The gamble

The six o’clock talking heads in Global’s Toronto newsroom breathlessly reported on “Metro’s red-hot housing market.” But one hour later (from the same building) the network’s national news carried a piece on “Canada’s cooling real estate picture.” In Vancouver the dailies reported a survey ‘proving’ Asians have a minimal effect on real estate prices. Yesterday they carried a piece on how the Asian impact on exploding values had been ‘dramatically underestimated.’

Capital Economics says Canadian real estate is at an unsustainable US-style tipping point and will drop 25% over three years. CIBC Economics says unaffordability is exaggerated, at-risk homeowners are few and far between and the market could plump indefinitely.

And look at this woeful blog. The only consensus here is to have more perverted pictures.

Well, no wonder most people shut this conflicted river of information off and turn to the street for their news. If houses on their block or in their town are moving, the market is strong. If they hear about rising prices, it’s hot. If the guy across the road can’t sell after six months of lonely open houses, we have a quasi-depression.

Fact is, no national housing market exists. Real estate is an intensely local commodity, as witnessed by the irrationality of Vancouver. A short ferry ride away in Victoria, listings are sprouting in the night and buyers are vanishing. In Toronto June sales popped after a dismal Spring, while in Halifax realtors dream of becoming baristas.

But what has occurred nation-wide, is an irrevocably altered perception of houses. They are no longer homes, but tradable, marketable commodities. This view was always latent, but has erupted into the public psyche since the financial crash of 2008 begat the lowest mortgage rates, and the easiest credit ever.

Cheap money meant houses could jump in value without anyone’s wages or salary going up. This is how real estate became detached from the real economy. It’s exactly what happened in the US between Nine Eleven and 2006. Prices followed the debt chart skyward.

As values and indebtedness rose, more and more family net worth was shoveled into this one asset. In a few short years we’ve reached a position of absurdity, where half of all families spend more than half their income on a piece of property, while carrying record debt, and in a country where houses have never cost more and yet seven in ten people have one.

This is a gargantuan national risk. It’s why this petulant blog exists. And why houses are no longer homes.

Scads of unthinking but house-horny Canadians have turned real estate into their one and only financial plan. It constitutes their forced savings. Their investment portfolio. Their tax strategy. Their retirement plan.

House prices have shot ahead by 25% a year in BC, for example, while the family savings rate in the province is now negative. RRSP contributions across the country have crashed in recent years. Forty per cent of Canadians have nothing in their bank accounts at the end of each month, and nothing invested.

This is the portrait of an accident waiting to happen.

So the question is not exactly when the market will falter, or how much a house in Leaside or Kits will jump in value this year – those questions are interesting but irrelevant. The bigger issue is what happens to a society when most people shun diversification, flock to one thing, gamble on a common outcome, and assume tomorrow repeats today.

History tells us change is normal. Human nature says it’s news.

Not a day passes I don’t get a load of emails like this one (from a prominent realtor in Calgary):

Thanks Garth for once again making an ass of yourself. 42 months since your Dear Abby blog began and yet NOT ONE of your stupid predictions has occurred. Take a chill pill and appreciate the fact that Canada has a real good chance to be OK. All those broke homeowners would have no cash left to buy your rags you call books… Keep me laughing, old man. Moron loser.

How can I not be inspired by words like that?


#1 phinny on 07.07.11 at 9:38 pm

Interesting post, Calgary realtor.

A friend of mine was freed of his 100k underwater Calgary mortgage by death. Probably the least painful way to get out.

Jackass. Moron… meterosexual.

#2 Lisa on 07.07.11 at 9:38 pm

That is one strange picture!

#3 disciple on 07.07.11 at 9:38 pm

Yes, very inspiring…lol…

You don’t get to make 500,000 friends without making a few enemies along the way…er…sorry, that’s Zuckerberg…

You know you’re doing good when you are attacked without merit. – disciple

#4 Abitibidoug on 07.07.11 at 9:40 pm

I’m probably not first, but a comment about the Email from Calgary. Well, what do you expect a realtor to say, that they agree housing’s overpriced and due for a correction? Not if their salary depends on the illusion that absurdly high prices are the norm. To tell the truth would be like tobacco companies admitting their product causes health problems.

#5 Hoof - Hearted on 07.07.11 at 9:42 pm

1ssssrrzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt !

#6 Mark on 07.07.11 at 9:42 pm

So who the heck is actually funding this Ponzi scheme? Little old ladies shovelling endless cash into GICs and savings accounts?

Isn’t it safe to assume that both the GIC owners/cash hoarders, as well as the borrowers, are going to get destroyed economically once this is all over?

#7 Mr. Lee on 07.07.11 at 9:42 pm

A cow town realtor calling you a loser. You should feel honoured Mr. Turner, consider the source. These assholes have been pushing their bullshit for close to a decade now. Soon the reality will hit. It came back in 2008, but ’emergency rates” breathed life back into the market. Now China is raising rates, the EU is raising rates and Carney will hold the line in July. He will hold the line into next year. However, eventualy he will have to raise these historicaly low rates. When he does, watch out.

#8 vyw on 07.07.11 at 9:42 pm

Dear prominent in Calgary:

check out the Royal Lepage report:

“Calgary witnessed moderate year-over-year price declines as it continues to adjust from the boom experienced in the middle of the previous decade.”

This table might help:

Calgary and Victoria are the only two cities in negative numbers YOY in all three categories.

#9 DoomedinSask on 07.07.11 at 9:44 pm


#10 ucatzoduro on 07.07.11 at 9:46 pm

Dont listen to him keep it UP Garth, you tell it like it is. You cant help it if house horny people keep getting deeper into debt while driving up prices..the crash will happen slowly over the next five years or it may crash all at once, we dont know exactly when. Time will prove you right!

#11 Victoria on 07.07.11 at 9:47 pm

That realtor in Calgary sounds so intelligent. God I would love to do business with someone so educated.

#12 Basil Fawlty on 07.07.11 at 9:48 pm

The slide is coming soon and the squirrels are heading for the high country. Its getting harder to find work and the cost of staying alive is increasing, people are getting squeezed. The real estate market is rolling over outside of the Big Smoke in BC, as the Alberta money has gone home in the OK.
Of course there are some bright lights as Harper plans Super Max prison construction and a bunch of fighter jets to ward off pesky Libyans, while stealing their broccoli.

#13 bsallergy on 07.07.11 at 9:48 pm

Garth please keep making an ass of yourself. I love the Dear Abby blog, no need for chill pills, this will be a hell of a mess. And keep publishing your rags, they contain plenty of useful information.

#14 librarykaren on 07.07.11 at 9:50 pm

Prominent realtor: very feeble. Old man? Moron loser? Please…These blog dogs respond better to visuals. Next time, send photos.

#15 T.O. Bubble Boy on 07.07.11 at 9:52 pm

Funny how the fluff pieces pumping the RE market always come out on the same day as economic studies that say the market will correct… is there really any doubt that the various media outlets (paid by RE advertisers) just sit on these “stories” until they are needed?

Also – how long can consumer confidence stay up when almost every economist (and apparently even realtors like Royal LePage) are calling for a correction?

#16 tomohawk on 07.07.11 at 9:55 pm

I wonder if the problem is one of perspective. You would think the smartest, most disciplined, least emotional people would be the savviest investors, but maybe the problem is that they are so unlike the rest of the herd that they simply cannot relate to Joe Lunchbucket and have to wait forever for him to catch up. The “best” (i.e. most successful) investors might be only a half-step ahead of Joe, which allows them to get out on top rather than see the danger from kilometres away and avoid riding the bubble at all. Just a theory…

#17 Makaya on 07.07.11 at 9:58 pm

In Vancouver, it will be a blood bath…
Look at this example:

#18 Happyguy on 07.07.11 at 9:59 pm

I would suppose that a rational conclusion could be that, when the current fact that “establishment” commentaries are in such opposition, that the “establishment” position that RE is a steady and constantly escalating investment could be seriously questioned.

#19 JSS on 07.07.11 at 9:59 pm

Dear Abby…HA HA!

That’s hillarious

#20 T.O. Bubble Boy on 07.07.11 at 9:59 pm

It looks like the same story exists in every property market where the mainland Chinese dollars have pushed prices into bubble territory.

JPMorgan cut its rating on Hong Kong, saying that property prices are “excessive relative to income” and that the city’s real-estate market, along with those in China and Singapore, has “peaked.”

#21 torontorocks on 07.07.11 at 10:01 pm


#22 JR on 07.07.11 at 10:03 pm

Garth, I have been waving your flag for the past year since I unloaded my own home in Edmonton. I moved to Kamloops and have been seeing local stats. They are on the decline. Month after month, they have been either stagnant or declining YOY. They only thing is the small declines I see are bushed off by many who think I’m crazy. I really hope we see a bigger correction to drive the point home.

#23 Utopia on 07.07.11 at 10:03 pm

Cripes. Are all your emails from Realtors that angry Garth? I mean, there is some real furious hostility in those few words. Like they think an eventual housing slowdown is going to be your fault for reporting (and not theirs for all the past ludicrous pumping they did when we were clearly going bubbly).

I talked to a few people today incidentally. They had seen or heard the story and Soper’s comments that housings prices were unsustainable and set to fall.

That message got out to the public for some reason. So many others did not. They are concerned about what it will mean and one young fellow was intent on calling friends he knows who are planning to buy soon. “Soon” as in, they are within days of writing an offer. Says he will do his best to dissaude them before it is too late.

Not a hope in hell I am sure.

Another friend though expressed serious reservations about the future. His comment was that if the CEO of Royal Lepage is warning that housing will correct then we had better look out below.

There is no way in hell that guy would make those remarks unless there was a significant concern about a coming tumble. It is all about liability he explained.

They have advance notice and numbers already that the market is falling apart and do not want to be seen to be bleating an upbeat message that will come back and haunt them later in court. They need to be able to say they warned the public before a correction actually begins. This, he added, just means we are literally on the precipice of that correction.

“We are doomed, man” is what he finished with.

#24 Joe on 07.07.11 at 10:04 pm

Cheer up, old man, at least you’ve got your loyal readers who flock to their computers around 7pm each night to read your pearls of wisdom. You go look yourself in the mirror and you say “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me!”

I admit the last two blog entries got me good and depressed about money and investing and human nature and the state of the union in general. Today I decided to take charge of things; I went to Chapters and bought The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Technical Investing and Power Investing for Dummies. Yes, yes, “Idiots,” “Dummies,” whatever. I’ve got to start somewhere and some time and now seemed as good a time as any. Can’t depend on the DH to always be there and invest for me, and certainly can’t depend on a pension or the government. I’d like to join the ranks of the millionaire next door one day, a considerable net worth safely tucked away in investment vehicles while I drive a 15-year-old Buick.

#25 wetcoaster on 07.07.11 at 10:05 pm

And they wonder why real estate agents and their industry gets painted with the same brush.

I can’t wait for the coming crash, won’t be long now when immature comments like that show up via email.

#26 T.O. Bubble Boy on 07.07.11 at 10:06 pm

but.. but… tiny 2-bdrm houses are only $800k-$850k in North Toronto right now — where’s the bubble in that?

#27 Medic on 07.07.11 at 10:07 pm

That Calgary realtor sounds a little upset. Garth, you should insist that any insults thrown your way include the title “Honourable”, such as honourable dick, etc.

#28 TaxHaven on 07.07.11 at 10:08 pm

Simple “shoot-yourself-in-the-fanny” RE twit.

If they have “no money left to buy your books” they CERTAINLY won’t have any left for that guy’s listings…

#29 Smoking Man on 07.07.11 at 10:09 pm

Just sold my last Rental Condo for an outrageous price, I don’t think the buyer will get financing but hey it is what it is. I am partnering up with my son so he can open his music studio. There is a 90% chance it will fail but I turned 40k down into a 140k in a little over two years. So I take out my 40 and throw the rest after tax away, It might work out who knows. Screw the idea of my kids working for the man, it’s against my religion. He is kicking in his $$$ from his condo sale. Hopefully he is not like his dumb dad in his first business, hookers and crack if you know what I mean. Real reason is the demographic was changing rapidly in that building, the fruit was right for the picking, In my sons case he was an idiot that condo was in prime time location everyone wants to be there.

When we where signing the papers It was so funny I am usually a prick I am always the first one out of the elevator, I hate elevator people they annoy me, their was a hot chic on the elevator, when we got to G, I let everyone out, but it was not cause I am a gentlemen. My wife was mystified you never do that you just wanted to look at hot paints ass. Ya Einstein I confessed bit that was not the reason. This not drinking has messed up my body, and my mind. Hard core withdrawal. Just before I got on the elevator I tried to pass a little gas, well what a shocker, first time in my life, can you say a wet bubbly one, better know as a heresy squirt. I wasn’t sure If I leaked trough so I made sure everyone was in front of me. And they all thought I was just being nice.

Now to business bubble heads, few posts ago I told you the real estate market was on fire and that main street media would start pouring water to try and cool it. (Why am I always right) Anyone read the headlines lately.

If they cool it to much they will blow huge sunshine later it’s what they do. And if it got bad this is exactly what they would say, “well because the markets slow Canadians are just talking their house of the Market “ Power of suggestion, kind of like, Canadians don’t want an election. It works

As you all wait under the tree desperately hoping an apple will fall off not realizing the man in Canada has invisible metal hooks into all the apples.

Sorry bubble heads you are no match for the machine.

#30 Hoof - Hearted on 07.07.11 at 10:11 pm

It is an irrational ponzi scheme

True Story:

Our family had a property (Richmond..HAM central)bought in late 1960’s

Had to borrow from relatives…borrowing was very tough….paid approx $12,000.

In late 1970’s the value ballooned up to approx . $300,000 …..

We had a neighbour who had bought….and got caught in that 20% interest rate disaster in early 1980’s .

Within a few tanked to less than 1/2……approx. $140,000

In 16 years…(mid 1990’s) it rose to approx. $1 Million….

At peak….late 2000’s ….it would be worth approx. $2.4 million.

Pick your numbers and your poison…

#31 Behavioral Finance on 07.07.11 at 10:17 pm

This clearly shows that increase in house prices have been driven by borrowing like there is no tomorrow.

#32 eviee1973 on 07.07.11 at 10:22 pm

Who is the “prominent” realtor who is sending Garth death threats. Are they one of those bus stop bench advertising people? The Garth Army will retalite!!

#33 Ex-Cowtown on 07.07.11 at 10:24 pm

And comments from that Calgary Realtor are why I am “Ex-Cowtown”.

#34 Jsan on 07.07.11 at 10:24 pm

********COMING VERY SOON*********

The game changing energy breakthrough that has been almost 100% missed (or purposely ignored) by the main stream media. Is it Cold Fusion? The inventor does not say and neither do those who have witnessed it’s successful operation. It has been tested and verified by some very prominent European organizations. One of the Chief scientists of NASA has endorsed it and just recently a Nobel Prize Winning Physicist Blasted the Mainstream Media For Ignoring Rossi’s New Physics Busting E-Cat Technology.

Is the Oil industry worried? They better be, if they even know about it yet. They will though in the not too distant future The technology is a very small and compact unit that with between a 400 to as little as 80 Watt input of power produces 15,000 Watts output steadily and consistently. It is said to be cheap to produce and maintenance consists of only changing the catalyst module which is very cheap and easy to replace quickly by practically anyone every 6 months. They are currently in the process of finishing their 1 MegaWatt system which will be put into operation in a couple of months.

Even Hitler is nervous about this one. (another Hitler spoof)

Hitler Panics Over Rossi’s Energy Catalyzer


#35 Carlyle on 07.07.11 at 10:25 pm

42 months is a blip in the long run of history. Humans by nature think short term … This is the reason these crashes occur over and over again.

#36 Carp on 07.07.11 at 10:27 pm

To Calgary dude,

1. This blog is not only about real estate.
2. It’s about the global economy and how everything relates.
3. You can’t keep yourself in bubble when everything around us – be it in Canada or elsewhere is heating up.
4. Garth has been forecasting possible risks that may end up being reality and will affect us.

2008 crash -> huge government deficits -> European and US mess -> Impacts on the Canadian Economy -> home prices … he has a lot more on the go like China, inflation, and hot tall babes pics.

Garth has been about 6 months ahead of reporting what might happen and then you see it on

So I’m pretty sure he’s correct on RE prices declining and interest rates going up. Timeline – 2-5 years from now and a slow melt.

For those who listen and understand the message – diversify and be ready for the turbulence.

#37 TurnerNation on 07.07.11 at 10:33 pm

Simple solution for the Calgary realturd: stop following this lecherous blog!!

There, all your problems are solved realturd. Now go away and enjoy your pathetic parisitic life.

#38 The InvestorsFriend (Shawn Allen) on 07.07.11 at 10:35 pm


(I posted this late on yesterday’s blog, but this is very important so I repeat it here. Please forgive! And this is of interest. Already Hoof-Hearted responded yesterday with a mindless bash of Buffett indicating that the wise and very rich Buffett should see that we are doomed to repeat 2008)

Warren Buffett was interviewed on CNBC this morning. His comments were upbeat and optimistic. Everyone should read these comments.

Some of you may remember some commercials from maybe 15 or 20 years ago about a financial advisor. It was something like “when E. F. Hutton speaks, people listen”. Well when Warren Buffett speaks, I listen. So should you. And frankly, I don’t have much time for anyone who who does not see the wisdom in listening to the world’s most successful investor.

I mean the people on this Site spend time reading anoymous comments that are often absolute drivel, often made by complete nutbars, with only the odd useful nuggett occasionaly found. If you read the blog comments here, surely you have time for Buffett.

In particular note that Buffett is bullish on America (not it’s currency but the country) and is in particular bullish that the house construction industry will rebound soon.

(Buffett bashers, feel free to respond, which will only reinforce my point…)

#39 Habbit on 07.07.11 at 10:39 pm

Mr Calgary realtor. My sister could have sold in Cow Town at the peak of the latest frenzy when there were bidding wars. I suggested she sell and cash out and wait for the next buying opportunity. She waited until last fall and sold for 100k lower. She sold then as she realized finally that there was downward pressure from the economy and the underlying fundamentals of the market. Good salespeople will survive. Your attack on Garth is petty. You would serve your clients and others better by debating your position. Remember duty of care. There are many opinions out there. Those that are informed and share their position respectfully may not be right but they will be heard.

#40 nonplused on 07.07.11 at 10:41 pm

Well Garth, I don’t know what to say about the quote at the end from your realturd friend except that I dated a Greek girl once. In addition to being very open along your photo lines, she had a lot of good proverbs of Greek origin that I hadn’t heard before. The applicable one:

“The closer to home, the stronger the reaction.”
– Greek Girlfriend

I assume she translated and in Greek it was probably even more meaningful.

On another topic Wills and Kate are in town and I can’t figure this thing out. What is the role of the royalty at this point? Cutting short for lack of time, I postulate this: Politicians have made such a mess of things and acted so badly, maybe the people who supposedly live in a constitutional democracy are now hoping that this young couple might be a ray of hope when the politicians finally hand us our “you are screwed, we did it, we are not sorry” papers. Maybe they represent the “hero” that we hope will save us from ourselves. I mean, they really don’t have a function in Canada. Why the hype? But they are conducting themselves much better than a North American politician. My question: Why are they campaigning?

#41 Utopia on 07.07.11 at 10:49 pm

#26 T.O. Bubble Boy

Thanks for the laugh man! I especially loved the second house on the micro sized 25 foot wide lot. I must have it since I am delirious. I will offer 900k if they throw in a small poodle and a lamp shade.


#42 Stevie Why ?? on 07.07.11 at 10:49 pm

The only ” Moron Loser ” I can say for sure is Stephen J. Harper, Prime Minister of Canada and Member of Parliament for Calgary Southwest ……..Now where did this term ” Moron Loser ” originate ? Ohhhhh yes ….. a prominent Calgary realtor ! hmmmmm …..Birds Of A Feather

#43 Omni on 07.07.11 at 10:52 pm

#1 To Phinny : meterosexual used as an insult… I commend you, good job. Ditto from me.

#44 The InvestorsFriend (Shawn Allen) on 07.07.11 at 10:53 pm


Think about this, the guys that build a house the skilled labour, they make money for building a house. That is certainly fair they are adding to the “real” wealth of the country by constructing a house.

And land developers and home builder companies also make money when a building lot is produced and they build a house. That again is fair, the land developer and the home builder company take risks and apply expertise and money to “manufacture” building lots and houses and this adds to the real wealth of the country.

Much as many nutbars would refuse to admit it, banks play a very useful role too. The house typically would never get built if there were not a bank willing to fiannce a purchaser. So the bank too is adding to the real wealth of the country by helping to get houses built.

But now let’s turn to the home owner. If he occupies the house for 20 years and pays it off should he expect to make a large gain when he sells it?

Well, if there were no improvements the house is 20 years depreciated, starting to run down a bit. This hypothetical house owner has not improved the house has not added tot he real wealth of the counrty by merely owning and occupying a house.

And yet in the last decade or so many homeowners found that their house was making more in a year than they did at their job! They got HUGE gains in value.

Much of that was a windfall from inflation and especially from hugely lower interest rates. As interest rates fell houses became more affordable and this drove the price up. (oops lower interest rates would have made houses more affordable but it was existing owners that got the gain through higher prices and houses in the end were not more afforable.)

House prices gained too as the price for skilled labor rose, the price for lumber, the cost of developing land, the costs added by municipalities who charged land developers for roads and infrastructure.

But those gains can only go so far. Interest rates don’t fall forever. Even inflation has its limits.

Does it really make sense that the free market is going to continually cause house prices to rise such that any fat slob that merely owns and occupies a house sees a fat gain yearly. No, he is not adding value (absent renovations). Big gains on house proices year after year defy logic and will come to an end. They were mostly windfall gains. Not reliable gains that will occur annually.

Windfall losses are also possible especially if interest rates rise.

Think about it… Especially, you Vancouver.

#45 Mr. Reality on 07.07.11 at 10:59 pm

Sounds like a Realtor that knows the gig is up. And it is……

MR. R.

#46 April on 07.07.11 at 11:05 pm

That Calgary realtor is not doing well. He’s afraid of what’s coming.

#47 endovtimes on 07.07.11 at 11:05 pm

GettumGarth -that Calgary realtor’s brain must have been adled during the bloodbath that was Calgary 1981-84. When the bubble burst negative equity was so rampant that a raging industry developed, the so-called Dollar Dealers. People flogged their property for $1 so that slimers could rent them out and skim the rent while stiffing the mortgage company during the foreclosure process. Dollar Dealers, receivers, bankrupcy trustees and insolvency lawyers made dough, the rest ate potatoes. Yep, bubbles burst and that was only a small one!

#48 JohnnyBGood on 07.07.11 at 11:12 pm

The faster prices accelerate upwards, the closer to the end we get.

This is not a cheer. It is a lament––a lament for a country, a people, whose ignorance and greed allowed them to be suckered into believing in a distorted model of affordability, becoming the willing victims of a financial industry who exploited their dreams of home ownership, while passing out large helpings of kool-aid (in the form of cheap credit) that once imbibed, magically removed the very concept of risk.

If energy prices do not force economies to become highly localized, economic instability, volatility, uncertainty, and less job security could cause the immobility inherent in home ownership to become a financial liability––a lead anchor in a world where freedom of movement is paramount, where workers become neo-nomads.

We are already seeing this in the US, where negative equity in homes is constraining the flow of labour and contributing to economic stagnation.

However, if, on the other hand, energy prices do make life so much less affordable for the average person, then their homes will become a financial burden that fewer and fewer will be able to carry. Again, in the US we are already seeing a shift to smaller new homes. And who in this country would deny that the parcels of land devoted to the average new home is becoming so small as to turn the average SFH into a de facto townhouse.

Absent a massive productivity boost that sees GDP rise well above the historical average––AND where the wealth is fairly distributed––living will become much more expensive (remember what gasoline prices were in, say, 2004? Compare the rise in gasoline prices to the rise in your income).

The decades-long trend in the expansion of SFH square footage could go into a swift reversal. So you want a huge palace with ballroom-sized, stainless-clad kitchens, vast expanses of heated marble underfoot, and cavernous bathrooms for every boudoir? Be careful what you wish for.

When the majority of “investors” rely on a single asset class to fund their prosperity, it becomes impossible, by definition, for that asset class to do so. If everyone is a buyer, who will they sell to?

The risks are well known (if not broadly recognized). But woe to those who try to forecast prices or time the market. The burgeoning field of behavioural finance shows us that markets are not efficient, or rational. And though one may recognize a bubble, seeing the breaking point is another matter.

Just this past week, two realtors came canvassing at my door distributing glossy, glorified post cards. Rich Arabs are buying in your area? You have a very nice home here. Are you interested? So prices are soaring but agents are scurrying. Surely, just another sign the end is nigh.

#49 Cato on 07.07.11 at 11:15 pm

“Take a chill pill and appreciate the fact that Canada has a real good chance to be OK”

There are so many things wrong with that sentence, not least of which is the grammar. Canada is not ok and the damage done to the economy is irreparable. Most RE agents I’ve met are starting to worry because few of them have the skills to transition into alternate careers. Remember the days when most real estate agents were just part timers? When the bubble deflates the number of job losses will be substantial.

What happens to society? Easy, life will go on but it won’t be the life most have come to expect. Unlike the dutch tulip mania, housing mania robbed the productive economy of vast resources & capital. We can’t deconstruct the excess and put resources to more productive use. The debt created during the mania isn’t going away, someone has to pay.

I think the most dangerous side effect of the western housing bubble was enticing the burgeoning middle class in developing economies to aspire to similar lifestyles. If we aren’t careful the tug-of-war for resources will lead us to actual war. Either way most Canadians will need to readjust their lifestyle expectations and prepare for a rude awakening.

#50 Aussie Roy on 07.07.11 at 11:17 pm

Aussie Update

THE pace of corporate insolvencies has reached its highest since the global financial crisis, with retailers, manufacturers and transport players feeling the squeeze from the slump in consumer spending

The Australian Tax Office is helping to drive the surge, flexing its legal muscle to liquidate mostly property development businesses that have fallen behind in tax payments.

Some claim house prices must rise as there is a housing shortage of 200,000 houses that grows by 30,000 annually. This is bunk.

According to Bloomberg, Australian property could see values tumble as much as 40 per cent in the near future as overseas investors cite high debt, increasing interest rates and expensive dwellings as problems for the sector.

The last financial crisis isn’t over, but we might as well start getting ready for the next one.

Sorry to be gloomy, but there it is.

Why? Here are 10 reasons.

China Raises Rates to Counter Inflation

#51 Stevie Why ?? on 07.07.11 at 11:18 pm

If you had leveraged and put $200,000 last quarter of 2008 into GCE when it was trading at $0.50 and sold first quarter of 2011 when GCE was trading at $11.93 … you would be UP about 4.5 MILLION …..ffs … that even humbles Van real estate…

#52 Rich Renter on 07.07.11 at 11:19 pm

When the insulting starts you know the game is over. Thanks Garth for the past 42 months it’s been great.

#53 Randis on 07.07.11 at 11:23 pm

Mr. Calgary realtor:

What are you trying to accomplish? You think you look so cool by doing this? … wow very professional indeed I clap for you, you look so cool you are superior.

Hows that? isn’t it what you want? Now go home and drink some milk

Professional realtor … very professional and prominent indeed. What a joke, and seriously you sound more like a sore loser than Garth … so sad for you.

#54 Kitchener1 on 07.07.11 at 11:25 pm

Look south into the US for our future, thats where this will lead.

Smoking man, wtf u find jesus or something? throwing your loser (as u always say) son 100k? Not working for the man–LOL guess u will never retire if you got to support your kids their whole life.

#55 Crash on 07.07.11 at 11:29 pm

Check out this CTV spot. It seems some “professional” realtors misrepresent the size of their client’s properties. Apparently there is nothing that can be done about this dishonest misrepresentation. Buyer beware…

#56 Hoof - Hearted on 07.07.11 at 11:45 pm

“If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and
leave us in peace.

We seek not your council nor your arms.

Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity
forget that ye were our countrymen.”

–Samuel Adams

#57 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 07.07.11 at 11:46 pm

It appears the m$m appears to be reversing their position, that RE always goes up. As with anything else, it goes in cycles, so it may have crested at the top of the roller coaster ride and is headed in the opposite direction.

With the printed m$m in decline (see second link to HH), they won’t come out and say directly that RE ads are drying up, so the NOTW deliberately created their own downfall, close the paper and use extra income to fund other products.

“This is a gargantuan national risk. History tells us change is normal. Human nature says it’s news. This is the portrait of an accident waiting to happen. Prices followed the debt chart skyward [into] a quasi-depression.”

Change is constant, human nature is constantly stupid. Figure the only reason the realtor e-mailed insults at you is because he needs more business, and that is where #1 phinny’s line — “Jackass. Moron… meterosexual.” — or — MetroSludgeMobile comes in very handy!
#182 Hoof – Hearted on 07.07.11 at 5:14 pm — Indeed. It has been established that Japan surrendered a week prior to the bombs being dropped — link, here and Disintegration. Anyone can fall, no matter how old or big, and the bigger one is, the harder one falls. (Seems the west is, literally, falling to pieces.)

Two of the reasons they were dropped was to kickstart the floundering US economy from GD1, and to show TROTW that “might makes right”. Hence the US is the self-appointed ‘world’s policeman’, ‘tho he is retiring shortly.

But remember David vs. Goliath, or the USSR in Af’stan? Might doesn’t automatically make right. Thanks for the info. One further link (#211 Hoof – Hearted on 07.07.11 at 9:04 pm) — Socialism by any other means.
4:39 clip Arachnophobia? Don’t watch. The tarantula is rather large; Govt. has to pay for wars, so people can make do with less; Forewarned is Forearmed Possibly the SAF + Cascades, or Yellowstone (depending where HAARP is situated) and here; Saturn has its knickers in a twist; Soros and Obama have both studied Marx, and a few of Marx’s ideas are here; The Next 30 Years A Kondratieff Cycle perspective.

US Treasury looks for options to avoid default; Egypt vs. IMF Time for a default, in unison with PIIGS, the ME, NAmerica, Chindia and Russia? That’ll make the gravy thicker! Blame Game or Passing the buck, and European Commission workers are quite well paid; Sovereign Debt Crisis = Global fiscal nasties; Collapsing Financials “These elites do not have a vision. They know only one word: more.”; LIBOR manipulated?

#58 TheFirstRick on 07.07.11 at 11:46 pm

#29 Smoking Man on 07.07.11 at 10:09 pm

….. I am partnering up with my son so he can open his music studio…….

Give the lad my sympathies, will ya?

#59 UVZ on 07.07.11 at 11:47 pm

#6 Mark

[Isn’t it safe to assume that both the GIC owners/cash hoarders, as well as the borrowers, are going to get destroyed economically once this is all over?]

Looks like the big Canadian banks are hedged one way and/or the other through the CMHC. They would likely come through fine.

As for the common people, a housing collapse and its various repercussions on wealth destruction, sluggish economy and increased taxes could cause much suffering and carnage.

#60 Kevin in Winnipeg on 07.07.11 at 11:53 pm

People flock to a single investment because they have no knowledge of risk and are looking to make big money quickly. This is nothing new. Millions has been lost in Nortel, BreX, dot coms and tulips so why should housing be any different. Real estate will collapse and lessons will be easily forgotten just in time for the next big thing.

Now to capitalize on the next bubble…..

#61 DML on 07.07.11 at 11:55 pm

RE Smoking Man post 29.

Garth,please add to your forum rules:

If one should crap ones pants,please keep this information to oneself.


#62 Ron on 07.08.11 at 12:02 am

The reason why most realtors lash out, angrily and defiantly, is because they see the stats. Declining sales, more and more listings, price reductions…the end of easy money for them. The good realtors (there are some, who happen to be good people) will tell you that the stats are not friendly and that it’s tough sledding these days.

#63 Love this Blog on 07.08.11 at 12:09 am

Keep fiughting the good fight Garth. You are getting under their skin, because they know you are right. We “gotcher back”

#64 SmarterThanYouLook on 07.08.11 at 12:13 am

Anybody who calls for a ‘correction’ in Canadian RE is declaring themselves a novice investor. It’s been fun reading comments in the media that have predicted a downturn in RE for the last half decade. It’s almost better than reading the comic pages.

Let’s just accept that buying real estate has made people very wealthy compared to those who haven’t. Don’t get angry. Just accept it. You’ll feel better.

#65 The Phantom on 07.08.11 at 12:18 am

Hey Garth and Fellow Bloggers:

I concede that I am in a mischievous mood tonight…I think that I have the ultimate panacea that will satisfy the irate realtor, the house horny folk, possibly yourself, Garth and maybe even the sober Smoking Man…

I propose that we push to legalize prostitution and communicating for the purposes of prostitution and turn it over to be run by the government. Law enforcement personnel, the folks in the judiciary and the politicians just don’t seem to get it. We could easily break the back of prostitution by turning it over to the government to run. I predict that within six months, you’d wait forever to get an appointment; chances are you’d get lousy service and it would cost a small fortune to finance the encounter…Just my devilish thoughts for tonight.

In closing Garth, Ernest Hemmingway, after his encounter with death in WWI (and the removal of over 250 pieces of shrapnel) said that trials and anxiety neither make or break a man but rather they bring out what truly lies within. I suspect that given some of the tribulations you’ve lived through that you could consider this quote within the context of your convictions, your actions and your conduct when the “heat was on” as you sat as a member of parliament when Harper held the reigns of a minority government and can hold your head pretty high regardless of the implacable attacks any real estate agent might throw your way. Have a great evening everyone…

the Phantom

PS: I love tall women…any chance you’d have a contact number for the lass above?

#66 Andrew on 07.08.11 at 12:25 am

Anyone who thinks the RE market, on a national basis, is going to fall by ONLY 33 percent, is out of their god damned mind.

If a market is overvalued, and THEN it proceeds to increase by 50% in value (as RE in Canada has done), the previous overvaluation is not grandfathered out. The opposite is true. The previous overvaluation is exacerbated. The more overvalued something becomes, the lower its bottom will be when it crashes. This is the effect of malinvestment. Irrational valuations cannot be turned rational through even more irrationality. So few seem to comprehend this.

What disturbs me is that virtually NONE of the RE bears are calling for a sane, realistic correction, given the level of insanity we’re witnessing now. Almost none of the bears are calling for the Canadian housing market to fall below the depths of the US housing market, which is exactly what we’re facing based on how much longer the Canadian timebomb has been allowed to build up. With Canadian median prices now beyond $374,000 and US median prices falling below $158,000, the “one-third-fallers” just don’t get it.

Top to bottom, there is no way Canadian RE is going to escape an 80% drop in nominal terms, barring a swift and sudden bout of hyperinflation. Even if hyperinflation does set in, we’re already committed to a 90% housing fall in inflation adjusted terms. If the “big one” hits Vancouver, that place could fall 99% in real terms.

I just wish more people had the brains and balls to call a spade a spade and see this clusterf*ck for what it really is.

#67 Sumadartson jr. on 07.08.11 at 12:25 am


Please look outside the box why Toronto and Vancouver have such high Home Prices.

The reasons may seem hidden but are easily discovered.

#68 LS on 07.08.11 at 12:28 am

Wherever you focus in Europe you hear the same cries of indignation. In some countries with more intensity than others, but the cry is becoming louder everywhere, and what seemed like a slow-motion financial collapse, is rapidly becoming an accelerated social catastrophe. Specifically in Spain, despite the political elite presenting a country recovering from the financial collapse, everyday things are getting worse economically, politically, and socially, and protest although nonviolent for the most part, could be on the verge of becoming violent unless political and economic elites begin to make some concessions.

#69 Tim on 07.08.11 at 12:28 am

What else could this clown in Calgary do but sell real estate? He certainly can’t express his thoughts in an articulate manner. Who would want to buy from someone so crude and stupid?

#70 Ravishing rick on 07.08.11 at 12:34 am

Garth, you know what your problem is? You are too nice, you need to get all michael douglas in “falling down”.

Start kicking ass and taking names! Start with Carney and then this Calgary realtor.

You can be a vigilante superhero, albeit an old moronic one… Or so they say

#71 NorthOf49 on 07.08.11 at 12:47 am

Hey Garth, for every Cowtown realtor with a big mouth, there are dozens of guys like my cousin, a new realtor who can get a sale to save his life and fights like a dog to get listings. Deep down he knows this market is cooked.

And you’re right, there’s no consensus on this crazy market. Yesterday I reported for the first time, a property flip in my tony area of Ancaster, yet over the last two years I’ve witnessed houses taking over a year to sell with asking prices dropping by $60K or more. Today, I overheard a lady working the Tim Horton’s sandwich counter in god-fearing Burlington telling a customer, while buttering a bagel, that she sold her house, now rents and found a great financial adviser to help her invest. The customer was not convinced stating that in this market, “you could lose your investment gains and your principle…at least with a house you don’t lose your principle…”, whatever that means. You could say I was a little shocked that the local Timmie’s lady not only has a leg up on this crazy RE market, but that she’s doling out bagels with a side of investment advice!!??

Slide over to Stoney Creek where friends are proud to own $500K homes (their estimate) and think nothing of carrying a $50K LOC, while a little down the road in Binbrook, my hick BIL has no job, thousands in savings, but no mortgage (owns it outright) and bathes with the water he collects off his roof (too cheap to fill the sistern), I kid you not.

So what’s up is down, what’s down is up. Abnormal is the new normal. In my case, I rent this castle in Ancaster for $1500/mth

Largest lot on the street, lots of pretty flowers thanks to the wife, all the veggies we can harvest out back, but you know what…….its a f#@king dump.

#72 Jwb on 07.08.11 at 12:51 am

Aussie Roy can show articles to demonstrate that the game is over in Australia. However it took almost 8% interest rates to finally do it. There is plenty of gas left in Canada at your current crazy rates. Will be a massacre in the end though.

#73 BPOE on 07.08.11 at 12:57 am

Thanks for providing another example how holding Vancouver LONG TERM provides fabulous returns. Diversification is for people who don’t know what they’re doing.
Add to another BPOE winner list GOLD. $1600 by Jan1 st 2012 and $2000 by Dec 31st 2012. As opposed to some others I give concrete dates to my predictions
30 Hoof – Hearted on 07.07.11 at 10:11 pm
It is an irrational ponzi scheme

True Story:

Our family had a property (Richmond..HAM central)bought in late 1960′s

Had to borrow from relatives…borrowing was very tough….paid approx $12,000.

In late 1970′s the value ballooned up to approx . $300,000 …..

We had a neighbour who had bought….and got caught in that 20% interest rate disaster in early 1980′s .

Within a few tanked to less than 1/2……approx. $140,000

In 16 years…(mid 1990′s) it rose to approx. $1 Million….

At peak….late 2000′s ….it would be worth approx. $2.4 million.

Pick your numbers and your poison…

#74 stage1dave on 07.08.11 at 12:57 am

Well, that was rude…I never trusted anyone who dangled participles, anyway. Apparently I’m more old fashioned than I thought…

I wonder if that’s the same realtor who got my sister into that 640K “semi-detached” (read: duplex) 2 storey that they stuck another 80K into over 2 years & is now advising them to “fire sale” it at 699K?!

Guess you must be hittin’ a nerve when blog attacks start getting personal & include linguistically incorrect name calling!

Anyway, that’s personal criticism up with which we should not put…

#75 Debtfree on 07.08.11 at 1:01 am

re pic the guy is an over achiever ? The woman is an under receiver ? Confused and a little disturbed by the pic. I for one can hardly wait for your next rag that you call a book. Please don’t put any pics in it . graphs yes pic no . or maybe it’s the old tune climb every mountain . oh that’s disturbing too. ok That’s it I’m not looking at it again.

#76 AB Bust on 07.08.11 at 1:04 am

Garth, I think the Cartel might be looking for u soon. quick tell them how 100 dollar oil will cause houses to triple.

#77 BPOE on 07.08.11 at 1:05 am

Please read Hoof Hearted post regarding Richmond. Bottom line shoveling all your money into a home in the RIGHT area is a great idea. Forced savings. Get Rich and take out the biggest home equity loan you can and enjoy life to the fullest. This is how OWNERS LIVE. Millions are being made by owners everyday while the renters are kicked to the curb. I’ve said a million times renters are shell shocked at how they have been financially destroyed by a UFD Unrecoverable Financial Decision. All they had to do was BUY and be set for life. It really was and is that simple. Folks NO RISK NO REWARD. A renter can NEVER fully enjoy their life. Has no idea of the JOY that ownership brings. PRIDE OF OWNERSHIP has never been so true. Be an owner not a renter. A renters life is a long trail of regret, anger and self doubt.
Scads of unthinking but house-horny Canadians have turned real estate into their one and only financial plan. It constitutes their forced savings. Their investment portfolio. Their tax strategy. Their retirement plan.

#78 Einsam Solo on 07.08.11 at 1:09 am

That Calgary realtor needs to take a “chill pill” and learn some manners.

#79 ken s on 07.08.11 at 1:14 am



#80 a prairie dawg on 07.08.11 at 1:17 am

The Realtards™ will eventually get their lesson. While they’re bragging now about their sales acumen during a bull market, they’ll be woefully prepared for their next sales job in a couple years.

“Would you like to up-size those fries?”

McRealtards! lol

#81 Not Wondering Anymore on 07.08.11 at 1:18 am

The bottom line is, as house values have risen, until you sell, it will be on paper only and you won’t see the profit.

#82 Bilbo Bloggins on 07.08.11 at 1:28 am

When one’s opinion and writings are irrelevent then no one cares.
However, to draw this much ire from realtors clearly means Garth is speaking the truth and is now a threat to their livelihoods.

#83 Thetruth on 07.08.11 at 1:35 am

Demand for rental units affected by illegal immigrants. 120,000 files in the GTA office but they’re only trying to find 20,000 to start.

By the the way, temp workers and students will not go back as there is no mechanism to see that they leave after their temporary visas expire.

Expect millions of illegals here in a few years, and thiswill lead to pressure on rents.

#84 whynot on 07.08.11 at 2:26 am

can I get her phone number?

#85 terces on 07.08.11 at 2:35 am

I’ve shared this chart before. People are befuddled with why Calgary is drifting sideways and down. If the population forecast in this chart is correct there are fewer people in the all important home buying 25 to 49 age category. And yet everywhere you look new houses are being constructed. Excess supply increases in the face of weakening demand = lower prices.

#86 Golden Stu on 07.08.11 at 2:37 am

Maybe the Calgary Realtors can explain this if the markets are so strong…

“Next week, the eight-bedroom waterfront mansion Hooper and his wife, Diane Bradshaw, built in an affluent part of Hudson will be sold through an absolute auction, where there are no minimum bids required.

Theoretically, it means that the five-acre estate once priced at $5.5 million in the Multiple Listing Service, could be sold for less than $1 million.”

#87 chris on 07.08.11 at 2:51 am

all this yalk about our Canadian r.e bubble has got me googling property prices around the world, especially in safe and prosperous countrys such as Germany and boy oh boy are prices here at home CRAZY NUT CRACKING NUTS!
Here ia another 19 units building in Berlin area for 1.58mil that will blow you away whem you look at this link ,,

Yep, they’re gonna keep this bubble going as there is a Whole Army of shisters here whos living depend on it.

#88 Lawn (South) Asian on 07.08.11 at 2:54 am

Seems Calgary realtor will need to return to grade school – to learn punctuation and sentence structure. Perhaps then he’ll have a chance to get hired by Tim’s. Typical “gung-ho”, me-first, ego-maniacal, consumerist Calgary smack-talk.

The fact that 101% of Calgarians were cursing you publicly the day you walked from H&F’s party should help explain why he’s so hostile… I used to have to listen to seat-neighbors on the C-train cursing “Toronto” and “damned Easterners” every morning on the way to work. This was AFTER the 2006 election. I couldn’t believe how full of “East hate” many of these clowns were. They evidently have never learned the finer points of being humble cow-pokes. Nope. Everyone’s a Wyatt Earp/John Dillinger hybrid out there.

#89 an honest man on 07.08.11 at 4:48 am

“Real estate is an intensely local commodity” vs. “House prices have shot ahead by 25% a year in BC”. I guess not so local when you wanna stretch a point, eh Garth? Your clever. Perhaps too clever by half? While I’ve no illusions that sober & intelligent thought that even remotely runs contrary to your viewpoint will in any way temper your thinking, I offer the following research in the futile hope that it might enlighten:

Not as entertaining as perverted pics, but it’s my understanding that there’s no shortage of them on this internet thing.

Central 1 makes its money writing mortgages to finance BC real estate. This is a study in conflict of interest. — Garth

#90 Q on 07.08.11 at 5:15 am

The current housing situation has many causes behind its’ magical levitation trick, seemingly without any attachment to economic reality or common sense. Frontline, you have the realtors, who take an intense online course (which I could get a monkey through in half the allotted time with zero effort) and immediately hold themselves out real estate “experts”. Most of these twits can’t spell economics and are solely driven by self interest and a single digit IQ that allows them to believe that real estate is in no way tied to the current economy, the sole asset that always increases in value….eventually. Next we have the Bankers, driven by their unrelenting greed and general lack of knowledge regarding economics and fiscal responsibility, allowing anyone with a pulse to leverage themselves into bankruptcy. But the Bankers don’t care, thanks to the taxpayer, the tiny minds in Ottawa and CMHC, they have zero exposure! Then we have the politicians, the real culprits, that inept gang of bottom feeding halfwits that we wouldn’t normally hire to mow our lawns, but instead elect them to run our finances and the entire country…into the ground. Let’s not forget the media, who will send whatever mixed, unresearched, sensational or irresponsible messages, that will sell their papers….while pleasing their advertisers and political puppies. They truly have become entertainers, as averse to reporters. How is the average Canadian lemming supposed to navigate sensibly through this greed driven quagmire of BS and self interest, when the sole lonely voice of reason and common sense available, is a daily blog called “greater fool”?

#91 HappyPlace54 on 07.08.11 at 5:46 am

Calgarians have no class – as proven by their treatment of Will & Kate for not putting on the sacred white hats.

#92 JOC on 07.08.11 at 5:50 am

Common sense says that this can’t go on for ever and it’s no suprise the realtor who made these comments against you comes from the same town as Harper one of this bubbles architects (Cowboy Way).
Keep up the great post Garth
Remember you can’t fix stupid!

#93 fancy_pants on 07.08.11 at 6:40 am

pic caption: Good Rental Opportunity

“Look here Aqua Velva man, cheap money means I jump in value without your wage or salary going up. Come on, I offer a lot of bang for your buck. It pays to have the right Real Estate in all the right places.”

#94 Blame Canada on 07.08.11 at 6:43 am

The Calgary HOUSESALESMAN(R) (we will call him Bob) forgets one thing, Bob is in sales and needs to sucker (sorry, convince) gullible people to buy from him.

Bob’s income depends on lying to you (sorry, convincing you) to buy now… what else do you think Bob will say?

“It’s always a good time FOR YOU to buy” for Bob’s pay check.

#95 Q on 07.08.11 at 6:45 am

Regarding Andews’ comment, I agree that the coming collapse (not merely a correction) will be brutal. I predicted 2 years ago, that by the end of June 2011, the Canadian housing market would collapse by 30% across the board and in areas like Vancouver, Muskoka, Toronto and especially Oakville, up to 60% (my batting average is 1000 for past 30 years) and if I’m off by 2 months….so what. I’m sure that the realtor “brain trust” will point out that it is now July and I’m obviously wrong….just remember that in September (when the dismal July figures have been digested fully and even the average lemming has figured out they’ve been suckered) while all the overpaid “experts come rushing in after the fact, to announce a correction may happen. The longer the lunacy continues, the harder and longer the collapse. Canadian memories are short, ie; Vancouver 1982 (-55%), Toronto 1989 (-40 to -50%), etc. and like it or not we are inextricably tied to the US economy (they represent 54% of our GDP) and to use a rather crass analogy..”when they fart, we merely apologize”. The lemmings have come to behave like the example set by our governments….living far beyond their means in an irresponsible, unaccountable (at present), euphoric bubble, that will burst loudly. Just keep two harsh facts in mind, the market erodes from the bottom up and there comes a time in the life of all debts, when they become due and payable. The longer the ride, the higher the cost……

#96 Jody on 07.08.11 at 7:09 am

That picture, something about it, I wonder who wears the pants in that relationship. Shouldn’t she have a whip?

Regarding the Calgary realturd, don’t you people know Calgary is a world class city? It ranks right up there with London, New York, Edinburgh, LA, Seattle, Boston, Miami, Sydney, Wellington, Paris, Madrid, Berlin, Dublin, San Francisco, Prague………..

Everybody wants to live here, it’s just so hip and cool. Half a million for a box of plywood on the bald ass prairie is soooo worth it. Every house has the same color scheme, the same furniture from the Brick and Leons, the same paintings on the wall from, it’s a city of Stepford families.

“What are you doing on the weekend?”
“I’m mowing the lawn.”
“Oh for the love of Christ!”

We have the Stampede, oh, and we hosted the Olympics in 1988. We’re world class. We don’t even have a mass transit line to the airport but we are world class. We can’t keep any alternative music spots open because we’re world class. We ask street artists to get a liscence (Hahahaha! Oh good God, and how is that promoting spontanious action?). We have no food cart culture, and I’m sorry but any city that does not allow the people who live there to eat from people hawking food on the street isn’t a real city, it’s a rule based commie hole full of drones. Downtown is a ghost town after 5pm because we’re world class. The problem is Calgary still consists mostly of people who we’re born here, went to school here, got married here, had babies here, etc. You’ll have to forgive us, the gene pool is gettin’ a bit shallow round these parts.

#97 househornyhousewife on 07.08.11 at 7:13 am

The bigger issue is what happens to a society when most people shun diversification, flock to one thing, gamble on a common outcome, and assume tomorrow repeats today.


I think the answer is quite simple. Exactly what has happened south of the border. I have been wondering for the last 5-10 years how so many people can be driving around in expensive cars and how so many of them have magazine perfect kitchens and bathrooms. Debt is something that is easy to mismanage in our times and unfortunately we lack the self discipline and self restraint that it takes to manage debt wisely.

The US has also recently gone through exactly the same scenario with dire consequences as we all know. As a result, they have begun to espouse the good old fashioned values that produced expressions like “putting something away for a rainy day” and “a penny saved is a penny earned”. Many of them will be forced to work well into their seventies as a result of their irresponsible behaviour but “them’s the breaks”.

This is exactly what will happen in our society Garth. The real estate market is only a symptom of a much bigger problem and until everything comes crashing down around us, we will keep spending with abandon and put off the inevitable until later.

Our situation is just the crest of an economic wave and what goes up must come down, without question. When we crash, we will begin to behave like our ancestors did after the great depression. Then when our economy recovers and we are again back on top, our children will have forgotten what we went through and think they are invincible (just like we do now) and history will repeat itself. It’s just one big historical joke and as they say, “Anyone who does not heed history is destined to repeat it” (or something like that .. I am too young to remember … ).


#98 UVZ on 07.08.11 at 7:43 am

#66 Andrew

[Anyone who thinks the RE market, on a national basis, is going to fall by ONLY 33 percent, is out of their god damned mind … I just wish more people had the brains and balls to call a spade a spade and see this clusterf*ck for what it really is.]

Like mainstream bank economists, blog ‘forecasters’ try to remain civil and conservative in their estimates.

#99 Jason Baxevanidis on 07.08.11 at 7:43 am

Wow – how can’t you get fired up with eloquent
Emails like that, Garth?

I do have to agree with one thing the keyboard warrior says…your predictions have not come to be realized. I guess we underestimated the power of cheap money and gullibility of the average canadian.

I am bearish but fatigued.

Brushing up on your reading skills might help. I said there is no national housing market, so conditions do not change simultaneously everywhere. My predictions are doing quite nicely in the Okanagan, Fraser Valley, most of Ontario and other markets. Your turn is coming. — Garth

#100 Ron Burgundy on 07.08.11 at 7:44 am

Seems a little contradicting to post a link to a G&M (or shall I say MSM) story from the stiffs at Royal Lepage with all the criticizing of these same individuals whom are blasted when they report on positive real estate results.

Garth man, I dont know what to believe anymore.

I don’t filter news. — Garth

#101 TurnerNation on 07.08.11 at 7:50 am

Ouch, official (doctored) USA numbers admit at least 9% unemployment rate today. How many uncounted people have given up hope or are underemployed (min wage)?

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The U.S. economy added jobs at a slower pace in June than in May, suggesting that the sudden slowdown in the economy might be longer-lasting and more severe than feared. Nonfarm payrolls rose by only 18,000 in June, well below the 125,000 gain expected by economists surveyed by MarketWatch. Job gains in May were revised down to 25,000 in May from the initial estimate of 54,000. Employment rose by an average of 215,000 per month from February through April but now has only averaged 22,000 over the past two months. The unemployment rate ticked higher to 9.2% in June from 9.1% in the previous month. This is the highest level since December. Economists had expected the unemployment rate to remain steady

#102 Willa on 07.08.11 at 8:04 am

When the morons fight back, then you know you’re onto something. The more insulting and cocksure they are, the more they’re defending themselves from a real attack.

You’re touching a nerve, and they’re trying to get away.

Good one.

#103 smoking man on 07.08.11 at 8:09 am

Last week I said investors where nuts unloading bonds for equities well the job numbers just came out. USA ouch. Down baby. Canada ZZZZZ nothing special.
Translation. Rates are going nowhere. Fixed rate rates are going to go back down.
Sucks to be a swap trader today thinking you can get away to the cottage early today

That def dumb and blind kid sure playes meen pinball

#104 Randis on 07.08.11 at 8:14 am

Its funny to imagine how people would prefer to pay interest to big banks, dump cash into renovation just to maintain their investment’s value and maintain their nest egg/ net worth … Even better, take out big equity loan and live on it, hence more interest to the banks.

Some people who post on this blog are simply nuts … their level of intelligence simply render me speechless … wow

#105 Jsan on 07.08.11 at 8:37 am

“#39 Habbit on 07.07.11 at 10:39 pm

Mr Calgary realtor. My sister could have sold in Cow Town at the peak of the latest frenzy when there were bidding wars. I suggested she sell and cash out and wait for the next buying opportunity. She waited until last fall and sold for 100k lower.”


A friend of mine here in Alberta bought his house around a year and a half ago. The seller had listed the house for the typical bubble price. My friend looked at it and said, there is no way he would pay that much and than offered the seller 25% less than asking price. The seller laughed and told him to take a hike. 6 months and many price drops later, the seller contacted my friend and asked if he was still interested in buying at his original 25% lower offer. My friend bought the house and he admits he still paid probably 25% too much.

The moral of the story is fantasy of a bubble market quickly turns to the reality of a post bubble crash market. Home owners who got used to the fact that selling a house during a housing frenzy which can be so effortless quickly realize that selling a house during a market slowdown or crash can be next to impossible.

#106 fancy_pants on 07.08.11 at 8:41 am

# 93…continued

man’s retort:

“Why don’t I remove your photo-shop head for the true ugly beast you are and pay you nothing. Your Real Estate isn’t worth a damn, Miss Vancouver. You are an overpriced commodity. Get your overpriced asset out of here.”

#107 Toon Town Boomer on 07.08.11 at 8:47 am

All those broke homeowners would have no cash left to buy your rags you call books…

This statement is revealing though as he acknowledges that buyers are strapped for cash once they buy an over valued property. Seems to me Garth has been warning folks about this. Thanks for enlightinging us & reaffirming Garth’s point.

#108 JohnnyBGood on 07.08.11 at 8:48 am

#104 Randis

I’m planning to finish my basement and then do some minor renovations to the main floor of my home. This has nothing to do with ‘investment’. It’s about creating a more comfortable, more useful, and more enjoyable home for my family. I am not counting on my home as a ‘nest egg’. It’s a place to live. If it retains its inflation-adjusted value over time, bonus.

#109 endianness on 07.08.11 at 8:49 am

[quote]How can I not be inspired by words like that?[/quote]

Indeed, you do touch a nerve, Garth. Still my suspicions – the inspirations of today’s post is Rabelais, not some silly character.

Readers, friends, if you turn these pages
Put your prejudice aside,
For, really, there’s nothing here that’s outrageous,
Nothing sick, or bad — or contagious.
Not that I sit here glowing with pride
For my book: all you’ll find is laughter:
That’s all the glory my heart is after,
Seeing how sorrow eats you, defeats you.
I’d rather write about laughing than crying,
For laughter makes men human, and courageous.

#110 Gerardo on 07.08.11 at 8:55 am

Just stubbled on the following great letter that explains why the US economy has difficulties recovering.

The main reason is the destructions of the US middle wealth by the collapse of the housing bubble. If you think it is bad in the US, such a collapse in Canada could be a greater disaster for many reasons:

1) In Canada we have rich social programs. Many of these people losing their homes to real estate collapse will be elligible for these social programs (wellfare, social housing, free medication, …). Their will flock into these social programs and explode our provincial and federal deficits. Remember the explosion of these deficits as people flocked to EI and other programs in 2008-2009.

2) the government will be on the hook with CMHC insurance (1 trillion $). Another potential source of deficit explosion.

Fellow Canadians, cross our fingers, pray and hope that oil and commodidy prices do not collapse at the same time.

#111 allister on 07.08.11 at 9:05 am

Look at the smile on the guy in the pix – I hope he survives.

#112 Aussie Roy on 07.08.11 at 9:11 am

Official RBA rates are 4.75%

ARM rate (90% of all mortgages) is 7.8ish.

Why has the Australian market slowed down?.

Prices are just too high.
Interest rates – increased mortgage cost.
Ending of Govt FHOS. (First home buyers bribe).
Rising cost of living.
Slowing demand from speculators as prices melt.
Slowing demand from owner occupiers, because as prices fall they dont feel the urgency to buy.
Some negative M$M stories from “look out there may be a 40% drop” to the bulls calling for a 5-10% fall, before prices of course, go to the moon in 2012.

Cost of renting is half the price to buy in many cities and with the RBA telling us interest rates will rise again soon, many are choosing to rent and WAIT.
80% of the private mortgage brokers have now gone only leaving the banks, demand for debt is falling.
The MYTH of a housing shortage is slowing being washed away with high levels of inventory for sale and in some areas more rental properties being offered.

Its been kind of fun to watch as many here in Australia come to terms with falling house prices and terms like prices versus annual incomes, rental return and house price deflation.

However there is still a strong feeling among the average Joe that all this is just a short lived phase due to the RBA pushing up rates too quickly. They think that prices will continue their well above average appreciation as soon as next year.

Yes, denial is still wide spread even with the growing list of negatives in the industry.

IMHO the next surprise will be job losses in construction, retail, tourism and parts of the financial sector.

#113 Aussie Roy on 07.08.11 at 9:17 am

For those interested in, income to price ratios the link below contains median salaries per Australian city.

Interested in salaries for other countries then use the change country tab at top of page.


#114 Mr. Reality on 07.08.11 at 9:37 am

Pretty soon realtors will be pan handling on the street. They deserve it. You can only cash in on people’s emotions for so long………

Mr. R.

#115 GregW, Oakville on 07.08.11 at 9:39 am

Hi Garth, Were is your drinking water coming from??

We have just four days left to let them know what we think of the plan to dig a mega-quarry and in the process destroy thousands of acres of prime Ontario farmland and damage the headwaters of five major river systems.

The mega-quarry has been proposed in Melancthon Township on Highway 124 just north of Shelburne. The Highland Companies (owned by a Boston hedge fund) has filed an application for a 2,400-acre aggregate mine, which would make it the largest quarry in Ontario and the second largest in North America. This precious land is the “rooftop of Ontario” running along the border of the Niagara Escarpment. For many months, the Council of Canadians has been working with local groups to stop this open pit mine because of the extraordinary impacts it will have on neighbouring communities, watersheds, Ontario’s food supply and the drinking water of more than one million people.

Join the fight to protect this precious land and water! ACT NOW to have your voice heard – THE DEADLINE is midnight on Sunday July 10th.

Go here before the end of the day on Sunday July 10th (midnight) to make your comment on the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry (011-2864).

Every comment counts! You can write as much or as little as you like, but please voice your objection to the mega-quarry.


Support our allies: We have been working with the North Dufferin Agricultural & Community Taskforce (NDACT) and the Citizen’s Alliance for a Sustainable Environment (CAUSE) and we ask you to consider supporting them as well. Please visit their websites: and

If you have any questions about the comment process or the quarry proposal, contact Mark Calzavara, Ontario Regional Organizer for the Council of Canadians, at [email protected] or 1-800-208-7156.

Thank you! Your renewed attention and support will once again make an important difference in this campaign.

#116 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 9:42 am

#89 an honest man

“I offer the following research in the futile hope that it might enlighten”

Well I read that report honest guy and I am not sold. What they are saying in effect is that if we just include more municipalities the statistical brew then average and median prices will decline for the record.

The secret to success is to just make the Metro Vancouver area bigger and “Voila”, it’s not so expensive after all. All you need to do is lower average costs by including Abbotsford and Mission.

If people would just agree to massage the numbers a bit the problem might go away. Hey, why not include Hope to Pemberton. Shoot, Vancouver is dirt cheap then isn’t it? Better yet, include Blaine and chunks of Washington state for fun and watch the numbers drop. It’s a peach.

See, I can be sarcastic.

#117 Omni on 07.08.11 at 9:45 am

BPOE …. Pride of ownership? Ownership, my friend, is over rated. Freedom, is priceless. Sadly you have been brain washed for years, and if you are over 40, I dont suspect you can be helped. Thats okay though, we soooo need people like you.

#118 Daisy Mae on 07.08.11 at 10:06 am

“Not a day passes I don’t get a load of emails like this one (from a prominent realtor in Calgary)”

Well, wasn’t THAT little tirade mature and so very professional? This is one very angry and worried realtor…

#119 disciple on 07.08.11 at 10:11 am

#40 nonplused…The visible royalty is merely the PR wing of your real rulers. Start your journey to wisdom by studying the “Black Nobility”, and the famous pseudonym, Columbus.

#38 InvFiend…Warren Buffet’s father was a Congressman. His success largely depended on his political connections and indirectly from State violence. Ditto for Gates and others. These people live in a world you would never understand. Some among them have their limbs chopped off and sewn back on just for fun. They are so removed from your reality it’s difficult to comprehend. It’s foolish to worship such idols.

#56 Hoofy…That Sam Adams quote was awesome. Makes me want to raise a pint. Cheers!

#66 Andrew…I also believe 80% correction minimum. Of course, there will be variations across localities, but the bubble is so ridiculous. Incidentally, it would surprise many that the largest organism on earth is actually a humungous fungus covering 38 acres.

#90…Q…banks and governments are not as clueless as you think. This crisis like all others is obviously engineered. There is a method to the madness, and it is precisely that…madness. The goal is mind-control, the very etymological definition of “govern” “ment”.

#120 Sphinx on 07.08.11 at 10:17 am

“How the bubble destroyed the middle class” in the US

#121 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 10:25 am

When someone finally does a Wiki on the word “Realturd” (also Realtard) then we will be one step closer to having the term officially sanctioned. It might then enter the lexicon and come into common use.

What the hell, it was invented by someone on this site. Might as well work to popularize it. Maybe Mirian Webster will add it to the 2012 dictionary…..

#122 calgarygirl on 07.08.11 at 10:31 am

Long time no speak, Garth! I disagree with Mr Nice Realtor. My neighbor bought at the peek for $550,000, sold two months ago for a little over $400,000 in NW Calgary. I guess that is what happens when life and divorce occurs….My math is bad, how much of loss is that??

And I do not live in a shabby neighborhood..

#123 Kevin in Winnipeg on 07.08.11 at 10:48 am

June 2011 Winnipeg Sales –

“The average residential-detached sales price in June of $258,275 was up 3% over the same month last year while the average condominium price of $201,642 increased 7% over June 2010.”

#124 AG Sage on 07.08.11 at 10:56 am

Does every Prominent Realtor cut his teeth by drunk dialing mailing Garth?

#125 BrianT on 07.08.11 at 11:12 am

101Turn-The credible number is about 21% at this time. In fact, even the doctored report lists numbers far higher than this headline number quoted by the MSM of 9.2%.

#126 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 11:19 am

#115 mouthagape on 07.08.11 at 9:23 am

So let’s examine exactly what Royal LePage said, rather than just skimming the headline. The Realtor group says home prices by the end of 2011 will be 7.7 per cent higher than they were at the end of 2010, on average. So a 7.7% YoY increase in real estate prices is a correction?

It is a correction. How is that?

Average national first quarter home price increases for major markets rose 3.5% which would result in a 14% national price increase if the trend continued.

Royal Lepage is estimating half that number which represents a significant slowing of price growth and the beginning of a corrective phase.

In absolute terms prices will actually have gone up for the year and this is consistent with my own prediction for 2011. The number suggests a significant slowing of price appreciation though as the year progresses.

Even 7.7% though is more than double the rate of GDP growth and it is running far ahead of income growth too. It is still too high but the reckoning is ahead.

I actually appreciate that Phil Soper is trying to talk down the market a little at this point. He has joined in the chorus of voices warning of trouble ahead. Hopefully the message will start to sink in and blow the froth off some of the overheated markets.

Here is the breakdown of quarterly numbers:

#127 panopticon singularity on 07.08.11 at 11:24 am

real estate goes up forever, until you decide to sell, then realize you’re underwater, so you jump in your leased BMW and drive to the food bank to get supper…

meanwhile i eat tenderloin every night of the week lol…

#128 Brad in Cowtown on 07.08.11 at 11:27 am

I am actually starting to have a little sympathy for Calgary realtors who see doom and gloom predictions month after month, most of them completely wrong, or at the very least… many years too early.

I see only one potential problem with the Calgary residential real estate market – the underlying debt.

And that only becomes a real problem if people run into significant difficulties servicing that debt. The doomers will point to the fact that mortgage defaults are rising in Alberta. True. But the sheer number of mortgages in Alberta has also risen. Of course defaults will rise too. Regardless, either way, no one can say with certainty Alberta has “too many” people defaulting on their mortgage payments.

How about the positives…
Employment levels strong in Calgary? Yes
Economy is strong and diversed here? Yes
Affordability low and within historical ranges? Yes
Net Migration rising? Yes
Credit still cheap? Yes
Most importantly… what is the overall sentiment about home ownership in Calgary vs. renting? The majority of people overwhelmingly still say owning a home is a good investment. Will they still feel that way in 10 years? Who knows.

The point is… Perceptions like that take a long time to change. So Calgary home prices will continue to go sideways – worst case scenario. The ratios can play catch up in the meantime.

Vancouver and Toronto may not experience a “soft landing” like that (because their fundamental ratios deviated way more than Calgary). But calling for a crash a certainty (in ANY market) only serves to strip away even more of the credibility the doomers were already lacking.

#129 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 11:30 am

My tomatoes are going gangbusters lately. Great crop. Hooray.

(Just did my first Twitter. Next one is for Smoking Man)

#130 TS on 07.08.11 at 11:34 am

Fact is, no national housing market exists.

It is all about supply and demand.
Unfortunately we do have an agency called CMHC that is national which contributed greatly to the wealth affect. It helped create nothing more than an illusion for many debt slaves. It was internal economy hocus pocus. A growing economy based on debt is bound to stall and than revert. Every fundamental belief and rule was modified by those involved to create the illusion. Canada cannot be globally competitive with high housing values. These high home values have been debt driven for the most part. Some made off like bandits for now. We are following the States in some respects we just are years behind from feeling the impact thanks to government, institutional and personal debt. If people here do not believe the other guys debt is his problem you going to find out that debt amassed is a problem for all.
Those that took debt on just helped buffered the affect on those that lived within there means.
I sure wish a house would have stayed a the basic shelter level. A slow downhill spiral from here until the States and the world gets into a more evenly distributed (whatever that is) recovery. As a society letting greed and envy run the ship does not end well for all. You would think the U.S. and past experiances (early 80’s and 90’s in Canada) would of taught us that but it appears that we like to repeat things as a society. You dragged along whether you like it or not. I suspect pension entitlements are going to be under attack big time. Those dam instincts don’t ya just love them.
They make life so interesting and sometimes painful….

#131 Clay on 07.08.11 at 11:37 am

Garth gets laughed at and belittled. Hmmm here is another man who was laughed at after an hour talk where he explains in perfect precise English why the housing market in the US is unsustainable, why it occurred, and why a lot of the relators and mortgage brokers in Vegas, Neveada, and Arizona will be out of work. Watch Peter Schiff’s Mortgage Banker Speech 2006 and ask yourself, hmmmm do I see any similarities in our economy? The best part is the guys who laughed at him near the end with a smug demeanor. They all are screwed finically.

#132 Daisy Mae on 07.08.11 at 11:38 am

“Warren Buffett was interviewed on CNBC this morning. His comments were upbeat and optimistic. Everyone should read these comments.

What’s ‘upbeat’ about this? Buffett is babbling…not impressed.

#133 BrianT on 07.08.11 at 11:44 am

Funny headline (Goldman got 15 billion and all I got was this T shirt) but look-the US guv gives a hedge fund 15 billion (in secret) at an interest rate of .01% (basically 0%) to play with (and a bailout follows if somehow they even screw up this sweet deal). This is supposed to help investor confidence-how does that work exactly

#134 BrianT on 07.08.11 at 11:48 am

121Disc-When you hear Buffett spew his endless baloney he often attempts to imply he was born in a one room cabin-he forgets to mention the congressman daddy part.

#135 disciple on 07.08.11 at 12:09 pm

For those of you not able to see the big picture, please allow to me help you…for free!

This great nation, this constitutional monarchy, run by “chartered” establishment circles over the native free range domestic human livestock, i.e., Canada…

…is one of a handful of underdeveloped, resource-rich countries on the planet, the others being Australia, Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, South Africa, Nigeria, Angola, Ghana, and parts of the old Soviet Republic to some extent.

So, here’s the overall plan being worked out to perfection as I type: bring the local citizens to their knees financially, while slowly dividing and conquering them politically through stupid debate over nothing, also while incrementally gaining full control over their resources to sell them to the emerging markets.

Like I’ve stated previously, Canada is “owned” 80% by foreign trans-nationals, including its tar sands, lumber, and BC mining. Western Canada is keeping this country afloat and the inflated housing market is a symptom of that. That’s why what happens in China is a very big deal for our collective wealth.

Job almost complete. Situation is very grim. But I remain optimistic that a new beginning for my fellow Canadians will dawn once the dust settles. We can be an example for the rest of the world on how to clean up our own houses and mind our own business globally. We can still turn the tables.

Will the half million visiting this blog care what disciple has to say? I hope so. Through new technologies, manufacturing will return (real wealth), the financial parasite class will retreat back into the shadows, and we will, in time prosper.

Ordo ad chao, ordo ab chao.

#136 Devore on 07.08.11 at 12:12 pm

#115 mouthagape

So a 7.7% YoY increase in real estate prices is a correction?

House market ‘hits the top’ says LePage.

Do you know what a top is?

#137 Mr. Plow on 07.08.11 at 12:29 pm

#61 DML

Thanks for that. That was too funny!

#138 rory on 07.08.11 at 12:31 pm

FYI reading …

30 Reasons To Get Out Of Real Estate And Into REAL Assets

#139 Mr. Plow on 07.08.11 at 12:37 pm

#66 Andrew

Why 99% correction? Why not go out on a limb and make your prediction really crack? Go the full 100%. Predict that people will literally give their homes away like Detroit.

Post again, make it official.

#140 Hoof - Hearted on 07.08.11 at 12:37 pm


That scenario simply played out over 40 years.
That was then…this is now.

You make your profit the day you buy the land.

Now ? Fuggedaboudit

Within a block of where I live I noticed some interesting purchases.

Purchase (1)

2 side by side homes….
Very quiet….rarely saw anyone around.

(went for $ 2.4 Million)
lived in…then slowly look deserted
BUSTED major grow -opp

A few years ago
Vancouver…west side.
Buddy told me to check out this abandoned house house….
BUSTED grow-op……the funny thing was, the registered owner lived 2 doors over.

Point is….so much dirty laundered money…..

BC, since 1986 has been a bubble inflated by offshore money.

anyway……Go ahead and listen to BPOE..REAL profit was made long ago….sales are flatter than an Asian chest.

#141 Mr. Plow on 07.08.11 at 12:42 pm

#100 Ron Burgundy

Exactly a comment I had to poster Alex.

You can’t blast the MSM for being biased and unethical in their reporting when their message contradicts yours, but then use them as a source when their message fits yours.

Which stance are you taking when it comes to the reporting of the MSM? For or Against?

#142 Mr. Plow on 07.08.11 at 12:45 pm

#94 Blame Canada

Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t realtors make money when people buy or sell?

#143 Mr. Plow on 07.08.11 at 12:48 pm

#91 HappyPlace54

I agree with you there.

Yes let’s make a capital case about a stupid hat. For all they know, maybe they thought it would be more embarrassing to wear a hat improperly that they likely have never seen and potentially have it blow away on the tarmac and have some handler chase after it and have it come back beaten and filthy.

Or play it safe, and respectfully hand it to someone so you can wear it later.

#144 Hoof - Hearted on 07.08.11 at 12:57 pm

#121 disciple

Thanks…that’s why I invented the Internt lol

Amazing the tangents one can go on simply by a focus.

Samuel Adams quote ….if one delves into history you see some much concern at the time…like VanHelsing versus Dracula…(Dracula being the banking interests lead by Rothschilds).

The enemy wasn’t armed army per se , it was rapacious British bankers.

Woodrow Wilson should go down as the ensalver of US, a PhD who was in waaaaaay over his head in politics….hence perfect puppett for black hands.

It was under Wilson’s watch and a fraudulent/rigged voting scam that allowed the Federal Reserve. (ie over Christmas…many politicians were away and told nothing would happen.

Taft was Wilson’s predecessor…but there seemed to be some slimey politics that stopped Taft from a 2nd term, as Taft seemed like a Progressive the US needed at the time.

A premise could be made that once Fed Reserve was created…this was the seed for WW1…and WWII (and some say they were the same war.)

The Federal reserve was needed in the US so that a war could be funded so US and Britain could gang up on Germany.

aka Their is no Coincidence the Fed Reserve created at the time of start World War I

#145 Hoof - Hearted on 07.08.11 at 12:59 pm

Warren Buffet = worn out buffoon.

Doesn’t need to lure in more greater fools

He had his day

#146 TheFirstRick on 07.08.11 at 1:02 pm

#92 JOC on 07.08.11 at 5:50 am

” ……. comes from the same town as Harper one of this bubbles architects (Cowboy Way)…….”


Harper is from Toronto, born and raised. I know this is painful for Albertans, but ‘dems da facts.

#147 pablo on 07.08.11 at 1:07 pm

I too dream of one day becoming a barista!
Whadaboutu Garth, whatcha gonna do when u grow up?

#148 biil c on 07.08.11 at 1:14 pm

Garth would you be interested in being on Hot Property on CP24 Toronto. This show is making be physically sick.
I suggest to all to email [email protected] and demand to see someone else besides real estate agents, mortgage brokers and sales people. Come on people email Anne at hot properties and lets get garth on there.

#149 Sam1 on 07.08.11 at 1:16 pm

As a newbie to Canada from the burst bubble of the UK, I could not get over just how many realtors (dodgy salesmen) you guys have.

I can recognize quiet clearly the real estate over here is heading the same way I experienced in the UK 6 months ago when I eventually sold my house $80K less that it was back in 2008.

I take what salesman says with a pinch of salt – they talk crap. After all what qualifications do you need to be a realtor – talk the talk, walk the walk – no knowledge of economics, just how collect huge sums of commision whilst houses sell themselves!

Sell your own home and save a fortune!

Keep up the good work Garth you will be proven right in the not to distant future!

#150 Lostinthewilderness on 07.08.11 at 1:45 pm

Frustrated Realtors, stock brokers, used car salesmen, lawyers,politicians, news media hacks……..
The whole economy rests always on a very thin edge kept in place by people who believe the media hype and BS generated by the “experts”. People generally aren’t that smart.
Think about it?
1. Stand in line to buy 400k condos on spec with a 10 minute buying decision.
2. Buying more muscle cars and trucks with gas at $5.00 Cdn + per gallon ( look at current sales figures)
3. Paying 2 mil $ plus for a shack in Vancouver and Toronto or 450K for a 500 sq ft squirrel cage condo.
4. Believing their net worth is improving without looking at the collusion of planned inflation imposed by governments and banks.
5. Believe Al Gore and David Suzuki are correct that we all should live in condo squirrel cages and ride bikes when they each have carbon footprints larger than some towns or small cities ( and very large bank accounts from selling green BS)
6. Believe a collapse in Real Estate prices won’t happen here as everyone wants to live here. Even Regina Saskatchewan.
7. Trust that a realtor’s goal is in your best interest! (or a mutual fund salesman)
8. Trust , lawyers don’t prolong the agony and enlarge the fees by fighting each other rather than mediating a prompt and equitable settlement.
9. Believe smoking two packs a day won’t hurt you.A Big Mac, fries and a milkshake is a balanced meal.
10. The state cares about your needs and increases taxes only to help you.
Take the test. Give yourself 10 points for any one of the above you have accepted as normal. Add them up. Out of 100%, that’s your personal percentage of “being screwed” (If you live in Vancouver or Toronto add another 10 points)
There is no escape folks. We’re “screwed”

#151 JRL on 07.08.11 at 1:45 pm

The “it could never happen here” people aren’t even worth my time to read their inane comments. They have short memories or…(more likely) they are kids all excited because they’re making some money. I have friends that lost their houses in ’82, they lost everything, every penny they had in their house – gone. The banks were merciless, they DO NOT CARE about you, me or anyone, no matter how much they smile and shake your hand like a friend and trusted adviser when you give them your money. I did not lose my house thanks to dumb luck, the only thing that saved me. Oh, the sun never sets on Canadian RE, eh? Sure, sure, and for our next fairy tale…

#152 betamax on 07.08.11 at 1:52 pm

I’ve noticed a common fallacy parroted by house pumpers here and elsewhere:

“Despite bearish predictions, prices have continued to rise, therefore prices are never going to fall.”

I heard it over and over again in the US, right up until the bottom fell out of the housing market. It’s the same myopic mantra bleated in every bubble. Now I’m hearing it again and again about Canadian RE.

The fact that high appreciation divorced from fundamentals continues further is never evidence that there will be no correction. Rather, it implies the opposite: a correction is more likely and the inevitable price drops will be even more severe when they happen.

The fact that a correction is delayed by a few years means nothing when involving illiquid leveraged assets that most buyers take decades to pay off.

I don’t know if the correction is coming this year, next year, or sometime after that. But it’s coming and it’s going to be long, deep and devastating. Buckle up.

#153 Daisy Mae on 07.08.11 at 1:52 pm

CAPITAL NEWS, Our View (Editors) – July 7, 2011

“We’ve heard of the politics of fear, but Premier Christy Clark is quickly defining the politics of the fearful….The premier’s decision to avoid debating Dix (NDP leader) follows her avoidance of speaking to the HST in the legislature when she invoked closure when it was her turn to speak to the issue…if Clark truly believes the HST is good for BC and crucial to the future of this province’s economy, wouldn’t she be salivating at the opportunity to discredit HST opponents like Dix….?”

I’ve marked my ballet, placed it in Envelope #1, and put #1 into Envelope #2, and put #2 into Envelope #3, post paid by the taxpayers…

#154 betamax on 07.08.11 at 2:00 pm

#131 Brad in Cowtown: “I am actually starting to have a little sympathy for Calgary realtors”

No doubt. You’re drinking the same kool-aid.

#155 disciple on 07.08.11 at 2:19 pm

Former grow-ops seem to appearing everywhere. Banks are into laundering drug money big time. Is this the headwaters of the raging river of price inflation? There must be a connection here somewhere, dammit.

I know the Nashville music industry is a front for illegal drug smuggling by the CIA.

Calgary grow-ops:

#156 ottawan on 07.08.11 at 2:26 pm

Single family homes in my area are definitely NOT rising. One lowered its price by $40,000 in order to sell. I have copied my information here from the mls listings, Original price: $389,900, then 374,000 then $349,000
Borden Frm/Stewart Frm/Carleton Hts/Parkwd Hill
43.75 (frontage) X 118.11 (depth) Imperial lot
2 Coach House Ga, Ottawa,
to$374,900 Lowered July 4 to 349,000. This is how it is recorded in my word document. It is an 80’s house, and looks in good shape. It is STARTING. New listings are very high as nobody realizes the problems in selling. If you watch MLS in this Ottawa area, it has been dead since March. Hold on Garth, you will be shown to be correct!

#157 Devore on 07.08.11 at 2:28 pm

#144 Mr. Plow

You can’t blast the MSM for being biased and unethical in their reporting when their message contradicts yours, but then use them as a source when their message fits yours.

They are biased. They are self-serving, in that their responsibility is to their corporate masters and advertisers.

The point is to show that public sentiment is about to change, since most people believe the things “experts” tell them, especially on TV. MSM and vested business are now increasingly negative on real estate, instead of always slapping rosy spin on whatever the best number pairs are.

This is quite the shift. Of course media are biased. Look past it. Read between the lines.

#158 Devore on 07.08.11 at 2:31 pm

Erro, posted too early.

Which stance are you taking when it comes to the reporting of the MSM? For or Against?

I other words, don’t take news media at face value, regardless of whether their message agrees with your views or not. “For or Against” sounds an awful lot like “with us or against us”, the kind of polarization and false dichotomy that does no one any good, except those peddling it.

#159 Bobby on 07.08.11 at 2:31 pm

Let’s remember that a realtor only gets paid if a sale is made. That is the reality of commissioned sales. So, they have a vested interest in ensuring the market stays active. And it only remain active if there is the perception that prices will continue to rise.
A perfect example is the use of average vs median price statistics. It only takes a few high end sales to skew the average price upwards when in fact the median sale price is trending down. That is why real estate boards will quote average rather than median prices in this market here in Victoria anyways.
There are a lot of properties for sale with many sitting on the market forever. I don’t need a realtor to give me a market assessment. Just take a look around.

#160 Hoof - Hearted on 07.08.11 at 2:35 pm


What goes around comes around..the solution arises from the Greek Phoenix ?

Greek Film Shows Way Out of Debt Bind

“Debtocracy” a 75-minute documentary made for $15K has inflamed popular resistance in Greece by casting the debt crisis in a new light.

Seen on the Internet by over a million Greeks, the film convincingly argues that the debt is a neo-liberal (“Economic Hitman”) scam and there are strong precedents for repudiating it.

The brainchild of Costas Lapavitsas, an economist and professor at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, the film introduces the concept of “odious debt” which was used in 2003 by the United States to renounce Saddam Hussein’s $120 B debt to Russia and France.

Defined by Russian economist Alexander Sacks in the 1920’s, “odious debt” is incurred by a despotic power, “not for the needs or in the interest of the State, but to strengthen its despotic regime, to repress the population that fights against it, etc., this debt is odious for the population of all the State.”

He went on. “This debt is not an obligation for the nation; it is a regime’s debt.” Sack called it “a personal debt of the power that has incurred it.” When this power falls, that debt “consequently . . . falls with the fall of this power.”

Sack also considered a debt odious when, “the loans incurred by members of the government or by persons or groups associated with the government to serve interests manifestly personal – interests that are unrelated to the interests of the State.” A bribe is an example of a manifestly personal interest.

Now, in order for a debt to be deemed “odious,” Sack said that the lender must also be aware that the loan is “contrary to the interests of the nation.”

In this case, Professor Sack said, “the creditors have committed a hostile act” against the people. They can’t therefore expect that a nation freed from a despotic power will assume the ‘odious’ debts, which he called “personal debts of that power.”


The Illuminati banker – IMF method of absorbing the world’s wealth is well documented. They bribe corrupt regimes to incur huge debts for costly boondoggles built by companies owned by the same bankers. Then the bankers make their targets repay these “loans” (created out of thin air) by accepting severe “austerity” programs and privatizing national enterprises and resources.

At first we thought this predatory behavior was reserved for the Third World, but now it’s clear Europe and America are also in their cross-hairs.

Rafael Correa, the President of Equador didn’t think the majority of his government’s income should be used to service the national debt. He ordered an “audit committee” to investigate how this debt was incurred and discovered that 70% of it was due to the corruption of prior regimes.

He renounced that debt. Equador’s bonds fell to 20 cents on the dollar. His government secretly bought it back and saved seven billion dollars in interest.

Interestingly, many civil servants at the Ministry of Finance refused to cooperate with the audit committee. This emphasizes that there is always a class which is in cahoots with the bankers and profits at the expense of the people.


The banker-owned mass media has put out the story that Greece’s problems are due to bloated bureaucracy and a crippled tax system. But “Debtocracy” documents a pattern of wasteful boondoggles from which the bankers and the ruling class benefited.

These include bribes and kickbacks from the German conglomerate Siemens to build the Athens subway system and a $1.1 B boondoggle for “security” at the 2004 Athens Olympic games.

But the most costly expenditure has been billions for unnecessary weaponry — aircraft and submarines — bought from European manufacturers owned by the same bankers.


#161 An Cat Dubh on 07.08.11 at 2:36 pm

Sorry about my “long” post. I only wanted Kevin’s.

#162 Maxamillion on 07.08.11 at 2:47 pm

#151 biil c

Hot property has to be one of the best comedy shows on at the moment.

#152 Sam1

My first experience with a real estate agent was in high school. This guy sat behind me in calculus class. The biggest moron in the class and the bully on the bus home. Years later after finishing school I open up the local newspaper with a full page ad with this guys picture. Headline was, top salesman for some realty. It was like Karla Homolka had opened up a chain of daycare centers and received an award.

#163 palebird on 07.08.11 at 2:49 pm

Could not agree more..

#164 disciple on 07.08.11 at 2:50 pm

Look at this CBC video on the grow-op cover-up. Mike Holmes says there is a grow-op on every block of this country. Sorry for the bad news, guys. TGIF. Have a great weekend!

#165 garrulous squirrel on 07.08.11 at 2:56 pm

Put me on the list of losers. In professional circles the conversations for the past few years regarding real estate markets have been about the incredulous aspects of the crazy balloon……..not the glee that go’s along with commission cheques.

At this point in the cycle…the average Canadain who has more than 25% of their worth entangled in real estate should be very concerned for their future financial well being.

Yes….the Van (Rat) Couver Sun ran an article regarding how the effect of non Canadian foriegn nationals from ‘Asia’ has been grossly underestimated. The ‘under estimation’ is bundled in monetary and politically correct reasons all it’s own. These buyers are not ‘Asian’ per se…….that just confuses people who don’t know the differances…….

These are Mainland Chinese nationals from the PRC who are laundering stolen loot in Canada by the hundreds of thousands in amounts…according to China…in the hundreds of billions…not Thai…Malay…Indonesian or Japanese or Korean..

The fact that ‘it’ exists and is so adamantly denied is also ‘political leftovers’ from the Trudeau-manic caning most Canadians over fourty years old recieved from the education system…..a system grossly skewed towards nutbag political ideas and concepts…..all of which has been soundly dismissed as bafflegab and nuttery in capitals around the world since the Liberal Socialist the blinders have come off. That ‘it’ ( lets not call it by name’ has been so vehemenantly denied locally is somewhat of a joke .

Just days ago I was being chastised for mentioning ‘it’……now the Sun is supporting me…..what go’s?

Suddenly….the news has refocused the nations attention on anti-semitism in the universities……does this also mean we are accepting an unequal number of economic migrants from anti semitic countries and now the Canadian taxpayer has to pay for their nonsensical ideology as well?

#166 JRL on 07.08.11 at 3:02 pm

Funny how media outlets seem to be ignoring the 400lb ‘bloated hippo’ in the room – industry jobs vanished thanks to “Globalization” and now we’re getting around to gutting public servant jobs. Greed Corps have reached the point of diminishing returns – they can only offshore so much before they start hurting their own ‘market’, since 3rd world slave labour cannot afford to buy the products they produce. So we transport raw materials half way around the world in search of ‘cheap labour’ and then half way around the world again back to the first-world ‘market’ – and get this, for CHEAPER than we can produce in our own backyards. This fundamentally contradictory philosophy is the foundation of ‘free trade’ just exactly as that “nutcase” Ross Perot predicted – that big “sucking sound” if you prefer sound bytes. I don’t know the solution to human greed and avarice – Government does not appear to be much of a solution to anything. ‘May you live in interesting times’ is a Chinese proverb and curse.

#167 a prairie dawg on 07.08.11 at 3:20 pm

#120 Daisy Mae
“This is one very angry and worried realtor…”

– – –

Pretty sure we’re dealing with more than just an angry loner Realtard™. All the little cretins over at CREA have rallied the Realtard Army™ to launch waves of stupidity. Luckily they’re well trained…

#168 Bottoms_Up on 07.08.11 at 3:23 pm

#55 Crash on 07.07.11 at 11:29 pm
Actually there was a comment recently on Garth’s blog with a news article saying that a realtor had been sued in Sudbury and had to cough up over $100,000 because of withholding information about the condition of the property.

So, they can be held accountable!

#169 45north on 07.08.11 at 3:23 pm

NorthOf49: Yesterday I reported for the first time, a property flip in my tony area of Ancaster, yet over the last two years I’ve witnessed houses taking over a year to sell with asking prices dropping by $60K or more.

Ancaster Ontario: 43.209° north, -80.001° south

in google maps right-click what’s here, you get latitude and longitude in decimal degrees

#170 45north on 07.08.11 at 3:25 pm

should be

Ancaster Ontario: 43.209° north, 80.001° west

#171 Anna on 07.08.11 at 3:28 pm

1) No goverment agency can overrule the decisions made by the Federal Reserve.

2) The Federal Reserve is a private corporation.

3) The shareholders and owners identities of the Federal Reserve are hidden by law. No one is allowed to know who they are. This includes the President of the United States.

4) When money is injected into the economy, it is created out of thin air and compunded interest (debt) is charged to the US government for each dollar bill created.

5) The interest (debt) is profit for the owners and shareholders of the Federal Reserve and the global banksters behind the curtain.

6) The system is called usury on fiat money. It is a system of perpetual debt in that new money is always being injected into the economy, with debt attached. There is no way to ever get out of debt. It is a scam.

7) Canada uses usury on fiat money. We pay $160 million per day in taxes to the banksters.

8) All political parties in all the western democracies support usury on fiat money.

9) The mainstream media will not make usury on fiat money public knowledge.

10) The governments have the legal authority to create their own non-debt currency. Instead they choose to saddle their populations with debt for the benefit of corporatism.

Hey, everyone, it’s Tin Foil Friday! — Garth

#172 a prairie dawg on 07.08.11 at 3:45 pm

Former Vancouver realtor charged with mortgage fraud


#173 Hashnugs Inthebong on 07.08.11 at 4:24 pm

The epitome of ethics is a realtor taking rent for a uninhabitable house and refusing to refund the money.

#174 Sail1 on 07.08.11 at 4:40 pm

How can I not be inspired by words like that?

Garth, you give these guys ammunition. You have been saying the sky is falling for a while now. What you preach makes sense. I assume real estate is not your bread and butter. Do you expect hugs and kisses? Realistically that e mail could have been much more descriptive. I’m sure your skin is very thick by now, somewhere between alligator and porcupine.

#175 Timing is Everything on 07.08.11 at 4:45 pm

A house (Brick and mortar and stuff) will be worth-less in 40 years, mostly. Land will be worth-more, mostly. This is not rocket science. Similar to Garth’s Hummer…no one will want a monster house soon enough. A modest 3 bedroom bungalow or rancher on a self-sufficient acreage (aka -> bunker ) and a reasonable distance to amenities (health services, airport, ferry, grocery, shopping)….works for us.

I’m still wanting to know what land prices will like around Victoria about 2030? …Give or take a few years. (In ‘the Zone’…not over ‘the Hat’)

Just got back from my bros place in Estevan, Skatch. RE is local….or is that loco? ;)

#176 jose on 07.08.11 at 5:17 pm

well, Garth, in Spanish there’s a saying:

“quien rie ultimo, rie mejor”

somewhat translates:

“who laughs last, laughs best”

except this will be no laughing matter, why do realtors take it personally when all you want is to protect people from their own greed (both buyers and realtors, i hear not many of them left in the states)

#177 poco on 07.08.11 at 5:17 pm

Hey Mikey–you help with this??? remember you were thinking of “helping ” the new realtor (owner of this property) out with her first sale !!!!–another way of doing it i guess

i guess this isn’t going to sit well with anyone in the neighbourhood who might be thinking of selling–you think their insurance will pay for repairs–not—you watch, it’ll be there for a long while–the whole transaction deal (husband to wife) is under scrutiny.

bit of an eye sore in a nice area

#178 Soylent Green is People on 07.08.11 at 5:23 pm

I lourve this photo, I hope she crushes him to death.

This line:

Well, no wonder most people shut this conflicted river of information off

Made me think of this:

Orwell warns we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley’s vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history.

As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.

Huxley v. Orwell: comic strip where you can actually read everything

Huxley v. Orwell: comic strip put to cool music ala video

#179 Soylent Green is People on 07.08.11 at 5:26 pm

CRUSH in a good way.

#180 Junius on 07.08.11 at 5:29 pm

#163 Hoof-hearted,

Thanks for the post. I find this notion of “odious debt” very interesting. It is a convenient notion and hopefully will gain some traction.

Certainly we have seen it in Iceland and now in Greece. Ireland and Spain are also likely candidates soon to be followed by Portugal and Italy.

What boggles my mind is how few people seem to understand how criminal the actions of our bankster community has been over the past few decades. The constant distractions of blaming others for the mess they have caused is so vile and corrupt. It is really shocking.

#181 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 07.08.11 at 5:38 pm


Just to remind you all…

Garth wrote: …”Not a day passes I don’t get a load of emails like this one (from a prominent realtor in Calgary):

Thanks Garth for once again making an ass of yourself. 42 months since your Dear Abby blog began and yet NOT ONE of your stupid predictions has occurred. Take a chill pill and appreciate the fact that Canada has a real good chance to be OK. All those broke homeowners would have no cash left to buy your rags you call books… Keep me laughing, old man. Moron loser.

Garth: How can I not be inspired by words like that?”


To this “prominent” Calgary realtor I say: You, sir, are an ass!

It won’t be Garth who curtails your income opportunities over the next period of time, it’ll be what’s shakin’ south of the line and, by and by, what’ll be shakin’ NORTH of the same line!

In case you missed today’s news, Mr. “Prominent”, US jobless numbers came out and for the umpteenth month in a row they were all bad news.

Apparently another stat that was not widely published claims that joblessness amongst American young people is now 25 per cent!

How can that country, our country’s largest trading partner, continue to keep us living the shadow-American dream we all so crave; eg: grinding through those Calgary mega-malls buying Chinese-made crap for outrageous prices and then going to some side-o’-beef joint for an artery-clogging dinner with all the trimmins!

Nexty winter, look in the mirror, Mr. “Prominent”, and not to Mr. Garth, if you can afford only something less than you used to be able to buy.

For instance a trip to the sunny south. Instead of business class, it might be more simple fare. In fact, you may see some of your former clients sitting right across the aisle in those cheap seats!

If you don’t know by this time, here’s what to expect when you fly steerage class:

Cram your girth into a too-small seat, inside a glorified cigar tube, with 100-plus other sweaty, tight-wad fellow travellers for seven and a half hours at 42 grand, as you pound down tiny packages of dried up cookies offered by 10-buck an hour stews. Bon voyage!

The way things are going your lifestyle will change sooner than you may expect, Mr. “Prominent”.

And if the Empire’s ongoing ennuie doesn’t cut you down to size, sooner than that, there’s a few other queazy Canadian trading partners out there: Europe, UK and China. That’ll do the trick!

My recommendation: trade down your domicile, car, and bling-blonde.

Embrace those traditional Calgary values of thrift, helping out your neighbours and making an honest buck or two.

I like Calgary a lot, used to live there and my gal is an Albertan!

The city is wasted on folks like you. And that’s a dman shame.

#182 Junius on 07.08.11 at 5:48 pm

#163 Hoof – Hearted,

Two quick stories on debt nations.

Several months ago I was interviewing candidates at our company for a new position. I was rather surprised when I received a large number of applications from recently landed Irish people. What was amazing was the high quality of the applications. These were people who should have been employed somewhere.

I asked a few who I interviewed about the situation in Ireland and it sounded dire. After years of being the Celtic Tiger the rug was pulled out from underneath them. It was shocking to see.

Fast forward to a function I was at last week. A friend is working with a person who just moved here from Spain. He was at the function with 2 fellow Spaniards who are looking for work in North America. Same story.

Two of them had 6 figure jobs. One in the Real Estate business. Now the one is working in the hospitality business at minimum wage.

The Spaniards all came to Canada thinking that we had a strong economy but soon found out it is just like theres was 3 or 4 years ago before the bubble burst. They all just laughed at our Real Estate prices.

One thing both Ireland and Spain do share are onerous debt and bankruptcy laws. Ireland is about 200 years behind with no relief for people. According to the people I met in Spain you personally owe for your mortgage so you can’t walk away. I was pretty sure one guy left a house and mortgage behind in Ireland.

More to come.

#183 Dan M. on 07.08.11 at 6:06 pm

153…who are we to believe? 98% of climate scientists who are not particularly wealthy…OR…the guys who tuck away millions a year from the oil industry? Don’t give us this crap that guys are getting rich on the green scam, it’s a tired argument that has little to no basis in reality. Try again.

Too bad, you were doing pretty well on the others.

#184 Imstupid on 07.08.11 at 6:12 pm

#38 The investors friend Shawn Allan

Nicely put.

Let me enlighten the readers of this blog with truth about debt and the eventual end of the current housing cycle. Is actually very simple, mortgage payments stay the same but everything else increases. The property tax, electricity prices, gas prices everything. That would be fine, if wages increased at the same rate but as everyone knows wages always increase at a slower rate. This will cause home ownership to become unaffordable, irregardless of interest rates.

Just ask yourself this question can you afford to rebuy your home again? The answer is surly no. My dear old mom has a problem now, her home is paid for but the cost to run the household had increased faster than her wages. Fortunate for her she has a loc that does not need to be paid back, it’s called I’m stupid. Every month I give her money to offset the costs. Lucky for her but what about everyone else?

You only need to look at the people around you to see the pressure adding up. Most my friends can not even buy me a coffee, it would put to much strain on their budget. Vacations forget about them, savings in your dreams, the only path for them is heart ache and pain.

Everything I own is bought and paid for, it’s a beautiful way to live. Did I have a mortgage of course, but the numbers made sense at that point. I do not experience recessions, down turns or slow downs because I live within my means. The biggest mistakes people make are trying to be more than they are. I don’t need a 200k car can I buy one sure, but I would rather have the money. The problem is that I can’t walk around with my net worth around my neck for all to see, or the illusion of net worthin most cases. Vanity is a dangerous obsession that will only lead to failure.

#185 brainsail on 07.08.11 at 6:21 pm

I’m sitting here watching the Royals land in the US. My, god it’s a huge Canadian military plane for just two people and an unknown entourage at this moment. Is Canada paying for their vacation?

#186 poco on 07.08.11 at 6:35 pm

#185 Junius–watch this max Keiser video—they call it “Immigration Wake”–near the 10min mark

#187 McSteve on 07.08.11 at 6:35 pm


#188 Devore on 07.08.11 at 6:49 pm

#174 Anna

4) When money is injected into the economy, it is created out of thin air and compunded interest (debt) is charged to the US government for each dollar bill created.

Paranoid much? Perhaps the FED annual report and audit would be of interest to you, specifically the table on income and expenses, which states:

Payments to Treasury as interest on Federal Reserve notes: 79,268 (000,000’s).

#189 TurnerNation on 07.08.11 at 6:52 pm

This thing is a residential real estate play with a small divdend, and they issued exchange traded debentures:

FP says CIBC’s Law recommends buying Killam Properties

Killam Properties Inc (2) (C:KMP)
Shares Issued 45,137,972
Last Close 7/7/2011 $11.03
Friday July 08 2011 – In the News

The Financial Post reports in its Friday, July 8, edition that CIBC Global Asset Management manager Jennifer Law recommends buying Killam Properties ($11.03). The Post’s Jonathan Ratner writes in the Buy & Sell column that Ms. Law manages the Renaissance Canadian Equity Small Cap Fund, which has assets under management of $380-million. Last year the fund had a return of more than 38 per cent. Over five years it is has returned 10.45 per cent. Killam is one of the fund’s largest holdings. The fund bought Killam when the company first went public. Ms. Law notes that Killam is one of Canada’s largest residential landlords, owning and operating nearly 10,000 apartment units in Atlantic Canada and Ontario, as well as more than 9,000 manufactured home communities sites across the country. Ms. Law says in addition to offering a dividend yield significantly above 5 per cent, Killam is trading at or slightly below net asset value. Ms. Law notes that residential is probably the lowest-risk part of the real estate market, with Killam’s occupancy at 98 per cent. The weakness in small caps this year has prompted Ms. Law to raise the cash position in the fund she manages to 12.4 per cent as of the end of May. © 2011 Canjex Publishing Ltd.

#190 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 07.08.11 at 6:53 pm

#152 Sam1 — “Sell your own home and save a fortune!” — Yes, we did that in Port Coquitlam in 1992. Cost us around $5K (including Notary fees, advertising and hand-painted FSBO sign), sold the home in less than a month and didn’t have to fork over fees. In the old days (pre-2010), it was worth the time and effort.

#158 disciple — Correct. It is in the govt.’s interests to keep the drug wars alive and well. Check ‘legalization of drugs in portugal’ (and Holland) to see the pushers have all been let go, there is no further need for drug dealers or pushers. See Drugs.

#163 Hoof – Hearted — Great post — sums it up nicely. Time for major cataclysmic events, shaken, not stirred?!

#168 garrulous squirrel — “Put me on the list of losers.” — Me too. I always will be a societal reject, as I chose a long time ago not to conform myself to anyone else’s POV. Good post.

#169 JRL and #174 Anna — “2) The Federal Reserve is a private corporation.”

Both great posts; Garth’s line — “Hey, everyone, it’s Tin Foil Friday! — Garth” should also be included, as hardly anyone (sheeples) has the slightest idea of what is going on anymore — they are too busy being bamboozled by all the bright and glitzy neon lights of too much debt.

#183 Junius — “. . . how criminal the actions of our bankster community has been . . .” — Actually, it’s most of the western banxters. See this.
6:59 clip Anyone found US$2.3 trillion? If so, please return to T. Geithner Esq. — Thanks! Speeding Up the slowdown (oxymoron); Auto or Manual? “Giving this government more money is like giving a bottle of scotch and the keys to the family car to a bunch of teenage boys!”; US “Read this list, then you will understand why DC is trying to solve all their problems by mass murdering the rest of the globe.” US has the worst economy in the world; Fiscally Responsible by killing old folks (boomers, not banxters); 2012 US Military budget is US$649 bln, and they are still broke.

China gold; End of Shuttle = thousands of jobs gone, plus No Hubble successor; Good Investments Coins, all PMs; Utilities Up in UK; No fuel sales Unemployed folk can’t afford to buy gas, so bring in new carbonazi taxes;

Egypt Revolution Part Deux; 0:15 clip where Obama clearly says the war in Iraq will end, and now using smooth talk to justify staying in (going after Iran); US – Russia and Arctic; another war? Greece “THE GREEK COAT GUARD DOES NOT HAVE JURISDICTION IN INTERNATIONAL WATERS! This is piracy on the high seas! BOYCOTT GREECE! NO PRODUCTS, NO TOURISM. GREECE HOVERS AT THE EDGE OF COLLAPSE.”; Food Additives Top 10 list; Police State Well documented article; Oz and GC Best snow since 1990, and and 32 inches of snow where it’s not supposed to be; Intimidating China.

#191 Devore on 07.08.11 at 6:58 pm

#174 Anna

Or perhaps Canada is different. Hmm, nope.

Earnings after expenses are transferred to Receiver General for Canada.

#192 Daisy Mae on 07.08.11 at 7:05 pm

” Utopia on 07.08.11 at 11:30 amMy tomatoes are going gangbusters lately. Great crop. Hooray.

(Just did my first Twitter. Next one is for Smoking Man)”

Great! And if the tomatoes get ahead of you, your wife will probably can them….or, what’s even easier, freeze ’em for spaghetti!

#193 Killer Chicken or Imploding Boomer? on 07.08.11 at 7:17 pm

55 Crash – from the bottom of any listing on

“All information displayed is believed to be accurate but
is not guaranteed and should be independently verified.
No warranties or representations are made of any kind.”

This was always my premise for arguing against realtors
being “professional”. They take no responsibility, and have no liabililty.

#194 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 7:26 pm

#169 JRL wrote….

“So we transport raw materials half way around the world in search of cheap labour’ and then half way around the world again back to the first-world ‘market”
Then since you mentioned it, here’s a tip. Stock up on supplies. One day the ships will stop coming and there is very little manufacturing capability here to fill the demands that will arise when imported goods no longer arrive.

Start with zippers. Only the Chinese make them now.

#195 jess on 07.08.11 at 8:01 pm

…tax bubble?

Economic substance

..”Unfortunately, over the past 10 years we have witnessed a resurgence of tax shelter activity that has caused great damage to the integrity of our tax system. We have many cases under examination and many others in various stages of litigation. In working these cases, we must keep in mind that the economic substance doctrine is not a general antiabuse rule that can be raised to attack every transaction that the IRS does not like. On the other hand, taxpayers and practitioners should not forget that the doctrine is an indispensable tool which the IRS must be able to employ, to challenge transactions where the tax results appear inconsistent with Congressional intent and common sense. What this means is that in appropriate cases, the IRS will use all of the tools at its disposal to combat abusive tax shelters, including the economic substance doctrine.”
JANUARY 25, 2005

The case is Schlicksup v. Caterpillar Inc., et al, 09- 01208, U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois (Peoria).

The Republican Myth on Tax Cuts and the Deficit
Bruce Bartlett

Tax Notes, Vol. 131, No. 7, 2011

In this article, I examine the impact of the Bush tax cuts on the deficit and the national debt, and Republican efforts to deny that the cuts had any effect whatsoever. Admitting that the Bush tax cuts reduced revenue and thus increased the deficit and the debt would undermine the Republican position that deficit reduction must involve only spending cuts and no tax increases of any kind. “

#196 Utopia on 07.08.11 at 8:19 pm

#187 ImStupid wrote…

“Just ask yourself this question can you afford to rebuy your home again? The answer is surly no. My dear old mom has a problem now, her home is paid for but the cost to run the household had increased faster than her wages”

That is so true. I have been talking to an elderly neighbor. She has lived in the same house for decades and is now retired. The house was paid off years ago.

She was telling me she must sell now as her pension is insufficient to cover taxes, utilities and ongoing maintenance and repairs. She can’t afford to live in that place anymore.

She was pretty upset about it too. She is still in good health but the eighty five year old home is beyond her ability to cope with. Not long ago her basement flooded and she lost most of her memories that were stored down there. Everything was ruined.

The costs of remediation were prohibitive, mold is growing on the walls now and she knows the place is a health hazard. What can she do really as her husband is long since dead, she is arthritic as hell and kids live in other cities.

Since she has run out of savings and can’t get affordable help to fix all her problems she is going to try to sell and move to a condo or rent.

There will be a lot more like her in the coming years. It is rough getting old when you are all alone and have no savings.

#197 jess on 07.08.11 at 8:21 pm

188 brainsail

..don’t ya know they are promoting our “brand”

#198 Devore on 07.08.11 at 8:34 pm

#191 mouthagape

Nothing to be smart about. By definition “top” means it is a level higher than all other previous periods. When someone calls a top, like the Royal Lepage in their report, they do not mean prices will be lower than a year ago, they mean prices will be heading lower from that point on, so it does not make sense to expect prices to be lower at the top; they must be higher.

I’m not sure what your point in #115 was. If 2011 is the top, that by necessity means prices in 2011 are higher than 2010, otherwise 2010 would have been the top.

Sorry if simple logic, and plain English in the Royal LePage report confuse you.

#199 BrianT on 07.08.11 at 9:08 pm

#186Dan-There is just no way you are stupid enough to actually believe that carbon credit trading is about fixing the physical environment of this planet.

#200 Dan M. on 07.08.11 at 9:25 pm

Geez, what do you think this means?–condos-on-the-market

#201 Hoof - Hearted on 07.08.11 at 9:39 pm

#168 garrulous squirrel

No need to apologize….

Turdeau was a sick pathetic joke.

His ilk are psychopaths, that deftly market their agenda under a progressive agenda…but the reality is the exact opposite.

Multiculturalism via P.E. TURD-owe was simply a divide and conquer strategy….an ages -old practice….so he could maintain power by kissing asses of a minority majority(oxymoron)..namely Quebec and Ontario.

He fine tuned the despotic formula that 50% +1 = 100 % of the power.

Pearson was likely the last hope for a united Canada….

#202 Dan M. on 07.08.11 at 10:37 pm

203…I never said a word about carbon credit trading. I know that the idea has been taken over by bankster types, it has little to do with saving the planet. I did mention something about climate scientists…any of them worth their salt know that carbon credits won’t do it. I believe Suzuki has it figured…but I’m no Gore fan. I just know that when people spout off about those two, they’re not far off quoting some “research” by a psuedo-scientist with oil money all over his nice white lab coat.

#203 JRL on 07.09.11 at 10:38 am

The only supplies I’m stocking up on are canned food and shotgun shells – figure I can just take whatever I need.

#204 CPN on 07.09.11 at 12:50 pm

Thanks for the great blog Garth and I love your books (especially Money Road – my fav because there are so many great tips for getting through the next 4-5 yrs). I’m from Ontario and moved to Calgary 10 years ago. While I wouldn’t run out and sell my house (I plan to live in it for 30 more years so will ride whatever the market brings), I see a lot of conflicting reports on the RE market. On the one hand as noted above, the average home price (sold) has gone down (about 1-2%, likely due to the monster homes not selling, which brings down the average price slightly). Then on the other, I see reports like these for June 2011 in Calgary:

“Single family sales led the way with 1,398 home changing hands during the month. This was a 32% increase over the 1,059 homes sold last year during June. Condominium sales were also up over last year’s numbers with 581 units selling during the month. This represented a 30% increase over the number of sales recorded in June 2010. This increase in condo sales was the first monthly increase year-over-year since April 2010.”

Calgary unemployed is down to 5.6% with positive reports on the job market:

So, I know the days of bidding wars are over (thank goodness), but I really don’t see the bottom falling out either (like I could see happening in Toronto and Vancouver). Assuming oil prices stay relatively similar, do you really think Calgary is headed for disaster?