The con

In recent months over 5,000 people have complained to the real estate cops in Ontario (called RECO) about bidding wars purposefully engineered by rapacious realtors and their vicious vendors. Alleged is that agents are mispricing houses so potential buyers are fooled into thinking they might actually afford them. Silly gooses.

Of course, this is a charade. The deception’s carefully laid out so the victims will first drown in endorphins, then erupt in a shower of combative adrenalin and testo.

But wait. Let’s have a real, live, unethical agent describe the process. The following was part of an advice column published a day or two ago by Toronto house flogger David Fleming:

“Under-pricing is a time-tested technique that always brings in more money. For example, a $550,000 house is best priced at $499,000 with a set “offer date.” This brings in a sub-set of buyers with a $500,000 cap that would otherwise never see the house. If some buyers offer $499,000, $505,000, $510,000 and so on, this just means the astute, informed buyer who is looking at $550,000 will have to pay more.

“People are competitive by nature — one buyer will get caught up in the bidding war and overpay. That’s all a seller needs. That buyer might come in at $560,000, but once the frenzy begins he could walk away with the house at $591,000.  Ultimately, that house would never sell for $591,000 if it were priced at $591,000. The only way to get that money is to price at $499,000.

There you have it. Dupe wannabe buyers into thinking they can afford something, then bait and switch by ensuring a bevy of bids, leading to a winner-takes-all competitive auction. Since bidding wars run on emotion and hormones, not reason and logic, the greedy realtor and owner are assured – in a market like the GTA these days – to sell for more than the property is ‘worth.’

As the shill says, it’s a ‘time-tested technique.’ It works. Like with that $759,000 North Toronto bung that sold for $1.1 million to a Chinese university student. So, was it really a $759,000 house and an example of HAM eating Toronto? Or was it a $1,000,000 house that sold for slightly above asking in a tight market?

The thousands of people bitching to the Real Estate Council of Ontario suggest this is akin to the local Best Buy offering a $1,600 sixty-inch flat screen for $590 on Thursday night, then auctioning it off to the throng’s highest bidder for $1,900. In that scenario, the store would have broken the law and likely be fined. It would’ve also wasted customers’ time, unfairly raised expectations and pissed everybody off. And the guy who ‘won’ TV paid too much, while establishing a new benchmark price for all other flat screens in area stores.

Price manipulation, false advertising and manufactured bidding wars are but some of a myriad of reasons most people can’t afford most houses anymore. Cheap rates, lax lending, dumb laws and HGTV horniness all play a role. But this really sucks. The impact is immediate. It’s widespread. It makes headlines (especially since reporters are fed the details by agents). There is nothing that will inflate prices in an entire hood like one high-profile multiple-bid slugfest, since every owner then figures they live in a palace.

Let’s look at an extreme case – delusional Vancouver. Here’s how real estate, left unfettered and goosed by agents unburdened by ethics, can destroy a city.

A new academic study used assessment roles to track all properties worth more than $1 million. In 2011, 43% of about thirty thousand homes in single-family districts fell into that category, and just a year later this had jumped to 53%. A stunning four-fifths of all properties increased by at least $100,000 in a year, or twice the median household income.

But here’s the tragic news: “The number of properties under $500,000 decreased by 80 per cent. In 2011, there were 71 properties in the city worth less than $500,000: Now, there are 14. Indications are the category is headed for extinction.”

On the west side of Vancouver (the tastiest part), BTW, the average selling price of a property in March was $2,324,675. The good news? That was down $200,000 from the previous month.

Yes, I know we have a free market economy, and somebody should be able to ask whatever the hell they want for their real estate. Nobody forces 12 fools into trying to outbid each other for a lean-to with Moen faucets in a Toronto ghetto. And an agent’s job is to squeeze every last dollar out of a listing for the benefit of the seller.

But this is fraud.

252 comments ↓

#1 Johnny on 04.01.12 at 6:24 pm

First and I don’t care

#2 TimV on 04.01.12 at 6:24 pm

@’nd! #’rd!

#3 Prepmonkey on 04.01.12 at 6:26 pm

Phurst!

#4 TaxHaven on 04.01.12 at 6:30 pm

This is NOT fraud.

There’s no misrepresentation here…the “value” of a house is only what PRICE the highest bidder is prepared to pay for it. Thus the “value” is exactly what he paid, and applies only to him.

What’s a loser to say? “I didn’t get the house for the starting price??”

I don’t sell coins on Ebay for some mythical arbitrary “value”, either: I start low, knowing that to at least one person the coin is worth much more.

In real life, buyers are responsible for the offers they make. If they can’t control their bidding paddles or use their heads that is not the fault of the seller.

#5 Peter Menard on 04.01.12 at 6:30 pm

I wouldn’t call this a con. It is the same way in ebay. You are just taking advantage of human nature.

#6 Don't Believe The Hype on 04.01.12 at 6:31 pm

Uno?

#7 Mikey the Realtor on 04.01.12 at 6:32 pm

“Nobody forces 12 fools into trying to outbid each other for a lean-to with Moen faucets in a Toronto ghetto.”

nice spiel, but at the end of it all this is the only part that matters. I have no issues with the tactics used as its free market and nobody is forced into bidding or buying, how do they say in the markets?…bulls make money, bears make money and pigs get slaughtered.

#8 Blasé on 04.01.12 at 6:33 pm

Yawn. Sorry, after the last week’s fireworks, bidding war tomfoolery doesn’t get my juices flowing. Its just like an auction, and no one has to buy.

#9 Peter Goesinya on 04.01.12 at 6:35 pm

first

#10 Beach Girl on 04.01.12 at 6:39 pm

I think Garth, you should tell everyone of us out there, what we are expected to receive from the government at age 60 (if elected to take CPP early) and age 65. Along with OAS payments, and also what is available to seniors living in distress financially. I have Italian senior neighbours who have no idea what they are entitled to.

Also, I have a friend Tom, a lightbulb has a higher wattage. But he is a human being, he turns 65 this year. He is single. What is this poor bugger entitled to. He rakes and shovels all winter and does yard work for all of us.

I am quite sure these people are entitled to some form of care. I guarantee the government is not making them aware of the programs available. Still pissed off today.

Does anyone know how to get these TV shows for free legally? See yesterdays blog. I am mad.

#11 Tim on 04.01.12 at 6:41 pm

Fraud? My dear sir, you are describing _capitalism_, at it’s finest and most refreshing level of screw-your-neighbour corruption.

While on a macro scale it’s correct to worry about the damage the inevitable smashing of real estate values will have on our country and our economy, it’s very difficult to muster any sympathy for the defrauded in this case–anyone stupid enough to buy real estate that they cannot reasonably expect to pay off in their own lifetime is suffering from self-inflicted financial wounds.

#12 Bill Gable on 04.01.12 at 6:44 pm

And nothing will be done.

It’s the Canadian way.

Suckers get fleeced.

Like paying Flaherty over 300 K for his pension – for destroying our economy.

I will say it again – they better not try and screw sane people to bail out these morons.

They can try – but the pitchforks and the mob will take care of these crooks, if they try.

#13 Mr Buyer on 04.01.12 at 6:47 pm

The story today moves us away from the point. These are symptoms of a disease. As for the ethics of Realtors well heaven help us if we have no better way to protect our society than to rely upon the ethics of profiteers. Excellent points to be sure but if people are so juvenile that they can not understand these rudimentary techniques and govern themselves accordingly it would not matter what kind of political system we lived in, there would still be serious problems due to the lack of awareness on the part of the citizenry (the story today is of great value in that it serves as an introduction to the phenomenon but sadly the target audience likely does not read this blog). In my mind an advanced culture requires from is citizens a degree of self awareness and an awareness of human nature as well as reasonable expectations on the part of the individual citizens.

#14 Blue Monster Lover of Meats and Vegetables on 04.01.12 at 6:57 pm

#11 Tim on 04.01.12 at 6:41 pm

Fraud? My dear sir, you are describing _capitalism_, at it’s finest and most refreshing level of screw-your-neighbour corruption.

Tim, you’re a moron. That’s capitalism at its worst, not best. Freedom ain’t always pretty when there are so many stupid people, many like yourself.

For the most part businesses treat their customers well to get repeat business but you wouldn’t understand that if you’re an idiot who never ran a business.

#15 I'm stupid on 04.01.12 at 7:03 pm

#4 tax heaven
#5 Peter
It is a con and I’ll explain why. Lets use your eBay example. If you post an auction with a low price and the only bid you get it the very low price, you must sell or you get bad feedback.

Now if a 1 million home is listed for 800k and it only gets one clean offer at 800k the seller does not have to sell. That is fraud. If the seller listed at 800k and the buyer could force the sale or seek damages then the process would be fair.

#16 Canadian Watchdog on 04.01.12 at 7:04 pm

TREB GTA Sales By Price Range:

$200,000 to $299,999 http://i39.tinypic.com/14sp8ol.png
$300,000 to $399,999 http://i39.tinypic.com/2djrn8x.png
$400,000 to $499,999 http://i44.tinypic.com/6jk8lh.png

0-$500,000 http://i39.tinypic.com/281554.png
$500,000-$1,000,000 http://i40.tinypic.com/fyptvm.png
$1,000,000+ http://i40.tinypic.com/120qbs6.png

#17 Tonto on 04.01.12 at 7:13 pm

i just heard a radio ad here in BC about new grant for purchasing a second house. It also said that buyers are eligible for for up to 42K rebates (or something) from Federal government? IS this new?? If so , it looks like the gov is really pulling out all stops to ensure a soft landing (or to ensure that the party continues)

#18 Wise Guy on 04.01.12 at 7:22 pm

I think everybody should do their due diligence on housing, investments or what have you. What I find now a days is that people tend to know how to do their job or their profession, but really don’t understand the concept of the money they earn.

When I hear about people at work being in bidding wars here in the GTA, now I just listen and can’t be bothered to give my opinion.

They will learn…in time!

#19 Randy on 04.01.12 at 7:25 pm

This is why I refuse to get caught up in bidding wars….even on ebay….I come up with my valuations and my max bid and I’m prepared to walk away with nothing…..There is always a better deal…..if you don’t get too house horny…

#20 Curious and Asking on 04.01.12 at 7:29 pm

Garth, do you remember when an elderly couple put their mansion in Quebec up for auction? It was estimated at 5.5 million but after 2 years on the market the couple decided to try something radical (at the time). Here’s the link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2011/07/12/mansion-auction-que.html

I believe they sold it for 3.4 million and took a loss but even if they had sold close to or over what they wanted, what would be the difference between their actions and the realtor’s actions mentioned in your post?

The reason I ask is because I didn’t feel any outrage in the Quebec couple’s approach even while, like you, I did feel a sense of revulsion at the RE for igniting the bidding war. Why? Was it because the Quebec couple lost money and David Fleming made money or because one of the bidding wars was started by a realtor?

Because it was an auction without a price, not a listing. — Garth

#21 TorontoRenter on 04.01.12 at 7:32 pm

The key is to educate Canadians about affordability. For example agents of first time buyers with barely 5% deposit and no cashflow to pay their mortgage “if” interest rates go up should know better than pushing their clients into guaranteed future bankruptcy.

#22 Joe Q. on 04.01.12 at 7:45 pm

It’s shady, and opaque, but it isn’t fraud — it’s a product of high demand and low supply, and everyone knows what they are getting into.

If you really want to fix the system, there are a lot of concrete steps that can be taken:

1. Make bids open — bidders should know how many others are participating, and what their bids are.

2. No renegging on listings — if a seller lists his home for sale and receives an unconditional offer at his asking price, he should have to sell it for that price. (This connects to the “false advertising” theme — right now, in Ontario at least, a seller can refuse to sell under such conditions as long as he immediately re-lists the home at a price higher than the highest offer he received.)

#23 Ben on 04.01.12 at 7:46 pm

Well that $2 million dollar bargain in Van hasn’t sold yet

http://www.realtor.ca/PropertyDetails.aspx?PropertyID=11537897&PidKey=878401640

#24 Onemorething on 04.01.12 at 7:50 pm

The game changes from buyers being suckers to sellers being suckers all the time. The broker of that event wins, who is it, get in line behind the MSM, Gov, Banks and Agents!

I’m in no hurry, the bigger the bubble, the bigger the opportunity down the road.

Few people can walk away, that what the brokers count on…For Now!

#25 Sydneysider on 04.01.12 at 7:54 pm

Here in Sydney, houses often sell by auction. Watching them is a local Saturday pastime.

One feature of these auctions is that bidders get caught up in a battle amongst themselves. The vendor and his agent just stand back and let them get on with it. There is no pressure on the vendor at all, because he is under no obligation to disclose a reserve price.

When it comes down to the final bid, the agent and vendor then step indoors to discuss it, and then come back with a request for even more cash (perhaps $50K).

The bidder has to accept the final indignity of bidding against himself, or walk away in front of the crowd and other bidders (there is always a crowd of onlookers) as a “loser”. I have never seen anybody refuse to pay this extra levy, which represents a year of after tax salary for most people.

#26 AACI homedog on 04.01.12 at 7:57 pm

I am not sure if appraising in that market would be easy or difficult.
Foolish buyers are born every day, I think.

#27 Makavelli on 04.01.12 at 8:02 pm

Van West Average Sold price recorded in the Jan/Feb was $2,814,854. Feb/Mar witnessed a 17% stabbing dropping the Average Sold price to $2,326,174. That’s almost a half mil, not 200k. It definitely looks like a bubble.

#28 Westernman on 04.01.12 at 8:04 pm

Beach Girl @ # 10,
You sure like that word ” Entitled ” don’t you? Let me clue you in on something…
NOBODY – and I mean – NOBODY is ” Entitled to ANYTHING. You are ” Entitled ” to what you work for, plan for, sacrifice for and how much value you bring to the table … period.
You Canadians have one enormous entitlement mentality, don’t you?
The coming economic re-positioning is going to be quite a shock for the entitlement crowd…

#29 lc on 04.01.12 at 8:09 pm

You don’t have a free market if the central bank fixes interest rates!!!

#30 Timbo on 04.01.12 at 8:12 pm

http://australianpropertyforum.com/topic/9473451/1/

“Irish house prices quadrupled, and prices in the capital, Dublin (with 40% of the Irish population), rose by a factor of more than 5 times, over a ten year period.”

Interesting take on Ireland and Australia’s housing bubble……..

http://www.businessinsider.com/shiller-real-chance-of-japan-like-housing-slump-2012-3

“that we will never in our lifetime see a rebound in these prices in the suburbs.”

Read more: http://macromon.wordpress.com/2012/03/27/shiller-real-chance-of-japan-like-housing-slump/#ixzz1qpyNNc00

Seems that some think the party is truly over…..

#31 daystar on 04.01.12 at 8:12 pm

#10 Beach Girl on 04.01.12 at 6:39 pm

The CBC link gets into OAS in some detail:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/taxseason/story/2012/01/30/cpp-oas-faq.html

But the website from Government Canada would be the most informative:

http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/audiences/seniors/index.shtml

http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/home.shtml

#13 Mr Buyer on 04.01.12 at 6:47 pm

Excellent points. Well said. (with way less words than I would use, that impresses me too!)

And for our faithful readers, a small trip down memory lane.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/housing/imf-calls-for-review-of-cmhc-risk-management/article2281470/

Is it a coincidence that F moved towards more CMHC oversight? Pressured maybe but still delaying the moves towards slowing credit growth which is still around 7% and thats bad news no matter how one looks at it:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/economy-lab/daily-mix/canadian-economy-vulnerable-to-overheated-housing-market-imf-warns/article2280838/

#32 DM Kid on 04.01.12 at 8:17 pm

#15 I’m Stupid:
” If you post an auction with a low price and the only bid you get it the very low price, you must sell or you get bad feedback.”

All you have to do is to use a reserve if you dont wan’t to sell your item at below a certain price on eBay.

Sorry, still the same thing!

#33 anon on 04.01.12 at 8:19 pm

I agree it is somewhat unethical, though I fail to see how it is against the law. Does this contravene some rules etc that realtors are supposed to abide by? I would imagine as long as the realtor makes it clear to their client what their pricing strategy is, then it should be fine.

Also – may I ask about your Van West numbers? It would seem like 2.3M is a 100K increase over Feb 2012 but I am only looking at the HPI on REBGV. It’s seems it’s a huge YOY increase as well :/

#34 Otto Doppelganger on 04.01.12 at 8:20 pm

Garth, forgive my political naïveté, but it is just possible that F instituted no new ‘cooling’ mortgage measures in the budget because he knows like most of us here that it will unravel under its own weight?

Dare we give him even a modicum of credit?

#35 TaxHaven on 04.01.12 at 8:27 pm

#15 I’m Stupid,

But in the case of the house, it IS not really an auction, because as far as I know sellers are obligated to “respond” to all offers within a set time. They don’t have to accept ANY of them. But there’s no “fraud”.

My point is that it’s impossible to deduce such a thing as house “value”. There’s only PRICE, which varies from house to house area to area, time to time and sale to sale…and the price is merely what the last buyer paid. Period.

Prospective house buyers should know this. But they persist in treating houses as investments…
Point made with Ebay, though…there, if my item attracts a “low” offer I have to accept it even if I don’t consider it adequate. Ebay is certainly closer to a “real” auction in that way…

#36 Toronto_CA on 04.01.12 at 8:27 pm

GTA bidding wars. Yet another reason I’m not playing this insane game. I am a single mid30s guy, I make about $125k a year and soon will be making much more; but even with $100k down I’m not able to buy a small townhouse near work (despite what a mortgage broker or real estate agent might tell me). I refuse to buy one of those sh!t box condos for $400k, I think those will be hit the hardest by the coming storm. So I just keep stock piling money and renting a nice condo downtown with no commute, which enables me to put in tons of hours in lieu of commuting to the affordable(?) burbs.

In any other major city besides the GTA or Vancouver in North America I’d be able to buy something reasonable. I hope the crash comes sooner rather than later. Both because I hope to enter the housing market and because the more we put off the hurt, the more it will destroy the economy when it finally happens. I love your blog Garth, keep up the good work.

#37 David Fleming on 04.01.12 at 8:27 pm

Garth,

Thanks for including me in this article.

I don’t disagree with this at all. I’ve never liked under-pricing, I don’t like the system we work in, and I’ve long since called for changes to an industry that at times seems unregulated.

You quoted me to perfection, but you left out anything to the effect of what I’ve written above. Anyways, I understand that you feel I’ve misquoted you in the past, so perhaps it’s fair.

I loathe agents who promise to work with the highest offer in a “one shot deal,” only to “send back for improvement” the highest three offers, which are all supposedly very close.

Even worse is what many agents do – send back ALL the offers, even the ones that aren’t even in the ballpark. Many agents have no respect for any of the other participants.

I would like to see change to the “offer process” just as much as you would. But who is going to bring order to chaos?

#38 FI Guy on 04.01.12 at 8:28 pm

What’s interesting about it is the interaction between all parties in the industry.

Banks lend based on the value of collateral (homes and the land they sit on). In Canada’s case, the value of collateral for a large portion of the mortgages granted is nearly 100% based on CMHC’s automated emili system – not people who actually view the houses.

When a house like this sells for $41,000 above its value, everybody’s house in the whole neighbourhood move’s up in value in CMHC’s emili system. When this occurs, banks will lend more in the next sale and CMHC will approve more lending that is insured.

This is likely why OSFI has moved in its recent requirements that more appraisals need to be performed.

This is also why CMHC reports “risk related values” that support the notion that they are not taking any risk. For instance, the “low proportion” of mortgages that are more than 80% leveraged. Then someone puts 5% down on a mortgage, and next year a relatively equivalent house down the street sells for 10% more, CMHC’s emili system believes the house is 85% leveraged.

The system can, however, work in reverse. Once prices begin to stall (or fall) and CMHC’s low-LTV mortgages run-off (planned – CMHC has cut back on pooled insurance for the Banks), everybody will be seeing nothing but risk with respect to CMHC’s insured portfolio. For example, as opposed to, say, 15% of the portfolio being held as high-ratio, the number will swell to 30% or 40%, or more. This will certainly make news. It could, to be quite honest, be the trigger for a crash.

#39 kc on 04.01.12 at 8:31 pm

Why don’t they just do like they are doing in Surrey BC and hold a group-on to sell houses?? I kid you not, this was on Global News last night…. are we there yet??

video link

http://www.globaltvbc.com/video/groupon+style+condo+sales/video.html?v=2217961674&p=2&s=dd#video

News Hour –
Group-on style condo sales
Sat, Mar 31 – A developer has taken the concept of group-on and applied it to the sale of new condos.

Read it on Global News: Group-on style condo sales – News Hour – Videos | Global BC

#40 AprilNewwest on 04.01.12 at 8:32 pm

Just wondering if anyone has the “true” number of sales and price in Vancouver and Tri-City area for Mar ending?

#41 DJB on 04.01.12 at 8:35 pm

This is not fraud, just a good realtor suckering a bunch of emotional people into paying to much for a house. If I was a seller I would hire him.

It works the same on E-Bay I regularly sell 1 rare item that if I do a “Buy it now” option no one gives me $20.00 for it. When I start a 7 day auction at $0.99 this item sells for as much at $40.00. Crazy as it is once you get a few bidders going look out.

Is it fraud that I am more than happy to sell this item for $20.00 but will happily engage a few bidders in there to get $40.00? I am just maximizing the value of my sell.

Human psychology is a funny thing, I used to sell bicycles for $250.00 and no one would buy them as they thought they were to cheap (just old stock) so i upped the rice to $350.00 and sold them taxes in and they went like hot cakes.

Only the bidder is to be blamed in the cases you provided. Someone paid $120.00 for Nortel once by bidding up the stock.

#42 squidly77 on 04.01.12 at 8:43 pm

Some realtors even go as far as bragging about the illegal and unethical practice on the web-sites.

#43 Amazed on 04.01.12 at 8:44 pm

I’m also tired of trying to rationalize with the crazies that compete in the bidding wars. The way I see it, the ones who lose the bidding are actually the winners. They didn’t over pay. People are so heavily in debt these days, the frenzy will stop at some point. I’m convinced the cost of living will just be too high for people. I’m not in debt and I had sticker shock at the pump today at $1.35 for the cheapest gas… $1.50 for premium. Then food… Money didn’t go far these days. Add in increasing heat, electricity, and all the other expenses and at some point people just won’t be able to keep up with everything. Out goes the bidding war and in comes trying to survive. The more I read the more I am convinced that living within your means with minimal stress is definitely more important then competing with the house crazy out there. I’ll get my mcmansion when the time is right or just. Retire earlier.

#44 squidly77 on 04.01.12 at 8:46 pm

DJB on 04.01.12 at 8:35 pm

Price fixing is Fraud. http://patrick.net/housing/crash2.html

Be sure and read all 4 pages.

#45 X on 04.01.12 at 8:47 pm

IMO it is fraud when they list with a lower price, get poor interest, and reject a singular offer for the asking price. That is the risk you take when you list low, and it should be enforcable to have to legally make the sale, if the buyer offers the asking price with no conditions.

Don’t hate the player, just the game. F missed his opportunity to make it a game worth playing this past week. Hopefully others will make changes to the game in the near future.

I know we are approaching a retirement crisis, 30 year mortgages, and high prices, will not help.

We are punishing the people who plan for their future, and rewarding those who do not.

#46 TurnerNation on 04.01.12 at 8:50 pm

Ah, that twerpy realty blog. I know of it.

#47 Signpost in the bushes on 04.01.12 at 8:50 pm

Beware those who must demonstrate their virility through their wallets. It’s quite sad to witness, under any set of circumstances, but more so when the wallet contains only borrowed money.

#48 Amazed on 04.01.12 at 8:51 pm

I have to agree with 31. It seems that unless it costs a lot its not worth buying. At least that seems to be the mentality. Everyone has to have the perceived best… Brand name high end purse, high end shoes, car etc…. In my neighborhood a person with an x5 has been driving with a dinky spare tire for over two years on their high end relatively new BMW x5. Oh and they have two.fork lifts on the front lawn.of their $700000 home that they are trying to sell. Class act. If you can’t afford the tire don’t own the car…. Apply this to the houses!

#49 Doug in Victoria on 04.01.12 at 8:51 pm

Re: #17 – Unconfirmed, but has the BC government lost its mind?

http://kevinknowsmortgages.com/2012/03/rebates-coming-for-second-homes/

#50 Amazed on 04.01.12 at 8:54 pm

Fyi… Cost of Living issues… $75 for two adults and two kids to watch a matinee with four drinks and one popcorn… No doubt there were very few of us in the theater.

#51 ANONYMOUS on 04.01.12 at 8:54 pm

I need to ask here : How many of you actually feel that interest rates will be heading up more than 1% to 1.5% over the next 3 to 4 years?

I mean, with the massive unemployment that we have, especially the youth unemployment, do YOU feel that rates have a glimmer of a chance of rising more than 1.5% over the next 3 to 4 years?

#52 disciple on 04.01.12 at 8:57 pm

Yes, it is fraud. And yes it is legal. And yes, it is capitalism at its best. Because capitalism is a flawed economic system, and those of you who worship at the feet of its altar are brainwashed children because Papa Capitalism gave you some candies. It’s time to grow up…

#53 Cassandra on 04.01.12 at 8:59 pm

Beach Girl:

Depending on where you live, you mat be able to get most (if not all) of your TV programs fore free, over the air, in HD. One of the things the cable companies generally don’t tell us is that most of the “basic cable” TV channels also transmit an over-the-air signal you can pick up (legally) with a small rooftop aerial. If you’re curious, have a look at SaveandReplay.ca (they sell this equipment) or the helpful folks at the digital forums http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/ (they can tell you what you can get in your area)

Now you won’t get specialty channels this way, but you will get the basic services: CBC, CTV, Global, CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, PBS, TVO, that sort of thing. That’s about 30 channels in the GTA, by the way, all free.

Good Luck.

#54 furst on 04.01.12 at 8:59 pm

FIFTY FURRSSST!!!!

#55 Devore on 04.01.12 at 9:02 pm

Vancouver stats out soon, probably Monday, here’s a preview from Larry:

http://www.yattermatters.com/2012/04/mail-delivery-surprises-vancouver-average-prices/

HAM’s gone baby, HAM’s gone.

#56 Bast on 04.01.12 at 9:02 pm

We have arrived, Canada. Real Housewives of Vancouver makes its debut on Slice this week. God help us…

#57 Claudius Emperor on 04.01.12 at 9:04 pm

I guess paying suckers in BC to buy 800 k homes that are insured by myself /CMHC/ with rebates of up to 42k /including second home/at the cost of myself getting less services and late retirement /and the 67 years OAS is just the beginning/ is the right thing to do and would make me happy?

This folks is called ‘increased affordability’.

Capitalism at it’s finest?
I don’t think so.

#58 Devore on 04.01.12 at 9:06 pm

Correct me if I’m wrong, but in Australia don’t they routinely auction off houses (as in hold an actual, on the spot auction)? I don’t know what the rules are about the starting price, but I think the highest offer takes it. In Canada, if the multiple offers are too low, or there is only one offer, the seller just says “oops my bad, didn’t really want to sell the house at this price!”

#59 Amazed on 04.01.12 at 9:07 pm

Open house weekend… Nothing new… Same old homes in highend Mississauga and oakville… No major price changes… I’m amazed at how long people can sit on empty properties… Also amazed at the dollar amount of property taxes…. Really scary for those that have been properly assessed… The numbers are staggering. 1 percent of what someone would pay right now.For.your house is huge. Living in vancouver would in theory be scarier… $10000 on a million is huge…. Either there are a lot of hugh income earners out there or people will be in trouble…

#60 Westernman on 04.01.12 at 9:13 pm

Disciple @ # 51,
Here’s the rule of capitalism Mr. Disciple – it is the best system on earth for people who have ambition, drive, perserverance, creativity and intelligence because it allows them to create as much personal wealth as they are able to and willing to work for.
The Socialist ( Communist ) system ( Canada ) is appealing to the slow-witted, lazy, passive, bottom – feeding, low I.Q. lemmings who believe they should be able to sit on their asses all day, produce nothing and be served by the nanny state from cradle to grave…
Which category do you fall under…

#61 stuart on 04.01.12 at 9:13 pm

this FRAUD is encouraged by the lack of competition to the dominant MLS system and the agents who all accept it as their right to do anything they can get away with. We need regulation badly and the Competition Bureau is a farce.
I’m in Montreal and at the gym two young girls in their earlier 20s were talking beside me on the ellipitical one told the other they bought a house and had an inspection done on it costing $500 and they were an early bird as the daughter of the mother was moving out and they got her to agree to sell so the offer was accepted. The only problem and get this, the buyers father was a real estate agent that told her to go ahead but it seems the deal fell through as the daughter did not have power of attorney and I guess it was the notary that stopped it despite two eager real estate agents. So what is she gonna do sue her father for $500. Asked her what she learned about agents? eh kid. I don’t thinks the girls can afford a car much less a house as they said earlier they were just out of school.
we are so doomed and even one of the Banks pres said so. bye bye bank shares.

#62 Kip on 04.01.12 at 9:14 pm

We pay realtors to bring the highest price. We will seek out the realtor that has a record of consistently selling at or above asking price.

If I list a house for sale and it sells for full asking in 1 or 2 days, I would look straight at the realtor and tell him, “you sold it too cheap!”

You can’t blame sellers for taking as much as they can get or seeking out realtors who consistently outperform.

#63 a prairie dawg on 04.01.12 at 9:16 pm

#40 DJB

Only the bidder is to be blamed in the cases you provided. Someone paid $120.00 for Nortel once by bidding up the stock.

– — –

Bad example. There is a Nortel class action event underway over improper insider shenanigans to trigger bonuses. Former shareholders are being contacted.

#64 squidly77 on 04.01.12 at 9:21 pm

I don’t know what the rules are about the starting price, but I think the highest offer takes it. In Canada, if the multiple offers are too low

Offers are never to low at staged bidding wars, you can be sure theres at least one other realtor (who has no plans of actually buying) placing bids and driving the price higher.

#65 harden on 04.01.12 at 9:21 pm

“an agent’s job is to squeeze every last dollar out of a listing for the benefit of the seller”

A gullible seller would believe that is their agent’s job – one would assume the realtor’s working on their behalf – but that is incredibly naive. Low-balling the asking price to spark a bidding war, for example, works in the selling realtor’s favour; a quick sale. Next………..

#66 Molokai on 04.01.12 at 9:25 pm

http://www.yattermatters.com/2012/04/mail-delivery-surprises-vancouver-average-prices/

Vancouver is done..

#67 Prepmonkey on 04.01.12 at 9:27 pm

I was looking at a car on Craigslist, seemed like a very good buy. I offered the selling price sight unseen, but the seller had other ideas. It turns out that he was arranging a number of buyers to show up at the same time, to bid for the car. I immediately asked if he was a realtor and indeed he was. I did not feel like having my time wasted on a long drive, and getting caught up in a bidding war so I passed in the deal. I called him back and he was successful in auctioning his car off with multiple bids. Anyone who goes for a situation like that is asking to be deflowered. It was still a good deal even with the “auction” but I bet he would have gotten more money and pissed off fewer people had he put in market value.

#68 DJB on 04.01.12 at 9:37 pm

Squidly77 the link you provided seemed to have references to the USA.

Yes most auctions have an open process unfortunately the R/E market hords information for their best interest. Be it keeping recent sales confidential so that you can not make a comparison to keeping the bid process closed. The CREA needs to be opened up so that everyone can make an informed decission, until then expect manipulation.

#69 Virgin Toronto Couple on 04.01.12 at 9:44 pm

Mid thirties couple here sitting on a good downpaayment, but not fooled by these tactics. Sure we missed the train, unfortunately, but at least we weren’t victims of this shady practice. You have to walk away, and just trust that eventually you will find a house one day. Maybe it’s naive, but I’d rather be knowingly hopeful than aggressively short sighted.

#70 Canadian Watchdog on 04.01.12 at 9:52 pm

Now that brothels are legal in Ontario, perhaps the undercover unit should investigate fraudulent RE bidding wars.

#71 BC Bring Cash on 04.01.12 at 9:55 pm

Median price in Vancouver down $300,000. Not up and up predicted buy the RE industry.
http://whispersfromtheedgeoftherainforest.blogspot.ca/

#72 Jokes on Us on 04.01.12 at 10:01 pm

Free Market?????

Capitalism????

In CANADA!!??!!?

That’s a laugh.

#73 blatherer on 04.01.12 at 10:07 pm

Sorry, but property is still very cheap here in Vancouver, especially for freehold detached. I’m looking at buying a new investment condo in a Chinese 2nd tier city, and couldn’t believe the prices in a nearby town called Xiamen, where near the town centre, nicer condos are north of 5,000,000 RMB ($800,000 CDN+)

And before anyone mentions “historical valuations” or prices must return to historical averages in Vancouver, I’ll make very clear the fact they don’t. Humanity is in a period of exponential growth. It is different now.

#74 eagle eyes on 04.01.12 at 10:12 pm

BC Hydro is to increase prices by 7%. On top of this, the smart meters that they have recently installed has been known to increase readings by as much as 1000%. They claim that this is the correct reading, as opposed to the old meters that were falsely misread.
Interesting article in the Province Newspaper:

http://www.theprovince.com/technology/bc/6392515/story.html

It’s uncanny that events are unfolding exactly the way Garth has predicted:
-unemployment increases
-cost of heating McMansions increases
-fuel costs increases
-food costs increases
-interest rates inevitably increases

-Wages stay the same.

How could this end well?

#75 Ralph Cramdown on 04.01.12 at 10:14 pm

A house listing isn’t legally an offer, only an “offer to treat,” a solicitation of offers. Obviously if some clown makes an offer at asking with a $1,000 deposit and a long closing, you’re under no obligation to accept.

The real estate Boards should crack down on this, IMHO, as it cheapens their members. Even somebody who might believe that, in normal times, their agent is worth 2.5% must bristle at the guy who lists $100k under with 1 photo and a bad description, presides over a 45 minute circus eight days later, and walks away with $20,000.

But even that agent might look worth the money compared to the one who lists “low,” gets no acceptable offers, relists 10% higher a week later and starts dropping the price a few weeks after that. I can understand the difficulty in setting a price to within a few percent in a fast market, but to screw up a bidding war on a bog-standard property??

[old fart mode]
It used to be that, if you could buy with cash, you were presumed a sophisticated buyer. If you needed to borrow, your bank was sophisticated enough not to lend you more than a decent fraction of what the property was worth, and they did a good job checking — even sent someone out to take a look! Now, with credit enhancement through CMHC, the bank punches the property’s price and postal code into a computer, computer says ‘yes’, and BOOM, 5x your income with not enough DP to pay the transaction fees. Instant negative equity. That’s progress.

Those dumb Yanks! They used to do all this too, but they’ve gone back to requiring a big DP and sending someone out to appraise the property. Luddites!

#76 FI Guy on 04.01.12 at 10:25 pm

#50 Anonymous

An interest rate shock of 1 to 2 % is nearly certain within the next few years. We are currently at the limits of monetary policy. Most economists, for instance, believe a 1% rate hike in 2013 will occur. That being said, they have been wrong before.

There are two issues that I see that could trigger a rise in rates.

Firstly, an improving economy (as we have now) will certainly bring Bank of Canada rate hikes, which will affect VRM rates (higher VRM rates), and likely substantially higher 5 year fixed rates. Funding costs are generally tied to Canada bond rate expectations.

Secondly, one thing to consider is that we are talking about residential mortgage rates and not necessarily Canada bond rates. Spreads on costs of funding can and will rise substantially once the housing market cools. There could be a time that nobody will want mortgage-backed securities issued by banks. This will raise funding costs substantially in the system – as it did in 2009 before the government stepped in and bought $50 billion. Banks will need to either raise rates again unless the government steps in (or decrease deposit rates).

Also, as mortgage growth slows, and CMHC support for the market wanes (due to a lack of portfolio insurance), spreads over the Canada bond curve should increase. In this scenario, banks are no longer growing the balance sheet, but their costs are increasing, which will result in higher rates. You could see a scenario where spreads (and rates) increase by 0.20% – 1.0% simply because of a cooling market.

Finally, if delinquencies pick up to say, double the national average (to 0.80% from ~0.40% – not an implausible scenario), spreads and rates should increase. Ofcourse CMHC doesn’t even consider this scenario in it’s calculations, as I do not believe delinquencies have never reached 0.80% in Canada. This naturally raises a seperate issue – once delinquencies pick up, CMHC’s actuarial calculations (accounting calculations) will require it to record substantial losses in it’s financial statements (goodbye equity).

#77 NFN_NLN on 04.01.12 at 10:31 pm

People are free to spend THEIR own money however they like. After all they earned it.

However, borrowed money is not earned. Therefore they are not entitled to spend it however they like. Take away CMHC backing from the banks and lets see how much money these fools have to throw around.

#78 pathcontrolmonk on 04.01.12 at 10:32 pm

Zero sympathy. Reminds me of Vancouvers olympic village buyers who tried to weasel out of inflated presales after Rennie started dropping the price. Cavet effin emptor.

#79 Hardassi on 04.01.12 at 10:34 pm

westernman – you do exemplify all that is wrong with capitalism.
People pay taxes all their lives with assurance from government of a pension, but aren’t ‘entitled’ to anything?
“it is the best system on earth for people who have ambition, drive, perserverance, creativity and intelligence because it allows them to create as much personal wealth as they are able to and willing to work for.” Yeah, right, ‘creating personal wealth’: Privatize the wealth and socialize the costs – you don’t see many of the banksters holding themselves accountable for the damage they did to society.
Who’s backing up the mortgages? The wealthy? the profiteers? Hardly. CMHC = taxpayer risk.
Many would judge a society not on the arrogance of the rich but on how that society takes care of the least capable.
Not everyone is as elite as you hold yourself to be. Most have less arrogance and more compassion for those less capable.

#80 Ed on 04.01.12 at 10:37 pm

The biggest issue with multiple offers is that the winning offer is often represented by a buying agent who is NICE but totally clueless in cutting up a neighbourhood and assessing value. So in effect you have the dumbest agents totally resetting the price personality of a street and entire neighbourhood. What other profession would be comfortable with the least smartest people in that profession completely setting the agenda on the most important part of the industry that they are in. Welcome to Real Estate in Canada

#81 First Wave Boomer on 04.01.12 at 10:38 pm

Try Ebay. Items start at ridiculously low price. Close to end date the price gets bid higher and higher by the minute, by an apparent Robo program. To add insult to injury, if you were outbid, you are contacted soon after the auction ends to say that miraculously a similar item is still available for purchase.

The Robo program must be run by the seller. It is a waste of time to bid, so I only buy from sellers that give a buy now fixed price.

#82 J.Larose on 04.01.12 at 10:40 pm

There is no fraud here – it’s capitalism at its best and worst – and it’s sad that a former ‘Minister’ of “Revenue’ doesn’t get that. But then again this blog is more about attention than substance.

As for the fixes, if anyone thinks an auction style is going to stop underpricing, you’re wrong. It’s going to drive prices even higher – just like in Australia.

#83 KingBubbles on 04.01.12 at 10:42 pm

And an agent’s job is to squeeze every last dollar out of a listing for the benefit of the seller.

——————–

All the more reason to rent and avoid the real estate ponzi scheme

#84 McLovin on 04.01.12 at 10:43 pm

The top was in in Vancouver at least 4 months ago for the average place. Get your popcorn cause the movie is just beginning!

#85 The Thing in the Basement on 04.01.12 at 10:45 pm

74 Ralph – minor point – “Invitation to treat”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invitation_to_treat

#86 Ronaldo on 04.01.12 at 10:52 pm

#72 Blatherer –

”Sorry, but property is still very cheap here in Vancouver, especially for freehold detached. I’m looking at buying a new investment condo in a Chinese 2nd tier city, and couldn’t believe the prices in a nearby town called Xiamen, where near the town centre, nicer condos are north of 5,000,000 RMB ($800,000 CDN+)

And before anyone mentions “historical valuations” or prices must return to historical averages in Vancouver, I’ll make very clear the fact they don’t. Humanity is in a period of exponential growth. It is different now.”

While your at it, check this place out. Probably could pick up a good deal there too. Built for a million people and practically vacant.

http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29307,1975397_2094509,00.html

#87 Grooby. on 04.01.12 at 10:54 pm

#78 Hardassi

Well put. There’s no such thing as pure capitalism, just like there’s never been a pure communist state.

Interesting how the most ‘socialist’ countries of the world are also those with the highest ‘Gross National Happiness’. Perhaps they don’t breed losers like Westernman.

#88 Mountain Girl on 04.01.12 at 10:59 pm

#78 Hardassi – Well said!

#89 Monster Cookie on 04.01.12 at 11:00 pm

Hardassi,
People pay taxes all their lives with assurance from government of a pension, but aren’t ‘entitled’ to anything?

That’s a problem with socialism. We don’t have capitalism when the government insuring mortgages, controlling interest rates, regulating banks, insuring deposits and declaring money by fiat.

You preach a Christian dogma about helping the poor but think nothing of stealing from the rich to spread their poverty. Or voting for the government who promises to do the stealing for you. You preach compassion to justify stealing. You pretend to care but only want to loot. You hold yourself as morally superior when in reality you’re a scourge.

#90 eagle eyes on 04.01.12 at 11:05 pm

#72 Blatherer
Your handle is very suitable.

“And before anyone mentions “historical valuations” or prices must return to historical averages in Vancouver, I’ll make very clear the fact they don’t. Humanity is in a period of exponential growth. It is different now.”

Go look at Whistler, BC – down 50% from the highs. It’s not different now. Ask the owners in Whistler who are trying to sell. They are not seeing any exponential growth.

#91 45north on 04.01.12 at 11:16 pm

Amazed: I had sticker shock at the pump today at $1.35 for the cheapest gas

I paid $1.31 at Canadian Tire in Ottawa plus I saved 50¢ by using a Canadian Tire Credit Card.

if you get on the 407 and drive 20 kilometers for something, anything, it adds up

#92 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 04.01.12 at 11:25 pm


It’s true, isn’t it? Mercedes now produces Electronic Studmuffin Donkey Scooters on their production lines. Is this the best that evolution has to offer? Never mind.

“Of course, this is a charade. But here’s the tragic news: Under-pricing is so potential buyers are Silly gooses.” — Yeeaaahhh!! There are still plenty of greater fools out there!
*
#28 Westernman — “The coming economic re-positioning is going to be quite a shock for the entitlement crowd…”
— and —
#44 X — “I know we are approaching a retirement crisis, 30 year mortgages, and high prices, will not help.”

Bang on both posts! ‘Tho it has often been said “This won’t end well”, etc., the main point is not the end, it’s an ongoing process, an overall state we’re finding ourselves in, none of which was caused by us.
*
24 Hours Before the world explodes in laughter, and This Week the universe implodes; Smoking Man Place your bets; HSBC; Oil Prices Plunged; Change Whether one likes it or not, change is speeding along; New York or Vancouver are not for families anymore.

Four min. clip So long US$, Hello BRICS; China No question China is correct; Financiers and Hookers Good fit? Morgan Stanley and China; Provoking wars, civil unrest (govts.) etc.; Bad Idea Co-signing for kids (CCs); Employment Pic. Doesn’t say which country; US$13 bln. gain last week for the world’s wealthiest; Cashless Society or consp. theory?
*
1:02 clip Sun tornado five times wider than earth (toasty, no?); Beyond Doomsday Could you survive it> UK Truckers looking to bring down govt.; 3:38 clip Wealthcare replacing Healthcare in Old Blighty; Syria “So this is not a popular uprising but a coup fought by paid mercenaries.” wrh.com; ‘Net Snooping West following China and Iran’s lead; Stealth GMOs Why food prices are increasing (Mosanto); Erdogan (Turkey) is right on this; France Interesting development; Big Pharma Profit Centre with taxpayers help; Vaccines Ingredients and side effects; One of Romney’s donors — Pink Slime; More Defense, more killing.

#93 Devore on 04.01.12 at 11:26 pm

#63 squidly77

Offers are never to low at staged bidding wars, you can be sure theres at least one other realtor (who has no plans of actually buying) placing bids and driving the price higher.

That may be, but the bidding is blind, so how are they driving up the prices higher? Only thing driving bids higher is knowing there are lots of other bidders, and in that case I agree. However, even in the most heated up bidding war, the highest offer may still be below the “reserve price”, so no deal will take place, even if the highest bid is unconditional.

When you see a listing come off market then come back shortly at a higher price, that’s usually a sign of a failed bidding war attempt.

Oh, and it appears Australian auctions have reserve prices too, so whoopdee.

#94 Charles Ponzi on 04.01.12 at 11:27 pm

Nothing like cheap easy credit curtesy of our irresponsible banks to help feed a house bidding frenzy.

#95 Ronaldo on 04.01.12 at 11:27 pm

http://www.businessinsider.com/pictures-chinese-ghost-cities-2010-12?slop=1#heres-chinas-most-famous-ghost-city-ordos-1

More on Chinas ghost cities….check out these satellite photos. No shortage of real estate there.

#96 wopaholic on 04.01.12 at 11:32 pm

Blatherer #72, you just keep saying all that to yourself and maybe one day it will come true…not. alm,ost no real estate…NOTHING is selling in China and every part of their BS economy is crashing fast. And last time I checked, they are a nation of over 1.5 billion people living in a country about the size of Ontario, not 4.4 million wallowing in that vacant lot you call a province. And sorry, EVERY market corrects, whether it’s stocks, bonds, oil, coffee beans or pork bellies. History will confirm this and always repeats itself. What you’re claiming to be “different this time”, is unsustainable and unprecedented.

#97 Devore on 04.01.12 at 11:34 pm

#32 anon

Also – may I ask about your Van West numbers? It would seem like 2.3M is a 100K increase over Feb 2012 but I am only looking at the HPI on REBGV. It’s seems it’s a huge YOY increase as well :/

5% YoY is “huge”? That’s downright pedestrian.

I am sure this is the number that will be headlined, as both average and median prices are down hugely. Last month, when the average was way up, that’s all we heard about.

#98 Mainlander on 04.01.12 at 11:40 pm

Fraud is the wrong description for this practice. When you list it is only an “offer to treat”. I think it’s gross and amateur and would only appeal to a certain kind of buyer but it’s a long ways from fraud. Most intelligent buyers would see this tactic a mile away and stay away which is why it isn’t a common marketing tool. It can also backfire.
Most of the time your writing is good and even addictive but tonight Im giving you a thumbs down.
All parties involved are willing participants and besides why would you want to deprive fools and their money a chance to separate.

#99 Peter Pan on 04.01.12 at 11:52 pm

Garth, a Venn Diagram with “Ethics” and Real Estate Agents” are two individual separate circles with no point thereof intersecting…

#100 Devore on 04.02.12 at 12:02 am

#78 Hardassi

People pay taxes all their lives with assurance from government of a pension, but aren’t ‘entitled’ to anything?

Actually, they are not. Did you sign something? I know I didn’t. Legislation (the “assurance”) can be reversed as easily as it was brought in, and regulatory changes can happen overnight with no warning or announcement. There would be political consequences, but nothing a “national emergency” couldn’t smooth over. Higher age eligibility and lower clawback thresholds are coming, whether you feel “entitled” or not.

#101 southseacompany on 04.02.12 at 12:30 am

I see Garth has opened up a Vancouver subsidiary blog:

GreaterFool 大傻的温哥华房市分析站 Vancouver RE Blog
http://greaterfoolvancouver.blogspot.ca/

There is but one pathetic original of the blog. — Garth

#102 Shopar on 04.02.12 at 12:54 am

Real estate market is not capitalism. Destroy CMHC completely and no gov’t should interfere with it. Then you would agree that bidding wars or WETF happens, it’s capitalism. It’s not like that and I see coming crash will blow eventually towards taxpayers.

Giving Ebay example to bidding wars shows how ignorant some are. On Ebay, items are not unique, it’s free to bid, free to walk away, no travel, no hassle and nothing personal. If you want to get rid of something, you list it from 0.99 so that it will go away. I listed many things from 99c and went up to hundreds, some just don’t go up but I still sell it, because I want to get rid of it.
Another reason to start from 99 is that it’s free to list at that price. However if you put $10,000 reserve price for an item, you will pay a lot as listing fee and there is chance that it won’t be sold.

#103 Cristian on 04.02.12 at 1:00 am

Like many others have already pointed, this is not fraud. It’s nothing but a smart use of human nature to one’s advantage. Nobody puts a gun to a potential buyer’s head and force him to bid his brains out. Anything there is for sale is worth only as much as somebody is willing to pay for it. That is market economy. It is not fraud.
Don’t like it? Go live in North Korea or in some other hell hole, where I’m sure bidding wars don’t exist and the state sets the price for everything.

#104 Mr Buyer on 04.02.12 at 1:11 am

#14 Blue Monster Lover of Meats and Vegetables on 04.01.12 at 6:57 pm
For the most part businesses treat their customers well to get repeat business
……………………………………………………………………….
If frequency of a phenomenon is any indication of its generality and we allowed dollars spent to proportionally represent the frequency a phenomenon occurs then the idea that businesses have the best interest of the client in mind is in fact by and large a myth. The main goal of a profiteer is profit making, not customer service. In fact the most common form of profit maximization is protectionism and price fixing, in short, varying degrees of monopoly. This is in fact by and large the environment within which consumers must spend their dollars. There is no free market in reality and the myths are employed simply to inspire, diffuse, and misdirect public opinion in my skewed view, but how am I supposed to know? What I do believe is the NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO BUY A HOUSE. BUYER BEWARE. THE BUBBLE HAS TOPPED. SALES ARE FALLING ACROSS CANADA.

#105 BigAl (Original) on 04.02.12 at 1:21 am

#59Westernman on 04.01.12 at 9:13 pm
Disciple @ # 51,
Here’s the rule of capitalism Mr. Disciple – it is the best system on earth for people who have ambition, drive, perserverance, creativity and intelligence because it allows them to create as much personal wealth as they are able to and willing to work for.
The Socialist ( Communist ) system ( Canada ) is appealing to the slow-witted, lazy, passive, bottom – feeding, low I.Q. lemmings who believe they should be able to sit on their asses all day, produce nothing and be served by the nanny state from cradle to grave…
Which category do you fall under…
………………………………………………………………………….

Westernman….Wouldn’t you be happier in the third world, where they have the exact system you crave?

We in Canada don’t have full on capitalism nor full on socialism or communism or anything of the sort. We have a mixed economy just like every successful western economy (including the U.S.), where the government and private sector have their separate roles to play. It’s not perfect but it has brought all of the European, N. American, and Aus/NZ countries much greater overall wealth and prosperity than any other countries on earth. Problems with economies arise when governments or the private sector treads too much on the other. The third world is where this is evident, being either all socialist or all capitalist. In either case, a few elites, no middle class, and a massive amount of poverty. You seem not to mind a world where a few of what you consider the smartest, brightest, and best get it all and the vast majority get nothing because of what you consider their lack of talent and/or laziness.

There are many countries in the world where capital equals rights – more money equals wayyyy better living, better protections than everyone else (private security, etc, walled communities), the cops/courts and government offices treat you better than everybody else, you’re always believed in disputes, you can hit/beat workers if they don’t produce, you can murder anyone who even looks like they’re going to start a union or have the military do things like cut off womens’ breasts in front of their 5-year old children to send a clear message across generations (Chile under Pinochet, who Ralph Klein proudly fawned over in a paper he tabled in the AB legislature). You also get front-of-the line service in hospitals and government offices, your capital accumulation lets you buy changes to laws and regulations quite easily. My point is everything you want already exists in many many places in the world. Why don’t you go there?

#106 Mr Buyer on 04.02.12 at 1:27 am

#59 Westernman on 04.01.12 at 9:13 pm
The Socialist ( Communist ) system ( Canada ) is appealing to the slow-witted, lazy, passive, bottom – feeding, low I.Q. lemmings who believe they should be able to sit on their asses all day, produce nothing and be served by the nanny state from cradle to grave
……………………………………………………………………..
Mr Westernman, being a slow-witted socialist at heart myself, I have to question your perceptions of being this self made man of a higher and thus more deserving ilk. You have benefited directly from your countrymen in no small way. I myself have no interest in carrying anybody on my back other than my children and expect a degree of work and learning from myself and my countrymen that allows us to contend with all competitors. The fact is, a team of such individuals, supporting one another will outproduce and outperform any and all other organisational styles, especially profiteers.

#107 Tim on 04.02.12 at 1:32 am

Why are you going on about such trivial things when Steven Harper has stolen the election? These neo-con thugs have a stranglehold on the media, and consequently this gets little coverage.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9XkcWN9DSKY

#108 Aussie Roy on 04.02.12 at 1:35 am

Aussie Update

Aussie housing myths part II

I’m sure many of these myths also exist in Canada?.

http://bubblepedia.net.au/tiki-view_forum_thread.php?comments_parentId=27018&topics_sort_mode=lastPost_desc&forumId=7

Why Australian House Prices Are Set to Crash

http://au.ibtimes.com/articles/321064/20120329/why-australian-house-prices-set-crash-ibtimesau.htm

People starting to realise a house isn’t always the road to wealth.

Australia’s focus on saving is being driven by a desire to “bolster wealth”, the Reserve Bank says.

One indicator of this trend is the households savings ratio, which has been running at 9.5 per cent of disposable income for several years, significantly above the 1990s, the RBA’s March financial stability review snapshot shows.

And if people feel less wealthy now, they have reason. Real net worth of households fell 6.5 per cent last year, about 11.5 per cent below its 2007 peak, the RBA said.

http://www.smh.com.au/business/paying-off-mortgage-top-of-the-priorities-20120330-1w3dp.html#ixzz1qrG2AxBu

Bursting bubbles cause unemployment to rise.

SUDDENLY it’s much harder to find work in Victoria. A year ago there were 3.6 unemployed Victorians fighting for each vacant job. Now there are 4.6.

The dramatically worse odds, revealed yesterday by the Bureau of Statistics

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/job-struggle-gets-worse-in-victoria-20120329-1w19k.html#ixzz1qrGMBWJn

Overseas banks make a run for it, away from Australia.

THE economy’s ability to reap the full benefits of the once in a generation resources boom is in jeopardy, with major projects facing a funding gap as more foreign banks leave the Australian market.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/financial-services/funding-shortfall-threatens-resources-projects/story-fn91wd6x-1226314925545

It always gets “silly” when bubbles peak.

Need a house? Why not build one in a laneway?

http://www.news.com.au/money/property/need-a-house-why-not-build-one-in-a-laneway/story-e6frfmd0-1226315779293

As govt revenue falls, middle class welfare get the chop.

Childcare rebate means test proposed
Education, health slashed by $8 billion

http://www.news.com.au/national/childcare-rebate-could-be-cut-in-federal-budget/story-e6frfkvr-1226040285239#ixzz1JiCARwYA

#109 Mr Buyer on 04.02.12 at 1:35 am

Realtors are not legislators. It would be fraud if they did not legally do all they can to serve their clients. This bubble was easy to predict, especially with the recent nature of the American bubble and a trained economist as leader of our country along with the measures they took to create and manage the bubble. We must not allow responsibility to be diffused. The government allowed the banks and Realtors to do what they have done to our homes. The main stream media is likely much more culpable than the realtors in that the media practices blatant propaganda under the guise of reporting the truth. The Harper government is responsible and no one else and they have been aided by the propaganda spread by the media.

#110 LS in Arbutus on 04.02.12 at 1:41 am

At least Toronto made #16 on the 2012 Global Cities Index…. Vancouver, nowhere to be seen.

http://www.atkearney.com/index.php/Publications/2012-global-cities-index-and-emerging-cities-outlook.html

NY #1
London #2
Paris #3
Tokyo #4
Hong Kong #5
LA #6
Chicago #7
Seoul #8
Brussels #9
Washington #10
Singapore #11
Sydney #12
Toronto #16
San Franciso #17
Montreal #30
Nairobi #56

#111 GeneticistX on 04.02.12 at 1:44 am

I know this might sound crazy, but after selling my current house, i am thinking of downsizing a bit and buying a house in the 400K-500k range in Toronto. I will tell my purchasing agent the following:
1. I will not be involved in a bidding war

2. I will demand to inform other buyers what my bids are, if they are around, and if they want to bid more, by all means, go ahead, if she won’t do it, I will figure out a way to do so, maybe a piece of paper on the window of my car if i have to sit in front of the house

3. I am conflicted, as i do believe that a product is worth what someone will pay for it. But a comment above makes sense, which is mostly everybody who is bidding up in these wars is bidding with SOMEONE ELSE’S MONEY.

4. People aren’t looking very closely at amortization tables, and how much they are spending on interest over the life of a mortgage.

There should be a mandatory class in high school about house/real estate financing.

If i were to get a 40 year mortgage, id be dead long before i paid it off. What are the banks thinking, why are they lending money to someone whom they know will NEVER be able to pay it back? WTF?

#112 Arshes on 04.02.12 at 2:12 am

#10 Beach Girl on 04.01.12 at 6:39 pm
I think Garth, you should tell everyone of us out there, what we are expected to receive from the government at age 60 (if elected to take CPP early) and age 65. Along with OAS payments, and also what is available to seniors living in distress financially. I have Italian senior neighbours who have no idea what they are entitled to.

Also, I have a friend Tom, a lightbulb has a higher wattage. But he is a human being, he turns 65 this year. He is single. What is this poor bugger entitled to. He rakes and shovels all winter and does yard work for all of us.

I am quite sure these people are entitled to some form of care. I guarantee the government is not making them aware of the programs available. Still pissed off today.
.—————————————————-

Make an appointment with Service Canada agent at a Service Canada office. Generally if you have been filing your income taxes on a regular and timely basis you will get a notice in the mail when you qualify for CPP or OAS or GIS. If you need help to complete the forms make an appointment with a Service Canada agent. For Provincial Programs you may get a notice in the mail also (my parents did in Alberta) about programs you can qualify for, this is generally also dependant on the regular and timely filing of your income taxes. But it may be a bit different where you live.

#113 betamax on 04.02.12 at 2:13 am

#14 Blue Monster: “Tim, you’re a moron. That’s capitalism at its worst”

I think you missed the part where he referred to it as “corruption”. Look it up.

#114 EJ on 04.02.12 at 2:14 am

Most people are unaware of how the human thought process works, what the weaknesses are, and how it can be manipulated. There are some sinister masterminds that, over thousands of years of research, have developed amazingly effective techniques for controlling people’s behaviour. Their wants, desires, feelings, and opinions can all be steered to whatever those in power want them to be.

Marketing is psychology in practice. The majority is powerless against it, as they don’t even believe they are affected. We believe that we are adults and have free will to make our own choices, but when we’re constantly fed misinformation, and have truths held back from us, we’re susceptible to becoming sheep who rely on charlatans that we are told are “experts”. At this point, we can be lied to and told what to think.

One of the most important lessons in life is to think for yourself. Until people start doing this, you will continue to see these kinds of scams taking place, as they have for thousands of years.

#115 Santa on 04.02.12 at 2:24 am

And how exactly is this fraud, Garth? As much as I don’t like this, just because it empowers idiots to drive the market price discovery, I don’t see any fraud here. Unless a judge would deem the bidders mentally incompetent and in need of enforced protection from themselves. Is this what they are seeking with their legal action? To be declared irresponsible? This is so ridiculous…

What I think it shows is only a pinnacle of the entitlement mentality I noticed all around. So called adults mired in a Peter Pan world. I came here from an ex-communist country. I thought I escaped this mentality. Communism just legitimises envy and gives a field to run to manipulators keen enough to use the system.
Instead I found it replicated here in a more sinister form. People are genuinely convinced someone has to fix their mistakes. This would be the definition of a child mind. Sinister because a child can kill without remorse. It is amoral.

#116 realtorpro on 04.02.12 at 2:30 am

Realtors are about as ethical as a teenage boy trying to get into the pants of a girl. They will lie, tell you what you want to hear, make up stories and promise you the world just to close the deal – once done, it’s onto the next one.

You: Is this over priced? Realtor: No, I would never let you pay anything over market value — people, there is /no/ market value! Market value is what you can afford to give up monthly to the banks in order to keep up with the Jones’.

After all, it is more important to own a home today than to be happy and to have some cushioning in your finance. Has everyone forgotten that it sometimes rains?

#117 new-era on 04.02.12 at 2:42 am

Real estate agents are no more than used car saleman.

With no regulation and backed by CMHC , global / CBC and all those news stations helping to orchestrate this facade.

But the worst offender is F and C. Not willing to pull the trigger to stop the charade!

#118 betamax on 04.02.12 at 2:45 am

#72 blatherer: “Sorry, but property is still very cheap here in Vancouver”

I’ve noticed that online comments beginning with the words “Sorry, but…” are invariably rhetorical, at the expense of logic.

“I’m looking at buying a new investment condo in a Chinese 2nd tier city”

So soon after purportedly buying in Vancouver and investing your remaining savings in a home business? Wow, you’re a busy bee.

Regardless, congrats on investing in two of the biggest property bubbles in the world, and using the greater to justify the lesser.

“And before anyone mentions “historical valuations” or prices must return to historical averages in Vancouver, I’ll make very clear the fact they don’t.”

Thanks for supplying us with this “fact”. I’m sure someone in their twenties has a wonderful perspective on historic values.

“Humanity is in a period of exponential growth.”

Has been for some time, according to history. If more so recently, then it’s odd that property values have recently crashed in many parts of the world.

“It is different now.”

It always is. Someone even wrote a book about it: ‘This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly’

http://press.princeton.edu/titles/8973.html

#119 Ben on 04.02.12 at 2:45 am

#72 blatherer on 04.01.12 at 10:07 pm

That’s a pile of crap, just look south in the good ol U.S.A. and you don’t see these astronomical prices.
And much better preferred places to live to I might add.

#120 BSWar on 04.02.12 at 2:58 am

Here is a real life example. House was listed for $450K in a GTA neighbourhood a while back. I placed a bid at $470K. Seller decided wasn’t high enough. 3 months later house still not sold. Relisted at $500K. No offers. Price reduced to $475K. WTF!!! Here is what i think this should be done…there should be a penalty paid by the seller if offers are submitted at or above the asking price and seller decides not the sell. They are wasting peoples time and that should be accounted for. Prices should not be a moving target! Ebay does not allow this! The stock market doesn’t allow this. Why is it so different when selling a house? I don’t care if a buyer decides to purchase a home in a bidding war. My issue is the right the owner has to refuse offers at or above the asking price. That is a fraud!

#121 SadMan on 04.02.12 at 3:09 am

I live in Toronto and i’m really sadden by what is happening to my neighbourhood. About 5 years ago you could of purchased a decent semi- for about $350K and change. Now prices are absurb selling in the $500K and higher. However, these buyers are not looking to live in these houses instead they are of course putting their 5% down and having renters pay for their mortgage because otherwise they could not afford these homes. This has turned my neighbourhood full of renters and no longer families. In the past 2 months 6 homes have been bought on my street and renovated into rentals. I really think in the end this is going be the downfall of my area since no family is going to pay these outrageous prices just to convert the house back to a single family home. When (not if) this housing market corrects i think we are going to see a lot of slums in Toronto.

#122 Sucker Man on 04.02.12 at 3:41 am

This is what I hate about this blog, a sense of unfairness. People will brag about a great deal but cry if they get ripped off. If you lose money because you’re stupid, you weren’t suppose to have it in the first place. I have no problem with realtors’ lack of ethics or morals, in fact, I think they should be encouraged. What I do have a problem with is the bitching and complaining and the moaning about how it’s not fair. “don’t hate the player, hate the game” oh, and hate that bastard Smoking Man.

#123 VancouverJoe on 04.02.12 at 3:57 am

Like paying Flaherty over 300 K for his pension – for destroying our economy.

+1000 So true

#124 Aussie Roy on 04.02.12 at 4:53 am

Canadian flavoured – Aussie Update

Following on from Monday’s post, Canada’s bubble goes mainstream, Canada’s leading current affairs magazine, Macleans.ca, has published its March housing bubble report (front cover above), entitled Time to panic about the housing market: why is everyone ignoring the unfolding disaster? Let’s take a look.

http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2012/03/australian-vs-canadian-property-by-leith-van-onselen/

Building approvals plunge across Australia

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/economics/residential-dwellings-approved-for-construction-plunged-in-february/story-e6frg926-1226316357137

http://www.news.com.au/money/property/building-approvals-data-confirm-weakness/story-e6frfmd0-1226316541088

http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2012/04/nsw-hits-building-approvals/

Ireland – the zombie economy.

And it is only the tip of the iceberg. The next phase of the Irish economy’s story won’t be the recovery but the mass default phase and it will imply the banks will need yet more capital. When that capital is unforthcoming, we will have another bank crisis.

The banks don’t have the capital necessary to foreclose on thousands of defaulters. If they foreclosed now, they’d simply go bust. However, by not actively foreclosing they will just go bust passively, slowly, zombie-like.

http://www.davidmcwilliams.ie/2012/03/28/next-stage-for-economy-isnt-recovery-its-mass-default

#125 backwardsevolution on 04.02.12 at 5:08 am

@76: “People are free to spend THEIR own money however they like. After all they earned it.

However, borrowed money is not earned. Therefore they are not entitled to spend it however they like. Take away CMHC backing from the banks and let’s see how much money these fools have to throw around.”

Bang on! If bankers were in a position to take a loss (currently the loss goes to the taxpayers), things would look a whole lot different.

#126 backwardsevolution on 04.02.12 at 5:19 am

@59: “Here’s the rule of capitalism Mr. Disciple – it is the best system on earth for people who have ambition, drive, perserverance, creativity and intelligence because it allows them to create as much personal wealth as they are able to and willing to work for.

The Socialist ( Communist ) system ( Canada ) is appealing to the slow-witted, lazy, passive, bottom – feeding, low I.Q. lemmings who believe they should be able to sit on their asses all day, produce nothing and be served by the nanny state from cradle to grave.”

Capitalism is the best system on earth for people who are more inclined towards greed, fraud, corruption, speculation (speculators used to be hung), for people much closer to the sociopathic end of the spectrum. Much of the wealth being created today is purely “accidental wealth” because we do NOT have a free market. If we did, Canadian banks would NOT have been bailed out in 2008, and the so-called “intelligent” you speak of would have met an appropriate death. How much hard work does it take to lever up and speculate? Most of the recent wealth has come precisely from people sitting on their asses; they haven’t had to lift a finger.

#127 Beach Girl on 04.02.12 at 5:51 am

#28 Westernman on 04.01.12 at 8:04 pm

Beach Girl @ # 10,
You sure like that word ” Entitled ” don’t you? Let me clue you in on something…
NOBODY – and I mean – NOBODY is ” Entitled to ANYTHING. You are ” Entitled ” to what you work for, plan for, sacrifice for and how much value you bring to the table … period.
You Canadians have one enormous entitlement mentality, don’t you?
The coming economic re-positioning is going to be quite a shock for the entitlement crowd…

____

Okay clueless. I paid into that fund, and am entitled to reap my rewards. I have paid my taxes, employed people, worked hard and long for what is due me. So suck on that lemon, lemon. Yes, of course I planned for my future, saved, invested, not blown away.

As for bringing value to the table, I am quite sure, I succeed you in that. Classic arrogant American. Bet you are 500 lbs and miserable. Do your thighs chafe.

And thank you Cassandra, will definitely look into that. One Canuck to another.

#128 First to last on 04.02.12 at 5:53 am

Just went to Walmart for the first time in a long time and Canadians cannot bitch about rich Chinese buying up all the houses, everything we buy is made in China. Where do you think they got the money?

#129 Beach Girl on 04.02.12 at 6:26 am

#317 Van grrl on 04.01.12 at 9:49 pm

Beach girl: http://www.tv-links.eu

TV shows A-Z and up to date!

_____

Thank you very much. Exactly what I was looking for. Again thanks

#130 I'm stupid on 04.02.12 at 6:37 am

Dh kid
Tax haven

As far as the reserve price, with a home listing there is none. If you listed a home with a reserve price then your right that would not be fraud. As long as you advertise your home with a price without a reserve it is fraud. let’s say I place a bid at the reserve price should you have the right not to sell? With real estate the reserve price should be the listing price.

Tax haven

If you list your home With requirements and all of them are met exactly as you requested them you should be forced to sell otherwise it compromises the process. It’s called bait and switch and the only place it’s allowed is in real estate.

#131 Savonarola on 04.02.12 at 6:44 am

Thanks, LS in Arbutus, for pointing out that Vancouver (“the best place on earth”) is NOWHERE to be found on the Global Cities index!

I went to a very uncrowded Vancouver open house today where some lying realtor in the usual fancy clothes with the usual prestige-mobile (leased, no doubt) parked out front tried to get me to believe that housing prices here were up this month. Guess he hadn’t read the new stats. I noted from his bio that among his previous occupations was used-car salesman. Why do some professions attract all the best and the brightest?

I am so sick of the way this city has been sold off and torn down. In my neighbourhood, spec builders continue to lunge to tear down smaller houses and bungalows that could have made affordable homes for families. These houses will be replaced by big, ugly, sloppily built homes made of sawdust and plastic that NO ONE WILL NOW BUY. Go, spec builders! Go, City of Vancouver “leaders,” letting this happen!

The MSM goes on and on and on publishing press releases from the realty industry that encourage the mindless and the faddish to buy and speculate. And those arrogant, self-deceived, monopolistic and supposedly sober Canadian banks! I can’t wait till the real-estate-industry-shills who own the MSM and Vancouver City Hall start suffering from the consequences of what they’ve foisted on this town.

#132 Savonarola on 04.02.12 at 6:51 am

127 Beach Girl — you can make good points without indicting a whole people, can’t you? “Classic arrogant American”? “Classic smug Canadian”? Ugly generalizations?

#133 Sky on 04.02.12 at 7:41 am

# 95 wopaholic – ” …last time I checked, they are a nation of over 1.5 billion people living in a country about the size of Ontario…”

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

That’s quite the whopper. China is huge, nearly the size of Canada.

http://geography.about.com/od/countryinformation/a/bigcountries.htm

#134 Sky on 04.02.12 at 7:50 am

Monday, Monday.

Political Ideology 101:

Big corporations and their lobbyists in bed with big govt is NOT called Capitalism. This is called Fascism.

Step away from Ayn Rand and her cult ( former fed chairman Alan Greenspan being one of Rand’s chosen)and get your ideologies straight.

#135 maxx on 04.02.12 at 8:10 am

Excellent post Garth (as usual). I completely agree.
Whenever a realtard dares utter that there is “another interested party”, we tell it that we’re no longer interested as we’re highly allergic to any hint or semblance of a bidding war. Bidding “war”! Only those with absolutely no respect for their money engage in this idiocy.

#136 Mikey the Realtor on 04.02.12 at 8:21 am

I’m glad to see that some have come to their senses on the blog, the only thing I see here is greedy buyers who can’t control their emotions, they buy at all costs regardless of consequence. Until people stop tripping over themselves to hand over $500k+ after a 3 minute visit in the viewing centre this will keep on going.

The gobberment loves taxes and so higher housing means higher property taxes, in fact I believe that is the reason why housing is being pushed up artificially. The illusion of ‘rich’ is a powerful thing and the gobberment knows this.

#137 maxx on 04.02.12 at 8:26 am

#5 Peter Menard on 04.01.12 at 6:30 pm

“You are just taking advantage of human nature.”

Re-read what you’ve posted. In the realm of logic, it doesn’t hold. At all.
Fraud is fraud, whatever part of a human being you attempt to subjugate.

#138 Can it be? on 04.02.12 at 8:37 am

It’s amazing how obsessed we are as a country about houses…. @north45… I drive a diesel so we will see what happens to that price… I avoid the 407 like the plague. Even if you have money doesn’t mean you can’t be frugal…Our other car is small and uses little gas. And no bidding wars for me, I’ve been turned off from agents and home sales exactly for that reason, and I’ve walked away an saw the home sell for less then what I would have paid. A house I was looking at says… 3% commission to the selling agent and please make an offer. They listed high, they listed a million under asking… Now they are in the middle. Workmanship sucks, I won’t touch it… It could have sold but now the owners are out of luck…

#139 Kevin on 04.02.12 at 9:00 am

I don’t think you can blame the realtor or the owner. They’re simply acting rationally. It’s human nature, and there’s nothing wrong with greed.

With any other commodity, this would be no problem at all. Would it be a scandal if someone priced their Lexus 20% below Kelly Blue Book in the Auto Trader, with the intention of provoking a bidding frenzy? I don’t think so.

The sellers and agents are just trying to get the most money. Why would anyone expect them to act otherwise?

The problem, as I see it, is that housing enjoys a sort of “protected” status, in that it’s in the best interest of society as a whole for people to be able to afford a place to live, whereas nobody has a right to an iPad.

In that context, then if anything needs to be done, it should be in the form of regulation, from the government. The problem is the compensation model for the realtors themselves. It puts the buyer’s agent in a direct conflict of interest. The higher the sale price, the more the buyer’s agent gets paid. But they’re supposed to be getting a LOWER price for their client (the buyer). I honestly have no idea why such a blatant conflict of interest has been allowed to persist for so long.

The solution is for the government to introduce rules that prohibit realtors from being paid on a commission basis, and move them to a flat-fee model (do it for insurance salespeople and so-called “financial advisors” too, while they’re at it).

#140 DodgedBullet on 04.02.12 at 9:01 am

#28 Westernman,

by taking part in society you are entitled to some basic things, i.e. those entitlements and rights laid out in the universal declaration of human rights.

We are not so on our own as you would have us believe.

Ben.

#141 househornyhousewife on 04.02.12 at 9:04 am

Garth,

I agree with many on this blog.

I don’t think this is fraud because you know what you are getting for your offer. You went to see the place, you know where it is located, you hopefully did the inspection and you should know your limits.

It would be fraud if the other bidders are fictitious however, and sometimes I really do wonder if what real estate agents say is genuine (ie. like, “another couple was looking at the house and they were willing to offer more than the asking price” or some such bullshit to which I used to answer, “oh yeah, then they can have the place”).

I personally refused to get involved in a bidding war. Last summer my husband and I saw the most beautiful lakefront place and I am sure we would have been very happy there (my hubby already had his bags packed). However, there was another buyer and I was unwilling to get caught up in a bidding war so we set the price that we were willing to pay for the place based on what we thought it was worth and what we were willing to pay and that was that ! The other buyer went higher and he got the house.

I simply put myself in the situation that I would be in after the sale. Always thinking, “hmmm, did I make a mistake and pay too much for this place ?” … “did I move too quickly on such an expensive purchase”, … “did I just throw away hundreds of thousands of dollars simply to get this place and not because it was worth it” … believe me, that monthly mortgage payment will taste like POISON each and every month for the 20 – 25 years it takes you to pay it off … JUST IMAGINE IT. Your house would become a prison instead of your dream style of living. You would be forced to forgo other great things in your life in order to afford those twenty four hours of testosterone. NOT WORTH IT.

In the end, we found an even better fit for us with an even better view in the village of our choice and we cannot wait to move in. We paid what it was worth and were able to get a fair price by using other things to deal (like seller’s choice of closing date, no conditions other than an inspection .. this particular seller happened to appreciate a clean offer and that’s what we made .. if you really want a place, tailoring your offer to fit the seller is always a good strategy .. money isn’t everything).

No one is forcing anyone to get caught up in a bidding war. I personally hate gambling and I think that all of those free buses and free meals that are given by casinos to seniors in order to bring them in to empty their pockets should be illegal. Casinos are taking advantage of lonely people who are looking to make their lives more exciting by making what they are selling seem like glitter, gold and life in the fast lane.

Instead of free transportation and free food, these house vendors are baiting people with a low price. Smart people should know better. Just as we know about casinos, we also know about lower priced listings. It should be noted that the vendor is also taking a chance and I cannot wait until these people begin to sell at their asking price (if anyone tried to bait buyers with a lower priced listing here in the townships, the asking price is all they would get). If people refused to get involved in bidding wars then this practice would end. Just as if people stopped lining up for half a million dollar condos, developers would stop duping buyers into paying top dollar for cardboard boxes.

If there are buyers willing to fork out money for crap, there will be sellers willing to sell it .. ethics and integrity be damned. Business is business. If you are stupid enough to get caught up in a bidding war and come out a loser (meaning you “win” the place) then you have no one but yourself to blame. EVERYONE should know that if it looks too good to be true then that’s exactly what it IS so don’t take the bait.

HHHW

#142 Ret on 04.02.12 at 9:12 am

#121 Sad Man

Rentals never get converted back to SF homes. Our neighbourhood turned into a student ghetto in about 6-8 years and will never provide the quality of life that it did in the previous 20 years. Nothing is legal on my block but greedy “investors” have kept prices up even as the area continues to deteriorate.

Don’t wait too long to ring the register on your place. Once total decay in an area becomes evident, prices will fall because investors have milked the properties for every last cent (?). The properties will look like crap and the rent available to investors will not be as lucrative. Prices for RE won’t keep up.

#143 Nuke on 04.02.12 at 9:18 am

House across the street went on sale for 1.6million. or 110 times my annual rent. Downtown TO. That’s up $600k from about 4 years ago when it was last sold. Has no back yard and sits on an alley. Let’s watch how long it takes to sell. If price manipulation is in order are we then looking at a $2million fixer upper after the feeding frenzy. then again who pays 2 million to sit across from a public housing townhouse lowrise project?

#144 disciple on 04.02.12 at 9:22 am

#59 Westernman… none of the above and none of your business. As to your false duality and self-described labeling system, I know which category you fall under, that’s for sure, and it’s not the first one. You do not know yourself, and like I told you before and like you ignored me before, you are a classic case of child abuse. In that regard, you are not unique and you are another victim. But count yourself lucky that you have me to put up that mirror so you can see yourself more clearly.

#145 Kevin on 04.02.12 at 9:24 am

@I’m Stupid:

” As long as you advertise your home with a price without a reserve it is fraud. let’s say I place a bid at the reserve price should you have the right not to sell?”

Uhm… You do have the right not to sell.

As a seller, you always have the option of just saying “I changed my mind, I’m no longer willing to sell it for that price.”

Nobody can force you to go through with a sale just because someone is willing to pay what you were asking.

#146 Ronaldo on 04.02.12 at 9:28 am

Ominus glimpse of the future of work. From the Wall Street Journal. So much for retirement for many.

http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/working-9-to-5—-at-75.html?page=1

#147 The American on 04.02.12 at 9:35 am

104thBPOE, almost all major areas’ sold prices within the Vancouver metro, including West Van, Richmond, North Van, Kits, etc., are down between 11%-17% month-over-month. Listings going up, sales going down, prices going down. Of course, this is going to vacillate by area as we move forward, but for ALL areas to be down as is the current case is quite telling. By the way, you made a commitment to the bloggers/readers on this site not to mention me again. You just couldn’t help yourself, could you. You also made claim rates woul *never* rise again. You’ve also said how solid Richmond is, but it is one of the areas that has been nailed the hardest since just November of 2011. You also said the USD would continue to drop against the CAD, but it didn’t. You also said that gold and silver are the only place to be other than real estate, yet both continue to drop in value from their peaks. You also said the Chinese real estate economy was beyond solid, yet values across most major metropolitan areas in China have virtually fallen off a cliff. Yes, I’m sure its just that silly HST creating all the mess. LOL You silly moron with a major inferiority complex. As I’ve been saying… at LEAST a 40% drop in Vancouver real estate prices will happen, and it is already beginning.

#148 disciple on 04.02.12 at 9:37 am

#103 Cristian…”Nobody puts a gun to a potential buyer’s head and force him to bid his brains out.”

No, not a gun, but something much more potent: Mind Control, in its various forms. Because humans are not rational. Adam Smith was wrong.

#149 disciple on 04.02.12 at 9:43 am

#107 Tim…exactly right, but I called it right after the election, right here on this blog (not to toot my horn or anything). And then what happened to Jack Layton, it’s all too suspicious for anyone who cares to look. Was easy for me to see because I know that virtually all elections in North America have been fraudulent, but most of you still don’t…

#150 ARE WE NUTS on 04.02.12 at 9:43 am

All of this results from SELLING prices not be open and available to all! We have been renting a house in Ottawa for several years and have been watching prices. We love our neighbourhood, so have focused on houses there. Early in spring, we saw a 4 bedroom bung. with a garage on a huge lot. The price was $369,000. We talked to a neighbour and the house sold for $380,000. HOWEVER the agents have been raising prices this spring and across the street a 50’s bung. was offered for sale… MUCH smaller and priced at $419,000. It was tiny compared to the first, only 3 bedrooms instead of 4, a dining room that was 8 by 8 and a tiny addition that was electrically heated and had no basement. It gathered huge crowds and was sold in days. ARE PEOPLE NUTS. Anyone contemplating buying in an area needs numbers and the only real way to access them is to copy all the listings in an area to a word document and watch them! Last year I saw reductions of $40,000 in some listings, just because people get tired to keeping houses on the market. Check things out!

#151 KingBubbles on 04.02.12 at 10:10 am

I hope residential real estate gets regulated properly one day. It should never have been used as a commodity to speculate on. We don’t do this with water or electricty and those are basic needs as well as shelter.

Our current practice lacks both intra and intergenerational equity (i.e. unfair) and, Canada – being the best country in the world, should have known better. Roll that and smoke it H, C, and F.

Time for my morning Timmys.

#152 Bobby on 04.02.12 at 10:17 am

Yes, it is fraud. Plain and simple.
If you put something up for sale and a prospective buyer offers you the full amount with no conditions you are legally obligated to sell. It is a contract.
If the seller was to receive only one clean offer at the list price and refused to sell, the realtor could legally take action to receive his/her commission as they had met their obligations.
Most agents know little about contract law. I recall one clown I sold a condo with at Whistler. She was so useless we closed the sale offering her less commission. She signed without ever reading it, but then said it was null and void and threatened to take legal action. After a quick call to her broker and the Real Estate Board she came around.

#153 TaxHaven on 04.02.12 at 10:21 am

#130 I’m Stupid,

Only in real estate, yes. But maybe the “asking price” is – if you read the fine print – not defined legally as such. Maybe it’s a “starting price for solicitation of offers” or a “estimated value” or an “estimate” or a “suggested retail price” or something…

I’ll be the first to admit I’m no real estate junky.

#71 Jokes on Us

BEST COMMENT OF THE DAY! YAY!

Canadians wouldn’t know free market capitalism if it hit them over the head. This is monkeyed, manipulated, entitlement-laden, tortured socialism. Nothing less…

#154 backwardsevolution on 04.02.12 at 10:33 am

@128 (First to Last): “Just went to Walmart for the first time in a long time and Canadians cannot bitch about rich Chinese buying up all the houses, everything we buy is made in China. Where do you think they got the money?”

60% of all exports out of China are from U.S. corporations. That’s right, U.S. corporations use the cheap labour, but own the companies.

Then there’s the article, “Corrupt Chinese Officials Take $123 Billion Overseas”:
http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2011/06/16/report-corrupt-chinese-officials-take-123-billion-overseas/

The wealthy Chinese coming here are part of a small group of elite Communist Party officials who have ripped off their countrymen, dispossessed them of their land, in order to “hand” it to developers (in order to line their own pockets). They have then illegally gotten the money out of the country.

#155 GregW, Oakville on 04.02.12 at 10:35 am

Hi #91Nostra, Thanks for links! The ones with an April 1st date are harder to tell apart from the real ones? I’ll need to wait until April 2nd.

#156 pacific on 04.02.12 at 10:41 am

SO much for bringing money into the country

“Overseas Employment Tax Credit Phase out

Currently, employees who are residents of Canada and who qualify for the Overseas Employment Tax Credit (OETC) are entitled to a tax credit equal to the federal tax otherwise payable on 80% of their qualifying foreign employment income, up to a maximum foreign employment income of $100,000.

The budget proposes to phase out the OETC over four years, beginning with 2013. In particular, during the phase-out period, the 80% applied to an employee’s qualifying foreign employment income will be reduced as follows:

· 60% for 2013

· 40% for 2014

· 20% for 2015.

The OETC will be eliminated for 2016 and subsequent years.

The phase-out rules will not apply to qualifying foreign employment income earned by an employee if the employer has committed in writing (e.g., the employer tendered an irrevocable bid in writing for a project) before March 29, 2012. In this case, the 80% will apply for 2013, 2014, and 2015. However, the OETC will be eliminated for 2016 and subsequent years.”

CRA

I just lost my biggest incentive to work offshore… maybe its time to move offshore for good..

#157 The American on 04.02.12 at 10:44 am

At #127: Beach girl, I gotta say you probably shouldn’t have made the comment to Westernman intimating he is a “classic arrogant American.” Canadians, more than anyone, love to stick their noses up at Americans. And for what? 90% of your population lives within 60 miles of the U.S. border. ‘Nuff said. I don’t want to hear some lame excuse the rest of your country is inhabitable either… Tell that to the Northern Europeans who really get a laugh out of that excuse.

We don’t really give a damn what you think. And, for the record, we don’t pin up the American flag in our offices and homes when we establish residency and work in your country. However, if we see a Canadian living/working in the U.S., I guarantee he/she will have a Canadian flag hanging up in his/her office or hanging off the front porch of his/her home or both (not shitting you, this is REALLY the case at Microsoft, Amazon.com, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Nordstrom, Starbucks, K2, T-Mobile, etc… Canadians are the ONLY ones who behave like this in our observations. Talk about arrogant and really not *getting* the picture). So, if you’re going to point a finger in one direction, remember that you have three fingers pointing right back at you. So, clean up the trash in your own backyard before you point out your neighbor’s. I could certainly point out all the problems with Canada today, but let’s try not to go there, okay? You wouldn’t want that, I promise.

I could point out the only arrogance right now is the Canadian attitude that your economy is coming along just swimmingly. We all know differently. And to make a comment that Westerman may be a 500 pound individual with chafing thighs is pretty damn funny. In case you haven’t checked lately, Americans are thinning down while Canadians are fattening up at an increasing rate that exceeds the U.S. obesity rate at its peak. The difference between Canadian and American obesity rate today is about 4% – so not that much of a difference, and Canadians are gaining QUICKLY.

Back on point, you do come off as a person in many of your posts who believes you are entitled. Just sayin’….

#158 The American on 04.02.12 at 10:50 am

Beach Girl, and yes, it does suck to pay so much of your income to taxes to support entitlement programs that you may or may not ever have the opportunity to partake. The problem with entitlement programs is that, *POOF,* in the blink of an eye the government can just take it all away – and they do, or they change up the rules on you after the fact. Even after you’ve spent your entire life paying into the system. It really isn’t a great system. I can already detect the anger in your posts at the mere notion that your entitlements may not come to fruition. But, that’s okay. Keep on believing the way you do. Let me know how it works out for you.

#159 MoneyMyHoney on 04.02.12 at 10:54 am

Nothing wrong with it. As long as there are fools, it will sell for a higher price or so called $$s that market can afford.
There were houses priced for $1.00.
Again, just because some idiot offered $3.5 mil. doesn’t mean that owner has to sell it.

Check eBay (only difference is they have a cut off time).

#160 DonDWest on 04.02.12 at 11:08 am

I agree with Westernman, we have far too much socialism in Canada:
First, we have the CPP. This is a tax subsidy from the poor to help the rich and middle class. The poor, by being poor, usually die only a few years after they’re permitted to get their CPP payments. Meanwhile, the rich and middle class, who enjoy longer lifespans, reap the benefits.
Then we have the OAS, which functions much the same way, only this time it’s mostly a subsidy from the poor to the middle class.
Next we have student loans. While the students are required to pay them back – the taxpayer is left to foot the bill if the students can’t pay or decide to bail from the country. “Higher college education” is a social club the rich and middle class use to maintain prestige and status. Indeed, even if the poor do manage to somehow get an “education,” rarely does it matter. This is simply because the purpose of college isn’t to get an education but to cement connections. The poor pay taxes to insure these student loans and reap none of the benefits. They’re mostly used to raise the salaries of the rich and middle class.
Next we have all of our wonderful environmental laws and taxes. Often these rules have little to do with the environment; instead they’re used to keep property values high for the rich and middle class. How do you keep properly values high? By keeping the poor out and away. How do you force the poor away? Decreed the area the poor live in is a slummy “environmental hazard” and start gentrifying accordingly. The poor pay taxes on these environmental regulations that only serve to move them out of town and improve the property values of the rich and middle class.
Let’s talk about roads? Oh that’s right, the poor pay taxes on roads as well despite the fact most can’t even afford a car. Once again an example of socialism for the rich and middle class with zero benefits to the poor.
Let’s also not forget all the wonderful subsidies and tax breaks the rich and middle class get for simply owning a home. Who do you think pays for that? That’s right, poor renters.
Last but not least, the rich are for the most part completely insured by the Federal government in the event they ever were to lose large sums of money. Take the banker bailouts for example. While this hurts both the middle class and poor to the benefit of the rich – it hurts the poor at a disproportionate amount. Most middle class people still have money in their bank accounts that would be protected from such bailouts – while the poor have none.

The only government program that directly funds the poor is welfare, which is why people whine so much about it.

So if Westernman wants to completely remove socialism, go ahead, but my guess is he only wants to remove the socialism he disagrees with and keep the socialism that benefits himself.

So here is what I propose: Create a political party that eliminates all this socialism for the middle class, old, and rich at mostly the expense of the young and poor. Hopefully, the rich and their baby boomer “knights of the middle class order” will be too busy debating what type socialism to hand themselves (should it be of the red or blue variety?) by plundering from the young and poor. With any luck, we’ll get a voter split and we’ll be able to creep in.

#161 Tony Right on 04.02.12 at 11:12 am

Welcome to “New Age Capitalism”. And when the ship sinks, the government will bail everyone out on the backs of the younger generations.

#162 vreaa on 04.02.12 at 11:15 am

Spot The Speculator #79 – “A relative of mine was caught chasing the “boom” in Calgary in 2006. Took a huge hit on 3 properties. Swore he would never buy again. Guess what? He’s now in Vancouver, buying at another crest.”

Why Not Play Again?

http://wp.me/pcq1o-3U3

#163 wopaholic on 04.02.12 at 11:23 am

Lol sorry sky you’re right, China is quite large but still smaller than Canada and has 50 times our population… you get the idea ;)

#164 Outtahere on 04.02.12 at 11:25 am

Bidding can backfire too…we got our place in Vancouver in 2007 as one of 8 bids. The house was under priced and there were 100 people at the open house. The listing realtor couldn’t even be bothered answering questions I posed about the house! I just went in with the amount I was willing to pay ($60k less than assessed value) and when the offers were being accepted my realtor kept asking if I was sure of my price And I wouldn’t budge. Guess what, it was accepted even after they kept coming back to me saying there were multiple offers do I want to offer more, etc. I stood my ground I knew the price I was willing to pay and wasn’t going to give another cent. I knew that there will always be another great house another day. Well the seller was pretty unhappy but there you go…in a sellers market a buyer can still get value as long as they don’t get emotional.

#165 Coraline on 04.02.12 at 11:33 am

I can’t believe so many people are defending the practice of bidding wars. Information is key to any truly free market. Real estate boards use the ratio of sales price to listing price as one of their measures of how strong a market is. As we all know, they also use days on market. Both of these statistics are extremely misleading. There is very little accurate information about Canada’s real estate market, and the real estate boards are one of the main reasons why this is the case. As a consequence, people are more likely to make foolish mistakes.

#166 Brandon on 04.02.12 at 11:37 am

First! :)

#167 big T on 04.02.12 at 11:38 am

why all the moral outrage when a realtor actually does
his/her job and increases anticipated profit, or do you
prefere the norm, the quick sale at your expense, the
realtor taking a small hit in a reduced percentage, for
a low ball quick sale, they lose a little, you lose a lot..

#168 Bottoms_Up on 04.02.12 at 11:41 am

#150 ARE WE NUTS on 04.02.12 at 9:43 am
——————————————–
Prices in Ottawa are pretty much crazy. Hopefully we see some softness with the 12,000 layoffs over the next 3 years. You basically have to be a millionaire (whatever that means these days) in order to buy a decent SFH within the city of Ottawa proper.

#169 John G. Young on 04.02.12 at 11:50 am

#88 Monster Cookie on 04.01.12 at 11:00 pm

“You preach a Christian dogma about helping the poor but think nothing of stealing from the rich to spread their poverty… you preach compassion to justify stealing…you pretend to care but only want to loot… you hold yourself as morally superior when in reality you’re a scourge.”

And you wage personal attacks on people you don’t even know.

Who the hell do you think you are?

#170 isampat on 04.02.12 at 11:54 am

Hi Garth,

I enjoy reading your blog. You mentioned CMHC will reduce its taxpayer funded tap of house insurance for banks. If this is the case, wouldn’t a private a insurer like Genworth step in provide insurance to keep houses being insured ?

#171 Canada HATES free markets on 04.02.12 at 12:10 pm

Take away CHMC and then you will have a free market in Canada. You would also see a 50% crash over night. Realtor ,bankers , mortgage broker and every other facist knows it. Can you imagine the screaming and kicking from everyone if the OPEN and FREE MARKETS were to be allowed in Canada? Come on realtors and fellow facists if RE is so strong why not ask the government to shut down CHMC and have everyone see just how strong of a demand the free housing market in Canad would be. Lets see just how much HAM would really be. Why isn’t HAM not buying RE in the US now? They were buying during the run up!

#172 CONservatives HATE FREEMARKETS and DEMOCRACY on 04.02.12 at 12:18 pm

These COns hate freedom and democracy.

#173 brainsail on 04.02.12 at 12:32 pm

The part about the “bidding wars” that I do not get is when houses sell for way more than they should, it appears that everyone doesn’t have a proplem getting a mortgage. Are the bank appraisals for mortgage approvals fairy dust?

In contrast…

“You find the home of your dreams. You’re pre-approved for a mortgage. You’ve scheduled the closing. Then … the appraisal comes in too low and the deal blows up.”

http://money.cnn.com/2012/03/30/real_estate/mortgage-denied/index.htm

#174 daystar on 04.02.12 at 12:33 pm

#44 X on 04.01.12 at 8:47 pm

“IMO it is fraud when they list with a lower price, get poor interest, and reject a singular offer for the asking price. That is the risk you take when you list low, and it should be enforcable to have to legally make the sale, if the buyer offers the asking price with no conditions.” – X

I couldn’t agree more. Commentors compare bidding wars to being the same thing as ebay, but its not. Ebay is an open auction where you can see how many others are bidding and what their bids are (even so, some sellers run up the bid through robo programs or others bidding for them). Thats simply not the case with whats going on here. Its a closed bidding process, the RE agent tells you what the other bids are but you have no way of knowing if they are legit and if a bid does go offer what the seller initially asks, the seller often withdraws and ups the price to a more realistic value without ever mentioning the asking price was ever a reserve bid.

David Flemming has a point here today (a realtor who by the way agrees with Garth that this is fraud). Whats happening in this RE market concerning bidding wars is chaos, it could easily be regulated or stopped but it isn’t and you all have your federal government to thank for it.

Ebay is an open bidding process (when not manipulated). Whats happening here with RE is far from it… and to me its fraud.

I’m also reading all kinds of other stuff I disagree with here today. Get rid of social programs for example. I take it such opinions are formed by people who don’t rely on them to survive or more simply put, by people who can’t put themselves in the shoes of the poor (likely because they believe themselves to be superior to them).

Lets ask the the simple question of what society would be like if we didn’t have them shall we? It would be “pay as you go”. Don’t people have a clue as to how many of us have wealth simply because we were born into it or were just given lucky breaks? I’ve got news for folks with such positions. Some of the most ambitious, intelligent people you will ever find wind up with nothing. (Nikoli Tesla comes to mind as such an example, a pure genious who ended up dying broke and alone) Such positions are born out of judgment giving birth to pride (or vise versa) which, if left unchecked, leads to a superiority complex and some of us clearly have one.

And this noise… about the bidding wars going on minimized as “just another form of capitalism”, a fool and their money is soon departed, suckers deserve it and blah, blah, blah… lets get real. If you have a corrupt system, it favors corrupt people and innocent people will get burned, its as simple as that.

Y’know, I have to laugh at the judgments and rundowns people throw at each other as if they are all above it, as if they themselves aren’t capable of mistakes and misfortune. It reeks of belittling others to build themselves up, its obvious and those who engage in this behavior are essentially in reality, chopping themselves down. People pat themselves on the back publically for not being conned into a bidding war? Good for them, they can join the ranks of the sociopath who doesn’t let their emotions play with them. What an accomplishment.

Oh, I can go on but I’ll quickly sum it up. A good chunk of us lack empathy and it shows. Who’s more of a loser? The person who made dumb choices or faced hard luck and loses their shirt… or the person who has no empathy for the losses of others. Some of us need to wake up. Some of us are hardly financial wizards when it comes to choices but being heartless is hardly a thing to be proud of.

#175 Chris on 04.02.12 at 12:34 pm

Just wait a minute now. Are you trying to tell me that capitalism needs regulation and that people ought to be protected from unscrupulous business practices? Sounds like liberal/ndp talk. Maybe Muclair is having an effect?

#176 AprilNewwest on 04.02.12 at 12:39 pm

American #147- I love it when you tell it like it is to smug Canadians. I wasn’t born here but I am a Canadian citizen and I detest the smugness of so many Canadians. When people are smug and arrogant others can’t help wanting to see them take a good slapping to bring them down a peg or two. A real estate downturn will do it for many. I have no sympathy for them.

#177 Pinky on 04.02.12 at 12:40 pm

A house for the price of an SUV? That’s plausible, given the dip in housing. But a home for the price of a Ford Fiesta?

http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2012/03/30/houses-for-price-car/?intcmp=features

#178 blatherer on 04.02.12 at 12:52 pm

@118 Betamax

Regarding property worldwide, it isn’t surprising that Vancouver’s detached market is so high, considering a detached market in an urban center is a rarity to begin with.

Regarding investment properties in Mainland China, I am in fact selling my current property and looking at a new area called the QuJiang New District.

http://en.xasourcing.gov.cn/zone/132.htm

It’s about an hour closer to where my IT outsourcing business is located, so it really is quite convenient.

IMHO, I’m not concerned about “bubbles.” My current property in China is rented out and I’m making a couple hundred extra each month that I can stockpile spending money for my visits.

By 2050, we’ll have 10 billion people (exponential growth!) on this planet. In 1950 we had 3 billion. I KNOW people looking back on today will think property was ridiculously cheap, especially in beautiful places like Vancouver.

And your disparaging comments about my age? Consider that a young person in their 20s now has consumed far more knowledge and understanding than a baby boomer did in their first 40 years. :-)

#179 Jim on 04.02.12 at 12:53 pm

#152 Bobby:

“If you put something up for sale and a prospective buyer offers you the full amount with no conditions you are legally obligated to sell. It is a contract.”

Please don’t spam this forum by offering opinions that clearly demarcate you as ignorant. In fact, the words you are bandying around have a much more nuanced meaning than you seem to believe.

I recommend picking up a textbook that covers the basics of property law and contracts, since you are utterly clueless. You may be very surprised to find that putting up an ad to sell a stove for $500 does not create a binding contract once someone decides that they will pay $500 for it. There is something more required in order to create a contract.

(The worst part is that other posters clearly covered this very issue in previous entries)

#180 Two-thirds on 04.02.12 at 12:56 pm

In other news:

Orange guy’s shorts interest rate on TFSA savings moves DOWN in the last 72 hrs. 40 basis points or 20% decrease.

Now, why would this be, given that bond yields have been trending UP in the last 2-3 months?

Do they know something the rest of us don’t?

#181 Jim on 04.02.12 at 12:57 pm

#174 AprilNewwest

I’m with you on slapping down the smug buggers north of the border. I’m Canadian, but I have lived in Asia and the US. I’m disgusted each time I visit my home town of Vancouver, largely on account of the fact that a decent, fun, mid-sized city has turned into a haven for pretentious idiots who believe that housing only goes up in price. The ‘best place on earth’ license plates didn’t help. I enjoyed the latest hockey riots, largely because they serve as a reminder of how many rotten, spoiled and self-satisfied people live in that city.

#182 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 04.02.12 at 1:00 pm

PICKING THROUGH OUR “MONEY” GARBAGE DUMP OF HISTORY

Our current economic “situation” is built upon the sludgy/dodgy foundations of “contradictions.”

Today the markets are good; tomorrow , who knows? hapless idiots line up for over-priced slums in Canada’s real estate cities of ill-repute; public sector workers, feel the cold-shoulder wind of “it’s over soon, buster”, as their immediate managers turn into pince-nez pencil-pushing budget bottom-liners; EU unemployment rates the highest “in history”; interest rates stay low…; the beat goes on.

CNBC: DR. DOOM SPEAKS

The following few paras from CNBC this date shed light on the reasons WHY we have such contradictions coursing through our monied existences; it’s existential!?

CNBC: ” ‘Massive Wealth Destruction’ Is About to Hit Investors: (Dr. Doom Marc) Faber

Runaway government debts have triggered uncontrolled money printing that in turn will lead to inflation that will decimate portfolios, according to the latest forecast from “Dr. Doom” Marc Faber.

Investors, particularly those in the “well-to-do” category, could lose about half their total wealth in the next few years as the consequences pile up from global government debt problems…Efforts to stem the debt problems have seen the Federal Reserve expand its balance sheet to nearly $3 trillion and other central banks implement aggressive liquidity programs as well…”Somewhere down the line we will have a massive wealth destruction…either through very high inflation…social unrest…war…credit market collapse,…”

THIS IS GOOD FOR EQUITIES…

Mr. Faber says equities do well, here, thanks to all of this money printing since low bond yields inevitably lead investors to choose other higher yielding investments caused by huge investor demand. Real estate is another investor target.

WHAT’S COMIN’ ROUND THE MOUNTAIN THERE, PILGRIM…

Established boomers and echo-types are benefiting NOW but what about that upcoming cohort Mr. Garth referred to recently, the “mellennials”. Will they, when finally in power (and our fiscal landscape looks like Dresden in late 1945), get to exact their revenge on the innumerable owners of so many plastic body parts and “drugs” that keep them alive in some sort of disconnected “liberated” haze? What will this retribution look like? Ever thought of that?

STAGE RIGHT, “THE FAT LADY”

We need the higher interest rate “fast lady” to start warbling and to thus save us from ourselves.

But Mr. Bernanke won’t let her on stage at least until 2014, if then. Therefore, Canada’s version of the same dame, will ALSO not be performing at a future JUNO Awards thanks to her PR flunky, “Brother” Carney.

Until then let the good-times roll, dig out those credit cards, more HELOCs and mortgages. What the Hell, you only live once! At 3 per cent for some rates, what’s not to like, huh? Just don’t lose your job, see a stock market correction, get sick, welcome your adult kids “back home,”…whatever.

#183 Dom_Now_in_Zürich on 04.02.12 at 1:01 pm

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/canada-politics/jim-flaherty-stephen-harper-paul-martin-135518877.html

Hey Garth, what do you think? A diminutive leader is just what Canada needs isn’t it? But all us hulking, gorgeous, 6`5″ hotties in our place no?

#184 OkanaganInvestor on 04.02.12 at 1:06 pm

#107 Tim on 04.02.12 at 1:32 am
“Why are you going on about such trivial things when Steven Harper has stolen the election? These neo-con thugs have a stranglehold on the media, and consequently this gets little coverage.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9XkcWN9DSKY

Thanks for the video. I am impressed by well-spoken MP Pat Martin is.

Yes, there is a serious problem with the election results, but being debt-free and financial secure is what Garth is trying to accomplish on this blog, which for most Canadians centers on housing.

#185 vreaa on 04.02.12 at 1:07 pm

Global TV Promotes RE, Yet Again – “Realtors like it because they want to get their realtors.. their clients, sorry… the best deal they can.”

In the Global clip, Ms Fluet is portrayed as a ‘White Rock Investor’, yet in an article in ‘The Province’ [‘Two homes are better than one’, 17 Oct 2010], it is revealed that she is a ‘sales representative’ selling condos for Cam Good’s ‘The Key’ marketing group, the same people behind this promotion.

http://wp.me/pcq1o-3Uv

#186 Victor on 04.02.12 at 1:12 pm

Beemo’s Chief Economist, Dr. Sherry Cooper waxes poetic about the economy, real estate slowdown, equity outperformance, tax increases and also mentions that interest rates are heading upwards “moderately”.

If you can stand the shrilly voice, here’s her clip:

http://www.media-server.com/m/p/udkyzrio

#187 eddy on 04.02.12 at 1:24 pm

“Under-pricing is a time-tested technique that always brings in more money.”

This is a lie

#188 kenken on 04.02.12 at 1:24 pm

Can anyone explain CMHC closing the tap?
When will it happen?
How are they going to choose who gets insurance and who does not? Geographic?
what happens if private insurers does not come in? does this mean banks will take the risk, at a higher rate obviously?

can anyone enlighten us here?
thank you

#189 Onemorething on 04.02.12 at 1:35 pm

about 25 years ago my friends father made it big buying used 40ft containers and making them weather tight for Disney in both Orlanda and Cali where they needed temp storage.

I’m thinking again of all those surplus containers in early 2009 after the crisis and it coming to a head again shortly and doing the same thing but for cheap living spaces.

Gotta be cheaper than this one in good ol’ Carleton Place Eh!

http://www.cottagesunlimited.com/cottages/SaleCottageView.aro?cotID=89

#190 Onemorething on 04.02.12 at 1:38 pm

40ft Containers at it’s best!

http://dornob.com/40-foot-cargo-containers-into-stylish-small-home-spaces/

#191 Hardassi on 04.02.12 at 1:43 pm

Thank you #87 Mountain Girl, #105 BigAl, #106 MrBuyer, #160 Tony Right, et al.
#88 Monster – IMHO #105 Big Al provides a pretty good rebuttal to your comment.
All the best

#192 Harlee on 04.02.12 at 1:44 pm

Big Al ,Mr. Buyer,Beach Girl and other “enemies” of Westernman: Don’t try to use logic on him. It won’t work. Instead,ask him 2 questions- #1. Which loser are you supporting in the election – Romney or Santorum ? (We all know he wouldn’t vote for that black,”Muslim socialist” Obama….). And most importantly : #2. What’s the best way to invest in #2 kerosene ?
To DonDWest @159 and daystar :Very good posts. I may not agree on every point you both express but you do express yourselves well. Thanks.

#193 NOBODY on 04.02.12 at 1:50 pm

Why falling prices are good news, dummy?

#194 Value on 04.02.12 at 1:58 pm

Garth,

Curious to know – what do you think is fair value for a 600 square foot 1 bed 1 bath condo and a detached 3 bedrooom 2 bathroom house near the downtown core (Toronto)?

Just trying to get an idea on how far you think the current market is off by.

#195 refinow on 04.02.12 at 2:15 pm

How is asking one price for a house and selling it for another fraud.?

Houses are not mass produced generic products built on an assembly line.

Each house is unique, the property it sits on, the upgrades within it, the curb appeal, it’s proximity to schools, or possibly a separated spouse all contribute to the value of this home. And to each it might hold a different value. Some things people are willing to pay for and other’s won’t.

So listing a home for a low price…… to get interest in the home, and selling it with multiple offers at a higher price in my mind is a perfectly legal way to sell a home. Caveat Emptor. If the price is too high…..Don’t buy it. It is that simple.

But in this world of “NOT MY FAULT-IGANS” if they lost the house to a higher bid, then someone must be doing something wrong.

Accept responsibility for your actions, do your research, understand what the maximum mortgage you can financially afford, your own, not what the Bank tells you, they lie….They are financially rewarded, the bigger your mortgage gets. And get a good realtor who knows the market who has strong negotiation skills. if the price is going too high, then step away from the deal and go find another property.

#196 Canadian Watchdog on 04.02.12 at 2:15 pm

Bank of Canada: Economy Healthier Than Expected: http://ca.reuters.com/article/domesticNews/idCABRE8310S320120402

If you know how to read central bankers, this means the opposite is happening.

#197 John on 04.02.12 at 2:17 pm

That was a detailed article about “bad faith”. Fraud is something else. It does however border on fraud.

The real estate market machinations may not be a fraud as a stand alone, but the “economy” that created it most certainly is.

Read many of these comments. These are people with internet connections that continue to insist on “the government” and what “will happen with x or y” at age x. The government has no say in this.

Here’s a simplistic little story about fraud and the real estate market in Canada. It’s downright entertaining.

Since there has been an excellent breakdown on the market here ( lots of detail), one more number. What percentage possbility exists that the following video is “doomer” or “conspiracy theory”. Like a fair number. And then another challenge. What is the specific argument debunking this over-simplified message about fraud.

People have an internet connection. The real meat is asking exactly why people choose not to look. It’s all there. I personally don’t listen to hyper-ventilating kooks with bad childhoods, looking for “evil Big Brother”.

I try to stick to the facts and probable cause.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AaDfT0C1Qm4&feature=youtube_gdata_player

‘Fraud’ is deception. This is fraud. — Garth

#198 disciple on 04.02.12 at 2:21 pm

TaxHaven…”it’s not the fault of the seller” – Who’s blaming the seller?

Kevin … “there’s nothing wrong with greed” – buddy, you’re stuck in a timewarp with Michael Douglas

AprilNewest…”a good slapping” – some Canadians might enjoy this…

fraud [frɔːd] A common sense definition: noun
1. deliberate deception, trickery, or cheating intended to gain an advantage
2. an act or instance of such deception

The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation.

The intent of fraud is to deceive for gain. A hoax is intent to deceive without respect to gain. The first intention is a celebrated objective of capitalism for some nutjobs, and the second is an understated objective for the same nutjobs and/or their affiliates.

#199 disciple on 04.02.12 at 2:28 pm

Generation X and the Millennials: What you need to know..

http://apps.americanbar.org/lpm/lpt/articles/mgt08044.html

#200 dd on 04.02.12 at 2:31 pm

Movement away for the US buck…

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9180373/Robert-Zoellick-calls-for-Brics-bank.html

#201 Riding the Pine on 04.02.12 at 2:32 pm

The real estate industry rules breed corruption. It’s rife with fraud and misrepresentation.

#4 TaxHaven:
At least on eBay you know the numbers. All a real estate agent has to do is tell a prospective buyer (imagine a family trying to set roots in a community they know) that there are 3 other offers on the table (lie) and suggest that their offer is “not looking good” and that they should bring their ” best possible price forward”. All BS because the incentives are too irresistible to someone with no integrity. I’ve been on both sides of this scenario, and it’s wrong.

Or how about the scenario where a seller accepts an offer from a buyer with a subject to sell. The seller decides the market’s looking better for them a month later, and gives the seller 48 hours to complete or the deal’s off because they “found another buyer” (lie)…WITHOUT any proof of the offer they get out of the deal to make a few extra grand.

RE agents purposefully mislead and manipulate people strictly for more money, and rules of the game encourage it. No matter what happens to the market, this will continue. In fact, in a depressed market, expect the game to get even dirtier.

#202 Cato on 04.02.12 at 2:50 pm

Kudos for calling this what it is Garth.

Real estate markets during a bubble resemble a giant pyramid scheme. Speculators at the top making these outrageous purchases require speculation by those at the bottom. The two are tied together, you can’t have one without the other, hence the pyramid.

By financing speculation at the lower level of the pyramid the CMHC is providing the upward lift necessary for the bubble to inflate on the high end. Speculators are gamblers, they have predictable behaviors. They typically get their start at the low end, often flipping their personal residences. As with most bubbles the earliest entrants have the greatest advantage.

The early entrants start flipping multiple properties and soon the speculative bubble begins. Prices start creeping above the mean and soon the lure of easy money starts attracting more and more people into the market. The banks have no concerns because the taxpayer is backstopping any losses so they are more then happy to feed the bad behavior.

The bubble picks up steam, more and more people enter the bottom of the pyramid. Those at the top typically don’t diversify and simply keep plowing their gains back into real estate often using leverage. The allure of larger gains at the high end of the market proves irresistible and more and more of these early specuvestors focus on the higher end of the market where perceived gains are greatest.

Perceived strength at the high end of the market feeds the illusion of stability and strength to those operating at the bottom of the pyramid who are also speculating with debt. The bubble inflates further as more money (created by debt) flows into the market. A rising tide lifts all boats or in this case everyone takes a step up the pyramid.

Had the free market been allowed operate the banks would have poured cold water on the bubble right from the beginning. Gov’t policy is at the root of this calamity and a calamity is now surely coming. Canada’s time will come when there are no longer enough new suckers entering at the bottom to support the leverage used by those at the top. We are already seeing signs of this happenning. Every pyramid scheme usually collapses at the bottom first, often it can maintain appearances that everything is fine at the top while its base is slowly eroding. At some there is a sudden collapse, confidence is destroyed and the entire scheme comes crashing down.

The bidding wars we see occurring today are just a symptom of a coming collapse, they are a sign of the end of a bubble. Specuvestors are all chasing the last perceived safe havens because they are seeing other areas they normally invest in starting to unwind. Too much money starts chasing too few opportunities, this is what happens when the bottom level of the pyramid begins collapsing. There is no avoiding it now, thanks to recent gov’t policy and inaction we very well could be facing a housing collapse and not the orderly unwinding we should have had 4 years ago.

#203 triplenet on 04.02.12 at 2:55 pm

Garth, you’re losing it.

I’m just here for the babes. — Garth

#204 Still Renting on 04.02.12 at 3:08 pm

# 95 wopaholic “last time I checked, they are a nation of over 1.5 billion people living in a country about the size of Ontario…”

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

I think you need to check again. China is 9 times the size of Ontario.

Size of Ontario = 1,076,395 km2
Size of China = 9,640,821 km2

#205 Bobby on 04.02.12 at 3:10 pm

#178 Jim,
I’ve got a lot of textbooks. Perhaps it is you who should learn to read. I suspect you must have just finished your realtor course. Do it online?

#206 Sean on 04.02.12 at 3:19 pm

Is downtown Toronto out of land for houses – NOT condos???

OK I got into a heated debate with my family this weekend. Everyone thinks pricing will never be coming down in Toronto because we are running out of space for houses. They say the same thing happened in London or NY. The core of houses isn’t going to go down in price. Blame foreign money and blame running out of land?

I don’t buy it.

One thing they kept saying was you can barely find available homes in the area. I have a few friends that are looking and a friend who finally had to up his bid to win a tiny shack which requires a lot of work and sold for over 500k.

So where is the supply??? If you can get amazing value for your home right now, why is nobody selling?

Rates are low, but so is supply. Fear of never being able to afford in the city is high. Never got that heated before at the dinner table.

Who’s right???????

#207 DonDWest on 04.02.12 at 3:23 pm

By the way Garth, your Best Buy analogy isn’t the greatest. Why? Because it’s much worse.

It’s akin to the local Best Buy offering a $1,600 sixty-inch flat screen for $590 on Thursday night, then auctioning it off to the throng’s highest bidder for $1,900. To top it all off, you don’t actually see the bidders or the bids. The news you’re receiving on the bids is being carried out by word of mouth from the store employees. To add further insult to injury, the manager advertises this is the only sixty-inch flat screen in stock while nine additional models remain hidden in the company warehouse.

#208 BSBidWar on 04.02.12 at 3:26 pm

Here is a real life example. House was listed for $450K in a GTA neighbourhood a while back. I placed a bid at $470K. Seller decided wasn’t high enough. 3 months later house still not sold. Relisted at $500K. No offers. Price reduced to $475K. WTF!!! Here is what i think this should be done…there should be a penalty paid by the seller if offers are submitted at or above the asking price and seller decides not the sell. They are wasting peoples time and that should be accounted for. Prices should not be a moving target! Ebay does not allow this! The stock market doesn’t allow this. Why is it so different when selling a house? I don’t care if a buyer decides to purchase a home in a bidding war. My issue is the right the owner has to refuse offers at or above the asking price. That is a fraud!

#209 I'm stupid on 04.02.12 at 3:32 pm

#145 Kevin

That is my point, as a seller you can change your mind without financial reproductions. There is where the problem lies, to make things balanced between buyer and seller there should be consequences. If the buyer changes his mind after the offer he will get his ass sued. Listing your home for sale to the public at a price should be the same as an offer to buy.

Tax heaven

Your right if the listing explicitly said what you mentioned in your last post then it would be fine. The problem is it does not. So in effect all offers to buy are binding while all offers to sell are not.

#210 TaxHaven on 04.02.12 at 3:36 pm

@#200 Riding the Pine

But I don’t see anything wrong with any of what you stated.

THE SELLER SHOULD KNOW HOW MUCH HE IS PREPARED TO PAY, PERIOD.

#211 in_calgary on 04.02.12 at 3:47 pm

neither seller nor his agent can force you to buy house

you are buying w/firm belief that you will, at some point in future, profit/benefit from the deal

and if you are buying in calgary chances are that you are right: http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/index.html

:-)

#212 Calgaryboomer on 04.02.12 at 3:48 pm

Just listened to money talks and ozzie J says that Calgary real estate is a buy right now and a bottom is in. Lots of in-migration. Maybe everyone is leaving Ontario and Vancouver for some affordable housing and…jobs! Sure looks that way, lots of sold signs now.

I don’t see how real estate can go down in this town with such population growth. Where the heck will everyone live? Prices can only go up at least for the next couple of years, even though the other major centres have peaked. And can’t really see interest rates going up much because that will kill the economy and I doubt anyone wants to be doing that anytime soon.

As Garth says, we don’t have one RE market in Canada. The gains over the next year (or two) might be worth waiting for. But will be interesting to see what happens in the first US president term.

#213 Form Man on 04.02.12 at 3:49 pm

3201 Cato

good post.

You nicely describe the reality of our housing market today. Salesmen such as DA and BPOE seem to have no concept of notion that the party is about to end ( in DA’s case it ended some time ago). The Canadian taxpayer has been fleeced by the Conservative government and doesn’t even realize it yet. It is an extraordinary experience watching this slow-moving trainwreck

#214 Ronaldo on 04.02.12 at 3:57 pm

#174 Chris – did you work for Madoff?

#215 daystar on 04.02.12 at 3:57 pm

#191 Harlee on 04.02.12 at 1:44 pm

Thanks. Glad I’m not always right as well truth be told, it keeps me humble and hungry for the truth. Thanks again.

#216 Canadian Watchdog on 04.02.12 at 4:05 pm

CFTC CHARGES ROYAL BANK OF CANADA WITH WASH SALE SCHEME

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/02/rbc-cftc-idUSL2E8F2EY820120402

(Reuters) – The Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Monday accused the Royal Bank of Canada of engaging in “hundreds of millions of dollars” in coordinated stock futures trades with itself to win tax credits from the Canadian government.

#217 Ronaldo on 04.02.12 at 4:06 pm

#178 – Jim – ”There is something more required in order to create a contract.” Consideration, right?

So if I came up to you and said, ”I’m thinking of selling my rolex for $50.00, would you like to buy it?” You say ”yes”. I say, ”I’ll think about it”. Have I broken the law?

#218 Beach Girl on 04.02.12 at 4:15 pm

I should not have labelled all Americans as fat. SOREEEE!! But not sorry to a few knuckle draggers on this site.

#219 ozy - LITTIGATION is CAAALING, Hello? on 04.02.12 at 4:17 pm

Buyer spends $50000 in litigation to get out of the 850000 deal + to get the 50000 deposit back and legal fees.
Seller sticks to the guns, as it won’t be easy to find such SUUUUCKERS anytime soon :) that overpayed $150000 for a $700000 house.

LAWYERS and JUDGES are HAPPY like never in 2012, litigation left and right, buyer SUE seller, seller sue agent, buyer sue brokerage and home inspector. Buyer sue RECO, RECO sue brokerage! Agent sue insurance company! Insurance company counter-sue buyer.

Bring the money in OOO BABBBBBBBBY!

#220 jess on 04.02.12 at 4:18 pm

Irish Life

honour de meanings
cumal, n., old Irish –female slave
updated to this century gender neutralized

http://www.rte.ie/news/2012/0328/government-buys-irish-life-for-1-3-billion.html
Permanent TSB has reported an annual loss of €424m.

“as is”
http://www.americanbanker.com/issues/177_62/bofa-credit-cards-collections-debts-faulty-records-1047992-1.html?pg=2

#221 K-W Realtor on 04.02.12 at 4:21 pm

All those that don’t like the process are welcome to move an hour west to Kitchener-Waterloo where the process is more civilised and multiple offers are the exception.

#222 jess on 04.02.12 at 4:36 pm

disciple

How Barter Followed and Did Not Precede the Creation of Money
From P2P Foundation
Jump to: navigation, search
Discussion

http://p2pfoundation.net/How_Barter_Followed_and_Did_Not_Precede_the_Creation_of_Money

#223 nnso on 04.02.12 at 4:44 pm

#117 new-era on 04.02.12 at 2:42 am
Real estate agents are no more than used car saleman.

That remind me my Dentist too.

#224 Bobby on 04.02.12 at 5:11 pm

Further to my earlier note, I recall a number of legal cases where realtors were charged for misleading buyers. The old idea of another bidder had one poor couple overpaying for a home in Sherwood Park. But there was no other bidder, just another realtor working with the selling realtor. I call that fraud, so did the courts if I recall.
So tell me, why do realtors call them self a profession when they don’t seem to adhere to any code of ethics.
Maybe 178 Jim knows. I understand he can read.

#225 jess on 04.02.12 at 5:23 pm

Oh Canada! Imposing Austerity on the World’s Most Resource-Rich Country
Monday, 02 April 2012 01:10 By Ellen Brown, The Web of Debt Blog | News Analysis

#226 Kevin on 04.02.12 at 5:27 pm

Not sure if this was posted already.

From the Economist :Downdraft March 31,2012
http://www.economist.com/node/21551486

Canadians have reason to quake at the wrenching correction going on south of the border. House prices in Canada are above their 2007 mark, and appreciation accelerated from the third quarter of 2011 to the fourth. The price-to-rent ratio now indicates that Canadian properties are 76% overvalued, though things look less bubbly on the income measure (32% overvalued) and Canadian lenders are a far more disciplined bunch than pre-crisis American lenders were. The government hopes to prod markets into a slowdown by toughening financing rules.

#227 GregW, Oakville on 04.02.12 at 5:56 pm

Hi Nastra, You might find this audio interview interesting. I wonder if it can be applied to people in office too? Sound like it may depend.

“By studying frame-by-frame video of five specific facial muscles that denote different emotions, those being deceptive were distinguished from those being truthful, with over 90% accuracy.

see “Facing the Truth” in this link to listen to 10min interview. http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/

#228 Westernman on 04.02.12 at 6:01 pm

What great replys to my post on the types of people who function well under a Capitalist system as opposed to the parasites who advocate the Socialist/Communist/Marxist system.
I would like to take this opportunity to address my detractors by stateing that when the shrill squeeling gets to a fever pitch then I have spoken most truly and accurately… or in laymans terms ( so you Canadians can understand ) … the truth hurts like hell, doesn’t it?

#229 Nome on 04.02.12 at 6:33 pm

@ronaldo
Thinking of selling and putting your item up for sell are two entirely different things!

#230 Goldenfox on 04.02.12 at 6:33 pm

How the Canadian taxpayers are being fleeced for $33billion every year. Thats $1000 for every man, woman and child

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/04/01-4

#231 blatherer on 04.02.12 at 6:38 pm

@#95 wopaholic

I doubt you really know what you are talking about. Real Estate is moving in China, incomes are rising, people are urbanzing, and the economy is shifting toward a domestic consumption model. The amount of opportunity in China is simply breathtaking, and any good capitalist would love to take advantage of the possibilities.

It sounds like you just can’t handle the fact global power is shifting Eastward? I for one love it, and go back regularly to do business.

#232 Mr Buyer on 04.02.12 at 6:45 pm

#227 Westernman on 04.02.12 at 6:01 pm
………………………………………………………………………..
Congrats,You have just qualified for the
twinkle twinkle little star,
what you say is what you are
rebuttal.

#233 Poorgoisie on 04.02.12 at 6:51 pm

Blatherer, did you hear that quip about people in their 20’s learning more than boomer’s in their 40’s from the guy who sold your awesome investment properties or did you dream it up in math class when you should have been learning about exponents?

#234 Dontcallmeshirley on 04.02.12 at 7:20 pm

#215 Canadian Watchdog,

This Royal Bank “wash sale” thing underlines what a great investment RY is.

Their div will pay 4ever.

“If you’re not cheating, you’re not competing”

#235 Dontcallmeshirley on 04.02.12 at 7:35 pm

Nevermind this bidding process brouhaha.

How ’bout J. Trudeau laying a black eye and bloody shnoz on that big mouth, trash talking, PC wind bag?

That enriched the soul a bit eh Garth?

#236 Westernman on 04.02.12 at 7:48 pm

Mr Buyer @ # 231,
So I take it from your schoolyard level response you would be one of the parasites in favour of the Marxist/Lenninist system?
You are probably one of our coddled ” Civil Servants “… who the hell else would come out in support of high tax, high regulation business repelling government…

#237 NoName on 04.02.12 at 7:48 pm

@Westerman

Can you plz enlighten me with your wisdom and explain me difference in between “socialist” social programs, and “capitalist” defence industries…
Explain me difference of person collecting welfare, of company that only customer is a government.

#238 Linda on 04.02.12 at 7:50 pm

So many great posts, as always.

The controversy over OAS got me thinking of poverty, the fight for survival and all the ways life can throw us a curveball from which we somtimes simply can’t recover.

I did a google search about a Canadian doc about a poor Irish family struggling in Montreal in the 1960s. I remember watching this original documentary when I was in my teens (in the 80s). It was really interesting then, and even more so to watch it again as an adult with life experience. I especially enjoyed the follow up documentary, and here’s a link:

http://www.nfb.ca/film/courage_to_change/

Also, for anyone who hasn’t seen 28 Up and the other docs in the series, I can’t recommend them highly enough:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Up_Series

#239 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 04.02.12 at 7:51 pm


Well, Whaddaya think of the show so far? Rubbish! It’s all a bunch of rotten tomatoes anyway.
*
A women asks a man who is traveling with six children,

“Are all these kids yours?”

The man replies,

“No, I work in a condom factory and these are customer complaints”.
*
#226 GregW, Oakville — Hi Greg. Thanks for the link.
*
The US ed Created 1913; destroyed 2013; Gold Paper to physical ratio; Ellen Brown “Why are governments paying private financiers to generate credit they could be issuing themselves, interest-free?”; Stealing Numbers are interesting; BRICS Band dominance; Creeping Inflation; Just in Time When the delivery trucks stop, the nation grinds to a halt. Same as UK.
*
Mexico ‘quake and 02 April 2012 Another date for the Mayans? ICANN makes it easier for govts. to take domain names; Fukushima No. 4 reactor not well; Supreme Court NAmerica isn’t free anymore; Flashback Why did Russia ban microwave ovens? Pink Slime Available to most; Follow The Money Govt. kickback time; Ron Paul Mobilizing the young; Vitamin D for a cancer free life; The CPC is monitoring politico verbiage. Hello boys and girls!

#240 Don on 04.02.12 at 8:31 pm

#234
Someone should have kick his old man’s ASS

#241 Daisy Mae on 04.02.12 at 8:38 pm

#109 MR BUYER: “The Harper government is responsible and no one else and they have been aided by the propaganda spread by the media.”

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

And now they are attempting to muzzle Elections Canada….

#242 The Thing in the Basement on 04.02.12 at 9:13 pm

110 LS 131 Savon

Didnt see Dallas, Philly, Prague or St. Petersburg.

147 American – Didnt see Seattle either. And you do give
a damn or else you wouldnt post here!

#243 Ronaldo on 04.02.12 at 10:40 pm

#212 Form Man – how are these things doing?

I remember when they came on the market in late 2006 for somewhere around $840,000 and said to myself, “well, every house on Westside Rd will now be worth close to a million”. Then, in spring of 2009 I’m driving down Westside Rd and notice a sign that condos for sale for under $500,000. I’m thinking, ”wow, somebody’s taking a bath on these”. Have any of these sold lately. I see that they are renting some of them.

http://www.6717000.com/blog/2009/05/discount-pricing-in-the-okanagan/

#244 MacroBusiness on 04.02.12 at 11:30 pm

There’s going to be a new global recession. All the stimulus did was kick the can down the road, and now the collapse will be even worse. These guys on Wall Street know nothing about how the real world operates, how can they expect to speculate successfully on the direction of the American (or any) economy? The issue with Wall Street traders is they speculate on anything. That’s what drives the price of stock up and down, and ultimately what leads to unemployment when the whole thing collapses.

#245 disciple on 04.03.12 at 12:47 am

#229 Westernman… no, check the record. It was I who spoke the truth and it was you who then squealed first…

#246 disciple on 04.03.12 at 12:51 am

#231 Goldenfox… no problem, I could spring for a few dozen men, women and children, how ’bout you? See, the problem is not that gov’t spends money (that is its function), the problem is that we allow a handful of private banking families to solely benefit from this process…

#247 disciple on 04.03.12 at 12:52 am

#223 jess… thanks, amigo. Great read…

#248 skip on 04.03.12 at 3:13 am

No Garth, prices are up and people can afford to own a house because Capitalism sucks and turns people into scumbag losers as they try to hit their money fetish.

That’s what happens when you turn the resources of the earth into private property. Not everyone can be an owner so they fight to become one.

When dogs are hungry and you throw scraps into the pack, they turn on each other.

But then your ideology blinds you.

China isn’t soft landing It’s crashing because of Social tensions erupting form Capitalist relations.

The corporations in the USA are making profits not from more sales or better productivity but because of the downward pressure on wages.

Europe is in turmoil and the working class will not sit ideally by, expect political change over the next 10 years as they are not a brainwashed over Capitalism as the stooges here in North America.

Markets are going up because the conditions are improving. It’s because the Capitalists feel they have the upper hand. They are dumping money in because they think they won.

Social tensions are rising the world over, any you Capitalists think everything is peachy.

#249 industrial Guy on 04.03.12 at 8:31 am

K-W Realtor – you are so right. No bidding wars because the market is so flooded with houses for sale. MLS lists 482 Properties under $150,000 in London this morning. In St. Thomas, you can buy a 3 bedroom SFH for 100K. Oh, it’s different out here … but not in a good way.
If you head down to Windsor, you can buy a house where the monthly tax bill is very close to your mortgage payment. Windsor has 500 houses priced under 100K!!
Here’s a nice 4 bedroom ….. MLS®: 1201633
$52,000
Oh, this is not going to end well.

#250 Mr Buyer on 04.03.12 at 9:42 pm

#237 Westernman on 04.02.12 at 7:48 pm
Mr Buyer @ # 231,
So I take it from your schoolyard level response you would be one of the parasites in favour of the Marxist/Lenninist system?
You are probably one of our coddled ” Civil Servants “… who the hell else would come out in support of high tax, high regulation business repelling government…
……………………………………………………………………..
Mr Westernman. Lets explore the word parasite for a moment. A parasite lives off another life form to the detriment of the life form it is living off of. Now lets take a look at business (lumping in of course the financial institutions and political structures it has subverted) and the society it is living off of. Do you get the picture? Who is the parasite in that relationship?

#251 Mr Buyer on 04.03.12 at 9:45 pm

The shear NET amount of money extracted by supposed business and financial entities from our society DWARFS our social expenditures. As for Defense spending well that is a required evil and should be fully exploited in country from start to finish.

#252 Dan on 04.04.12 at 2:36 pm

Im fresh out of school with a pile of debt – now way can I afford a house in Canada and 2 kids till Im 89.

Fresh out of school? Then why do you have two children? — Garth