Canada Housing bubble in the Wall Street Journal.

I think Domus was the first to point out this article in the Wall Street Journal - it looks like the Canadian Housing Bubble is getting some attention in the US media.

But some economists who are concerned point out that home prices are rising far faster than other measures of economic health. The 2009 price increase of more than 20% came as personal income in Canada fell nearly 1% and total employment was 1.4% lower than the year earlier. In a December report, the Bank of Canada warned that household debt—largely mortgages—was 1.42 times disposable income during the second quarter of 2009, a record high.

Another possible danger: Because Canadian banks typically reset adjustable-rate mortgages every few years, those who are buying now at low rates will likely see increases soon. Toronto-Dominion Bank forecasts suggest that the rate to which many Canadian mortgages are pegged, the prime rate, could nearly double by the end of 2011. The Bank of Canada warned in its December report that if interest rates increase as expected, by mid-2012 about 9% of Canadian households could have so much debt that they’d be “financially vulnerable.”

“This is exactly what happened in the U.S., when affordability had moved way out of whack with prices,” says David Rosenberg, an economist who witnessed America’s housing bubble at Merrill Lynch in New York, and now sees similar trends up north from his post at Toronto-based wealth-management firm Gluskin Sheff.

Reading the article it quickly becomes apparent that Canada = Toronto (with a dash of Red Deer).  So we finally get some mainstream media coverage and there isn’t a single mention of the Vancouver market in there.  What are we, chopped liver?

76 Responses to “Canada Housing bubble in the Wall Street Journal.”

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    The even better article is the G&M article concerning the Competition Bureau's decision to attack the MLS monopoly.

    This poor industry: Attacked by foreign journalists and bloggers and now domestic bankers and bureaucrats. Pile on the HST, no more "the Olympics are coming" and buyers of the future used up months ago. Ouch!

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    Starving Artist Says:
    2

    It's going to be interesting to see what happens when completions catch up to the starts line – that's a lot of construction jobs that aren't likely to come back any time soon.

    http://housing-analysis.blogspot.com/2010/02/cons

    Although I'm not sure how that jives with this:

    VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(Marketwire – Feb. 8, 2010) – According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), 917 new housing units broke ground in the Vancouver Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) in January, 50 per cent higher than the same month a year ago.

    I'd be inclined to believe the former, but that's just my bias showing. The construction industry has grown by 110,000 workers according to BC Stats, from 2000 to 2008 and falling since then. That represents almost 5% of the BC workforce in 2008 numbers. If all those are boom jobs…..? 15% unemployment a possibility?

    http://www.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/data/dd/handout/naic

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    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business

    Bubbles remain hard to define, difficult to measure and, like recessions, can only be accurately assessed after they have burst. Economists have wrestled with bubbles for generations, but have yet to devise an adequate scientific means of analyzing them, comparing them or providing us with an early warning system that would safeguard from their worst effects.

    With respect to RE bubbles, that is complete nonsense. Because the earnings of RE (rental value) and ability to pay (wages) are so predictable, it's very easy to see from price/rent and price/income whether price is out of line with earnings. These numbers cannot deviate from historical norms in the long run. This has been demonstrated by many well known experts like Robert Shiller. Anyone willing to take an objective look at the numbers in 2005 could see that the US market was headed for a bust.

    Most housing watchers insist Canada is not in a bubble just yet. But they acknowledge there is no precise science that determines exactly when a market shifts from merely heating up to bubbling over.

    Instead of "most housing watchers", why not pay attention to those who got it right about the US, etc. Because all of them say there is a bubble in major markets in Canada.

    “If price increases come down and we see the sales numbers moderating, then I won't be so worried,” said Tsur Somerville, an associate professor of real estate finance at the University of British Columbia.

    Somerville is saying that if prices simply don't go up further, everything will be OK? He deserves to be on the cover of Mad Magazine.

    Once again, no mention of price/rent or price/income for any Canadian market in this article.

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    TOTALLY off topic…but I almost gagged when Michael J Fox'x name came up as a possible person to light the Olympic torch.

    WTF? What has he ever done for this country? He's not even Canadian anymore.

    As far as Tsur Somerville, he reminds me a lot of Michael Levy.

    Sticks up his finger to see which way the wind blows.

    Me? I salute them both with the middle one.

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    Good thing those rich foreigners don't read the Globe and Mail's ROB.

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    Really though, all the recent MSM attention to our market…

    I feel like a Noxema Girl. I knew I was beautiful all along.

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    @Patriotz "…it’s very easy to see from price/rent and price/income whether price is out of line with earnings…" — Doesn't it really come down to a monthly payment? In that sense price/rent should be a good indicator since rent can't mortgaged it represents what the market is willing to bear for housing. But I don't really get the price/income ratio, since this ratio is closely correlated with interest rates and amortization lengths. When rates were 10%+, the ratio sat at 3-4. It has been trending upwards for the past 25 years as rates have been decreasing, for much longer than a bubble existed. So I don't think it's really a good metric, or at best it's an indirect measure of affordability.

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    @Purp:

    You seem to be assuming that today's low interest rates are permanent. What I am saying is that if price/income and price/rent deviate significantly from their sustainable values seen during times of moderate interest rates (the 50's for example), they have to come back down. Because interest rates will inevitably return to normal as well.

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    "What are we, chopped liver?" – a lost cause.

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    More bubble talk on the G&M this morning:

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business

    I am hearing echos of 2008.

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    anonymousAA Says:
    11

    Nice press from the US. If Americans are finally taking notice of Canada, there MUST be a problem.

    It's tax time, and as an accountant I see a lot of financial information. I really don't like what I'm seeing. Excuse me, but people who earn $40k per year really shouldn't have $700k in debt (and that's just the mortgages!) And it's not just one or two clients, it's quite a few. They've taken out these mortgages to buy principal residences, and then added a couple of rental properties for good measure.

    Ever get that sick, worried feeling in your stomach? Yes, this would be one of those times.

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    bubble verbatim article from globe and mail

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business

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    @Patriotz — I guess the question is what is 'normal' for rates? No doubt that rates have nowhere to go but up, but is it realistic that 5 year mortgages will go back to 10%+ anytime soon?

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    Not much of a name Says:
    14

    @Purp:

    It doesn't matter if rates don't go as high as 10%. When you have rates that are in the range of 2-4%, going up to, let's say 6%, will hurt many many people.

    If people are stretching in terms of affordability now, every incremental rate increase will only be that much more painful.

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    @NMOFAN — Agreed, higher rates in any form will cause hurt. My point is only that if we are using a price/income ratio of 3-4 as 'normal', then we are really waiting for interest rates to return to 10%+ and amortizations to max out at 25 years. I just don't see that happening anytime soon (if it did it would absolutely bring the world economy to it's knees). In the medium term, I wonder if we will return to something in between, say 6-8% and 30 year ams. This will correspond to a different price/income ratio, say around 7-8. People who are waiting for homes to return to 3x income may as well rent for the rest of their lives.

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    Eyes of the World Says:
    16

    Hahaha..I love checking in here and seeing the same old "arguments" being rehashed over and over and over again…

    Vancouver is the best place on earth and the Olympics will show that to the world. People will walk around, notice the beauty and buy here.

    Most people are room temperature, and there are a lot of them with tons of money. A lot of them are coming to the games (who else can afford them?). Not all of them are rational investors, as the supposed bubble has shown. If you think that many of them wont buy here because of the price you are out to lunch…

    Not everyone is a rational investor like all the bear renters here..

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    @Starving Artist:

    Regarding the sharp uptick in housing starts in January it may just be the unseasonably warm weather we've been having this year. Often housing starts follow weather patterns rather than 'calendar' seasons.

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    No Longer Looking Says:
    18

    Vancouver is Interzone. Exterminate all rational thought.

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    @Purp:

    @NMOFAN — Agreed, higher rates in any form will cause hurt. My point is only that if we are using a price/income ratio of 3-4 as ‘normal’, then we are really waiting for interest rates to return to 10%+ and amortizations to max out at 25 years. I just don’t see that happening anytime soon

    Interest rates doubling from 3.5% to 7% would have exactly the same effect on people's ability to pay as when they went from 5% to 10% or 9% to 18%. Plus, a lot of people are so maxed out that even just a 1% rise would sink them.

    Sure, 1% doesn't sound like much but as a fraction of the current interest rate it would mean about a 30% increase in the interest portion of mortgage payments. Whether rates will ever go to 10% is immaterial because all those people currently paying below 5% will be screwed long before then. The abnormally low rate amplifies everything.

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    20

    @Purp:

    My point is only that if we are using a price/income ratio of 3-4 as ‘normal’, then we are really waiting for interest rates to return to 10%+ and amortizations to max out at 25 years.

    What do you mean "we", white man? I explicitly gave the 1950's as a time of stable house prices and interest rates. What do you think the rates were then?

    BTW longer amortizations cannot result in lower prices long run, because they borrow demand from the future with interest. They also greatly increase the risk from rising interest rates.

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    21

    @patriotz:

    Excuse me, "longer amortizations cannot result in higher prices long run".

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    16: "Not everyone is a rational investor like all the bear renters here."

    ———————————

    In Soviet Russia, Investment Rationalizes You!

    (coming soon to an Olympic town near you)

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    @Eyes of the World:

    "Not everyone is a rational investor like all the bear renters here.."

    Well that's what we've been saying for the past five years!

    A bubble market cannot develop if everyone behaves in a rational manner. But it cannot be sustained indefinitely either so it will crash. The only pertinent question is when.

    Your own argument promotes the bubble hypothesis you know?

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    @Patriotz : I don't know what the rates were in the '50s, I wasn't alive yet, maybe you can tell me? :) Look, the point is, a given 'affordable' price/income ratio is only relevant in a static lending environment (ie rates that are steady). If someone says a 4x ratio represents a normal market, they are also implying that 5-year interest rates are in the 10-12% range. If the rates change, then the price/income also changes, which means it's not a particularly useful metric. I think price/rent is a much better metric because it directly ties the price to a monthly payment.

    I understand your point about longer amortizations, but I think it's fair to say that as amortizations increase the price/income ratio will also be rising. If they are held steady I guess eventually enough future demand will be borrowed putting a downward pressure on prices. And of course if they are decreasing there is a definite downward trend.

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    @Aleks — you kind of made my point. Wishing for a 4x price/income ratio is like either wishing for unicorns or economic scorched earth. One isn't going to happen and you don't want the other one to happen.

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    26

    @Purp:

    If someone says a 4x ratio represents a normal market, they are also implying that 5-year interest rates are in the 10-12% range.

    I already corrected you once, I'll correct you again. I was talking about the interest rate level we had in the 1950's. Straw man much?

    And what was that? Right around 6%. How much of a shock would that give to recent homedebtors?

    http://www.bankofcanada.ca/pdf/annual_page57_page

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    27

    @Purp:

    Wishing for a 4x price/income ratio is like either wishing for unicorns or economic scorched earth. One isn’t going to happen and you don’t want the other one to happen.

    They didn't want it to happen in the US, Ireland, Spain, etc, either.

    So why did it?

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    "I think price/rent is a much better metric because it directly ties the price to a monthly payment."

    -0——————

    And by this measure too we are in a massive bubble.

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    "you don’t want the other one to happen"

    ————–

    Err, I do. Don't assume we are all in your pseudo-altruistic camp. I want exactly what is best for me and my financial health, and that scenario would be.

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    @Patriotz 27 : Read my quoted statement again and see if you can't find the answer. Hint, it's not unicorns.

    @Logic : Agreed.

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    @Patriotz 26 : Thanks for the link, interesting stuff. But I'm not sure why you are disregarding the past 30 years of data, instead basing affordability on what the price/income ratio was in the 1950s. I would put that in the unicorn camp.

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    taylor192 Says:
    32

    LOL @ Purp and patriotz arguing silly semantics

    Who cares if its 3x or 4x, right now Vancouver is 9x and that's silly by any standard.

    Purp, you're technically correct. Rates have been dropping since the 80s, higher TDS/GDS and longer amortizations seem here to stay. Thus the magical price/income ratio of 3/1 has changed… or has it?

    patriotz makes a good point that other countries with bubbles that overshot the price/income ratio have seen a return to a 3/1 price/income ratio.

    Housing is ruled on emotion right now, not fundamentals. A collapse in housing may see a 3/1 price/income ratio again – if a collapse occurs.

    Now who wants to get back to predicting whether a collapse will occur, and when?

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    33

    @Purp:

    Price/income was at the same level as the 1950's as recently as the mid-1980's. We have been in two bubbles, with a slight correction, since then. It's that simple.

    Do note that real prices were a lot higher in the 80's than in the 50's, because real household incomes were higher (higher real wages and many more two income families). But it was the same price/income.

    I am using the 1950's as an example for interest rates because I don't think rates are likely to go back to where they were in the 70's or 80's, because people are so indebted now they wouldn't be able to buy anything (i.e. it would result in general deflation).

    http://cuer.sauder.ubc.ca/cma/data/ResidentialRea

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    patriotz patriotz Says:
    34

    @taylor192:

    A collapse in housing may see a 3/1 price/income ratio again – if a collapse occurs.

    The historical price/income for Vancouver, like California, has been 4/1. People really have been willing to pay more to live here – but just 33% more, not over 100% more.

    And the collapse is not a matter of "if" but "when" and "how fast".

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    @Eyes of the World:

    Hahaha..I love checking in here and seeing the same old “arguments” being rehashed over and over and over again…

    Vancouver is the best place on earth and the Olympics will show that to the world. People will walk around, notice the beauty and buy here.

    Most people are room temperature, and there are a lot of them with tons of money. A lot of them are coming to the games (who else can afford them?). Not all of them are rational investors, as the supposed bubble has shown. If you think that many of them wont buy here because of the price you are out to lunch…

    Not everyone is a rational investor like all the bear renters here..

    ——–

    Hahaha. Be my guest. Fill your boots.

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    @taylor192:

    "Now who wants to get back to predicting whether a collapse will occur, and when?"

    Not whether, that is a given. As for when, as I said a few days ago we're peaking right now, within a couple of months things are going to start to slide and within six months there will be an undeniably downwards trend. A year from now specuvestors will be peeing in their pants.

    @Purp:

    Purp, I don't think it matters whether we want a crash to happen or not. It's going to happen so get yourself in the best position possible to see yourself through it. If you're prepared these economic storms will have a minimal impact on you and your family and may even bring some very positive changes. The people who will be hurt the most are the small business owners in Vancouver and the people who have stretched themselves too thin on Real Estate.

    As for me I can safely say that my wife's job will not be impacted and mine is pretty safe too so we'll be laughing all the way to the bank.

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    @ Patriotz 33 : "…I am using the 1950’s as an example for interest rates because I don’t think rates are likely to go back to where they were in the 70’s or 80’s, because people are so indebted now they wouldn’t be able to buy anything (i.e. it would result in general deflation)…." — Agreed, so if rates don't return to that level, then what will change to reign in the amount of cheap money sloshing around fueling the bubble? Are you anticipating that CMHC rules change and risk is offloaded back to the banks, who will likely tighten mortgage lending standards? And since that requires prudent responsible action by the gov't, against their natural tendency to stay in power, isn't that wishing for unicorns too?

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    @Purp:

    If someone says a 4x ratio represents a normal market, they are also implying that 5-year interest rates are in the 10-12% range.

    Actually (at least for a condo) you get a 4x ratio at 6.1% for people with car payments. With no other debt, you still hit the 4x limit at 8.9%.

    For example, an income of $100k buying a $400k condo with 10% down and $500/mo in taxes and condo fees:

    For a Debt Service ratio of 32%:

    Max monthly outlay = ($100k/12) * 0.32 = $2,666.

    After condo fees and taxes, there is $2,166 available for mortgage payments.

    At 6.1% with a 30 year amortization, you get a payment of $2,163.

    For a Debt Service ratio of 40%:

    Max monthly outlay = ($100k/12) * 0.40 = $3,333.

    After condo fees and taxes, there is $2,833 available for mortgage payments.

    At 8.9% with a 30 year amortization, you get a payment of $2,829.

    Anyone still think our current 9.3 ratio is sustainable? Dave? Browntown? SATV???

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    Not much of a name Says:
    39

    @crabman:

    That's also using an income of $100k per year. Scale that back to the median family income of about $65k a year and see what that yields…unaffordability.

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    @crabman:

    The 9.3 ratio is meaningless. The average person in the GVRD does not purchase a SFH in Vancouver. Vancouver homes are in the upper 90% percentile of real estate in the Lower Mainland and perhaps even 95th. If you want to read into these ratios, then you should also adjust the income for people who buy those homes. Of course when you do that, the ratios are nowhere near 9.

    There are still plenty of affordable options in the Lower Mainland.

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    patriotzed Says:
    41

    @Dave:

    The 9.3 ratio is meaningless. The average person in the GVRD does not purchase a SFH in Vancouver.

    Nor does the average person in the Bay Area buy a SFH in San Francisco.

    As I recall price/income in the Bay Area peaked around 10:1 and has since declined to about 5.5:1, i.e. prices are down about 45%. And that bust is not over.

    How come Dave?

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    White Payer Says:
    42

    @Dave:

    Dave, dumps in Surrey are selling for over half a million. THERE ARE STILL PLENTY OF AFFORDABLE OPTIONS across Canada, just not the Lower Mainland.

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    Boombust Says:
    43

    Gag me. NOW I have heard the "The Terminater" himself is going to carrying the torch?

    Can someone explain WHY?

    I mean, c'mon! As if we'd be on California's radar screen if THEY were hosting the games. Not even close.

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    other ted Says:
    44

    40. Dave if 9.3 ratio is meaningless. What is the ratio for condos only. And using your logic we should adjust down the income to show who is buying. But even if we don't what is the best case ratio for income/price. Something tells me its still not even close to 3.

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    Delusional Says:
    45

    Dave has no sales again today. The Demographia survey is for metropolitan areas, and “Median Multiple” (median house price divided by gross annual median household income).

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    patriotzed Says:
    46

    @Boombust:

    Can someone explain WHY?

    Well either because The Terminator was a pioneer in the use of steroids or because his father belonged to the party that invented the Olympic Torch, I guess.

    What better credentials could you ask for.

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    Not much of a name Says:
    47

    Using the multiple of 9.3 even for condos is rather functional. I'm sure there are many FTB out there purchasing $375k condos with $40k a year salaries.

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    patriotzed Says:
    48

    @logic:

    Arnold is one of Gordo’s buddies. This is BC, land of nepotism, after all.

    That's cronyism not nepotism, unless there are some family ties we don't know about.

    :-)

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    true that. but nepotism and cronyism are cousins, so to speak :)

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    realpaul Says:
    50

    #10 Domus, one thing that struck me in The CREAäs response to Competition Inquiry oversight was the confrontational style of his answers, saying "we are negotiating a settlement" . Excuse me, a 'settlement'? If you are breaking the law you cease and desist, usually after being sanctioned for your criminal behaviour!!

    Second, I got the distinct impression that Ripplinger is saying that by collecting public information and withholding it from the public that the CREA has a right to call the collection of public statistics 'CREA property'? Excuse me?

    These peoples arrogance has gottten way out of control. You'd think they were unionized.

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    Ignore Dave, he is pretending to be stupid and intentionally wrong to bait you. Just ignore him/her.

    The Rental Market is backing up like crazy and the Olympic haven't even started yet.

    The days of $1250 one bedrooms in new buildings are back.

    Soon the days of $99,000 one bedrooms will be too.

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    Not much of a name Says:
    52

    @Drachen:

    I'm sure you could pull apart the numbers for all segments of the RE market in Vancouver and find that the 9.3 multiple will be fairly consistant across the board.

    The numbers are bad no matter where a purchaser falls within that spectrum.

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    patriotzed Says:
    53

    @realpaul:

    You’d think they were unionized.

    They are. But when they use the term "association" instead people don't notice.

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    realpaul Says:
    54

    Re: the price/income ratio. I'm sure that the RE whores want to misdirect the public away from this traditional calculation. It makes the market appear unsustainable even to the math challenged FTB's.

    But the question is 'whats next?' Do we also exclude the current batch of unaffordable condos and move down to those 270 sq footers to benchmark 'AFFORDABILITY'?.

    Its rather obvious that they would rather fight than include the traditional model of the SFH (where the statistic originates) because it has reached the unfreakingbelievable figure of 16.6 times earnings. ( 950K divided by the average Vanc income of 57K.

    Liars can't figure and figures can't lie eh?

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    OlympicLies Says:
    55

    More hype on the Olympics. How will the winding down of Olympic spending and hype mean that BC will continue to grow on the back of the long gone games?

    http://www.theprovince.com/business/Games+give+sh

    I think BC is in for a big dump when all the part time jobs related to the Olympics are gone. The VANOC parasites did manage to get a big bonus but how long can that last? Once the high wears off we're in for the hangover.

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    oneangryslav2 Says:
    56

    @Frank: This is what I'm seeing as well. I've been wanting to get out of my current rental for a few months now but knew that prices were going to come down dramatically after the Olympics. But, as Frank writes, prices have come down considerably already and the Olympics haven't even started yet. Which sucker (I mean homeowner) is going to subsidize my housing costs for the next year?

    "Eenie-meenie-miney-mo…"

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    stagnate Says:
    57

    patriotz says:

    As I recall price/income in the Bay Area peaked around 10:1 and has since declined to about 5.5:1, i.e. prices are down about 45%. And that bust is not over. Why is that Dave?

    elasticity of demand. it's doubtful san fransisco real estate will come close to vancouver again.

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    Not much of a name Says:
    58

    @stagnate:

    "it’s doubtful san fransisco real estate will come close to vancouver again. "

    It may…as Vancouver chases SF downward.

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    Eyes of the World Says:
    59

    Just flew back into town and wow, is there ever an Olympic buzz. And wow, does the city look great from the air. This city is crawling with foreign female talent, and even actual talent. Walked beside Eugene Levy for 5 blocs up burrard from the covention centre. He is staying at the Sutton.

    Poor patient bears are screwed. This is perfect weather, and its warmth is being broadcast all across North America! 250k people will party it up, with hundreds of millions more watching. That is 250k RICH people…even a fraction of them buying will further erode already low inventories…

    Sorry bears, but this city is in a new paradigm…it will be even more for the rich after the Games…you are all screwed

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    Partisan Spectator Says:
    60

    I've been watching units for rent in Vancouver on Craigslist for over a year. Noticed that for all that period the number of units for rent (for my search criteria) was 700 +/-30, relatively steady. Now, it started few weeks ago and continues, the number is 850+ and growing. What is this? Desperate landlords or wanted-to-be-but-unlucky olympics hosts?

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    stagnate Says:
    61

    ps says:

    the number is 850+ and growing. What is this? Desperate landlords or wanted-to-be-but-unlucky olympics hosts?

    a bit of both, downtown there are some accidental landlords out there; especially at recently completed buildings like alto, donovan, vita, etc. the values on the recently completed product is less than what they paid for it.

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    stagnate Says:
    62

    eyes of the world says:

    This is perfect weather, and its warmth is being broadcast all across North America!

    people are seeing the real vancouver, it is warm and rains. no snowshoes and ice fishing here.

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    Eotw, please get sober, it's not fun.

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    Anonymous Says:
    64

    @Partisan Spectator:

    It is time to start listing if you want someone in your suite for Mar 1. I guess many landlords forgot the games were actually going to end.

    @Eyes of the World:

    Have you checked the weather forecast? I'm hoping I don't get soaked on Cypress on Sunday.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    cypress – sitting in the pouring rain peering through the fog/mist to try to see people skiing on hay bales (surrounded by mud and rock off piste).

    sign me up now

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    We're #1 again!

    According to Google Trends, the term "price bubble" is most searched for in Vancouver, followed by Singapore and a bunch of American cities.

    Not very good evidence of anything, but kinda amusing…
    http://www.google.ca/trends?q=price+bubble&ct

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    @realpaul: 56 realpaul, I think there is nothing surprising in the lobby of real estate agents trying to preserve their unfair market power in order to extract surplus from consumers. I am a bit more surprised to see that it took so long for the government of Canada to figure out that something needed to be done!

    The CREA virtual monopoly and the CHMC are the 2 largest market distortions in Canada: the are so large that the market mechanism can no longer work well. I believe the CHMC is the largest distortion, but removing the forced 'CREA tax' would already go a long way towards a consumers' oriented housing market.

    Abolish the CHMC! Liberalize the MLS!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    @Dave:

    There are still plenty of affordable options in the Lower Mainland.

    ++++++++

    If you truly believe that, then calling you a retard would be an insult handicapped people. Seriously, are you drunk, or on crack, or what. No sane person, not even a troll would state something so ridiculous. Oh wait, you're joking. Ok I get it. Dumb me.

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    also, Arnold is one of Gordo’s buddies. This is BC, land of nepotism, after all.

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    patriotzed Says:
    70

    @Not much of a name:

    I’m sure there are many FTB out there purchasing $375k condos with $40k a year salaries.

    Oh I’m sure there are too, and I’m equally sure they will disappear in short order when interest rates go up or their account with the Bank of Mom and Dad is overdrawn.

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    @Dave:

    “The 9.3 ratio is meaningless. The average person in the GVRD does not purchase a SFH in Vancouver.”

    The 9.3 number does not represent SFH, that number would be more like a 17 or an 18. 10 seconds with a calculator is all it takes to figure that one out.

    9.3 is MEDIAN HOUSING you dip.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    "According to Google Trends, the term “price bubble” is most searched for in Vancouver, followed by Singapore "

    And I split my time between these two countries.

    You guys think you've got it bad with one bubble. I have two to contend with.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Buy or not buy Says:
    73

    Where is the bubble? I want to buy a home so please come bubble!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    [...] Eyes of the World at vancouvercondo.info 9 Feb 2010 11:58 am – “Hahaha..I love checking in here [vancouvercondo.info] and seeing the same old “arguments” being rehashed over and over and over again… Vancouver is the best place on earth and the Olympics will show that to the world. People will walk around, notice the beauty and buy here.” [...]

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    More fear of the bubble is better since it helps to avoid the bubble. Based on the price/rent ratio, the prices in vancouver currently with say a normal interst rate of 4% are overvalued but not terribly overvalued (I would say they are fairly valued for 3.6 to 3.7% interest rate range). However, if the low interest rate environment persists more and more people are tempted by this false sense of affordability to buy homes with even higher prices. Fortunately, the new laws coming in regarding minimum down payments and 30y max amortization will help to contain that. Also, we'll probabely see much more fragmanted market prices from location to location and from one price range to another price range. For example, I would say a decent 2bd condo in a good locaton of downtown under 600K is a much safer bet than very high end of the market (because of price) and also than the very low end of the market where usually locations are not attractive and easily substitutable.

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