What happens if the bubble pops?

Over on the Vancouver Housing Market Blog there’s an interesting historical discussion of 1981. That was the year when real estate prices in Vancouver fell by about 50% after a fast strong run up in prices. There were a few factors that caused that crash, but ‘this time its different’. As long as we keep bidding up the price of Condos in Vancouver we’ll all be fine.

But just for the sake of argument, lets say the real estate market in vancouver crashes in the next year or two.. what would that mean? Well for one thing houses and condos would be worth a lot less. This could be depressing to current owners, but not the end of the world. If you can afford your bills you stay put right? Eventually prices will go back up, you’ll just be paying some premium rent on the money you used to buy your place. As long as you don’t have to move you don’t have to worry about the fact that you cant sell your place.

If things get really bad? Well, I guess in the worst case scenario that would be unemployment and foreclosure right? Buy why get all negative? Even in that gloomy scene you can look at the bright side. Its all a matter of perspective – Vancouver has one of the mildest climates in Canada, people come all the way from Quebec to live on our streets. We have lots of prime real-estate in parks and tarps are cheap! So lets stay positive! I’m off to view this 500 sq. foot condo on east side right now – the MLS listing says I can “just paint and profit!”.

Fame, Fortune and Forclosures in the U.S.A.

Things aren’t looking so good in the US housing market. Sales are down, prices seem to have peaked and are starting to drop in some places. And as we’ve seen in the past some people don’t react to turmoil in real estate values too well.

Just how bad has it gotten? Apparently the rich and famous can no longer afford to live in Wisconsin.

More than a bell is needed to save Dustin Diamond this time around. Diamond, best known as geeky Screech Powers on the 1989-1993 teen comedy series “Saved by the Bell,” is selling T-shirts with his photo on them to try to raise $250,000 so he doesn’t lose his gray two-story house under a foreclosure order.

For the whole story you can visit Diamonds website at http://www.getdshirts.com/.

Basements Suites Galore in Fairview!

Wow! This weekend between Cambie and Broadway on 6th ave I must have seen signs for at least 15 open houses going on. A suprising number of these are ground level condos, sometimes called ‘garden suites’ or ‘basement suites’, and most starting around 350k.

Now some people might look at this and see an overheated housing market getting dangerously close to meltdown via saturation but I say tish-tosh! What we have here is an OPPOURTUNITY!

Look at it this way: The majority of people that live in basement suites are renters. Most home-owners choose not to live in the basement for whatever reason, but many many renters do. Therefore we can assume that there is GREAT DEMAND for basement suites among renters out there, but only a finite supply. See where I’m going with this?

The thing about basements is that there needs to be land to put them into, and they aren’t making anymore land! Sure they can stack condo on top of condo and get more floorspace, but they cant make more groundfloor units than the total surface of the ground that exists. Therefore groundfloor units are CLEARLY in more DEMAND than upperfloor units, particularly among renters.

And renters are going to pay our mortgage and get us rich arent they?

Some people might think that renters wont be willing to pay the $3000 per month that will make us rich off of these 600 sq foot basement suites, but you’ve got to THINK ABOUT THE FUTURE! Demand steadily increases while supply dwindles, and the one TRULY LIMITED supply is in basement suites!


little tiny houses for you and me..

With less and less space around I guess we’ve got to figure out ways to live in smaller and smaller places. This ingenious design uses a rotating corner section of one large room to compact four rooms into one.

..So basically you’ve got your living room but with a turn of the corner cylinder you’ve got a kitchen. To bathe you rotate the cylinder to the ‘bathroom’ section and then when you’re ready to head to bed you rotate the cylinder to the ‘bedroom’ section. It’s like a futuristic version of the Murphy Bed!