What’s your savings rate?

I thought the topic on what people pay for rent in Vancouver generated some interesting and informative discussion, so I’d like to do something similar on the topic of income and savings. As the majority of visitors here are… let’s say ‘sceptical’ about the Vancouver real estate market and likely financially cautious I don’t expect the results here to reflect the city at large, but I’m curious to see how much people are saving.

One argument for home ownership is that it acts as a forced savings plan, because the average person doesn’t have the willpower to save on their own. If you’re sitting out of the market waiting for a correction and renting for less than a mortgage would cost are you saving the difference? If loans disappeared and real estate in Vancouver was suddenly only available for cash would you be ready to swoop in?





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This is where I got the stamps as an investment anecdote.



Anonymous/SATV "expression of his feeling about the way thing should be" Exactly! it was his feeling, it was not fact. As for your repeated comments about Garth Turner, he has always said that boomers who have most of their money tied up in their houses should consider selling. He is an MP and makes a lot more than your typical warehouse worker, he'll also collect a large pension for life. He is not saying "I'm an idiot and I bought a condo at the peak and think everyone else should buy at the peak so they can be like me" you're confusing yourself with him. Do not get confused about who you are as you will never be an MP and will never be able to buy a house thirty or forty years ago like he did. His points apply… Read more »


bdk: I know what you mean: you better be prepared to back up claims with some decent arguments or what's the point? Christine's comments were more general in nature and I'm not calling anyone out but I have seen it get testy for no good reason.



that's not true that was just expression of his feeling about the way thing should be so while asking you that question about tax return he also declare his exit with this

"I think this will be my last post here"

so his question was in flash back to change around as what should have done to be wise.


1.If I were to claim that I'd bought a condo ,in Vancouver, last year for $800,000 and it had dropped to $600,000 this year but refused to say where it was located or why it had dropped 25% when the rest of the market went up close to 10%….

2.In school if I wrote an essay without doing any research and cited all sorts of my own "facts" which were obviously made up and then for the bibliography wrote "why don't you give me your tax returns and i'll show you" it would not have passed.

Tom Vu's reaction proved he was making it up.



well said-t.hu is very smart,he did not spend a minute to figure out what the hell is going on here.


"If someone dissents, even slightly, with a rational argument or a personal anecdote, everybody piles on the “bull” to tell them how crap they are." Christine, I have to agree that I find many comments here pretty insulting. The frustration with many long-time commenters here is that many of the arguments used to promote the "bull" case are filled with half-truths and in some cases blatantly incorrect information and logic. I think most commenters on this blog don't show up just to insult someone (though maybe there are those that do) and have a genuine interest in dispelling some of the myths floating around. I have found some of the best comments come across as curt and agressive but that's because these commenters are smart, have done their research, and have answered the same questions over and over again for… Read more »


I have to agree with t.fu up there. I've been reading this blog for over two years and recently it's just the same over and over, from the same old people. If someone dissents, even slightly, with a rational argument or a personal anecdote, everybody piles on the "bull" to tell them how crap they are. It's degressed into something very infantile.

I am a bear about where this market is headed, but I don't need to validate my position by making all homeowners feel like overextended idiots.

Tony Danza

My spidey senses were tingling and that usually means I'm reading a post by a Realtard(TM).


"Crabman, you can quote all the indexes and numbers you want, but, it’s a simple fact that a typical condo in NYC in 1990 more than doubled in price by 1996. I was there, I know."

Well, that just says it all, doesn't it? Confronted with numbers the troll scampers away in defeat to lick its wounds.


canadian mortgage problems?


didn't think so


I decided I wasn’t going to get shut out of the market before it became unattainable like happened to many people in NYC who kept waiting for “The Big Crash” and for prices to tumble…

Bud – prices in NYC – even in Manhattan – cycle up and down and even crash on a very regular basis. A typical decade has swings of 25%. You can look this stuff up. Because of Manhattan's history and uniqueness, the data is better than for most other locales.

My favorite stat is that inflation-adjusted total return for commercial real estate in Manhattan between 1899 and 1999 is…

…wait for it…

negative 30%.


another math formula for you guys:

t.fu = tom vu

looks like bdk was the only one to sniff it out.

a lot of baby bears i guess, this gig is age dependant.




I have my T4 and T4A's here for this year and can get my notice of assessment from last year, what's your fax number?

If you can't even make up, er, answer what basic industry you're in that brought you to Vancouver then you should take a deep breath and come up with a plausible scenario before getting mad for being called out as a BullS*itter.


"then maybe I’m just wasting my time here." Life on the internet can be brutal. Thanks for the comments. "it’s a simple fact that a typical condo in NYC in 1990 more than doubled in price by 1996." Comparisons to NYC have been made here before. The main difference is the high prevalence of high salaries in Manhattan. Certainly not everyone who works there earns high wages but the ones living in Manhattan likely do and the ones that don't earn as much commute from other cheaper boroughs and cities. The future can change but what I know now is that the total sum of salaries in Vancouver cannot support such a large ground swell in prices. There are pockets of affluence in the city due to differences in income but I just don't see the current distribution of prices… Read more »


If I really exist? Give me a break. Why don't you fax me your tax returns for the past 2 years first, then I'll give you all the personal information you're asking for.

I think this will be my last post here. This place is hostile to anyone but those who cling to their doomsday fantasies. Not interesting.



T.Hu, what do you do that brought you from a world trade centre and financial hub to Vancouver?

How did the immigration process go?

Were you able to get a work permit right away?

Did your company sponsor you?

Or are you just independently wealthy?

If yes then how do you like paying the non resident tax?

Do you prefer paying higher taxes and higher prices to be in Vancouver versus New York? What industry could you work in here that pays more than New York?

If you really exist you'll have no problem answering these questions.


FYI, I just found this blog a week ago and have been reading the comments and decided to make my first post. So, if that makes me a troll, then maybe I'm just wasting my time here. I thought perhaps a different real-world perspective might be interesting, but, clearly not.

Crabman, you can quote all the indexes and numbers you want, but, it's a simple fact that a typical condo in NYC in 1990 more than doubled in price by 1996. I was there, I know.


"So, when I arrived here in Vancouver, I decided I wasn’t going to get shut out of the market before it became unattainable"

Glad you got in while you did. NYC rents and salaries are high enough to better justify the high prices. I don't see rents in Vanhattan keeping pace yet.

Tony Danza

Ignore the RE bots (t. hu et al) that troll the blogs. They're just trying to find a greater Realtard…


I moved here from NYC, and see similar things happening in the RE market here that were going on in NYC in the early 90s.

Here is the Case-Shiller index for New York:

1990: 80.89

1991: 74.59

1992: 74.59

1993: 75.54

1994: 76.61

1995: 78.28

1996: 78.63

Exactly what similarities do you see to the current RE market in Vancouver?

The current CS Index for NYC is at 200, compared to the baseline of 100 in 2000. The Vancouver HPI is currently at 253 for condos vs. the baseline of 100 in 2001. So in this decade, Vancouver has gone up more than NYC, and New York is currently 7% below its peak and falling.

Robin in vancouver

Yeah, the difference is that New York has a vibrant economy, while Vancouver has an economy that is to a large degree built around building condos and selling condos.

I am getting an MBA. When I graduate I will leave Vancouver to make more money elsewhere. Many of my classmates feel the same way. Does that sound like New York to you?


So, all in all, RE in Vancouver was a great investment last year.

And instead of taking the money and running, you put more on the table.

Come back this time next year and tell us how you're doing.


So T.Hu, what exactly do you do that brought you from New York to Vancouver?