Friday Free-for-all!

It’s the end of the week and that means it’s time to do our regular news round up and open topic discussion thread.  Here are a few stories I’ve noticed lately:

BC kills leaky condo loan program
Teranet: 11th straight month of Vancouver price declines
The house price bounce
The rational for an extreme rent / mortgage spread
Successful flipping: Get the buyer to overpay
Builders oppose BC’s Harmonized Sales Tax
Translink proposes toll on all Metro bridges
Canada’s GDP drops .05% in May
The Winter Games call for 1,500 volunteers
Housing Market outlook in the USA
Sometimes real estate goes down.  Is that a typo?

So what are you seeing out there?  Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes here and have an excellent weekend!

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Hmm, I thought I posted this, but I must have just previewed it only.

People are starting to shrink wrap unfinished construction sites in the US to stop them from falling apart before someone can finish building them:


Yeay, squeak Soggy yeay!! Real economy factors everthing (EVERYTHING) that affects a society. Even social well being (it costs way more to rehab a 17 yo than a 2 yo..duh, start there ty). Health care, income distribution (poverty contributes to illness which will cost in social and health care costs and lost of tax revenue) Educated people, not just for rich kids..duh.. how are you going to have great leaders if they only come from the 2%? Or is it 1% now? Environment must be factored in too. Toxic environment not just affect humans, it affect weather, crops, rising sea levels. How expensive will that be do you think? Beyond what we can imagine.. So.. yes behaviour needs to be modified.. we only have ONE (1) planet. No spares, no test planets, this is it. Freedom you like to have,… Read more »


Dave: Pay Attention. Vic #59 already covered this, it's what started this whole debate. Gas prices where over $1.50. Crank up the price of gas and traffic will improve.

Or take your alternate option: No buses and no cyclists. Everyone drives. How's your traffic situation looking then?


Soggy, why was traffic better during the bus strike a few years ago?



Author Richard Florida believes that there is a correlation between “gay” cities and economic prosperity.

Sure there's a correlation, but what is the causation? Since the same % of people are born gay everywhere, cities with a high % of gay people are that way because they have a lot of gay in-migration. And gay people move for pretty much the same reasons as anyone else – #1 being economic opportunities. So affluent cites attract more gay migrants as well as migrants in general.

Social tolerance does of course also play a role – for example Calgary is less gay than Vancouver although it is more affluent. But for a gay person, tolerance is linked to economic opportunity, since it makes it less likely you'll be turned down for a job because of your orientation.


Of course it's ridiculous. I was exaggerating my point, which you STILL don't seem to get, so I'll spell it out as simply as I can: The Canadian people at large disagree with your simplistic stand that the government should never act to modify behavior. That's why we tax cigarettes and use some of that income to fund healthcare, it's why we have seatbelt laws, helmet laws, etc. It's why you can't start a company that burns old tires as a power source or disposes of garbage by tossing it in english bay. On the flipside it's why we reduce tax on certain ventures that we want to encourage: things like the film industry tax credits come to mind. Is the government efficient or perfect at this task? Not at all, but as a society we seem to have come… Read more »


Ridiculas comparison. Its simple, I agree with Dave that it is not the governments duty to modify behaviour through taxation. The government should not take from a group of people (drivers) and give to another group (transit users), simply because they believe it is in societies best interest. You contradict yourself when you espouse a "hippy" position, and in the next sentence call me a hippy.




So tell me Phil, are you really in favor of allowing the free smoking of crack and driving through crowds of children? I mean that's 'free will' right? You wouldn't want to restrict that based on some hippy-dippy notion of what's best for society at large huh?


Ohhh, I understand now. Soggy knows what is "for the betterment of society". We all better start letting people like Soggy tell us how we can act. Forget "free will" and crazy ideas like that! We should let government or Soggy tell us what is in our best interest. I wonder where Soggy was on Friday evening?


goldie: "You don’t DEMAND cheaper apartments. Like most of the commenters on this board, you fundamentally misunderstand how the marketplace works."

Why don't you educate us then? I was under the impression that the marketplace operates via SUPPLY and DEMAND. You're saying it's impossible for the marketplace to DEMAND cheaper apartments? Really?!? Perhaps you can explain what's happening in Vegas, Phoenix, Miami, Etc.

..Or perhaps you're just another jackass who doesn't know what you're talking about? I guess the bright side is that you'll never lack for sympathetic company in this world.


Dave: "I am tired of other people telling me what I can and can’t do." The reason people tell you and others what you can and can't do is for the betterment of society. You're not allowed to shoot junk or smoke crack, because you'll become an addict and break into cars. Likewise, you're not allowed to drive through the park, even if it means you'd get to work quicker, because you might run down other peoples families. There's an easy way to stop paying taxes and having people tell you want to do: detach from society and stop mooching off the support that it provides. Move deep into the backwoods and do whatever you want far from the maddening crowd. I'd rather live in a civilized society where I pay a bit more for the convenience of driving, and… Read more »


Squeak, you need to get out more:

"Yes, I guess there are beggars and some junkies here, but nowhere anything near what Vancouver has, havent seen that many."

You can't walk downtown anymore without being accosted by beggars and drug-dealers.

"Have not yet seen anybody standing with signs at traffic lights,…"

Douglas and Bay.

"…neither anybody shooting up next to me…"

Bushes next to the furniture store near Value Village.

But you're right: no traffic jams of significance and a way slower pace.

You don't DEMAND cheaper apartments. Like most of the commenters on this board, you fundamentally misunderstand how the marketplace works. That's why you all have been left behind.


Well said Dave! I don't know why that would get voted down…???

read on

Dave, cities with free transit (and there are a few around the world) see major social benefit. Taxing gas – or more usefully, setting up a congestion charging system for the busier parts of the city (a la London) makes a great deal of sense.



Free? Nothing is free.

I am tired of social engineering. I am tired of other people telling me what I can and can't do. If you don't like driving, then feel free to walk. In the meantime, keep your hands out of my pocket.


Great point about gas prices. Doubling the cost of gas with tax and using that to improve transit ( and make it free ) would improve driving and transit. If you can't afford to drive, well tough. What makes you think its a right instead of a priveledge?


The GVRD is a car-centric city but the city wasn't built to handle its current population of cars or people. It would cost billions to fix the problems and decades to implement it. Sadly, the public and the polticians picker endlessly about who is paying for it (i.e. should Burnaby foot the bill for a Richmond skytrain?), where its implemented (i.e. electric tram on old arbustus train tracks…not on my backyard you aren't. But a small prison by BCIT is okay with me :D) and what to implement (i.e. do we "really" need a new Lion's gate?). I think tolling is a good idea but we should have one route that is toll free. If you want to get there faster…you pay the toll. If you have lots of time…then you can take the free scenic route 😀 52: I… Read more »


Hey Pride.

Author Richard Florida believes that there is a correlation between "gay" cities and economic prosperity.

Mr. Reasonable

Pride: You're being voted down because your posting smells like a troll, I think you're trying to kick up a controversy where none exists.

Mr. Reasonable

This is how the US is going to get out of the recession…

Productivity is up when it comes to selling weapons to the world:


Why is my comment #9 voted down? What a bunch of homophobic bigots!

Just because straight wealthy DNK couples live in desireable neighborhoods as well is irrelevant. Two men tend to have higher incomes than a man and a woman. That's why gay cities are more expensive. If you don't like it you should move to a straight city like Topeka, I hear apartments are a lot cheaper there.

Let's get our f

Not at all, buff_butler! I like to keep informed! 😉


Let’s get our facts straight: im sorry, my goal wasn't to misinform but just something I noticed when I was looking at the numbers for something else. You are correct "net" was improper wording and this does not include foreign immigration and births (as the report mentions).

Given you've created an account with a name specifically for this conversation I've clearly ruined your weekend 😛