Rich people suck. The vaunted 1% are oppressors. Parasitic bankers. Casino capitalists. The greedy elite. The ruling class manipulates central bankers, who trick the people and steal their wealth. I read it on this blog, so it’s true. Who in their right mind these days would want to be rich? This is the question the other 99% are asking, as they occupy Wall Street, downtown Toronto and that hotbed of global finance, the Remembrance cenotaph outside of Halifax City Hall. Seriously.

Anyway, let me save you from yourself, in case you’re inadvertently accumulating money. Fortunately there’s an effective and time-tested program for remaining impoverished, while managing to look middle class (to avoid arrest). It’s called real estate. Here are the Ten Essential Steps.

  • Buy with 5% down. This way you get to qualify for mortgage insurance! That means adding a whopping premium to your borrowing, as much as 2.75% of the entire home loan. On a $300,000 mortgage, with fees that’s almost $9,000 which means when it’s amortized and finally paid back, it has drained you for just under $20,000 in after-tax income. This is an excellent way to remain poor.
  • Even better, buy with 0% down. Talk to Eddie. You remember the no-money-down guy, right? That are scads of Eddies around the country willing to help you buy a house with no savings whatsoever. So what if you have to pay a higher interest rate? This keeps you closer to the people. And moral. You can also use a cash-back bribe from one of the big mortgage lenders to purchase the home. That qualifies as a non-traditional down payment, entitling you to pay even more CHMC insurance. Bonus.
  • Get a 30-year amortization. Gone are the fine old days when F rammed 40-year, zero-down mortgages through Parliament. Now the best you can do is 30 years, but do not despair. This is still a most legitimate way of ensuring you are raped and pillaged by the bourgeoisie. For example, that $300,000 loan amortized over three decades with 4% interest means you end up paying $85,593 over five years, and still owe $271,200. How cool is that.
  • Whatever mortgage you were preapproved for, max it. Hey, the bank knows what’s safe, right? Why else would they offer a hairdresser with a part-time income of $35,000 a loan of $500,000? Now your job is to go out and find a piece of real estate that will suck up the entire amount. Because housing always goes up, everywhere, there is really no risk. And if there is, well, this affords a better opportunity to go bankrupt and smite.
  • Don’t get a home inspection. Only girlie men and financial advisors (redundant) make conditional offers. Screw that. Be decisive. Be impressive. Swagger into your bidding war like a conquering hero, pick your teeth with a spent bullet, and slap that clean offer down while flipping the bird at the metrosexual young couple fool enough to oppose you. This way you earn the right to put in a new furnace, replace the roof and make innumerable new, very small friends in the walls.
  • Focus on the appliances and the counters. This is the heart of real estate. Forget surveys, school catchment areas, appraisals, comparables, property taxes or even the neighbourhood. Nobody cares about that schlep any longer. The only words that matter are ‘Miele’ and ‘Bosch’ and ‘Subzero.’ Counters must be granite, concrete or glass. If they are porous and uncleanable, this is ideal since they will soon have to be replaced.
  • Ask your MIL for investment advice. She knows everything. She knows what you know. She knows what you think. She knows what you will think. She knows houses. She learned all there is to know about real estate in 1972. So be quiet already. Resistence is futile. Give her daughter what she deserves. For once.
  • Buy to impress your friends. They’re the most important aspect of real estate, as witnessed on HGTV. The only critical bits of a house are the ones your friends notice, like the Miele appliances, wine glasses and the door knocker. Your friends do not give a damn about high-efficiency gas furnaces, liquefied basements or bugs. Be more like them.
  • Buy the biggest house you can afford the payments on. Debt is so iPod. Who cares? It’s not like you’re ever going to, you know, pay it back. This is just about renting money so you can get the most stuff possible to impress other people with and look rich. But not too rich. That sucks. So tell everyone you bought for nothing, just to stick it to the man when you walk.
  • Don’t save or invest. That’s what Kevin O’Leary does. And look at him. In order to remain a viable part of the 99%, just keep shoveling money into your real estate. Buy glossy mags like Toronto Life and replicate every room they show in your own house. After all, what’s the point of having any investments when the parasite bankers and criminal corporate class are manipulating markets and stealing public wealth, creating crises and controlling governments while enslaving the masses with debt they profit wildly from by making the tax slaves covet real estate?

Who the hell’s going to fall for that?

Eat ‘em.



#1 Steven Rowlandson on 11.02.11 at 9:30 pm

Who in their right mind these days would want to be rich?

Garth a better question might be who can live in Canada properly with out being rich or nearly so?
The income and capital required to meet the challenge of retirement, income security and real estate are such that being rich or at least well paid is compulsory.

#2 WI BOOMER on 11.02.11 at 9:32 pm

I your humble servant, or was that savant…volunteer to become one of the 1%ers or at least one of the top 10%ers. My accountant said, sadly with my measely wealth I’m only in the top 20%. Me, the dumb high school almost drop-out. Who wudda thunk?

SMOKING MAN has a follower here in thinking education is mostly full of $hit. What can I say, guess I was too dumb to folow the crowd.

#3 Edward on 11.02.11 at 9:33 pm


#4 Helpful Advise on 11.02.11 at 9:33 pm


#5 Sampson on 11.02.11 at 9:37 pm


#6 T.J. BONES on 11.02.11 at 9:40 pm

Garth I couldn’t resist numo 1

#7 Mean Gene on 11.02.11 at 9:42 pm

You forgot about getting a id10t tattoo on the forehead.

#8 squidly77 on 11.02.11 at 9:44 pm

And the hard wood floors and soaker tubs are so now. LOL.

Sadly there is one place in Canada where mortgage debtors have been taking it on the chin for 3 years now, that place is Alberta and Edmonton real estate has now lost a solid 20% from its utopian peak.

#9 WI BOOMER on 11.02.11 at 9:46 pm

OK. Now that I have dutifully volunteered to become one of the Elite 1% or thereabouts lets talk about where this world econopmy is headed.
Greece may well default, and be removed from the EU. Just how wide an impact will that have? By itself, Greece doesn’t appear to be much of an issue. It’s the “copy-cat” idea where things might get thorny. Portugal, Ireland, and of course Italy. Who holds the Greek Debt, who holds the credit-default swaps, and who are the counterparties? This could get REAL interesting. We have quite a number of structurally deficient Banks here in the US, certainly France has some, and there are others. Stay Tuned. Your house could get progressively cheaper as time passes (See Phoenix, AZ or Las Vegas NV as instructional reality). CASH is still very much in demand. Yeah, you can’t take it with you, but try going far without it.

#10 vyw on 11.02.11 at 9:48 pm

People blame the 1% except their share of income has gone down during the recession. It was higher pre-recession.


Well one explanation is that more people were employed pre-recession. They spent their incomes which percolated up the food chain to the 1%.

But there weren’t protests back then. Why? Well, again likely because people were working and borrowing (but that’s another story).

The 1% are really not the problem here IMHO, it’s the lack of money in the system. There simply is not enough GDP per capita hence unemployment is high and everyone’s real incomes are flat. So Main Street is struggling but if you check carefully, there are bankruptcies and layoffs on Wall Street.

If the Govt’s of developed and BRIC countries follow through with their fiscal austerity – it will remove billions/trillions from their economies resulting in more jobless resulting in more fingerpointing at the 1% who will be taking home a smaller share of income.

You couldn’t even write a script about this catastrophe, all of our own making.

#11 vyw on 11.02.11 at 9:49 pm

Oh and btw, everyone wants to be rich and especially people who are poor. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

#12 meslippery on 11.02.11 at 9:50 pm

Maybe just listen to Kevin and look at Amanda.

#13 Devore on 11.02.11 at 9:51 pm

Gone are the fine old days when F rammed 40-year, zero-down mortgages through Parliament.

Rammed it through? As a minority government, he had to get the full cooperation (due to party discipline) of at least one other minority party who thought this was a great idea. Doesn’t sound like ramming through.

I was there. He bullied. — Garth

#14 T.O. Bubble Boy on 11.02.11 at 10:00 pm

I can shorten this to 2 steps:
1) Live in Vancouver
2) Don’t be a crooked offshore millionaire or local drug dealer

#15 disciple on 11.02.11 at 10:06 pm

I love Kevin O’Leary. I just wish he wouldn’t lie through his teeth on national television, that’s all. He leveraged the bankers’ money and lucked out on the rigged casino capitalism, crystallized his gains and then signed on to be a mouthpiece for his friends. Good on him. But don’t lie to me and tell me that everyone should do it because the system works. It can’t. Impossible.

#16 Maxamillion on 11.02.11 at 10:07 pm

Those are my Ten Commandments. Print them and hang them on the wall.

#17 Stinky the Fish on 11.02.11 at 10:12 pm

Ate this post up and loved it. Sounds like my entire posse of friends has followed 9 out the 10 commandments. Oh ya, they love their granite countertops. Serious, when is this garbage going to end? I want the debt collector to start chopping some F’n heads soon.

#18 Just a Tech on 11.02.11 at 10:12 pm

11) Pay Tax
12) Not buying lottery tickets
13) Going to School
14) Travelling
15) venturing outside of your basement bachelor pad

#19 Steevo on 11.02.11 at 10:17 pm

Best. Post. Ever.

#20 Marc L on 11.02.11 at 10:20 pm


Lots of bitterness on this one. Did the Amazon women turn you down? Maybe a bad bottle of red tonight?
Maybe the divorce of Kim Kardashian has upset you?

Well I agree with you on the cultural observations.
We had some guests over to our home over the weekend and one of the couples asked me if we had thought about updating our kitchen (original higher end kitchen from 1992 – still in great shape).

I said ‘no we are not, why is the meal not tasty enough?’ the kind of half laughed….
They live in a 550K McMansion in a suburb. Whenever we visit them, I have to remember the house number, otherwise I overshoot because all of the homes look the same.

I wonder when the correction will be in full swing and Peter Mansbridge will have you on the National to comment on a panel…

#21 Canned Goods and Buckshot on 11.02.11 at 10:20 pm

Well, that was a surprising introduction and an odd segue into the pitfalls of using housing as investment tools.

The OWS protesters do come off as somewhat unorganized and undefined, but whatever your political point of view, you have to admit they are tapping into the uncomfortable feeling that many have about our circumstances. Ironically, they have much in common with the Tea Party.

There are the usual malcontents that populate most large gatherings, but also people who have worked hard, gotten an education, yet are un or under employed, paid into a system that seems ill-equipped to serve them and feel that they are screwed no matter what they do.

They don’t resent the rich exclusively because they are rich. They resent the privitization of profits and the socialization of loss. They resent the billions spent on war. They resent all the shitty loans made knowingly to people who couldn’t pay, the securitization of those loans sold as triple AAA products, and the credit default swaps these same banksters contrived to bet against their own ponzi scheme. They resent the feckless ability of authorities to hold the guilty to account. They resent the gluttony of consumerism in the face of resource depletion. Garth, you’ve written some great posts. This ain’t one of them.

#22 SLN on 11.02.11 at 10:21 pm

:D Great post tonight! I “lol’d” as they say.

But, erm… global bankers ARE manipulating markets. If you believe otherwise you’re dull witted or if you’re just pretending to believe otherwise you’re obviously one of *them*.

Pass the salt.. ;)

#23 What Goes Up, Must Come Down on 11.02.11 at 10:25 pm

Garth, I’ve been reading your blog for about a year and a half and I think this is my favorite post yet. Made me chuckle.

#24 martin on 11.02.11 at 10:25 pm

garth when will we have a chance to hear a conference call again. thanks

When you stop with the heavy breathing. — Garth

#25 Devore on 11.02.11 at 10:28 pm

I was there. He bullied. — Garth

Oh those poor helpless politicians. No one with the backbone to even stand up and ask questions?

I did. Look where it got me. — Garth

#26 JohnnyBravo on 11.02.11 at 10:28 pm

Excellent post. Nice prose.

#27 Toon Town Boomer on 11.02.11 at 10:31 pm

SGEU employees just asked to take a reduction in thier pension. Their Union rep stated they will be watching the interest rates. This housing bubble is hurting so many people in so many ways.

#28 LH on 11.02.11 at 10:41 pm

I am the 1%, and looking forward to getting to 0.1%.
More is more. But it won’t necessarily make you happy.

#29 M.A. on 11.02.11 at 10:44 pm

let them eat cake, garth!!!

#30 Foggy on 11.02.11 at 10:46 pm

Perfect advice and strategy for today’s young homebuyer. All the basics are here. I would add that if a friend has recently bought something but you haven’t – better get crackin on those MLS listings and your local bank, and BUY something. Do you want to look like a total loser in your circle of friends- the one who still rents? Christ you’re almost 22.

I know personally of at least 10 couples who started their house journey thru exactly this process.

#31 Tyler on 11.02.11 at 10:53 pm

#18 do the equivalent of Mr. Turners list, not as a individual, but as a bank, or central bank and he will approve of your bailout!

#32 Bill Gable on 11.02.11 at 10:57 pm

Killer – hilarious – if it wan’t so true.

The whole meshpookah.

#33 len on 11.02.11 at 10:57 pm

Actually, your sarcastic comments are simplification of a very real underlying problem. As MF Global’s demise amply demonstrated, money has become disconnected from the real economy and has, over the years, lost its productive value. Whether you use cheap money to speculate in realestate or “invest” in the stock market, money has now become the end of itself, and not the tool to productive activity.

The corporate healthy balance sheets and bonanza of pending amazing earnings that you so much like to talk about – who can anymore trust what is real and what is a sham? MF Global, to use as a good illustrative example, was broker who was fairly strictly supervised to safeguard client’s segregated accounts. If this kind of crookery happens at the highest levels of the financial system tied directly to the feds, then all the Sino-Forests and the likes in-between are all suspects.

That you don’t entertain the idea that what you promote may all collapse in a heap thanks to the rotten core is amazing to me. But then again, “it is hard to make a man understand something, if his salary depends on his not understanding it” OWS has an intuitive grasp on the situation, perhaps because they do not stand to profit. So I will stick with that!!

Actually I understand this all quite well. It will end badly for many, but there will be no heap. — Garth

#34 Fool me once... on 11.02.11 at 11:02 pm

“…education is mostly full of $hit”

Well, talk about exposing one’s ignorance. Education is crucial if we want our children to be competitive in the future. The problem in most developed countries is that the youth have come to think an education is an automatic ticket to immediate gratification and wealth. They have a sense of entitlement that is unprecedented. No desire to start at the bottom and work hard to move up. “I have an MBA at 25 and deserve 100K”. This is what I believe to be one of our biggest problems.

#35 nonplused on 11.02.11 at 11:02 pm

Hey pretty good post tonight Garth-Ghost-Writer. Not quite Garth’s style but some good points.

I for one am not going to be taking any advice from my MIL on real estate even if I were trying to pretend to be poor. If she doesn’t like it, she can encourage her daughter to go back to dating guys with dragon tattoos. Sometimes mother does not know best.

Some of the recent changes are starting to filter through to the speculative crowd. One of the girls I work with just had to pony up to refinance her second condo (both rented out) to get to 20% down. There are a lot of 5% or 0% down “investments” out there that are coming up on said “cash in” refinancing. I think the banksters will count equity, so the problem isn’t as big as it might have been. Until the 10% correction, coming this winter.

Oh, and did I mention “special assessments”? I can’t understand how you can make money renting out a condo, unless prices are rising at least 5% a year, and the payout is all upon selling.

Anyway, eating the rich is a good idea if they got rich via some sort of crime (fraud, collusion, political contributions leading to contracts, taking bailouts, etc.) But we don’t want to eat the Steve Jobs of the world whether they are tasty or not. People who get rich by enriching us all should be honoured, not vilified.

Notice I didn’t include “insider trading” in my list of crimes? This is the most ridiculous crime ever invented. It’s like saying you shouldn’t be allowed to drive unless you know nothing about cars and roads. Granted that is how they seem to hand out licenses, but still. Insider trading has no victims, and actually leads to broad market knowledge as long as everybody knows what the insiders are trading (which they do). For example, if the CEO of a company is loading up on shares (not options) using his own money, you might want to too. Where’s the harm? The price would go up for all shareholders. On the other hand, if he’s selling, well, maybe you should too. It’s called price discovery, and it can’t happen if anyone who knows something isn’t allowed to trade.

Eventually, insider trading laws will make anyone who owns shares in a company they work for a criminal, and also anyone who does research.

#36 AACI Home-dog on 11.02.11 at 11:02 pm

Good humor on housing, Garth.
PS…re: “occupy”
where is the line anyway….for 1% vs. the 99% ?
just curious am I…


#37 Vik on 11.02.11 at 11:03 pm

HAM Related- New Brunswick shutting the door on Chinese investors.


#38 DonDWest on 11.02.11 at 11:10 pm

“Why else would they offer a hairdresser with a part-time income of $35,000 a loan of $500,000?”

I don’t know many hairdressers that make 70k a year full time unless they’re working for very exclusive clientele (the 1%). As for renting, Canada isn’t Germany. Our rental market isn’t exactly in good shape. Affordable (compared to buying)? Yes, but the quality isn’t there. I’ve yet to come across a rental I could see myself tolerating for life.

With the number of renters at an all-time low; I think most landlords don’t give a damn due to the lack of demand. Most landlords I’ve rented from wanted to sell the property in a couple of years (too late); so they could care less about maintaining the property (lazy and stupid).

It’s hard to make an argument that the middle class are retaining their middle class status by renting units that are often small and in poor conditions. Buying certainly isn’t an option, but there’s been an obvious decline in living standards, whether you rent or buy, for most people the past 10 years that’s a combination of bad choices and other political factors.

#39 Janusz on 11.02.11 at 11:10 pm

Or of course you can also just go and write a blog that caters to the 99 percent, and pretend that you are one of them. All this while you drive a Harley and a Hummer, live in a mansion, err bunker, and make money hand over fist through being an author.

When the 99 percent ask you how you can justify it, all you have to do is reply, “Is it my fault that you can’t afford to invest?” “Is it my fault that you can’t afford granite?”

Evil, parasitic financial author who provides a free blog. Yes, good target. — Garth

#40 eviee1973 on 11.02.11 at 11:18 pm

Thanks for the laughs Garth, maybe you should start a list as well about believing everything a realturd says to get you to buy.

#41 nonplused on 11.02.11 at 11:19 pm

More insider trading rant.

So they’ve locked this Raj guy up like he committed attempted murder. I don’t know all the details, but basically it sounds like what he did was phone up a friend who said “oh ya, we are coming out with this and we think it’ll be great for the stock price”, so he bought. You don’t think that doesn’t happen all the time??? But the real question is who is the victim of this crime?

– People who had shares they planned to hold saw the price supported and maybe rise as he was buying.
– People who might have wanted shares may have been encouraged to buy in as they saw the strength in the share price created by this big buyer.
– People who wanted to sell probably got a better price from Raj in the market than without him.
– The company itself might have had an easier time raising capital.

So who was the victim? Banks. They love to short sell an issue into oblivion before a big announcement and then buy it back on the cheap. The banks were the victim and that is why Raj is serving an attempted murder term. You don’t cross the banks.

#42 Not 1st on 11.02.11 at 11:27 pm

Seriously, how cna someone run a blog and then misunderstand the issues so completely.

The Occupy movement isn’t protesting the rich, they are protesting rich people and banks who gamble with leverage to make a huge score that they keep for themselves when it goes right, but then are the first in line for a bailout when it goes wrong. In the meantime, the leverage is so high that a tiny nothing country like greece can teeter the world economy on edge.

And Kevin O Leary is your idle? Please get a grip. That guy cashed out a bogus business in the tech bubble that wouldn’t sell for $10 today. Just like pets.com and a host of other stupid ideas, he pulled one over on investors like Mattel and then patted himself on the back. He didn’t do anything but cash in on a once in a lifetime bubble.

Ah, ever heard of sarcasm? — Garth

#43 VicBC on 11.02.11 at 11:32 pm

They earned it?


#44 Davey Boy on 11.02.11 at 11:41 pm

It all comes down to discipline. I spent many weekends working overtime when others played and made numerous other sacrifices to get ahead(limited dinners out, that sort of thing, maximized RRSPs). Most people lack those abilities, in hindsight maybe it was wrong, maybe I should have just had fun.

#45 from kits on 11.02.11 at 11:55 pm


I probably missed the point of some of this… but in the US this is exactly what happened.

“creating crises and controlling governments while enslaving the masses with debt they profit wildly from by making the tax slaves covet real estate?”

did I miss something????????? for a man who has put himself out there and is going against the grain I’m surprised you are so against an independent movement. while not on the money on all their issues at least people are getting up and trying to change things.

a couple stats…

When the 400 wealthiest Americans own more than the “lower” 150 million Americans put together, you have a system that is badly broken…

Wall Street celebrated by paying themselves $60 billion in bonuses between 2008 and 2010. The poster boys for the .1% Jamie Dimon and Lloyd Blankfein “earned” $23 million and $19 million respectively in 2010…


#46 Kilby on 11.03.11 at 12:20 am

I’m happy with Amanda, Kevin may be clever but he is all the annoying asses I have ever met all rolled into one, maybe the next Donald Trump………..

#47 Robert Dudek on 11.03.11 at 12:29 am

But of course about 20% of the population thinks they are in the top 1%, while 80% thinks they are in the top half.

#48 Junius on 11.03.11 at 12:38 am


With respect it is not about being wealthy or not. It is how that wealth is obtained or maintained. No one at Occupy Wall Street is concerned about entrepreurs like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates or anyone who creates value.

It is the Vampire Squids on Wall Street who have gambled, lost and then had the system abil them out. Meanwhile there is no bailout for the people they hurt.

Anyone who thinks Occupy Wall Street is just about rich versus poor is not keeping up. It is about different rules for different people. It is about money ruining politics and turning society into an oligarchy.

#49 Van guy waiting on 11.03.11 at 12:56 am

Dear Garth,

“Carney poised to be named top cop of global banking”


Makes me sick :@

#50 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 11.03.11 at 12:58 am

Tin Foil Nutjobs I would gladly walk as far as possible away from RE, and take a mil. + / – in fair exchange. That would give moi a nice monthly income in a 45 / 55 split.

“. . . in case you’re inadvertently accumulating money.” — See above. No one else is going to save money for me, so I’ll have to do it myself.
Silver has become the new gold; EU Dictatorship Iceland left on their own terms, so let the whole thing sink; Earth to EU No means no; Revenge of the people.

6:02 clip Eurocrats running into walls; Recession – Collapse; Brilliance; Postponed; The US is the cause of EU downturn, not Greece; Collection Time Buy some US Treasuries as Xmas gifts! Down the Crapper is a fine and truthful outlook.
Erdogan Good question. Is the UN willing to answer? 8:19 clip US – NATO’s plans for Algeria; Train Ride like we’ve never been on; Bend Me, Shape Me Depends on which part of the universe one is in; UK Navy No warships. The country is broke; Siberia Great place to study GW. In the KDC Wednesday, Environment Canada said Jan. – Feb. – March would be colder than normal, but it’s not GC, it’s La Nina; Cloning Tokyo Japan’s govt. is probably as broke as the rest of us, so borrow more; Glenn Beck Not the greatest endorsement.

#51 Chaos on 11.03.11 at 1:15 am

Uranus ROCKS!!!!!

#52 johnny C on 11.03.11 at 1:31 am

r u nuts

#53 Marco from the bestest place on the smallest part of earth on 11.03.11 at 1:43 am


You outdid yourself. This is the post of the year. You summed up about 80% of the property buyers out there. The base of the pyramid, that when it falters will guarantee that correction.

Where their proportion is higher (that that of the responsible buyer who can take a hit balanced out by other investments and appropriate mortgage to value ratio) the correction will be deeper, where lower, so follows the correction.

I suspect in van it will be higher due to the stupid irresponsibility while most are playing “catch up to the chins” and so in Toronto due to the crazy proportion of speculators. Lesser so in the atlantics and places where the average home to average income is more balanced (or less stressed).

You’re a genius, and thanks for looking out for everyone!

#54 Off-Gridder on 11.03.11 at 1:56 am

Garth, amazing post! This reminded me of several people I know although I feel they would likely be offended and disagree :D I am all for a protest that I can support. But this Occupy everything business spreading across Facebook — The ‘new’ news for young folk is entertaining at best. Most of the ppl I know supporting it have no job, get assistance from the government, and have never attempted to get a job since I have known them. But that is but my observation. If they were to focus on one issue and not 50 different issues to protest for, perhaps it would be inflation and wage freezes. Meanwhile, the protesters I know have made occupying their full time job.

#55 M.T. on 11.03.11 at 2:07 am

In Edmonton here Condo prices dipped an average of $11,500 down from Oct 2010 last month. That’s a sign the market is getting very sick here, Sales we down to last January levels. CIBC was advertising 2.9% 5 yr mortgages last month. I’m surprised the prices still are contracting so much here in Edmonton & Foreclosures are going up here (and in BC) while the rest of the entire country sees foreclosures stabalizing or going down!

#56 EdmontonGuyHere on 11.03.11 at 2:30 am

In Edmonton you can find some great Character properties with huge Yards! This is an example on MLS… http://www.mls.ca/PropertyDetails.aspx?&PropertyId=11020028&PidKey=1169746759

#57 Calculon The Mighty on 11.03.11 at 2:43 am


#58 a prairie dawg on 11.03.11 at 3:08 am

“Anyway, let me save you from yourself, in case you’re inadvertently accumulating money.”


Translation: In case you’re not preoccupied, lazy, stupid, or just plain average.

But worded much in a more subtle way…

Almost Shakesperian… (if, he had been into Finance)


– – –

Insert: Orange guys shorts, Scotiabanks “You’re dumber than you think”, or TD’s “Making banking easier for Athiests” (ie: my interpretation of ‘banking on Sundays’) Even though I’m not predominantly religious, I just see it that way in a comedic sense…

It’s called sarcasm people, work with me.

And I don’t mean profiting from real estate, either…

Anyone else one out there have an investment up 2400% in the last 4 years? (it’s not gold or real estate related either) And the “global recession” has kicked it down from it’s high of a +4000% gain. (well, for me anyway…) But it should double or triple from here in the next 5 years, my money says. (don’t ask, nothing in life is free)

Think Red Rose Tea…


Think Mr. T…

“Pity the Fool”

It’s called legwork people. There is no free lunch…


– – –

PS, Garth I think you’re wrong about K.O.
I don’t particularly espouse or claim knowledge of Kevin’s investment model, but I don’t think it dominates in real estate. (although like Dennis Miller, “I could be wrong”)

#59 Humpty Dumpty on 11.03.11 at 4:12 am

Iran FM: We are united and ready for war


Funny how everyone wants to unite then “occupy” some ideology or land these days…

#60 Aussie Roy on 11.03.11 at 4:28 am

Aussie Update

Interest rate cut will solve all our problems, does it?.

Rate cut not enough to help struggling households, Cost of Living survey shows


Stock on market in Melbourne just keeps rising, as the graph shows.


There’s a shortage, a shortage of houses I tell you !

The recovery in building approvals hit a wall in September with the monthly total tumbling by the most since November 2002.


Aussie central bank (RBA), have they got it right?.

The only economic models that the RBA use are neoclassical, so by definition they have deficiencies in their modelling.

They’re about as relevant to the Australian economy or global economy as the weather conditions on Mars are to those on Earth.

The RBA is still expecting a booming economy, when in fact what we are experiencing is a debt deflation.


Auction clearance rates just keep going lower National average 44%, no city above 50%.


Sunshine, lollipops and rainbows abound in the RE sponsored media, thank goodness we don’t have a bubble here – LOL.

#61 iq42 on 11.03.11 at 4:59 am

I’m curious about how many people post a comment here while intoxicated…

Can you really impress a decent person while tied to a crazy ass mortgage?

Garth, what’s your opinion about leasing/financing/full cash payment on a car to (somewhat) impress?

If it matters, I’m looking at a 40-50k price range. It’s less than a what I have for a property down payment, ride 7 of 12 months and drive once a week.

Yes, I’m one, and that’s how I roll.

#62 betamax on 11.03.11 at 5:02 am

Garth: “Focus on the appliances and the counters. This is the heart of real estate.”

LOL. One of the funniest posts ever.

For me, the bubble was confirmed when I looked at a condo presale and they didn’t even bother mocking up a show suite; instead, they just displayed the appliances. Apparently, I was supposed to shell out $400k after looking at a fridge.

#63 Herb on 11.03.11 at 5:41 am

You want to know where the money is, Guido? There’s a pile of it here –


It would be nice if our resident Kevin O’Learys were to prove the stats and conclusions wrong vice merely damning the whole thing as left-wing propaganda.

#64 Marcus Aurelius on 11.03.11 at 6:26 am

Excellent framing of the real situation, Garth. It’s funny (at least to me) because it is so true.

We truly are living in an inverted world, one in which values are inside out. Appearance over substance, debt makes you rich, savers are schmucks. Over here in Oz the bank websites have a little app that can calculate your ‘borrowing power’.

For me, reading this was made even richer by reading it as if spoken by Nathan Fillion (mystery writer in Castle). Try it, you’ll see!

#65 Cow Man on 11.03.11 at 6:52 am


Any possiblity of you becoming a Lecturer at Schulich School of Business? Your classes would overflow.

#66 I'm stupid on 11.03.11 at 6:55 am

So let me get this straight, Italy with a debt of 120% of GDP is in trouble, yet Canadian households with consumer debt at 150% are ok. I guess in the world of wacky accounting this makes sense. I must be stupid.

#67 Issues not egos on 11.03.11 at 7:27 am

2 Smoking Man on 10.31.11 at 9:40 pm
I real miss going to the my kids principals office and verbally ripping of his head and excrementing down their neck….Ah the good old days.
With out explaining why in grade ten I moved and registered in five different schools – just ended up burnt and took time out to recover and re-group. But I liked school, for many reasons maybe not as intended.
Certain factions in our lives preach that everybody is capable of everything. They do not support the requirements of achieving Marc Garneau type of abilities.
We do not educate our people about our legal system but we make criminals out of our citizens.
We do not educate our people about financial systems but we have support systems for our impoverished.
In sport violence is inflicted on others, in art it is self inflicted.
210 Smoking Man on 10.31.11 at 7:38 pm
Eveyone has an agenda? hum what’s mine?
In Conan the Barbarian the power over people was proven to be greater than the secret of steel.
In some, money replaces all other yardsticks.
Leonardo Da Vinci showed the world, in painting the Mona Lisa all they would need to know – perspective.

#68 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 7:38 am

am not saying they won’t be cut. In fact, I think they should be cut along with many other burdens. However this issue is not a front burner issue compared to others.
Actually Junius, I beg to differ. I believe pensions are a front burner issue.

If so much had not been guarantee, Canadians would not be so complacent, clueless and without money.

We would not have as many public servants loaded up with McMansions and condos bought with the equity on the mammoth. These guaranteed pensions have contributed to the bubble.

#69 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 7:39 am

These guaranteed pensions have contributed to the bubble.

The longer we wait, the bigger the problem.

#70 fancy_pants on 11.03.11 at 7:43 am

#61 iq42 on 11.03.11 at 4:59 am

Hey, at least you don’t have to wait for a RE crash to lose $, you get that privilege the moment you drive it off the lot.

#71 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 7:46 am

“Evil, parasitic financial author who provides free blog. Yes good target”

I’ve seen you in your black cowboy boots. Put a couple of plastic horns on your head, a violin and you could play the devil in the next Charlie Daniels band music video.

My horns are personal. Back off. — Garth

#72 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 7:51 am

They have a sense of entitlement that is unprecedented. No desire to start at the bottom and work hard to move up.
If you were entering a workforce knowing you were going to stay a couple of years in a job, would you focus on delayed gratification?

Yes kids are entitled but there are real structural reasons for this.

Wake up people.

#73 T.O. Bubble Boy on 11.03.11 at 7:54 am

#66 I’m stupid
So let me get this straight, Italy with a debt of 120% of GDP is in trouble, yet Canadian households with consumer debt at 150% are ok. I guess in the world of wacky accounting this makes sense. I must be stupid.

Great point… but a couple of key differences: GDP is the output by the Country (public + private), not just the Government. Household debt is measured against the income of that household, not the entire city that the household lives in.

Anyway – even if this is an apples-to-oranges comparison, the concept of Italy borrowing to pay for Government services vs. a Household borrowing on a mortgage are pretty similar. This is especially true when you think about the way it all gets justified: “I can make the monthly payments at today’s super-low rates, so obviously I can afford this debt!”

I guess that the citizens of the Country (wanting social services and pensions without caring about the debt) are the equivalent to a house-horny/HGTV-addicted wife (wanting granite & stainless)?

#74 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 8:04 am

Once again Garth, an article in stark contrast to what you are telling us. You have to admit,argument here has presented facts and figures.


Prices in the GTA going higher, at least according to this writer

That’s a pump piece for CHMC and BILD. Do you believe everything you read? (Except here, of course.) — Garth

#75 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 8:18 am

Circumstances in Italy insurmountable.
“knock down economic crash”


Once again, in stark contrast to your point of view Garth.

#76 Hammer1 on 11.03.11 at 8:29 am

#21 Canned Goods and Buckshot
thank you for verbalizing my thoughts exactly. Not a great post by Mr.T. Garth is just running out of new ideas. I agree that RE will sink a lot of folks and kill their dreams. It’s been their way of “making it”..totally wrong and foolish.
I got a great visual of Garth on a balcony, holding a glass of bubbly, gazing down on the masses, thinking with pride,”I saved and invested and I’ve made it..why can’t those people?” “They’re just idiots,they over invested in one asset, they could have all of this if they were smarter.” Well, maybe they could, after all that’s the point of this blog..but they don’t…
I don’t think there’s enough time now. At the end of a great ponzi scheme (the world financial system), the last ones piling in will burn and we will see that. Many will still believe that its possible to “make it big”. I don’t knock them,they gotta do what they gotta do,so to speak. Maybe a small number will squeak through, but most will not. (that’s why it’s 99% vs a small minority)
If you have a secure life now, just hang on it will be a good ride.

#77 aweb on 11.03.11 at 8:30 am

The protest in Halifax happens to be right outside of City Hall, where local-sized versions of the rich geting help from government despite repeated and noted failures – concert spending, failed expensive bids on international events, building a massive conference centre because, you know, everyone will want to fly to Halifax for conferences – are obvious and just a small part of the 1% playing by different rules and getting more help than average citizens could ever dream of, and within a stones throw of the local HQ for each of the major Canadian banks. Aside from trying to take over one of the bank buildings, the protest, such as it is, is in the most logical place.

The Remembrance cenotaph happens to be located in the “parade square”, but that has nothing to do with the location of the protest. The mayor has been using this as a blatant and obvious excuse to try and get rid of the protest. Protests are fine as long as no one in inconvenienced. I fully expect the protest to fade away, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have a point. It’s not a blanket hatred of all rich people, just the ones who are only rich because they system has been rigged for their benefit – read the entire banking and investment system. Making money with money gets easier the more you have – there’s a reason society should want to claw more of it back, and certainly not cover asses when things go wrong.

Sure hope you back off on the 11th and let the true heroes of democracy be honoured. — Garth

#78 Changing Pseudonym on 11.03.11 at 8:32 am

Garth said: “Fortunately there’s an effective and time-tested program for remaining impoverished, while managing to look middle class (to avoid arrest). It’s called real estate.”

This statement is true for those financial illiterates who follow the 10 step blueprint Garth outlines in his blog today. On the other hand, as bloggers such as Big Rider have pointed out over and over, real estate has made more millionaires over the years than any other asset class. Even the mighty Garth dabbles in it and has it as part of his portfolio. The real killer is debt and over leveraging. I even have a book from the 80s penned by you Garth in which you extolled the virtues of owning real estate.

Every asset has its day. — Garth

#79 househornyhousewife on 11.03.11 at 8:32 am


You are the king of sarcasm ! Hilarious post that hit the nail right on the head. Bravo !


#80 Be Leery of O'Leary on 11.03.11 at 8:39 am

Not First #42

Spot on with your comments on Kevin O’Leery (sic). The funniest part is that he will sell 1000s of books to suckers who don’t realize that he was at the right place, at the right time and found the right sucker. Even he admitted this in a chat with Amanda Lang. Yet I am sure this won’t deter the masses from buying his book. As Barnum said, “there is a fool born every day”.

#81 Pr on 11.03.11 at 8:40 am

…what’s the point of having any investments when the parasite bankers and criminal corporate class are manipulating markets and stealing public wealth, creating crises and controlling governments while enslaving the masses with debt… WOW Watch this, Video of Eurocrats in Action, Ripping Off Taxpayers and Running Into Walls to Avoid the Cameras. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xnMtc_QJ4-E

#82 JayDee on 11.03.11 at 8:42 am

Hilarious post today!… it’s so sad the majority think this way, even with all our education.

#83 Q on 11.03.11 at 9:05 am

Brilliant blog today Garth….maybe the lemmings will understand sarcasm….probably not, but you’ve tried everything else. The one thing you forgot to mention though, is that they should also lease their vehicles (preferably a top of the line mercedes or bmw…don’t want to miss out on another a depreciating asset), after all doesn’t every house painter and handyman in Oakville need a second vehicle?

#84 rower on 11.03.11 at 9:08 am


Exactly. Your comment sums it up nicely.

#85 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 9:25 am

#74 Garth to Bigrider- “pump piece from CMHC and BILD. Do you believe everything you read.(except here of course”

No of course I do not believe everything I read, but this ‘pump piece’ provides numbers, verified or not, supporting their respective position on the matter.

Garth, greenbelt restriction has had an enormous impact on supply levels of low density housing in GTA. Do you deny that fact?

I thought only Saskatoon was running out of land! — Garth

#86 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 9:32 am

#78 Changing pseudonym.

I want to make it clear that I still remain firmly bearish on the prospects of RE going forward in the GTA and especially in raincouver.

I only post the corresponding contrary evidence against my position, simply to test my own point of view and hear what our good(strongly opinionated) host has to say.

I think it is always necessary to periodically review a point of view to make sure argument for or against, still stands.

It is inconceivable to me that with all that RE has going against it right now, we continue to see prices and demand move higher in the GTA.

#87 Daisy Mae on 11.03.11 at 9:35 am

Mark L: “Lots of bitterness on this one.”


No bitterness. Exasperation, maybe — total frustration? Amazement?

#88 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 9:36 am

Garth to Bigrider #85 -” I thought only Saskatoon was running out of land”.

Ok, ok LOL I use that sarcastic argument with my builder buddies all the time, but Garth, nobody wants to commute to T.O from F-in Orillia or Collingwood !

Barrie is a metropolis on to itself already(pardon the slight exaggeration but you get my point)

Plenty of land in Ontario but thanks to our policies toward housing, not so much close to Bay and King.

#89 Silen on 11.03.11 at 9:39 am

The top destination among Chinese emigrating was the U.S., accounting for 40%, followed by Canada with 37%, Singapore with 14% and Europe with 11%, the survey showed.


#90 Fat Charlie on 11.03.11 at 9:40 am

Hey Garth,

Long time reader, first time poster. A few years back I followed some of your advice and diversified…I am currently finding myself with manageable debt, and a better understanding of “diversification”..even if I spell it incorrectly.

My question is, when would be the appropriate time to invest in that fancy sports car I always wanted? I am feeling the urge to fit in with the 99% and feel I am missing it in my portfolio. I also only have one TV. Should I diversify my investments to a second one?

#91 Kilby on 11.03.11 at 10:03 am

#68. Moneta.

It is unfortunate that you use upper management’s guaranteed pensions as an example of public servants pensions. After 21 years in the same government job (Tech) paying $59,000 per year and a total of 29 years total as a public employee I get a pension that clears $748 and medical. For this I contributed approximately $200 per month for my share (You DO have to pay) At age 60 I will be running on my own contributions for the first 8 or 9 years. Also, a lower wage was the trade for this little bit of security……Won’t affect our economy that much. But I do get $150 every two years for eyeglasses (I have to pay for the exam) Not that great! If I hadn’t invested in real estate, stocks and Term GIC’s religiously for the last 25 years I would be eating Meow Mix. Not sure what the plans for ex MP’s and MLA’s are but those are the ones that should raise your ire…..

#92 eaglebay - Parksville on 11.03.11 at 10:13 am

#45 from kits on 11.02.11 at 11:55 pm

Too many trouble makers in this so called “OWS”.
How about the other 150 millions?
I’m part of the other 50% and OK with it.
99% is a fraud and very misleading.

All is well in the Duchy of Parksville? — Garth

#93 Kris D. on 11.03.11 at 10:28 am

#21 Canned Goods and Buckshot
Your last paragraph is spectacular – Never read a better summary of the general public’s unease with the financial system. Gonna memorize your words – To use as pickup lines, of course.

#94 stevo on 11.03.11 at 10:43 am


You should really, explicitly label today’s blog entry as “SATIRE”. You don’t want one of your readers to “pull a Rick Perry”.


#95 HSC on 11.03.11 at 10:43 am

It’s time to stop picking on granite countertops. They’re so 2010. Quartz is the new granite!

Hey, maybe if I cash out part of my RRSP, I too can have a lovely new quartz countertop. Afterall, isn’t that the god-given right of every citizen? And if things don’t work out, I can always go to downtown Toronto and join the other 99% in occupying a park that no one cared about until it got occupied.

#96 Dr. WAYNE on 11.03.11 at 10:53 am

“A word to the wise ain’t necessary. It’s the stupid ones who need the advice.” –Bill Cosby

#97 cory on 11.03.11 at 10:58 am

“focus on the appliances & countertops”

Love it Garth – it’s so true.

I think young people nowadays feel they can never truly get wealthy so this is their way of pretending that they already are.

#98 Herb on 11.03.11 at 11:01 am

#21 Canned Goods and Buckshot

I heartily second Kris. D’s #93. Now how do we get your words out to all those who describe the Occupiers as aimless and clueless?

And where are our resident Kevin O’Learys when their facts and logic are called for?

#99 disciple on 11.03.11 at 11:01 am

#85 bigrider… “greenbelts” are land assets that have been stolen from Canadian citizens and promised as collateral for debts incurred by government lackeys. 407 ETR was one such similar, although not quite exact method of wealth transfer. Both the US and Canadian governments have succeeded in peaking the book value of debt owed per capita to foreign interests, that one of the only valuable assets left is land, to provide as collateral or guarantees on the restructuring of these shadow loans. And then, they have the nerve to add to the fraud by promoting this as an excuse for high land valuations? They’ve knocked off two birds with one stone. Your real rulers never seem to sleep.

#100 Daisy Mae on 11.03.11 at 11:03 am

Greek PM’s bailout referendum scrapped, sources tell AP

For the latest on this breaking story, visit http://links.cbc.ca/a/l.x?t=jncickejeopnicdnefggfekp&M=1&v=4

#101 Mister Sanity on 11.03.11 at 11:07 am

The fraction of the 99% calling themselves the 99% and complaining about the 1% are by and large a bunch of whiners. Read this:


There’s nothing new in income inequality here. Coyne writes in the paper issue that it’s really only the top 1% of the 1%, or 0.01%, that has really seen income grow. Some of these 99% should really pick up some more educated literature, like Macleans/Time/TheEconomist, or Minyanville, before blaming the 1%.

The real enemy here is capitalism and how it’s corrupted our government. We’re all screwed.

#102 gladiator on 11.03.11 at 11:07 am

Hey, at least Kevin O’Leary wrote a book that I will buy for my kids for when they grow up.
Despite the fact that he may have been lucky, I like Kevin’s point that you have to work hard, be realistic and focused on making money in an entrepreneurial endeavour. No one will give you stuff for free and you gotta put 100% of yourself into what you do in order to succeed.
This is enough for me to like his point and have a new weapon in my arsenal (his book) against the sense of entitlement of my kids, if they will ever try to have it. If my kids are wrong, I tell them they’re wrong – and don’t say “good try!!!” or “try again!” like they do in schools. Life slaps you on the face very hard for your mistakes and I will prepare my kids for that with tools that I find appropriate – even the ones from “Mr. Wonderful”.

#103 disciple on 11.03.11 at 11:09 am

#91 Kilby, you make a good point about the difference between managers and lowly servants in terms of pensions. But, I don’t think Moneta was criticizing public pensions per se (I could be wrong) but the fact that empty promises were made. So someone, somewhere, engaged in fibbery. Surprise, surprise. What a tangled web we weave…

How do we begin solving this imminent problem? Tax the rich more, or if we’re hungry and 72, eat them…LOL. But it’s not funny, I don’t know why I’m laughing…sorry.

#104 Mister Sanity on 11.03.11 at 11:12 am

#85 bigrider

I agree that the greenbelt has limited low-density development in the GTA; however, it’s not leapfrogging to places like Innisfil. The supply issue should help cushion the extend of any correction in low density housing prices, but they’re not immune – although condos are the real market subject to a major correction, the current price of low density housing in the GTA is not sustainable at current levels. I just saw a flyer for 38′ lots 20 minutes north of Toronto city limits (Steeles) STARTING at $550k. Nevermind the prices in the city itself – where that same 38′ lot will cost you double, triple or more depending on the neighbourhood.

#105 Mister Sanity on 11.03.11 at 11:12 am

That ‘not’ in the previous post should be ‘now’.

#106 Junius on 11.03.11 at 11:16 am

#68 Moneta,

If we added up all the causes of the housing bubble from cheap credit to the CMHC to investor speculation we would be hard pressed to rate government pensions as even a fraction of the cause.

Again, all social programs and government pensions are going to be under review going forward. However i dont buy the right wing rhetoric they are a cause. Just another symptom of our largesse.

#107 Sean on 11.03.11 at 11:30 am

“For example, that $300,000 loan amortized over three decades with 4% interest means you end up paying $85,593 over five years, and still owe $271,200. How cool is that.”

Everyone needs to understand this…I don’t think anyone does. 30 years is a long ass time too. Those numbers are with 4%… is that really gonna be the average number for 30 years???

#108 detalumis on 11.03.11 at 11:46 am

#20 A 20 year old kitchen may be in great shape and may be functional but it is almost certainly not aesthically pleasing. It’s the same as if I wore 20 year old clothes. Keeping kitchens and bathrooms updated is as necessary as maintaining a good furnace and roof, without it your house becomes in realtor speak “well kept” meaning “owned by a senior citizen and requiring 50K in updates”. It’s akin to being one of the myriad senior ladies in my area that brings out the 30 year clothes each season, those 1980’s linebacker shoulder pad jackets and dresses are still “in good condition”.

#109 Peakoilist on 11.03.11 at 11:55 am

#42 Not 1st
Seriously, how cna someone run a blog and then misunderstand the issues so completely.

Ah, ever heard of sarcasm? — Garth
Garth, you kill me !
Now, if you’re going down that road of political/economic satire, ala Stephen Colbert..I love that guy..then I’m totally with ya !
Then we’re all gonna know, knudge, knudge, wink , wink..that you are really with all of us
Then I think you’ll have less cranky people on here..

#110 Bankers hate democracy on 11.03.11 at 11:55 am

Looks like the bankers said NO to democracy. Bankers/elite HATE democracy they can’t stand it. This is a dark day from the people of greece and democracy.

Greek PM scraps bailout referendum; no plans to resign: reports

Funny how the so called capitalist bankers HATE capitalism and love socialism for themselves (bailout)

#111 Van guy waiting on 11.03.11 at 12:05 pm

In a pre-sale condo, the granite and stainless steel package is around $5000 extra. And the real cost over the laminate counters and regular appliances is under $2000.

#112 pbrasseur on 11.03.11 at 12:42 pm


Don’t you love this Papandreou fellow politician?

I’m sure you do ;-)

#113 The InvestorsFriend on 11.03.11 at 1:02 pm


Canadian credit card delinquency and loss rates remain remarkably low.


Thank goodness, once can use a line of credit or a MasterCard to pay a Visa bill.

As long as banks will lend new money to repay old debts no one needs ever be late on a payment, much less default on it.

Same applies to debt of countries… and all Ponzi schemes…

Just be sure your estate is large enough to pay off all the bills in the end.

Countries live forever, so no need to ever settle up there. Just keep a borrowin’

#114 Casey on 11.03.11 at 1:11 pm

Hi Garth:

First-time poster, long-time reader here, … from Calgary!

Anyway, there is this thread at fool.com on Vancouver housing, link:


… it’s about 185 posts at last count. Last post, I quote , states:

“Personally, I love this post, but it has more relevance to me as I live in the Lower Mainland. One thing I have come to grips with recently is that housing prices in Vancouver and area are not going to drop. Lets do some math…

China has 1.3 Billion people.

From Tim’s article roughly 1 million have more than $1.6M. That’s the low end of the worth scale.

Let’s say 1% of those people want to emigrate to Vancouver. That’s 10,000 people of moderate to significant wealth wanting to move to Vancouver.

Let’s assume roughly the same numbers for India.

So that’s 20,000 people who have significantly more money than the average Canadian living in the Lower Mainland wanting to buy homes here. My guess is that 1% is low too.

Last year in China the number of wealthy grew by 10%. That means every year there are 2,000 new people from China and India who want to buy homes in Vancouver. That will certainly skew a market. It also doesn’t take into account those who are buying investment properties here.

Simon, who no longer expects a major slump in Vancouver home prices….”

I suspect, you just may want to have li’l fun with it! No?


This logic will be highly amusing in a year. — Garth

#115 Junius on 11.03.11 at 1:18 pm

#110 Bankers Hate Democracy,

You said, “Funny how the so called capitalist bankers HATE capitalism and love socialism for themselves (bailout)”

While I am not sure I would call bailout socialism you are very correct that there is a clear double standard. Large corporations also call for “Free Markets” only when they can maintain control through anti-competitive measures. However watch how fast they run to the government when they are threatened.

Our current media business is just such an example. We are now heavily consolidated in broadcasting with Bell, Shaw, Rogers and Quebecor collectively owning almost 80% of the broadcasting system. Bell, in particular, is aggressively pursuing such practices. Meanwhile they are pushing hard for regulations against the Over-the-Top providers such as Netflix, Google and Apple.

Capitalism needs to be saved from those that are exploiting it for their narrow ends.

#116 cory on 11.03.11 at 1:20 pm

#108 – Detalumis

I would rather have an aesthetically pleasing bank account than an aesthetically pleasing kitchen. Just sayin…

#117 eaglebay - Parksville on 11.03.11 at 1:21 pm

The Duchy of Parksville is very quiet this time of year.
The whole of Oceanside is quiet.
There are tons of “for sale” signs. They include the so so accomodations to the many McMansions.
The local rag, Oceanside Star, did mention today about a jump in home prices of 6% for the area from the Cowichan Valley to the Comox Valley.
There are 2,695 SFH listings and sales were at 301 for October 2011 compared to 243 for October 2010.
The average price was $325,308 for SFH.
There are commercial and industrial spaces for rent or lease everywhere.
More than half the population in Oceanside are advanced boomers. It makes me feel young again.
The fishing is great but hunting sucks this year.
Renting for now, waiting for the right deal. When? Who knows. Our large 3 br, 2 bath on an acreage cost $1,000 per month plus BC Hydro.
Could have had a better deal but rushed into it.

#118 rana on 11.03.11 at 1:22 pm

Great post Garth- its interesting how stupid people are. Everyone wants to live like a baller but no one wants to actually do what is necessary to actually be a baller.
Saving, not going into debt or working hard.
People at the top are there for a reason- yes some of them scam and manipulate- but truely if you are one of those occupy people protesting- you have terribly screwed up your own fiances and then you do what makes most sense- blame someone else for your problems.

#119 Billy in Nobleton on 11.03.11 at 1:31 pm

#20 Marc L on 11.02.11 at 10:20 pm

Dear Marc L.

Sharing personal stoires on garths blog. Very trendy!
Anyone want to hear more great stories from Marc?

#120 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 1:36 pm

#68 Moneta,

If we added up all the causes of the housing bubble from cheap credit to the CMHC to investor speculation we would be hard pressed to rate government pensions as even a fraction of the cause.
You have over 20% of the workforce living beyond their means (not saving enough because their pensions will probably get cut or deflated) and you think it’s not an issue?

#121 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 1:39 pm

Again, all social programs and government pensions are going to be under review going forward. However i dont buy the right wing rhetoric they are a cause. Just another symptom of our largesse.
I don’t like the right wign rethorci either. But when you’re looking to get your way, you cling to things that are broken.

If the pension system was not broken, they could have chosen another easy target.

#122 Steven Rowlandson on 11.03.11 at 1:40 pm

I think it helps if one sees democracy, communism and the new world order as a corrupt ,false political religion that is worshipped by the misled masses and exploited to the fullest by the elites. Other than that one might as well send the whole thing to the dust bin of history and do one’s own thing. Some times you have to start over from scratch to make things right or at least tolerable.

#123 jess on 11.03.11 at 1:40 pm

romney and stanford
This is why some are peeved. And Romney is for the tax holiday.
CTJ (citizens for tax justice ) looked at 280 companies, all of them members of the Fortune 500, and found that “while the federal corporate tax code ostensibly requires big corporations to pay a 35 percent corporate income tax rate, on average, the 280 corporations in our study paid only about half that amount.” And those who paid even half the statutory corporate tax rate paid far more than many of their competitors.

In fact, in the last three years, 78 corporations had at least one year where they paid no federal income tax at all, while 30 corporations paid not a dime over the entire three years. Those 30 corporations paid nothing, even though they made $160 billion in profits over that period:

– Seventy-eight of the 280 companies paid zero or less in federal income taxes in at least one year from 2008 to 2010…In the years they paid no income tax, these companies earned $156 billion in pretax U.S. profits. But instead of paying $55 billion in income taxes as the 35 percent corporate tax rate seems to require, these companies generated so many excess tax breaks that they reported negative taxes (often receiving outright tax rebate checks from the U.S. Treasury), totaling $21.8 billion. These companies’ “negative tax rates” mean that they made more after taxes than before taxes in those no-tax years.

– Thirty corporations paid less than nothing in aggregate federal income taxes over the entire 2008-10 period. These companies, whose pretax U.S. profits totaled $160 billion over the three years, included: Pepco Holdings (–57.6% tax rate), General Electric (–45.3%), DuPont (–3.4%), Verizon (–2.9%), Boeing (–1.8%), Wells Fargo (–1.4%) and Honeywell (–0.7%).


#124 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 1:43 pm

The reason why I keep on bringing up the pension system is to warn people that something is going to happen there whether we like it or not.

Many still have time to plan. Good luck!

#125 HDJ on 11.03.11 at 1:50 pm

Good old real estate! Purchased first home in 1970 for $27,500. Bought and sold a few times, paid off the $25,000 mortgage, and now retired in a $1.5 million house. Over 40 years the initial real estate investment has grown in value by $1,472,500, tax free. And this amount is greater than the 40 years of taxed income I earned working from nine-to-five. Just lucky, I suppose.

#126 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 1:56 pm

And IMO the pension situation is a hufe problem that needs to be adressed ASAP.

Why should 60% of Canadians who are pensionless contribute to fund public pensions that have been too generous?

That makes it even harder for the pensionless to fund their own pensions today!

#127 Mr. Plow on 11.03.11 at 2:04 pm

#56 EdmontonGuyHere

Dude its $140,000 what do you expect!?

It’ll never be low enough is my guess. Prices could drop another 20% and people would still be complaining that its not enough.

#128 Ron on 11.03.11 at 2:16 pm

Greek PM must be either politically suicidal or a genious.

In one stroke he has solidified his position by bringing to the forefront the question of “put-up or shut-up” to the opposition and the Greek people.

Well done.

Then again, Mr. G of the former USSR didn’t last that long under his new reforms…….did he.

#129 jess on 11.03.11 at 2:17 pm

Bankers love deregulation and competition

Marquette Decision in the 70’s
Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act of 1980
Alternative Mortgage Transactions Parity Act of 1982
Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act of 1994
Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA), also referred to as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, repealed part of Glass-Steagall, tearing down the walls between banking, insurance and investments.

“language arbitrage”

Mayor Bloomberg blames congress. Would he rather leave the solution up to the trained financial investment professionals? Federal Reserve data concluded that 84 percent of the subprime mortgages in 2006 were issued by private lending institutions. Private firms made nearly 83 percent of the subprime loans to low- and moderate-income borrowers that year.

The Asylum

#130 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 11.03.11 at 2:19 pm

#27 Toon Town Boomer — “This housing bubble is hurting so many people in so many ways.” — Leads to another question: Has this whole thing been engineered by TPTB, not only by removing money from the system in general, but to increase their own wealth with what is left of an increasingly shrinking pie?

#44 Davey Boy — “It all comes down to discipline.” — Correct. Pay yourself first (20% of gross paycheque into a TFSA). The rest can be used to pay off bills, etc.

#51 Chaos — How the hell am I, and where have I been? Great to see you back! I’m toddling off into the next worlds for more adventures. Care to join me?

#59 Humpty Dumpty — Good link and post. Seems most in the west are under-estimating Iran’s capabilities, not the least of which are China and Russia. Israel is the only MEast country with nuke WMD.

#66 I’m stupid — “. . . Italy with a debt of 120% of GDP is in trouble, yet Canadian households with consumer debt at 150% are ok.” — Not quite.

The Grim Reaper pays a visit to all, no matter their circumstances. Freefall time — Look out below!

#82 JayDee — “it’s so sad the majority think this way, even with all our education.” — That is where Smoking Man’s points about education are right on the money.

Teachers have been taught to train people to become robots, to only follow orders because they themselves were taught by corrupt teachers.

It is quite simple to ignore the establishment and society, and do what one knows, not thinks, is right for themselves. That is what TPTB don’t want — an entire civilization capable of looking out for their own (and others) best interests.

#99 disciple — “greenbelts” are land assets that have been stolen . . .” — Exactly, and this is what the WH is doing under Eminent Domain. Parallels? You bet, working in harmony with one another.

#116 cory — “I would rather have an aesthetically pleasing bank account . . .” — With a monthly income so we could provide for ourselves . . . are you Garth’s ghost-writer? ‘Cuz you’ve hit the nail on the head!

#122 Steven Rowlandson — Pretty well describes it. Most of the so-called ‘leaders’ in the world today (certainly all in the west) are a bunch of yes-men, following the dictates of TPTB (see Greece’s example).

They are not here to help us, that’s fer sure.

#131 Mister Obvious on 11.03.11 at 2:26 pm

#125 HDJ

Its high time to crystallize those gains before the supply of greater fools dries up.

#132 penpal on 11.03.11 at 2:35 pm

@ # 125 Hdj

Have you sold your house?

If not you have no gain, untaxable or otherwise.

And your point, other than to be self congratulatory, was?

#133 Free Market on 11.03.11 at 2:40 pm

#127 Mr. Plow

Its only worth what someone else is willing to pay. SOL if no one wants to pay 140K. lol

#134 Mister Sanity on 11.03.11 at 2:47 pm

Interesting story on Toronto’s low-rise housing ‘shortage’:


#135 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 2:49 pm

Letting you know Garth that Satish Rai, manager of the largest bond mutual fund in the country at TD Bank, as well as various other mandates, argues for prolonged low interest rates for quote “years to come”

At a private luncheon today in Markham ,the out performing money manager was asked what his thoughts are on ‘canadian housing bubble’. His answer was that immigration rates ,coupled with low interest rates and possibly lower to come, will bouy housing prices higher. Add in the fact that we are only halfway through a resource super cycle that will see Canada’s ‘attractiveness’ only improve, and housing prices will be stable or only move higher.

Someone worth listening too. No dummy that’s for sure.

A little birdie told me.

(a) A bond fund manager has a vested interest in low rates since a rising cost of funds would decimate his performance (and bonus) and, (b) since when is a bond guy a real estate expert? — Garth

#136 I'm stupid on 11.03.11 at 2:50 pm

#73 T.O Bubble boy

I understand what GDP is. I know it’s not apples to apples. Household debt is actually worst than the national debt of Italy because unlike countries household cannot tax to increase revenue. Most households are stretched so thin they can’t even cut costs.

It doesn’t take a genius to realize why household debt is increasing quarter after quarter. Or why every second ad on daytime radio is advertising debt solutions or payday loans. We all know where this is going to lead and the implications are going to go far beyond real estate.

#137 Peakoilist on 11.03.11 at 3:04 pm

#118 rana
yeah, just go ahead and judge all of “those people protesting”. Feel better now?
You may be one of “them” one day….just sayin’

#138 Beach Girl on 11.03.11 at 3:09 pm

I really don’t get the OCCUPIERS. Yes, these are nasty times, but what are they really saying. I understand jobs are hard to find, pay is low. But sitting in a freezing tent isn’t going to accomplish much. They need a spokesperson, to deliver the message that most people aren’t getting, I am not. We can’t kill rich people. Or eat them. I imagine most are getting welfare of $585 a month and making friends and not having to pay rent. I never criticize people on assistance. But these people are just boring everyone. I imagine there are a few bongs rolling around those sacred grounds.

#139 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 3:24 pm

#119 Billy in Nobleton on 11.03.11 at 1:31 pm

#20 Marc L on 11.02.11 at 10:20 pm

Dear Marc L.

Sharing personal stoires on garths blog. Very trendy!
Anyone want to hear more great stories from Marc?


Glad I could entertain you ‘Billy’.

Anybody with a name like ‘Billy’ probably still goes to Mommy’s for lunch three times a week.

Get a girlfriend for Chrissake.

#140 Van guy waiting on 11.03.11 at 3:30 pm

“since when is a bond guy a real estate expert?” — Garth

This is not a fair comment. Some experts are saying that Canada RE is not going to tank. Experts also said US RE was solid. Look what happened.

Look most of us on this blog (including me) predict that doom is coming. Are we %100 percent right? Who knows. Until that happens, we are not proven right. And if it does, we are all experts.

#141 The Econoom on 11.03.11 at 3:31 pm

Garth, what have you to say about Bernanke’s recent commitment to keep rates low until mid-2013? I’d say we’re in for a wait of greater than one year before the impact of increasing rates really hits home….

#142 Habs 76-79 on 11.03.11 at 3:33 pm

HDJ said:

Good old real estate! Purchased first home in 1970 for $27,500. Bought and sold a few times, paid off the $25,000 mortgage, and now retired in a $1.5 million house. Over 40 years the initial real estate investment has grown in value by $1,472,500, tax free. And this amount is greater than the 40 years of taxed income I earned working from nine-to-five. Just lucky, I suppose.


First, why don’t you sell it then and cash out?
Second, it was not as tax free as you think. You paid 40 years of property taxes all indexed to the assessed value. You also paid many other taxes incl. sales taxes to maintain and repair said house and property for 40 years.

If you do sell and you do get $1.5 Mill. (we would have to see if that would be) you need to buy another home if you want to remain a home owner and that will eat up a chunk of the money you made from the sale of the first house. Or do you plan to move to down town Vancouver and join the Occupy Vancouver group with a pop tent?

#143 Young Old Fart on 11.03.11 at 3:36 pm

Sure hope you back off on the 11th and let the true heroes of democracy be honoured. — Garth



#144 zeeman1 on 11.03.11 at 3:41 pm

#34 Fool Me Once

You just described the problem with the education system while Criticizing someone for being uneducated.

#145 Young Old Fart on 11.03.11 at 3:41 pm

#90 Fat Charlie on 11.03.11 at 9:40 am
Hey Garth,

My question is, when would be the appropriate time to invest in that fancy sports car I always wanted? I am feeling the urge to fit in with the 99% and feel I am missing it in my portfolio….


When you can walk into the Audi dealership, say “I’ll take the white one”, write a cheque and walk out!

#146 Peakoilist on 11.03.11 at 3:41 pm

#119 Billy in Nobleton
I thought Marc’s post was very relevant to RE and the state of people’s financial affairs these days.
and who are you?…are you new here?

#147 disciple on 11.03.11 at 3:43 pm

#126 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 1:56 pm
And IMO the pension situation is a hufe problem that needs to be adressed ASAP.
Why should 60% of Canadians who are pensionless contribute to fund public pensions that have been too generous?
That makes it even harder for the pensionless to fund their own pensions today!
Right on! This explains how, indirectly, central banks have stolen from the unborn, for if the Ponzi continues, the next generation must pay, though they do not yet exist!

#148 cory on 11.03.11 at 3:49 pm


Even the most beautifully decorated and up to date houses will look dated in about 10 years. So for the average family to re-do every bathroom and kitchen every 10 years is probably not realistic for the average pocketbook. I know for my family it’s more important for us to provide for my kids and have something in retirement then to have granite countertops and hard to clean stainless appliances.

#149 Westernman on 11.03.11 at 3:58 pm

Just when I thought I’d heard the most stunned comment ever you come along with the best yet with the keeping the appearance of a kitchen updated is as important as a new roof or furnace.
Congratulations! you are now the new lord of the idiots… you must be female – even the dumbest man wouldn’t make a statement like that…

You should know about idiots. — Garth

#150 Peakoilist on 11.03.11 at 4:04 pm

#138 Beach Girl
If the protesters are boring or bothering you, then don’t watch.you have a right to change the channel. The discomfort of a growing number of folks in Europe and US, (coming here soon)..they are not trying to get their message to you anyway, most of us can’t change the system..the shouting is meant to reach the ears of people much higher up. The belief of the protesters is that freezing in a tent is worth it, if it achieves its desired effect. If you’re feeling uncomfortable with it all, just imagine how the power centres are feeling about it. My question is ,how will powerful people react to the demands?
I’m not at the point where I would feel the need to protest, however, some day soon I will travel down and walk around the Toronto protest areas and listen and try to gain understanding . This is history in the making and it’s all about being a good citizen among my fellow citizens. (just hope the cops don’t try to provoke a riot..I would look great with a tear gas cylinder in my chest…just jokin’)

#151 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 4:14 pm

Garth’s reply to Bigrider in #135 regarding Satish Rai TD fund manager.

a) Satish runs several mandates including equity just to be clear. Stocks historically cheap relative to bonds is his argument. Look him up.

b) ‘Since when is a bond guy a real estate expert?’ you say.

Please tell me who or what qualifies a person as a “real estate expert” ?

#152 Smoking Man on 11.03.11 at 4:14 pm

Lots of rumors floating around today hehe:)
Bata test went well.
Now I just need a buyer for the basterd……..

#2 WI BOOMER on 11.02.11 at 9:32 pm
Folow? Copy Cat LOL

#153 X on 11.03.11 at 4:14 pm

re #135 – Keep in mind that the speaker you were listening to is employed by one of the largest mortgage lenders in the country.

#154 Westernman on 11.03.11 at 4:16 pm

You are right – I check in here once a day for an idiot updated and am seldom disappointed.

The quota increases with your arrival. — Garth

#155 RJ on 11.03.11 at 4:17 pm

#39 JanusZ
You clearly illustrate how dumbed down the 99% are and that they (you) deserve all the poverty and debt you are likely mired in. If you cannot accept good advice to get out of the hole then go look at BCREA website info and plan your life from there; forget the ladder, stay in the dark. Plato must have seen this coming.

#156 John saccy on 11.03.11 at 4:19 pm

Garth, Please remind me not to read your posts at work. Hilllllarious!

#157 Philosophy on 11.03.11 at 4:22 pm

Funny how an individual’s ideas about life change as they become wealthy.

I don’t see any rich people holding up “eat the rich” signs.

We need consistency (and rationality) in terms of morals and ideology–loaded or not.\

Inconsistency is a dangerous creature.

#158 eaglebay - Parksville on 11.03.11 at 4:24 pm

#123 jess on 11.03.11 at 1:40 pm

So, what are you getting at?
Some corporation pay taxes, some pay less and some don’t pay any. What’s the problem?
Who do you think actually pays corporate taxes?
Think consumers. You and I. The final user of the products or services.
I expect a decent return on my investments in corporations. If not, no investors no corporation.
More taxes, more price increases. I want my dividends and appreciation on my capital.
Stop whining and check reality.

#159 rana on 11.03.11 at 4:50 pm

#150 peakoilist
well are we not all here to make judgements and proclaim our opinions. The protestors sure are doing that- and yes you are correct in saying that we can change the channel and turn a blind eye- that is exactly what I do.
I am not one of them and probably won’t be because I am too busy working and caring for my family- I will say that it is unfortunate that some people cannot be as well invested in learning what we need to do to protect ourselves from big corporations and the government. Since when did they ever have communities and society in their best interest. Their interest is scaming, taxing and evading all responsibility. Unfortunately they do prey on the niave and uneducated. I have little tolerance for those who choose not to live a lifestyle they can afford and indebt themselves and sell their souls to Satan.

#160 Westernman on 11.03.11 at 5:04 pm

You are lucky to have me on your blog…someone has to tell it like it is…

#161 Junius on 11.03.11 at 5:07 pm

#120 Moneta,

You said, “You have over 20% of the workforce living beyond their means (not saving enough because their pensions will probably get cut or deflated) and you think it’s not an issue?”

I usually like your posts but today your are just not reading. When did I say this was “not an issue”? I clearly stated otherwise.

However you are clearly wrong in your assertion that this is a major factor in creating the housing bubble.

#162 Abitibi Doug on 11.03.11 at 5:08 pm

I’m not sure else to say except what a good posting! Years ago some economist said I’ve been poor and I’ve been wealthy, and wealthy is much better. I’m glad I didn’t follow those commandments.

#163 HDJ on 11.03.11 at 5:13 pm

#142 Habs 76-79

My point is: real estate has been a winning financial ride for those lucky enough to have jumped onto the housing wagon back in the early 1970s. The enormous profits that accrued required neither brains nor effort. In fact, they were unearned, and probably undeserved. Dumb luck.

#164 Junius on 11.03.11 at 5:15 pm

#138 Beach Girl,

You said, “I don’t really understand the occupiers. Yes, these are nasty times, but what are they really saying.”

They are saying they are tired of a system that has failed them. They are tired of 2 sets of laws. Banksters who have committed fraud and made a mess of the economy are bailed out while homeowners who did everything they were expected to do are living in negative equity or being foreclosed upon.

They are tired of the governments finding trillions of dollars for bank bailouts, unnecessary wars and other pork while nothing for the unemployed.

#165 Bond junkie on 11.03.11 at 5:17 pm

# 135 bigrider

Just for clarity’s sake, Satish is no longer involved in the day to day management of that fund (he’s the CIO), but his comments should be well respected by those that frequent this blog, they’re actually spot on. Garth I am a big fan and do enjoy your daily colloquialisms but you can’t deny the fact that you regularly draw upon the correlation between asset prices (homes) and interest rates as ONE of the fundamental arguments in favour of your thesis. So hence with regard to b), I would say that in many cases a guy who’s only job is to anticpate the future direction of interest rates has a better understanding of the variables in both the domestic and macro economy that will ultimately determine the future value of real estate in this country. Further to this point, who would you say qualifies as an expert in this particular field nowadays anyways?? Given you regular criticism, certainly not the good folks at CREA?? If not them, Sherry Cooper? Please don’t say Sherry Cooper.

#166 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 5:25 pm

#153 X to Bigrider- ” keep in mind the speaker you are listening to is employed by one of the largest mortgage lenders”

Very well aware.

Let me remind you X, short of staging a ‘protest’ of ourselves, in front of lending offices of such lender, us RE bears, of which I have been for several years, continue to watch in utter shock and complete defiance of reason, as to ever higher RE demand and prices here in the GTA and Raincouver.

Before we douse the fuel or message of the pumpers , let’s make sure that the wood we carry is not wet.

#167 Smoking Man on 11.03.11 at 5:26 pm

For a second I thought greece became democratic. You know ask the people if they want to be debt slaves for ever. Ah but the people that preach the D word the most it said are u out of your mind. We decide not the usless eaters. Not this is going to get good.

‘Keep your eye on oakland kids. The insighting insident in waiting

#168 Drake on 11.03.11 at 5:30 pm

Problem with getting a building “inspection” is the building inspectors are in the pockets of the realtors. If they find too many problems and scare away a buyer, the realtor recommends other inspectors the next time. They’re reliant on the realtors. You’re left with getting Mike Holmes to do your inspection. LOL!

#169 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 5:32 pm


What I also want to say, is the economic environment has thrown every possible wrench into the possible derailment of our beloved RE in Canada, yet higher we go in both demand and price.

Short of staging a protest of our own in front of lending offices and HAM drop off points, I don’t know what other catalyst could derail RE continued success.

I guess we just need a black swan event of some kind unknown to any of us yet.

#170 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 5:34 pm

#163 HDJ.


Dumb Luck is exactly what it was.

Humility becomes you.

#171 ballingsford on 11.03.11 at 5:49 pm

Great post Garth! There seems to be a lot of newbies to this site lately and most seem to be a bit mixed-up or are realtors! Any chance of sending them some meds online to help them out a bit?

#172 blase on 11.03.11 at 5:54 pm

This clip from Conan O’Brien confirms what Garth has been saying about the media re-printing press releases verbatim. Sad but funny:


#173 the Phantom on 11.03.11 at 5:55 pm


Do I detect a mild degree of irony in today’s post?

Have a great day!

the Phantom

#174 Ron on 11.03.11 at 5:59 pm

#168 Drake

Who the hell uses a Realtor recommended inspector anyway????

Why don´t you just hand over your cheque book and be done with it.

#175 Habs76-79 on 11.03.11 at 6:03 pm


Yes, I agree with you, those who bought back in the 70’s can come off looking pretty good but they have not achieved all the wealth the potential selling price of their home may bring. Of course it also varies depending on where you live. Even though most real estate in Canada is silly priced and ultimately unsustainable, in certain areas it’s worse.

That said many who bought and may own real estate forget to factor in things such as years of compounding interest in on a mortgage, years of ever escalating property taxes, years of other costs from maintenance to repairs including many sales taxes and levies on stuff purchased for such home/property maintenance and repairs. But finally once they sell they if they want to remain a home owner must buy and even if they downsize to another housing unit, these homes also grew in costs too, eating into the amount they may get once they sell their current house.

OBTW lets not forget all too many who used their houses as a ATM machines taking out Home Equity Loans usually to buy MORE CRAP and stuff they could not likely otherwise afford with more usury compound interest applied, eating into more of the house’s original equity.

DEBT SLAVES! for all too many thinking they are rich though.

Of course most people carry some debt and most of us carry or have carried silly debt to buy things we have/had no business in buying, but for all too many they fail to see the potential harm in such.

#176 Moneta on 11.03.11 at 6:21 pm

106Junius on 11.03.11 at 11:16 am
I never said public pension largesse was the leading cause of the bubble.

I said it contributed to the real estate bubble and the underfunding IMO is a front burner issue.

#177 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 6:22 pm

Question for anyone.

If it is indeed immigration that is causing our unaffordable real estate market and the slew of problems associated with it ,not the least of which is the crushing gridlock daily, why are we allowing so much of it?

Admittedly, I do not understand what our immigration policies are

#178 Kalergie on 11.03.11 at 6:24 pm

This was your best post so far, Garth!

#179 Westernman on 11.03.11 at 6:34 pm

Why are our masters in Ottawa allowing so much immigration? Because immigrants will work (generally)
for lesser wages than people who have been here for several generations. Our owners in Ottawa need low wage slaves to work the machinery of their plantation (so to speak ). I’m sure this will upset many here on this blog but that is in fact why so much third world immigration is allowed and encouraged.

Our immigration quotas have remained static for many years, in the 250,000 range. This is slightly less than the annual number of deaths in Canada. — Garth

#180 Drake on 11.03.11 at 6:40 pm

#174 Ron – you need to put yourself in their shoes. Even if you go with ‘your own” inspector, he gets your business once, but if he gives a good report, he can get your realtor’s business many times over. I just don’t trust them at all.

#181 Westernman on 11.03.11 at 6:44 pm

Re Immigration Quotas … source?

Here’s today’s news. Would you like me to come over and wash the car? — Garth

#182 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 11.03.11 at 7:05 pm

7:12 clip and 1:26 clip WW3 ready to go? #167 Smoking Man — “Keep your eye on oakland kids. The insighting insident in waiting” [Noted — see the clips]
#169 bigrider — “I guess we just need a black swan event of some kind unknown to any of us yet.” — How about Israel pulling another Fukushima on Iran (with their non-existent WMD), or the US orchestrating another 9-11? They have done it before and will do it again.
Avoid credit, stay healthy! 3:17 clip Are the super powers (elite) breaking down? Stranger things have happened; Simple Key, but no one has seen it yet; 53:13 clip Text as well. “The DOW is totally out of phase with the financial news. There is no doubt the markets are being rigged.” wrh.com; Democracy or Finance Choose wisely! Debt Horizon doesn’t exist. We’re too far beyond it; Reality “Do you see how it works now?” Answered in the link; BoA Is it not more humane to take a wounded institution and put it to sleep for once and all?
See the Image “I think that wars should be fought by the people who profit from them, and they should use swords, so they have to look the people they murder right in the eyes.” wrh.com. Any wonder that China and Russia are prepping themselves for WW3? County Sheriffs standing up to the feds.; War is for the health of the state; Population Stabilization = Depopulation; Farmers Markets and how the Super Congress could kill them; BBC hypocrisy “Israel says that Unesco’s decision to admit Palestine to full membership will damage the prospects for peace in the Middle East.” That statement was the Joke of the Century; No benefit You bet there isn’t.

#183 shanks on 11.03.11 at 7:14 pm

vlad, smoking man,
i think i have figured out why corporations have been granted citizenship (treated as people), in order to de-citizenize people.

#184 bigrider on 11.03.11 at 7:19 pm

Garth says our immigration quotas have remained at 250k for years.

Yes but if 150k of that 250k are coming to T.O, doesn’t the bullish argument for continued RE prices to move higher have credence ?

By the way Garth, have you tried driving your hummer anywhere south of the bunker lately?

Might as well walk.

#185 TurnerNation on 11.03.11 at 7:21 pm

I had to wipe the sarcasm off my screen! Just dripping in it.

Hopefully, we will see a post, on comma splices, soon!

#186 Ronaldo on 11.03.11 at 7:26 pm

#11 vyw – “Oh and btw, everyone wants to be rich and especially people who are poor. And there’s nothing wrong with that.”

I know a lot of rich people who are poor.

#187 Ronaldo on 11.03.11 at 7:39 pm

A bunch of good links.


#188 Billy in Nobleton on 11.03.11 at 7:42 pm

#139 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 3:24 pm

Dear Mark L.

Your 1992 Kitchen is a reflection of your character and class. Your friends laughed at you… and you missed the joke.

You probabely voted NDP, you fit the mold.

You come on to this blog, put people down, act all smart. Real classy buddy. Go F yourself.

#189 Hammer1 on 11.03.11 at 7:46 pm

#159 rana
cool..I agree with that thought
have a good one

#190 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 11.03.11 at 8:05 pm

Fed surpasses China as biggest creditor. What happens when China calls time, and demands their moolah back? Women In Debt “The official government solution? Prostitution!” wrh.com. — Prostitution; How the US banks are lying about their EU debt exposure, and other links; Libya to meet the IMF. Now that the gold dinar is toast, so is Libya; Videos Federal Reserve systems and bank scams.
Isolated Good on UNESCO for admitting Palestine; GM Mosquitoes Now they really WILL eat us for lunch! Plus this; 29-12-2009 Gore Algonzola proves, for one and for all, that he doesn’t have the slightest idea of what he is talking about. Headline is great; Every Breath You Take 14 ways the govt. is watching us; Fukushima Fall-out in fields; Iran Good for Iran, except the bought- and paid-for controlled m$m won’t ever report it.

Jessie Ventura’s lawsuit tossed by judge. Is this the same judge filmed while beating his 16-year-old daughter? (On UTube, gotta sign in); Libyan Civil War “Yes, it is a civil war, killing the Libyan people. But at least we got rid of that pesky Gold Dinar and that makes it all hunky dorey!” wrh.com.

#191 Ronaldo on 11.03.11 at 8:07 pm

#25 Devore – “Oh those poor helpless politicians. No one with the backbone to even stand up and ask questions?

I did. Look where it got me. — Garth”

And the others sat quietly on the fence knowing their pensions would be secure.

#192 jess on 11.03.11 at 8:23 pm

you said: When the Government (taxpayers) decide to give more money to the poorer %, I’ll be buying shares of the beer and pizza companies.Future assured. You must be British to spew out such garbage.”

You seem to like to use Stereotypical language. Does that make you feel more powerful?

If you had even read through this american report the tax burden is borne mostly by workers .That article points out what you had asked for in a previous post that corporate taxes should be abolished. They are already it would seem.
Aren’t the real whiners those consumers who invested, lost their future income projections and now want the government, you and I , to bail them out?

For example, in Texas, 1290 people are whining since they lost their retirement savings because of the Stanford (fake cd’s) They liked their fake dividends while they lasted.

bailing out these investors.
Under a stock purchase agreement with the Treasury, the companies pay a 10 percent dividend in exchange for their taxpayer support. With today’s request from Freddie Mac, the companies have drawn about $175 billion since 2008 and returned about $30 billion in the form of dividends, for a total net cost to taxpayers of about $145 billion so far.

NYTimes notes the changing mood on tax evasion Treasure Islands
Nov 3 – Nick Shaxson comments on a NY Times article. He notes how the OECD is trying to claim credit that its processes are raising billions in tax revenue, but as our colleagues in Paris point out, a country-by-country breakdown of the data reveals that in France, every last penny of the claimed increase in revenue came from whistleblower data

#193 Kits on 11.03.11 at 8:41 pm

Wow, this West Vancouver property was purchased 6 months ago for less than $1M … it is being flipped now for $1.5M … I hope all the pure speckers go straight to hell


#194 vyw on 11.03.11 at 8:42 pm

those rich people who are now poor?

well they want to be rich again….and there’s nothing wrong with that.

#195 T.J. BONES on 11.03.11 at 8:45 pm

Sir Garth Watching the news, the Greek thing, the FRENCHMAN said that Greece cant leave. His reason was that if Greece, Ireland, and Spain the weaker sisters were not in the EURO the currency would skyrocket against the USD. It would destroy the price advantage the EURO has now. It would make that BMW so high priced that even Smoking Man couldn’t afford one. Tourism would die. It’s all Manipulated to keep Europe working. Maybe even China lusting after them Mercedes

#196 The thing in the basement on 11.03.11 at 9:04 pm

123 Jess – you should get your own corp. I did. Cant remember the last time it paid tax.

145 YOF – No! Bad plan! Never white!

#197 Devore on 11.03.11 at 9:06 pm

#98 Herb

I heartily second Kris. D’s #93. Now how do we get your words out to all those who describe the Occupiers as aimless and clueless?

Because they ARE aimless and clueless.

Human psychology works in certain well known ways. People need organization. Everything is in a box, and everything has a label. People and ideas that do not fit into the small set of proscribed boxes are labelled anyways and MADE to fit. You can’t blame people for doing this.

You do it too. Lots of things that you do not care about, or disagree with, are randomly tossed into some box, and you go on with your life.

If the OWS folks want to be taken seriously by the other 99% of the 99%, they need to define themselves, and present logical ideas. What do you want? Why? What will that accomplish? What will it cost, and what are the negative consequences? How will you deal with them? What’s in it for me? (This is the most important one, ie, why should I get behind your idea?) Otherwise, you get a bunch of yahoos in your camp who get all the media attention by overdosing on drugs and intimidating reporters. And because they’re in the OWS box, they speak for and represent OWS with their actions.

You can rile against all you want, but that’s how it works, and you ain’t gonna have any change by acting as if the world works the way you think it should, instead of how it actually does.

#198 Ronaldo on 11.03.11 at 9:21 pm

#80 – Be Leary of O’Leary – “Yet I am sure this won’t deter the masses from buying his book. As Barnum said, “there is a fool born every day”.

MURPHY’S LAW: It is morally wrong to allow suckers to keep their money.

I believe that realtors and so-called financial planners believe this as well.

#199 Devore on 11.03.11 at 9:23 pm

#108 detalumis

A 20 year old kitchen may be in great shape and may be functional but it is almost certainly not aesthically pleasing. It’s the same as if I wore 20 year old clothes. Keeping kitchens and bathrooms updated is as necessary as maintaining a good furnace and roof, without it your house becomes in realtor speak “well kept” meaning “owned by a senior citizen and requiring 50K in updates”.

Is this supposed to be a parody? Are you seriously comparing keeping your house in working order to granite countertops? (Which will be replaced soon anyways because they suck, unless you’re baking lots and lots of pies.)

There are not many reasons to replace kitchen/bathroom on a regular basis. You should only do it very rarely: when they get to a run down condition, and when you sell, to extract the maximum price premium over comparables. Otherwise, you are literally throwing your money away, because the renovations will depreciate almost completely within a year, and you will never recoup that money.

And the worst thing you can do is to borrow money to pay for these vanity renovations.

#200 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 9:24 pm

#188 Billy in Nobleton on 11.03.11 at 7:42 pm

#139 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 3:24 pm

Dear Mark L.

Your 1992 Kitchen is a reflection of your character and class. Your friends laughed at you… and you missed the joke.

You probabely voted NDP, you fit the mold.

You come on to this blog, put people down, act all smart. Real classy buddy. Go F yourself.


Glad I got you. You were easy.
Still not using spell check. Idiot.

NDP … ya right.

#201 Devore on 11.03.11 at 9:26 pm

#151 bigrider

Please tell me who or what qualifies a person as a “real estate expert” ?

Someone who depends on his knowledge of it and ability to forecast its future movements and returns to put bread on the table every day. Same as every other genuine expert in any other field.

#202 Habbit on 11.03.11 at 10:01 pm

Mr. Turner you have had so many good posts but this one is, well, over the top. Awesome dude.Ya know the repeat petty criminal that wants to be the DON just ain’t that smart and will never figured out how to get there but he wants to. That is what our society is about now. It’s OK as long as you don’t get caught and if you do, some $ and connections will likely minimize the punishment or negate it. The perception of many is that it’s the way it is. Hard to argue with that given Enron, Brex, ect. So you see, perhaps why the protesters may have a point eh? Many were still receiving bonuses after the disaster in 08. Talk about entitlelment. This leads to what we see today and no wonder. This may not end well. The UK can’t even protect it’s coastline. Times are changing and it’s not good for the west. The old $ has gone on to the next pasture no? Thanks again.

#203 I Smell BS on 11.03.11 at 10:47 pm

I’m sure you’re very happy with your investment HDJ, but you’d need 11% annual appreciation (doubling time of just under 7 years) for a home to increase from $25K to $1.5M over the 40 year term. Allow me to remain skeptical of your claim.

#204 meslippery on 11.04.11 at 1:28 am

please post more often. or post your fan club link.
your awesome .

#205 Not Wondering Anymore on 11.04.11 at 2:25 am

#21 Canned Goods & Buckshot

Thanks for your logic and concise analysis clarifying many of the current global issues which are affecting all of us.

Your voices on this blog are thought provoking and respected as valuable contributions in this “leaderless” revolution, as we all strive to understand and respond to the societal changes being dismantled and reformed around us worldwide.

Many of us are listening. Thanks, and please continue.

#206 Tk on 11.04.11 at 7:43 am

Dear Garth are the ten essential real estate rules you pointed out yesterday a key to becoming happy home owner?. Gonna apply them today.

Appreciate Your Advice.

#207 Non Believer on 11.04.11 at 8:24 am

So Garth what your piece seems to say is the markets are rigged along with the world banking system so what are we peasants to do seek out crumbs to survive in this pseudo casino where the house controls all the tables. No doom this time but you know what they say about control the more you do it the more out of control it gets that’s chaos theory baby. If the rules are not followed as they ought to be I still see father doom on the horizon riding in slow and steady eventually but for now I will continue to eek out my crumbs with the rest of the peasants with my eyes to the horizon

#208 Billy in Nobleton on 11.04.11 at 8:55 am

#200 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 9:24 pm

Dear Mark L,

Enjoy Timmins loser.

#209 Beach Girl on 11.04.11 at 9:05 am

Thanks #204. I can accept a compliment. Have a nice day.

#210 Billy in Nobleton on 11.04.11 at 12:11 pm

#200 Marc L on 11.03.11 at 9:24 pm

Now that I got you pegged for a 60yr old, married, living outside the GTA, Northen ontario French routes.

I choose to disengage. It’s all over.

#211 Abitibi Doug on 11.04.11 at 6:45 pm

@Billy in Nobleton, post 208:
Where did Marc say anything about Timmins? By the way, what’s wrong with Timmins? I lived there many years and it was a good experience in a place with many good qualities like a total absence of the hell of big city crowding and congestion, a city surrounded by beautiful northern countryside that many city people battle traffic every weekend to barely enjoyas they are too stressed out , a more relaxed pace of life, and a city with cheap housing (to rent or buy) but very good wages. During my stay I was able to accumulate a generous amount of wealth, yet still enjoy my life, and now with Garth’s help am finding better ways to invest it all. I am almost 51 years old now, but most people guess my age as early 40’s, and that’s a product of living in a pleasant low stress city. I would take Timmins any day, any week, any month (even in the cold winter), or any year over overpriced, and overcongested Hogtown or Raincouver.

By the way, next year is the centennial of the incorporation of Timmins, the City with the Heart of Gold, and I may go back to enjoy any festivities for this event. I suggest YOU get out of Nobleton and see more of this awesome country of ours, including of course Timmins.

#212 Where's The Money Guido??? on 11.04.11 at 9:02 pm

Re: #63 Herb on 11.03.11 at 5:41 am

RFO (right effin’ on) Herb…..
Time to make those corps pay the freight…..