Cowgirls

ReMax

A tale of two cowgirls.

On Thursday the premier of Alberta froze politicians’ pay. “We’re in some difficult times,” she said. No kidding.

In precisely a month Alison Redford will deliver a budget that would have been hard to believe a few years ago. Provincial revenues are taking a $6 billion hit as the gulf widens between what oil sands oil costs and what America’s willing to pay for it.

alison Cue the perfect storm. Tons of new oil development in the US Midwest, not enough pipelines, mounting supply and just one customer for all that black stuff that has to be cooked, sucked, squeezed, strained and refined. A third of Alberta’s budget comes from skimming off resource royalties, and they’re plunging.

So what? So Calgary should be more than interesting since it’s turned into Vancouver, circa 2010. Ignoring the looming Cowboy fiscal cliff, the growing economic tide against ‘dirty’ oil, our slowing economy and all the stuff F did to real estate, Calgarians have truly convinced themselves that it’s different there.

As this pathetic blog has been chronicling of late, sales have been fading in various degrees from Vancouver and Victoria to Regina, Halifax, Montreal and even the GTA. But in Cowtown there’s a prairie suspension of disbelief. This week the local cartel’s numbers were reminiscent of the good old hockey riot days in Mouldy City, when Olympic jingoism fueled the mother of all Canadian housing dirigibles.

Last month Calgary saw a 19% jump in sales at the same time Van shed an equal amount. The average price has gained 11% in the past year (but has definitely lost momentum in the last six months), while the time it takes to sell a house has shrunk 14% (while it swells in Toronto). That sharp drop in days-on-market, combined with a whopping 34% jump in total dollar sales volume tells us one thing: buyers are on drugs.

The average detached house price is now $496,592, an annual advance of 12.73%. This week, based on current sales, that jumped to $519,714. Cartel boss Becky Walters looked for all the world as if she was trying to dampen things down. “Overall indicators put the market in balanced conditions.” And while less inventory is forcing buyers into unstudied decisions, “this is by no means a signal that the seller has the advantage.”

Of course, shorter sales times and higher prices make a lie of that statement. There’s definitely a sense in Calgary that the next oil boom is just up Highway 2, and the laws of economics no longer apply. That is precisely why Alison Redford had to take over eight minutes of TV airtime a few days ago to look pouty and worried and tell people to get ready for changes ‘acoming.

The bottom line: same advice I gave the delusional citizens of Vancouver three years ago. Get out at the top. Of course, almost everyone will ignore me – which is hardly a surprise. So I’ll just stand back and watch the swelling, throbbing, self-gratifying spectacle.

Which brings me to Diana, the roadside seductress who this week came to personify all the class and sophistication this Paris of the flatlands stands for.

Diana Arvatescu is a Re/Max agent even that company is embarrassed of. She achieved her dreams of social fame and significant mindshare among 14-year-old boys with a billboard that had her colleagues clucking. “Let me take you home,” it screamed, as Diana flashed a come-hither look worthy of a Cialis documentary, “it’s gorgeous inside.”

Now this is a double-entendre even this tawdry, testo-drenched, bikes-babes-and-and-balanced-portfolios blog would never touch. (Do you know how many brittle, humourless regulators read this thing?) Not only does it demean Diana (which is fine), but it uses the patina of sex to sell houses. Imagine! What is this woman trying to do to all the horny house virgins out there?

As you’d expect, the cartel isn’t happy. Re/Max is pissed. Those who worry about female agents alone at open houses are appalled. But so far, silence from the premier.

This much is clear: today more people in Alberta know about Diana A’s insides (vicariously) than Alison’s deficit. This economics lesson is so over.

DIANA

196 comments ↓

#1 TurnerNation on 02.07.13 at 9:37 pm

Yee haw.

#2 medjazz on 02.07.13 at 9:41 pm

wow thanks for the calgary segment, its what i’ve been waiting for we’re going to get it soon, i’m tired of hearing it’s not going to happen in this city.

#3 T.O. Bubble Boy on 02.07.13 at 9:42 pm

HAM moved from Vancouver to Toronto to Calgary?

#4 TurnerNation on 02.07.13 at 9:43 pm

Missy Bunny didn’t even flinch. This is awful.

#5 hoser on 02.07.13 at 9:45 pm

Remax is feigning shock and indignance? I’ve heard of those agents doing much worse than Diana A. At least she is upfront with her billboard. I could tell Remax stories that may even make Garth blush. You have to do just about anything to pay those monthly desk fees. Can you blame them?

#6 Lilyjoe on 02.07.13 at 9:49 pm

Went to the Chiropracter yesterday and told him my investment grew 24.5% in 2012. He asked me what do I do to get such a great return?
I said I listen to my father and read Garth Turner. Get this Garth, he reads you too!

#7 salonist on 02.07.13 at 9:51 pm

#1 turner nation
sript moron

#8 Jsan on 02.07.13 at 9:53 pm

“Cue the perfect storm. Tons of new oil development in the US Midwest, not enough pipelines, mounting supply and just one customer for all that black stuff that has to be cooked, sucked, squeezed, strained and refined. A third of Alberta’s budget comes from skimming off resource royalties, and they’re plunging.”

===================================

The US Midwest oil shale boom is possibly just the tip of the iceberg. Just to mention a few.

“California is sitting on a massive amount of shale oil and could become the next oil boom state”

http://money.cnn.com/2013/01/14/news/economy/california-oil-boom/index.html

“An American Oil Find That Holds More Than All of OPEC”

“Drillers in Utah and Colorado are poking into a massive shale deposit trying to find a way to unlock oil reserves that are so vast they would swamp OPEC.
A recent report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office estimated that if half of the oil bound up in the rock of the Green River Formation could be recovered it would be “equal to the entire world’s proven oil reserves.”
Both the GAO and private industry estimate the amount of oil recoverable to be 3 trillion barrels.”

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/american-oil-find-holds-oil-opec/story?id=17536852

.

#9 DM in C on 02.07.13 at 9:54 pm

T.O. Bubble Boy on 02.07.13 at 9:42 pm
HAM moved from Vancouver to Toronto to Calgary?

No, as everyone in Calgary asserts — the rest of Canada is/has moved here, and they ‘have to live somewhere!’

Still watching that former grow op on my street. Been empty going on 3 years. Bank hasn’t budged on price. #367k 2bdrm, unfinished basement. We’ll see if the Calgary market gets desperate enough. I’ll know it’s topping if it goes.

#10 AK on 02.07.13 at 9:59 pm

Could history repeat for Alberta?

1978 Housing starts in Alberta reach almost 48,000 for the year, marking the height of one of Alberta’s most-significant housing booms.

1982-1986 The oil boom collapses as a world oil glut pushes prices below $9 a barrel. Average resale prices of homes in Calgary fall by approximately six per cent per year. Alberta leads the nation in foreclosure, bankruptcies and suicides.

#11 Smoking Man on 02.07.13 at 10:07 pm

That chic is one smart agent..

#12 From Mississauga with Love on 02.07.13 at 10:07 pm

Garth, how do you explain this?
In going from December to January, Mississauga detached houses average price drops by $30K, but the median increases by $30K.
How do you explain this?
If I say the average dropped b/c the higher end isn’t selling as well, then the median drops with it. Can one infer that the high end end is selling slowly but that the low end is slower?
I have observed, though, the detached is not selling quickly…

#13 pathcontrolmonk on 02.07.13 at 10:11 pm

There is a limited amount of space to develop in Calgary before you cross Edmonton city limits.

#14 JSS on 02.07.13 at 10:12 pm

SO, what about Edmonton?

#15 Richard and Zeus on 02.07.13 at 10:12 pm

Wow…..thanks for putting the pieces together. I knew the US was growing supply but did not really realize the “eggs in one basket” scenario in Alberta. Good luck to them. Its where I am from…..

#16 T.O. Bubble Boy on 02.07.13 at 10:17 pm

@ #12 From Mississauga with Love on 02.07.13 at 10:07 pm
Garth, how do you explain this?
In going from December to January, Mississauga detached houses average price drops by $30K, but the median increases by $30K.
How do you explain this?
_______________________

Both the high end AND the low end aren’t selling… F’s removal of 30-yr mortgages hit the entry-level buyer, and the $1M CMHC cap hit the 7-figure buyer.

#17 My thoughts on 02.07.13 at 10:17 pm

Marking this day as the price drops from 2 million into less then two million begin. I thought it would take longer then this but the speculators are starting before the spring melt… Thaw… Whatever you want to call it. I don’t care what the realtors are saying. The general public has no money. Jobs are fragile. People are tapped out. There are a few greaterfools left… But it looks to payoff for those of us waiting on the sidelines. Pleasantly surprised these days by the MLS listings starting to come on.

#18 East Van on 02.07.13 at 10:18 pm

No need to put quotation marks around Alberta’s “dirty” oil. The tar sands (as we called them in Edmonton in the 70s) produce the dirtiest oil in the world by far.

#19 Inglorious Investor on 02.07.13 at 10:20 pm

Wouldn’t it be ironic if another Trudeau became PM Justin time for a second Alberta oil bust?

#20 Victoria Real Estate Update on 02.07.13 at 10:25 pm

Hello again to all of you Victoria readers. I’m a Victoria girl and I am here once again to share with you what I have learned about the housing market in Victoria over the last 3 years. We were very close to buying a house near the peak of the market in mid 2010, but we decided to rent and wait for prices to correct after we did a lot of research and came to the conclusion that a major correction was due in Victoria. We are so happy that we didn’t buy back then because we would already owe more on our mortgage than the value of our home and prices have only corrected a fraction of what the total correction will be.

Over the past 5-6 years there have been many housing bubbles, like Canada’s, around the world. Most have burst and corrected significantly. Canada has recently started its own multi-year correction. The recent US housing bust is the most well known among Canadians, so let’s take a closer look at that.

What caused house prices in Victoria to increase by 147% since the year 2000? This piece explains that it was excess credit caused by lax lending standards in Canada that caused Canadian house prices to increase to bubble levels. This is the same thing that happened in every housing bubble in the world, including the US.

Victoria’s price gain from 2000 to the peak in mid 2010 was 147%, that’s a lot more than double. That 147% gain is comparable to the gains of the biggest bubble cities in the US that have now crashed. From the year 2000 to peak, Phoenix (+125%), Las Vegas (+135%), San Diego (+150%) and Los Angeles (+175%) were among the cities that experienced the biggest gains.

Corrections in Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix and Las Vegas ranged from 45% to more than 65%. Victoria will experience its own major correction. A correction of 25% from current prices in Victoria will erase about 55% of all gains since the year 2000. We think there will be a much bigger correction than 25% in Victoria. According to the Teranet index house prices in Victoria have corrected about 6% from peak, yet so many recent buyers are in a position of negative equity. Imagine what the situation will be like once prices decline 15% or 25%.

A lot of our friends bought near the peak in Victoria. They are so upset now that prices have come down some. If they had to sell, they would definitely be taking a loss. It’s so unfair that their realtors told them that it was a good time to buy and that they should buy now or be priced out of the market forever. Owning a house can cause you financial hardship and a lot of stress, just ask our friends. At first they thought that we were making a bad decision to rent instead of buy, but now they think we were smart. We are happy to be renting right now.

Girls, your financial future will be much brighter if you wait for prices to correct before you buy a house. Guys, don’t cave in to the pressures of buying right now. You will have the rest of your lives to enjoy all the money you will save by waiting for prices to correct.

Until next time – cheers!

#21 . on 02.07.13 at 10:26 pm

Wonder what she would do if you offered to pay more commission. Lol

#22 Inglorious Investor on 02.07.13 at 10:28 pm

“Now this is a double-entendre even this tawdry, testo-drenched, bikes-babes-and-balanced-portfolios blog would never touch.”

Can I touch it? Baby, it’s cold outside!

#23 LJ on 02.07.13 at 10:28 pm

The marketing ploy by ‘Diana’ and the ‘shocked’ reaction by her employers are just a ruse to arouse more attention to be wrongly focussed on the housing stupidity here in Calgary.

On the other hand, there are a lot of foreign (both inter-provincial and US) licence plates rattling around Cowtown. It’s like an invasion. However, they will be assimilated, then annihilated during this current boom/bust cycle, as they always are. The cycle that is now firmly in the rear view mirror, but the current batch of lemmings coming to town just don’t know it yet.

Give them 6 months…

#24 Bill Gable on 02.07.13 at 10:28 pm

Forget the pulchritude – check this out -
“Vancouver reigns as the most expensive city in North America to live in, even more so than swanky locales such as New York and Los Angeles, according to annual rankings by The Economist.

The Economist Intelligent Unit’s (EIU) worldwide cost of living index 2013 released this week ranked Vancouver 21st globally, climbing 15 spots from its last ranking.
In the U.S., New York and Los Angeles tied for being most expensive.

Globally, the two cities ranked 27th.
Internationally, Tokyo was ranked the most expensive. The buzzing metropolis has held that position for most of the last two decades.

http://tinyurl.com/ak75nvb

#25 Uwinsome on 02.07.13 at 10:30 pm

Get ready Vancouver – real estate sales are set to soar this Chinese New Years.

http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Realtors+prep+Lunar+Year+upswing+sales/7934733/story.html

#26 mark on 02.07.13 at 10:32 pm

Aww, you did this just in time for the RE/MAX Western Conference…

#27 Canned Goods and Buckshot on 02.07.13 at 10:33 pm

Don’t make fun of Diana. That’s real Romanian pleather she’s sporting AND genuine Saskatchewan seal skin boots.

#28 Rob on 02.07.13 at 10:34 pm

So far I know of 5 people who could not sell their lower mainland homes in the fall of 2012. Their Realtor advised to take it off the market and try again in the spring 2013. I told them to mark it down and sell it fast but fell on deaf ears. I guess the Realtors know what they are doing. This will not end well.

#29 shopper on 02.07.13 at 10:38 pm

I would by a house from Diana, and I don’t even want one. She seems talented as well as tantalizing from here and can sure stir interest in real estate.

#30 think again on 02.07.13 at 10:40 pm

Love makes the world go ’round’
but money pays for the trip…

#31 Chickenlittle on 02.07.13 at 10:41 pm

I was just talking about Romania! This type of advertising is not uncommon. What would you expect comming from a country whose biggest export is strippers.

#32 Chickenlittle on 02.07.13 at 10:42 pm

Uncommon in Romania…

#33 eviee1973 on 02.07.13 at 10:45 pm

Saw this sign on the reserve next to 37th Street ( no standards, values, or ethics required for on reserve billboards). Sign next to this was one from the reserve to King Harper. A born and raised Calgarian I know who makes more money than myself (plus his woman’s income) want to get into a house, yet cannot even save for a dwonpayment, wtf!

#34 Devore on 02.07.13 at 10:48 pm

#15 Richard and Zeus

It’s why they’re so desperate for that pipeline through BC. Not desperate enough to share some of the dough though.

#35 Dan from Richmond Hill on 02.07.13 at 10:53 pm

#32 Chickenlittle on 02.07.13 at 10:42 pm

You would be surprised to know that Romania export more IT specialists than strippers.

#36 AprilNewwest on 02.07.13 at 10:55 pm

#29 Are you an idiot?

#37 Burnt Norton on 02.07.13 at 10:58 pm

Speaking of double-entendres, in the context of the last paragraph, is use of the word ‘vicariously’ intended as well to mean ‘like a vicar’ or are you ‘poking’ fun at the church of Re/Max only?

#38 Saskatoon-Living on 02.07.13 at 11:01 pm

Regina sales for Jan. are down 17% more than Saskatoon YOY.

http://www.leaderpost.com/business/Regina+home+sales+slump/7918303/story.html

#39 Suede on 02.07.13 at 11:01 pm

Good for Diana! This is a cut-throat market and she used the oldest trick in history to get attention and put steak dinner on the table.

Too bad the TSX isn’t as suggestive. Maybe the volume would be higher…

Lots of sex appeal this week in the cover photos – Hits must be through the roof!

#40 Sebee on 02.07.13 at 11:08 pm

If dirigibles doesn’t score you 392 in scrabble, I think all will agree to grant you 392 points for using it in a blog.

#41 stop lying on 02.07.13 at 11:09 pm

she’s got huge… tracts of land

#42 Babblemaster on 02.07.13 at 11:09 pm

#20 Victoria Real Estate Update

It certainly was an excess of credit and lax lending standards that caused Canadian RE to rise so dramatically, but does it matter what the cause was? When it comes to RE, do fundamentals really matter? Is logic relevant? If so, there never would have been a RE boom of this magnitude in the first place. That’s why I’m skeptical of Garth’s prognostications on RE prices. Garth makes a great deal of sense, but his arguments fall on deaf ears as far as most people are concerned. It may be that the RE cartel is right and that it will turn out to be a great spring market in TO with regards to numbers and prices. Damn it.

#43 Ralph Cramdown on 02.07.13 at 11:16 pm

Standards are slipping all over. Mansbridge cracks wise about the federal Liberals’ “tiny caucus” this evening.

Hey, if any agents here are strapped until their “The year’s off to a b-u-s-y start!” deal closes, http://www.accesseasyfunds.com/ lends against firm deals at 27.4% APR. These services were popular in the US, too. Kinda warms the cockles of your heart, doesn’t it?

#44 R. Olausen on 02.07.13 at 11:18 pm

Forget the Alberta government, they had their decision not to share with the commoners made in Washington a long time ago. Watch oil and I do not mean Suncor.

#45 vangrrl on 02.07.13 at 11:20 pm

Reminds me a couple months ago there was a full page ad in the freebie ’24 hrs’ for a new condo deveopment that ran something like ‘It’s so hot other condos want to have sex with it’. I remember doing a double take and thinking it was pretty strange, but attention grabbing. Now they’re running apology ads due to complaints, haha!

#46 timmy on 02.07.13 at 11:21 pm

Albertans can thank that inbred alcoholic buffoon, Ralph Clown who screwed up the province for years to come. He opened the floodgates without a long term growth strategy or plan, and kissed ass to the oil companies, who got away with incredibly cheap leases and rolaylty rates. Danny Williams at least had the foresight and the balls to stand up to big oil and tell them what the deal was. Big oil came back and met his demands. Klien was too stupid to charge appropriate lease rates for these companies who make obscene profits. Where else ar they going to go? Iraq? Iran? Venezuela? Alberta is the only politically stable state for oil. Even Peter Lougheed said they needed a growth strategy, but Klien was too stupid and short-sighted to thing long term, so Alberta is in the situation they are in thanks to him, and to the inbred idiots that voted for him. Anyone with a vision for the future could have extracted enough from these companies to pave the streets with gold, but these people are too ignorant and short-sighted…most of them probably also voted for Harper…

#47 timmy on 02.07.13 at 11:25 pm

Paris of the flatlands? Are you on crack or just trying to get our goats? How about Arkensaw with oil?

#48 buy hi on 02.07.13 at 11:26 pm

DELETED

#49 timmy on 02.07.13 at 11:29 pm

Real estate in Calgary will continue to appreciate, just think of the benefits:
Beautiful architecture
Sophistication
Great food
Beautiful women
Liberal bias
Lots of greenery and trees
Incredible character
Walkable city
Incredible diversification
Beautiful weather

What more could you want? lol!

#50 Babblemaster on 02.07.13 at 11:32 pm

#36 AprilNewwest

“#29 Are you an idiot?”

———————————————–

Do you really have to ask? It seems blatantly obvious that when he wrote that comment he was in a state of lust induced idiocy. Not at all uncommon for men, although #29 sounds like an extreme case. In Greek mythology, the beautiful goddess Circe would turn idiot men into pigs. Women have been doing that to men since the dawn of time. And besides, Garth has stated repeatedly that hormones played a significant role in the Canadian RE boom.

For many men, if the choice boils down to taking advice from a grizzled Garth or the apparently nymphomatic Diana, they would chose the latter.

#51 Dr. Hoof Hearted on 02.07.13 at 11:34 pm

Truly grateful Garth’s” Bored of Quality Control” has voted to keep this latest post at median “Soft Porn” level.

#52 A Nightmare On Bay Street on 02.07.13 at 11:46 pm

Calgary is now hoping for HSTM, hot sex tourists money.

#53 Something on 02.07.13 at 11:50 pm

Some info for Ottawa RE:
“The average sale price of a residential-class property was $364,011 a decrease of 2.5 per cent over January 2012″, so… get your popcorn ready. I can’t wait to see the numbers for April and May.

#54 Kingbubbles on 02.07.13 at 11:50 pm

Go west young man ;-)

#55 Smoking Man's Old Man on 02.07.13 at 11:51 pm

Funny how women are so angry about being sexually exploited and yet they are the first to play that hand if it is to their advantage…sad, sad, sad.

#56 Camshaft on 02.07.13 at 11:51 pm

Living in Calgary for the past 4-1/2 years and am renting. The prices ( to buy ) are ridiculous. Have no idea what drives the house prices here.
Syncrude / Imperial Oil / Tallisman etc are all cutting back. Google Suncor Voyager and it will tell you all you need to know. Real Estate agents are still telling that it is a great time to buy – some tosser on a RE course last year was oblivious to the ratios of price to earnings ratio, that really indicate risk.
It is going to end up here very messy.

#57 Tripp on 02.07.13 at 11:55 pm

While this is probably not the best way to sell homes, she is without doubt a beautiful woman. Like it or not, sex sells, and it could work for homes as well as it works for cars, clothes etc.

As for the ones associating her looks and her Romanian origin with stripping, travelling is good for you! You would be surprised how many women in (Eastern) Europe look like her and are well educated, fantastic mothers and wives, great cooks etc.

#58 TakingResponsibility on 02.07.13 at 11:59 pm

LMAO! : D

Look! Now, girls, you too can become a realtor when you grow up.
Be a good girl and pass grade nine…

#59 happy renter on 02.08.13 at 12:00 am

Watch Maxkieser.com and listen what he thinks of Marc Carney.Canadians should realize what kind of person Marc Carney really is.

#60 Richard andvZeus on 02.08.13 at 12:26 am

“Watch Maxkieser.com and listen what he thinks of Marc Carney.Canadians should realize what kind of person Marc Carney really is.”

I’ll sum up from Gerald Celente…..he’s one of the Goldman Sucks white shoe boys. There is no Justice with them…..because its not Justice……it’s ” Just Us”. The rest of us are just their donkeys who work for them. We pay them interest on fractional money that comes from keyboard strokes. Good luck in England Marc and thanks for effing up Kanukustan….

#61 CalgaryBoy on 02.08.13 at 12:27 am

http://beaconnews.ca/blog/2013/02/alberta-premier-alison-redford-talks-debt-layoffs-and-new-taxes/

I think people in Calgary are still very delusional. They still think everything is ok and will continue to go up despite our oil selling at a very low price.

Plus, what’s with all the CEOs resigning from Encana, Talisman Energy, Suncor, and Enbridge in 2012 and 2013?

There is fear about cut backs like in the days when Ralph Klein was premier.

Interesting times ahead.

Best to hold off buying any real estate.

And like you said, Garth, best to sell when it’s high, and I believe this is the year to do it in Calgary.

#62 A Nightmare On Bay Street on 02.08.13 at 12:34 am

Rilf …

Cool, a new word.

#63 Freedom First on 02.08.13 at 12:36 am

I’ve said it on here before and I’ll say it again : “You can bad mouth a Politician, a Banker, or a RE agent, but never badmouth a whore, as she is honest about what she does for her money.

#64 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 02.08.13 at 12:39 am

Smoking Old Man

Don’t drool over the merchandise…

Otherwise ………you own it
……..later it’s a 50/50 split…

…………ahahahahahahahha………

#65 Kurt on 02.08.13 at 12:51 am

#18 East Van

Actually, some California Heavy is worse.

#66 earlybird on 02.08.13 at 12:51 am

We in Cowtown are a bubble within a bubble…the bust’s are brutal….hope the folks that came out here are mylti-skilled! Redford is stunningly, jaw dropping incompetent….

#67 BigEnglish on 02.08.13 at 12:52 am

My wife just took me to a open house in Vancouver, $950k for a house on the East side, she’s keen to buy back into the market.

How do I tell her, politely, now is not the time?

#68 Sockeyemoon on 02.08.13 at 12:56 am

Big Snake Scares Ham: The YOTS may not be popular for making big deals in China. If everyone is trying to have their babies and weddings before the Year of the Snake starts, I can’t see why they would want to get hitched to a house either!
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324590904578288182480182760.html

#69 Mister Obvious on 02.08.13 at 12:57 am

#57 Tripp

“Like it or not, sex sells, and it could work for homes as well as it works for cars, clothes etc.”
—————————-

Sex sells. I’ve been hearing that all my life. Tell you what Tripp… I’ve purchased an awful lot of stuff in my time. But I can’t remember a scrap of sex coming my way because of it.

#70 Evil Magpie on 02.08.13 at 1:01 am

The twin of that 829K freshly-built two storey bungalow (assessed at 616K) actually sold. Was only on the market for 3 months. Ten minutes north of downtown Cowtown. What were they thinking?

#71 Wally Wingnut on 02.08.13 at 1:02 am

Garth. You often describe this blog as pathetic. Your right on the money.Pathetic it is at times especially the comment section. Where did you dredge this fan club from?

#72 daystar on 02.08.13 at 1:12 am

#246 Inglorious Investor on 02.06.13 at 9:55 pm #232 daystar on 02.06.13 at 8:17 pm

Sorry about your reading disability. Either provide the sources, as I have (multiple times now) or give it up. – I.I.

Let me be clear once again, I.I. You are off topic. Public vs private pay isn’t on the menu but since your manners are sadly lacking, a course in ediquette is worth the time. Why would you use a link like this:

http://business.financialpost.com/2012/10/02/why-excessive-teachers-wages-are-a-boondoggle-we-cant-afford/

… from a bankrupt Canwest rag that suggests your average teacher makes $160 G’s a year benifits included and then run with it is beyond me. Had you say, used links of good repute from say the Huffington post… but no, bankrupt Canwest Op pieces work for you. A topped out professor with a double masters teaching in the U o T (it comes to my mind as the highest cost of living university in T.O and the G.T.A. which could support a number like that but there could be a university with a geographical area that is more expensive, can’t say I’m not from there) with benefits included might earn $160 G’s abstractly but clearly, the rest of the teachers in Ontario don’t and far from it. What bothers me is why someone like yourself would use obvious hyperbole to remotely begin to try to make a point on teachers salaries at a time when the government of Ontario announced a month ago that they are forcing contracts on all teachers in Ontario with wage freezes for at least 2.5 years as well as reduced sick days:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/story/2013/01/03/ontario-teachers-impose-contracts.html

Other than the legal precident this sets concerning labor, its a dead issue so why are you making noise with it? Do you now suddenly think your inflated opinion will change things, is that it?

I’d leave it at that but its the things you say like this (#124) that bother me:

“I don’t care what BC teachers make; I don’t pay for their salaries, benefits and pensions.”

Translated, you don’t want to compare provincial budgets, incomes and salaries or for that matter, international ones. With a statement like that, input from organizations like OECD or student assessments like PISA are lost on you and what does that mean in a nutshell? It means you’re ignorant.

Suggesting provincial teacher salaries across Canada are irrelevant to what teachers make in Ontario implies that you really don’t care about what you are actually getting in return for what you pay for. Its akin to criticizing the pricetag of a car without a wit to look at its system design and performance history. (kind of looking at an EOS Volks and saying, “its small and foreign, it isn’t worth much to me”. Then you go on to say this:

“The sad part is, educators, and most parents don’t even realize that they are doing it because they have a rather limited frame of reference. The individual teachers aren’t doing it on purpose. They do mean well. They simply don’t recognize how oppressive the system actually is.

I am consistently “deprogramming” my kids such that they can take away the positive lessons from school while encouraging their creativity and independent, critical thought.

That said, once in a while you do come across a more enlightened teacher who does attempt to encourage these things.” – I.I.

When I read comments like that it reeks of intellectual vanity and pride but what I’ve always wondered is why being blind to one’s own ignorance was ever something to be proud of. Dude, I don’t mean to cut ya’ but… trust me (flawed as I am, you still can), its for your own good.

So… here’s what you missed so hopefully we can put this issue to rest and focus on something with a whole lot more unfolding drama, like the troubled present/future of Canada’s real estate, i.e, shrinking equity and as a consequence shrinking budgets that pay for essential services like teaching that conversely support RE values from total crashes.

In the middle of 08′ just before the GFC crash, teachers unions in Ontario inked a sweet 4 year contract for teachers. They couldn’t have done it at a better time… for them. While salaries not under contract were flatlined or rolling back in 09′ elsewhere, teacher’s salaries running higher annually by, if memory serves me, 3.6% in 09′ to 4.2% in 2010 and 3.2% in 2011 etc.(with a faster scaling up of salaries, its out there in internet land if readers wish to take a look at the agreement for a refresher). Conversly, Ontario deficits swelled with revenue crashing and today they are desperate to cut back spending or at the very least, freeze it while waiting for income tax revenues to catch up which is really, the least painful alterative (except for the short term balance sheet of course). The teachers union of Ontario may not publically admit whats happening or happened, but thats the case.

In hindsight, it could have been worse for the teachers union of Ontario. The government of Ontario could have rolled back the scaling of teachers salaries to pre 08′ levels and that would definitely be the equivalent of a rollback but its not. Teachers are facing a forced contract 2.5 year freeze, its not unexpected or unfair with history in mind and when one looks at it fully, its not all that unfair to the taxpayer either. You get what you pay for, the worm turns, it all comes full circle.

Even so, lofty teachers salaries during tough times were not for not. Readers, keep in mind that Canada ranked second behind Finland in the western world of education systems and performance and Ontario was a big part of it which is also a big part of why teachers had a favorable contract in 08′ to begin with. PISA scores from 09′ ranked Canada as 6th in the world:

http://www.oecd.org/pisa/46643496.pdf

…and really, we’ve been in the top 10 since post 2000 internationally with the provinces of Alberta, BC and Ontario leading the way in Canada. Our public education “competition” if one were to call it that, in the western world is Finland who spends more on their systems and teachers than we do per capita and there’s good reason as to why asian nations are ahead of us. Students spend more hours of class time annually in China, South Korea and Singapore than they do here. A case could be made for these nations redlining students towards burnout if one looks closer. Extra curricular activities that develope our students more socially such as music, plays and sports aren’t as much of a focus in Asia mainly because it doesn’t lead toward economic achievements down the road. What I’m saying or trying to say is… that Canada could possibly have one of thee best if not thee best designed education system in the world when one packages together everything else that a student needs to learn besides reading, math and science. Its hard to prove but once we look beyond data and performance (but please start there!) and factor in the rest of what children need to develop besides math, reading and science and look at the social/political/environmental/philosophical/historical/physical aspects that have their role in development right down to the feedback loop academic gauntlet all teachers face in post secondary before they get the chance to teach our students, it gets harder to criticize the systems we have in place when one truly looks! Unfortunately, until people look, well… we have these distracting (which really isn’t so bad especially when we are more cordial and polite) conversations.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Programme_for_International_Student_Assessment

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/27/best-education-in-the-wor_n_2199795.html

#73 Saddam Hussein/Osam Bin Laden on 02.08.13 at 1:32 am

We like this area…

Very quiet…..no Navy Seals…..or drones….and great Block parties!!!

PS: what are those thingies dangling from the back of PU truck hitches.

#74 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.08.13 at 1:39 am

-
Interesting. In 1993 the former Mulroney PCs were wiped out, and Kim Campbell took it on the chin. Now, BC, Ont. and Alta. have ladies in charge, just as the country and provinces are heading down. This may well be a case of reverse discrimination!

“Cue the perfect storm, combined with a whopping 34% jump in total dollar sales volume tells us one thing: buyers are on drugs.” — Are you referring to Cialis (mentioned in this post as well)?! I can see why Carney jumped ship, ‘tho — better pay and Kannaduhhh is probably worse off than the UK.
*
Lies, damned lies and disinfo. “Today just 400 Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined.” And yet western govts., bowing to their master’s orders (TPTB) impose austerity cuts on the middle class and poor, but the rich keep flogging a dead horse, such as as here; Euro Markets Hmmm; Illusion of Stability; Golden Nest Egg As per Garth says; Tax Hikes Backfire Revenues plunge (as they will here); Robert Shiller Buying a home as an investment is dumb; China It’s different, that’s for sure; Rich Californians Abandon ship; Morgan Stanley Buy the currency war basket; The Sequester A manufactured crisis, as most are; Ravens vs. 49ers A promise is a promise; Dot-Com boom Deja-vu? Switzerland, Gold Eagles and the like; Soros Tension and infighting may kill the EZone; JPM overtakes Wells Fargo as most valuable US bank; Macy’s leads retail gain; French workers threaten to blow up factory; Hollande’s a little surly if he can’t get his own way.
*
Source: Unknown But what is written is correct; 1:50 clip Listen to all but follow none. A good reminder from the Pythons; Rolling In The Dough Adele enjoys a nice take-home per day windfall; Jade Jagger Not living where you would expect; Brawl time! One man vs. plenty of women (no contest). The man lost hands down; Google Street View Not the greatest taste in advertising; Wednesday, a like said nine year old had given birth. Today (in Argentina) as 12-year-old has twins; Deafness . . . but there is hope; Coke What happens to a body when a can of coke is drunk; 65 Best New Buildings in the world; DIY Beats big pharmas prices for skin creams, etc. and natural Blood Thinners; BioEngineering Weather reacting to man’s tinkering; Hypocrites, Freeloaders and Traitors That’s just the day shift; 3:29 clip Small cracks may lead to big ‘quakes.

#75 █ ♣ █ ANONYMOUS on 02.08.13 at 1:51 am

Well, …. The world is ‘Technically’ running out of oil. The production of oil from the U.S. midwest is tapping into deposits that are relatively small, so they won’t last more than 10 years before running out.

So yes, oil prices will be kept low for the next 10 years, but after that; the moon is the limit for oil prices.

#76 Beach Girl on 02.08.13 at 2:13 am

#201 Beach Girl on 02.06.13 at 7:24 am

#90 Asse, I hope your own Mom didn’t name you.

Are you this sites Dr. Phil? Someone actually married you and stayed? Yikes, now that is desperate.

On another note, I thought a camel toe referred to the front.

#77 dave on 02.08.13 at 2:14 am

someone should hire Brad Pitt to sell some houses, he seemed to do good with perfume… :)

#78 A Yank in (Parksville) BC on 02.08.13 at 2:32 am

On a scale of 1 to 10.. maybe a 5, at best. Depends on how long you’ve been living in Alberta.

#79 meslippery on 02.08.13 at 2:32 am

The way things are going do you thing Jeff Rubin is
knocking on CIBCs door ?

#80 daystar on 02.08.13 at 2:48 am

http://www.news1130.com/2013/02/07/albertas-redford-moves-to-freeze-mla-pay-ahead-of-belt-tightening-budget/

… or so the headline says. Considering Alberta MLA’s have the highest base salary of all the provinces, its hardly a meaningful sacrifice and cabinet ministers to my knowledge are the best paid in Canada with 19 deputy ministers taking a pay increase to $275,000 annually. Why should we be surprised?

http://www.globaltvedmonton.com/wrong+time+to+end+wage+freeze+says+opposition+leader+smith/6442667213/story.html

… and then there’s a grand a month for each committee Alberta MLA’s sit on up to four committee’s. By the time they haul it in, they aren’t skipping meals but I digress. Its not the scandal even so much that bothers me with Allison Redford awarding her ex husband (who was ever so gracious to help her with her election campaign as a key organizer. Gotta get divorced or there’s a conflict of interest? Well thats a no brainer. See you home tonight, dear):

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/11/29/alison-redford-patronage-scandal-discipline_n_2213310.html

… its Daryl Katz’s Alberta Conservative $300,000 election campaign contribution that just blows my mind. This, which in my opinion smells absolutely rotten:

http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/alberta/Katz+donations+spark+fiery+exchange+Legislature/7466926/story.html

A clip:

“Given that a quarter of the government’s election donations are said to be from a single source, and given the source wants $100 million from the government for a hockey arena, and he sits on the board of a Crown corporation that invests $70 billion of assets owned by Albertans, doesn’t anyone in this government have a problem with that?”

Folks, it doesn’t pass the smell test. I mean… here is Allison Redford, telling the Alberta masses public spending cuts are in order (oh, we can’t increase royalties, Big U.S. oil has dictated government revenue for us since the get go. Thats why we’ll never build a true refinery in our province or build a pipeline to eastern Canada, there’s no U.S. profit in this) while telling the city of Edmonton they will get $100 million from government for a new stadium, crown land and sweet gambling concessions since a multibillionaire can’t afford it on his own. Oh, and thanks for the $300K, we couldn’t have gotten elected without you Daryl!

How does one define corruption? Dary Katz rescues the Conservatives from election defeat with sizably illegal campaign contributions and gets his $100 million from taxpayers while Allison Redford tells her province “we gotta tighten our belts”. Yup. Oh, and the city of Edmonton is falling all over themselves to get it done:
http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/Council+approves+revised+downtown+Edmonton+arena+deal/7861481/story.html

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/11/01/jesse-kline-new-betting-law-could-provide-cash-for-arena-projects/

The only thing we don’t see is brown paper bags and overseas accounts ya just know Harper won’t ever look into. 42 years of one party rule couldn’t generate a sweeter outcome, as some say.

#81 John Dominsas on 02.08.13 at 2:55 am

I talked to my broker today and he suggested specific corporate bond issues. They are Sunlife Financial 5.40% coupon 2037-May-29 $104.36 5.09% yield, Wells Fargo Canada 3.46% coupon 2023-January-24 $99.85 3.48% yield, Hydro One 4.39% 2041-September-26 $108.31 3.91% yield, Fairfax Financial 5.84% 2022-October-14 $104.82 5.20% yield, Loblaws Co LTd. 5.90% coupon 2036-January-18 $108.25 5.28% yield. I would like any suggestions from anyone that give me a different perspective.

He also gave me a few provincial bond issues that were not as attractive yield wise.They are Quebec 4.25% coupon 2043-December-1 $109.95 3.71% yield, Quebec 3.00% coupon 2023-September-1 $98.79 3.14% yield, New Brunswick 2.85% coupon 2023-June-2 $98.34 3.04% yield, B.C. 4.30% coupon 2042-June-18 $113.84 3.54% yield, Saskatchewan 3.40% coupon 2042-february-3 $100.09 3.40% yield.

#82 Humpty Dumpty on 02.08.13 at 3:20 am

Canned Goods and Buckshot….
Lmao…

From one specal human being to another….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_qDpgyuDWc
Super Dave Baseball Skit!

#83 Soylent Green is People on 02.08.13 at 5:01 am

You and sexual harrassment

http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=gBVuAGFcGKY&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DgBVuAGFcGKY

.
.

#84 a prairie dawg on 02.08.13 at 5:13 am

#41 stop lying

she’s got huge… tracts of land

- — -

haven’t heard that one in awhile. :)

come and see the violence inherent in the system. help help I’m being repressed. lol

#85 polecat on 02.08.13 at 5:22 am

I think I saw her in Budapest back in 01, she is still hot.

#86 Giddion on 02.08.13 at 5:23 am

#8:

the shale from the largest field in california (the one mentioned in the article) is so solidly “locked up” that the cost of extraction will be higher, at current tech, than the comparable unit of bitumen.

as everyone knows, the southerners are very resourceful and may well find a way to cut costs; however, water resources will have to be diverted and that will be a major problem in that region.

the real “threat” to the oil sands in the midterm comes from the more easily accessed shale in other parts of the US. alberta also has a nicely-sized shale field of their own, which they share with sask. and BC. there are also smaller fields in the maritimes and in quebec. this stuff is all over the place.

as a resident of BC, i tell some of my anti-pipeline friends not to get to embrolied in their fight because in the end, the pipeline will probably forced through regardless of what they want. there are too many forces aligned against them. the US shale boom might become the most insurmountable if the canadian economy starts to tank as a result.

#87 a prairie dawg on 02.08.13 at 5:23 am

on topic:

A good time to short trucks with silver balls on them.

#88 Buy? Curious? on 02.08.13 at 6:28 am

DELETED

#89 Anonymous on 02.08.13 at 6:59 am

#57 Tripp:

“As for the ones associating her looks and her Romanian origin with stripping, travelling is good for you! You would be surprised how many women in (Eastern) Europe look like her and are well educated, fantastic mothers and wives, great cooks etc.”

Are you saying that being a stripper is incompatible with being well educated and a good mother, wife, and cook? Lots of strippers are educated and some strip to put themselves through school. Many strippers are amazing wives and mothers and cooks.

#90 Rick Perry on 02.08.13 at 7:43 am

Stop the presses, the Alberta government misses budget target and has a 6 billion dollar shortfall, because they thought the oil price would average 100$ a barrel so they could steal more of oil company profits to fund the massive bureaucracy.

This is not headline news, this is standard government procedure of being incompetent, inefficent and unaccountable for wasting the taxpayers resources. Alberta should not only freeze public worker salaries, they should lay many of them off and cut off most government programs. Public servants should be making at par to what the average Canadian makes, and if they don’t like get another job, there are thousands of people ready, qualified and ready to be trained to do your job. They should reduce tax burdens on the citizens and encourage a culture of saving, investing and self reliance.

We need freedom, we need liberty

We need fewer wackos on this blog. — Garth

#91 The real Kip on 02.08.13 at 8:26 am

“Ignoring the looming Cowboy fiscal cliff, the growing economic tide against ‘dirty’ oil, our slowing economy”

Dirty oil? Clearly you do not understand how dirty the shale oil extraction prices known as fracking (fracturing) is or you would know it is just as problematic as oil sands extraction.

The Reagan administration shelved the proposal 30 years ago as being too damaging environmentally but no matter, getting a barrel of oil out west will soon be easier than getting a glass of water.

I understand it well. I put the word ‘dirty’ in single quotes to reference how it is seen by a growing body of Alberta’s customers. Had I not used single quotes it would have been a comment from me. Even crane operators need to work on subtlety. — Garth

#92 MarcFromOttawa on 02.08.13 at 8:41 am

It must be different in Ottawa.

#93 Ralph Cramdown on 02.08.13 at 9:06 am

A good time to short trucks with silver balls on them.

Well, I sold my Carfinco position a few days ago. It had gone up so much that current yield no longer felt like enough. A rapidly growing company that writes auto loans mainly in Western Canada. What could go wrong? N.B. It’s still paying about 4 1/4% for those interested.

#94 Chris L. on 02.08.13 at 9:31 am

Holy shit Garth, that’s funny.

#95 realist on 02.08.13 at 9:51 am

@88
Your post insults those decent women who do odd jobs to put them selves through school or care for their families rather then compromise on their moral values by dancing naked in front of perverts for money. I guess according to you they are just plain dumb or ugly enough to find stripper jobs.

The tone of your post suggests you have everything figured out, haven’t you eh! Felicitations! The high priests of your out of control feminism (read religion) have taught you well in that it is perfectly OK to glorify demeaning and exploitative professions as long as the end justifies the means.

#96 realist on 02.08.13 at 9:53 am

My last post was directed at @90.

#97 Buy? Curious? on 02.08.13 at 9:54 am

Sorry, let me rephrase that: “I’d happily engage in a polite conversion that hopefully grows into a healthy relationship if it meant the possibility of selling my house.”

Much better. Dept. of Sanitation Approved. — Garth

#98 Toronto_CA on 02.08.13 at 10:07 am

http://business.financialpost.com/2013/02/08/canadas-economy-sheds-21900-in-first-drop-in-6-months/

More good news! We’re at 7% unemployment rate (what?) despite losing -22,000 jobs against a prediction of +5,000 gain and the average salary is up 2.0% since January 2012, coming in just at inflation (no real wage growth!).

#99 Toon Town Boomer on 02.08.13 at 10:21 am

Very sad to see the way things are going!

#100 Chickenlittle on 02.08.13 at 10:27 am

#57Tripp on 02.07.13 at 11:55 pm

As for the ones associating her looks and her Romanian origin with stripping, travelling is good for you! You would be surprised how many women in (Eastern) Europe look like her and are well educated, fantastic mothers and wives, great cooks etc.

Travelling is good.. I lived in Romania for 2 years, am fluent in the language, and quite familiar with the culture.
An yes, some of them are pretty hot, cook, make good children, etc., but like many “good looking” women it comes for a price..don’t fool yourself! They’re not unlike Russian mail order brides.

We women have you so fooled! We are so smart!

#101 Dr. WAYNE on 02.08.13 at 10:30 am

This Diana person must have the intelligence of a gnat. What wife would select this woman as her and her husband’s realtor … the husband, maybe, but certainly not the wife (and you know who will make that decision).

Diana (of limited brain power) Arvatescu has just removed a significant portion of her client base, at her own expense … that bill board, I suspect, wasn’t free … however, there are ways to pay for it I suppose.

#102 Not 1st on 02.08.13 at 10:30 am

Re Anonymous, The state of Alaska is literally floating on a sea of oil that has never been produce d because it would send the price plummeting. There is no shortage of oil other than that which we choose to make by leaving the product in the ground and not telling anyone about. Utah, Colorado and California also have large untapped source as well as ND.

The US strategy was to use other people’s oil and leave their own in the ground until a proper time. I think they are seeing that new technologies are going to displace it in the next 30 yrs Operational fusion is expected to come online in under 10 yrs in a few places.

#103 Dupcheck on 02.08.13 at 10:40 am

Real estate agents are so desperate they are becoming prosties now to get that money, or should i say they have no morals left how they do business. Shame on them for trapping people into homes with games they play. Shame on the government for sitting back and not the regulating real estate business. Real estate agents rights stop where our rights start. We have the right to be protected by the law from scrupulous agents that fuel bidding wars and under the table deals with each other.

#104 The Prophet Elijah on 02.08.13 at 10:44 am

Garth are you saying Calgary RE was going to go down anyway due to regulatory squeezes, but the massive deficit now is a double whammy and no brainer as to what happens next?

Did you prophesize that? — Garth

#105 Ralph Cramdown on 02.08.13 at 10:46 am

#92 The real Kip — I put the word ‘dirty’ in single quotes to reference how it is seen by a growing body of Alberta’s customers.

I guess I must’ve fuelled up a thousand or two times in my life, and not once have I heard another customer ask where the oil came from. I do recall a brief period after the Exxon Valdez when people put their Exxon credit cards in a ziploc bag with some used motor oil and mailed it back to the company but, judging by XOM’s market cap, that didn’t last. I made lots by buying BP after their unfortunate incident, too.

Don’t get me wrong; I wish we’d go nuclear for most of our energy requirements. But in the meantime, I’m placing my bets where the odds are short. N.B. for people looking for decent yields at low prices, there’s also Canadian Oil Sands, Total, Eni, LUKOIL, Royal Dutch Shell and others. Don’t forget that, if the foreign ones aren’t in an RRSP, you’ll get dinged for withholding taxes on the dividends. Always ensure Canada has a tax treaty before investing.

#106 Pr on 02.08.13 at 10:47 am

DELETED

#107 Aussie Roy on 02.08.13 at 10:52 am

Aussie Update

New Zealand MSM debates, “Where does money come from?”

http://tvnz.co.nz/seven-sharp/paying-interest-loan-never-existed-video-5336329

Unemployment on the up; Retail trade down

http://www.whocrashedtheeconomy.com/blog/2013/02/unemployment-on-the-up-retail-trade-down/

#108 Spiltbongwater on 02.08.13 at 11:07 am

Some peoples comments get deleted, mine just disappear completely. It is not like I called her a prostitute like some of the comments do.

As you wish. I will delete you in future. — Garth

#109 gladiator on 02.08.13 at 11:23 am

come on, this type of advertising is something usual in Europe and Russian part of Asia. I saw a billboard in Russia that was advertising vacuum cleaners and it said “I suck for kopeyks” – something equivalent to “I suck for pennies” – with a very sexual hint. And it was something people joked about, but the ad stuck in their minds, which was its main goal.

#110 Eaglebay - Parksville on 02.08.13 at 11:24 am

#104 Dupcheck on 02.08.13 at 10:40 am

That’s it. The government should regulate our lives.
How is the government supposed to do that? They can’t even govern.
Don’t people have a mind of their own?
Whose signature is on all these RE contracts and mortgages?

#111 Beach Girl on 02.08.13 at 11:25 am

I think she is very clever.

Imagine sex sells. Turn on the TV. I would use her in a second, if I believed in RE Agents. Parasites. If you can’t buy a house yourself, you should not own one.

At least she isn’t frackin. OIL.

#112 Stoopid Idiot on 02.08.13 at 11:25 am

Rise in Asset Prices all an Illusion-Fabian Calvo
6 February 2013

By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com

Real estate expert Fabian Calvo says, “There’s a lot of manipulation from government agencies and the Fed that is creating this rise in asset prices . . . but it is all an illusion.” Calvo’s company, TheNoteHouse.us, buys and sells $100 million in distressed debt a year. Calvo says, “The Fed thinks this will work. I don’t believe it. I think we’re going to end up in some kind of currency crisis or come kind of bond crisis.” Nevertheless, the Fed policy of suppressing interest rates is working–for now. Calvo says, “The Fed realizes there needs to be a low rate environment for housing to recover or it’s a huge implosion. They have thrown underwriting guidelines out the window. They are going to continue with no money down loans or very little equity.” The Fed also knows that many big banks are technically insolvent. Calvo contends, “You have a lot of these zombie banks. If you mark-to-market their assets, they would be bankrupt.” So, the Fed and the government will continue to print money to keep housing prices and the big banks from collapsing. Join Greg Hunter as he goes One-on-One with Fabian Calvo from TheNoteHouse.us.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=tm7Vi6LfcFg

#113 Eaglebay - Parksville on 02.08.13 at 11:29 am

#106 Ralph Cramdown on 02.08.13 at 10:46 am
“#92 The real Kip — I put the word ‘dirty’ in single quotes to reference how it is seen by a growing body of Alberta’s customers.”
_____________________

Alberta’s customers are the US, China, Europe and so on.
You’re stuck in your own backyard.

#114 Stoopid Idiot on 02.08.13 at 11:40 am

#18 East Van

No need to put quotation marks around Alberta’s “dirty” oil. The tar sands (as we called them in Edmonton in the 70s) produce the dirtiest oil in the world by far

Please define what you know to believe is the qualifier of Dirty oil. It’s important not to parrot what you hear as compared to deriving to an educated and informed opinion. I guess what I’m trying to say is…. Are you educated or indoctrinated?

http://www.transportation.anl.gov/pdfs/TA/273.pdf

http://www.ceps.eu/system/files/article/2011/03/Jacobs%20Consultancy%20LCA%20Meeting%20March%2021.pdf

#115 hangfire on 02.08.13 at 11:41 am

DELETED. You are done here. — Garth

#116 Timing is Everything on 02.08.13 at 11:56 am

Cue the perfect storm.

Garth, I thought you forbade snow in S. Ontario. What gives? The ‘Royal’ army is on stand-by.
—————————————————
Oh those nasty unions, they’re all the same…
http://tinyurl.com/b5tqzms
—————————————————
Oh ya, this is a ‘dirty’ blog.

#117 ETFer on 02.08.13 at 11:56 am

Questrade is offering no commissions on purchases of any ETFs, however, there will be their regular $4.95 commission on selling

http://www.milliondollarjourney.com/questrade-offers-commission-free-etfs-and-weekend-links.htm

Garth, you’ve been recommending self-directed TFSA accounts using balanced and diversified ETFs (among other things)… would you share some opinion about Questrade? Thanks

If you know what you’re doing, sure. If you don’t, being cheap is not exactly a strategy. — Garth

#118 Inglorious Investor on 02.08.13 at 12:00 pm

#72 daystar on 02.08.13 at 1:12 am

“[…] the government of Ontario […] forcing contracts on all teachers in Ontario with wage freezes […]”

Yes, I’m aware of the wage freeze. It was a good initiative, but it was implemented too late. The damage had already been done years ago. As I said in a previous comment, Ontario has invested plenty of money in “education”, increasing funding when student enrolment was declining. By far, the bulk of it went to teachers, not to other educational resources. The result today is bloated teacher salaries and eviscerated school boards who are desperate to find cost savings, including considering the selling-off of assets. For some reason, very few people have made the connection between rising teacher pay and financially strapped boards.

“[…] you don’t want to compare provincial budgets, incomes and salaries […]”

While I’m cognizant of the issue of market competitive pay, it’s an issue of accountability. BC teachers are not accountable to the tax payers of Ontario.

“Suggesting provincial teacher salaries across Canada are irrelevant to what teachers make in Ontario implies that you really don’t care about what you are actually getting in return for what you pay for.”

No, it’s precisely the opposite. I care very much about the value the tax payers of Ontario get for their education funding. That’s the point.

“When I read comments like that it reeks of intellectual vanity and pride. […] Dude, I don’t mean to cut ya’ but… trust me (flawed as I am, you still can), its for your own good.”

You don’t know me or my intellect. And yet, you feel you can tell me what is for my own good, eh? Whose being vain here? Self-deprecating comments will not mask your arrogance.

“Canada could possibly have one of thee best if not thee best designed education system in the world when one packages together everything else that a student needs to learn besides reading, math and science.”

Agreed. But Canada is one of the richest countries in the world by many metrics. We SHOULD be among the best. But if the current funding trend continues, the quality of education will deteriorate. I believe it already is in absolute terms if not in relative terms.

The report below is not exactly damning, but it aligns with the trend that I and the many friends and family I know with kids in school are seeing. And notice this little nugget: “Dalton McGuinty said in August the Putting Students First Act was put in place to fortify the province’s gains in education by making class sizes smaller and protecting the jobs of 20,000 new teaching and support staff jobs.”

http://www.ottawasun.com/2012/12/11/educational-quality-and-accountability-office-show-ontario-students-losing-ground

Can you read between the lines? How do they protect teachers’ jobs while student enrolment declines? Smaller class sizes, for one. All day Kindergarten perhaps? It was a nod to the union, not parents or tax payers. As I said previously, I know many teachers. They and classes are being shuffled around to protect jobs. When what they should be doing is adjusting the number of positions to reflect the need.

While teachers’ jobs and salaries have been protected, school boards are desperate for money. Our schools are turning into fund raising institutions rather than educational institutions. They are constantly rolling out fund raising drives and events. They increasingly charge for things that were once included. Students are even asked to bring boxes of Kleenex to school. No exaggeration, we receive some kind of request for funds or they are trying to sell us something at least once a week, if not more.

Every year, they beg parents to buy books for the school library (not donate old books, but buy new ones; they even prepare a nice display of books one can choose from). They continually try to involve students in fund raising efforts, and entice them to sell more by awarding game systems as prizes. Then they preach against the dangers of video games. They invite food services companies that sell fast food crap lunches to students (for which they get a cut). Then they preach about nutrition.

Teachers are doing less and less. They are increasingly trying to involve parents in projects and assignments as part of the actual curriculum. I am all for parents taking an active part in their kids’ education (my wife and I taught our kids to read), but it should not an actual part of the curriculum. Ask people with kids in schools; the trend among teachers is they want to do less and less, while getting more and more money.

Standards for reporting student progress have declined, as shown by the recent change in report cards. Report cards are obviously canned with blatant copy-and-paste errors that just make you shake your head. Many of the teachers themselves can’t string together a cogent, grammatically correct sentence.

In the meantime, fraud and nepotism are becoming a bigger problem. Some teachers defraud the system by routinely taking sick days when they don’t need it and having a friend or mother fill in. You know, keep in the family. Want to become a teacher today? I certainly helps if your mother or father is a teacher.

If you don’t have kids in the system, you won’t know what I’m talking about. But my friends and family members with kids in school know what I’m talking about. Furthermore, I am pretty involved with my kids’s school, and my wife was on CSAC for many years. A view from the inside is not vey encouraging, believe me.

Overall, the quality is declining by what we see, and it’s driving more and more people into private schools. It used to be people chose private schools as a stepping stone. Now they are using them as an escape.

Putting students first? I don’t think so.

#119 Timing is Everything on 02.08.13 at 12:15 pm

Alberta clipper, Saskatchewan Screamer and Manitoba Mauler. Haaaa! Oh, the irony. The weather Gods.

http://tinyurl.com/abuuwtt

#120 Tony on 02.08.13 at 12:19 pm

Calgary had their chance and so did all of Alberta to get wealthy when oil was 147 dollars a barrel but the imbeciles who live there cited pollution and environmental studies. They never learned from China get wealthy first and you can buy anything you want. Pollution is for stupid people who don’t know up from down and that’s Alberta. Now we can watch the entire province go down in flames while the Chinese laugh at them.

#121 Old Man on 02.08.13 at 12:34 pm

This gal in the photo is using the technique called bait and switch. She is a cowgirl who ropes in the guys for a listing to lasso them into a commission agreement for someone else to sell. Then saddles up looking for more prey, as is hooping a commission from these fools one way or another with sex appeal.

#122 Alberta Ed on 02.08.13 at 12:36 pm

The handwriting has been on the wall for a long time in Alberta, but the PC’s, who are neither Progressive nor Conservative IMHO, have been ignoring it. Let us pray together with Alison: Dear Lord, please send another oil boom…”

#123 Form Man on 02.08.13 at 12:40 pm

#116 hangfire

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perfect. thanks Garth

#124 Tony on 02.08.13 at 12:43 pm

Re: #46 timmy on 02.07.13 at 11:21 pm

Alberta also got “pollution on the brain syndrome” all the while they weren’t selling enough oil when the price was sky high. A whole province full of clueless morons. All they had to do was look east to China that went from third world status to a superpower because they realized pollution studies are for nitwits while “pollution on the brain syndrome” seems to be ingrained in the degenerated brains of all Albertans.

#125 Astronaut down on 02.08.13 at 12:44 pm

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#126 rosie "moving forward" on 02.08.13 at 12:46 pm

Personally, I think the neighbours are just green with envy, or is it blue? I might be colour blind. I should look into that, moving forward. http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2013/02/08/brampton_monster_home_stuns_its_bungalowdwelling_neighbours.html

#127 Dr. Hoof Hearted on 02.08.13 at 12:49 pm

Office vacancy remains high, but ‘milestone’ reached

http://www.richmondreview.com/news/190303771.html

Richmond continued to lead the region in empty office space last year, but demand is growing, according to a new Metro Vancouver market report from Avison Young.

Richmond’s vacancy rate at the end of 2012 stood at 19.3 per cent, well above the region’s 7.0 per cent average.

Of Richmond’s 4,196,438 square feet of office space, 808,624 square feet remained vacant last year. But demand did grow, as the city boasted 110,703 square feet of positive absorption for the year—the strongest level of annual absorption since 2008 and the third highest rate in the region.

According to the real estate firm’s report, vacancy in Richmond’s office market dropped below 20 per cent for the first time since mid-2009. Avison Young principal Bill Elliott called that a “milestone of sorts.”

================================

and they haven’t even discussed the large amounts of commercial vacancies(warehouses, retail, etc.)

#128 squidly77 on 02.08.13 at 12:54 pm

The Oil-sands operators are their own enemy, anytime some pinko points a finger at them and declares their product to be dirty, they hide under the bed. Never proactive, always reactive.

Riddle me this, would you rather buy a product, any product from a country that treats its people with respect or do you prefer to buy it from oppressive regimes that consider women to be second class citizens? For anyone that prefers the latter I suggest you watch this movie. http://www.thestoning.com/

If that movie does not bring you tears, nothing in this world ever will. Anyhow, I expect some left wing pinko to respond to my comment with the misunderstanding I know he/she possess.

Albertas Oil sands are a national treasure. 97% of the reclaimable product will be extracted using SAGD technology (very, very clean). The remaing 3% will extracted via mine-site. The minable area is very small. Smaller than the total area of the Greater Vancouver metropolitan city limits.

I will post 2 links so as not be judged as biased, first from a greeny site.

The surface mineable area is larger than Greater Vancouver.

By July 2009, mining operations had disturbed more than 686 square kilometres of boreal forest.11 http://www.pembina.org/oil-sands/os101/alberta

Thats an area of approx 20 miles by 22 miles. Huge eh!

Now from the people that supply the Petrol you put in your cars at your local gas station.

80 per cent of oil sands reserves (which underly approximately 97 per cent of the oil sands surface area) are recoverable through in situ technology, with limited surface disturbance. http://www.capp.ca/CANADAINDUSTRY/OILSANDS/ENERGY-ECONOMY/Pages/what-are-oilsands.aspx

I get what Garth said. Most don’t.

#129 sunshine girl on 02.08.13 at 12:56 pm

We bought a 3100 sq. ft house when we moved to Kelowna in 1999 for $195K, paid it off and won’t succumb to pressure to buy a bigger, showier home, quite happy here and love the financial freedom. Was in North Vancouver in November and drove by my small childhood home that my parents purchased in 1958 for $12,000 and it’s currently for sale for $960,000!!!! That’s just nuts. A move for us to a really nice upgrade in Kelowna now would cost close to a million. So if we sold ours which is now worth close to 500K, that would mean taking a 500K mortgage out. NOT going to happen! Can’t believe people actually do this. Come on man!

#130 DM in C on 02.08.13 at 12:56 pm

But…. they’re just breaking ground on the East Village development! Imagine all the post-game shenanigans you can get into while walking home! Yay for living in the shadow of the Stampede grounds. #winning

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/story/2013/02/07/calgary-east-village.html?cmp=rss

#131 Ogopogo on 02.08.13 at 12:57 pm

And the MSM now heralds as obvious what Garth has predicted all along:

Housing starts plunge, revealing weaker than expected market

Notice in the comments section notorious real estate pumper “whazzup” trying to spin the plunge. Notice too how quickly he gets taken down by commenters.

#132 Stoopid Idiot on 02.08.13 at 12:59 pm

Net Energy:

Learn about it.

http://www.resilience.org/stories/2013-01-08/shale-gas-myth-and-realities

http://www.peakprosperity.com/video/234/playlist/153/chapter-17a-peak-oil

#121 Tony

Calgary had their chance and so did all of Alberta to get wealthy when oil was 147 dollars a barrel but the imbeciles who live there cited pollution and environmental studies. They never learned from China get wealthy first and you can buy anything you want. Pollution is for stupid people who don’t know up from down and that’s Alberta. Now we can watch the entire province go down in flames while the Chinese laugh at them.
=======================

You may not live in Alberta but I think it may be a safe assumption the your pick-up truck has a set hanging from the hitch… Ignorant and bitter are the only words that come to mind…. OMG…. I just got it…. She dumped you for a guy with a job….. let me guess where he was from

#133 Money talks on 02.08.13 at 12:59 pm

Rick Mercer on the housing market, got a kick out of this (was posted in our paper’s comment section).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ER0Tn0jV7w

#134 Dr. Hoof Hearted on 02.08.13 at 1:00 pm

Residents urged to help combat home break-ins

http://www.richmondreview.com/news/190303271.html

A 41-per-cent spike in home breaks last month has prompted Richmond Mounties to warn residents, and urge them to do more to deter bandits.

There were 99 breaks-ins last month, up from 70 in 2012, according to Richmond RCMP Cpl. Sherrdean Turley.

Most of last month’s break-ins occurred along No. 2 Road, between Steveston Highway and Granville Avenue, she said, with homes hit following the dinner hour, between 6 and 10 p.m.

The targetted homes were either in darkness, or the homeowners were away at the time.

“As much as officers have the tools and training required to catch criminals, the ever-watchful neighbour is always helpful,” Turley said.

etc etc.
=================================

Translation:

No HAM home. This is very common. House bought on spec. sit empty, unlit.

Doesn’t surprise me….the crooks have finally figured it out.

#135 Herb on 02.08.13 at 1:01 pm

Nice sizzle, Diana, but the wrong steak. The billboard has some relevance to real estate, but the bottom pic must have been done by Missy Bunny. Pointless pose on cheap background, might have engaged the viewer if she looked at him but, as is, no relevance to anything.

#136 2centsCdn on 02.08.13 at 1:11 pm

Come on … we’ll buy hand creams and cell phones from pretty girls at a mall kiosk. Why shouldn’t we buy $600,000 dollar condo’s (and find a new home for 3/4 of our pay cheques for the next 25 years) from one?

#137 CalgaryRocks on 02.08.13 at 1:12 pm

#121 Tony on 02.08.13 at 12:19 pm
Calgary had their chance and so did all of Alberta to get wealthy when oil was 147 dollars a barrel but the imbeciles who live there cited pollution and environmental studies.

Thanks for the advice Tony! However, you should know that oil was at or above 140 for about 6 weeks in 2008. Not any longer than that.

Oil above 140 was simply a parabolic blow up, a classic sign of a bubble about to burst. Same thing happened to Natural gas.

Oil prices:
June 27, 2008 $140.21 <– Yey! Alberta gets rich!
July 4, 2008 $145.29
July 11, 2008 $145.08
July 18, 2008 $128.88 <– Oops!

#138 Doug in London on 02.08.13 at 1:12 pm

So the expectation that the price of thick as molasses bitumen would go up and up forever, and fill the coffers of Alberta’s government with more money than they know what to do with, has hit a wall. It wasn’t long ago I heard Don Drummond, an economist with TD Bank who advises governments about money management, on a talk show. He said (I don’t recall his exact words) the western provinces shouldn’t get too comfortable about the idea of riding a commodity boom that will last forever. He then said about every 20 years (give or take a few years) commodities go into a bear market, and economies that depend on them go bust. It’s nothing new, as AK said in post #10 about the Alberta bust in the early 1980′s. It happens with other commodities also. Lately there’s been all the raving about high gold prices. The economies of gold mining towns like Timmins, Kirkland Lake, and Val d’Or were slow in the late 1990′s and early 2000′s with low gold and base metal prices.

I say to Albertans, especially those in government: welcome to the world of deficits, a reality we in eastern provinces like Ontario have had to deal with for some time. I wonder, why wasn’t the Alberta government paying down debt and building up that heritage fund when the economy was doing better? In the long haul, prices of oil (including that thick as molasses bitumen) will likely go up, but when, and what to do between now and then? Interesting times we live in.

#139 juno on 02.08.13 at 1:13 pm

Good For Diane. She’s got the goods and she’s using it.

I don’t know what all the media and other realitors are complaining about. Its such an un-regulated industry, anything goes.

When You see the head of CMHC prostitute his lies, or CREA fudging up the number to deceive the public. Oh and the Media, what a bang up job they are doing to get the real information out to the public, instead of being an advertisement extension for CREA

#140 jess on 02.08.13 at 1:15 pm

Yen Trader 1: can we lower our fixings today please [Primary Submitter]
Primary Submitter: make your mind up[,] haha , yes no probs!
Yen Trader 1: I’m like a whore’s drawers.

Or:

Swiss Franc Trader: can u put 6m Swiss libor in low pls?
Primary Submitter: NO
Swiss Franc Trader: should have pushed the door harder
Primary Submitter: What’s it worth
Swiss Franc Trader: ive got some sushi rolls from yesterday?
Primary Submitter: ok low 6m, just for u
Swiss Franc Trader: wooooooohooooooo[,] 0.01%? that’d be awesome
http://rowans-blog.blogspot.ch/2013/02/the-libor-crimes-tale-of-two-cultures.html

#141 Chet Sanders on 02.08.13 at 1:16 pm

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#142 Don on 02.08.13 at 1:26 pm

#11 Smoking Man on 02.07.13 at 10:07 pm

That chic is one smart agent..
**************************

Really smart…eh. I guess you didn’t hear of the young female agent who was murdered in Victoria a couple of years ago while showing a house.

I understand what you are saying but it doesn’t make her smart for using sex to sell… that’s not rocket science and should not be employed for her own safety. Sorry only STUPID people fall for this stuff. Who cares what she looks like, I am buying a house, not a date and a rather expensive house.

#143 Axxman on 02.08.13 at 1:33 pm

Just had downsizers fail to close on my $500M house – they sold for over $1MM and went in firm on my place. In the end, couldn’t get financing approved??? There’s a clear sign things are falling apart in the GTA. Luckily I moved to a rental so I’m not impacted by their stupdity…but what a mess if I had have been in a back-to-back deal. Good lesson folks!!

#144 Intuitive Missus on 02.08.13 at 1:33 pm

G&M – Canada sees biggest jobs decline in half a year

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/jobs/canada-sees-biggest-jobs-decline-in-half-a-year/article8374406/

Hoping not but with all the stuff going on – or not going on – with our Oil & Gas industry in Alberta, this could be a trigger point.

Hope not but my spidey senses are tingling.

Hey all the Alberta bashers – cut it out. What hurts Alberta will hurt the rest of us too. This from an Ontarian. Grow up.

#145 Dr. Hoof Hearted on 02.08.13 at 2:06 pm

Diana would attract more clients if she had on an apron,holding a vacuum , dishcloth , and possibly barefoot.

#146 Ludmila on 02.08.13 at 2:08 pm

You don’t believe she’s actually using sex to sell a house, do you? Be serious… The losers who buy a house just because of her look just deserve what they get.
P.S.: Advertisement Industry in Canada is primitive.

#147 Dupcheck on 02.08.13 at 2:11 pm

@ #111 Eaglebay – Parksville

Professionals that make that amount of money such as: Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers, Accountants etc… are all regulated.
These are crucial professions that play a great deal in people’s lives. If they started lying, manipulating, and playing games with peoples health or safety, the people will be the ones that suffer. So dear sir or madam tell me why shouldn’t a profession such as real estate agent be regulated? They can screw up someones life. I know that we all sign at the dotted line. But why would they deserve a 3 or 4 % payout rate? They all have these rates as cartel. They all work with each other on deals, game playing under the table deals. They are in with the banks, loan providers, lawyers. etc. After all buying a home is the biggest expenditure one makes it is not buying a car.

#148 Rainclouds on 02.08.13 at 2:12 pm

“Paris of the flatlands”:-)

AB History will repeat: Folks flee back to their real home.Entire streets peppered with listings.

Interesting conversation last night He “Van prices won’t drop more than 10%”. Me “already have and much more to go” Rolled his eyes and I got the what a dolt look…….oh my! Decided to shut up. He is in sales after all……..

Profound thanks Garth!

#149 Ralph Cramdown on 02.08.13 at 2:15 pm

I for one am disgusted at Alberta’s transparent attempts to become a have-not province. Ontario needs those transfer payment cheques!

#150 spaceman on 02.08.13 at 2:21 pm

Garth did you write this?

http://www.moneysense.ca/2012/12/19/how-tfsas-can-make-your-child-a-millionaire/

If not, then they are stealing your material..

Seems to happen more often these days. — Garth

#151 betamax on 02.08.13 at 2:27 pm

#90: “Many strippers are amazing wives and mothers and cooks.”

I’m not sure why professional chefs are also working as strippers, but I’m not one to judge….

#152 CalgaryRocks on 02.08.13 at 2:32 pm

#139 Doug in London on 02.08.13 at 1:12 pm

I say to Albertans, especially those in government: welcome to the world of deficits, a reality we in eastern provinces like Ontario have had to deal with for some time. I wonder, why wasn’t the Alberta government paying down debt and building up that heritage fund when the economy was doing better? In the long haul, prices of oil (including that thick as molasses bitumen) will likely go up, but when, and what to do between now and then? Interesting times we live in.

Hi Doug! Alberta doesn’t have any debt! Paid off when Ralph was in power.

The new ‘progressive’ conservatives don’t know how to budget so therefore we have the same situation as everywhere else in Canada. As you see, it’s not about how much money you get, it’s how you manage it.

#153 Seriously? on 02.08.13 at 2:35 pm

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#154 Old Man on 02.08.13 at 2:35 pm

I remember the day when I got this phone call about the boom in Alberta during the late 1970′s, as a couple of people needed a clean corporation which I had that was new. The principal owned a huge food company, as was dressed like bum in his plant, so this meeting was held at his home off of Lawrence Avenue West.

What a shock as was a mansion with an indoor pool, and the place was prestine; he was dressed in fine clothes. They wanted my company to front the buying of used cadillacs being shipped on rail to Alberta, and would not have to pay anything for a 1/3 cut in profits, as the workers from the rock were buying, and there was none to be had in Alberta.

I smelled a rat, so said sorry but my corporation does not have the mandate for such, but it really did, as did not like the idea why these dudes wanted to hide their names with all the money that would be needed, so walked away from it all, as established a new holding company on the side that was clean, and they knew it.

#155 Fed-up on 02.08.13 at 2:36 pm

@#90 Anonymous on 02.08.13 at 6:59 am
#57 Tripp:
Lots of strippers are educated and some strip to put themselves through school. Many strippers are amazing wives and mothers and cooks.

—————————————————————-
I’ve dated more than a few strippers in my time and it wasn’t because of their motherly or cooking skills :p

#156 CalgaryRocks on 02.08.13 at 2:40 pm

#145 Intuitive Missus on 02.08.13 at 1:33 pm
G&M – Canada sees biggest jobs decline in half a year

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/jobs/canada-sees-biggest-jobs-decline-in-half-a-year/article8374406/

The kind of news day that makes me happy to have a paid off house, multiple streams of income and six figures in the bank.

Well back to the bunker.

#157 Intuitive Missus on 02.08.13 at 2:45 pm

#144 Axxman

Hope you got a big downpayment because if you end up re-selling for less you will need it to bridge the gap between what you sold to them for and what you will get when you are able to sell it for again. The market is getting worse not better for sellers.

Unfortunately, you still have to sell your place and while you can sue them for the difference between what you sold to them for and what you end up selling for, as my grandmother would say “you can’t get blood from a stone”.

That’s why you need a big downpayment these days. Good luck with the sale.

#158 jess on 02.08.13 at 2:51 pm

…the job#’s down? but , the bank econ reiterated the shortage of skilled workers. i wonder if he means “cloud” workers?
=
“nail house”,
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/9717218/Chinese-home-surrounded-by-highway-demolished.html

#159 Daisy Mae on 02.08.13 at 3:04 pm

Should I use double or single quotation marks for quotes within quotes?

First things first; decide whether you will use double or single quotation marks for the initial quote. If you use single quotations marks, then you should use double quotation marks for a quote within a quote. If you use double quotation marks, then you should use single quotation marks for a quote within a quote. For example:

“When I say ‘immediately,’ I mean some time before August,” said the manager.

“Why did she call the man a ‘traitor’?”

#160 shopper on 02.08.13 at 3:04 pm

I wonder, would Diana the roadside seductress be interested in producing an annual calendar of her spicy yet tasteful photos? Or perhaps she already has one for those fortunate Calgary clients. I still get calendars from an ex real estate agent, I think they are of houses for sale or something. Boring or what.

#161 beefcake on 02.08.13 at 3:12 pm

Look the head of a real estate company on TV saying slow and steady in Ottawa – so then why is he on TV?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0TVJbQRkFQ&list=UUOYxMz070f7jYMjoHk36dGA&index=14

#162 polecat on 02.08.13 at 3:15 pm

#145, I agree, easy to beat up on Alberta but they have been floating this country for a while. Imagine all the people I know from the Maritimes here that work out west that would’ve had no jobs. Reality is we need this resource and to be able to get it to market, whether now or in the future. I figure once the country is on its knees people will get over being scared of pipelines. Even give it 20 years, though I doubt it will take that long. To be honest, I am blessed to have a job in N.S., have seen a lot of friends go west and make a lot more money. I would be right with them too if I was younger and didn’t have a lot of family obligations. Anyway I get by on bartering my skills and make a bit of cash. Lets bring the oil sands east and create some jobs along the way.

#163 Westcdn on 02.08.13 at 3:40 pm

We spend a lot of money on public education and I am on the side that we get poor returns. If our public school system is so good, why do we have to further educate 18 year olds for 4 or more years to get a professional (aka guild) job/career. I found this link regarding the public education system in Alberta. http://education.alberta.ca/department/budget.aspx
It says the average 2012 pay for a public school teacher with 10 years’ experience is over $92,000 plus they have a great pension and benefits plan. I did a quick back of an envelope calculation of pension plan contributions by the employer/taxpayer which came to $22,000 per teacher in 2012. It is high by about $12,000 due to some underfunded pre 1992 pension liability. I am suffering a little envy here given the level of security they have.
But the far more disturbing aspect is the cost of postsecondary education. I read this article regarding future job prospects and I have read many more like it. http://www.testosteronepit.com/home/2013/2/7/the-new-reality-of-economic-recovery-for-american-workers.html
The situation looks grim for people who don’t get a diploma or more. At the very end of the article, it concludes “With the average cost of attending college in America at $120,000, a family of four should expect their children’s college to cost more than a home”. Yes, certain people will say Canada is different but I am sure that we always pay more than Americans for the same product. I think the truth is hidden by our tax structure.
I do have concerns that our education system is too expensive along with other public programs. How are we going to fund our retirements when we of the private realm are always paying someone else first?

#164 jess on 02.08.13 at 4:08 pm

The scheme involved a three-step process in which the defendants would:

■“Make up” a false identity by creating fraudulent identification documents and a fraudulent credit profile with the major credit bureaus.
■“Pump up” the credit of the false identity by providing false information about that identity’s creditworthiness to the credit bureaus. Believing the furnished information to be accurate, the credit bureaus would incorporate this material into the false identity’s credit report, making it appear that the false identity had excellent credit.
■“Run up” large loans using the false identity. The higher the fraudulent credit score, the larger the loans that the defendants could obtain. These loans were never repaid, and the defendants reaped the profits.

The conspiracy generated enormous profits for the defendants—even though they spent millions of dollars sustaining the elaborate network of drop addresses and running credit reports on the thousands of false identities. Records of the New York and New Jersey Departments of Labor reveal that many of the defendants have no reported legitimate employment in the last five years. Nonetheless, the defendants used the proceeds of the criminal enterprise to buy luxury automobiles, electronics, spa treatments, expensive clothing, and millions of dollars in gold. They also stockpiled large sums of cash. Law enforcement discovered approximately $70,000 in cash in the oven of one defendant.

The defendants also moved millions of dollars through accounts under their control and wired millions of dollars overseas. An analysis of 169 bank accounts of the defendants, sham companies, and complicit businesses has identified $60 million dollars in proceeds that flowed through the accounts, much of it withdrawn in cash. The conspirators wired millions of dollars to Pakistan, India, the United Arab Emirates, Canada, Romania, China, and Japan. Due to the massive scope of the conspiracy, which involved over 25,000 fraudulent credit cards, loss calculations are ongoing. Final figures may grow beyond the present confirmed losses of more than $200 million.

http://www.fbi.gov/newark/press-releases/2013/eighteen-people-charged-in-international-200-million-credit-card-fraud-scam

#165 Steven Rowlandson on 02.08.13 at 4:09 pm

Female real estate agents using sex appeal to seduce the real estate virgins. Some people will do anything for money. Considering the consequences it is shamefull in more ways than one.

#166 Bottoms_Up on 02.08.13 at 4:21 pm

#163 polecat on 02.08.13 at 3:15 pm
——————————————
No one is scared of pipelines, we have a gazillion of them already above ground and under ground. People are sensitive to where they cross — if the pipelines can avoid sensitive areas then there should be no problem with them.

#167 Chickenlittle on 02.08.13 at 4:33 pm

Many strippers are amazing wives and mothers and cooks.
I’ve dated more than a few strippers in my time and it wasn’t because of their motherly or cooking skills :p
_______________________________________
And amazing actresses too…You think they really like all those losers climbing all over them? Gross!
I was a bartender for 10 years and that was bad enough. I should start my own uncensored blog about the stories I have heard. ZOWIE! Talk about TMI…
The best part is most of the guys think you want them, when in fact it is your job to talk to them. I think I smiled too much.
Ok! Venting is done….

#168 AprilNewwest on 02.08.13 at 4:44 pm

#143 – Right on Don!

#169 Richard and Zeus on 02.08.13 at 4:51 pm

“Canada could possibly have one of thee best if not thee best designed education system in the world when one packages together everything else that a student needs to learn besides reading, math and science.”

Agreed. But Canada is one of the richest countries in the world by many metrics. We SHOULD be among the best. But if the current funding trend continues, the quality of education will deteriorate. I believe it already is in absolute terms if not in relative terms. ”

The fact that Canada has trillions in resources which the govt “takes in royalities” has HIGH TAXES but forces kids to PAY FOR POST SECONDARY is shameful. Its FREE IN EUROPE. They have NO gas, oil, minerals, forestry etc etc yet school there is free.

Absolutely shameful. There are NO excuses for this so don’t anyone even dare to try…….unless you wish to be honest and try to tell the truth……wasteful tax sucking govt employees…..

#170 Herb on 02.08.13 at 5:08 pm

#162 beefcake,

he was on TV to convince the locals that things really are different in Ottawa. That, too, is pumping.

#171 DM in C on 02.08.13 at 5:38 pm

Dr. Hoof Hearted on 02.08.13 at 2:06 pm

Diana would attract more clients if she had on an apron,holding a vacuum , dishcloth , and possibly barefoot.

+++

Given the city she’s chosen to advertise her wares in, true enough. Don’t forget the cowboy hats.

#172 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 02.08.13 at 6:08 pm

#156 Fed-up on 02.08.13 at 2:36 pm

@#90 Anonymous on 02.08.13 at 6:59 am
#57 Tripp:
Lots of strippers are educated and some strip to put themselves through school. Many strippers are amazing wives and mothers and cooks.

—————————————————————-
I’ve dated more than a few strippers in my time and it wasn’t because of their motherly or cooking skills :p

===================================

Where they Chippendales?

#173 popados on 02.08.13 at 6:13 pm

67 bigenglish/same problem here, just be like me a DISASTER ON MUTE. silence is golden.

#174 simkev on 02.08.13 at 6:18 pm

Well sounds like Calgary is BOOMING ! Maybe not so much …. Just talked to buddy at work who is trying to sell a normal Bung in a normal neighbourhood in the “Town of Cows” and seems that the realistic realtor …if there is such a thing says that to get it sold “ASAP” would mean a loss of some 20% after fee’s etc ! Buddy bought into this money sucking “investment” only some two years ago!
Even here in Ft Mac the centre of the Oil Universe prices are dropping and sales have stalled like a bug in Bituman ! Yes it is different here ? Not!

#175 European on 02.08.13 at 6:22 pm

There is an interesting trend in Calgary over the last 4 years, the sales are shifting from the mid end to the higher end prices. There is definately a large income gap in calgary, and this could possibly contribute to that.

http://calgaryrealestatereview.com/2013/01/29/calgary-home-sales-show-diverging-price-trends/

Also the inventory is dropping significantly.

What will happen in the next few years is hard to tell.

Yeehaa, Calgary is definately different, its not the place for a middle class family to buy a home.

#176 FML I AM A SKRenter on 02.08.13 at 6:31 pm

Most overpriced home in Regina. PS, this neighbourhood rivals Regina’s North Central, once voted by MacLean’s Magazine the worst neighbourhood in Canada.

http://www.realtor.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=12811267&PidKey=-91429861

But in its defence, where else can you be in walking distance of the police station, downtown, casino and hookers.

#177 bcc on 02.08.13 at 6:40 pm

Maybe the only good part from buying a 403 house from Diana is her service. All the rest will be nightmare for years.

am I being too suggestive?

#178 Eno. J on 02.08.13 at 7:02 pm

@145

Most of the job losses were in Ontario (31,200 jobs lost, so the other Provinces combined gained jobs) and most of the job losses were in the public sector and mostly in education.

#179 jess on 02.08.13 at 7:28 pm

frackademics
http://public-accountability.org/
http://stateimpact.npr.org/texas/2012/07/23/fracking-company-paid-texas-professor-behind-water-contamination-study/

#180 Spiltbongwater on 02.08.13 at 7:40 pm

#177 FML I AM A SKRenter on 02.08.13 at 6:31 pm

I guess in the 5 week course realtors take, they do not teach how to rotate images? How to make a listings photos look so unprofessional, leave them sideways on the listing.

#181 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.08.13 at 7:51 pm

-
#71 Wally Wingnut –”Where did you dredge this fan club from?” — I fell oout of the back of a manure truck, plus I am a societal reject (but I’m happy about that!).

#141 jess — “I’m like a whore’s drawers.” — A good description of banxters!
*
Thought For The Day! (wrh.com) — “How fortunate for governments that the people they administer don’t think.” — Adolph Hitler
*
Currency Wars Venezuela fires first nuke, and more Currency Wars; 43:34 doc. All wars are banxters’ wars (currency wars as well); 10:30 clip Soros — China will have the new currency of choice; 6:11 clip Usury is the new weapon for our tiny little minds; 6:19 clip BBT (Bernanke’s Bear Trap); Oh oh Some figured NAFTA was a loser. See what the EU and US have planned; Cdn. businesses lobby for the right in infect people’s PCs.
*
A Message to Le Goracle of the GW alarmists; Restricting Home Schooling thus forcing children to be trained as dumbed down sheeple; Kalifornia Gun control proposals begin tomorrow (Sat.) and 1:04 clip Joe Biden is correct. Gun control will not stop mass murders, but taking SSRI’s off the market will reduce them; Malware Attacks Becoming more frequent; Obomba ignores law that dubya brought in; The ‘Net’s Six Strikes rule (on illegal downloads) is about to come into existence; Aspartame “Did you know that Aspartame was banned by the FDA twice? How is this product legal now?” Russia Blunt message to Japan; Israeli Minister “There will be a civilian revolution”; Fox News Did they have any credibility to begin with?
*
1:07:33 doc. The Executive — Obama’s real reason he wants gun control (China).

#182 Devore on 02.08.13 at 8:04 pm

#67 BigEnglish

How do I tell her, politely, now is not the time?

“Honeypoo, now is not the time.”

#183 Eaglebay - Parksville on 02.08.13 at 8:26 pm

#148 Dupcheck on 02.08.13 at 2:11 pm

The professionals that you mentioned are overseen, self regulated, by their own professional organizations.
They are not regulated by the government.
A real estate salesperson is not a professional, only a salesperson.
And furthermore, check out 1% Realty. I have never paid a RE commission.
There are lawyers to help out and common sense.
There are so many rules, regulations and laws that most of them are forgotten and useless.
Blame our education systems for part of this ignorance.
With today’s information technologies at everybody’s finger tips there are no excuses. Google it…

#184 CrowdedElevatorfartz on 02.08.13 at 8:43 pm

@#90 Anonymous

So you married a well educated stripper. Congrats.

#185 Eaglebay - Parksville on 02.08.13 at 8:45 pm

#183 Devore on 02.08.13 at 8:04 pm
#67 BigEnglish

How do I tell her, politely, now is not the time?

“Honeypoo, now is not the time.”
_____________________

Get a lawyer to tell her. It’s only a matter of time anyway.

#186 CrowdedElevatorfartz on 02.08.13 at 8:47 pm

@#103 Not 1st

OMG! You actually believe that conspiracy horse$##t ?

#187 jess on 02.08.13 at 8:48 pm

Eagle bay said: There are so many rules, regulations and laws that most of them are forgotten and useless.
Blame our education systems for part of this ignorance.

who is advising?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/29_01_13_fo4_taxingquestions.pdf

#188 Daisy Mae on 02.08.13 at 9:08 pm

#166Steven Rowlandson: “Female real estate agents using sex appeal to seduce the real estate virgins. Some people will do anything for money. Considering the consequences it is shamefull in more ways than one.”

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

If it wasn’t so pathetic, I’d think it was laughable. :-)

#189 blase on 02.08.13 at 9:34 pm

“Old Man”, do you intentionally write to not be understood?

#190 jess on 02.08.13 at 9:41 pm

charter cities new colonialism?

Honduras revives the idea of the charter city – free-market enclaves where corporations can operate virtually under their own rules.

“Honduras is a place that has been devastated for literally centuries by the oligarchs. But now there are some laws that get in their way and they would like to get rid of those laws …. They simply see this as yet another way to increase their wealth at the expense of other folks.”

- William Black, a professor of economics and law

The idea is to create at least two so-called super-cities that, although on Honduran land, would be planned and run by private companies and free to make up their own laws.

Its backers say the scheme would attract investment on a huge scale and create business-friendly enclaves similar to Hong Kong and Singapore
..

http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/insidestoryamericas/2013/02/2013287134869343.html

#191 Devore on 02.08.13 at 9:48 pm

#168 Chickenlittle

I think you will find most guys have few illusions about the nature of the arrangement. Willful suspension of disbelief. It is a nice fantasy to live in for a few hours.

#192 Richard and Zeus on 02.08.13 at 9:55 pm

@#103 Not 1st

OMG! You actually believe that conspiracy horse$##t ?

Do you have any evidence to support the fact that oil is “NOT” plentiful? There are 1000+ full oil tankers floating around the world at anytime. This does not even take into account all the oil processed domestically and used without taking to sea.

NO….I don’t believe anything corporations or govts tell me because they have been caught lying, stealing and murdering too many times. WMDs ring a bell?

#193 Pr on 02.08.13 at 10:18 pm

Oups! Sorry.

The money is still flowing is real estate, because of F. I am very intrigue what will happen, when , only the banks will take all the risk in lending the money for real estate.

#194 Derek R on 02.09.13 at 1:59 pm

#191 jess on 02.08.13 at 9:41 pm wrote
charter cities new colonialism?

Honduras revives the idea of the charter city – free-market enclaves where corporations can operate virtually under their own rules.

Thanks, jess. I have been following this story but hadn’t seen that development. Looks like the Honduras Supreme Court was sacked for coming up with the “wrong” decision.

#195 TurnerNation on 02.09.13 at 3:27 pm

Haha, I trust she’s not adding Garth as a facebook friend.

#196 RickOShea on 02.10.13 at 5:40 pm

I saw his kerfuffle on the TV news – said to my wife – if this does not make it into Garth Turner’s blog, I will eat my kilt.