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Steveb over at realestatetalks posted a link to honestrealestate.ca, and it is perhaps the most entertaining and bizarre example of an honest realtor in BC.

He offers his views on the Fraser Valley market (last updated June 06):

Residential Real Estate SALES so far in 2006 are running at what should become ALL-TIME NEW RECORD-LEVELS! (quickly and decisively topping previous-record 2005, which in turn topped year-earlier record 2004). May 2006 registered as the HIGHEST MAY we have ever seen. Any listing that is at all ATTRACTIVE usually SELLS VERY FAST, often with competing MULTIPLE OFFERS (and selling prices often HIGHER than asking price!).

He also offers spiritual advice and commentary on his status as a wingless earth-angel:

This Realtor, in addition to being an extraordinary and exemplary realtor, is now TOTALLY convinced he is wingless, living ‘EARTH-angel’, in a here-&-now godless heaven. –and, is THIS ever a whole BUNCH OF FUN! — just ASK ME!–

– I’m quickly getting into better physical condition, having so far dropped over 20 lbs.
– I’ve got truly huge amounts of energy & an infectious grin on my face. When I walk into a room, others can readily sense the energy coming from me. Most respond very warmly, positively. A few panic!
(they’ll get over it, no one will get hurt)
– I now operate brilliantly on about 1&1/2 hours of sleep a night
– Food seems to be optional, no longer mandatory!
– I can suddenly cook ‘like an angel’
– I’ve got nearly-infallible INTUITION (when I remember to rely on it)
Sex, even with just
myself, is a whole new adventure every time. With my 59th birthday around the corner, I run around with a near-CONSTANT ERECTION that the viagra people would SIMPLE LOVE to be able to SELL you!).

(–NOW, IF MY LOVING BRIDE WOULD JUST PLEASE COME HOME, AND LOVE ME:There’s nothing to fear, really!–)

>—-DOES ANY OF THIS SOUND INTERESTING TO YOU??

.. oh, and thats not all, not by a long shot. Many more details including his connection with the rats, how to talk fun with dogs and his goal of converting as much of the world as possible into living earth angels who are ready to ride ‘the love train‘ – All this and more available at honestrealestate.ca

Just when I was starting to lose interest in Vancouver real estate something like this comes along.

fan-tas-tic!

Negativity in the news

Remember the good old days when all coverage of the Vancouver real estate market was positive? While you can still find some bright uplifting positive coverage it seems like its getting harder to find under the avalanche of negativity in the news recently.

In this weekends Globe and Mail the ‘financial facelift’ section is running with the title couple urged to pay off debts, forget about real estate, and includes a few negative swipes against our market.

“The couple’s goals are like many others,” he explains. “A house in a decent neighbourhood, kids and a solid retirement. In fact, there has never been a worse time in history to buy a house in Vancouver. It now takes 64 per cent of average pretax income to fund housing costs in Vancouver. House prices in Vancouver cannot rise forever.”

and

“Pay off those debts first, the planner urges, and forget about real estate for a while. House prices in Vancouver could decline within a few years. Waiting may be better than spending a great deal today when there are bargains tomorrow, he says.”

meanwhile over at the Vancouver Sun the front page article in the business section is New house supply outstripping demand, with the following gem:

“A large number of projects were launched over the summer in Richmond and it is taking time for the market to absorb all the units, she said. In New Westminster, Podmore added, sales have slowed because little new supply has been put out. In Maple Ridge, a large amount of the same type of housing is being built and it is taking more time for the market to absorb all the units.”

So if I understand that correctly, Sales are currently low due to the following factors:

– Too many houses on the market
– Not enough houses on the market
– Too much similarity between the houses

I think that about covers it, but lets try to stay positive huh? Where can we turn to for a little ray of sunshine? ReMax forecasts an increase in supply AND price, the best of both worlds! It sure is considerate of them to take the time away from the business of selling real estate and do an impartial study of the market reassuring us all of 8% gains. I think their positive outlook should be an inspiration for us all.

Just BUY something already!

You on the fence! Yes you! Hop down and buy something already! Octobers numbers are in and they don’t look good. Its only a one or two percent price drop in most categories so it’s not too late to stop everything from sliding downhill if we work together.

We’re a couple of months into price drops for single family homes on the west side, so thats where we’ve got to act fast. If you’re a move-up buyer or someone with a hefty down payment its time to take that leap of faith. Buy a place on the west side with no subjects now and then put your house on the market – hey it’s worked out ok for some people, now is not the time for hesitation, now is the time for bold action.

First time buyers: If you don’t start doing your part we’re going to have a lot of move-up buyers stuck in a precarious situation. CMHC will insure a zero percent down payment mortgage so you don’t even need to have any money, just BUY SOMETHING!

Look, I know its expensive out there but thats the price you pay for living in paradise. Just make do with a little less and we can keep the bottom from dropping out of this market. If we’re going to prevent whats currently happening in the US its time for everybody to pitch in and do their part. Now get out there and BUY something!

Burnaby is an incredible investment!

With sales dropping in Vancouver you may be looking for the next ‘sure-thing’ investment in lower mainland real-estate. Where can you get in and ride prices up-up-up and away?

Burnaby.

Seriously. If the Oma Developement on Madison Avenue is anything to go by this is a can’t lose investment. This 647 sq. foot condo was originally listed in May 2004 for a price of $207,900. It is still available for you to buy, but is now priced at $325,900! Thats nearly a doubling of value even without anyone buying it!

There are several reasons why you should consider buying this unit:

1) Its only 1 minute away from Vancouver!*
2) Price is going up. Buy now before you are priced out forever.
3) Buy it now before its gone. They’re not making any more land to build condos on and there are only 334 suites available.
4) Bob Rennie!®

*not downtown Vancouver, but the far east side of Vancouver that is one minute away from Burnaby.
® actual Bob Rennie not included with suite purchase.

Vancouver (un)Real Estate

Solipsist has created an interesting Vancouver Real Estate blog called Vancouver(un)RealEstate where he focuses on specific examples of properties that have been rotting on the market for more than a year. The fascinating thing about these specific examples is that they’ve been raising the price when the house doesn’t sell.

Now I’m not educated in the mysteries of economics or supply and demand, but if you can’t sell a house for your asking price in a year, does it really make sense to raise the price? Any theories (other than insanity) on how this happens?

Good work solipsist, I for one would like to see more of these example in the future if you’ve got ’em.