MoneyWeek on the Housing Bubble

Another day, another article on the housing bubble. This is from MoneyWeek Magazine: Cash in as yet another housing bubble bursts.

The average borrowing burden of Canadian families now stands at 153% of disposable incomes, according to Statistics Canada. To put that in context, that’s almost as much debt as US households had taken on at the peak of their own housing bubble.

In other words, the warning signs are everywhere. Canada’s housing market is plagued by “overvaluation, speculation and over supply”, says Merrill Lynch. The Economist conducts a survey that compares house prices with the rents that property owners can charge. On this basis, Canadian residential property is overvalued by more than 70%. Even the central bank admits there’s a problem.

Read the full article here.

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YLTN @ Work
YLTN @ Work
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAMEe: lots of new restaurants in gastown cause the kitchens in the Woodwards building are too small to use, ha ha ha

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@WFT?: "Other parties worry about other things like the good of the nation, in addition to winning."

OMG! Do you really believe that? Just because any particular party in power doesn't subscribe to your particular version of what's good for the nation, somehow they're not acting according to their own particular version of what's good for the nation – they're only trying to get re-elected?

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAME: "For example, on Robson street between Granville and Bute, how many non-chain restaurants can you think of?"

A restaurant could not survive on Robson in this area even if packed 100% The rent is too high. The chains are probably still there because they have an old lease at a lower rate. They will move too at some point when the lease expires.

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@WFT?: "Other parties worry about other things like the good of the nation, in addition to winning." Yes sure. I don't see your federal Liberals or NDP speaking out against the housing bubble or policies that support it. Either they are too dumb to understand what is going on or they are not doing what is good for the nation. It is the NPDs responsibly as the opposition to speak out against bad policy is it not? Not a peep from them on this but they have no issue opposing every other policy. Why are they not calling for higher down payments and tighter CMHC policies? They are just as much to blame with their silence and would do no different if in power. Speaking of doing things for the good of the nation look no further than the Federal… Read more »

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@patriotz: "As if their own strategy of inducing a national housing and consumer debt bubble"

The Liberals induced it. The Cons kept it going.

Devore
Devore
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAME:

innocense and greed are mutually exclusive

How so? Greed IS innocence, in the sense that innocence = hoocoodanode. Maybe you should expand on your assertion. It is humans' unique ability to be rational, ignore their base emotions and instincts, and consciously undertake a course of action.

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAME:

How many new restaurants can you think of in Gastown?

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

When you look at Vancouver, there is no doubt that people are stretched to the max. For example, on Robson street between Granville and Bute, how many non-chain restaurants can you think of? When people need to cut back on expenses, dining out would be among the first. Every time I come back from vacation at various places, I am shocked to realize again and again how stale/dead Robson street has become over the years. It seems that the only thing a lot of people can afford these days are lattes, cheap sushi, burgers, and pizza (not a good kind).

vangrl
vangrl
8 years ago

oh ya, great time to jump in, and "beef up" your portfolio

http://www.canadianrealestatemagazine.ca/news/ite

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley
8 years ago

innocense and greed are mutually exclusive

Maybe. But the fear of getting priced out forever from listening to the 'professionals', the CREA and the CMHC isn't. Many people who bought at stupid prices are in no way greedy.

Troll
Troll
8 years ago

@WFT?:

Other parties worry about other things like the good of the nation, in addition to winning.

I find political rhetoric tiring and useless, but that one made me laugh. Thanks, keep up the good work!

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@Patiently Waiting: "Latest “mysterious” fire"

Lots of red flags with that one.

Devore
Devore
8 years ago

@nuxfan:

Haven’t monthly region-wide averages been skewed by a few biggies for most of the past year?

They have, but not nearly as much as you might think. The recent spate of high price sales is unusual, particularly relative to the volume of sales in lower segments. Regardless, unless there are something like 95th percentile stats available, we should keep comparing like to like, removing outlier sales in the notes on the margin.

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

innocense and greed are mutually exclusive

WFT?
WFT?
8 years ago

The Canadian Housing Bubble even made the front page in a relatively obscure place like Bangor, Maine.

http://www.greaterfool.ca/

Devore
Devore
8 years ago

@patriotz:

The real innocent victims are the people who lost their industrial jobs (e.g. the truck factory) or simply left because they couldn’t make ends meet. In other words, its the bubble that really has innocent victims, not the bust.

Always something that escapes the flagwaivers and cheerleaders. The damage is done during the bubble, as resources are misallocated towards the bubble activities, and a larger and larger share of the economy depends on it.

Devore
Devore
8 years ago

@N:

I realize that this is just a preemptive excuse, but what does it say about the market in this city, if the claim can be made that a few sales here skewed the figures for the whole country?

Klump didn't see anything being skewed in 1st half of 2011 when prices were going up. Metrics always change to suit agenda.

WFT?
WFT?
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAME:

Jeez learn to read. Take lessons along with Troll. Patriotz said that "only thing" the cons worried about was winning. Other parties worry about other things like the good of the nation, in addition to winning.

Our "stellar" bank regulation that is the envy of the world was a Liberal creation. The cons, did not worry about economic health so they blew the biggest RE bubble in Canadian history. They did that stunningly irresponsible thing because the "only thing" they cared about was winning. They cared about nothing else.

Eddie
Eddie
8 years ago

@DEFAULT NAME: Yup, if anything the innocent victims are the taxpaying renters who were smart enough to not buy on the way up.

But they will sure be paying their share on the way down when the Feds start to bail out the sinking ship.

rp1
rp1
8 years ago

#10 @N: "I realize that this is just a preemptive excuse, but what does it say about the market in this city, if the claim can be made that a few sales here skewed the figures for the whole country?"

It says that these people never do math. Ever.

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@Guy Smiley: "Unfortunate though that many innocent victims will end up collateral damage."

There are no 'innocent victims' in any of this. Everyone had/has a choice.

ZRH2YVR
ZRH2YVR
8 years ago

#22 nuxfan good question – I do agree. However, if you go back over the past 36 weeks, there were not really any transactions over $5 million. So when looking at the overall trends leading into January, and then you suddenly have $20 million sale in a period of few unit sales, you get a magnified skewing effect. High $ single transaction in slow volume period makes the absolute average skewed. Wben I track this, I don't take it out when looking at actual data but I do take it out just to see what the trend is without as I would say individual transactions over $10 million are not really part of the overall market. When the numbers come out for this month, the average on SFH will be higher than January but we may see another 1% fall… Read more »

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

@pricedoutfornow: "More foreclosures will come, I’m sure of it. It’s going to be very very sad."

No it's not sad! They made their choice – they need to get over the repercussions! The downside of gambling is that sometimes, more often than not, there's a loss; people need to get over the loss part – or don't gamble.

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley
8 years ago

@N

I suspect you're right on that. Looking at this CREA graph of natiional prices, even with a mild increase that YOY figure is likely to go negative very soon, probably in the next report.

oneangryslav2
oneangryslav2
8 years ago

@N: You're right. It is possible to track the year-over-year average (a single data point) for as long as you want.

@Makaya: I'm with Ash over Neumann on this one.

Neumann is worried the number of foreclosures will bring the overall market down, hurting anyone who wants to sell their home.

The myopia is startling. What about those looking to buy?!? Will lower prices not help them?