Bug country

Ross lives in a summertime mecca north of Toronto where cottages cost a fortune. At least, they used to. “One property sold last year, none this year.  There are more properties for sale now than ever before, but none are near or above $1M anymore. Prices are down from the last few years, but new listings are IMO at least 33% above what the market will bear.”

Exactly what’s going on with recreational real estate – cottages, hobby farms, chalets – the stuff Boomers wanted so badly before they began looking in Kijiji for organ donors? It’s an interesting question, since these kinds of properties have traditionally been canaries in the coal mine, rising or falling in advance of the larger residential market. Now, it seems, more than ever.

Since HELOC rates plunged in 2009, real estate values popped and bankers lost their way, the preferred method of financing a cottage has been to suck those paper gains out of a principal residence. All that kinda made (a little) sense while house prices continued to escalate. After all, this was found money. Why not waste it on a family compound you can’t get to for half the year, that requires battling three hours of traffic for the other half, and which your kids will tire of in two weeks? Good plan.

But things sure look different in a hurry when a few economic clouds gather. It’s why recreational real estate was creamed in 2008 when the GFC hit. And leveraging up the city house to buy a country manse is not a sound strategy when stock markets are shedding 400 points a day amid a debt crisis, for example, which was the case last summer. As a result, the 2011 market for mega-cottages in places like Muskoka tanked.

Now, new worries.  The feds have moved aggressively to reign in HELOC borrowing  by removing CHMC insurance and cutting loan-to-value ratios. Worse, the urban real estate market is clearly wobbling while economic growth forecasts fall. Suddenly it looks possible the value of that city house could be low enough in a year or two that the cottage HELOC keeps you up at night, especially if you happen to be a Bay Street trader with all the job security of, oh, a realtor.

Meanwhile, with household debt at historic levels and savings in the sewer, Mr & Mrs Frontporch are no longer dreaming of a place with a boathouse. The results seem obvious – more listings, fewer sales, and lower process on anything changing hands.

That, says Ross, is what’s happening. “Cottage country RE sales and prices tanked last year, even worse than in the summer of 1988.  Both times, a crystal-clear harbinger for Toronto.” Indeed. Which is probably why the real estate cartel is in high gear these days trying to slap some mascara and lip gloss on the porker.

This is a relief, since it means Re/Max executives are not on drugs, after all. Four weeks ago the company came out with a report saying, “Lower prices are powering a large increase in cottage sales across the country. Sales of recreational properties such as cottages are higher in 70 per cent of 33 markets the agency tracks.” That would be amusing enough, but Re/Max is also claiming “the low end of the market” – stuff selling for under $400,000 – is being gobbled by “younger families and first-time buyers.”

Of course these are the same people who have been steadily and relentlessly priced out of the market for primary residences – and now they’re snapping up $400,000 cottages from the wrinkly set? Does anyone in Re/Max’s compliance department read this stuff before it’s sent out? Oh wait. There is no compliance department. Because there are no rules.

And don’t bother turning to the official area real estate board for hard numbers on sales, prices, listing volumes or days-on-market. The last time the Muskoka and Haliburton Association of Realtors massaged a stat was in March. Then the news wasn’t so hot: “The average price for waterfront sales was $369,351 in March 2012, down 45 per cent from a year earlier. The non-waterfront residential average price was $220,228 in March, an increase of six per cent compared to March 2011. The dollar value of all residential sales in March 2012 totalled $28.7 million, falling 28 per cent on a year-over-year basis.”

If things were a lot better now, don’t you think they’d be anxious to flip a media release saying so?

Hmm. The facts seem clear. HELOC financing is fading. So are Boomers. Most middle-aged, middle-income couples are in no position to drop big bucks on docks and cedar. The economy is slipping into low gear. American buyers are so gone. And now the city housing market has crested and begun a correction which could last years.

Yes, Re/Max, cottages are cheaper than they were last year. And you may actually convince some families to buy.

They will be destroyed.


#1 TurnerNation on 07.22.12 at 8:16 pm

Love it – this scotch-fueled weblog!

Garth – have you ever thought about approaching CBC’s Dragons Den for a real estate themed episode where you sit in as a dragon? When people bring their real estate ideas and schemes in to be shot-down?

(You could even use Bandit as a prop, like Don Cherry and his dog Blue).

#2 West coast guy on 07.22.12 at 8:17 pm

Great post. But it doesn’t sound like you Garth. There’s no insults and thats what I love about your posts!!!

Don’t chill out just because of what happened yesterday!

#3 Blasé on 07.22.12 at 8:22 pm

Garth, is the cartel’s false statements cause for a class-action suit by burned buyers?

#4 a prairie dawg on 07.22.12 at 8:22 pm

Like clockwork. Gracias

#5 Superman on 07.22.12 at 8:23 pm

Richmond MOI is approaching 20.

#6 IM in C on 07.22.12 at 8:27 pm

Back in 1990 I can remember when a cottage development had a Mercedes and a boat parked in front of their sales office. A big sign said, if you buy a cottage they would give you one or the other. Seems that the developers got caught in the real estate crash, tried to lower their prices 50k, and got sued by the people who already had bought, so this was their legal way around the suit.

#7 a prairie dawg on 07.22.12 at 8:28 pm

‘Oh wait. There is no compliance department. Because there are no rules.’

– — –

“That’s gold Jerry, gold.”

#8 woper_holic on 07.22.12 at 8:30 pm

Cottage ownership has always baffled me.

#9 TurnerNation on 07.22.12 at 8:30 pm

Maybe some of the blog dogs have heard about Toronto condo developer Peter Freed and his eponymous building company. He’s known as Mr. King West, having built dozens of high end condos out here, some with Brad Lamb. They are very alike in personality. That’s all I will say.


Freed – playing on the boomer demographic I think – built a tony Muskoka resort. Still trying to flog specials:


#10 Randy on 07.22.12 at 8:39 pm

Great …I’m retired….I should arbitrage this market….haha

#11 imabull on 07.22.12 at 8:41 pm

ha ha im furst!

#12 Mark W on 07.22.12 at 8:43 pm


HAM & Champagne


HEIM & Caviar

(Hot East Indian Money)

#13 Raj on 07.22.12 at 8:46 pm


Not even close. — Garth

#14 Sebee on 07.22.12 at 8:55 pm

There is so much of “up-north” to explore, why would you sit in the same spot summer after summer? Pay some proud owner the $5k for a week and have your way with their precious property!

#15 TurnerNation on 07.22.12 at 8:56 pm

Keep an eye on the listings:


#16 Mean Gene on 07.22.12 at 9:01 pm

Bug country = Buggered (UK slang)

#17 Realtors in an all out PANIC! on 07.22.12 at 9:11 pm

another great post Garth. Remember bloggers to spreada the truth to everyone you know . Goto website and tell everyone about greaterfool.ca. Also has anyone hear about http://99tosell.com/ . They will post your house on MLS for $99 or you can get FULLSERVICE for 0.99%. WOW full serve for under 1%. Looks like realtorsare in a panic!

#18 I'm stupid on 07.22.12 at 9:17 pm

Hi Garth

Just a thought, is the govt trying to keep as much equity in homes as possible to protect chmc from the enviable housing correction? Where the new rules a preemptive strike to burn homeowners and save banks and chmc? It makes sense had the US done the same they could have avoided having to bail out fm and fm.

#19 mjg on 07.22.12 at 9:17 pm

this is a test! ;->

We don’t allow tests. Buzz off. — Garth

#20 Mark W on 07.22.12 at 9:21 pm




(Hot Iranian Money).

#21 mjg on 07.22.12 at 9:26 pm

Ok, so forty years ago, newly arrived (from somewhere else), young and green, I looked at the city lemmings jamming hwy27 and thought joining that rat race every weekend all summer was for the birds. It was then, it still is.
Retired, debt-free, HELOC-free, mortgage-free, doing whatever I want, loving every minute. Great blog Garth, keep up the good work.

– Somewhat wrinkly but not-dead-yet-in-Etobicoke.

#22 boko on 07.22.12 at 9:27 pm

Look ma, I am first

#23 Smoking Man on 07.22.12 at 9:27 pm

#17. Read my post from yesterday probably last few posts. Dude you scare me Not to self never see batman with you in the building when it becomes obvious that 416 never crashed.

I makE it out alive this another take me god moment. But then again LaughingCdn. What’s it like to live in a basment void of risk and fun. Linda Paterson when in a tightspot do you put on a british accent. ML you are iether Turner Nation of Bond Junkie. When we going for beer? When pete clears imigration?

Just asking

#24 Jim Lahey, Sunnyvale Trailer Park Supervisor on 07.22.12 at 9:33 pm

With real estate collapsing across this HELOC infested land, the one beacon in this gathering shit storm of colossal dimensions is good ol Sunnyvale Trailer Park where the average trailer is still running a mere $25k. 50% drop in real estate? A mere loss of $12.5k or a couple weeks of weed sales for Ricky. No biggie. Hey Furst, we are waiting for another one of your masterfully written real estate poems…Bubbles has them all printed out and stapled to his shed.

#25 Jon B on 07.22.12 at 9:41 pm

The HELOC means for the past 10 years hiring tradespeople has never been a pleasant experience. They’re all busy all the time. They don’t care about doing good work because there’s always another job waiting for them. The HELOC gets the credit on this one.

#26 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 07.22.12 at 9:44 pm

I don’t get it ?

HAM will be like Superman( Batman???) and save the day !!! re Recreational RE

Asians love roughing it….building fires, moose hunting….outhouses…..Old Chevy 4 x 4’s…..chainsaws..splitting firewood…..the whole 9 yards/10 meters.

What ? ………Me Worry?

#27 ANONYMOUS on 07.22.12 at 9:46 pm

I always wondered WHY do people buy a cottage. If you simple pack some beach stuff and head off to either Wasaga Beach or Grand Bend Beach (or maybe one of the other local city beaches, like ‘Marie Curtis Park’ near Mississauga, if you don’t mind the stinky water) then you can have all of the fun and enjoyment that you need in the summer months, no problems. And no cottage maintenance costs too.

I asked a few people why not just enjoy the beach, why buy a cottage, and this is what they all said to me:


That was 4 years ago.

I think that this crazy notion is still stuck in their heads, and it will take a shotgun blast to their heads to get it out of there.

#28 @crazyfasteddy on 07.22.12 at 9:50 pm

Bob Truman is gonna be pissed. Hell, he’s keeping on the lay-low so not to “heat up the market” more than it is.. according to him.. http://bobsrealestateblog.com/2012/07/16/market-update-july-1-15/#comments

#29 Stinky the Fish on 07.22.12 at 9:53 pm

HZM – Hot Zimbabwe Money

#30 george on 07.22.12 at 10:05 pm

Massive mortgage debt is top of mind for Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney, but in his quest to curtail Canadians’ borrowing, he might want to start thinking about the vehicles sitting in their driveways and garages, too.

The use of long-term loans to purchase new vehicles is skyrocketing, as car buyers look for ways to cut or hold steady a key component of a family’s spending – the monthly car payment.

More than half the Canadian car buyers who borrow to finance their vehicle purchases are taking out loans longer than six years, according to new data from J.D. Power and Associates.

That is a huge increase from just five years ago, when 14 per cent of buyers borrowed for six years or more, said J.D. Ney, an automotive account analyst in the consulting firm’s Canadian office.


#31 Tripp on 07.22.12 at 10:07 pm

It is hard to understand why would anybody pay hundreds of thousands for a cottage.

With the same amount of money one can take dozens of great vacations, experience different cultures, taste unbelievable food, admire stunning architecture, visit illustrious museums and enjoy unique landscapes.

Where is the joy in seeing the same lake for years?

#32 Harry Palms on 07.22.12 at 10:19 pm

#14 Sebee on 07.22.12 at 8:55 pm
There is so much of “up-north” to explore, why would you sit in the same spot summer after summer? Pay some proud owner the $5k for a week and have your way with their precious property!

I’m a renter myself. With vacation properties, renters win. Just the tax bill is enough for 50 nights at a so-so hotel, 20 nights at a pretty good resort, or 10 at a really good one.

$5K / wk will get you a helluva nice place.

If you’ll settle for so-so, it’s under a $G for a week.

Really beats the shit out of another house and yard that needs work, another set of utility bills, and a $5K per year tax bill for damned near no municipal services.

There’s also the gas and 4 to 6 hour weekly premium on commuting, because if you’ve sunk that much money into it, you’ll feel obligated to get there and use it.

I’m never buying anything up there unless I happen to find myself sans city house and looking at eventual retirement at a time when this stuff is in a crater again.

#33 thinker on 07.22.12 at 10:29 pm

Muskoka can learn from Whistler – Whistler is not at 5 or 10 or 15 or 20 or 25, it is at 30 YEAR LOWS, since INCEPTION. Imagine that, just 1.25 hours from Canada’s hottest real estate market sits property at lifetime low prices? Some may argue that HAM doesn’t ski, but I believe what it shows is that we don’t actually have folks making large cash on RE and spreading it around. In fact, idoits are tied to debt and financing boxes in the sky that are built or yet to be built.

Now just replace Whistler with Muskoka and Vancouver with Toronto.

#34 Freedom First on 07.22.12 at 10:37 pm

Garth. Great post. And your posts, as well as informative, are just so much fun to read too! The thought I had today after reading your blog, is just how grateful I am to be diversified and liquid, and of course, debt free.

I was at a get together of about a dozen men and women last night, and the topic of real estate and the global economy came up. The comments that the people there made, were ignorantly disturbing, and this was a crowd of people from their 30’s to their 50’s. I rarely say anything, when it these topics come up, but I did make a couple of what I thought were tactful comments, but I just got a reminder of how brainwashed, and in denial, many people are when it comes to finances, global or Canadian. Disturbing indeed. I am sorry to say, and I try not to wish anything bad on anyone, but I did have the thought that when some bad things happen to some people, they were just asking for it.

#35 cottage price/rent reality on 07.22.12 at 10:45 pm

in order for buying a cottage to make sense…prices would have to come WAY WAY down.

think of it this way.

if a small waterfront cottage rental costs 1000/week for two months/year…

you would be able to rent it for almost 50 years before hitting today’s average cost!


no property maint.
no property taxes.

in order to make the buying experience remotely worthwhile…the average cottage price would have to come down QUITE considerably.

and it most likely will…given time.

#36 West of the Grand on 07.22.12 at 10:46 pm

#24Jim Lahey, Sunnyvale Trailer Park Supervisor

– Jim, it’s gonna be a Shitnami Tidal Wave. The Shitwinds are already turning!

#37 joe larue on 07.22.12 at 10:53 pm

some words of wisdom from the Calgary Herald..


Build up a safety nest of at least six month’s expenses.

? Don’t live within your means, live below your means. The bigger the margin, the more you save.

? Get rid of debt. If you have investment properties, consider selling them as soon as possible, as this winter may be too late.

? If you have a mortgage on your home with a floating rate, consider locking in the rate for between three to five years. Similarly, with lines of credit that you cannot pay off. Interest rates may jump without warning.

? Pay off your higher interest rate debt, such as credit cards, first.

? Look for a secondary source of income to increase your safety net, such as a part-time job or by renting out an eligible basement.

? Expect a lot of volatility in the stock markets. If you have money invested in the markets that you may need soon, you shouldn’t be in the market.

? We are entering an age of frugality, so be frugal, but not cheap.

? It would be wise to put off big-ticket purchases and make do with what you have.

? If you are considering selling your home to buy another, make sure yours is sold first or you risk being stuck with two homes and extra debt in an uncertain economy.

? Think twice about quitting your job.

? Reconsider whether you need all the cars you have.

#38 Victoria on 07.22.12 at 11:02 pm

Like I said in an earlier post Whistler was sure quiet this time compared to the same time as last year. I can’t believe so many condos and houses are for sale. The prices are about 50 percent less than they used to be. Crazy speculation went on before the Olympics. Shops are shutting.

Has anyone else seen this change?

#39 LS in Arbutus on 07.22.12 at 11:09 pm

Graph of diving sales in Vancouver….


#40 Big oil on 07.22.12 at 11:09 pm

Sold signs keep going up out here in Alberta.With a lot of drilling to be postponed till October,it’s not half as busy as it was last year.I just can’t believe how houses keep on selling.Its starting to get scary out west,not the promised land like many believe.

#41 mel in victoria on 07.22.12 at 11:19 pm

Pretty much everyone now very negative on the precious metals which is typical and corresponds to the seasonality of PMs the past 30 years..The next couple weeks are often a good time to buy as more times than not the PMs move up during the Fall…..Might not this year, who knows…But might be worth some consideration….a nibble…



#42 Ray on 07.22.12 at 11:34 pm

Will Garth Turner finaly close his blog?

A poll with three negative-option questions. The realtors never give up. — Garth

#43 Timbo on 07.22.12 at 11:38 pm

That picture you posted is worth a thousand words :)


“As Sherrill said, without regulation, capitalism is thievery. We stopped regulating the financial system, so thieves took over.”

A bit extreme but to the point. Now where is my cordless drill………………


“Export growth may slow in coming months, surveys of manufacturing purchasing managers indicate. A June survey released July 2 by HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics showed new export orders fell at their steepest pace in more than three years while a separate index released by the government a day earlier showed overseas demand contracted for the first time since January. ”

Running on fumes is a little risky. Better build another empty city to keep people busy………..

#44 OLD MAN on 07.22.12 at 11:46 pm

Muskoka was a great area to buy decades ago, and when I was going to university there was 2000 feet on Lake Rosseau that I wanted to buy for $15,000, but had no money except for part-time jobs, but had $1,000, so said to the vendor can we cut a deal, and he said do you want to make me an offer. I said $1000 down, but need a VTD first mortgage and can pay, and he laughed and said young man I do not need the money, but will except your deal.

#45 Toon Town Boomer on 07.22.12 at 11:46 pm

Craig on 07.20.12 at 10:27 pm
Hey Garth, I thought you were going to pick a major RE market each week and break it down…or was that my imagination?

Yes. — Garth

No, not your imagination! Garth you asked if there was support for this and there was, so many of us are still waiting. Please deliver on this.

#46 daystar on 07.22.12 at 11:46 pm

#2 West coast guy on 07.22.12 at 8:17 pm

We don’t allow tests. Buzz off. — Garth

Lol, you see what you started?

#47 bridgepigeon on 07.22.12 at 11:51 pm

The Canadian dream of a lakefront cabin to get back to nature has been bastardized into an atrocity. I’ll take a old Finnish cottage any day: a sauna and remnants of a dock, a shotgun shack with a table and bench and a bottle…

#48 mousey on 07.22.12 at 11:51 pm

Too nice to see Spiderman, so convinced better half to visit some open houses, 4 to be exact, all Van West.
#1: Kerrisdale at about 46th and Yew, regular lot size and touted as nice family home. Price: a mere 1,400,000plus. One other group into see the place. Ghastly house. Small, run down. Did I mention small? Husband wouldn’t even try to go upstairs where there was one bedroom without a door and I could barely clear the ceiling. We excused ourselves and I explained to the realtor that it was simply too small. My hubby added and too much. Hubby said agent looked embarrassed. Yes, well he should be.
#2: MacDonald and 20th, so not quite Point Grey or Kerrisdale, but still good hood. Regular size lot. This joint was right on the corner and would obviously be a tad noisy, but curiosity drew me in because the listing said “blow out sale”. Ok, I admit I wanted to meet the agent that would say that about a mediocre house selling for 1,300,000 plus. No agent even showed for the open house. We knocked on the faux wood door….no answer. We left. Hubby getting ansy…only 2 more to go I say.
#3: Short lot in Kits, but hey, nice pic and just under one million with a mortgage helper. Agent was saying to very interested lady, “seller is very motivated and she’s done a lot of updates.” Hubby, “oh really, like where?” Brutal. The basement suite was stinky dank and the lovely tile floor was about as straight as Oscar Wilde (sorry Oscar).
Hubby, not snarly, but getting close.
#4: The coup de gras. Douglas Park, full size lot, only 1,300,000 something. As we pulled up, we noticed that the street was actually the alley way for the main street only one block away. So, your view each and every morning would be….wait for it…yes, blue and yellow industrial size dumpsters for the apartments which had their collective rear ends pointed at your snout. As we slowed to take it all in two people….who were they? agents?….frantically waved at us from the window of the open house gesturing for us to come in. Not a chance. Didn’t even stop the car and I just pointed at the dumpters. You have to be out of your flippin’ gord to think anybody would pay that kind of coin and wake up to look at the alley and the dumptsters practically on your front porch. Hubby’s humor restored when I failed to even stop the car.

#49 Onemorething on 07.22.12 at 11:53 pm

we’ve talked about this before, cottage property went parabolic during the last decade of money printing and cheap rates.

We talked about the last group of vultures preying on generations of cottage property whereas families were displaced around the word and mom and pop couldnt survive the property taxes especially north of TO and Whistler and the Oki.

These properties will not only halve but wont be safe from break in’s as there will be NO NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH!

I sold in 2001 doubled my money in 3 years and there was a legal loophole on capital gains. When I come back to my lake I rent.

Opening, Closing and 6-8 months of usage is just silly to pay for year round. Taxes assessed retarded and these properties are the last to get re-valuated especially when the only sales were when the market was hot and overpriced. Deadly!

I’ve got my eyes on very nice OKI, Whistler and 1000 Islands digs, all gated, secure. Asking 2M+ last year now 1.5M offered 850K and dropped off my business card to owners. Stay in touch with them regularly same as the one unit on the Sunshine Coast AUS I’ve already had a call on.

Time will come, an email but in this case older owners will pick up the phone and call.

With mobile devices and my business now internet based I can work from anywhere.

There is a magical formula I’ve been working on for over a decade, it’s working whether we print or not!

#50 LG on 07.22.12 at 11:57 pm

I have never understood the Canadian cottage lifestyle – having yet another property to care for in the short summer (and driving hours to get there) has never made sense to me.

I build a haven in my backyard and love the peace and quiet when all the neighbours head to the hinterlands on the weekends!

#51 Toronto_CA on 07.22.12 at 11:58 pm

Good lord:


Just when you thought mortgage debt was being reigned in, Canadians go and take out 8 year car loans. I had no idea you could even take out longer than 60 months for cars (I’m pretty sure that was the highest the last time I financed one); show’s what I know about today’s easy credit situation.

“More than half the Canadian car buyers who borrow to finance their vehicle purchases are taking out loans longer than six years, according to new data from J.D. Power and Associates.”

At least our student loan debts are still somewhat under control (though you’d never believe it given Montreal’s protests) relative to the USA.

Floored by this. Great post Garth, as always. Cottage country has been in trouble for a while now. Everyone in Muskoka knows it.

#52 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 07.23.12 at 12:16 am

“So are Boomers. They will be destroyed. Which is probably why the real estate cartel is in high gear these days trying to slap some mascara and lip gloss on the porker.” — Hawaiian Beans? Ingredients: Few cans of botox filled pork and beans, coupla cans crushed pineapple, tomatoes and French’s mustard. Solid protein!

I’m with #14 Sebee on this — renting is a far better option, way more flexible.
America’s GD#2, and Greece’s GD; Trickle Down theory or flooding offshore reality; Nursing Homes Kids responsible for Mom and Dad’s bills? Ten Cities where homes cost less than a car; HSBC Today’s smorgasbord; Dying Damned expensive; 12 American Cities that rank among the world’s largest;
Beware the Ideas of September, Spanish Implosion and Monetary Insanity; 4:14 clip Monty Python’s version of the banxters; Family Problems through wills and inheritances; Rising Unem. Taxes How are small businesses supposed to hire by increasing taxes?
No Sex Please, I’m Sleepy (man’s perfect excuse); Sinking Feeling in a dormant ‘cano; Obomba? They did it to JFK; Drought Monsanto + HAARP? Tools and their use; China Proposing to the UK the exact same thing that Russia has done for Iran, building nuke power plants; Portrait of a life in hell.

#53 Questioning RE in Calgary on 07.23.12 at 12:27 am

Garthorama, my fiance has a lot of patience, but how long do you figure it’ll take to start seeing some kind of depreciation in Calgary housing? She wanted to buy when it dropped a bit in ’09, but i managed to talk her out of it. Each year we pay over 16k in rent, and with our down payment, our interest lost to the bank is only 12k/year. I know that interest rates will go up when we go to renew, but my arguement is getting weaker each year we rent and dont see a drop in housing prices. Please help.

#54 Mackie on 07.23.12 at 12:28 am

Why not waste it on a family compound you can’t get to for half the year, that requires battling three hours of traffic for the other half, and which your kids will tire of in two weeks? Good plan.

lol- Could not agree more. Why do people put themselves through this every weekend?

#55 Ted53 on 07.23.12 at 12:28 am

Also has anyone hear about http://99tosell.com/ . They will post your house on MLS for $99 or you can get FULLSERVICE for 0.99%. WOW full serve for under 1%. Looks like realtorsare in a panic!

Not sure how old the poster is , maybe a 10 year old. These kinds of offers have been around for years. This is a Sutton Group Brokerage. Nothing new here. Help You Sell was here 25 years ago doing this stuff. Unfortunatly and typically they dont survive because their is no profit in it. Look at Comfree for example, no longer a private for sale operation they are now a full MLS Brokerage. Watch for them to up their fees to survive. MLS is the only game in town. Especially in tougher markets MLS always gains in market share as it will this time.

#56 NewWorldPartyDotOrg on 07.23.12 at 12:30 am

Many Canadians believe that when this housing bubble bursts, they will have a soft landing, unlike the American’s. They say that the outcome for Canada will not end in a disaster like it did for the U.S. economy, because Canada did not have AAA rated CDOs (Collateralized Debt Obligations), NINJA loans, etc.

True, Canada did not have these, but neither did Spain, Ireland or Japan. Nevertheless, Spain and Ireland are now worse off than the U.S.

Housing: After the Bubble Bursts

#57 randman on 07.23.12 at 12:42 am

Best line from Dark Knight…

” Junior broker: This is a stock exchange. There’s no money for you to steal.
Bane: Then what are you people doing here?”


#58 Carpe Diem on 07.23.12 at 12:44 am

After a fun beaching time on the ottawa river, we began paddling back to our navpoint.

The waves and river were against us. The wind as well.

I love kayaking this piece of the river. The kids get to snokel on sanddunes and we get a work out.

We saw some nice places for sale … most far too much on price … the others … far too little on asset.

I told my woman … we keep renting and kayaking since overpriced home will come down. 200K+ is not worth it take 45 minutes to come home everyday versus 15 minutes to be on the ottawa river when we want.

The hobby farm still rules versus a waterfront property … But at the right price. We are in no rush but the boomers will eventually be.

The best purchase this summer were our kayaks. The second was a 2ft deep pool made in China for $100 buck (with a filter).

The kayaks are environmently friendly. The pool .. we shall see (but the kids love it).

#59 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 07.23.12 at 12:44 am

#19 mjg on 07.22.12 at 9:17 pm

this is a test! ;->

We don’t allow tests. Buzz off. — Garth

yeah..only allow testes…which proves Smoking Man has a doppleganger hacker in Mumbai

#60 Corban on 07.23.12 at 12:56 am

I’m still waiting for an Albertan lake that can’t also be called a “slough”

#61 WaterlooResident on 07.23.12 at 1:18 am

Look at this chart and see the future:


If the blue line keeps falling as it most likely will, the next recession will begin probably some time between January 2013 and Summer 2013.

#62 Aussie Roy on 07.23.12 at 2:10 am

Aussie Headline

The “Global DEBT Crisis” in 1000 words—or less

Invited papers that explained the crisis in 1000 words or less (so that they can be printed on one double-sided sheet). Here’s my effort in somewhat less than 1,000 words (though with 2 figures).


Mining boom forecast to end in two years

AUSTRALIA’S budget surplus has evaporated and its mining investment boom has only two years to run, according to Deloitte Access Economics.

The forecast marks a watershed in assessments of Australia’s prospects, implying in the words of this morning’s Access publication: ”The strong bit of Australia’s two-speed economy won’t stay strong for more than another two years or so.”

Deloitte Access Economics is Australia’s leading private-sector budget forecaster, set up by former Treasury economists in 1988 to provide services to both sides of politics.


Irelands prices down 64% – time to bring out the bulldozers

Ireland Bulldozes Ghost Estate in Life After Real Estate Bubble

There’ll be some places where the most sensible decision that can be made will be to demolish,” Housing Minister Jan O’Sullivan said.

The people that bought into a dream inherited a nightmare,” said Peggy Nolan, a local lawmaker in Longford. “The taxpayers have paid enough, as far as I am concerned, shame on these developers.”


China Will Not Relax Property Controls, Xinhua Reports

China won’t relax property controls and ordered local governments that have relaxed housing policies to “strictly implement” them to prevent a rebound in prices, Xinhua News Agency reported, citing a government circular.


#63 Bill Gable on 07.23.12 at 3:02 am

No car, no gas, no job, no more 4 hour trawls to a piece of crap, that is, sadly too close to a pro Football player. 21 years old – jet-skis, beer, 5 am hottubs.
Under your window.
Bugs the size if Carney’s ego are doing a Karloff on you. It is three hundred degrees.
Your mortgage is coming up. You did this with a HELOC and the big plan now is oay less, pay down debt…the wind doth change, Skipper.
This one is on us like the downhill to Papate.

#64 Soylent Green is People on 07.23.12 at 3:10 am

If that bus monitor can get $700k for not doing her job… Well….

Let’s rid canada of stephEn harper




#65 Buy? Curious? on 07.23.12 at 3:38 am

Part of the appeal of cottages was that they were cheap vacations. Again, the demographically blessed Boomers snapped up these cottages at insanely cheap prices and spent the summer up. I’m sure it was a great time and the Gen X’ers have fond memories but you can’t recreate that opportunity again in this lifetime. First time buyers who do buy cottages now or inherit them, may or not be able to sell with taking a major lost or hefty tax bill. I, however, don’t give a rat’s ass either way. I know how I make my money.


#66 s on 07.23.12 at 4:24 am

The feds have moved aggressively to reign in HELOC borrowing by removing CHMC insurance…

HELOC’s are no longer covered by CHMC? When did this happen, this would have a huge effect…


#67 P & T S on 07.23.12 at 5:16 am

Maybe with the inevitable reductions in “entitlements” for the retiring generation, buying a Hobby Farm might not be that bad an investment, as long as one runs it as a Farm – and not as an extra-large lawn!

OK It’ll be useful to have some Agribusiness knowledge, and the determination (and initial basic fitness) to run a smallholding, but the rewards can be very substantial, from a monetary standpoint (you can grow most of your own vegetables providing you think planting cycles, and maybe sell excess via your local Farmer’s Market), psychological (it’s VERY rewarding to be able to “Do It Yourself” on the scale of a few hectares of mixed arable / livestock), and physiological (“Out there” in the fresh air, and an opportunity to maintain / develop muscular fitness at essentially your own pace – certainly beats signing up to smelly, overcrowded and elitist Gyms!).

There’s LOTS of GOOD books on this out there from “the usual suppliers”, and there are many excellent physically compact breeds of livestock particularly suited to the smallholding lifestyle (e.g. the Dorper sheep variant, and the justifiably well regarded Pinzgauer beef cattle). Throw in a few goats (to eat the undies off the washing line!) and you’re set up for a most rewarding experience. Mustn’t forget the chickens – White or Black Leghorns are ace egglayers, but our experience is that the Rhode Island Red variant provides the best all round performance (and they’re the best brood hens!).

Sure beats Cruising with the Geriatrics (in the modern Floating Casinos), or waiting for the Grim Reaper in some Nursing Home!

#68 Aussie Roy on 07.23.12 at 5:30 am

Aussie Headlines

Building industry crumbles

AUSTRALIA’S building industry is in survival mode, with official statistics revealing that at least two companies a day are going to the wall as labour costs continue to rise, profit margins flatline and banks play hardball on funding.

The latest statistics on liquidations and voluntary administrations show that since January 1 more than 363 companies in the building industry, excluding mining, have collapsed, more than 200 of them from New South Wales and 95 from Victoria.

What is even more alarming is the trend seems to be getting worse, with 30 building companies failing in March, 33 in April, 51 in May, 63 in June and a whopping 40 collapsing in the first 10 days of July.


#69 neo on 07.23.12 at 6:37 am

#30 george

I mentioned this to Garth several weeks ago when I saw a 96 month financing advertisement in the paper. I asked, who would be foolish enough to take this. Apparently half of Canadians would. This keeping up with the Jones’ materialism Canadians are embarking on is so circa 2005 U.S. I remember going to Atlanta and eating at a Wendy’s and seeing a cashier driving a Jaguar. There were high end cars everywhere. I went back a couple years ago and people are very conservative in their choice of vehicles now. Scotia’s “You’re richer than you think” comes to mind. Many will realize that isn’t the case. Can’t have an expensive house with granite and a beater parked in the driveway now can you.

#70 >>>>>>>>>>>>> █ ♣ █ >>>>>>>>> on 07.23.12 at 7:57 am


Should we blame Serbs for this too?
Got to be them? ha?

like #2 said, does not sound like Garth!
Oh god he is cloned?
Body snatchers got him?
I know, evil realtor cooked his brain!


#71 Backstep on 07.23.12 at 7:59 am

This spring I was driving home after my last ski day at Blue Mountain and noticed a huge number of For Sale signs in the ski chalet areas. Looks like HTM (hot Toronto money) may be draining out of the Collingwood area, just like it is leaving cottage country.

Hardly an ironclad conclusion, based as it is on a 5 minute drive through a recreational property area, but I wonder whether anybody else here has noticed the same thing.

#72 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 8:01 am

Nothing like waking up fresh on a Monday morning just to see red arrows down everywhere and on everything in the financial markets F&^%.

RE is doomed here in Canada but will that money find it’s way into the financial markets??

Very doubtful.

#73 MarcFromOttawa on 07.23.12 at 8:02 am


#74 TurnerNation on 07.23.12 at 8:02 am

Smoking drunk man no I’m not Bond Junkie. I work in the equities and options space.

Yes I know of a few recently-laid-off Bay St. equities Traders.

(zomg a harbringer! At least it’s not a chimera!!)

Reducing market executions costs, and commission costs via cost capture is all the rage. As is no-touch DMA and Algo trading. Cutting out the human trader.

#75 Randy on 07.23.12 at 8:14 am

Can I get a 25 year car loan ?….haha….the Debt Culture…

#76 Sydneysider on 07.23.12 at 8:16 am

#60 Aussie Roy is Prof. Steve Keen? Can it be true?

#77 Damn dirty apes on 07.23.12 at 8:35 am

This piece from G&M disagrees with you. Check out her sources. It appears well researched.


The sources? Three realtors. No credible third-party statistics. No average sales numbers, prices or tally of listings. No days-on-market. No comments from sellers. I would be ashamed as a paid journalist to have produced such a piece. — Garth

#78 Aussie Roy on 07.23.12 at 8:35 am

Sydneysider on 07.23.12 at 8:16 am

#60 Aussie Roy is Prof. Steve Keen? Can it be true?


No, I just missed the “………..” – quote marks.

Aussie Roy is a retired risk manager, now enjoying life as a grape producer.


#79 SE Asian Expat on 07.23.12 at 8:38 am

Will Boomers sell their houses in GTA and retire to 4 seasons cottage country?

#80 No canaries this time around on 07.23.12 at 8:46 am

It’s (R/E) going to BOOM!!!

#81 Damn dirty apes on 07.23.12 at 9:00 am

Hook, line and sinker!

#82 eaglebay - Parksville on 07.23.12 at 9:10 am

#71 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 8:01 am
“Nothing like waking up fresh on a Monday morning just to see red arrows down everywhere…
RE is doomed here in Canada but will that money find it’s way into the financial markets??”

There you go again.
You wouldn’t have been burned in the financial markets if you had done proper DD.
The money “is” going to the financial markets. Where else do you think it’s going to go?

#83 Linda Paterson on 07.23.12 at 9:14 am

#23Smoking Man on 07.22.12 at 9:27 pm
Linda Paterson when in a tightspot do you put on a british accent.

No, but I can do a mean stevedore when required. Good enough for ya creep?

#84 Smoking Man on 07.23.12 at 9:18 am

Like said last week or the other day interest rates will be going to basment. Now many of you think that will have no impact on Tor real estate as you have concluded its doomed.

Well where do you put your money.?

Now that spain and Italy have banned shorting. Look out below.

Hounestly do I not have great vision.

This is a certified prediction from the smoking man.

Toronto real estate to surge when the herd figures out inspite of what Carney says. Foren loot buying our Bonds ln panic.

#85 George on 07.23.12 at 9:19 am

Screw this, I’m tired of waiting. I am buying a half mil Toronto house next month.

#86 eaglebay - Parksville on 07.23.12 at 9:22 am

Eastern Canadians call it a cottage.
Western Canadians call it a cabin.
Eastern Canadians see tar in the sand.
Western Canadians see oil in the sand.
Eastern Canadians drive little imported cars.
Western Canadians drive large North American trucks.
Eastern Canadians vote socialist.
Western Canadians vote free enterprise.
Eastern Canadians eat veggies, rabbit food.
Western Canadians eat meat and hunt.
We are different.

#87 Alberta Ed on 07.23.12 at 9:24 am

“The sources? Three realtors. No credible third-party statistics. No average sales numbers, prices or tally of listings. No days-on-market. No comments from sellers. I would be ashamed as a paid journalist to have produced such a piece.”

That`s the Glob for you. Typical…

#88 Nemesis on 07.23.12 at 9:26 am

“I would be ashamed as a paid journalist to have produced such a piece.” — Hon. GT

You’re kidding, right? The Mop&Pail has started paying ‘the help’ again?…

#89 Steven Rowlandson on 07.23.12 at 9:29 am

Real estate prices are still in cloud cuckoo land along with the realtors and real estate cultists. Its along way down price wise before there is affordable real estate in canada.

#90 Spiltbongwater on 07.23.12 at 9:31 am

Gregory Klump, Phil Soper, and Tsar Somerville are out flogging the greatness of the HPI. That say avg prices are down 0.7% but if you throw out Vancouver sales, national prices are up 3.5%. Does that mean Vancouvers price declines are bringing the country down with it? That can’t be a good thing can it?

#91 eaglebay - Parksville on 07.23.12 at 9:37 am

China growing at 7.6%.
Don’t bet against China.


#92 jess on 07.23.12 at 9:38 am

Libor Rate Rigging Shows Biggest Banks Are Criminal

Call the “Libor scandal” by the right name: massive criminal conduct. If any other business or group of businesses did what is reflected in the Barclays emails and voicemails, Federal prosecutors would already be indicting them under a bunch of criminal laws including RICO because there is a pervasive pattern of criminal racketeering activity


#93 Daisy Mae on 07.23.12 at 9:46 am

#3 – Blasé on 07.22.12 at 8:22 pm
“Garth, is the cartel’s false statements cause for a class-action suit by burned buyers?”


Don’t think so. They haven’t broken any rules…’cause there aren’t any.

#94 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 9:53 am

#81 eaglebay to Bigrider.

There YOU go again eaglebay. Making assumptions on what I have said.

Where did I say I have been “burned”. Why would you assume I have not done DD ?

Reading to much into what I have said again..there YOU go again.

By the way, with net redemptions out of equities now running into the umpteenth year globally, I say the money will not find it’s way into the financial markets, other than treasuries and gauranteed money products issued by various institutions.

Please present a cohesive and logical argument as to why you view otherwise.

#95 Helen on 07.23.12 at 9:54 am

Garh, is that true that HELOC will be fully eliminated some time in October- November this year? My pal mortgage broker said so.

It is untrue. — Garth

#96 Paul on 07.23.12 at 10:06 am

#38 Victoria on 07.22.12 at 11:02 pm

Tofino was unbelievably quiet when I was there last week. Vacancy signs hung everywhere. Last time I was there, 3 years ago, everything was full.

#97 Daisy Mae on 07.23.12 at 10:07 am

POSTERSs QUOTE: “Wow, the RE pumper crowd must be getting desperate if they’re coming to RFD to spew venom, on an anonymous basis, against a former MP, former Minister of the Crown, Privy Councillor, multiple winner of MP elections, owner of multiple properties, and probably has a higher net worth than any of the RE pumping peons here.”


Sums it up nicely.

#98 Timbo on 07.23.12 at 10:09 am


“Speaking of Italy, the head of the Union of Italian Provinces (UPI) has warned that some Italian schools may be unable to open after the summer holidays, due to a funding crisis.

“With these cuts we won’t be able to guarantee the opening of the school year,” UPI President Giuseppe Castiglione told reporters in Rome.

Piero Lacorazza, president of the province of Potenza in southern Italy, said the comment was “not an exaggeration”, adding that “half of the provinces are in serious financial difficulty”.

Years of growth wrapped in unsustainable debt. Europe is in a depression and it is not going to get better anytime soon…………


“McDonald’s Corp. (MCD), the world’s largest restaurant chain, reported a 4.5 percent drop in second- quarter profit, trailing analysts’ projections, as U.S. same- store sales slowed. ”

You know it’s bad when…………….

#99 Yes, it exists!!! on 07.23.12 at 10:14 am

REALTOR® Code Of Ethics

CREA’s Code of Ethics and Standards of Business Practice has been the measure of professionalism in organized real estate for over 40 years. The first code was approved in 1913 at the convention of the National Association of Real Estate Boards held in Winnipeg. The first Code of Ethics specifically prepared for members of The Canadian Real Estate Association was approved by members in 1959.

The Code establishes a standard of conduct, which in many respects exceeds basic legal requirements. This standard ensures that the rights and interests of consumers of real estate services are protected. As a condition of membership, all REALTORS® agree to abide by the Code.

Some of the requirements of the Code include:

REALTORS® must disclose in writing whom they are representing as an agent in the transaction. Parties to a transaction must be told what their agency relationship is to the REALTOR® .
Definitions, terminology and presumed agency relationships vary from province to province. Most jurisdictions have their own forms for complying with disclosure requirements, which have been drafted to accommodate agency relationships as they exist in your province or territory.
All financial arrangements between REALTORS® and others (e.g. referral fees, compensation from more than one party, rebates or profits on expenditures) must be fully disclosed to clients;
REALTORS® cannot acquire an interest in property (either directly or indirectly) without disclosing the fact that they are real estate professionals;
REALTORS® cannot use the terms of an agreement of purchase and sale to negotiate commission.

While the Code of Ethics establishes obligations that may be higher than those mandated by law, in any instance where the Code of Ethics and the law conflict, the obligations of the law must take precedence.

A REALTOR® ’s ethical obligations are based on moral integrity, competent service to clients and customers, and dedication to the interest and welfare of the public. The Code has been amended many times to reflect changes in the real estate marketplace, the needs of property owners and the perceptions and values of society. For more than forty years, through a variety of updates, the CREA Code of Ethics is unchanged in demanding high standards of professional conduct to protect the interests of clients and customers and safeguard the rights of consumers of real estate services.

REALTOR® Code (pdf) – Effective December 2011

#100 Dupcheck on 07.23.12 at 10:28 am

The RE prices now days have no relation to how much the property is worth. It is all driven from demand. When the demand dries so will the prices. It is sad that people only value on demand. It seems like houses are bought as some sort of investment based on a crystal ball speculation that their value will always go up at no end. Gone are the days where houses were seen as a place to live and their value was based mostly on how much it was worth as a dwelling. The fuel of this madness will not last forever something will give as natural order of life itself always corrects its course.

#101 Retired Boomer - WI on 07.23.12 at 10:29 am

Stocks on SALE today! You know, those dividend paying things that actually PAY more than the Orange guy’s shorts!

#102 Ralph Cramdown on 07.23.12 at 10:30 am

Can I get a 25 year car loan ?

A lot of Canadians already have. It’s spelled H-E-L-O-C.

#103 Bond junkie on 07.23.12 at 10:31 am

Alright boys, figured it was about time for a post… Funny that you guys should mention Freed, was just on the Thompson rooftop Thurs night. Quite the spot he’s built there, great ‘views’. Garth, kudos to a relevant post, rec space is a distaster, you finally bagged one man!! Outside of that, anyone advocating a 20-40% haircut in even the most parabolically priced neighbourhoods in T.O is I*N*S*A*N*E, period. Principal residences folks, does that term not mean anything to you people?? Rec gets abandoned at the expense of the principal. As SM has said many times before, as was the case in ’08, as it will be during the recession of 2013, if they don’t get ask or close to it, track 6ers will pull their sales signs out of the ground and hunker down and pay their mortgages. No 20-40% impairment. The individual balance sheet DOES NOT have the same level of autonomy as corporate. You don’t just take a 20-40% writedown to your net worth like it’s nothing if you don’t have too, wake up people!!! One last point, #60 WR, nice chart but you fail to recoginze 3m bills in the U.S yield next to nothing. Hence, it’s virtually impossible for that relationship to ever become negative in the next couple of months, if ever again. Still won’t stop the freight train barreling down upon us. SM beers are overdue, you name time/place.

#104 Realtors in an all out PANIC! on 07.23.12 at 10:52 am

Look at the scum realtors posting and bashing garth in an all out panic. Realtors hates garth since he posts truth and facts that realtors like smokingman and Ray do not like.
Ray on 07.22.12 at 11:34 pm Will Garth Turner finaly close his blog?

A poll with three negative-option questions. The realtors never give up. — Garth

Keep posting in a panic realtors. Blogger go out there and spread the truth. tell everyone about greaterfool.ca from your friends , family and just simple blogging around the web. Realtors are uneducated , unregulated criminals and CREA needs to be looked into. Bloggers with the help of garth should e-mail MP’s and who ever it take to bring down the CREA. The masses are being misinformed and the facts and truth need to be known. Together we can all bring these uneductaed people down. Right now realtors I am telling people to sell private or 99tosell.com . To think some poor sucker big 90K over asking because they thought it was a bidding war? wow investigate CREA

#105 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 10:54 am

Multiple choice question below for the blog.

Question : Why have so many done so poorly investing in the financial markets and thus become so dissillusioned ?

Is it :

a) A lack of knowledge on the part of the investor and a lack of due diligence on his/her part ?

b) A lack of an advisor to help guide investor to a proper portfolio?

c) A global obsession with Canadian real estate ,thereby diverting all monies that would have normally found there way into the financial markets globally, into real estate here in Canada

d) The fact that market indexes from around the globe are lower today than they were as much as 12 years ago.

Think long and hard about that one…LOL

#106 Realtors in an all out PANIC! on 07.23.12 at 11:03 am

1…….2 The housing crash is coming for you.
3…….4 realtors you are going to be poor.
5…….6 this isn’t 2006
7…….8 it’s to little to late
9…….10 you are useless again!

#107 Dontcallmeshirley on 07.23.12 at 11:05 am

A guy I went to school with is now a realtor.

He claims the days of fake employment letters are over. Now, “banks” are having mortgage applicants sign a consent that lets them perform an income check with CRA.

Can anyone confirm or deny this…brokers, bankers, realtors???

#108 This is Wonderland on 07.23.12 at 11:08 am

#78 SE Asian Expat

Will Boomers sell their houses in GTA and retire to 4 seasons cottage country?

To far from the grandkids and poor medical care.

#109 45north on 07.23.12 at 11:23 am

I’m stupid: Were the new rules a preemptive strike to burn homeowners and save banks and chmc? It makes sense had the US done the same they could have avoided having to bail out fm and fm.

Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac

Had the US tightened mortgage rules in 2005, just before the peak the damage to the banking system would have been greatly reduced.

Flaherty pulled the rug out from property over $ 1 million. If you own a property over $1 million you now have to find a buyer with 20% down payment.

#110 Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 11:40 am

As expected Garth..

‘Average’ house prices don’t tell the whole story http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2012/07/17/f-average-home-prices.html

One commentator already figured it out:

“So basically, real estate agents have used the average price for years to justify higher price and higher commision but now that the number don’t go their way they are trying to make us believe the market is still good using other numbers.”

Nobody could have seen this coming. Nobody.

#111 martha on 07.23.12 at 11:47 am

My hubby is on disability, and has a good pension…and I am effectively retired to take care of him. We rent (same house for 30+ years) and are without debt. We are 57 years old and have no plans to buy anything…we will continue to rent.

I’ve been watching the cottage market for a few years now, because I am a country girl at heart. I figure that in two years of not selling, people will be glad to get something out of their cottages, and will rent for a reasonable price for long term renters like us.

Here is an example of what I mean. Three bedroom furnished bungalow with a wood fireplace, on a good sized lot (I garden). $900/month


#112 2centCdn on 07.23.12 at 12:14 pm

#108 45north
“Flaherty pulled the rug out from property over $ 1 million. If you own a property over $1 million you now have to find a buyer with 20% down payment.”

How could Flaherty do this to us?! How cruel! I want a million dollar place with NOTHING down! ….. are you on glue?! … I friggin hope someone buying a
$1million dollar property would put have 20%. A million dollar place shouldn’t be for a fist time buyer (even though I know the (old) math has allowed a few idiots to pull it off). Jeeezuz! … the world has officially gone nuts!

#113 truth hammer on 07.23.12 at 12:25 pm

persoanl debt continues to climb despite reports that CDN’s are ‘richer than the americans’…….


You won’t find prices on new vehicles ads any more….just the finaning…….many now at 7 years!!!!!!

What a joke…….if people were so rich…why the death grip financing…….do have a clue what a 7 year old car will net? If you have to buy the sucker out you’ve been hooped by 7 years of rental !!!!

Oh yeah…….low monthly payments as set by the sucker rates that Carney is tossing out are the way to go….why own???????

This is the finance ministry is fishing with dynamite .

#114 Tonino, Nonno Nicola's Grandson on 07.23.12 at 12:30 pm

#104 Bigga Rider

Hey Big Rider, Nonno wants you to check out the latest quarterly report from Friedberg Mercantile. Says he is too busy in the garden to speak directly to his adopted blog son. Enjoy.


#115 Sparky on 07.23.12 at 12:34 pm

74 @ Randy

Can I get a 25 year car loan ?….haha….the Debt Culture…
Yes, you can. It’s called refinancing the mortgage.
I know several people who unfortunately have rolled car payments (and other debt) into their mortgage when they refinanced. It won’t end well.

#116 Realtors in an all out PANIC! on 07.23.12 at 12:49 pm

Bond junkie #102

US Realtors like you were saying the SAME THING about Miami , vegas , etc and prices crashed over 50%. but It’s different in Toronto …LOL. Toronto and vancouver are overvalued well over 50% and will crash that amount over time. You realtors are in a PANIC as Toronto prices already crashed 15% in two months. It’s going to be a nasty crash realtors…..a nasty crash!

#117 Hoof - Hearted on 07.23.12 at 12:53 pm


They were never really meant to be investments, but recreational use.

Our family owned a lakefront property since 1974. 300 mile drive one way.

We are in our early 50’s now, and sick of the drive and all the packing and unpacking. My sibling and I will inherit it…..but I told her we should have sold it….

I was the one who invested all the blood and sweat, and $$s fixing the place up and maintaining it. My sibling’s family won’t even cut the grass

Our family has no interest in going up…..but my sibling and her family do…the the point they know we won’t be going up, but now have their teenagers and their friends taking up weeks, and letting us know at the last moment.

When we first bought it…taxes were approx $100 year…now they are over $2000, for something that is used perhaps 8 weeks a year..with no local services provided.

It is far cheaper to take the money and rent ..or go for a holiday.

What I see happening is these boomers parents or grandparents bought them….but there isn’t enough demand to support prices AND not enough interest to go to the cabin…younger generations are too urbanized . There will also be tax implications upon inheritance which may help decide the issue

I know some have asked their family if anyone wants it he family cabin…..aka buy it…if NO was the answer….then it was SOLD.

I see the whole market collapsing big time.

I am sure other posters have similar stories

#118 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 1:04 pm

#100- Retired boomer- Stocks on SALE today. ! You know those things that actually PAY more than the orange guys shorts !

Those same stocks that every retiree is obsessed with are the most expensive they have ever been by every valuation metric you care to use.

A zero grower like Enbridge going from $25 a share to $42 a in a few short years says it all.

Many more examples of the above.

On the other end of the spectrum, growth is being shunned like the plague. Growth oriented dividend payers are the cheapest they have been in many years and as for growth stocks that don’t pay a dividend..well they are almost free.

#119 prairie gal on 07.23.12 at 1:09 pm

Garth, speaking of regulation (or lack thereof), do you have any thoughts on the way forward for securities regulation in Canada? Efficacy of enforcement varies greatly by province and the gaps allow a lot of bad guys to steal millions from naive or greedy investors. I see this as being an increasingly important issue as baby boomers become desperate to grow their capital and are swindled by slick salesmen.

#120 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 1:13 pm

#113 Tonino-

I read it and thanks for posting.

Hope you own some Tonino.

#121 Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 1:19 pm

Red Pin New MLS Listings Up 82%.


#122 eaglebay - Parksville on 07.23.12 at 1:32 pm

#93 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 9:53 am
“By the way, with net redemptions out of equities now running into the umpteenth year globally, I say the money will not find it’s way into the financial markets, other than treasuries and gauranteed money products issued by various institutions.”

Don’t be afraid of the financial markets.
Where does the treasuries and guaranteed money products from the various institutions end up?
Right, financial markets at your expense in the form of REITs, ETFs, stocks, mutual funds, etc…
Sell your RE and profit from the financial markets at bargain prices, today, if you can sell your RE.

#123 jess on 07.23.12 at 1:43 pm

the hood

british library:

Laws of Forests

How did the Laws of Forests come about?
Magna Carta, the ‘Great Charter’, gained its name when it was reissued in 1217 with another lesser charter known as the Charter of the Forest. While Magna Carta spoke mainly of the rights of the barons, the new Charter also addressed the rights of ordinary people.


The territorial tax system

Tuesday, May 10, 2011
U.S. speaker Boehner calls for territorial tax system

Corporation That Paid Nothing In Taxes For Four Years Tells Congress It Pays Too Much In Taxes
By Travis Waldron | Sourced from ThinkProgress

Posted at July 21, 2012, 10:04 am

…”Over a four years period from 2008 to 2011, Corning Inc. was one of 26 companies that managed to avoid paying any American income taxes, even though it earned nearly $3 billion during that time. In fact, according to Citizens For Tax Justice, the company received a $4 million refund from 2008 to 2010…”

Ford told the committee that Corning paid an effective tax rate of 36 percent in 2011, but as CTJ notes, she is counting taxes on profits earned overseas that haven’t yet been paid and won’t be unless the company decides to bring the money back to the United States. Corning’s actual tax rate in 2011, according to CTJ’s analysis, was actually negative 0.2 percent.

#124 Winterpeg on 07.23.12 at 1:55 pm

Manitoba & NW Ontario is also huge cottage country. As we say here, no mountains but tons of lakes.
I am a 2nd generation owner, heading to a third generation ownership scenario for the family cottage.
It was great when I was a kid; no real responsibilities: just play and swim.
Now as an adult the picture is this:
-Shared ownership with siblings and their kids all with different agendas, wants and expectations.
-Taxes and upkeep on an aging property.
-Renting the property just to offset the taxes and pay for the upkeep.
-Wondering why we keep the cottage when there are so many other places to see in the summer.
-Higher gas prices just to get to the cottage.
-The ever-present question of water quality in any given lake.

My friends all say how lucky I am to have a family cottage. I say, “Yes”, but then point out the above mentioned points. But I can tell it doesn’t really cut through the mystique.
Like regular home ownership, it is dream for lots of people. However, like home ownership, it is probably much better to rent at this time. Our family has pondered selling, but, just like in the rest of the country, cottage prices in Manitoba are dropping from the spike in prices we saw a few years ago. There are plenty of properties on the market. We may have missed the window to “cash in”. If I was wanting to buy now, I’d let the prices drop more .
To note: what may be keeping the prices up a bit around here, is that lots of boomers are eyeing lake properties as retirement homes. That idea may seem great for a few years until health problems set in. Proximity to good health care is a big consideration. So as far as the market goes we may see some steady turnover in the coming years(?)
Anyway, the summer cottage remains a romantic notion that many Canadians embrace and covet, and it is a hard one to shake, especially this time of year.

In reality, there are tons of things to consider when owning!!!

#125 IM in C on 07.23.12 at 2:12 pm

So it begins


#126 Toronto_CA on 07.23.12 at 2:30 pm

“#120 Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 1:19 pm
Red Pin New MLS Listings Up 82%.”

Wow. That seems to be a ridiculous spike in new listings. Do you all think it is mostly condo speccer/flippers trying to cash out before the mortgage rule changes can drop prices?

I don’t know what to make of it.

#127 bigrider on 07.23.12 at 2:32 pm

#121 eaglebay.

Go back about three years and look up my posts going forward.

Been bearish on RE since the beginning and in no way over exposed. Right at about 40 /60 RE to financial assets.

So no need for me to sell RE. No argument from me that RE is going down. Could not agree more.

Once again more assumptions on your part.

“There you go again”

#128 bruce on 07.23.12 at 2:33 pm

you have been preaching bubble for the past 6 7 8 years.
guess what? accept defeat there isnt one and wont be.
Proices are going up up up and wont stop.
But I will help people with a few great deals. I have 2 cottages in wasaga i am willing to part with.
$230000 each. I will personally guarantee they will go up every year.
I have reduced them from 279000. Not becuase nothing is selling here but because i am a good guy and want to help you.

#129 Chris on 07.23.12 at 2:48 pm

Out at Wakaw Lake, SK (less than 1hr East of Saskatoon – making it a very popular lake), there was a whole new area that got re-zoned for lot sales. Listed last year at $89k… Price this year – $39k and still only about 1 or 2 sold! OUCH. Those developers must be sweating. These aren’t lake front, but have frontage/access to have your own dock.

Or you can spend $250k on a lakefront tear down! My sister tried hard to convince me to split it with her. I have successfully convinced her she’s smoking crack.

#130 Questioning Calgary stats on 07.23.12 at 2:55 pm

#53 Questioning RE in Calgary

This explains the Calgary housing market over the last 3 or 4 years.

Back in 2008-2009, the housing market in Calgary was crashing. It would have continued to do so, but massive intervention took place to stop the housing crash which was Canada-wide.

In 2009, CMHC was mandated to insure more high risk loans. At that time it had about $300 B on its books. Three years later, that total is almost $600 B. This gives you an idea of the scale of the unprecedented intervention that has been in place since 2009. As well, interest rates were slashed to emergency levels and kept there.

This magnitude of intervention should have taken Calgary house prices to new all time highs as it did in Vancouver , Toronto and many other Canadian cities. However, it did not. Calgary RE basically struggled in comparison. This exposes a weakness in the Calgary market.

CMHC’s cap will not be pushed past $600 B. The new mortgage rules are there to reduce high risk lending and this will result in fewer buyers and smaller mortgages. The net result will be lower prices in Calgary. Give the new mortgage rules time to kick in. A lot of them have not been implemented yet. The years ahead will provide many opportunities for you to buy Calgary RE at lower prices.

#131 Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 3:06 pm

#125 Toronto_CA

“I don’t know what to make of it.”

What’s to make of it? Everyone who said they were a long-term investor is heading for the exit door. They were just kidding. http://postimage.org/image/btaerda9x/

The market cliche has gone from “location, location, location” to “immigration, immigration, immigration” to the latest “sell, sell, sell.”


#132 Luc on 07.23.12 at 3:30 pm

Find the loopholes and you win.

HELOCs for 80% value check it out at…


#133 bruce almighty on 07.23.12 at 3:37 pm

#127 bruce




#134 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 3:49 pm

#123 Winterpeg on 07.23.12 at 1:55 pm
Thanks for reminding me why I never want to own a cottage. Being a home debt renter is enough.

#135 Questioning RE in Calgary on 07.23.12 at 3:52 pm

#127 bruce

please tell me this is a joke, im a little slow today

#136 2centCdn on 07.23.12 at 3:54 pm

#127 bruce
Dear bruce ….. half of Wasaga Beach and Collingwood is for sale right now. And half of the other half will have their signs up by fall. You know it. You ain’t selling nothin for a long long time.

#137 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 3:55 pm

#110 martha on 07.23.12 at 11:47 am
Isn’t $900/mo for a small shack outside of Kincardine (ON) a little outrageous?

#138 IM in C on 07.23.12 at 3:59 pm

My parents built a summer home back in the late 70’s. It’s what they wanted , and they could afford it. They spent their summers there and it afforded them a social and psychic joy in their retirement years. It was bought with that idea in mind. Now that they are elderly, they gave the cottage to the sibling that expressed the greatest interest, with the proviso that that is their inheritence. That is my case for a cottage.

#139 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 4:00 pm

#102 Bond junkie on 07.23.12 at 10:31 am
20-40% loss will happen on paper, whether people hunker down and continue to pay their mortgage.

It’s those people that are forced to sell that will reduce their prices — and they will have to reduce their prices in order to find buyers.

It’s not that hard to understand.

#140 Bigrider on 07.23.12 at 4:01 pm

Garth, I know I am going to get jumped on by the blog posters on this. They won’t bother to check my previous posts on call me some kind of realtor , RE pumper and the like. Still as bearish as I have always been and even more so now on RE but.,

Perhaps you can do a blog entry as to why you find so many self made millionaires in the GTA who have done so on RE and virtually none who have done so in the markets.

I know some of the reasons for sure but your perspective would be appreciated for sure

#141 KW T800 on 07.23.12 at 4:02 pm

Eastern Canadians call it a cottage.
Western Canadians call it a cabin.
Eastern Canadians see tar in the sand.
Western Canadians see oil in the sand.
Eastern Canadians drive little imported cars.
Western Canadians drive large North American trucks.
Eastern Canadians vote socialist.
Western Canadians vote free enterprise.
Eastern Canadians eat veggies, rabbit food.
Western Canadians eat meat and hunt.
We are different.

Eagle Bay you are correct on this one we are different on the West Coast.

#142 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 4:07 pm

#70 Backstep on 07.23.12 at 7:59 am
It is a slower time of the year typically (people go on vacation July/August, thus are not out house shopping), but I do think listings are accumulating more than usual….

#143 Stanley on 07.23.12 at 4:09 pm

Hi, Garth,

I am living in GTA. Recently I observe an interesting trend happened in Richmond Hill. The houses that are sold are usually over $600,000. Transactions below $600,00 are very few.

Any insight? Does it mean that the market is about to correct?


It means there is no defined mathematical correlation between wealth accumulation and intelligence. – Garth

#144 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 4:11 pm

#68 neo on 07.23.12 at 6:37 am
96 month financing, if at a low interest rate, is not all that bad if you think about it.

How is that different than someone that leases a car for 4 years, then buys it out (and by buying it out has to come up with a lump sum, most likely on a LOC, that they then pay back for 3 more years)?

New cars are damn expensive, and in either scenario it takes 7 years to pay it off. 0% financing for 7 years is actually a much better deal than leasing then buying out.

Yes, in both cases it is like renting for 7 years, but if you get another 7 years out of the vehicle, you’re laughing.

#145 Junius on 07.23.12 at 4:15 pm

#127 Bruce,

Welcome! For those of us who miss BPOE let me say it is good to have you here. Every village needs one of you.

#146 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 4:16 pm

#48 mousey on 07.22.12 at 11:51 pm
cool update, more people should post their OH experiences…

#147 jess on 07.23.12 at 4:19 pm

westernman regarding stupid are you a quant?

if we don’t take it someone else will (dumb money)


#148 nuke on 07.23.12 at 4:21 pm

if you are in Toronto, just join a a yacht or sailing club for $300 to $500 per year. great access to the water, cold beer and you can be downtown toronto in 10 minutes on your bike. also there is real wifi that works.

I ended up joining two, one for sailing and another for paddling. both are quiet and the view is wonderful.

also do a week up north of Bancroft for bass and walleye fishing with my son. best way to enjoy the summer.

owning a place is crazy!

#149 unbalanced on 07.23.12 at 4:49 pm

To # 104 Big Rider. Ya know, I like your style. I really do. My answer to you would be # 2. The clown avoids me!

#150 IM in C on 07.23.12 at 4:51 pm

Not doubting that in the past , people made money on Real Estate. Question is, will that trend continue?

#151 2centCdn on 07.23.12 at 4:54 pm

I know it’s off the cottage/vacation topic a little, but Brad Lamb was on Breakfast television here in Toronto this morning trying to keep some air pumped into the Canadian condo balloon. He threw out some wonderful facts (with pretty graphs) that laid out how condo values have done the PAST 4-5 years. It made good TV speak with the host eating up all the crap and adding some rediculous comments. I have to tell you though …. the guy has the best poker face I’ve seen in a long time. How he doesn’t have a massive coronary with what he knows is in progress. The sh!t that must be going through his mind right now with the number of projects he has in progress, the number of his own dollars that he has tied up and tens of millions of mortgage dollars he has his name signed to …… I give him credit, I would have dropped dead six month ago.

#152 IM in C on 07.23.12 at 4:58 pm

@147 Nuke
With Garth’s permission I will mention the 4 sailing clubs you are alluding to . They are, Westwood SC, St. Jamestown SC and Mooredale SC all located on Regatta Rd. and Toronto Island SC located on – Toronto Island. Most of the clubs are set up for single adults, and do not offer family memberships or accept minors as members (on this point I could stand corrected) Your discription of these clubs is fairly accurate! As a former member of one of the aformentioned clubs, I enjoyed many years of sailing -without owning a boat- while enjoying a summer cottage in downtown Toronto .

#153 Dividend Yield Investor on 07.23.12 at 5:01 pm

#140 KW T800

Want to know why there is a difference between the east, middle or west of Canada. It is simple, just as the U.S. is made up of different cultural regions so is Canada. Plus many of them are shared with the U.S.

Take a look at a map created by Colin Woodard it is very accurate and telling. These regions are not new and have been known about for over 200 years.

Here is the link.
Dividend Man


#154 Toronto_CA on 07.23.12 at 5:03 pm

#143 Bottoms_Up on 07.23.12 at 4:11 pm

New cars are expensive? I think cars have actually only gone up by inflation (source: a G&M article from May 2012) unless you went from a used Ford Tempo to a new BMW?

In any case, if you get 0% financing the car will just be marked up in price to reflect the interest. “Cash discount” is the key here, a few percent off the price if you don’t finance. Surely you know that, though?

Buy lightly used, maybe something coming off lease with low kms. If you buy new, pay it off in 3 years and drive it another 5 or so years at least (while doing the maintenance). Keep making car payments to yourself after it’s paid off so you can buy the next car in cash. Taking out a loan to buy a rapidly depreciating asset doesn’t make much financial sense unless you HAVE to do it.

I honestly am floored at 8 year car loans being used by so many Canadians today. I guess it makes sense but cars depreciate so quickly, after 3 years the loan will still be hugely underwater, no?

The insurers must be making a killing selling gap coverage.

I know this hasn’t much to do with housing, but in a way it just shows how loose and easy credit is wrecking havoc with our debtloads. In other news:


#155 Mithan on 07.23.12 at 5:32 pm

I was in Candle Lake, Saskatchewan a week ago and every single business had a “For sale” sign and I would venture to say about 25-35% of the Cottages were for sale. Makes you wonder.

and to reply to poster #149:
Of course people will make money off of real estate, after things crash and the fundamentals work out again.

#156 Roial1 on 07.23.12 at 5:59 pm

#98Yes, it exists!!! on 07.23.12 at 10:14 am

A REALTOR® ’s ethical obligations are based on moral integrity, competent service to clients and customers, and dedication to the interest and welfare of the public.


Sounds to me just like the “code” adhered to by the banksters.

Lots of great sounds but NO ENFORCEMENT! and no impartial regulater.

#157 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 07.23.12 at 6:13 pm

#79 No canaries this time around — “It’s (R/E) going to BOOM!!!”
— and —
#127 bruce — You two must be two extra Bruce’s from Monty Python’s Four Bruce’s skit! Nice to make your acquaintance.

#137 IM in C — Smart parents!

#158 IM in C on 07.23.12 at 6:19 pm

Hmm … cars with 6,7,8 year loans. Insurance companies are going to hate insuring those! Cars with more owing on them then what they can be sold for have a much higher frequency of being stolen, wrecked or torched !

#159 DonDWest on 07.23.12 at 6:26 pm

“It means there is no defined mathematical correlation between wealth accumulation and intelligence. – Garth”

That’s a rather large admission on your part. What happened? No longer worshiping the top 1%? Is that a slight voice of dissent against the current capitalist system that I hear?

It was about you. — Garth

#160 truth hammer on 07.23.12 at 6:53 pm

The ‘risk on’ mentality regardin Canadian NRG equities is so high that the market has entered into a phase of induced psychosis…..apparently the sky has fallen and the future is one of dim lights and cheap fabric…..as is the case in Japan these days…..so…the question is…how long will this last?

I don’t think forever will be the watch word going forward so I continue to buy NRG related issues……the timing is awfully scary…I remeber Jesse Livermore and his ‘market staying irrational’ comment….but the fundamentals vs the sentiment on NRG are so compelling….really.

I was woken up today with a bold act of M&A and had my small position in NXY jump 55% on an offer from the Chinese soveriegn wealth fund. That sure beats a preferred share return of 5%….but oh….the risk…the risk……..C’mon….do you really think the risk will last forever and we will will never value oil again?

#161 CleverFastFreddie on 07.23.12 at 7:14 pm

#28 Crazyfasteddie

Are you taking over from Squidly as Bob Truman’s stalker? “Crazy” is truly the operative word for you guys.

#162 Esoteric on 07.23.12 at 7:20 pm

@ 106

As someone who works in the credit department at a bank, I haven’t heard of any document to sign that allows a bank to access your CRA file.

Banks do however require a few years worth of tax returns to prove income.

#163 Hoof - Hearted on 07.23.12 at 7:22 pm

#48 mousey on 07.22.12 at 11:51 pm

The basement suite was stinky dank and the lovely tile floor was about as straight as Oscar Wilde (sorry Oscar).


So….let me guess…..there was as much chance of you and hubby buying as ” Anderson Cooper JR.”.

#164 CleverFastFreddie on 07.23.12 at 7:27 pm

#28 Crazyfasteddie

I checked your website, psychopath. You are one incredibly vulgar dude.

This ends here. — Garth

#165 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 07.23.12 at 7:35 pm

Straight From The Horse’s Mouth 2008 was manufactured, very profitable event; Con Ed Workers Ready for a scrap? Ten Italian Cities going broke? Lousy Economy? Join the military! QE3? More mist for the grill; Bankrupting Britain How Brussels works; Spain and Italy ban short selling.
2:01 clip George Orwell’s final warning; Putin “The wild card here, most certainly, is Israel, the leadership of which has this grim, almost apocalyptic obsession with regime change in Iran, which has to be preceded by regime change in Damascus, as the two countries have a mutual defense pact.” wrh.com; 0:57 clip Soylent Green is People — Mexicans are marching against their new president. Think passive, meek, boring Cdns. would do the same against Harper? James Holmes was on on hard pharma drugs, James Holmes and here. Also — Judge seals case “Now THAT is a red warning flag!” wrh.com; Iran First, there was Phoney Tony’s Dodgy Dossier on Iraq’s non-existent WMD, now Dumbkopf David’s Downing Street memo on Iran, and Recall Entebbe? Virgin Coconut Oil Better than regular coconut oil?

#166 TRT on 07.23.12 at 7:42 pm

A Reese’s chocolate bar has gone up in price. It is at $1.59 plus tax at the local 7-Eleven.

It was less than $0.99 a few years ago.

This bubble is going to burst… I’d hate to be the person hoarding the King Size bars! Income growth has not kept up with this so it is not sustainable in the long run. Furthermore, there are less kids nowadays than a few short years ago so demographics imply that there will be a crash. The Smart money has moved to grilled chicken and Soy milk…

I tell you, those convenience store employturds are Evil. Just like Apu from the Simpsons.

This will not end well.

#167 John on 07.23.12 at 7:55 pm

Freedom First wrote:

“I was at a get together of about a dozen men and women last night, and the topic of real estate and the global economy came up. The comments that the people there made, were ignorantly disturbing, and this was a crowd of people from their 30′s to their 50′s. I rarely say anything, when it these topics come up, but I did make a couple of what I thought were tactful comments, but I just got a reminder of how brainwashed, and in denial, many people are when it comes to finances, global or Canadian. ”

I hear what you’re saying about your group at that get together. The denial. But I’m reading this blog, and it’s not much better. Busting down the “housing” lie is a branch on a tree, nothing more.

What do you think of LIBOR as just one ( huge) example. How is that woven into “Canadian” real estate? Why do derivatives obliterate the concept of “market” at a local level?

You don’t get to claim that your friends are in denial while you yourself refuse to look at the big picture. Canada IS that big picture. It’s really hard to accept this, even though it’s now obvious.

I personally think it’s a process. It’s not logical. People can’t let in any kind of realities that suggest too big of a disintegration of their reality. Your friends, you, me and everyone else are sure to have this defence.

#168 TurnerNation on 07.23.12 at 7:58 pm

#120Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 1:19 pm

In my bookmarked condo search area, bordered by King West, Lake Ont., Spadina, Queen, I’ve noticed a listings explosion in the past 2 months’ time.
Realtors and sellers must be in a panic. 2011 pricing. We hardly knew ‘ya.

#169 neo on 07.23.12 at 8:13 pm


Committing 8 years to an asset whos value is cut in half after 3 years and after year 5 is out of warranty and repairs begin to pile up is STUPID!

Extend and pretend you are a baller with low monthly payments to get into a car you really can’t afford because you feel entitled to is a big problem in our society that is manifesting itself here. Very low interest rates always makes you feel “You are richer than you think”.

#170 bizznach on 07.23.12 at 8:15 pm

wow more and more trolls everyday.

#171 Daisy Mae on 07.23.12 at 8:16 pm

Helen on 07.23.12 at 9:54 am
Garh, is that true that HELOC will be fully eliminated some time in October- November this year? My pal mortgage broker said so.

It is untrue. — Garth


Curtailment is one thing. And something we can live with…to a degree. But a total ban on HELOCs smacks of dictatorship. There’s a limit to what the government can do.

They do, after all, work for us. LOL

#172 Mr Buyer on 07.23.12 at 8:24 pm

Fiber optic to the home (FTTH) for 99.99% of homes in all of Canada. Every home that has hydro should have FTTH internet at the very least to begin with. Wireless, phone line and even cable have issues fiber optic does not and contrary to suggestions, fiber optic has proven very durable (if not strung in tension) in countries that have used it widely. While cable can provide adequate service it labors under a business model that has co-opted high-speed internet penetration to protect other business interests. It is time for an independent internet only entity to be created that will employ the best and proven high speed technology that is fiber optic. Private enterprise has failed miserably in bringing the massive country of Canada into the high speed, broad band age and it is having a detrimental effect upon our economy. Video conferencing, remote learning, work from home are a few mundane things impacted by the present shoddy and capped service (never mind yet to be envisioned applications that result from the proven “if you build it they will come” maxim). This is a national infrastructure issue and these conglomerates have proven their intent over the past 2 decades. The feasting on the low hanging fruit and foisting of ancient and hobbled technology upon the people of Canada at huge expense should be brought to a close. The government of Canada should take action at the behest of Canadian voters next election. A good start would be to identify the lobbyists and money that has gone into holding Canada down and shackled our citizenry with sub-standard and outdated as well as hobbled technology. TV and telephone have served to protect their interests by securing adequate internet market share to bring development and implementation of technology to a stand still to protect TV and Television interests at the expense of Internet interests. This situation can be easily remedied through licensing. A crown corporation entitled The Canadian FTTH Initiative may be the way to go. Cheap, massive penetration and huge broad band is within reach and is only a matter of national will. Get private TV and Telephone out of the internet business, they are hurting our economy.

#173 Daisy Mae on 07.23.12 at 8:30 pm

#1`23 Winterpeg – “Wondering why we keep the cottage when there are so many other places to see in the summer….”


That’s just it. There’s a whole, wide world out there to see…so why limit yourself to the same experience, year after year?

I’d rather have an RV…altho’ they are ‘depreciating assets’ and in that sense, not a good investment…so maybe cruising or flying to and fro is the way to go?

#174 Tania on 07.23.12 at 8:41 pm

Wow. Cottage jealousy, I think. I always read this blog but have almost never sent comments. Can’t resist this time. My husband and I decided to buy a cottage back in 2005 (with advice from Garth at the time to go ahead). We also adhered to Garth’s principles in his little green book on real estate and purchased a little gem cabin in the right spot. We’d be able to sell today/tomorrow at a sweet little profit because the area is in such high demand with very little inventory on the market. We rent an apartment in TO and, at the time when we decided to buy a cottage it was a decision btw house in TO or cottage up nord. Decided on the cottage and have never looked back. Best decision we have ever made. We just lock the door to our apartment and go to our little piece of paradise whenever we feel like it. Not stupid enough to follow the cottage traffic – we choose our time and our routes for stress-free driving. Cost? Still way less than our friends who vacation once per year or every two years in Europe and spend $10k for two weeks and then go to the Carribean for another $5,000 when the snow flies. Seriously? Line ups at the airport, living out of a suitcase, hotels where God-knows-who-did-what on the bedspread, jet-lag, line-ups for tourist spots, $10 cups of coffee or water? No thanks. I can’t believe people fork over good money for all that crap. And you come home tired and broke. And those of you who enjoy summer in TO? Really? Do you have a sense of smell? It STINKS in the city, if you haven’t noticed. Its humid, hot and SMELLY. Who in their right mind enjoys club membership on Lake Ontario in Toronto? And what does that membership cost you?? We spend $2500 in taxes for the cottage; about $500 per year for hydro; $75 per year for a cord of firewood (dried, split and delivered); and $200 for a plumber who opens and closes for us; approximately $1,000 on gas to and fro. For less than $4,500 per year we can enjoy our place whenever we want – summer, Thanksgiving, Christmas, you name it – its just a drive away. Packing and unpacking?? Just leave clothes up there; put in a washer and dryer, etc – we don’t unpack anything except the groceries and LCBO purchases we make. And, the air is clean, smells fantastic, our well water is free and better than anything you’ve ever bought in a bottle. There’s an excellent hospital 10 minutes away with a helipad. Our neighbours and we often joke that if we ever need to go to the ER in TO, we’d just hop in the car and drive to the hospital at the cottage – we’d still see a doctor hours sooner than if we went to any hospital in the GTA (even factoring in the drive up north). Sure, we’ve spent $ on up-keep (new roof shingles, new deck) but guess what? You’ve all spent that on your house anyway. We dont’ have a house. We have a minimal up-keep cottage we love. At least at the end of 20 years, we’ll get back what we’ve put in. How about you guys who vacation in Europe, etc? Over 20 years, many of our friends will have spent $300,000 on “vacations” with nothing to show for it except photographs. I suspect that over 20 years, my husband and I will easily recoup that money (and much more – we could sell now for much more). If we decide to sell at that point, we will have had 20 years of the best experiences and most restful vacations and money in the bank to boot. However, we suspect we’ll retire up there like many of our neighbours. And turn it into a bunker modelled after Garth’s. Sorry, city-folks-counting-your-pennies-and-suffering-in-the-unbearble-stinky-humid-heat-of-TO, you just don’t know what you’re missing. Feel sorry for you.

#175 Canadian Watchdog on 07.23.12 at 9:26 pm

#167 TurnerNation

Yep. Here’s C01 listings going off the charts. http://postimage.org/image/4gkoxzmsj/

This is nothing. Once the average price hits 2008-2009 levels in 12-18 months then you’ll see listings explode.

#176 EIT on 07.23.12 at 10:46 pm


The rabbit hole has no bottom.


#177 Marshy on 07.23.12 at 10:55 pm

Tania @ 173

It sounds like you have found your own little piece of paradise and that you enjoy the your cabin very much so good for you. I owned a cabin that started out as a dream but turned into a huge pain in the ass. After 2 break ins, numerous maintenance issues, loud parties on long weekends by teenagers and twenty somethings, bugs galore, etc I decided to sell and thank goodness someone bought it. Cottage jealousy … not so much…. more like what another former cottage owner told me … “the 2 happiest days in the life of a cabin owner are the day it is purchased followed by the day it is sold”

In my case, a hot winter vacation trumps a lake vacation every time. If I ever do get the urge to go to lake country I can always rent something.

#178 Ryan Tynd on 07.24.12 at 12:17 am

Tania you sound idiotic. Do you have any idea what kind of doctors exist in Cottage hospitals? The worst kind, after my friend’s nightmare experience at a Cottage hospital – I would surely drive to Toronto any day to a proper hospital than be stuck in a cottage ‘hospital’ if you can call it that.

And yeah would travel to Europe today while am younger and active, and when I’m 70 can go live the cottage life – and be bored as hell.

Because thats what cottage life is in Canada, going to the same friggin spot every weekend to hang out with the same boring people, oh yeah thats living life baby

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

#179 RayB on 07.24.12 at 9:06 am

Hi Garth
This was spoken about on the CBC this morning with the broadcasters reassuring the viewers that they have nothing to worry about. The article itself has no data to back up what was said a very weak argument I would say.

#180 jess on 07.24.12 at 4:11 pm

Hedges also describes the difference between truth and news. “The really great reporters — and I’ve seen them in all sorts of news organizations — are management headaches because they care about truth at the expense of their own career,”

Hedges on Capitalism’s “Sacrifice Zones”: Communities Destroyed for Profit


#181 Andrew on 07.24.12 at 5:52 pm

Let’s see: $500-600K, minimum to buy a decent house in the GTA. Only the top 1% can afford to spend that much again on a cottage, without going into debt (I’ll bet you that most of the people buying cottages have massive amounts of debt). All for the privilege of driving on 400, 401 or 35/115 in long weekend traffic congestion, no thank you.