Friday Free-for-all!

It’s that time of the week again, let’s do our regular end of the week news round up and open topic discussion thread. Here are a few links to kick off the chat:

British Columbians think prices are unreasonable and a good investment
British Columbians less likely to ever be mortgage free
Vancouver market coming off of boil
Prices in BC, more drops that increases
Time to limit foreign buying in Vancouver?
Plans for rental housing fall short
Full size virtual tour
Your grocery bill will keep rising
US foreclosure crisis about half over
Average American now must work two years beyond death

So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes here and see if you can do it without mentioning China. I dare you.

Have an excellent weekend!

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you are so smart, you could not survive vancouver and have to send packing. are you out there finding job or just sitting posting all day long? i wonder if any employers want to hire you as you moved around too much and being unstable.

fixie guy

Governments have been pumping real estate for 15 years now. Toronto bottomed in 1995 and immediately started rising again. If Mr. Financial Planner has 15 years experience, it would be the only world an expertise based on trend watching would know.



Scott Plaskett, a certified financial planner in Toronto, says he advises young singles to forge ahead with purchasing a home.

“They’re not getting married, so they should get on with their financial lives,” he says. “They have cash flow increasing and they can afford it, plus financially it makes tremendous sense.”

Makes financial sense? According to what metrics, Mr. "Financial Planner"? Or does it make sense simply because you "know" prices are going to keep going up?

And the great Toronto bust ended only 15 years ago. How soon we forget, or just get stupid.


IMHO the real story of the evening was COPE being shut out of council on what was otherwise a good night for the leftish. But that's the sort of thing that happens when you dump your most popular incumbent councilor from the ticket.


My idiot article for this week.… Look for the key phrases here and then think about implications. "Ms. Yan is one of a growing number of 20-somethings who are no longer waiting until they get married to purchase a home for the first time. She is part of a trend that adds an extra stage to the housing market." What we can deduce from this is that demand for house has been borrowed forward in recent years. “We call it mingles,” says Mr. Simpson, noting he often sees single women teaming up to get that first home. That is just sad. They better have an air tight joint venture agreement prepared by a lawyer. You know the sh!t will hit the fan when one gal wants to sell but the other two doesn't. "Much of the desire for homeownership… Read more »


As much as I dislike Robertson, I'm glad Anton didn't win.

Okay Gregor time to get those squatters out of our public spaces.



Michael Moore's mansion still doesn't hold a candle to a crackshack in 'Couver.

Patiently Waiting

Mayor Moonbeam and Vision did better than I thought. Congrats to them.

Blog favourite Garossino had a respectable finish with over 20,000 votes.


"The OV was started by Vision/Cope. Remember Larry?"

Millenium was awarded the contract in 2006, isn't it? You know, when Larry wasn't mayor anymore.


Sorry if someone already posted this. Mish calls for 75% drop in Vancouver's house prices. Lots of Americans wondering just what kind of drugs we're smoking up here.


Let's face it….we bears don't stand a chance…..even Mr Moore has succumed to granite and stainless….. 🙂 RTP

Luxury 99 per cent of Americans can only dream of…Michael Moore's stunning waterfront mansion revealed


@Yalie: You need to update your phone system's welcome message.

"This call may be recorded for quality assurance or training purposes, as well as ridicule on local blogs."



@patriotz: One thing that is ironic is how foreign ownership is only an issue in a very small part of the province. PEI has a very small province, which is a beautiful destination for rich Europeans and North Americans looking for a summer cottage. BC, OTOH does not have a ubiquitous foreign ownership problem; it's an issue concentrated in a small and affluent enclave of Vancouver and surrounds. The rest of the areas don't have this problem. Further in places like Saltspring Island or Kelowna, they are probably resorting to voodoo rituals to try to woo foreign buyers back. BC is not like Singapore, HK, or PEI. Maybe Vancouver is but BC is not. So trying to install foreign ownership using a provincial regulation change won't play well in all of the province. They would have to fashion foreign ownership… Read more »


@DEFAULT NAME: ….We are selling our souls here for a few bucks and making this city unliveable. …

I say: let them have it! Why anyone would want to buy anything in this water logged back woods dump is beyond me.


@DEFAULT NAME: ….let these places sit empty while real estate everywhere is selling. ….

I can't believe you're that drunk this early in the day.



"Remember when people are talking about foreign ownership what they really mean is Chinese immigrants."

Immigrants are foreigners? You sound like Tim Hudak.

Speak for yourself, but when I say foreign ownership, I mean people who are not legal residents of Canada, and I'm sure most everyone on this board means the same thing.


@patriotz: "what’s really funny (or sad) is that the city has no power at all to enact restrictions on foreign ownership or taxes on speculation anyway."

Yes, it may start getting more play on the provincial scene, only because those areas most affected are also the most "connected". But really this is just part of a grieving process that many west side denizens' children are unlikely to afford the neighbourhood their parents raised them in.



"China is really just another Syria, Libya or Iraq. They all used guns on peaceful demonstrators. The only difference is the UN isn’t cracking down on China. Think you can demostrate in China today? You can’t even google Tiananmen square. Ask those poor people who applied for a permit to demonstrate during the Olympics only to be arrested and sent for “reducation”"

Iraq has had several elections so not sure how they fit in. As for China, it's about the process. Syria and Libya have and had no process, just the totalitarian status quo, while China is undergoing a rapid, messy and perhaps even dangerous evolution.



So anything someone isn’t physically forced to do they “want” to do? Some people NEED a job so they go to places like Fort McMurray. Of course they have a choice not to go and can let their family starve. On the other hand people do not need nice weather.

No, people can work in lots of places, utilizing any number of their skills and experience. Yet, some still choose to work in FortMac. Obviously, not everyone has the same priorities as you do. It's not a binary choice: Ft Mac or starve; Vancouver = voluntary or everywhere else = need; BPoE or shithole.


For QA reasons, I sometimes listen in on customer support calls to our company. Here's one that came in this week: Customer Support: Hello, where are you calling from today? Caller: Las Vegas. Customer Support: How are things in Las Vegas? Caller: Not good. You know, the economy and all that. Customer Support: Oh! That's too bad. Things are tough lately. How can I help you today? Caller: I'd like to know if I can pay you guys with a check. Customer Support: Sorry, we don't accept checks for payment. Credit cards only. Caller: I can't pay with a credit card because it's maxed out. I'm having trouble with my mortgage. I paid 180 thousand and now it's only worth 60 thousand. Customer Support: I'm very sorry to hear that. I'm sure things will turn around for you. Caller: Well… Read more »


The realtor blog "Vancouver Reflections" has a post describing the Kits market in October as follows:

"A whopping 90% of the sales were under $500,000 and no sales above $740,000 – favouring lower end sellers."

That seems very promising to me … doing a simple search on, of the 210 Kits properties listed, only 30% are currently listed under $500k, and less than 50% are under $750,000.

If these numbers are correct then over half of the Kits properties for sale are priced above the highest sale last month.



"Wrong, provincial governments definitely have the power and PEI does so at present."

The federal government would not allow the province to tinker with immigration enough to impact anything. Remember when people are talking about foreign ownership what they really mean is Chinese immigrants.



"Some people NEED a job so they go to places like Fort McMurray."

Like people working elsewhere don't need a job? Every city has its own labour market which is attractive to some people and less attractive to others.

You can't single out one city and assume that everyone working there would be unable to find a job anywhere else. I'm sure that if you talked to people in Ft. Mc you'd find that most would be just as capable of finding work in, say, Vancouver as the average Vancouverite. They work in Ft. Mc because, of course, it pays more but as I said it's up to the individual to decide which amenities of a city are most attractive to them.



"The only people who could make this change would be the federal government."

Wrong, provincial governments definitely have the power and PEI does so at present.