Could we get some big companies here?

This is an interesting post over at medium- basically positing that high home prices in Vancouver threaten it’s future, and proposing a tax to try to change that risk:

The secret that no-one actually wants to talk about is that the quality of a city is mostly determined by a simple factor — the number of smart, ambitious people who live there. These people are the ones who want to drive that city forward by investing in opening businesses, donating their time to the arts & community, participating in city planning, etc… Without them, growth wouldn’t happen and you wouldn’t get all of the benefits that great cities enjoy.

The biggest contributor to the decline of a great city is simple — it’s the decline of those smart people. When they decide that the cost of living in a place outweighs the benefit, they move. They don’t just take their money with them, they take their intellectual and future capital with them. This is dangerous. When people aren’t willing to make an investment in a place to live any more, the city doesn’t just lose their taxes for the year, they lose a massive function of potential jobs created, culture added and future capital they can put to work.

There are two issues here: the generation of local business opportunity and an attempt to draw established business head offices to town.

What do you think of a proposal for a housing tax that attempts to encourage economic development?

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Coleman
Coleman
6 years ago

Stunning story there. What happened after? Good luck!

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6 years ago

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LL
LL
6 years ago

“The number one concern for our city should be to invest in the right kind of people for the future.”

I like the sound of this. Has a nice rhyme to it.

Jeanne
Jeanne
6 years ago

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david
david
6 years ago

#95 patriotz: No doubt, CMHC has some influence. But it does not explain the difference in the two markets. In Seattle, mortgages are tax-deductible. Not here. And Seattle, you may have heard, is the epicentre of a sector that has produced more multi-millionaires than the first 100 years of the industrial revolution did in total — these are real people with documented wealth…not black helicopters full of alleged Asians. And these people tend to stay in Seattle, where the start-up tech scene is on a rolling boil. Gvien its unidentifiable economic drivers (other than teaching yoga, dog walking and home renovation work (talk about a circular argument!) Vancouver might rationally be, on a good day, 1/2 to 3/5 the price of Seattle, with the current CMHC rubber stamping press (temporarily) swelling those figures upwards maybe 25%. The remaining price differential… Read more »

crabman
crabman
6 years ago

^^^ Looks like someone missed the irony.

cris
cris
6 years ago

patriotz

‘…….because the CMHC stopped ensuring mortgages over $1 million and house prices in vancouver collapsed.”

Proof?

Yunak
Yunak
6 years ago

@89
The applications of about 60,000 would-be immigrants – about 80 per cent of whom were mainland Chinese who filed their applications in Hong Kong – have now been formally scrapped.

Next great thing would be to “clean the house up”, review IIPs that managed to get in and if they don’t contribute (have valid businesses, paying taxes) send them back promptly, cancel status whatever is it. Those pests are just the bad disease on already decrepit organism.

@patriotz
@patriotz
6 years ago

it’s the CMHC. the CMHC is the reason why houses in vancouver are double the price of houses in seattle.

so, if you have a $1 million dollar house, $500,000 is actual value and $500,000 is CMHC distortion.

HAM isn’t a factor. we know this because the CMHC stopped ensuring mortgages over $1 million and house prices in vancouver collapsed. now there are hardly any houses over $1 million for sale in vancouver or lower mainland.

patriotz
6 years ago

@92:

According to Port Metro Vancouver they support about 38,000 direct jobs, which interestingly is about the same as Microsoft’s payroll in the Seattle area. And Seattle has a pretty big port too.

So why should house prices in Vancouver be twice those in Seattle?

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley
6 years ago

Haha David you are amusing. I did read it. Congratulations! You can plagiarize from the internet and use a thesaurus! Your post reeks of effort and I’m quite certain you composed it in a hot rage after the previous go-around about Detroit. Thank God Patriotz provided a segue back on to the topic so you got the opportunity to use it.

Now go relax before you have an aneurysm. I can see you arteries pulsing with anger from here.

donnie
donnie
6 years ago

“800 global mining firms”

Don’t forget the part where we’re the 4th largest port in N America and Canada’s gateway to the world’s leading economies.
http://www.portmetrovancouver.com/en/about/factsandstats.aspx

david
david
6 years ago

edit: read 84…putz.

david
david
6 years ago

#88…read #82. Just read it. Now….reply to it with something more than childish gibberish.

Or give up and go away because you’re an utter putz.

Randy Randerson
Randy Randerson
6 years ago

Looks like it was a total non-event afterall. I doubt those Chinese millionaires understand that they can threaten regular Joe’s with a lawsuit, but they can’t do the same with a sovereign country. Their lawyers probably got rewarded handsomely for doing some pointless legwork.

“Hey, at least I tried, guys. Now where’s my cheque?”

http://www.scmp.com/news/world/article/1541520/canada-court-rejects-millionaire-migrants-compensation-claim-over-defunct

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley
6 years ago

Immature and juvenile? I know you are but what am I?

But you’re right David, I’ll try make my posts more like yours – charming, reasoned, insightful and totally not defensive.

david
david
6 years ago

Guy: You really got nuthin’, do you? No insight, no reasoned arguments. Not even any disarming humour. Nuthin’. Just immature, juvenile, defensive BS.

And that’s the entire case for Vancouver RE, isn’t it? Petrified, thin-skinned navel gazing.

George
George
6 years ago

Live in a new condo (esp. in Toronto) and risk exposing yourself to asbestos. From the Globe and Mail: “Pipes containing asbestos are being installed in new condominiums, hospitals and high-rises in Canada, despite widespread health concerns that have led many countries to ban its use… A key concern is that many workers, tenants and owners may not know asbestos materials are in their buildings, raising the risk of accidental exposures particularly in the event of a fire, or as the materials start to deteriorate… The Globe and Mail visited a dozen construction sites in Toronto, Markham and Vaughan, from luxury condos to commercial offices. Asbestos-cement pipes were being installed in at least eight of the sites, principally for drainage… Tom Kelly, president of Inscan Kaefer Inc., an insulation and asbestos abatement company, says it’s incongruous he’s being asked to… Read more »

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley
6 years ago

To paraphrase a famous line from a Vice Presidential debate: I’ve been to Vancouver, Mr. Senator. Vancouver is no Detroit

He was here for almost 48 hours and never got mugged or shot at. That’s why he said it.

david
david
6 years ago

#82 Patriotz: “…it wasn’t that long ago that Detriot thought it was at the top of the world, too,”

Here’s the discrepancy, though…..Detroit had a substantial, easily measured, productive base of fundamental industrial activity that justified perfectly rational estimates of every facet of Detroit’s ‘value’. What Detroiters “thought” didn’t actually enter into it.

In comaparison, today’s Vancouver has what? 1) Wild arm-waving about unmeasured hordes of Chinese investors 2) Realtors advising people that property here simply has no upper limit on valuation 3)global economic weakness that requires completely unsustainable lending rates and accessibility.

To paraphrase a famous line from a Vice Presidential debate: I’ve been to Vancouver, Mr. Senator. Vancouver is no Detroit.”

david
david
6 years ago

As I learned from one insightful patron on this messageboard just days ago, Vancouver is home to more than “800 global mining firms”. So there’s probably just no adequate office space left for any other companies to set up shop there.

Bwa ha ha ha ha ha!

patriotz
6 years ago

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/06/27/us/detroit-foreclosure-photo-mosaic.html?hp

The 43,634 Detroit Properties That Were on the Brink of Foreclosure

This mosaic of images captures the scale of Detroit’s challenge. As of January, the owners of these properties collectively owed more than $328 million.

“Foreclosure” in this article means tax sale.

Look at the numbers. These properties owe an average of about $7500 in taxes each, yet the owners are unable or unwilling to pay. In Vancouver, even the worst of them would go for $500K or more.

Not that I think Vancouver is headed for this anytime soon, but it wasn’t that long ago that Detriot thought it was at the top of the world, too.