It’s that time of the week again…

Friday Free-for-all time!

This is 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:

Canadian debt at unsustainable level
Realtors optimistic about 2015
Overly fat debt loads
Not expecting unexpected economic shocks
Oil to affect Calgary prices
Vancouver Island Stats

So what are you seeing out there?

Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes here and have an excellent weekend!

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RE FP article: CMHC finally releases foreign ownership data on housing… “To comprise its data, CMHC asked property managers to provide information on the total number of condo apartment units owned by people whose permanent residence is outside of Canada” -as long as the cash keeps rolling in, prop mgrs will keep their heads buried in the sand. disclosure of the truth (assuming such info can be accurately determined) would open up so many cans of worms “I don’t think the number is accurate and there is no way you can get a true reading on [foreign ownership] unless you mandate everyone to come out and disclose what they own,” -lol, the banks can’t even get the full story in most cases. no way the RE industry would be forced to adhere to such draconian guidelines “…in many cases you… Read more »

sex and movies

You can certainly see your expertise within the paintings you write. The sector hopes for more passionate writers like you who are not afraid to say how they believe. Always go after your heart.

Mister Obvious

The disparity between the two prices is said to reflect an “endowment effect.” In essence, we put a much higher value on things we already own than on things we don’t.”

Interesting how there’s no “endowment effect” in the stock market. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve owned a stock, or how warm and fuzzy it makes you feel, it is re-evaluated by the minute to whatever an aggregate of other people are willing to pay.

Your shares are of precisely the same value as anyone else’s and you must pay the market rate if you want more and accept the market rate if you want to sell. I love that straight forward simplicity. If the residential real estate market worked the same way it would be a different world indeed.


“Joe Oliver says Ottawa looking at hot housing market as ministers meet”, CBC


“Finance Minister Joe Oliver says the federal government could take “moderate steps” to address Canada’s strong housing market as he began two days of meetings on Sunday with his provincial counterparts.”

“Oliver has said he intends to further reduce Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.’s share of the mortgage insurance sector.”


#81 —

efficient does not mean best or most extensive.

buy a dictionary, moron

and while you are there, look up “logical fallacy”

Transit = Poverty

“Vancouver’s middle class shrinks, poverty spreads along SkyTrain”



@80 “Want higher home prices? – don’t fund transit…Translink is one of the most efficient transit agencies in North America by any measure”

Let me get this straight:

1. Poor transit = higher home prices which would mean great transit = low home prices.

2. TransLInk is one of the most efficient transit agencies in North America.

3. Then why are Vancouver home prices the highest in North America when we have this great transit system? Shouldn’t they be amongst the lowest using your thesis great transit lowers home prices and we have the most efficient transit agencies in North America by any measure?

Smoe Guy

“Please help stop this proposed extra tax to fund the nightmare that is TRANSLINK.”

Want higher home prices? – don’t fund transit – as gridlock worsens people pay more and more for location and real estate prices go up and up.

Translink is one of the most efficient transit agencies in North America by any measure, but people just lap up critical stories about trivialities (in the big picture of the transit budget for a region) in the media the same way they lap up all the bs the media spouts about real estate.

So funny to see that the people here who pride themselves on seeing through media bs on real estate are just suckers for it like everyone else when it comes to other topics like transit.


First Poloz, now Oliver? “Oliver says Ottawa exploring ‘steps’ to address housing market”, CTV News. http://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/oliver-says-ottawa-exploring-steps-to-address-housing-market-1.2147729#ixzz3LwA6o5H4 “Finance Minister Joe Oliver says the federal government could take “moderate steps” to address Canada’s strong housing market as he began two days of meetings on Sunday with his provincial counterparts.” “”In terms of household debt and the real-estate market, this is a subject, of course, we’re monitoring very carefully,” said Oliver, who reiterated his position that there is no housing bubble. “So, we’re not going to take any dramatic steps in that regard, but we may take some moderate steps.” “Quebec Finance Minister Carlos Leitao, an economist, says he thinks the risk to the housing market is “moderate,” but that it has been well-managed by the Bank of Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.” “If there are further measures needed to… Read more »


The BC liberals are responsible for the biggest tax hikes, the carbon tax
which province has the highest gas prices in canada


TransLink’s seven ‘deadly sins’: Art installation and Compass Card snafu just a couple of its dubious spending decisions

What do stranded commuters trudging wearily along the SkyTrain tracks and a giant porcelain poodle sitting on top of an eight-metre-high pole have in common?

Both are examples of a Metro Vancouver transit system that has lost its way and gone to the dogs.


I am sure they will spend the next tax increase more wisely.


There is more controversy tonight over Translink’s Compass Card program.

Testing was supposed to wrap up a year ago but the system is still not in operation and it is millions of dollars over budget.

Faregates were installed years ago with much fanfare, complete with scanners that were meant to deter fare evaders with one simple tap of a Compass Card.

The cards were handed out to 85,000 riders, and beta-testing was supposed to wrap up in October 2013.

But one year later, the system still isn’t fully operational.

“Gordon Campbell in 2009 promised that they’d be up by 2010, actually gave $100 million towards them from the provincial government,” said Jordan Bateman from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.



“Which study is this from?”

Surely you jest?

Ian Jarvis, CEO of TransLink, received $83,700 in bonuses in 2013, making his total compensation for the year $468,015, a rise of almost seven per cent over 2012…He noted that Jarvis, “who already is paid far more than the CEO’s of transit in Toronto, Montreal, Portland or Seattle,” received a bonus “bang on the household income in Vancouver”, and called for an apology explaining to taxpayers the reasons for the hike.

“More TransLink employees than ever before made six figures,” Bateman said. “In 2012, 393 TransLink employees made six figures. Last year, in 2013, that jumped to 434.”



“Why Canadians should consider Poloz’s overvalued housing warning”, Globe & Mail.


“Stephen Poloz has done a novel thing for a central banker. He’s bluntly told most Canadians that their most valuable asset is worth far less than they think it is….Will Canadians actually listen?”

“One of the most famous experiments in behavioural finance offered people a chance to buy and sell mugs. The experimenters – future Nobel prize winner Daniel Kahneman, Richard Thaler and Jack Knetsch – found that people demanded twice as much money to sell a mug they already possessed compared to what they were willing to pay for a mug that belonged to someone else.

The disparity between the two prices is said to reflect an “endowment effect.” In essence, we put a much higher value on things we already own than on things we don’t.”



UK Housing prices down 3.3%.
Must warm the hearts of the locust ex-pat sitting on their multiple Canadian RE holdings.
They have moved to Canada in great hordes the last 15 years to do one thing… and one thing only….Flip Houses.
No talent or skills for any other work.



Coming to Canada with your suitcase full of fresh HK dollar, ready for laundering in Vcr Hsg?… the exchange rate favors you. One of the reasons for the recent surprise swing up in prices and sales volume.

Believe me, they aint coming for oil field jobs.

Whistler or bust?

The religion of peace is at it again in Australia. This could be any one of us or our families in a second. I feel just sick for those hostages. Imagine this on Robson St? It could happen and with enough time it will happen.


More temporary foreign workers headed our way good luck being a skilled Canadian trying to find a job.

Sincerely, Harper.



“[Translink is] [e]asily one of the most wasteful government programs/agencies in the entire country…”

Interesting. I’ve done some research on public spending in the past and would love to know more details. Which study is this from? Thanks.


“Classic NPD for you. We need more taxes or the world will end!

Straw man says what?!?


Gregor says if we don’t have a tax hike we will have “a lot more traffic congestion, pollution, sitting in traffic …” Or we could just put all those roads back into service that were replaced with bike lanes. Classic NPD for you. We need more taxes or the world will end! Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, who voted in support, said the alternative would be detrimental economically. “There will be a lot more traffic congestion, pollution, sitting in traffic … it’s a costly thing for our economy,” he said. The proposed sales tax increase would apply only in Metro Vancouver and would cost the average household about $125 per year, officials estimate. The poorest families would pay an estimated $50 per year. It is estimated the tax increase would raise $250 million per year to fund the mayors’ plan to… Read more »


Nice spin from a NDP hack. It is the local mayors like Gregor campaigning for the tax hike because he promised a new Vancouver subway. If the mayors had their way they would just hike the PST with no referendum. It is the BC Liberal government that is making any tax hike pass a referendum and let the voters decide as they should.

Metro Vancouver residents could be asked to vote on a 0.5 per cent hike in B.C.’s Provincial Sales Tax to fund new transit projects, during a referendum next year. The proposal was approved by the majority of Metro Vancouver mayors, who considered it the most affordable solution for the majority of residents, at a meeting in New Westminster on Thursday morning. It passed by a count of 109 to 19, under the weighted voting system



@63 today’s fat cows at Translink are no political friends of NDP old boys club.



The original Translink was created by the NDP to give local governments control over transit. When the BC Liberals came into office, they took away local control but kept the name so the people would blame the NDP and local governments for mismanagement.

Worked for you didn’t it?