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Consumer Information

Page history last edited by PBworks 13 years, 7 months ago


For Canadian Consumers

 

  • Canada's Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA) - This is a multi-part resource on consumer issues for Canadians. News and issues are posted daily.
  • For Consumers  - Canada's Office of Consumer Affairs supports extensive resources of interest to Canadian consumers.
  • Canadian Consumer Handbook - An annual publication for Canadians, downloadable from this link in PDF format. It includes consumer tips, general information and a directory of organizations. 

 

For the General Consumer

 

  • Better Business Bureau - The national organization from the Canadian Council of Better Business Bureaus helping business and consumers maintain an ethical marketplace.
  • Canadian Consumer Information Gateway - A portal created by 27 federal departments and agencies, in partnership with Industry Canada. Designed to help Canadian consumers be informed, find money-saving tips, and check for recalls and fraud alerts.
  • Canadian Toy Testing Council - Useful general information about toys, toy awards, and some of the test results that are published in the annual Toy Report
  • CBC News: Marketplace - Consumer features, recalls, news from the TV show.
  • Consumer Guide - In-depth easy to understand articles about how the world around us works, with expert ratings and reviews to help you make informed decisions. Includes products, cars and travel.
  • Consumer Price Index  - From Statistics Canada.
  • Consumer Protection - From Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services, this site includes sections on Know Your Rights, Buying Merchandise, Your Home, Real Estate Fraud and more.
  • ConsumerReports.org - An easily searchable electronic version of the familiar magazine. Note that much information is available to subscribers only. However, you may access complete articles and reviews using EBSCOhost through the Library's electronic resources.
  • Consumer World - An enormous public service site offering buying advice and product reviews. A searchable compendium of sites and resources. Chiefly American.
  • ConsumerREVIEW.com - This portal links to a series of consumer communities. Offers good information on those topics covered.
  • Consumers' Association of Canada - An independent, non-profit volunteer organization, representing and informing consumers.
  • ConsumerSearch.com - Ranked reports by a team of expert reviewers. Search for a product or select a category.
  • EnerGuide - Make informed energy decisions about your long-term investments in appliances, car, heating and cooling equipment and your home using EnerGuide from Natural Resources Canada, Office of Energy Efficiency. The ratings for the various products are available online.
  • Energy Shop - Unbiased price comparisons and information of interest to homes and businesses. Includes maps to help you find your utility area, links to solar energy sites, provide quotes on energy supply. Information and links on such issues as nitrous oxide and sulphur dioxide and carbon dioxide reduction. A consumer report on the energy industry in Ontario.
  • Epinions.com - An online community which uses consumer / customer product reviews.
  • Financial Services Commission of Ontario - The FSCO regulates pensions, insurance, loan and trust companies, credit unions, caisses populaires, co-operatives and mortgage brokers.
  • Free Consumer Information - Free reports, articles on a wide range of subjects from this U.S.-based site.
  • Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) - The IESO is a not-for-profit organization formed in 1998 as part of the restructuring of Ontario’s electric power industry. Their job is to operate and regulate the new wholesale electricity market.
  • Internet Fraud Watch - Tips, articles and bulletins to help the consumer avoid fraud and protect privacy from Internet transactions.
  • Martindale's Calculators On-Line Center - A well-organized selection of more than 19,000 virtual (Internet) calculators, in many general categories. Some would definitely be of practical and entertainment value to consumers.
  • mySimon - Compare products and prices on this consumer portal. Find user and expert reviews and rating of products.
  • National Consumers League's Fraud Watch - Learn about fraud incidents and report scams through this site.
  • National Do Not Call List (DNCL) - The DNCL will allow Canadians to reduce the number of telemarketing calls they receive as of September 30, 2008, organized by the CRTC. Key Facts for Consumers will explain how to sign up.
  • PhoneBusters - The Canadian anti-fraud call centre jointly operated by the OPP and the RCMP. Includes information on identity theft, phone scams, phishing and other scams are listed.
  • ScamBusters.org - Protect yourself from scams both online and offline. Includes urban legends and hoaxes.
  • Smart Consumer Calendar 2007 [PDF] - Tips on how to avoid fraud, information about current scams in the marketplace and a list of telephone numbers and Internet addresses of organizations that offer help to consumers, from the Ontario Ministry of Government Services.
  • Tools & Calculators - Tools and calculators for your money from the Canadian Consumer Information Gateway.
  • TSNN.com (The Ultimate Trade Show Directory) - An online resource for the trade show, exhibition and event industry including a widely consulted event database. It contains data on more than 15,000 trade shows, exhibitions, public events and conferences across Canada and the U.S.
  • U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission - Official Federal Agency website, including recalls, reports, alerts. 

 

Appliances & Electronics

 

 

Buying A Car?

 

  • Auto Restorer Magazine - A monthly newsletter with articles and photos on auto and truck restoration, written by people knowledgeable on the subject. It serves as a forum for readers to interact with experts and other restoration enthusiasts.
  • Automobile Protection Agency (APA) - The Canadian APA is a membership based non-profit association dedicated to promoting consumer interests in the marketplace.
  • AUTONET.CA  - A site for Canadian car buyers. New and used cars, banking and insurance resources, maintenance, magazines, accessories and auto shows.
  • AutoSite - An automotive buyer's guide featuring reports on new and used vehicles by make or category.
  • AutoTrader.ca - Use the Canadian site to search for a vehicle or place an ad. Advice and other features are offered as well.
  • AutoTrader.com - Formerly AutoConnect - Many sections to this site built and maintained by ADP Dealer Services to help you find the right used (American information) or new car. Mainly American content but much of the interactive information and product reviews are useful.
  • Buying and Selling Used Vehicles - The Ontario Government's information for buyers and sellers of used vehicles including their rights and responsibilities.
  • Car and Driver Magazine - A car portal with numerous sections include a buyer's guide for new and used cars, reports on cars, and a community area of chats and forums for special interest groups.
  • Car Guide Magazine - A Canadian car magazine containing reviews, test drives, and opinions from the industry.
  • CarQuotes.ca - Find Canadian car costs at Car Quotes Canada. Knowing dealer cost prices will help you negotiate a great price with your car dealer. Includes free and fee for service information. 
  • Edmunds.com - Buyer's advice, what's new, road tests, incentives, rebates, and a car discussion page. There's a large database on vehicles rated on safety, reliability, performance, comfort and value. Features used car prices, although prices are in U.S. dollars.
  • GlobeAuto - Car news and articles, plus interactive research tools to help you find the car you want from the Globe & Mail.
  • IBC - Car Insurance - The Insurance Bureau of Canada provides a wide range of products and services to IBC members who subscribe to VIC services. The following sections are very useful when choosing a new or used car.
  • Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) - The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the Highway Loss Data Institute are independent, nonprofit, research and communications organizations funded by auto insurers and dedicated to reducing highway crash deaths, injuries and property losses. Find vehicle safety ratings.
  • Motor Trend - The magazine's Web site features news and articles on used cars, road tests, new cars, concept cars, auto shows, and much more car buying information and help.
  • MSN Autos - A car portal offering a variety of services to make it easier for consumers to buy their own cars.
  • Personal Vehicles Initiative - Formerly the AutoSmart program from Natural Resources Canada, including the:
  • Safe & Secure: Choosing the Right Car Seat for Your Child - The Ministry of Transportation offers information on safe installation of car seats.
  • Safety Problems & Issues - Use these search engines to retrieve information from the available U.S. NHTSA Database Files from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • Wheels.ca - Read expert reviews, compare and price cars, find certified used car listings and more. 

 

Computers and Information Technology

 

  • CNET.com - Many sections for computer and Internet buffs. News, information, shopping, resources, games. A very comprehensive site.
  • ComputingREVIEW.com - One of the portals from the ConsumerREVIEW Network (see above), this is another forum for the posting of reviews or opinions of fellow consumers.
  • Globe & Mail: Technology - A comprehensive interactive site featuring daily tech news, career information, articles, a user forum on all aspects of current technology.
  • Internet 4 Free - Looking for free Internet service? Also offers free long distance and e-mail.
  • Junkbusters - A comprehensive collection of information about junk messages and how to stop them.
  • PC Magazine - A comprehensive resource to use when considering purchasing a new computer, software and other technologies.
  • PC World - Computer and Internet news and information resource. Reviews, how-tos, downloads, product and price information.

 

Insurance

 

 

Real Estate & Cost of Living

 

  • Canada Mortgage.com - Canadian national network of mortgage consultants with mortgage resources, calculators and tools to help you plan for your mortgage.
  • CREA - Canadian Real Estate Association - In addition to organizational structure, this site offers significant resources for home buyers.
  • MLS.ca - From the Canadian Real Estate Association, the largest single source on Canadian MLS real estate properties and the official source to all MLS information across Canada.
  • Mortgage Calculator - When buying your home, use one of the many mortgage calculators to assist you with your decision regarding a payment plan. Look under Mortgage Tools to find the Mortgage Calculator.
  • Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) - MPAC administers an Ontario-wide system based on current value assessment. It provides municipalities with a range of services, including the preparation of an annual assessment roll for use by a municipality in calculating property taxes.
  • Survey of Canadian House Prices - The Royal LePage Survey of Canadian House Prices is a quarterly report that many organizations, including the Bank of Canada, turn to for trends in average house prices in markets across the country. 

 

Identity Theft

 

 

Maintained by Diane Jamieson, Burlington Public Library

Updated October 2008

 

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