Wrinklenomics

Days ago I called retired people living in trailers on CPP, ‘losers’. Many blog dogs took offense. Which tells you how screwed we are. One of our myths is that the government will look after you when you wrinkle and shrivel and grow hair in the awful places. In reality, public pensions may keep you alive, but barely.

Worse, the system of income support we have now will soon be under attack, which should scare the crap out of every forty-something with a fat mortgage, two kids and 90% of net worth in a house. In case you had any illusions, the average amount of Canada Pension paid to people at age 65 is just $512 (you can double that if you contribute for a lifetime, but most don’t). And also at 65, everybody gets the Old Age Supplement. The average here is $504 (the max is $540).

So, that’s a grand a month – $12,000 a year. For a couple who both worked the average number of years, income is double that. Now name a single Canadian city where two people can afford rent, food, a car (or transit), cable, insurance, clothes, meds and a few simple Victoria’s Secret cherry red teddys with embroidered transparent organza bodice inset, on twenty-four large? Can’t be done.

And yet an apparently huge number of Boomers (and their house horny kids) are headed in precisely that direction. More people are retiring with a mortgage than ever before. Over 70% have no other pensions. Half the population have no savings. Debt is rampant and third of all households can’t pay their monthly bills.

And yet seven in ten Canadians have the most costly single possession of our society – a house. What’s wrong with this picture? Why would a blogger – whose parents (68 and 65) sold a $400,000 in Toronto, ended up broke after paying down debt, and face living in a buggy Muskoka trailer on the public stipend – defend them? There’s no justification for blowing through six decades of life and having nothing to show for it but a defensive 39-year-old.

CPP and OAS were never intended to finance anyone’s life, and never will. They exist as retirement supplements to money you’re expected to save and invest – skimpy little safety nets to round up the income that RRSPs and TFSAs and non-registered investments provide.

So what’s gone wrong? Sure, interest rates have tanked, so Canadians’ fav investment – GICs – pay next to nothing (that isn’t going to change). Yeah, financial markets have been scary for a few years and many people got creamed buying high and selling low (Nortel). Few employers offer pensions now, and even plump public-sector plans are under-funded and uncertain. But mostly, it’s been the historic concentration of wealth in real estate that’s truly messed with our heads.

Gone are the days when people waited until they had 20% or 25% for a house down payment. Now they buy with 5% down which means zero equity after closing costs and a new deck plus 60-inch flat screen. They have a baby or two, move up, spend more and borrow more. By age 40 millions of them have all kinds of stuff and obligations, but no actual money and precious little equity. It’s a financial death spiral.

The stuff I hear is sad. I sit with way too many couples on the path to nowhere. Their laser focus is on getting a hunk of real estate, and nothing else comes close. They can recite the current table of fixed and variable mortgage rates, but have no idea a TFSA is not a savings account or an RRSP is not a thing. I see middle-aged couples with zero savings frantically trying to pay down mortgages with rates less than inflation. It never occurs to them they have no diversification, way more risk and are paying back a 2.5% loan with money that could be earning 6%.

And daily on this pathetic blog we hear from house-heavy Boomers who simply can’t sell their properties. Too late they realized real estate can turn cold and illiquid. It’s an experience vast numbers of retiring homeowners are about to discover. So if you think a house is a financial strategy any more, think again. The coming tidal wave of wrinkly sellers will change your mind fast.

But here’s the news: Public pensions, as piddly as they are, will soon be under attack.

Over the next two decades the number of old retired farts will double. The cost of OAS alone will go from $36 billion a year to $108 billion. The bulbous generation will suck off $2.8 trillion more in retirement benefits than the taxes collected to support it.

So, expect the CPP age to eventually rise from 65 to 67, as is happening in the US and the UK. Expect to receive OAS only if you need it, not just because your sperm count falls. Expect the feds to again drop the age at which retirement plans turn into taxable income. Expect to lose the ability to take the public pension early, even discounted. Expect marginal tax rates to rise.

And expect Boomers to do to real estate what they did for saving.

Except for trailers.

 

 

311 comments ↓

#1 Josef on 02.03.12 at 9:51 pm

FIRST!!! OH YEAH BABY!!!!! Josef is back!!!!!

#2 Randy on 02.03.12 at 9:53 pm

Anybody here yet ?

#3 MarcFromOttawa on 02.03.12 at 9:55 pm

Polk on 02.03.12 at 3:52 pm
I still don’t understand why anyone would rush to write the “First” comment!! Seriously, get a life!!

F5 F5 F5 F5

First!

#4 Randy on 02.03.12 at 9:56 pm

Gee….Who would have seen this problem coming.??…haha

#5 Jack Lemming on 02.03.12 at 9:57 pm

First!

#6 T.O. Bubble Boy on 02.03.12 at 9:58 pm

Solution: take back all of the resources (like Norway), and everyone lives off of the oil & gas & water & gold royalties.

Ya ya ya – Trudeau screwed all of us capitalism-lovers doing this, but is it any worse than what Harper and Flaherty are doing by bankrupting us all with mortgage debt while blowing billions on prisons and planes and bonus senators?

#7 doug lewiw on 02.03.12 at 10:00 pm

First? second try

#8 doug lewis on 02.03.12 at 10:02 pm

First
second try

#9 Freedom first on 02.03.12 at 10:02 pm

Great message. Reality is about to bite for many people.

#10 Farfetched on 02.03.12 at 10:03 pm

First?

#11 peter on 02.03.12 at 10:07 pm

No to mention bankers taking money from your accounts. This week I had to go to the bank because they did extra charges. They credit back some of my money. Be careful with those paperless accounts. They are not thinking in saving paper/enviroment, they are trying to steal money from you. Open your eyes!

#12 Jack Lemming on 02.03.12 at 10:10 pm

@ Josef
I bow to your greatness! You’re #1 once more!

#13 Pete in Barrie on 02.03.12 at 10:12 pm

I have been hearing since I was in my 20′s (almost 30 years ago) that it would be unlikely OAS would be around when I retired. And now that retirement is on the horizon, I continue to not expect it. I will retire with one of those comfy gov’t pension that I pay 13% of my gross income into. Doesn’t leave a lot for tfsa’s or rsp’s, but what can you do.

Garth is right, though. Everyone should have a pension and/or an investment account that works out to about 10-15% of your gross wages. Don’t bank on the gov’t when the time comes. And the sooner the better. Chilton was advocating his 10% rule 25 years ago.

#14 Elmer on 02.03.12 at 10:13 pm

If you’ve been reading the news, they’re having a severe cold spell in Eastern Europe, snow is several meters thick. 220 people are dead in Ukraine, Poland, Romania, etc. No matter how bad you think people in Canada have it, I’ve never heard of hundreds of people dying here because they can’t afford shelter and utilities and warm clothes. Even a couple earning only 24k in Canada is still gonna be warm and well fed, unlike in some other parts of the world. So maybe instead of regarding these people as poor, you should look at the big picture and realize that someone earning 24k a year is actually very wealthy, when compared to those poor people in eastern Europe.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/9059519/Europes-cold-spell-Death-toll-rises-to-220-and-no-end-in-sight.html

#15 sam.i.am on 02.03.12 at 10:16 pm

“…but have no idea a TFSA is not a savings account …”

Maybe a dumb question, but what is a TFSA if it isn’t a savings account?

An investment vehicle capable of accepting almost any security. It is not a product. — Garth

#16 TheRealTruth on 02.03.12 at 10:19 pm

Many young people with good jobs paying taxes will simply leave the country if the boomers continue to suck $$$.

US, India, and China to name a few. They will leave the family here while working abroad. Its already being done!!

#17 CrowdedElevatorfartz on 02.03.12 at 10:19 pm

Your peeing into the wind Garth. No one is listening.
I have been saying these exact same things to my friends for 20 years.
Today they have zero savings, massive debt, great vacations and a ‘work til they die” future.
These will be the same people that will bitch and moan that no one warned them when their eating dog food in their 70′s

#18 Mike Rotch on 02.03.12 at 10:20 pm

More people are retiring with a mortgage than ever before.

Over 70% have no other pensions.

Half the population have no savings.

Debt is rampant and third of all households can’t pay their monthly bills.

And yet seven in ten Canadians have the most costly single possession of our society – a house.

These cold hard facts truly scare me.

So, go long in discount retailers’ stock, plus firearms & ammunition?

#19 1drs on 02.03.12 at 10:21 pm

Yikes ! Now I really can’t imagine a happy retirement for most of the population. I am doing OK , having retired a couple of years ago but, I had been planning on getting CPP to supplement my pension. Now I think it had better be sooner than later. Does the government miss that more boomers will take their pensions earlier rather than miss out? Or is that the plan?
I can’t imagine the Conservatives being re-elected. Not when they are cutting corporate taxes and cutting pensions at the same time.

#20 Canned Goods and Buckshot on 02.03.12 at 10:26 pm

I think the reason many blog dogs took offence to calling retired people living in a trailer park “losers” is multifold.

First, we don’t know people’s individual history, whether they had opportunity and blew it, or just never really had a chance to succeed financially due to their own particular circumstances.

Secondly, you seem to judge these people rather harshly based solely on material wealth. What the hell is the point of life? If it is to accumulate wealth, the ‘he who has the most toys wins’ philosophy, then these people have not succeeded. I feel more sorry for the people who can only value themselves and others by their possessions. How much plastic shit from China and fossil fuel burning gadgets do you need to impress the Jones?

Lastly, but closely tied in to the second point, is the that I think the way we will value quality of life in the next few decades will be different from the last 30 years. People are slowly making the link between over consumption and this behaviour’s effect on our environment. People living low carbon impact lifestyles may be seen as something to aspire to.

#21 a prairie dawg on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm

a few simple Victoria’s Secret cherry red teddys with embroidered transparent organza bodice inset

- — -

early Valentines Day shopping for the Amazons…. lol

#22 Waterloo Resident on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm

EVERYBODY: buy a house NOW, don’t wait, or you will hate yourself in 10 years time
(and no, I’m not a realtor.)

Yes, there will be a 15% correction, but who cares when house prices are jumping 10% to 15% EVERY SINGLE YEAR !

Here in Waterloo, house prices are HOT-HOT-HOT, and now here’s proof that prices have jumped 13% from a year earlier. :

http://www.therecord.com/news/business/article/665438–move-up-buyers-push-up-house-prices

So lets say you wait a year, then two, then 5 years in hopes of a house price fall of 15%, well here’s the math for you:

Price of the house at the start of your waiting: $300,000.
After 1 year (up 12%) = $336,000
After 2nd year of waiting (up 10%) = $370,000
After 3rd year of waiting (up 10%) = $407,000
After 4th year of waiting (up 12%) = $455,000
After 5th year of waiting (up 10%) = $500,000.

Now, we get that 15% correction, so the price is now 85% of $500,000 = $425,000 .

Funny thing, is that $425,000 is still a lot higher than that $300,000 that you started out with, wasn’t it?

Right now I’m retraining for a better job, but as soon as I’m finished I’m buying a house close to a college / university and renovating it to add two more bedrooms and then renting out as many of the rooms as I can to reduce the cost to less than what I am paying now for the house that I currently rent for $1,670 per month (3 bedroom house, Waterloo ). The landlord just told me that in May my rent is going up to $1,840 per month !

I went to this mortgage calculator from the TD bank,

https://calc.tdcanadatrust.com/HMCIA/Input

and punched in some numbers:
Gross annual household income = $65,000 (just me)
Household debt = $0
Annual property taxes = $1800
Monthly heating costs = $45 (yes that’s about what I pay now in my rental)
Condo fees = $0 (it’s a house).
Down payment = $50,000
Interest rate (2 year Closed = 3.55%)
Amortization Period = 25 years

RESULTS: I can afford a $356,000 house, with monthly mortgage of $1,538 per month.
Guess what: That’s 16.4% cheaper than what I will be paying in rent come May 1st !

So tell me, if YOU are stuck in this position, why would you not buy a house too, instead of paying rent?

You forgot this part of the newspaper story: “Overall, sales fell in both markets last month. In Kitchener and Waterloo, they decreased 7.8 per cent to 342 compared to a year earlier. In Cambridge, they dropped 10.3 per cent to 166.” You are an embarrassment. — Garth

#23 TurnerNation on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm

People on this scotch fueled weblog must realize: there are only two classes – always have been – The owners of capital, and the Serfs/slaves/indentured servants.

So what of this recent invention “the middle class”?

It exists because the owners of capital LEND us money. An undelicate equlibrium.

Witness the rise in payday loan storefronts (replacing, perhaps, the opium dens of yore), liar loans, sub prime, collaterized and factored receivables. We and our debts are packaged up and sold.
The capital class made a game of us! We are their sport.

When you have that much money, everything else is pure entertainment. Hard for us to imagine. Generations ago the serfs were thrown in with lions for specators’ sport.
Today the lower classes are thrown into the hands of brutal police, lawyers and courts. Tasers, drugged and battered. The King’s court was replaced by the Crown’s court.
It’s sport for the elites! The numbers are tracked regularly. Lawyers are the court jesters. He’s innocent? Surely your jest. What a show indeed. The Queen IS amused.

#24 mikling on 02.03.12 at 10:36 pm

It’s great that we can say that some others should have been doing this and doing that.

The question one needs to ask is “what would have happened to the economy in the last 10 years if the population who should have been saving did?”

Would we have had a great recession anyways before 2008? I am sure we would have. Like the Fram guy says to the boomers, pay me now or pay me later! Hurt is gonna come. I look around and I see everyone driving bimmers…I’m wondering WTF! is this for real!

#25 Uki_one on 02.03.12 at 10:38 pm

Just saw condo sales on SHOPTV Canada an hour or two ago. It was holerious because next was “Schticky” and “Ab Twister”.
By the way according to their data, 30000 condos was sold in GTA in 2011.

#26 TurnerNation on 02.03.12 at 10:44 pm

It’s a game for the elites. Pure sport. Team A against B.

Do you recall the scene from that 80′s movie where two fat cats made a gentlemanly bet of $1 they would ruin a working stiff’s life? I forget its title.

We are the enemy this time – Toronto’s CON Mayor Ford’s (aka Boss Hog) henchman’s words:

-A lot of people have the impression you ran a dirty campaign. What’s your reaction to that?
” The fact of the matter is, all your downtown champagne-sipping socialists can’t understand how some kid from Windsor came in and kicked the shit out of them. It happened. They should get over it.”

http://www.torontolife.com/daily/informer/from-print-edition-informer/2011/11/16/the-qa-nick-kouvalis/

There you have it. We lose this round. Buzzzz. What fun.

#27 Foggy on 02.03.12 at 10:47 pm

All is not lost. There are always alternatives to maximize a small retirement income. The most obvious is to simply move to a cheaper area. In Canada that would be the Maritimes. Cheap housing if you’re ready to do some renovating. Less taxes and cheaper insurance on your vehicles. Food and gas is a tad higher. I moved to NS from Ontario 3 years ago and have no mortgage, 2 vehicles, a stocked fridge and no debt. I have yet to apply for CPP but will do so this year. RRSP’s in the bank which I have yet to touch. And I guess OAS will be a bonus when the time comes. You would be shocked at how “modest” my company pension is and it still covers all my needs.
Beats living in a crummy apartment in Toronto, splitting a Kraft dinner with your spouse. Or worse…

#28 Pat on 02.03.12 at 10:48 pm

G:
” Now name a single Canadian city where two people can afford rent, food, a car (or transit), cable, insurance, clothes, meds and a few simple … on twenty-four large? Can’t be done.”

Sure – Halifax, NS
– $600 rent; 1bd apt downtown, utl included
– $400 food
– $100 transportation; hardly needed
– $150 phone, internet, etc
– $150 clothes (old people spending on clothes?)
$600 still left

#29 vatoDETH on 02.03.12 at 10:51 pm

Garth, I wanted to get into RE years ago. It used to be a smart thing and it was my only focus. I know that I am behind the game for my age, but I’m also a tenacious hard worker and steady learner.

I have zero debt and have started a real life career that I am very content with. All I could focus on was RE and I was waiting for the bubble to burst.

I have not started investing yet, but I am researching and learning how to do it. I have a TFSA and a Practice RBC Investing Account. In a month I have made a 3.03% gain overall in my Practice Investment. I need to play around with selling and other features to see what kind of fees I get charged, etc.

Thanks for opening my eyes to other options and things that I should be doing with my idle money. Chances are good that I will need a hefty down payment, when the housing market returns to normal in greasy Calgary. This will help me get there!

You’ve also given me a smack of reality about saving for retirement. I no longer look at purchasing a house as the be all/end all. Now I look at the bigger picture and preparing for retirement. I know I will make it, but this blog has given a good heads up!

Thank You!

#30 truth hammer on 02.03.12 at 10:52 pm

Seniors debt is rampant because inflation is rampant and people have memories about eating. Of course the federal economists say we can ‘substitute’ our intake items and move down the food chain from meat to KD….and then ….cat food. Further down the line there is food bank drizzle…..and why are all the cereal boxes and cans half the size they were five years ago? How did a box of cereal become as expensive as a meat item? A hearty meal in a can is now a splash on a spoon and a whistful memory. The geniuses at finance haven’t taken into account that food of all variety is now triple what it was five years ago and rising. You can’t substitute the facts boys.

The fact is that the government is spending too much money on itself and can not imagine reducing taxes because of the obligations they have made to the millions of fat and greasy hangers on collecting sucking fat pay packets, pensions and perks.

The ultimate substitution is to leave Canada while you still have a pot to pee in. The average trailer pad rental in Bug Spray Ontario will get you a fine apartment in Asia and South America. Food is abundant and cheap…untouched by marketing boards and government taxation thats stripping away the value to the consumer in Canada.

The level of affluence in these places is skyrocketing…hence the extremely low personal crime rates. Reading the Canadian media it looks like you’re hooped for life. Get out from under that litter box mentality into the real world and retired life can be a beautiful thing.

Ex….ther is a town in the south of Spain where the biggest growth industry is AA meetings. People from high tax Europe and Canada get into the real life and realize that they’ve been trying to booze their misert away because of the high tax / high cost life in the west, They get into a place where the sun is shining and people aren’t inundated with bitching and they find they want to get from under the malaise of misery by getting sober and enjoying their senior years.

Canada is a misery pit…do yourself a favor and get your money out of their and live.

#31 DUI on Money Road on 02.03.12 at 10:55 pm

#15 sam.i.am on 02.03.12 at 10:16 pm
———————————————-
What you need to do is open a TFSA and make sure you are able to trade stocks and options with it. It can be used as a trading account. Do so.

Any bankster that tries to sell you the TFSA as a place for saving cash is stealing from you.

#32 formerly horny on 02.03.12 at 10:58 pm

@Waterloo Resident – In what world do you live in where you can heat a home for 45/mo and pay $1800 property tax, especially in waterloo. Im in kitchener, I know these things.
Reality:
1540 mortgage
275 property tax
200 average monthly utilities
100 necessary repairs – average/budget
200 car insurace
200 fuel and vehicle maintenance
600 food/drink – dont forget to eat!
65 – you must have a smartphone
Total 3180 – entire paycheck at 65k/y
Happy Saving
Note: Conservative estimates above and notice no savings!

#33 not 1st on 02.03.12 at 10:59 pm

Question: So in a world where one generation is going to be tapped to support another and increasing levels of personal and sovereign debt swamp everyone causing severe cut backs on consumer spending and increasing debt servicing for everyone, how does an equity market possibly stay up?

Answer: It probably doesn’t

The equity market is not some infallible messiah. The same trends that will hit you and me in the pocket book can easily carry over into that broader market. Garth should seriously address this possibility in a future post.

#34 NotAGreaterFool on 02.03.12 at 10:59 pm

Here’s what $1-million will buy you east of the DVP

http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/02/02/heres-what-that-1-million-will-buy-you-east-of-the-dvp/

This is so wrong…

#35 vyw on 02.03.12 at 11:01 pm

On OAS/GIS and CPP – it’s best to use the tables:
http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/isp/oas/tabrates/tabmain.shtml

A couple with $1000 in CPP collect almost $1500 a month in OAS and GIS and with the age deductions, they pay no taxes.

A senior couple can live on $2500 a month if their house is paid off. Actually many do just that – check out any old neighbourhood in Toronto (or any other city.

A senior homeowner (mortgage-free) who is short of cash from year to year can use their HELOC or take in a boarder or work part-time.

The Govt is making a big mistake in tampering with the OAS/GIS. This is a fiscal transfer to the poorest seniors – almost all the money is spent. A cutback would result in downloading costs to the provinces/cities and a reduction in consumption which would increase provincial deficits and unemployment. It’s very bad public policy.

As for paying the fair share of taxes – since boomers will boost the number of seniors – clearly the level of tax revenues from this cohort would increase as well. So what’s the problem here? The number of seniors double, OAS cost triple (due mostly to inflation), but the cost as a dddperscentage of GDP rises by less than 1% over a period of 20 years and THEN DECLINES.

We should look at the whole picture and properly assess the consequences of social cuts.

#36 DUI on Money Road on 02.03.12 at 11:01 pm

#22 Waterloo Resident on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm
—————————————————
A couple things:

First, resale homes in Ottawa for example, have only increased 5% per year on average over the past 8 years. So your $300,000 home turning into a $500,000 home in 5 years is crazy.

Second, the property tax in your scenario on a $360,000 home is quite low, you didn’t account for maintenance on your home (about $400/month) and there is no way you would be paying $45/month in heat. Try 50% more. Oh yea, you forgot your water/sewer and hydro bills.

Ooops!

#37 Kip on 02.03.12 at 11:03 pm

“Why would a blogger – whose parents (68 and 65) sold a $400,000 in Toronto, ended up broke after paying down debt, and face living in a buggy Muskoka trailer on the public stipend – defend them?”

Because they are his parents and he already stated that they did without for many years while raising a family and that, in my books, counts for a lot. It may not mean much to you but life and living well is not always about money.

#38 Carlyle on 02.03.12 at 11:08 pm

Garth said: “Why would a blogger – whose parents (68 and 65) sold a $400,000 in Toronto, ended up broke after paying down debt, and face living in a buggy Muskoka trailer on the public stipend – defend them? There’s no justification for blowing through six decades of life and having nothing to show for it but a defensive 39-year-old.”

My point was that they do have something to show for it … 3 kids who are for the most part doing ok (well two of them), multiple grandkids, and the possibility at retiring to a lifestyle they love … and one that is almost affordable on government pension income.

Again I’ll say that while the trailer lifestyle isn’t for me, it is far from the “buggy” place in Muskoka you’ve painted it to be. Alot of these trailer parks have resort like amenities, lakeviews, barbeques 24/7, boat docks, multiple shopping areas around them, and well off neighbors.

Personally I’d hate it but some folks seem to love it.

Look I get that my folks failed financially. But where they failed in one area they did really well in others (providing a loving family, a good upbringing, good morals, etc). My defensiveness is more just me saying that they did ok overall if perhaps not in the saving for retirement area.

With that said, my wife and I have determined that we don’t want to be completely dependent on government pensions when we are one day old and grey. I think that the advice you give Garth is solid, and to be honest, you are part of the reason my folks sold (because I listen to you and whispered in their ears for the last year or so).

I realize there is no justification for many soon to be retirees, retiring broke, but I do think that many boomers had little to no financial training in school, and just sort of made things up as they went. It was also a generation that grew up in affluence in terms of guaranteed employment, low cost of living, a dollar that had limitless buying power … and I think the boomer generation is having a hard time coming to terms with the new economic reality.

As a part of my job as an Employment Specialist a few years ago I worked with 55 year old boomers laid off from union manufacturing factory positions (25 + an hour) …. guys with no marketable skills, and no real understanding that the new reality is that their skills were now worth 12 – 15 dollars an hour at best (and that’s if they could even find work in their area) …

I think it’s not just the lack of financial know how but a complete lack of understanding in general about the way the world is going to work in the future. The same way people blindly think real estate can never go down, many can’t believe the world has changed.

Anyways in regards to my own folks, like any person, I just want what’s best for them. It won’t be easy for them on government pension in come but I could think of alot worse ways to retire than a nice big trailer in cottage country.

You are right Garth, they failed financially but that doesn’t make them failures …

With that said, I’ve emailed you and watching my folks move into retirement has lit a fire under my ass to make sure that when I get there one day it’s under very different financial circumstances. If there’s anything that’s been the triumph of your work/blog it’s that Garth. You help open people’s eyes.

#39 Canadian Watchdog on 02.03.12 at 11:15 pm

Charts Of The Week: Today’s TREB Data

Detached: http://i39.tinypic.com/n9jjn.png
Semi-Detached: http://i43.tinypic.com/bg5yc6.png
Condo: http://i41.tinypic.com/14y82o.png

Despite TREB reporting a manipulated 8.8% yoy increase for Jan 2012 sales (4567), the actual figure with revisions removed is an estimated 3.3%. This is compared to last January (revised to 4199 ) which was a lousy -13% yoy decline from 2010. Therefore over a two-year-over-year comparison, sales are down -5.37%. (Jan 2010 sales 4826 )

Revisions explained: TREB always includes additional sales (for some reason they haven’t explained yet) that will be removed over the next couple of months. I front-run TREB and remove the number of median revisions (230 sales) to get an estimate (shown as 3.29% on chart).

http://i40.tinypic.com/35jja6c.png

Better watch out for those headline numbers…

#40 GranolaBar on 02.03.12 at 11:15 pm

Waterloo resident said:
“I currently rent for $1,670 per month (3 bedroom house, Waterloo ). The landlord just told me that in May my rent is going up to $1,840 per month !”

You are either lying or in need of legal assistance. The maximum rent increase for 2012 is 3.1% or $51.77. This takes your rent to 1721.77 for the next year.

He’s lying. — Garth

#41 Boomer on 02.03.12 at 11:16 pm

Come on Sam.I.Am, you have been commenting on this blog long enough to know that a TFSA is not just for the “orange guy shorts” stuff but can be used for any other investment vehicle including preferred shares etc. Or maybe you just comment without really reading and understanding Garth’s comments. Get with the program Sam and try reading and understanding what Garth is telling us. Sheesh!

#42 Smoking Man on 02.03.12 at 11:16 pm

Fortunately for me I won’t qualify to collect squat.

If fact this whole weekend I’ll be reading all these posts that state how screwed boomers are, and house are going crash bla blab la negative shit.

I will read every post this weekend waiting and listing for one of you, anyone, just one to say, zillions of old farts going to retire and kick the bucket. How can I profit from this. What business do I get into to exploit this change coming? Where do I position myself.

But I won’t the vast majority of you have degrees, You don’t think like me. A predator, a dirty, rotten, scoundrel. An opportunity thrill seeker with no feelings.

And yes the odd idiot will say the universe is expanding, I read it in a text book. And learn to speel smoking man.

#43 Ralph Cramdown on 02.03.12 at 11:24 pm

They have a baby or two, move up, spend more and borrow more.

Yeah, there’s a T.O. realtor kvetching on his blog that inventory is tight for entry level properties; he blames move up buyers for not moving up, and of course he blames the Land Transfer Tax for that. The LTT is, of course, your second biggest move-up expense, after the 5% RE commission. I did some math, based on his examples and my assumptions:

Moving up from a $425k to a $600k place, LTT+5% commish is $37,450. Wanna guess how long it’ll take you to get that back? Assuming prices rise 3-5%/year, 6-8 years.

So go ahead, get on that property ladder, as soon as possible, and build equity you can trade into your next property — oops, into the pocket of your realtor and government.

#44 Kip on 02.03.12 at 11:29 pm

“So, expect the CPP age to eventually rise from 65 to 67, as is happening in the US and the UK.”

The Old Age Security Act has been in effect since 1952 and age eligibility was originally 70 years old. That was amended to 65 but phased in between 1965 and 1969.

For the Harper government to amend it to 67 is not unreasonable given that we now live on average to 80 plus but he will face an uphill struggle with a public that views it as a holy grail.

If the uproar is too much I think they will back away from it and news reports are already saying there is lukewarm support even from back-bench MP’s in his own party.

#45 Uki_one on 02.03.12 at 11:33 pm

#26 TurnerNation
“Do you recall the scene from that 80′s movie where two fat cats made a gentlemanly bet of $1 they would ruin a working stiff’s life? I forget its title.”

The title is “Trading Places”. Great movie with great actors.

#46 Canadian Watchdog on 02.03.12 at 11:35 pm

Garth have you read about the ‘Buy-in Annuity Products’ option for pension plans? Not my area but the proposal looks interesting.

http://www.osfi-bsif.gc.ca/osfi/index_e.aspx?ArticleID=4759

#47 DonDWest on 02.03.12 at 11:41 pm

Garth, you’re forgetting one thing:

Boomers have the voting power. They can vote their way through retirement by pludering the young; and the young cannot out vote them. The young could stop the boomers by using their physical strength, but schools have taught us silly things like “violence doesn’t solve problems.”

#48 Retired Boomer - WI on 02.03.12 at 11:45 pm

Interesting post….. some random thoughts:
1. Education system failed to warn the young about consumption, debt, and pertsonsl responsibility.
2. Ditto the parents. Of course, with nearly 7,000 advertising impressions launched before one’s eyeballs daily, how could you NOT be oriented toward a “consumer” rather than a producer, or heaven forbid, even a speculator.
3. Don’t like YOUR prognosis, change it.
4. Don’t like your children’s prognosis, change it.

Garth’s forecasts about the future are quite sanguine (Smoking Man: look it up) and have a high probability of accuracy.

What happens in 20 years to me is moot, I’ll statistically have croaked off by then, so WGAS. IN THE MEANTIME it’s party time here, baby. Retired, been asked to do some consulting at 200% of former salary. Only want part time and sporadic if I wanted to work, I would have. Time for music, booze, and need to make a trip too the Sault for more Cuban cigars!!
Enjoy it!

#49 Al on 02.03.12 at 11:46 pm

I’m in my 40s. Retirement is a boomer’s expectation, for those at the tail end of the boomers it is not. I see nothing wrong with continuing working even if at some point that means taking a menial job. Sitting in front of a tv all day (retirement folks) is not that great. Better to be engaged in life, take nice vacations and enjoy your time now. Sure I save what I can & rent but I am not waiting to 65 to start life.

#50 John G. Young on 02.03.12 at 11:46 pm

#30 truth hammer

“…the biggest growth industry is AA meetings. People from high tax Europe and Canada get into the real life and realize that they’ve been trying to booze their misert away because of the high tax / high cost life in the west…”

So you’re saying that government spending is the cause of alcoholism?!? I’m sure some who post here will love that one — absolves them of all personal responsibility.

Maybe the meetings are popular because when they move to these idyllic locations and find that they’re still unable to stop drinking, people realize that the “geographic cure” (as it’s referred to in AA) didn’t work, and that their drinking really is THEIR problem.

#51 BC Bring Cash on 02.03.12 at 11:47 pm

Demographers have seen this bulge in the population coming for generations and warned anyone who would listen. Of course politicians never listened because our system of Govt. is focused on the short term election cycle. Kick the can down the road and don’t worry about the tough medicine on my watch. These issues should have been dealt by the likes of our hero Brian Mulroney or even Jean Chretien. Its more popular to bury ones head in the sand than plan for the future. Everyone shares some of the blame for this stupidity and the lack of planning for our present and future retirees. Good one Garth.

#52 Mean Gene on 02.03.12 at 11:47 pm

The future is so bring we’re gonna need a sunlamp!!!!!

#53 Uh Oh Canada on 02.03.12 at 11:48 pm

24k is quite a handsome amount to live on per year. Hopefully, it’s non-taxable. My family of three (husband, wife, and two years old) live on $2000/month ($1000 of it goes to rent) and we save the rest, which has added up quite quickly. In a rich nation like Canada, it is possible to live on less, though it be a simple life.

#54 NYCer on 02.04.12 at 12:00 am

Luckily I have no plans to get OAS or CPP since I am only 29. Currently, I save about 25% of my net pay and I have a Provincial pension. Hopefully I am on the right track.

Q: I am renting and I am up for renewal in May. If I can avoid a rent increase of 3.1%, I guess my landlord has to give me 3 months notice before raising it right? However, if it does get raised at say June or something, if they allow rent increased in 2013, does my rent stay the same until June 2013 if I am on a month-month basis or it can be raised in Jan 2013?

#55 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 12:07 am

A ‘Sign’ of the times. (cue Twilight Zone music)

Within the last couple days I’d noticed a new sign out in front of a large established “big three” auto dealership.

DEBT PROBLEMS?
Come in for a chat.

Right…..

Borrowing even more money that you can’t afford, to buy a new car, will make those pesky “debt problems” disappear like magic. Duh, why didn’t I think of that.

When the bubble finally bursts in credit binging, the following drop in Canadian consumer spending will be MONUMENTAL.

ie: EPIC.
ie: HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT.
ie: LIFECHANGING!!!

(cars, houses, decks, big screens, Beemers, BluRays, hot tubs, lattes, steaks, expensive trips, marble, granite, stainless) That will all stop, seemingly overnight. Except for the wealthy. (also known as reverting to the mean) For the rest of us, 60% of nonessential consumer spending here will grind to a halt. Suddenly.

And as Garth keeps reminding us, the entire Canadian GDP is made up with 60% of the total just from consumer spending alone.

When that happens, do you think the other 40% of our GDP is miraculously going to mushroom higher to compensate? Hardly.

The US is close 50% of our labour costs right now, based on recent news stories. US companies are packing up and moving back down south to save money and create jobs at home. (win/win for them) Their economy will be gaining traction as ours is losing it. They gain jobs. We lose jobs. Their market starts to recover slowly as ours starts to tank noticeably. As ours tanks, more layoffs and even more unemployed.

It’s going to get ugly!

And if you can’t remember that H, F, and C could have done much more to help stop it or cushion it, then History will do it for you.

But we’ll have more soup kitchens, new prisons, and a batch of shiny new F35′s so it won’t be all bad.

Oh, and also add that other ‘pesky detail’ about the majority of Canadians having little to no savings. ouch…

Baby, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
Here’s something that you’re never gonna forget.

The Canadian economy’s downfall theme music:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7miRCLeFSJo

:end rant:

:logoff:

#56 Basil on 02.04.12 at 12:12 am

Disappearing social programs and benefits, massive reductions in corporate taxes, government disinterest in secondary manufacturing, super prisons, Wheat Board gone, Ministry of Environment slashed, regulations on BGH and GM Foods harmonized with US and more war hardware.
Is it too early to say we are moving towards the third world model? Okay, I will be back to ask again in six months.

#57 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 12:13 am

#42 Smoking Man

Go long on mortuaries, crematoriums, and kleenex.

#58 frederoo on 02.04.12 at 12:17 am

Garth,

Can you write a post about strategies for income during retirement. eg. when to turn the RRSP into an annuity. retire at 55 and use RRSP money until CPP and then OAS or dribble it out over 25 yrs? Is it best to keep the income at ~ the same levol over 30 yrs or front end load the money while you’re still able to enjoy it? RRSP to a 10 yr annuity from 55-65. Thanks. still following along.

#59 Cato on 02.04.12 at 12:23 am

Not only did most boomers treat real estate as their one and only retirement investment many treated their home as a piggy bank thanks to heloc. Any equity that did accrue during the boom was wiped out, many are no better off than their children.

As retirement nears the blame game will begin. I suspect they’ll all play the victim of circumstance expecting us to ignore a life filled with excess. The era of passing the buck to the next generation is at an end.

Its going to get nasty. Globalization carried benefits but also consequences. The ability of gov’t to tax capital is constrained. Countries are now in fierce competition to attract investment like never before. Moving production to friendlier jurisdictions is now now easier than ever. Locomotives made in London will now be made in the US with little disruption to production, this would have been unheard of even 10 years ago.

Canada has a big problem. What was once our biggest customer is now our biggest competitor. Contrary to the simple logic put forward by the left we can’t raise the corp. tax rate without losing even more jobs to the US. Judging by the latest employment figures the US is well on its way to bleeding our manufacturing sector dry.

Taxing the rich is a popular battle cry but is of little practical use. Given the right motivation its easy for a high net worth individual to change tax jurisdictions. Push too far and many will just move money and utilize complex tax avoidance vehicles, stifling investment and economic growth.

Taxing the high income professional is equally problematic. This is a mobile work force, why continue toiling in Canada for the next 30 years when as a young professional you can move to a friendlier jurisdiction and keep substantially more of your efforts. I have had plenty of friends who already made this choice, push any further and more will leave.

The middle class cannot tolerate additional taxation thanks to its current level of indebtedness. Most are already slipping as their wages have not came close to keeping up with inflation over the last 10 years. A tax hike would put many under water and spark and even bigger crisis.

I think that leaves taxing the the last captive audience, the resource sector. Imposing special tariffs and taxes will require a more authoritarian govt then most of us are comfortable with. Opposition to development will need to be stifled. I suspect current batch of politicos will seem tame in comparison to what we will see in 10 years.

The transition isn’t going to be pleasant. The sooner the average joe realizes they are on their own the better, there is no magic cure this time around.

#60 Xerglacia on 02.04.12 at 12:36 am

#22 Waterloo Resident:
———————————————
Unlike most everyone else, I’m going to go ahead and say, yes you bought a house at $300,000 and sold for $425,000 (because otherwise you don’t actually have the money, as it’s still tied up in the asset and you can’t use it).
So, from your $125,000 in profit for 6 years you’ll need to remove the following which I didn’t see actually considering in that, or at least wasn’t accurate:

Closing Costs ($250 land survey, $500 inspection, $5000 land transfer tax, $1500 lawyer fees, $21,250 realtor fees): $28,500
Current average property taxes for Waterloo (http://www.niagararegion.ca/government/budget-taxes/municipal-tax-comparisons.aspx) averages to: $3200/year x 6 years = $19,200
Mortgage Penalty for early cancelation: $10,000
Mortgage Loan Insurance (for 10% downpayment): $9,500 ($6,000 + interest)
Home Insurance (required by most lenders), $800/year x 6 years: $4,800

So:
$125,000
- 28,500
- 19,200
- 10,000
- 9,500
- 4,800
————
$53,000 for 6 years investment (or $8833/year)

So that’s likely the best you can do, even in your ideal world of property incresing at 10% a year, with a 15% correction in the final year. Even then I’ve left off other things that others have mentioned, since I was only concerned with what you’d take as a profit. However, if even one of your years is flat or negative, you will make next to nothing, or less.

#61 Carp on 02.04.12 at 12:36 am

Smoking Man,

I like your thoughts but speeling is not your thing.

“zillions of old farts going to retire and kick the bucket. How can I profit from this. ”

The question back to you … is there an EFT geared towards making money off oldies?

Phara is alway an option. Is there a public company for old folks homes, funeral homes and such?

Better yet … is there a way to save money for their kids having to bail them out when they do kick the bucket? Image a burial by bonfire!

Carp

#62 Tony on 02.04.12 at 12:41 am

Re: #22 Waterloo Resident on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm

If you buy now odds are you’ll lose your 50 grand when the bank calls your mortgage because the house you bought will be worth at least 15 percent less in the future.

#63 nonplused on 02.04.12 at 12:41 am

Wow, Garth, one of your best posts yet! And that says a lot, there have been some good ones! And on a Friday! I thought the ghost writer took the later part of the week! I was wrong I guess.

I do have a couple of questions though, so here they are:

Was it wrong to buy a house recently? I tried to follow your advice, kept it to 37% of net wealth at 43 years of age, tried to use your scalping tips as best I could (old listing with several large price reductions, bid low, no conditions except inspection, short possession), and we love the house and the neighbourhood. To be frank part of the reason we did it was because we knew our landlord was selling this spring and we didn’t want to buy it. And the MF Global thing. I was thinking, if money in segregated accounts can “vaporize” (as opposed to being liquid or even existent, and this is how the MSM is reporting it), I had way to much money in the banking system. So, “fear”. If MF Global can go down and take their customers with them, why not E-Trade?

And are you now saying my “investment” in an RV trailer was now a good investment? It makes a pretty high end 280 sqft apartment with the slide out, except for the bathroom and no dishwasher or laundry. But of course many expensive condos don’t have in suite laundry or even a dishwasher.

My third question is a little more complicated so bear with me, this paragraph is preface. If the old folks are going to be living in trailers, that’s good to know. But the problem with trailers is that you now have something to live in but still no place to live. My dad was involved in building a 4 season campground for the Rotary Club, complete with centralized laundry and bathroom facilities, but also full hook-ups on all sites. You know what? It’s been a huge money maker for the Rotary Club, even though there are probably only 10 sites actually being lived in year round. And I am not sure if the water and sewer work in the winter, but that can be done. Yes, heating the bitch in the winter is really expensive and requires almost daily propane bottle changes, but if you have power you throw down a couple of electric heaters and right now that helps a lot, both with money and bottle changes. Skirting helps too, and you have to do that anyway if the water and sewer are going to work in the winter.

So the third question is, are 4 season campgrounds the investment deal of the decade? And what about 3 season campgrounds to capture those folks who still have enough money to haul the rig down to Nevada for the winter? Almost like being nomads again. Here is my design idea. Like a regular 3 or 4 season site, you press these folks in to a 20×60 foot lot, give them only 30 amps of power (but meter it, a change) and weather proof water and sewer, and then (another change) metered propane service that connects right where a bottle would, coming from a big central tank. Centralized laundry and even a games room, and for the high end “communities” you might even put in a spa and a pool. Customers can then buy their own RV, costing whatever but it ranges from $30,000 to $100,000 for the target audience, and you charge $500/month plus utilities for the site. Locate them close to where their grandchildren might be living, golf, gambling, drinking and prostitution.

#64 bcpaul on 02.04.12 at 12:41 am

It is simple math: either increase the age (and other requirements) or OAS or it will like other big ponzi schemes. Of course socialist Canadians will be up in arms if this gets cut.

#65 The Thing in the Basement on 02.04.12 at 12:42 am

26 Turner Nation – Trading Places with Eddie Murphy?

Re: CPP. It was only ever meant to replace approx 25% of income. But let’s crunch some numbers. CPP contributions are now almost 10% of income including employers share. I am self-employed, so it’s all me. Max wage covered is about 50k/yr. So take that $5K and invest at 5% for 35 years. Now draw down that sum over say 25 years of retirement. Yields income of about 2/3 of that $50k wage. (yes ignoring inflation but that affects
contributions as well).

Yet even if I work until I’m 65, all I will get is about 1/4 of that $50k wage. Sounds like this boomer is paying his way.

13 Pete in Barrie – why are you putting more faith in your govt pension than you are in mine (ie CPP)? Also, I dont think you contribute 13%. Maybe half that. Taxpayer contributes the rest.

#66 nonplused on 02.04.12 at 12:50 am

Actually with a pool and spa it’s probably $700 – $800 a month, but of course that is a “high end” community. And of course you put in a store.

#67 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 12:55 am

#23 TurnerNation

- — -

Since the middle ages we’ve become nothing more than surfs with perks.

“Come and see the violence inherent in the system.”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAaWvVFERVA

#68 Ozy - for TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 12:56 am

Here is the movie you referred to:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trading_Places

#69 Ronaldo on 02.04.12 at 12:59 am

#31 DUI ON MONEY ROAD _ “Any bankster that tries to sell you the TFSA as a place for saving cash is stealing from you”

Absolutely dead on statement. Giving you 1.2% in a High Interest Savings account is also stealing. You lend them your money, they give you 1.2% and take that money and lend it out at least 10 times over to your neighbors and friends for 5 times that amount or more. We should all be so fortunate.

#70 Ozy - for TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 1:04 am

The problem is the people that should be listening -as they will be dearly impacted – are not here tonight or ever. Nor they listen to a rational voice, they are guided by feelings and the subconscient. Too bad, they imact the other part…with thier childish\consumerism acts.
Human nature, and I guess some selection will indubitably have to happen. Hopefully sooner than later (with some help from smoking men)

#71 Ozy - for TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 1:04 am

The problem is the people that should be listening -as they will be dearly impacted – are not here tonight or ever. Nor they listen to a rational voice, they are guided by feelings and the subconscient.
Too bad, they impact the other type of people…with thier childish\consumerism acts.
Human nature, and I guess some selection will indubitably have to happen. Hopefully sooner than later (with some help from smoking mans)

#72 Arshes on 02.04.12 at 1:07 am

#20 Canned Goods and Buckshot on 02.03.12 at 10:26 pm
I think the reason many blog dogs took offence to calling retired people living in a trailer park “losers” is multifold.

First, we don’t know people’s individual history, whether they had opportunity and blew it, or just never really had a chance to succeed financially due to their own particular circumstances.

Secondly, you seem to judge these people rather harshly based solely on material wealth. What the hell is the point of life? If it is to accumulate wealth, the ‘he who has the most toys wins’ philosophy, then these people have not succeeded. I feel more sorry for the people who can only value themselves and others by their possessions. How much plastic shit from China and fossil fuel burning gadgets do you need to impress the Jones?

Lastly, but closely tied in to the second point, is the that I think the way we will value quality of life in the next few decades will be different from the last 30 years. People are slowly making the link between over consumption and this behaviour’s effect on our environment. People living low carbon impact lifestyles may be seen as something to aspire to.
—————————————————–

I think the point is, after a lifetime of working, nobody wants to being living on income, that is less then what you would be getting at minimum wage working 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year, flipping burgers at McDonalds or serving coffee at Tim Hortons.

There are people out there working minimum wage jobs who will bring in more money in a year, than some COUPLES will on just on CPP and OAS.

The whole point is, if you want a retirement that is actually comfortable, save for it!

#73 Golden Stu on 02.04.12 at 1:08 am

#22 Waterloo Resident
“Yes, there will be a 15% correction, but who cares when house prices are jumping 10% to 15% EVERY SINGLE YEAR !”

moron….. maybe change your retraining course to include some basic number skills…at 10% growth per year, you seriously think your house will double in valve about every 7 years? At 15% it double every 5 yrs.

Heres a basic math lesson for you…..”4 million views for an old codger giving a lecture about arithmetic?” Maybe you can learn a thing or two about

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=6A1FD147A45EF50D

watch and ponder on this phrase after you buy your house.
“Anyone who believes that exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist.”

#74 Abitibi Doug on 02.04.12 at 1:09 am

@Pat, post #28. Agreed, and I’ll add you can also live that cheaply in many parts of Ontario. The figures you quoted are about the same for London. Where I used to live, in Timmins, that $600 would get you a 2 bedroom place. Yes, like you I could live comfortably on 2 grand a month.

#75 disciple on 02.04.12 at 1:09 am

Garth, on some days I’m really glad I found this blog. But on other days, I’m really really really glad I found this blog. This is one of those days. I believe this feeling that I have today is called…. freedom. Sweet, sweet freedom. Hallelujah!

It appears there will be no shortage of poor “wrinklies”, but I hope there will be enough in the coffers to allow them a decent stipend for the basics. The ethical standard of any society can be directly measured by how it treats its seniors and children…

#76 Smoking Man on 02.04.12 at 1:15 am

#57 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 12:13 am
Go long on mortuaries, crematoriums, and kleenex.

Don’t know about kleenex, got a roll of TP this aft, had a shower snuggled with wify poo. Hoping to use the kleenex after the fire works. Man she puts me under pressure

Problem, the launcher was lit, but the missle would not launch.

The other two are good

#77 brainsail on 02.04.12 at 1:16 am

“So, that’s a grand a month – $12,000 a year. For a couple who both worked the average number of years, income is double that. Now name a single Canadian city where two people can afford rent, food, a car (or transit), cable, insurance, clothes, meds and a few simple Victoria’s Secret cherry red teddys with embroidered transparent organza bodice inset, on twenty-four large? Can’t be done.”

Garth, thankyou for that statement. The wife and I live in the US and have two Canadian relatives that contact us on a regular basis.

It is so sad. They now live in low rental apartments and talk about what a struggle life is. They can’t afford to have a car and getting groceries and getting to medical appointments is difficult. These are ordinary people who worked hard their entire lives. They are now very lonely and desperate.

They live in the land of the so called rich, Edmonton.

This is today’s realitity, not tomorrow’s.

#78 Arshes on 02.04.12 at 1:31 am

#37 Kip on 02.03.12 at 11:03 pm
“Why would a blogger – whose parents (68 and 65) sold a $400,000 in Toronto, ended up broke after paying down debt, and face living in a buggy Muskoka trailer on the public stipend – defend them?”

Because they are his parents and he already stated that they did without for many years while raising a family and that, in my books, counts for a lot. It may not mean much to you but life and living well is not always about money
—————————————————–

Hmmm maybe i read something different? I dont recall anything about his parents doing without. I do remember mentions of LOC’s and what not. They had almost $400,000 worth of debt, when they sold thier home. Does $400,000 debt equal doing without?

And dont assume because Garth says negative things about them, that he thinks they’re bad people. Their failure was financial, not personal.

People have a tendency to think of finances as a “this is what happens to “bad” people” and “this is what happens to “good” people. They forget the numbers and assume they will be ok in retirement because they were “good” people.

#79 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.04.12 at 1:36 am

-
“In case you had any illusions, you wrinkle and shrivel and grow hair in the awful places. Except for trailers. Which tells you how screwed we are. What’s wrong with this picture? It’s a financial death spiral. The coming tidal wave of wrinkly sellers will change your mind fast.”

Welcome to Death Warmed Up! Little to no sympathy for these old codgers (we’re in there), who didn’t bother to take advantage of the options made available to them (we did).

It wouldn’t have taken very much self-discipline to have a company take off a set amount on a per-cheque basis, so one’s RSP would need little topping up at the end of the year.

They didn’t bother to ask for help, and now they’re getting back just what they asked for — nothing.
*
#15 sam.i.am — “. . . but what is a TFSA if it isn’t a savings account?” — Should be a Tax Free Investment Account, a TFIA. Buy low, sell high. Lithium, thorium, junior gold / silver / copper stocks, etc.

#23 TurnerNation — Good post.

#56 Basil — “Is it too early to say we are moving towards the third world model?” — No it’s not. The fourth world awaits us, and we’re diving headfirst into it!
*
2:55 clip Soros; Robber Bank Barons “The largest of these was the Wall Street Crash of 1929.”; Highs The higher one ascends (Icarus) . . .; Gold UK has a little; Sunk Costs; Lumber Nice returns; Too Expensive Made In China stuff; Vancouver, B.C. “Is the mortgage industry running out of money?”; All IS Changing, because change is one of the many constants here.

Boomers in the US Same as boomers here; Real Unemployment figures double; Snap up stocks, dump Euro; Kyle Bass urges Texas fund to hold gold hedge; Bernanke – Carney – F all telling us the same thing (we’re on our own); Ten Wealthiest Cities no one is moving to; 30 Fastest Growing jobs in the US; Bankrupt by June Providence, R.I.; Spain losing 9K jobs per day; Further reading Links in; The ECB has a plan.
*
For the Handy Persons here How to build a solar water heater; Silver kills tumors; Propaganda BBC is part of the propaganda package; 9:37 clip Assad staying? 400 Chernobyls See you on the other side! 2:55 clip Pouring a cup of iced tea while flying upside down; Russia may step up their efforts against NATO – US – UN; Strange Sounds proven; Texas Fireball glows colors.

#80 P F Murphy on 02.04.12 at 1:36 am

Taxes come from normal people, particularly boomers. Rich people pay FA; companies pay FA. Ther deficit has been concocted by Harper and serves to steal the benefits of those taxes from those who paid the taxes in. The erosion of pensions and benefits destroys the ability of ordinary Canadians to take part in the economy. Without them and Americans in their country, businesses will fail and the economy will collapse. How stupid are the business leaders not to see that their greed will cause their own demise? Well, I always said that capitalists were the stupidest people on earth so its gratifying, but unfortunate, to be proven correct!

#81 Preciousss on 02.04.12 at 1:48 am

“I’m in my 40s. Retirement is a boomer’s expectation, for those at the tail end of the boomers it is not. I see nothing wrong with continuing working even if at some point that means taking a menial job. Sitting in front of a tv all day (retirement folks) is not that great. Better to be engaged in life, take nice vacations and enjoy your time now. Sure I save what I can & rent but I am not waiting to 65 to start life”.

Amen to that. In addition to living an enjoyable life, I plan to work as long as my health will allow. I also plan to take every work related, paid-for course that my employer will allow. It is great to stimulate the brain and increase one’s market value. If my kids want, they will be welcome to stay at our home, contribute their share and work with me (family members are usually a shoe-in if the elder relatives do not conduct themselves like azzes). I will prep them and train them on the side to do what I do if they are interested.

I have no intention to ever fade away or go away. I plan to contribute, learn, mentor, and work for as long as I possibly can. Lots of big shoes for young folk to fill in my profession. I want them to be the best that they can be.

#82 Actual Waterloo Resident on 02.04.12 at 1:48 am

$1,540 for a house in Waterloo? You just lost your job, and are retraining? Sorry, but I don’t know of any job that pays an apprentice with no experience $65K- welders start at 18-20 bucks tops as an apprentice.

Second, $45 a month for hydro? BS! For a house, hydro can easily hit $400-500 a month here in Waterloo if you crank up the heat in Winter.

I know several friends, some recently married, but all earn about $50-60K/year, the max they could afford was $250-300K on a dual income, with a downpayment gifted from mommy and daddy. Most of them bought older houses on the boundary with Kitchener in Waterloo, so crappy neighbourhoods.

Your thinking is delusional. Waterloo real estate is set up for the perfect storm. One, it’s way overbuilt. You don’t even know how many homes in Waterloo, ie Laurelwood, are owned by mid-late 20 year old Waterloo grads who took out 0/40 mortgages and are renting them to students. They are negative gearing and paying the difference with their salaries assuming prices are going to go up forever.

Second, is fact that everyone realizes, but doesn’t want to admit, is that RIM is going to go bankrupt and will lay off over 10,000 workers who are well-paid. Every single one has a house. The flood in supply will cause a catastrophic depression in Waterloo for many years, besides the Universities, and the spending that students bring, Waterloo has not much. Waterloo = RIM, UW, WLU. I know a few business owners (ie bars), 20-30% of his business is RIM employees. My business that I ran, about 20-30% RIM employees, on RIM’s dime. The collapse of RIM will have an unfathomable effect on Waterloo and it’s economy. Housing prices will literally drop an easy 25% overnight if RIM declares bankruptcy. Sales will drop to 0 because every buyer will realize a flood of supply is about to shock the market and RIM employees will be utterly desparate.

Waterloo real state, especially family housing, is a fail. Student housing will be fine, but that’s limited to within a kilometer of UW and WLU, anything further out, good luck.

#83 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 1:56 am

I made $92,000 U.S in 9 months last year working in Dallas and I got $260 back when filing my W2
I come home to this rip off country and file my T4 and I owe the Canadian gov another $8,000 in taxes.
This country is absolutely fuk’d !!!!!!!!!!

#84 Roial1 on 02.04.12 at 2:02 am

#49Al on 02.03.12 at 11:46 pm
TV??? I sure don’t think so for me.
Nope.
Fishing, golf, skiing, fly tying, etc. And just so I can suck as much as I can out of all you gen Xs and Ys. I am going to live for at least 40 more years. NNAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (try evil snicker sound, but loud)

Smoking man, you really must give up the smoke. It is rotting your brain. (Or maybe the alcohol is) Besides if you where as evil as you want to sound, you would plan to be like me and “live long and prosper”

on their buck.

#85 sam.i.am on 02.04.12 at 2:08 am

@41 yeah I know what it is but wanted to understand the semantics in the blog post.

#86 Ronaldo on 02.04.12 at 2:14 am

#44 Kip –

“For the Harper government to amend it to 67 is not unreasonable given that we now live on average to 80 plus but he will face an uphill struggle with a public that views it as a holy grail.”

We may live on average to 80 plus but it does not mean that we are in better shape to work beyond age 65. It’s a well known fact that once you get close to 60 companies look at ways of getting you out by offering early retirement, voluntary severance or layoff with a buyout package.

They know that once you reach this age, you are a potential long term disability candidate and the cost to carry you until retirement age is very expensive.

Increasing the age of retirement to 67 would just exascerbate the process of getting you off the payroll and open the way for younger, healthier and more productive individuals who are mostly all tech savy and not like the majority of old wrinkly boomers who shrug off this high tech stuff. Like they would still prefer to use an old Underwood typewriter rather than the most up to date PC. A bit of an exaggeration there but you get the message. Plus, there are only so many Walmart greeter positions available.

I know of individuals who were laid off from their jobs in their mid 50′s in upper level management positions who were out of work for well over a year before finding work in their related field after putting out hundreds of resumes. Companies want young, energetic, and enthusiastic individuals, not worn out old boomers.

We have enough young graduates in their 20′s and 30′s who are sitting with thousands of dollars in debt who are flipping hamburgers at Wendys and working in minimum paying jobs waiting for the wrinkly boomers to get out of the way.

The other thing, if they increase the age of retirement beyond 65, you can expect a lot more government employees to be taking off on stress leave. Like there isn’t enough of them out there on it right now. One of the reasons our CPP pot of cash is being slowly depleted. The people that are going to be hurt are those with no other income other than OAS and CPP and the GIS.

#87 PrairieMongoose on 02.04.12 at 2:20 am

#42 Smoking Man

Service Corp International – NYSE: SCI

;-)

#88 Blue Monster Lover of Cookies on 02.04.12 at 2:34 am

The problem is too much government, plain and simple. Why does our government get involved in our personal finances? Why do they confiscate our money via CPP, UI, income tax and sales taxes to provide programs through a dysfunctional system with no competition or market forces feedback?

I’ll tell you why, to support the non-working, non-productive bloated upper class and public sector socialite elitists! The conglomerate of Canadian society who turn their noses up at the private sector toilers and greedy business corporations. The bankers who steal our money’s value without changing the numbers. Inflation the tax by stealth. The boomers are not getting away with nothing, their savings were real capital at the time they earned it, now it’s close to worthless.

Ass, grass or cash nobody rides for free. Except the bankers, governments, cronies and the public sector but their free ride is running out soon because nobody is going to be left to pull the overflowing wagon.

Happy Birthday Ayn! Feb 2.
Ayn Rands Atlas Shrugged part II is now in production for release in October.

It’s official. Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has been greenlit and will start production this coming April.

Please stop by and read the official press release and check out the brand new teaser trailer.

The new Atlas Shrugged Trilogy Portal Web Site, and the new Part 2 Web Site are awaiting your arrival as well.

See you in the Gulch!

http://blog.atlasshruggedmovie.com/2012/02/atlas-shrugged-part-2-officially.html

#89 ShipsNGiggles on 02.04.12 at 2:46 am

General discription worth a read LMAO! Happy weekend all!

http://www.realtor.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=11528767&PidKey=352269510

#90 John G. Young on 02.04.12 at 3:19 am

#38 Carlyle

Once again, thank you.

#91 Boomer on the beach on 02.04.12 at 3:23 am

Want to live well on $24K a year?

Move to Thailand.

Get a retirement visa after age 55, rent a nice place near the beach for $200 a month.

Warm weather, cheap food, nice people and (surprise surprise) FANTASTIC hospitals and health care.

Some of the best in the world. Don’t believe me? Google it.

When a bowl of tasty noodles is 30 cents, and beer 50 cents — your savings go far.

Forget Florida and the crime and loud Americans.

Thailand too far? Try Costa Rica. Try Greece – villas dirt cheap now.

My point is that it’s a wide world. You aren’t stuck in a bad situation – just move.

#92 smartalox on 02.04.12 at 3:38 am

Garth, you’ve previously taken credit for getting the TFSA for Canadians, yet you’re always correcting people who think it’s only a savings account. Couldn’t you have prrssed for a more meaningful name? Like Tax Free Investment Account? Or even Garth’s Gift to Canadians?

Also, you’ve spoken before about how RRSP’s are a tax time bomb, that RRSP gains will be taxed at a higher rate when withdrawn. Won’t this increased revenue offset increased pension costs?

#93 Crash Callaway on 02.04.12 at 3:43 am

Dunno, all this OAS, CPP, versus dropping your pants for the investment shysters seems totally unnecessary.

Aren’t there govt approved anti wrinkle creams?
Can’t we just put the clocks back?

#94 Canuck Abroad on 02.04.12 at 3:43 am

And don’t forget the ones even older than the boomers…

My mom (80) was recently over here visiting me and I could notice a marked difference in her demeanor that I haven’t seen before. It’s not a health issue or a fear of death or anything like that…

Mom has always managed the money in our family. Dad was hopeless with money and not terribly bright, so mom would send him off to work with his lunchpail (yes really, how quaint nowadays) and would carefully save his earnings and her own every week. They did this for decades, bought a house, raised children, sent us off to university and so on.

So here they are, both 80 now. My father is the same as ever, happily oblivious to all things monetary. The look on my mother’s face, I have decided, was fright. Garth, you so often mention running out of money and I think my mom is baffled by the savings rate and how everything that has worked for her for decades no longer works. Dad took his pension early for health reasons and mom worked decades of part time jobs in between babies etc. So, just one pension then, and it’s indexed but still modest. The house was paid off a long time ago but there’s still ongoing costs as you know. They have enough for a vacation every year, the fridge is full, they’re not suffering or anything. But still I think my mom is a little panicked that if she is around for another couple of decades (not unusual in our family) she actually might not get by.

Anyway, I don’t think there is a solution to this. All she can do is carry on. Dad won’t sell the house and rent a flat which mom wants to do. At some point one will pass away and that will probably force a re-think.

The elderly don’t spend a lot of time hanging about on the internet so you tend to hear plenty from the Gen-X and Gen-Y and boomers, but out there is a large group of people who are quietly suffering from the government’s low interest rates and wondering what they will have to cut next year in order to pay all the bills.

#95 Jane24 on 02.04.12 at 3:51 am

I support an earlier point. if 60% of the economy is made up of consumer spending than what indeed does happen when consumers finally get frightened and start to save instead. The same dollar cannot be both saved and spent.

If 20% of the economy is RE and construction then really what will be left by the end of the year?

Plus although I have the required million dollars, first thing i do when i retire in 2 years is buy that trailer by the sea. Can’t wait.

#96 R. Olausen on 02.04.12 at 3:55 am

My mortgage will be paid when I turn 93. In the meantime I while away the days in my luxury condo at about the cost of a 2 bedroom dump on the edge of the skids. I will dump the majority of my expendable cash living it up as much as possible because once old age sets in it is just a waiting game that is quite cheap to play. I have seen many codgers live their last few years under the false notion that money could do for them things that it just can not do.

#97 Blacksheep on 02.04.12 at 4:19 am

“Days ago I called retired people living in trailers on CPP, ‘losers’. Many blog dogs took offense. Which tells you how screwed we are.”

Wow Garth…this latest round of Boomer Doom has sparked some strong emotions. Your blog attracts a multitude of lost economic souls, whom no longer have
faith in the work till you die “System.”

I don’t think this statement is helping:

“So, expect the CPP age to eventually rise from 65 to 67, as is happening in the US and the UK. Expect to receive OAS only if you need it, not just because your sperm count falls. Expect the feds to again drop the age at which retirement plans turn into taxable income. Expect to lose the ability to take the public pension early, even discounted. Expect marginal tax rates to rise.”

Sorry, I doubt this will make them feel any better:

“The pension funds in many large corporations (e.g., Boeing, Lockheed Martin, AT&T, Lucent Technologies, etc.) have been “Over Funded” because many “late retirees” who keep-on working into their old age and retire late after the age of 65 tend to die within two years after their retirements. In other words, many of these late retirees do not live long enough to collect all their fair shares of pension money such that they leave a lot of extra-unused money in the pension funds resulting in the over-funded pension funds.”

You’ve got’ta see the graph linked below to believe it.

http://www.early-retirement.org/forums/f27/retire-early-live-longer-14402.htm

Time for a change. Skip the **** plan. Freedom 50!

take care,
Blacksheep

#98 Blacksheep on 02.04.12 at 4:29 am

working link for my last post.

http://proteger.com.my/articles/others/Longevity_Strategies.pdf

take care,
Blacksheep

#99 truth hammer on 02.04.12 at 5:48 am

John…#50….people are drinking to excess in the highest tax countries because they are miserable after shouldering a heavy work load and then having their income stolen from them just so they can watch the prolifigate spendthrifts in the union movement piss the money away on egregious salaries and perks for the socialist elite.

People stop drinking when they realize that there is a reason to live. They find this in sunny climes where the cost of living hasn’t been manipulated artificially by the government to pay for the outrageous compensation to a few elite con men who work under the disguise as civil servants.

The geographic clause in the AA literature refers to people who must stay away from the bars and the bar flies that trigger episodic bouts of alcohol consumption……it makes sense..recovering alcoholics should not be hanging out with alcoholics….

Leaving your entire country behind is something they hadn’t considered. Who would have thought that entire countries would become toxic enviornments as have Canada, Finland, Norway , Denmark, GB, France etc…..all countries retiring people are leaving in droves when they realise they can.

The statistics show that people stop drinking ( opposite to your proposition) when their lifestyle opportunities improve. Hence the huge rise in people NOT drinking by joing foreign based language specific AA groups in ex pat communities world wide.

Heres a new politically correct twist…..we send all the rubbies to Spain for a spa treatment….give them a livable pension and thereby reduce Canada’s alcoholism stats to zero !!

Of course how many hundreds of thousands of civil servants would that put out of work. The unions wouldn’t like this idea….at all.

BTW…I had a note from someone in justice….did you know that Canadian prisons are now offering inmates yoga and relaxation spa therapy?

More union logic,

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/02/03/andrew-coyne-nasty-as-caterpillar-may-be-it-had-something-the-community-wanted-jobs/

#100 Mixed Bag on 02.04.12 at 5:52 am

#57 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 12:13 am

#42 Smoking Man

Go long on mortuaries, crematoriums, and kleenex.

Ha! It’s funny. But it’s true.

#101 detalumis on 02.04.12 at 6:20 am

The only people who need to be worried about living on OAS/GIS and in Ontario GAINS as well as refundable tax credits are the taxpayers not little old me with no income outside of senior-welfare. My western GTA town is a good example. We have a 100 year backlog for social housing here, meaning nobody has a hope in hell of getting it, instead we ship our young-poor, you know, down the road to Hamilton or T.O. Now if I am 65 instead, the magic age, we have a 6 month backlog. The town’s priority when faced with these backlogs is to – you guessed it, build more senior housing.

As a single little-old-lady with my $17,000 a year free money I will pay about $425 a month for my housing. No – it ain’t a nasty building like at Jane & Finch, its smack dab on the lake in between million dollar condos, has subsidized transit right to the door and if I don’t feel like cooking it has meals served as well. Along with that I get free health care, big piles of cheap meds and town run exercise classes, free as well.

So Sir I would say you should save your tears for somebody else like say the 35 something who is commuting 60 hours a week and has nothing to show for it at the end of the day or the taxpayer who has to pay to keep me going for oh say 30 years or more but sure as heck dont-cry-for-me-Argentina.

#102 betamax on 02.04.12 at 6:22 am

#14 Elmer: “24k a year is actually very wealthy, when compared to those poor people in eastern Europe”

Unfortunately true, but those people are not your neighbours. Most people compare themselves to those around them, not the abstract poor somewhere else, and feel content or not accordingly.

My mother and step-father are living on about $24k in a small town in BC. They live comfortably in a decent little house and drive a decent car, but they have no extra money every month. A recent vet bill was more than they could pay cash for in a single month.

I’m concerned about their ability to handle a larger financial emergency. They’re talking about selling their house and downsizing, but the housing market in their town is already dead.

They lead a simple life, but it involves them doing little else than getting by. There’s no money for travel and other minor luxuries.

Sure, they’re better off than most people in Somalia, but they still feel financially constrained here. Money’s not everything, but the lack of it causes its own stress.

#103 Deb on 02.04.12 at 6:57 am

One area which does not seem to get much attention is the positive impact on federal government revenues when those Boomers who have RRSPs are obliged to convert them to RRIFs. I have not seen a projection of the expected revenue which will become available from taxes on the minimum annual withdrawl from these RRIFs. Although this tax will not come close to matching the huge increase in costs (such as the surge in OAS payments, health care, ect.), I would suggest that it is a significant factor in the overall picture.

#104 The Biotech Guy on 02.04.12 at 7:06 am

#37 Kip

Fully agree with you. I’d rather end up in a trailer park and have successful, happy and grateful kids than be lectured by a financial ‘professionals’ who think a fat portfolio when you are 70 equals success in life.

To others on this blog: It is a good thing to have savings and not a huge debt. It is also a good thing to have your car maintained regularly. Both are only the means not the end, people. Many of you seem deeply and hopelessly confused about this.

Nothing wrong with having great vacation every year of your life, no savings to speak of and still working at 70. In fact this may a sign of a very successful dude. The key here is to be aware of what you are doing and what you want.

How is a someone who spends life in a rented shack, regards a weekend trip to Peterborough, Ontario a vacation, and defers all consumption indefinitely a success ? He may have great savings at 70 but if you can’t walk up the stairs to scuba shop you don’t need no trip to Hawai, baby. You are good on OAS.

And to true believers, regarding a housing bubble.. How is selling your house in 2010 renting since then working for ya ?

#105 polecat on 02.04.12 at 7:10 am

#27 Foggy, nice name , my dog’s name is Fog. Nice you made the move down east, but don’t you find the taxes high here in N.S. Being in the military I’ve been to Ontario and loved it, then to B.C. , loved it but too expensive for a house, mind you utilities were cheaper. Then get here, poorest province, and high taxes(thank’s N.D.P. GOV) found a weel built cheap older house to tinker with but I advise every young person to go west. This whole place is gonna be a retirement villa. People are great but only so many will get on with Irving…

#106 Pr on 02.04.12 at 7:33 am

Canada Housing Market Beginning To Resemble U.S.’s Subprime Mess, OSFI Documents Reveal…Wake up and smell the coffee!
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/01/31/canada-housing-subprime-osfi_n_1243668.html?ref=canada-business#s458245&title=St_Johns_Nfld

#107 renting and waiting no more on 02.04.12 at 7:44 am

#53 Uh Oh Canada…
you can’t call it ‘saving the rest’ if you take it out of the bank each week for things.

You must live a magical lifestyle if your only expense is rent… don’t tell me you have no other expenses.. No food? No clothing or shoes? No transportation? No phone? No medicines? No insurance? No glasses or dental work? No gifts?

I honestly don’t know why you would post such a ludricrous thing… ?? Who do you think you are helping (or fooling?)

#108 Last (the first shall be last) on 02.04.12 at 8:04 am

@uh o Canada – I honestly see how you can live on a grand a month, unless you don’t have a car and live in an appartment with all utilities included. Insurance upkeep and gas alone will run you several hundred a month.

@waterlooresident, prices can and will go down, I know from hard experience!!!!

Remember as Garth has said, lower volume pushes the average price higher and is a reflection of the top. How low will prices or how long I have no idea, that’s not Garths point, it’s that people are illiquid.

#109 House on 02.04.12 at 8:14 am

$38 Billion to $108 Billion. Wow they still haven’t told you about the Future Value of Money.
Why not say reduce the age 71 level, not the cryptic phrasing you used?

#110 Beach Girl on 02.04.12 at 9:04 am

58 frederoo on 02.04.12 at 12:17 am

Garth,

Can you write a post about strategies for income during retirement. eg. when to turn the RRSP into an annuity. retire at 55 and use RRSP money until CPP and then OAS or dribble it out over 25 yrs? Is it best to keep the income at ~ the same levol over 30 yrs or front end load the money while you’re still able to enjoy it? RRSP to a 10 yr annuity from 55-65. Thanks. still following along.

_____

I would be interested in that too. Very much so.

And when and if the government changes the pension age from 65-67, I will be OCCUPYING something.

Thank God, there are lots of us Boomers. I will be as noisy and obnoxious as it gets.

Don’t mess with me. I have worked all my life except till now. I am enjoying my retirement. Was a business owner and landlord for over 25 years (still do that). Never have been so busy.

Don’t piss with my pension!!!!

#111 Foggy on 02.04.12 at 9:12 am

@105 Polecat:
Nice you made the move down east, but don’t you find the taxes high here in N.S.? ….

Maybe I was lucky but my taxes for a century farmhouse on 4 acres out here is $850/year. Way under my projected budget. I guess Halifax or the Annapolis Valley is more in line with other provinces, but I don’t live there. Back in Ontario I was living in a small town north of the GTA and it was $3600/year in an ordinary subdivision home (2008). Car insurance is less than half than Ont due to govt limits on lawsuits. So it’s worked out fine so far.
The one acre lot next to mine came up for sale and I bought it. Got the tax bill. 12 bucks. I laughed…

#112 househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 9:30 am

Garth,

Of course you are so right about this and many Canadians are going to find themselves not ready to retire despite their urgent need to do so (failing health, growing demands in the workplace etc..). This is very unfortunate.

I still believe that for people who do not have a pension from an employer, a portion of their savings should be invested in a Lifetime Withdrawal Benefit Plan or some other annuity style investment (although straight annuities are not for me, personally). This means that a portion of their savings will guarantee a lifetime benefit (like a pension would) and not be subject to the volatility of the market or to expiring before they do (ie. market and longevity risk).

Of course, any RRSP’s must be turned into RRIF’s when people hit a certain age and if that investment is not doing well, one has no choice but to withdraw at the standard rates (but I believe you can register a lifetime withdrawal benefit plan so that at least that amount will continue throughout your lifetime whereas a registered mutual fund would expire at some point).

If one plans on say a good Long Term Benefit plan, in addition to their RRSP holdings AND the Canada Pension (forget Old Age Security for the moment), these things should be enough to cover the basics of life. Then any additional savings on top can be used for other things (vacations, cars, that red lace teddy ..). I still believe that the TFSA limit is way too low at the moment to be of any significance. $5,000.00 per person per year for say 20 to 25 years, even with compounded interest, is not enough to retire on (especially if you have no other guaranteed pension except the CPP or QPP).

However, 5K in savings, if that is all you have, would be much better spent investing in a TFSA rather than a house so on that score, I definitely would agree with you.

I also do not think that houses are illiquid. Any house can be sold … for the right price. Vancouverites and Torontonians have become used to selling their home in 24 hours for 10 times what it is actually worth .. all because human greed and stupidity have inflated market value and immature 20 somethings have quick access to incredible amounts of cash thanks to greedy lenders. This situation obviously cannot continue forever and things will come back to normal levels over the next decade or so. However, people will still be able to sell their homes, at more sobering prices and within a more reasonable amount of time.

Why do you think that banks have become so competitive with their mortgage rates lately ? It’s because the tap of new clients has finally run dry so they must fight over the same piece of the pie and try to take it away from their competitor. It will be interesting to see what banks do in the future with this changing situation. Our bank, for example, would not only offer us an excellent rate if we bought a house (they’d better) but they are willing to pay all closing costs as well. I figure if things continue like this, I may have them throw in our moving costs, new paint and some brand new furniture.

Quite frankly, I would love to see a Torontonian come over here and try to sell a home by putting it on the market at a lower than market value to try to attract bids. They would get one bid that is right on the money and that’s it ! … oh and Garth, many people here in the Eastern Townships DO live on 24K a year, believe it or not. There are areas in Canada that don’t have the inflated economies that big cities do and there are many people who have very modest means.

Many of the smaller cities and towns in our country will actually have a ringside seat watching their big city brethren finally face the reality they have been living all along. Hopefully if there is big exodus out of the big cities, they won’t all come here .. I have already noticed a significant population growth where I am currently living (which is why I am looking to move further outside of the population pool).

HHHW

#113 Rob on 02.04.12 at 10:01 am

The S in the OAS stands for ‘security’. The S in the GIS stands for ‘Supplement’. There is a ‘clawback’ of the OAS after $66 thousand and change.

#114 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 10:17 am

#43 Ralph Cramdown: “…..$37,450. Wanna guess how long it’ll take you to get that back?

****************************

You never will. It’s gone…forever.

#115 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.04.12 at 10:23 am

#86 Ronaldo on 02.04.12 at 2:14 am
“We have enough young graduates in their 20′s and 30′s who are sitting with thousands of dollars in debt who are flipping hamburgers at Wendys and working in minimum paying jobs waiting for the wrinkly boomers to get out of the way.”
———-
We’ve hired these “young graduates”.
The problem is that they don’t have a clue about their so called skills. They cannot do anything without training and support. Too costly and useless in my opinion.
The education system is letting us down and is part of a larger problem affecting Canada.

#116 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 10:34 am

#58 Frederoo: “Can you write a post about strategies for income during retirement. eg. when to turn the RRSP into an annuity…”

******************************

How does ‘never’ sound?

#117 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.04.12 at 10:36 am

#91 Boomer on the beach on 02.04.12 at 3:23 am

No GIS if you live abroad.

#118 Shameless on 02.04.12 at 10:39 am

The problem with all of Garth’s analysis is that real estate follows the simple laws of supply and demand. There is no supply in any of the big markets and therefore houses will continue to rise in price. I can promise you that look back at this blog in a year from now and prices will have increased another 4-6%. There is no inventory people and demand remains high because banks keep offering amazing interest rates.

You have no idea what you speak of. Inventory is brimming in many places (I detailed Vancouver a few days ago). — Garth

#119 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 10:39 am

@ #24 Mikling, forget the foolishness you learned in Economics 101 that savings are a drag on the economy (i.e. “leakage”). That Keynesian myth that has no basis in reality and should have been purged from the textbooks long ago, along with its illegitimate son, the Paradox of Thrift.

Savings represent A) Investment capital, and B) Future consumption.

No savings means A) No investment capital, and B) No future consumption.

Compare those two scenarios and ask yourself which one sounds worse for the economy. Then burn your Introduction to Economics 101 textbook.

#120 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 10:47 am

@ #53 Uh Oh Canada:

My family of three (husband, wife, and two years old) live on $2000/month ($1000 of it goes to rent) and we save the rest, which has added up quite quickly. In a rich nation like Canada, it is possible to live on less, though it be a simple life.

Do you live next door to a food bank? And do the good folks who volunteer their time and money there know you are banking $12,000 per year instead of spending it on groceries? And what about clothes? Bus fare? Laundry? Your post makes no sense.

#121 Junius on 02.04.12 at 11:13 am

#118 Shameless,

You forgot to mention that Canada is also running out of land. Just think of all of us packed into this tiny geographic space with no where to build. No wonder Vancouver is the second most unaffordable city in the world after Hong Kong.

You are clueless.

#122 Adviser on 02.04.12 at 11:21 am

“#37 Kip

Fully agree with you. I’d rather end up in a trailer park and have successful, happy and grateful kids than be lectured by a financial ‘professionals’ who think a fat portfolio when you are 70 equals success in life.”

Bang on!! Live your life within means, but live it!. This constant concern with retirement and saving for retirement is really starting to get to me, even though advising people on finances is my daily calling. In my late 20′s am I really that concerned about retirement income? Should I be? Definitely keeping an eye on it, keeping an eye on budgeting, saving, spending but also living, as one day I will join the ranks of the one percent crowd, but I will never get back my youth, the only thing I will have are my memories and experiences, priceless.

Cheers,

Spoken like a true hedonistic, navel-gazing, twenty-something narcissist. Retirement in a traditional sense will occupy more of your life than your youth – yet without job prospects, recovery time from misadventures or innocence. Failure to be ready is a major stumble. Besides, I hear 60-year-olds also create memories. — Garth

#123 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 11:28 am

#83 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 1:56 am
I made $92,000 U.S in 9 months last year working in Dallas and I got $260 back when filing my W2
I come home to this rip off country and file my T4 and I owe the Canadian gov another $8,000 in taxes.
This country is absolutely fuk’d !!!!!!!!!!
———————————————————

Oh I forgot to mention not only do I take home less money in Oh Canada but I pay three times more for everything! Yes THREE times more, not two!

http://www.beazer.com/new-homes-for-sale/Dallas-TX-Willow-Ridge.aspx?initTab=DD

#124 Pat on 02.04.12 at 11:30 am

@ #120 Raging Ranter,

Do you lack reading comprehension?

#125 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 11:31 am

So…

Let’s warn the next generation against repeating the errors of our ways.

Let’s remind them that children are expensive, very expensive. Not only does it cost a lot to raise a child but there is a horrific opportunity cost associated with having a family too.

Let’s show the next generation why owning a house is so much more costly than monthly rent. They’re not going to need that back yard for the kids they’re not going to have anyway.

Let’s explain to them that by foregoing the preceding they will be able to buy lots of big boy toys and still have plenty left over to invest for retirement.

Let’s tell them how much fun retirement will be alone but wealthy.

Let’s tell them how after having amassed so much more money than they might need to see them through to their final days they can feel secure knowing what they leave behind will go to the state. Of course they could bequeath it to some charitable cause – whatever charitable cause such a selfish lonely life might find suitable.

Let’s tell them to invest all the money they can in a “sure thing” for the future, even though for each and every one of us tomorrow is no more assured than it is for even the most terminally ill today.

Let’s tell them to not repeat our mistakes giving them license to condemn us for all that we did wrong. We know they will repeat those very mistakes, for no one learns from the mistakes of others as well as they do their own. So confessing our sins does one thing for sure – it widens the generational gaps as it causes them to resent and point an accusing finger at why they think they cannot have it all right now.

Let’s understand that a lot of what is happening is because we made all of the mistakes we ought to warn them of above. The biggest of which was having a family which clearly lays at the root of it all.
So really, at the end of the day, let’s blame it on them our children as what it is we did so wrong? We grew up bought houses, had families and lived our lives just as every generation before us did as surely as every generation after will too. As anyone who has children knows, no matter how hard we try to help them learn from our mistakes instead of repeating them themselves, our children are destine to learn the best lessons the hard way through experience of their own. History may not repeat but it surely does rhyme.

I don’t know how many of the blog dawgs are even old enough to have children or of those who are who do. I suspect though that many do not and that is where their motive is so different and apparently shallow compared to that more prevalent in the real world. There seems to be a different mindset here on this blog – more selfish and focused on material gain they intend not to share. It’s not about who retires with the most toys or fat bank account. Life is about living each day.

Life is full of mistakes. Mistakes are what make life interesting. If you are afraid of making mistakes you are not going to live a very interesting life. Raising a family is a gamble in many ways. The challenges and expense of raising just one single child is a most onerous task from their first cry as an infant to their protest against “the establishment” as young adult, to the day they come to you with their own child in hand asking for your guidance when they realize how wise you’ve finally become. Raising a child never ends nor does the gratification that comes with – gratification that comes at tremendous cost but worth every penny and lost opportunity.

I am not a wealthy man in economic terms. My needs are simple and I have more than I need. But one thing I do have that I will never regret is the investment we sacrificed to make in our children without which there would be no point in going on.

Doesn’t anyone out there get it ?

#126 down and out on 02.04.12 at 11:43 am

Do not get to comfy in the trailer park.Remember Bob Rae’s NDP and their plan to levy a property tax on seasonal trailers .I wonder how long it would take to dust off that plan if this style of living puts pressure on hosting townships for services to these trailer parks .

#127 Daniel on 02.04.12 at 12:04 pm

#120 Raging Ranter.

Love this post – for it’s stupidity.

People can live on $1000 a month after rent. He’s probably an immigrant; they cook all their own food, get used clothes (or buy clothes that last), no car payment, $200 a month for gas, $400 for groceries, $250 for utilities, $150 miscellaneous. To think this can’t be done is naive. Wouldn’t be fun and in our consumer culture seems absurd, but it’s the way most of the people in the world live.

#128 Keith on 02.04.12 at 12:21 pm

The problem in Canada is the culture of do it yourself retirement is bound to fail when the majority of the population does not earn a large salary, and does not have a pension plan. There are five elements to accumulation of a large sum of money for retirement purposes.

1. Saving enough money
2. Saving for many years
3. Earning a high enough rate of return
4. Minimising risk
5. Minimising costs

The personal finance business does not profit in providing service that satisfies those conditions. Most Canadians are not financially literate enough to take care of themselves. It is simply unrealistic to expect the average person to be an expert investor with modest sums of money and create a huge investment fund and the investment industry is not friendly to small investors.

Certain things should be done on a community basis, like insuring against disaster – financial or otherwise. All Canadian workers and employers should contribute substantial funds to retirement through the government in order to SHARE THE RISK and MINIMISE THE COSTS. A giant publicly funded pension would cost almost nothing to administer compared to an individual scheme. Benefits could be increased to 40 – 50 percent of the industrial wage, with a cap. High income individuals would still be free to pursue a private solution to increase their retirement income.

This solution is anathema to those who believe in the
finance industry solution, and those who believe that we can build a great society eliminating all social welfare programs of all kinds and leaving it up to individuals. Retirement is too important to be a risky proposition, and properly funding it would provide a huge pool of capital for private and public investment, not a bad side benefit.

#129 zman on 02.04.12 at 12:23 pm

Garth,

Great blog

I have noted inventory moving up in my area(markharm) but at the same time prices still are holding firm and are selling. Sales did go down from dec 2011 to jan 12. Lets see if this trend continues.

I think feb and march will tell us what will happen. Last year it was at these months that prices and sales went through the roof and continued for a few months.

#130 View on 02.04.12 at 12:24 pm

“fact that everyone realizes, but doesn’t want to admit, is that RIM is going to go bankrupt.”

I was out shopping for a new phone at Koodoo, Rogers, Bell, Virgin, and Telus. Not one of the young 20 somethings recommended a Blackberry. When I asked the common response was to shift me back to Samsung or Apple. Then I mentioned bankruptcy and the reply was that RIM had not advanced and kept up with all the other smart devices. RIM is doomed with this attitude and if the youth aren’t selling the product, no one will be buying the product.

#131 Alister on 02.04.12 at 12:24 pm

“Victoria’s Secret cherry red teddys with embroidered transparent organza bodice inset”

Be prepared blog dogs – this will be GTs next picture of a senior citizen.

#132 sam.i.am on 02.04.12 at 12:30 pm

@freedom55… you gotta leave or intend to leave for 2 years, otherwise as you found out, the cra taxes eat into it

why did you come back anyway?

#133 i.see.debt.people.in.trouble on 02.04.12 at 12:34 pm

“Meet the new jobless – your broker, your real estate agent, your insurer. This group lost ground again as the Canadian economy created a just 2,300 jobs in January, Statistics Canada says.”

’nuff said! look out below!

http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1125820–jobless-in-canada-the-new-unemployed-may-surprise-you-think-bay-street-real-estate

#134 Herb on 02.04.12 at 12:40 pm

A challenge …

I would like someone who might be interested in the big picture and the potential future of this country – and continent – to read the link at #90 (or the same thing under a different heading at
http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/stumbled+into+Caterpillar+shutdown+without+plan/6100862/story.html)

develop the implications, and tell me how this trend is supposed to end.

#135 DonDWest on 02.04.12 at 12:43 pm

#115 Eaglebay

Yes eaglebay, we know, you expect us to know the job like the back of our hand the first day in. You also expect the college system to create a specialized cirriculum for each and every specialized job you offer. You expect the tax payer to subsidize your overheard in hiring costs. We’ve heard it all before, but here’s a hint, for all the railing you boomers do on your parents, at least they took the time to TRAIN YOU ON THE JOB. You didn’t become skilled over night.

As far as I’m concerned, it’s the employers responsibility to properly train their staff and I’m tired of entitled baby boomer employers whining over the costs. It isn’t the responsibility of the tax payer. It isn’t the responsibility of schools. While your employees are responsible for making the most of whatever training you offer, it’s not their responsibility to pay for it. Nobody should have to pay to get a job. It’s a cost of doing business like any other and I’m personally tired of governments subsidizing millionaires in this regard.

In the 1960′s employers trained their staff and didn’t run bankrupt. You didn’t need a bachelor’s degree for an antry level job. How is it different today?

#136 Herb on 02.04.12 at 12:45 pm

Sorry, that’s the link at #99 Truth Hammer.

#137 Ret on 02.04.12 at 12:48 pm

Sadly they quit making the Wrinkles brand hand puppets over 20 years ago. My daughter (b.1985) would always tell Wrinkles her problems when she was upset. She learned her numbers from his dog tag. We played all kinds of impromptu educational games with “Wrinkles.” We have saved him for any future grandchildren. Hopefully we don’t wrinkle as much with age.

#138 Jane24 on 02.04.12 at 12:52 pm

If you want cheap property tax, try Southern Italy. Our palazzo ( yes you read that right, built in 1550) costs us $360 a year in property tax so lots left for local wine at $5 a gallon.

So to support many previous comments there are lots of lovely places all over the world where you can indeed retire in comfort on a low income.

#139 Snowboid on 02.04.12 at 12:56 pm

#22 Waterloo Resident on 02.03.12 at 10:30 pm…

How times have changed since last September! I recall back then you predicted a $ 500K home would be worth $ 10 million in six years.

Now a $ 300K home will be worth a piddly $ 500K in five years?

A major correction, indeed!

#140 househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 1:02 pm

#125 Devil’s Advocate

The choice of whether or not to have children is a personal one and each individual should be free to make this choice without being called selfish or materialistic.

Those of us who have decided not to procreate may not have done so necessarily because we want to keep all of our money to ourselves in order to buy “toys”, as you put it, but rather because we feel that the overpopulation of our planet will hurt future generations. Our population numbers are growing and our planet cannot support this indefinitely.

To imply that your motives for having children are altruistic and our motives for not making the same decision are selfish is extremely … well … selfish.

It is wonderful that you made the decision to have children and I hope you enjoy the satisfaction of bringing responsible adults into this world and seeing them contribute to society in their own right. But please don’t judge others for their decision because things can definitely be seen in reverse.

All the best.

HHHW

#141 TaxHaven on 02.04.12 at 1:05 pm

“…mostly, it’s been the historic concentration of wealth in real estate that’s truly messed with our heads.”

Are you sure about that? Isn’t it more likely that economic policy has been as much responsible?

Canada’s economy is hopelessly uncompetitive, over-regulated, “protected” taxed and is hobbled with minimum wages, forced benefit contributions, innumerable by-laws and petty interfering regulations and HIGH wage costs…

And why do we have so little competition in telecom services? In airlines? In gas, electricity and other utilities? Why do most Canadians still watch daytime TV – and get NONE of their news off the web? Why is AM radio still n business here? Why is the selection of imported foods so limited here? Why are there no street markets here? No sidewalk vendors? No untaxed free enterprise!? Where is entrepreneurship? Why do some shrinking number of Canadians make $20-$30-$50/hour while more and more and more work in Tim Horton’s…? Or not at all…

It could be that global competition ~ MUCH more efficient, more productive and FAR cheaper ~ is forcing the Canadian economy in directions Canadians won’t like.

Who would dare try to start a business in Canada now??

We have a slow-to-no-growth economy on the horizon for years to come. This will further destroy jobs. Look for long-term continuing structural unemployment, whatever StatsCan says. Savers, 8% pension fund expectations, fixed-income recipients and the indebted are toast…

Instead of recognizing this and cutting living standards in response, Canadians dived into “cheap” debt. But the bottom – JOBS – is about to fall out.

This would have happened even without the real estate splurge.

#142 DM in C on 02.04.12 at 1:05 pm

Interesting article in the Calgary Herald today about renters rebelling against the ‘cult of ownership’ Lots of emotion in the comments section. People need to get a grip.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/Calgary+renters+rebel+against+cult+home+ownership/6100596/story.html

#143 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 1:10 pm

#53 Uh Oh Canada on 02.03.12 at 11:48 pm
“24k is quite a handsome amount to live on per year. Hopefully, it’s non-taxable. My family of three (husband, wife, and two years old) live on $2000/month ($1000 of it goes to rent) and we save the rest, which has added up quite quickly. In a rich nation like Canada, it is possible to live on less, though it be a simple life.”

****************************

Possible only if you’re sharing costs with other families, all living under one roof.

#144 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 1:12 pm

“Risk-Off” in the Canadian Mortgage Market
CanadianMortgageTrends.com Feb 02, 2012

There’s a growing air of uncertainty in the mortgage industry, one we haven’t sensed since the tail end of the credit crunch.

Regulators, media and politicians are waving the caution flag on housing and mortgages, and the foundation of our market (CMHC) is suggesting they’re running out of insurance room.

This has much of the industry in a risk minimization (“risk-off”) mode. In turn, mortgages that are not insurable, income-qualified and owner-occupied are now attracting more scrutiny.

Here’s what we’re hearing…

http://tinyurl.com/7xjeh2h

#145 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 1:19 pm

CMHC Insurance Limits: A Wake-up Call for Lenders
CanadianMortgageTrends.com Feb 01, 2012

Many have now seen this National Post article.

The gist of it: CMHC is approaching its $600 billion government-imposed limit on issuing mortgage default insurance. That’s happening largely because of lenders’ enormous appetite for something called portfolio insurance (a.k.a., “bulk insurance”).

No one fully grasps the repercussions yet, but our sense is that the news is not great (at least in the short-to-medium term) for mortgage consumers, smaller lenders and brokers.

On the other hand, it may be healthy long-term for the housing market. Here’s why…

http://tinyurl.com/7s7fsnw

#146 The Thing in the Basement on 02.04.12 at 1:19 pm

121 Junius

“No wonder Vancouver is the second most unaffordable
city in the world after Hong Kong.”

Man I miss the old Junius. He woulda read the study that showed this and realized that it only covered anlgophone
countires, plus HK.

Now I hadnt visited the site below for quite some time. It
offers even more info now. I cant vouch for its research or sources, but it includes far more countries. According to it there are many places less affordable than Van.

http://www.numbeo.com/property-investment/rankings.jsp

#147 Valyrian_Steel on 02.04.12 at 1:21 pm

Gen-X’er here…. have worked hard, saved hard, and plan to retire in my 40′s. Never made more than 60k in my life… nor has the wife for that matter. Buying a condo for 140k (assessed at 300k+ now) in the early 2000′s and paying it off in 8 years was HUGE. Could care less if the condo loses 100k in value in the coming crash – our housing costs will remain negligable, allowing us to continue to stuff 5k per month into Garth’s tasty combo of REIT’s, Pref’s, low cost ETF’s, etc… I do confess that the Orange Guy still has far too much of my money in his shorts though…. oh yeah, no kids helps a freakin’ ton. Don’t know how you all do it (or why you would want to). ;)

#148 Preciousss on 02.04.12 at 1:26 pm

Many aspire to be the richest person in the graveyard.

#149 Kip on 02.04.12 at 1:26 pm

#104 The Biotech Guy

“And to true believers, regarding a housing bubble.. How is selling your house in 2010 renting since then working for ya ?”

Well said.

#150 TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 1:26 pm

There is an Ontario cemetary, funeral home, masoleum company listed on the TSX. Symbol is PLC. Monthly div, yielding 6%.

Problem is the stock is very very illiquid, and tightly held by insiders (including a family group). They just expanded into the QC market by way of acqusition.

Disclosure: no position.

http://www.parklawnlp.ca/

#151 Don on 02.04.12 at 1:29 pm

eaglebay – Parksville on 02.04.12 at 10:23 am

#86 Ronaldo on 02.04.12 at 2:14 am
“We have enough young graduates in their 20′s and 30′s who are sitting with thousands of dollars in debt who are flipping hamburgers at Wendys and working in minimum paying jobs waiting for the wrinkly boomers to get out of the way.”
———-
We’ve hired these “young graduates”.
The problem is that they don’t have a clue about their so called skills. They cannot do anything without training and support. Too costly and useless in my opinion.
The education system is letting us down and is part of a larger problem affecting Canada.
***************************************
I finally agree with you on something, not all of it but something. Education is not teaching common sense, critical thinking anymore. That’s up to the pupil. However, I have seen so many older managers who do not know what they are doing and have been gliding for years, could that be how we got to where we are today.

Funny story: Met a recent “high finance grad” who looked at me and stated that a house is the smartest financial plan you could venture into these days, so I told him to buy then. “Just make you sure you buy a place with a pool and geothermal heating, off the grid so…when you can’t afford it any longer you can sell it too me for next to nothing.” Dumb kid….they are giving everyone A’s these days and the kids come out thinking they are hot stuff. Nothing replaces experience, nothing!

I can’t begin to tell you how many “smart” people I have met that plunged into a house in the last two years. Well at least I seem to have gotten through to my relatives who are now telling me how expensive Victoria is to live in.

My prediction for the future: We will have to go back to multi-generational dwellings. The boomers will come and go but their main base will be with their adult children. Some cultures still live with way.

#152 Kip on 02.04.12 at 1:33 pm

#126 Down and Out

“Do not get to comfy in the trailer park.Remember Bob Rae’s NDP and their plan to levy a property tax on seasonal trailers”

Bob Rae is a switch hitter and is now batting for the Liberal Party not NDP and is also in the federal ball park now. Property tax is regulated by the provincial government, yes?

#153 TaxHaven on 02.04.12 at 1:37 pm

#32 formerly horny…

It can be done. You have to live in a small town. Have to have hobbies, friends and activities that don’t involve spending loads of money. Have to be restrained in spending ~ DON’T eat out or smoke & NO Starbucks ~ and somewhat self-reliant…

INVEST, don’t “spend”. I bought a woodstove: it saves me a TON and wood is virtually free here on Vancouver Island.

Tax: $180/month
Web/ph./cable: $120
Food for two $450
Car insurance: $80
Gas: $120
Electricity: $90 yearly average
Nat Gas: $35
Clothes: $20 (thrift stores!)
School lunch for son: $40-60
Forced health “insurance”: $116
Dental: $30 average per mo.

That’s something like $1300/month and we lack nothing & eat plenty. But we have no mortgage, of course…

#154 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 1:38 pm

#60 Xerglacia: “Closing Costs ($250 land survey, $500 inspection, $5000 land transfer tax, $1500 lawyer fees, $21,250 realtor fees): $28,500…”

**************************

Certainly not disputing the figures, but just look at them. Legal fees, $1,500. And $21,250 for a damn realtor?

#155 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 1:38 pm

@ #127 Daniel, he said he spends $1000 on rent and “saves” the other $1000. Which means he’s living on $0. Read the post again.

#156 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 1:46 pm

@ #120 Pat:

Do you lack basic math skills? Family of 3 lives on $24000 per year, or $2000 per month. They pay $1000 per month on rent, and “the rest we save.”

Now here’s the hard part:

$2000 – $1000 rent = $1000
$1000 – $1000 savings = $0.

That means $12,000 per year adding up in savings, but no money for groceries, clothing, bus fare, or anything else. Either Uh Oh Canada has some other source of income, or he is not saving anything like “the rest”. Now do you understand? Use a calculator to verify my numbers if you wish.

#157 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 1:48 pm

#64 BCPaul: “Of course socialist Canadians will be up in arms if this (OAS) gets cut.”

***********************************

We’d have millions of ‘bag ladies’ and ‘hobos” and that will never do…..

#158 Uh Oh Canada on 02.04.12 at 1:49 pm

Just to make things clear, we make more than $2000 per month but we LIVE only on that amount. The rest of the salary we make goes into savings. $1000 on food, clothes, and hydro is possible depending on where you live. We rarely eat out, make almost everything at home and take hand me downs for our child. We are not on welfare nor take food from the foodbank. It’s hard for many in our country to understand, but what I’m saying is that it is possible.

#159 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 1:59 pm

Garth says:

Spoken like a true hedonistic, navel-gazing, twenty-something narcissist. Retirement in a traditional sense will occupy more of your life than your youth – yet without job prospects, recovery time from misadventures or innocence. Failure to be ready is a major stumble. Besides, I hear 60-year-olds also create memories. — Garth

Knocked that one out of the park. These carpe diem types are really a treat aren’t they? Travel and live large when young. When old, they’ll be demanding the government look after them because “We paid into it!!!” As the Greeks are finding out, nobody cares if you’ve paid into it. And if you’ve paid into something that is no longer there, nobody can do anything about it, even if they did care. So go ahead, live it up and seize the day if you like. You’ll need the comfort of those old memories in the trailer park.

#160 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 2:02 pm

122 ADVISOR: “This constant concern with retirement and saving for retirement is really starting to get to me, even though advising people on finances is my daily calling….”

*****************************

I’d be a little concerned then, accepting advice from someone so young and naive.

#161 nickolaos vlittas on 02.04.12 at 2:20 pm

Garth, you’re attracting more chicks to your blog! Right on, Right on! It’s like the financial Soul Train and you’re like Don Cornelius and the blog dogs are the dancers!

Do the Soul Train dance line and blame it on the boogie!

#162 nickolaos vlittas on 02.04.12 at 2:21 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0g7KawdsVSQ&feature=related

Get on down wiv yo bad self, Papa Turner!

#163 Pat on 02.04.12 at 2:27 pm

@ #156 Raging Ranter,

Here’s a reading comprehension lesson for you:

“My family of three… live on $2000/month (a statement in parenthesis, which if removed should not change the meaning of the rest of the sentence) and we save the rest…”

Are you embarrassed enough to shut up now?

#164 T.O. Bubble Boy on 02.04.12 at 2:31 pm

Here’s the latest investment plan (according to the G&M):
1) Find someone like Garth (maybe a bit older)
2) Take out a Permanent life insurance policy against that person
3) Collect somewhere between 15% and 1500% returns on your cash when the person dies

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/rrsp/maxed-out-rrsp-try-a-life-insurance-strategy/article1921471/singlepage/#articlecontent

Imagine if you could somehow pay the premiums via the CHIP home equity income plan from the same Boomer — that would be one way to cash out of today’s bubble market.

#165 Raging Ranter on 02.04.12 at 2:47 pm

@ #158 Uh Oh Canada, that makes a lot more sense. :)

#166 Adviser on 02.04.12 at 2:51 pm

Garth,

Thanks for asking I am great,

What I meant to say is that I have seen many, many people with money, disappointed, because looking back they have allocated a lion’s share of time towards planning and accumulating for retirement and not living in the present. Ask anyone over 70, the number one thing they regret and I guarantee only the very few will say “I wish I have saved more money”. Live life but live within your means, keeping an eye on both the present and the future. Balance is key, whether in spending/saving, portfolio design or proper insurance coverage. (Don’t even get me started on life insurance and the ultra-low qualifications within the industry, an entire book can be written on the lack of fiduciary duty and a complete lack of ethically charged advising. Whatever pays higher commissions gets pushed onto the client. Don’t try to prove me incorrect, this is as inside information as it can possibly get.

Additionally the recent craze with retirement saving, planning, calculating future tax rates, values, returns. Common folks who of course don’t have a large enough egg nest to entice a professional money manager, are bound to become high MER victims. Do you know that most advisers have absolutely no idea what they are selling? You honestly believe that the funds you have with a bank, firm, insurance company are getting proper attention, please don’t kid yourself. Maybe with an investable asset base of 250K you might actually get what you pay for.

As to my “misadventures and innocence” trust me, there is time for everything as long as you have a brain and can use it. Not being afraid of hard work and an entrepreneurial drive also help, but then again not everyone is made for that.

So goes my rant, don’t worry still love the blog, just let’s not spread fear. Boomers want to remain in houses, so let it be. They want to play the market (notice how I said play) let them have it. In reality they have an equal chance of loosing. Carney and F know exactly what housing can do to our economy, they will not let it decimate Canadians, a pause in property asset inflation via higher lending standards, combined with a higher than normal real inflation will eventually bring housing back in line. Obviously there are pockets of insanity (Vancouver, Toronto condos, and a couple more, but some areas have only experiences a very minimal price appreciation over the last 5-10 years. We may have to agree to disagree.

Long time follower.

#167 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 2:55 pm

#132 sam.i.am on 02.04.12 at 12:30 pm
@freedom55… you gotta leave or intend to leave for 2 years, otherwise as you found out, the cra taxes eat into it

why did you come back anyway?
———————————————————-

I came home to do my taxes and renew my TN Visa and then I’m outta here again. If I get another TN Visa?
Those are a crap shoot, can’t guarantee you will always get one. I’m 50/50 on TN Visa’s over the years.

#168 tkid on 02.04.12 at 2:58 pm

How’s life working out for me after selling my townhouse? Pretty well, actually. I invested most of it, and bought a car with the remainder.

Will I buy again? Maybe, but there is no way I would pay what I sold it for.

#169 Ogopogo on 02.04.12 at 3:03 pm

DA, you truly are a basket of contradictions and logical fallacies. Just a few nuggets of your “wisdom”

Let’s tell them how after having amassed so much more money than they might need to see them through to their final days they can feel secure knowing what they leave behind will go to the state. Of course they could bequeath it to some charitable cause – whatever charitable cause such a selfish lonely life might find suitable.

I don’t know how many of the blog dawgs are even old enough to have children or of those who are who do. I suspect though that many do not and that is where their motive is so different and apparently shallow compared to that more prevalent in the real world. There seems to be a different mindset here on this blog – more selfish and focused on material gain they intend not to share. It’s not about who retires with the most toys or fat bank account. Life is about living each day.

Raising a child never ends nor does the gratification that comes with – gratification that comes at tremendous cost but worth every penny and lost opportunity.

I am not a wealthy man in economic terms. My needs are simple and I have more than I need. But one thing I do have that I will never regret is the investment we sacrificed to make in our children without which there would be no point in going on.

Doesn’t anyone out there get it ?

I think it’s you who doesn’t get it. Just because my wife and I have decided that we don’t want to replicate our genes it doesn’t make us any more selfish than you for wanting the “gratification” that children supposedly begets. Every serious academic research has concluded that most childed couples are no happier than the child-free, and in most cases the childed are less so. Notice too the rhetoric of economics and martyrdom that you use to describe a supposedly selfless act:

“tremendous cost”, “lost opportunity”, “investment”, “sacrificed”… you get the idea.

The tired old canard that the child-free are somehow “selfish” is a stereotype that only bitter, regretful childed souls seem to love indulging in to cover up the fact that so much of their lives has been spent trying to compensate for their own insufficiencies and inferiority complexes through their children.

If I were a prick I suppose I could throw in your face the exotic vacations we take very year, the sophisticated conversations with friends that don’t involve talking about diapers, the quiet and peace of a child-free home at the end of a long work day, and yes, the substantial nest egg we’ve built by not having to buy said diapers. But I won’t do that because I’m happy for the childed as we need more taxpayers to keep the machine happy.

But don’t you dare think you can try to paint us as “selfish” when in fact, by your own account, our net worth will go to benefit charities and the underprivileged upon our deaths.

#170 Adviser on 02.04.12 at 3:04 pm

122 ADVISOR: “This constant concern with retirement and saving for retirement is really starting to get to me, even though advising people on finances is my daily calling….”

*****************************

I’d be a little concerned then, accepting advice from someone so young and naive.

____________________________________

Young? Maybe. Naive? Definitely nowhere near.

As someone who has accomplished more than most will by retirement, I honestly believe that my advice and knowledge do carry some value. Definitely more value than a 50 year old second career self made adviser, who has ran out of options and scraped enough cash for a license, office and a cheap suit. Please don’t try to lecture me on finances/money, numbers are my second love. My clients beat the index every year since I’ve taken them on, family and close friends and referrals, would not feel comfortable managing random people’s money. Loosing 100K of my own funds over a quarter or two is one animal, but a random client who believes in your education/experience and seriously thinks you must possess special powers is a different ball game. But in reality that’s not my calling and I wish luck to anyone wanting to control other people’s life savings in this turbulent, unpredictable, rigged game called the “market”.

#171 brainsail on 02.04.12 at 3:10 pm

According to StatsCan that I read several months ago, a family of four with less than $38,500 income is considered to living in poverty. Also, I remember that a couple with less than $20,500 income were in the ranks of poverty. Sorry, I don’t have the time to provide the links. I’am helping my wife celebrate her birthday, and her father’s and my neighbor’s. It’s also Super Bowl weekend.

How the heck do people living on a $24K income afford a computer and an internet connection?

#172 Expat on 02.04.12 at 3:12 pm

#83Freedom 55

I understand the sticker shock, and I HAVE felt your pain. The big differentiator is Canadian tax pays for the Canadian health care safety net, BTW a year of premiums for an individual (not family) with a private health plan in the US would also cost you about $8,000.

What do you get for that money? My family has used health care on both sides of the border and have found dedicated doctors in both countries. That said, the US private system is obviously much better funded. Doctors in Canada have described their case load and are clearly overwhelmed, no way they can give sufficient time to each patient.

So getting around to Garth topic, having the boomers work a few extra years to pay taxes, or if you prefer, “health care premiums”, and not draw public pensions may help out the younger tax payers. It would be wise to not be stuck in a job you hate at age 60. Or any age for that matter.

#173 Waterloo Resident on 02.04.12 at 3:21 pm

What?

#62 Tony said (“you’ll lose your 50 grand when the bank calls your mortgage because the house you bought will be worth at least 15 percent less in the future.”)

I didn’t know that mortgages in Canada were ‘CALLABLE’ ???
———-

#60: Xerglacia :

Yes, after all those expenses and stuff, my $50,000 investment only gave me back about $53,000 , so I made $3,000 on a $50,000 investment ? Not very good is it? (Thanks for your math ! I appreciate it. )

———–

#73 Golden Stu:

Yes, I do think that house prices in Canada will continue to double every 7 to 10 years, why would anything change? (and yes, I might be mad, but then so are my neighbours and 90% of all other Canadians too who believe the same.)
————

#82 :
As for my income: future job = $40,000 per year. Income from investments = $25,000 per year, so total income = $65,000 per year. That’s where I get my number from.
And by the way; Welders here in Waterloo are starting apprenticing at $11.25 /hr TOPS, nowhere near $20.

As for hydro; I don’t use hydro for anything other than the furnace and fridge, I turn off all the lights off at night and go to bed early. My hydro bills are minuscule.

RIM won’t go bankrupt because they don’t have any debt, but their income definitely will go down as competition eats into their business, so its a declining company, shrinking, not growing. The shrinkage of RIM will more than be made up with service jobs.
————

#86 Ronaldo: Sorry, but the wrinkled boomers will be working till they drop, the new term is that they will be doing a “STEVE JOBS”; they will work until they die, just like Steve Jobs did.
————————

every 2 years the government will be increasing the CPP age 2 more years, all in an attempt NOT TO PAY THE BOOMERS, its as simple as that.

#174 Uh Oh Canada on 02.04.12 at 3:34 pm

And no I’m not an immigrant. Just a budget conscious consumer who’s not in debt and very liquid. Also, I have a vehicle thanks to cheap Quebec auto insurance.

“It’s not how much you make, it’s how much you save.”

#175 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 3:48 pm

#169Ogopogo on 02.04.12 at 3:03 pm

#140househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 1:02 pm

Touched a couple nerves did I? Does explain a lot though. Enjoy };-)

#176 DUI on Money Road on 02.04.12 at 4:14 pm

One cannot ‘live’ on $2000/mo in Canada with 3 in the family. ‘Survive’ possibly, but not live.

LIVE A LITTLE!!

#177 DUI on Money Road on 02.04.12 at 4:15 pm

ps. I’m in a family of 3 and my daycare bill alone is $1300/mo…….

#178 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 4:22 pm

As each successive generation has wanted more for their offspring, they’ve tended to spoil them a little more than the last one did.

“I want my kids to have what I didn’t have”, and so on…

That’s all well and good, but for one important thing.

After a few generations eventually you hit the wall, where “the good life” is ingrained in them from a young age, and from then on they “expect” that kind of lifestyle always. For the rest of their lives.

Kinda like we have right now.

So who’s to blame here?

#179 Westernman on 02.04.12 at 4:33 pm

DondDWest @ #47
“The young could stop the boomers with their physical strength…”
Just try it, snotnose…

#180 Herb on 02.04.12 at 4:45 pm

To narrow discussion on what a family might need to live in Canada, here is a StatsCan table on “Low-Income-Cut-Offs” based on annual family expenditures expressed in 2009 dollars by community size and before and after-tax income. The amounts are for a family size of one, i.e., per capita. It might be a fair assumption that retirees would need the same amounts.

http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/pick-choisir?lang=eng&p2=33&id=2020801

Obviously one can get by on less by dumpster-diving or unusual circumstances, but the table gives us a good idea of what the average Canadian should earn to avoid poverty. The political and economic challenge will be to ensure that every Canadian has the possibility of earning this income. Force sheeple into poverty and they will develop teeth.

#181 Tom from Missisauga on 02.04.12 at 4:48 pm

I’ve tried to convince a few more friends and colleagues this week that US large cap stocks are the safest place on the planet to park your cash today and a house in Mississauga the most dangerous. They wondered what planet it was I spoke of.

#182 betamax on 02.04.12 at 4:53 pm

#170 Adviser: “Definitely more value than a 50 year old second career self made adviser, who has ran out of options and scraped enough cash for a license, office and a cheap suit.”

If you lower the bar enough, then you can look good in comparison.

#183 down and out on 02.04.12 at 4:57 pm

#152 Kip Sorry I should have explained better .Bob Rae was NDP premier of Ontario at the time and looking for anything that they could tax .I remember the trailer parks owners outrage at the time but soon the government changed but the seed of a idea is still there.

#184 betamax on 02.04.12 at 5:02 pm

#175 Devil’s Advocate: “Touched a couple nerves did I? Does explain a lot though.”

Vacuous response to her reasoned (and reasonable) reply to your post.

I’d say it’s beneath you, but clearly it’s not.

#185 vyw on 02.04.12 at 5:22 pm

#94
Check to make sure your parents have applied for OAS/GIS and CPP.

Perhaps you could co-sign a HELOC for your parents. I imagine the house would be turned over to you/siblings in the future.

#186 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 5:24 pm

#169Ogopogo on 02.04.12 at 3:03 pm

We lived a good part of our lives, like you, without children and a good part with children diapers and all. What we DO know is what you will NEVER know and can never be explained to you.

Enjoy your “sophisticated conversations”, enjoy your “exotic vacations”, enjoy your “substantial nest egg you’ve built by not having to buy said diapers”, enjoy “the quiet and peace of your child-free home. But do not think for a moment we don’t have all that and so much more.

#187 The Biotech Guy on 02.04.12 at 5:46 pm

As the world around us changes so do concepts like retirement. And it is not because OAS is running out of gas.

Is retirement when you are no longer ABLE work or is it when you longer HAVE to work. Or perhaps when you no longer WANT to work ? Or is it what government says it is ?

We have this 20th century idea of a production line Joe who can lift a a hammer no more, must retire, too weak.

Meanwhile in our economy, lots of experienced gurus sell their advise for top consulting fees. This is possible if they still remember their names. Its is also good for them socially , mentally and yes finanncially.

So let’s not panic about retirement readiness with some outdated notion of what retirement is. What is it to you ?

#188 Adviser on 02.04.12 at 5:51 pm

Betamax

“If you lower the bar enough, then you can look good in comparison.”

It’s not about looking good, it’s about uncovering the industry and it’s participants, most being uneducated and unaware, preying on human naiveness. Maybe they had you fooled.

Your comments on the ‘uneducated’ would be weightier if you knew how to spell ‘its’ and ‘naivety’. Just saying. — Garth

#189 Preciousss on 02.04.12 at 5:58 pm

#181 Tom from Missisauga on 02.04.12 at 4:48 pm

“I’ve tried to convince a few more friends and colleagues this week that US large cap stocks are the safest place on the planet to park your cash today”

You one of the wise ones on this board. Just be careful that exchange rate fluctuations dont kill your returns. Keep a close eye and be nimble. Park and hold is not always the best strategy.

#190 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 6:09 pm

#184betamax on 02.04.12 at 5:02 pm
#175 Devil’s Advocate: “Touched a couple nerves did I? Does explain a lot though.”

Vacuous response to her reasoned (and reasonable) reply to your post.

I’d say it’s beneath you, but clearly it’s not.

You are quite right betamax. In my haste to get out the door I made to quick a post without thinking and I regret it.

I extend my apologies to househornyhousewife for having included her in my response which was more intended for Ogopogo.

With regard to her comment;

“To imply that your motives for having children are altruistic and our motives for not making the same decision are selfish is extremely … well … selfish”

I don’t know that we really thought about it that much. I really wonder if the decision to have children is at all contemplated nearly so much as that deliberate one not to have children.

I have childless friends and family – some by choice some denied that choice. What I can tell you is; I am thankful we had and did indeed make the choice to have children – for whatever the reason. For those who are deliberately choosing not to have children, all I can say is I hope that you have taken the time to speak to someone older and wiser who made that same choice. No one can explain to you what it’s like to have children – it just can’t be done. But I do believe they who do not have children, for whatever reason, might provide you good counsel you should seek before it’s too late.

At any rate my original post on this matter was not intended to be so much on family as it was about a life wasted living for the future. The future will be what it will be and the fact is you, despite your best efforts, may not be a part of it. So many on this blog are preoccupied with the future – predicting it, saving for it, wishing it would come that they clearly must be missing all this day has to give them. Live for today, plan for the future.

#191 Patiently Waiting on 02.04.12 at 6:19 pm

I am always amazed at the monthly living expenses people post on this blog. Is Vancouver that much more expensive than the rest of the Lower Mainland or across Canada?

Our monthly budget for an active, middle class family of 4 living in Vancouver is $7300/mos (RESP, retirement savings, income tax, and savings for holidays/weekends away are on top of this). Our lifestyle is in no way extravagant by North American standards but we are active in sports.

I buy items on sale or second hand as much as possible, use the library for books and videos, make the vast majority of our meals at home, and have eliminated a number of hobbies due to their expense.

$7300 includes $2500/mos rent , utilities/cable, tenant and car insurance/gas for one older model car, food, medical/dental, clothes and sports equipment (usually 2nd hand), sports/activities for kids (both play hockey-think $1400 in registration fees alone for 2 players in one season (one also plays spring hockey at $1000), school fees (just wrote a cheque for $21 for one field trip), gifts (I try to limit it to $15/birthday party – ($12 gift plus tax!) and often pool funds with other parents). A trip on BC Ferries to see the grandparents is nearly $200 in transportation costs (incl gas). We spend $800/mos on groceries but I just noticed a big spike in this line item and will be watching it closely as I believe it’s a result of food price increases rather than us eating more. We eat out maybe 2-3 times per month (White Spot or Milestones type restaurant-no alcohol – darn, I usually need a glass of wine on the same nights I need a break from cooking ).

My husband and I recently created a savings target for our retirement years. We based our target on the average annual expenses of four different retirees/retired couples we know, adjusted for inflation (2.5%/yr). We believe we will need about $95,000 per year for two of us (65yrs – 95yrs).

This assumed no mortgage, a nice vacation every year, comfortable living (ie wine with dinner, finally!) and increased health care costs (heart disease in both families).

Anyway, I am amazed at what other families live on – and what people are suggesting they will live on in retirement.

Is living outside of Vanc/BC really that much cheaper?

No. There’s a lot of macho-cheap being tossed around here this weekend. — Garth

#192 Preciousss on 02.04.12 at 6:23 pm

http://www.coldwellbankerfortmcmurray.com/search_map_form1.php

Have a peek here. This is the ultimate city in which to become a “high wage debt slave”.

Have no fear. You will be able to sell out for double after 5 years and go back ome and retire. lol

#193 P & T S on 02.04.12 at 6:36 pm

Garth – a bit harsh implying that ALL those living the “mobile lifestyle” are losers! Whilst we accept that if this lifestyle is forced on individuals through poor financial planning (or bad luck – as a “Finanace Professional” you will be fully aware that ALL investments have SOME degree of risk), then maybe this does apply, however there are plenty “out there” enjoying similar circumstances to us – we chose this lifestyle, and are very content with our roving homestead choices, although the attraction of a “floating home” is becoming ever stronger, and with the lack of confidence Worldwide, there are good “floating bargains” out there to be had, for those prepared to travel a little.

As stated by Garth ages back – “Success is the ability to be able to react quickly to circumstances”. A fixed home will always slow you down, and even a wheeled home limits you to a particular land mass. Since 70% of the World’s surface is water – true mobility must mean Maritime, so you can go where the jobs are, or where the cost of living fits your budget.

Think about it . . . .

I think the normal people took this weekend off. — Garth

#194 Signpost in the bushes on 02.04.12 at 6:55 pm

I think the normal people took this weekend off. — Garth

One has to wonder what is normal? Is it having Harleys, Hummers and a stable of Amazonian babes?

Consider the ancient wisdom; “Humble living does not diminish. It fills. Going back to a simpler self gives wisdom.” (Rumi)

#195 Hoping it lasts on 02.04.12 at 7:15 pm

31, married, $200k in liquid assets and a condo with $200k in equity in a Vancouver burb. Just dropped the price of our condo by $15k hoping we can find one of the few remaining Greater Fools. We take home $12k per month and can easily save half that if we’re renting :). Please tell me it’ll last a few more weeks!!!

#196 Kip on 02.04.12 at 7:17 pm

“And expect Boomers to do to real estate what they did for saving.

Except for trailers.”

Will CMHC insure an RV trailer? If yes, where do I Sign?

#197 Van guy on 02.04.12 at 7:50 pm

#118 Shameless on 02.04.12 at 10:39 am

The problem with all of Garth’s analysis is that real estate follows the simple laws of supply and demand. There is no supply in any of the big markets and therefore houses will continue to rise in price. I can promise you that look back at this blog in a year from now and prices will have increased another 4-6%. There is no inventory people and demand remains high because banks keep offering amazing interest rates.

————————————————————

You know the answer if you come here. So buy now!!If you do buy, make sure you buy a pre-sale condo that completes 3 years from now. Those are great investments! Don’t let this pathetic blog convince you not to buy. Dont get priced out. Pay more if you have to. BPOE!!!!

#198 TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 7:59 pm

This realtor’s blog post was earlier mentioned on this weblog.

http://www.torontorealtyblog.com/archives/lack-of-inventory/6352

It’s true, there is a dearth of SFHs and semis in prime Toronto areas. But why?
Because young couples feel ENTITLED to their own house. And bankers oblige.
Many properties (80-100 year old houses) selling in bidding wars, almost sight unseen (no inspections). Why? Because We deserve a house.

#199 TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 8:08 pm

Well, bonds took a hit after the positive USA jobs #s on Fri.

TLT.US (bond ETF) fell to 116, could fall to 112 but I’m still in bond funds.

Still there is a serious disconnect. VIX at bargin basement level 17, yet TLT.US is above 100. In the old days TLT was well below 100 as markets rallied.

I’ve heared it from a professional TSX trader and market maker that, in his opinion, equity markets are in a disconnect state now.

#200 Andrew toronto on 02.04.12 at 8:11 pm

Garth a couple of things to clarify .. debt to income ratio is that total income/divided by total debt including mortgages? (based on one year income /total debts)

this was Mark wiseletter on talk radio 1010 ,, saying some other countries have a income to debt ratio of 200 like Austrilia so we have room. I know we are cloe to what the u.s was at before they collasped ,but he goes on to say Canada is the number one country immigrants are coming to. Oh by the way he says Vancouver is not overvalued because it is in the same league has hong kong…

how can they allow this crap

#201 househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 8:25 pm

#190 Devil’s Advocate

Your post made me laugh and I thank you for the compliment. However, I am already in my late forties and believe me, honey, it’s definitely “too late” to have children. That ship has sailed.

I have always known what I wanted in life and I have never once regretted my decision not to have children. My husband and I have very busy careers with crazy schedules and children would have suffered within this marriage (not to mention us as well). I also did not want to bring more children into a world that already has too many mouths to feed and not enough resources to feed them. It was therefore, as you say, a very “well thought out” decision for me.

However, what you might want to consider is that we “childless by choice” couples may actually have more of a positive influence on your children than you realize. Some of us are teachers and medical people who work with children. We pay school taxes that go to educate your children (and obviously not ours). Despite our childless condition, we still care about future generations and we sometimes go out of our way to help a young person who is just starting out in life (how many times have I spent hours with a university student trying to impart useful advice because he or she has temporarily lost their focus .. this happens often at this age). Like you, we also get a lot of satisfaction from helping those who come after us.

Being childless doesn’t mean we have declared war on future generations but rather have consciously chosen not to procreate.

You are absolutely right that people need to enjoy the here and now, in addition to planning for the future. This is definitely what I am doing and if my genes do not travel any further than my lifetime, that’s OK because what I have accomplished in this lifetime will.

How’s that for thinking things through ?

Take care of yourself.

HHHW

#202 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.04.12 at 8:45 pm

-
Something to contemplate upon . . .
*
I want to live my next life backwards.

Start out dead and get that out of the way.

Then wake up in an old age home feeling better every day.

Then get kicked out for being too healthy.

Enjoy retirement and collect pension.

Then when you start work, you get a gold watch on your first day.

Work 40 years until too young to work.

Get ready for High School: drink alcohol, party and generally promiscuous.

Then go to primary school, become a kid, play and no responsibilities.

Then you become a baby, and then . . .

You spend your last 9 months floating peacefully in luxury, in spa-like conditions — central heating, room service on tap.

Finally, finish off as an orgasm.

I rest my case.
*
Thought For The Day! — “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.” — Thomas Jefferson
*
7:17 clip The case for US$960 silver; The Ideas of March “It is fitting that the collapse of Western Civilization is beginning in its ancient cradle, Greece. This great nation has fallen to the banksters who are behind the despotic new world order.”; The US Fed “. . . the debt is perpetual and must continually be increased or the economy will collapse from de-leveraging”; China The beginning of the end of the US$? HSBC Laundry suds? Obummer and Harper Neither are economists (except for screwing their respective economies up); Geithner Old but good story; 2:36 clip Nigel Farage Q&A rant; Schneiderman sues banks on foreclosing; 4:23 clip GGreat myths of GD1.
*
4:12 clip Russia and China veto UN security bid (good); Fukushima It appears reactor 4 is in bad shape; CC Just The Orient Express blasting in from Siberia, so The Bovine Excrometer just melted in laughter; Oz Sacrificing humanity for corruption; 6:20 clip Making public prisons private.

#203 sam.i.am on 02.04.12 at 8:47 pm

@Freedom 55
You gotta break .ca tax residence. TN’s are great when they work but aren’t always a sure thing. I started on a TN then found an employer to sponsor H1 then GC. Biggest problem I had was my girlfriend could not legally work for like 4 years. But we stuck with it and things eventually worked out. Now I am looking ahead to going in the other direction.

A good Ca-Us immigration lawyer is http://www.grasmick.com. I still find the monthly newsletters helpful, even though I’ve finished the process. Good luck.

#204 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 8:48 pm

#170 ADVISOR: “Losing 100K of my own funds over a quarter or two is one animal…”

*********************************

Yikes!

#205 John G. Young on 02.04.12 at 8:49 pm

John…#50….people are drinking to excess in the highest tax countries because they are miserable after shouldering a heavy work load and then having their income stolen from them just so they can watch the prolifigate spendthrifts in the union movement piss the money away on egregious salaries and perks for the socialist elite.

Is this your opinion, or do you have objective evidence to back this statement up?

The geographic clause in the AA literature refers to people who must stay away from the bars and the bar flies…

Wrong. First there is no “clause” in AA literature — there is, however, a folk-wisdom slogan, advising those seeking recovery to stay away from “people, places and things” that might influence once to use. This is separate from the expression “geographic cure” which refers to attempting to escape one’s addiction — an inherent and incurable condition for many — by moving to another location. Doing so is usually doomed to failure, because you can’t run away from yourself.

The statistics show that people stop drinking ( opposite to your proposition) when their lifestyle opportunities improve.

Not always — see above. Addiction is a complex, multifactorial condition.

Hence the huge rise in people NOT drinking by joing foreign based language specific AA groups in ex pat communities world wide.

If, as you suggest, these people were drinking simply because of their environment, then why would they need to attend AA after they had escaped from that environment?

Heres a new politically correct twist…..we send all the rubbies to Spain for a spa treatment….

Not all alcoholics are “rubbies”, and I think that referring to them as such says something about you.

BTW…I had a note from someone in justice….did you know that Canadian prisons are now offering inmates yoga and relaxation spa therapy?

I didn’t know that. I do know that in India, the introduction of vipassana yoga has demonstrated great value in helping inmates to become more insightful and take more responsibility for their actions.

BTW I am an addiction medicine physician. I co-edited the American Society of Addiction Medicine’s “Essentials” textbook (look it up online), so I think that I have some small degree of expertise in this area.

Addiction already carries enough of a stigma, in part because of misinformation and unsubstantiated individual opinion. I would ask that you please refrain from making statements about addiction which serve to advance your political opinions but are unsupported by facts.

#206 OneMoreThing on 02.04.12 at 8:54 pm

#83 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 1:56 am

I made $92,000 U.S in 9 months last year working in Dallas and I got $260 back when filing my W2
I come home to this rip off country and file my T4 and I owe the Canadian gov another $8,000 in taxes.
This country is absolutely fuk’d !!!!!!!!!

HaHa…yes correct and it’s been that way for years! Left 10 years ago, never coming back except to visit!

#207 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 9:02 pm

#187 BIOTECH GUY: “So let’s not panic about retirement readiness with some outdated notion of what retirement is. What is it to you ?”

*********************

The last sentence sounds like something Scotiabank would say… LOL

#208 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 9:13 pm

“I think the normal people took this weekend off. — Garth”

************************

Hey…! LOL

#209 carol on 02.04.12 at 9:24 pm

When Harper says hes raising the retirement age to 67,
Does that mean for police ,firemen,All Government workers including staff on Govnt hill , everyone Prov and Federal..
Or is it just for unwashed who are currently struggling to save for there own pensions as well as pay for the above mentioned Public service pensions.

Our Police chief retired at 55ish
A school custodian I know is retiring at 58

The people Ive worked with are struggling on to 65

And I think the public service should have the same right.

#210 Shameless on 02.04.12 at 9:35 pm

There is no catalyst for housing prices to start falling, seriously, nothing has changed in the last 6 months to prompt any of the price decreases that Garth has been suggesting. Again, I point out that in my opinion it is simple supply and demand. To Garth’s point maybe, and I stress maybe Vancouver is an outlier and there is some inventory in that city. However, in the vast majority of Canada and especially Toronto/GTA, where I work as an agent, there is simply more buyers with preapproved mortgages that sellers and there is no chance that in the next 12-24 months that is going to change. I sold a property last week in Bloor West and I had 7 of my own clients interested and received 6 other offers. This is no way unique to Bloor West, I also sell in Mimico and throughout the city and it is true everywhere. This spring will be entirely a sellers market as will the summer and most of the fall. Listen folks, I really don’t mind if prices fall, I am a person who earns a salary by selling a product, in my case it is houses, therefore, I prefer there to be investory as there continues to be demand on the street for homes. I am not a fool, I know this will ultimately end but I just don’t see what the trigger will be. I sincerely believe that prices will continue to increase with a price appreciation of at least 4% and possibly as much as 6%. It is a new world out there, most of my clients sincerely believe that the only tangable investment in the world today is houses.

#211 The BioTech Guys on 02.04.12 at 9:44 pm

#207 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 9:02 pm

I have been called many things in flife but a Scotiabank is first for me ;-).

Some people spend 50 years of their life shopping only at Costco to save for some mythical retirement. Doesn’t it deserve a question what exactly they expect at retirement ?

Canada is a very rich country. Recommend a trip to Africa to put the content of this blog in perspective.

Yes, do not panic about retirement is right.

#212 Preciousss on 02.04.12 at 9:52 pm

#199 TurnerNation

Here is something to support your observation:

“If I wish to leave you with one takeway, it is that the current use of the monthly headline (employment) number is more of a Sales and PR program for Wall Street and the government, and hardly the product of serious and thoughtful analysis of statistical data. The US economy is on a flatline from all that I can tell. I suspect that if a double dip occurs it will be blamed on Europe or some other factor. But in fact there has been no real recovery as of yet. There is a yawning discrepancy between the bond and equity markets in the manner in which they are interpreting the data. And one of them is wrong. Based on my experience, it is the bond guys who are most always the adults in the room. Still, the markets are what they are, and it does not pay to fight the tape ahead of its season. Wall Street and its Banks have shown a marvelous ability to create paper rallies out of nothing and sustain them for quite some time before their inevitable collapse. The US economy can recover. The system can be repaired. But I do not see the effort required to perform that task coming out of New York or Washington yet. They may be talking a good game, but it looks like just more of the same”. Jesse

#213 Shameful on 02.04.12 at 9:55 pm

@Shameless

It is a new world out there, most of my clients sincerely believe that the only tangable investment in the world today is houses.

No it’s not. Credit is overdue to tighten. The IMF has already warned the govt.

#214 Devil's Advocate on 02.04.12 at 10:13 pm

#201 househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 8:25 pm

I will accept what you say as that which you choose to believe and wish you a full and happy life.

Curiosity begs me to ask though: What was that caused you come up with the handle “househornyhousewife”? Your writings tell of a much more pragmatic person than that.

#215 a prairie dawg on 02.04.12 at 10:32 pm

#209 carol

When Harper says he’s raising the retirement age to 67…

- — -

He means eligibility to collect government retirement benefits and/or supplements. ie: OAS and CPP

It has nothing to do with (when) you retire from the workforce.

#216 John G. Young on 02.04.12 at 10:32 pm

#210 Shameless

…Listen folks, I really don’t mind if prices fall, I am a person who earns a salary by selling a product, in my case it is houses…

Wow, a real estate agent who earns a salary rather than works on commission — I didn’t know such an animal existed.

Note to self: be sure to get a salaried real estate agent when I decide to sell my house.

#217 Too old to be 'First' on 02.04.12 at 11:28 pm

Never will be first, I have a “natural sense of slowness”!

Unfortunately, I am also one of those aging,wrinkling, drooping, soon to be screwed boomers!!

I think I will go into politics next election!

#218 Arshes on 02.04.12 at 11:32 pm

#65 The Thing in the Basement

“Also, I dont think you contribute 13%. Maybe half that. Taxpayer contributes the rest.”

——————————————————–

Most gov’t employees, or public servents like teachers or police officers pay a large percentage of their wages to thier retirement fund. And that 13%, best to my knowledge, is from thier gross wages, not net. I used to work as tax accountant, that 13% if def. not off.

#219 TurnerNation on 02.04.12 at 11:42 pm

#205John G. Young on 02.04.12 at 8:49 pm

I think there’s enough blog dog examples on this weblog for a whole new book….

#220 boomer on the beach on 02.04.12 at 11:45 pm

Dear #117 Eagle

Shhhh …. but there are ways to get your CPP,OAS etc paid and live abroad.

I do it, and have for the past 7 years.

It’s not that difficult.

#221 Smoking Man on 02.04.12 at 11:51 pm

You guys all kill me, so worried about money when the universe is there to be discovered, stop obsessing about money and your position on the hierarchy it means nothing, and you will make it.

And when you have it and things you have dreamed of doing become routine, you go down one of two paths, self destruction to relive boredom, or enlightenment. Vision, like you could never image

On one of my trips to the universe I meet Albert Einstein, he was sitting in a winged chair, tears flowing down his face. Alb what’s wrong said.

His reply, Smoking Man I traveled through the Universal Consciousness consolidator, I have learned everything there is to know, I can make all my equations resolve, I know everything about everything. He starts balling his eyes out.

Here was man that loved to solve puzzles, someone gave him all the damn answers, now , no puzzle to solve just eternity in a winged f-n chair somewhere in the universe.

Sucks to be him

#222 Dan from Richmond Hill on 02.04.12 at 11:54 pm

One idea about the poverty line (i.e. 2000 CAD per month for 2 seniors), which some people consider to mean poverty: what do you believe this economic crisis is about ? Western countries cannot live on debt for ever, printing money could help for a while, but not for ever… so maybe we will see a lot of changes in the standard of living for many of us, not only for seniors.

#223 DUI on Money Road on 02.05.12 at 12:10 am

#201 househornyhousewife on 02.04.12 at 8:25 pm
——————————————————-
You thought through your decision and that is what is most important. It is also noble that you care and contribute to the growth of children and young adults. However, 20 years ago I would have said to you:

“HHHW, you have a good head on your shoulders, you are focussed, motivated, will likely do well in your career and could really be a great role model for your future children. It’s people like you that should be having kids as you can really do great things for them and lead by example (as per your own omission you seem to be good at leading directing kids)”

Yes, every family and marriage has its problems, but it really is people like you, that are able to look ahead and contemplate the future, that could provide a great life for little ones, that should be having kids.

#224 DUI on Money Road on 02.05.12 at 12:17 am

#191 Patiently Waiting on 02.04.12 at 6:19 p
————————————————
Amen. I’m in Ottawa and young family of 3 and monthly costs are around your numbers, and food expense is similar. One car family, no tv, one vacation/yr, active in sports, 2-3 order-in/mo and we’re looking at a monthly bill of $7000 (again, that includes $1300/mo daycare).

#225 DUI on Money Road on 02.05.12 at 12:23 am

#190 Devil’s Advocate on 02.04.12 at 6:09 pm
—————————————————
Agreed. Although parenting is the toughest job you will ever do (if you do it right), it is the most rewarding. My little one is still in diapers but I cannot imagine a life without them, the love one feels is enough to fill the vastness of the universe….I am thankful my parents decided to have me, so that I could have the chance to experience life with a child.

#226 renting and waiting no more on 02.05.12 at 12:24 am

@ #191 ..

ummmmm.. yeah. it’s really quite amazing that you would believe that $7300/mo is normal for a family of 4 in Canada.

As a single mom i lived on $968 a month (16 years ago, mind you, but still..) I felt lucky every single day. :D

#227 nonplused on 02.05.12 at 12:27 am

Wow, don’t always weigh in on the comments but Garth doesn’t post on Saturdays so I read them in more detail.

The one “thread” that caught my eye was the argument that arose re: having children vs. not having children. Wow. On both sides. Ok, a few facts.

Having children or not having children are both inherently selfish acts. It’s what you want to do. In the days before birth control, nature forced us all to have children, because that is what is good for nature, but now that we have a choice, we can make a choice. And that choice is inherently selfish, as most choices are. So pot, stop calling the kettle black. (A reference to having been dirtied by the fire, not something racist. Dog, are we that far from the land? I guess so.)

People who don’t have children are not saving the planet any more than people who do have children are wrecking it. In first world countries, the birthrate is below replacement adding up all families. Our populations are in decline. No need to worry because only averages matter here and if one person doesn’t have kids it saves the world about as much as when one person walks to work at the steel mill.

People who have kids so they won’t be alone when they are old are committing the most selfish act of all. I mean, come on! What does that kid owe you? And anyone who thinks their kid owes them something is probably forming a very dysfunctional family, complete with all kinds of control issues, and is trying to control the kid so “they are not alone when they are old”. Ever heard of blowback? Parents who have kids who won’t talk to them are probably feeling more alone than people who have no kids. At least if you don’t have kids, you don’t feel more alone because nobody called.

Having kids is a lot like hosting a party. The party is what it is depending on who shows up. And then whether you are still on speaking terms depends on what happened at the party. But you hosted the party because you wanted to, the kids came because, well, they had no choice. But they are still going to sleep over for at least 18 years. Suck it up sunshine.

If there is one thing that has been drilled into my head with a hammer drill lately, it is this: Never believe you know what another person is going to do, even if you have discussed it with them in advance. While I didn’t get schooled by my children, I think it applies to everybody.

Children and money go together like gunpowder and matches. If you have no money your children may strive to do well, but then resent you looking for a handout in old age. If you have lots of money your children may free load and wait for the inheritance rather than make something of themselves. Rare is the man and woman who can do well for themselves and raise a child who will strive to do well for themselves as well. It has to be cultural, and it isn’t on YouTube. You know why all these 20-somethings are living in your (boomer) basements, barely working, taking joke courses, stealing stuff and getting high? It’s because you facilitate it, so they can.

So, our birthrates are below replacement, because of the collective self interest of each of us acting as we want. Fine. The government says “Woah, holy heck! We need constant growth or this OAS thing isn’t going to be funded!” So they allow in immigrants. Well, that’s fine enough, and the children of the immigrants are never a problem, they for the most part acclimatize, some as we or our parents did. And even though 99.9% of them are never a problem, relying on immigration means occasionally the Canadian courts have to deal with some nut bag who’d drowned his first wife and 3 of his daughters in a canal for “honour” reasons. (Really??? Can there be any honour in killing people??) If we were having our own children these cases would be tried in Afghanistan where they belong and not here, but it is what it is. If we feel we need to import people, we have to live with the fact that we are importing those people’s world view also.

Have kids if you want, don’t if you don’t want, carry on. You are neither saving the world nor destroying it, the world just doesn’t give a sh!t about you or what you think or what you want. Rant done.

#228 Sotiri on 02.05.12 at 12:33 am

#210Shameless

“There is no catalyst for housing prices to start falling,… in my opinion it is simple supply and demand.”

You are so wrong. Do you know how much demand is artificially created by the government through CMHC? If you really want to know what the real effect of supply and demand would have on housing prices, take the CMHC out of the housing market and let the private banks deal directly with the clients looking for a mortgage. Then and only then can you rightfully say that supply and demand is determining housing prices.
The home market in Canada is not a free market.
Does this sound familiar to you? Just look south of the border at what happened. It’s coming here too and it’s going to hit harder.

#229 Smoking Man on 02.05.12 at 12:34 am

Garth when 37 A is the soul surviver you will regerent not posting my post

Say goodnight, SM. — Garth

#230 Arshes on 02.05.12 at 12:57 am

#170 Advisor

Ask anyone over 70, the number one thing they regret and I guarantee only the very few will say “I wish I have saved more money”.
———————————————————

That’s funny cause I read a article, I think it was CNN money section, talking about seniors in the US. They’re biggest regret was not saving more money, even if it was just a little. I guess a decade or more of eating tuna fish sandwiches will do that to you.

#231 Mr Buyer on 02.05.12 at 1:02 am

#201 househornyhousewife…However, what you might want to consider is that we “childless by choice” couples may actually have more of a positive influence on your children than you realize.
…………………………………….
As well as having two wages in the family to put in the extra big bid on the house for sale down the street because we can handle the monthly payment. Did I say that out loud?

#232 worried realtors in a Panic on 02.05.12 at 1:03 am

Funny how realtors spend all their time on thus blog telling us the market is doing well…lol if that were true they wouldn’t need to come here and convince us. The fact very little is selling to the point realtors and mortgage brokers are losing their jobs in the GTA. You can see the outright panic from the realtors who post on this blog. Its going to be a nasty crash.

#233 Beach Girl on 02.05.12 at 1:05 am

househornyhousewife

I applaud her decision not to have children. Truth be told, if I had to do it over again, maybe not. The only deal breaker is would I have felt I missed out. Small people are fun. After 12 not so much.

I find it amusing that the most critical are males.

When everyone knows, women carry most of the burden.

I joke about my 2 idiots, but they are lucky in the fact their education and life is basically secure. No student loans for these 2. And they both can’t wait for the ex and I to die.

I would never have brought them into this world without that minimum of security. Their father felt the same way.

Unfortunately I run into a lot of young people who have been discarded.

It just seems to get worse. Admired June Callwood.

#234 Carp on 02.05.12 at 1:07 am

Before age 35 = no kids and lots of life fun + travels.

At Age 42 = 3 kids + nagging wife = happy dad.

Both age no debt.

Salary – Not applicable.
Investments = x + 7.5 to RESP per year.

At 42 – lots of love.

At 70 I hope lots of love from grand-kids.

Investments won’t be RE unless REITs

At 90, run out of funds and that’s ok.

#235 Mr Buyer on 02.05.12 at 1:25 am

THE BUBBLE HAS TOPPED
When I am really busy, like I am almost all the time, my kids are getting in the way of me getting my work done. Now that is not the way I want to feel and behave. If my wife was not with them full time I do not think I could stand to look at myself in the mirror (not that I enjoy seeing the impact of the relentless march of time upon myself even at the best of times, I mean really, giant hairs growing out of my ears, come on ). I remember ONE night when my little brother and I were in are twenties we went out drinking because we had not seen each other in years. Well by the end of the night we wound up getting in an argument with each other and didn’t the little so and so work up the sand to sucker punch me and lay me right out. After a lifetime of me kicking his ass rightly or wrongly and when I was in top condition benching and squatting heavy weights he tossed off his chains and knocked me right on my ass. I have to tell you I felt happy for him even though I couldn’t eat very well for 2 or 3 weeks because my lower lip looked like a giant piece of liver. It left one of the bigger scars in the collection. I hope I can stay in good enough shape so that my boys (or even my daughter) can feel some sort of satisfaction from kicking my ass when they are older over some real or perceived shortcomings on my part. Sadly though they will likely feel sorry for me by that time as I will be a shriveled up shell of my former self by that time with no physical prowess remaining but likely all my short comings in tact (did anyone here ever watch Magnum PI and that character Higgins kept telling stories that most people were not that interested in hearing but he seemed oblivious to the general lack of interest, I think I am kind of like that guy a little bit, my apologies)

#236 GTA banker on 02.05.12 at 1:32 am

You people have no idea how many are in trouble with their mortgages? We have a whole department that just handles those who are behide on their mortgage payments. You have no idea how many 700k and higher mortgages are in trouble. Garth is right when he says its good to be liquid . The house of cards is falling apart. It’s scary.

#237 P & T S on 02.05.12 at 1:42 am

Hi Our Leader!

Proud not to be classified as the “Normal People” – Normal People tend to have normal (i.e. pretty average, pretty boring) lives.

Been there, Seen it, Done it, and, as you have always suggested, invested wisely, and well diversified (from an Asset and Geographical viewpoint). NOW it’s Playtime, so we’re enjoying ourselves doing all the risky things that scare “Normal People”, which includes serious planning for a few circumnavigations.

Keeps the mind working, is an enjoyable (and efficient) way to keep fit, and keeps us out of the Retirement “Homes” – or rather “Institutions for the Prematurely decrepit”.

You only have the one life (as far as we know) so you might as well make the most of it. If collecting ephemeral “possessions” is what floats your boat, so be it. Others are keen on the Experience aspect, and that floats (our) boat – figuratively and soon-to-be literally.

Normal is becoming “so Last Century!” Try Eccentric – lends a load of spice to an otherwisew humdrum existence!!

#238 Mel on 02.05.12 at 1:44 am

You naughty Garth. You know a lot more about Victoria’s secret teddys than I know!

But then, you are a man. You should know a lot more than a woman. Good for you!

#239 bubu on 02.05.12 at 2:03 am

if the dean of the University of Western Ontario’s Richard Ivey School of Business is recommending to buy real estate now, what do you expect from regular people without financial education.

http://www.moneyville.ca/article/1124627–this-business-school-dean-s-first-mortgage-a-17-nail-biter

#240 OneMoreThing on 02.05.12 at 2:27 am

#202 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.04.12 at 8:45 pm

-
Something to contemplate upon . . .
*
I want to live my next life backwards

Sweet, I’m In! Well at least if offered in the next life!

#241 NorthYork Sash on 02.05.12 at 3:13 am

With so many comments, I only want to read the ones worth while, a good indicator of this is the ones that Garth responds to.

#242 The Thing in the Basement on 02.05.12 at 3:36 am

218 Arshes

“For all those benefits, federal employees pay 5.8 per cent of their annual salary up to $48,300 into the pension scheme, and 8.4 per cent of their salary above that amount.

Members are now paying about 35 per cent of the plan’s costs, with taxpayers picking up the rest — although the federal government has taken steps to move up the employees’ contribution to 40 per cent by 2013.”

http://blogs.ottawacitizen.com/2012/01/15/public-service-pensions-overly-generous-and-unsustainable-the-push-begins-to-cut-back/

I dont know how that is accounted for from a tax perspective. Perhaps the “employers” contribution shows as a taxable benefit, but is not taxed as it is a pension contribution.

#243 Pat on 02.05.12 at 5:28 am

@ #227 nonplused,

1. You write too much…
2. All the people who I know who have chosen to not have children have made that choice because they don’t want the responsibility of taking care of onother human being.

@ househornyhoudewife, or whatever,

Mentoring university students?? Don’t make me laugh. I do this every day… and then go home to take care of my kids.

Off to the ski slopes tomorrow morning. Watching my 6 and 9 year olds ski like champs beats any pleasure money can buy.

#244 househornyhousewife on 02.05.12 at 5:50 am

#214 Devil’s Advocate

Thanks for your last post.

My avatar is actually quite accurate. In our household, I am in charge. In addition, my husband and I have been looking to move to a nearby small, picturesque village for the past two years. We are “putting ourselves out to pasture” so to speak. Therefore, we are both quite “househorny” at the moment (in case you are wondering, my husband is just as househorny as I am .. perhaps even more so).

Believe me, my pragmatism has come in very handy over the past few years. Looking for a place these days is an insane process and in the area where we are looking, it is simply unbelievable.

All the best.

HHHW

#245 Timbo on 02.05.12 at 6:35 am

http://www.wallstreetjournal.de/article/SB10001424052970203889904577200953014575964.html?mod=fox_australian

what did you say?

Wages and a strong dollar will always keep going up to support housing prices?

It is not a bubble are keeping things from falling off a cliff?

We export well made products that can compete with 3rd world wages, insuring a strong middle class?

It is going to be interesting to see how credit expansion can keep things on track. The last locomotives are leaving the station people
(pun intended)

#246 Pr on 02.05.12 at 7:05 am

…CMHS.Raising the $600 Billion roof will not be easy politically. CMHC’s cap has risen in tandem with the housing bubble.

In 2006 that cap was $100 Billion. Six years later it is hitting $600 Billion.

In that one statistic alone lies the real foundation of what caused Real Estate values to skyrocket in Vancouver and the rest of Canada. -by Whisperer.

I hope, if your new here, than your not to surprise about so many people aware of the giant Canadian real estate bubble. The fun begin SHORTLY! Welcome.

#247 The Dividend Yield Investor on 02.05.12 at 7:22 am

Smoking Man!

Don’t slack off the smokes and whiskey, remember -
You are in Training!!

#248 truth hammer on 02.05.12 at 7:42 am

John ….The CDN media runs articles every day regarding public servants of every profession in the trough…do you read? … C’mon John…you didn’t read about the dentists pulling out a million net p/a off the native reserves?

Professionals that have that little respect for the community shouldn’t be allowed to practice. We are NOT fair game for every tom dick or harry who feels himself aloof from the citizenry.

John…….Don’t stop the juice heads from finding a cure elsewhere…if that is going to be effective…. .I understand they are always hiring at McDonalds…..even doctors who are out of date are welcome to apply..

Canada has failed miserably with addiction rates…admit your failure…..’cause if you’re taking responsibility Mr. textbook writer/expert…..then it’s obviously your fault. BTW John ..I’ve written nine books in current publication….so there.

If there was a massive migration ( hypothetical obviously) out of Canada by the addicted towards successful treatment elsewhere..you should be happy….instead you’re giving us a snowjob about how much better you comprehend the staus quo than any of us lesser minds can possibly do.

By your logic treating the addicted with ineffective regimes under an antiquated Canadian medical system is better for the professionals pay cheques….but nothing gets done for the addicts?

Decades of political interferance from special interest groups have produced addiction rates that have increased not decreased. Wasn’t it the ‘professionals’ that shunted the sick out into the street from the institutions that created Vancouvers massive addiction mess in the first place?

The unions loved that one…they were going to hire thousands of new ‘community workers’ to treat the addicts where they lived…..WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT PLAN JOHN?? Really ‘professional’ pal.

We ended up with Main and Hastings and more fat civil servants raking in big salaries and scoring cheap aprtments in subsidized buildings. You’re telling us that doctors decided to create Main and Hastings…because they know a thing or two about addiction????? If you had anything to do with that one J-boy….well it goes without saying we pity your patients.

Best thing for everyone is to get all the public payroll junkies off the Liberal gobsmack…no matter what their ‘position’. Trust me…once you’ve weaned yourself off the public juice bucket you’ll feel like a real person again.

It doesn’t sound like you have any experiance or knowledge with the countries or communities that I have spoken about. You obviously have no idea about sobriety programs in ex-pat communities around the world and have to find out about your professional outlook on a jibber jabber blog about real estate….good way to out your true situation John.

Canada is well known as a toxic enviornment that people are escaping from in droves. I’ll forgive you your ignorance…I have the luxury of getting out of the house more often.

BTW…as an ex- landlord I have rented to my share of doctors ……and found as many of them are drunks and urinate in the closets as any other segment of our society…..Earth calling John….we don’t care .

BTW….John your hats on too tight…

#249 Gypsy Kid on 02.05.12 at 9:44 am

Smoking Man, you are THE lunatic sage…keep posting.

As for household budget: Of course you can live on $2000/mth…don’t eat out and don’t buy stupid things you don’t need as it was pointed out.
And yes, you can also live not so well on $7200. Doesnt it all depend on one’s perception/understanding of “living well?”

#250 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 10:28 am

#170 Adviser on 02.04.12 at 3:04 pm

By calling the market “rigged”, it proves that you’re not as savvy as you think.
As you grow up, you’ll acquire more experience and knowledge. Then, you’ll understand.

#251 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 10:50 am

#248 truth hammer

drug and alcohol addiction is caused by political special interest groups ?
you, my friend, know absolutely nothing about the causes of addiction…………

#252 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 10:53 am

DonDWest

Don, Don, Don.
You’re one plugged up character.
So far, I’ve build up two (2) highly professional consulting firms.
I don’t even have a graduate degree. I only completed grade 10 and failed grade 11.
But, I educated myself and used a lot of common sense.
The majority of my employees were supposedly well educated people with degrees and then some.
I sold at the top and one business thereafter couldn’t survive.It goes to show you.
The cost of “training” are not necessarily in dollars but more so in time.
In the consulting world time is what you sell plus obviously, knowledge.
It’s much easier today to self trained and educate oneself then it was then.
You should learn to read between the lines and understand what you read.
By the way what is your shoe size, genius.
Oh, I almost forgot, we never had any government subsidies and always paid more than our share of taxes.

#253 maxx on 02.05.12 at 11:01 am

#246 Pr on 02.05.12 at 7:05 am

Allowing CMHC to raise the ceiling would be a tactic of the most profound stupidity.

#254 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 11:08 am

#177 DUI on Money Road on 02.04.12 at 4:15 pm
“ps. I’m in a family of 3 and my daycare bill alone is $1300/mo…….”
———-
Why is your boyfriend in daycare?

#255 maxx on 02.05.12 at 11:11 am

#232 worried realtors in a Panic on 02.05.12 at 1:03 am

The louder and more profuse the pumping, the worse things really are. Expect fireworks in advertising going forward with realturds making a public meal out of even the tiniest listing sold.

#256 GregW, Oakville on 02.05.12 at 11:12 am

Hi Garth, Someone may be interested.

BIG IDEAS airs on TVO every Saturday and Sunday at 5:00 pm. To download our podcast, please go to our
http://bigideas.tvo.org/

This time the subject for a new BIG IDEAS and THE AGENDA with Steve Paikin collaboration is future….future with capital ”F”. What happened to it? We used to embrace it. If you are a boomer, you still remember the time, when the future was a good thing, a very good thing, indeed. We looked forward to it. Not so much today. Fears of global warming, anxiety about robots replacing jobs that used to be manned by flesh and blood people, suspicion of science telling us what we don’t want to know and discomfort with accelerating speed of change have taken a toll on our collective optimism. Complexity abounds without a good solution in sight.

Enter Robert J. Sawyer, Canada’s best-selling science fiction writer.
The title of his talk is Humanity 2.0.

#257 jess on 02.05.12 at 11:17 am

create your own country
Nondoms becoming Seasteads…..
http://www.seasteading.org

The Haves and the soon to haves?

What actionaid investigation discovered Bangladesh garment workers

http://www.actionaid.org.uk/doc_lib/the_real_asda_price.pdf

So why is Asda on this ethical trading initiative and “Respect for workers worldwide” ?????
is on this list
http://www.ethicaltrade.org/about-eti/our-members
======================
Tuesday, 5 October 2010
BRITAIN’S £6BN VODAFONE BILL
From ‘Private Eye’

“avoidance” It’s the interest deductions, stupid.

Progressive Tax Blog, reloaded | Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and …treasureislands.org/progressive-tax-blog-reloaded/Cached
You +1′d this publicly. Undo
It’s the interest deductions, stupid. Anybody familiar with UK Uncut’s coverage of Alliance Boots will know that following the takeover by KKR, the group pays no
http://www.monbiot.com/2010/11/09/the-lax-tax-pact/
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1339026/Britains-biggest-firms-moving-offshore-denying-UK-exchequer-100s-millions.html#i

SAUL ALINSKY: Now power’s always gone into two areas: those who have money and those who have people. We have nothing but people.

/

#258 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 11:21 am

#191 Patiently Waiting on 02.04.12 at 6:19 pm
“This assumed no mortgage, a nice vacation every year, comfortable living (ie wine with dinner, finally!) and increased health care costs (heart disease in both families).”
———-
Isn’t retirement a permanent vacation?

#259 Canadian Watchdog on 02.05.12 at 11:47 am

Precisely as I stated about OSFI Garth. We have a banking and liquidity issue in our bond markets. Without an exemption from the Volcker rule, Canadian banks will be left scrambling to raise capital.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/02/05/us-financial-regulation-et-idUSTRE8140DV20120205

OSFI submission to US regulators http://www.osfi-bsif.gc.ca/osfi/index_e.aspx?ArticleID=4719

#260 Daisy Mae on 02.05.12 at 11:48 am

211The BioTech Guys on 02.04.12 at 9:44 pm
#207 Daisy Mae on 02.04.12 at 9:02 pm

“I have been called many things in life but a Scotiabank is first for me ;-). ”

************************

Yes….calling you a ‘Scotiabank’ IS pretty strong language. LOL

You realize I was referring to their latest
commercial: “What does it mean to you?”

#261 GregW, Oakville on 02.05.12 at 11:57 am

Hi Nastra, You might be interested in this article.
I wonder if Iran, who has not attacked anyone, has some of these to go with there advanced medical sciences?

E-Bombs: What is the Threat? Jan 11, 2012
http://spectrum.ieee.org/riskfactor/aerospace/military/ebombs-what-is-the-threat
“The science underpinning non-nuclear E-bombs is very mature, the first flux compression generator was built…late 1940′s”
“The second reason is the cascading failure effect, in a large interconnected system, like a power grid or computer network,”
“The sad reality is that electromagnetic weapons are generally not taken seriously outside of the small community of physicists and engineers who work in this area, and a handful of people in the legislatures and military strategy communities. ”
“Shooting the messenger may well be a gratifying pastime for folks with ideological, political or simply misguided agendas, but it does not change the basic reality that a pervasive digital infrastructure is highly vulnerable to natural or man-made high power electromagnetic effects, and that electromagnetic weapons devices to produce such effects are being developed and weaponised across a number of nations.”

#262 Silver on 02.05.12 at 12:02 pm

People are living on the Legal value of their property (a property assessment),
not the Lawful value as established by a bill of sale which establishes the Real value in actual dollars. ( the difference in purchase to sales price..discovery)

Bubbles burst and exposing this discrepancy vaporizing the difference….

Silver

#263 Sky on 02.05.12 at 12:08 pm

eaglebay- “Isn’t retirement a permanent vacation?’

********************************************
Yes . Except for laundry, vacuuming,dusting,floor washing,window washing, scrubbing toilets and tiles, grocery shopping,cooking,dishes, cleaning the stove and fridge,endless govt paperwork,snow shovelling,trips to the doctor,dentist and vet, funerals, paying the bills, household repairs, vehicle repairs,cleaning out computer viruses,increasing hospital stays. All while suffering diminished physical and mental capabilities.

Not my idea of a vacation. Vacation from hell, pehaps. Or should I say vacation IN hell?

#264 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 12:09 pm

#252 eaglebay

always paid MORE than your fair share of taxes ? you need a new accountant ……….

#265 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 12:09 pm

#244 househornyhousewife on 02.05.12 at 5:50 am
“My avatar is actually quite accurate. In our household, I am in charge.”
———-
DELETED

#266 Adviser on 02.05.12 at 12:13 pm

eaglebay – Parksville on 02.05.12 at 10:28 am

By calling the market “rigged”, it proves that you’re not as savvy as you think.
As you grow up, you’ll acquire more experience and knowledge. Then, you’ll understand.

___________________________________________

Once you get your ass handed to you by a pump and dump scheme or have an opportunity to profit from some credible inside info, then we will talk. Not saying I am some superduper trader, but have definitely seen a good share of what’s really out there.

Obviously investing and gambling are two very different conceptions. I’ve learned that the hard way.

#267 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 12:13 pm

#245 Timbo on 02.05.12 at 6:35 am

It’s OK. Bombardier is manufacturing locomotives and they are selling well.
They’re also hiring.
Be mobile people.

#268 Freedom 55 on 02.05.12 at 12:13 pm

#83 Freedom 55 on 02.04.12 at 1:56 am

I made $92,000 U.S in 9 months last year working in Dallas and I got $260 back when filing my W2
I come home to this rip off country and file my T4 and I owe the Canadian gov another $8,000 in taxes.
This country is absolutely fuk’d !!!!!!!!!

———————————————————

I’ve got a few replies to this post and it is quite a sticker shock I have to admit. I have to make sure this year (working 12 months) that I have 12G’s put aside for Revenue Canada !!!
The hilarious part is that I couldn’t find a telecom job in Canada let alone one that paid me $120,000 a year and their crying for telecom people like me in the U.S.
Another hilarious thing is that not only are they making that kind of money down there, but there paying $140,000 for the same house were paying $400,000 for. Not only is it a third of the price but there writing off the interest on their mortgage and their property taxes. Wait…. I’m not finished, they pay half the amount we do for everything else. From the gas in their cars to their cars to the McDonalds Big Mac they buy in their cars.
Wait there’s more… I lived in an extended stay down there while working for $750 a month !!!
I had it all, everything from a 100 channels of TV to wireless internet, to breakfast every morning, to a swimming pool for those 100+ degree Texas summer days, to $10 for a case of cold beer… should I continue? I don’t know where to stop!
We are getting so ripped off here in Canada and 90% of us don’t even know it!

#269 Adviser on 02.05.12 at 12:16 pm

“Your comments on the ‘uneducated’ would be weightier if you knew how to spell ‘its’ and ‘naivety’. Just saying. — Garth”

_____________________________________________

I said numbers are my love, and as an immigrant I am still attempting to perfect the language. Not everyone here has an English degree and a career in politics.

But we all have SpellCheck. — Garth

#270 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 12:36 pm

#263 Sky on 02.05.12 at 12:08 pm
“Yes . Except for laundry, vacuuming,dusting,floor washing,window washing, scrubbing toilets and tiles, grocery shopping,cooking,dishes, cleaning the stove and fridge,endless govt paperwork,snow shovelling,trips to the doctor,dentist and vet, funerals, paying the bills, household repairs, vehicle repairs,cleaning out computer viruses,increasing hospital stays. All while suffering diminished physical and mental capabilities.”
———-
You do this everyday? Exaggerated BS
I don’t do any of the above. Maybe some of those once a month.
I’m usually on my boat fishing and exploring or hunting using my large truck feeding CO2 to the trees.
If you have diminished physical and mental capabilities, a vacation won’t help you.
Live while you can.

#271 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 12:39 pm

#264 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 12:09 pm
“always paid MORE than your fair share of taxes ? you need a new accountant ……….”
———-
Who do you think pays some of the useless employees including their taxes?
Read between the lines. It’s a sign of intelligence.

#272 a prairie dawg on 02.05.12 at 12:42 pm

#222 Dan from Richmond Hill

so maybe we will see a lot of changes in the standard of living for many of us, not only for seniors.

- — -

The so called 1st world is slowly losing it’s way of life, having binged on debt for far too many decades. And the so called 3rd world is now gaining in wages, lifestyle, and economic dominance. And their population base is also growing as ours is receding.

At some point people will have to adjust to a new reality. Easy to do on the way up the ladder. But for those on the downhill slide it won’t be nearly as tolerable. Conflict (possibly even global) may be all but certain. The question is, how soon and how bad?

#273 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 12:49 pm

#269 eagle bay

you pay more than required in taxes and keep useless employees ?………. and you provide consulting services ?……. in what ? stupidity ?

#274 Timbo on 02.05.12 at 1:10 pm

http://www.montrealgazette.com/business/Kansas+woos+Bombardier+with+financial/5975163/story.html

http://www.amazon.ca/Silent-Partners-Taxpayers-Bankrolling-Bombardier/dp/1552636267

Eagle take a closer look at what is happening. Bombardier would of already left to remain competitive if it were not for yours and my tax dollars.

Unless something is done your only going to have resources, wall-mart and 7-11 jobs to keep the bubble inflated. A hollow shell indeed.

#275 DonDWest on 02.05.12 at 1:11 pm

252 eaglebay – Parksville

Employers don’t value self-education; they want to see the degree. They’re not open to people acquiring skills outside the box or through experience.

#276 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 1:13 pm

#266 Adviser on 02.05.12 at 12:13 pm
“Once you get your ass handed to you by a pump and dump scheme or have an opportunity to profit from some credible inside info, then we will talk. Not saying I am some superduper trader, but have definitely seen a good share of what’s really out there.”
———-
There is such a thing as “due dilligence”.
For every trade there’s a loser and a winner.
We all know where you stand.

#277 TurnerNation on 02.05.12 at 1:20 pm

I hereby declare Toronto as the 2nd BPOE!

Finally we have million dollar SFH crackshacks.

This site is a decent tracker:

http://fmlistings.tumblr.com/

All due to lax lending standards.

As the lyrics say: “It’s fun fun fun ’till daddy takes the T-bird away”.
(Before my time, but still a good example)

#278 Sky on 02.05.12 at 1:24 pm

eaglebay- My own physical and mental faculties are still OK. But I know lots of people who are only in their late fifties and are suffering from plenty of chronic ailments -diabetes, high blood pressure,arthritis, sleep disorders etc.

I don’t wash the windows every day or shovel snow in the summer…but the rest of the household drudgery is endless. You don’t know the half of it. We’ve always had rescue dogs and the latest one- all 90 lbs of bottomless appetite and allergies to EVERYTHING- is non-stop work.

I’ve always known where the end of the dusty trail leads. Death. So I’ve taken my ” retirement” throughout my life in small bites. Couldn’t travel, because we’ve always been animal house. I don’t regret it. There are other rewards.

The illusion of a golden retirement is just that- an illusion. Death isn’t the bad part. The bad part is being stripped of your independence and having those you love die. Retirement doesn’t isolate you from the heartaches of life. It adds more.

A lot of people live their lives running like rats in a maze, piling up wealth, and chasing after the promised piece of cheese. Sometimes the cheese is limburger. It stinks.

#279 City Slicker on 02.05.12 at 1:25 pm

142 DM in C on 02.04.12 at 1:05 pm

Interesting article in the Calgary Herald today about renters rebelling against the ‘cult of ownership’ Lots of emotion in the comments section. People need to get a grip.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/Calgary+renters+rebel+against+cult+home+ownership/6100596/story.html
———————————————————
Good article thanks for posting. The comments section obviously has some from the RE cartel.

#280 DonDWest on 02.05.12 at 1:25 pm

#233 Beach Girl

“I find it amusing that the most critical are males.

When everyone knows, women carry most of the burden.”

Wrong. Men are still stereotypically expected to be the providers of the children; not so much the woman. The woman also has the option of divorcing any time and having her children being taken care of by the state. Men on the other hand file bankruptcy during divorce because they’re then expected to pay 1.5 a mortgage/rent rate. This is why I plan to never have children. Sadly, it’s not my choice to make, as rubbers don’t always work. Women have never had it better.

#281 AG Sage on 02.05.12 at 1:48 pm

Holy perfect storm, Batman. What have we got now:

Anemic employment numbers
Record personal debt numbers
CHMC cap kicking in on mortgage market
Chinese imports slowing
Domestic Chinese earthmover sales plummeting
Canadian MSM discovers housing bubbles might be more real than UFO sightings.

Am I missing anything?

#282 Kilby on 02.05.12 at 1:49 pm

Victoria (including Vic. West)
23 sales in last 7 days, 15 condos, 8 SFH.
Average 57 days on market. 590 active listings.

Qualicum Beach
1 sale in last 7 days, $300,000, 150 days on market.

Summerland
8 sales in last 7 days
average 233 days on market.

#283 brainsail on 02.05.12 at 2:06 pm

#268 Freedom 55

My wife and I have lived in Central Texas since the late eighties and we can both testify that every fact that you have stated is 100% correct.

I got cleaned out in Alberta after the NEP thing and the only job I could get in my profession was done here. We have never looked back. I have a professional degree and as of a couple years ago the average hourly pay was $39/hr here and $27/hr in Canada. We buy 24 packs of Bud on sale for about $17 + tax. We pay $3.26 for a gallon of gas and milk is less than that. It would be a struggle for us to live here on $24K a year.

Freedom, why don’t you cut your ties with Canada so don’t have to pay additional taxes?

#284 Tony on 02.05.12 at 2:07 pm

Re: #197 Van guy on 02.04.12 at 7:50 pm

A 25 percent price decline at the very least this year. The year after another 25 percent price decline until 70 to 75 percent has been shaved off of those prices. Remember denial is the first stage when prices start to collapse. You’re still in the denial stage.

#285 John G. Young on 02.05.12 at 2:11 pm

#248 truth hammer

I don’t react well to name-calling and personal attacks, especially from people who hide behind monikers and know nothing about me.

I’m done with you.

Talk to DA, you two should get along fine.

#286 Devil's Advocate on 02.05.12 at 2:36 pm

#269Adviser on 02.05.12 at 12:16 pm
“Your comments on the ‘uneducated’ would be weightier if you knew how to spell ‘its’ and ‘naivety’. Just saying. — Garth”

_____________________________________________

I said numbers are my love, and as an immigrant I am still attempting to perfect the language. Not everyone here has an English degree and a career in politics.

But we all have SpellCheck. — Garth

We’re all learning… well most of us. Those others who think they know it all have stopped learning.

#287 Devil's Advocate on 02.05.12 at 2:51 pm

#271eaglebay – Parksville on 02.05.12 at 12:39 pm
#264 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 12:09 pm
“always paid MORE than your fair share of taxes ? you need a new accountant ……….”
———-
Who do you think pays some of the useless employees including their taxes?
Read between the lines. It’s a sign of intelligence.

I always leave a little on the table – something that is more trouble to claim than it is worth the effort usually. You know those “red flags” which are allowable but tend to draw the attention of the CRA. That way when, and in my business it is just a matter of time, next they decide to audit me it will be I who asks them to write me a cheque. It’ll be worth it if for nothing more than the perplexed look on their face when I greet them at the door with “I’ve been looking forward to this day!”

#288 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 3:01 pm

#273 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 12:49 pm
#269 eagle bay
“you pay more than required in taxes and keep useless employees ?………. and you provide consulting services ?……. in what ? stupidity ?”
———-
I should be providing bankruptcy services to builders and so called developers, based on your posts.
Enjoying your pissing contest?

#289 Preciousss on 02.05.12 at 3:07 pm

#281 AG Sage on 02.05.12 at 1:48 pm
Holy perfect storm, Batman. What have we got now:

Anemic employment numbers
Record personal debt numbers
CHMC cap kicking in on mortgage market
Chinese imports slowing
Domestic Chinese earthmover sales plummeting
Canadian MSM discovers housing bubbles might be more real than UFO sightings.

Am I missing anything?
———————————————————-

Record government debt. (municipal,state/provincial, federal).
Strong $CAD relative to $US killing exports and manufacturing.
Rising fuel and commodity prices.
Rising food prices.
Rising taxes and fees.
Diminshied government funded services.
Aging and insufficient infrastructure.
Accounting fraud.
Corporate control of nations and governments.
Generational shifts.
Demographics.
War drums.
Worldwide “race to the bottom” currency devaluation
Negative real interest rates.
Pension funding crisis (so they say).
Cost and volume pressures on medical system.
Low quality public education system.

You can forget about UFO’s and the alien invasion because no alien in their right mind would want anything to do with this messed up planet.

#290 Snowboid on 02.05.12 at 3:08 pm

#268 Freedom 55 on 02.05.12 at 12:13 pm…

We still pay all our income tax to Canada, but totally agree with your last few sentences. We usually wait until the 30 packs of beer are on sale for $ 16.99!! It’s hard to take when you figure the equivalent price in the Okanagan is $ 54.58!

It costs about the same to own/maintain our Phoenix home (winter) plus Okanagan rental (summer) as it did to own/maintain our former Vancouver Island home by itself.

That doesn’t count the near $ 14K we saved buying our car here – but fuel prices are only .39 cents a litre cheaper here with the latest increases.

The average difference, over about 40 items we track(ed), is still about 74% less expensive in the US (after tax). Biggest differences are in building supplies, booze and clothing – with the lowest differences in furniture, electronics, and appliances (only about 35% cheaper here). Utilities (with recent increases in BC) are about the same.

Of course these amounts change with the exchange rate – but look even better with the current figures at par.

No plans to be anything more than snowboids, however.

#291 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 3:09 pm

#274 Timbo on 02.05.12 at 1:10 pm

Same for GM, Chrysler and many more.
Socialism at its best.
The world cannot function without our natural resources.
Neither would Walmart.

#292 eaglebay - Parksville on 02.05.12 at 3:19 pm

#280 DonDWest on 02.05.12 at 1:25 pm

You’re setting yourself up, again.
First the boomers and now the women.
Good luck.

#293 John G. Young on 02.05.12 at 3:37 pm

#280 DonDWest

“…This is why I plan to never have children. Sadly, it’s not my choice to make, as rubbers don’t always work.”

If you plan to never have children, you could have a vasectomy. Of course there are consequences — for example it could threaten your status as a victim.

The Amazons loved that. — Garth

#294 TurnerNation on 02.05.12 at 3:41 pm

Ok who’s watching the StupidBowl ;)
A bunch of american/african-american multi- millionaires throwing a ball around, while the advertisers take you to the cleaners.

#295 Dan from Richmond Hill on 02.05.12 at 3:43 pm

#272 a prairie dawg

I believe the future conflicts will be between various social classes of the same country, more than between countries (see UK and not only). There will not be enough resources for everybody and governments are hand in hand with big businesses (see the financial sector),not with the little guy…

#296 Ogopogo on 02.05.12 at 3:54 pm

Glad to see the childed vs. child-free discussion sparked a civilized debate, no thanks to DA’s initial baiting, though he did come around in the end.

HHHW made some great, rational points. It’s good to feel less alone in this children-driven society. First it’s the pressure to get married, then the pressure to buy a house, then the pressure to have kids, then the pressure to have another kid, then the pressure to fill every second of the kids’ lives with “structured activities”, then the pressure to get them into the top schools, etc., etc., etc….

Is it any wonder we’ve become so good at producing obedient slaves?

P.S. great article posted earlier on the cult of home ownership in Calgary. Here’s the link again in case anyone missed it: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/Calgary+renters+rebel+against+cult+home+ownership/6100596/story.html

#297 Van guy on 02.05.12 at 4:05 pm

#284 Tony on 02.05.12 at 2:07 pm

Re: #197 Van guy on 02.04.12 at 7:50 pm

A 25 percent price decline at the very least this year. The year after another 25 percent price decline until 70 to 75 percent has been shaved off of those prices. Remember denial is the first stage when prices start to collapse. You’re still in the denial stage.
—————————————————————

Tony,

First off, you are extremely gullable. Google this word “sarcasm”. Shameless was pumping it so he should go buy some condos. That was my point. And for your prediction of 25% off this year, what area are you talking about? That’s a crash and I don’t think that’s happening for Van at least. My call is 6-15% for the lower mainland this year. Richmond and Van west will lead the pack. And many more sad years of price erosion. If there’s a crash, it would of started by now. Kinda like 2008-09. That was a short crash.

#298 Van guy on 02.05.12 at 4:07 pm

Eaglebay-parksville

Is this what you do with your retirement? Coming on this blog to rip people? That’s immature dude. I still feel sory for your children.

#299 Beach Girl on 02.05.12 at 4:35 pm

#293 John G. Young on 02.05.12 at 3:37 pm

#280 DonDWest

“…This is why I plan to never have children. Sadly, it’s not my choice to make, as rubbers don’t always work.”

If you plan to never have children, you could have a vasectomy. Of course there are consequences — for example it could threaten your status as a victim.

The Amazons loved that. — Garth

____

Liking that. Some people shouldn’t breed period. If they could even find someone to mate with. LOL.

#300 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 4:36 pm

#288 eaglebay

I guess we will add reading comprehension-challenged to your long list of deficiencies. I suggest you gather up DA, westernman, truth hammer, and the rest of the outcasts for a good old navel-gazing, misogynistic, racist, juvenile, backwoods hunting party. Ignore any facts when tracking animals…….instead DA will provide guidance ‘from the gut’………..westernman can channel his rage……..you can provide the big truck…….you all can wallow in the bliss that comes with ignorance and immaturity………wait, sorry, I was just describing the Federal Conservative party.

#301 inmississauga on 02.05.12 at 4:50 pm

does anyone feel we really need zillow here in Canada?

#302 45north on 02.05.12 at 5:15 pm

Shameless: talking about Toronto, GTA: This spring will be entirely a sellers market as will the summer and most of the fall.

In January there were 4567 sales in the GTA
http://guava.ca/indicators.html

In other words, there were 4567 buyers who don’t know about the Canadian economy nor about conditions in the US. Not only don’t know, they have to be clueless. In order to look anywhere near normal, in February and March there has to be another 16000 clueless buyers. This is just not going to happen, GTA sales are about to fall off a cliff.

GTA Banker: You have no idea how many 700k and higher mortgages are in trouble.

we don’t but we’re gona

#303 jim on 02.05.12 at 5:20 pm

#294 turnernation

lol….so true. It truly is scary watching how the stupid masses are when it comes to sports. Everyday i have to hear people talk about sports as if its important. The elite have their foot on the working class throat and all they care to do is waste their money and time on sports. I can only imagine how much the sports owners laugh at the weak minded working class slaves.

#304 Stinky the Fish on 02.05.12 at 5:34 pm

Last

#305 Smoking Man on 02.05.12 at 5:39 pm

Say goodnight, SM. — Garth

Good call garth

Jack Danials on the rocks……Never again .sticking with wine.
Wow is all I got to say. Still hung over at 4:30

But the dream I was in a plane crash, so real never going to accept a seat 37 A

#306 live within your means on 02.05.12 at 6:59 pm

#300 Form Man on 02.05.12 at 4:36 pm

LOL – So true.

#307 live within your means on 02.05.12 at 7:18 pm

#294 TurnerNation on 02.05.12 at 3:41 pm
Ok who’s watching the StupidBowl ;)

……………….

Nobody in this household. I’ll be watching Downton Abbey and DH will be watching porn on the French channel cause it’s more entertaining – just kidding!!!.

#308 Devil's Advocate on 02.05.12 at 7:31 pm

househornyhousewife;

I applaud your environmentalist concerns and the self-sacrifice you have made by choosing not to procreate and thereby not contribute to the overpopulation of our planet. Unfortunately your efforts are about as futile as trying to put out a forest fire by pissing on it. Do you have any idea at all how many new human beings are born each and every minute in China or India?

It is intellectually dishonest to talk about environmentalism without discussing population control.

Unfortunately the human race does not have a good track record when it comes to being proactive. I wholeheartedly agree with you that unchecked eventually overpopulation will become a most serious issue. When that day finally arrives it won’t be for us to decide whether to procreate or not but rather a directive imposed upon us by the state. Chances are we won’t get there though as long before that those undeveloped countries striving to have all we have will start to take it from us without request or we will from them those resources they possess. Bickering will ensue followed by war which will go a long way then toward alleviating those overpopulation pressures. And if that doesn’t curtail our numbers we might look forward to disease or famine that will. Of course, failing any of the preceding, there is always the prospect of a big assed space rock hurling our way.

And this is what gets me most about this “pathetic” blog as I am sure most would have to agree; the challenges we face today pale in comparison to those which loom over the horizon. Housing issues? Ha, Pfffft! These economic woes are about as selfish as can be when you stack them against what has happened in the past, is happening now in other countries and what we might need to collective face to overcome in the future. We are acting like a bunch of pouting, spoilt, brat, sissies.

I think you get my point. Life is for living not so much worrying about the future. What will be will be. Have hope, don’t wallow in despair, live for today and plan for the future.

#309 The Thing in the Basement on 02.05.12 at 8:07 pm

294 Turner – I’m recording on PVR. Can blast thru meaningless stuff that way, though the Pats “tempo” offence can use way less than the allowed 40 sec between plays. And of course I usually zip thru the
commercials, but the SB ones are “special”.

Dont spend much directly on pro sports, or even the lcoal jr hockey team. Of course the industry is so huge that we all pay for it somehow. Do enjoy some HS basketball and Gonzaga U when on the tube.

#310 Herb on 02.05.12 at 8:08 pm

#300 Form Man,

well said! And you described the Conservatie Party of Canada perfectly.

#311 TurnerNation on 02.06.12 at 9:44 pm

Last :+)