Friday Free-for-all!

Hello!  It’s the end o’ the week and winter games wrap-up.  Let’s do our regular news round up and economic news discussion post, here are a few stories to kick off the chat:

NYT: a $1 billion olympic hangover?
ReMAX: few listings mean tight spring market
-Google search for ‘housing bubble’ in Canada and US
a cooler take on a hot housing market
Canadian inflation rates 1915 – 2010
Automatic tipping makes some visitors complain
Reports show US recovery losing momentum

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

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Porky Pig
Guest
Porky Pig
6 years 5 months ago

Real estate agency Re/Max said the prospect of higher interest rates, the arrival of the Harmonized Sales Tax in Ontario and B.C. in July, and recent changes to modestly tighten mortgage financing rules have prompted an "unprecedented number of purchasers" to enter the market

Why do people rush in to buy, when they know that the fundamentals will get much worse soon and will likely result in lower prices? Makes no sense…

patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago

@Porky Pig:

Why do people rush in to buy, when they know that the fundamentals will get much worse soon and will likely result in lower prices?

Well because they can't figure it out, of course. People are stupid.

Porky Pig
Guest
Porky Pig
6 years 5 months ago

Automatic tipping is outrageous. I am a good tipper, but a tip is always tied to performance. If the service isn't good enough, then the server or cook deserve no tip. With automatic tipping, the restaurants untied tipping from quality of service and changed it into an entitlement or an outright theft.

patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago

@Porky Pig:

It's just concealing the true purchase price of the meal. No gas station or store would be able to get away with tacking on 10% to the marked price at the cash register – they would be prosecuted. Why should restaurants be any different.

If the owners of restaurants are so concerned about the economic well-being of their staff they should give them a raise. And increase the price on the menu to make up for it.

domus
Guest
domus
6 years 5 months ago
Great link on inflation. Notice that, unlike US and UK, this is happening in a period of extremely stron loonie and favorable exchange rate. The phenomenon is common to all the great money printers (UK,US,Canada). In the Anglosaxon world only Australia has taken serious step to avoid a burst of price increases, and only because their economy was in the middle of commodity/RE frenzy. In summary, inflation is possibly the most understated phenomenon at the moment. With such rates of money printing and velocity of money due to pick up over the next year or so, expect those numbers to… Read more »
vreaa
Member
6 years 5 months ago
The Froogle Scott Chronicles: Mortgaging Our Souls In Paradise – Part 5: Raise or Raze http://wp.me/pcq1o-xO I walk around our neighbourhood taking inventory: renovation, renovation, that house raised and a new foundation poured, that one with a second storey added, and there, a house demolished — razed with a “z” — and a new house built in its place. In the six and a half years that my wife and I have lived in the Grandview area of Vancouver, there have been a startling number of major renovations, and demolitions followed by new construction. – Froogle Scott In his fifth… Read more »
patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago
@domus: Governments see it (inflation) as a benign phenomenon, because it would decrease debt liabilities. No they don't, because inflation inevitably results in higher interest rates. The bond markets are not going to be cheated out of their real returns. The primary reason why the Federal government was able to balance the budget in the 90's was the big decline in interest rates, and that happened because the bond markets were no longer afraid of substantial inflation going forward. Bring back that fear and you bring back high interest rates. Guaranteed. Particularly when your currency is not "too big to… Read more »
Peter
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Peter
6 years 5 months ago

I wonder if the auto gratuit levied by the cactus club of 18%, 20% at Library Square for the Olympics will come back to haunt them. This was for ordering drinks at the bar with no waiter and 20% seems like a generous tip. Things will slow down after the Olympics as people economize after $10 beers so everything will balance out.

domus
Guest
domus
6 years 5 months ago
@patriotz: I disagree, but we won't know until things fold out. I see your view as the 'optimistic' take on governments. In your view governments genuinely worry about repaying real debt and for the long term well being of the economy. What i see is a bunch of governments in 'emergency mode'. They are all overloaded with debt. Private households' liabilities are even higher. These are powerful incentives to run some inflation. I know, I know: interest rates will pick up. But 3 years of 5% inflation will do wonders to reduce debt loads. This is Krugman's argument. The problem… Read more »
patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago
@domus: In your view governments genuinely worry about repaying real debt and for the long term well being of the economy Not really, our current "Conservative" government is clearly not concerned about either one. But they, and those that support them, are very much concerned about corporate profits and stock prices, and inflation is bad for them. Google "death of equities" to see what I mean. Inflation and the resulting higher interest rates would also result in an even bigger RE bust than we would see otherwise, and any government is going to be concerned about the fallout from that.… Read more »
pricedoutfornow
Guest
pricedoutfornow
6 years 5 months ago
$1 billion hangover is right. I went to an Olympic event yesterday (lucky for me, I didn't pay a cent) and happened to hear some people behind me talking. They were from Nova Scotia, the person said "We're never going to do this again, so we're spending like there's no tomorrow, really racking up the credit card! But it's a once in a lifetime opportunity, so why not?" Party on dudes! Enjoy it while you don't have to think about the bills to come! My guess is 3 months down the road we'll be wondering if it was all really… Read more »
realpaul
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realpaul
6 years 5 months ago
A Russian newspaper describes Vanshittydiaper this way " Vancouver, he writes, “is mutton dressed as lamb. Take off the outer veneer and the stench is horrific.” I couldn't agree more. http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Vancouver+hold+O… This sorry event has been taped together with a last minute splurge of ad dollars through a tightly controlled media ( its hard to say and Vantampax in the same sentence without laughing), a policy of all night booze fueled idiocy promoted by the government by keeping the liqour stores open all night so that the drunks can fill up the camera space. I have watched with great amusement… Read more »
realpaul
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realpaul
6 years 5 months ago

should say "its hard to say MEDIA and Vantampax in the same sentence

best_place_on_meth
Guest
best_place_on_meth
6 years 5 months ago

US recovery losing momentum?

I haven't seen any recovery at all, other than the fake one fueled by government programs using borrowed money from China.

2010/11/12 is going to be hell on America and we're too close for comfort.

Vansanity
Guest
Vansanity
6 years 5 months ago
@pricedoutfornow: Buddy, I know tons of people doing exactly that! They're partying hard and the common theme amongst them is that they're not going to worry about what their credit card statement looks like until its all over! It should be interesting to see the debt figures come up a few months from now. Also, I know someone who recently bought a home and is now $700k (+) in debt. His family income is somewhere around $100-125k per year. Couple kids, $3,000-$4,000 per month on house costs. Financial stress, mental stress, physical stress… sounds like a great plan. I should… Read more »
space889
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space889
6 years 5 months ago
@vreaa: While I certainly feel the sentimental feelings the writer has for his old neighborhood and how he wish things don't change so much and in his view for the worse, I must say I don't feel quite the same way. I had recently gone back to my first home in Mount Pleasant when I came as an immigrant back in 1989 and lived there for about 10 years. There has been a lot of changes to the neighborhood and blocks where I don't recognize where I am. There have been large heritage style houses torn down and rebuild as… Read more »
patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago

@realpaul:

A Russian newspaper describes Vanshittydiaper this way

” Vancouver, he writes, “is mutton dressed as lamb. Take off the outer veneer and the stench is horrific.”

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Ever been to Sochi?

You may also be cynical about the First Nations chiefs sitting with Gordo, but at least we're not killing off the local aboriginals because they want self government, like they are.

Clarke
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Clarke
6 years 5 months ago

"My guess is 3 months down the road we’ll be wondering if it was all really worth it."

The Olympics is a two week party that will be followed by 20 year ordeal to pay off the debt.

MrBear
Member
MrBear
6 years 5 months ago

@realpaul: Look, getting the Olympics wasn't the smartest thing Vancouver has ever done. The financial hangover will really suck, we all know that.

But while the Olympics is here I refuse to just wallow in negativity and complain about everything. You don't have to be a knee-jerk wet blanket just because you're bearish on Vancouver real estate prices. Get outside and enjoy yourself a little, you're paying for it either way.

Supraboy
Guest
Supraboy
6 years 5 months ago

@Porky Pig:

"Why do people rush in to buy, when they know that the fundamentals will get much worse soon and will likely result in lower prices? Makes no sense"

How do you know the fundamentals will get much worse? If you knew all this, why don't you short the markets with all your money?

Supraboy
Guest
Supraboy
6 years 5 months ago

@MrBear:

Today isn't the first day you're here I hope. These bears here have been bitter since the olympics were announced. They're just going to bury their heads into the ground and pretend nothing's happening outside. Don't worry about them. Those who are out and enjoying the games know how to have a good time.

Gordon C.
Guest
Gordon C.
6 years 5 months ago

Do the establishments have a sign outside, saying that they add 18% gratuities to your bill?

patriotz
Member
6 years 5 months ago
@Supraboy: If you knew all this, why don’t you short the markets with all your money? Wish I could. You cannot of course take a short position in RE itself. Also there really aren't any publicly traded companies that would take a direct hit from the RE bust. The banks have already been bailed out and I don't think there are any significant players in the RE business which are publicly traded. Nor do I think shorting REIT's is a good strategy as they invest in multi-unit rentals and commercial properties, not individually titled properties at ridiculous prices. There's a… Read more »
Drachen
Member
6 years 5 months ago
Not every bear is anti Olympics. I think it will have a net negative impact on Vancouver but that doesn't stop me from enjoying it. I sometimes wonder if the anti-Olympics voices here are here because they're just generally 'anti'-something, now they're anti-real estate and anti-Olympics in a few years they'll find something else to complain about. For my part I try not to be anti, I am pro-bubble thesis and pro-real estate crash to normalize prices (it has to happen eventually and the sooner it comes the less damage it will do). Those positions are just supported by sound… Read more »
Loud Speaker
Guest
Loud Speaker
6 years 5 months ago

Fan favourite Jon Montgomery tells the talk queen he's from the 'greatest place on Earth.' You Gotta Be Here.

Keep the spirit going folks- lots of medals in decades to come.

SD92129
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SD92129
6 years 5 months ago
@Clarke: 20 years? its always nice to have optimistic people around: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/story/2006/12/1… on the upside is that maybe we will recover more money and more quickly by selling some of the althlete's village compared to hosting the Expos and various tradeshows in the Big Owe. Get ready for taxes and potholes. PQ has almost double our GDP and more smokers (cigarette taxes). According to the media, the worldwide recession/depression is over and we can start getting lots of money for our lumber, ores, gas and other resources. I like the olympics, I just prefer someone else to host.
VanRant
Member
VanRant
6 years 5 months ago

The next wave of foreclosure is about to hit the US with the Option Arm and Alt A coming very soon. Its gonna be bigger than the Subprime! Hang on for a rough ride. Canada is next.

Disbelief
Guest
Disbelief
6 years 5 months ago

RE Sales in the US are down for the last three straight months they will need a rise in employment to see some recovery in the sector. Not likely for some time.

best_place_on_meth
Guest
best_place_on_meth
6 years 5 months ago

@MrBear:

Berlin, 1933:

Well, looks like the Nazis are here. No point complaining, may as well just enjoy it.

At least we get to wave our flags and do lots of cheering.

I hear they throw some good parties.

Vancouver, 2010:

Well, looks like the Olympics are here. No point complaining, may as well just enjoy it.

At least we get to wave our flags and do lots of cheering.

I hear they throw some good parties.

LordHuggington
Guest
LordHuggington
6 years 5 months ago
Has anyone been keeping tabs on which restaurants are doing this automatic tipping stuff? I'd just assume not go to those places anymore if they're pulling something like that. If people working at those places want more money, they should ask their bosses for a raise, and not expect customers to subsidize their wages. The majority of the time all the waiters do at restaurants I go to is ask what I want, take the order to the kitchen, bring the food when it's ready, do the requisite "Is everything OK?" routine a few minutes later, and eventually bring the… Read more »
No Longer Looking
Member
No Longer Looking
6 years 5 months ago
@space889: "Is it really better to live in a 50 years well build and well maintained small house than to live in a well build new and likely larger building using all the advances we had in the last 50 year?" If only that were the case. Larger, yes, but the new houses are FUGLY and often poorly built. The ugliest houses were built in the 80s and 90s. But the ones built in the last ten years are still not much too look at (other than a few custom houses in wealthy neighbourhoods). Why is it that we can't… Read more »
SD92129
Guest
SD92129
6 years 5 months ago
Interest Rates and Alt-A are not as big as the other concerns. Rates in the US have been as low as ever at that is the plan. With bad economic numbers to come, pressure to hike rates will be lower unless they can no longer keep the bond rates down (as upward pressure is building there). definitely downward pressure on the USD. Unemployment effects will be relevant. Alt-A is a no doc loan so if you still have your job, it should be business as usual. Option ARM will be awful. The negative amortization plus the requirement to now start… Read more »
vreaa
Member
6 years 5 months ago

@space889: Thanks for your comment. Almost needless to say, I'll archive it. First by referencing it in the comments at VREAA, second by headlining it after the w/e. Hope that's okay with you.

best_place_on_meth
Guest
best_place_on_meth
6 years 5 months ago

@patriotz:

>>>Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Ever been to Sochi?<<<

Even Russian chimps can't handle the depression of being there.

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/reuters/100226/odds/od

LordHuggington
Guest
LordHuggington
6 years 5 months ago
@No Longer Looking: Yeah, this frustrates me as well. When the crash inevitably comes I wish there were some new constructions that I could feel confident in putting some money on, but this city (region, actually) has such a terrible track record with new buildings. So many towers and smaller walk ups get a tarp thrown over them after a few years because they were built so badly, and I haven't heard anything good about new houses either. Moreover, the architecture is so boring. I actually enjoy reading some of the architecture magazines out there, and think what they're showcasing… Read more »
No Longer Looking
Member
No Longer Looking
6 years 5 months ago

@LordHuggington: "Waiters could just be eliminated from the picture in most cases by putting a small touch screen monitor on the table where customers pick their meals, confirm their choices, and it’s electronically sent to the kitchen."

Or just have a cafeteria-style restaurant. Some people like the middle-man. I don't totally understand it, other than for fine dining, but its more of a cultural thing.

realpaul
Guest
realpaul
6 years 5 months ago
#19 McBear I have to avoid the stumbling drunks and other losers in the downtown street everyday, if thats what you mean by 'getting out and enjoying myself'. It's amusing how many people are making total asses of themselves. Sorry I don't get the whole 'drunk thing'. As I said its funny to see the usually girlish policemen suddenly NOT using the taser on the innocent when under every other circumstance outside the Olympics we would have our lives in jeopardy by the application of this killing machine in the hands of these half wit yokels from BushBrain Saskatchewan and… Read more »
space889
Guest
space889
6 years 5 months ago
@No Longer Looking: I guess that really depends on your perception. To me the Vancouver Specials are split around 50% average, 30% bad/horrible looking, 20% very nice looking. What you or I consider to be a nice charming house might be a total fugly house to someone else, or a sign of everything that's wrong with modern rampant consumerism. Looking around my current neighborhood of Fairview (Cambie to Oak, 16th Ave to 33rd), I find most of the Vancouver Special or new big houses are not horrible to look at. Nothing spectular that makes me want to go wow but… Read more »
space889
Guest
space889
6 years 5 months ago

@vreaa: The honor is all mine vreaa! 🙂 I've always enjoyed your archives and think you are doing a valuable service! Glad to be able to finally be part of it 🙂

oneangryslav2
Guest
oneangryslav2
6 years 5 months ago
@LordHuggington: "Waiters could just be eliminated from the picture in most cases by putting a small touch screen monitor on the table where customers pick their meals, confirm their choices, and it’s electronically sent to the kitchen. The only time we’d need a staff member is for bringing the food to the table. Even the monitor could print out the receipt, and we pay on the way out. Who needs to pay tips for that? Wait staff at most restaurants do so little, I can’t see a reason to give them a tip. They’re just middlemen between the customer and… Read more »
space889
Guest
space889
6 years 5 months ago
@LordHuggington: Funny you should say that because I just read that free mag – Metro Vancouver Condo Guide – special Edition: Invest in Metro Vancouver – that is free and comes with the New Home Buyers Guide that's available at most skytrain stations. In this special edition guide, they had a SFU prof(?) who is supposedly an expert on building architecture who is raving about how architects all over the world are just raving about the unique architecture style called "Vancouverism", how we are leading the world and the envy of architects all over due to our unique, varied styles… Read more »
Ann Ong
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Ann Ong
6 years 5 months ago

@Porky Pig: CRA must be thrilled there's a papertrail for all this bonus income though 😉

Anonymus
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Anonymus
6 years 5 months ago

@patriotz

"You may also be cynical about the First Nations chiefs sitting with Gordo, but at least we’re not killing off the local aboriginals because they want self government, like they are."

But you have murder them nearly all 300 years ago so there was nobody left to kill. Typical american ignorance. learn your history first. And it is not that Canada is bringing candies to poor Afghan's kids. we are pretty much on a murder mission with the taxpayers dollars. I have not seen you complaining about that.

Vancouver Girl
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Vancouver Girl
6 years 5 months ago

California is riskier than Greece.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financetopics/

Joe
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Joe
6 years 5 months ago

"being anti-Olympics is a purely emotional stance".

I disagree. The olympic hype was the single strongest factor that fueled the wild real estate speculation in the last 5 years. As a result, a decent home will cost me $500,000 more and that can be attributed to the olympics. The games effectively reduced my personal wealth by half a million dollars. I don't see how my anti-olimpic stance can be considered purely emotional.

VanRant
Member
VanRant
6 years 5 months ago

@Joe: Its very true and not only had it cost me money, it had cost me my marriage as I could not buy a house to shelter my family. 2 more days left for the Olympics, tic toc.

Chilled
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Chilled
6 years 5 months ago

Tipping?

Hey, I'll give you a tip: don't fry bacon with your shirt off!

Chilled
Guest
Chilled
6 years 5 months ago

@Vansanity:

15

X Vansanity Says:

I’m so happy I’m not living “house poor”. We’re planning our vacations for the year, looking at 4-6 weeks away, Europe, Hawaii and Jamaica, few trips to Vegas in between to maintain the tans. It’s really rough being a renter.

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Your post is only deserved of a D

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…for the vitamin D, of course! LOL

ReplyCurrent

Chilled
Guest
Chilled
6 years 5 months ago

@LordHuggington:

@30 George? George Jetson?!?!

bestplaceonmeth
Guest
bestplaceonmeth
6 years 5 months ago

~IN LUONGO WE TRUST~

Not so sure about the rest of the team though.

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