drip, drip, drip

Like that battery-marketing bunny, the leaky condo crisis keeps going and going.

Owners in a 71-unit building in Cloverdale say their builder repaired some leak problems a few years ago. At the time, the work was covered by warranty.

But recent testing found moisture in the building’s walls, and homeowners learned that they would be hit with a bill of about $45,000.

For some owners, that was too much to handle, and they just walked away. Eight owners have yet to come up with the necessary cash.

“They’re going to be foreclosing. I have until the end of December to come up with any monies,” owner Shirley Hall said. “I guess I have to walk away from it.”

The building was built in the 90s, at the height of the leaky condo crisis. For 11 years, the province gave interest-free loans to those facing massive repair bills.

A 2008 report done for the government said that after 2012, anywhere from 14,000 to 24,000 leaky condos would still near repairs, and that the demand for loans would be high until 2017.

..but as you all know, that interest free leaky condo repair loan program has been axed.  Housing minister Rich Coleman suggests taking out equity to pay for repairs saying “Even seniors can get reverse mortgages — they’re pretty economical”.

Hat-tip to Bizznitch for the link.

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patriotz
10 years ago

@fixie guy:

The only reasonable expectation a buyer has with relation to RE is that the property is not subject to extraordinary hazards like being a former grow op/drug lab, UFFI, site contamination, severe structural problems, etc. But as far as ordinary maintenance issues go it's caveat emptor.

If you know of any judgments in BC that have said otherwise, please share them with us.

fixie guy
fixie guy
10 years ago

patriotz Says: "My point is that if something is not in the contract, and there is no statutory condition, there is no obligation to do something."

Your point is BS. Google "contract law" and "reasonable expectation", and turn off Fox.

jesse
10 years ago

@space889: "owever total costwise, I think the inspection department is the best setup. Off course whether it works properly or not is another matter."

I don't think it ever can. City inspectors are acting on behalf of their employers, the City. There will always be fundamental clashes between the City's and your best interests, even if the system works smoothly and it's legislated up the wazoo. I would still get advice from someone who is working for me directly or I get what I deserve.

patriotz
10 years ago

@Strataman:

Yes they are all registered P.Eng with the association, which to my knowledge has never seriously gone after or reprimanded any engineer that is part of a large consultant firm that works for major developers.

Oh they have, if the aggrieved party was important enough. Remember “Cave-In Foods”.

But don’t expect it for you.

Strataman
Strataman
10 years ago

213 "Just curious but is a project engineer an “actual engineer”…are they governed the same way as say a mechanical or structural engineer would be"

Yes they are all registered P.Eng with the association, which to my knowledge has never seriously gone after or reprimanded any engineer that is part of a large consultant firm that works for major developers. The association generally chases individual engineers who for whatever reason are not part of the "in crowd".

The professional association covering BC Engineering is a joke.

I have met several engineers from various specialties that have with drawn their services due to shoddy workmanship and have had there own Association of Professional Engineers black list THEM, NOT the ones doing the lousy work.

patriotz
10 years ago

@space889: as pointed out earlier, just because it’s not in the contract doesn’t mean you have the right to do something. My point is that if something is not in the contract, and there is no statutory condition, there is no obligation to do something. Contracts are primarily about obligations. A commits to obligations to B in return for B committing to obligations to A. There is an obligation in common law for a dwelling that's sold to be habitable at time of sale (unless specified otherwise), but that's about all. The onus is on the buyer to check out the property before sale, or to get the seller to commit to whatever obligations the buyer wants in the sales contract. And if the seller won't commit, there's no sale. And comparing a contract for delivery of a tradable asset… Read more »

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

off topic ( but I bet this will fall into the leaky bucket in a few years )

OV rental prices all over the place
http://vancouver.en.craigslist.ca/search/apa?quer

Soooo Tired
Soooo Tired
10 years ago

hahaha bears…

wait for the summer they said…

wait for the HST to kick in, for the Olympics to be over, wait for interest rates to rise..

well, the big show is over, the HST is in, and the bank is increasing rates, ever so slowly…

and yet still a balanced 50% sell list ratio…

oh bears, you will be waiting another decade for your dream crash

fixie guy
fixie guy
10 years ago

It's not brain surgery: http://www.uaw.org/page/wages-and-labor-costs The claim workers 'get more in benefits' than they get in base wages is tales for dummies. From the same page: "In addition to regular hourly pay, the labor cost figures cited by the companies include other expenses associated with having a person on payroll. This includes overtime, shift premiums and the costs of negotiated benefits such as holidays, vacations, health care, pensions and education and training. It also includes statutory costs, which employers are required to pay by law, such as federal contributions for Social Security and Medicare, and state payments to workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance funds. It takes big cajones to claim workers are 'compensated' the training required to do company designed tasks. I don't know how many here have worked the line like me (many, many years ago) but you don't… Read more »

Jimmy
Jimmy
10 years ago

Not sure about the chargeout rate, but the article says autoworker gets $77.75 per hour:

"GM has calculated that a Canadian autoworker gets $77.75 an hour, compared with $47.50 an hour for workers at the Japanese plants in the U.S, the Globe and Mail reported Friday. Closing the gap is very important, a company spokesman told the paper."

buff_butler
buff_butler
10 years ago

@Jimmy:

From the article:

"GM has calculated that a Canadian autoworker gets $77.75 an hour"

Two points:

1. That 77.75 is their "charge out rate" This is equivalent to what a contractor would get paid if directly (most have to go through an intermediary) – so it includes benifits, pension, union management and possibly HR. If I had to guess take home is probably only ~30/hr.

2. "GM calculated"; this is a company in distress 😛 Similar to Steve Jobs throwing a few other phone companies under the bus in a recent press conference about the iPhone4.

space889
10 years ago

@patriotz: as pointed out earlier, just because it's not in the contract doesn't mean you have the right to do something.

Simple analogy, your employment contract probably doesn't have a clause saying you can only work a maximum number of hours per day or per week, or that the employer can prevent you from leaving the company premise until the job is finished. Does that mean come some project crunch time, your employer can demand that you work 24/7 in the office until the job is done and that you are not allowed to go home?

You might say ok then I exercise my right to quit. But if your right to quit on the spot isn't in the contract then wouldn't the employer refuse your resignation and sue you for economic loss for failing to work?

Jimmy
Jimmy
10 years ago

This article is dated 2008. Back then, GM claims that it was paying its workers $77.75 per hour in wages plus benefits (although the union disputes that number….even if it's 10% lower, it's still close to $70 per hour.) Not sure what the wages & benefits are now post GM's bankruptcy.

http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2008/04/18/gm-caw.h

GM wage comparison misses mark, CAW head says

Newcomer
Newcomer
10 years ago

@chip:

Dude, are you illiterate or something? Individual workers did not receive that much compensation. It is the total amount paid out to all currently employed and retired workers, divided by the number of currently employed workers. To say they are *making* $70/hour is to misunderstand (or to lie).

space889
10 years ago

@jesse: This sounds awefully like the job of the inspection department at city government! Which also can do the job at a cheaper cost and easier way than having every buyer paying for a full time engineer inspecting the constructions by themselves. I'm sure there are engineering firm who would love this as they can make a lot more money this way. However total costwise, I think the inspection department is the best setup. Off course whether it works properly or not is another matter.

patriotz
10 years ago

@chip:

The union guys ARE making $70 an hour and GM is paying them $70 an hour.

No they're not. Quit lying. There are people on this board who understand finance and you're not going to BS them.

patriotz
10 years ago

@vibe:

I’m not talking about people getting upset about floor plans being changed. Do the contracts have a liability waiver in regards to leaking buildings?

The first property I bought in Vancouver had a leaky roof. I had to fix it myself. There is no statutory condition in RE contracts that the property can’t leak. If the buyer wants redress, it has to be in the contract.

chip
chip
10 years ago

@oneangryslav2: “…and handed the company to union workers making over $70 an hour You’re either obtuse (which I doubt) or being exceedingly disingenuous. There is a clear substantive (and not only semantic) difference between the statement that you did make–in which the worker is the subject–and the statement you claim to have made–in which GM is the subject.” Whoa, guy. Who is being obtuse? The union guys ARE making $70 an hour and GM is paying them $70 an hour. Whether it’s in the form of salary, health insurance, pension payouts or bushels of wheat is totally immaterial to the point that the govt DID hand the company over to workers who receive this amount in compensation. You can twist yourself up into a confused knot over the real meaning of ‘pay’ or ‘make’ but those costs are real. GM… Read more »

jesse
10 years ago

@realpaul: “I’m a ‘Occams razor’ guy and assume that the ‘invisible hand’ will raise up”

I thought Occam’s Razor was that the BoC were being run by brood of reverse vampires.

Never change, realpaul, no matter what they try to slip into your soup.

realpaul
realpaul
10 years ago

Patriotz, the governments game plan is to turn the clock back by deleveraging all asset classes, including the cost of government ie: wages and benefits also RE and savings. Until then they will have to keep a lid on the market forces…..who will win, the market or the manipulators? I’m a ‘Occams razor’ guy and assume that the ‘invisible hand’ will raise up and slap the brittle untruth into the next dimension. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam's_razor Behind the scenes: “Roubini Global Economics submits that “Our core scenario is thus that once national balance sheets are repaired through a protracted and gradual deleveraging of household and public sectors (following the relatively rapid deleveraging of the financial sector, particularly in the United States), excessive deflation and inflation fears will [both] subside. There are certainly financial storm clouds to [still] worry about—not least because of sovereign… Read more »

realpaul
realpaul
10 years ago

#221 Jimmy, I like where the article alludes to 'savings' in the 'six figure range'. Bwahahahahahahahahahaha. Savings are discounts on established pricing. The RE market in the OK was never anything buy cheap money chewed up into smoke and blown up some fools ass. When the bottom is eventually established ( and it isn't clear that its even close to a bottom by the look of the growing inventory and cratering prices) then you can bargain for a deal, right now its called 'catching a falling knife'. Nortel was a screaming buy at $60 after it fell 50% and fools rushed in with their hair on fire. Nortel is worth zero today. Thats what can happen to bargain hunters in a falling market.

realpaul
realpaul
10 years ago

#216 P. what would be interesting is to find out how many billions the CDN governement is spending anually to keep the speculators( like Soros and myself) out of that market. Switzerland recently admitted to going through 14 billion so far to play the game. Switzerland has far deeper pockets than Canada so I have to assume that we will find out sooner than later what the true nature of our ‘bond’ is really worth. The international ‘stimulation game’ has run its course. Debt exceeds GDP in every western country, only the governments willingness to play fast and loose with public debt is keeping the facade shaking but upright. It is indeed an interesting call as to when our government can’t afford to buy its own paper. When that wall is hit, the change between government to private capital will… Read more »

chilled
chilled
10 years ago

@Best place on meth:

Best place on meth Says:

July 21st, 2010 at 4:25 pm

Speaking of leaks, if you thought the Gulf oil spill was bad…

++++++++

I'm grateful the slideshow skipped the poor oily fella being scrubbed down buy people in zoot suits. One holding him down, another with his hands around the fellas beak, a third with a turkey baster hydrating and the last rescue worker with a soapy sponge.

Kosta
Kosta
10 years ago

@Jimmy:

Rich foreigners don't have time now for Okanagan they buy a big time at the Costco, Superstore and Walmart. I buy 3 shirts my husbah buy 3 shirts.

vibe
vibe
10 years ago

patriotz, “Pre-sale buyers are entitled to whatever level of redress is given to them in a freely agreed upon contract, just like anyone else.”

I’m not talking about people getting upset about floor plans being changed. Do the contracts have a liability waiver in regards to leaking buildings? I doubt it. Either way, having a contract doesn’t mean you can break the law. If the government wants to ensure through building codes that all condos are built to a certain standard then the contracts have nothing to do with it. If the government wants to hold developers accountable for these issues then they can.