Archive for the ‘humor’ Category

Well, that must be the top then.

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Over the weekend we found out that a bearish poster on this site just bought a house.  Not in Vancouver mind you, but still..

What went wrong? Landlord wanted to move back in. Now if it was just me I would have rented another place, but as it isn’t just me I decided to see if I could make buying work.

Had to look outside my old neighbourhood, but I found a house on a big lot, price $330,000. Taxes about $3000/year, rental value about $1750/month. Great deal? No. But one I can live with. There might be some downside on the price going forward, but what matters to me is value, i.e. ownership costs versus rent, not expectation of price changes going forward.

And in that same thread we found out that a bullish poster sold his house and is now renting.

In all sincerity, when a voracious bear purchases, it may signal a top. Market trends often reverse at points like this.

To let you guys in on a secret, yours truly is no longer a home owner. I rent. I do have other real estate interests though.

So are these signals of a market top or what?


I Believe the Children are our Future

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

The middle class is doomed.

You may have heard of that internal Conservative Government report on the middle class prepared by Employment and Social Development Canada even though it was never released.

The Canadian Press used the Access to Information Act to get a copy and it’s mostly remarkable due to some of its blunt take-aways:

“The market does not reward middle-income families so well,” says the report. “As a result, they get an increasingly smaller share of the earnings pie” compared with higher-income families.

The report also refers to debt, saying “many in the middle spend more than they earn, mortgaging their future to sustain their current consumption.”

“Over the medium term, middle-income Canadians are unlikely to move to higher income brackets, i.e., the ‘Canadian dream’ is a myth more than a reality.”

Well it turns out that there’s another way to look at the same data, as Finance Canada has just done.

“Their analysis arrives at conclusions — namely that middle-income families have stagnant wages, are unlikely to move to higher income groups, and are increasingly indebted — which appear to conflict with the general message in Budget 2014 and previous internal briefings,” says an accompanying briefing note for Oliver.

The new report points out that moving from single earner to double earner households as more women have joined the workforce has acted to keep the middle class afloat.

The Finance Canada report estimates about 70 per cent of the increase in middle-class household incomes since the mid-1990s can be attributed to higher workforce participation rates, primarily by women workers.

“There is no second wave of women, spouses, entering the workforce,” said New Democrat MP Nathan Cullen, the opposition’s finance critic.

Of course the MP is being overly pessimistic without cause, there’s an obvious next wave of income for households and it doesn’t require polygamy.

The children are our future.

It’s time for Canada to get in line with global economic trends and fully utilize the productivity of the available workforce.  We have a large population of potential workers that remain untapped.

Instead of wasting tax dollars and time in school, children could be gaining valuable experience cleaning homes, mining coal or any number of other jobs to help support the household. Lets not squander this bright future opportunity, let’s put the kids to work!

Mayor Robertson to be replaced with condos

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Like a local onion?

Many Franks pointed out this article over at

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson to be town down, replaced with condos

VANCOUVER (The News Desk) — After a long fight with developers, City Hall announced yesterday that Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson will be demolished to make way for a condo development.

“Gregor is such a recognizable part of this city. We are all very sad to see him go and regret that we couldn’t do more to save him,” said City Hall human resources manager Deborah Swift as she watched construction crews approach the mayor from across the street.

According to documents from Henriquez Parters, the developer, Robertson will be rezoned as “mixed-use residential.” If the application is approved by council, the two-term mayor will be rebuilt as a 16-storey residential tower, with commercial space at street level.

Read the full article here.

Won’t you please help a hungry house salesperson?

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Are you aware of the Vancouver Realtor Hunger Index?

Across the city you’ll see used house salespeople who are having trouble making their german auto lease payments – a decline in the glory days of Vancouver real estate affects us all.

That lost commission translates into a deferred payment to a local auto dealer, who might not buy that extra big ad in the local newspaper.  Will that editor buy his ounce of weed this month?  Will that grow op have the money to expand?

These are the big issues to consider.


If you’re thinking about buying a house or apartment in Vancouver BC or know somebody who is, your commission can make all the difference.

Just jump in and do it. Now is the time.

The Vancouver Realtor Hunger Index for February 2014 stands at 62%.*

And while thats nowhere near the worst that we’ve seen it, it’s a hell of a lot worse that the halcyon days of 2004 where for two solid months every used house salesperson in the city was fed.

You can help.  Buy a house or condo in Vancouver BC and lets keep this economy rolling.

*A big thanks to RFM for the data. 

What will the CMHC announce?

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Who wants to play ‘guess the future’?

Apparently the CMHC is holding a conference call at 10 am EST on Feb 27th.

Some rumours are saying privatization, though it looks like most everyone agrees that would extreeeeemely unlikely at this point for a few reasons:

-Privatization would require the finance department
-No one in their right mind would take on the debt

But that doesn’t mean you can’t guess at what is going to be revealed tomorrow!

So what do you think the CMHC will announce? Privatization? Tougher underwriting standards? Branching out into commemorative figurines? A new special expert task force comprised of Brad Lamb, Bob Rennie and Angelo Mozilo?

What’s your best guess at what the CMHC will announce tomorrow?

The Central Bank That Cried Wolf.

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

There once was a central banker who was bored as he sat on the hillside watching the village sheep. To amuse himself he took a great breath and sang out that some property prices were “probably overvalued“.

The Canadians came running out of their homes to try to pay down their debt and get their finances in order. But when they arrived at the top of the hill, they found record low interest rates and rising property prices along with stagnating incomes. The central banker laughed at the sight of their angry faces.

“Don’t cry ‘high debt loads” said the Canadians, “when there’s no interest rate increases!” They went grumbling back down the hill and signed up for some more mortgages.

The banker was replaced with another, but he played the same naughty game, singing out “The elevated level of household debt and stretched valuations in some segments of the housing market remain an important downside risk to the Canadian economy”

By this time though the Canadians were wise to these pranks and they wisely held their place in the line up for the latest greatest condo pre-sales opportunity.  The banker retired with a gigantic pension and everyone lived happily ever after.

MORAL: Load up on more consumer debt, invest in hot real estate. What could possibly go wrong?


A Tale of Two Trump Towers

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Even though Vancouver is the bestestest city that ever there was, we’re yet to get our Trump Tower.

But if you want to get excited that we will be getting you Trump Tower you can rely on the Vancouver Sun to reprint the best press releases as news articles.

If you could buy a unit in the luxurious $360-million Trump International Hotel & Tower Vancouver, to be finished by fall 2016, you might never want to leave.

But if you have to, you will probably be able to go in style. Access to private jets, helicopters and Rolls-Royce limos for Trump buyers are probably going to figure as “residential amenities”, or perks.


Meanwhile there’s another Canadian City that already has it’s Trump Tower and yeah, that would be Toronto.

But the one in Toronto apparently doesn’t have that problem where people ‘might never want to leave’.

Apparently the problem there is sort of the opposite.

A unit in Toronto’s troubled Trump Hotel up for auction Sunday only received one bid — and below the minimum offer.

Kashif Khan, managing director of Toronto-based Ritchies Auctioneers, said the $550,000 bid will be taken to the owner of the unit.

“At that price, we can’t close the deal . . . but we will be presenting the offer to the seller,” he said. “We don’t know (if he will accept) — crazy things happen.”

The owner is a real estate broker who after seeing lots of similar units stagnate on MLS for months on end decided an auction would be a good move to unload the condo.


Most expensive listing sees biggest price drop

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

Anyone remember a story about the most expensive real estate listing in all of Canada?
It made news first for the obvious reason: most expensive property in the country!

Then it made some blogging news because the pictures of the really weird house turned out to be imaginary.

But you got to figure with all that nation wide exposure it must have sold for a pretty sum right?

Well not exactly.

As observer points out that’s a $25 million (or 66 percent!) price drop in less than a year!

Surely at that rate we must have the biggest asking price collapse in all of Canada here.

If you’re into extrapolation this means that in one year they’ll pay you six figures to take it off their hands.

Field Guide to the Tarps of Vancouver

Monday, August 12th, 2013

It used to be that Vancouverites were concerned about leaky condos.

There was a time when local newscasters and politicians would wring their hands and referred to condo repairs blossoming across town as a ‘crisis’.

Then we discovered that tarps can be worn with flair!

Here’s just a few different styles that you can currently find on the Fairview slopes, look around town and see if you can spot these or other trend setting styles!

What special style has your strata chosen?

A field guide to various condo repair tarp styles

A field guide to various condo repair tarp styles


1. Drapery:
just throw it up there! This bohemian style says you have more important things to do than tidy up the tarps.

2. Tidy blue:
a ‘just so’ cap of shiny white tarp tops custom fit to your building is offset by a beautiful blue mesh, making even a grey sky look sunny!

3. Showercaps:
just a little on the top please! Leaves the balconies, doors and windows unblocked, but keeps the rain off the roof!

4. Stormtrooper:
for the serious mysterious type.  Cover everything in a tight white shell. These are not the droids you’re looking for.

5. Cascading green:
for extra excitement in a downpour, this style will only work with a multilayered building but creates a beautiful waterfall effect in a heavy rain.  The green mesh says ‘i care’ about the environment.

Have we missed any quintessential Vancouver tarp styles?

Chuck Norris and Vancouver Facts

Monday, July 29th, 2013

Bubble blind Canadians are amazed at the asking price for the Dallas home of Chuck Norris.

Yes, Vancouver, there are places you can get a decent home for $1.2 million.

You’d have to make do with just 4 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms in just over 7,000 square feet.

There’s a theater, a gym, a pool. You know, the basics.

Chuck Norris House


Of course, what it doesn’t have is Vancouver.

And for those that don’t know, here are a few Vancouver facts courtesy of reader crikey

Vancouver fact #20:
In Vancouver you can ski, surf, swim, and spend eight hours in the Emergency Room waiting to see a doctor to treat your hypothermia — all in the same day!

Vancouver fact #56:
Vancouver’s property salepeople’s tears can cure cancer. Its a shame that none of them will ever have reason to cry, since Vancouver home prices are only ever going to go up.

Vancouver fact #106
Vancouver could shrink its abundance of rainy days if it *really* wanted to. But Vancouver chooses to allow so much crummy weather every year because it is being ironically hip.

Vancouver fact #66
Children in Vancouver seldom bother to buy chewing gum. There is no point do doing so, because everybody knows that some fundamental laws don’t apply to Vancouver, bubbles cannot ever form in Vancouver.

Vancouver fact #27
Vancouver is home to the greatest Wizards in on Earth! Harry Potter and Gandalf look like rank amateurs compared to Cam Good, a Wizard/salesperson who once put a group of Vancouver property salespeople in a yellow helicopter and magically transformed them on the evening TV news into well-monied overseas investors scouring the city for purchases. More recently, the Wizards at ‘MAC Marketing Solutions’ took two unrelated employees with different nationalities
and magically turned them, on various leading nightly TV new broadcasts, into sisters whose wealthy parents were buying into the condominium market — from the selfsame building MAC was marketing!


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