An isolated unfriendly town?

When you smile and say hello to people do they glare back at you?.

A recent study says Vancouver is not a very friendly city:

Talk to people in Metro Vancouver about their interactions with others, and similar stories abound. Newcomers to the city talk about going weeks without anyone offering to show them around or invite them for dinner. Apartment dwellers talk about distrusting their neighbours to the extent that they’re afraid to let their children play unsupervised outside.

And because this is Vancouver, everything comes down to real estate:

Significantly, more than half of respondents agreed that Vancouver is becoming a resort town for the wealthy and that there is too much foreign ownership of real estate. This view was particularly common among people aged 25-34, a group whose responses to many survey questions revealed a marked cynicism about the state of their communities compared with other age groups.

And it’s not just desirable to the wealthy with a longing for rain, it’s also irresistible to the homeless. But how do we house them?

A handful of people, including Vancouver assistant director of housing policy Abi Bond, sketched out a plan to transform a cargo ship into a green-roofed utopia. They proposed a kayak co-op for commuting to and from the shore, filtered seawater to drink, and occasional rotation of the hull so the container-homes on both sides could get southern exposure.

Other suggestions ranged from tweaking property tax laws to building tiny apartments atop warehouses. The prevailing attitude seemed to be that the current crunch in the least affordable city in North America was caused not by a lack of housing supply, but by a dearth of creativity.

I’ve heard housing bubbles justified by a lot of things, but I must admit ‘a dearth of creativity’ is a new one.

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Uwe Helm

Abi Bond’s plan to house to house people off-shore sounds a bit ‘out there’, but I’ve stayed with friends at student container housing in Amsterdam and it was amazing. Architecturally intriguing, affordable and communal. However, this was ‘on land’.

Mansur al-Hallaj

Vancouver is a shock to immigrants. Here’s your average interaction with a Vacounverite: Inevitable plastic smile. How are you? The weather is fine, innit? Hockey is good. Real estate is good. Shopping is good. We should meet again. All phrases but the last one are a harmless waste of time. The last one means the opposite of what it sounds like. What is friendly about it? Everything about this routine screams “I don’t want to see you, get out of my life immediately. I have my family and high school buddies to be friends with. I am talking to you only because multiculturalism and political correctness are strictly enforced in our country.” Do Vancouverites honestly expect immigrants to not see through this crap, or to find any shred of actual rapport in it? Here’s a cheatsheet that must be handed… Read more »

[…] “Land Value Property for sale – 5038 Arbutus Street [V955311; 52×108 lot; Quilchena area of Westside]– listed for $998,000 now 13.2% below last sale price of $1.15 million on April 15, 2011- assessed value is $1,227,900. This is where you will see the 1st cracks in the Westside housing market – big lot on busy street in Westside. In a few years, this lot will be worth $300,000+. Is this a speculator who is bailing, perhaps someone who put 5% down last year, never made a payment and is walking away? It definitely sounds like a foreclosure but I have not confirmed that. Is this the Canary in the Coal Mine?” – airborne canine at VCI 19 Jun 2012 10:53am […]

fixie guy

111 Ulsterman Says: ” This society is divided into an aristocracy who own mortgage-free or low mortgage homes and those who don’t.”

You miss the part where aristocracy spends decades working off that ‘free’ home. A forced choice between aristocracy and a political philosophy fueled by resentful entitlement isn’t the best place to be, but I’ll take the former every time. At least it’s productive.



It’s inaccurate insofar as one of the inputs you use is an estimate. That’s all I meant.


@Anonymous: It is not “inaccurate.” It may not be what you want it to be, but it is what it is. You are welcome to develop a different measure that is better for your purpose.


Inventory growth is slowing to crawl this month, just like 2010. Soon, it will be going down, just like 2010.

Looks like another crashless year. Bears wrong again. They should rename this site


Jumping is probably about right, if by comfortable you mean smalish house, smallish car, public school, one vacation per year. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think you need more to be happy here, but a hundred k would not count as wealthy by any means.



So it’s not really today’s MOI as its based on a projection of month-end sales totals? So it converges to the “right” answer on the last day of the month, and before that it’s inaccurate.

Doesn’t really matter, though, and the effort you go to is always appreciated.

jumpin in

PS: pre-tax yearly income should be at least $100,000.

jumpin in


Family with 2 kids

Housing = 2000- 3000 depending on neighborhood. I would say more like $3000.
We pay Electricity = $100 per month + Heating= $50 per month on average
Internet + phone = $90 per month
Food = 1000- 2500 depending on what you eat (Costco Kraft dinners – organic vegetables)
Car = $2000/year insurance + gas + parking is expansive, Gas = 1.5$/liter
Medical bills = I do not know – Care card is covering almost all over expanses.
Education = free, but any music lesson is $45 an hour
Good community centres
Restaurants = We do not go anymore , way overpriced for the quality of the food being served (especially the meat)
Umbrellas: %50 per year per person

Patiently Waiting

“When i see younger people in the Lower Mainland i’m surprised there isn’t more apparent anger about house prices. This society is divided into an aristocracy who own mortgage-free or low mortgage homes and those who don’t.”

They should be more angry about the lack of decent jobs.


@exwestender: …..On the other hand, we diss the city for not being as friendly or safe as Ottawa (which has the same population as London, Ontario). …

London Ontario: most boring city in the Americas (except for the Ceeps of course).


@alberto: “I usually like to open the doors for the ladies but it seems that Vancouver ladies don’t appreciate that. did anyone notice that? Anywhere in the world it would be expected that from a gentleman”

Of course, in Vancouver, it’s often difficult to tell the difference between ladies and men.


Copied from PaulB’s number. Thank you PaulB. Date List Price+- Sold Xpired Inv+- Inv S/L(%) 12.05.31 258 160 64 196 -2 18881 25 12.06.01 288 130 147 447 -306 18575 51 12.06.04 340 219 87 145 108 18683 26 12.06.05* 309 173 86 82 141 18824 28 12.06.06* 281 163 82 102 97 18921 29 12.06.07 240 136 97 140 3 18924 40 12.06.08 269 134 96 76 97 19021 36 12.06.11 294 241 113 120 61 19082 38 12.06.12 283 188 162 82 39 19121 57 12.06.13 266 164 103 101 62 19183 39 12.06.14 219 141 120 88 11 19194 55 12.06.15 219 151 95 72 52 19246 43 12.06.18 274 216 93 170 11 19257 34 12.06.19 249 154 129 102 18 19275 52 Total-Cur 3531 2210 1410 1727 394 June-Avg 272 170 108 133 30… Read more »

HAM Solo

Quick poll: How many regular readers of VCI thought there still would be any kind of debate over whether Canadian housing market was cracking by June of 2012.

(Hat tip to all the can kickers, paper-overers, pretend-and-extenders out there…you’ve done better than anyone might have expected)


When i see younger people in the Lower Mainland i’m surprised there isn’t more apparent anger about house prices. This society is divided into an aristocracy who own mortgage-free or low mortgage homes and those who don’t. As an immigrant from the UK, i find Vancouverites quite friendly. Any visiting friends and family (and i’ve had many) ALWAYS comment on the friendliness of the locals. Safety – compared to the UK, and many, many of the other cities i’ve visited, Vancouver is incredibly safe. The levels of random street violence is almost non existent. Try walking home from the bar in any big English city at kicking out time and you can cut the sense of menace with a knife. I never get this sensation in vancouver. I know of what i speak – my wife works on Granville St,… Read more »


@Anonymous: Hi, my MoI is **today’s** MoI, not a projection of where MoI will be at the end of the month.

That is, I take **today’s** inventory and divide it by the best estimate I have for the monthly sales pace as of today.

Maybe a projection of a month-end MoI would be more useful for some purposes, but (in part to avoid the complications you point out) I don’t do that.

Gresko MCGresko


I hear you man…

I’d be po’d too if the fortune cookie factory you worked at was outsourced to Mumbai


@Patiently Waiting:

Come to the Drive. We’ve got them, and they are sweet.



How do your MOI projections account for end-of-month expires?


Anybody here ever watch, or have a significant other that insists on watching, those “House Hunter” reality shows, and their ilk? Turns out they are not “reality shows” at all. They are mostly fiction: “viewers follow a buyer as they anxiously decide between three different houses. [Former show participant] Jensen says that, in fact, one house has already been purchased–the producers wouldn’t even finalize her as a subject until after the closing. … While the two rejected properties may be on the market, in Jensen’s case, “They were just our two friends’ houses who were nice enough to madly clean for days in preparation for the cameras!” LOL!!! I wonder how many numbnuts have been encouraged into buying into the overpriced housing market after watching shows like these. They’re about to find out that not only were the shows pure… Read more »


The new GEAB’s issue is out, dark times ahead… Once again, they got most of their past months predictions right (euro crisis). GEAB N°66 is available! Red alert / Global systemic crisis – September-October 2012: When the trumpets of Jericho ring out seven times for the world before the crisis The progression of world events unfolds in accordance with the anticipations mapped out by LEAP/E2020 during these last few quarters. Euroland has finally come out from its political torpor and short-termism since François Hollande’s election (1) as France’s president and the Greeks have just confirmed their willingness to resolve their problems within Euroland (2) thus contradicting all the Anglo-Saxon media and Euro sceptics’ “forecasts”. From now on, Euroland (in fact the EU minus the United Kingdom) will therefore be able to move forward and create a true project of political… Read more »


@Gresko MCGresko: What a comment crap-flood. Time for you to get your ban back.

Patiently Waiting

@VHB: “MoI is over 8! yessah”

Time to start celebrating every additional month of inventory 🙂