Usually I go to Kelowna to have the waitresses at Joey’s fawn over me, but two years ago I was also there to tell a hotel ballroom full of people they were at risk. Real estate, I said heroically (young women like certainty), will fall by a third in this city.

“I thought you were nuts,” Jamie told me on the phone today. “But I’m back here, and you were right. This place is in serious trouble.”

And it is. Sales and prices are growing weaker by the month. In all of Central Okanagan, 179 residential properties sold last month, and there are 1,579 which didn’t – so there’s now a 10-month supply. Deals are down from last year by a fifth, there are 900 condos available (just 63 sold) and sellers are shocked when somebody shows up at an open house who doesn’t need a bathroom.

Of course, I said the same in Victoria, where salaries are 20% lower than in Toronto and house prices 20% higher.

June emailed me yesterday. “Garth, I am a new reader of your website.  I have found you to be right on the money regarding Vancouver, Toronto and Vancouver Island.  My sister-in-law just sold her place in Victoria for $118,000 LESS than her original listed price only 6 weeks ago.  We were shocked!!”

Speaking of Vancouver, this pathetic blog last year boldly went where few delusional Lower Mainlanders feared to tread, saying HAM’s influence was grossly exaggerated and the market – especially in the hyperventilated hoods – was a bomb. Anyone who bought on the fabled west side (for example) in the last 18 months, deserves a GreaterFool wedgie of recognition. After all, where would this sad world be without people who always buy at the top, rescuing the lesser fools?

In case you doe-eyed provincials in Toronto missed it, Van was hot. Bidding wars. Yellow helicopters full of horny mainland Chinese. Serious street envy. Seven-figure crackshacks. Rock star realtors. Naturally it was different there. Until it wasn’t.

Now sales have crashed during the key Spring season, off about 40% over the last two months. And while the average SFH has had $100,000 shaved off its value, the reductions in the tonier neighbourhoods are stunning. Worse, all those Chinese guys with bulging pockets have apparently left town – concurrent with the new banking attitude I’ve been telling you about since March.

Mortgage lenders now want verification of income and assets before handing over a few million, no matter how many peasants you employ in Guangzhou. As a result, deals are falling through, and those greedy Vancouver homeowners who waited for prices to crest before listing, waited too long. Fail.

Worse, the city has just incurred some serious collateral damage. All that mindless real estate humping and pumping done by local promoters, politicians and media fostered a global impression that Vancouver is (a) unaffordable and (b) nuts. I’ve run into several high-octane Bay Street types who have refused opportunities on the coast because they’re unwilling to spend $3 million to replicate a lesser version the $2 million house they now own in North Toronto. In a regional city, to boot, where people actually watch Global. God.

Seems a safe bet to say that all of the Lower Mainland is going to pay for this foolishness. And those who bought in the last two years could be a decade or more getting their money back.

All this is proof I’m omniscient, as well as fully modest and nicely sinewed.

Now, on another note, I told Adrian you’d help him out.

“We sold our house in GTA 3 years ago, and since then rented, mostly outside Canada – nice places like Costa Rica,” he says. “We are not very keen to return to Canada yet, especially with the housing prices so high, however we have small children for which we need to get a bit more practical and eventually get a home there in the nearish future. My question to you is, could recommend me one or more areas in Canada that might fit us?”

Here is what Adrian wants:

“I think what we need is a small town, with some character and good family life, that offers most of the things you’d need from a town including some academic life, colleges, that has some good scenery around, is not too polluted and is not prohibitive to buy some property (just outside it) in the next year or so. And maybe that the weather is not too bad. And maybe not too many rednecks either. We are open to pretty much all of Canada. Would you recommend me some places to check out this summer?”

Over to you, blog dogs. A nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values. And no knuckle-draggers or Silverados with balls.

Does it exist?


#1 Randy on 05.07.12 at 9:09 pm

Elora-Fergus is very nice…

#2 Dorothy on 05.07.12 at 9:12 pm

Armstrong, BC.

It’s in the Okanagan Valley, only 20 minutes north of Vernon, and 30 minutes south of Salmon Arm. Houses are reasonably priced, as are property taxes. It has 2 good elementary schools and a good high school. There is bus service into Vernon if you don’t want to drive.

You can buy a fairly nice 3 bedroom home there for around $250,000

#3 ken s on 05.07.12 at 9:12 pm

Many in the astrology community* are buzzing about the
upcoming lunar eclipse of may 20. Most of them* are fakes, -some are good, and half-a- handful are brilliant: (same as financial advisors, sex therapists and spiritual cousellors): so keep your Reality outlook.

This eclipse sits exact on Japan’s Natal Ascendant
(which is conjunct Japan’s Pluto), Hey man, you
dont mess with This:
The eclipse shadow brushes along Japans south coast –only miles from direct passage over the
Fukushima reactors, also 10km south of Tokyo (before
passing Fukushima)
-then it tracks the jet stream to about Portland Oregon.
Every major meteorologic-geophysical agency
in Japan and beyond has predicted a Major 7-8+ earthquake near Tokyo-Fukushima, before 2013.
Presently the odds are +70%
Does the Black Swan have to draw a picture ??
Will the ‘exact’ alignment of sun, moon, and a
few more planets over Fukushima create a gravitational focus along the eclipse track?
(The geo guys just left to make a phone call)
Ask yourself if this disaster could Possibly get
[-or: Why Me god?]
We have collectivly ignored ­­__ Every__ financial, political, enviromental, technical, scientific, even spiritual, low tech-high tech, humane, administrative, Law ever written in 5000 years. Karma: It comes Back to you. We have practically begged for this. -Otherwise : enjoy the visuals.
The #4 spent fuel pool is hanging by its fingernails, if that,
-many experts wonder What is holding that thing up 100 feet in the air?
If it comes down, over 10,000+ fuel rods will create the mother of all nuclear fission, sky shine, nuclear aerosols, the works.
-Environmental wipeout for the entire N. Hemisphere: I mean Wipeout as complete as Fukushima itself.
I would suggest Buenos Aires or Sydney: Tangos and
esspresso, or G’day mate and surf boards. (I always wanted to ride across the pampas.)
“……….On a long enough time frame, the survival rate……….etc”
–So now the Good News: Monica says she will
meet you at 5:30 –and to bring lotsa ‘thingys’
(What are ‘thingys’ ??)
KenS in La-La :-)

Who the hell let you in? — Garth

#4 MarcFromOttawa on 05.07.12 at 9:16 pm

Ottawa #1 place to live:–canada-s-best-places-to-live-2012-ottawa-wins-again-burlington-is-2-toronto-ranks-47th

House prices in Vancouver as expensie as ever:

#5 Dave on 05.07.12 at 9:17 pm

Parts of the Niagara Region fit his criteria, I’d say..

I’m in Northwestern Ontario and it’s truck nutz heaven up here (but a great place to live nonetheless).

#6 Goody Niosi on 05.07.12 at 9:19 pm

Nanaimo, Duncan or Courtenay on Vancouver Island

#7 Elmer on 05.07.12 at 9:19 pm

I would highly recommend Thunder Bay, Ontario.

It has its own university, a bustling downtown core, a booming industry, and picturesque neighborhoods. Whether you enjoy camping, mountain biking, horseback riding, fishing, or white water rafting, it’s all just a short drive away. And housing is very reasonably priced – 200k for a typical mid-sized house in the city, or 500k for a 4000 sq/ft mcmansion on the outskirts of town on several acres. Your kids will grow up breathing clean air, in a very low crime town, and never run out of outdoor activities to do. Why anyone would choose to live in Markham or Milton over T-Bay is baffling.

#8 sluggo on 05.07.12 at 9:20 pm

Rossland, BC. Snow may be an issue if you don’t like it otherwise the redneck factor is negligible, most of the developers have gone broke so you can find land on the cheap and the quality beer tap per capita ratio is sufficient which is high on my list right up there with the ski hill.

#9 on 05.07.12 at 9:23 pm

How about St. Catharines Ontario or other small towns in the Niagara region?
Reasonable driving distance to Toronto and New York state for shopping , decent weather , and no heavy industry.

#10 Mean Gene on 05.07.12 at 9:25 pm

Cambridge, Ontario??

#11 Makavelli on 05.07.12 at 9:28 pm

Vancouver average prices down because the high end ain’t moving. All other properties in the 1 mil range, seem to be hot still. Sales have tanked and listings up. When will prices tank?

#12 Jim Lahey, Sunnyvale Trailer Park Supervisor on 05.07.12 at 9:28 pm

“I think what we need is a small town, with some character and good family life.”

Well Adrian, Sunnyvale Trailer Park is the place for you! A small community with all the characters you could ask for! Here is the link, come and check us out. The trailer next to Ricky’s place just went on the market…

#13 J.F. on 05.07.12 at 9:29 pm

You’re a dreamer. Such a place doesn’t exist.

Good weather – Wetcoast, when it doesn’t rain we get a couple of months of sunshine.
Cheap and clean – Not Vancouver or Toronto. I hear our real estate more expensive than Paris.
Trendy – Vancouver or Toronto cause our real estate is more expensive than Paris.
Good colleges – Quebec, cause I hear they have killer low tuition rates. And when the Government tries to increase it, the kids riot.
High Family Values – Not Vancouver, kids are taught to riot when if the hockey team loses the Stanley Cup. I don’t think we’ve ever won.

I’d stay away longer. Unless you want to bring your kids back to learn rioting skills.

#14 Dazed & Confused on 05.07.12 at 9:31 pm

Yeah. He-he-he. Kelowna, dude.

#15 Tim on 05.07.12 at 9:32 pm

The Chinese with the money haven’t left Vancouver, it’s hard not to trip over them, or if you are driving, you won’t miss them either. Vancouver is still outrageously overpriced. Despite all of the media coverage, prices have barely budged.

Would those be Canadian citizens of Asian heritage you are referring to? Or do they wear special shirts? — Garth

#16 Marco on 05.07.12 at 9:33 pm

He’d better stay in Puerto Rico? Nah! Canada is a great country. The worst crime it is guilty of, is acting like a teen ager thinking it knows everything in a room full of grown ups; Who in turn have seen how the inevitable ends.

Foolishness brings pain and wisdom through learning. So it will. But it has been, is now and will always be a country of benevolence, positivity and overall good.

I have lived in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and North America. Canada has the best of all these places. While we bicker about real estate prices and poor financial education (and knowledge by implication), let’s remember these are luxury problems compared to countries where basic human rights are not respected.

So, Adrian, move back to wherever in Canada and rent until you have a diversified portfolio and real estate represents 40% of your holdings, with about 3-5x leverage of your yearly earnings and a decent 20% down payment.

If that is not possible, then be a well invested lifelong renter, much like most of Europe has done for centuries (people are not broke there, governments are – try carry the lowest debt to income ratios compared to North America), and you will be liquid and solvent enough to be able to enjoy life in this world once your kids have grown up and moved on.

You never own real estate anyway… You rent it from the bank if you have a mortgage (paying it back a good couple of times in form of interest) or, if you buy in cash, you hand it back to the government every 20 or so years in property taxes (doubly as bad if you rent from the bank)

But Canada? Its value as a safe place to live in is truly different. I banked my children’s life on that!

#17 ken s on 05.07.12 at 9:33 pm

er…. its Solar, not lunar :( ……Would you believe
a typo?

….I wouldnt either. KS

#18 Burnt Norton on 05.07.12 at 9:34 pm

Halifax (the summers make up for the winters…sort of).

PS #3 @ken s: Step away from the bong.

#19 Paully on 05.07.12 at 9:34 pm

I loved Kingston when I lived there as a student!

#20 abraxas on 05.07.12 at 9:35 pm

Fredericton NB

Nice homes can be had for well under 200K

#21 Keeping the Faith on 05.07.12 at 9:35 pm

Adrian, Dryden Ontario Canada is where you want to be … everything you want and more!

#22 Pete on 05.07.12 at 9:36 pm

Adrian and family should look into moving to the Sherbrooke-Lennoxville area of Quebec. It has the highest standard of living in Canada ( for those who understand which factors truly determine the standard of living of a community ). Bishops University and Champlain College 10 minutes from downtown. Home prices in the city and surrounding rural areas are far lower than would be found in Ontario, B.C., etc. And if Adrian and family are not fluent in French, the Lennoxville region is 50% anglophone.

#23 ken s on 05.07.12 at 9:37 pm

I thought you did. But correct me, if not. Its not the end
of the world (not mine anyway)

#24 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 9:38 pm

Usually I go to Kelowna to have the waitresses at Joey’s fawn over me, – Garth

The waitresses at Moxies are way hotter.

#25 Sockeyemoon on 05.07.12 at 9:41 pm

I here the east coast is where the deals are. Check out this: Vs the west coast:

#26 JM on 05.07.12 at 9:42 pm

Kingston, On

#27 Curious! on 05.07.12 at 9:44 pm


#28 nocte_volens on 05.07.12 at 9:45 pm

Kamloops is a nice city, 88,000 people, university, but with home prices near 5X income, it will likely remain overpriced for a few years yet.

#29 BO in TO on 05.07.12 at 9:45 pm

Nunavut is lovely in the spring. The kids will love it!

#30 Snipes on 05.07.12 at 9:46 pm

Anywhere but Fort McMurray. People here really seem to like Beyond Thunderdome and really hate Tina Turner.

#31 randman on 05.07.12 at 9:47 pm

How about Squamish? only 35 min from the big city

great mixed softball and smoked cariboo!!

#32 Scalgary on 05.07.12 at 9:48 pm

Where is “Mike the Realtor” from Kewlona?

He used to pump Kewlona RE here in this website and disappeared on time???

#33 Blair on 05.07.12 at 9:49 pm

Anyplace half an hour south of Ottawa will do…you’re near a big town, but the small town life is peaceful.

– More land;
– Great for young families;
– The neighbors here actually talk to each other;
– Properties are about 40% less than Ottawa;
– 45 minutes from the USA for bargain seekers;
– If you like protesting, Montreal is 2 hours away & you are 4.5 hours from “Godless Toronto”.

3 Bed, split level on an acre down the street from me for 259K – start packing!

#34 renters rule on 05.07.12 at 9:49 pm

I would definitely recommend the Island of Montreal.

Most interesting, diverse city in Canada. And not that expensive. Better place to raise kids than godless GTA or soul-less Vancouver….


#35 Observer on 05.07.12 at 9:50 pm

Garth, how can you say that Dianne Francis is right or wrong, when, according to this article, even Flaherty admits that Ottawa “doesn’t have a good grasp on the amount of foreign money in the Canadian housing market”?


As debate heats up about the degree to which Toronto and Vancouver’s housing markets are overheated, there is a lot of talk about the role that foreign investment money is playing.

And it’s a bit frightening to realize that not even the government knows the answer.

During a discussion with the Globe and Mail’s editorial board, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty acknowledged that Ottawa doesn’t have a good grasp on the amount of foreign money in the Canadian housing market.

#36 Doug in London on 05.07.12 at 9:52 pm

@ken s, post #3:
The eclipse you mentioned is actually an annular (or ring) solar eclipse, called that because the moon is too far away to block out the sun completely as in a total eclipse. If you want to see this event, forget Japan and try the western United States. It’s cheaper to get there from Canada, and the weather prospects are better also. Just don’t forget those safe viewing methods if you value your eye sight. Say, didn’t we drift off topic?

#37 Dave2 on 05.07.12 at 9:52 pm

Re Dorothy @ comment #2

Avoid Armstrong BC. Have you ever seen Children of the Corn?

#38 Frederoo on 05.07.12 at 9:52 pm

Quesnel B.C. Houses $150,000- $280,000. Junction of 2 rivers, riverwalk trail, friendly, accessible X-country and downhill skiing, cycling trails, hiking area, lakes and backcountry. Thriving college & university satellite courses. Library, theatre community, vibrant volunteer community, French immersion school.

#39 NoName on 05.07.12 at 9:53 pm

Stoney Creek
1.great place for young family
2.relatively inexpensive RE hour away from everything

Fraser institute school ranking

#40 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 9:55 pm

Sales and prices are growing weaker by the month. In all of Central Okanagan, 179 residential properties sold last month, and there are 1,579 which didn’t – so there’s now a 10-month supply. Deals are down from last year by a fifth, there are 900 condos available (just 63 sold) and sellers are shocked when somebody shows up at an open house who doesn’t need a bathroom.

Now Garth you know this is my area, who I am and can verify what I am about to tell you. There were, in fact 334 residential properties of all types sold in the Central Okanagan in the month of April 2012. There are, in fact 4,613 residential properties of all types listed for sale here not 1,579. That is pretty much a 14 month supply not 10.

In April of 2011 there were 310 properties sold compared to the 334 this year so you can hardly say “deals are down”.

If you break out strata, vacant land and modular homes there were 199 sales of single family residential properties in April 2012 against a current inventory of 2,044 properties on the MLS in the Central Okanagan. THAT might be the 10 month supply you were speaking of. In April of 2011 there were 172 sales of single family residential properties in the Central Okanagan so still again you can hardly say “deals are down”.

There were 112 condos sold in April not 63 and there are 1,508 currently available for sale not 900.

The open houses I held this past weekend were well attended.

I think you need a new source.

My stats were for SFHs, straight from the real estate board. — Garth

#41 Walter Safety on 05.07.12 at 9:56 pm

Charlottetown ,PEI , Fredericton,NB , St Mary’s Ont, Picton,Ont, Brandon,MB ,Banff, Invermere BC, Nelson ,BC Quadra Island, Ingonish , N.S , even Chester NS since your going to live outside of town

#42 East Van on 05.07.12 at 9:57 pm

What women really want:

#43 Potato on 05.07.12 at 9:57 pm

I spent a decade in London, Ontario and would recommend it. Not small town, but certainly smaller and friendlier than the big smoke, yet still big enough to have almost all the amenities (including a university). Nice park/trail system along the river, and a short drive to the great lakes. Regular Southern Ontario weather, but if you’re moving to Canada a bit of snow and summer heat is to be expected.

While house prices are a little high, they’re nowhere near as bubbly as Toronto — and with all the academics there’s a decent supply of nicely maintained detached rentals too (as well as the student ghetto parts).

#44 JC on 05.07.12 at 9:57 pm

Perfectly reasonable small town would be T-bay in Ontario. Or perhaps Cornwall. Those places stick out as having “bubble-proof” homevalues.

#45 Katheran on 05.07.12 at 10:01 pm


Be careful where you run – there is nowhere to hide! I’d recommend staying where you are. All small towns are full of rednecks (dead end towns on no thru streets.) Where there’s good scenery and “lifestyle” the Silverado’s all have dragging balls and there’s lots of guns – even in small town Canada – “great white hunters!”

The whole world is polluted – just wait until the Japanese Current (why do you think it’s called the Japanese Current!) delivers radiation to the entire West Coast of North America. Every living breathing sea creature and the minutest of organism in the sea and shores, will be radiated. Death and mutation will be the norm – although isn’t that what’s been happening for the past 215 years (or so) since the beginning of the “cheap oil” and industrialization fiasco of humans.

I would bet my life that Fukushima is already unleashed on the planet. It’s no co-incidence that all nuclear plants have been “shut down” in Japan.

Real estate values are so the least of our problems. I don’t expect we will recover from the impending real estate disaster about to “tsunami” us in my lifetime (I’m 59 years old.) The “Depression” will have nothing on the coming collapse. More like the Second Great Dark Age.

That would make me one of Garth’s doom and gloomers – dirty job but someone has to do it! Hi Garth.


Man, this blog scares me. — Garth

#46 By any Means on 05.07.12 at 10:02 pm

In my opinion Adrians dream location does not exist in Canada.
I have called many parts of Canada home due to work including but not limited to:
Toronto, Ottawa, Pembroke, Vancouver, Kelowna, Vernon, Calgary Edmonton and have lived temporary in 50 more.
All had good and bad but none were perfect. Ottawa area and Quebec just over the river from Ottawa are very nice in many ways and would

#47 Calgary's OK on 05.07.12 at 10:02 pm

“A nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values. And no knuckle-draggers or Silverados with balls.”

Do they want free fries with that too?

No seriously, on top all the requirements listed above they also probably want low property taxes and good jobs with decent salaries? What they really need is a time machine so they could go 3 years back and think twice before selling their house. While they were having a good time in Costa Rica waiting for RE prices in Canada to drop, the rest of us had to work hard in order to pay our taxes and mortgages. I have to admit, it was very good plan, too bad things don’t always work out the way we need… If they are planning to go back to Canada soon, they may want to consider start renting, most blogger on this site seem to recommend it for the life style now.

#48 T.O. Bubble Boy on 05.07.12 at 10:03 pm

East Coast for sure. Whoever said “Mississauga” obviously doesn’t understand the meaning of ‘small town’.

#49 Form Man on 05.07.12 at 10:03 pm

good post again Garth

Kelowna is exactly as you say. I took my sweetie for our weekly doom and gloom tour of Kelowna housing developments on Sunday. Here is our report:

The Ponds :
Phase 1- dozens of empty lots, forest of for sale signs, no sign of any new starts

Phase 2- finishing up a group of new homes that were started last year, tons of empty lots, no new footings poured, one home being framed

West Harbour :

marketing claimed 24 presales in January of 2011……16 months later there are 12 completed homes, 4 finishing up, 2 abandoned basements, no new starts…….

these are 2 of the more high profile developments in Kelowna right now, and it is mid- May ( when new starts should be peaking ). This is a market far from recovery…….over to you DA

#50 Aizlynne on 05.07.12 at 10:04 pm

Well they better not come to beautiful High River, AB with majestic mountain views. Those bumpy roads I drive on must be the result of too many knuckles dragging on the pavement.

Stay in yuppy town please!

#51 Cake on 05.07.12 at 10:05 pm

Please consider Kimberley, BC. Plenty of character, outdoor activities and not to mention great weather. Home prices very affordable and the residents are friendly.

#52 Monster Cookie on 05.07.12 at 10:06 pm

I would move to New Hampshire, the ‘Live Free or Die’ state. Washington State and Seattle or Portland Oregon would be nice too.

In Canada, the tax me to death while they run your life and subject you to substandard education and healthcare. Throw a dart and hope you hit Hudson’s Bay!

#53 b on 05.07.12 at 10:06 pm

I know some people think its a shithole but vernon bc is the spot. 5 lakes within 20 min drive, great skiing on silverstar, proximity to KLO and VAN, and a 5 bdrm in coldstream with a view of Kal lake can be had for 350k (was 500k three years ago)

30 degrees plus in the summertime, all the tourists hit up KLO and the PEN which keeps things nice and quiet.

Only about 50k people. Only bad things I hear about are poor job prospects and crime but where else is the grass greener? I’m moving my family up there in a few years once I earn the right to work remotely!!

#54 furst on 05.07.12 at 10:07 pm

Garth is now saying that Toronto SFH are good value? That’s a FURST!

#55 By any Means on 05.07.12 at 10:08 pm

Oops…accidental enter.
Ottawa area top pick, Coldstream near Vernon second if you prefer scenery to culture….definitely not Armstrong…too many whiskey jug blowers.
If a job trumps all you have to pick Alberta.Tolerable and the mountains are oh so close. Great opportunities for anyone willing to work hard.

#56 Tri-State Pat on 05.07.12 at 10:08 pm

Kingston, Halifax, Saint-John,Sherbrook,Cobourg,Cambridge,Parts of London…

I’m sure there are many more.

After a while you realize that you like these places because how people treat you.

#57 Bruce on 05.07.12 at 10:08 pm

St. Marys Ontario. Period, new paragraph. Diversified economy, great schools, excellent health care, unpretentious, we’re friendly folks who mind our own business, great transportation by rail, bus or road, close to everything: entertainment, culture, beaches. Real estate that might even meet Garth’s standards for value. Check us out at

#58 Sebee on 05.07.12 at 10:10 pm

Would those be Canadian citizens of Asian heritage you are referring to? Or do they wear special shirts? — Garth

Garth, don’t you think a look at Chinese real estate bubble or not – is something worth talking about one day? It could equally be a trigger for a correction, along with impacting economies of natural resource rich nations like Oz and Canada.

#59 Mr Buyer on 05.07.12 at 10:10 pm

#3 ken s on 05.07.12 at 9:12 pm
Gravity gets very weak very quickly (hence our trip to the moon was possible). Your assertion that planetary configuration impact geologic events on earth has little or no basis in fact. On the other hand earth quakes are rather frequent in Japan and I have been holding my breath since the tsunami (that earth quake shook my house on the opposite coast over 400km away as the crow flies and we had a weak one with its epicenter right under our city a few months back).

#60 John on 05.07.12 at 10:11 pm

Clever, fun writing…really a great blog.

#61 anon on 05.07.12 at 10:16 pm

Garth – can you comment on how and why the HPI keeps going up for Vancouver, even when average prices seem to be down quite significantly? Drives me nuts and I cannot get any clarity from the HPI handbook the REBGV puts out. Why is there not more government oversight on this market? Seems sketchy if you ask me.

It’s doing what it was designed to do, and as I wrote when the index was adopted by several boards. This is intended to mask current market changes. — Garth

#62 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 10:16 pm

“I’ve run into several high-octane Bay Street types who have refused opportunities on the coast because they’re unwilling to spend $3 million to replicate a lesser version the $2 million house they now own in North Toronto. In a regional city, to boot, where people actually watch Global. God”. – Garth

They are not our market anyway. As evidenced in the OMREB Buyer Survey results I posted a few days back Alberta buyers of Okanagan properties, currently, outnumber those from all the Eastern Provinces by a factor of 15 to 1 – that’s ALL Eastern Provinces. I can’t imagine the Lower Mainland is much, if any, different.

In a “regional city” WTF is that supposed to mean. You sound like the snobby British of the Colonies.

”those greedy Vancouver homeowners who waited for prices to crest before listing” – Garth

And Torontonians aren’t just as “greedy”?

Garth I like you, really I do but seriously Dude you are definitely doing a good job of alienating the West by pointing out just how “Center of the Universe” Torontonians think themselves. Yes national elections are determined long before our western bedtimes but keep it up and you’ll soon find yourselves flanked by Separatists on both sides of the continent who soon determine their own destiny just as you did when you dumped that arrogant leader you used to work for.

#63 anon on 05.07.12 at 10:20 pm

Oh and I think Kelowna would be a great place to settle.

Great weather year round – hot dry summers, and the winters are relatively mild. Amazing lake culture – lots of family stuff to do. Wine country etc. Garth can comment on whether it is a good time to buy – but sounds like prices are still on the way down, but at least they have been on the way down for awhile :)

#64 dutch4505 on 05.07.12 at 10:20 pm

Adrian…check out Bellingham WA. Great university town of 70,000 souls, many of them with Canadian roots. Located 20 miles south of the Canadian border on a true 4 lane expressway highway. (unlike the paved logging roads as Garth calls them in the lower mainland of BC) Shopping, excellent k to 12 schools, low crime rate, lots of recreation, and fantastic real estate deals. As an added bonus you get to see 1/2 of the lower mainland every weekend looking for deals. Now only if they could drive on the right lane and pass using the left lane.

#65 Smoking Man on 05.07.12 at 10:20 pm


Well I enter exhibit A The machine has successfully talked down the Market in that Market.

And the machine has got double barrel shot guns on the Toronto market. Lets face it, House prices in the GTA vs Income are insane.

F needs to rain in this insanity, to please his masters other wise , the scum bag middle class will be demanding more loot.

Which means the pool boy, the maid, and the nanny, you try and keep one for more than six moths will be demanding more loot.

This will not do..

Middle class when you walk down town and the homeless dude is begging for money, the contempt and ill feeling you have to the slimebag is what the elite and those in power out side the light think of you.

Even though you may drive a nice car, and have a nice house. You’re a dog in their eyes, while they pat you on the head and say good boy. Been to parties like you wont believe, seen it first hand.

That’s why I always say steel the fking customer list, cause sucking up gets you no respect. Honesty integrity, virtue in their eyes is a sign of pathetic weakness and confirmation in their heads that you are a dog.

The school system is a pet training operation. The teachers are just well trained pets, following orders.

I say steel customer list dogs, and live large.

#66 Mr Buyer on 05.07.12 at 10:25 pm

Kingston Ontario is a nice place but house prices got stupid there as well. You can still find a place though but I would hold off a few years. Ten years to regain these house price levels again after the impending crash is highly unlikely. I am guessing a generation or two if ever. But how am I supposed to know.

#67 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 10:25 pm

Clarification of my previous post

RE: your reference of Vancouver as a “regional city”.

WTF is that supposed to mean. You sound like the snobby British as they speak down of and to the Colonies.

I thought it was no different here? I thought you were a man of the whole country? You’re not being a very diplomatic host. I can’t think of any other place in the world you speak of so derogatorily as you so often do Western Canada.

Such behaviour might be expected of me but you?!?

Relax. Somebody has to counter this absurdist talk of comparing Vancouver to Paris, London and New York. Contrasting it to Seattle is a stretch. — Garth

#68 Ron on 05.07.12 at 10:27 pm

And by “gravity” you mean, what goes up … must come down. More importantly, what are you thoughts on stowing a pile of cash into some private REITS? With all the people who will be looking to rent after the big B deflates, I can’t see going too far offside. Besides, property valuations are (usually) based on business fundamentals, not the f’n mentals.

Why go private when you can do public, and have liquidity? — Garth

#69 Canadian Abroad on 05.07.12 at 10:31 pm

Living here now State side in Washington state in Seattle and we’d be hard pressed to return to Canada. I really hate to admit it but Canadians have it all so wrong. Pull your heads out of your butts and recognize the lies that we have been fed every day. I simply cannot believe how much bullsh*t we have been eating for at least a decade. My wife and I have never had it so good. We receive significantly better quality and attention in healthcare and continued treatment, housing, food, transportation, education, and most importantly the Americans are some of the nicest people I’ve ever encountered. I’ve traveled the globe many times around and I’ve come to realize that we Canadians have so much to learn or should I say un-learn! It really upsets me when I read such stupidity on this blog from my fellow Canadians’ perceptions of Americans and the United States. My wife and I feel more and more American as each day passes and less Canadian. Unpatriotic? Yes, and this pains us. Smarter and happier now? Yes, and we’re happy to learn something new everyday. No wonder why the Americans think we are so kept in the dark – We never question authority and we always eat up the bullsh*t we’re told about the U.S.!!! I am going to clue in my fellow Canadians here – When you travel here please understand that Americans like Canadians to a degree but Americans truly find us to be clueless and not with the times. We never really understood what this meant until living here for the last four years. WOW! What an eye opener! We were in the dark when it comes to global politics, educational issues, healthcare issues, and finance. It isn’t perfect here but it is so much better than when we were living in Vancouver. My point is not to believe everything you read but instead to learn and experience it for yourself. Our experience has been vastly superior to that of when we lived in Vancouver and Quebec.

Just for that we’ll win the Stanley Cup. Oh wait… — Garth

#70 Swinging Humanzee on 05.07.12 at 10:31 pm

Sooke, BC, on Vancouver Island. less than an hour from Victoria, situated on the strait of Juan de Fuca with one of the best views in Canada. Provincial parks, mountains beaches etc and close enough to the city to still get things done.

#71 TaxHaven on 05.07.12 at 10:32 pm

Port Alberni, B.C.!

NOT Nanaimo (overpriced, strip malls), Parksville-Qualicum (geriatric Wisteria Lane, too ‘neat’) or Courtenay (overpriced, no character).

Why Port Alberni? Because we ranked 186th our of 190 Best Places to Live on MoneySense’s 2012 survey: in all the ridiculous unimportant categories!

187th in “Number of New Cars”
168th in “Household Income”
166th in “Jobless Rate”
144th in “Population Growth”

And you want this stuff? AFFORDABILITY is the only thing that counts…

#72 Dave on 05.07.12 at 10:37 pm

#21 Keeping the Faith

Was odd to see another Drydenite posting on here!

#73 finto on 05.07.12 at 10:37 pm


#74 drv on 05.07.12 at 10:39 pm

Nanaimo fits. Or Port albernis cheaper if you decide after all you can live with rednecks and fog

#75 Foggy on 05.07.12 at 10:40 pm

There are many small towns in the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia. Normal house prices, moderate winters, lovely Spring, Summer and Fall. Has up-to-date internet, all the regular retailers and decent hospitals. And there are the vineyards in the Gaspereau Valley. And the ocean is always close by in NS.
Someone mentioned Fredericton in NB, which is a nice provincial small city. Winters are harsher in NB than NS, and flooding can be an issue.

#76 Chaddywack on 05.07.12 at 10:41 pm

Still lots of SOLD stickers that I see when walking around East Van……..apparently the “Rich Mainland Chinese have just discovered that the city extends east of Main St.”

This after “HAM realized that Richmond can flood in the event of an Earthquake, so they’ve moved to the North Shore”


“HAM stopped buying on the North Shore because they realized there are too many white people there” (I wish I were joking about this one….)

I love Vancouver Realtors! You seriously can’t make this stuff up!

#77 FTP - First Time Poster on 05.07.12 at 10:43 pm

Why would you move back to Canada? Our two favorite places are NZ or Melbourne, AU. NZ RE is relatively reasonable for what you get with the exception of maybe Wellington and Auckland. Melbourne is outrageous, although it seems to be pulling back. I’d explore these two places before ever setting foot back in the great white north.

#78 aaci-home dog on 05.07.12 at 10:46 pm

Right on…Rossland, BC…if you love skiing and mountain biking…hard to beat. Homes from $200-$350k…fair college half hour away…lots of lakes nearby….etc…etc…

#79 Deano on 05.07.12 at 10:46 pm

Brantford. I know I’m partial as I live here, but it has tonnes going for it. University downtown that’s growing every year, proximity to other colleges/uni within 30 minutes, beauty river, slower pace of life, incredible old neighbourhoods where a deal can still be had.

That one is in a hood so quiet you can hear a pin drop on any given evening. Brantford isn’t all happy fun, but don’t believe what people will tell you about it. Those same people think Milton or Brooklin (ON) are incredible places to live with a vibrant nightlife.

#80 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 10:47 pm

”Relax. Somebody has to counter this absurdist talk of comparing Vancouver to Paris, London and New York. Contrasting it to Seattle is a stretch.” — Garth

Matter of opinion, to which you are entitled to yours as is anyone else. Personally I’ll take Vancouver over any of those you mentioned. Don’t get me wrong their nice enough cities but live there? Not me. But you go ahead.

Additionally, someone’s got to counter the absurdist talk comparing the Canadian real estate market to that of the U.S. incessantly four years after the fact. That’d be me. };-) Until I am censured that is.

#81 Smoking Man on 05.07.12 at 10:48 pm

The Machines next move, first we had Black vs whites, Then Lefts against rights. What’s next, Boomers vs Kids.

While the machine rakes it in. Opera at Cocktail parties while barging about what your slave did for you today.

Home School your kids. Teach em my posts.

Only way to break throw to the other side.

And then The other side sucks.

Never mind keep your kids stupid and happy.

Neck is killing me, back has fused, That beautiful bottle of JD I just killed is kicking in. I better stop. Night Night kids. Ankylosing spondylitis Sucks.

#82 ANONYMOUS on 05.07.12 at 10:52 pm

When people are going to be upside-down in their mortgages (owe more than the house is worth), then they will just love to go see this upside down house:

#83 Dad on 05.07.12 at 10:54 pm

The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland.

#84 daystar on 05.07.12 at 10:58 pm

Nelson BC but its not cheap. Can’t think of any place with less than 100,000 people and cheap, at least out west. Quebec or Atlantic provinces? Adrian, if you want cheap and hip, think central/south america. Maybe even Cuba, Carribean… I hear they are allowing citizens to own their own homes in Cuba now. Do you really need to own?

#85 Smoking Man on 05.07.12 at 10:58 pm

Buzz going huge to kill the pain, had to dip into the safe, last resort, to pull out a pre-rolled .

Came across this.

Love this man

#86 Lotusman on 05.07.12 at 11:03 pm

Saanichton and Sidney, BC

#87 Skip Breakfast on 05.07.12 at 11:04 pm

Kimberley BC you say? Well, the Kootenays are beautiful and the air is clean. But there is no “culture” there whatsoever. And it is populated by 95% rednecks. Sorry. It’s my hometown. I know of what I speak. I go back regularly to see family. And while it is not quite the backwater it was when I went to school there, there are far too many neanderthals for my liking. My heart is in those mountains though.

#88 CoreyMc on 05.07.12 at 11:05 pm

#75 DRV
Nanaimo fits. Or Port albernis cheaper if you decide after all you can live with rednecks and fog.


You got to to be kidding me, Nanaimo or Port Alberni? Island folks are pretty much all rednecks. I guess if you like pot smoking welfare neighbours it’s alright. I just moved from there. And they are just as delusional about there RE as Vancouver.

#89 BigAl (Original) on 05.07.12 at 11:05 pm


1) London, Ont.: Any small town around, or on the outskirts of. Good size university, great healthcare access, good community college, Toronto, Detroit, Buffalo all within a couple hours’ drive, surrounded by the great lakes on all sides. Great older yuppy-ish neighbourhoods and new neighbourhoods.
2) Kingston, Ont: Within drive to Montreal, Toronto, and (sadly) Ottawa.
3) Grimsby/St. Catharines area
4) Windsor, Ont
5) Any place in the Eastern Townships of Quebec just East of Montreal…gorgeous quaint towns dotted through rolling countryside and small lakes, great for the kids to pick up french while growing up, highly cultured with ne’er a redneck in sight, great universities in the area ….If only I spoke French I’d be there myself.

NOT recommended
1) Ottawa: Yuck yuck yuck. Don’t let the rumours of sophisticated diplomats running around fool you. The reality: A sea of thousands of horribly dressed bleary-eyed government clerical workers who stopped thinking or caring about anything, except hating Toronto, the moment they got their gov job. It’s hell in the shape of a city.

If you wan’t to avoid the redneck thing, Alberta’s out. So is most of rural Saskatchewan and rural Manitoba. Avoid all of those small towns dotted along the Ottawa river (Pembroke, Arnprior) and all of the Ottawa valley – redneck to the core. BC is nice…but you better always praise BC and put down Ontario, otherwise I think they hang you.

#90 Don on 05.07.12 at 11:06 pm

Your list is rather unreasonable don’t yah think. There is no midsized paradise void of rednecks and what’s wrong with good hard working people. Go where there are no gangs, the rednecks are the least of your worries in Canada.

Gotta go make tons of popcorn – where the real money will be shortly.

#91 Dan in Victoria on 05.07.12 at 11:10 pm

Taxhaven @ 72

J & L
Sproat Lake
McLeans Mill
Martin Mars
China Creek
Alberni inlet
Barclay Sound
Nahmint Lake
El Pescadors omlette


#92 chumpay le chump on 05.07.12 at 11:12 pm

Courtenay, Cumberland, on Vancouver Island.

There is North Island College, a new super hospital being built.

good mix of former logging rednecks, refugees from Vancouver, meth/crack fiends, military folk, retirees, and hippies.

in short, nothing gets done.

#93 Yikes on 05.07.12 at 11:12 pm

Yikes – DA likes you Garth! That is creepy. Do you like DA Garth?

#94 John G. Young on 05.07.12 at 11:13 pm

#79 Smoking Man on 05.07.12 at 10:48 pm

“Ankylosing spondylitis Sucks.”

When I was in medical school I kept a mental list of what I thought were the worst diseases you could have: diabetes, Crohn’s disease, and ankylosing spondylitis were at the top.

Sorry you have to deal with that.

#95 Lorne on 05.07.12 at 11:17 pm

The Comox Valley is nice.

#96 Victor on 05.07.12 at 11:21 pm

Banks set for more profits as Canadian consumers keep taking on debt

May 7, 2012

Markets observers have been warning that Canadians consumers could slow their borrowing this year, dealing a blow to the country’s banks as a result. But analysts at Barclays Capital said Monday that bank profits are likely to stay safe from deleveraging — at least for now.

Concerns have been raised over the past few months about the damage a slowdown in consumer lending will do to Canadian banks. Canadians currently have one of the highest debt-to-income ratios in the world, and that ratio continues to grow. The Bank of Canada has repeatedly said it views this growth as unsustainable and that households will eventually be forced to pare debt levels.

John Aiken, analyst at Barclays Capital, said that while he does see an eventual slowdown in consumer borrowing, it doesn’t appear to be hitting bank profits this quarter.

#97 vatoDETH on 05.07.12 at 11:24 pm

A 25 year old at work today told me that his net worth is over $1 million. He owns a house and rents a condo in Calgary.

I asked him if he owns them or mortgaged them. The answer of course was mortgage. He tried explaining to me that Net Worth is all of your Assets, not Assets subtract Liabilities.

He’s also trying to get his first time home owners credit on his RRSPs, despite using that to previously buy a condo. He explained that this time he bought a house, which is different. I guess you get one for a condo and another for a house? lol

These are the kinds of people that CMHC has insured. Are you scared yet?

#98 Snowboid on 05.07.12 at 11:25 pm

#2 Dorothy on 05.07.12 at 9:12 pm…

You forgot the cheese! And they better hurry – there isn’t much selection with that price you quoted! Like two. Did I mention the cheese?


If I had to move back to Canada and was younger I would choose NB or NS.

#99 Regan on 05.07.12 at 11:26 pm

I’m a bit suprised no one has mentioned Peterborough – lovely city with beautiful old buildings, cheap to live there, Trent university creating interesting cultural life for a relatively small place, no one locks their doors, tons of outdoor spaces and a river. My job used to take me to many small towns in Ontario, and Peterborough was always my favourite. Guelph and Ottawa are also nice, although more expensive. Kingston always seemed so conservative. Avoid Niagara Falls, Hamilton and Windsor, but St. Catharines is suprisingly nice.

#100 Alberta Ed on 05.07.12 at 11:27 pm

Dang… rednecks iz some of my favorite people, ‘cluding my best hunting/drinking/fishing buddy, whoze worsen I am. ‘Fact, I are one, what with the Harley ‘n sum guns, an inbred intolerance for gummi’t BS ‘n taxes, not to mention RE speculators, evun tho’ I still have mosta my teeth, no tattoos, an’ no balls dangling from the truck… Lived in south Texas fer a year and found a lotta fine people down there, nevermind whatever color their necks wuz. Ya woodna like Red Deer, tho’…

#101 Jim Lahey on 05.07.12 at 11:27 pm

#70 Canadian Abroad

“I really hate to admit it but Canadians have it all so wrong. ”

Yep, them there Americans have it right with their 15,000 murders by gunshot a year (world leaders they are, nobody is even close to second unless you count countries with civil wars going on). Let me see, last count there are 50 million Americans on food stamps, housing being sold at 40% below build cost, and wonderful reality shows featuring the well spoken and articulate folks in such nice areas as Louisiana where everyone owns at least a couple of guns, hunts gators or frequents a pawn shop. Oh, I heard Detroit has some great homes for sale. Under a $1000 and you have great gangs of crack dealers as neighbours (sorry neighbors for our American friends) who will welcome you upon arrival. If you want to really go upscale, try Cleveland but you may have to shell out $5k for a house. In fact every major city in the US has some slum with very affordable housing. You might want to read Jim Kunstler’s weekly blog and his comparisons of Canada and the States. Kunstler is American btw. Adrian, you may want to join Canadian Abroad in the land of guns and drug dealers and gator hunters. You will have a blast…

#102 Form Man on 05.07.12 at 11:30 pm

interesting reading the nominations for best towns to raise a family. I vote for any town between 50,000 and 100,000 population. Any less and one’s choices are limited for sports etc. Any more and crime and pollution become an issue. Kind of like Vernon myself, although I live in Kelowna……..

#103 Bo Xilai on 05.07.12 at 11:32 pm

Adrian… I have two words for you Nelson, BC… Great place.

I’m at the CFA conference in Chicago right now… Got to hear David Rosenberg. One guy who was even better was James Montier.
He was talking about “Black Swan” events and how they are “good” or “bad”, “predictable” or “unforseen” depending on your perspective.
He had a great analogy…
Imagine you’re a turkey… For three months, your life couldn’t be more perfect… These big bi-pedals feed you, shelter you and take care of you constantly. Then a week before Thanksgiving, a turkey genocide. For Turkeys this is a “Black Swan” event.
For the Farmer, this feeding, animal husbandry and slaughter is a normal and predictable sequence of events. Nothing abnormal here…
This analogy got me to thinking about the Vancouver Real Estate Market.
Guess who the Turkeys are?
Guess who the Farmers are?

#104 Party On Garth on 05.07.12 at 11:34 pm

‘redneck’ is a blatant racial slur against white people.

#105 Ronaldo on 05.07.12 at 11:43 pm

#54 B – I agree with your choice of Vernon, BC. Small place, affordable RE, great lakes, skiing, fishing, hiking, golfing unlimited, great college, close to Kelowna University, central, only 5 hrs. to lower mainland. Great summers and not so cold in winter. Many orchards and wineries, great farmers markets, horse racing, much much more.

#106 thinker on 05.07.12 at 11:45 pm

Garth I expect a tally of town most mentioned tomorrow or a top 10!

#107 skaha forever on 05.07.12 at 11:47 pm

Penticton , BC. Not to be mistaken with Kelowna. Two very different citites. (Kelowna is more like Calgary, over crowded and rushed) I haved lived in all 3 cities and would move back to Penticton in a heartbeat.
Penticton has the sunshine, weather, beaches, good schools of all levels and tons to do outside all year round. And a booming little manufacturing industry, I did say little, but it is a little, quite, slow paced place. But don’t let the rumors fool you. The population over 65 is only 25%.

#108 John G. Young on 05.07.12 at 11:48 pm

#105 Party On Garth on 05.07.12 at 11:34 pm

“‘redneck’ is a blatant racial slur against white people.”

I think it’s a slur against stupid people.

BTW loved you “F ‘n PIIGS” from yesterday.

#109 Axehead on 05.07.12 at 11:48 pm


The best answer so far was to move back anywhere and rent.

If you must buy, I would choose London or Guelph or some small city around that location in southern Ontario. Close to everything, half decent home prices, good weather (except for wicked thunderstorms), access to most things you need.

Unfortunately, my haunt, Red Deer shouldn’t make this list. Trucks outnumber cars 3 to 1; nuts hang from the bumpers; this is where the term ‘red neck’ was invented; crime is very high statistically due to methedone clinics that attract parasitical pushers; restaurants with the word ‘Eatery’ in the name are considered gourmet.

#110 tomohawk on 05.07.12 at 11:48 pm

Kentville and New Minas NS are great spots. Wife and I went on vacation there last year and were wowed by the friendly people, clean streets, inexpensive houses and nice weather. Wolfville is maybe even nicer, but too rich for our blood.

#111 Bohemian on 05.07.12 at 11:50 pm

Unbelievably, Prince George is a pretty good fit. Kinda ugly, but the people are great. Home to one of the best dance studios in the country, A university and a college, home of the World Baseball Challenge, the nation’s northern most professional symphony and 4 of the 10 worst roads in all of BC.

#112 Pops Ol' Limey on 05.07.12 at 11:50 pm

You travel with kids too young to remember and now you want to come back. What were you trying to escape? No mention of wanting to be with family and old friends or employers and co-workers.

#113 Phil on 05.07.12 at 11:53 pm

Garth, you are using the fact that sales in Van are decreasing as proof HAM was overstated???? The precise reason why sales are down is because HAM is evaporating! You have probably read this article, but it succinctly summarizes what has happened here.

It’s completely disingenuous to say HAM, including asian immigration has not been the PRIMARY reason why Vancouver real estate has increased dramatically (please spare me a comparison to random Canadian town without HAM that has increased as well, the scale of increase is not comparable). When I went to elementary school (80s) my class was 70% caucasion, 30% non (mainly asian), today the entire school is 100% asian. It’s just a fact, and it’s ok to acknowledge said fact. You are not a r word for doing so.

#114 Axehead on 05.07.12 at 11:54 pm

#101 Alberta Ed.

Nice…enjoyed that.

Hey, have you noticed that every POS house in Dead Rear has been selling lately? What is it…Ft McMurray residents wanting to live there OR speculators including REIN cult members OR people moving for NOVA Chemical plans to expand OR something else?

#115 Devore on 05.07.12 at 11:56 pm

#63 };-) aka DA

DA, why would a Bay Street financial type want to move to Vancouver, a regional secondary financial centre, where they will make less money, have fewer opportunities, and where houses are even more expensive than in Toronto? Garth isn’t “alienating the West”, he’s telling it like it is.

As usual.

Now, put down that lipstick and step away from the pig.

#116 Jon B on 05.07.12 at 11:58 pm

Impossible. The “good weather” parameter cannot be met in this country. If “good weather for no more than six months” was added as a requirement, then we could populate a list of potential cities. My suggestion is to move to the Turks and Cacos and wait for Canada to buy the islands.

#117 phil on 05.08.12 at 12:03 am

@#70 Canadian Abroad

This is YOUR america..

#118 Victor on 05.08.12 at 12:04 am

The rise of premature affluence
Why the face of debt keeps getting younger.

BY: Carley Fortune

It was a Saturday night a couple of months ago and my fiancé and I were eating dinner with my parents at Woodlot, a restaurant at College and Palmerston. I was puzzling over the menu. Would it be the $28 whey-fed pork chop with walnut sauce or the $29 Nova Scotian sea bass with braised endive and smoked white-bean velouté? But my parents, small-town restaurant owners, were distracted. “Everyone here is so young,” said my mom, looking around at the other diners, a mix of twenty- and thirtysomethings. “How do they afford it?”

It was a good question. It turns out that adult Canadians in all age groups have a staggeringly high debt-to-income ratio: For every $100 we earn, we owe $150.60, which is worse than in the U.S. And the picture looks especially gloomy for the 18- to 34-year-old demographic. We are notoriously bad at budgeting. Several recent studies indicate that we want to retire before 60, but only about 40 per cent of us actually have a financial plan—and 40 per cent of those planners say they have it “in their head” rather than on paper.

#119 Jim Summers on 05.08.12 at 12:04 am

Southern Ontario is the most popular part of Canada, so there is plenty of choice in towns. The further from Toronto, the cheaper the house prices. I recommend Waterloo, or a smaller town nearby (like #1 Randy). No killer scenery, I’m afraid; but most of the rest of the list.

If we knew Adrian’s occupation, it might help to narrow the choices.

#120 Come out DA on 05.08.12 at 12:04 am

DA, you seem like a spitting image of the evil, gay baby Stewie on the Family Guy. Come out of the closet DA – you’re angry cause you’re a repressed gay man married to a woman which makes you really passive aggressive. Nothing wrong with being gay, but there is something wrong with being the passive aggressive prick you are. What a shame to waste away in your obvious bitter prison.

As Cobain said “come as you are” – no one will hold this against you DA

#121 Guy1 on 05.08.12 at 12:05 am

I have considerable experience in the area of identifying “nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values” without rednecks. I have traversed across this great land by car something like a dozen times (I’ve lost count) visiting numerous small communities from Nova Scotia to BC. First of all, a good chunk of rural Canada is unfortunately redneck (and not always welcoming to ‘city folk’). But, I have found some general patterns that might be of help to Adrian. The question, however, is what does Adrian considers as good weather? Much of Canada is uncomfortably cold or damp during the winters (then again, I lived in Australia for a time *smile). However, lets use gardening terms and assume that he doesn’t want colder than a 5A or 5B plant zone. There are select locations in the Maritimes that he should consider: 1) The North Shore of PEI near Cavendish (while a good chunk of PEI can be insular, the country folk near Cavendish are much more comfortable with CFAs (Come from Aways) given the non-resident tourism dollars that pour into the area during the summer months. 2) the outskirts of Wolfville, NS as well as the centre and outskirts of Annapolis Royal, NS (although, Annapolis Royal is more of a summer town; it’s dead in the winter). 3) For a slightly larger ‘town,’ I would recommend Fredericton (although, it gets cold in the winter) – the people were pleasant and it has an attractive setting/architecture; I also liked Woodstock and Sussex, NB (they’re quite pleasant in terms of their appearances and layout but I found the people to be insular and closed to anyone who wasn’t family – it’s difficult to make friends there). Now, if you like French towns, then Moncton and Shediac are pleasant and normal enough. And, incidentally, there are a truckload of cheap but quite dysfunctional communities in Canada; my wife and I drove all along the Eastern shore of New Brunswick, and what a disaster; never mind about Attawapiskat – the coastal roads along the New Brunswick side of the Bay of Fundy are like some nasty scene out of 1984 in terms of its visual destitution. As to Quebec, I’m partial to the sexy/chic and fun-loving communities north of Montreal in the Laurentian mountains i.e., along Hwy 15 from Mont Tremblant down to St. Saveur, but you have to love snow, and be prepared to speak some French (although, most people there also speak English). There’s only one reasonably-priced English community in Quebec that’s worth considering: Hudson (it’s quite an idealic town/village). In Ontario, there’s the outskirts of Kingston (like Bath) that are reasonably priced and friendly enough (nothing to write home about though). Nearby Amherst Island is super friendly, but it’s mostly a retirement community (but, I’ve seen houses there occasionally for under $100k and there is a good elementary school in Stella). I discovered Westport, Ontario a few years ago – it’s just north of Kingston – it was quite a surprise – very middle class and cutesy in appearance (but then the prices there are higher and it is far from medical services). Stirling, Ontario is very pleasant – probably one of my top choices as far as small towns/villages are concerned. Nearby Campbellford is more working class, but has an unspoiled time-warp feeling about it – having a dash of Scottish reserve, farmer’s toughness, mixed together with a 50s decency and innocence (although with these descriptions comes the tinge of redneck influence). Now, I’m going to make some broader generalisations now if I haven’t already done so (skipping the whole northern part of ‘balls on truck’ Ontario). Brandon, MB and the surrounding southern communities have a salt of the earth feel to them – good decent people who actually care about their neighbours (a lot of church going folk but not in any evangelical sense; they seem to be mostly upright/clean-cut red Tories perhaps explaining why they seemingly schizophrenically flip between the NDP and Tories). Now, forgive me for skipping SK and AB, but they aren’t really my cup of tea. I like Banff and Canmore but they are still pricey (and are filled with too many glum looking, tough-faced posers showing off with some stylised this or that who likely care more about their wallets than themselves to the detriment of all). Much of BC is pretty empty from a social and human standpoint – lots of plastic show-offs or cold uncaring types – but the Gulf Island communities are more real, artsy, and as close to what Adrian is probably looking for than anywhere else I’ve suggested. It’s hard to find a modern day, clean, liberal, with-it, “Leave it to Beaver” atmosphere in Canada at an affordable price, but I think the above places, if you are on a budget, are the best you’re going to get.

#122 Tim on 05.08.12 at 12:06 am

Qualicum, Parksville, or Courtenay Comox are nice. If you don’t have much $ then Nanaimo (Surrey by the sea) is cheaper.

#123 Smoking Man on 05.08.12 at 12:08 am

I should have added that I mentioned that Victoria looks like it might be ground zero, based on what my plebes have reported to me.

Keep the faith folks, it’s a miracle that I’m even awake to right this.

#124 Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 12:09 am

#79 Smoking Man on 05.07.12 at 10:48 pm

“Ankylosing spondylitis Sucks.”
As a person I often disagree with you do not readily inspire sympathy (I do not know if you are even telling the truth in this instance) but I can say whole heatedly that I would never wish Ankylosing spondylitis on anybody. My Uncle contends with it and it is not a pretty sight.
PS. I still generally do not care much for you so do not get any ideas.

#125 B P O E ?? on 05.08.12 at 12:14 am

Where is Sir BPOE? My Vancouver property is not selling even with price reduction, where are your angels in the wings, the pros, the winners circle Italian sports car driving buyers?

Help i need your magic wand [email protected]@!!!

#126 willnotbill on 05.08.12 at 12:14 am

# 38 Frederoo. Quesnel B.C.?? Oh you mean that epi-center of wood manufacturing with the highest cancer rates in B.C. Yep seems like a real good choice.

#127 FTP - First Time Poster on 05.08.12 at 12:19 am

#105 Party On Garth on 05.07.12 at 11:34 pm
‘redneck’ is a blatant racial slur against white people.

As a white person, I strongly disagree – its a blatant slur against people who wear wife beaters, drink no name beer, drive jacked up trucks with loud exhaust and think their sister is hot.

#128 Teacher on 05.08.12 at 12:19 am

How small is too small? Fernie, BC., with 5,000 people is a beautiful mountain town. It has a ski resort, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and golf. There’s a strong arts’ community and great restaurants too. Rednecks and the sporty/artistic community peacefully coexist. A small college campus offers on-line and face-to-face courses. Housing is still expensive, but better than Toronto, Calgary, or Vancouver.

#129 Tim on 05.08.12 at 12:22 am

Re# 70
Please stay stateside…I’ve traveled to the States many times and I almost tripped over all of the homeless people when I get my coffee in when I’m down there. Obesity is rampant, portions are huge, yet the food sucks. The individualist- every man for himself attitude that many have is something that is destroying the country. God forbid you should lose your job and have a health issue- you could be bankrupt. Over a third of all bankruptcies in the States stem from health issues. Sure it is no problem if you have a good paying job and don’t mind paying over $200-$300/ month on health care. With the exception of several neighborhoods in Toronto, there is no neighborhood in Canada where I wouldn’t feel safe walking around in at night. How many places are their in big cities where one wouldn’t walk at night? Sure, we have a neo-con, self serving, scheming ##^&%& for a Prime Minister, but the right in the States is laughable. With 50 million on food stamps, and many more million unemployed or in minimum wage jobs, I don’t care how nice the weather is or how cheap real estate gets, I’d rather pay more here and wear a parka

#130 Twentysomething on 05.08.12 at 12:23 am

Sackville, NB
Check out the relocation brochure …. it’s quite the unique town.

Long story short: lived in this unique town for four years earlier this decade. Miss it everyday. A mix of life long residents and transient population allows for a family friendly, highly educated and culturally diverse small town.

University: Mount Allison – #1 Primary Undergraduate according to Maclean’s.

Culture: 300 annual events, 50 community organizations, great sports facilities, Waterfowl Park and the biggest live performance stage east of Montreal – all in a town of 8,000 people (including 2,500 university students). Add in students from almost 50 different countries and you have diversity not seen in many large cities across Canada.

Small town: 2 stop lights, no mall/superstore. Instead a quaint downtown with mom and pop cafes/restaurants, pubs, 4 lane supermarkets, banks and art galleries. A 10 minute drive across the marsh to Amherst, NS or westward to Greater Moncton gives you bigger community amenities.

VIA Rail stop & 20 minutes to Moncton Airport (Air Canada, WestJet and Porter) with quick flights to Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa and Hamilton.

24 hour hospital with Emergency Room – 8 doctors and full health care services.

Finally: reasonable house prices (seriously!) Sackville celebrates 250 years in 2012 … imagine a centuries old home. I spent a year living in house built in 1820.

#131 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 12:24 am

Toronto… move there. Apparently it is the center of the universe. Avoid British Columbia – Canada own toothless, dumbassed hillbilly country. Hyuck, hyuck

#132 CalgaryBoy on 05.08.12 at 12:24 am

WoW, Calgary is on its way to breaking its record which was set in 2007 at $505K.

According to this, we are averaging $524K in the first week of May, 2012! In a weird kinda way, I’d like to see it break the previous record ’cause then Calgary will get a lot of media and housing bubble talk! People are really talking about Vancouver and Toronto, but Calgary is kinda in the background and people here don’t sense the danger of a housing bubble.

If we break $505 set in 2007, there will be a lot of bubble talk in this city. We shall see in 3 weeks time…tick toc tick toc…

#133 Island renters on 05.08.12 at 12:26 am

No to port Alberni, nanaimo, and Sooke, unless you heart Walmart, love your truck, award yourself points for hitting pedestrians, and smoke 2packs a day. My advice is to rent in Squamish, Nelson, or Victoria. If it doesn’t work out you can move on. Yet another benefit to renting.

#134 P F Murphy on 05.08.12 at 12:28 am

Wow, so many people from BC. They must think you’re the little white ball about to drop into the right date slot for the housing crash on a roulette wheel. Hey how about St. John’s? Largest university east of McGill, lowest tuition next to Quebec, but bring your own job. Exciting as heck, especially since Harper closed the Marine Search and Rescue Centre. Fall in anywhere and they’ll try to rescue from over 900 kms away in Halifax if they have a helicopter that’s not under repair or off somewhere in Nova Scotia doing training.

#135 Rubbie on 05.08.12 at 12:36 am

Wolfville, NS or Sackville, NB – both university towns with solid values and scenery. Foggy had it right.

#136 Frank on 05.08.12 at 12:37 am

aka DA….must stand for Denial Addict!

Vancouver compared to London & Paris…..dude, put down the B.C. bud!!!!

#137 Van grrl on 05.08.12 at 12:38 am

You had me stumped at “good weather”.
Did this guy not grow up in Canada??

Raise the kiddies in Costa Rica!

#138 Freedom First on 05.08.12 at 12:39 am


“redneck” has nothing to do with race. the term redneck is an attitude…….geeeez……where the hell have you been?

#139 Dan in Victoria on 05.08.12 at 12:40 am

Hi Vlad
Missed your post yesterday.
Where’s it falling off ?
Is it near the bottom corners of the windows?
Or is it out in the middle of the flat wall?

#140 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 05.08.12 at 12:49 am

Adrian — rent in Costa Rica, and holiday in Canada.
#143 Form Man on 05.07.12 at 8:24 pm — Thanks for answering. Appreciate it!

#146 disciple on 05.07.12 at 8:55 pm — Panetta – Madoff have worked miracles in screwing peoples’ lives up. A nice, long stint in the loonie bin for him would be good for humanity. Cheers!
Welcome to the Global Control Matrix! Obummer in one pic; Everything you need to know from a Cdn. site; <a href=""US Consumer Borrowing Soars; Wells Fargo Look (eventually) for another Fannie – Freddie bailout scenario; Ex-CFO in jail sues for big bux; Architects in Limbo; Which of these two is correct? Spain Bailing out banks (sound familiar?); Stuffed Moussaka; Ron Paul Goes with #3 ken s’ post; Aversion to Truth; Biting The Bullet Pink Slime isn’t the greatest advertising slogan to date; Cameron has months left to fix the economy, or Limeyland is auctioned off;

Mugabe and Zimbabwe A update; Stress- and Debt-free Graduation; Global Reality Check Surplus of labor, shortage of jobs. Economic recovery? The Economy or Fukushima Which blows first? Russia and Norway Pissing the west off; Why no arrests of Wall St. crooks? Bear Paradox of 2012.
Coconut Shrimp Pizza from SKorea, and nine more weird pizzas; World Web War One and the preparations; Dubai Underwater hotel; Cameron “Voters booted out Sarkozy and his EU-pleasing, penny-pinching ways in favour of socialist Francois Hollande and his anti-austerity policies.”; Fast Car; BP and GoM Govt. hid pix; Natural and other medicinal stuff; Terminated The human race is being discontinued due to faulty models!
disciple — Multiple personality disorder?

#141 Carpe Diem on 05.08.12 at 12:50 am

Ottawa … it’s rated #1 by money sense. In the next couple years demographics + Harper’s government will have plenty of folks selling homes. You can get homes for rent for not much in this city + acreages as well.

Having some land 20-30 minutes from the core is easy to find if you want to live in a “village” within ottawa.

Ottawa/Gatineau have 4 universities and number of colleges.

Winters are cold and sunny – fun for skiing and snowshoeing.

Spring to Fall are awesome for hiking, biking.

Ottawa river is a nice overnight sailing trip.

Schools have high ratings …

I am biased on West Ottawa (Kanata, Carp) but other places are great too.

Best place in Canada – Ottawa.

#142 Makavelli on 05.08.12 at 12:51 am

It’s doing what it was designed to do, and as I wrote when the index was adopted by several boards. This is intended to mask current market changes. — Garth

Everyone lies. Just be smart enough to see the real truth. All blog dogs here know what’s up and we the minority will watch the majority suffer in pain.

#143 Love This Blog! on 05.08.12 at 12:53 am

Garth, I goott say how nice it is to finally see the crash coming, and to see you vindicated. I’ve followed you for a couple years, as much for your writing style as the content.
I would reccomend the Town I am in, but ht elocals haven’t heard of the crash….YET…and to be honest?? We IS rednecks.
Love the blog man.

#144 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 12:55 am

From #40 re Okanagan RE Stats

”My stats were for SFHs, straight from the real estate board.” — Garth

Used to defend the integrity of your stats.

From #62

” It’s (HPI; Home Price Index)doing what it was designed to do, and as I wrote when the index was adopted by several boards. This is intended to mask current market changes.” — Garth

Used to ridicule the integrity of CREA stats.

Hmmmm. Need I go there?

#145 Vitrify13 on 05.08.12 at 1:01 am

come to cold lake! it’s awesome here especially with occasional fighter jets flying overhead :)

#146 Debtfree on 05.08.12 at 1:03 am

Joeys only . Man you really know how to hurt a guy. Da wants moxies . I want Joeys where the food is hot and the girls are real . Btw please don’t tell Adrian where we live Tia.

#147 TRT on 05.08.12 at 1:03 am


I think the new Cactus Club overlooking Mt. Baker in Abbotsford have by far the sexiest waitresses!!

#148 Garths Waitress on 05.08.12 at 1:10 am

…and you’re a cheaper tipper too. And so are your buddies F and C

I don’t want a case of signed books, and quit plugging the toilet.

#149 gtrz4peace on 05.08.12 at 1:11 am

#70 Canadian Abroad. Hmmm. And you get healthcare how? The only way to get any healthcare in the US, let alone decent healthcare, is if your employer provides benefits, or you have never had anything that can be considered a “pre-existing condition.” Unfortunately this leaves out any self-employed people who have ever had a health issue. Lose your job due to a downsize? No more healthcare. I worked in the US insurance industry, would not go back to that for profit pirate system as the only option. It’s fine when you have employer coverage but look out when you are on your own. We know.

#150 Soylent Green is People on 05.08.12 at 1:12 am

Why on earth would you want to bring your children to canada just as harper is building those new super prisons. He will need customers for them, after the mentally sick, the homeless and the drug addicts, then he will come for your kids.

Canada has no democracynright now, run for your freaking lives.


#151 Soylent Green is People on 05.08.12 at 1:13 am

P.s. bowmanville, ontario is nice


#152 Kits on 05.08.12 at 1:20 am


Just a quick comment on your note to Tim. I think he is merely stating a fact. I have lived in Vancouver since 1993. The Asian community has grown remarkably si
nce I arrived. This is not good or bad, just a fact. Two weeks ago, on a Friday at 6 pm, I walked the length of the Pacific Centre Mall and 80% of the people in the mall were Asian. I was walking to get my hair cut. My stylist is Asian. I told him about my stroll through the mall and he spent 30 minutes telling me about his parents and their complaints about the mainland Chinese invasion. You do not need to be Caucasian to be prejudiced.


#153 kilby on 05.08.12 at 1:22 am

#6 Goody Niosi on 05.07.12 at 9:19 pm
Nanaimo, Duncan or Courtenay on Vancouver Island

Three very different places, Nanaimo is a major hub with all the big box stores, Courtenay a bit rough around the edges (high taxes) Duncan… Duncan. Better do a road trip.

#154 Sue on 05.08.12 at 1:38 am

I concur with #2 Dorothy. Armstrong is a lovely small historic town, conveniently close to all amenities. Farmland surround the area, so there’s easy access to organically grown food. You’re forty minutes from Silver Star resort and some of the best cross country and downhill skiing, and even closer to Okanagan and Kalamalka lakes.

I was at your talk in Kelowna two years ago, Garth, and learned a great deal. When are you coming back?

I still wish you wouldn’t use the word “pathetic” at such frequent intervals. You’re a better writer than that (how’s that for a backhanded compliment?).

#155 Sue on 05.08.12 at 1:40 am

Oh, and Dave2 @#37, no, but you *should* rent Fido, with Carrie Ann Moss. Was filmed here! A hoot!

#156 Ben on 05.08.12 at 1:43 am

I’m from Edmonton and now in Dallas. It’s clean, warm to hot, and dirt friggen cheap.

New 2,200 sq ft home on a 1/4 acre size lot
Asking $176,000

#157 truth hammer on 05.08.12 at 2:23 am

Yo ….. Adrian……fugget about it. There is no such idyll village of enlightened cloud dwellers as you seek anywhere in Canada… were either delusional when you left or have developed amnesia while you’ve been away. The social socio-cultural morass has always been trogla-delic and it seems to get constantly worse. A well traveled actor friend recently brought up in conversation as to how miserable everyone seems to be in Canada compared to …anywhere else he’s been. ( the lucky bugger travels non stop) . He went on to say how jealous of each others or anyones success we were and how covetous for substitutes we have become….new cars amking larger personalities and less apparent bald loneliness. Over all , I had to agree.

Look at the facts…..the weather is crap 11 months of the year…taxation is egregious and forces you to borrow every month to meet expenses…..cost of living beggars the average person……the lies of the media create a bizarre paraodox where the ugly reality of poverty undermines the advertised vision of wealth….there is no fashion… culture…no theater…no cafe culture… cool neighborhoods to hang out……no art scene….no museums of note… music….no venues……it’s just booze booze booze and the illusion that if you drink enough you can live vicariously through a set of overpriced hockey tickets and watch ‘your’ team lose again…..and thats what you hear in every Canadian city….bitch bitch bitch…..people don’t live in Canada …they surround themselves with temporary blankets of crap and try to rent a personality until the repo man comes by with a reality check.

And don’t visit Grandma …she’s starving in a cold basement after the ZIRP stole he grocery money.

So Adrian…give Aca Nada ( meaning ‘here is nothing……the real translation of what was written on Amerigo’s map….and the ‘village’ as the liberals would have you think) aka Canada a wide berth if you’re thinking about relocating somewhere. The country has become a politically correct refugee camp that only benefits the uber wealthy class of civil servants that has driven a stake through the heart of our democracy….but will ride off into the sunset with fat payouts and outrageous pensions to live forever on the backs of the poor.

If you were a desperate refugee from one of the worlds many crapholes you might call Canada’s welfare state a paradise….but the rest of us will tell you a very differant story.

You can still get a Canadian education through distance education… wife and I homeschooled our son through to university entrance and he graduated with honours. I did everything I could to convince him to become a civil servant and get on the one and only perpetual gravy train allowed under our system of ‘socialists only’ benefit…but he refused and has gone into busy-ness for himself………he said he had his pride……A life away from Canada kept his head clear apparently.

#158 Ben on 05.08.12 at 2:25 am

If that’s a little to far out in the burbs, don’t worry.

It’s closer in and cheaper yet
Asking $129,000

#159 A Fan in Van on 05.08.12 at 2:32 am

Man, Canadian Abroad (#70). You must have really had your head up your ass if a move to the states actually helped you learn something about global politics. I’ve got plenty of American friends (I work exclusively for American clients) and travel to Seattle regularly, and with very few exceptions, I am better informed about American politics than my Yankee friends. And what they know about Canadian/Europen politics is almost embarrassing.

#160 A Fan in Van on 05.08.12 at 2:34 am

Correction: not ‘almost embarrassing’. Just ’embarrassing’, full stop.

#161 CalgaryBoy on 05.08.12 at 2:35 am

Vanilla Ice?

#162 truth hammer on 05.08.12 at 2:37 am

And BTW…why are the Okanogan prices getting hit so hard……from what I hear the three towns there are top heavy with several drug dealing biker gangs ….a mass of civil servants….the swollen members rap band…..and thousands of people with grow ops in the side rooms and basements…an one of the richest Indian bands in the country…’d think from that demographic the place would be awash with free cash? What gives….no HAM?

#163 Ben on 05.08.12 at 2:52 am

Did I forget to tell you I make more money down here?

Did I forget to tell you EVERYTHING is cheaper?

Do you see many U.S. licence plates up there anymore for a vacation?


It’s to stupid expensive !!

#164 BarefootNomad on 05.08.12 at 3:01 am

#28 nocte_volens on 05.07.12 at 9:45 pm
“Kamloops is a nice city, 88,000 people, university, but with home prices near 5X income, it will likely remain overpriced for a few years yet.”

Adrian, I’ve lived in Kamloops for the last year, and I have to vouch it’s a nice city to live in. People are very unguarded, and truly friendly and helpful. There are literally dozens of small lakes within 30 minutes, all good for fishing, paddle boarding, hikes, and the like. Harper Mountain (smaller local ski hill) is 15 min away, and Sun Peaks is 30 min. There are a few rednecks, but you’llfind them anywhere. Check out the downtown area – along Victoria St – some great little independent restaurants.

One big word of caution though, a mining company is planning a large open pit mine in Kamloops’ Southwest. If it goes through, the quality of life could drop like a stone. We’re in the same position as you, and could live anywhere. Because of the mine, we’re looking into Vernon, Squamish, and somewhere around Nanaimio.

We’ve travelled a lot also (SE Asia, Costa Rica, Mexico), and have 2kids (3 and 6) so we may have a similar take.

#165 betamax on 05.08.12 at 3:26 am

Fredericton NB.

Nelson BC, but the prices are still too high.

Those are the only two I can think of from personal experience that meet all criteria, and I’ve been coast to coast a couple of times (by motorbike; I highly recommend it if you want to really see Canada).

#166 betamax on 05.08.12 at 3:44 am

#70 Canadian Abroad: “Living here now State side in Washington state in Seattle and…Our experience has been vastly superior to that of when we lived in Vancouver and Quebec.”

I just visited Seattle and have to agree. The people were very friendly, the prices are reasonable for everything from housing to food & gas, taxes are less, and the Pike Place Market puts Granville Island to shame.

#102 Jim Lahey: “the land of guns and drug dealers and gator hunters”

You have a point re. gun-related violence and greater economic disparity, but Canada certainly has its share of drug dealers and redneck hunters. Your absurd prejudices only serve to reaffirm Canadian Abroad’s claim about Canadian jingoism and willful ignorance.

#167 Michelle on 05.08.12 at 4:02 am

@#90- Big Al (the original).

Big Al, you made me laugh! I have to say, I pretty much agree with your choices… and your assessment of Ottawa. If you mentioned Toronto there, people would usually say “ack! Toronto!” and then they’d spit on the side-walk :)

#168 I'm stupid on 05.08.12 at 5:29 am

Congratulations to all the greater fools, you’ve helped chmc make Bloomberg.

#169 Sam on 05.08.12 at 6:02 am

Belleville Ontario is a great place….
clean air, clean water, good family life, neighbourhood kids with great family values, quiet, Loyalist College (better value and education than the other over rated establishments). Great employment opportunities and commercial growth.

#170 PS from Ottawa on 05.08.12 at 6:04 am

Ottawa – slam dunk

#171 Keeping the Faith on 05.08.12 at 6:08 am

#73 Dave … woeeee, hold on Dave. I never said I’m from Dryden, just endorsing the town. It’s a nice place … let’s not get crazy! ;-)

#172 johnny d on 05.08.12 at 6:21 am

Over 100 entries and only one person even mentioned Saskatchewan… and that was to tell people NOT to move here. This is Saskaboom we’re talking about here. Jobs Jobs Jobs!!! Money Money Money!!! Credit Credit Credit!!! Everyone here drives $70,000 dollar trucks and has $500,000 houses and they reno them whenever the newest trendy color of granite counter top comes out. Oh and Garth, the balls we hang on our Silverados are the classy brushed stainless steel ones, just like the newest best kitchen taps that are in style this week. Things will always be great here and there is no threat of it ever slowing down. Our 900,000 carpenters, dry wallers, plumbers, electricians, roofers and framers will always have work because home building is our new economy (besides some oil and potash). It IS different here. So just like all the commercials I see on television promoting how great it is to live here say… “Move to Saskatchewan.” We need some more homebuilders.

#173 David B on 05.08.12 at 6:33 am

Over to you, blog dogs. A nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values. And no knuckle-draggers or Silverados with balls.

Does it exist?

YES! Annapolis Valley Nova Scotia …….. from Digby to Windsor along the south mountain shore …… Canada’s if not the world’s best kept secret.

#174 John on 05.08.12 at 6:50 am

Marco wrote:

“If that is not possible, then be a well invested lifelong renter, much like most of Europe has done for centuries (people are not broke there, governments are – try carry the lowest debt to income ratios compared to North America), and you will be liquid and solvent enough to be able to enjoy life in this world once your kids have grown up and moved on.”


I read your interpretation of reality and found it to be based mostly on the past, and unplugged from what’s going on now.

Canada “enjoyed” the post-war run-up of it’s economy due to timing and circumstance. We know this, in part, from it’s brazen economic-driven “multi-culturalism” policies. And then claiming “tolerance” and a “special character” as a reason for it.

In Canada it’s common for a person to live 40 years in a house and not know the name of his neighbour 4 houses over. This lack of human and cultural integration causes horror-show “communities” like Mississauga to exist. Many people there might write what you have written, riding a crest of world circumstance that has nothing whatever to do with culture, character or a collective “Canadian” will. If it did, integration would be the base of those values.

Do you know your neighbours? If you do, are you aware that you are the absolute exception in a 20 block radius of your house. So what do your ideas mean in that context. Your “kids” in the fantasy world you’ve written about might be ( if lucky) distanced from the mental construct you’ve built, one would hope.

If not? Well…they might be “buying houses” or “investing” in the collapsing ponzi, where governments are broke, but people ( and communities) are fine. And the ponzi-derivatives scheme isn’t going to touch them…nor is it any kind of moral imperative to look into what it is about.

What’s amazing to me is that 15 years ago, I could read your belief system and I wouldn’t have noticed how delusional and self-righteous it is. Now? Every single idea and it’s false assumption jumped of the page.

#175 Stephen on 05.08.12 at 7:01 am

Adrian should check out Fredericton, NB. It matches his wish list perfectly. Seriously! Well, except for the part about good weather. But the words “good weather” and “Canada” don’t belong in the same sentence anyway.

#176 Guan-Di on 05.08.12 at 7:09 am

#22 Pete, give it up for Lennox-Vegas!

#177 The real Kip on 05.08.12 at 7:11 am

“Over to you, blog dogs. A nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values. And no knuckle-draggers or Silverados with balls.”

Windsor, hands down!

#178 S-J on 05.08.12 at 7:14 am


If you would like to be by the ocean, try Mahone Bay on the South Shore of Nova Scotia. We just bought a waterfront home with its own dock and cottage just outside the town for $345,000. It’s a beautiful town with friendly people and a great school called Bayview. Lots of lovely beaches and islands to explore by boat and Halifax is about a one hour drive. The winters here aren’t too bad either.

#179 Dave on 05.08.12 at 7:16 am

#172 Keeping the Faith – My apologies, I don’t hear too many people not from here singing its praises! It is a great down though I do think that we are going through our own little mini-bubble hear as of late due to renewed interest in mining close by.

#180 Notsofoggy on 05.08.12 at 7:22 am

Nova Scotia…. of course….. Wolfville or Lunenburg – both have amazing scenery – one side is scholarly and the other artsy…

#181 Onemorething on 05.08.12 at 7:36 am

15 years ago it was Ottawa!

Growing up in TO, and bouncing with the Bay Street boyz I woke up one day and moved to Ottawa.

From Feds to High Tech back to Feds I have no idea what it is like now, too much residual from 2001!

Been in Asia for 12 years now and when back in Canada it just will never have the appeal it once had for me. Boring, calculated, taxed and schooling/health care has lost its way.

So no, cant help you!

#182 md on 05.08.12 at 7:42 am

I would say Guelph would be right for him

#183 yorel on 05.08.12 at 7:47 am

#3 ken s
Read the book. The point about Black Swans is you don’t see them coming.

#184 Dr. WAYNE on 05.08.12 at 7:56 am

Parksville on Vancouver Is. … great place. But … you may have a problem finding a doctor of your own to check out your hemorrhoids.

#185 jerry on 05.08.12 at 7:58 am

Starting in Newfoundland you could move to Blow Me Down, then on to Dildo, then over to Pick Eyes and then finish off at Come By Chance or if you want something dependable move to Climax Saskatchewan.

#186 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 8:01 am

Wow, I am surprised at all the condemnation of Kelowna. Yet so many save all year just to vacation here in the summer?

“I think what we need is a small town, with some character and good family life, that offers most of the things you’d need from a town including some academic life, colleges, that has some good scenery around, is not too polluted and is not prohibitive to buy some property (just outside it) in the next year or so. And maybe that the weather is not too bad. And maybe not too many rednecks either. We are open to pretty much all of Canada. Would you recommend me some places to check out this summer?” – Adrian

Nope, that doesn’t sound like Kelowna at all.

I see my ”ghost writer” comment either struck a nerve or… maybe, it didn’t reach the moderator?

#187 Fred on 05.08.12 at 8:01 am

Well, Fredericton NB ain’t too bad all things considered. House prices are quite reasonable and tend to be stable, there are decent schools, university town, government town, some industry (overweight in I.T.). If you don’t like city property taxes you can find a place out of town but still just 15 min from downtown. The Bay (of Fundy not the shopping experience) is an hour away.

And apparently Atlantic Canadians are happier and have sex more often than Canadians further west :)

#188 LH on 05.08.12 at 8:06 am

Smoking Man

The people’s hero
Remicade cures AS
And we all know you can afford it ;)

Your faithful disciple,


#189 bigrider on 05.08.12 at 8:10 am

#68 Garth replys to AKA DA regarding comparisons on Vancouver to New York.

That really is absurd.

As equally absurd as comparing T.O to New York as is much the talk around the GTA.

What I would like to know is why the likes of Donald Trump would continue to do so while snickering behind all our backs.

#190 CTO on 05.08.12 at 8:11 am

Barrie, Parry Sound (north of T.O)

The fact is, most of the small towns mentioned have everything a modern family needs, everything!
New schools, hospitals, banking, shopping, etc…
Even the employment rate tends to be better.
Oh! and the most important thing? your mortgage is 1/2 of what you would pay in the City. That’s half your cost of living right there alone.
Most city people are either totally ignorant of this or don’t want to accept this fact.

#191 Oshawa or Hamilton on 05.08.12 at 8:22 am

The city that MOTOvates Canada:


#192 KW Man on 05.08.12 at 8:29 am

$1.2 Million Condo in Kitchener-Waterloo

First I thought it was for the whole building, but read it its only 1 unit.

#193 Arse on 05.08.12 at 8:29 am

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts was 244,900 units in April, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). This is up from 214,800 units in March.

“Most of the increase was in the multiples segment. The increase in this segment is partly a reflection of the high level of pre-sales in large multi-unit projects since 2011, which is in line with job gains over the last year,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. “Looking at single-detached homes, 67,700 such units were started across Canada in April, a rate which is consistent with that of the recent past,” added Laberge.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased by 18.0 per cent to 226,200 units in April. Urban single starts increased modestly by 0.6 per cent in April to 67,700 units. Meanwhile, multiple urban starts increased by 27.4 per cent to 158,500 units.

April’s seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased by 56.5 per cent in Québec, by 12.2 per cent in Ontario, by 6.3 per cent in the Prairies and British Columbia, and by 2.6 per cent in Atlantic Canada. In each region, the increase was mainly due to multiple starts, particularly in Québec and Ontario. Meanwhile, single-detached starts decreased in April in all regions, with the exception of Ontario (+7.9 per cent).

#194 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 8:35 am

#187 DA

one of the requirements for the ideal small town to raise a family was affordable housing prices. That rules Kelowna out.
On the topic of Kelowna, I notice you are speechless after I exposed your nonsense regarding “The Ponds’. CMHC housing starts out this morning show Kelowna starts are down a whopping 51% for May 2012 compared to May 2011. Your lipstick is fading DA…….

#195 Mapleton on 05.08.12 at 8:38 am

Try Drayton, ON. Small town, not far from Waterloo and Kitchener.

#196 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 8:53 am

clarification: CMHC report is dated May, but refers to April starts……..

#197 Lai on 05.08.12 at 9:15 am

How about London, Ontario?

Housing is affordable, great University town (Western), large enough to get whatever you want, with a small town feel. Also a short drive to Toronto or the U.S.

#198 Dave on 05.08.12 at 9:21 am

Antigonish is exactly what the man is looking for.

Small town – less than 15,000

Academics: St. FX

Beaches, beautiful scenery. And property – potentially waterfront – just outside town.

Nice people.

My criteria are similar, and Antigonish is my choice.

#199 Joey on 05.08.12 at 9:21 am

Sorry i’ve missed what HAM stands for on this blog. Can someone please explain? thanks

#200 Throwstone on 05.08.12 at 9:34 am


Nice little bit on rapid credit expansion, CPI vs RPI indexing and its effect on the economy.

I wonder which index Jim “F” flaherty uses…

It starts around the 40:00 minute mark….

That is all…continue on……

#201 Canadian Abroad on 05.08.12 at 9:36 am

Jim Lahey – you just proved my point. Your statistics are inaccurate and you are cherry picking the worst of the worst statistics. If you stepped back and looked at it objectively and assumed the same behavior for Canada you would find the same bullsh*t. Careful because your willful ignorance is showing.

#202 Islander on 05.08.12 at 9:37 am

Definitely NOT SaltSpring Island:

No hockey team…(no rink) We have to go to Vancouver to riot.

Not one traffic light, except the pedestrian crossing.

The police have not made a serious arrest in years.

We can not even decide on the name, Salt Spring Vs Saltspring.

There are at least five divergent community groups for every resident.

3 ferry terminals…Ridiculous.

No paved driveways allowed because they are used by the beach crows to smash their clam shells.

Weeds, I tell yer, great big tall ones that litter the ground with leaves, and little small ones that get so many flowers you can’t mow the lawn. The residents even grow some of the smaller ones.

You have to pay to get here; Visitors are tolerated, stripped of extra cash and given (yes given) free passage back to the main island.

Enough already, I could go on all day but today it is my turn to patrol the mountains.

#203 angela on 05.08.12 at 9:38 am

Kingston is ever-evolving and offers many cultural/music events. You can live outside the city and get the best of both worlds.

#204 Canadian Abroad on 05.08.12 at 9:39 am

gtrz4peace, you also prove my point. There are many ways to get healthcare here in the U.S. It is not only provided through an employer. Do some research and get back to us. You could bing it and find out in seconds the various ways. The ignorance of my fellow Canadians is embarrassing.

#205 Jim on 05.08.12 at 9:46 am

““redneck” has nothing to do with race. the term redneck is an attitude…….geeeez……where the hell have you been?”

Actually, the term is inherently tied to race.

“redneck” is one of the American terms that arose in the deep south, denoting white slaves (indentured servants). It is a derogatory term. Many escaped white slaves fled inland to escape colonial landowners, and the term ‘redneck’ stuck. (another contemporaneous term is ‘red legs’, since white laborers would sustain sunburns on their calves).

There are several books detailing this etymology, but I don’t remember their titles offhand.

The term ‘redneck’ should be avoided, as its use is derogatory. We don’t call black people ‘negroes’ anymore, since it they consider it offensive. Same here.

#206 Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 9:48 am

#145 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 12:55 am
From #40 re Okanagan RE Stats

”My stats were for SFHs, straight from the real estate board.” — Garth

Used to defend the integrity of your stats.

From #62

” It’s (HPI; Home Price Index)doing what it was designed to do, and as I wrote when the index was adopted by several boards. This is intended to mask current market changes.” — Garth

Used to ridicule the integrity of CREA stats.

Hmmmm. Need I go there?
You are more than a little obvious. Apples and oranges do not make accurate direct comparisions. A derived metric is much different than raw data. If a derived metric masks a tend and that metric replaced another metric that did not mask said trend then there is something not quite right. I am sure you understand there are a dwindling number of people you are fooling. I remember when I was like 10 years old I told a story that was not exactly true (I said my brother bit a dogs ear because the dog bit him, everybody howled with laughter. In fact my brother just chased after the dog but he couldn’t catch it). I told and retold the embellished story so many times that when I was like 15 I had to think hard about the truth of the story. Any how at that moment I remembered one of my Uncles saying to me previously that it was okay to lie sometimes just do not lie to yourself. I just hope you know the difference between the half truths and omissions and the facts.

#207 bigrider on 05.08.12 at 9:49 am

You can go from Beijing to Shanghai, 1300km’s, on trains that go up too 300kms an hour (soon to be 500km), in full luxury, multiple tracks and..

Toronto and Vancouver are “world class cities” ? what with the 20km of 50 year old + train stations from the jam packed parking lot at Finch to the lakeshore ??

Really ???

World class…I would be surprised if Vancouverites and Torontonians aren’t picking up and eating road kill to subsize their foolishly oppressive mortgages on over inflated, soon to be Detroit, crack shacks.

#208 DaleCowtown on 05.08.12 at 9:49 am

I have to say, you’ve hit the nail on the head Garth, check out this chart which proves your point.
–Real Estate agents, take note:

#209 DaleCowtown on 05.08.12 at 9:50 am

oops, wrong link, try this:

#210 Anon on 05.08.12 at 9:58 am

“Does it exist?”
Sure it does: Kuujjuaq, QC.

#211 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 9:59 am

#194Form Man on 05.08.12 at 8:35 am
#187 DA

one of the requirements for the ideal small town to raise a family was affordable housing prices. That rules Kelowna out.
On the topic of Kelowna, I notice you are speechless after I exposed your nonsense regarding “The Ponds’. CMHC housing starts out this morning show Kelowna starts are down a whopping 51% for May 2012 compared to May 2011. Your lipstick is fading DA…….

Not at all Form Man. Truth is I am quite surprised at the success The Ponds is enjoying. You do realize that Callahan has acquired the commercial site there don’t you? I think that is a substantial infusion and vote of confidence. On West Harbour; I find Troika a bit odd in all that they do but somehow they seem to pull it through – The apparent success of Yaletown next to the city dump still baffles me.

Anyway you believe what you want to believe and I will what I want to. Mine positive outlook is working for me and your negativity is, apparently by all your claim, working for you. To each their own.

I have not yet seen the CMHC report for April but based on what your telling me I’m really not interested. They have their own agenda – wouldn’t you agree. I guess whether you would or not depends on the point you are trying to make. Must be nice to pick and choose the facts which suit you best and ignore the rest. Of course I’m sure you would accuse me of much the same but you would be wrong – my facts are those applicable to here and now not something your crystal ball tells you or you and your wifes weekly “Sunday Gloom and Doom Tour of Kelowna” looking for carnage and developers you hope might be doing worse than you. They aren’t. Might have something to do with their positive attitude.

You hate it so much here in Kelowna… LEAVE! We don’t need you… hell we don’t want you. Go on, git, shoo.

#212 Mississaugan on 05.08.12 at 10:03 am

Mississauga, ON

#213 Curley Que on 05.08.12 at 10:03 am

Hey I have to agree with Monster Cookie and Canadian Abroad because my family just visited Western Canada for a ten day vacation, our focus being Vancouver. We were not impressed at all and dare I say we were disappointed. The only thing Vancouver does better than Seattle is marketing itself. This is evidenced as Seattle really has no campaign going on for itself but somehow it still manages to come out the clear winner. We stayed five nights in Vancouver. We were ready to leave by the third evening. What’s the big deal with that place anyway? Drug users and dealers were everywhere and the snobbery was disgusting. When we walked around the downtown area it felt very strange because there would be a tower and then on either side would be vacant lots where the drugsters would lurk. My husband recommended we head South to Seattle to check it out because neither one of us had been before. So we did. Let me tell you there is no comparison between Vancouver and Seattle. None. Seattle was such a different experience. People were buttoned down to go to work in a real financial district, the fresh food was excellent and fairly affordable, the people were pleasant and kind, the fashion was interesting to say the least, Pike’s Market puts Granville Island to shame, and the city was abuzz in literally every neighbourhood we drove through. The city itself is a marvel because there is no way you could simply recreate what Seattle has going on for it. It is decidedly something that would have to naturally happen over time, striking a delicate balance between progressiveness and modernism but keeping its local charm and flavours. Vancouver just felt like a city under quarantine being scrubbed and homogenized and trying very hard to be bigger than it really is almost as if it was trying very hard to be like Seattle but wasn’t making the grade. We agree that Vancouver is a regional city at best, especially after seeing Seattle. And we stumbled upon two other Canadian couples who were traveling together while we were visiting their Sculpture Park. We told them what we thought of Seattle compared to Vancouver and amazingly both couples agreed with us! They said they felt like they were cheating just to admit that Seattle is a much nicer city.

#214 SKRenter on 05.08.12 at 10:09 am

Regina, SK

Growing City, Affordable Housing, Great Weather and Best of All, No Rednecks!!!!!!!

Wow, i can’t even write that without throwing up a little in my mouth…

#215 Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 10:10 am

#114 Phil on 05.07.12 at 11:53 pm

It’s completely disingenuous to say HAM, including asian immigration has not been the PRIMARY reason why Vancouver real estate has increased dramatically
Your HAM was but a small portion of the total dollars that went into this bubble. Nothing is going to stop what is happening. Bubbles ALWAYS crash. Nothing will stop this. Not HAM, interest rates, regulations, not anything. Even if money became free there would come a point at which people would stop buying. Free money would just get us there faster (unless there was free money available for everything of course). It is bubble mechanics pure and simple. When the bubble has consumed so much that daily goods are beyond reach inflation of the bubble stops. Whether it is the I feel rich effect of having a house that is increasing in value and thus other goods are sold at higher and higher prices to richer and richer people or I feel poor because the bubble asset consumes too much of my income and less is spent elsewhere thus less growth and ensuing contractions of jobs and incomes, people reach a point at which the bubble asset has consumed all resources and collapse follows. The harvesting of gains must be continuous in a bubble. As soon as the point at which expansion of prices or sales or both is reached a crash follows. Holding on as if it is a normal cycle generally does not work out well as bubbles are not normal cycles and are defined by their crashes that follow the topping of a bubble. I just put a ton of free money into this bubble asset and there are fewer and fewer opportunities to harvest gains I have realized and wait now the asset is starting to decrease in value, where’s the door? CRASH.

#216 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 10:16 am

#212 DA

I quite enjoy living in Kelowna. I also enjoy exposing falsehoods and bringing a little sanity to the insane. It is deluded folks such as yourself that Kelowna would be better off without……..

#217 daystar on 05.08.12 at 10:17 am

140 Dan in Victoria on 05.08.12 at 12:40 am

Someone named “Boomer” mentioned Vlad’s name among others and my own comments as “irrelevant” because they weren’t about real estate. What a controlling dork, kind of like expecting news papers to contain nothing but news. The names Boomer mentioned have been around a long time, true regulars who, upon hearing close to every theme rehashed over and over add (most of them) some harmless extra texture to it. Its not like content and diversity isn’t needed to make a blog work but boomer didn’t see it that way, feelings got hurt and you know what happens next. :)

Take care, bud.

#218 wendi1 on 05.08.12 at 10:30 am

I would have to rule out NB in general, because of the health care problems (and the redneck population). Also, while the scenery is so beautiful it will break your heart, the weather is so foul that the locals don’t even complain about it anymore.

If you are priced out of the west coast (or dislike earthquakes), I would try southern Ontario – Port Hope, Cambridge, London, Hamilton.

#219 Ben on 05.08.12 at 10:34 am

Hey GOLD bugs !!

How’s that gold doing today?


#220 bill on 05.08.12 at 10:35 am

spences bridge
nothing there. no cell service , no store to speak of,
unit trains every 20 minutes or so depending,
a small bar, free range wild sheep and theres gold in the gravel bars in the thompson…. really hot in the summer and freezing in the winter…
and cheap. no university close by.

#221 Daisy Mae on 05.08.12 at 10:37 am

#109 John G. Young — “redneck is a blatant racial slur against white people.”

I think it’s a slur against stupid people.


Over the years, it has come to include bigots (intolerance) and racists (discrimination).

#222 John on 05.08.12 at 10:39 am

Brockville, Ontario

#223 Doug in London on 05.08.12 at 10:43 am

London, Ontario, as some of you have mentioned is a good mid size city with plenty of amenities and prices that aren’t outrageous. Another recommendation is North Bay, Ontario. If you don’t mind colder winter weather than southern Ontario and like being surrounded by the great outdoors and nice scenery, North Bay might be just what you’re looking for.

#224 yanz on 05.08.12 at 10:44 am

I would highly recommend Prince George, Prince Rupert, or Attawapiskat

#225 Mr. Lahey, Sunnyvale Trailer Park Supervisor on 05.08.12 at 10:47 am

#202 Canadian Abroad

I will grant that I over generalized however my statistics are not wrong. Yes, there are many wonderful Americans and I don’t want to come across as a nationalistic, xenophobic Canadian. That honour lies with Ricky and Cyrus but I digress (I speak in character when I mention Ricky and Cyrus. Viewers of Trailer Park Boys will understand). America leads the world in murders by gunshot. No other country, except one engaged in a civil war or war with a neighbouring country even comes remotely close to the US. This is not a made up statistic. Detroit does have abandoned homes being sold for a $1000. 50 million Americans do live on food stamps. Americans are embarrassing themselves by showing reality shows of southerners speaking English like it was not their first language. Further I went to school in LA during the mid 80s. I never, never, ever went to a bank machine at night. To boot I lived in an upscale area of million dollar homes (Pasadena). Several students in my dorm had guns held to their backs after they inserted their bank card in the ATM. I was frightened silly in Florida when I went into a sporting goods store and watched as a sales clerk demonstrated about a half dozen handguns to a potential client. A gun case running about 20 feet was filled with every imaginable gun you could ask for. In Louisiana, you do not even need a permit to own a gun (there may be other states). Jim Kunstler has some interesting observations about his own country. I think Michael Moore has a few things to say about the gun culture as well. Bowling for Columbine for starters…

#226 Daisy Mae on 05.08.12 at 10:49 am

I wouldn’t recommend Peachland, BC. Population just over 5000.

It is picturesque. But taxes are high — equivalent to Kelowna — amenities almost non-existent. And every phone call into Peachland is ‘long distance’.

#227 MrSmartPants on 05.08.12 at 10:50 am

Here it is… All these cities have a university, small-medium sized communities, nature, good vibe, cultural stuff, employment, great places to raise a family, and “cheaper” real estate.

1. Sherbrooke, QC
2. Guelph, ON
3. Gatineau, QC
4. London, ON
5. Quebec, QC
6. Kitchener-Waterloo, ON
7. Kingston, ON
8. Fredericton, NB
9. Chicoutimi, QC
10. St-John, NF

#228 Makavelli on 05.08.12 at 10:51 am

#200 Joey on 05.08.12 at 9:21 am
Sorry i’ve missed what HAM stands for on this blog. Can someone please explain? thanks

Hot Asian Men

#229 eaglebay - Parksville on 05.08.12 at 10:53 am

#158 truth hammer on 05.08.12 at 2:23 am

Good description of Costa Rica.

#230 eaglebay - Parksville on 05.08.12 at 10:56 am

#160 A Fan in Van on 05.08.12 at 2:32 am

Right on.
Most Americans, outside Seattle, could not point to Canada on a map.

#231 cory on 05.08.12 at 10:59 am

Just outside of Waterloo if they want some land with the house. Although house prices are a little on the high side.

#232 Williston Geo on 05.08.12 at 11:04 am

Dear Europe,

Please get your shit together.

Balanced Portfolio

#233 truth hammer on 05.08.12 at 11:23 am


#234 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 11:23 am

#212 DA

CMHC’s board is made up of developer/realtor friends of Flaherty. Their agenda is to ‘promote home ownership in Canada’……..not only is your lipstick fading, it is turning a sickly green colour……..

#235 kilby on 05.08.12 at 11:25 am

Interesting day on the blog, hundreds of really nice towns mentioned, but one has to spend time anywhere to be sure they are the right place for you.

We sold our home in a really nice little town, Summerland, BC as we wanted to get back to living near the ocean after 25 years in the Okanagan.

The people that bought our home were from Ottawa and wanted to get away from the snow, we wanted to get away because of the valley cloud cover that pervades all winter, many people from the prairies vacation in the summers in the Okanagan when the sun shines all the time only to retire and move and miss the prairie sun all winter………

We thought Courtenay looked perfect until we spent a few days there, walked nearly 20 kilometres one day all over town and noticed that we had never seen so many homes with alarm systems, we even saw two companies installing alarms that day, as well, the towns infrastructure is in rough shape and the taxes are high compared to most other communities on the Island.

Spent some time in Qualicum looking at homes there, prices are OK but nearly all are 25 years old and most need expensive upgrades, taxes are high like Courtenay and although the median age is 61 a trip to the local grocery store or downtown seems more like 81……

Any new home requires a lot of research on the ground, internet searches don’t tell you much.

#236 arctodus on 05.08.12 at 11:25 am

Please consider Kimberley, BC. Plenty of character, outdoor activities and not to mention great weather. Home prices very affordable and the residents are friendly.

Whenever I hear “outdoor activities” I want to vomit….it is code for “not a pot to piss in” but you can have fresh air. Kimberly has NO FUTURE…the mine is closed and if were not for inflated real estate (that started down in 2010 in Kimberly) the place would be a ghost town now.

Nearby Cranbrook is bad enough..check out the violent crime stats sometime…..

There is a reason the blackfoot used to raid the kootenays for slaves….the entire place is a fricking desert with pine trees and no real industry to speak of.

#237 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 11:27 am

#207Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 9:48 am

You are assuming accuracy in the reporting of the raw data and a derived metric which does not mask the trend. Garth is assuming accuracy in the reporting of the raw data and a derived metric purposely constructed to mask the trend both coming from the same entity. Hence there is no integrity to either argument as either the source is trustworthy or it is not.

#217Form Man on 05.08.12 at 10:16 am
#212 DA

I quite enjoy living in Kelowna. I also enjoy exposing falsehoods and bringing a little sanity to the insane. It is deluded folks such as yourself that Kelowna would be better off without……..

It is practically impossible to lead someone to believe that which they do not want to believe. I understand “delusion” and I understand “insanity”. It is reality that I deal in – that which is here and now, not some foggy vision of the future which someone sees in a crystal ball or even that which a statistical historical trend suggests. If you want to call my refusal to believe in such things deluded insanity then so be it.

I know very well what the market it doing right now and I like it. It’s not out there what makes the difference Form Man. There is little you can do about what is out there. It’s what’s between your ears that make the difference – all the difference in the world. To some that may seem an absurd insane notion. Others get it and get by it.

#238 AACI Okanagan on 05.08.12 at 11:29 am

217 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 10:16 am

#212 DA

I quite enjoy living in Kelowna. I also enjoy exposing falsehoods and bringing a little sanity to the insane. It is deluded folks such as yourself that Kelowna would be better off without……..

Why waste your time with DA, it is obvious he has his head in the sand. He made claims last week that people come here and spend money and I called him on it, where are they spending the money because hotels, motels, restaurants, golf courses and the wine industry are all down since 2008. The proof is in the income statements we get to see all the time. Another thing that DA fails to get is that the developers that own subdivisions who are still building spec homes, very few btw, are not trying to make a profit on the construction end, but on the lot it self, a far cry from the boom days. One of the biggest sub-market to get hit since 2008 is the bare land market. I spoke to one developer the other day who said he has to start doing something in fear of losing some of his good people so he is building a spec house. His lots are not moving so he hopes to make his money on his lot and not the construction part of the house.. he hopes that at least this will allow him to ride through this market and keep his key guys working, which as you know is a key factor with any good building company. Trades people always move to where the work is. That has not changed.

#239 AACI Okanagan on 05.08.12 at 11:31 am

oh and I forgot CMHC has a secret agenda but the CREA does not.. spin spin spin

#240 JohnG on 05.08.12 at 11:35 am

All the suggestions sound great…but what business is this guy in? If he needs a job, that will greatly influence the location imo.

I think you can make yourself a nice life in Canada or anywhere where you have personal safety. You always get used to the weather (and people are not generally happier just because they live in better climates (Haidt)). For my busy life, as long as there is *some* arts and culture that’s good enough – I don’t have time for season tickets to the theatre/etc. I attend 1-4 sports events a year (preferably in the box). So that’s not much either.

It depends on what you spend most of your time doing, and find a place that makes that better/easier. Is it just time with kids? Kids don’t have much point of reference, so anything is usually good as long as it’s playtime/time with parent(s). If you are into a sport, then maybe base it around that.

In sum – choose by job if required, then by personal values. As smart as the blog dogs are, they can’t help you there!


#241 PoorgEoisie on 05.08.12 at 11:42 am

If I never had to work again, I’d head back to Nova Scotia in a heartbeat. Halifax has everything a city needs, but if I could I would go to Cape Breton. People (not often on this site) say Canadians are nice and if you don’t believe that Cape Breton would change your mind. If you do believe that Canadians are nice and have never been to CB you might not want to go because your head will explode.
But I take nothing free and that makes me….

#242 Alex N Calgary on 05.08.12 at 11:42 am

You guys are nuts, I’ve seen some terrible places to live listed here. Since I’ve lived all of Ontario, Vancouver island and now Calgary, I have some ideas.

Vancouver island, anyplace outside victoria is hillybilly to the max, but if you like green lifestyleish and no jobs, go for it! Victoria is nice enough, if you enjoy making no friends ever as they all have their little groups, bad traffic, no jobs, lots of old people, but great coffee shops! (and mountain biking, the BEST)

Interior BC hillbilly, ignorant, but pretty nice weather and lakes etc.

alberta, calgary and edmonton are pretty hillybilly ignorant, nice enough people, weather not good, jobs a plenty (for now at least) houses outrageous.

Southern ontario, st. catharines is a bit of a dump, lived there, Oakville and stoney creek, not too bad?

Honestly where are your friends? move there, you can live anywhere and be happy if you have good friends and lots of things to do. Just rent if its too expensive for now, there are a lot of factors there, making a new group of friends and activities can take painfully long even if you’re pretty outgoing, go where you pals are!

Its a 50/50 with positives and negatives pretty much anywhere you live, i’ve not found a even 70% place, if you do, let us know!

Also Calgary realestate continues to go a lot, investment properties, super duper virgins, you should check out the Calgary Herald housing headline from yesterday about the young girl named Pepper who wasn’t even thinking about buying, then BOOM condo…bad things are coming.

#243 Ret on 05.08.12 at 11:43 am

1. London
2 St. Catharines or surrounding smaller towns
3. Brantford
4. Kingston

and definitely not Hamilton or any surrounding area!

Burlington and Oakville are worth the premium prices.

#244 Timbo on 05.08.12 at 11:48 am

#234 Williston Geo

Dear Europe,

Please get your shit together.

Balanced Portfolio

Didn’t you know that every continent took the debt ex-lax pill at dinner? The effects will be felt by all. The problem is that with only 2 bathrooms and uncle Ben not throwing toilet paper from the helicopter a spillage is bound to happen.

Now get busy with that plunger and clean up the mess made in the lower bath. I will keep our guests occupied with more bean-dip and salsa.

#245 cramar on 05.08.12 at 11:53 am

The list of criteria for the best place to live is going to involve tradeoffs. For example, what is more important schools or weather? I can’t speak about schooling (except in my own area of K-W), but a couple of years ago we decided that weather and cost of housing was at the top of our list in finding a place to retire in Canada. After research, my conclusion was that there are only two locations in all of Canada with suitable weather. South-western BC and south-western Ontario (furthest south latitude in all Canada). Thunder Bay? Ghasp! Ottawa, while lovely gets too cold in winter and is too expensive. Anything in Quebec gets far too much snow and cold. Anything north and east of Toronto is out. Niagara/St. Catherines is nice but gets too much snow in a normal winter. The East Coast of Canada gets wacked with remnants of every hurricane that hits the eastern U.S. Forget that! B.C. is too expensive to live there and maybe too wet for my liking. Several have mentioned Guelph, Cambridge, Waterloo. We want to get out of this area because it is getting too populous and SW Ont. has warmer winter weather and housing is half the price. London in a normal winter is in the snow belt and gets twice what is dumped on Kitchener, which gets more than the GTA. We narrowed it down to Leamington/Kingsville ON and have been looking for two years! The weather is the best you are going to get in this country and housing is as cheap as you are going to get. We just haven’t found the right house at the right price. We’ll keep looking.

#246 Randy on 05.08.12 at 11:57 am

Keep inflating that Teflon bubble….

#247 george on 05.08.12 at 12:03 pm

Try the Sunshine coast. We are a 45 minute ferry ride and a 15 minutes drive from downtown Vancouver. Not that I go there very often.
There are good elementary schools here.
We have mountains and the ocean and are far enough away from Van. to have a great situation.

#248 happy wife = happy life on 05.08.12 at 12:03 pm

Stratford, Ontario.

#249 John G. Young on 05.08.12 at 12:14 pm

The essential features of a personality disorder are impairments in personality (self and interpersonal) functioning and the presence of pathological personality traits. To diagnose narcissistic personality disorder, the following criteria must be met:

A. Significant impairments in personality functioning manifest by:

1. Impairments in self functioning (a or b):

a. Identity: Excessive reference to others for self-definition and self-esteem regulation; exaggerated self-appraisal may be inflated or deflated, or vacillate between extremes; emotional regulation mirrors fluctuations in self-esteem.

b. Self-direction: Goal-setting is based on gaining approval from others; personal standards are unreasonably high in order to see oneself as exceptional, or too low based on a sense of entitlement; often unaware of own motivations.


2. Impairments in interpersonal functioning (a or b):

a. Empathy: Impaired ability to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others; excessively attuned to reactions of others, but only if perceived as relevant to self; over- or underestimate of own effect on others.

b. Intimacy: Relationships largely superficial and exist to serve self-esteem regulation; mutuality constrained by little genuine interest in others’ experiences and predominance of a need for personal gain.

B. Pathological personality traits in the following domain:

1. Antagonism, characterized by:

a. Grandiosity: Feelings of entitlement, either overt or covert; self-centeredness; firmly holding to the belief that one is better than others; condescending toward others.

b. Attention seeking: Excessive attempts to attract and be the focus of the attention of others; admiration seeking.

#250 John G. Young on 05.08.12 at 12:16 pm

Oops! Wrong blog. ;)



#251 Elizabeth on 05.08.12 at 12:22 pm


I don’t live there but dream of this spot for all the reasons mentioned. University town. Lovely location and very ‘easy on the eyes’ downtown. The downtown core has stunning homes that a Toronto shmuck like me can only dream of. Spend some time on the mls in the downtown core and it’ll blow your mind. Easy escape to other towns. Warm weather for Canada and lots of creative types fleeing Toronto stupidity. Can you tell I want to move there? If not there is always Hamilton but that is seriously ‘ hard core’….

#252 getreal-tor on 05.08.12 at 12:23 pm

Best place to live in Canada is without a doubt,

Cape Columbia on Ellesmere Island

The RE market has literally been cool for a long time and people are friendly – it’s a place where you can simple leave the front door open without worries.

Internet access is a bit shoddy at times but quality of life is amazing… and don’t listen to any of the “look at me, i live in the centre of the universe” Torontonians or even worse the “god’s paradise” Vancouverites.

#253 Bond junkie on 05.08.12 at 12:24 pm

Fonthill or Carlise Ontario. Winters are going to suck anywhere you lay down roots in this country.

#254 Tim in Ottawa on 05.08.12 at 12:27 pm

Ottawa-ish or Kingston.

#255 John G. Young on 05.08.12 at 12:30 pm

#125 Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 12:09 am

“I do not know if you are even telling the truth in this instance…”

My guess is yes — partly because spelled it correctly.

#207 Mr Buyer on 05.08.12 at 9:48 am

“I remember when I was like 10 years old I told a story that was not exactly true… I told and retold the embellished story so many times that when I was like 15 I had to think hard about the truth of the story…”

I think you just basically described the root of most “mental illness” in today’s society.



#256 Bond junkie on 05.08.12 at 12:38 pm

Forgot about Guelf too, nice call MrSmartPants. I recind my Carlise recommendation… too many rich financiers make their homes there hence probably unaffordable for most 99 percenters.

#257 Lianne on 05.08.12 at 12:41 pm

#220 Ben

Hey GOLD bugs !!

How’s that gold doing today?



Garth, just wondering why you allow this type of comment. I would think that with the TSX down 200 points today, there are a lot of “paper bugs” hurting today too.

#258 bigrider on 05.08.12 at 12:45 pm

Well, as much as the housing market in Canada is over -inflated ,I would suspect that with equity markets as dismal as they are, coupled with a possible repeat of 2008/9 market meltdown, housing will not soon lose it’s luster.

I for one will continue to diversify and buy assets on the cheap(equities) and avoid those expensive (real estate) .

Whether it turns out to be the right move or not, only those who can read the future will know for sure.

#259 Paul on 05.08.12 at 12:57 pm

Stratford and St. Mary’s are lovely towns, but the surrounding countryside is flat flat flat. In my opinion, London is on the decline–the last time I was there, the downtown was looking more than a bit Hamiltonesque. In Ontario, my votes would be for Guelph or Peterborough, or Creemore for a genteel small town vibe. I also like Perth, which is nicely situated between Kingston and Ottawa.

#260 Blacksheep on 05.08.12 at 12:59 pm

Ben #220,

“Hey GOLD bugs !!
How’s that gold doing today?
Excellent Ben, thanks for asking.

Gold is doing just what I thought it would and will keep dropping in US dollars.

A good re entry point would be in the 1400-1450 range, before the post election stimulus announcement, but I think there may be to much support, to drop that low. Done with silver for ever. To big a premium on the in/out.

take care

#261 spaceman on 05.08.12 at 12:59 pm

Finally got the wife to stop peeing her pants over a 460,000 Mortgage, you see everything we have looked at in the past month, has sold withing 1 day, it is freaky.

But other crap sits for months? This is Victoria, as Garth has mentioned, is coming down, but not fast.

Anything below 450 in the core, is snapped up in minutes… mostly Asians, believe it or not. We have been to MANY open houses, and there is always an Asian family present. No i have nothing against asians, my wife is Chinese, I better not, her family will disown me. And many of our friends are Asian Canadians. Its just an observation.

The wife is finally seeing the light, “If we take on a big mortgage, we will have no money to spend on anything else” you got it now sweet heart, and she doesn’t even look at this blog.

3 Listings today off #1 is off by 30,000, #2 off by 20,000
#3 dropped 10,000

There is fear in the air, sellers (some not all) are taking the first offer that comes along, and usually under list. What happened to bidding wars? My Realtor believes its fear of being stuck and following the market down.

#262 Ed on 05.08.12 at 1:04 pm

That’s an easy one – Windsor, ON.
– Southern most city in Canada
– Most affordable real estate
– Small town lifestyle with big city ameneties just across the river in Detroit.

#263 Steve on 05.08.12 at 1:04 pm

Nothing like a question with no definitive answer to set the blog-o-sphere on fire…

I sure hope Adrian has unlimited time (just one summer?) and finances to check out all of Canada. If he does, he will then become the most qualified to actually tell us which place most meets his criteria.

#264 Fred on 05.08.12 at 1:04 pm

I would like to apologise for the recent severe declines in the stock market, which are due to me having invested some money there a few days ago.

I regret to inform you that the decline will continue, until I change my mind and withdraw my money, after which the stock market will recover fully, and then some.

#265 sid on 05.08.12 at 1:10 pm

wow, i think alot of what makes a town desirable is a mater of personal opinion. People have listed off some terrible places as being great while bashed some ones that I quite like. My suggestion, rent in a place for a year to really get the feel of it before you decide to move for good.

#266 Ogopogo on 05.08.12 at 1:15 pm

Garth, you’re welcome back in Kelowna any time. I only wish I could’ve seen you the first time around. Do come back. I’d expect nothing but standing room only.

#106 Ronaldo on 05.07.12 at 11:43 pm
#54 B – I agree with your choice of Vernon, BC. Small place, affordable RE, great lakes, skiing, fishing, hiking, golfing unlimited, great college, close to Kelowna University…

“Kelowna University”? Thanks for the laugh. It must be really well hidden. Perhaps you mean UBC, one of the highest ranked universities in the world. The Okanagan campus is a thriving offshoot of the venerable institutions.

#40 };-) aka DA on 05.07.12 at 9:55 pm wrote:

Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, realtor, realtor, realtor, blah, blah, blah (repeat ad nauseam)

I think you need a new source.

My stats were for SFHs, straight from the real estate board. — Garth


#267 Bigrider on 05.08.12 at 1:23 pm

Fred# 266.

Loved your post.

I was wondering if anyone else felt that way..LOL.

Refreshing honesty

#268 Bigrider on 05.08.12 at 1:25 pm

Hey Fred at # 266.

You interested in partnering up with me to buy a condo in the GTA and another in Vancouver?

Together we can have Garths prophecy finally come true

#269 Smoking Man on 05.08.12 at 1:29 pm


#270 zeeman1 on 05.08.12 at 1:30 pm


Stratford fits the bill nicely.

#271 Steven Rowlandson on 05.08.12 at 1:43 pm

Yes gravity is a very interesting subject. In stellar evolution the biggest stars eventually collapse into blackholes where not even light escapes. With this massive real estate bubble we will have a financial black hole that no debtor will easily escape from and one that smart people will stay away from. Infact I think banks and governments will find themselves sucked into a financial black hole and there will be no way out except to cancel everything that went before and start over from scratch.

#272 Mike on 05.08.12 at 2:04 pm – CMHC says it “has yet to see evidence of overheating in housing”


#273 cramar on 05.08.12 at 2:27 pm

#193 KW Man on 05.08.12 at 8:29 am
$1.2 Million Condo in Kitchener-Waterloo

First I thought it was for the whole building, but read it its only 1 unit.


I can never fathom the logic behind expensive condos. How can you compare a penthouse condo for $1.2 million when in this same area for $1 million you can get 5 bedrooms, 3,500 sq. ft, and 1.35 acres of lovely land! Go figure!

In defense of the K-W area, there is one unique feature that I absolutely love about this area that nobody has mentioned. Just drive a few minutes outside of Waterloo (try doing that in the GTA) and you are solidly in Mennonite country! The greatest joy is just going for a drive. The farmland (some of it rolling) and the small Mennonite towns are a real delight. Cars share the roads with black horse-drawn buggies. A few weeks ago we stopped at a Mennonite farm advertising eggs and bought free-range brown eggs for $1.35/doz and fresh maple syrup for $19 a litre. The sights and smells of the farm were priceless!

#274 pbrasseur on 05.08.12 at 2:37 pm

“I think what we need is a small town, with some character and good family life, that offers most of the things you’d need from a town including some academic life, colleges, that has some good scenery around, is not too polluted and is not prohibitive to buy some property (just outside it) in the next year or so. ”

Quebec City

No contest. Check it out.

#275 Form Man on 05.08.12 at 2:39 pm

#240 AACI

Agree with you about DA. I also agree about developers only making money on lots now. My favourite response when I ask a developer why he is building in this market:

“money is never going to be this cheap again, and the trades are also working cheap”………..umm… maybe that is a reason not to speculate…..

#276 C on 05.08.12 at 2:41 pm

Been following the listings on since the beginning of the year. The criteria I look at is a detached house, 2 or more bedrooms, 2 or more bathrooms, Burlington/Ontario, $400,000-$550,000:

Today is the highest # I’ve seen YTD at 640 listings.
The lowest I have recorded YTD is January 5th, 2012 at only 384 listings. I know now is the “busy” time of the year especially vs January. Still 384 vs 640 is a lot more supply.

#277 Saskatoon Housing Bubble on 05.08.12 at 2:44 pm

CMHC’s 2011 annual report is out.
CMHC mortgage insurance in force hit $567 billion at the end of 2011. Only $33 billion left until the ceiling is breached. It was only $131 billion in 1996.

How the heck is a credit induced housing market going to keep chugging away when credit availability is scaled back?

#278 betamax on 05.08.12 at 2:47 pm

#266 Fred — LOL! Sorry to hear about your losses, but thanks for the laughs.

#279 Cato on 05.08.12 at 2:48 pm

The ideal town doesn’t exist, for someone like Adrian choice should probably hinge on employment/business opportunities unless the family is independently wealthy. Its not the scenery but the people who are the true measure of a community.

I see alot of communities being bantered around that look idyllic but scratch surface and you’ll find they are hollowed out by youth forced to leave due to lack of opportunity. There are plenty of pretty looking towns in my home province of BC that are dead ends you’d never want to raise a family in. The youth exodus going on in the Greek countryside should serve as a warning to small Canadian towns that bet the farm on real estate.

#280 Overcast and Damp on 05.08.12 at 3:01 pm

That place does not exist in Canada. I live on Vancouver Island and it is rainy, damp and overcast most of the year. I’m cold most of the time. If we get a good hot summer we are lucky. Overrun by Alberta rednecks too. Yeah I’ve become pretty disappointed with it to say the least. Yup I was behind some dork who indeed have steel balls connected to his tail gate the other day. Must have been from Alberta!

I would look to buy something in a warmer climate and that is nowhere north of the 49th hate to say it.

#281 Doug in London on 05.08.12 at 3:05 pm

@Fred, post #266:
Invest more, stocks are on sale now! If they go down again, buy even more! that’s what it’s all about, buy low and sell high. Resource stocks or funds are especially on sale now.

#282 Linda on 05.08.12 at 3:05 pm

#91 BigAl (Original)

Your comments about Ottawa were spot on.

#283 Linda on 05.08.12 at 3:08 pm

Oops, meant comment #90.

#284 C on 05.08.12 at 3:10 pm

I just returned from Vegas. I was chatting with a blackjack dealer from NYC who has spent 31 years in Vegas. She was funny, kind, and seemed fairly intelligent. I told her I was from Toronto (Burlington actually). There was some more small talk and then she says “so where would Toronto be near”? I said it’s near Buffalo/Niagara Falls in a calm voice, but inside I was thinking are you serious? Plus, she’s from New York City, which is not too far from Toronto.

That pretty much sums up why the USA is sinking in all aspects.

#285 betamax on 05.08.12 at 3:16 pm

};-) aka DA is spending far too much valuable Realtor time posting here. To make things easier for him, I have culled all of his posts to date, summarized all the content, and created one single, generalized post which he can simply copy and paste ad nauseum, for any response or occasion. This will free his time immensely so that he can use it for more valuable Realtor activities, like playing Solitaire on his iPad at open houses.

The one-size-fits-all post follows:

“blah blah blah I don’t understand metrics blah blah blah I love a down market, even if I’ll make much less money blah blah I can take a vacation whenever I want blah blah blah blah my wife is hot blah blah blah I brag incessantly, not comprehending how insecure it makes me look blah blah blah I am ‘positive’ and those who disagree are ‘negative’ blah blah blah but now I’ve had my say, so let’s get back to talking about real estate blah blah blah I’m going to stop posting here any day now blah blah blah me me me blah blah blah me me.”

I might have left something out. But I doubt it.

#286 Bigrider on 05.08.12 at 3:18 pm

My buddy just accepted 1.9mill for new home near mount pleasant and Lawrence. He bought lot for 500k in 2008 and built house for just over 300k . A few cost to the city but 1 mill profit or so assured .

He will not nor ever own any financial assets worth mentioning.

Please go tell him about the benefits of diversification and investing in financial assets cause he has stopped listening to me and rightfully so.

#287 Bigrider on 05.08.12 at 3:27 pm

Areas that are currently experiencing a bubble:

Stocks, bonds , preferred’s, gold ,silver and anything else that can be bought or sold with the click of a button.

RE , well market is telling you not so much.

Ok , I’ll turn off the sarcasm.

#288 Nonno Nicola on 05.08.12 at 3:30 pm

#270 Bigga Rider

“You interested in partnering up with me to buy a condo in the GTA and another in Vancouver.”

Ah Bigga Rider, I no happy you aska me a to go in da partnership witha youa. Youa been a waiting for da marcato in da real estate to falla for years and your paesani, they just maka da fortunas. Even iffa youa boughta da real estata in Toronto when dis blogga starta foura years ago, you would maka da moneta Bigga Rider. Why you fighta da trenda all these years Bigga Rider? Looka your residenza principale. It probably go uppa 100% in da last decade. Now iffa it go downa 20% you still mada a hella lotta mora moneta den dose investimenti bilanzati you always talka abouta. You should a listen to Nonno Nicola Bigga Rider. I no speaka or writa da Inglese very well but I mada lotsa moneta with da real estata over da yearsa. By da way, Nonna Nicola, she put me back in her a gooda booka after I give youa da apologia.

#289 John In AB on 05.08.12 at 3:41 pm

Try Medicine Hat. Real estate is moderately priced, average income is high, taxes are low. Famiy freindly with lots to do. And just far enough away from Calgary. My wife and I have been here for 2 years and love it.

By the way we rent!! house prices still have about 10% to go before they hit bottom.

#290 Tiny Bottoms on 05.08.12 at 3:58 pm

RBC CEO Says Fears Of Housing Bubble In Canada Are Overstated

“I would love to see the rhetoric come down a little bit,”

#291 Tiny Bottoms on 05.08.12 at 3:59 pm

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. said Tuesday there is “no clear evidence” yet of overheating in the country’s condominium markets

#292 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 05.08.12 at 3:59 pm

#244 Alex N Calgary

“…any place outside Victoria is hillybilly to the max, but if you like green lifestylish and no jobs, go for it! Victoria is nice enough, if you enjoy making no friends ever as they all have their little groups, bad traffic, no jobs, lots of old people, but great coffee shops!…”


Victoria, mainly the private sector, seems to be going through a bit of ego-busting financial angst.

The tourist season–about all it consists of is what comes off the tourist boats–a little money spent by maxed out Yanks–is tentatively proceeding.

That contributes somewhat to our not as healthy a tourist economy as we’ve been used to, in 1998!

Similarly the real estate industry is beginning to get what it deserves, not what it wants–endless upward moves in so-called land “values.”


I’ve lived in this funny little backwater of a pretty little town for 30 years, and I still can’t figure out why so many locals are less than friendly to newcomers (those who’ve lived here for 20 years or more).

Maybe people who become “islanders” do so because they are insular to begin with. Or, maybe, it is simply that over time physical isolation, from just about everything on any adjacent mainland, causes islanders to believe they are a cut above the average.

In our case, the average is pretty damned low; on the deck.

So, Adrian, wait awhile where you are.

Let the following happen, first:

–Greece hits the skids in a serious fashion, along with the rest of peripheral Europe, thus destroying the Eurozone experiment in world government;

–The day that Germany brings back the DM and connives with Putin’s Russia to form a trade bloc involving squeezing the life out of Poland (this has happened before, in 1939!!);

–China has begun to get real about its so-called economic growth “miracle”, and part-takes of honest bookkeeping;

–and, the stock markets have started to uncrash themselves.

Then move to Victoria and buy something nice, with a view.

It’ll be SO CHEAP!

Bring some friends. The mood should be a little “offish!”

#293 Tiny Bottoms on 05.08.12 at 4:01 pm

CMHC considered selling mortgage insurer as housing bubble fears grew

The board of Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp. considered selling the home loan insurer last year, according to former Chairman Dino Chiesa, who’s term ended in March

Investors shouldn’t “overreact” to Flaherty’s comments about exiting the mortgage insurance business, RBC Capital Markets analysts Geoffrey Kwan and Sean Adamick said in an April 30 research note. “If it were to occur, we believe it would be unlikely to happen for a while,” they said.

U.S. housing prices remain 33% lower than they were at the start of 2006 while home prices in Canada have surged 44%, prompting Flaherty and Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney to warn Canadians about taking on too much debt

#294 Tiny Bottoms on 05.08.12 at 4:02 pm

Link for the last post

#295 PoorgEoisie on 05.08.12 at 4:08 pm

You could try Moncton Franglais anyone?

#296 Steve on 05.08.12 at 4:35 pm

“In our monitoring of the condo markets, we don’t see clear evidence of overheating in those markets. We don’t see either clear evidence of problematic house price conditions,” CMHC deputy chief economist Mathieu Laberge told reporters after the agency issued its annual report for 2011.

Visual Impairment is epidemic!

#297 Jim Taylor on 05.08.12 at 4:39 pm

Without doubt you owe it to yourself and family to move to Nanaimo British Columbia on Vancouver Island. It is the third point on a triangle that includes Vancouver and Victoria with most of the advantages and few of the disadvantages of either. Less than 100,000, right on the ocean, much less rain than Vancouver and no grid lock like Victoria. Property is still a WHOLE log cheaper, you can buy the Penthouse of a waterfront condo right on the harbour for $699,900. The same in Vancouver will buy an old shack. Of course in the $300- $350,000 price range there are many good family homes available. It is the hub city on Vancouver Island and is often overlooked, but is worth every minute you spend investigating it.
A good place to start is my blog…. :^)

#298 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 4:43 pm

Form Man

For a couple of Dudes who think they have it all figured out you spend WAYYYY too much time reading and responding to my posts.

#299 Blacksheep on 05.08.12 at 5:15 pm

Changed my mind, Ban DA.

take care

#300 jeannie on 05.08.12 at 5:19 pm

Fredericton N.b., hands down every thing you have asked for and more

#301 Bill Gable on 05.08.12 at 5:24 pm

Chester NS is for a rich Americans – I would choose Mahone bay/Lunenburg area – or Bridgewater.

The deals are to be had, but, wait – the prices are going to drop again.

Mahone Bay climate is typical Atlantic.

Freeze thaw – and sweltering summers. People are great.

#302 brainsail on 05.08.12 at 5:33 pm

#286 C

“That pretty much sums up why the USA is sinking in all aspects.”

Your observation may have shocked you but consider what your knowledge of Canada would be like if you lived on the other side of the fence like we do. We get 200+ satillite channels and the only one with Canadian content that I am aware of is HGTV plus the odd episode of Trailer Park Boys which should not be shown outside of Canada anyway. The only news we hear from Canada is when the odd foot in a Nike or a Harley that washes up on the west coast or a hockey game riot.

Canadians have full access to US television stations which is good I guess but they tend to wrap themselves around a telephone pole about American events. US news reporting is very transparent. This blog is our only reliable touch with Canada which is scary but it also serves as a source for some Canadians who want to find out what is actually happening their own backyard.

#303 Westernman on 05.08.12 at 5:42 pm

Truth Hammer @ # 158,
Right again, old chap.
Canada appeals to the timid,weak,needy,useless and intellectually vapid… these useless eaters love Canada because it represents on big free handout courtesy of the ever-shrinking pool of productive people paying the freight for mammoth Socialist government.
The U.S. frightens them because they would have to leave the protected confines of Nanny-State Canada and fly on their own…

God, you’re tedious. — Garth

#304 Westernman on 05.08.12 at 5:46 pm

johnny d @ # 173,
No one is moving to Sask. Now sober up…

#305 AACI Okanagan on 05.08.12 at 5:46 pm

#300 };-) aka DA on 05.08.12 at 4:43 pm

Form Man

For a couple of Dudes who think they have it all figured out you spend WAYYYY too much time reading and responding to my posts.

Pot meet kettle

#306 Grantmi on 05.08.12 at 5:57 pm

Do NOT move to Nanaimo!!!!

Or any where near Vancouver island . Ferry costs will kill you. $150 bucks return with just two people and car.

Only going to get worst!!!!! Huge waits… And a pain.

Move there only when they build a bridge. Period.

#307 Dan in Victoria on 05.08.12 at 5:57 pm

AACI Okanagan @240
I have to agree 100% with what you said.
I got an old plan out last summer, blew the dust off and got it priced out.
Prices were okay but a little high.
Fast forward to this year, I can get the labour pretty much done at an hourly rate right now.
I’m still going to sit though, we’ll see where it goes from here.

#308 Smoking Man on 05.08.12 at 5:58 pm

Wow slow day at the tax farm.

300+ posts


#309 Smoking Man on 05.08.12 at 6:01 pm

RBC CEO Says Fears Of Housing Bubble In Canada Are Overstated

See it’s tricky now, The machine needs to cool the market with out turning it negative with out doing anything to Rates.

Watch the back and forth from different camps.

Sure bets, CDS on Greece, Short Rim

#310 imalwaysrite on 05.08.12 at 6:07 pm

Adrian’s best choice would be St.Catharines. A beautiful city of 150,000 people complete with Niagara College and Brock University. Called “Garden City” it is surrounded by water and beaches and is 1 hour from Toronto and 1/2 hour from the USA. The city is being transformed into a cultural centre with performing arts being the highlight. An OHL hockey team, inexpensive homes, and 20 Tim Hortons makes it the best choice of all.

#311 jess on 05.08.12 at 6:07 pm


…an exotic offshore locales that tightly guards your financial secrets

Tuesday, May 08, 2012
These Islands Aren’t Just a Shelter From Taxes

#312 disciple on 05.08.12 at 6:10 pm

Gravity is the weakest force but exerts its effect instantaneously. Almost as fast as airport scanners were installed after the underwear bomber fake news event:

#313 Ballingsford on 05.08.12 at 6:14 pm

I wish people would stop voting for Ottawa. How am I going to afford the home I want here if people keep moving here?!?!?! I need the prices to drop, just a bit.

I definitely don’t want to go to Kanata, Barrhaven, or Orleans. I just want a spot in the hood where I am now.

Let’s keep this as our little secret. No more mentioning Ottawa. :)

#314 John Prine on 05.08.12 at 6:26 pm

#299 Jim Taylor on 05.08.12 at 4:39 pm
Without doubt you owe it to yourself and family to move to Nanaimo British Columbia on Vancouver Island.

Jim, you forgot the crime that is endemic in Nanaimo, lots of unemployed and lots of drugs. Also someone mentioned the ferries, it is now over $150 return so if one has family or business on the mainland that would be an issue.

There are lots of neighbourhoods outside the city core that are nice, you just have to do a lot of research to find low crime zones, there are internet sites that show the good. bad and ugly neighbourhoods in Nanaimo.

Nice to be 2 hours from Victoria, 3 from Tofino and 1 from mount washington though……..

Are you a realtor? Blog?

#315 Can it be? on 05.08.12 at 6:27 pm

#310… Just what I was thinking, record number of posts!

#316 John Prine on 05.08.12 at 6:31 pm

Out of 190 cities rated for liveability across Canada, Nanaimo comes in at a respectable # 74 but crime is a dismal #155, affordable housing #169 and #145 for household income.

#317 Country Girl on 05.08.12 at 6:34 pm

“A nice erudite small town, cheap, clean and trendy with good weather, killer scenery and high family values. And no knuckle-draggers or Silverados with balls.”

Well, that sounds like Paris, ON

#318 Van grrl on 05.08.12 at 6:36 pm

#229 Makavelli:

What HAM stands for..”Hot Asian Men”- nice :)

HAMWiM- “Hot Asian Men with money”?!

#319 Jim Lahey on 05.08.12 at 6:51 pm

#266 Fred

They saw you coming Freddy…:) You are not the only one who has felt that way with the stock market, I can assure you.

#320 Jim Lahey on 05.08.12 at 6:54 pm

#287 Betamax

You are so friggin funny! Side splitting laughter ensued after reading your post. Barb thinks I’ve gone off my rocker and even Ricky who is over having a drink is laughing up a storm!

#321 Canada's housing market is headed for a bubble. Or is it? | Edmonton Journal on 05.08.12 at 7:05 pm

[…] and Dov Zigler of Scotiabank speak of a condo craze. The wonderfully acerbic Garth Turner spouts unending warnings of a coming real estate apocalypse, even using words like “fecund” […]

#322 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 05.08.12 at 7:15 pm

#140 Dan in Victoria — G’day Dan.

Form Man gave me a good answer yesterday. It’s only falling off at the lower front and side, not a big deal.

I’ll follow Form Man’s advice, hire a pro. stucco man, get the missing parts done, then a nice coat or two of liquid stucco — good for another twenty years. Cheers!

#311 Smoking Man — “Watch the back and forth from different camps.” — Called manipulation, it’s what TPTB regularly do to keep sheeple off guard and unbalanced.
Petrodollar Warfare Iran accepts Renmibi for payment; dubya’s tax cuts in EZone; Wall St. New year, new racket; HR 1094 “Of Course the bill was Introduced by Ron Paul.” (Ending the US Fed); Economic Alert Another one; Unemployment “Total US population is 330 million. But 24% of those are young people not eligible to work. And 13 percent are retired. So the total population of available workers in the United States is 100% – (24% + 13%) = 63% of 330 million people, or 207 million workers. And with 94.5 million workers not working, the true jobless rate in the US right now is 45%, not the 8% the media keeps propagandizing you about.”; Fortune 500 smashes profits; France and Greece “Europe is not in a downward spiral. Europe is breaking free.”; Hostess Layoffs? 18K jobs could be gone in two months; UK Pay Raise fails to keep up with inflation; Todays Homes lays off entire staff; EZone Debt Everyone’s left; Hundreds protest BoA, numerous arrests.
John Cleese has a special message for all of us; 3:23 clip Ron Paul has plenty of victories; Drones What of the innocent people the west gladly kills in the name of freedom? Plus and Drone deals; Hillary “Hillary basically stated that it is okay for Israel to be in violation of the NNPT and sell nuclear weapons to places like South Africa because they are “good”, but not okay for Iran to have peaceful uses of nuclear power even while they are fully in accord with NNPT because they are “bad.” Note that Hillary never denied Israel has nuclear weapons.”; 1:06 clip 18 US vets. commit suicide every day; Intimidation toward F-22 Raptor pilots; Cell Phones India vs. US.

#323 CalgaryBoy on 05.08.12 at 7:22 pm

It’s booming in Calgary again!

Plus, tons of million dollars homes sold in the 1st week of May!

All this with record level debt and historically low interest rates…Gotta make you go hmmm…

#324 in_calgary on 05.08.12 at 7:41 pm

#325 CalgaryBoy on 05.08.12 at 7:22 pm

it’s true – took me less than a week to sell downtown condo

#325 Stuck on the Island on 05.08.12 at 7:46 pm

Ladysmith, BC.

Cheap housing, low taxes, right on the water with lots to do outdoors and just enough local amenities to get by, but all of the big box goodness you need is either 20 minutes up or down the highway (in Nanaimo or Duncan).

An hour to Victoria. A few minutes drive to Nanaimo airport or the ferries to Vancouver. Low crime. A good mix of people living in town (retirees, young families, etc).

It’s probably the best kept secret on the Island. Outside of it’s current real estate market funk, it’s a decent place all around.

#326 Steven Rowlandson on 05.08.12 at 7:47 pm

Canadians do love to be sucked into financial black holes don’t they Garth. It is like that old story of shoeshine boys giving stock tips to passers by on Wall Street during the late 1920s. Those that discretely sold out and sat on cash could vultch later. Never follow the crowd into a financial black hole.

#327 jess on 05.08.12 at 7:50 pm

Allow scientists to speak right Mr. Buyer

If fracking is good then why ?
“As communities struggle to contend with these impacts and risks in their daily lives, citizens are forced or sometimes unknowingly sign a nondisclosure agreements, [and] they have lost their freedom to speak and share their knowledge and experience with their neighbors,” Perry said. “As a result, whole communities have been silenced and repressed.”

Why should something true be a reason for losing one’s job?

EPA scientist who warned of caustic dust from Ground Zero wins job backCate Jenkins was fired from job as chemist after accusing EPA of deliberately covering up dangers of 9/11 wreckage dust.

Jenkins, who has spent more than 30 years at the EPA, was the first agency official to warn of the dangers of the caustic dust rising from the ruins of the World Trade Center.

“The dust, which had dangerously high pH levels, was so corrosive it caused chemical burns to the lungs of firefighters and other rescue teams. Hundreds of workers spent weeks at the scene without protective gear such as respirators…Subsequent research has shown as many as two-thirds suffered permanent lung damage…In the 1990s, she was transferred out of her job after accusing Monsanto of falsifying a study on the cancer risk from exposure to Agent Orange. An administrative judge later ruled she had been wrongly transferred…”

#328 Harlee on 05.08.12 at 7:56 pm

#71 Swinging Humanzee
Sooke! I have an aunt that has been living there since the 1940s. My uncle (was a navy doctor) died a few years ago but he used to scuba dive for “pirate treasure” just north of the town. Found coins,jewelery and antique rum bottles (alas empty).A nice peaceful area.
#122 Guy1
“..skipping SK and AB…aren’t really my cup of tea.”
Did you really explore these two provinces or just drive through on the Trans-Canada highway like most “tourists” do?
#305 W-man
What Garth said…

#329 doctore on 05.08.12 at 8:02 pm

Anywhere in Southern Ontario, the best rub-n-tugs and also escort selection is tops in the country as well!

#330 Daisy Mae on 05.08.12 at 8:06 pm

229Makavelli on 05.08.12 at 10:51 am
#200 Joey on 05.08.12 at 9:21 am
Sorry i’ve missed what HAM stands for on this blog. Can someone please explain? thanks

Hot Asian Men


Cute! LOL

It means: Hot Asian Money, for anyone interested…

#331 Westernman on 05.08.12 at 8:12 pm

C @ # 286,
The U.S. is sinking in all respects, huh?
You just went there and gave them your money… maybe they aren’t so stupid after all…

#332 jess on 05.08.12 at 8:19 pm

It’s free money, and all you have to do is press “yes” to claim – or so say the millions of spam messages that hit mobile phones almost daily. “It’s important! Our records indicate you may be entitled to £3,450 from mis-sold loan insurance! To claim reply YES to this message. Thank you!” Or “Urgent! If you took out a bank loan prior to 2007 then you are almost certainly entitled to £2,300 in compensation.”

What the messages don’t tell you is that the claims company will rake off about a third of any “winnings”. And nor do they tell you that you can just as easily do it yourself, without having to pay a middleman.

Excessive fees and unscrupulous practices have sparked fears of a fresh debacle in the £8bn payment protection insurance mis-selling saga, as victims lose out again, this time to the voracious claims management companies (CMCs)….More than 800 such companies have sprung up in recent years to grab a share of the billions that banks are paying out in compensation. Exact figures are not available, but critics estimate that at least £1bn, and maybe up to £2bn, will be pocketed by the claims companies and the legal firms behind them.

=…”Banks have been forced to shell out massive compensation payments to people mis-sold PPI – which covers repayment of loans when a borrower is unable to – a scandal highlighted by This Is Money which eventually led to the industry losing a High Court battle.

HSBC chief Stuart Gulliver’s said: “The UK should continue with its austerity policies, as tough as it is,”

#333 Daisy Mae on 05.08.12 at 8:24 pm

268Ogopogo on 05.08.12 at 1:15 pm
“Garth, you’re welcome back in Kelowna any time. I only wish I could’ve seen you the first time around. Do come back. I’d expect nothing but standing room only.”


Yes, please come back. I missed you two years ago when, apparently, you were here. You’re the only one making sense these days…and we sure as hell need some sanity.

#334 The Thing in the Basement on 05.08.12 at 8:34 pm

308 Grantmi – It makes no sense to live somewhere if all you have/want to do is leave. There’s no need to leave the island on any sort of regular basis if your work is
here. We do have two universities, two int’l airports (if you do want to leave), some large hospitals, ski hill (two if you count Cain) a symphony orchestra etc.

327 go ladysmith!

#335 Pops ol' limey whiffa on 05.08.12 at 8:57 pm

Any smell town there will be plenty of whiffa about prying to get an aroma of scandal.. Remember you’ll have to give a full & complete account.

#336 Ronaldo on 05.08.12 at 9:02 pm

#268 Ogopogo – had I said UBCO would you have been less giggly?

#337 Herb on 05.08.12 at 9:17 pm

A most enjoyable thread that has taught me a lot about our human geography.

A few observations about two cities. One, Ottawa. I’ve been here for many years. It has great natural features and great national institutions. It also has a municipal administration that is totally in the pockets of developers and wouldn’t recognize the common good if it tripped over it. No problem, except you’re looking at frustrating city services, upward-spiralling property taxes, and the worst BS coming out of City Hall. And no, you can’t fight this city hall.

Second, Belleville. I’ve been looking for a reason to move there for over a year because the wife wants to move closer to Daughter in TO. TO is out. I loved it when I grew up there, but it has gotten too big and the population too ignorant. B’ville seemed like a good mix, except that the housing stock we saw was either 30 years of delayed maintenance or McMansions in the suburbia we rejected in Ottawa. As to the water, it has too much chlorine to drink, and the local waters are not recommended for swimming. There is not a single beach in this waterfront city. The Le Café is nice, however, and the Quinte Mall is big city on a smaller scale. The natives are friendly and even look strangers in the eye.

Thanks for the leads east and west of Toronto. We’ll be following some of them.

#338 piker on 05.08.12 at 9:56 pm

I’ll vouch for Kamloops, but only in the eastern suburbs (Dallas, Barnhartvale) or out toward Monte Creek, Pritchard and Chase. You want to be away from the pulp mill.
Hour drive to both Sun Peaks and Silver Star, South Thompson River and Shuswap Lake. Good schools (kiddies will need to bus). Emerging university (now with a law school) and great sporting ammenities…being the Tournament Capital of Canada.
An added bonus: no douche Kelowna attitudes.

#339 Willa on 05.08.12 at 10:02 pm

Adrian, Kingston fits the bill. A nice-size house here is $250G. Two universities and a college, a long fall (no snow at all this year), plus waterfront and sailing.

But there’ll be a housing correction here too. Our house price has doubled in the past six years, for no reason.

Why not stay in Costa Rica? Send your kids to one of the international schools, enjoy the weather, live relaxed. The education there is great, and for the price, you can’t get a private school like that in Canada. Costa Rica is one of the happiest places on the planet. Pura vida!

#340 Dan in Victoria on 05.08.12 at 10:02 pm

Hi Vlad.good advice.

#341 Kootenay Ma on 05.08.12 at 10:24 pm

Well Better Late than Never!!

You may guess what I will say….. Nelson BC

1O000ish…. But larger when you add in all the interesting and talented people in the Greater Area

Selkirk College with world class programs in multi-disciplines. Art. Music. Culture. Warm community. Nice choices for education from 1- 12. Beautiful climate. All four seasons, with just the right amount of the Winter kind. (remember, in the mountains Winter has a lot to do with elevation, if you want more, go higher….

Luscious Lake. Kids have been in it already. Beautiful white sand beaches. Beauty. No pollution. Pure water. Wildlife.

GREAT place to bring up children !!

Daystar said its not cheap, but this renting, vegetarian
family manages just fine Thank You !

#342 Canadian Watchdog on 05.08.12 at 11:07 pm

#31 thinker

CMHC’s LTV portfolio shows 25% of loans are above 80%. But that is not solely based on principle payments, rather home price appreciation that’s included in their model. This is why CMHC always says homeowners made “extra” payments, not “principle” payments.

I wouldn’t believe anything CMHC reports.

#343 Herf on 05.08.12 at 11:10 pm


You forgot to mention, getting from one part of Kamloops to another is a breeze because of the Trans Canada Hwy. bypass, the Halston Street river crossing, the Summit Drive to Overlander Bridge extender, etc. etc. etc. Not like Kelowna with its one main thoroughfare through town – Harvey Avenue with multiple traffic lights. And, you’re still only a four-hour drive from Dumbcouver should you (for whatever unfathomable reason) desire to venture down there.

Besides thinking about changing his name, Adrian might consider Merritt, about a 45 minute drive along the Coconut Express (i.e. Coquihalla Highway, Phase II) from Kamloops, on the way down to the coast. Only thing is, a friend of mine who lives there once told me that although he and his wife like the place, “there’s a lot of evil here”. (There have been some high-profile murders there in the last decade or so). But, you’re in close proximity to Kamloops, Kelowna (via the Okanagan Connector/Coquihalla Hwy. Phase III), and Dumbcouver.

I’ve contemplated what it would be like to live in Salmon Arm, Chase, Falkland or Westwold. I’ve always been in awe of that stretch of open landscape in Westwold where the open area has the sod/grass farms at the south end of town, and the mountains on east and west sides. Only thing is, what’s there for affordable accommodations and employment (for myself)? And if you need services like doctors, dentists, etc., well, I don’t know who all is there. Probably still have to trek into Kamloops, Vernon or Kelowna. Everybody else’s mileage may vary.

#344 Tony on 05.09.12 at 1:58 am

More like those who bought in the last two years their kids or grandsons or granddaughters may just live long enough to see property values come back to where they were a generation or two ago.

#345 No OK for me on 05.09.12 at 2:36 am

“I know some people think its a shithole but vernon bc is the spot. 5 lakes within 20 min drive, great skiing on silverstar, proximity to KLO and VAN, and a 5 bdrm in coldstream with a view of Kal lake can be had for 350k (was 500k three years ago)”

Vernon IS a dump.
I thought it would be great to live in vacation land too. Big mistake. It’s great to vacation in vacation land. Not live there. If you arent third generation living there you are a new comer for ever. The place is fully of grumpy nasty people who enjoy being bullies. Nepotisim and backstabbing are the norm. The common attitude there is, if you can scam someone , go for it.
Buy a cabin and spend the summer holidays there, but dont waste your real life there.
Vernon, in the summer, plays host to the homeless of Vancouver. Really, really. They are giving a one way bus ticket to Vernon, and Vernon gets grants from the city of van for the homeless shelters.
You can tell when summer is over in Vernon, the homeless line up at the intersection of 25th and 32nd to hitchhike home.
Honestly, anything in the Okanagan noth of lake country is waste of life cycles.
Vacation or retire there, anything that requires the least amount of rubbing shoulders with locals.
This is based on my own experience and my friend’s. Cost us both dearly.
Think really really hard about it
PS Avoid Cold Stream, It fills up with wood burning stove smoke in the winter due to it being a bowl.

#346 GBoomer on 05.09.12 at 4:17 am

Re: Smoking man and Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Sincerely sorry to read you are suffering from this. The only light at the end of the tunnel is that once the fusion is complete, the pain petty much goes away, though anti-inflammatories continue to be effective in moderating the aches that come from stiffness.

And to the person who stated that Remicade cures it, you are incorrect. Nothing cures it. The best you can do is to slow it down and keep as flexible as possible, but sooner or later it will continue to fuse your joints, cause occasional bouts of iritis and perhaps result in Irrititable Bowel Syndrome. I have lived with it for over forty years, and have long since made my peace with it. Good luck, and know that you are not alone.

#347 Russ on 05.09.12 at 10:28 am

Sound like you’re looking for Nanaimo, Vancouver Island.
A couple o’ rednecks for colour, but they’re polite and no guns.
Sun, sailing, small universary and scenery… ocean & forest.
The best part is a ferry to keep the vancouver idiots from coming over to here.

#348 pop on 05.09.12 at 11:43 am

CIBC calls for a 10 % reduction in home prices

#349 Jason on 05.09.12 at 6:28 pm

Lumby BC: small town in the monashee’s, 20min drive to the okanagan, lakes, hunting, fishing close to the kootney’s.

#350 Form Man on 05.09.12 at 9:29 pm

#342 piker

you nailed it brother. I am staying in Kamloops during the work week right now, and going back to Kelowna on weekends. You are dead right. Kelowna has this superiority complex, when really they are glorified trailer trash….with DA posing as Ricky…….