Rennie ‘guarantees’ post Olympic values

Bob Rennie is the quintessential salesman and like most marketers he knows how to talk his product up.  Here he is expounding on the wonders of Vancouver condos on the Chinese news site  This follows the template of most of his ‘news’ releases but includes one very interesting quote about the post-games market here in Vancouver:

“I’ll guarantee it won’t hurt our values. I’ll guarantee it will maintain our values. The frightening part is if values go up too much. We don’t have financial sector head office jobs, no manufacturing. If we are basing things on local incomes, how does housing keep up with local incomes if we have a shortage? We have to be very careful on the affordability side.”

This is a very generous offer.  If anyone has the financial resources to ‘guarantee’ that your condo won’t drop in value it’s Bob Rennie.  This could be exactly what anyone who fears the fallout of a housing bubble needs to get them to buy property in Vancouver.  After all, many people are leery of buying in a market where prices are near record highs and there are no ‘financial sector head office jobs’ and ‘no manufacturing’, particularly when that city has a history of volatility in house prices and has seen market crashes of up to 50% in the past.  Watching people in cities around the world go into foreclosure or make mortgage payments that are far beyond the current value of their property doesn’t exactly instill confidence either, even if it IS different here.

I’m not sure exactly what the contract on this deal would look like but I imagine that you’d ‘lock in’ your purchase price and it would be held on record for any future point you decide to sell.  If the market goes up, you’ve made free money.  If the market goes down, I’m guessing Bob Rennie would write you a cheque to cover the difference between your purchase price and the price you were able to sell for.

Nah, that’s just silly… he’d probably have an employee write you the cheque.

I’m not sure if there are any catches, but with a deal like that how could you possibly go wrong?

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Just A Thought


People might view your comments as racist because when people use a racist term, or write something that could be construed as racist, they always qualify it by saying they are from that race.

"Eg. The new townhouse across from me is completely owned by asian investors….I am asian, but that is going to affect things around here"


"People who blame Vancouver’s high house prices on immigrants are barking up the wrong tree. I’m suspicious of them."

Actually it's the bulls who believe immigration is why prices will go up forever.

[…] discussion around who lives in the West-side of Vancouver [average SFH now over $1.5M], this from Stan at 19 Jan 2010 4:10 pm […]


Stan, this picture is for you with love.




By the way Vancouver has always been an "ethnic enclave" if he means a place populated by non-indignant people. The city started as a British enclave. Or do Brits not count as immigrants? Out.


Listen I didn't start with this. How about the guy who did – the one who said this…

"Lets face it, Vancouver will be an ethnic enclave in less than 20 years if the current pace of immigration and settlement continues."

… explains what he means. What exactly is an "ethnic enclave" for a start? Then we can decide who the racist is.


What did I say that was racist? "whitey"? I'm white – I was being facetious. People who blame Vancouver's high house prices on immigrants are barking up the wrong tree. I'm suspicious of them.

Maybe, Maybe Not


No…just a reaction probably to your racist comments


Hmm so anyone who says something positive about Vancouver or immigration gets negative post ratings. I get this blog now….


"Or some of us can critically point out that there are positives and negatives to both, as opposed to the simplistic, zero sum approach of good or bad…"

You're putting words in my mouth. Of course I'm talking in general terms. I stand by my previous statement. In too many of these blogs we see word like immigration and ethnicity used in, frankly, a bigoted way and I don't like it.

Vancouver needs controlled immigration or who exactly do you think will look after you when you're old and dribbling? Because I hate to break this to you but we are a rapidly ageing country with a low birth rate and you're going to be thanking those immigrants in 20 years time because they'll be the ones wiping your chin.


PS #73 I have also lived here for decades. I choose not to buy here that's all – but not being able to buy somewhere does not make it a bad place to live. There are a lot of places I couldn't afford to buy somewhere in, and I like a lot of those places. Funnily enough they all tend to be places people want to live, and I would rather rent (or save and eventually buy) in a city people want to live in than buy (cheaply or even affordably) in somewhere no-one likes. This is the conundrum people who are desperate to buy a house face! I personally am happy to rent my whole life but I like to keep track of when a good time to buy is – hence I read blogs like these. I reserve… Read more »

Long Time Vancouveri

Why do I stay – simple – family.

As for outlooks,

"Some see immigration and multiculturalism as negative things. Others see them as positives."

Or some of us can critically point out that there are positives and negatives to both, as opposed to the simplistic, zero sum approach of good or bad…


#73 And yet you still call yourself a "long time Vancouverite". Why stay if it's so bad?

As I said, all cities change over time. Vancouver is doing pretty well so far – just for not having a freeway into the centre for a start – the only north american city of its size to have resisted that. I don't own a car and the transit is actually excellent. It all depends on your outlook. Some see immigration and multiculturalism as negative things. Others see them as positives.


#71 I already said it's overvalued and I think it will decline. That's not a reason to run the place down though. I have travelled and lived abroad (and in two other Canadian cities), and I base my opinions partly on that. I do think Vancouver doesn't have many competitors for the title of nicest city to live in Canada, depending on how much cold you can take and what your interests are. It's like the nicest city in any country, or the nicest neighbourhood in a city, or the nicest street in a neighbourhood – prices are higher. And yes I know it rains a lot. This is just my rationale for the high prices – it's not that I think it's a good thing. And the reason I'm posting is I have a problem with the obvious hypocrisy… Read more »

Long Time Vancouveri

69 Stan In fairness to #67, I have lived in Vancouver since the early 70s, and he or she does have some valid points. If you have spoken to anyone that has lived here for decades, they will note that the city has become less "liveable" in some ways, but more "liveable" in others. Back then, people were friendly, less focussed on consumerism, had civic pride, had solid paying jobs, and seemed to appreciate the natural beauty more than today. Sure, we have better transportation systems today, and some better restaurants, but at the cost of reduced affordability and a now neurotic superficial population. Lets not forget that fact that we now receive global attention for our levels of crime and gang activity, and that our economy is complete shell of what it used to be. We may have "grown… Read more »



And the fact that so many people read blogs like this because they are so desperate to buy in Vancouver kind of proves how attractive a place it is.


A bit of a perplexing statement! This is a place to discuss various arguments that support or disprove the presence of a bubble. I, like many others that come here I suspect, have never been less inclined (or desperate to use your word) to buy anything in my entire life. The people that are desperate to buy are the very nut jobs that this blog discusses.

PS: there’s paying a premium, and there’s being delusional about expectations on what the return for paying that premium will be.

Not much of a name

Stan…have you ever travelled or lived anywhere else? If not, you need to get out a little more. Vancouver is nice and has a lot going for it, however, not that much to be the only place in the world immune from declining real estate.

Give your head a shake, overvalued is still overvalued no matter how you slice it.


Drachan – "I take offence to this too. Kitsilano, Dunbar, Pt. Grey Shaughnessy and the West End (and maybe a few others) are not working class neighbourhoods (all in about the same price range). Who DOES live there? "

I live in Kitsilano. I earn around $50,000 a year. Almost all Canadians are Middle Class these days anyhow, but if working class means mechanics, mailmen, construction workers, then all of these people do live in Kits, Dunbar, West End and Pt Grey. So do students, retail workers, waiters…


"Lets face it, Vancouver will be an ethnic enclave in less than 20 years if the current pace of immigration and settlement continues." I'm suspicious of anyone who brings ethnicity and immigration into debates like these, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt. Vancouver is already about 50% "ethnic" – it's one of the city's attractions not one of its downsides and it's not the reason for the high prices. Immigration will not keep housing prices high. People do not move to a new country and then immediately buy a house. "this once quaint and tranquil city" Ha! This city has only ever seen serious rioting twice. Once when the railroad was being built and once when the 'Nucks lost the Stanley Cup – both a fair while ago. So I see no signs of disintegrating social systems… Read more »


@Ally123: "Right now prices seem fairly reasonable in Port Coquitlam." Prices throughout the Lower Mainland are well offside, The only places I'd say Real Estate in Canada is a fairly good deal (but will probably still drop a bit) is east of Ontario or North of Prince George with a few exceptions in smaller towns. PoCo is not one of the exceptions. "n your general opinion would you say just hold off from buying right now for: a year? 6 months? 2 Years?" 2 Years or perhaps a little more, IMO the time to buy is when the average detached is in the 450-400 range and still heading down, it will mean lots of inventory and you can probably get a deal because prices should still be falling on a fairly steep curve and the general psychology will be a… Read more »

Eyes Wide Open

Lets face it, Vancouver will be an ethnic enclave in less than 20 years if the current pace of immigration and settlement continues. It will also exhibit the classic divide between the haves and have nots, and the moral foundation of this once quaint and tranquil city will degrade even further. It is unfortunate, but many will "abandon" this city in the coming years, and many already have, opting to settle in other regions such as the Interior that provide a sense of community.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with those two sides of city living, just as long as you know what you are getting into when you want to buy in the city.


"I expect walking the same walk on Granville in a few months time, watching the new stores being boarded up as the tourists leave, the homeless re-claim the streets and the city reverts to its true self." This is what I don't get about this blog. Are you deliberately running the city down to put people off buying? Or do you genuinely believe what you wrote? (I personally don't like Granville St but don't recognise your view of it). And if you genuinely believe what you wrote why on earth are you reading blogs about buying real estate here? Why would you want to live here if it's that bad? I constantly come across this on the RE blogs I read – people who talk Vancouver down but are still desperate to buy here. Makes no sense at all. (I'm… Read more »


"Vancouver is an irrational bubble." I disagree. I think there are reasons for Vancouver's bubble and they are all down to the "livability", the "mountains and ocean" and all the other cliches – whether we like to admit it or not. The comparatively mild climate compared to other cities doesn't help. The fact is that people with money – mostly Canadians, but also people looking for an international move – find Vancouver attractive and are willing to pay a premium to live here. Others who grew up in Vancouver really don't want to leave and will also pay a premium. I myself am willing to pay a premium to live in Vancouver, just as I would expect to pay a premium to live in a nice neighbourhood of any city. I can't afford the current premium, but I still rent… Read more »