Living in a Van… couver

For the longest time the rallying cry ‘location, location, location’ was used by real estate salespeople everywhere.

Then marketers started to bore of that chant and realized they had to also sell property way out in the boonies or in an industrial area with landfills and transit hubs and cleverly adapted the old adage to ‘transportation, transportation, transportation’.

Well some enterprising souls have a housing solution that fits both of those bills: living in their car.

In early December, Arthur bought a $500 used van off Craigslist from a farmer in the B.C. Interior. With the help of his family, the vehicle was gutted, cleaned of mice feces and rebuilt with $400 worth of furniture, wiring and insulation.

In the small space, the van has four main areas: the kitchen and sink, work space, storage and bed. Without a personal toilet or shower, he has a daily excuse to go to yoga for exercise and to use the studio’s facilities.

The difference has shown in his savings: his monthly rent has reduced from $850 to a $200 parking fee plus $50 for hydro.

Full article over at the Huffington Post.

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Boombust
Guest
Boombust
3 years 7 months ago

Hmm…

I wonder if a kondo kar would be also fit the bill?

jesse
Member
3 years 7 months ago

Been going on since the ’60s. Notice he’s saving on rent costs.

An Observer
Guest
3 years 7 months ago

I’ve mentioned before that I get email alerts on south surrey sales above $1.2 million in a few areas. Inventory in these areas and price ranges are currently about 150 homes and January has seen 1 sale (for $1.365 million)

That gives it an MOI of over a decade!!!

A year ago way over priced homes were selling. 6 months ago only reasonably priced (close to or under assessment) homes were selling. Now, nothing is selling.

Q
Guest
Q
3 years 7 months ago
More credit tightening from Ottawa may be required. This is in the Globe and Mail: “The pace of consumer borrowing is climbing again in Canada, according to a new reading that comes just a week after the Bank of Canada took its finger off the rate trigger because the credit picture was improving. “Awkward” is how deputy chief economist Douglas Porter of BMO Nesbitt Burns puts it. To be sure, as the central bank noted, the pace of consumer borrowing is easing, though the key debt-to-income level in Canada is expected to remain near a record because credit growth is… Read more »
patriotz
Member
3 years 7 months ago

This is basically why a “soft landing” is impossible. Consumer debt has to keep increasing just to keep prices from falling.

The peak in consumer debt in the US lagged the peak in RE prices and the same will happen here.

southseacompany
Member
southseacompany
3 years 7 months ago
From the Globe and Mail: “Renters want a house. Is it a good investment?” http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/financial-road-map/renters-want-a-house-is-it-a-good-investment/article7920860/ “As the primary breadwinner in her family, Monica is facing a paradox. The 47-year-old public-sector employee says her biggest financial concern is not owning her own home. Yet living in Vancouver, with its absurd housing prices, she doesn’t necessarily want to.” ““We’ve stayed away from real estate because to stay in Vancouver it would be out of our reach,” says Monica, who has a husband and an eight-year-old son. “I’m not crazy about a condo, and that’s about all we could likely afford, even in… Read more »
Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

“This is basically why a “soft landing” is impossible. Consumer debt has to keep increasing just to keep prices from falling.”

Actually at this point we have both falling prices and increasing consumer debt. Once consumer debt actually starts decreasing (which is what the federal government and BOC want) prices will collapse.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

What a stupid gimmick…to prove what? I hate the whole chosen poverty schtick. It reveals that, yes, poor people living in cars have it hard. Now, back to my middle class life….

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

southseacompany: Mr. Spitters (Assante Capital Management) says. “Home prices are at historic highs and are already showing signs of correcting… There may very well be a time where she can purchase a home for significantly less than a home costs now.”

Although the advice is correct you have to love how the news papers go to people with a vested interest to comment. What a surprise the guy from Assante Capital Management suggests other investments over home ownership. I bet he has a mutual fund that would be a perfect fit.

specialfx3000
Member
specialfx3000
3 years 7 months ago

Re: #8.

I agree that this is some silly ’10 minutes of fame’ gimmick. Surprise, surprise, he’s some young designer who is very likely above the poverty line that thinks living in a van will bring out more of his creativity.

Cost-wise, $250 per month for 45 SQ FT is pretty expensive, no?

So he downgraded from a laneway house to a van.

Here’s a suggestion Mathew. Take it another notch and switch to a treehouse and save on the $200/month parking fee. Now you only need to pay $50/month for the hydro part.

vreaa
Member
3 years 7 months ago

Reversion To What Mean?

The Vancouver market is weakening, and prices are heading down. Where will they settle?

For a discussion of long-term trend-line support, see ‘The Froogle Scott Chronicles: Mortgaging Our Souls In Paradise – Part 10: Reversion To The Mean’
VREAA 30 Jan 2013
http://wp.me/pcq1o-59a

Many Franks
Guest
Many Franks
3 years 7 months ago
@specialfx3000, @Anonymous: You’re presuming an awful lot about the guy’s motivations. I find what he’s doing very interesting and I’m glad he’s documenting it. Remember the boat squatters in False Creek? They were evicted in part because of high fecal coliform counts in False Creek. When that subsequently failed to clear up the city found a massive sewage leak under Chinatown — but the new moorage laws stayed in place and few boaters remain. I remember walking along the seawall and encountering a crowd of condo owners yelling angrily at a new boat that was coming in for moorage. My… Read more »
Left already living in San Diego
Guest
Left already living in San Diego
3 years 7 months ago

Here I go again:
21 degrees and sunny here, how is all that golfing , skiing and sailing at the same day going on the best place on earth? I wish I could do that too sometime.
Enjoy

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

ManyFranks: “I remember walking along the seawall and encountering a crowd of condo owners yelling angrily at a new boat that was coming in for moorage.”

You are still allowed to moor in False Creek. There is just a 3 week time limit per stay. There are lots of boats moored there right now. Your ‘story’ doesn’t make any sense. Why would condo owners be yelling at boaters legally coming in for moorage? Also how do you know they were condo owners? Maybe you confused people cheering at the dragon boat races?

@vreaa
Guest
@vreaa
3 years 7 months ago

“The Vancouver market is weakening, and prices are heading down. Where will they settle?”

From comments you’ve made on your blog it seems that you think prices are going to 2001 level adjusted for inflation. Isn’t that right?

Many Franks
Guest
Many Franks
3 years 7 months ago
@Anonymous: You are still allowed to moor in False Creek. There is just a 3 week time limit per stay. There are lots of boats moored there right now. Yes, but full-time liveaboards now have to motor around to the Fraser or elsewhere part of the time, which wasn’t feasible for many of them; the community that used to be there was destroyed as a result (which was the plan). Your ‘story’ doesn’t make any sense. Why would condo owners be yelling at boaters legally coming in for moorage? Also how do you know they were condo owners? Maybe you… Read more »
Goober
Guest
Goober
3 years 7 months ago

“What a stupid gimmick…to prove what? I hate the whole chosen poverty schtick. It reveals that, yes, poor people living in cars have it hard. Now, back to my middle class life…”

That’s white people for you…

patriotz
Member
3 years 7 months ago

“They were yelling about having to pay property taxes while the boaters freeloaded”

Freeload what? Someone living in a boat that has to move every few weeks doesn’t seem to be in a good position to send kids to school or use the public libary for that matter.

Many Franks
Guest
Many Franks
3 years 7 months ago

@patriotz: At the time they didn’t have to move every few weeks, but that’s beside the point. Basically I think the owners were angry that they were paying a lot of money for a waterfront view with derelict boats in it. And again, my sympathies were mostly with the boaters.

Q
Guest
Q
3 years 7 months ago
I’m not an investor, but I just want to say that the new BlackBerry sounds pretty good. After reading this, I almost feel like buying the one with the QWERTY keyboard. I am so sick of the Apple touchscreens. http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2013/01/29/business-rim-blackberry.html …and good idea to drop the name “RIM” and just call the company BlackBerry. The other name sounded like a sex act. Apple has had a lot of bad press lately. Samsung seems to be the new favourite. I feel like the smart phone market is ready for a bit of a shake up. I feel like the BlackBerry has… Read more »
Democrass
Guest
Democrass
3 years 7 months ago
“Freeload what? Someone living in a boat that has to move every few weeks doesn’t seem to be in a good position to send kids to school or use the public libary for that matter.” I rent a waterfront condo in South False creek (been there four years, no rent increase, $1800/month, 1100 SF, 2 beds 2 baths – when I moved in similar units witch same view listed for $950,000, now listed for $750K – $850K – i rest the bear case). Those boats wreaked havoc in the summertime. All night parties, people playing guitar/bongos and singing until 4… Read more »
Democrass
Guest
Democrass
3 years 7 months ago

“That’s white people for you…”

Black people too:

“A poor man chains himself” Kenyan proverb

Bag it and tag it
Guest
Bag it and tag it
3 years 7 months ago

@ 13 Left already living in San Diego Says
OK,OK, we get the point. We just don’t need to hear it every week.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

2001 price level? hahaha silly bear!

Groundhog
Guest
Groundhog
3 years 7 months ago

“2001 price level? hahaha silly bear!”

is anything you can share with him that would indicate that this is silly?

Goober
Guest
Goober
3 years 7 months ago

“Black people too”

blacks are poor. they don’t need to play at poverty because it’s “authentic” and “genuine”. they know being poor sucks because they live it.

@Groundhog
Guest
@Groundhog
3 years 7 months ago

When do you think we’ll hit the 2001 + inflation price level? Any idea?

Burbs Boy
Guest
Burbs Boy
3 years 7 months ago

Goober Says: “Blacks are poor”

hmmmmm, might want to check and make sure that you aren’t over generalizing just a wee bit there. Poor natives (see any of the ramshackle reserves around this province), poor white people (see DTES, Walley, Langley City), poor Asians (I work with people who are raising a familiy on a 12$/hour job), poor East Indians (same again)… there is poverty “a plenty” to go around. All over NA there are areas that contain all ethnic backgrounds and are mired in poverty. Ethnicity is not the problem… inequality is.

Randy
Guest
Randy
3 years 7 months ago

Hey Burbs Boy. Shut the fuck up. No one wants to hear how PC you are. Idiot.

Groundhog
Guest
Groundhog
3 years 7 months ago

@@Groundhog

I don’t know if we will, but based on financial history I wouldn’t say it was silly. Japanese prices are back to 1982 nominal levels, US are back to 1998 real prices (see below).

Posted today on the US
“In nominal terms, home prices are about where they were in mid-2003. In “real” inflation adjusted terms, this time using the CPI and PCE (personal consumption expenditures) as a measure of inflation, home prices are about where they were in mid-1998.”

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.ca/

slurker
Guest
slurker
3 years 7 months ago
“This is basically why a “soft landing” is impossible. Consumer debt has to keep increasing just to keep prices from falling. The peak in consumer debt in the US lagged the peak in RE prices and the same will happen here.” I’d prefer to say total debt (either private or public or both) in an economy has to keep increasing at an exponential rate for any debt based currency. It’s pretty simple actually, when the bank gives you a loan it creates the money for the loan amount only injecting it into the economy it does not create the money… Read more »
Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous
3 years 7 months ago

I agree with Burbs Boy that there is a lot of poverty to go around. Blacks do not have a monopoly on poverty (and some black people are actually quite rich)

Randy accuses Burbs Boy of being politically correct. Actually, it’s not all that politically correct to talk about white poor people and to de-couple class from race (which is what Burbs Boy does with his comment that it’s not race, it’s inequality).

The politically correct people would say race and class are linked and that white people have privilege and that inequality is more closely linked to race than class.

Aleksey
Guest
Aleksey
3 years 7 months ago

This is so profound!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VV_v5HV9mtI (from BigThink)
Number 1 on my certainty list is that housing prices in Vancouver will go down.

Many Franks
Guest
Many Franks
3 years 7 months ago

From the no-shit-Sherlock department:

“I think 2013 is going to be a transition year into 2014 and 2015 when we are finally going to see the global economy start to post more regular performance,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA chief economist [wiping an unidentified brown substance from his lips and chin].

Even Somerville calls Muir out, though in the very blandest of terms:

“In general, BCREA is going to tend to be more optimistic than perhaps one of the banks might be.”

Another way of phrasing that more directly might be “BCREA is forecasting poorly because they have a vested interest.”

addair
Guest
addair
3 years 7 months ago

Alexey #33

While you and I and most others are certain that housing prices in Vancouver will go down, one certainty that nobody can dispute (including Muir and Tsur) is DEMOGRAPHICS. The biggest phenomena in a couple of centuries is the boomer thing…folks needing to downsize as they get old, and creating excess supply as they die.

Vote Down The Facts
Guest
Vote Down The Facts
3 years 7 months ago

Groundhog, I gotta get me some of those 1998 dollars!

Clockbike
Member
Clockbike
3 years 7 months ago

Time for some comedy for those who haven’t seen it:
http://i.imgur.com/mws5MjV.jpg
and
http://youtu.be/5ER0Tn0jV7w

patriotz
Member
3 years 7 months ago

“Groundhog, I gotta get me some of those 1998 dollars!”

You can make your own – just stack a loonie, a quarter, a nickel, and three cents.

Bag it and tag it
Guest
Bag it and tag it
3 years 7 months ago

34 Many Franks
Another episode of the Sewer and M-an-uir show!

Democrass
Guest
Democrass
3 years 7 months ago

“While you and I and most others are certain that housing prices in Vancouver will go down, one certainty that nobody can dispute (including Muir and Tsur) is DEMOGRAPHICS.”

Why can’t the government open the immigration flood gates to counter any threat posed by Boomer retirements?

We are not talking about a closed system here. The stroke of a legislators pen will fix any demographic problem – as long as Canada remains one of the world’s richest countries with a generous social wellfare system.

wakie waikie
Guest
wakie waikie
3 years 7 months ago

An Observer #3

Same thing in North Van. Don’t have any stats, but pretty sure nothing over $2 mil has sold this year.
Gonna see blowout price reductions in a couple of months.

patriotz
Member
3 years 7 months ago

“Why can’t the government open the immigration flood gates to counter any threat to the RE market posed by Boomer retirements? ”

Maybe because there aren’t enough good paying jobs for young people as it is? An immigrant working at Starbucks isn’t going to be able to buy any more than his locally born workmate.

rookie
Guest
rookie
3 years 7 months ago

any opinion on RIMM ($13 something)…are we going to see $6 before we see $20 again?

midnite toker
Member
midnite toker
3 years 7 months ago

You’ll have plenty of time for doobie rolling, when you’re living in a van down by the (Fraser) river!!

Anonymoose
Guest
Anonymoose
3 years 7 months ago
Over in the Abbotsford, Mission, Maple Ridge area there is a RE agent/celebrity by the name of Mindy McPherson. She has plastered her ugly mug on a few large billboards in Abby and on Lougheed by Silver Lake. I noticed tonight her billboard has changed, and at top in big letters is says “BUY NOW!!!!!” with below “Why wait for prices to go up!!!”. It screams desperation. I know next to nothing about her, but in the limited amount of driving I have done in Mission I have seen her name associated with a number of projects that look to… Read more »
Anonymoose
Guest
Anonymoose
3 years 7 months ago

“any opinion on RIMM ($13 something)…are we going to see $6 before we see $20 again?”

Are you serious? In two years it will be a penny stock and nobody will be seeking RIM jobs. They are the next Palm (remember them?).

Groundhog
Guest
Groundhog
3 years 7 months ago

I don’t know anything about RIM but there’s this new smartphone company, ticker symbol BBRY, that’s going to revolutionize the market.:)

Chabar
Guest
Chabar
3 years 7 months ago

@addair Says:

The biggest phenomena in a couple of centuries is the boomer thing…folks needing to downsize as they get old, and creating excess supply as they die.

Don’t we supposed to keep replacing them with rich Chinese on regular basis to keep RE market and demographics in balance?

paulb
Member
3 years 7 months ago

New Listings 200
Price Changes 84
Sold Listings 77
TI:14166

http://www.paulboenisch.com

RealityCheck
Guest
RealityCheck
3 years 7 months ago

Demographic time bomb..?

I agree Immigration can fix that…with a stroke of a pen…Overnight if they wanted to.

Increase from 280,000 to 500,000.

No wha do you think the gov will do if there is a RE crash?

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