Human drama on the front page

Newspapers love stories of human drama – something that will grab your attention and get you to buy the paper is ideal, particular if it’s something personal that connects with the readers experience or fear.  I remember seeing a headline story on the Province newspaper about ‘underwater’ mortgages in the mid-nineties, but I haven’t seen any front page stories on the Sun or Province yet about the human impact of the Vancouver real estate market crash.  Perhaps its too early, or perhaps I haven’t been paying attention.

So let’s have a poll – when do you think we’ll see a front page story on a local paper linking the Vancouver real estate market crash to hard times on the individual level?  I imagine this would be a story about families that owe more than their home is worth or have gone bankrupt on presale contracts that they can’t get financing for.

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Sylvia in Vancouver

k, i'm a bear, but this is kind of a silly poll. there was a front page story in the Province last week or the week before about families that had been bit by subprime mortgage lenders.

i think what you're referring to is "word on the street," of people talking about real estate misery everywhere they go, much like how the "Great Recession" is the topic of discussion now. if that's the case, then 2010 it is: gotta have the job losses, then family struggles to stay afloat, then the foreclosures.


In order to fight the recession down south, hyper-inflation will happen simply just by printing more money (US greenbacks)

Hyper-inflation is the lesser of the 2 evils now; it certainly will arrive if the US "quantitive easing" continues…

other ted

patriotz lol. I was thinking that after I wrote it. Glen Cambell the rhinestone cowboy guy.



Actually,its loss denied. They cannot claim the capital loss as many of them have claimed principal residence for thier flip property. They made that claim in their city's property tax assessment. They were hoping to not be taxed on the gain, but unfortunately, they cannot offset their loss for tax purposes.


other ted:

I told him I was disapointed with Glen Campbell. I mentioned how he has done nothing different than the NDP,

What do you get when you cross Glen Clark with Gordon Campbell? A country singer who likes to borrow money to build things. 🙂

Let us not forget that Gordo's big baby, the Olympics, is really Glen Clark's child.

other ted

woops his name is gordon not glenn. well you know who I was talking about.

other ted

Patriotz you bring up a good point. I had an argument 3 years ago with the guy who works at EA. I told him I was disapointed with Glen Campbell. I mentioned how he has done nothing different than the NDP. The province was no better off except for the housing bubble. Which you will agree makes us worse off. He went into a rant how because of Cambell EA was business was through the roof along with his fathers business which is in construction. Then he accused me of being a commie and endorsing the NDP. Talk about how brainwashed and uneducated most adults are. Its funny I never voted for the NDP before. I will never endorse them. Last election I spoiled my ballot. But if I am back in BC for the next election, which it doesn't… Read more »


Also Florida waterfront " they're not making anymore of it" – I guess they found 40% more b/c that's how much prices have dropped!


Land shortage article is crap … look up Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo RE history


other ted:

Actually techdeath the tech industries best days were behind it 10 years ago.

You mean when Glen Clark was running the province? Say it ain't so.

And that is not meant as an endorsement of Clark.


Jesse, 30% of your posts are sort of clever, the rest are pompous crap. Of course some unemployment is good (especially in Ontario), it lowers interest rates; in a market like vancouver with a land shortage the market is very interest rate sensitive.


Actually the sector most responsible for growth in employment over the last several years has been construction. How many projects have they recently mothballed? Is it not obvious that developers are trying to rush completion of projects b/c falling prices cause a huge problem for them? Transit line/ Whistler highway etc. aka all the Olympic infrastructure projects are winding down so who is going to replace all of this.

Tourism down 10-15% according to the tourist board.

Oil is 50 vs 147 dollars – Gas hit its lows today

Forestry WTF

Manufacturing – pls tell me where?

Mining – commodity prices other than gold in the tank.

C'mon Dave!


Dave's real and nominal dollars shtick was like watching someone poke a hornet's nest. Really, nobody wins, neither the hornets nor the guy with the stick.

Dave is a definitely a master at baiting.

read on


Would the large % of retiring boomers who now can't afford to retire as their RSSPs and RE Equity are vanishing in a poof of smoke?


other ted:

#51 OT, you are correct.



#50 Dave, you're a baiter, you ARE fooling some, not all. Keep it up though, it's entertaining.

other ted

Actually techdeath the tech industries best days were behind it 10 years ago. If EA is considered a tech company that is how far we have fallen. It is an entertainment company, it is content it sells not technology. The same with the movie industry. both are were here for the cheap dollar. You can make a video game anywhere. There hasn't been any innovation out of this province in years.


Yes, government is probably the biggest employer in the province. That doesn't mean 50% or more work for them. It just means no single business is bigger. Overall, the civil service is pretty small in BC. Health care and education take up something like 2/3rds of the budget themselves.

Unemployment will continue to go up, but the retiring boomers will soften that pain. Fewer people are entering the workforce than those who are retiring.

We have high tech, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, mining, forestry, oil and gas, ports, entertainment, tourism and all sorts of professional services. And ya, pot adds cash to the picture to the tune of billions.

Yes Asians are savers, so there is still lots of upside. You can't save forever.

CKNW listens to me.


Dave. Unemployment rate is on a steady curve upwards (probably an understatement, dramatic increase more appropriate), so while it may seem reasonable at the moment, I will guarentee you we'll be at 10% some time in 2010. Diverse economy, perhaps you can eleborate; I personally dont see that much diversity here, yeah we now have more than forestry, but what else beside commodities, grow ops, tourism and ports? Isn't government single largest employer in BC? Provincial government has been running surpluses but how hard was that in the bubble years! Huge deficits are in store for at least the next 3 years. Yeah, banks appear to be in better shape, but have cut lending back big time as they start to assess risk properly. CMHC withholding data, bank earnings are under massive pressure. China needs to grow by at least… Read more »


RennieWhereRU?: Locally, the employment rate is still pretty strong. Consumer confidence is improving and BC leads the country in optimism. Our economy is more diverse than ever before so I don't think the optimism is misplaced. Big purchases are up (e.g. cars, real estate), which reflects consumer optimism. Our provincial economy has been managed relatively well in the last 8 years and we are in a decent financial situation relative to past recessions. The same is true for the feds. Our banks are in relatively good health and we don't have nearly the level of subprime mortgages that existed in the US. Globally, I see positives in SE Asia. China and India have pulled hundreds of millions of people out of poverty and into a productive world economy. Huge markets have been created and will continue to grow. Although exports… Read more »


SFH sales have definitely increased in the past 2 weeks (finally after no activity since the peak) according to the select areas of South Vancouver and Delta that I keep track of. And prices are at about 2005 levels there, 10-20% down from the spring 2008 peak by my estimations. They are selling, but I believe they will drop more still. My SFH in South Van is 10% below what I payed in 2006 but I'm still happy unless it drops more. Glad i had a big downpayment and have payed only $20k in interest. Minus the massive rent we get now.


Future projections are for the US dollar to lose it's current strength as global markets improve and stimulus dollars flush through the system. This would make any company reconsider expansion in Vancouver as the exchange differential will be marginalized in that scenario. EA would not survive a reorg if taken out, the supply of talented employees has grown exponentially everywhere else due to the recession. The cost of buisness has increased dramatically as has the cost for relocating first class employees here. Very few imports transition into long term residents. Vancouver is more a place for refugees and insecure new immigrants not for global citizens. There is also the growing problem of moving proto devices across the border. It has become increasingly difficult as the restrictions on buisness visa's make it near impossible to travel without a difficult customs disclosure… Read more »


Dave can you list some of the positive things happening in the local and global economy?


Labour in Vancouver is only cheap when the dollar is low. If you want to see where the videogame industry is going in Canada, take a look at Montreal. Vancouver is now #2. One company, Ubisoft, is hiring more people in Montreal than all of the game companies in Vancouver. Lots of developers leaving Vancouver for Montreal. It started as a trickle, now it's a steady flow. House prices are a huge factor in people leaving. EA actually paid fairly well. Raises were mediocre but they paid bonuses which could be huge if you had a massive hit and were on the right team. When they lay people off, they give an excellent severance package to help tide people over. Unfortunately, the Vancouver studio demanded brutal hours and 80 hour weeks were not uncommon for months at a time, usually… Read more »

other ted

Well I don't think EA paid much to begin with, but it does create another chink in the armour of the invincibility of vancouver. EA is one of the name dropped companies that was supposed to show Vancouver is world class. It is an entertainment company that is in Vancouver to take advantage of the cheap labour.With the abundance of cheap labour in Vancouver I am amazed more companies did not come to vancouver but I guess insane land prices will do that. I know a couple of people who work at EA. Their parents are rich and are there for status. Losing their jobs will do nothing for their net worth. Like the city as a whole its all smoke and mirrors.