Big Mortgage BLOW OUT SALE!

If you’re sharp-eyed you may have noticed some ‘special offers’ on 5 year fixed rates.  BMO kicked off another low-rate war by once again offering a rock-bottom 5 year fixed rate of 2.99% and a new 10 year fixed at 3.99%.

Nobody wants to be left out of fun like that, so TD, CIBC and Scotiabank quickly followed suit and started offering a 2.99% rate as well.

How are customers responding?

Techar said reaction to BMO’s previous offer was fantastic. “We saw an increase in volume almost immediately and it continued for the whole two-week period.”

These deals are temporary and expire in a few weeks.  You’d almost think something was about to happen March 29th, but who knows?  Rumour has it more changes are coming to insured mortgage rules in Canada whether it’s higher down payment requirements or shorter amortization terms.

So is this a deal too good to refuse, or a trap for the gullible?

If rates start to rise, could it be a benefit to buy a home now?  Would these ridiculously low rates offset a drop in prices at a higher interest rate?

What about in markets whose prices have fallen for the last few years?  There are many of these across BC – The Okanagan has seen prices collapse by more than 30% so already.

And what does Mark Carney have to say about all of this?

“Canadian household spending is expected to remain high relative to GDP as households add to their debt burden, which remains the biggest domestic risk,” Carney said Thursday as he held the bank’s trend-setting rate to 1 per cent.

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@Arthur Fonzarelli:

Arthur, just rent. And buy a diversified liquid portfolio, with a leaning towards US stocks.


@Ridge closing,

The supermarket next door(Mein Hardt) had already closed in 2011, citing that the building was being demolished for new units.

Elections BC then took over that space during the referendum.

I could see some truths in the Ridge closing down; what confuses me is why did Mein Hardt have to pull out during the 3rd year of their lease when they could have stayed for a 4th or 5th year.



I can’t help thinking these guys all know something is coming. It’s just too weird. Why the sudden good citizenship?

Arthur Fonzarelli

I forgot to say – I think we’re going to buy in Squamish in the next 1-2 years, if we can get 15-20% off list around $400-$450 for a decent detached. But I’m almost 40 and don’t own a primary residence. In 10 years I’ll still have it, and can rent it at a slight loss but above level as an investment for sure. Not as good as a good portfolio at 10% per year, but I don’t have much equity nor time/inclination to try to get that much. I don’t work in finance or real estate. But I make $100K a year. Almost completely mostly ethically… 🙂 Most don’t make that much. And if you have to drive 1hr each way each day with that kind of distance and gas, making this much, in this city, you know this… Read more »


@VMD: ANOTHER Bubble-warning will be released by TD Bank tomorrow (Friday): [Ottawa urged to take concrete steps to limit growing consumer debt] 3/15/2012 Mr. Alexander, chief economist at Toronto-Dominion Bank, says the government, which has tightened mortgage rules three times since 2008, should step into the housing market again and gradually roll out a series of steps to ensure the risk doesn’t get worse. “We want to ensure that the imbalance we have doesn’t get any bigger, so the economy over the medium term can weather the inevitable future adjustment in interest rates,” Mr. Alexander said in an interview. “If we incrementally lean against credit growth while we have low rates, it will be a better outcome for the economy.” In a report he will release Friday, Mr. Alexander recommends four possible measures: 1. the maximum amortization period for government-insured… Read more »


@N: your reading it the wrong way. Rates are so low, pressure to sell is extremely low. If people think they are going into the market in a “bubble” where they will get low balled, they will not do so.



“Huge sales days coming up for at least the next 2 weeks. We are seeing the first of it today. 2.99 mortgages have brought forward a ton of new buyers.
I think all the bubble talk in the media has stifled listings.”

It’s too early for the 2.99 mortgage rates to show up as sales. Surely it takes longer than that to go from approval for a mortgage to sale showing up in the stats. As for bubble talk, if people are reading about it and believing it, there is no way that it would stifle listings. When people believe that they are in a bubble situation, they want to sell as soon as possible. People don’t hold when they believe that they are in a bubble that is about to blow.


Anonymous Says: LOL that fancy supermarket closed a while ago.”

Gee, i guess city crowd is becoming walmart nation

They were overpriced and didn’t pay their vendors. Their produce was horrendous (even when it was Kins). Their dairy was short-dated cuz they couldn’t turn it fast enough, cuz you could buy the same brands for 20% less at Safeway with twice the shelf life. People aren’t stupid. You can’t charge 10% more on EVERYTHING, and not bring value of some sort to the table. The owners are morons; they think they can get away with it because their store on Graniville does so well. I hope they lost their shirts.

Arthur Fonzarelli

Toronto catching the Vansanity in the news – Chinese pricing Candians out of the market in perpetuity. A little more cause to buy because it might just keep going up. So they hope. Vancouver single family homes – MEDIAN PRICE $157,000. I need to get some land quick, Mr and Mrs. Cunningham are looking to sell to a family of Emirates and Chinese gajillionaires, talking about kicking me out of their laneway attic-shed mansuite (whatever Fonzi had…) I’m not going to buy in this city now. Not a SFH. I thought about New West but no, nor North Burnaby. Definitely not in this state of the market’s stupidity. I could have bought my first place for about $400K in 2008 but didn’t – I needed a townhouse or house, with two young kids coming fast. Kind of regret that… Read more »


Huge sales days coming up for at least the next 2 weeks. We are seeing the first of it today. 2.99 mortgages have brought forward a ton of new buyers.
I think all the bubble talk in the media has stifled listings.


Girlbear Says:

what can i say then so sad. if i am not mistaken they had a small store in Oakridge mall (where Apple is now) and I was going often there with my 3 year daughter to browse the books. we could spent an hour reading the books. it was such a joy to see kids enjoy the books.
I go to pour myself a scotch, i can’t take it anymore 🙂


@Dante: Dante, you won’t like this news either…I do agree with you on the loss of culture (and there was never a lot to start with) that has occurred over the past 20 years in Vancouver.


Yet another bubble warning on G&M [Strong medicine urged for a fevered real estate market] 3/15/2012 “Canadians ought to put themselves in risk management mode,” urges Queen’s University finance professor Louis Gagnon. The professor is adding his voice to the chorus urging the federal government to make it tougher for marginal buyers to get into the Canadian housing market. At the same time, people across the country should be lightening their heavy debt loads to avoid a shock when interest rates rise. Prof. Gagnon is calling on the government to tighten the rules further in order to relieve the upward pressure on real estate prices and prevent a bubble. Which is not to say we’re not already in a bubble Prof. Gagnon would like to see the maximum mortgage amortization period knocked back to 25 years from the current 30.… Read more »


That’s $400 billion a year that’s coming largely out of the bank accounts of retirees whose incomes are fixed even as rents and food and energy prices move higher.

“The reality is that they’ve thrown Aunt Edna under the bus in an effort to stimulate the economy, but what’s resulted has been a direct wealth transfer from retirees into the pockets of indebted borrowers,” said Greg McBride, senior financial analyst at

No Shift Yet in Fed Policy That Punishes Savers

Similar ZIRP policy up here……and besides, I love the headline.


Looks like this month is going to be slightly below the median. Will need much bigger changes to affect the price.


Anonymous Says: LOL that fancy supermarket closed a while ago.”

Gee, i guess city crowd is becoming walmart nation 🙂


You have to admit bears that giant 2.99% 5 yr fixed rate mortgage is like bringing crack to an NA meeting. All they do is punch in the numbers and a store clerk can afford an $800K condo. These low rates are certainly dragging the last virgins to their death. I think we would all like this market to implode faster than it is, but look on the bright side: Every possible trick has been pulled out of the hat. Every bullet fired AND we have record low interest rates yet we are still on track to have one of the worst March’s in a long time. All I can say is, when it turns,it is going to turn hard and stun even the most ardent bears. Until then, I will pay my rent (32% of the cost of ownership)… Read more »


Girlbear Says: “What about the Park and The Fifth? They are still around.”

You could be very right. i left town 3 years ago.
I really liked Ridge because it screened so many alternative/foreign/documentary movies that you would never have a chance to see in your regular Cineplax theater . It is so sad. Without them today’s kids would never know that anything else exist besides typical hollywood dumb and dumber flick.



LOL that fancy supermarket closed a while ago. I’ve had farts linger longer.


@Dante: What about the Park and The Fifth? They are still around.
It’s worse if you live in West Van. Have to drive to far reaches of North Van or DT to see a movie.


Anonymous Says: “The place is closing because it is a dump with poor sound, etc. ”

Not so simple. Modern Cinemas in Oakridge Mall are also closed. There are no cinema in the on the whole Van west side left..
Culture left this town long time ago.


@Pacifica Partners:

Ominous indeed. In 2004 San Diego was at the top. Today it’s Vancouver.

The outcome, while inevitable, calls for patience.


Copied from PaulB’s number Date Listing Price(+-) Sold Inv Inv(+-) S/L(%) Mar 01 313 94 123 14,912 5 39.3 Mar 02 251 97 163 14,919 7 64.9 Mar 05 338 134 118 15,069 150 34.9 Mar 06 298 114 163 15,161 92 54.7 Mar-07 260 114 71 15,305 144 27.3 Mar-08 237 106 152 15,345 40 64.1 Mar-09 229 76 69 15,454 109 30.1 Mar-12 306 119 120 15,588 134 39.2 Mar-13 290 122 146 15,640 52 50.3 Mar-14 238 97 133 15,701 61 55.9 Mar-15 208 83 180 15,693 -8 86.5 Total-Cur 2,968 1,156 1,438 786 48.5 5 day-avg 254 99 130 70 51.0 Total-Est 5764 2,249 2,864 16,459 1,552 49.7 Historical March Sold and listing Year Sold Listing S/L(%) 2001 2,315 3,805 60.8 2002 3,392 5,168 65.6 2003 3,304 4,272 77.3 2004 4,371 5,709 76.6 2005 3,938… Read more »