accessory store known for its unique flavours and educated staff. At Evoolution you will find oils, vinegars, salts, seasonings, chocolate and snacks that you won’t find elsewhere!

The Black Pearl is a vibrant, maritime-themed eatery offering raw oysters, a range of classic seafood dishes & cocktails.

Credo Coffee is much more than merely a place to run in for coffee: it is a place to connect, to relax, to discuss, and to feel at home.

Ono Poke Co. is a modern, informal outpost serving custom & signature poke bowls with varied toppings.

Kelly’s Pub is a lively hangout with exposed brick walls offering clever pub grub, sports on TV & happy hour deals.


6. Revillion Building

Built in 1912, the Revillon Building was, for many years, the most modern building in Edmonton. Revillon Frères, the international furriers of Paris, built it when members of the extended family came to Edmonton in 1906 to establish a warehouse for their fur-buying business. Now, this building is home to many local businesses. Here are a few:

Evolution Wonderlounge is a hopping gay bar offering cocktails, bottle service, DJs & dancing, with regular drag shows & events.

Sabor is an upscale eatery offering Portuguese & Spanish cuisine, with traditional tapas & wine.

Bodega is a warm, rustic spot for an array of Spanish tapas & paella plus wines served in a high-ceiling room.


7. Phillips Building

Located in the main floor of the Phillips Lofts Building in a repurposed warehouse called the Phillips Building, Cavern is an artisanal cheese joins wine, beer & espresso restaurant that features an intimate, brick-walled cheese shop & wine bar. 

We hope you learned a thing or two about Edmonton’s Warehouse District and we encourage you to check it out when you’re in the area. Maybe we will even see you there!

From Ukraine To Edmonton: Week One As A Host Family

Thu, 07 Jul by TruHome Inc







A month ago, my husband Roberto approached me with the idea of wanting to do something in the face of the tragedy of the Russia and Ukrainian war—navigating what we could do as a family and how we could best help those truly in need. 


While neither my husband nor I am of Ukrainian descent, imagining what these families were enduring was unimaginable to us.  Roberto remembers the hardships of coming to Canada as a young boy, what it was like to learn a new culture, a new life and let go of his previously known life. For me, a lot of my family resides in Finland, and knowing how close they are to the wrath of Russia is definitely scary too… 


We recently moved into a new home with a lot more space (transitioned from a 2 bedroom condo) and so decided to explore the journey of hosting a family. We connected with a group on Facebook and started discussions with one of the organizers. They have a long list of people waiting to find family partners. After getting to know our family through a couple of conversations, they recommended 3 family profiles to us and we had the opportunity to chat with them via video with the help of a translator. Scheduling between different time zones was tricky, but within a few days we were able to chat with the husband of the family we ended up choosing to host. Overall it was a really, really fast experience, from connecting to them, to flying here was less than 3 weeks in total. We are now a week in and learning a huge amount as well.  Below is some advice that we are learning first hand with our family – week one: 


  1. Not every family will be the right family for you and that is okay. 


We really had to consider what type of family we were comfortable housing. How many people? Is it a single mom and kids, or an entire family? How many children and what ages would fit well with our family? How can we best help them navigate the things they need to both live and thrive here in Edmonton? How long would they be with us? Do they have pets? Do they speak much English?


Each of these questions would be different for everyone. One of the toughest for us was whether we wanted children the same age as our boys (3 and 6) or a different complimentary age/gender. Another one was understanding what supports were in place to assist the family when it comes to finding employment in Canada. In truth, we are still navigating this one. 


In the end, the right fit ended up being more people than we originally expected, a family of 5 – 3 girls (8,11 and 13) and their mom and dad. 


  1. We Need To Communicate Somehow


Seriously, google translate is such a lifesaver for us. Our guests are slowly learning English but for the most part, we have relied heavily on Google Translator to connect. Sometimes it feels like we are playing a game of charades but overall the apps have greatly improved how we can communicate on a daily basis. Something we didn’t realize or consider was what language we were needing to translate. The dad was raised mostly speaking Russian, while the mom and girls do know Ukrainian too. In fact, ⅓ of the Ukrainian’s native language has been Russian, however, due to the war, this appears to have caused some conflict and many are trying to distance themselves from speaking Russian due to this. That being said, ultimately getting clarity of communication is most important and whether we speak/translate in English, Ukrainian or Russian, for us it doesn’t matter. We just wanted to ensure we could understand each other best. 


  1. There are many steps to get started here in Canada – be patient and take one step at a time


There were so many things we needed to organize for our guests, beyond the physical space. 


  • Arriving At The Airport: If you can, it is best to organize transportation from the airport to your home. Many people that arrive will have limited funds for getting from point A to point B, so it is important to be mindful of this. When you get to the Edmonton International Airport, there is a booth set up with information for Ukrainian travellers pertaining to some of the items that need to be done. The good news is that this information is available in both English and Ukrainian. The Red Cross presently is set up there too but only open from 3 pm – 8 pm. The red cross has some handouts, but may vary – our guests received some gift cards to Save on Foods. 
  • Getting their SIN Cards: While you can mail in your SIN card application, we decided to visit Service Canada and walk in. It did take a couple of hours, but it was worth it to get it done quicker. We went to the West End Service Canada location, here in Edmonton as we knew downtown would have much longer wait times. 
  • Getting A Bank Card: We decided to go with Servus, as it seems like they were offering the most value for Ukrainian refugees. This was recommended to us by another Ukrainian refugee who has been a great help in helping us better understand the culture. Presently for opening a bank account, a Ukrainian refugee gets $250.00 cash back, 24 months of no bank fees and a MasterCard with $1500 worth of credit. 
  • Applying For Alberta Health Care – Simply fill out the form from AHS and drop it off at any Alberta registry, however, do note that there is about a 2 month lag in processing time due to high volumes. 
  • Getting A SIM Card For Their Phones: Phone packages in Canada, again a higher fee than most would expect. The red cross at one point was giving free SIM cards from Roger’s Chatr, but these have been long gone in Edmonton for months. We ended up finding a fairly good rate through Fido as it allowed them to be on a month-to-month with high data (20 GBs) and no credit check. People have also expressed Bell has some good options too. 
  • Getting A Bus Pass: Edmonton Bus passes for Ukrainian refugees are significantly reduced, but the cost of it will still most likely come as a surprise as many of our basic costs are higher than what our families have experienced in their home country or other parts of Europe. Compared to our normal bus pass fee of $100.00, it is $35.00 and includes a leisure pass. You can read more here. 
  • Applying For Finanacial Aid: The government of Canada has a one time financial assistance program that is a non-taxable benefit. Each person 18+ can receive $3000 and each dependent child $1500.  


There are still more things we are researching and working on, so stay tuned for more updates on this. 


  1. There are some unique resources set up for Ukrainians:


  • Ukrainian Free Store: There is a Pop-up Ukrainian free store downtown open Wednesdays and Saturdays where you can find toiletries, clothes and other items your guest family may want and need. They are also seeking donations and most in need of basic necessities – shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, socks, underwear and shoes. 
  • Children’s Summer Camps: We are still exploring this, but some are offering the experiences at no-cost to Ukrainian refugee children. Check out Camp Bar-v-nok and Camp Oselia
  • Useful Facebook Groups: I’m looking on some of the Facebook pages to see if I can find additional information that would be helpful to the family we are hosting. 


  1. They Really Become An Extension of Your Family


While we have been helping our guest family navigate many of these things mentioned, they have also blessed us more than we would have ever imagined. Within the first few days, we had heavy rain that resulted in our water wells filling up. They were there helping us reduce the water and even helping us clean out our gutters to avoid further issues. We have enjoyed many home-cooked meals and have extra hands around the house to visit with, play with our boys and aid in the day-to-day. 


They have joined us for our son’s 6th birthday party, have surprised our boys with little gifts (drawing cards, candy and other surprises) and the mom has trusted me to bring her girls to our son’s last day of school activities. We are making new friends and trusting each other to navigate the day-to-day to best support everyone.  


While many describe us as being amazing for this, what people don’t realize is how blessed we are to welcome this beautiful family into our home. They are enriching our lives for the better and our hearts are truly so full because of this experience. 


We have worked together to establish what works in terms of shared roles – cooking, cleaning, spending time with all the children and have worked towards strategies that feel good for all of us and that feels fair and focusing on our individual strengths. 


This is only week one and my family is excited to continue to get to know our guest family and support them on their journey to calling Edmonton and Canada home. 


At TruHome, for me – our role is always to focus on ways we can better build community and I wanted to share this experience with our TruHome friends and followers as being a host family is very much about helping our guests find their TruHome both physically and emotionally here in our beautiful city.  

How To Save Up For A Down Payment On A Home In Edmonton

Sat, 02 Jul by TruHome Inc


Saving up for a down payment is difficult—we know that. And what’s more, saving up for a down payment in 2022 is even harder than years past. Inflation in Canada is changing the way many of us look at paying bills and saving money, but that doesn’t mean that buying a home needs to be out of the question.

To save for a home, you must prioritize your spending, cut down on unnecessary expenses, and/or increase your income. And don’t forget—you will also need to be conscious of your credit score to ensure that you can get approved for a mortgage.

1. Find how much you need to save

Before setting a budget and finding ways to get you to your desired saved amount, the first step is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Doing this will allow you to know how much money you need to save, as well as allow you to shop homes within your budget. The average homebuyer needs to put down between 5% and 20% of the home’s cost. You can do this by going to your bank’s website and using their online calculator!

2. Set a weekly budget

It is so easy to swipe your credit card and forget about your purchases until it is the end of the month and your bills come in. But if you are looking to purchase a home in the near future, your credit card should be left at home.

Canada has access to some incredible Canadian-owned prepaid credit cards that have been proven to help people with budgeting. Companies like KOHO and Neo are just two options to look into. With these cards, you can set a weekly budget while also earning rewards for spending your money at certain places—this is usually in cash back! An additional perk is that these cards come with handy free mobile apps that help you track your spending categories.

3. Increase your income

We know that increasing your income may not come easily to everyone, but this is an easy way to save up quicker for your dream home. You can do this in one of four ways:

  • Ask for a raise at your current job
  • Switch to a job that has a higher salary
  • Start investing
  • Pick up a side gig

Nowadays, Millennials and Gen Z are well-acquainted with the side gig. This can be in many ways: freelance writing, dog walking, opening an Etsy shop, voiceovers, taking quizzes… you name it! Any of these side gigs can get you anywhere between $250–$1000 of extra income each month.

4. Save on rent

It goes without saying that living completely on your own can be challenging. With bills steadily increasing, the cost of living is becoming difficult for many.

Consider swapping out that two bedroom for a studio, or maybe even bringing on a roommate or two to split on costs! Do you have a good relationship with your parents or a family member? Maybe they have some space for you to hunker down for a while.

5. Set up automatic withdrawals

Life is busy and it is so easy to forget to move your money around at the end of each month. Book a meeting with your bank to discuss setting up automatic withdrawals that go to a secure account that you don’t have everyday access to. After some time, you won’t even realize that the money is leaving your account. Consider setting up withdrawals of $100–$500 each month. Imagine, after a year you can have $6,000 saved for your down payment!

6. Look for a cheaper way of doing things

It can be so easy to get used to a life of luxury—but just because you are saving up for one of your largest purchases yet doesn’t mean that you have to give it all up. Here are some suggestions on common everyday purchases that can be made cheaper:

Nails: instead of heading to the salon every 2 weeks for a new set of nails, purchase a kit online and do it yourself at home. Kits usually cost ~$50 to get set up, which is around the same cost of your bi-weekly nail appointment.

Clothing: stop purchasing brand new clothes. If you are in need of a new article of clothing, check out your local thrift shops first. If you didn’t find what you were looking for, try shopping on Poshmark or Facebook Marketplace.

Vacations: traveling is a privilege, but you can still make do on a budget. Check out Swoop or Flair for cheap flights, and once you get to your destination, consider renting out a private room at an Airbnb or staying in a hostel. Better yet, do a getaway to close-by Canadian cities like Vancouver, Calgary or Winnipeg.

Eating out: we all deserve a nice night out every once in a while, but if you are a true foodie, consider getting takeout and sitting in the park with a friend. This removes the need for a tip! Or, get crafty in the kitchen and invite your friends over for a potluck.

Entertainment: concerts, shows and movies can easily rack up your chequing account. Instead of spending money during your spare time, find free things around Edmonton! Thankfully for us, our city is filled with many free activities—especially in the summertime. Check out the Fringe, Edmonton Street Performers, free concerts in Churchill Square and more!
Books & movies: there is something so special about opening up a brand new book and getting started on the story. But what do you do with those books once you’re finished with them? The Edmonton Library has so many free books, movies and games—all when you sign up for a library card.

The list doesn’t end there. Let us know if you think of any more ways to save money easily!

7. Invest your savings

Though we are far from being financial advisors, it is proven that investing your money can be the easiest and fastest way to increase your income. Investing can be daunting and worrisome, so if you don’t trust yourself to make the right decisions and grow your investments, hire someone to do it for you! Edmonton is filled with so many talented investment brokerages. Send us a message to get our suggestions!

8. Borrow from your RRSP

If you have been building up your RRSP for some time, did you know that you can withdraw up to $25,000 from it (without any penalty) to put towards your first home? But be warned—there is a catch. Within 15 years, you are expected to pay back the full amount. If you don’t repay in time, the borrowed amount is considered income and you will be taxed on that amount. If this is something that you are considering doing, please contact your financial advisor beforehand!

9. Find programs or incentives you can utilize

The City of Edmonton, Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada offer incentives that can empower first time home buyers to purchase their dream home. This is done through programs like the First Time Home Buyer Program, the City of Edmonton’s First Place Program, Down Payment Assistance Program and many more. We highly encourage every first time home buyer to do their research and see what programs apply to them!

We hoped this inspired you to start saving for your dream home! If you have any questions regarding down payments, homes in your budget or anything in between, feel free to reach out to us at any time. We hope to work with you when you are ready!

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