Friday Free-for-all!

You made it to the end of another work week!

… And that means it’s time for our regular end of the week news round up and open topic discussion thread for the weekend.

Here are a few recent links to kick off the chat:

Toronto Bankers put squeeze on Van RE
Flawed data bumps up home prices?
Depressing homes outlook for Canadians
Personal debt creeps higher
Vancouver: no fun city?
Spain foreclosures hit wealthy

So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes here and have an excellent weekend!

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Ha ha!


@Many Franks: “I’m not following your logic at all, but those do bother me. They’re asinine sloganeering that veers away from the critical thinking that I like about this blog, and towards groupthink.”

Get back to work Tsurd.

Many Franks


Nobody has any problem with “Crusty”, “Chimpman”, “Sewer”, or what have you…

I’m not following your logic at all, but those do bother me. They’re asinine sloganeering that veers away from the critical thinking that I like about this blog, and towards groupthink.


I was hoping that this board would be a refuge from political correctness. Nobody has any problem with “Crusty”, “Chimpman”, “Sewer”, or what have you, but simply using an Asian name in a non-flattering context seems to bring out the PC police.


Some of you are far too touchy. There was no racism intended.

It could have been ANY name.

JOHN DOE anyone?

painted turtle

Thanks for the link. I enjoyed the documentary. I agree with the anxiety aspect of the documentary, but apart from this, I do not think things change that much from one generation to the next.
In my job I deal with 20-35 yr old people, and I see that same mix of lazy/hard working, mature/immature people as when I was a student myself…


…er, WONG.



“Richmond realtor James Wong also just wrote: “There are strong signs for a prolonged market downturn”


So, because some realtor named JAMES WONJ declares that it’s over…it’s OVER?

Got it. I think.


Speaking of million dollar homes, there are 43 million dollar homes from furry creek to the Squamish valley. A Realtor friend of mine said nothing above that price range is selling out here. He said there was one sale in Squamish over a million this year. With 27 over a million in Squamish alone, I think you could say that this market is f@cked.


@mclovin: “This is scary:

“There are currently over 5,000 homes in Vancouver
metro area for sale for over $1 million according to In comparison, the NAR reports that in April,
just over 7,000 homes sold in the entire US were sold for
over $1 million”

Yes, well of course! There’s no way Cam Good could take a dump in every major US City.


So all this talk about education and experience and couldn’t help think how timely that the hyper parents and coddled kids documentary was on CBC last night:

This is really a good doc and what I’ve been preaching for years how there is an entire generation out there that has no clue about reality and failure.


@ Patiently Waiting Your questions are deep – I’m afraid my answers are rather superficial: “How the hell did that happen?” Because there are big differences in the educational and job markets of 2012 vs 1962, some already nicely addressed in this blog. “Are these rich kids who still live off Mom and Dad?” They generally are not rich kids, but Mom & Dad do support them to a varying extent. The young of the middle class today behave much more like the young rich of 50 years ago than the young middle class of 50 years ago. However, the young rich have never had to live in their parents’ basements. “How can you be in your late 20s with a degree, and be unemployed or working at poverty wages?” No demand – our economy in increasingly dominated by Finance… Read more »


Richmond realtor James Wong also just wrote: “There are strong signs for a prolonged market downturn

We are now witnessing the unwinding of the housing market. The severity and pace of price decline are dependant on the interaction of buyers and sellers perception of the market. At current price point, getting financing for a family earning $65,000 a year with 5% down payment will allow the buyer to afford a home valued at $280,000.

It will take many years before owning a home makes sense again. Home prices are not going up now or holding. Instead, the housing market is coming down in values. The rush to exit the market will take its toll on sellers who bought their homes recently.


James Wong strikes again: Richmond real estate market outlook Market sentiment has deteriorated further. Buyers prefer to stay on the sideline, waiting for home prices to fall further. The only way out for sellers who are determined to sell was to price their home more aggressively. Sellers who are taking deep cuts in reducing their selling prices are the ones likely to succeed in selling their homes. Richmond detached homes over $1,000,000 are not seeing much buying interest. With total active listings of 686 and average sale around 28 homes the past 3 months, there are 24.5 months supply of homes in the market. For detached homes over $1,500,000, there are currently 353 homes for sale. With an average past 3 months sale of 12 homes, this translates into 29 months supply of homes. The decline in housing sales and… Read more »


@Patiently Waiting: I’m still getting head around the fact…

Lucky you! 😀


@146 – yes the unemployment rate for 2-years out generalist degrees is depressing, but we are in a recession (or recent post-recession) environment, and I am sure that their unemployment % is still better than those in the SAME AGE bracket with no degree.

A better comparison is the 5-year out stats, where – historically – one sees much better numbers.

Still, not a great situation atm.

Patiently Waiting

@realist: I’m still getting head around the fact that the unemployment rate for BAs and BScs (who are in the workforce, not in school) two year after graduation is 9-10%. That is freakin horrible. Its worse than the overall unemployment rate of 6-8%. They don’t even have a part-time job in retail. At the same time you have 15% who are working but making under $20k/year. So that’s about 25% of BA and BSc grads, who really have nothing to show for their degrees after two years in the job market. That’s not counting many more who make $20-30K/year and probably could’ve done just as well without the degree. How the hell did that happen? Are these rich kids who still live off Mom and Dad? How can you be in your late 20s with a degree, and be unemployed… Read more »

Dumbest Time in 30 Years to Buy Real Estate

….and Real Estate is even worse than “Eal Estate”


@realist: Agreed. I am under 35 (32 to be exact) and only now am I realizing what money is and what I can do with it. Money, invested in a good index fund is way better than dumping your money in real estate. Timing the market in real estate is impossible. People I see nowadays just spend–with credit. People with middle class incomes buying million dollar+ homes like it’s no big deal. People who make 50K a year buying a 130K mercedes on credit. Crazy. People with no idea about how to budget. And this is largely in the Vancouver area. My American friends don’t dare buy million dollar homes, even though they’re all doctors who make 200k+ a year. My best friend in med school in the US is a specialist who still drives a Civic and rents. My… Read more »

Oh Oh

Plenty of rentals coming to market,

watch for thousands more in this area alone


And I should have added: the inexperience of the under-35’s most unfortunately includes matters such as savings, compound interest, leverage, mortgages, credit cycles, etc. This is generational: they often know no one who has lost money on real estate, so that possibility has no reality for them.


@ Brian

Entirely agree. It is not rare today to encounter a 28 year old who has never had a regular paying job where the boss does not care whose kid you are, but does care that you report to work @ 7am sharp as stipulated. Consequently, the under-35 set is lacking essential experience, sometimes to a remarkable degree. I usually find this a greater limitation to their instruction than their intelligence or content knowledge.
The above is not a criticism of the younger generation’s intrinsic lack of moral fiber; rather the situation has arisen from their being the unwitting targets of a consumerist, child-centered youth culture imposed on them by their parents, schools, and the chattering classes, ironically with the best of intentions. Yet their development usually has been retarded rather than enhanced.

Dumbest Time in 30 Years to buy Eal Estate

You’re right Aleksey. When the weather was still good I went to a bunch of Open Houses in North Van (out of sheer curiosity after all the noise of imminent collapse) Man, what a shock!…to see that buyers are still dreaming and asking absolutely outrageous amounts for 50 year old dumps that are virtually tear-downs, and with realtors having the audacity to suggest that prices have now fallen to bargain levels. The (price to income) levels are so out of whack that the mere idea that prices may recover like they did after the 2008 slump are ludicrous when you stop to think about it, especially when money from China has dried up. I’m sort of puzzled that some credible authorities are only calling for a 20% drop. After defying reality for way too long, and with absolutely nothing to… Read more »


@ Patriotz

But the intention of those in the RE business who use the term isn’t to let buyers know that sellers are asking above market, but to make them think that RE is a good buy at the current market price. That is, it’s used to deliberately mislead people.

….which was the original intent of my sarcasm (if you scroll back) when I responded to Mclovin…you should count a few steamboats B4 you go off on a tangent, but go on ahead if you insist….


@Anonymous: You are right. I am a doctor, I’ve gone to school for many years to learn my trade and for this particular job, I need all that training. But for most jobs, experience is KEY. My friend, who has a Bachelors, one Masters, and on the verge of getting another Masters (in his early 30s) has never really worked other than the odd tutoring job. I think this is a big mistake. No one will hire him (other than minimum wage jobs). The problem is parents don’t understand this. They push their kids to get that four year degree, and the child, with no understanding of how the world works only knows to “go to school”. But you’re never really ever training for anything with your typical science or arts or even commerce degrees. Also, people with no experience… Read more »