Friday Free-for-all! April 7th 2017

It’s the end of another work week and that means it’s time for another Friday Free-for-all! This is our regularly scheduled 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:

Hot housing market could drag down Canada
A 2% tax for owners who don’t file income tax
REBGV stats for March
Wide open for money laundering
Sales down 31% over previous March
BMO: the solution isn’t more tulips
RCMP reviews swap of $130m land for $15m

So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes in the comments section below and have an excellent weekend!

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

[…] of ridiculous vancouver, this nation is real estate crazy. In many key metrics Canada has surpassed the US housing bubble at its […]


It’s On! Help The Tyee Cut Through Political Spin This Election


117 BC Liberal Falsehoods, Boondoggles and Scandals: The Complete List


“Millennial B.C. buyer: ‘I’m sick of living in a basement’”, Globe & Mail

“Curtis Van Marck says he thought he would always be a renter, until the British Columbia government’s new interest-free loan program for first-time home buyers came along.”


“Nearly 2 in 3 homeowners won’t sell because of how much it costs to buy again: CIBC”, CBC

“Nearly two-thirds of homeowners polled by CIBC in a recent survey say they are reluctant to sell their homes because of how much it would cost to buy another one.”


“54% of Canadians think home prices will never fall: CIBC poll”, BNN

“Despite lofty valuations in the Toronto and Vancouver housing markets, 54 per cent of respondents to the CIBC poll say housing prices will rise indefinitely, while only 40 per cent think prices will decline over the course of the next five years.”


B.C. Liberals pledge tax credits to seniors, caregivers for renovations

Surprise! Christy pledges even more tax money to subsidize the RE industry and keep seniors’ houses off the market.

Just me

She knows very well who are the people voting for her. And she pleases them to no end.
Politics that screws the young(er) and pleases the old.


what really irks me is that the same multi-millionaire owners who claim to have minimal to zero income will somehow manage to max out the $20k tax credit while most won’t either have the spare cash lying around or a house of their own to renovate in the first place

Just me

Some B.C. universities leasing spaces on their campuses to private Chinese high schools to boost revenue

Looking to boost revenues and create a pipeline of future international students, some B.C. universities are turning to a novel — and controversial — idea: letting Chinese companies open private high schools on their campuses.

Combat roach

Prostitution of the worst kind.


so not only will HAM monopolize the merchandise, they will be in the business of owning/managing the brothels too

Just me When the B.C. Liberal government amended the Election Act in 2015, the focus of most people’s attention was on its elimination of the pre-election spending limits. That change paved the way for both the unprecedented fundraising and spending that has foreshadowed the election campaign that officially begins Tuesday. But what was also tucked into the eight-pages of stricken sections and subsections was a change requiring Elections B.C. to provide parties and candidates not only with the list of people who voted in the last election, but the list of those who didn’t. The government’s reason for wanting that information was that it could be used to try to boost voter turnout, which over the past decades has steadily eroded. But others begged to differ. Among them were: the privacy commissioner Elizabeth Dunham, Independent MLA Vicki Huntington, Green Party leader… Read more »


imho boosting voter turnout would backfire on the liberals. just for kicks, imagine for a moment if it were possible to secretly embed voter information into the ballot itself as they are handed to you?


“Won’t last!”…..posted 27 days ago…


Let’s see if I can break through the denial. Here is 1612 Maple St. Thirty freaking four years old. Had to have the entire envelope redone a few years back. Someone bought it for 530ish K back about six years ago. It’s now sold for over a million. Having lived near there I cannot believe it 3009 Laurel St. I’ve been in this complex, I’ve seen the complex rooftop with funky-looking black-green stuff clinging to it. A few years back the prices always hovered between 5&6. A real struggle to get 6. One of them just sold at 841K; 142K over asking. And then on the higher end, a coach house with NO space for anything aside from a kitchen downstairs sells for 1.370M. So that’s whomever in their living room upstairs sandwiched between 2 squirrelly bedrooms overlooking an alley… Read more »


Market down or up? Things are like this just recently or do you really think they’ve been at these prices for two years now? This is a new market high for condos because there is no inventory. And there’s no inventory because sellers didn’t want to sell in a declining market (just like Chipman said…that b*stard). And then Christie came to the rescue.

Just me

I agree with everything you wrote about the condo market. Clearly, Christy Clark brought the market back to life.
However, the higher end is still being starved of Chinese money (mostly thanks to Xi Jinping).
Of course, the BC Libs are doing their utmost to feed the market bottom up. And they are trying to do so without being perceived too much pro-developers. They are as slimy as snails.
My point however is that valuations in excess of $1000/sqft have been around for at least 18 months now.

Anyway, splitting hair is no use. The best bet we have is to vote the BC Libs out of office. After two decades in power they are indecently corrupt, beyond redemption. We are talking corruption at the level of bad banana republics.

Best place on meth

“We are talking corruption at the level of bad banana republics.”

Not just Krusty but Turdeau as well.

Our chinese owned country formerly known as Canada needs to be liberated by Donald J. Trump.

Right Bear Vancouverite? I bet you dearly miss fake newcomer you fucking asshole.

Bear Vancouverite

I noticed you are smart now and stop the traitorous call for a military invasion of Canada, however, it now sounds like you traitorously believe the US President should depose Canada of its democratically elected Prime Minister. Did you vote for the LIberals or the Conservative after I warned that the Liberals were going to increase immigration, because I voted against Trudeau.

You throw the word traitor around lightly yet you keep hoping that a foreign power takes control of the country. I wonder how many patriots in the US want a foreign power to take over their country, send in their military, and remove their elected head of state.

Bear Vancouverite

PS. I find it interesting you want to pick a fight with someone who a) believes we need to stop all foreign money b) not only wants to vote for the NDP but has been corresponding with all 3 levels of government to express disatisfaction with our housing crisis c) actually cares about Canada, Canadians and a quality of life for hard working Canadians.

Maybe you care more about being a racist than you do about making a difference in local housing prices and in locals themselves.


BC Liberal in bed with developer: Rennie Gate.


none of this is a surprise to me. if the whole system is really as rotten to the core as i think it might be, then the integrity of the election results themselves have to scrutinized very carefully along with the outcomes of the various RCMP “investigations” which i believe will get swept under the rug or unnecessarily bogged down in legal red tape for many years. i am also wondering when the libs begin the process of suing horgan and co into the stone ages for more alleged wrong doings

Just me

I guess nobody is really surprised anymore. But will voters react? Or will they just accept that this the way politics is done on BC?


I have never voted NDP in my life but this will be the first time voting for the NDP. I know there are many like myself, sick and tire of the corruption and cost of housing in this province.


I ventured out into deepest, darkest Surrey last night to see a friend’s band at the Dublin Crossing. Chatting to a young women who’d bought a two bedroom condo nearby three years ago after a move from downtown. It tells you something about the nature about how the easy money made in lower mainland real estate distorts people’s sense of actual money. She told me that she loved the place and had made money on it but “…not much, really, but it’s OK. Yeah, I’m up $90,000 so far.” When very pleasant, yet very ordinary people call $90,000 in three years not much, you know that people’s expectations of profit from real estate are at shark-jumping moments.

Just me

More voters bribing.. B.C. Liberals promise cap on Metro bridge tolls. I suspect they will renege anyway after re-election. That is their style.

VICTORIA — The B.C. Liberal party is promising to cap Metro Vancouver bridge tolls as part of its re-election campaign platform.

Meanwhile, in other news:

Housing activists mark 10-year anniversary of Little Mountain saga
‘Look at the big hole. There’s still no building. Government-backed speculation? Who is getting rich from this?


“The Liberals say that their government would cover the cost of the lost toll revenue in excess of the cap…”

>>> and how exactly would they accomplish this? this is real shame that it will come down to pulling the wool over the eyes of unsuspecting everyday people


The tolls shouldn’t be there at all.


Newcomer gone. Don’t need people here who put Canada 2nd.

YVR changes name….

Shut it. Would you fight for China or Canada?.

Shut It Down Already

Give it a rest, dumbass.


If you really want to see people who should be banned, go on 4chan.


I’d rather ban proven and admitted liars with no sense of shame.


230 Third Avenue, New Westminster
Dec 16:$2,888,888
Apr 8: $2,390,000
Change: – 498,888 -17%


NDP candidate targeted in attack ads for support of gay marriage

Best place on meth

“Ads printed in two Chinese newspapers target Chak Kwong Au, the NDP candidate for Richmond South Centre and a City of Richmond councillor.”

Those two newspapers should be shut down permantly for promoting hate.

Right? Right?

Bag it and tag it

No, it’s acceptable because it’s a part of the culture. Oldest culture in the world so right about everything.

Joe Freedom

The western culture of freedom of opinion, freedom of belief and freedom of speech. Even if I don’t agree, I support anyone’s right to have an opinion on same-sex marriage and to voice that opinion, whatever that opinion is.


Speaking of western culture, the opposition to same-sex marriage and gay rights in Canada and south of the border hasn’t been led by Chinese. It’s been led by white Christians.

Just me

And they do get a lot of stick for it. As they should.
Are we going to use the same stick for millionaire migrants from rural china?

Joe Freedom

Of course, since in Canada and the US, there are more white Christians than there are Chinese. Luckily, anyone of any race or religion, has the freedom to voice their opinion on the definition of what a marriage is or isn’t.

Personally, I don’t believe governments should be in the marriage business. They weren’t until Napoleon came along. Then none of this would be an issue.

Best place on meth

Correct you are, Joe.

Being critical of an “identifiable minority/group” or whatever the PC fucktards like newcomer call them is well within our rights as free people in a free country.

If the chinamen want to get pissed off about gay marriage and spout off about it, they surely can.

Meanwhile, those of us who are absolutely digusted with money laundering locust scum from the most corrupt shithole in the history of the world also have the right to be pissed of at the ruination of our country by the aforementioned locusts.

Thank god fake newcomer is gone, it’s a hopeful sign that we can beat back and defeat the worthless traitors.

Just me

That is the funny thing: when hate is promoted by a group (any minority group, to be clear) is often presented as freedom of speech. It is a fine line. And people are happy to walk it back and forth.

Shut It Down Already

For once I agree with you.


Globe editorial: How to pop Toronto’s housing bubble, without blowing up the economy

What government shouldn’t do: The federal government, Ontario and Toronto can all take lessons from B.C. The province came up with a measure that helped cool the Vancouver market – and almost immediately set about undermining it.

As soon as B.C.’s foreign buyers’ tax started working, its terms were watered down. And in response to a bubble making homes less affordable, B.C. introduced taxpayer-financed subsidies for first-time home buyers. That only encourages people to spend more on a home, pushing up prices. It’s designed to fuel housing-price inflation. Crazy.

Best place on meth

The foreign buyer tax needs to be adopted federally.

You can’t leave the regulation of something as important as access to shelter for the people of Canada to small time gangster punks like Christy Clark, who prefer to align themselves with communist gangster punks from china.

Just me

Could not have said it better myself.

Joe Punk

Seems that Christy definitely is a punk;


“The foreign buyer tax needs to be adopted federally.”

Will not happen, because every province wants its own policies and Federal action will result in a fight with the provinces even where foreign ownership is not seen as a problem, like Quebec which always resists attempts to extend Federal authority. What can happen is stepped up Federal enforcement of tax evasion.

The Feds have said that if the people of BC want something serious done they can get rid of Christy. Not those exact words of course, but that was the message.

While we’re at it, have any of the contenders for the Federal Conservative or NDP leadership said anything about this?

Best place on meth

Quebec can be exempted like they always are, honestly they should just seperate.

If a tax isn’t made federal then you just end up with a game of whack-a-mole where one province brings in a FBT and the money launderers head to another juridiction, the the first province changes the tax and they come back again.

Around and around they go, on the whims of small time pukes like Christy Clark.


It’s not just a non-starter for Quebec but for every other province. For starters, no province is going to agree with any kind of federal property tax which they will see, correctly, as a grab of their own tax base. As well there are provinces where foreign owned cottages and the like are an important part of the economy and the cost of housing for locals is not an issue.

No federal party will go near this for good reason. It’s just a bad idea.

Best place on meth

It’s not a property tax, it’s a sales tax.

Non-residents who currently own those cottages won’t be affected.

New buyers will, and really, if they can afford a vacaction home in another country then they can certainly afford to pay an extra 15% on the purchase price.


The bubble is the economy.


Little Mountain advocates hold ‘Rich Coleman Vacant Lot’ ceremony 10 years after land-sale announcement

>>> little surprise this has been the outcome to date. while the multi-year stalling will almost certainly be blamed on the nimbyists, it is clear in my mind that developers have always had bigger and better plans for this location and if it takes a while longer for the public to finally warm up to it, then so be it.


Thank God I’m out of that God forsaken province! Stop banging your heads against the wall and get out too!

Best place on meth

Property taxes are just Prrof you dont really own your house. the Rule in Canada is that prop taxes can be deferred, until death.

It’s a war over your BALLS and OVARIES


Vancouver Pre Sale Condo Ponzi Scheme By Steve Saretsky
This is crazy. why is Krusty and Justin allowing this? Thank you Steve.

Best place on meth

Eby proposal to close this loophole, but it just shows how pathetic the supply-side argument is which is really the developers talking.

“Just build more”, they say.

What’s the point when the offshore vermin are playing their usual locust games?


But, with the 15% FB tax (plus other completion costs such as GST, PPT, legal fees) these foreign buyers will be put in a must sell situation prior to completion. In a year or two when these places are about to complete they may have to be sold at a massive discount to avoid the 20% plus in taxes and fees. There is also the empty home tax coming which will go on top of that if they complete and let it sit empty. If they rent it the resale value drops. How many locals want to buy condos for $1200 to $1800 per foot to live in? Not many that is why foreigners are the only ones buying them now. If foreigners do end up holding most of the presales that is actually very bearish going forward and sets… Read more »

LS in Arbutus

That’s a good point.

Best place on meth

The’ll have to sell prior to completion but in the meantime they’re flipping the pre-sales around at ever increasing prices before they finally sell it to a deseperate local at a huge markup. Saretsky referred to Tomlinson’s original artice: “Realtor Steve Saretsky contacted Rennie staff recently and said he was told most of the units in The Ellsworth, a new low-rise building in East Vancouver, have already gone to family and friends of the developer. When sales opened Monday at 8X on the Park, also marketed by Rennie, Mr. Saretsky said all the studio and one-bedroom units had been sold privately. “I think we are being deceived,” he said. “I think it’s giving local people a false hope – that if we keep building and building and building, it’s going to help them to find a home.” There is so… Read more »


“before they finally sell it to a deseperate local at a huge markup.”

I will believe it when I see it. Locals buying at $1500 to $2000 per ft after mark up? Don’t think so. If it was such a sure bet developers would keep the units until completion and then sell them at the higher price to the locals themselves.

Joe Condo

Developers couldn’t get financing to build and keep the units until completion. They need to pre-sale the vast majority of units in order to get financing from banks. The whole system would fall apart without investors taking on the risk.

There really isn’ a ‘mark up” anyway. The pre-sale buyers buy at a discount, more so if they buy more units. They pay less than re-sale prices in order to entice them to buy so that the developers can get the financing to build. It’s like the pre-sale investors are a middle man, buying wholesale and then reselling at retail.

Shut It Down Already


Either way what’s the problem with selling on something you own?


The Spot on Cambie. Every studi and 1-bed sold to family and friends.


i think it could be a bit presumptuous to say the FBT will still be in place in the coming months/years.


Exactly. This is why Krusty and her merry band of thief have to go. Housing is not a commodity but a human rights issue..


That’s it for me. I tried engaging you and making sure that you were aware that what you were doing was wrong. There is no question but that you are fully aware. You are, nonetheless, unwilling to stop referring to people who are members of an identifiable group by birth as vermin, insects, etc. and calling for discrimination against them. To participate in this blog while you are participating is to promote hatred of an identifiable group, and I will not do that anymore.

Shut It Down Already

He’s a simpleton who happens to have been afforded a forum for his hate speech by the site admin. It’s even more hilarious when he claims that people who call out his vile behaviour are “playing the race card”. Like Trump, he thinks he’s smart.


You are Nothing wihthout playing the Refi card. I’ll match and exceed you on personal productivity… after i jam your device up your ass. Want a battle of Survival? bring it on.

Shut It Down Already

Meth is bad, mmm’kay?


not that i support his views or actions, but trump actually has an incredibly high IQ and just wants his voters to think he’s a simpleton. imho, newcomer is doing the complete opposite

Best place on meth

What makes me doubly happy about Trump’s win is that I get to remind the Trump haters that it’s the blowback against their political correctness and attempts at mind control which is responsible for Donald J. Trump now being the most powerful man in the world.

The condescension, the harassment, the race-baiting, the tut-tut finger wagging tell us we must be tolerant even as we’re being ass raped by horrible people from barbaric countries….

In other words, it’s people like me getting fed up with people like newcomer that led to a Trump victory. The PC idiots are responsible for what happens next.


And now we don’t have to be subjected to fake newcomer’s bullshit anymore.

Double sweet.

Shut It Down Already

Is this the same Trump that had a secret plan to defeat ISIS in 30 days, was going to repeal and replace Obamacare, promised that he’d be working for the people rather than playing golf or on vacation, accused a former president of an illegal act without a shred of evidence (and suggested something interesting would show up in 2 weeks when it did not), put a moron in charge of education, promised to declare China a currency manipulator before backing down and otherwise didn’t accomplish a single one if his “first day” promises?

People like you are fucking idiots.

Shut It Down Already

We don’t know Trump’s IQ, he just claims that it’s high. But we know what other things he’s claimed, so….


Bye bye.

Just me

Yes, the Eby legislation would take care of this scam in one clean swipe. The fact that anti-flipping measures have been kept at bay by the BC Libs is concrete indication that they fully understand they would stop the practice if assignment selling. And this is not desirable because this system allows developers to offload part of the risk and puts pressure on buyers.
Developers bankroll the BC Libs, and probaly will hire Christy Ckark post-politics.

By the way, I was drving in the west side today and I saw one of thise billboards about the climate of open corruption among the BC Libs. I think they are very effective.


” it’s easy to avoid capital gains tax as nothing ever registers in land titles office.”

Proceeds of flipping pre-sales are regarded as business income by CRA (i.e. 100% taxable income) not capital gains. Doesn’t inspire confidence in the article.

As Joe Condo pointed out, the ability to flip pre-sales is necessary to get most pre-sale investors to buy in the first place. It is not a bad thing. However evading taxation is a bad thing.


Show me how much they collected in the last 5 years Mr Ottawa man. Show me the stats.

close to ZERO


Interesting history of money laundering (and stashing it in real estate) in the New York Times: