Eddy’s story

Have you noticed more people on this blog out for my blood lately? I must be doing something useful. In fact, in recent weeks the barbarians have been ingenious. Some post here using the identities of regular bloggers, hoping I won’t notice. I do. Others just link to external blogs calling me a dink. Yawn. And others try to squeeze through comments suggesting what I can do with all my orifices. Those I sell.

All this vitriol I attribute to the obvious fact things are starting to unravel for those who swilled the Kool-Aid, and now glimpse the inevitable. Houses are unaffordable. Inflation rages. Real estate prices are unsustainable. Rates and taxes will rise. And those who eschewed diversification to roll the dice on granite and stainless need someone to blame. I’m handy. I’m unapologetic. And mostly, I don’t care.

This brings me to Eddy, who read a comment here by some feathered numbnuts named Angry Bird, claiming most of this pathetic blog’s readers are low-income losers who work at McD’s. Eddy wrote me the following letter last night, which I am sharing with you. I’ll let him speak for himself – a property virgin who lost it. And rose again.

Hey Garth,

Love your blog.  Was turned onto it about 8 months ago and the reason I read it daily is because you speak the truth about the majority of things.  (No one knows it all, right?).  Anyway, I’ve noticed lately a considerably greater amount of opposition to much of the things you are saying.  This intrigues me as it suggests a transition in the general conception of real estate.  Before people ignored what you said or brushed it off as just doomsday conspiracy theories.  Now, it’s hitting home and people are getting defensive.  Enjoyable to sit on the sidelines and watch it all play out.  But after #11 Angry Bird’s comment today, I wanted to chime in and offer my two cents.

I WAS everything you talk about.  25 years old, with my college girlfriend, final year of University, and we were both horny… obviously not for each other cause we had been together for 5 years but for a house.  I only had work during my 4 month co-op work terms, she made decent income being fresh outta college but we obviously couldn’t afford a house so we settled on something cheap.  A $335,000, 800 square foot cube.  Fice year term, 30 year amortization, 10% down.  Got my $15k from my daddy cause I’m a spoiled brat.

Anyway, we convinced ourselves and our families that it was an investment.  After all, why burn money on rent (I’ll go over all the money I would have “burnt” renting later).  All we were concerned with was being able to afford the monthly cost.  I don’t think people realize that this monthly cost lasts for longer than you even know life to exist if you ever want to actually own what you’re paying for.  Buying real estate today at current prices is exactly like renting just with a way higher damage deposit (down payment) and a way higher monthly carrying cost.  Not to mention it financially restricts your ability to adapt to life changes or follow opportunities beyond ones current bubble.

So we bought, man it was easy.  “Hey Mom?  Are we supposed to pay this realtor that’s been driving around for weeks finding and showing us houses?”  I was seriously expecting some kind of bill at the end of it all.  “No, no.  It’s the seller’s obligation to pay both realtors.”  Ohhhh, no big deal then.  When it comes time to sell, I’ll just pay the realtor with all of the crazy profits from the sure value increase :).  It’s so simple.  Not once did the bank ever mention (nor did my parents for that matter) that if something were to change in 5 years (how could something NOT change) and we wanted to sell our home that there would be quite a substantial penalty.  It’s all lollipops and rainbows at the buying phase.  I wouldn’t sign-up for 5 years with a new girl I just met no matter how beautiful she was even if she did have brand new stainless silicon appliances.  But unfortunately, we live in a society of instant gratification and if I want a house today, even if it does cost more money than I’ve made or spent in my entire life combined, I’m gonna have that house tomorrow.

Well, 2 years went by at:
$1,700/mth mortgage
$400/mth condo fees
$200/mth property tax
Let’s not forget about $33,000 damage deposit (down payment)
GRAND TOTAL: $88,200 or $3,675/mth

Also take into account that during those 24 months, 9 of them I was in Victoria going to school full-time paying rent AND my mortgage.  And another 9 I was working up north in the oil patch.

Then it happened.  The break-up.  I looked at every angle.  Only option was to sell.  Let me tell you, the whole selling process, not the same as the buying process.  First of all the bank tells you that their interest differential calculation amounts to over $15k.  Then you crunch the numbers for realtor costs and finally quantify commission percentages into an actual amount sucking another $12k.  Goes without saying that the amount we paid off the principal is completely insignificant.  All said and done, my mommy knows a lawyer AND a realtor so we were able to substantially cut costs on lawyer fees and commissions resulting in both parties walking away only having to pay the bank $1,000.  And the property value was only sold for 5 – 6% less than we paid.  But I count my blessings everyday that I was even able to walk away without having to take out a loan in order to sell my property.

Don’t worry.  This email isn’t all negative and depressing.  After finally releasing the burden of that cube in the sky, I rented a lakefront property c/w dock and boat lift right on Okanagan Lake $1,000/mth (house worth $1,000,000) for 9 months.  And now I rent a fully furnished luxury condo overlooking the same lake, dock, boat lift, pool, hot tub all included for $1,500/mth.  Obviously it’s for sale cause the current owners have learned their lesson of trying to buy real estate at the height of the market in 2006 for investment purposes.  I’m not worried at all about having to move either when someone buys it cause guess what?  I’m quite certain that ain’t happening soon in Kelowna.  With all those nice amenities that I listed, oh ya, and c/w geothermal heating which subsequently needs a complete overhaul, condo fees for the owners are well above $600/mth and on their way to a large increase.

I learned my lesson the hard way, and take my word for it, there will be a lot of naïve people learning valuable life lessons very soon.

And in response to #11 Angry Bird.  I’m a 28 year old Electrical Engineer, made $170,000 last year only 2 years outta University, I 100% guarantee I’m smarter and a far better athlete than you, I definitely have a hotter girlfriend…. Actually, all three of them are hotter, and at any moment I can grab my duffle bag, jump in my paid off competition wakeboard boat and hit the open seas in search of my next lake front dream home where I truly only have to consider monthly carrying costs.

Eddy

299 comments ↓

#1 Tim on 04.19.11 at 10:10 pm

Garth,
With all the stats you’ve been citing, you must have a sense of how much the market will fall in Vancouver, if it ever does…How much in percentage terms do you think the market will fall here?

#2 Kurt on 04.19.11 at 10:11 pm

Yaayyy Eddie!

#3 Todd on 04.19.11 at 10:22 pm

Whenever I hear stories like this, this always pops into my head. Just pretend the doctor is talking about the real estate market and Mr Burns is your average Vancouverite.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhW2hb6cRIg

At least Eddy learned.

#4 Pro Star on 04.19.11 at 10:23 pm

Is the GTA not the New York north? If that is the case why don’t we hear of a huge crash in New York real estate, but the GTA is going to have a huge correction?

#5 Aizlynne on 04.19.11 at 10:26 pm

Garth.

Between my hubby and I we make over 6 figures a year. That isn’t to brag, only to tell you that poster (Angry whatever) is hoping for uneducated masses, but fails miserably at being psychic.

BTW .. I work in commercial real estate in Calgary and things are slow. Most of my space is sitting vacant well over 6 months and renal rates are coming down (of course this is suburban … not downtown).

Btw … I prefer A&W over McDonald’s as their share prices are much more stable and they pay a pretty decent ROT monthly per share. Good for those on fixed incomes! (Plus they make a pretty mean Grandma burger).

#6 Micawber on 04.19.11 at 10:26 pm

Reality check. Electrical engineers do not make $170K. No way no how. I help hire them

#7 Victor on 04.19.11 at 10:28 pm

Way to go Eddy!

My wife and I earn nearly 200K gross and we rent an apartment for $1500/month in Toronto. Both our RRSPs are maxed out. Both our TFSAs are maxed out, and we have non-registered investments filled with ETFs, fixed income and dividend paying blue-chips growing for us every year – And we have NO DEBT WHATSOEVER.

Like you, we are free and live well. Travel, go out whenever we want and spend as we see fit (but prudently nonetheless). We could not be happier being “non-owners” in this crazy bubble of a housing market in Canada.

Wish I could say the same for our friends, but regrettably virtually all of them are leveraged with debt (mortgage, line of credit, credit card, vehicle, student loans, etc) and many have not made much headway on financial planning. It saddens us to know that the coming years will lead to much heartache for many of them as interest rates and cost of living rises, but we did what we could to warn as many as we could, but NOT ONE listened…

#8 Kevin in Winnipeg on 04.19.11 at 10:32 pm

I was waiting for the douchbag comments to come out sooner or later…. low and behold, there they are in Eddy’s last paragraph. Your credibility just went out the window along with real estate predictions. Way to go champ, you told him.

#9 Elmer on 04.19.11 at 10:38 pm

170k/yr with 2 years experience? Highly doubtful. Average salaries for engineering grads in Canada is around 45-50k, maybe 60k with 2 or 3 years exp. That’s assuming they’re lucky enough to find a job in their field at all, many engineering grads aren’t due to the rampant outsourcing. I call BS.

#10 Siddelly on 04.19.11 at 10:39 pm

Eddy, you should be giving the alternate universe Tom Vu Real Estate course where people will get the hot babes on the yaught by NOT buying into the Condo dream! Anyway, I can see how an extra 2100 a month cash flow can pay for a few benefits for all those lucky ladies.

#11 S.B. on 04.19.11 at 10:39 pm

Is this guy Chad’s brother??

Attn. Blog Dogs: the following blog user names are still available for your posting use.
Claim yours today:

– TurnerNation
– Chooch it
– property spruiker
– Anon
– MissyBunnyII
– Squamish Sasquatch

#12 Taiwan is not China on 04.19.11 at 10:41 pm

Debt kills. Stop this madness. First time buyers need to strike. I will never buy until price is normalized so should all first time buyers.

#13 Joe on 04.19.11 at 10:44 pm

I like Eddy. He’s like a Garth Jr.

#14 OttawaMike on 04.19.11 at 10:45 pm

Well penned note Eddy, Thanks for sharing.

#15 Carp on 04.19.11 at 10:45 pm

This made me look into who are the top 1% earners in Canada and I’m in that fold .. f$%^. So … sir… I disagree with your assessment of who frequent this site!

I’m so glad I sold my suburan castle (and before that my Richond,BC crack shack) … I’ve not looked back since.

I’m renting a farm house and land and loving it so far!

#16 CalgaryRocks on 04.19.11 at 10:46 pm

LOL. Eddy you’re a stud man. Send us some pictures (of your bank statements). There are tons of gold diggers around here and I don’t think Chad can handle them all.

;)

#17 mel on 04.19.11 at 10:49 pm

For all those who have nothing ‘inteligent’ to add, please find something else to do.

If you do not agree that house prices are too high, and will go down in the future, FINE, but tell us the reasons behind that assessment. Don’t waste my reading time with a lot of crap.

If you agree that house prices will go down, tell us why? Garth tell us why, so should you!

I also enjoy people’s assessment of the future, and how to prepare our porfolios accordingly. Not everyone has the same idea as how to invest our hard earned money, however, it helps to get other’s point of view.

#18 LH on 04.19.11 at 10:49 pm

Hi Garth,

I love diversification, just like you. I am also concur with the guideline 60/40 split in stocks / bonds, for most individuals with no debt. For the sake of simplicity, let’s ignore human capital here.. which is also a significant if not the most signifcant part of our assets. (People with stable jobs like doctors, government workers, and pop authors should increase their equity portion. People with risky jobs like derivatives traders will be better off having more bonds and eschew highly correlated bank preferreds etc)

Not all homeowners have the same personal circumstances. Your 60/40 split is not a one-size-fits-all portfolio. Furthermore, I fear that some of your readers may be mislead into refinancing to buy bonds (in part) in the name of “diversification”. Paying a higher rate (e.g. 4% for a 5Y fixed mortgage) to receive a lower coupon (less than 4% for many solid corporates, and much less than that for federal and provincial debt) is not diversification. It is beyond pointless, it is a guaranteed LOSS.

For those who like want to spike their porfolios this way, I suggest borrowing short (e.g. floating, at P-0.9 or environs) and investing either 100% equities or in higher risk, higher yielding preferreds and junk bonds.
As mentioned above, this is more appropriate for those with stable income streams such as unionized David Miller acolytes and their ilk. For the rest of us, better to pay down that mortgage first!

Respectfully,

LH

Nobody in their right mind would take an amortized, five-year mortgage to buy bonds. But I told you that the last time you said it. — Garth

#19 Chris L. on 04.19.11 at 10:50 pm

Eddie, going against the grain ahead of the crowd. Brilliant and eternally repeatable throughout history for big gains.

#20 Debtisforever on 04.19.11 at 10:51 pm

Hey Eddy, what’s your number? hmm…smart AND rich! lol

#21 dog on 04.19.11 at 11:00 pm

” I’m a 28 year old Electrical Engineer, made $170,000 last year only 2 years outta University”

…didnt make the cut a few times in grade school Eddie?

#22 Increasing that 1% on 04.19.11 at 11:00 pm

Enjoyed Eddy’s letter. Many who haven’t been ‘burned’ just can’t get it- such is life with the stove..

Garth, are you going to be contributing to this new “Sun” Network News, on channel 52? Your own segment…”The Turner Report”…”Turner’s Corner” .. Hey, would be especially entertaining if you could take callers, and make responses as you do here! click, nnexxt

#23 Marina on 04.19.11 at 11:03 pm

My pal is Electrical Engineer as well working at gas company , but making only 85K annually ( he is an immigrant). How come you made $170,000 last year ?

#24 T.O. Bubble Boy on 04.19.11 at 11:04 pm

Vancouver rejects proposed big casino in downtown core

I guess the city already lost their “double down” on the Olympic Village?

Also – if there’s no casino, how do you expect to keep attracting offshore money?

#25 Wise Guy on 04.19.11 at 11:08 pm

This whole housing mania that is going on is very similar to what I have seen happen to one particular penny stock the past couple of weeks.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine told me that I should check out this stock, Intertainment Media Inc (INT) on the TSX-v. It was trading at .42 cents.

I looked at it and said yeah, but it’s a penny stock and I don’t see anything happening with it.

Last week, it moved up to over a $1 and then yesterday closed at around $2.15. Yes, I felt sick.

It was unreal the mania that has been happening. Today, I”m refreshing my browser and can’t believe my eyes as it steadily it moves up today from $2.15 to $3.25. No word of a lie, but within a couple of minutes, I refreshed my browser and the stock was now $1.89.

The stock ended up at $2.25, but look at the graph.

http://www.stockhouse.com/tools/?page=%2FFinancialTools%2Fsn%5Fadvancedcharts%2Easp%3Fsymbol%3DV%2EINT%26subnav%3Dadvanced

I don’t care what anybody says, two weeks ago, it was trading at .40 cents. If I had invested lets say $5000 then, I would have had $40,000 if I sold at $3.20, but the fact is that I didn’t invest or gamble and just watched this stock go up and up and up.

Now, what if I were the investor, who was late to the party and perhaps invested my $5000 at $3.25 today and it closed at $2.25. That’s a third of my investment that I would have instantly lost. This graph that has gone straight up, looks a lot like the housing markets graph and the fact is that housing won’t drop within minutes like it did today with this stock, but when it does start dropping, it will happen a lot quicker than one will realize.

Sure I’m kicking myself for not buying at .40 cents, but now I’m just watching. Perhaps, this company is the real deal, who knows, but I just feel so much more at ease sitting back and watching it unfold.

Just in the same way that I feel so much more at ease renting and not buying into a market that very likely could come crashing down in the same way that this stock in effect did today.

Who knows, it might very well rise up again, but that’s the difference as Housing absolutely will not continue to rise and as an investment, we are done folks, so my suggestion is to sit back and enjoy it if you are on the sidelines!

#26 Mr. Reality on 04.19.11 at 11:08 pm

Good post

I hate people who brag about how much they make……

Money means nothing….Look at home equity!

Mr. R.

#27 Jody on 04.19.11 at 11:10 pm

Eddy rocks! Livin’ it large while house horny nitwits sit at home fondling their granite. I’m in the same situation, I rent for a third of what it would cost me to own, the rest is money in the investment account, no debt, plan to stay that way. I can move when I want, and have done so several times the past ten years, there is to much cool stuff to see out there. All those idiots that think your less of a man if you don’t own a house, are exactly that, idiots.

Taxes suck: http://www.lewrockwell.com/sowell/sowell41.1.html

#28 Gatineau Beach on 04.19.11 at 11:13 pm

Right on Eddie ! We’re doing the same ( minus the three chicks ) renting and waiting it out. Sold our 5 acre Lakefront property last year and will be sitting on the cash till this market starts to make sense again. Here in the Ottawa / Outaouais region prices have officially hit a ridiculous level in the last two years.
We want a 1-2 acre property within a 15-20 drive of the city. 10 years ago 200k got you a nice 2000+ sq ft two story house with big garage on a nice 1+ acre lot.
Now that same house is easily +400k. These 400-600k houses are all over Cantley , Val-des-monts & Chelsea.
How can SO MANY people afford these ? A big chunk of those properties are owned by government workers. I’d be curious to see what the AVERAGE salary is with these folks ? 50k – maybe 60k /year. Somethings gotta give soon.We could just give-in and buy the house we want but I’d have a hard time enjoying it right after the price corrections roll along. Argh ! I rather wait and pick one from the PILE once all this mess will unravel.

I love this blog Garth , so happy to have found it.
I’ve been telling people since 06/07 that real estate was going up too fast around here and will implode soon. Now I don’t feel like such a freak anymore.

Will.

#29 Makes Cents on 04.19.11 at 11:16 pm

Most people who comment on this page have interesting things to say. Why get so twisted over comments like yesterday’s Angry Bird? They only want a reaction. Just as those who insist on being “first”. Simply skip over them and read the comments that are worthy of your time. I disagree with many of the things I read here but appreciate a different perspective. If you all keep encouraging them, they will continue to taunt. Go back and check the grammar from Angry Bird’s post and you will find no reason to post your annual income.

#30 Cellar Dwellar on 04.19.11 at 11:16 pm

$170,000 a year right out of University, no wonder Engineers are so arrogant.

#31 Laughin Eddie on 04.19.11 at 11:18 pm

Thank you Fort McMurray… You’re good for one thing.

T4 – $135,000 (13 hrs/day adds up)
LOA – $35,000

Btw. Live out allowance is tax free money.

#32 Waiting.... on 04.19.11 at 11:19 pm

If our universities continue to turn out hicks like this who can’t spell and have poor grammar, then this whole country is in trouble. Honestly, Eddie, if you’re going to write about your experience, at least write properly. It will make you appear much more intelligent.

At what university do they teach engineering students sentence construction? — Garth

#33 martin on 04.19.11 at 11:20 pm

ctv news today stated rates going up to beat inflation, and there is more to come. garth is it true that we may face an increace of a full 1% by the end of the year??

I told you that months ago. — Garth

#34 bubble town on 04.19.11 at 11:21 pm

Is New York crashing, Is Chicago crashing, is Boston RE going down….I dont think so…GTA will keep prices! In what planet you guys live, look around houses are selling…not as fast as use to but selling top prices!

You obviously know nothing about recent real estate valuations in New York, Boston or Chicago. — Garth

#35 sick_of_waiting_to_buy on 04.19.11 at 11:21 pm

2 years old University Grad. Electrical Engineer making $170K. Not believable, unless you work for your Mom/Dad family company or a Consultant. But hey even to be consultant, you need to be a P.Eng, which requires at least 4 years of experience in Ontario.

#36 martin on 04.19.11 at 11:22 pm

cbc says the same thing :

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2011/04/19/inflation-march.html

i guess we are screewd

#37 CoB on 04.19.11 at 11:23 pm

To all those questioning Eddy’s numbers, look back at the original post… “nine months up north in the oil patch”. If you work away from home= premium.

FWIW-Spouse and I are both engineers (29 years old) and rent a house in Vancouver w/ no plans to jump on the property ladder. There are many Eddies out there….

#38 VMT on 04.19.11 at 11:23 pm

Right on, Garth. Here’s some info on what happened to the Irish (who are ahead of us):

Hot Spots with Max Keiser – Ireland Part 1
http://youtu.be/A5zXU1bQ3tQ

Hotspots with Max Keiser – Ireland (2/2)
http://youtu.be/F59Z8u8KuTE

#39 Mister Obvious on 04.19.11 at 11:28 pm

I applaud the Eddie story if that is in fact they way it happened, but I strongly suspect there is a component of BS contained therein. This statement I believe though: “Got my $15k from my daddy cause I’m a spoiled brat”.

I’m astonished by the naivety of a top earning 28-year-old engineer who needs his mom to tell him how RE commission works. That just the kind of smart young pup I’d want to pay 175 large per annum. When I retired from engineering in 2007 very competent engineers with sought after specialties and many years of experience were pulling maybe $110K per year. But of course he is smart, a real Olympian by the sound of it and quite lady magnet to boot.

Now I love this blog and am very thankful there is a Garth Turner in this world to help us keep at least one foot planted in reality. But let’s face it, coming up with a fresh and interesting blog entry 6 days a week for free consumption by the masses must get a bit tedious sometimes. I understand how one might want to let some testimonials air from time to time. But really, who here agrees with me that young Eddie seems a bit of a jerk-off.

I had plenty to write about today, but felt this was a letter worth publishing. Eddie might agree to stop being a jerk-off if you stop biting his ankle. — Garth

#40 dosouth on 04.19.11 at 11:28 pm

Eddy you make me smile.

We live in the Sun”less” Okanagan as well. Glad mom and dad could help you and your trust fund kicking in the extra 100k or so to top up your eroneous wage claim… although maybe dad owns the company…say what!?!

Don’t hate the players…. eh Eddy!

#41 martin on 04.19.11 at 11:30 pm

#4 Pro Star on 04.19.11 at 10:23 pm

-ask your father what happened 21 years ago about real estate in Toronto. Toronto its not New York its just a town with over 50% resident non born canadians and not very smart people. Like ME!!!

read and learn and get the free advice from Garth Turner.

#42 Another Calgarian on 04.19.11 at 11:32 pm

Definitely plausible that a 2nd year engineer is making that kind of money if he works in the oil patch as mentioned. Pretty unlikely if he actually lives and works in the Okanogan I think, but spend ~170 days a year working up on some of the projects around Ft Nelson for ~$1000/day and you can get to $170K no problem. I’m a renter in a similar situation but I only like working 90-100 days a year.

It is bemusing to see the pity on people’s faces when they find out you’re a 29 year old renter that only works 90 days a year but my liquidity and freedom makes me feel warm and fuzzy on the inside.

#43 squidly77 on 04.19.11 at 11:33 pm

New York, Boston and Chicago are all down between 30% and 50%
http://www.deptofnumbers.com/asking-prices/

#44 not 1st on 04.19.11 at 11:40 pm

$170k for a 28 year old engineer is only possible if you decide to settle in filthy fort mac and get fondled in camp, otherwise its B.S. How do I know? I spent 15 years in the patch in cowtown and topped at $120k in my last year, then retired on my massive real estate holdings (i.e. farmland).

#45 squidly77 on 04.19.11 at 11:41 pm

I posted the wrong link, that ones for asking prices. Sold prices are much lower. The sold link I had no longer works, bummer.

#46 Hoof - Hearted on 04.19.11 at 11:42 pm

23 Marina on 04.19.11 at 11:03 pm

My pal is Electrical Engineer as well working at gas company , but making only 85K annually ( he is an immigrant). How come you made $170,000 last year ?

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

Total BS.

Electrical engineers are adept at bypassing meters and indoor agriculture.

#47 Paolo on 04.19.11 at 11:43 pm

Great letter Eddy – – bit of a reality check for everyone in the mainstream. This is priceless:

“…we convinced ourselves and our families that it was an investment. After all, why burn money on rent…All we were concerned with was being able to afford the monthly cost. I don’t think people realize that this monthly cost lasts for longer than you even know life to exist if you ever want to actually own what you’re paying for. Buying real estate today at current prices is exactly like renting just with a way higher damage deposit (down payment) and a way higher monthly carrying cost. Not to mention it financially restricts your ability to adapt to life changes or follow opportunities beyond ones current bubble…”

Garth, people are getting uncomfortable because the fragile cracks in this financial logic are starting to show again and I don’t think the federal gov’t will be able to manipulate interest rates or lending guidelines any longer – – no more tricks left up their sleeve. I’ve suspected for some time that many out there are already suffering in silence and denial is one of the most predictable human responses. No one wants the party to end and the CMHC punch bowl will soon be empty.

If anyone has 46 minutes to spare and is concerned about what we all discuss on this blog, please take the time to watch the following. I stayed up very late a few nights ago to catch it on TV and I was blown away. It’s what I and we all have been saying for so long:

http://www.knowledge.ca/program/overdose-the-next-financial-crisis

Wow!

#48 Hoof - Hearted on 04.19.11 at 11:45 pm

Goldman Gravy Train Over For Buffett

http://www.tickerspy.com/newswire/?p=4345

Undoubtedly, this is a deal Buffett didn’t want to see come to an end. When Goldman informed Buffett last month that it would be buying back the preferred shares Berkshire purchased, Buffett said “I’m going to be the Osama bin Laden of capitalism,” in effect joking that he would make it hard for Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein to find him to buy back the preferred shares.

#49 reality guy on 04.19.11 at 11:47 pm

Way to go Eddy

care free. Must be fun out there in
the Okanagan.

Go man go…. Free Willy

#50 Mark on 04.19.11 at 11:52 pm

$170k for an EE in Fort Mac with almost no experience? I, too, call BS. EE is one of the lowest paid and least in-demand disciplines of engineering, especially in the oilpatch. And the downturn in the past few years has been so severe that it seems improbable that an entry-level guy would be hired. I know EE’s who have gone much of the past decade with little or no employment.

How does the guy’s salary possibly relate to his message? — Garth

#51 Guy_in_Regina on 04.19.11 at 11:57 pm

Ft. Mac then eh. What Eddy doesn’t tell you is that he spends hi LOA on flights (and then some if week in/week out) and spends his days surrounded by, well, people who work in Ft. Mac. My bro was working there for a while and couldn’t get out fast enough – took a big pay cut to stay in cowtown. Three girlfriends? Riiiiiight.

I am jelous of the rental rates in most of Canada, though. Rent in the Vag is a rip-off.

#52 All is knowledge. on 04.20.11 at 12:04 am

There is a wise saying, be careful for what you wish as it may just happen. Those who wish for a housing crash may just get it but with it comes a destroyed economy just like the U.S.A. Millions with no jobs, no future and no hope. Millions relying on food stamps for food. Is this what we want for Canada? Let us all pray that we get a gradual soft landing in real estate so that we dont wind up like the U.S.A.

#53 LJ on 04.20.11 at 12:07 am

Eddy learned the hard way. But he learned his lesson and all those Property Virgins out there would be wise to heed his words.

Guess that we’ll all have to wait until tomorrow to hear the rant about inflation. Carney should be primed to goose the rates next month, after the election, when we will hopefully get 4-5 years before the next trip to the polls (whoever gets the prize). Then again, with this bunch of buffoons…..

#54 Tom from Mississauga on 04.20.11 at 12:07 am

Hi Eddy
Nice story. Mistakes are not bad, just an opportunity to learn. Also, need a roommate over there, cuts the rent in half!
Tom
PS My condo building now has more units for sale in than it did during financial crisis. Long Branch, Port Credit, Clarkson, Square One, Meadowvale. Tonnes of empty condos now across Mississauga. Same too by where my brother rents at QEW and Spadina!

#55 T.O. Bubble Boy on 04.20.11 at 12:08 am

I hear Timmie’s workers in Ft Mac make $171k now.

#56 Dan in Victoria on 04.20.11 at 12:12 am

Smart girlfriend.

#57 Kurt on 04.20.11 at 12:12 am

#21 dog

Learn to read. Eddy did a co-op degree at UVic – it takes a few more years but when you get out you’re much more marketable. Your supposedly clever heckle just makes you look stupid.

#58 kc on 04.20.11 at 12:15 am

34 bubble town on 04.19.11 at 11:21 pm

Is New York crashing, Is Chicago crashing, is Boston RE going down….I dont think so…GTA will keep prices! In what planet you guys live, look around houses are selling…not as fast as use to but selling top prices!

You obviously know nothing about recent real estate valuations in New York, Boston or Chicago. — Garth

be nice to all grasshoppers Garth…. they weren’t taught about the 80’s and the 30’s are a two line para in a text book between WW1 and WW2….

#59 BC Bring Cash on 04.20.11 at 12:16 am

This clown Eddy claims to be an Electrical Engineer in Kelowna earning $170,000 per year. Yea right! I got a job in Kelowna as a Auto Dealership Service Manager and was told that my income of $43,000 per annum was a good salary. As I’ve said
before bring 2 million dollars to Kelowna if you want to be a Millionaire. That kind of money does not exist here period. This is a service industry and retirement town.

#60 Get Real on 04.20.11 at 12:20 am

How can a 28 yr old Electrical Engineer make 170K per year???
No seriously, is this a typo

He explained this in his comments. $64K base plus equal overtime and living allowance. — Garth

#61 windtunnel on 04.20.11 at 12:24 am

Pressure’s on. New baby due in June and landlord says we gotta move out. They’re moving back in. Renting ain’t all sunshine & rainbows, but to think about putting 50-65% of my after tax dollar into a owning a junker house that is just north of being condemned is unthinkable. I’ll move 100 times before considering buying into this ponzi scheme. But the pressure to buy… ohhh the pressure.

#62 LH on 04.20.11 at 12:26 am

I am an electrical engineer as well (undergrad was EE/CS). Last two years my gross salary income was >$1million CAD (totally legit, fully taxed, at a too-big-to-fail bank you may have heard of)

Unlike Eddie, I still own my four houses in downtown Toronto. I hold on to them because they yield very nicely.

Just like Eddie, I personally RENT. No shame! My tenants collectively pay more than 10x my personal rent per month!

Unlike Eddie, I graduated on time. I turn 27 this year.

Sorry gals, I’m already taken!

#63 nonplused on 04.20.11 at 12:26 am

#9 Elmer

If Eddy is working oil patch in Northern BC (Horn River area) who knows what he is making. It’s all shift work and overtime.

$170,000 a year seems high for a 28 year old engineer, but he could also be counting unrealized stock option gains, again if he is oil patch.

Also most companies give you a “total income” statement that includes their cost of benefits and payroll taxes, which adds a good 25%. But that alone can’t get $60,000 to $170,000, so some other source of income is certainly in need of explanation.

So Eddy, what’s the nature of the income?

#30 Cellar Dwellar

$170,000 a year is usually a senior engineer with several direct reports and well over 10 years experience. So yes I agree it seems high but if there are extenuating circumstances like stock options that are currently doing well or lots of paid overtime it might be plausible, but barely. On the other hand if he can program computers and is working for Google the sky is the limit.

#31 Laughin Eddie

If you are Eddy or just in a like situation then I think you have shown how it could be done. And if I am not mistaken the LOA is tax free. But on the other hand you probably spend the whole LOA on living out, so I am not sure you should include it as income. Although I was on an LOA once and paid significantly less that the living out allowance envisioned by renting a room in my boss’s basement. So it is possible to pocket some of that if you are frugal.

The whole of the construction industry (where working remote) is supplementing their incomes by collecting an LOA based on renting a hotel and eating in restaurants but then hauling out their RV and camping near the site or rooming with a bunch of coworkers together in an unused summer house. I know Garth hates RV’s but some people actually do turn them to profit.

When I was profiting on my LOA, I was living in the basement of a house that was a walkout, with a pool, backing on a golf course, which then backed onto a lake. I think I paid about 1/3 of my LOA, and my boss’s wife cooked dinner and did my laundry. (He was renting the place and also living on an LOA.)

Anyway, in the future I suggest you convert your income to the 8 hour a day living in Calgary equivalent. Teachers or other “civil servants” aren’t even willing to work 6 hours a day, let alone 13, and let alone 50 weeks a year, but they read what you are grossing and go on strike. We should all convert our salaries to 6 hours per day and 9 months per year before discussing it publically. You made $35,000 last year on a TEHPI basis (teacher equivalent hours put in).

PS: There are a few shining examples of teachers that actually go the distance because they do care about the kids and love thier jobs. 3 in every school. If you are a teacher, and you leave at 3, you aren’t one of them.

#64 Jon B on 04.20.11 at 12:30 am

Ed’s story does convey a nicely worded warning about the true power of the banks that dole out their sweet credit. Once the higher rates hit the fan, many will wake up to the reality that the banksters and the Realturds are in fact the true winners.

#65 Paully on 04.20.11 at 12:31 am

“Eddie the Ego!”

#66 Eddy on 04.20.11 at 12:31 am

What do I gain from lying? The imaginary recognition of a virtual audience? I’ll go to my POF account for that. Wasn’t bragging either. I felt it necessary to portray that smart successful people DO in fact visit this blog and it’s not just uneducated conspiracy theorists patiently awaiting a market collapse while we can sit in our rented dwellings counting gold coins and harvesting seeds.

To clarify my salary is not $170k. What I earned last year was $170k.

Regular Time/Vacation/Holiday Pay $64,000
Overtime $66,000 (13 hrs/7 days a week adds up)
Live Out Allowance/Travel $38,000

I exaggerated a little… $168k

The funny thing is, I don’t even feel like I can afford to buy real estate. I worked damn hard for that money and I don’t feel like paying a bank hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest over the next 30 years or let it evaporate in an inevitable market correction. It doesn’t take an Electrical Engineer to see this cannot be sustained.

Anyway, I used to care about new hardwood and would deliberate for weeks on what color to get. My ex used to want to swap our current granite counter tops for a different color granite… wtf! Needless to say I was caught up in the materialistic HGTV house horny world. Now I’m caught up and just as horny in a different world… boats n’ ho’s. If I’m gonna blow my hard earned money it’s going to be on matching jet ski’s or tower speakers for my boat.

Hey Garth. How’s your Harley running?

#67 james on 04.20.11 at 12:38 am

I can understand you defecting from the Cons, but to go to the Libs, Homo – plus no kids, you’ve topped it Pinko Homo, congrats.

#68 HouseBuster on 04.20.11 at 12:42 am

I for one am happy for Eddy. Good for him if he is making some good money and is enjoying life.

Why are all of you so jealous of him? What kind of people are you?

#69 Jsan on 04.20.11 at 12:48 am

Let me throw my 2 cents in.

To those people that still believe the myth that renters are poor down and outers. I am a single professional 30 something guy, owned a home but sold it when I took a job transfer to a different city (barely made anything on the sale). I have close to 600K in savings, zero debt and I still think this is hardly any money and need to catch up if I plan on retiring some day.

I live in a 2 bedroom high rise apartment and pay 1000 dollars per month which is easily covered by the money I earn from my savings/investments. Basically I live for free and this includes all of my living expenses such as food, etc. Everything is included in the price of the apartment with the exception of my cable and phone. I can run my air conditioner and stove 24 hours a day, leave all of the windows open all winter long and take 3 hour long hot showers every day and it doesn’t cost me a penny extra because it is included in my rent. I have no property tax to pay, no maintenance costs to pay and could pack up and leave on a moments notice.

After owning a house and realizing just how expensive all of the little things that add up can be, I have to chuckle at those people that still believe that being a home owner (especially if you are buying or have bought at today’s prices) is some sort of ticket to prosperity. It is just the opposite, it is a ticket to mortgage slavery. Stop listening to the lies of the real estate industry and their little catch phrases such as “Building equity”, “investment”. They never talk about losing “equity” and going deeper in debt as your overpriced home begins to drop in value.

If home prices were at realistic levels as they should be, that being maximum 3X household earnings, it is still expensive but definitely much more manageable than what a new home owner today will be paying. All I can say is stay away from the market until prices come back down to earth, rent and build up some real savings.

#70 Eddy on 04.20.11 at 12:49 am

Agreed ‘Guy-in-Regina’. Fort ShitMurray I like to call it. I’m young. Stack cash while I don’t have a wife and kiddies to look after. Build a solid net worth so I can take a HUGE pay cut and enjoy a higher quality of life working in K-Town or something.

But it does allow me to spend 4-6 days every 2 weeks in an Okanagan paradise. Or Calgary (where I’m from). Or Vegas. Or wherever. And still have a fat bank roll.

Site flights bro.

So many haters. I just shared a valuable lesson I learned. Learn through my experience, or learn through your own. One way or another you’re going to learn it.

You know the expression… don’t hate the game, hate the player… no wait, how does it go again?

#71 @crazyfasteddy on 04.20.11 at 12:49 am

I’ll confirm Eddy’s income … yes he made that coin in Ft Mac; in fact he was one of the lower wage guys out there… Trades working those hours were well into $200K and above; what he didn’t mention the entire LOA or ‘subsistance’ was spent on food and hotels… so only $135K… peanuts in Alberta… Eddy must have been salary only (no OT)…
At 28, he’s come to his senses fast…

#72 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 12:55 am

The funny thing about this article is that it doesn’t even mention that Goldman, which is not a lending institution, has no right to be living off the US taxpayer at all http://www.huffingtonpost.com/charles-gasparino/post_1965_b_851175.html

#73 SafetyBear on 04.20.11 at 12:56 am

All you people with your “I earn $170,000” AND “We make $200,000” boasts just remember.

We all have to breathe the same air.

We are all going to die.

You have a lot more to lose than people like me.

#74 JohnnyBGood on 04.20.11 at 12:58 am

Eddy learned the (not so) hard way something about the true costs of home ownership. This is something most first-timers are clueless about, because in our “pay monthly instalments for everything” society, too many prospective buyers are told by unscrupulous–or ignorant–mortgage brokers that “price does not matter, only carrying costs.’

That said, real estate (I mean real real estate, not condos) has been a good inflation hedge. Historically, real estate prices have moved roughly with the rate of inflation. This makes sense because of the “real” in real estate. I.E. it is a real asset, which should hold its value in the long run. As with any asset, prices will fluctuate over time. You have to be able to ride it out, if you so choose.

Owning a home is akin to a savings account that you live in and which pays you a real, after-tax interest rate about on a par with inflation (again, in the long run). The operating and maintenance costs are just the cost of living in a man-made structure with municipal services and taxes vs. a cave in the Niagara Escarpment. These costs need to be paid for whether you rent or own.

Periodically, things get out of whack–like now. But as long as the fundamentals hold, and the population keeps growing, the long term should be OK. (To see what happens when the fundamentals are negative, check out Detroit).

Some people do have the misfortune of buying at the peak of a boom and then for some reason (higher rates, job loss) find they can’t carry the expenses and are forced to sell at a loss or are foreclosed on. I felt very sorry for people who were forced to sell during the dip in ’08/’09. This is why I tell people: calculate your costs carefully; don’t buy more than you can (really) afford; and do a stress test to see if you can keep your home during a period of financial hardship.

Now, it may be possible that this current boom is a generational or even multi-generation peak, given that the West is in what looks like a long-term deleveraging phase. If so, then buying a home now could become the worst financial decision of your life. But even if this is a major, long-term top, you still have to look at real estate locally, not nationally and judge the supply/demand fundamentals properly.

Part of the problem is, too many people think of their home as an investment. Something to retire on. It is not. It is something to retire IN, not on. You should buy a home because you want to own the place you live in, not because you want to make a profit from it. Owning is a lifestyle choice, not a road to riches. Some people, do get lucky by buying or selling at the right time, but you can’t plan on it.

I suppose I am one of the lucky ones. My wife and I built our home in ’98 before this madness began. Our costs were low (compared to today) and our house is paid for. I don’t really care if SFH prices skyrocket or crash. Unless I have to sell for some reason, it makes no difference to me. It’s my home, not my nest egg.

#75 debtified on 04.20.11 at 1:02 am

The rent just keeps going down in Ft.Mc.!

http://fortmcmurray.kijiji.ca/c-housing-apartments-for-rent-2-bedroom-RENT-TEMPORARILY-REDUCED-PLUS-TWO-MONTHS-FREE-RENT-W0QQAdIdZ276311623

I know it’s still almost $2K (+ 2mths free rent) for a lousy two bedroom but to think that just a few days ago it was $400 more. Two years ago it must have been almost $3K.

It’s always been a futile exercise describing to people the feeling of “freedom” that comes with renting in today’s RE market, specially in Ft.Mc.. People I personally know who wanted to move out of town couldn’t because they could not sell their houses at break even prices. A co-worker juat sold his 3-yr old condo for $40K less than what he paid for because he is relocating due to work. What’s also often overlooked is the cost associated with lost opportunities. Still, people tell me that I am wasting money by renting.

Tonight, while having dinner with friends who just moved to Ft. Mc. and are staying with me, I was surprised to see a former neighbour and co-worker serving our food. She owned a condo from that infamous Penhorwood Place that was vacated last month (all seven buildings declared “condemned” by the condo board) and she’s still paying for her mortgage on that unit while renting another place to live in. She works at the restaurant for her second job so she can keep up with her expenses. Meanwhile, despite the inconvenience of being separated from my belongings for over a month now, all I had to do was find another place to rent without any major strain on my finances and quality of life (I even managed to have friends stay as guests).

Lastly, here’s something for Angry Bird: $60K working at McD, eh? I paid over $80K in personal income tax alone last year. That’s not counting my second income from the consulting company I own where I charge $123 per hour (all work done remotely). I won’t even mention the capital gains of what would have been a downpayment for a house. I have no debt and I save over 50% of my NET income; while travelling the world on my free time. Sleep well tonight in your cage, little birdie. I know I will (in my rented house).

#76 Buds on 04.20.11 at 1:14 am

Quote – All is knowledge: “Those who wish for a housing crash may just get it but with it comes a destroyed economy just like the U.S.A. Millions with no jobs, no future and no hope.”

I don’t think anyone that reads this blog WANTS the crash any more than your average chump with crumby job, 2 kids and a mortgage does, but the alternative is not much better. It’s a matter of pay now or pay later, and the sooner we get around to it and move on, the better off we will all be.

So sick of greedy c.u.next.tuesday’s that defer the reality of what they can afford. They need to address the underlying psychosis of what it is they are trying to fill in their lives with spending, spending, spending.

“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”
— Socrates

#77 Select on 04.20.11 at 1:20 am

“I’m a 28 year old Electrical Engineer, made $170,000 last year only 2 years outta University, I 100% guarantee I’m smarter and a far better athlete than you, I definitely have a hotter girlfriend.”

Despite his alleged success Eddie still struggles (and fails) to manage his ego and identify the important things in life.

Such is the shallow life of a 20 year old.

Angry Bird; winning.

#78 Beaker on 04.20.11 at 1:20 am

How does the guy’s salary possibly relate to his message? — Garth

The message is a worthy one, but if the salary is a fabrication, then the story loses credibility. I too call BS. EE’s are not making 170K 2 years out of school.

Here are the stats for BC:

http://www.apeg.bc.ca/services/employmentcentre/compensationsurvey.html

#79 Mister Obvious on 04.20.11 at 1:22 am

How does the guy’s salary possibly relate to his message? — Garth

His salary does not relate to his message. The message is clear, understood and consistent with the generally expected the fate of the young, restless and overextended.

I think the source of the outcry is that Eddie comes off sounding like a pompous three-dollar bill, which is a description we generally reserve for real estate agents. There is precious little sympathy for those guys around here. Eddie is a now subject to the same sensibility.

#80 Willywonka on 04.20.11 at 1:24 am

TLDR

Eddie: “I failed with my finances and I continue to fail with my personality. I think a hot gf is important. I also think $170k is a lot of money. Look at my biceps.”

Does that pretty much sum up your bad writing Eddie?

#81 Shane on 04.20.11 at 1:36 am

I’m an Electrical Engineer in Calgary, pulling in 140k with 8 years experience, but the thing about engineering is that most engineers do not stick with it for the long haul and move onto other things within 10 years of graduation… The money just isn’t there but there are other fields that beckon engineers with better salary and career prospects…. Most engineers go either into consulting, sales teaching, start a business or corporate management. I myself now support a sales team and live mostly off commissions and love it… I sell advanced electrical solutions to the oilpatch.

I know many EE’s in the oilpatch in Ft. Mac and Calgary… Yes, many are making $170k+ but not as strict engineers… Management (with options), small business owners, consultants, etc…

Where do you think oil and gas CEO’s come from?

#82 Tiffa on 04.20.11 at 1:38 am

Why is everyone latching on to the salary figure so vehemently? It’s weird.

Honestly. Work in oil away from home and you make insane money, overtime, living allowance, etc. There are much better things to focus on in the story… like… the point.

#83 kilby on 04.20.11 at 1:38 am

Listening to the late news in the background while I read the first 50 comments….Interest rates, maybe in May now? And #52 is right, a soft landing would be nice. Resource rich British Columbia has taken big hits in royalties from oil and forestry, a crash would have more far reaching results besides making vultures happy.

#84 r on 04.20.11 at 1:42 am

“Those who wish for a housing crash may just get it but with it comes a destroyed economy just like the U.S.A. ”

if there is a crash, it ain’t the bears wishing that will cause it. so stuff it.

#85 Heloguy on 04.20.11 at 1:51 am

I think alot of posters are in denial with regards to what an engineer can make. I was totally surprised when my son graduated and was recruited by an oilfield company in Alberta and he told me the “starting” salary was 130k a year. That was 3 years ago. He is chemical so is much more employable than an electrical engineer (Just Kidding), but if you are willing to relocate and not accept a position as a drone in an office, there is big money to be made.

Thankfully, he listened when I mentioned this blog to him and his wife. They are happy renters with a good start on their investment portfolio.

Cheers

#86 jas on 04.20.11 at 1:56 am

170k/yr with 2 years experience?

I think it is possible in some unionised environment because I’ve heard from a friend that an electrician (not an electrical engineer) is being paid $240k/yr at the Vancouver Longshoreman workplace.
I am not against unions (we need them to counter balance the management side in workplace) but I must say that at times they act against their own interests.

I won’t be surprised if an electrical engineer earned 170k/yr

#87 SuddenValley on 04.20.11 at 1:57 am

@All is knowledge, I agree with you. I’ve been watching the market for the past 12 months and I would like to see things correct but not overnight. I run a small business and the collapse of the economy would be a disastrous for me and my staff. I’m excited and scared at the same time. Lets go for a steady, gradual correction.

What do you think Garth? What should we be hoping for?

#88 JohnnyBGood on 04.20.11 at 2:00 am

#52 All is knowledge,

You’re right. A housing crash would likely mean a severe recession or depression. Therefore, I WOULD care if SFH prices crashed. We all know that at current levels of income prices are not sustainable. So lets hope for a gradual rebalancing, not a sudden collapse.

#89 Mrs Loquacious on 04.20.11 at 2:00 am

Today I found out that my twenty-something colleague and her fiancé bought a house recently. She is new to the profession and living in the GVRD, and I know she can’t be making more than $46k. I think her guy just finished his degree recently. Anyway, when I told her that we didn’t have real estate, she responded with, “Oh, you’re *just* renting?” like it was some inferior way of living. Tempted as I was, I didn’t have the heart to tell her that she will have paid double or even triple her purchase price by the time she’s done renting from the bank.

#90 JB on 04.20.11 at 2:07 am

#52 All Is knowledge If we do see a mild correction of even 10-15%, it will get ugly in a hurry. All you have to do is look at the percentage of our GDP that housing construction makes up… I know in Saskatboom I’ve never seen so many Duramax’s with bobcats behind them, most of them home landscapers… Stucco contractors.. Sprinkler companies (yeah for the 5 months the ground isn’t frozen), A/C repairman (lmfao again), framers, stone workers, small time concrete guys…

It will get UGLY!

#91 warptweet on 04.20.11 at 2:22 am

Good post Eddy, but my BS senses are tingling. 170K fresh outta school. Ain’t gonna happen.

#92 not asian on 04.20.11 at 2:27 am

Eddy claims that he paid $335,000.00 for the box (probably didn’t include lawyer fees), $15,000.00 interest differential, and sold for 5-6% lower than purchase price….unless the realtor and lawyer didn’t take any commissions and fees because they were his “mommy’s friends, how could he walk away only paying $1000.00? Did the realtor pay for Eddy’s interest differential? Did the lawyer pay for Eddy’s 5-6% loss? Because he is such a stud that he has 3 “girl”friends in Fort McMurray? Nope, does not compute. Eddy is a lying sack of **it.

#93 Devore on 04.20.11 at 2:29 am

Gonna love the comments today. All the ankle-biters getting hung up on meaningless details.

#94 John Smith (Toronto) on 04.20.11 at 2:30 am

@ Victor…. #7
Same thing here, family income just over 200K/year gross. Wife works in provincial government, I am in consulting so I get to deduct whole bunch of expenses.
RRSP maxed out (not diversified… yet), TFSA maxed out, my kid’s RESP maxed out.
My wife gets a lot of questions at work about how is it to raise a kid in apartment.. and as Garth once mentioned.. there is this place called Europe, where most people live in apartments… and they are not all delinquents, thieves and murderers.
Last year quit the job that sucked the life out of me because:
1. I hated the company (not paying promised bonuses to deceased employees)
2. I hated my boss (sleazy f..ckhead)
3. I could afford it.. :-)
The only freedom that you’ll ever have in your life is financial freedom. The rest is only cosmetics, weather you rent or own.
I choose to rent because last year we spent 1 week in Paris (not the one next to Hamilton) and another 4 weeks across Europe. What I did not do is spend yet another summer fixing basement, roof, driveway, and whole bunch of other oversized features that are successfully advertized to North American populace.
To all homeowners on this site… Good luck with your homes over the next 5-7 years. You’ll need it.

#95 realpaul on 04.20.11 at 2:32 am

Well Eddy…it’s nice to be young……enjoy it while you can. There’ll come a time when 170 still leaves you sucking hind tit at the end of the day ’cause the fat sow in training that you married burped up six kids and they all need school fee’s. You’re lawyer will have long ago changed his tune and won’t be offering up any freebies…neither will anyone else…and you’ll be paying full pop. Your boat wll be long gone and the only donuts you’ll be driving are the ones you try to hide from the kids who seem to hoover down 3 grand a month in groceries before you ever open the fridge. Oh……and hope you’re not Catholic ’cause they take 10% off the top of the gross and won’t want to listen to any whining about taxes. You’ll be lucky if you get the mini van ride home from the airport……..forget the dreams pal.

Sure…you’re a good athlete now…everybody who’s under 30 is in great shape. ……God intended it that way so the herd would breed….wait a few years after you’ve been stuck in those shitholes engineers always end up in where the only recreation is drinking mass quantities of liquor so that the thought of blowing your brains out don’t get the best of you. Most likely you’ll be 200 overweight and bald before you’re thirty.

Like all your colleagues you’ll end up with a massive soul sucking mortgage and sweet ‘f’ all to show for all your years living in the trailer camps while your sloppy fat wife sucks up bon bons and spits out pups.

Since you’re overhead is so high you’ll have no savings…probably end up not filing your taxes for a few years like so many ‘professionals’ do trying to ‘keep up with the Jones’.

Buddy……I know a zillion engineers…you guys are probably the worst investors of all with the gold star going to dentists…..but it’ll be differant for you…..I’m sure.

#96 Aussie Roy on 04.20.11 at 2:34 am

Three stages of a bursting bubble from the bubble participants..

Denial
Anger
Realisation

Its no surprise to many that the pending price correction envokes such anger among those who have been completely brainwashed by delusion thinking. Lets face it, its hard to admit you have been not only wrong but have been gullable enough to swallow such classic tales like.

Houses only ever go up.
House price doubles every X years.
Its as safe as bricks and mortar.
Rental yields dont matter its all about capital growth.

Many of those who post here remind me of small children who have just discovered the tooth fairy, santa and the easter bunny are not real. It must be tough not being able to confront the economic reality that house prices are driven by emotion and debt and house values are driven by wages.

Aussie Update

Todays story could fit well with this article.

‘The extent to which large parts of society were willing to let the good times roll on until the very last minute, a feature of the financial mania, may have been exceptional’

He also found a “tendency to ‘groupthink’ ” may have resulted in “contrarian views” being ignored or suppressed, while a “herd” instinct resulted in some banks setting aside their normal governance procedures .

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/frontpage/2011/0420/1224295069428.html

When the housing market is rising, it’s relatively easy to extract equity from one’s home and fritter it away as ‘income’. We still have the shiny cars and overseas holiday snaps to prove it. This time is now over.

http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/house-prices-carbon-price-ACTU-Jeff-Lawrence-pd20110420-G3SEK?OpenDocument&src=kgb

Government plans to release more housing blocks to help with shortage. – LOL what shortage?..

http://www.onthehouse.com.au/news/article/1105/

Banks PONZI trick exposed. Prudent lenders, hey…

ML has reverse engineered from online calculators then, as reader Sarah P. has pointed out in other articles, we need to factor in that the calculators themselves are marketing tools and probably inflate potential customers credit potential.

Nonetheless, the breadth of the discrepancy between what might be considered prudent lending criteria and what has been reverse engineered suggests there is fire behind this smoke.

http://macrobusiness.com.au/2011/04/another-ponzi-trick-exposed/

#97 Brian1 on 04.20.11 at 2:43 am

I disagree with All is Knowledge. Although America has some ways to go to full recovery they will recover. As I have said before Obama drew a line in the sand and stated not on my watch. At first I was doubtful but now I am certain of hope. The QE’s are what we needed and maybe some more. The alternative was to Hoover it and if Hoover were alive today he would not repeat the same mistakes. Canada, however, will suffer the cosequences of permitting contract slavery of others.

#98 edmonton mortgage broker on 04.20.11 at 2:44 am

hate to break it to you dawgs but it’s highly probable an electrical engineer is pulling in $140k/yr and an additional $35k LOA working the patch. in fact, i’ve seen welders with 2 years experience (non redseal) pulling in $150k including LOA working in Edmonton! they get the LOA if they’re originally from more than 100km (don’t quote me on the distance) away from the place of work.
these claimed wages of my clients are backed up with paystubs, T4s and notice of assessments. so it’s no bullshit. The kicker is alot of these high earning folks have hardly a dollar to their name. but lots of trucks, sleds, atv, harley, boat, 3rd wheel etc.

in general, i’ve seen some ridiculously high wages for very young and inexperienced people in Alberta due to labor shortages back in 2006-2007.

#99 Aussie Roy on 04.20.11 at 3:06 am

How the Aussie RE industry plans to help increase affordability for FHBs. – Oh dear, not much logic here.

REIA’s submission calls on the Government to:

• Retain current arrangements for negative gearing of property investments;

• Ensure that the family home will not be subjected to Capital Gains Tax (CGT);

• Commit to no increase in Capital Gains Tax on property investment;

• Remove stamp duty on property transactions;

• Review the First Home Owners Grant (FHOG);

• Allow first home buyers access to their superannuation (401K) for the purchase of a home, and;

• Monitor the Housing Affordability Fund (HAF) and National Rental Affordability Scheme
(NRAS) to observe their effects on housing supply and conduct a review which considers
additional measures to bridge the demand – supply imbalance.

REIA President, Mr David Airey said, “Our focus in this year’s submission is housing affordability.”
An increase of the FHOG is crucial to improving affordability in the housing market and encouraging
the return of first home buyers to the market.

Think about the points above, I struggle to understand how.

Increasing the FHB grant makes housing cheaper, history shows (data 1991 – 2009) every time this is used, prices just head higher. I would agrue that the FHB grant is little more than a sellers grant.

How does complete tax deductability on purchasing established houses help create more living space, that is if you buy the whole shortage story. Surely this kind of tax incentive just puts pressure on those wanting to buy a home to live in seeing they have to compete with those buying for tax minimisation (infestors).

Its not rocket science if you want more houses built, then remove the tax breaks on established homes and place it on newly constructed dwellings only.

If you want cheaper housing then remove the grant, the tax incentives for speculators which both only push up prices.

http://www.reia.com.au/userfiles/MEDIARELEASE_1302784779.pdf

#100 Jas on 04.20.11 at 3:13 am

Nice story from Eddy. There will be more Eddys in the coming months. However, his claim of 170k/year is total rubbish. And he brags that he has three gfs. Did not he learn from his housing mistake. Next time, what will make him broke again is having too many women. Lol. Cut the BS Eddy.

#101 Jack the Lad on 04.20.11 at 3:25 am

As for former Kelowna-man, I’d love to see this house on the lake, complete with a boat dock, that he’s getting for $1000 a month.

Last time I was in Kelowna, $1000/mo rent wouldn’t even get you a dump out in Rutland.

#102 Brian1 on 04.20.11 at 3:40 am

It looks as though Bob Carrick is siding up with Garth in a recent piece. In the meantime, thanks Bob for all the lives you have destroyed.

#103 Brian1 on 04.20.11 at 3:50 am

When Hoover was president I have no doubt that he was much like the E-Trade baby in You Tube.

#104 Robert Dudek on 04.20.11 at 3:59 am

Some of the dumbest people I met in uni were studying engineering.

#105 six-figure-renter on 04.20.11 at 4:06 am

i watched that doc that paulo #47 posted…wow is right, what an awesome piece of work.
People in Canada and especially Vancouver should watch it…cause it clearly points out that the next big bubble will not just affect the US but the whole world.

#106 Ralph Cramdown on 04.20.11 at 4:27 am

I’m certainly not wishing for a housing crash. The decline of any industry responsible for 20% of GDP is going to hurt, no matter how unwise it was for us to be spending that much on shelter in the first place. We can’t all get rich building and selling each other real estate — somebody actually has to dig up, manufacture and export stuff. But as real estate rises, more of the economy is sucked into that hot sector. At the peak in the US, almost one percent (0.91%) of GDP was going to realtor commissions alone.

There’s a big difference between wishing something will happen and seeing it as inevitable. In the long run, real estate price to rent and price to income ratios don’t increase (how could they?) so if they’re at higher than normal levels, they’re going to go down, eventually. ‘Soft landing’? Please. How many have you known about in the past, especially in real estate, and especially in markets whose rise, near the peak, was so rapid? Maybe if everybody remained calm, but then one seller panics and cuts his price because he HAS to sell, creating a fresh new low comp, sitting on the MLS statistics like a turd.

My parents’ generation did well in real estate almost regardless of where and when they bought — mainly a result of demographics. My generation will not be so lucky, and I cannot afford to buy near the top; I’d be screwed for life.

#107 Pr on 04.20.11 at 5:35 am

Real men now rent. Patiently. Thats it Eddy! Smart men!

#108 Oasis on 04.20.11 at 6:08 am

WOW.

look at the USD collapse yet again today. loonie near $1.05 and running higher, Euro at $1.45, running higher, Swiss Franc, near another HISTORIC HIGH against the dollar.. USDX broken badly… collapsing.

Oil prices near $110
Gold OVER $1500
Agricultural commodities skyrocketing

#109 bigrider on 04.20.11 at 7:08 am

#4 Prostar.

Toronto is NOT the New York north and never will be!

Let me know when we get an infrastructure or transit system anywhere near New York city and then we can compare.

Besides, New York has corrected in RE price. You have not been watching.

#110 David B on 04.20.11 at 7:20 am

Cool dude you are Fast Eddy …. few words of caution,

Watch our for Faster Eddette … but not close the door on love …. whatever than is … LOL

#111 David B on 04.20.11 at 7:22 am

Was speaking to guy in Tim’s, interest rates will not go up because it will kill growth said he …. to whit

#112 detalumis on 04.20.11 at 7:24 am

I personally don’t think Eddie is a 28 year old, none that I know would admit to ever being a “spoiled brat”. I really don’t think he will be all that okay in the long run no matter how smug and smart he thinks he is today and the reason is because he selects women by their “hotness” factor. Men who do this set themselves up for a fall bigger than any loss they will ever have in the real estate market.

#113 David B on 04.20.11 at 7:25 am

to whit I said … governments must raise them if for no other reason ( and there are many) should another emergency happen they will not be able to go down. … he thought a moment and said … good point.

#114 Sail1 on 04.20.11 at 7:53 am

#50 Mark

How does the guy’s salary possibly relate to his message? — Garth

It is not the dollar amount. Flaunting unrealistic earnings, gives the message a lack of credibility. Clearly stated by many readers.

Read his explanation of earnings. Sounds plausible. — Garth

#115 Kevin on 04.20.11 at 7:57 am

“I’m a 28 year old Electrical Engineer, made $170,000 last year only 2 years outta University, I 100% guarantee I’m smarter and a far better athlete than you, I definitely have a hotter girlfriend…. Actually, all three of them are hotter”

LOL! Damn, I love the Internet!

Oops, gotta go, NASA needs my help fixing the Space Station.

#116 SMOKING MAN on 04.20.11 at 8:06 am

My predication as follows.

First off because I am dyslexic and can’t spell worth a carp, or care too. If you’re a grammar Nazi, skip this and go on to the next.

When the bubble heads are eventually dancing in the streets location will determine your good or bad fortune. Now with gasoline and electricity going through the roof, a 3500 sqft castle in the suburbs will take a big hit, expensive to power and long commute.

What will be in demand and in short supply is little bungalows in the city, that are cheap to run, (same price as a condo) and reliance on a car is optional.

There is already an exodus from the burbs to the city in the GTA. You can still pick one up in the 3 to 4 hundred k range. Near the water add an other 100k. Better yet buy one that has a big lot where you can knock it down and build two semis. Do this, sell one and your semi is free…..

#117 BraveSirRobin on 04.20.11 at 8:19 am

RE: Angry Turd comment;
My wife and I are both professionals, grossing slightly over 200K\yr, with retained earnings left inside my professional corporation which I then invest in an IPP to fund my retirement. We just listed our house for sale and we will be renting for a year or two, then will probably get back into the real estate market when prices normalize. I have been following this blog for the last 8 months, before which I would of never even considered renting……………..I have seen the light and it is Garth!

#118 Mike on 04.20.11 at 8:26 am

Garth, I really think you are doing a great job with this blog! I may not agree 100% with everything you type, but you always teach me new things on a daily basis.

Keep up the great work.

#119 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 8:27 am

“Have you noticed more people on this blog out for my blood lately?” ~~Garth
___________________________________________

Yes I have noticed it. Some of the long-time regulars who contributed daily have dropped off lately too. Perhaps they are still reading but just don’t post as often. You seem to be hitting a nerve lately as the reality of the R/E crunch is no longer theory anymore, but reality. Criticism and plenty of shouting comes with the territory.

There were times in the past when the trolls tried to over-run the site too and times when over-indulgent arrogant Realtor’s worked full time to prove the premise that housing might be overpriced was just an idea of outsiders, wing-nuts and lunatics.

Most of them are gone now (or converted to the dark side).

Many of those posters who remain though are indeed renters themselves and might be seeking salvation in the hope that housing will come back down to earth while others (home-owners) gloat over their good fortune in equity gains and mock those who did not buy.

I have noticed there is one thing in common though between the many people here. There seems to be an essential conflict between the demographic that is most loyal to the site and a revulsion to the comic losses of those often portrayed in daily anecdotes.

Eddy is a good example. Few seem to be able to relate to him and many obviously doubt the authenticity of the story. I think that is less because it might be true but rather because his story does not really resonate with their personal circumstances.

So the grassroots of the blog is revolting a little. One thing that is always appreciated here is an honest opinion and you have been getting that in spades lately Garth.

I am guessing your fans don’t have sympathy for the central character in todays post and sense he is a person who has come by a better life through easy family connection and wealth instead of hard work and effort.

Eddy sucks because he comes across as an ignorant, vain, narcissistic, naive braggart with money. Few here can relate to him easily although I have no doubt his story is true. (I have known plenty like him).

But why should they relate anyway? We know what the typical family is going through in this country already and what the average income is.

We might also assume that if this site attracts a broad cross section of Canadians, as I am sure it does, that its happiest days (on average) are actually those when the contributors are engaged in discussing stories that have a more personal connection to their lives.

So I figure its not personal Garth. But there is a disconnect with some of the narratives playing out here. The whole focus of todays post was lost because of the mere mention of Ed’s income. That is where all the energy went instead of to the essential storyline of loss and salvation in the real world of real-turd skunks and the suggestion of freedom gained by dumping debt obligations for the opportunity to enjoy the use of top-notch digs subsidized by some other poor sap.

See what I mean?

#120 Mike Rotch on 04.20.11 at 8:33 am

Not sure why several are calling BS on $170,000 income per year. It’s not everyone, but it’s far from impossible.

Hell, a union plumber makes about $40 per hour in Ontario, and that’s before any overtime, premium for LOA, company truck, or other perq.

So, if an engineer and has specialized knowledge that is in demand……well, is it unreasonable to think he might command $30ish per hour for regular time, and premium for OT?

As a young engineer, this type of compensatory arrangement was certainly available to me, if I were willing to temporarily relocate to a place like Northern Ontario, Fort Mac, Iraq……..

Anyway, even if the story is part or all BS, it’s a good teaching annecdote.

Replace the $170K, the actual price of the condo, and the location with fill-in-the-blank, and this is a story that could apply to lots of young couples.

This one ended well, it’s easy to see that it might not have.

#121 bubblepeda on 04.20.11 at 8:34 am

Eddie’s income is completely relevant to his letter. A loser claims that everyone who can see the housing bubble wishes they were in it but can’t afford to be because they don’t earn enough working at McDonalds. Eddie responds.

Eddie’s an example of a guy who can afford to own but can see what is going on so chooses not to. It only takes _one_ to falsify the claim that _all_ Garth’s fans can’t buy.

The angry bird loses.

We Aussies have the bubble from hell too, and the few who have their eyes open are constantly accused of being bitter members of the lower class. I don’t work at McDonalds. I’m a medical specialist. I earn a multiple of what Eddie earns. (Remember – this is in response to Angry -you all work at Macca’s- bird. It’s not showing off it’s part of the argument he started.) I’ll be buggered if I’m going to throw away all that excess income on a house I can rent for two percent per annum. I live in a much better house than I would buy. It costs me much less. It’s risk free.

Garth, you have rational fans over here too, both rich and poor. Keep up the good work.

#122 RentinginRosedale on 04.20.11 at 8:41 am

How does a naive young engineer make 2x to 3x the average salary you ask??

One word – Schlumberger.com (there are other, similar gigs)

Did it myself 30 years ago. Only lasted 4 years. Money is phenomenal, life sucks

#123 Nemesis on 04.20.11 at 8:56 am

Eddie!…

NiceOne! (but watch out for DeadHeads, the ProtoRealtors™ of OgoPogo and their Deity – TheGreatSerpentOfTheLake) while yer pilotin’ that KickAssWakeBoat!)…

#124 Grrr on 04.20.11 at 9:03 am

Regarding the soft landing in realestate hopes; they’re just hopes.

Here is the problem. When property prices are going up quickly, it pulls in investors/speculators which help drive up prices, which draws in more investors, etc.

The same happens in reverse. As prices stop going up, some investors drop out leaving more inventory on the market, which in turn puts downward pressure on prices. As prices drop, more investors dump inventory and the downward spiral intensifies.

I don’t wish for a crash, but I do predict one.

#125 Diana on 04.20.11 at 9:25 am

Here’s another one refuting the fast food working cellar dwellers are the only ones who read this.

I don’t make nearly what the other people on this blog claim. $65k salary, normal working hours, no stock options, no LOA, no northern allowance.

I rent my own place, a spiffy little 750 sq ft apartment, balcony, AC, underground parking, everything included but the phone and the ‘net. Of course, rent’s a mere $620. No, it’s not a crackshack, nor ancient, and I don’t have to worry about being stabbed in the hallway. Yes, it doesn’t have a pool. That’s ok, I hate swimming.

What it does give me is $1100 a month to invest before I reach the 32% gross income for household expenses the banks insist on. Better yet, that’s $1100 of my money, to me, and not $500 in equity, $600 in interest on a house.

For those pooh-poohing the privations I must be living under, just remember that Keeping Up with the Joneses isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon. I’d rather be taking my winters in Greece at 60 than waiting for the alarm clock to ring for yet another day at work.

#126 Fort Mac Flatlander on 04.20.11 at 9:27 am

Eddy must be a electrical engineer technician. Two year diploma in a three year co-op. First year out made $178k. Laughing my way to the bank moa ha ha ha ha!

His comment: 64K salary, equal overtime, plus LOA – 168K. — Garth

#127 fancy_pants on 04.20.11 at 9:31 am

So we just need the rates to go up already. Although they have reigned in the foolish amortization periods, it doesn’t matter as they have filled the Titanic already.

just need the waves now. Don’t be shy captain, go ahead and raise those rates now; your buddy F has filled the boat.

Why the hell would one allow for 35-40 yr amortization periods at the same time cheap mortages were being handed out to anyone with a pulse? Can any of them really not see past today? Sometimes a little hurt now results in a lot less tomorrow.

And soon that tomorrow becomes today.

#128 Ronaldo on 04.20.11 at 9:35 am

Here is what $850 big ones gets you near Red Deer, Ab. Driving by on way back to sons place I see this large sign on side of hiway advertising 20 acre property with 2 houses, 7 shops, a pond and wooded area for less than what an old 1920’s starter will get you in Vancouver. Sure no shortage of land out here.

#129 Oasis on 04.20.11 at 9:36 am

it’s amazing that on a day when the USD hits new historic lows, and decades lows on a number of currencies …
that the usual cheering squad doesn’t have a peep to say.

maybe tomorrow…

#130 King Bubbles on 04.20.11 at 9:56 am

I’ll second Micawber on Eddy’s quoted salary.

I am a Engineer making six figures, I have worked across Canada, and I also hire Engineers.

Engineers get paid well however, it is very unlikely Eddy makes that kind of cash.

#6 Micawber on 04.19.11 at 10:26 pm
Reality check. Electrical engineers do not make $170K. No way no how. I help hire them.

Sigh. Once again. He spelled this out some hours ago – 64K salary, 68K OT plus LOA – 168K. Too bad one tree blocked the view of the forest. I guess we’re all only worth what we earn. — Garth

#131 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 9:56 am

#108 Oasis

“WOW… USDX broken badly… collapsing.
Oil prices near $110
Gold OVER $1500
Agricultural commodities skyrocketing
____________________________________________

Yes Oasis, that looks to b the case. I encourage you to jump in quickly. Lock in some fat long positions as fast as you can. Commodities are going to the moon….to the moon, man.

You don’t want to be left out, now do you. Hurry, hurry.

#132 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 10:04 am

#95 realpaul wrote to Eddy..

“Well Eddy…it’s nice to be young……enjoy it while you can”
_____________________________________________

OK, maybe I am getting cynical too but I laughed my guts out reading your post Paul. Too funny. A bit of truth in it too with a dose of future reality.

#133 Nuke It on 04.20.11 at 10:06 am

Eddy, whatever his income, makes sense. I am biased as I have rented downtown for years. The rent has stayed below 10% of my pay per month. The landlord has been generous with a new roof, hardwood and ceramic kitchens, new windows, new balcony and patio, new appliances etc. It’s a simple choice. I got rid of my car and use the local car sharing service. I sail using my club’s boats. I belong to all the cultural institutions like the AGO, ROM, TIFF, MOCCA etc. and use their resources to the max. I paddle on a national senior’s team and lead tours on my bike club. I am even completely an LLM. When you are renting, you have so much time on your hands to do the things that are fun. Also the disposable income each month gives me peace of mind. If the bank looked down on renters, than why did it just give me a LOC with a 0% rate for the next year. Cash flow is king.

#134 Paul on 04.20.11 at 10:08 am

Garth, would you be able to break down or comment on why the hell the Canadian government borrows money from the big banks at ridiculous interest rates?…I don’t understand why we are not borrowing from the Bank of Canada at zero interest rate. This usury or debt based monetary system is littered all over the world and is crippling everything in its path.

Here is a funny but scary documentary done by a young Canadian who has his way with our MP’, MPP’S, Finance Minister, and ex Prime Minister (Paul Martin)…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVBDwAuCdPw&NR=1

And this is perhaps the best documentary about the history of banking.

http://www.themoneymasters.com/mm/

We should all be ready to revolt against the new world order. It’s happening!

Thanks for the good work GT.

#135 vreaa on 04.20.11 at 10:10 am

PostCardsFromTheBlastRadius #3 – The Okanagan Bust – “Life Revolves Around You!”

http://wp.me/pcq1o-2ay

Latest in series of photoessays by ‘Nemesis’, documenting and riffing-on the collapsing periphery.

#136 Vince on 04.20.11 at 10:17 am

Eddy, – well said. All the best for you. Life is short, enjoy it.

#137 Tim on 04.20.11 at 10:18 am

http://shitharperdid.ca.nyud.net/

#138 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 10:27 am

#112Deta-I assume from your post you are female and this is the reason you don’t understand the dynamic. There are few men who would choose to be attracted to “hot” women-it isn’t a choice at all, it is more of a curse. Blaming Eddy for this is identical to blaming a guy for being gay. Gorgeous women are like cocaine to many men-few would choose to become cocaine addicts but there are a lot of them. Eddy has probably been like that since he was 3 yrs old, or since he figured out how to turn on the TV and watch the gorgeous chick sell the soap.

#139 kilby on 04.20.11 at 10:27 am

Summerland, BC. Okanagan. Pop. 11,000. 321 listings, 4 bank repos. 6 sales in the last 2 weeks, 21 price reductions. Around 45 realtors to support.

#140 dave99 on 04.20.11 at 10:28 am

Ugh.

What’s with all the thinly disguised jealousy and envy towards this Eddy fellow?

Seriously people. Cut the hating and be happy for someone else’s success.

Or maybe you live by the motto “It is not enough in life to merely succeed, others must also fail.”

#141 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 10:33 am

#95Real-Best post today.

#142 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 10:39 am

#137 Tim on 04.20.11 at 10:18 am
http://shitharperdid.ca.nyud.net/

LOL. I agree with most of what he did.

#143 cory on 04.20.11 at 10:42 am

#115- Kevin

Good one Kevin. Thanks for the laugh.

#144 Charles on 04.20.11 at 10:51 am

Eddy,

Can I have one of your girlfriends, please.

#145 GregW, Oakville on 04.20.11 at 10:53 am

Hi Garth, re: His comment: 64K salary, equal overtime, plus LOA – 168K. —

Good on Eddy. Glade to see that being a perfect speller isn’t the only thing valued in this world.
(Having some good spellers is important too.)

I hear plumbers and others can make really good money! And you don’t need to be a perfect speller to be able to do many skilled good paying jobs. If there weren’t some who are ready and willing to do many different job, we would all be in a lot of trouble. Now if we can just keep many of the better paying jobs, value added work in Canada too??? Or get it to come back?
And were does your food and water come from to keep your family healthy?

Might I be detecting some salary envy in some comments today? Don’t worry you are special too, but in our own way. Money isn’t the only measuring stick.
Yes having money is helpfull, but it’s just another tool that man has made.
For example, what is the value of Garth’s blog?? What would you use to measure it?

#146 torontorocks on 04.20.11 at 10:55 am

Je$u$ Chri$t Lucky Eddie just posted his t4 working in Fort Mac and half you cats are still pi$$ing on his claims. The fact is the kid wrote a response in support of you all against Angry Bird – stop running the kid down.

As for Bubble Dummy or whatever about real estate in Boston or Chicago or New York? I challenge ANYONE to find a comparable property in Toronto that meets some of the gorgeous structures (and prices) you can find in the heart of a fan-fu*king tabulous city such as Chicago. Or even better, if you want to show some class, Westchester New York.

Unsustainable. There is no way these houses in the GTA should be at the levels they are. Its a boring, dried out city, great if you’re a bright eyed newbie out of Barrie or Newcastle or the Ottawa Valley, looking to come to the Big Smoke and make bank. But if you’ve ever travelled or seen anything other than Fionn MCCools and the 401 East West Home Work run (occasional 400 north to some other d-bags cottage) then you would know that these prices are not sustainable or justifiable.

Thickness.

#147 Fuzzy on 04.20.11 at 10:55 am

I’m an EE in Montreal, when i was 28 (back in 2007) I was making $65K, which seems inline with Eddie’s stated base salary.

#148 debtified on 04.20.11 at 10:56 am

#26 Mr. Reality on 04.19.11 at 11:08 pm

Good post

I hate people who brag about how much they make……

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

You know I’ve given this some thought. I am wondering if it’s really “bragging” when no one really knows you here. Maybe it still is but I fail to see the point of impressing a whole bunch of incognitos who also don’t know me.

I think I am just playing along.

Anyway…

“Survey finds nearly one-third of respondents didn’t have enough money to live on”

http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/Survey-finds-nearly-one-third-capress-886125985.html?x=0

#149 Kitchener1 on 04.20.11 at 11:00 am

With the numbers out for the GTA, there will be no melt up in RE numbers, it will be a full blown crash.

for 8.0 times income to buy a single family home to be viable is insane.

Right now, im looking out at Sept/Oct as being a possible calmity in the markets.

It comes down to the price of fuel. All the anaylsts are saying they see crude going to and staying at $120-$130 a barrel.

That means 5 gallon for the US and for us it will be $6 a gallon. I mean its around $105-110 a barrel now, at $125, its usally 1 cent increase at pumps for every $1 increase in barrel. That would push prices in the GTA to $1.50-$1.60 a litre.

Thats it, the economy is finished if those prices stay at those levels for 1-2 quarters. Imagine what inflation will be at, right now, day to day for groceries etc.. I would say that we are pushing 7-8% easy.

BoC is pushing themselves into a corner they will never get out off. They will have to push rates up hard and fast to quell inflation. They have attempted to micro manage the economy on a quaterly basis. BoC rate will have to go to 3% to have any meaningful attempt at fighting inflation.

$130 a barrel for oil will kill all the quartly numbers coming out in Sept/Oct. We are already seeing margin compression right now in financials. Increased revunue numbers with much smaller profits then those numbers warrent. Just the tail end now.

The CAN $ is going to 1.10 then 1.15 by years end, the US will just continue to devalue their currency or the markets will do it regardless.

It will be a perfect storm that no one saw coming– high inflation, increasing CAN $, hurting exports and tourism. US will double dip if fuel prices continue to rise, less exports and tourism, less domestic consumption due to higher fuel costs and increasing rates etc…

rinse and repeat. No more $ or public will left for any stimuls plans.

#150 not 1st on 04.20.11 at 11:03 am

Eddy, if you are making so much cash and so much smarter than the rest of us, why didn’t you use your $170k salary and pay off your stupid condo and then stop worrying about anything. You were living in camp, expenses all paid, daily allowance which you banked, 64k regular salary another 64k OT. Plus you got the downpayment from your mommy. You should have had that box paid off inside of 3 years. You think you are a smart money manager?

Let me tell you something, no matter what Garth says, rich people own real estate and they don’t worry about its valuation. They buy it with cash, keep it forever, borrow against it and will it down to the next generation. What Garth is talking about in this blog are the stretched, dreamers making combined $80-90K and carrying a 1 million in debt.

#151 Cellar Dwellar on 04.20.11 at 11:03 am

@ #95 realpaul
LMOA

#152 SMOKING MAN on 04.20.11 at 11:04 am

If you want to sell might i suggest, Listing May 1st

The Toronto Real estate board will issue April stats on May 4ish It will show a record month, sales and prices.

List a we bit above market and try and catch a greater fool…

But expect the main stream media to go barrish or real estate 2 weeks after that, in trying to help BOC talk down the market so they don’t spike job killing rates.

#153 Mr. Plow on 04.20.11 at 11:06 am

#66 Eddy…

You lost me with, “boats n’ ho’s”.

Sorry dude, you sound like an arrogant prick.

But I am glad you didn’t lose your shirt when buying a box in the sky with a girl you aren’t even married to. In the end, it sounds like you have made some good decisions. Some humility might be the next step.

#154 Mr. Plow on 04.20.11 at 11:14 am

Wow Angry Birds turned this blog into a dick measuring contest (sorry ladies, its a figure of speech).

“I too am an EE and I make $150K a year”

“I own 4 houses in TO and my renters pay 10x my rent along with the cool mil I made last year”

“I have a harem of six wives who are all large breasted and extremely attractive, Oh yeah I make $200K and rent”

#155 Timing is Everything on 04.20.11 at 11:18 am

Eddy’s Fables….Kinda like Aesop.

#156 Oasis on 04.20.11 at 11:23 am

#131 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 9:56 am
_______________________________________

i guess it’s painful to see how wrong you are day in and day out. must really hurt your ego. don’t quit your day job.

#157 GregW, Oakville on 04.20.11 at 11:24 am

Hi Nostra, Have you seen this 13-1/2min satirical video yet? “Employee Meal Plan”.
http://www.infowars.com/censored-video-alex-jones-joins-the-new-world-order/

I hope this isn’t what the H government has in mind when he said you wouldn’t recognize Canada after he’s through with us??

#158 Mr. Reality on 04.20.11 at 11:27 am

Australia, the UK, China, Canada….the list goes on

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/the-worlds-hottest-real-estate-market-2011-04-19

This is getting rediculous and the more this goes on the worse the fallout will be……

Mr. R.

#159 SoftwareGuyInTo on 04.20.11 at 11:29 am

I can attest that it is quite likely to make 170K/year being fresh out of University – you just need to take a bit of risk.

Short-term assignments pay double/triple your normal salary to compensate for the risk of being unemployed in a few months.

I know. I got a gig paying 75K/year just like everyone else until I got bored with it in less than a year and quit. Picked up some 3-4 month contracts paying double what I was making before and never looked back.

Of course, you have to be on your toes and always look for new contracts, but the rewards are significant. It has been a few years and my client list has improved – I made about 230K last year.

Ohh yeah and I rent for about 1400/month! I am house horny, but crunch the numbers frequently to stay away from that Lawerence Park starter home.

#160 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 11:42 am

In Italy, there have now been 61 different governments since the close of the Second World War.

Sixty one governments. Count em. All gone but one.

That is what you get when there is no strong central parties. That is the outcome of divisive politics, ill conceived coalitions and the greed for power.

The outcome? Few Western leaders can count on the word of the Italians on any major policy decisions that are dealt with on the global stage. The Italians have little prestige and even less say in diplomatic circles.

Each new government that comes to power is anxious to reverse policies of the previous regime. The Bureaucracy itself is in a permanent state of paralysis.

None of them can be counted on in a pinch to deliver on promises made to other countries because nobody knows who will be in power next month or next week even.

So nothing gets done; little is accomplished. Italian leaders and those in its pay have only minimal say or legitimacy on the world stage as a result and almost no pull with other more stable members. Like Canada.

That’s right. Canada has more say that Italy in world affairs. So it was with disgust that I read the remarks of Michael Ignatieff yesterday where he stated he would attempt to form government (a very weak one) if the Conservatives failed to achieve a majority.

And so now we know the Liberal agenda.

The Italianization of Canadian politics will be the outcome of the weakening of the heart of the country and our long traditions of as a stable national democracy with a strong central government.

That is what Michael Ignatieff wants to bring to Canada in his desperate attempts to take power win or lose. An Italianization of Canadian politics with a weak central government will be our undoing and will strip away our authority in global affairs.

This is no small matter. Today, what Canada say counts. We are trusted almost everywhere and our word is as good as gold to our allies. We offer consistency. We can deliver the goods.

But Michael, led by his ego, will bring on stalemates and a loss of Canadian prestige and all of us will be losers as a result. He opens the door to a divided country too as the BLOC gains power by default and sovereignty demands are reignited through cooperation and capitulation to other minority members he would depend upon for support.

Do you think Michael will not give up Canada and the nation in order to hold power? Of course he will. And the BLOC demands he will be asked to satisfy will both bankrupt us and break the country into two pieces.

The Liberal party under Michael Ignatieff is but a sad thin veneer of the respected party that once held sway in this great country of ours. Under his leadership though, they have lost their way. Even Paul Martin looked disgusted at how it is all turning out and that is one guy who’s opinion I really respect.

Dump Ignatieff. Dump him for the good of the country.

#161 Andy In Vancouver on 04.20.11 at 11:49 am

I didn’t find that letter to be bragging at all. The numbers were required for the complete story and they were entirely plausible in Fort McMoney.

Go Eddie, go!

#162 Michael Motorcycle on 04.20.11 at 11:50 am

Wow. It’s a 8th wonder of the world the market hasn’t collapsed sooner with the short-sited comments based on todays post.

Also, I think Eddie lives at Discovery Bay. Plenty of owners in there have been burned by the market swing and with the insurance reno that happened (nightmare). Rents go for 1000 to 1500$+.

To sum up;

People need to setup your portfolio, then setup your life. Also, get outside more.

#163 Devore on 04.20.11 at 11:51 am

#92 not asian

blah blah blah how could he walk away only paying $1000.00? Did the realtor pay for Eddy’s interest differential? Did the lawyer pay for Eddy’s 5-6% loss?

Do you understand what a downpayment is? You know, you save money by spending less than you earn.

Although I lost money on my condo, after all was said and done, I still walked away with a $50k check. I guess my realtor and lawyer were very generous?

#164 Mister Obvious on 04.20.11 at 11:54 am

#140 dave99

“Seriously people. Cut the hating and be happy for someone else’s success.”

“Best Place On Earth” (aka BPOE) was extremely upbeat and positive, wasn’t he? And as I recall, he was universally despised.

What’s good for the goose is good for the gander…

#165 Jon B on 04.20.11 at 11:55 am

Eddy, best of luck with the “boats n’ ho’s” lifestyle. I just hope it’s more sustainable than the real estate gig.

#166 Jimmy on 04.20.11 at 11:56 am

Hey Garth great site! Keep it up!

Only thing that sucks is 75% of the comments. Too much negativity you know. But yeah you’re all fredom of expression right!?

Hell I know an EE made close to 250G north of fort mac; willing to independently subcontract for 2 outfits AND run his own contract business, work like a mofo, live in a **** town and pass a drug test. At least I think he was an EE! Ha.

Anyway, we need a guy like you running the country. Too bad no Party will have you.

#167 Chris no longer in England on 04.20.11 at 11:58 am

I went to look at a property yesterday (sheer nosiness) which has been listed for sale for a while now. Partially finished house, large acreage, but couldn’t get in because the bank had seized it and it is now a POS. Another one I was interested in snooping around has also been taken off the mls as … ditto, POS. A third that had been languishing for the past year has also disappeared and enquiries provided the information that the sellers could not find a buyer so they rented it instead. In each case, they had either not dropped the price at all since first listing, or they had dropped it by $5,000 or less after months of no activity. One was lucky enough to rent it and hold off the creditors for a while longer, the other two lost the game.

These are just the ones I heard about yesterday, and doubtless there are more, as I keep a running total of places that interest me, their price changes over time and how long it takes to sell them. A number have disappeared from the mls recently. The one I didn’t get in to see yesterday was owned by a realtor, who now homeless, has moved in with his girlfriend (a fellow realtor who failed to sell it in time for him).

Heading in another direction, there is a story in the UK Daily Mail today about how Canada is the top destination for British ex-pats and in the comments section there is a post from a Toronto realtor (signed with her name and company name so all those Brits desperate to move can locate her easily) stating there are some wonderful cheap condo bargains to be had in the centre of town, and that they could do worse than to “invest” in a little condo in Toronto!

#168 Joe on 04.20.11 at 12:00 pm

#29: “Go back and check the grammar from Angry Bird’s post and you will find no reason to post your annual income.”

I agree with you, Angry Bird was an idiot and why spur him on. I found it kind of annoying that there was a mine-is-bigger-than-yours contest in terms of income yesterday, but I also have a theory about why people are compelled to post their income. I think that comes from a place where $100,000+ of real income, not credit, used to be and in a lot of people’s minds should be a good living and allow people to be among the percentage of Canadians that own a home. But now people making even double that are sidelined and can’t buy the things they were led to believe they could afford if they went to school, got a professional degree and a good job, but their grocer and hairdresser are owners because they have this crazy tolerance for debt. Plus they seem to enjoy smearing it in, like, “Oooh, don’t you wish you were as smart as me.” It’s a bit like my friends have nice houses, nice furniture, nice cars and so they look like they’re doing well. We have our college furniture, live in a rental and our clothes aren’t the latest and sometimes it’s like, “Can we have a party and casually lay our bank statements around so that we can flash how much money we have, too.” ‘Cause I figure everyone wonders what the hell we do with our money, ’cause we sure look poor. That’s all in my head, probably, and I doubt anyone else thinks about it as much as I do. But when I see people jumping at the first chance to post on a blog how much they make and their net worth it’s a bit like that party where you happen to leave a bank statement on the table. Your buddy buys a house and brags how much equity he has after a couple of years, but for whatever reason bragging out your real income and what you have invested is not okay. So you do it here, and you’re among friends, ’cause it seems there’s a lot of us in that boat.

#169 Steve on 04.20.11 at 12:03 pm

170K per Year?…. someone has been drinking too much koolaid me thinks. You started out good but started to get cocky. There are only two things certain in life, death and taxes.

#170 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 12:11 pm

3140Dave-Everybody knows these people like Eddy who go on and on about nothing but themselves. Nobody cares how much money you do or don’t have-possibly close friends will be happy for you but even they find your endless self obsession to be tiresome. His entire letter discussed little but himself-he managed to squeeze his Mummy, daddy and hot girlfriend into the discussion.

#171 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 12:17 pm

#146Kitchener-IMHO the analysts are wrong on the crude price-I think 130 is way too low-170 wouldn’t surprise me in the least-we shall see.

#172 Antonio on 04.20.11 at 12:18 pm

Still a hot market in Toronto

http://www.torontomls.net/PublicWeb/CL_CF.asp?link_no=36301514.083900&t=l&fm=F

#173 No crystal ball... on 04.20.11 at 12:20 pm

Good for you Eddy – you dodged a bullet. Lucky for you your break-up wasn’t a marital divorce. The costs to you would have been far more significant.

I believe you have learned a lot about owning versus renting, and now you want to enjoy your life and your healthy income, and who could blame you? You are playing the field with women because being in a long term relationship (complete with stainless and granite) didn’t work out for you. Can’t blame you for that either. You are young and you should really get to know what you want out of life before you settle down.

But what about the repayment of the 15 K your dad gave you for the deposit? Was that repaid or was that just written off as a gift? Just curious.

You are obviously a privileged kid (as I was), but if your dad had to eat that loss, as a result of your bad judgment, then you haven’t really learned that much.

Being fully self sufficient and not relying on parents financially is the greatest lesson any privileged child can learn. I know this from first hand experience.

#174 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 12:21 pm

#146Toronto-If TO ever even approached the disintegration that is Chicago circa 2011 we would be discussing the subject constantly. Chicago is in big big trouble-you can’t even compare the two cities.

#175 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 12:26 pm

#161 Andy In Vancouver on 04.20.11 at 11:49 am
I didn’t find that letter to be bragging at all. The numbers were required for the complete story…

Not one bit. Unfortunately, we didn’t get any pictures of his 3 HOT girlfriends. That would’ve completed the story for me.

#176 Cowboy on 04.20.11 at 12:27 pm

AMERICAN,

You have great posts, I always read yours, very interesting…
Anyways, last post you were asking about per capita costs of Canadian healthcare. What did you find out?
Where do you live?
Would you advise Canadians to move to the States?
In retirement is it somewhat easy to move there, do you know? I would like to potentially move down there in 15-20 yrs but of course could have health issues,
do you believe the hype of Canadians wanting to stay here for health insurance?
What are your thoughts about our health care system compared to US? There has been a decline of services here, waitlines ridiculous being the top of the list of complaints. But I have to say, excellent (and expensive) care paid for cancer for example, not effecting the patient’s financial well being.
I don’t know, there have to be ways of getting comparable care down there, just pay an amount per month, like tax as you mentioned. I just don’t think the Canadian care is as good as it used to be, that’s for sure…
I would appreciate your opinion,
Please keep posting!

#177 Hoof Hearted on 04.20.11 at 12:28 pm

#68 HouseBuster

I for one am happy for Eddy. Good for him if he is making some good money and is enjoying life.

Why are all of you so jealous of him? What kind of people are you?

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

Well, ya gotta keep yo’ lady happy….play some Barry White records
Eddy was living in sin….this is what happens.
Now he’s lying about his income, and freezing his balls off swimming in the Okanagan.

#178 Maltesehamster on 04.20.11 at 12:36 pm

How is it that I’m pissing my money away renting when I:
– Pay no property tax or condo fees
– Have plenty of extra money to invest
– Don’t spend hundreds of dollars and hours of my time each week repairing/improving my home
– Commute to work in 10 minutes (not by car)
– Don’t have to shovel a driveway or scrape my car in the winter (its parked inside), or cut my grass in the summer
– Am in a great part of my city, where there’s character, as opposed to the lifeless suburbia populated by cookie cutters, each more identical than the last
– Am within 5 minutes walk of everything I need
– Live in a brand new unit, not an 80 year old dump, which is the only option other than the aforementioned cutters
– Have friends and/or relatives with yards that I can enjoy should the desire arise

I’d like to get a house some day, but how can I possibly be in a hurry given all of this?

#179 Chaos on 04.20.11 at 12:43 pm

Easy dawgs…

in Kelowna… Electrical Engineer means that…

You wire grow-ops.

Apparently there is really good money in grow-ops.

“And it’s Fun, Fun Fun until….”

#180 The American on 04.20.11 at 12:46 pm

In response to #254 from the previous string:

Brew, here’s one source…

http://www.helocbasics.com/list-of-non-recourse-mortgage-states-and-anti-deficiency-statutes/

Now, by default, Florida is technically a recourse state. But, nearly every mortgage in Florida has a non-recourse clause (its old on the books). Typically, the only thing you can be screwed on is a 2nd Mortgage, or HELOC. These will certainly follow you around and you will most certainly receive a deficiency judgement, unless your lender agrees IN WRITING not to. Additionally, before you were to go into foreclosure, you should talk with your bank about a Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure. This practice is becoming more common and less painful for all parties involved. Or, talk with your lender about doing a short-sale. I hear they’re much more willing to do it these days

You’re probably wondering how I know this? Well, I have family (my brother and his wife) that just recently had to go through this process in Florida. Oh, and my brother is an attorney, his wife is a paralegal. He is a highly-educated person who made EVERY payment on his home. After watching values collapse around him for nearly four years, it was time to get out. Here’s how it works…

The banks, or “experts”, lent everyone ridiculous amounts of money to buy houses, and I mean EVERYONE. 25%+ should never have qualified for these loans. Hell, some couldn’t qualify for jury duty. Anyway, my brother and his wife, he being 27 and she being 25, bought a nice home for $479,000 back in 2005 with a whopping 10% down. Everything was bliss and no kids and their payment was easily made at about $3,200/month. DINKS with the world in the palm of their hands. After all, values only go up… They never go down (values had doubled in about 3 years in the area)! All homes around him were quite nice too. Neighbors were hard-working and white collar. Then, IT happened. One by one, and painfully slow, every home around him began going into foreclosure or became a short-sale. Home values plunged too. His home at peak was valued at $530,000 in early 2006. By 2010, it was valued at $215,000. Yes, a 3,700 square foot McMansion in a great neighborhood was selling for that. All the while, he made every payment. Oh, and I forgot to mention he too had lost his job by this point, but he still stuck by his commitment to pay the bank per the original agreement in the note. That is, until I got ahold of him.

I make no qualms about it – I despise what the banks have done to consumers. Keep in mind, I work in the banking industry. Yes, consumers have a responsibility too, but frankly, banks should be held far more accountable – they are the “experts” pandering to consumers. Banks were bailed out by American tax payers, yet banks lobby for no regulation and free market enterprise. They love it their way, until they too need a handout. So, I have absolutely no sympathy for them. Once you or a family member have gone through it, you’ll understand. And believe me, many of you will in one way or another. Moving on…

We flew to Mexico for vacation in Puerto Vallarta where he and his wife met me there. I wanted him away from the “forrest,” per se, so we could openly discuss his options. We talked a LOT about what he should do. My recommendation you ask? Yes, that’s right… WALK AWAY from the home one way or another. But, do it smartly. He still owed nearly $415,000 on an asset that was now only worth $215,000 – a $200,000 dissonance. Not good. Sure, they could stay and continue to struggle to make payments while he was out of work, watching the value on their home continue to drop. Or, they could cut their losses, suck it up, and move on.

The loss of value on their home was NOT their fault. In my opinion, this is at the hands of the banks. Why should my family have to stay and fulfill their obligation to the contract for the bank on a horrifically depreciating asset? After all, the banks did not fulfill their obligation to lend money only to those who could afford it, ultimately causing financial ruin to ALL their clientele. The banks knew precisely what they were doing, and they’re the “experts.” But, their greed got in the way, and they should have to pay a price as well – not all of it solely on the consumer as it has been. Because of the banks, my family was now upside down $200,000 on his home. My point of view was, “f*ck ‘em!” Why continue throwing good money after bad?

We determined it was significantly more costly for he and his wife to continue making a $3,200 monthly payment on the depreciating asset, vs. renting the exact home for as little as $1,400/month. There were several things to consider… The obvious stands out – MONEY. But, besides “saving” $1,800/month by renting, it was also healthier for their mental state. Here’s why… They were constantly stressed and worried about how much more the value of their home would drop. Additionally, if they were to have stayed, we determined it would be at least 15 years before values returned to where they once were. Can you imagine staying in the home that’s worth so little for another 15 years, only to say you’ve fulfilled your contract to a crook bank? With time value of money in consideration, we determined that the cost was somewhere in the neighborhood of $700,000 of expenses that weren’t necessary, and that was just to wait long enough to get back to a break-even point. Therefore, “WALK AWAY!” I said.

His concern was his credit getting ruined and the shame of it. Of course one’s credit is going to get dinged. He and his wife had a FICO score in the low 800s (that’s very good credit). I told him to do a short-sale. Six months later, he had done it. He put the house on the market and received an offer for $210,000. The bank agreed to take it. The other debt was wiped away as a write off.

Now, I’m sure you’re saying that he and his wife get off easily while the banks are getting hurt. Not so. Here’s why… The bank’s are insured for this, and the consumer was paying the premium on behalf of the bank, so cry me a river. Also, the consumer does pay a price of a dinged credit score. Their credit dropped to the high 500s within 60 days after the short-sale. That’s okay, though. They are now able to rebuild their credit and they are HAPPILY renting. This process ended for them about 18 months ago. Today, their credit score is in the low 700s, not great but a good score. They KNOW they made the right choice, because in another 18 months, they’re going to have their scores back in the 800s again.

Basically, they decided to suck it up, hurt their credit for 3 years or so and get out of depreciating asset for which they were paying a significant monthly premium. This was SMART and LEGAL. Sometimes in life, things happen out of one’s control that test one’s belief system with respect to integrity, honesty, and trust. It is in these times you must seek counsel and consider options you may have never considered in your life.

Oh, by the way, the house is now worth $205,000. Another $10,000 haircut. Smart!!!

#181 realpaul on 04.20.11 at 12:48 pm

In spite of what the pimps might say….the real estate market continues to deteriorate south of the borber.

http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/home-ownership-declining-despite-cheapest-prices-in-40-years.html

#182 King Bubbles on 04.20.11 at 12:50 pm

Saw the forest and the compensation breakdown but could not resist pointing out a funny looking tree when I see one.

I won’t touch the worth and earnings comment – that’s for Sheeple.

http://www.despair.com/wealth.html

:-(

““““““““““““““““““““
I’ll second Micawber on Eddy’s quoted salary.

I am a Engineer making six figures, I have worked across Canada, and I also hire Engineers.

Engineers get paid well however, it is very unlikely Eddy makes that kind of cash.

#6 Micawber on 04.19.11 at 10:26 pm
Reality check. Electrical engineers do not make $170K. No way no how. I help hire them.

Sigh. Once again. He spelled this out some hours ago – 64K salary, 68K OT plus LOA – 168K. Too bad one tree blocked the view of the forest. I guess we’re all only worth what we earn. — Garth

#183 Another Albertan on 04.20.11 at 12:53 pm

So many people just don’t understand how much money can flow through the energy sector.

Eddy’s compensation numbers as a sum are very plausible. Been there, done that. Sign the cheques now.

On mega-projects, it’s hard to wrap your brain around the sheer volume of cash changing hands. Additionally, working that many hours translates to having essentially no life while you’re employed. Having been through both north-eastern Alberta and Schlumberger (as mentioned by Rosedale), the number are wholly legitimate, especially if you’re working what is more than 50% more than the next guy and it’s 100% chargeable. Don’t get me wrong… the pace is unsustainable and eventually everyone flames out. Your body and brain can only take so much of punishing hours and conditions.

If you’re in sales like Shane pushing specialized solutions, 140k is also not unreasonable.

In the meantime, a whole bunch of you need to understand the concept of all-in compensation versus strict salary.

Everyone else’s mileage may vary.

#184 EdmontonJim on 04.20.11 at 12:56 pm

Ahem,
An electrical engineer with 2 years experience can indeed make $170k per year with minimal experience provided he is willing to travel. In the oil patch of northern alberta and saskatchewan you can easily clear that. I assume he worked on a prospecting crew. I turned down such a job right out of University. The money looked unbelievable, but I didn’t like the work environment and the employer was evil.

I realised the day I turned it down that I do in fact have standards. Go figure eh?

#185 Digo on 04.20.11 at 12:58 pm

Once again the message gets lost on the masses only concerned with competing against each other and jealousy. Kind of explains how this housing bubble was created in the first place.
Why is there such a stigma around renting? I live in Ottawa, have a gov job and could own if I wanted to. All my friends who own stay home every day and call people to come over and cure them of their loneliness. I rent a 3 bedroom condo, rent out two rooms for $500/room and pay $300/month for the master. Personally I love having a friend to come home to, keeps life interesting and the money growing in my bank. Where did this desire to own castles and wall ourselves in come from? Life is boring when your by yourself, enjoy it people.

#186 super dave on 04.20.11 at 1:01 pm

I like it Eddy, even if you really don’t have 3 babe girls, and ya the $170K, might be a tad high, but we get the point.

Real Estate is one of many, many, many investements, it is illiquid, and has very high carrying costs. My cash is in a balanced portfolio, mostly dividend paying equitys balanced with long and short term bonds, it has done well, where as in Victoria, Real Estate as an asset class has dropped in real terms 5%, with inflation adjustment 8%. The loss in the last year on a 500K house, would be $40,000 dollars. I spent $14,400 on rent. you do the math… which one was better, and as Karen Carpeter puts it “We’ve only just begun…”

#187 torontorocks on 04.20.11 at 1:15 pm

#174 – I was referring to an earlier post where they said Chicago didn’t melt and therefore Toronto, being a world class city, will not melt either. As New York won’t melt.

That said, I will challenge price/value/location/elegance of accessible Chicago with ‘accessible’ Toronto. A gorgeous home can be had in Edgebrook Ill, 20 minutes from downtown Chicago by car on a saturday night at 10pm (peak night driving). Compare that with Toronto? what 2-8 million for a place in Rosedale?

#188 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 1:16 pm

I would love to know on what planet an electrical engineer with barely any experience makes anywhere near 170k a year. Story could have done without the last paragraph.

Read his comments. The guy has now actually sent me a pay stub, because you all hurt his feelings… — Garth

#189 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 04.20.11 at 1:24 pm

#129 Oasis — It’s better for the US to bankrupt TROTW along with it, so chances are good they will let the $ sink into oblivion, create and have wars here, there and everywhere and by the end of all this, everyone will be on a level playing field.

Except the cycles will have changed and the US doesn’t have the infrastructure it used to.

#157 GregW, Oakville — Hi Greg. Thanks for the link (I hadn’t seen it).

Taking a break for a week or so, down in the US seeing friends and family.

There’s a Libertarian in the Okanagan, so I’ll vote for him. By the time we get back, there will probably be a massive groundswell of opposition against Harper and the CPC, what they are doing to Canada (dismantling it), but because there is no viable alternative, it will be a minority again (thank goodness).

Harper is a traitor, and deserves to be booted out — the sooner the better.

Cheers!

#190 Rusty1 on 04.20.11 at 1:26 pm

Hey, I’m an electrical engineer making 168k/year, too! But don’t tell my proud mother – she thinks I’m a piano player in a whore house…

#191 Ben on 04.20.11 at 1:27 pm

Eddie’s numbers and story ring true to me.

I am an engineer. I have also worked in Fort McMurray, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, doing the oil refinery shutdown thing, etc.

The overtime hours add up very quickly, and add to the fact that a young engineer qualifies for OT pay at 1.5-2X base hourly wage (older engineers don’t get OT once they become “professionals”), and the 2010 earnings are completely believable.

$3G / month for LOA is also believable, actually seems a bit low.

Quit hating on Eddie, he’s on the money (pun intended).

#192 to utopia...and beyond. on 04.20.11 at 1:31 pm

hey “utopia”!

thanks for responding thoughtfully to my post yesterday concerning the connection between people’s crazy irrationality in the housing market (and elsewhere) and their own physical/mental health.

regular toothpaste, for example, has Sodium Fluoride in it…that’s why there is a little poison warning on the back of the tube…if you swallow a “pea-size” amount…contact “poison control”.

ironically, there is just as much Na fluoride in a single glass of city tap water!

hence, if you drink two glasses of the tap…you are ingesting what the ADA considers to be dangerous amount of this substance.

even the ADA has had to admit that it is harmful for pregnancy and developing babies–warming those who are listening not to use tap water to make formula.

yet…strangely…i don’t see any poison warnings on water fountains and indoor plumbing.

what gives?

sodium fluoride is toxic waste.–it is a chemical by-product of the agricultural industry.

and you are correct, utopia: it causes a condition called dental fluorisis…essentially…toothpaste is a dentist’s monetary wet dream.

most country’s are violently opposed to forcibly medicating its citizens in this way.

what the heck happend to informed consent? is this canada?

why not just throw some lithium or statins into our water supply as well?

many powerful individuals have actually suggested this.

as for anti-perspirant: most contains high levels of aluminium…which can negatively alter brain chemistry and cause a host of auto-immunological difficulties…OVER TIME.

i like to call these things “joker products”.

tim burton may be onto something ;)

cheers.

#193 Kevin on 04.20.11 at 1:34 pm

@The American:

That’s a great story, but I have one question: How is your unemployed brother going to pay the tax bill from the IRS after the bank issues him a 1099 for the $200,000 in “forgiven” debt?

Income tax on $200,000 has got to be a pretty big bite. Especially when you just trashed your credit and have absolutely no hope of financing it, and cannot bankrupt IRS debt.

Hope he had fun on his little “vacation” while screwing the bank. ‘Cause the chickens, they’re coming home to roost …

#194 Big D on 04.20.11 at 1:34 pm

I had to skip the last 75 comments. I couldn’t handle reading more analysis about how much an engineer makes. It’s not the point. Delete the last paragraph from your memory.

Eddy’s point is that: it’s easy to get caught up in the moment, super easy to rationalize the decision to buy, and no shortage of cheerleaders pushing you along the path.

In his case, he’s saying he’s lucky he got off easy. He’s absolutely right. Having lived through the US crash, it’s easy to say, “I’ll just keep making my payments somehow.”

Try saying that if you lose your job and/or values have fallen when it’s time to refi. Making your payments isn’t a problem today but a 2% rate increase would become a burden to a lot of folks.

Add to that a situation where you’re in a negative equity situation because prices fell 20% and the bank is going to need a cheque at closing to do your loan at all. This is the primary cause of every foreclosure I have personally seen. The bank wouldn’t refi the homeowner when the term was up.

#195 Star Trek SUCKS on 04.20.11 at 1:36 pm

Electrical Engineers = Star Trek Convention

Sorry, I’m sure that your a real nice guy Eddie.

#196 edmonton mortgage broker on 04.20.11 at 1:50 pm

#180 The American on 04.20.11 at 12:46 pm

Right on man!
precisely the advise i would to a family member in a similar situation. the numbers speak for themselves. It’s incredible how many Americans are not willing to walk away from their mortgage because they somehow feel like it’s their duty to pay. In a situation like that faced by your brother, you either choose to take care of the bank or take care of your family. i’d put my family first.

#197 Grrr on 04.20.11 at 2:05 pm

From strictly a financial standpoint, Eddy would probably have been better off with the condo than the boats n’ ho’s.

#198 Coraline on 04.20.11 at 2:05 pm

Every once in awhile someone tries to trick readers by telling them that the housing market didn’t decline in New York, Boston, Chicago, etc. That’s just wrong. Boston has decline 14.8% from the peak, New York 23.2%, and Chicago a whopping 31.1% through to January 2011.

Now that the U.S. appears to be heading into the second leg down, these numbers will probably get worse.

Link to one of many sources of Case Shiller data: http://tinyurl.com/4h3du3m

#199 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 2:06 pm

Wow. I’d rather be mired in debt than work 65 hours a week in an oil patch in the prime years of my life.

#200 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 2:08 pm

Read his comments. The guy has now actually sent me a pay stub, because you all hurt his feelings… — Garth

I’m now more interested in some photos of his three hot girlfriends…anyone else?

#201 Junius on 04.20.11 at 2:14 pm

#180 The American,

Great post. My fav line – “Banks were bailed out by American tax payers, yet banks lobby for no regulation and free market enterprise. They love it their way, until they too need a handout. So, I have absolutely no sympathy for them.”

Amen. Needs to be said again and again.

#202 maxx on 04.20.11 at 2:16 pm

#125 Diana- beautifully put!

#203 Richard on 04.20.11 at 2:17 pm

Whats with all the hating comments on this post?

I salute you, Eddy. From your story you have demonstrated that
1. Youve learned lessons and improved from your experiences
2. You are smart enough not only to be an EE but you are able to leverage your compensated labour by travelling to a geographic location where it is relatively high in demand, and
3. The hot girls (you gotta give me tips ;) )

im currently 23 and when i graduate and start working (as a dentist) ill be sure to follow your example. Consider this a positive affirmation among the pool of negativity that you are on the right track :D.

P.S I have quite a few engineering frds and they currently dont make as much as you…obviously because they work in Toronto.

#204 tkid on 04.20.11 at 2:19 pm

Eddie, what kind of jobs are available in the north of Alberta?

#205 Roial1 on 04.20.11 at 2:24 pm

117 BraveSirRobin on 04.20.11 at 8:19 am

I then invest in an “IPP” to fund my retirement

Can anyone tell me what this is?

#206 45north on 04.20.11 at 2:26 pm

The American: The banks knew precisely what they were doing,

they did, who would know better? Great post! Great post! I have five adult children and I don’t want any of them to buy property.

Garth can you send The American my e-mail? Please.

#207 Steve on 04.20.11 at 2:31 pm

Very interested how “super” mom was able to reduce the 15K mortgage payoff penalty to 1k especially when the clause is written in the mortgage contract. I just paid 18K on my house and 10 k on my rental for my mortgage closure penalty, apparently I was figuratively told to “Suck it up”. If you ask what reinvestment rate they (bank) used and how it was derived …. no response. They seemed so attentive and nice when you sign up.

#208 Williston Geo on 04.20.11 at 2:41 pm

I know several guys who work in the oil patch and reside in Kelowna. Not that uncommon, but the guys I know all own properties. It’s a pretty good life, thanks to cheap Westjet flights.

I do find it funny some people call BS on Eddy’s salary, it’s actually not that high for an engineer putting in the hours he does in godless Fort Mac.

#209 AG Sage on 04.20.11 at 2:43 pm

>#34 bubble town on 04.19.11 at 11:21 pm

Because of one link per post limits, here’s Chicago collapsing

I like that condo dive. Woo hoo. You can google yourself the rest if you can manage to post here.

It’s true that NY and Boston are only down 3% and 0.6% respectively, year on year. But they are still going down and the bottom is not in sight, honestly.

(rumors of chinese buyers in NY, actually, fwiw)

As to the stats of the readers on here. We own a double lot in an urban area (otherwise I’m not keen on that kind of density, but I am keen on not commuting) with no mortgage. Low six figures income. Travel constantly for work. I haven’t worked retail since paying my way through community college too long ago to actually give a decade . . . Actually, working retail was fine as the boss-owner was a nice enough fellow. It was the hold-ups that were a little harrowing as this was a bad part of town.

It’s about being smart, a little disciplined about short and long term goals, and lucky. Luck really matters in avoiding the health and other disasters that befall people. I try to keep that in mind before jumping to conclusions about someone not doing so well.

#210 robert james on 04.20.11 at 2:45 pm

#25 WiseGuy V.INT kind of looks like a pump and dump.. If you want a real winner go for V.Ohttp://www.stockhouse.com/tools/?page=%2FFinancialTools%2Fsn_overview%2Easp%3Fsymbol%3DV%2EOPL%26table%3DLISTPL Do your own DD.

#211 Big D on 04.20.11 at 2:47 pm

#208 – Steve

Maybe you should’ve “Sucked it up” :-)

#212 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 2:48 pm

#187Toronto-Chicago is a rich enclave surrounded by a giant slum, which is getting worse every day. You can’t even logically compare TO to Chicago. The direct competitor for the town you are discussing is Oakville (20 min down the road at 10 pm).

#213 pjwlk on 04.20.11 at 2:48 pm

Eddy, I hear your story and I’m going to pass it along to my son so that he can see that these things happen to his generation too – not just old guys like me…lol Live the dream kid, you’re only going this way once.

As for the rest of you cry babies going on and on about his earnings – you’re pathetic. He speaks the truth.

I know people working in oil and also have a niece working out west as an engineer – all making fantastic money. I can even show you trades people right here in the GTA that make over $160k per year. Let it go… Learn something from the message.

#214 Sinking In The Seaweed on 04.20.11 at 2:58 pm

Good for Eddy. At least he’s not one of the few losers like me who read this blog that ‘Angry Bird’ was referring to …

My self employed taxable income for 2010 was under $20k. I’m right now in the process of paying $2,900 in 2010 income tax/cpp with my visa card because I have zero savings, and zero investments – all gone since losing my job 3 years ago (and I didn’t have much to begin with). Try paying the rent for yourself and your girlfriend on that income in Vancouver (or anywhere). It’s a joy.

Oh, and I’m 46, she’s 50.

What am I doing on this site? Trying to learn a little, so if I ever make any money I have some idea of what to do with it. Or, maybe I’m just a sucker for punishment. Take your pick.

#215 45north on 04.20.11 at 2:59 pm

Rusty: Hey, I’m an electrical engineer making 168k/year, too! But don’t tell my proud mother – she thinks I’m a piano player in a whore house…

pretty funny

#216 triplenet on 04.20.11 at 3:00 pm

Actually, all three of them are hotter, and at any moment I can grab my duffle bag, jump in my paid off competition wakeboard boat and hit the open seas in search of my next lake front dream home where I truly only have to consider monthly carrying costs.

……sounds like a repeat offender – for the next cycle.

#217 robert james on 04.20.11 at 3:01 pm

Hi Garth,, my last post #209 should be deleted as it was in poor taste.. Thanks!!

#218 Oasis on 04.20.11 at 3:04 pm

Commodities are going to the moon….to the moon, man.
_________________________________

the only thing going to the moon….
http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/AMBSL?cid=124

#219 debtified on 04.20.11 at 3:08 pm

Those who got hung up on the $170K missed the point entirely! Or, ignored it because it hurts and focused on something that will make them feel better about themselves. Even confirmation from other people about the possibility of the number also got misinterpreted as “dick measuring contest”.

The point was: Eddy drank the kool-aid. He had a stomach ache. He threw up. Felt better.

First hand experience. Learn from it.

Then he responded to Angry Bird. Angy Bird now hides in his cage he calls a house.

#220 Steve on 04.20.11 at 3:14 pm

“First of all the bank tells you that their interest differential calculation amounts to over $15k. Then you crunch the numbers for realtor costs and finally quantify commission percentages into an actual amount sucking another $12k. Goes without saying that the amount we paid off the principal is completely insignificant. All said and done, my mommy knows a lawyer AND a realtor so we were able to substantially cut costs on lawyer fees and commissions resulting in both parties walking away only having to pay the bank $1,000 ”

The only way this could even “remotely” happen is that the buyer’s have assumed Eddy’s mortgage, period. Even then it seems very unlikely, tell me what I am missing otherwise I must conclude that this is just a nice story and just that, a story. ( I’m being nice.) When do lawyers,realtors and banks slash their fees after the fact… “Super” mom, I am all ears.

#221 BrianT on 04.20.11 at 3:15 pm

160Utopia-OTOH you are the guy telling us to invest based on Goldman propaganda so the credibility isn’t super.

#222 Hoof - Hearted on 04.20.11 at 3:20 pm

Interesting series re Okanagan

http://vreaa.wordpress.com/2011/04/20/postcardsfromtheblastradius-3-%E2%80%93-the-okanagan-bust-%E2%80%93-life-revolves-around-you/

http://vreaa.wordpress.com/2011/04/17/postcardsfromtheblastradius-2-%E2%80%93-the-okanagan-bust-%E2%80%93-the-conservatory-becomes-the-reformatory/

etc….

========

The Okanagan never has and never will sustain an industry to support high paying jobs….it is basically California and Florida North.

The above links show it is even worse than what I imagined

#223 Eddy's Ex on 04.20.11 at 3:24 pm

The guy has now actually sent me a pay stub, because you all hurt his feelings… — Garth

Pathetic…Eddy always did have issues with bullies and he will never learn. Being a life-long, milk-fed, trust fund kid does not help develop a thick skin.

Take it from me, blog dogs, he is trumpeting his income to compensate for his small pr-ck. He is horrible in the sack; you will just have to trust me on this one, as I spent five years dealing with his “electrical equipment failures,” if you know what I mean.

He is no doubt paying for the pleasure of his escorts’, oops, I mean girlfriends’ company. I wouldn’t be impressed by his money making skills either. His parents’ wealth saved him from having to deal with the consequences of poor decision making.

I’m not sure why an otherwise incisive, forward thinking blog is asking you to praise a self-professed spoiled brat who, through no fault of his own, managed to land on his feet.

#224 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 3:27 pm

#199 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 2:06 pm
Wow. I’d rather be mired in debt than work 65 hours a week in an oil patch in the prime years of my life.

Are you Liberal or NDP by any chance? You’re not willing to work a bit extra for 4 years so that you can get a really good head start on the rest of your life?

#225 AG Sage on 04.20.11 at 3:39 pm

>#179 Chaos on 04.20.11 at 12:43 pm
>in Kelowna… Electrical Engineer means that…

>You wire grow-ops.

I would not hire an EE to do house wiring. You know how confused they get when you tell them the black wire is the hot one?

#226 Blitzkrieg on 04.20.11 at 3:41 pm

Man I must be in the wrong industry, MBA plus several financial designations, 28 and my gross last year was less than $60 (first year of self employment). The wife with a Phd came in at half of that. To think that several years ago without any education, I managed to gross $200 in a completely different field (property management) drives me insane every time I look at my bank account. At least we own mortgage free and don’t carry any debt, but I completely lost faith in the value of education (from a strictly monetary standpoint).

#227 Blitzkrieg on 04.20.11 at 3:44 pm

#206 Roial1 on 04.20.11 at 2:24 pm

I then invest in an “IPP” to fund my retirement

Can anyone tell me what this is

Its an individual pension plan available to higher income self employed people. Higher limit of contributions than RRSP but commitment is key, can be used to hold pretty much any available investment.

#228 mr noodles on 04.20.11 at 3:48 pm

i live and work in fort mcmurray,and do not find it hard to believe eddys stated income.wages here are phenominal, the best jobs are with the big oilsand companies,secure employment,compared to contractors,pensions loyalty bonus etc.plus a free ride to and from work by coach.working a regular 6 on 6off cycle 150,00 pa is average,overtime shifts 1,000 each for 12hrs are additional.yes housing is expensive but renting an apartment is around 1600 a month ,2 days overtime a month after tax.thankyou canada from a really happy immigrant

#229 Dorf on 04.20.11 at 3:50 pm

Are the banks trying to turn your home into revolving credit cards that never get paid off ?

They seem to be creating an environment where they own all the homes, and people pay high rent to call themselves the owners of those homes, but never own them in their lifetime.

Food –> UP, UP, UP

Fuel –> UP, UP, UP

These two factors alone will put enough financial pressure on a lot of people that they will struggle to meet their obligations.

Believe Garth, I already see it happening.

It’s not beginning, it HAS BEGUN.

#230 Timing is Everything on 04.20.11 at 3:54 pm

#188 Bruce

Agreed. The last paragraph ruined a perfectly good ‘teaching’ moment. ‘Clip’ ‘Send’ ‘Done’.

Garth, any pics of the bimbos..er girlfriends er whatever they are? I thought so. Makes for a a good story though. ;)

#231 Nic Name on 04.20.11 at 3:55 pm

I firmly believe Garth’s view that this bubble is destined to burst at some point but the question I have is when?

For 3 years now I’ve been watching trends hearing that it is inevitable any time now, and nothing…

What is the outlook at the moment? Fall? next year? 3 more years?

#232 bystander on 04.20.11 at 4:08 pm

Real Estate prices definitely going up this year. 5.1% at least, and another 7.2% next year.

here is the reason: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/more-canadians-feeling-squeezed/article1992547/print/

Buy now or be priced of the market forever. Last chance to buy. BUY!

#233 Steve on 04.20.11 at 4:10 pm

@ BIG D # 212

Sorry bud, not my game. If it is as big at you say you probably do yourself. :)

#234 Pr on 04.20.11 at 4:13 pm

Hey you Canadians, government will not create a bubble and after busting the bubble? A little amusement, try to find who it is: Missing Records in Hawaii, Missing Records in Kenya, Missing Records in Indonesia!
Now come home, and tell us it can’t happen here.

#235 Chris no longer in England on 04.20.11 at 4:17 pm

I too am an electrical engineer making $170k a year. So how do I manage to do that while looking like a lady of leisure that doesn’t work at all, sitting around all day leafing through fancy magazines and getting Beulah to peel me a grape? Skill and experience, that’s how.

#236 Nic Name on 04.20.11 at 4:18 pm

“Are you Liberal or NDP by any chance? You’re not willing to work a bit extra for 4 years so that you can get a really good head start on the rest of your life?”

Absolutely not. Life is short, enjoy every moment. Do not sacrifice today for tomorrow. Tomorrow is never promised.

#237 LS on 04.20.11 at 4:18 pm

RE: The American (BTW, love your posts!)

In case anyone is wondering what a “short-sale” on a house is:

A short sale is a sale of real estate in which the sale proceeds fall short of the balance owed on the property’s loan. It often occurs when a borrower cannot pay the mortgage loan on their property, but the lender decides that selling the property at a moderate loss is better than pressing the borrower. Both parties consent to the short sale process, because it allows them to avoid foreclosure, which involves hefty fees for the bank and poorer credit report outcomes for the borrowers. This agreement, however, does not necessarily release the borrower from the obligation to pay the remaining balance of the loan, known as the deficiency.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short_sale_(real_estate)

#238 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 4:19 pm

#229 mr noodles on 04.20.11 at 3:48 pm
i live and work in fort mcmurray,and do not find it hard to believe eddys stated income.wages here are phenominal, the best jobs are with the big oilsand companies,secure employment,compared to contractors,pensions loyalty bonus etc

I guess when the Layton, Iggy & Duceppe trio become PM and they shut down the oil sands, Eddy can go see them for another 170K/year job.

#239 Mr. Reality on 04.20.11 at 4:20 pm

#232 Nic Name on 04.20.11 at 3:55 pm
I firmly believe Garth’s view that this bubble is destined to burst at some point but the question I have is when?

For 3 years now I’ve been watching trends hearing that it is inevitable any time now, and nothing…

What is the outlook at the moment? Fall? next year? 3 more years?

The problem is the system is so rigged and the power at be have way too many tricks up their sleeves….QE2 is a perfect example of that….Something unpredictable will happen and that will set off a chain reaction. The nice thing about todays picture is there is alot of data out there pointing towards how bad a correction could be when it happens.

It will be bad. Get your finances in the right order and sit and wait. Enjoy the show and stay on the sidelines until a bottom occurs.

Early April was the market top.

Mr. R.

#240 Nab on 04.20.11 at 4:23 pm

Thanks for that letter, Eddy. I’m envious. I feel so stuck.

#241 American Werewolf on 04.20.11 at 4:35 pm

“25%+ should never have qualified for these loans. Hell, some couldn’t qualify for jury duty.”

—-

While I don’t necessarily disagree with that, I’d like to point out (anecdotally speaking) many of my friends who went sub-prime in the early part of last decade were having issues qualifying conventionally at 6-7% rates (which were considered historically low at the time). In 2004, with “perfect” credit, I jumped through hoops to get a conventional 30 year at 6.125%. In comparison, I can drag my ass into any brokerage firm in Canada and get pre-approved with little (compared to what I needed in the US) paperwork and down-payment for a variable at under 3% now.

Trust me. I’ve done both.

So what is my point of that loosely connected rambling?

Well, many of those friends who couldn’t pass muster in the States at 6-7% and went subp-rime would of easily been able to qualify in line with the current Canadian rates/standards. While corruption and idiocy enabled them to borrow over their heads in the early part of the decade, the system in Canada is letting this happen on its own. Whether Easy-Credit is a product of corruption or actually a systematic failing, it alone is what will drive the asset bubble; crossing all your t’s and dotting your i’s won’t save in the end.

Im tired of the arrogance suggesting that “it can’t happen here” because there are more regulations and less of a sub-prime problem. There is less of a sub-prime problem because any idiot in Canada can qualify conventionally. That is the bottom line.

#242 not asian on 04.20.11 at 5:15 pm

#163 – Devore
“Do you understand what a downpayment is? You know, you save money by spending less than you earn.

Although I lost money on my condo, after all was said and done, I still walked away with a $50k check. I guess my realtor and lawyer were very generous?”

So someone had to pay for the downpayment?- it wasn’t free? If are good with a downpayment of $100k to get a $50k cheque, I’d say I have some property you may be interested in you idiot! If you indeed walked away with $50k after all your expenses paid (ie lawyer fees, realtor fees) then it means that you broke even.

Eddy walked away paying $1000.00 and still owed his mommy $30,000 borrowed for the downpayment. I suspect the **ithead never paid them back.

#243 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 5:16 pm

#225 CalgaryRocks

Are you Liberal or NDP by any chance? You’re not willing to work a bit extra for 4 years so that you can get a really good head start on the rest of your life?
——

I sure as hell am not Conservative. Call me crazy but I’d rather not work 91 hours a week in a hellhole for several of the prime years of my life for a few extra dollars. I’m perfectly happy with my current employment and location and can “get a head start on the rest of my life” through sound decision making, both financial and otherwise.

I’m 23, an engineer, rent, save close to half my net income and am not sacrificing any happiness doing so.

#244 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 5:36 pm

#222 BrianT
160Utopia-OTOH you are the guy telling us to invest based on Goldman propaganda so the credibility isn’t super.
_____________________________________________

I never tell anyone how to invest. I merely express my own personal veiws and opinions. If you don’t like them, ignore them. (Goldman is right btw)

#245 randman on 04.20.11 at 5:59 pm

“He is no doubt paying for the pleasure of his escorts’, oops, I mean girlfriends’ company.”

Hey Eddy’s Ex

They probably cost a lot less than you did

And they come with a satisfaction guarantee

Believe me…if that’s what he’s doing..he really got smart!

#246 randman on 04.20.11 at 6:02 pm

My god!

This blog is morphing into a Jerry Springer episode!

#247 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 6:27 pm

#245 randman on 04.20.11 at 5:59 pm
“He is no doubt paying for the pleasure of his escorts’, oops, I mean girlfriends’ company.”

Hey Eddy’s Ex

They probably cost a lot less than you did

And they come with a satisfaction guarantee

There’s a guarantee? Really? Wow!

#248 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 6:31 pm

#243 Bruce on 04.20.11 at 5:16 pm
#225 CalgaryRocks

Are you Liberal or NDP by any chance? You’re not willing to work a bit extra for 4 years so that you can get a really good head start on the rest of your life?
——

I sure as hell am not Conservative.
I’m 23, an engineer, rent, save close to half my net income and am not sacrificing any happiness doing so.

Here’s a tip. There are 1 billion engineers in training in India that will do your job for 15k/year.

In other words, strike while the iron is hot.

#249 Live Under Your Means on 04.20.11 at 6:37 pm

160 Utopia

Dump Ignatieff. Dump him for the good of the country.
………………

And I say dump Harper for the good of the country.

A

#250 jess on 04.20.11 at 6:38 pm

American/Junius

supply side THEORY

milton freidman = libertarian = supply side = lower tax rates = greater investment therefore, more jobs whichs leads to greater prosperity so much that tax revenues will go up despite lower rates.

================================
AltWeeklies Wire
9 Things The Rich Don’t Want You To Know About Taxes

” What the news media missed is that hedge fund managers don’t even pay 15 percent. At least, not currently. So long as they leave their money, known as “carried interest,” in the hedge fund, their taxes are deferred. They only pay taxes when they cash out, which could be decades from now for younger managers. How do these hedge fund managers get money in the meantime? By borrowing against the carried interest, often at absurdly low rates — currently about 2 percent.

Lots of other people live tax-free, too. I have Donald Trump’s tax records for four years early in his career. He paid no taxes for two of those years. Big real-estate investors enjoy tax-free living under a 1993 law President Clinton signed. It lets “professional” real-estate investors use paper losses like depreciation on their buildings against any cash income, even if they end up with negative incomes like Trump.

Frank and Jamie McCourt, who own the Los Angeles Dodgers, have not paid any income taxes since at least 2004, their divorce case revealed. Yet they spent $45 million one year alone. How? They just borrowed against Dodger ticket revenue and other assets. To the IRS, they look like paupers.

In Wisconsin, Terrence Wall, who unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for US Senate in 2010, paid no income taxes on as much as $14 million of recent income, his disclosure forms showed. Asked about his living tax-free while working people pay taxes, he had a simple response: Everyone should pay less.

As millions of Americans prepare to file their annual taxes, they do so in an environment of media-perpetuated tax myths. Here are a few points about taxes and the economy that you may not know, to consider as you prepare to file your taxes…”

Association of Alternative Newsweeklies | David Cay Johnston | 04-14-2011 | Economy
Tags: taxes, politics, economics, Milton Friedman

#251 Timing is Everything on 04.20.11 at 6:38 pm

#246 randman

This free blog is first and foremost entertainment…anything else is a bonus.
Are you getting your money’s worth?

Who is Gerry Springer? Is he related to Garth?

#252 ballingsford on 04.20.11 at 6:49 pm

Hi Garth, do you have any recent stats on how much the traffic has increased on this site for the last while?

Months ago, I used to get home and look forward to reading your post and the blog responses which used to be around 130 – 150. Now I just finished reading 239 posts. How much time did I spend? Probably more than a 1/2 hr, but I’m a fast reader.

Anyway, today was an interesting read, well worth the time. I consider this site as informative and entertaining. I don’t get out to movies much lately as we have a 3 year old.

Anyway, I don’t have an issue with Eddy’s income, but the last part of the post with the 3 girlfriends shows a bit about his immaturity and his ego.

I guess one learns life lessons as part of the wisdom one acquires with age. He still has hope.

#253 Kits on 04.20.11 at 6:53 pm

Look no further than this WSJ article to understand why the cost of housing in Canada has climbed so high …. and why it will likely correct

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703838004576274750183949910.html?mod=WSJ_hp_MIDDLENexttoWhatsNewsThird

Emerging Economies’ Fear: Easy Credit

Housing prices are rising rapidly in Australia, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Israel, Singapore, South Africa and Sweden.

Housing prices are flat—or falling—in Britain, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy and the U.S.

Welcome to the two-speed global economy.

When most observers talk about a “two-speed economy,” they are contrasting slow-growing mature or advanced economies (the U.S., Europe, Japan, etc.) with fast-growing developed or emerging-market economies (China, India, Brazil, etc.). Philip Suttle of the Institute of International Finance, a bankers’ association, calls it “a two-and-six world.” In mature economies, growth and inflation are at around 2%; in emerging markets both are around 6%. Whenever anything nudges them off that course, he says, something else nudges them back.

But there’s another way to divide the world: Some economies had a big banking crisis. Some didn’t. And the ones that didn’t are the ones where housing prices are shooting up. Slow growth in mature economies is leading them to keep interest rates low and credit conditions easy. Because they (so far) dominate world financial markets, that means global credit is easy, too easy for emerging markets where inflation—in wages, prices and asset prices—is the worry.

“In countries where the financial system was not seriously damaged during the global crisis, housing prices have risen rapidly,” says Stanley Fischer, governor of the Bank of Israel. “That’s because when interest rates were cut sharply to deal with the crisis, mortgage interest rates also fell rapidly, and people responded by borrowing to buy houses—thereby driving up the price of houses.”

Low rates in the U.S. and other economies hit hard by the financial crisis aren’t having the same effect. Their banks aren’t yet eager or able to lend readily. In the U.S., for instance, the latest 20-city S&P/Case-Shiller home-price index was 3.1% below year-earlier levels and those year-ago levels were 29% below the 2006 peak. The latest Federal Reserve survey found little evidence that banks are undoing tighter mortgage-lending standards imposed during the worst of the bust.

But elsewhere—particularly in countries flooded with money fleeing super-low interest rates in the U.S., Europe and Japan—banks are lending, people are buying and home prices are climbing. This isn’t only an emerging-market phenomenon. In Canada, for instance, commercial banks were hardly shaken by the crisis but the Bank of Canada has been holding its key rate at just 1% to foster economic growth. The consequence: Housing prices in February were up nearly 9% from year-earlier levels, the Canadian Real Estate Association says. The worry in Canada and elsewhere is that what goes up might come down, and history amply illustrates the economic harm done when housing prices plunge.

In Israel, banks were spared the worst of the crisis; they hadn’t invested much in U.S. subprime mortgages. But Israel wasn’t immune from shock waves from abroad so its central bank cut rates all the way to 0.5% in 2009. That made mortgages cheap. Over the past year, the house prices are up 16.3%.

“Continued rapid price increases could threaten stability, and in that sense could lead to the creation of a bubble,” the Bank of Israel says. Raising rates will make mortgages more costly, and Mr. Fischer has been pursuing that, recently pushing the central bank’s benchmark rate up to 3%.

But like many of his counterparts elsewhere, Mr. Fischer knows a side-effect of higher rates is a higher currency. And that hits Israel’s vibrant export sector. So he is looking for alternatives more targeted on home prices: The Bank of Israel has imposed rules meant to increase the cost of mortgages. So far, they hit only mortgages larger than 800,000 shekels (about $235,000) with down payments below 40%, but there are no signs that the Bank of Israel will stop at that.

In this (and perhaps only in this) respect, Israel is not unusual. The average house price in Hong Kong rose more than 20% in 2010 following a 30% increase the year before. In the first two months of this year, prices rose another 7%. “The current abundant liquidity and low interest rates will not last forever. Neither will rising property prices,” Financial Secretary John Tsang warned recently. Authorities are pushing lenders to make mortgages harder to get, lifting minimum down payments and imposing taxes of up to 15% on property sales to cool things off. Singapore has done much the same, levying a tax on residential properties held less than three years.

Some big countries had a housing bubble that burst, provoking the biggest financial crisis in half a century. To avoid a depression, they flooded the world with credit. And that credit threatens to create new housing bubbles in other countries. No one ever said globalization was easy.

Write to David Wessel at [email protected]

#254 Otto Doppelganger on 04.20.11 at 7:11 pm

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/the-worlds-hottest-real-estate-market-2011-04-19?dist=afterbell

I wonder if Vancouver has been a similar type of “laundromat” all these years.

#255 OttawaMike on 04.20.11 at 7:16 pm

Reading some of the comments today makes me wish for the good old days on this blog when the gold bugs, tin foil hatters, Jewish banker conspiracy theorists and Satan’s Helper the OCD Kelowna realtor were regulars.

Some of you commentators are unreal and pretty boring at the same time, obsessing over Eddy’s salary and ego…

#256 ballingsford on 04.20.11 at 7:18 pm

BTW Eddy, treat those ladies of yours with respect and find one that is down to earth lovely. It isn’t easy, but stop playing the head games. It must also be hard on your head trying to manage this. Think of this Cat Stevens song.

Father
It’s not time to make a change,
Just relax, take it easy.
You’re still young, that’s your fault,
There’s so much you have to know.
Find a girl, settle down,
If you want you can marry.
Look at me, I am old, but I’m happy.

I was once like you are now, and I know that it’s not easy,
To be calm when you’ve found something going on.
But take your time, think a lot,
Why, think of everything you’ve got.
For you will still be here tomorrow, but your dreams may not.

#257 ballingsford on 04.20.11 at 7:24 pm

One more thought Eddy. Once you find this down to earth girl, start a family. Your thoughts will no longer be about yourself and your wants, but your thoughts and wants will be focused on your child(s).

It’s the best feeling anyone can experience. I used to be like you BTW!

#258 GTA Girl on 04.20.11 at 7:27 pm

Post #146 Toronto Rocks? Your post should be embroidered by my nonna and hung in the AGO. Everything i have ever felt about TO after landing at Pearson from cities like Paris, NY, or Rome. You, are my new guru.

#259 Live Under Your Means on 04.20.11 at 7:42 pm

#176 Cowboy on 04.20.11 at 12:27 pm

I have withheld relating my story, partly because it’s personal and I don’t want sympathy. In 2003 I was diagnosed with stage IV cancer – 12-18 mos. to live. I rec’d the very best care. Within a couple of weeks underwent surgery – 7 days in hospital and as soon as I was able rec’d chemo – 8 hours one week and 2 hours the next week. My body could not not take the full treatment so chemo was stopped. A few years later I again went for chemo – only 3 treatments – they would have to do transfusions, IIRC, and said it could be worse than not doing them. I still have a couple of cancerous lymph nodes. Have had so many ct scans, xrays, MRI, etc. that I’ve lost track. My taxes paid for it. I did oodles of research when I was diagnosed and before my op and learned about my condition/options/and fellow warriors from a very well respected site in the US. No way would I want their Health care system.

#260 mr noodles on 04.20.11 at 7:49 pm

calgaryrocks
if you read carefully,i said secure employment compared to contractors,who are the first line of layoffs.nothing is ever gaurenteed in this world,if they do shut down the oilsands,so be it.i walk away from my rented apartment with a very nice nest egg.
still a happy immigrant

#261 KingBubbles on 04.20.11 at 7:50 pm

Inflation discussion anyone ?

#262 S.B. on 04.20.11 at 7:55 pm

“Have you noticed more people on this blog out for my blood lately?” ~~Garth

I think the junior blog dogs are making a run at the Alpha dog’s rein, bound to happen. The fur is flying, teeth are gnashing.

As the saying goes, The View Never Changes Unless You Are the Lead Dog. ;)

#263 S on 04.20.11 at 8:01 pm

#70 Eddy on 04.20.11 at 12:49 am

OK, Eddy. Up until your comment # 70 I was with you and thought the people calling you out were uninformed. See, I am well familiar with Fort Mac, the oil patch and Alberta at large. Spent many good years there. I learned to fully appreciate the place only after I left it. You know, each time I hear someone from Okanagan, Van Island or any other place in beautiful BC (and I sincerely mean beautiful) deride Alberta my blood pressure rises a bit because had it not been for the Wild Rose Country money large swats of British Columbia – and certainly parts of the Okanagan – would not yet have running water or indoor plumbing. So enjoy yourself in Kelowna but have some class and don’t shit on the place that makes your lifestyle there possible. You owe Alberta and its people an apology dude.

#264 Hoof Hearted on 04.20.11 at 8:02 pm

The guy has now actually sent me a pay stub, because you all hurt his feelings… — Garth

=======

WTF?

Even Don Corleone send out pay stubs……

This was a wasted item…some clueless engineer(redundant) still picking his nose/ass.

#265 Alpha Bravo on 04.20.11 at 8:10 pm

#190 Rusty1

Hey, I’m an electrical engineer making 168k/year, too! But don’t tell my proud mother – she thinks I’m a piano player in a whore house…

——————————-

Finally, some comic relief….

#266 Victor on 04.20.11 at 8:13 pm

#94 John Smith (Toronto) on 04.20.11 at 2:30 am

Looks like we have more in common. I grew up in Europe so I can certainly attest to the ‘normalcy’ of renting, hence not owning at present comes pretty easy to our family.

On the other side, at one point, I did own a McMansion so I can also directly relate to the money pit that these homes can be.

Older and wiser now, hence the new orientation of our family’s finances…per my original post.

#267 Brew on 04.20.11 at 8:21 pm

At #193 Kevin

“That’s a great story, but I have one question: How is your unemployed brother going to pay the tax bill from the IRS after the bank issues him a 1099 for the $200,000 in “forgiven” debt?”

There is no personal income tax in Florida.

If that doesn’t take care of it then this should.

The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief act and Debt Cancellation

http://www.irs.gov/individuals/article/0,,id=179414,00.html

#268 torontorocks on 04.20.11 at 8:28 pm

#258 GTAGrrrl – don’t even get me started about what it feels like when you come back from Europe…

your nonna….she knows how to make a red focaccia?

#269 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 8:30 pm

#260 mr noodles on 04.20.11 at 7:49 pm
calgaryrocks
if you read carefully,i said secure employment compared to

You mis-understood me. It was sarcasm. The Liberals & the NDP always s*it on the oil sands but forget to mention how many people make a really good living there.

#270 Makes Cents on 04.20.11 at 8:38 pm

#125 Diana Greece is beautiful … you will love it!

#271 groundzeropat on 04.20.11 at 8:48 pm

My realtor has been sending me any action that is happening in Fraserview, Vancouver. Just over the past 2 weeks there have been 8 price reductions. My co-worker has been trying to sell her house in Surrey for one month now and a friend of ours who lives in Richmond has been trying to sell for the past 1.5 months. The market is starting to turn downwards now. I’d say the real drop starts after mid-July when all the 120 day rate guarantees expire from the March 18 rush to sign. My best friends wife is a mortgage broker and she says there are a lot of people who were pre-approved for 5/35 on the March 18 deadline. She says these people are in a hurry to get in but at the same time they heard about the news of a 25% price drop coming.

#272 debtified on 04.20.11 at 8:49 pm

Eddy lost me at #70.

#273 Guy_in_Regina on 04.20.11 at 9:15 pm

#70 Eddy,

No hard feelings man. Thanks for the illuminating lesson. I do appreciate it. You’re smart to make hay in the patch while you’re young and got no commitments. Giv’er buddy!! And soak up all the Oakanagan you can! Some of us live in Regina :(

#274 eddy on 04.20.11 at 9:18 pm

I’m the other eddy,
OK, here is a great documentary about Ireland real estate boom bust by Max Kaiser-

http://www.prisonplanet.com/max-keiser-documentary-on-irish-eco-hell.html

#275 The American on 04.20.11 at 9:22 pm

At #193: Kevn, let me happily answer your question. All taken care of! :-) First, I paid for the vacation to Mexico – not him. “Screwing over the bank?” Seriously? The bank screwed him and tens of thousands of others over, allowing everyone in the neighborhood to default and short-sale while all the while he is making timely payments. The bank CREATED compressed home values. He was the last man standing in his neighborhood, and he should not be made liable for the actions of poor lending standards and bullshit banking “standards.” Period. As stated before, cry me a river.

He did not receive a 1099. Instead, he received a 1099 C. Federal Law does NOT provide that a person must pay taxes on the “forgiven” debt (this is the debt the bank is reimbursed for by the insurance company on the insurance the consumer was paying on behalf of the bank), contingent it your primary residence. This is in effect until 2012. If, however, it is NOT one’s primary residence, you still do NOT have to pay taxes if you can prove you are insolvent. If it is shown you are solvent and a secondary home, you’re going to have to pay the taxes.

By the way, he has a FANTASTIC job… Now in D.C., no less :-) Good luck!

#276 45north on 04.20.11 at 9:33 pm

Kitchener1: With the numbers out for the GTA, there will be no melt up in RE numbers, it will be a full blown crash.

drive along Highway 7 and see endless subdivisions. Each house worth $600,000. Hard to see the LTV.

#277 Republic_of_Western_Canada on 04.20.11 at 9:37 pm

#258 GTA Girl –

And what do you personally contribute to the ambience of TO or anywhere else in your day-to-day? ( Which European, South American, and Asian girls learn to do at an early age )

That is, beyond the typically bitchy entitlement attitude and horrible obesity prevalent in north american women these days.

#278 Dark Sad Monster Bunny on 04.20.11 at 9:37 pm

So much blog, so little time…..

This line from Eddy got me:

“I looked at every angle. Only option was to sell.”

He makes $170K/Yr. Mortgage is $300K . He had lots of options. If you think he is smart for selling, ask yourself if he was stupid for buying.

#279 The American on 04.20.11 at 9:42 pm

At #196: Edmonton Mortgage Broker, thanks for the support. It was clearly a “no brainer” for me, but when one is face head on with this kind of a situation, it becomes an incredibly emotional situation. Hence the reason I took he and his wife to Mexico so they weren’t staring it in the face when having to make this decision.

At #202: Junius, thank you for the support. I’m going to send my brother your comments. He’ll feel good about it. Truly, this was the BEST decision he has ever made in his life. In a twisted sense, I am proud of him.

At #207: 45 North, I would be happy to get your email. I haven’t received anything from Garth (probably blog etiquette). Garth, I’m happy to take 45North’s email and get in contact with him/her if you’re willing to provide it to me.

At #222: BrianT, get lost, dude. Not nice, I know, but frankly, you’re boring.

At #230: Dorf, YES, that is EXACTLY what the banks are trying to do. They WANT you to use your home as a revolving credit card. Remember, every time you take out a HELOC or refinance your mortgage, although this is a liability for you, this is a receivable asset for the bank’s balance sheet.

At #246: Randman, Jerry Springer is pretty cool if you stop and think about it. Much like a train wreck. You just have to stop and watch it, no matter how bad it is!

At #251: Timing is Everything, you said, “who is Jerry Springer?” Are you kidding me? I hope not. He is a CLASSIC. You should rent the movie called “Ring Master” The movie is based on the guy. Or, you could just watch his show daily at 2:00 p.m. on cable :-) Its AMAZING if you like watching hookers in fights with their ex-lesbian pimps. Or, if you prefer, he typically shows a “who my baby daddy” episode at least once a month.

#280 this is wonderland on 04.20.11 at 9:49 pm

Jesus 269 post about 1 guy.

#281 eddy on 04.20.11 at 9:49 pm

I’m a different eddy (honk if you hate Haarper)

a good documentary about Irish real estate boom bust

http://www.prisonplanet.com/max-keiser-documentary-on-irish-eco-hell.html

#282 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 10:03 pm

Read his comments. The guy has now actually sent me a pay stub, because you all hurt his feelings… — Garth”
____________________________________________

Alright, you got me there. Now I feel a bit bad because I was hard on him too. So I will extend my apologies to Eddy and hopefully he will forgive my earlier comments.

#283 AG Sage on 04.20.11 at 10:04 pm

>#248 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 6:31 pm

Actually, no. India is graduating masses of unqualified students. You only see the very cream of the very top here in NA and that skews perception. I’m in India about once a year and the businesses there are fighting like Michael Vick’s dogs over the handful of actual qualified graduates every year.

#284 The American on 04.20.11 at 10:28 pm

At #176: Cowboy, it appears that Canadians do pay less on a monthly basis per-capita than Americans for healthcare. As with all government backed or government-paid systems, there is a base line level of healthcare for ALL people – which is a tremendous thing. However, there is a cap to what one can receive as with all other government-backed or government-paid healthcare systems.

It appears, however, that immediate access to healthcare in Canada is lacking when compared to the U.S. In the U.S., unfortunately there is no baseline coverage for the uninsured. However, in the U.S., there is no limit to what one can receive in way of new life-saving procedures or types of care. Even in the U.S., you cannot be denied care, even if you don’t have coverage, nor can one be denied immediate access to the best of care. In the U.S., it is the COST that kills an uninsured consumer. So, you better be insured if you plan on getting ill. If, however, you are covered in the U.S., the costs are damn near a wash. In many respects, I do feel the “free healthcare” I continually hear from Canadians is hype. Even ex-Canaidan friends I have living here will tell me it was hype after they’ve experienced the American healthcare system.

Don’t get me wrong… Clearly there are too many administrative hang ups in the U.S. system. Nearly 40% of healthcare costs in the U.S. go toward maintaining administrative bullshit.

In a nutshell, Canada has a baseline and a cap. The U.S. has no baseline but no cap.

I live in Seattle, Washington. Seattle is truly a beacon of some of the best healthcare one can receive in the world. For example, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center is here, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation support many local research organizations, the University of Washington Medical Center is rated as one of the top 5 in the entire U.S. (and yes, it saved my life in an incredibly complicated and immediate situation), PATH is located here, and the University of Washington is globally renowned for its research and schooling of future doctors.

I am not advising anyone to move here as it isn’t fair for me to push that on anyone. I do not, after all, have a very clear understanding of the Canadian system. Therefore, it wouldn’t be fair for me to make any kind of recommendation.

As for moving to the States in retirement, I can only assume it isn’t that difficult. There are SO MANY Canadians living here, especially in Seattle, I could throw a rock and hit one! In fact, my neighbor in my condo building is Canadian, soon obtaining U.S. citizenship. Living here as a Canadian is easy. Obtaining citizenship takes TIME. The government has a lengthy due diligence process (by design) to ensure one TRULY wants to live here. Anyway, I adore her. Coincidentally, she is a professor at the University of Washington and married to an ex-Texan who is also a professor at the University.

I must also say I have two other neighbors who lived at the Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver. Granted, they are American and they are from Hollywood, so that in itself speaks for itself. After living in Vancouver for two years, they ran to Seattle because he was unable to find the care he was used to. He, to this day, still complains about the care he received there.

Frankly, in my life, I would never live ANYWHERE for one reason alone, including access to healthcare provided I can afford it. That is precisely the reason I was inquiring about the per-capita monthly costs to a Canadian for like coverage when compared to similar coverage for an American each month.

All I can do is speak from my own experiences. I can get a CT Scan RIGHT NOW if I choose. I can receive a life-saving and necessary operation for Ludwig’s Angitis within minutes if i have to (and I did at the UW Medical Center), or I can simply call my doctor’s office and have him look at me within 24 hours just because I choose.

As for cancer, I have a neighbor lady who is 74. She had lung cancer 3 years ago. Now, it has returned a month ago. I am quite saddened by it. However, she stated “I thank the Universe I live here. I wouldn’t get this kind of attention anywhere else.” She’s lived everywhere from the U.K. to France to the Netherlands (she hasn’t lived in Canada, though). Her prognosis is good.

I have another friend who is 40 years old. She is a health nut and runs marathons and eats all natural all the time. However, a little over a year ago, she was diagnosed with breast cancer in her twice-yearly mammogram. Since then, she had to have a double mastectomy, radiation, several treatments of chemotherapy with marijuana for pain management, a full hysterectomy (unfortunately, it was an estrogen-fed cancer), and now the first phase of reconstructive surgery where they remove her lats from her back muscle and move them under the skin where her breasts used to be. Next steps are for her to have actual implants place under the skin and a “nipple” tattooed where the areola once was located. Additionally, her lymph system in her left arm is failing as a result (this is common) and they are simultaneously working to correct this issue (this is complicated). All of this in about a year. That’s a lot, and access and quality was abundant.

Frankly, I love our healthcare system for the amazing quality, cutting edge techniques, and immediate access to it that I receive. I hate our system because there is no baseline for those who cannot pay for it – this really saddens me and I want our government to find a way to correct it. That is why I MUST view my premiums as a mandatory tax (much like it is in Canada). If I take the responsibility upon myself to do this, I will be perfectly happy and fine.

On a final note, the system here was good enough for a Canadian politician, Danny Williams, to come here for open heart surgery. I would too.

If I wanted access to great pasta, I’d move to Italy. Depends on what ones out of life and what one can afford.

http://bridgetdgms.wordpress.com/2010/02/23/canadian-politician-comes-to-us-for-heart-surgery/

http://www.heartland.org/healthpolicy-news.org/article/27111/Top_Canadian_Politician_Chooses_US_Health_Care.html

http://www.medpagetoday.com/Cardiology/AcuteCoronarySyndrome/18279

#285 The American on 04.20.11 at 10:33 pm

AT #241: American Werewolf, thanks for your post. You have demonstrated PRECISELY why I KNOW Canadian banks have been the biggest offenders of sub-prime lending standards, regardless of what they want to call it. Canadians on a whole, however, just don’t now it… yet.

#286 Cellar Dwellar on 04.20.11 at 10:34 pm

@#227 BLITZKREIG
No, your bank account statements dont drive you insane. The Property Management job did. :)

#287 Irrational Exuberance on 04.20.11 at 10:38 pm

#281 AG Sage on 04.20.11 at 10:04 pm

Michael Vick’s dogs??? really???

#288 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 10:57 pm

#281 AG Sage on 04.20.11 at 10:04 pm
>#248 CalgaryRocks on 04.20.11 at 6:31 pm

Actually, no. India is graduating masses of unqualified students. You only see the very cream of the very top here in NA

I know, but my point was that if you have the chance to make the kind of big bucks that will literally change the rest of your life you better take it because there’s no guarantee that you’ll be an ‘engineer’ in 20 years.

In my case I started to plan my escape from the cubicle farm 5 years into my IT ‘career’. And it was the case where I actually loved what I was doing. I just hated doing it for someone else who didn’t even appreciate it, that’s all.

#289 Utopia on 04.20.11 at 11:06 pm

#276 Republic_of_Western_Canada

What the hell did GTA girl do to you that called for such a nasty insult pal? That was totally out of line.

#290 pen pal on 04.21.11 at 1:06 am

re # 287 Utopia

What insult?

He asked her a question and made a value statement on North American women which I happen to agree applies to lotsa Canadian women, particularly from Toronto and environs.

#291 Just answering a couple questions from the wife... on 04.21.11 at 1:34 am

Posts are being block again. Not cool. Maybe I’ll go hang at zerohedge.com instead. Electronic or not I don’t like my responses being dropped because they take a while to construct. If you don’t like them Garth, refute them, but don’t just drop them. Responding is an investment of my time. Drop one more and I will visit the many other sites that have this topic covered instead.

Nothing of yours deleted. — Garth

#292 Cowboy on 04.21.11 at 1:57 am

American,
Thanks for your info!
I actually went down to Seattle last year and LOVED it.
I am originally from Scotland and was planning on going to the UK to visit family. Then the damn volcano in Iceland happened. I was so disappointed I got in my car and decided to go to Seattle.
Loved the food and the look of the place and I was only there for 3 days.
I could not believe the flowers were out at the time.
I love Canada but as I work outside, -45 is getting a bit much and that is the only reason I am researching options.
Thanks for the info about healthcare, I wish you the best.
I still appreciate your posts as I am always working or taking care of the family and am not able to talk to many adults because of my job.
Thus, hearing the ‘Word on the Street’ comes from places like this!
Cheers

#293 ted on 04.21.11 at 2:56 am

The guy blew it with the bogus salary claim. Good story he could of left that out. Even if that is true. Don’t see how it is. Well he might be an engineer but not working as one and made that. Anyways good story.

#294 islander on 04.21.11 at 3:00 am

Eddie had me until the last paragraph.
Whereupon he brags about his salary, insists he’s smarter than someone he’s never met, is a better athlete, and boasts of the hotness of his GF.
And then he sends Garth a pay stub to “prove” what he makes?!
People who actually have all those things don’t get into d!ck-measuring contests. They don’t need to. Unless they’ve super-humanly deficient in self-esteem.
And after all the lessons he claims to have learned, Eddy thinks he’s invulnerable to layoff. As an engineer.
What an arrogant little pr!ck.

#295 Kevin on 04.21.11 at 8:19 am

@The American:

I’m not going to have this argument again. Suffice to say, I think your brother is a liar and a thief. He borrowed money and promised to pay it back, then deliberately broke his word. Clearly, you strongly disagree with me, and neither of us are going to change our minds, so further debate on this point is futile.

#296 The American on 04.21.11 at 9:52 am

At #293: Kevin, cry me a river…

#297 Mr. Plow on 04.21.11 at 11:47 am

#292 islander

Did you copy my post?

:)

#298 The American on 04.21.11 at 12:29 pm

AT #293: You started the argument. You’re not going to have it “again?” Man, you’re delusional LOL

Anyway, you can think my brother is a liar and a thief all you want. The facts of the case are clear. One, he never lied about anything. He approached the bank and explained to the bank exactly his take on the situation and exactly what remedies he felt were appropriate – no lies there whatsoever. Two, the bank AGREED to the terms in a mutually acceptable, written contract in the process of a short-sale. So, no thievery took place. Otherwise, the bank wouldn’t have agreed to anything if they didn’t feel it wasn’t in their best interest. The bank was made whole – you’re clearly missing that point. You’re delusional. And, clearly you have no understanding of the U.S. system for consumer protection laws. These laws and processes exist for a reason and are in place for the use of the consumers who have found themselves in an unfair or unbalanced contract. That’s why he used them, LEGALLY.

I could care less if I change your mind. But, I’m not going to allow you to get away with false statements either. You do not understand that in a situation like this a consumer is not given a 1099. Instead he/she receives a 1099C, which alleviates all tax liability on a primary residence. You call people a thief or a liar, when in fact they’re abiding by the law in a judicial system by means of legal due process. Enjoy!

#299 r on 04.21.11 at 6:28 pm

“…I’d say the real drop starts after mid-July when all the 120 day rate guarantees expire from the March 18 rush to sign. … is a mortgage broker and she says there are a lot of people who were pre-approved for 5/35 on the March 18 deadline..”

what’s with this? i thought the CMHC said

“I have a written mortgage pre-approval from a lender, dated before March 18, 2011 with a 35 year amortization. Will I still be eligible for a 35 year amortization if I don’t sign an agreement of purchase and sale until March 18 or later?

No, a mortgage pre-approval is not considered to be a “binding agreement”. You may have a 35 year amortization only if your agreement of purchase and sale is dated before March 18, 2011”

in their march 18th faq.

so is the cmhc faq correct, or is this mortgage broker correct? are buyers just confused?