Category Archives: economy

One decade since the US Housing Bubble bust

Wow, time flies when you’re having fun!

Did you know that it was ten years ago that the US financial system had a little stumble due to over exuberance in the housing market?

10 years is a long time, but it’s how long it took at least one guy to sell his house.

That guy figures he lost about 60K over those ten years on a house he paid $137k for.

Fortunately in Vancouver there are no $137k houses so that can’t happen here.

Hey Vancouver! Why so miserable?

You’d think that living in a great city would make you happy, but apparently that’s not true for everyone.  Southseacompany points out this article about why people in Vancouver and Toronto are so unhappy.

Vancouver is now a place you try to survive as much as enjoy. All the problems are well known, the greatest being the high cost of housing. When you, as a young person, have little hope of making a comfortable life in a city that you love, of course it’s going to cause unhappiness. There is a sense that Vancouver is being yanked away from those who love it most, taken over by mercantilists and arrivistes from around the world who care little about a city’s “soul” so long as the skiing’s good and there’s a place that sells beluga caviar. And then there are those sitting on a lottery ticket with the house they bought years ago, waiting to cash out, and those sitting on a mountain of debt, praying interest rates don’t go up. It doesn’t sound like the kind of environment that would engender a cool community vibe, a place where relationships between people can flourish. And that, I think, is what the survey on happiness has tapped into.

Read the full article here.

BC slides

Kabloona pointed out this article: “dramatic drop in home sales makes B.C. an outlier among provinces”

“VANCOUVER—B.C.’s real-estate market has gone from being one of the strongest in the country to the weakest as the number of sales drops sharply in comparison to other provinces.

The B.C. Real Estate Association (BCREA) is forecasting a 21 per cent drop in sales in 2018. Meanwhile, the number of sales in July was 24 per cent lower than the previous July, according to Douglas Porter, chief economist and managing director of BMO Financial Group….

“…..Compared to the rest of the country we are noticing that it’s especially weak, which is quite a turnaround from what we’ve seen over much of the past 10 to 15 years,” Porter said. “It’s quite unusual for Vancouver to stick out.”

Read the full article here.

The hollowing out of Vancouver

Some smaller retailers are packing up and leaving Vancouveras rents rise and some owners would prefer to leave retail units empty:

“Certain areas of Vancouver are hollowing out,” Patterson said.

On Denman and Robson, he suggested it is due to higher rents, some of which is tied to rezoning potential.

“Some landlords don’t want to lower [retail] rents because it reduces the value of their building,” he said. “They would rather leave [storefronts] empty.”

Retail lease rates on Robson Street range from $120 to $250 per square foot, the second highest in the city behind Alberni Street, according to a recent survey by Cushman & Wakefield.

A second-quarter 2018 study by commercial realtor Marcus & Millchap showed the average price of a retail property sold in Vancouver this year was in excess of $1,000 per square foot, up 25 per cent from 2017. Average retail rents now average $30.10 per square foot, up nearly 10 per cent from 2017, the agency added.

Read the full article over at the courier.

Expensive to buy, cheap to own

Having trouble saving up enough for a teardown house in a terrible neighborhood? Good news! Although its expensive to buy real estate in Vancouver, it’s one of the cheapest places for property taxes in Canada or the US.

The owner of a C$1 million ($770,000) home in the Pacific Coast city will pay just C$2,468 a year in property tax, compared with C$6,355 in Toronto or more than C$10,000 in Ottawa, according to a new study by real estate website Zoocasa that looked at rates in 25 major Canadian markets.

Read the full article here.