Alternatives to Vancouver?

I’m finding myself less interested in living in Vancouver and I’m curious about the options – are any of you reading this site from outside Vancouver? I’d be interested in opinions, both pro and con of other cities and towns.

I’ve lived in Vancouver for my whole life. I’m in my early 30s and have a young family. I have a reasonable income that is portable. I currently rent in Point Grey, I like the proximity to shops and beaches here but would love to find a place that was brighter in the winter, even if it’s a bit colder. I’m just not a big fan of the rainshadow and I don’t care about the mountains that bring the rainshadow so proximity to mountains is unimportant.

I would also love to find somewhere that has less of a junky/ homeless problem. Even here on the westside it seems like the homeless population has doubled in the last couple of years.

Any ideas of good places for a young family to live?

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"I like the proximity to shops and beaches here but would love to find a place that was brighter in the winter, even if it’s a bit colder."

A bit colder! You are aware you live in Canada aren't you? Everywhere on the west coast is rainforest and you don't have to go much further east, even still in BC, to get a lot colder than "a bit" in winter.


@66 patriotz Says:

And just across the border $140K gets you this:

<a href="…..o-lightbox” target=”_blank”>…..o-lightbox

Seriously? That's a double wide!


@jesse: What???? Of course there is massive fraud being perpetuated!

1) The whole system of zero reserves and unlimited money creation is fradulent

2) Even if we accept the system as "normal", tier 2 capital is often complete bullshit (check the rules again). In theory it is more difficult to get creative with tier 1, but considering the creative accounting being used in the past years, it is also open to manipulation.

Why do you think is the whole World banking system in such a deep shit? Why does it need emergency rates, continuous bailouts and constant rule bending?


@gordholio: …Where is Cam Good?…

I wonder if he's back to driving a cab?


@bubbly: "Canada has no reserve requirements and the only limitation on banks are capital requirements where the banks can get somewhat creative."

They can get a bit creative but there are practical limits mandated by OSFI. Readers shouldn't draw the conclusion that it's necessarily open season for accounting trickery and there's some massive fraud being perpetuated.


@jesse: i agree with you, which is why I wrote "s/he suggested…"


Removing deposits from Canadian banks doesn't have much effect on their lending ability. Canada has no reserve requirements and the only limitation on banks are capital requirements where the banks can get somewhat creative.

Li Kai Shing


Grow Opp addresses?

Why not simply take entire white (brown?)pages from Surrey ?


@onenangryslav2: "s/he was effectively taking $10 million out of banks’ ability to lend money for mortgages"

But the ironic thing he wasn't. Queue tinfoil hat money=debt conspiracy theorists. Code word is "confluence".


@Girlbear: I don't think it was $10 million. S/he made a remark about the banks using 30:1 leverage, and using that as a basis suggested that by moving his/her money out of the banks, s/he was effectively taking $10 million out of banks' ability to lend money for mortgages. 10,000,000/30=$333,333.


New post


@Payback: Hold on. You waited until now to move $10M out of the bank to a "boutique investment fund"???? One that employs a "contrarion" method??? Just now you are moving the money???

If your advisor is telling you to do this just now, you have a terrible advisor. Sorry to say.


You don't have to go far. Try Kamloops for example.


Oops, meant Grow-Ops

This is link to BC's Grow-ops sites:


To any offshore investor,

You do realize what a recession in the US brings on? Sooner or later there is a drop in oil and commodity prices due to demand.Unfortunate our dollar is pegged to oil and commodities and if the recession gets worse in the US our currency will drop accordingly.

If your investing partly because of our high dollar you better re-evaluate your investments. Otherwise your real-estate return will have a double whammy due to the losses your going to realize from a deflating housing bubble and our lower dollar.

Hope you enjoyed the ride up because spike belts are installed on the ride down. It's not only going to be bumpy but also painful!


[RCMP Launches Grow-Up House Address Registry]

Sept 22, 2011

The RCMP is now publishing online the addresses of homes where marijuana grow-ops and other drug production operations were found.

The new page on the RCMP's website is part of a stepped up effort by the Mounties to target marijuana grow-ops and the organized crime gangs behind them.

The Marijuana Grow Initiative was launched Wednesday and the RCMP says it complements its National Anti-Drug Strategy. Split up by province, the website lists the addresses where search warrants were executed and lists how many marijuana plants were discovered and when. The database also covers clandestine drug labs that were found in homes.

The page also includes links to the websites of local police services in Ottawa, London and Winnipeg. They also list addresses in their cities where search warrants were executed.


This crash could be the straw the breaks Van RE's back. In addition to straining active and prospective Van RE investors, A weakening $CDN will cause inflation to rise, and open the door for rate hikes. C was never going to raise rates while our $ was strong.


I lived in Richmond for 5 years renting an apartment waiting for housing prices to drop. My cash can only afford a 10-20 year old mini-townhouse in Burnaby, Coquitlam or Richmond. My wife have difficulty looking for a job as accountant so we left for Toronto last year. Glad we did. I bought a brand new single detached brick house in Markham with a yard of my own for kid's play without mortgage last year. My wife found a job a week after she applied thru internet and is now working 2x a week at home. Summer was great and sunny most of the time. Not the hazy, cold rainy stuff like in Vancouver even during summer. I don't have to pay 104 or 114 dollars per month for health premiums and food items like fruits, vegetables, bread are a… Read more »


Post 123 was me. Forgot to log in.



"If banks really are capitalized at a 1:30 ratio, I just took out over 10 million that cannot be used to subsidize buyers."

First of all, banks' deposits aren't part of their capital. They are a liability of the bank. If you owed the bank money and defaulted, then that would decrease its capital.

Secondly, what happened to the money that you took out of your bank?


@Troll, "..Bullish case says people will take advantage of prolonged low rates and flee the basket case markets and pump more of their money into RE." I hate to use the tabooed phrase but I believe this time is different from 2009 when lowered interest rate reversed the decline in the local housing market. And the key difference in my opinion is that in 2009, the lower interest rate was coupled with surging stock prices and endless fiscal and monetary stimulas i.e. people in general felt the bottom was in, not to mention how the Olympics was going to transform the entire City. This time, however, the lower interest rate is coupled with collaping markets coupled with the increasing evidence of a slowing China and lack of stimulus from the gov. Low interet rate only helps the housing market if… Read more »


@Patiently Waiting: The farmer's market in Halifax moved out of the Brewery about a year ago. It was charming, but it was also getting insanely claustrophobic and it was tough to navigate. The city renovated an old building about a mile away. It has a "living wall (covered in plants). wind mills, solar power, the whole nine years. It's massive now! There is lots more space for vendors and walking, And it's *still* packed to capacity! It's really great. I really think the East Coast (and no I don't mean Toronto) is the last great undiscovered part of Canada in terms of quality of life. I hear Moncton's a really up and coming little town, too. After living in big cities for 15 years I have to say there comes a point where cities stop functioning effectively. I'll visit bigger… Read more »


Well, I just moved 85% of the net worth from the banks to a boutique investment firm that employs contrarian thinking and has double digit returns even during the 2008 collapse. I had several emails and calls from the bank manager and associates asking why I was moving, and suggesting that they could perform the same services. In short, I told him that I was tired of supporting loose lending practices by the banks and being penalized for being a prudent and financially responsible individual while banks reap record profits. I would much rather invest in bank shares and receive a dividend from those record profits than keep my money in their bank. If banks really are capitalized at a 1:30 ratio, I just took out over 10 million that cannot be used to subsidize buyers. Of course, that is… Read more »



"Bullish case says people will take advantage of prolonged low rates and flee the basket case markets and pump more of their money into RE."

That's assuming that a significant number of potential RE buyers can get money from selling stocks, or have money to buy RE that they might have used to buy stocks.

Very few households have any stock holdings outside of registered plans. And few households have significant holdings even in registered plans.

Every indication is that buyers of RE are getting their money from borrowing rather than from cash or from selling other assets. So I would say that the stock market just doesn't matter. I mean the stock market in itself – not the broader events that are driving it.


@Troll: "pump more of their money into RE" It should be pumping more of their money THROUGH RE. Because that's what it is, a transfer of cash for a title, not a one-way purchase. Maybe lower rates means more people will want to buy real estate but it looks like credit risk premiums are back, for now anyways, so I'm suspicious mortgage spreads are going to increase. The government of Canada has a huge choice to make if the world economy heads into a second recession — doubling down on real estate risks putting Canada over the top in terms of non-performing debt and that's bad news. The alternative may be more palatable — cool off asset prices and focus debt accumulation on non-residential projects. I think that's the direction the government should, and may be forced to, go, and… Read more »