Real men

“If there was ever an indication of how much of a buyer’s market it is out there,” says a prominent agent on his blog, “it has got to be the fact that so many homes I show lately have no one living in them!” No, this is not a realtor in Phoenix or Orlando, but a working dude in one of Canada’s major markets. More on that in a minute.

Another realtor, in the biz for 16 years selling luxury rural spreads on the horsey end of Toronto says, “there was no Spring market this year. Only now are the listings starting to gush in.” But he’s worried. Properties may have been scarce, but so were buyers. Why should that change now?

Some weeks ago I said a correction in Canada’s real estate market had begun. It was evident in falling sales even in the face of fewer listings. And it doesn’t take much to see consumer confidence has stalled. Gas and food prices are eating up disposable income, mortgage rules are tighter, jobs are still scarce, incomes are stagnant and we all know interest rates are set to rise. Meanwhile real estate values have jumped on declining sales, making houses less affordable. Tons of owners are frightened to become sellers, spooked at the cost of moving.

As I said, few homeowners today would ever pay for their homes what they demand others must. It’s another sign there’s no robust market ahead.

Too damn bad, because this could be the last, great opportunity to bail in markets which still have a pulse, like Toronto, Calgary, Montreal and Vancouver. People with houses, too freaked out to list them, may end up selling into a declining or moribund market – and collectively leave billions on the table in tax-free capital gains. Just ask folks in, say, Kelowna or Edmonton.

What turns homeowners into quivering lumps of insecurity when they contemplating a sale?

Maybe Marshall in Halifax can shed some light:

Although I agree with most of what you write in your blog I feel there is a portion of your audience that you may mislead.  Basically you are advising dumping real estate and investing the proceeds to fund rental costs of a home.  I own my home, which I purchased 16 years ago, with a small remaining mortgage which will evaporate in the next two years.

Being somewhat risk adverse I feel it would be an error for me to sell my home and rent with investment proceeds.  No investment is 100% safe and following your advice could lead to me having to move in with friends or live in a tent if the investments tanked and did not provide sufficient income to pay living costs.  Under the above circumstances I think I’ll hunker down until the grim reaper calls.

I feel blessed after reading your blog.

Of course, Marshall baby, we all do. But you haven’t exactly got my advice right.

Here’s the real risk in owning a home today: having the bulk of your net worth in one immovable, and potentially illiquid asset which looks like it will be declining in value for years to come. It you’re cool seeing equity trickle away, fine. This is exactly what kicked the crap out of the US middle class – the people who never took a subprime mortgage and owned their homes for years before any crisis materialized. Once property values started to fall, their net worth fell with it. In many cases, they were wiped.

Most at risk (as I’ve said) are first-time buyers with scant equity and obese mortgages, and wrinkly Boomers with fat equity and few investments. Both of these groups could be in for the surprise of their lives. They’ll bookend the correction.

But, Marsh buddy, cashing in your equity does not lead directly to living in a tent. Ironically, if you’re risk-averse, then you should actually be terrified of residential real estate. Its value is completely out of your hands, unlike say, plowing money into good corporate bonds with a 100% chance of paying you back. Combine those with assets that pay you handsomely to own them (like some of the REITs I’ve described here, or bank preferreds paying close to 6%) plus a swatch of Canadian blue chips churning out dividends and pacing economic growth, and you probably have more stability than bricks can offer.

No, nothing’s guaranteed (my last post helped explain why). But a balanced portfolio didn’t ‘tank’ during the financial crisis (the worst since the 1930s), so why should it now? We’re not on the edge of economic Armageddon, despite what the metal-pumpers and doomers who wail here say. However we’ve reached the point of housing exhaustion – when 70% of families own homes, which has pushed them into the deepest debt canyon of all time. This asset is done.

So, the advice stands. Especially if you’re a house-heavy Boomer. Real men rent.

Selling high makes sense. This is high. Buying low makes equal sense. That’s coming. Renting for a couple of years won’t kill you, especially when your portfolio pays everything. For many people, this could be the windfall of a lifetime. There has to be a powerful reason not to do it.

Being a wuss, Marshall, ain’t one of them.

BTW, if you are the first to guess what city I referenced in the lead sentence of this post, I have a free book for you, autographed and priceless. — Garth

UPDATE: It took but a few minutes after I posted the above for the first person to correctly identify the city this woeful realtor describes. So I’ll be sending out a book this morning to Freedom_2008. I asked this blogger for a few words of personal description, and received this:

The net name (freedom_2008) has a special meaning for us: we quit the rat race from high tech industry and got our freedom to do whatever we like in 2008, and our age then was 48 and 52.

No, we didn’t start our professional careers early, at 28 and 34.  Actually one of us came here from another country with only $100 US (and a young child) to start school (with highest grades to obtain and maintain a scholarship), that year was 1987 and she was 31.  Fast forward 21 years, the child is in graduate school and mostly independent, we have done our share of hard working and high earnings, enjoyed life and saved a lot.  We quit (not by layoff) and went to take care aging parent, and then moved to Victoria.

We own our house clear (about 25% in total wealth), have no other debt, and don’t need lots money to enjoy a good life, about $40K/yr now ($50K/yr while working), excluding income taxes.  Without the high stress from work, not only we feel so free, we started to re-discover ourselves, who we really are and what we really enjoy.  We are very very happy and feel that if there is a real heaven, we are already in it.

We started to read your blog not long after we quit and like it lots.

Fortuitously, Freedom lives in the city with the empty houses: Victoria. — Garth

333 comments ↓

#1 Rightman on 05.15.11 at 6:12 pm

“BTW, if you are the first to guess what city I referenced in the lead sentence of this post, I have a free book for you, autographed and priceless. — Garth”

I guess Vancouver. Lots of absentee landlords there…

#2 freedom_2008 on 05.15.11 at 6:16 pm

“BTW, if you are the first to guess what city I referenced in the lead sentence of this post, I have a free book for you, autographed and priceless. — Garth”

Victoria BC, my dear home city, of course.

#3 Northern_dirt on 05.15.11 at 6:16 pm

Toronto?

#4 Andrew on 05.15.11 at 6:16 pm

Guess: Toronto

#5 Mr. Lee on 05.15.11 at 6:16 pm

Put me in for Winnipeg Mr. Turner.

This weekend’s Home Section of the Calgary Herald featured the new head of the Calgary Realestate Board. In his address to Scotia banks he mentioned that he can not figure out why the Calgary market is not as active as it should be. One of the reasons the fellow used were that, “people are grumpy about the long winter.” and that the housing boom is right around the corner.

If his career at the Board fails he can always take up pom poms and become a cheer leader.

#6 cialis on 05.15.11 at 6:17 pm

That city would be Victoria

#7 bdiis on 05.15.11 at 6:19 pm

Brampton?

#8 tanned34 on 05.15.11 at 6:19 pm

Vicotria

#9 soaper on 05.15.11 at 6:21 pm

garth, i believe the city you are discussing is victoria!

#10 RentinginNS on 05.15.11 at 6:21 pm

Hi Garth, Could it be Victoria? Love your Blog!!

#11 AG Sage on 05.15.11 at 6:22 pm

This variation on a market top is interesting. The move-up buyers are stuck, so they don’t list. Even if they harvest their gains (ehem) they can’t buy up far enough to come out ahead on the deal.

As to the “contest”, I’ll guess the obvious, Vancouver.

#12 VFG on 05.15.11 at 6:22 pm

Is it Toronto?

#13 Joshua on 05.15.11 at 6:24 pm

good post again Garth…is it Vancouver?

#14 John Reid on 05.15.11 at 6:25 pm

It is Toronto.

#15 mel on 05.15.11 at 6:26 pm

Garth, I will guess. It is Calgary.

#16 tf on 05.15.11 at 6:27 pm

I will guess Victoria Garth.

#17 Tom from Mississauga on 05.15.11 at 6:27 pm

Mississauga! No, Toronto! Vancouver!!!

#18 Doug on 05.15.11 at 6:28 pm

Toronto

#19 jeff on 05.15.11 at 6:28 pm

the answer to the trivia question is victoria

#20 guava.ca on 05.15.11 at 6:28 pm

Victoria

#21 freedom_2008 on 05.15.11 at 6:28 pm

If, in case, I was the 1st got the city right, I would like one to be published book by you, after the “Money Road”. We already have a signed “Money Road”, although not free, but still priceless ;-)

#22 grantmi on 05.15.11 at 6:28 pm

Victoria Garth!

#23 bubble town on 05.15.11 at 6:30 pm

Alleluya…finally first!

#24 Love this Blog on 05.15.11 at 6:30 pm

Garth,
I believe the first sentence refers to Edmonton, Alberta

#25 Wags on 05.15.11 at 6:30 pm

Victoria

#26 Pity The Fool on 05.15.11 at 6:30 pm

Vancouver? Wheres my book?

#27 Joe on 05.15.11 at 6:31 pm

What is Vancouver, Alex?

Been keeping my eye on a development in the fringes of the Lower Mainland for a few months. Beginning of April they posted on their site that 70% of houses in their project were sold. Beginning of May “Only 6 homes left!” What percentage of homes are left, you ask? 30%. No change in over a month. However, they still excitedly say that, “Our construction department is working hard to catch up with the strong demand we have had since we opened as we are selling homes faster than we can build them!” Wow! Act now or be priced out forever!!!!

#28 Corey Javens on 05.15.11 at 6:31 pm

I’m going to guess good ol Victoria BC

#29 mel on 05.15.11 at 6:31 pm

Sorry Garth, I have changed my mind. I would say Victoria.

I was there two weeks ago, something did not seemed right to me.

#30 Kelowna on 05.15.11 at 6:35 pm

My guess is Kelowna…

#31 I pity the fool who drinks soy milk on 05.15.11 at 6:37 pm

Never one to pass on the opportunity to score some free swag, I’ll bite.
Ottawa?

#32 Siddelly on 05.15.11 at 6:38 pm

Was it Victoria Garth???

#33 Stacy Adams on 05.15.11 at 6:39 pm

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

View the home, beautiful homes in Victoria.

#34 Waiting on 05.15.11 at 6:39 pm

Well i went one open house today and it was vacant. The answer is Vancouver

#35 Happy on 05.15.11 at 6:39 pm

Victoria, BC

#36 Bast on 05.15.11 at 6:39 pm

For sure it’s Calgary – on the bald ass prairie surrounded by nothing but land and with vacant properties up the proverbial ying-yang.

#37 LH on 05.15.11 at 6:40 pm

Is it Toronto?

#38 henrigolo on 05.15.11 at 6:42 pm

I would guess the city you are referring to is Victoria.

#39 squidly77 on 05.15.11 at 6:42 pm

Should you stay put, downsize or get out completely?

Five short years ago, many learned men and women warned Americans against thinking that rising home prices would eliminate or lessen the need for them to save for retirement. Institutions and advisers alike warned people against relying on the equity in their homes to finance part if not all of their consumption needs in retirement.

More from MarketWatch.com:

• 401(k)s Grow, But Savers Are Still Worried

• Bill to Put Pressure on Mortgage Settlement Talks

• New Rule Protects Social Security Benefits

Today, that’s no longer the case. In fact, today, we have almost the opposite situation. With home prices falling for nearly five years, many Americans now must consider what to do with their homes should prices continue to collapse and the equity in their homes — if they are still lucky enough to have any equity — disappears completely. Real-Estate Nightmare Looms for Retirees

There’s no way in hell that Canada will escape the global real estate meltdown.

Whatever city it is, the others won’t be too far away.
Edmonton is certainly toast already and Calgary’s just about gone, sales not prices are the key.

#40 GLC on 05.15.11 at 6:43 pm

Long time reader, first time poster here. I believe the city referenced is Victoria. I just wanted to say that I enjoy the blog immensely – keep up the good work!

#41 rental monkey on 05.15.11 at 6:43 pm

Lead city in this post: Vancouver! Do I win?

#42 Carlos on 05.15.11 at 6:44 pm

Vancouver!

#43 Carlos on 05.15.11 at 6:45 pm

or Victoria! LOL

#44 e on 05.15.11 at 6:45 pm

Victoria! my e-mail is [email protected]

#45 Kdiddy on 05.15.11 at 6:46 pm

Vancouver?
Interesting article in Calgary Herald today identifying as many as 10000 condo units being under reconstruction in 2007 and 2008 due to building code violations. Do you think there is more or less instances of violation reconstruction going on now? If you said less, you are either from the government or are a realtor.

#46 Brought to Book on 05.15.11 at 6:46 pm

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

eets Victoria!

#47 Milan M. on 05.15.11 at 6:46 pm

Victoria is the city, if the first post didn’t go through!

#48 brainsail on 05.15.11 at 6:47 pm

Deadmonton

#49 Kdiddy on 05.15.11 at 6:48 pm

Shoot, Victoria is the place. Bing told me.

#50 Dan in Victoria on 05.15.11 at 6:49 pm

So is that what happens when you leave the Harley and the hummer in the same garage overnight?
Kelowna?

#51 Joshua on 05.15.11 at 6:50 pm

Garth,

Im sure a lot of ppl may say vancouver or Toronto, but Im going to get specific…in fact it is in beautiful VICTORIA.

Where do I pick up my book?

#52 Peter Pan on 05.15.11 at 6:51 pm

Vancouver…

#53 freebird on 05.15.11 at 6:52 pm

The city you referenced in the lead sentence is Victoria B.C. Love the blog!

#54 FreeKill on 05.15.11 at 6:52 pm

Hey Garth,

I think the city referenced in the lead sentence is Victoria…

#55 Paul on 05.15.11 at 6:53 pm

Calgary?

#56 Mikaroo on 05.15.11 at 6:54 pm

Could it be – Victoria! I guess the blossom is off the (cherry) tree in that market. Maybe everyone moved back to their places in southern Ont. now that it’s warm again here.

#57 sue on 05.15.11 at 6:56 pm

Edmonton?

#58 bcc7 on 05.15.11 at 6:57 pm

Victoria period

#59 Tim on 05.15.11 at 6:57 pm

Yet prices remain high in Vancouver…

#60 randman on 05.15.11 at 6:58 pm

First…..Edmonton?

#61 squidly77 on 05.15.11 at 6:59 pm

Should you stay put, downsize or get out completely?

Five short years ago, many learned men and women warned Americans against thinking that rising home prices would eliminate or lessen the need for them to save for retirement. Institutions and advisers alike warned people against relying on the equity in their homes to finance part if not all of their consumption needs in retirement.

Today, that’s no longer the case. In fact, today, we have almost the opposite situation. With home prices falling for nearly five years, many Americans now must consider what to do with their homes should prices continue to collapse and the equity in their homes — if they are still lucky enough to have any equity — disappears completely. Real-Estate Nightmare Looms for Retirees

There’s no way in hell that Canada will escape the global real estate meltdown.

Whatever city it is, the others won’t be too far away.
Edmonton is certainly toast already and Calgary’s just about gone, sales not prices are the key.

#62 arlo bundsen on 05.15.11 at 6:59 pm

Sounds like the sentiments coming out of Victoria.

I love your books Garth, and hope to add to the collection!

#63 High Park Renter on 05.15.11 at 7:00 pm

“Victoria” is my guess, Garth.

#64 randman on 05.15.11 at 7:00 pm

Garth…I think people are just too lazy and sedentary
in their ways……too much effort to move…too much stuff

Just guessing

#65 Calgaryillusion on 05.15.11 at 7:01 pm

I will guess Kelowna, BC.

#66 realpaul on 05.15.11 at 7:03 pm

Vancouver, The ‘Peg’ and Toronto all have price to income ratio’s so overblown when weighed against the traditional SF-Detached-House on a Standard Lot matrix that any of them could qualify as being at the apex of insanity. Dozens of other smaller sities could be considered with additional data re: tanking jobs numbers and enemic economic outlook for retail. Theres no telling how much more hot air the government is prepared to pump into the national balloon….so….the implosion/explosion could be more or less spectacular in certain geographies.

My guess is that the sky’s will look like Krakatowa for years after the blast though…..wickedly colourful.

As well as clarifying the price/income ratio pertaining only to SFH’s to the exclsuion of condo’s….I would also like to explore the subjective and nebulous ‘net worth ‘ statement’. The NWS is differant things to differant institutions and is interpreted differantly in various statutes from my lay understanding.

At the 7-11…the counter talk is that everything is balled in and you can over value your 73 Dodeg ram by double to triple the value. In the investment community it means that you count your cash to the exclusion of all else…. Many LLC’s do not count real estate on the NWS…….who does…….except the bartender and the drunk chick next door?

#67 Jim on 05.15.11 at 7:03 pm

It may not be the city YOU referenced-but Richmond BC is exactly like that today, so is Vancouver’s condo stock.
But I’ll guess Richmond?

#68 Debtisforever on 05.15.11 at 7:03 pm

I would guess…Kelowna.

#69 Behavioral Finance on 05.15.11 at 7:03 pm

Is Toronto facing the same faith?

http://www.youtube.com/user/VancouverPenthouse#p/u/4/uH5lPzSa1bI

#70 herbie on 05.15.11 at 7:03 pm

calgary is my guess…

#71 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 05.15.11 at 7:04 pm

“. . . in one of Canada’s major markets.” — HongKouver? Thai Temptress in Trawnna? Magnifique Montreal? Sexy Skatch? Erotic Edmonton? Hapless Hamilton?

Over 2 U!

#72 geoff on 05.15.11 at 7:06 pm

Hi Garth..
It’s Fergus Kyne with ViewTheHome.ca in Vacuous Victoria. Just like in “Richmen” BC, the “bottomless bucket” of property speculators has bottomed out here in Geritol by the Sea. I know a number of people who are waiting to list in July when their place is done up just right and they can ask top dollar.

#73 Rachel on 05.15.11 at 7:08 pm

Victoria!

#74 Another Albertan on 05.15.11 at 7:10 pm

Victoria.

Everyone else’s mileage may vary.

#75 MarcFromOttawa on 05.15.11 at 7:10 pm

My guess is Calgary.

1st

#76 a from van on 05.15.11 at 7:11 pm

my guess – YVR

#77 Scott Duncan on 05.15.11 at 7:11 pm

Hi Garth,
You’re refering Victoria in your first sentence. Love your blog!
Scott

#78 Jim on 05.15.11 at 7:12 pm

Vancouver?

#79 Audacity on 05.15.11 at 7:13 pm

Hmm… Victoria?

#80 Renter in Van on 05.15.11 at 7:13 pm

It has got to be westside Vancouver.

#81 Whistle punk on 05.15.11 at 7:14 pm

Talk about redneck picture isn’t that something applies more to the USA ?

Interesting times ahead for the suckers that are so deep into house debt they are done like last nights dinner.

Where I work I have already seen the effects of rising costs in fuel etc. Come this summer if we ever get a summer in British Columbia will show how bad things are. People are not spending any money they are feeling the squeeze.

#82 a simple man on 05.15.11 at 7:15 pm

Victoria!

#83 Michelle on 05.15.11 at 7:16 pm

Hey Garth,

Me-thinks you are referencing the city of Vancouver :)

#84 virtual ted on 05.15.11 at 7:18 pm

my guess is ottawa!

#85 Shaq on 05.15.11 at 7:18 pm

Garth you reference is VICTORIA,BC, CANADA. where is my book?

#86 Terry on 05.15.11 at 7:19 pm

Victoria

#87 Popeye the sailor man on 05.15.11 at 7:19 pm

I has to be Victoria, I use to live there and still work out of there and people I work with have made comments. I hope I get the book, I gave my last one away while I was on the ship to someone who needed to read it bad before they baught a new house to be built before selling the current home.

#88 Shaq on 05.15.11 at 7:20 pm

Victoria. Send me my book plz.

#89 virtual ted on 05.15.11 at 7:20 pm

my first guess is victoria though! lol

#90 North of Milton on 05.15.11 at 7:21 pm

Victoria! Shall I drop by the bunker to pick my book up?

#91 Jj196 on 05.15.11 at 7:21 pm

Calgary?

#92 rustyrd on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

Vancouver?

#93 Olympicvillager on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

Victoria.

#94 Neil Redding on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

It’s Victoria.
http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

#95 Ray on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

Vancouver!

#96 MikeyB on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

Kelowna? First?

#97 Janie on 05.15.11 at 7:22 pm

Vancouver?

#98 Peter Scholtens on 05.15.11 at 7:23 pm

Is it Victoria, where half the houses are owned by people on the mainland?

#99 MikeyB on 05.15.11 at 7:23 pm

Now I finally understand why so many people think they have the first comment – its all in the moderation

#100 Siddelly on 05.15.11 at 7:24 pm

Steve Forbes is now predicting that America will return to the gold standard within 5 years according to the New American.
http://www.thenewamerican.com/economy/markets-mainmenu-45/7465-forbes-return-to-gold-standard-within-five-years
This is due to the outrageous debt load of 14 trillion dollars and the fact Obama wants this raised to 16 trillion.
By the way, ever wondered what a trillion bucks looks like?
http://www.pagetutor.com/trillion/index.html
I’m not exactly sure if or how this will affect Canadian RE prices, but it may keep the ball rolling on commodities for some time yet as a way to preserve declining wealth. The American dollar has lost 96 percent of its buying power since 1913 when the Federal Reserve printing press was created.

#101 Chris L. on 05.15.11 at 7:24 pm

Toronto, ON. But probably somewhere in B.C.

#102 Robert the Bear on 05.15.11 at 7:25 pm

Calgary

#103 red in bed 74 on 05.15.11 at 7:25 pm

victoria!

#104 Book Seeker on 05.15.11 at 7:26 pm

Victoria

#105 Mohammed Bozai on 05.15.11 at 7:26 pm

The answer is Vancouver.

#106 Adam on 05.15.11 at 7:27 pm

Victoria

#107 Joel Toronto on 05.15.11 at 7:29 pm

Toronto First

#108 Richard on 05.15.11 at 7:31 pm

Vancouver?!

#109 TakingResponsibility on 05.15.11 at 7:31 pm

Victoria!!

#110 iq42 on 05.15.11 at 7:32 pm

Victoria

#111 Tripp on 05.15.11 at 7:33 pm

Garth, in spite of the media pumping, rosy letters from H&G readers and dellusional advices from financial analysts with degrees worth their weight in 1938 reichsmarks, could that city be our beloved Toronto?

#112 Vik on 05.15.11 at 7:33 pm

Garth,
The city you referenced to in the opening sentence is Toronto.

#113 Dan on 05.15.11 at 7:36 pm

I guess Saskatoon.

#114 Cato on 05.15.11 at 7:37 pm

Hey Garth, mystery city would be hard to guess – so many to choose from. I’d guess Kelowna but its more of a large town then a city, my guess is Victoria – Garth, you made it too easy :)

Something isn’t kosher with level of vacant homes on the market, I assume other areas are seeing same thing as my home town (kelowna). Even if a home were a spec home why leave it vacant – at least throw a tennant in it. Makes me think specuvestors have thrown in the towel and simply don’t care. Bigger question is why aren’t the lenders foreclosing.

And heres another question – ever notice how many gov. sponsored low income housing projects are being financed directly or indirectly by the CMHC. Barring the hypocrisy of taxing one group of working poor to finance homes for another is this what constitutes assets held by the CMHC? When banks start showing up to collect how does the CMHC intend to liquidate this portfolio when it needs to raise cash, or is it more likely gov’t forces taxpayer to bail out the portfolio to inject actual cash into the CMHC to pay the lenders.

#115 Utopia on 05.15.11 at 7:37 pm

The city you reference is Richmond.

#116 Havingagoodtime on 05.15.11 at 7:41 pm

Vancouver. Garth I had a question on declining listings. Does treb take into account listing that were not sold in prior months? Could the fall of new listing plus unsold listing accumulated month over month actually saturated the market?

#117 MJ on 05.15.11 at 7:42 pm

Victoria!!!

#118 ayn rand on 05.15.11 at 7:43 pm

Oakville?

#119 squidly77 on 05.15.11 at 7:43 pm

Must be that Quebec city that’s home to the Canadians.

#120 DMI on 05.15.11 at 7:50 pm

Victoria

#121 P on 05.15.11 at 7:52 pm

Brampton?

#122 jeremy on 05.15.11 at 7:53 pm

Is the city Vancouver?

I found your blog about a month ago. About the time I sold my condo. The plan was to take on a bigger mortgage and buy something even more over priced. Despite ridicule, and strong objections form friends and family I’m now looking for a place to rent for the next year. I always had a sneaking suspicion that something wasn’t right with prices here but whenever I asked others for advise I heard the same nonsense: “you can’t lose” “buy now or never” “every one wants to live here” and so on. However nobody every mentions the timeless wisdom of “don’t put all your eggs in one basket”! Thanks Garth you’ve reminded me to use common sense, and given me plenty of information to defend my decision. By the way, I already bought your book so if I win I’ll be giving it to my brother who still has all his money tied up in real estate. Thanks!

#123 T.O. Bubble Boy on 05.15.11 at 7:53 pm

Any of the GTA Burbs:
– Milton
– Markham
– Brampton
– Vaughn
– etc.

#124 VFG on 05.15.11 at 7:54 pm

Must be Montreal.

#125 Mean Gene on 05.15.11 at 7:56 pm

He who googles quickest reaps the spoils of their efforts… now where is the copy of Money Road I bought last week, Canada Post can be such a pain.

You ordered Monday night. It shipped Wednesday morning. You should see it tomorrow. — Garth

#126 joel Toronto on 05.15.11 at 8:00 pm

must be Whitehorse

#127 Sid on 05.15.11 at 8:02 pm

Hamilton

#128 Mark in Victoria on 05.15.11 at 8:04 pm

ok the suspense is killing me … I’ll throw my 2 cents in for Victoria … lots of empty homes on MLS here with wood paneling and marble shag carpet … slowly chasing down the market.

#129 this is wonderland on 05.15.11 at 8:06 pm

It’s got to be Oakville, far too many empty MacMansions for sale in this town.

#130 Utopia on 05.15.11 at 8:10 pm

“If there was ever an indication of how much of a buyer’s market it is out there,” says a prominent agent on his blog, “it has got to be the fact that so many homes I show lately have no one living in them!”
——————————————————

This is actually pretty curious to me. That there would be so many empty homes in any of Canada’s major markets and especially as you consider the costs of ownership, how much debt most carry and maintenance etcetera.

Who can afford to have an empty home?

I would be curious to hear more from that Realtor as to why this might be the case. There has to be more to this story than meets thee eye. I posted that I thought Richmond was the city with the greatest number of empty homes because it has always been thus.

The Chinese were always absentee owners there. Business was just better in Asia and most went back home for the opportunities after buying a nice place here as insurance against any possible instability that might develop from HongKongs handover.

But if it is not Richmond then I have plenty of questions. Have many people moved up before selling their previous house thus leaving it vacant? Is an empty staged house easier to sell maybe? Are folks moving out for job opportunities elsewhere? Are these bank owned homes…..?

What the hell is going on? Seriously Garth, I am very curious.

#131 Mr. Reality on 05.15.11 at 8:10 pm

Kamloops. I was just there and its scary!

Mr. R.

#132 Howdy There on 05.15.11 at 8:11 pm

Ottawa.

#133 Rafa on 05.15.11 at 8:14 pm

Halifax!

#134 Daniel on 05.15.11 at 8:24 pm

Garth, your book is too expensive. With taxes and shipping it’s almost 30 bucks and I’ve never paid that much for a book (in fact I don’t remember EVER paying for a book). Can you convert it to pdf format and make it available for download for free?

Wait, please… Let me come and buy you a house as well. — Garth

#135 Get Real on 05.15.11 at 8:25 pm

Ha.. Ha …Ha
Wow…so many people lining up for the free book.

You know they say..”If you really want to know about a person, offer him something free”

#136 Brad on 05.15.11 at 8:25 pm

Victoria

#137 Joseph [original] on 05.15.11 at 8:28 pm

Windsor, Ontario.

#138 Jack on 05.15.11 at 8:30 pm

MIlton, On

#139 allister on 05.15.11 at 8:30 pm

horsey side of town – could that be Aurora?

#140 squidly77 on 05.15.11 at 8:30 pm

Must be somewhere on the east coast.

#141 Shapperson on 05.15.11 at 8:30 pm

Saskatoon, now at least tell us if someone’s guessed it already.

#142 Really? on 05.15.11 at 8:31 pm

That is ever so interesting: large numbers of empty houses in so many Canadian cities – at least going by the number of readers who feel they have a fair shot at winning that priceless book!

#143 Hail Mary on 05.15.11 at 8:31 pm

Winnipeg

#144 Medic on 05.15.11 at 8:32 pm

London, it is

#145 tomohawk on 05.15.11 at 8:32 pm

I’ll guess Charlottetown. Mainly because as of post 132 no one else has. ;-P

#146 poco on 05.15.11 at 8:36 pm

ok i’ll bite– in the tri cities i’ve found many places that sit empty while the owners try to sell–so how about Coquitlam–ya not a major market to some but has been going downhill for over a year

#147 Jim Hamilton on 05.15.11 at 8:37 pm

why do you waste my time with this stupid guessing crap.
Your readers have nothing interesting to say tonight

You’d be the exception, I’m guessing? — Garth

#148 LJ on 05.15.11 at 8:40 pm

I’m going to go out on a limb here…..

HOOTERSVILLE!!!

The picture of the excellent Deere trike gave it away.

#149 Mister Obvious on 05.15.11 at 8:41 pm

Man… so many cheapskates angling for a free book. Let’s see… that’s 1678 votes for Victoria. OK, I’ll bite. How about Regina?

#150 BPOE on 05.15.11 at 8:42 pm

Folks folks just relax no correction is happening, just calm down and gather yourselves. You basement dwelllers are truly pathetic calling this unsubstantiyated declines. Just relax once again, my peeps inChina mainland are just taking a break and letting the cloud dust settle from all this earthquake talk.

#151 DM in C on 05.15.11 at 8:42 pm

I vote for Victoria.

And #35 — For sure it’s Calgary – on the bald ass prairie surrounded by nothing but land and with vacant properties up the proverbial ying-yang.

+++++

Bang on — here in Calgary where they charge $400k for an avg house on the prairie where there is land as far as the eye can see, and build your house so close to your neighbor that when one burns, five go up in smoke.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/Fire+destroys+three+homes+northwest+Calgary/4787433/story.html

As opposed to $300k in PEI , where, as an island they are ACTUALLY running out of space, you can get 620′ of beautiful ocean frontage and 72 acres.

http://www.michaelshomes.com/goose_river_cowan/

#152 bramptonsux on 05.15.11 at 8:44 pm

Caledon, ON

#153 Joseph [original] on 05.15.11 at 8:45 pm

I disagree with your impetus to rent.

If you take a 25 year mortgage, and make only one extra payment a year, your mortgage will be paid off in 18 years. Make two and you’re down to 16 years. Even in a declining market, the money you put into that house will be better served towards paying a house off, if you make it a point to accelerate downpayments. When it is done, all the equity in that paid off house is yours to keep. I also agree with another blogger who states that it is unlikely that renters would have the discipline to put their extra savings aside. Your life then becomes a two way money pit. The only exception to this scenario is if you make the right call on a bull market with some money up front. I haven’t read too may success stories in this regard however.

Finally, the Bank of Nova Scotia is offering 3.7% return on GIC’s for folks who have $100K to invest.

The only equity you have in your home is what the market values the property at, regardless of how much you’ve invested. If you think you get all your money back, all the time, you need help. — Garth

#154 LSC on 05.15.11 at 8:48 pm

Garth;

I know some of the locations named are attempts to be first, but if the bloggers can see that opening statement reflected in so many places in Canada we truly are on our way to a RE correction….

To help complete the list – St.John’s

Love the site.

#155 scibidubadebumbado on 05.15.11 at 8:50 pm

I’m guessing Richmond. The Chinese are not afraid of buying real estate to hold for capital gain. It has worked in China up to now. They do not know what a bubble is because none have burst there yet!

#156 S.B. on 05.15.11 at 8:51 pm

My guess is Oakville

#157 Mikey the Realtor on 05.15.11 at 8:53 pm

Milton

#158 Min in Mission on 05.15.11 at 8:55 pm

So many guesses, oddly, lots are of the same city!! Not many for Kelowna, which I may have guessed myself. Never would have guessed Kamloops, but, that is not a bad guess.

For a good contest, which would include some detective work, how about finding the source of those pictures?

#159 Brew on 05.15.11 at 8:57 pm

Punkydoodles Corner?

#160 abc on 05.15.11 at 8:58 pm

hemmm… it seems Garth wants to trick us..
No one living on them… I think Fort Mac is the city, since people go on summer vacation and leave the house empty.

But I choose Ottawa for what ever reason.

#161 Jon B on 05.15.11 at 8:59 pm

Ajax, Ontario! Just because it’s also a cleaning chemical.

#162 Scalgary on 05.15.11 at 9:01 pm

Well I am not the first one but will be happy to guess right.

EDMONTON

Cheers

#163 Medic on 05.15.11 at 9:02 pm

Sexopolis

#164 Controller on 05.15.11 at 9:05 pm

Sorry, forgot to add: Victoria.
Not first in either case. :-)

#165 atidnil on 05.15.11 at 9:07 pm

I guess Toronto

#166 Joe on 05.15.11 at 9:12 pm

“I also agree with another blogger who states that it is unlikely that renters would have the discipline to put their extra savings aside.”

We renters also pick our noses and wipe it on our shirts, and we are known leave the toilet seat up.

#167 john on 05.15.11 at 9:15 pm

#153 Joseph (Original)

The Bank of Nova Scotia is not offering 3.7% return on GIC (minimum $100,000 deposit). Please check your facts first!!

#168 Carlyle on 05.15.11 at 9:16 pm

My guess is Milton

#169 mf on 05.15.11 at 9:16 pm

Thunder Bay?

#170 Nobody special on 05.15.11 at 9:18 pm

Garth is trying to create a book bubble. Victoria is my guess.

#171 phinny on 05.15.11 at 9:21 pm

Wawa.

#172 Guy_in_Regina on 05.15.11 at 9:21 pm

Regina?

Thanks for expanding on why inventory is low, Garth.

#173 Goodkinjohn on 05.15.11 at 9:34 pm

Sorry Brew, # 159 you’re wrong.
Neither of the houses in Punkeydoodles Corners is for sale.

#174 dd on 05.15.11 at 9:37 pm

….We’re not on the edge of economic Armageddon…

EURO in trouble … print, Greece in trouble … Print. Japan in trouble … print, UK ,,,,,, US … Print.

#175 YUL on 05.15.11 at 9:38 pm

Kitchener-Waterloo is my guess. One of Don Campbell’s favorites.

#176 [email protected] on 05.15.11 at 9:38 pm

Pleasantville?

#177 AM on 05.15.11 at 9:40 pm

Kitchener-Waterloo

#178 mackie on 05.15.11 at 9:42 pm

Some thoughts: With the exception of some of Canada’s hottest housing markets (Toronto, Vancouver etc) I think the markets will soon correct as much as the housing market. Toronto, Vancouver RE will get hit a little harder than the markets, but anyone who thinks they are safe investing in the markets is kidding themselves. There is no no protection in stocks. Even conservative ones. When everyone starts selling to cover their leveraged stocks and ETFs, conservative stocks will get pulled down with the rest of the market.

Was watching Till Debt do us Part (love that show). And a young couple $70,000 in consumer debt and more than $200,000 in mortgage debt said they would do anything except sell their house to get their debts under control. Stupid people willing to let a house take them to bankruptcy. They were eight years away from being debt free and had to work additional prt. time jobs to pay their debt. Yea that’s going to work.

I still think oil, gold and silver are the future performers.

Renting might be ok for some people, but if you are a gardener and like to create your own beautiful landscapes to live in, (like me) renting does not cut it.

#179 brainsail on 05.15.11 at 9:42 pm

All of the above?

#180 Zara on 05.15.11 at 9:46 pm

Welland,Ontario. How’s that for a good guess. Would live a copy of your book.

#181 dd on 05.15.11 at 9:47 pm

I’ve described here, or bank preferreds paying close to 6%)
—————————————————————–
With real inflation running more that 6% people are losing out.

#182 Get Real on 05.15.11 at 9:48 pm

Vancouver without doubt.

West Vancouver to be more precise

You can take it to the bank, or the book-case in this case

#183 Zara on 05.15.11 at 9:50 pm

Would LOVE a copy of your book !!
Thanks for the prize !! :@)

#184 Jordan on 05.15.11 at 9:54 pm

Surrey?

#185 Utopia on 05.15.11 at 9:57 pm

“What do you mean it’s a cult”?

The fat Banker swilled the last of his Virgin-Homebuyer and ordered another. This was lunch after all. “I mean they hang on my every word” the beard answered, “and the meaner I get the more followers I collect. It is a real cult, alter sacrifices, tin-foil hats and all”. “We even counsel tender virgins” he said slyly.

“You must be joking” Banker guy shot back “Prove it”

“Ok”, snarled the beard, “I am going to hold a contest tonight. I will bet you one lost mortgaged soul that I get 200 responses in less than four hours. They are waiting like hungry vultures to hear what I might say next”……..”I might even throw out a prize to make it interesting”.

“Ha, Ha” laughed Banker guy as the next drink arrived. “You got your bet. But if you lose tough-guy, we bring back the 40 year mortgage”.

“You don’t have a prayer” the beard snapped “Just watch”.

#186 k on 05.15.11 at 9:58 pm

I guess Milton.

#187 SophieZombie on 05.15.11 at 10:03 pm

White Rock, BC. No more HAM flying in helicopter. ( Or Air Realtor ).

#188 MS on 05.15.11 at 10:05 pm

Fort McMurray

#189 Cellar Dwellar on 05.15.11 at 10:10 pm

“Scarberia” Ontario ?

#190 steve p on 05.15.11 at 10:16 pm

Garth writes
“However we’ve reached the point of housing exhaustion – when 70% of families own homes, which has pushed them into the deepest debt canyon of all time. This asset is done”

not many left to buy into the pyramid anymore is there

#191 Joseph [original] on 05.15.11 at 10:20 pm

167 john on 05.15.11 at 9:15 pm said –
“#153 Joseph (Original)

The Bank of Nova Scotia is not offering 3.7% return on GIC (minimum $100,000 deposit). Please check your facts first!!”

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

I did check my facts. It is not advertised but call your local branch and ask to speak to one of the managers, and see what he says. You’ll be surprised.

Also in response to Garth’s point, I never implied that I would get all my money back that I put into the house in terms of mortgage payments. It is understood that only the equity as dictated by market value will be accessible, as you suggested. But at least the equity, however large or small it may be, will be yours for the taking when the mortgage is paid for. My point was if you accelerate your payments or provide sizable lup sum downpayments, you can get that sucker paid off in no time. The comparison then to money paid towards interest as being the same as rent at that jucture is no longer applicable.

#192 Andy In Vancouver on 05.15.11 at 10:25 pm

Curse you and your fast googling #5 Cialis! Same to you #32 Stacey Adams with the full blog name and link. I’m gonna go ahead and read that blog entry about Victoria. It’s gotta be even stupider yet here in Van with all the absentee out-of-towners, IMHO.

#193 Crazy on 05.15.11 at 10:28 pm

CALEDON!

#194 Ronaldo on 05.15.11 at 10:29 pm

http://socioecohistory.wordpress.com/2010/12/31/canadas-real-estate-collapse/ Real estate collapse coming in Canada according to Nicole Foss

#195 Young Old Fart on 05.15.11 at 10:34 pm

Ft Macmurray?

#196 Randis on 05.15.11 at 10:35 pm

#153 Joseph … please get real … you think 3.7% return is a lot? Seriously? … How long does that GIC offer lock your money for? 5 years non-redeemable maybe? wow there you lock yourself for 3.7% over the next 5 years while a balanced portfolio during the same period can net you 7-8% … wow good call seriously … and you make it sound like the stupid GIC return comes tax-free .. you seriously need help, as Garth puts it … Or as I would put it, you need better financial education.

Btw thanks Garth for your 2cents on the CDIC.

#197 Gastown Mike on 05.15.11 at 10:37 pm

My guess is Burnaby

#198 Randis on 05.15.11 at 10:39 pm

O btw I was on Yahoo Sports checking the NBA scores (Yay for Bulls cruching the Heat), and on the side bar there is this advertisement that gives the following link … Ladies and Gentlemen please use it as a good laughter, as it is no more than some stupid funny crap and probably contributes to the notion how people think RE is the magic bullet to get rich …

http://www.remiccorp.com/toronto

#199 Purp on 05.15.11 at 10:42 pm

Whistler.

#200 Alex on 05.15.11 at 10:53 pm

172 responses for 3 hours!
But I think there is a hidden reason Garth forced all of us to participate – this way he can collect information about the RE situation in different cities of Canada. IMHO you can point any spot on a map and everywhere all will be basically the same. Am I right?

#201 Tom from Mississauga on 05.15.11 at 10:53 pm

#153 Joseph [original]
BNS J series preferred share pays over 5% no minimum.

#202 Outlier on 05.15.11 at 10:53 pm

Here is the link, I realize I am a bit late to the party though. That’s what happens when you watch the Canuck’s game. Worth it though. Garth, you probably aren’t giving out 50 bucks me thinks.

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

#203 Debtfree on 05.15.11 at 10:53 pm

Kelowna

#204 Outlier on 05.15.11 at 10:55 pm

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

Here is the link, I guess I’m a bit late to the party though. Watching the Canuck’s game. It is Victoria. Garth, I guess you aren’t giving out 50 books huh.

#205 Jen on 05.15.11 at 10:56 pm

It’s definitely Fergus in Victoria.

Ready for my free book, Garth!

#206 Utopia on 05.15.11 at 10:57 pm

“This week in Money” hosted by Stirling Faux has an interesting radio segment with Gerald Celente on the future where the money printing ponzi ends and war begins. Yikes.

Following that is Garth talking about homes in the desert.

http://talkdigitalnetwork.com/2011/05/week-money-16/?utm_source=weeklyrecap&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Weekly%2BRecap

#207 John on 05.15.11 at 10:58 pm

We went open housing in Medicine hat today and 1/2 of them were vacant. BTW I am very happy to be renting right now. A real man here!!! 440 houses (single family) here with a population of 60,000. Over the last 3 months the listing to saleshas been around 3 to 1. Realtors call that a “buyers” market. I call it a distressed market.

I digress, my guess is Sakstatoon SK

#208 bill on 05.15.11 at 11:00 pm

inuvik

#209 not 1st on 05.15.11 at 11:00 pm

Marshall, if you are only 2 years away from being mortgage free, hang on, pay that sucker off, then start putting some cash away in investments.

Why is a house that might fall 10% an immediate sell, but a stock that falls 10% is not? People usually buy more when things get cheaper.

#210 Bogdan on 05.15.11 at 11:03 pm

Calgary!

Thanks for the book!

#211 Makes Cents on 05.15.11 at 11:06 pm

Did anybody even read #32 – Stacy’s link? It’s Victoria, the answer is right there. Enjoy the book Cialis. In reality I suspect that Victoria is one of many cities this is happening in.

#212 Homer on 05.15.11 at 11:08 pm

I’m thinking must be Fort McMurray

#213 Alex on 05.15.11 at 11:08 pm

And the winner is…greed. 172 comments just three hours after Garth’s post. Unparalleled.

#214 nonplused on 05.15.11 at 11:17 pm

Better post tonight than last time but still some hyperbole. There is no such thing as a 100% chance of getting paid back on a corporate bond. There is no such thing as a 100% chance of getting paid back on most government debt (the governments that can print their own money excepted, but then default takes the form of inflation and you still don’t get paid back in real terms.) There is, in fact, no such thing as 100%, especially where risk is concerned.

It would be better to describe corporate preferred shares, including bank preferreds, as having a ‘low probability of default”. This much is true. But it is also true that there is a small chance in unforeseen but plausible circumstances that a default will happen. Just ask former GM shareholders, or anyone who has ever owned an airline stock. They get rated just fine by the rating agencies, but there has been no airline save Westjet and Singapore Airlines that hasn’t gone bankrupt at least once. Sure, they are back in business the next day, but the original shareholders are left holding a bag of brown bananas.

In investing, there is an old maxim that is more important today that almost ever: return of capital is more important than return on capital.

You can survive a few years of below market returns and then get back in the game. You cannot survive a “Nortel” experience. Or, for the wise, what we will be referring to in just a few years as a RIM experience.

Oh sure, this all flies in the face of the “Money Road”, which isn’t a bad plan and I am not against it, actually have it 40% implemented or so. But it’s also not a bad idea to do nothing when you don’t know what else to do.

#215 iEngineer on 05.15.11 at 11:18 pm

Montreal.

#216 Blobby on 05.15.11 at 11:18 pm

Guess : Vancouver -specifically coal harbour

(although i’m probably too later.. i just wanted to guess before i read the other comments)

#217 Carp on 05.15.11 at 11:20 pm

I’ll bet a book its Richmond, BC …

#218 nonplused on 05.15.11 at 11:20 pm

I’ll add a maxim of my own,

“If you don’t know why you are doing something, don’t do anything.”

#219 Blobby on 05.15.11 at 11:22 pm

“Finally, the Bank of Nova Scotia is offering 3.7% return on GIC’s for folks who have $100K to invest.”

WHY ON EARTH would you (or anyone) put 100 big ones into a 3.7% taxed return!?!?!?!

If you had 100k to invest, one would hope it’s because you knew what you were doing with your money.. and buying something which is below inflation after tax would show you dont….

#220 Abitibidoug on 05.15.11 at 11:28 pm

I don’t know what city Garth is talking about, but I’m puzzled about what’s going on here in London, Ontario. The economy isn’t doing all that well, compared to in years gone by. An example is the Diamond Aircraft plant laid off many people last month, and not far away in St. Thomas the Ford Plant is scheduled to close later this year. Despite all the doom and gloom, many new subdivisions of big new houses are going up all around the edge of the city. Have those wealthy Asian buyers given up on expensive Vancouver and are coming to London instead?

#221 somebody on 05.15.11 at 11:31 pm

Vancouver.

#222 Fool me once... on 05.15.11 at 11:34 pm

As for the Lower Mainland, Burnaby has the most empty homes of all, quite amazing how many you see as you drive around town.

#223 Z on 05.15.11 at 11:36 pm

Wetland ont ?

#224 obert on 05.15.11 at 11:41 pm

Windsor

#225 Ronaldo on 05.15.11 at 11:44 pm

http://www.ecorealtyinc.ca/listing?id=258573199

I paid $20,800 for one of these units in December of 1969 brand new. My first home. Now $507.000. Who wudda thunk. My annual salary was roughly $8000 and was average for that time. That was 2.6 times my annual salary. Interest rate was 9.5%. With a $3000 dp my PIT was $185 mo. and with condo fee $215 mo. or .31 of my gross monthly salary.

The equivalent salary for the job today would be around $58,000 per year. At current price that would represent 8.6 times the salary. PIT and condo fee today, the total cost would have to not exceed $1500 per month to equal same ratio as when I bought it. Good luck with that. Gives you an idea of what has happened with real estate over the years.

Today, an old 1920’s shack near main and King Edward which was selling for $26,000 in January of 1973 is supposedly worth $1.2 million. Give me a break.

When this market corrects as it did in the Autumn of 74 when homes in West Vancouver crashed 30% from their highs that summer and then continued to slide further, those who thought that things were different this time will wish they had listened to Garth.

#226 Toni on 05.15.11 at 11:45 pm

Victoria BC

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

#227 Digo on 05.15.11 at 11:45 pm

Edmonton!

#228 simkev on 05.15.11 at 11:45 pm

Garth it is Windsor, Ont

#229 AG Sage on 05.15.11 at 11:46 pm

>#150 BPOE on 05.15.11 at 8:42 pm
Folks folks just relax no correction is happening, just calm down and gather yourselves. You basement dwelllers are truly pathetic calling this unsubstantiyated declines.

How did you know I’ve been doing carpentry in my woodshop?

Oh, and I think the bartender just cut you off.

#230 Grampa Hindsight on 05.15.11 at 11:54 pm

How do you get a chic to get on a tractor (contraption )like that
Can only be Nanaimo

#231 mel on 05.16.11 at 12:00 am

Sorry John, but Joseph is right.

You must enter Scotia Bank back door to get it.

If you know the manager of the branch it will help.

#232 Calgary renter on 05.16.11 at 12:02 am

It’s victoria

#233 Gord In Vancouver on 05.16.11 at 12:06 am

BTW, if you are the first to guess what city I referenced in the lead sentence of this post, I have a free book for you, autographed and priceless. — Garth
________________________________

Great post but the suspense is killing me!
Vancouver?

#234 Jas Girn on 05.16.11 at 12:06 am

Brampton Garth! I love you man. You are annoyingly arrogant sometimes, but you tell it the way it is! Keep it coming!

#235 BuBu on 05.16.11 at 12:12 am

This is one of the biggest issues:
http://www.financialpost.com/personal-finance/family/Double+income+cash+mountain+debt/4626094/story.html

They are home owners… on paper…

#236 Jane54 on 05.16.11 at 12:18 am

Love games -lets have more of them.

My guess is St thomas, ontario.

#237 house poor on 05.16.11 at 12:22 am

Surrey

#238 Rusty on 05.16.11 at 12:23 am

Whistler

#239 reality guy on 05.16.11 at 12:28 am

I’ve been to open houses for the last several weeks in Vancouver and most of the condo’s as well as houses don’t look like they are being lived in.

Wasn’t sure if people were upgraded and now need to sell or if they are just speculative owners

#240 reality guy on 05.16.11 at 12:28 am

Vancouver is my guess.

I really really want your book!

#241 Dyno on 05.16.11 at 12:33 am

Who are all the landlords in the future?

Are you a deflationist?

#242 LH on 05.16.11 at 12:34 am

Phew looks like it’s Victoria after all. My 4 houses in Toronto are full occupied, rented, postively carrying and safe!

#243 @crazyfasteddy on 05.16.11 at 12:42 am

Victoria… its a ghost town… do I get a book?

#244 @crazyfasteddy on 05.16.11 at 12:43 am

oh and the blogger is Fergus Kyne in Victoria

#245 Thetruth on 05.16.11 at 12:57 am

Since no winner has been anounced… Regina

#246 Dark Sad Monster Bunny on 05.16.11 at 1:01 am

5 Cialis – enjoy the book! 32 Stacy – good job getting the source though its not too difficult if you highlight the quote, right-click and search with google…….

#247 betamax on 05.16.11 at 1:09 am

Moncton? All the more likely guesses have been taken…

#136 Ben — welcome to 2011. What’s next, Nixon jokes?

#248 Jeremy on 05.16.11 at 1:10 am

I’m your REALTOR ® in Victoria BC, Fergus Kyne with ViewTheHome.ca

Call me now 250-216-1217 to have any questions answered and to sign up to receive for FREE my video reviews of listings on the MLS©.

Fergus Kyne Victoria?

So if we’e being bombarded with low interest rate credit card/ Line of credit cheques. Does that mean the BoC is going to raise interest rate still?
It seems odd to me, a credit card company wouldn’t shoot out low rates if they know the overnight rate is going up right?
(It was a friend’s Mastercard, and they have “good” credit aka 2 houses, 3 cars, a boat and quad all financed of course :D )

#249 confused and a little crazed on 05.16.11 at 1:34 am

though i live in vancouver… i say victoria. They have even less industries than we do

#250 windtunnel on 05.16.11 at 1:35 am

I bet he’s talking about Abbotsford. Lots of homes sitting vacant.

#251 Paul on 05.16.11 at 1:42 am

Olympic village, vancouver

#252 Shawn Petriw on 05.16.11 at 1:45 am

I can’t believe how many people don’t know how to use Google.

Clearly the reference is Victoria:

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere/

Free book for adding a link Garth?

#253 bbcoq on 05.16.11 at 1:53 am

I am going to venture a guess that you are referring to Calgary. As a BC boy with AB relatives we always had “farm cousins” who made less and lived more modestly-the last few years my AB cousins seem to have more money than brains-tons of RVS, boats, rec properties and boob jobs-all the telltale signs of too much wealth. With oil at all time highs and spending power declining and AB real estate tied to oil so heavily how can things get better?

#254 Canuck Abroad on 05.16.11 at 2:07 am

“I also agree with another blogger who states that it is unlikely that renters would have the discipline to put their extra savings aside.”

More renter-hating. Predictable and pervasive, but wrong. There are many of us who rent as a lifestyle choice. We are good neighbours, take pride in our space, take lovely care of our homes, always pay the rent on time, and have a good relationship with our landlord. Why do you assume we are all losers who can’t keep two cents in our pockets without them burning a hole.

To me, this behaviour is more what we saw with US “home-debtors” who repeated refinanced to pay for the lifestyle they felt entitled to, and now realise the “wealth” was an illusion and you don’t realise the gain until you sell, just like every other asset.

If you have bought low, thank your lucky stars and sell high. Let your investments pay the rent. Buy again after the dust settles. Don’t let renter-haters tell you you won’t be able to hold on to the money – it maybe says more about them than you.

#255 not asian on 05.16.11 at 2:33 am

When are you going to tell us? I need to know that I am right. It’s Richmond, BC isn’t it? Lots of vacant homes here. You also referenced Toronto in your second paragraph. I’m thinking-taking us from the westcoast to the eastcoast. I’m right, huh? Answer me!

#256 Musical Jimmy on 05.16.11 at 2:33 am

How about something bizarrely off the map, especially given the current water situation (which we’re calling “a little high”) –

Brandon, MB

#257 Zorik on 05.16.11 at 2:40 am

It is FortMcmurray

#258 cam on 05.16.11 at 2:46 am

Richmond, BC

Free Book!!!

#259 Deliverator on 05.16.11 at 3:06 am

Vancouver. Lots of mostly dark condo towers downtown, and lots of dark newly-built homes on the West Side. At least they pay someone to move the lawn.

#260 DBL on 05.16.11 at 3:31 am

Montreal

#261 Nick on 05.16.11 at 3:32 am

Burnaby?

Although I’m pretty sure no one lives in Coal Harbour either.

#262 Bonnie jean Crites O'Grady on 05.16.11 at 3:36 am

I am so glad that I own my abode …and will ride the TIDE!!!

#263 Lynn on 05.16.11 at 3:43 am

My guess would be Caledon, Ontario.

#264 Tim on 05.16.11 at 5:22 am

The normally entertaining comments section is full of claims to the right city being referenced.
I vote um, Goose Bay lol

#265 SquareNinja on 05.16.11 at 5:58 am

#155 scibidubadebumbado: Holy shit… your insight is amazing! I can’t believe this has never crossed my mind… they really haven’t experienced a bubble before.

My guess is Oshawa, or Whistler.

#266 Pistol Pete on 05.16.11 at 6:02 am

Mississauga!

This is based of my own observations of my neighbourhood.

#267 maxx on 05.16.11 at 6:04 am

#30 I pity the fool who drinks soy milk-

It’s not swag- Garth is awarding one book.
(acronym for “stuff we all get”)

#268 Pete in Barrie on 05.16.11 at 6:28 am

How about my home town – Barrie

#269 T.O. Bubble Boy on 05.16.11 at 6:52 am

At least 8 more years for the foreclosure mess to get sorted out in the U.S.?

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2011/05/late-payments-or-no-payments-drop-for.html

Vultures need not hurry.

#270 Mtl RE Observations on 05.16.11 at 6:53 am

Wow. 268 responses and it’s only 7:30. Didn’t anyone get any sleep?

#271 greyhairedoldgoat on 05.16.11 at 6:54 am

Manhattan

#272 Northern_dirt on 05.16.11 at 6:59 am

North York?

#273 fancy_pants on 05.16.11 at 7:29 am

a simple google would have gave the evening bloggers a chance at a free book…

http://www.google.ca/#hl=en&xhr=t&q=%E2%80%9CIf%20there%20was%20ever%20an%20indication%20of%20how%20much%20of%20a%20buyer%E2%80%99s%20market%20it%20is%20out%20there%2C%E2%80%9D&cp=82&pq=john%20deere%20modified%20tractor&pf=p&sclient=psy&cr=countryCA&safe=active&tbs=ctr:countryCA&source=hp&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq=%E2%80%9CIf+there+was+ever+an+indication+of+how+much+of+a+buyer%E2%80%99s+market+it+is+out+there,%E2%80%9D&pbx=1&fp=a0ee290b7d0b7e83&bs=1

the middle result

#274 S.B. on 05.16.11 at 7:32 am

#243 LH on 05.16.11 at 12:34 am you always mention your four houses in, I think, the Bloor-Bathurst area.

I imagine they must be older houses (80yrs?) given the area. What if a roof or basement begins leaking and there is a 10-20k bill. Will it seem like such a good idea, then? Still positive carry?

#275 Willa on 05.16.11 at 7:41 am

Sudbury

#276 David B on 05.16.11 at 7:51 am

“Kitchener-Waterloo”

#277 rosie on 05.16.11 at 8:03 am

Fergus Kyne, View the Home .ca, said this about Victoria, but alas I am too late.

#278 Macrath on 05.16.11 at 8:12 am

How about St. Catharines and Niagara falls.

#279 fancy_pants on 05.16.11 at 8:41 am

no sh*t… that’s them on the tractor!
too bad $10k of the $40k annual income goes towards feeding the machine.

#280 Dark Sad Monster Bunny on 05.16.11 at 9:42 am

Cialis 5 – sorry – the winning post didnt appear when I first checked.

Congrats freedom 2008!

#281 C on 05.16.11 at 9:51 am

My wife and I are currently looking for a townhouse rental in Burlington, Onatario in the $1600-$2000 range and it is slimmmmm pickings. I guess everyone in this area who would like a townhouse and can pay that amount just automatically buys? It only goes up right ;)

But, what we have found is the few we have looked at have mostly been unoccupied. Likely speculators who have gobbled em up as rentals and are looking to lease em out.

Just looking at when the BoC will be meeting in 2011 and the next few dates are May 31st, July 19th, and then September 7th. I’m thinking that we will see a hike May 31st. He’s warned enough already and has put a rate hike off much too long so I’m guessing May 31st we will see the BoC raise hopefully a 1/2%.

Carney is so far behind the rate curve. $1.40/litre gas and a national real estate bubble yet we are at “emergency” interest rates. Nicely done bubbles Carney.

#282 Jim on 05.16.11 at 9:52 am

I would bet the stock of EMPTY condos in Richmond and Vancouver vastly exceeds the entire for sale inventory in Victoria-empty or otherwise.

#283 Industrial Guy on 05.16.11 at 9:59 am

Who is Fergus Kyne with ViewTheHome.ca?

Can I buy a vowel?

http://viewthehome.ca/blog/thoughts-on-this-market/vacant-homes-theyre-everywhere

#284 BPOE on 05.16.11 at 10:45 am

People, people…

That was not, I repeat NOT an iceberg. It was merely a blob of hard water. No need to arrange the deck chairs… You!! in the band!!! Stop playing!!!

Blub.. blub.. blub…

#285 disciple on 05.16.11 at 10:53 am

last!

#286 jounetsu on 05.16.11 at 11:13 am

interesting… I was just watching american financial guru to the masses suze orman on tv and she said much the same as you have been… buying right now is a bad idea… that she might have said ten years ago that investing in a home was the way to go but not anymore… she also figures the american real estate market won’t stabilize until 2025…

#287 FranSix on 05.16.11 at 11:15 am

I would say that in the aftermath of a housing collapse, you will have chronic low interest rates due to the flooding of the markets with liquidity and the swapping of bad credit with government bonds. The inflation will go into the bond price.

Homeowners had better be prepared to re-negotiate at lower interest rates on fixed rate mortgages.

Getting Technical.com’s housing price chart

http://www.gettingtechnical.com/01_home/market_commentary/can_en.html

#288 BrianT on 05.16.11 at 11:55 am

Looks like they got this IMF scum on at least one more rape-which means there are likely dozens or more victims out there-you have to wonder how the victims of IMF “Austerity” feel about being lectured to by this type of human being.

#289 Aussie Roy on 05.16.11 at 12:07 pm

Garth, the city could have been any number of cities here in Australia.

Aussie Update

Prices only ever go up, mmm.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/executive-lifestyle/housing-takes-a-breather/story-fn6njxlr-1226054816873

Fox in charge of the chicken house.

http://nfbpsh.blogspot.com/2011/05/dracula-in-charge-of-blood-bank.html

Home loans drop to 10 year low.

http://www.smh.com.au/business/home-loans-drop-to-10year-low-20110516-1eozn.html

http://abs.gov.au/ausstats/[email protected]/mf/5609.0?OpenDocument&rand=1

The importance of China to Aussie house prices.

http://macrobusiness.com.au/2011/05/is-chinas-economy-slowing/

#290 MikeT on 05.16.11 at 12:54 pm

It’s Squamish

#291 jess on 05.16.11 at 12:54 pm

the super box plays
creits rather than reits?

deducting rent payments made
to itself (through a captive real estate investment trust),

“…this structure was devised for
Walmart in the 1990s by the
accounting firm Ernst & Young,
which also sold the strategy to other
companies, especially banks.”

http://www.goodjobsfirst.org/sites/default/files/docs/pdf/walmart_shiftingtheburden.pdf

#292 BrianT on 05.16.11 at 12:57 pm

#288Jou-Research oil depletion and you will conclude that the USA RE market of 2025 will include a very high % of basically worthless homes.

#293 jess on 05.16.11 at 1:02 pm

I was reading about this “REAL MAN ” and the lessons learned…

Sunshine Charley

Charles Edwin Mitchell (October 6, 1877 – December 14, 1955) was an American banker whose incautious securities policies facilitated the speculation which led to the Crash of 1929. National City Bank’s (now Citibank) abuses under his leadership brought an end to ownership of investment affiliates by commercial banks.

Between 1911 and 1916, he ran his own investment house, C. E. Mitchell & Company. In 1916, he became vice-president of National City Company, which he reorganized into a private investment banking firm. Shortly after he relocated to Tuxedo Park, NY.

Nicknamed “Sunshine Charley,” Mitchell was elected president of National City Bank (now Citibank) in 1921, and in 1929 was appointed chairman. Also in 1921, he was elected president of National City Company, which became the largest security issuing entity in the world. Under his leadership, the bank expanded rapidly and by 1930 had 100 branches in 23 countries outside the United States. His salesmen sold millions of shares in the bank totaling $650 million, much of which would be lost in the Crash of 1929. Indeed, while the Federal Reserve Bank was attempting to curb speculation earlier in 1929, Mitchell flaunted a $25 million advance to traders.

Mitchell remained chairman until 1933, when he was arrested and indicted for tax evasion by then Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas E. Dewey.[1][2] Defended by attorney Max Steuer, he was found not guilty of all criminal charges, but the government won a million dollar civil settlement against him. In 1933, the Senate’s Pecora Commission investigated Mitchell as its first witness for his part in tens of millions dollars in losses, excessive pay and tax avoidance. In November 1929, Senator Carter Glass said of him, “Mitchell more than any 50 men is responsible for this stock crash.”[3]

Mitchell made a comeback and died a respected Wall Street banker, leaving his heirs a fortune. His townhouse on Fifth Avenue, built for him by Walker & Gillette in 1926, with a rusticated facade in the manner of a 16th-century Roman palazzo, now houses the French consulate.

(wiki)

#294 Marie on 05.16.11 at 1:04 pm

Kelowna! Where’s my book? I was just about to buy one. LOL!

#295 Industrial Guy on 05.16.11 at 1:07 pm

Hello Macrath. You asked about St. Catharines and Niagara falls?

I call on clients in this area. Welcome to Hell on Earth.

The area is de-industrializing very quickly. Many major industrial employers in Niagara Falls, St Kits, Welland, Thorold, Fort Erie and Port Colborne have closed. The GM facility on Ontario street will soon be history with all local operations consolidated at the Glendale Ave location. The utter evisceration of Canada’s casting and die casting industries continues with the closing of a major zinc casing facility in Stoney Creek. U.S. Steel has locked out its staff for six months. It’s killing business all along the Queensway. Heavy maintenance of Canada’s shipping fleet has moved to low wage countries. Depressing? Wait!! I’m not finished.

The higher Canadian dollar and cross border shopping has taken a significant toll on local retailers. As more manufacturing plants close, the housing market will be driven by the wages of tourism, fruit picking and vineyards. Basically seasonal work.

This million dollar house in Vancouver is yours for $149,000.00 in St. Kits
http://www.realtor.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=10475994&PidKey=1535039366
Location is everything …..

#296 disciple on 05.16.11 at 1:08 pm

FranSix I have a Question: Wouldn’t higher inflation cause higher bond yields and lower bond prices? How would the aftermath of a housing collapse result in higher liquidity? I would argue the exact opposite is what would cause a collapse, as people seek liquidity – too late at that point – look up Great Depression. I’m just sayin’…

#297 Devore on 05.16.11 at 1:10 pm

ZH regulars surely caught this already, but here it is, hiliting the dire state of US public pensions.

http://www.zerohedge.com/article/ss-trust-fund-we-lost-11-trillion-last-year

#298 disciple on 05.16.11 at 1:14 pm

Booms and busts only occur because of banks “lending” money that they don’t have, or if they do have it, they certainly wouldn’t lend it to you for 3% annual returns. Think about it. It’s a scam. The prime directive is always control through indentured servitude. Slavery has not been defeated, it has taken on a different form. Your rulers are still here, do you really think they have left us during the Middle Ages? Where would they go? To Mars? They died off? Dream on if you must…to make the pain of reality go away.

#299 Scotty from Snottawa on 05.16.11 at 1:16 pm

mississauga

#300 Another Albertan on 05.16.11 at 1:22 pm

Mark Carney’s lunchtime speech from today:

http://www.bankofcanada.ca/2011/05/speeches/canada-in-a-multi-polar-world/

Two key quotations from the text:

“The Age of Austerity is not a slogan but a timetable.”

“The Bank’s 1 per cent target for the overnight rate leaves considerable monetary stimulus in place, consistent with achieving the 2 percent inflation target in an environment of material excess supply in Canada. Any further reduction in monetary stimulus would need to be carefully considered.”

Everyone else’s mileage may vary.

#301 HouseBuster on 05.16.11 at 1:36 pm

I’m seeing house prices DROPPING in the GTA. I saw one listed for $849K for a few months and now it is at $825K.

Of course, that is still way too high.

#302 TheBigLebowski on 05.16.11 at 2:00 pm

Pimco’s largest equity holding-Gold

Many have been wondering why Bill Gross, with his atavistic aversion to holding US paper, has not yet branched out into precious metals which are the natural hedge to surging rates (not to mention sovereign default). Probably the primary reason for this is that the firm’s flagship credit funds do not have the mandate, nor permission, to invest in such asset classes. As such, the firm’s $200+ billion TRF flagship fund, at least, is limited to fixed income securities. However, the same limitation does not apply to the firm’s other funds, especially the recently launched $1.2 billion equity fund, the Pimco EqS Pathfinder. The fund was launched in 2009 under the stewardship of Anne Gudefin and Charles Lahr, who jointly ran the $16 billion Mutual Global Discover mutual fund. So in an interview recently granted to Fortune by Gudefin, we were not very surprised to hear her response on what her largest investment position is in: “The largest position in the fund is gold, which we think is a very good form of protection against what can go wrong. We were encouraged by the fact that a lot of the central banks, especially in Asia, are big buyers. We think that’s an underlying trend that’s very favorable for gold.” So to all those asking why Gross does not invest in the yellow metal, here is your answer.Should the EqS Pathfinder fund grow in AUM, one can assume that an increasingly bigger pro rata portion will be allocated to precious metals.
“Garth , your anti hard money scare comments are continuing to look more and more marginal..

#303 NorthOf49 on 05.16.11 at 2:06 pm

Garth, sounds like you’ve got a few economists on your side!

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/keep-your-house-from-becoming-a-retirement-burden-2011-05-12

Says one economist: “Assuming refinancing is an option, current low interest rates should allow for a cheap way of financing the remainder of the mortgage, potentially generate tax deductions, and free up money for alternative investments,”

#304 Abitibidoug on 05.16.11 at 2:43 pm

Lots of empty houses in Victoria? Look on the bright side, it looks like there’s a solution to the nagging social problem of homeless people!

#305 Live Under Your Means on 05.16.11 at 2:52 pm

#288 jounetsu on 05.16.11 at 11:13 am
interesting… I was just watching american financial guru to the masses suze orman on tv and she said much the same as you have been… buying right now is a bad idea… that she might have said ten years ago that investing in a home was the way to go but not anymore… she also figures the american real estate market won’t stabilize until 2025…

…………..
Guess you were watching The View today. :-) I was listening to it while painting :-(

#306 DJH on 05.16.11 at 3:29 pm

What % of homes/condos on the market in Victoria are in fact empty? Anecdotal info from one real estate agent doesn’t cut it. The point being made isn’t useful without numbers. I live in Victoria and none of the properties for sale in my neighbourhood appear to be unoccupied.

#307 Victoria on 05.16.11 at 3:31 pm

I am still noticing many properties – over $900,000 in Victoria being put on the market. I wonder if these are baby-boomers trying to get rid of their high end properties. I also see a lot of for sale signs in Broadmead.

#308 Macrath on 05.16.11 at 3:55 pm

#297 Industrial Guy

Niagara Region;

You know your area is in real trouble when the telemarketers leave town. They are heading for greener pastures in Oakville. There has been some real estate action with some boomers leaving the GTA with their bags of cash and heading here instead of Victoria.

But don`t expect a job because there aren`t any !

#309 Ryder on 05.16.11 at 3:59 pm

It looks like the same in Sas ka bush

Want to sell but want to rent!!!

http://regina.kijiji.ca/c-housing-house-rental-Home-for-rent-and-sale-W0QQAdIdZ282693487

#310 freedom_2008 on 05.16.11 at 4:22 pm

#281 fancy_pants,

Hope that you can read before writing. $40K is what we spend per year, not income. As for the machine, you can have it ;-).

#282 Dark Sad Monster Bunny,
Thanks. It was purely luck as yesterday was the 1st time I read the blog after 3 weeks absent.

#311 Junius on 05.16.11 at 4:26 pm

Garth,

Loved this post! Clearly you achieved your objective of demonstrating how broad the housing slow down is across the country. So many locations guessed, so little activity nation wide.

And so it ends with a whimper as we all knew it would.

#312 “I’ve been to open houses for the last several weeks in Vancouver and most of the condos and houses don’t look like they are being lived in.” | Vancouver Real Estate Anecdote Archive on 05.16.11 at 4:45 pm

[…] reality guy at greaterfool.ca 16 May 2011 12:28am – “I’ve been to open houses for the last several weeks in Vancouver and most of the condo’s as well as houses don’t look like they are being lived in. Wasn’t sure if people had upgraded and now need to sell or if they are just speculative owners.” […]

#313 jess on 05.16.11 at 5:16 pm

300 disciple

…money printers!

“Pecora’s investigation unearthed evidence of irregular practices in the financial markets that benefited the rich at the expense of ordinary investors, including exposure of Morgan’s “preferred list” by which the bank’s influential friends (including Calvin Coolidge, the former president, and Owen J. Roberts, a justice of Supreme Court of the United States) participated in stock offerings at steeply discounted rates. He also revealed that National City sold off bad loans to Latin American countries by packing them into securities and selling them to unsuspecting investors, that Wiggin had shorted Chase shares during the crash, profiting from falling prices, and that Mitchell and top officers at National City had received $2.4 million in interest-free loans from the bank’s coffers”

#314 Live Under Your Means on 05.16.11 at 5:25 pm

“They didn’t have Green in my day”

In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that she should bring her own grocery bag because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment.. The woman apologized and explained, “We didn’t have the green thing back in my day.”

The clerk responded, “That’s our problem today. The former generation did not care enough to save our environment.”

He was right, that generation didn’t have the green thing in its day.

Back then, they returned their milk bottles, pop bottles, and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.

But they didn’t have the green thing back in that customer’s day.

In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn’t have an escalator in every store and office building. They walked to the grocery store and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go two blocks.

But she was right. They didn’t have the green thing in her day.

Back then, they washed the baby’s diapers because they didn’t have the throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts. Wind and solar power really did dry the clothes.

Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

But that old lady is right, they didn’t have the green thing back in her day.

Back then, they had one TV, or radio, in the house, not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief, not a screen the size of the state of Montana. In the kitchen, they blended and stirred by hand because they didn’t have electric machines to do everything for you.
When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, they didn’t fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power. They exercised by working so they didn’t need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But she’s right, they didn’t have the green thing back then.

They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water. They refilled their writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and they replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

But they didn’t have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or rode the school bus instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service.

They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And they didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

So sad, they didn’t have the green thing back then.
…………….
Rec’d the above from a friend today. How true.

#315 SMOKING MAN on 05.16.11 at 5:39 pm

Sorry bubble heads but rates are not going to rise.

The MOB will see this as an indication that RE will contune to climb…

http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5gJ9kKsGOWKz-UmEeHBogtbF6PLHw?docId=6864723

#316 hector on 05.16.11 at 5:45 pm

Victoria.

#317 Bob F. on 05.16.11 at 5:56 pm

Never recognized you on that tractor – when did your hair go white?

#318 Live Under Your Means on 05.16.11 at 6:16 pm

A bro replied to a msg I had sent him today. Rarely send him emails. I had not noticed the following before. :-)

No virus found because none was checked for – I’m on a Mac

#319 Uki_7 on 05.16.11 at 6:20 pm

To #316 Live Under Your Means :

and brainwashed clerk did not mention that reusable grocery bags are dangerous to her health:

http://www.cleveland.com/healthfit/index.ssf/2010/06/study_finds_reusable_grocery_b.html

#320 boom boom bust on 05.16.11 at 6:57 pm

OTTAWA — Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney has signalled he is becoming increasingly concerned about the mounting level of debt in the United States and its potential to slow Canada’s recovery.

In layman terms he is talking about exchange rates not debt levels per say.

#321 LH on 05.16.11 at 7:05 pm

at #276 S.B.

Yes, yes and yes. It was a great idea 5-15 years ago, when things were cheaper. Even now, it may be worth holding on to them because of the transaction costs of selling (Realtors, implicit land transfer tax, etc.) I agree that many SFH’s are overpriced now in T.O. but I’m happy with the kinds of yields that we are getting.

PS: Bathurst/Bloor is too close to central tech (yuck). Mine are better located than that.

#322 Junius on 05.16.11 at 7:05 pm

#317 Smoking Man,

So what if rates don’t rise soon? The US market has gone down for 5 years with rates as low as they can possibly go. The rising of rates – which is inevitable – will accelerate the drop in Canadian prices. However if it doesn’t happen for a while or happens slowly it will only mean prices drop more slowly. Big deal.

Perhaps you missed the part where no rate increases means the economy can barely on its own.

You think that means the market is going to heat up again? Dream on and keep smoking up.

#323 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 05.16.11 at 7:27 pm


freedom_2008 — Way to go, and nicely done!
*
Too much celebrating over the past coupla days, so now my brayne hurtz.
*
#290 BrianT — More to this IMF stuff than normally reported — Possibility #1 and Possibility #2. Both have links. Plus this. Seems like a set-up. Latest — 3:14 clip.

Collection A fine collection of cars stored in farmhouses in Europe, c. 1920s.

Sheeple Quiz Answer A or B.

US$ One Trillion — and it covers tips!

Deceptions Inc. CFR etc., using their m$m continue to deceive western populations.

Abyss Europe tottering over.

Intro here and Something to ponder when there is nothing to do. It appears the article was written Aug. 29, 2001 but it popped up Sunday night. Chaos — do you know anything about this? Got some surprises 4 uz?!

HAARP Playing games again. NMF is acting up.

#324 Angry Realtor on 05.16.11 at 7:32 pm

#276 S.B. on 05.16.11 at 7:32 am
#243 LH on 05.16.11 at 12:34 am you always mention your four houses in, I think, the Bloor-Bathurst area.

———————————————————-

That area has so much product for rent that’s landlords will have to keep dropping their prices. I will not waste my times with stupid landlords who think it’s 1999 and toronto didn’t over build with condo/townhomes etc. The best part are these rental units have been sitting empty for months and finally a renter is willing to lease but wants a reduced in the rental rate. The landlord says no and the unit sits for months. One landlord said no and the unit sat empty for almost one year. Toronto in general is a renters market. Low ball those stupid landlords hard. Don’t even want to tell you how many wasted hours/days/weeks with these people. Never again.

#325 An Cat Dubh on 05.16.11 at 7:39 pm

Kamloops. I was just there and its scary!

Mr. R.

I was there two weeks ago and of course people said real estate will never drop here. Even though lots of places have for sale signs just like they have in Penticton.

#326 Min in Mission on 05.16.11 at 7:47 pm

@ 187 Utopia: “What do you mean it’s a cult”?

The fat Banker swilled the last of his Virgin-Homebuyer and ordered another. This was lunch after all. “I mean they hang on my every word” the beard answered, “and the meaner I get the more followers I collect. It is a real cult, alter sacrifices, tin-foil hats and all”. “We even counsel tender virgins” he said slyly.

“You must be joking” Banker guy shot back “Prove it”

“Ok”, snarled the beard, “I am going to hold a contest tonight. I will bet you one lost mortgaged soul that I get 200 responses in less than four hours. They are waiting like hungry vultures to hear what I might say next”……..”I might even throw out a prize to make it interesting”.

“Ha, Ha” laughed Banker guy as the next drink arrived. “You got your bet. But if you lose tough-guy, we bring back the 40 year mortgage”.

“You don’t have a prayer” the beard snapped “Just watch”.

Very good!!!

#327 Another Albertan on 05.16.11 at 7:52 pm

#320/Live Under Your Means:

Don’t get too cocky. What you just said, in different terms, is “It’s different here.” We know what happens to people who drink too much Kool-Aid.

There are a multitude of cross-platform web exploits that target Macs. Your machine no longer needs to open an infected email to be compromised. Just surfing to a website can be sufficient.

Everyone else’s mileage may vary.

#328 bridgepigeon on 05.16.11 at 7:56 pm

316 nice one

#329 walter safety on 05.16.11 at 8:03 pm

As a first time buyer of a vacuum cleaner in 1977 i paid too much (about 4 % of income) and 100 % of net worth .In the GTA in those days jobs were plentiful ,I often had two jobs. Youth fear little and they know little fear.
When I go to Calgary its just like the GTA in the 70’s and 80s’ a great demographic ,positive outlook on the future and no fear .Calgary will be alright and so will the kids. They can overpay for their houses,learn their lessons all the while building their net worth in skills and other non financial assets .Being a greater fool is the cure for being a greater fool.
Having 100 % of your net worth in a house is not a trap when your 25 even less so in Calgary.
If you run another contest please change your blog name to Greater Tool.

#330 jess on 05.16.11 at 9:06 pm

…more rot

Major Mortgage Firms Accused of Fraud May 2011 – from CONFIDENTIAL …16 May 2011 … WASHINGTON — A set of confidential federal audits accuse the nation’s five largest mortgage companies of defrauding taxpayers in their

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/16/foreclosure-fraud-audit-false-claims-act_n_862686.html

#331 randman on 05.16.11 at 9:20 pm

Live under….

Astounding post!!!

Keep up the good work!

#332 BrianT on 05.16.11 at 9:51 pm

#325Nost-Who knows? What is interesting is how much the image of the IMF has deteriorated in the last 3 yrs-now the words IMF and Scumball are linked firmly in the minds of a large % of the public, much more so than a few yrs ago.

#333 Merri on 05.17.11 at 11:22 am

Chinese Homebuyers Spreading Wealth Make Vancouver Pricier Than Manhattan

Vancouver’s Royal Pacific Realty had such a surge of business during the first two weeks of February that agents and assistants worked day and night shifts to find homes for Chinese buyers…. (quite a long interesting article in Bloomberg)

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-05-16/chinese-spreading-wealth-make-vancouver-homes-pricier-than-nyc.html

still waiting for the correction