Friday Free-for-all!

It’s the end of another week and that means it’s 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:

Assessments and sales
Canada in ‘serious trouble’?
Optimism Fading?
Rent vs. buy math
High debt a way of life
Oil brings doubt
Chinese investors not afraid of ghosts
Realtor Hunger Index at 68%
Prices down in Yuan

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

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patriotz
Member

Proposed Murray River mine to rely primarily on foreign workers

“The whole town (Tumbler Ridge) is basically unemployed,” Brian Cochrane, business manager with Local 115 of the International Union of Operating Engineers, said on Thursday. “So if any jobs are going to be available … you want to hold people’s feet to the fire and say, ‘Why aren’t we creating the appropriate actions so people from the local community are getting access to some of the employment?’”

Tumbler Ridge has been hit by a downturn in the coal sector, with mine closings affecting more than 1,000 jobs.

kabloona
Member
kabloona
Oops…my surplus just turned into a deficit! 😉 “Tumbling oil prices mean Alberta surplus this year now $500M deficit: premier” https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/tumbling-oil-prices-mean-alberta-surplus-now-500m-010701289.html “EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Jim Prentice says oil prices have plunged so far so fast that this year’s projected budget surplus will now be a $500-million deficit. And he says while his advisers expect oil to rebound slowly over the coming years, the budget may remain in deficit until 2018. “It’s the most serious fiscal circumstance we’ve seen in a generation in this province,” Prentice said in an interview Thursday. “Things have turned so dramatically that we’ve gone from a $1.5-billion surplus in November to what looks like a $500-million deficit based on today’s projections. “And there’s actually precious little we can do about that. We’ve been belt-tightening in government for the last quarter.” Oil prices, the lifeblood of… Read more »
southseacompany
Member
southseacompany

“Canada Housing Starts Slow to Weakest Since March Amid Oil Rout”, Business Week

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2015-01-09/canada-housing-starts-slow-to-weakest-since-march-amid-oil-rout

“The pace of housing starts declined to 180,560 units last month, the lowest since March and down 6.5 percent from November, Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp. said in a statement today. ‘

Loon
Guest
Loon

Here’s a fun task for any web heads out there,

Stand up some code that can query and return mls and assessment BC data for the same property simultaneously.

Rip through the database of available listings and return the top and bottom 5 percentiles. It should provide a few hearty laughs, eh ?

vangrl
Member
vangrl

Am I the only one that can’t stand the look of this style house that is being built everywhere these days? Almost every listing in East Van in the 1.5-3 mil range is a slight variation of this style.

It’s like a Chinese version of a heritage house, always complete with those ugly metal fences.

https://www.ecorealtyinc.ca/bc-real-estate-listings/vancouver/mls-V1093041/934-East-53rd-Ave-Vancouver-V5X1J6?id=261360043

Royce McCutcheon
Member
Royce McCutcheon

@5:

They are the cast of “Vancouver Specials 2: The Specialing”.

To bring the people to the show this time around, the production involved a WAY larger budget.

Harry Wang
Guest
Harry Wang

Birth tourism on the rise in Vancouver and Richmond?

New statistics show numbers up three-fold since 2009

http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/Birth+tourism+rise+Vancouver+Richmond/10713600/story.html

vangrl
Member
vangrl

#6 – I agree, I feel these are destined to be the future wave of Vancouver Specials.

Softy
Guest
Softy

The style of new construction is essentially determined by zoning regulations and astronomical land prices that compel builders to maximize the permitted square footage on a given lot. Those two imperatives result in that one design that you see replicated everywhere in Vancouver, east side or west side.

Softy
Guest
Softy

By the way, what is wrong with Vancouver Specials (I assume you are referring to the 70s and early 80s style)? They are far better to live in than houses in the same neighborhoods built in prior decades.

bullwhip29
Guest
bullwhip29
Royce McCutcheon
Member
Royce McCutcheon

@8

Hard to top the original. Good or bad, it’s a great emblem for housing here.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/68459632@N07/

bullwhip29
Guest
bullwhip29

@ #5 and #9

pretty sketchy neighborhood for this price. also this could be way more than the permitted sq ft now. description in header says 8 br, 7.5 bath. now much more than this. mortage pmt is a laugable 8500/mo so i’m not surprised by any of this. see lots of examples of owners living in 25% of house (max) and renting out the rest just to make ends meet. this home is basically a 4-plex disguised as a “mansion” located in a not so desirable area of the city

patriotz
Member

@9: “The style of new construction is essentially determined by zoning regulations and astronomical land prices”

Lot prices are determined by what buyers are willing to pay for finished houses. Buyers determine what style gets built – they have the choice not to buy.

Bo Xilai
Member
Bo Xilai

Looks like Christy Clark’s visions of sugar plum fairies, balanced budgets and paid off provincial debt are quickly evaporating due to troubles in the LNG industry… No problem, Christy will just create some new BS pipe dream next election…

http://oilprice.com/Energy/Natural-Gas/LNG-Another-Casualty-Of-Low-Oil-Prices.html

ex-kitsie
Guest
ex-kitsie

I was talking with someone involved in the LNG industry through work in Kitimat. The town has slowed down with one of the big camps (and they are HUGE workcamps) down to 30 people. Things are not looking good for the north, or for balancing the books via “Christie accounting”.

DaMann
Member
DaMann

Hey all those people buying up Kitimat RE should be laughing. After all it’s the next big thing.

CBC
Guest
CBC

@kabloona

Alberta had sales tax, it’s hidden into prices of goods. I guess psychologically, it makes the consumer feel better?

Yunak
Guest
Yunak

@5 …Am I the only one that can’t stand the look of this style house that is being built everywhere these days?

It is an integral part of Vancouver’s transformation in becoming a gray-eastern-craphole type of city, with all that Chinese immigration and influence. You can’t bring millions in relatively small area in a short period of time and expect to not to see a significant deterioration that even has a scientific proof.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/schools-backs-prof-who-says-asian-immigration-has-damaged-vancouver/article22358317/

bullwhip29
Guest
bullwhip29
@ #15 how much do you want to bet that her new game plan will be to promote BC as the best place on earth (again)? with the loonie cratering, tourism will likely be one the few bright spots (cue the bc ferries fare increases). surely the RE industry will somehow try to capitalize on the notion that Cdn real estate is now “cheap” too. christy might also have an opportunity to attract more big business (tech, hollywood north etc) to our neck of the woods, but i’ll believe that when i see it. anyhow, her big bet on the resource sector looks like it will be a massive bust imho, but that won’t matter much optics wise esp if the americans come back to BC in big numbers with plenty of cash to burn. at the drop of a… Read more »
kabloona
Member
kabloona

Now would be a good time to adopt a PST/HST (as per the talking heads on CBC a week ago) therefore Prentice absolutely won’t do it…

😉

Hello
Guest
Hello

@ 4

Where can I get access to the API?

bullwhip29
Guest
bullwhip29
bullwhip29
Guest
bullwhip29
Brian Ripley
Guest
Brian Ripley

“Prices down in Yuan”

I have updated my new chart of Vancouver, Toronto & Calgary Average SFD Prices in CA$ and US$ with FX and Crude Oil Notations

http://www.chpc.biz/canadian-housing-in-usd.html

In December 2014 the CAD USD spread continued to widen and an average priced single family detached house in the hot metros of Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto are now 13% cheaper if purchased in USD as opposed to CAD.

At the March 2009 Pit of Gloom, prices were 21% cheaper in USD.

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