The downsizing

boomer

Bring me your calcified and blocked intestines. Your thirsty underwear. Your low T. Your slipped chests and fallen roosters. Your cataracts, piles and fresh lumps. Your wrinkles, your Stones and Doors tapes, and your failed dreams.

Yes, it’s Boomer Week here at GreaterFool.

Despised as few other generations, even by the petulant offspring they so lovingly helicoptered, the diseased masses are set to have their final social revenge as they munch through health care budgets, drive their Kias into bus shelters and crash property values. There are, after all, more of these wrinklies than any other age group and the impact of nine million people, half of whom can no longer see their toes, will be palpable.

So far this week, lots of evidence the Boomers as a group have managed to pretty much flip out when it comes to their financial security. The original house hornies, a staggering 78% of them own real estate, and yet half believe they’ll run out of money ten years after retiring and four in ten don’t have a hundred grand put away. Generation fail.

My thesis is that a ton of these former hippies, yuppies and Dinks will have absolutely no option over the next decade but to liquidate the only asset most of them have. Their homes. Sure, some will tough it out and go Purina, others pull a Gordon Pape and eat their equity, and others will trade places with their unemployed genius offspring in the basement. But a whack will, of necessity, bail and rent or downsize – enough to make their children wish they’d never heard of real estate.

For irrefutable proof of this, I call upon my good friend Phil Soper, CEO of Royal LePage Real Estate. This week that massive media machine set out to debunk my views that a Boomer meltdown into Springsteen-induced goo would actually negatively affect real estate. The result was predictable.

Yesterday just about every major news organization capable of copying a media release verbatim carried the same story: “Nearly half of baby boomers have no intention of downsizing,” said the Regina Leader Post. “Nearly half of baby boomers don’t plan on downsizing,” said the Globe and Mail. “Nearly half of baby boomers have no intention of downsizing,” said the Calgary Herald. “Almost half of baby boomers say they’re not interested in downsizing,” said the Montreal Gazette. See my point? LePage knows its stuff. The mainstream media is laconic, malleable and going deservedly bankrupt.

Anyway, let’s get to the gist. What the real estate marketer’s survey found was that 40% of Boomers plan at some point to move to another residence, and of those 43% want a house of similar size. Hmm. That sure looks like 17% of boomers in general have no plans to downsize, which is not exactly the “nearly half” the newspapers splashed in their headlines. (But it is almost identical to the headline on LePage’s media release. That’s, like, so uncanny.)

Furthermore, of those 40% who do plan to move, LePage found that 54% plan to downsize. Now I’m confused. Is 54% of 40% big enough to be nearly half of nine million, when 17% have no plans to downsize? Or is the Globe wrong?

Explain this, okay Phil? “Baby Boomers are the wealthiest generation in Canadian history. They live in large homes with ample space for their many possessions. They love their garages and their yards. This study clearly indicates that contrary to popular belief, most Boomers do not intend to downsize anytime soon.”

So there you go. I’m glad we put the one to bed.

Before I run off to check my catheter, one more thing. The latest numbers have just been released by the once-mighty homebuilders of the GTA. New home sales crashed again in January, down a stunning 34.9% from the same period a year ago. Of the 21,000 new, vacant condos in Toronto, it looks like 686 found owners. Interest in low-rise homes cratered.

The builders are blaming the government. Saying current levels of housing starts are almost a thousand below the long-term average, the builders assert: “This is a direct result of reduced affordability and choice in the low-rise sector and illustrates the effect of public policy on the market.”

Yes, it’s just terrible: Five-year mortgages at 2.99%. Home occupancy with just 5% down. Government-backed home loan insurance. Federal first time home buyers tax credit. BC first time new home buyer bonus. The RRSP Home Buyers Plan. HST new housing rebate. Ontario and Toronto Land Transfer tax credit. Ontario Home Ownership Savings Plan.

Have you ever seen such a torrent of giveaways? If anything, the real estate industry should be on its knees before the altar of public policy.

Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be.

203 comments ↓

#1 None on 02.26.13 at 9:45 pm

Screw it : I’m going for it.

First.

Great blog, I really enjoy it.

#2 guelphstudent on 02.26.13 at 9:50 pm

New low rise sales crashed even more, by 50% in the GTA to be exact. I am wondering when the prices are going to fall, as my girlfriend is getting itchy to buy something…

#3 Smoking Man on 02.26.13 at 9:51 pm

2+2 = 5

Now if we gave 4 the value of 5 and 5 the value of 4. Now say we stared teaching this to kids at 4 years old. Then 12 to 20 years of school. During which we taught them never question the teacher, ie Authority, and believe everything authority says, including TV, celebrities, cops, politicians, and people who look good in suites. Now say this generation becomes teachers, and they stretch it a bit more now 2+2 =6.

Then you are left with a generation that can’t balance a check book, will spend 500k on a tiny condo, there parents can’t help them as they were washed in round 1
They will spend thousands on university text books, and teachers and yellow highlighters memorizing and regurgitating. Obeying. When million times more free info available on line….2+2 = insanity….

The stats in the USA new construction came out today so blatantly a lie and yet, MSM pumping, the herd believing. Algo’s buying. OUCH, Just like when here in Canada we say Real Estate will go up for ever.

Made a bad mistake in my evaluation of the usa housing market. I missed the obvious.

The Herd…

I tried to do a Gartho. Just the facts and stats……

Ouch is all I can say…….

#4 Mocha on 02.26.13 at 9:55 pm

Surrey is full of those little carts from today’s pic, only here they belong to the metal scavengers and are usually covered so that passerby can’t see what’s cargo they are carrying.

#5 claudius emperor on 02.26.13 at 9:56 pm

Phis Soper says:
Baby Boomers are the wealthiest generation in Canadian history
————————————–
66% of them plan to work after 65.
Because they are ‘whealthy’.

#6 Rob on 02.26.13 at 9:59 pm

Sales have dropped but I dont think reality will kick in until RE prices drop a lot. Just a matter of waiting.

#7 TurnerNation on 02.26.13 at 10:00 pm

Here I sit broken hearted; tried to Short but only started.

#8 Inglorious Investor on 02.26.13 at 10:03 pm

“Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be”

Very clever turner phrase.

#9 Gladiator on 02.26.13 at 10:10 pm

The RE market being a marginal one, even if a couple of million houses come onto market due to wrinklies, it will be a disaster, well, a good buying opportunity for many.
See, a fly in a spider net is a disaster for the fly, but also lunch for the spider.

#10 Inglorious Investor on 02.26.13 at 10:13 pm

See what I mean about the media? Spin. Lies. Bovine Excrement.

Not too sure about today, but Italians used to commonly refer to the news as “propaganda.” Canadians can learn something from that.

#11 Paully on 02.26.13 at 10:21 pm

I love your last line today!

#12 Uh Oh Canada on 02.26.13 at 10:25 pm

I know of a boomer who’s downsizing to Costa Rica. Two open houses and only one person showed up for the second one. Ouch!

#13 Chaddywack on 02.26.13 at 10:26 pm

But I thought that every Boomer sale in Vancouver and Toronto would be offset by a rich Mainlander…..that’s what my REALTOR® told me 3 years ago!!!! Say it ain’t so Garth ;)

#14 AK on 02.26.13 at 10:30 pm

Speaking of The Doors, this song fits in with todays subject.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSUIQgEVDM4

#15 lee on 02.26.13 at 10:30 pm

I think what Royal Lepage proved is 50 per cent of BOOMERS will sell. By the way, isn’t Garth a wrinkly yet?

#16 john on 02.26.13 at 10:33 pm

Hey Garth, did you ever win that personal finance blog survey thingy?

#17 DonDWest on 02.26.13 at 10:34 pm

#3 Smoking Man

Unfortunately, being right is often less profitable than being wrong, unless you’re part of a select chosen group of people.

If you’re one of the few among the common rabble who understands 2+2=4; you’ll suffer social ostracism. Difficult to turn a profit when you have no customers, are a loner, or you end up dead.

#18 Blasé on 02.26.13 at 10:36 pm

nothing on the big banks earnings?

#19 Timing is Everything on 02.26.13 at 10:36 pm

Garth, you forgot the various (and expanding) property tax deferral programs…

Currently, the Land Tax Deferment Act allows eligible homeowners who financially support a child under age 18 to defer their property taxes. Budget 2013 [BC] expands this program to allow an eligible homeowner who financially supports a child aged 18 or over to defer taxes if the child is enrolled in an educational institution or is disabled.

#20 Jamaican_Gal on 02.26.13 at 10:41 pm

“Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be”

Good one. Yea mon…

#21 Tim on 02.26.13 at 10:42 pm

In many places it doesn’t make much sense to sell a hour and buy a townhome or condo that is 70 percent of the cost of the house, as you have to factor in monthly condo fees, many of which are $300-$400 per month. Why would someone want to leave a well-built older house with a solid foundation for one of the many poorly built and often leaky condos that are often crammed together with little green space, or, worse, stacked on top of each other? Who would trade land for a characterless box in the sky? Construction quality in many areas of the lower mainland has deteriorated and cheaper materials are being used. This boom has created a bunch of hacks who undercut qualified trades people. I wouldn’t buy a new condo. I’d much rather a house.

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees?

#22 KG on 02.26.13 at 10:47 pm

Isn’t it a crime to spread misinformation. What’s the motive – political considerations or advertisement money ?

#23 meslippery on 02.26.13 at 10:49 pm

In my day I wanted out of the house at a young age.
Tired of making out in a pinto.
That is not the case t.98 per hroday.
Kid will get the house when I die.
So if She wants to live in the basement with her own
door in the basement and toes the line well.
We share cable internet hydro.
Saving money all the way around.

My Wife was earning $9.98 per hour in the early 80s
my Daughter is earning $ 10.25 per hour in 2013.
30 years no raise…. No wonder they live at home.
Yes both unskilled labour.
You do what you can.
Me I am a transport truck driver no raise since 1999
But I did get to enjoy pay cuts.

#24 Toronto_CA on 02.26.13 at 10:52 pm

So are we at 30+ months of new high-rise inventory in the GTA now? Isn’t anything over 5 months a “buyers” market? Isn’t there like 50,000 units being constructed right now (although hopefully most of those are already “sold” to speculators/flippers).

I read somewhere in the 2008 crash Miami had 62 months of inventory for condos, so I guess Toronto is halfway there!

#25 DJB on 02.26.13 at 10:52 pm

I was hoping for a retort on that survey..

#26 Devore on 02.26.13 at 10:53 pm

#109 Shea

The contract keeps referring back to plan number of the blueprints. There is no actual reference to square footage.

That’s what you agreed to, so you either live with it, or get a very good real estate lawyer to weasel yourself out, but historically chances of either canceling the deal or getting compensation are roughly 0.

#27 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.26.13 at 10:59 pm

WTF is that to the extreme left of the blog photo

(Looks like skeletal remnants of the walker’s owner)

PS :don’t see any KIA’s in the photo ….. next best thing is LADA’s …..yippee kay ay !

#28 Ralph Cramdown Ⓤ on 02.26.13 at 10:59 pm

Phil Soper can say whatever he wants, as long as my dividends keep coming. I finally got around to reading the report Garth talked about yesterday. Startling numbers. Here:
http://www.getsmarteraboutmoney.ca/en/research/Our-research/Pages/2013-Home-equity-as-a-source-of-retirement-income.aspx

I bought a luxobarge last fall from a boomer mortgage broker in Abbotsford. He had a nice place with a big 2 1/2 car garage, but told he was downsizing to a place in Chilliwack with no garage. He didn’t sound happy about it at all. I bought the car for 60% of asking.

Oh, and here’s some red meat for the wingnuts:
http://www.agr.gc.ca/cb/index_e.php?s1=n&s2=2011&page=n111104

#29 a prairie dawg on 02.26.13 at 11:03 pm

The matching topic and picture had me from the beginning. lol

Let’s turn their oh so positive RE spin around:

“Nearly half of baby boomers don’t plan on downsizing” actually means a slight MAJORITY of baby boomers WILL downsize.

And the other super positive “almost half” of them that don’t “plan” on it, won’t all get their wishes either. Some will be delusional to the end and lose it all. Some will survive. But sorry, not everyone’s “plans” will work out. Plans are great until they stop working. And some will be forced to change their plans.

So in all likelihood somewhere between 50-70% will downsize voluntarily, or be forced to.

And in a tightening economy by the way.

Yeah.that.won’t.have.any.effect.on.prices.at.all.

#30 Retired Boomer - WI on 02.26.13 at 11:06 pm

Rolling a joint might be just the thing for pain relief, but i digress.

Where do those stats that “Four in Ten Boomers have saved up less than $100,000” ?? 78% OWN a HOME!!!

There is your $100,000 easy, unless the dam thing is mortgaged to the rafters- a possibility i grant.

Four in Ten might not a hundred Grand liquid, er maybe but even that sounds desperately high -40% are mindless dolts?

The crowd I run with most have between 200k and 2 mil. Yes, they’re Americans., legal, and illegal, educated & non-educatred, smokers and nonsmokers, drinkers, and non-drinkers.

Mostly, smokers & drinkers who really don’t give a Fat one if they live to be 80.

Smoking Man take note: the wealthiest never went to college, we barely finished high school….go figure.

Hey, it’s all downhill from here baby!

#31 espressobob on 02.26.13 at 11:11 pm

Looks like some of these stubborn boomers will need help. Some lifestyle changes, and I will hand it over to Bubba.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxUlQv4qg-s

#32 Sebee on 02.26.13 at 11:12 pm

Seriously…seniors will probably drive an early model Kia. So I ask you…what kind of a damage can a senior do with an early model Kia?

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:KIA_MIXTE_BIKE.jpg

#33 Tyrell Pronghorn on 02.26.13 at 11:16 pm

#21 Tim on 02.26.13 at 10:42 pm

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees?

————–

You may wish to re-visit how you define “affordable”.

Otherwise, I agree slightly, as from what I’ve seen the spread on cost between a SFD and townhouse/apt. is about $100K. Give or take.

For me, in Victoria, an “affordable” $350K SFD still takes close to $2000/month to carry, factoring in taxes, insurance, utilities, and upkeep, etc. (which is a lot for the average Victoria salary – 70K)

This is comparable in total cost for a $250K townhouse (which doesn’t exist yet, unless you want to live in Sooke or maybe Bangford), or squeeze the family into a 900 sqft apartment.

Go to areas outside of Victoria and the average income likely drops 20-25%. Just a guess, but folks I meet from up-island or the interior don’t make a heck of a lot.

Yeah, so for a wrinkly to sell and downsize to/in Victoria and feel like they’ve gained I’m guessing they’d have to sell for at least 500K plus, probably closer to 750K plus.

#34 Frizzzz on 02.26.13 at 11:18 pm

Rotten freaking boomers….. dawdling around in their Kias.

#35 Mr Buyer on 02.26.13 at 11:24 pm

#3 Smoking Man on 02.26.13 at 9:51 pm
the herd believing
………………………………………………………….
This a continual cornerstone of many of your assertions. What exactly the herd is believing becomes more and more obvious. That is the operative phrase of late…more and more obvious.

#36 Mike on 02.26.13 at 11:26 pm

#30 Retired Boomer – WI

Garth, please address this one or provide credible reference/source to your findings. I know quite a few boomers who are sitting pretty as well with regular jobs.

Either you are making up or just doing the same as Phil.

Yesterday’s post sourced the financial data. The LePage report (I linked to it) sources the home ownership data. Try a little research. — Garth

#37 Notta Sheeple on 02.26.13 at 11:30 pm

“…This is a direct result of reduced affordability and choice in the low-rise sector and illustrates the effect of public policy on the market…..”
———————————————–

Funny…..RealTurds, Clone Builders, and Banksters never complained about that same ‘public policy’ that induced a decade of bidding wars, the same crack cocaine of easy money they are now so desperately facing withdrawal symptoms from.

#38 Lily joe on 02.26.13 at 11:35 pm

Roll a joint ;) you are a true maverick!

#39 Fleabitten Monkey on 02.26.13 at 11:37 pm

In this case, is it really relevant what the boomers say they are “planning” to do in advance of their reality coming around the corner? We’ll see how things change once the consequences hit them in the face.

#40 Smoking Man on 02.26.13 at 11:42 pm

Waiting by the phone…….

The tension, the confirmation, the all clear.. The bad news.. The so so news The good news Longest week of our lives……

Never anticipated this. Thought it would be me first.

Totally messes me up…..

#41 TurnerNation on 02.26.13 at 11:43 pm

“Stones and Doors tapes.”

Tapes?
I have Led Zep II on vinyl and wasn’t around back then, even.

#42 Rob Smith on 02.26.13 at 11:43 pm

Smoking Man

are they allowing you to use computers at the aylum now?

great post Garth, you should start clearing this blog out with wackos like smoking man and his ilk, they are really making a mockery of the message.

#43 Mr Buyer on 02.26.13 at 11:47 pm

#21 Tim on 02.26.13 at 10:42 pm
houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k
………………………………………………………….
300 to 400K is not in fact affordable especially in small town Canada

#44 CalVulture on 02.26.13 at 11:53 pm

Wrinkle Solution No1.

http://www.jsmineset.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/clip_image00118.jpg

#45 stage1dave on 02.27.13 at 12:02 am

In defence of boomers; by a more literate scribe than I: http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/02/22/in-defense-of-baby-boomers/ And OK, it’s from an Americans perspective, but unfortunately many Canadians may shortly be in their position.

Normally, I would expand on these points, but numerous bidding wars on PSA graded OPC stuff has worn me out for a few days…my fingers hurt!

Damned Ebay…

#46 Steven Rowlandson on 02.27.13 at 12:02 am

People are born crying, live complaining and die disappointed. Boomers are no exception.

#47 solex on 02.27.13 at 12:06 am

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees?

————–

You may wish to re-visit how you define “affordable”.
———

Well said. What’s on the market for 300-400k at the moment in the mid island area is way overpriced. Shabby BC boxes built in the 80s or new rice crispy box crap built in the last 5 years.

This is in an area where the average income is around 50k if you’re lucky.

I can afford 350k on a house but why should I? This area is way overpriced and a correction is due.

As an aside, Garth I’vebeen looking at property in Nova Scotia. You can buy a beautiful character home on 5 acres for $80k… what gives? Thinking I mihgt have chosen the wrong island to set up business on…

#48 Nemesis on 02.27.13 at 12:08 am

“Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be.”

You’ve never enjoyed a CamberwellCarrot, OldPol!?

http://youtu.be/PObknmaH9po

PS – my compliments to the BunkerGeeks… whom, I’ve noticed, have clandestinely added a line of code or two, here and there, in the interests of intellectual property…

#49 Island Girl on 02.27.13 at 12:13 am

Boomers will downsize as sure cost of the house won’t really change but their declining health will force them. When they can’t climb stairs, mow lawns and do yard work and home maintenance, they won’t have much choice.

My parents are looking at moving from their nicely little rented home to an equally little rented condo, just to get away from the yard work and snow removal. And they are still healthy and in their fifties!

#50 Bob on 02.27.13 at 12:17 am

You Don’t Know How It Feels

So Let’s Get To The Point

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TlBTPITo1I

#51 Chuck on 02.27.13 at 12:18 am

Garth,

If 78% of all boomers own homes, and 40% of all boomers plan to move, then that means you need to add 38% (70 – 40) to the 17% figure (i.e. 43% of 40%). Which is 55%, i.e. more than half. So the papers aren’t incorrect in their figures, just in their optimism.

Read the release. The universe is Boomers with houses. Numbers stand. — Garth

#52 blok existentialist on 02.27.13 at 12:29 am

Downsizing … yes, it’s starting. But not completely in the way I expected.
I moved from the city to a tiny unspoiled B.C. community (with a hospital in no danger of ever closing due to location — I reasoned that would be a huge plus down the road). I was 15 years ahead of the herd, anticipating retirees flocking en masse to rural havens of safety and cheap living in the future. (Also, I was broke.)
The population dropped and dropped and dropped for a decade. Most of the young people left. I got a crummy job, but a highly SECURE crummy job with hidden fringe benefits (grocery store — all the expired cheetos I can eat).
Renting IS the smart thing to do in the city, but not here. There were lots of small houses for rent 10 years ago, but they’ve all been bought as homes in the past two years. And, like almost everywhere, the duplexes and apartments that were built specifically for the rental market are junk.
After running into Garth’s blog over two years ago, I got off my ass. Knowing I was going to outlive it, I sold my original aging house for lot price in three days ($36,500). I grabbed the last of the good small houses the next day, beating another buyer out by one hour. ($80,000 for a 3 bedroom 958 sq. ft. late ’60s bungalow with many updates, including a new roof, new windows and 2×6 walls.)
Lots of beautiful property with good houses and acreage left here, but I wanted to free up cash for investment, not sink it into a perpetually more expensive lifestyle. The higher-priced stuff (dirt-cheap by city standards; it’s like money/cigarettes in prison here) is now being snapped up and the local population is continuing to increase steadily. People began by moving here from Alberta, using us as a bedroom community, but they are now coming from Vancouver (and Ontario, for some inexplicable reason … still haven’t figured that one out).
Interestingly, only the ones from Vancouver are not retirees or soon-to-be retirees. They are from 35- to 50-somethings who simply cannot manage the economic burden of living in Vancouver any longer. There are no good jobs here, by the way, unless you bring one with you or plan on farming. (I’m sure not giving up my cheetos.) The Vancouverites are all taking their chances by coming here. Significant that things have gotten so unsustainabledown south that they still figure it’s a better risk.
So the Vancouver boomers aren’t heading north (still hanging onto their pricey housing), but the generation directly under them is starting to flee.
Hah! Maybe the Vancouver boomers are moving to ONTARIO!
… and never mind where I live … I don’t need the Kelowna bikers moving here any time soon.

#53 FleetwoodBoy on 02.27.13 at 12:30 am

Just an update on what is happening in my area….
I’m currently renting in boomer land Fleetwood in Surrey BC. Motst of the houses around me are 2,500 sq ft to 4,000 sq ft on lots of around 7,000 sq ft. Prices range from about 650k to 850k. Beyond are $1m+ houses and two large developments of $300k townhouses.
Been waiting to buy for a while but holding my nerve. Not many properties come up for sale in the immediate area (15 min walking radius), and last year a couple for $650k sold within a month of being listed.
Now this year, there are three houses on my street for sale (850k, 659k, 640k) and one around the corner ($649k). The one at $850 has been on since October last year and I’ve not seen much action there, while the other three have listed this year. I’m going to track these carefully but I don’t think they will shift at these prices – a really nice house on the street was listed for $649k for about 4 months from July onwards last year until it was taken off the market.

#54 Roial1 on 02.27.13 at 12:32 am

Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be.

Is this now to be “lian Brian’s” Excuse for forgetting to pay the taxes on the 3 big ones he “found” in the paper bags?
You guys where “rollin” in the parl. library after question period.

I knew there was a good reason that the books NEVER ballanced. (a caucaus full of giggles I’d bet)

At least WE sat around and listened to weird sounds at night in the woods.

#55 Mel on 02.27.13 at 12:36 am

Just to add to the ‘experts’ predictions. Media here on the West Coast informed us that Boomers children are NOT moving out from the parents home, thus, no need to sell or downsize.

When I heard that, I just about got hit by a Asteroid. If you think that having adult children at home is a good thing because they are not able financially to buy their parents house, then we are really…. in trouble. We have no economic future under these conditions.

I stopped listening to their bull long time ago. If you listened to their expert advice, you would, and will loose money.

#56 simple reader on 02.27.13 at 12:42 am

too much talking about a meaningless survey…

“planing” is not their strong suit, else their situation would be waayyy better. so don’t pay much attention to this survey. the reality will bring down all this naive plans to keep their house forever… c’mon, haven’t you all seen how expensive life is today???

#57 Tim on 02.27.13 at 12:47 am

RE #47
I can afford 350k on a house but why should I? This area is way overpriced and a correction is due.

As an aside, Garth I’vebeen looking at property in Nova Scotia. You can buy a beautiful character home on 5 acres for $80k…

————————
Overpriced compared to the Nova Scotia, where the weather sucks for 10 months of the year and there are no jobs?

Spoken as a poorly-traveled man. — Garth

#58 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 02.27.13 at 12:49 am

Sorry Garth had to euthanize Dr. Wayne…( and stuff him like Lenin in the RE Hall of Fame)

Kinda miss the senile olde a$$hole.

#59 edmontoness on 02.27.13 at 12:53 am

No matter how you look at it, buying is better than renting in the long run.

I guess we owners just have to jack up the rent prices, so these blogs can shut down

Home $ crash is no good for anyone, not even for renters with cash on the side line ready to purchase

#60 edmontoness on 02.27.13 at 12:55 am

and don’t you get bored, reading / writing about this everyday…Boomers, House price, $ earned vs. $ saved…

#61 Retired Boomer - WI on 02.27.13 at 1:09 am

#40 Smoking Man-

From your post I infer you got bad news on your dear wife’s health. If true, I feel for you old boy, its never easy.

#41 Turner Nation-

LOVE my vinyl! No tapes, a few CD’s (they’re easy but…)
but, hey I came up on shellac 78’s at first, then 45’s still my favorite format, LP’s ok, but a pain for me to handle.
Only one good hand, that slows up the handling if an LP
correctly.
Hey, I am an earlier Boomer, what did you expect?

Garth – did some research, the stats you cite are accurately stated. US numbers similar (gasp). Our problem is our government pissed away all that excess social security money investing in non-negotiable US Bonds, rather than investing it in a broad based equity index fund for our later use, when the social security surpluses are depleted.
We have President Johnson to blame for this change, and everyone who followed him up to the present guy.

The moral of this tale: NEVER trust elected officials to do the right things. Our society has not lived within its means for a long time. Credit tastes good, payback is bitter.

#62 tb on 02.27.13 at 1:18 am

I agree with #51 Chuck.

The percentage of boomers who own and don’t plan on moving needs to be added to the percentage who will not downsize when they do. If they’re not moving, they’re not downsizing.

#63 visorman30 on 02.27.13 at 1:21 am

I guess the fact that more Boomers are not on solid financial ground and that we are now entering the peak period of 65+ Boomers does that mean that we should expect a number of homes to really be liquidated in 5-10 years from now?

As you’ve said, more of these Boomers are going to work later than ever and they will outlive their savings. But I feel a lot of them that have stopped working would need to see the retirement funds drop before they liquidate the house.

If anything, the macro demographic factor has a larger influence of the suppressing any recovery of house prices (normally 10 years) rather than accelerating it. Does this interpretation make sense? And how does it hang with the US experience?

#64 Dr. WAYNE on 02.27.13 at 1:29 am

58 Grim Reaper/Crypt Speculator on 02.27.13 at 12:49 am

Kinda miss the senile …

====================

Up yours … I’m no where near senile …

#65 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.27.13 at 1:33 am


Re: The first para. Is it not easier to say this?

“Before I run off to check my catheter, one more thing. There are, after all, more of these wrinklies than any other age group and the impact of nine million people, half of whom can no longer see their toes, will be palpable. Speaking of knees, for Boomers rolling a joint is not what it used to be.”

Phil’s jaw-dropping mathematics are somewhat off kilter. Were he plotting a U-turn on a hairpin bend with a super oil tanker, it would have broken by now.
*
Iran Guess who wants their banks? Same ones who took Libya’s; One good turn deserves another; Italy rejects austerity; Three decades The value of money vs. everyday goods has declined 67%; Beginning of gold confiscation? Big Brother is trying to get guns, gold and dumb the herd down; Vomitorium, aka LIBOR explained with one pic and write-up; IMF In order to keep economies going, harsher austerity methods will be bought in, leading to more revolutions and riots; EZone Italy is a big cream puff; Blackmail Sign your pensions over, or no more wage hikes; Building Home demand flies; Banxters Great pay and bonuses; China overheating? and and Renmibi; Austerity doesn’t work, but the Republicans want it; Dreamworks laying off.
*
Children’s Shots 1940, 1980 and 2012; Men Pathetic is too good a word to be used here; Toilet humor A very good invention. Who is supposed to use it? Argo Dirty Tricks from Hollywood — stoke the hype against Iran; Dr. Hoof-Hearted — If this happens (probably won’t), it would sure put the cat among the pigeons! Plus — Front Yard food gardens and Govt. destroys food Your comment (#133 in prior post) was right on; McVitie’s Chocolate Digestives don’t contain horse meat, and Burger sales slump, plus GE salmon found in China; Five Nuke Carriers Remember Pearl Harbor? 22:10 clip “Long before WW2, the myth of six million was already being used to garner sympathy and political support for Jewish interests. Fool me once … UPDATE: A reader went over to the New York Times and confirmed the existence of one of the articles in the video above.” wrh.com, and here is the second link. Looming Cuts = Mass release of illegals; Contaminated 90% of French wines; Bill H.R. 748 Draft (18 – 24 yr. olds).

#66 Saskatoon-Living on 02.27.13 at 1:40 am

It’s all good in SK:

http://www.thestarphoenix.com/business/says+housing+costs+manageable/8015696/story.html

#67 Dave on 02.27.13 at 2:02 am

This was a good read…great opening paragraph

My thinking is that the segment of the boomer generation that are currently living in these large homes will continue to stay in their house until a much later age then previous generations. I do not believe there will be a mass exodus of boomers downsizing for quite a while…

Boomers are working later into life then ever before. This is a trend that I am positive will continue into the forseeable future. I bet in a few more years you’ll see retirement age at 70-72.

Hey Garth – why don’t you celebrate boomer week by adjusting your margins to allow for more words per line. A lot of squinty boomers will appreciate being able to read your posts a little easier…

#68 futureexpatriate on 02.27.13 at 2:07 am

You’re a traitor to your generation!! ;P

#69 juno on 02.27.13 at 2:09 am

The baby boomer are still the majority. As they die off they will not be the voting majority.

As year passes, they will slow pass away, just like the vets of WWII.

One thing Canadian have to ask. How are we every going to fund health care and OAS. When the working young/poor can barely feed themselves.

In 10 years they will no longer be the majority and the younger generation will be taking their revenge on the old. There will be remorse because the baby boomers have left them with huge debt, enslave the young to fund them into the golden years. There will be no regrets when the life support system is cut off.

#70 Oceanside on 02.27.13 at 2:12 am

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees
_____________________________________________

Well said, once being involved with a strata council was enough for us. The only houses that are selling mid Island are priced in the mid $300,000 range and they are selling at that price, precious little once you get over $400K

#71 aggie on 02.27.13 at 2:57 am

@@16 John, re that personal finance survey thingy…

It’s still active on the Modest Money blog, where Jeremy says the voting will continue until he announces the results on Canada Day.

You can place your vote anytime at http://www.modestmoney.com/top-canadian-finance-blogs-2013/

I guess you could say that Garth’s not doing too badly. Here are the top five as of tonight:

The Greater Fool (85%, 3,155 Votes)
Canadian Couch Potato (7%, 264 Votes)
Gail Vaz-Oxlade (3%, 118 Votes)
Canadian Budget Binder (3%, 102 Votes)
Brighter Life (2%, 82 Votes)

#72 Other side of the pond on 02.27.13 at 3:02 am

If these boomers who own large homes get desperate they can always rent out the basement and move their loafing kids upstairs with them. I can´t see them opting for much smaller digs unless the $/sq. ft justifies doing so.

#73 Devore on 02.27.13 at 3:06 am

#21 Tim

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees?

Someone who needs to be within spitting distance of a hospital, perhaps?

That said, most places in the middle of nowhere are still “affordable”. They are “affordable”, because most who might want to live in them find themselves lacking a source of income.

#74 Ronaldo on 02.27.13 at 3:25 am

#52 Bloc – sure sounds like Creston.

#75 Devore on 02.27.13 at 3:27 am

#29 a prairie dawg

“Nearly half of baby boomers don’t plan on downsizing” actually means a slight MAJORITY of baby boomers WILL downsize.

Of course that is the only way to read it. “Don’t plan on downsizing” is merely code for “don’t wish to”. Well, I wish to win the lottery, but I don’t think that will happen. In fact, a survey from a year ago found a third of Canadians were rather hoping to win the lottery in order to be able to retire. Oh, here it is

http://www.thestar.com/business/personal_finance/spending_saving/2012/11/06/a_third_of_canadians_counting_on_lottery_win_to_retire.html

If wishes were horses…

#76 Piccaso on 02.27.13 at 4:41 am

Sure, some will tough it out and go Purina

ROTFLMFAO… That’s good !!

#77 bubu on 02.27.13 at 6:22 am

Boomers are not willing to downsize maybe, but in many situations they will be forced to, unless they can afford a private gardener and housekeeper.
I know several older age couples (and two singles), still living in their 3, 4 bedroom or larger homes.
They too were not willing to downsize.
But they can’t keep up with the house anymore; or they are having trouble of using the stairs.
They are now talking about downsizing to a more manageable size home.
Many more will be forced to downsize for exactly those reasons.
The legs go, often the mind goes – and the house goes.

#78 Rob aka Captain and Mrs Slow on 02.27.13 at 7:13 am

Hey fellow blog dogs, if you’re looking for the other side, not the debate but the poor sod who has to build those condos go no futher than Blue Collar Workman (no ladies here)

My new fav blog

[url=http://bluecollarworkman.com/ Blue Collar Workman: I build your houses, I fix your buildings, I plow your streets … and now I’m telling the tales! [/url]

#79 cropgrower on 02.27.13 at 7:47 am

WHAT THE……my knees have been killing me, thanks Garth.

#80 Buy? Curious? on 02.27.13 at 7:59 am

Garth, you made me spit out my coffee! Good thing that from previous experience, I know to cover my laptop with Saran wrap, like some old Italians do with their furniture when reading your blog.

Speaking of Italians, did you see the results of their “elections”? A stand-up comedian got something like 25% of the popular and Berlusconi got 33%. Seeing how Rob Ford is still mayor of Toronto, expense fiddling senators Pamela Walin, Mike Duffy and Patrick Brazeau who is charged with assault and sexual assault are still in their positions, would you ever think of getting back into politics? The reason why I ask is because you’re always slamming those people who come on this blog and try to pump up gold as an asset. Douche bags like Glen Beck shamelessly pump gold right after scaring people to death about some impending dictatorship. You on the other hand, talk calmingly about striving for a safe diversification of one’s portfolio and taking reasonable, achievable steps to get there. Sure, you make the the odd joke here and there and have to put slime buckets back in their place but I think the Canadian voters will appreciate that.

Look at your competition! Justin Trudeau? That moron thinks he’s the fourth musketeer by the looks of his facial hair grooming. Check it out! And the language. Does that silver spoon fed twerp think he’s playing for the Habs?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=592yLGGTA3Y

(Leafs are winning the Cup this summer.)

#81 HogtownIndebted on 02.27.13 at 8:17 am

Good slushy morning to all hogtowners – get the Canadian army here, pronto!!!

I just heard the otherwise usually sensible Michael Hlinka on Metro Morning CBC radio talking about RSPs.

His advice?

Well, he made the point that RSPs affect government entitlements and may not be good for low income people. Check.

Then….he said it would be the most “prudent” for many people to instead put their savings into their homes and mortgages, so they could retire “property rich” (his words) since principal residences grow tax free.

He also suggested using an RSP as mainly an “emergency fund”, since in the case of a real emergency you would probably use it anyway (regardless of the clawbacks, presumably)

If this advice was a shovel, it would be useful this morning.

#82 Francis on 02.27.13 at 8:21 am

Greedy, couldn’t care less, builders, except about themselves.

They are part of the “Axis of Evil “, together with F and C.

#83 The real Kip on 02.27.13 at 8:42 am

I’m a Boomer and I have no intention of downsizing now, don’t bogart that joint!

“Now” is not the time frame I wrote about. — Garth

#84 live within your means on 02.27.13 at 8:48 am

#57 Elmer on 02.25.13 at 11:49 pm
The reason 26 year olds can’t find good jobs is because all the old boomers refuse to retire. Even if they find an entry level job, they can’t get promoted to better paying positions while boomers are still occupying them.

30 years ago a reasonably intelligent young person could expect to find a decent job, and afford a decent house after a few short years of saving. Not possible anymore thanks to the boomers.

So maybe instead of blaming young people for mooching off their parents, blame yourself for creating this situation that prevents us from being able to live a normal life like you could. Every generation has worked hard to give their children more than they had, but we are the first generation to have it WORSE economically than our parents’ generation. Thanks a lot!
……………………..

Was it our fault that we were born after 1946 (47 for me) and that jobs were more plentiful after I grew up? There were a lot more Canadian industries back then. Now we live in an extremely competitive global world, with many technological advancements – even tech jobs & their support are being outsourced to the lowest bidder.

Stop whining about the boomers. It’s not the average boomer who is responsible for what happened, but rather the big international corps & govt. policy.

PS – I paid into EI all my working life & rec’d 1 cheque during my working years, when I moved from one prov. to another. Also worked part time while in high school, in order to pay for my own clothes, etc. When I & my 2 sisters started working, but still living at home (in a rental), if we got a raise, we gave my Mom half of it.

#85 Canadian Watchdog on 02.27.13 at 9:06 am

CMHC seeking to hide foreclosure information from home buyers

“Some real estate industry insiders wonder whether the Crown corporation is simply being prudent, not letting potential buyers know a property is part of a distressed sell so they can put in a low-ball bid.”

#86 EIT on 02.27.13 at 9:15 am

There is no “Axis of Evil”, only the incessant “Axis of Dumb & Ignorant”. On the other hand, without these unwashed masses to take advantage of, I wouldn’t be able to afford this magnificent strawberry-laced warm fudge machine to dip my privates into.

#87 detalumis on 02.27.13 at 9:16 am

#47 properties in rural and poor areas are that way for a reason, start with an 11 year wait for orthopedic surgery.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/story/2013/02/25/ns-11-year-wait-ortho.html

#83 I totally agree with you. I was born in 1960 so am 13 years younger than you but apparently my life experience is supposedly exactly the same as yours never mind that I graduated into the highest unemployment years ever in this country followed by the highest interest rates ever when I tried to buy a house. I also live in a 1,153 bungalow so it’s a really good idea to “downsize” from a house that costs $580 a month in property taxes and all utilities.

I think all the boomer media bashing where a 70 year old housewife who never worked a day in her life is blame free but then another person like me who commuted 60 hours a week and paid high taxes for 30 years is heaped with scorn is getting a bit tiresome. I do think it’s done with a purpose i.e. to remove more and more senior entitlements from my age band when the time comes.

#88 Louise on 02.27.13 at 9:18 am

Two Vancouver frauds are being investigated now, Cam Good and his helicopter stunt being the other. You know the old saying,” if you see one rat there are probably 100 more that you don`t see.” http://www.biv.com/article/20130226/BIV0111/302269967/real-estate-marketers-investigated-over-allegations-of-media-manipulation

#89 Stickler on 02.27.13 at 9:40 am

Planning and doing are 2 different things. Planning not to can easily change to want to in a couple of years.

A boomer I know 4 years ago said they would live in their house forever…fast fwd 4 years and they now have a smaller house and a place in Florida.

All the boomers (Zoomers) I know can be lumped into 4 categories:

– don’t want or need to downsize

– want to downsize & spend winters south

– need to downsize because they can’t handle stairs, cleaning & landscaping

– can’t downsize (much) because they are all ready in a cheap place

#90 Linda Pearson on 02.27.13 at 9:48 am

#40Smoking Man on 02.26.13 at 11:42 pm

I’m rooting for your wife and you, too. Stay strong!

#91 afraidit allmightend on 02.27.13 at 9:48 am

Ah….with condo prices in the city fetching what house prices in the burbs are…whats the incentive to move? Moving down is a disister scenario for most people….I couldn’t get one bedroom suite into one of the cat box condo’s the city has built…..nah..I see a political solution…as always….higher taxation on indivs and businesses….like whats already happening.

http://www.vancouversun.com/business/real-estate/Little+noticed+change+will+some+hard/8001432/story.html

City councils either stop using the condo craze to raise revenue and start allowing larger suites to be built or no boomer is ever going to buy them.

#92 Solidarity Forever on 02.27.13 at 9:51 am

#80 Michael Hllinka once said that Canadians got what they have today at work because business owners felt happy and just gave it to them from the goodness of their hearts! He’s out to lunch most of the time!

#93 Daisy Mae on 02.27.13 at 9:55 am

“A CBC News investigation has uncovered serious allegations against the B.C. government and provincial Jobs Minister Pat Bell related to the proposed Wood Innovation and Design Centre project in Prince George.”

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

This should be the final nail in the coffin…..

#94 Dupcheck on 02.27.13 at 10:13 am

Dog eat Dog, or should i say Youngster Vs. Boomer, it is sad because the one that will come victorious as usual is the Government, they are watch the fight and pick up the pieces like hyenas. We should do something about the Gov, they are channeling the energy of the two generations to their advantage. We at the end loose. They keep raising taxes and we end up paying them. The wages do not follow.

#95 live within your means on 02.27.13 at 10:26 am

#77 bubu on 02.27.13 at 6:22 am
Boomers are not willing to downsize maybe, but in many situations they will be forced to, unless they can afford a private gardener and housekeeper.
I know several older age couples (and two singles), still living in their 3, 4 bedroom or larger homes.
They too were not willing to downsize.
But they can’t keep up with the house anymore; or they are having trouble of using the stairs.
They are now talking about downsizing to a more manageable size home.
Many more will be forced to downsize for exactly those reasons.
The legs go, often the mind goes – and the house goes.
……………
Totally agree, except my mind hasn’t totally gone, but I have health problems, the least of which are “severe lower disk problems & sciatica”, etc. I can’t keep up with the housecleaning, plus have lost interest doing it by myself. We did have someone come in before Xmas to clean. I told her what I wanted cleaned, but she did stuff that I was capable of doing. Same story with another cleaning lady that I had previously. Hubby is great at doing renos, etc., but on a daily basis he does nothing inside the house. Coffee drips on the stairway to his workshop, hallway – all his – but he’s oblivious. Shoulda known the first time I spent a weekend WE w/him in Mtl & made a dinner for us & his bro & g’friend. Had to clean his oven before I cooked – it was so disgusting.

Try finding a gardener, unless you want to pay big bucks. I have a large garden that I can longer care for. Thinking of removing a lot of it. Sad, because I was pressured into hosting one of the local annual gardening tours years ago.

Pardon my rant, but only managed 4 hours of sleep last night & suffering from some type of flu bug for several days even tho I got my shot. Hubby has same symptoms but had to go into work.

#96 Sebee on 02.27.13 at 10:35 am

New home sales huge drop? No one cares. And by no one I mean MSM. Not a sniffle of it anywhere but Financial Post.

I guess they’re in the war room working out the spin.

#97 The Prophet Elijah on 02.27.13 at 10:40 am

Garth it looks like Alberta teachers rejected latest contract offer, and now going into the March 7 budget (cut back). What is your take on what will happen next?

#98 Yuus bin Haad on 02.27.13 at 10:41 am

Ah, the 60s – decade of education reform and New math.

#99 Penny Henny on 02.27.13 at 10:42 am

Garth-“The original house hornies, a staggering 78% of them own real estate, and yet half believe they’ll run out of money ten years after retiring.”

Garth they think like this because they have no intention of selling, maybe after they run out of money they will but that is still a long ways away.

Penny Henny

#100 Daisy Mae on 02.27.13 at 10:43 am

#2guelphstudent: “New low rise sales crashed even more, by 50% in the GTA to be exact. I am wondering when the prices are going to fall, as my girlfriend is getting itchy to buy something…”

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

SALES crashed…not prices.

#101 Patiently Waiting on 02.27.13 at 10:55 am

Combined sales of the Vancouver Real Estate Board & the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board for Single Family Homes (SFH) from January 1st to February 26th 2013 are only 1548. This is a 50% drop from last year and is below the 2009 level that followed the financial crisis of 2008. Here are the stats:

2013 SFH sales (Jan 1 to Feb 26) 1548
2012 SFH sales (Jan 1 to Feb 26) 3066
2011 SFH sales (Jan 1 to Feb 26) 3956
2010 SFH sales (Jan 1 to Feb 26) 3150
2009 SFH sales (Jan 1 to Feb 26) 1744

… I believe that Garth is correct is that first we will (and are now) experiencing the sales volume declines, and this will be followed by price declines which we are already seeing … these numbers tell the story that you will not hear from the media or your real estate agent until it’s too late … my recommendation is if you can sell now, do it before the price declines become more significant later this year and next year …

Best of luck

pw

#102 live within your means on 02.27.13 at 10:57 am

#148 Richard and Zeus on 02.26.13 at 1:53 pm
#3 European on 02.25.13 at 9:35 pm
Build brick homes, make them last for generations, and focus on building stuff that lasts.

Most Canadians spend half their incomes (on average) on shacks that they’ll outlive.
—————————————————–

Unfortunately……..you are talking about a custom home that will cost 100% more to build. Only a small portion of the public has cash for this. Most homes today are glue, sawdust and plastic junk.
……………………..

My PIL’s home & others I know were built out of brick as well as interior walls, but try doing any interior renos on those homes – very costly. Newer homes are still built with brick exterior walls – not sure brick is the right word – but newer homes use wood studs in the interior walls AFAIK. And, the quality of those studs are far better quality than those we get in Canada, because the best is shipped overseas.

#103 NOTTOSURE on 02.27.13 at 11:04 am

Boomers are the most resourceful group and we can make something out of nothing . So no worrys smoke a fat one and all your trouble will disapear.This generation is a split, people with lots and the rest of us .How much as the high divorce rate had to do with the way things are ? I would bet a lot I know for me it has, lose 60 % of what you have and then support 2 households and you have it.Be happy we are resoureful we can live under the overpass.Or sell our houses Not!!

#104 Goldfinger on 02.27.13 at 11:11 am

Honk Kong real estate just got nailed…..less money coming to Van and GTA…..party is over

http://www.opp-connect.com/index.php?option=com_postwebsites&view=postnews&id=839

#105 Holy Crap wheres the Tylenol on 02.27.13 at 11:16 am

Downsizing is not in my vocabulary!
I am a Boomer!
I am prepared for battle! (Peace & Love)
I will not succumb to this foolish wave of unprepared geriatric has-beens!
The ones who did not prepare for this economic tsunami will perish!
I shall be there the dig their graves, and charge the estate for that service!
I have no time for the non-planners and late-starters; they will be left on the wayside!
Onward and upward my Boomer friends, we changed the world before and we will change it again!
Long live the Boomers! ( really I mean it I hope to live a long and prosperous life)

Oh yes, far out man!

This is where it all started, see the link!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1_niX2uAJY&list=PL9E9AA281A068427B

#106 Tony Right on 02.27.13 at 11:22 am

Thank you, thank you, thank you for continuously pulling down the depends of mainstream media and the real estate cartel! The lazy journalism by MSM is astonishing and the outright lies by the RE cartel should be criminal. Sheep leading sheep.

#107 dosouth on 02.27.13 at 11:26 am

Interesting concept – No such house for sale?

http://tinyurl.com/ala33dv

#108 unbalanced on 02.27.13 at 11:32 am

To the Smoking Man. If its true, good luck, or are you gonna see how many sheeple u can hoooook , line and stinker. Just saying

#109 IM in C on 02.27.13 at 11:46 am

Here’s a story from the boomer’s parents. Back in 2003, my 80 year old parents decided they could no longer keep their 2200 sq ft. 4 bedroom home on a 60 x 100 ft lot. Mom just couldn’t handle the stairs, Dad couldn’t handle the lawn mowing and snow shoveling. So, 20 years after their last child moved out, they went to sell the house, and downsize to a rental apartment.

The house didn’t sell!

At first, they thought it was price. Five months and 3 small price reductions later, they discovered the real reason. They had bought the house as a newly built some 30 years earlier. Now, 30 years later , it was in a mature subdivision. Each house was demographically the same as them. Aging empty nesters! — A prospective house buyer alerted them to the problem by looking out over the neighborhood and muttering..”there are are no children here for my kids to play with”.

I suspect, that as the ‘wrinklies’ today start to try and sell their houses, they will encounter the same fate as my parents. They will put on the market beautiful, well appointed and well maintained homes, modern ,up-to-date, with large lots, that prospective new home buyers don’t want.

#110 Mister Obvious on 02.27.13 at 11:46 am

#75 Devore

Anyone who thinks there is a realistic chance a lottery will correct their lack of financial planning is utterly and hopelessly innumerate. That itself is the genesis of their problem.

#111 Daisy Mae on 02.27.13 at 12:03 pm

#99Daisy Mae
#2guelphstudent: “New low rise sales crashed even more, by 50% in the GTA to be exact. I am wondering when the prices are going to fall, as my girlfriend is getting itchy to buy something…”

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

SALES crashed…not prices.

*********************
Sorry, Guelph! Before you reprimand me, you DID say “wondering when the prices are going to fall…” Have to learn to read correctly…

#112 StuckinSurrey on 02.27.13 at 12:04 pm

Living and working in the heart of Surrey B.C.and this blog sure gives a needed perspective.Delivering construction materials all day and observing the different hot and cold pockets of construction is interesting.South surrey by the border is sure slowing down but Up Coast meridian in Coquitlam the lots are still being expanded and sold before completion.Pitt meadows crawling along and pausing with Langley. Definitely interesting times !
Update on meow mix I was disappointed to get a Costco card and find superstore pricing the same.ps . Don’t add milk to meow mix like cereal freeze dry to prolong freshness.

#113 Doug in London on 02.27.13 at 12:07 pm

I still don’t see how so many people of my generation (give or take a few years) could really blow it so badly. I remember seeing a subdivision of large houses being built in Oakville and thinking: some day the Boomers will want to downsize to something smaller, won’t that kill demand for such big houses and cause prices to drop? Now the punch line, that was 26 years ago from now in February, 1987. How could they not see that, when an idiot like me who failed a college financial course could see it?

There’s been a lot of talk about Boomers driving Kias (Korean Imitation Automobiles, that is) in years to come. Why weren’t more Boomers driving the cheapest econo cars that would meet their needs instead of big SUV’s over the last 20 years, pocketing the difference, and using it to build up a retirement portfolio?

Hey, what’s wrong with Doors and Stones tapes, or other tapes of 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s music when you get them for 50 cents (no pennies, please) at Goodwill stores or yard sales? Better yet, I’ve even fished some good ones like AC/DC or The Who out the garbage. That’s cheaper than Puretracks or iTunes!

#114 Denise on 02.27.13 at 12:09 pm

Really tired of all this boomer bashing. What a bunch of self-pitying, nasty, bitter vultures there are out there.
Good post #83 live within your means. I’d think the majority of boomers grew up in a similar fashion as you. They didn’t have the sense of entitlement many born in the last 35 years seem to have.

#115 Bloodcross on 02.27.13 at 12:20 pm

Far from me the idea of siding with Lepage, but “40.6% of Baby Boomers have plans to move to another primary residence” means 59.4% plan to stay put and therefore have “no intention of downsizing”. Of course Garth knows that but what fun would it be to not mischaracterize what the media says…

This being said, it’s completely irrelevant what “intention” boomers have. Reality will punch them in the face and tons of them who tell surveyors they have “no intention of downsizing” will have to sell to afford living…

Survey people to see if they “have the intention of experiencing rainy weather”; then see if the sky cares.

#116 OnPar on 02.27.13 at 12:20 pm

The Baby Boomers are the generation that created the shift to “real estate as investment.” You reap what you sow. I don’t feel the least bit sorry them. Their parents beat Hitler, they sit back and screw up the economy and the environment. My generation have been collectively shaking our heads for years at the Boomers’ mistakes, perpetual greed and lack of leadership. It’s hilarious to watch and listen to the Boomers cast judgement on those in their 20s and 30s now. For shame.

#117 Toronto_CA on 02.27.13 at 12:23 pm

Very nice article for the blogdogs:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-27/canada-losing-debt-halo-as-bull-market-housing-peaks-with-carney.html

Seems to sum up everything rather nicely, and paints Carney in a less than Flaherty-ing light (sorry, can’t help myself).

#118 45north on 02.27.13 at 12:44 pm

OnPar: My generation has been shaking our heads for years at the Boomers’ mistakes, perpetual greed and lack of leadership.

does that include raising you?

#119 Daisy Mae on 02.27.13 at 1:14 pm

#102 Nottosure: “How much as the high divorce rate had to do with the way things are?”

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

Divorce can scuttle best laid retirement plans. However, I know couples staying together just so they don’t have to divide the assets. They’re waiting each other out. Awful way to live life…..

#120 dave b on 02.27.13 at 1:17 pm

Interesting article here.

http://business.financialpost.com/2013/02/27/canadian-retirees-an-overwhelmingly-happy-bunch-bmo/

#121 Snowboid on 02.27.13 at 1:21 pm

#52 blok existentialist on 02.27.13 at 12:29 am…

You are indeed fortunate, and they even made a TV show about your story – way to go!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MzfDcAUkb8

#122 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 1:25 pm

True Story:

People we know raised 3 children in a rancher. The eldest got married and had (2) children. The middle never married and bought a condo. The youngest …well…a bit handicapped and never moved out.

The eldest divorced…moved back home, the parents were retired. The other daughter later sold her condo.

Long story short…they all pooled their resources, tore down the old house and built a large new house . The eldest has the entire upstairs with her (2)daughters as one self- contained unit.

The parents have a self -contained living unit on half of the ground floor. The other daughter has the other half of the ground floor , again in a self -contained unit.

The son has a detached room in the garage. All the original 3 children are 50+ years old.

So, in a SFH neighbourhood, we have a house with (3) self- contained suites and approved by the City.

I see that as a far more practical solution for many parties.

#123 Old Man on 02.27.13 at 1:26 pm

I have hands on knowledge what the boomers have done and are doing. Many retired early and sold at the top to the fools in life, so they could take cash off the table. There are two well defined trends, as they have relocated to smaller towns for a simpler lifestyle, and this one might surprise you. Many of them have moved into exclusive apartment buildings to pay rent devoid of condo fees and taxes to simply lock the door and travel a bit in life.

#124 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 1:50 pm

#65 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.27.13 at 1:33 am

Another good post !

One has to understand that no turd floats to the top in the cesspool of politics unless a lot of a-holes chose and groomed them. The old ” Skull and Bones ” .

Most of them are certifiable sociopaths which people confuse as strong leaders.

Obama has a very sordid past..as did Clinton. So why weren’t they exposed ? Only if and when their handlers feel they have to be taken down or taught a lesson. Do people really think Monica Lewinsky was just an “intern” and not an agent ?

The only rights the citizen have are those that they are prepared to defend. Americans that wave the Constitution just don’t get it. Bush was actually right….it is just a G-D piece of paper.

What people see at the surface is simply smoke and mirrors.

#125 Mister Obvious on 02.27.13 at 2:02 pm

#115 OnPar

” It’s hilarious to watch and listen to the Boomers cast judgement on those in their 20s and 30s now”
——————————-

Judgements are being cast in both directions.

Perhaps its time for everyone to back away from this pointless conflict and concentrate on getting their own houses in order. Literally.

Time and money are inversely proportional. Become aware of where you fit into that continuum then act accordingly.

#126 Iron Maiden on 02.27.13 at 2:11 pm

Got a call from the bank this morning, as a large sum of money was deposited into my account. (Changing investment services.) My first thought was they were calling to confirm that it was all legit. But the guy goes on to say he’s the investment manager and he can help me review my investment options with the bank. Although the no commission, no fee, paid on salary comment caught my ear, I said no thank you, as the funds had already been earmarked (I am satisfied with my decision). Banks only have bank products, why would I limit myself to that, especially when I was leaving just such an environment? To his credit, he did present well over the telephone.

#127 salama6898 on 02.27.13 at 2:12 pm

Garth, how the average house price being calculated.
It is base on the houses being sold in the period? If more million houses are sold, then the average house price will go up?

#128 Mixed Bag on 02.27.13 at 2:18 pm

#122 Old Man on 02.27.13 at 1:26 pm

Many of them have moved into exclusive apartment buildings to pay rent devoid of condo fees and taxes to simply lock the door and travel a bit in life.

—–

Old Man, looking out the window this morning, watching my spouse shovel, thinking on the year-long renovation we undertook, the property taxes, the maintenance on the house ….
I thought how nice renting would be. Then it was back to the morning routine.

#129 Brew on 02.27.13 at 2:23 pm

@#108 IM in C

“They will put on the market beautiful, well appointed and well maintained homes, modern ,up-to-date, with large lots, that prospective new home buyers don’t want.”

I think you are very wrong on this point. I have never heard anyone say the lot is too big when buying a home but I’ve heard many say “The lot is kind of small.”

#130 Brew on 02.27.13 at 2:24 pm

The bong boomers really came out of the weedwork on this post. LOL

#131 juno on 02.27.13 at 2:24 pm

Wow, sure the boomer are going to have to work past 60/65.

But what kind of jobs will they have.
– Lets say you have a booming company and you have to hire. Are you going to hire a 65 year old person, even a 55 yr person. NO!! NO!! You want the young one who can grow your company. Not the old one which will probably on stress leave after 6 months.

The only jobs the moldies can get is wal-mart greeters. Ever notice a old person at the counter or stocking shelves. No. So can you say Min Wages! So take your 40,000 dollar job and change it to 16,000 or less.

As for the oldies, once your friends starts passing away, you will be taking a good look at yourselves and trying to figure the meaning of life. So do you sell you house and live it up. Or do you continue paying the mortgage and eating dog chow til the end come?

I know lots of oldies which had to cut back drastically because the lost their jobs close to retirement age or forced retirement and now work at gas stations, ticket stand etc just to make ends meet. And forget about those starbucks coffee. They are probably at Mcdonalds right now getting their free coffee.

#132 Beach Girl on 02.27.13 at 2:28 pm

Ya, I am really getting a bad feel for it out there. I will always live communally, it is more enjoyable, never lonely. Laugh more than most marrieds. Eat and exercise more. Most married people get fat, not through contentedness but boredom. Imagine trying to wait the other out. That is just bad KARMA.

But desperation is in the air. A friend who is allergic to seafood, told me, if she wanted out of the stress, she would have a big shellfish dinner.

Then, a young man phoned me today. Broke, on Welfare, or what they call it. Ontario Doesn’t Work, because there are no jobs.

This will not improve in my lifetime. Thank God, I listened to my parents. Who scared the stuffing, right out of me.

#133 Ralph Cramdown Ⓤ on 02.27.13 at 2:29 pm

#124 Mister Obvious — “Perhaps its time for everyone to back away from this pointless conflict and concentrate on getting their own houses in order.”

Hey, my house is in pretty good order already. Two things: 1. Most of the boomers on this blog are probably in better shape than the average boomer. You’ve got free time, are literate and passionate enough to post, and you’re hanging out on a personal finance blog in the first place. 2. The overall financial situation of boomers is clear, as shown e.g. in that OSC report of a few days ago. Just because you and your circle of friends appears OK does not mean that the average boomer isn’t screwed. The evidence before the court is incontrovertible; there’s no need for the jury to retire.

The bickering on this blog may be pointless, but expect it to break out in broader politics in the next decade. Pay-as-you-go healthcare, OAS and GIS combined with a shrinking worker to retiree ratio is going to lead to some extremely nasty spats. Today’s students braving tear gas to fight tuition increases are tomorrow’s young families wondering why the hell they can’t afford a decent place to live with good public schools, their taxes keep going up while their services decrease and their wages don’t keep up with inflation. They’re going to figure it out. You’d better hope some demagogue doesn’t get out in front of them.

Here’s some things to think about: OAS and GIS means tested by assets rather than income, co-pays and higher provincial ‘premiums’ for healthcare and who knows what else. But if you build an unsustainable system given our demographics (which YOU produced), don’t expect it to all hold together until you shuffle off this mortal coil, because it likely won’t.

#134 Ralph Cramdown Ⓤ on 02.27.13 at 2:36 pm

#128 Brew

You missed DM in C’s point. If the neighbourhood school got closed two years ago because of declining enrolment, they won’t care about the lot size.

#135 bruce c on 02.27.13 at 2:41 pm

i see your not touting the great crash any longer.
guess now you know you blew it. No Bubble here any time soon.

Never did. The forescast’s been consistent – a correction followed by a melt, market by market. So far, right on sked. — Garth

#136 Screwed on 02.27.13 at 2:49 pm

Bottom line. We are screwed.

Boomers may not downsize but we are starting to. Got no other choice. Who needs all this crap anyway?

Mid Forties, married with kids.

If it all goes to shit, we’re walking. Banks beware.

#137 Old Man on 02.27.13 at 2:57 pm

I am a baby boomer, and it was not my fault that I was born, so take up your issues with my mom and dad who birthed me who have passed away. Now, stop the finger pointing to the baby boomers, as our time was no bed of roses either in life. Get over this all for you that are younger, and take care of business within your own life; do the best you can; make wise decisions in life; and move forward.

#138 syfon on 02.27.13 at 3:03 pm

#130 juno
You sound like you never planning to get old.
Show some respect to somebody wiser than you.
Boomers are The most sucessful generation on planet earth,
don`t you forget that fact.

#139 Dorothy on 02.27.13 at 3:08 pm

I am 58 and my hubby is 61, so we are both Boomers. My hubby left school at 14 to go work in a factory and when he turned 16 he began an apprenticeship. I left school at 16, went to college for 2 years, and began work at18. At that time, there was a recession going on and work was hard to find. In addition, there were many other young people (much more than there are today) competing for fewer and fewer jobs. Houses in cities were VERY expensive relative to income, and it was not unusual for young married couples to either rent or live with their parents while saving a down payment. My hubby and I were fortunate in that we were had good jobs yet, recognizing that it could be years before we could afford to buy a house, and also that the poor economic situation could eventually jeopordize our jobs, we chose to emigrate to Canada when in our early 20’s.
We left friends and family, and moved to a VERY isolated place in Canada. It was not an easy move; particularly when young and used to living in a big city. But we saw it as a stepping stone to a more secure future, and we were right.
For many years we envied those who still lived in larger centres; small isolated communities can be very difficult to live in sometimes. But we did what we thought was necessary to get ahead in life.
Maybe some of those who are finding city living to be too expensive, should consider doing what we did, and go live somewhere else.
I know many of you will say that you can’t find work in your field outside of the city, but to you I say that I have changed my career several times over my lifetime in order to find work in different areas. And if I can do it, so can you.
Stop blaming Boomers for whatever predicament you find yourselves in, and starting looking for solutions.

#140 LaughingCon on 02.27.13 at 3:08 pm

to #134 bruce c

i see your not touting the great crash any longer.
guess now you know you blew it. No Bubble here any time soon.
======================================
You could have waited two more days – after all March 1 is on Friday and Vancouver and Fraser valley RE boards will be the first to come with their stats, Toronto – early next week.

One thing to keep in mind – February 2012 had 29 days and Toronto was clobbered by two “snowgeddons”…

And if you want to take a peek at the Vancouver sales look here:

http://img692.imageshack.us/img692/6/vanfeb26o.jpg

#141 syfon on 02.27.13 at 3:10 pm

Hi Garth
Do not encourage young guys to be disrespectfull or
boomers will restore the order.
Boomers will change political lanscape to their likeings.
It is a numbers game remember.
Enough said

#142 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 3:21 pm

Ah yes…gentlemen start your nail guns…spring season.

Driving around HAMville…see a couple of more Hi Rises started.

A few SFH lots that were vacant for months are now going ahead.

Others I see are now “For Sale”.

Even more just sit, wait and grow weeds.

I think the smart ones are those bailing.

#143 Mister Obvious on 02.27.13 at 3:27 pm

#132 Ralph Cramdown Ⓤ

“Just because you and your circle of friends appears OK does not mean that the average boomer isn’t screwed.”

I’ve never tried to say otherwise. Many in my circle of friends are screwed. They didn’t plan well or notice the writing on the wall in spite of constant reminders (like this blog). They will have to make do with remnants. Their houses weren’t in order.

“Here’s some things to think about: OAS and GIS means tested by assets rather than income, co-pays and higher provincial ‘premiums’ for healthcare and who knows what else.”

Exactly. A person who had his house in order would have realized these things are coming and planned accordingly.

“Today’s students braving tear gas to fight tuition increases are tomorrow’s young families wondering…”

The boomer generation spent a fair bit of time screaming in the streets too. I was all in a bid to end insane wars, brutal racism, rampant misogyny and generally shake up an over-restrictive postwar society. In that we were reasonably successful. BTW, you’re welcome.

#144 BorrowedCarbon on 02.27.13 at 3:32 pm

The survey data presented is incomplete.

40.6% of respondents plan to buy a house … so ~60% don’t plan to buy.

Some of the 60% don’t own a house. If 78% of boomer respondents own a house, 22% don’t.

40.6% plan to buy
37% don’t plan to move
22% don’t own (safe to assume vast majority aren’t buying now)

If you break this down further:

7% upsizing
10.5% same sizing
21% downsizing
37% not changing residences
22% don’t own (safe to assume vast majority aren’t buying now)

#145 AK on 02.27.13 at 3:34 pm

#130 juno on 02.27.13 at 2:24 pm

“But what kind of jobs will they have.
– Lets say you have a booming company and you have to hire. Are you going to hire a 65 year old person, even a 55 yr person. NO!! NO!! You want the young one who can grow your company. Not the old one which will probably on stress leave after 6 months.”
——————————————————————–

Bullshit. A lot of companies hire people over 55 on contract. They are more reliable and loyal than a 25 year old.

I work in IT and the average duration for an IT employee these days is 24 months.

#146 GTA Girl on 02.27.13 at 3:34 pm

Partisan nature of CMHC is showing. Press release today is in tandem with Conservative Party press release and Harper Govt announcement.

http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/corp/nero/nere/2013/2013-02-27-1230.cfm

http://www.conservative.ca/?p=2811

This proves that the Harper govt is in full control of all govt info released. And will use govt agencies to push partisan/skewed ideas.

We may not know how bad CMHC foreclosures are, or what problems/crisis we are faced with.

#147 Deb on 02.27.13 at 3:35 pm

Really, Garth. Last week it was Meow Mix and this week it’s Purina. It is a myth that old people resort to eating cat food to survive. If it was indeed a fact, it would apply to people of any age, including the 26-year-old Mikey, who is hopefully about to be punted by his challenged parents. And I doubt very much that Mikey’s introduction to reality is going to involve chowing down every day with a bowl of premium cat food.

#148 GTA Girl on 02.27.13 at 3:41 pm

CMHC responds to today’s Financial Post article questioning if they are releasing accurate foreclosure numbers and info.

http://calgaryrealestatereview.com/2013/02/27/is-cmhc-seeking-to-hide-foreclosures/#comment-5723

Something stinks.

#149 Jay on 02.27.13 at 3:46 pm

One think to keep in mind when trashing the boomers is they’re just doiing what they can to be the best of they can — and it’s unlikely we’ll do anything different.

It’s easy to speak of high minded ideals when you’re without a pot to piss in, but once people start actually accumulating wealth, it’s a lot easier for a little devil on your shoulder to start whispering about ways to get more more more with no risk. More importantly, how you’re OWED success for some reason.

I notice it in me as I get older. I’ve always been very conservative with my finances, but as I achieve more in my career, and as I grow comfortable and complacent in my finances, such that another 500 here or another 500 there doesn’t seem like as big a deal. That 30 or 40 years from now seems comfortably distant while you take in professional paycheques today.

#150 GTA Girl on 02.27.13 at 3:48 pm

Someone isn’t telling truth at CMHC, and at this point I’d be extremely hesitant to trust their response or RE who wants to fluff the numbers.

With Carney gone, you have to wonder if Canada borrowed its way out of problems, and is now about to be bit in the ass -hard.

#151 richmond bc on 02.27.13 at 3:54 pm

#121 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 1:25 pm

I bet the daughter doesn’t have problems finding a babysitter, the parents won’t be moving into a care facility too early, and the son will help with some of the handy work around the house.

This is a model from the Asian community, where it isn’t unusual for kids with families to live with their parents. It isn’t the basement dweller idea, instead a very practical concept. Inter-generational living works with many benefits; the old help the young and visa versa.

#152 JustTryingToProtectEquity on 02.27.13 at 4:01 pm

I have got to know who Whazzup is.

#153 My thoughts on 02.27.13 at 4:16 pm

Getting listing emailed to me. New builds currently rented out but coming back on the market at even higher asking prices. I guess people didn’t get the memo that times are changing. I actually appreciate the emails as this actually brings the house need down a notch. No moving up for This couple yet. Waiting it out for sure. On a positive note people are heeding my advice and paying down their debts. That way they will be ready to move from renter to buyer when the time is right for them :)

#154 NOTTOSURE on 02.27.13 at 4:24 pm

#130
Well I would have to say that in most cases I would hire the 55 year old .Oh I will be 55 this year and will run a circle around any of our young employees and have something so many young don’t .Experience and work ethic . Most employers are also looking at there bottom linre these days our staf has gone from 25 to 5 and I’M STILL HERE.

#155 Solex on 02.27.13 at 4:24 pm

I can afford 350k on a house but why should I? This area is way overpriced and a correction is due.

As an aside, Garth I’vebeen looking at property in Nova Scotia. You can buy a beautiful character home on 5 acres for $80k…

————————
Overpriced compared to the Nova Scotia, where the weather sucks for 10 months of the year and there are no jobs?

Spoken as a poorly-traveled man. — Garth
————–

Nova Scotia is spectacular, what are you on about mate!

Cheap house prices, great scenery, peaceful lifestyle and fiddle music… my next destination may well be NS.

As a “consultant” I can be based just about anywhere and make a go of it. I’m sure a lot more people in my shoes will be contemplating this in the future if the rest of Canada doesn’t sort it’s house price situation out.

NS also has something that the rest of Canada struggles with – character and history.

#156 Solex on 02.27.13 at 4:28 pm

Outside of Victoria, many areas of Vancouver Island houses are actually affordable, many ranging from $300K-$400k. Who is going to sell a $300K home to move into a condo for $250 and pay $300 per month in condo fees
_____________________________________________

Well said, once being involved with a strata council was enough for us. The only houses that are selling mid Island are priced in the mid $300,000 range and they are selling at that price, precious little once you get over $400K
—————————————————

Nothing selling in our area (mid island) for that price. Houses I’ve been watching are still on the market, the ones that are not were pulled of by disillusioned (or dilusional!??) sellers because the offers were coming in too low.

Personally, when we’re ready to offer, it’ll be at least 20-25% below asking price to settle at 10-20% under.

#157 Doug in London on 02.27.13 at 4:29 pm

Here we go again with more Boomer bashing. To illustrate what has happened I’ll first use a parallel. I lived for many years in Timmins, Ontario where it gets quite cold in the winter. During March Break in 1995, the weather was unusually warm, with highs in the teens and one day the mercury hit 21 degrees! Was this normal? Were farmers in the nearby clay belt region (Earlton and area) out planting their crops with the knowledge spring had arrived? Of course not, as the following week the weather went back to more normal values of around zero in the day and colder at night. The previous week was an anomaly, an abberation from the norn, and similarly the period the Boomers lived through was an anomalous period of fast increasing productivity, increasing wages, and general prosperity. Things are going back more to the norm now, previously masked by the excessive debt ran up during the last decade and early part of this one to artificially keep it going for a few years longer. Eventually, however, you have to pay the piper.

So here we are now, where the most of the Boomers (at least the higher income ones) really BLEW this opportunity to get themselves financially stable and they have no one to blame but themselves. A lot of the younger 20 somethings (the Boomer’s kids) got spoiled as their parents had the money to spoil them, and grew up thinking the future would continue on like the past. I’ve seen it in many of them I’ve met, who think it’s below their dignity to do things we did (because we were raised by parents who grew up in leaner times, and when we were pre teens times were leaner also) like buy cheap stuff at yard sales, or better yet fish stuff out of the garbage and fix it up, rather than throw money at the problem and buy everything new.

Fast forward to now, many Boomers who should have retired are still working because they saved little, and are blocking the road for younger people to move into and up in the work force. Add to that, younger people are making less money, just when they haven’t learned how to be efficient with money. They have a lot of learning to do, but of course I can understand some of their resentment of we Boomers. All of the fallout from what’s happened will find its way into political agendas and election campaigns for years to come. It’s going to quite a show!

#158 Tkid on 02.27.13 at 4:32 pm

Do not encourage young guys to be disrespectful or
boomers will restore the order.  Boomers will change political lanscape to their likeings.  It is a numbers game remember.

 
Sure, while you still have equity left in the house and cash in the bank, you have the majority vote in an election.  Vote yourselves in lots and lots of tasty perks.
 
But keep in mind that when you reach your most vulnerable – 70’s and 80’s – that’s when the numbers will favour the generation who won’t get any of those tasty perks despite having paid via taxes for your tasty perks. 
 
What are the odds those tasty perks will stay?  You think the politicians of the day won’t be ready to bow to the whims of Generation X if it gets them elected?
 
So you lose the tasty perks.  And why keep CPP and OAS for the older generation if my generation won’t get to collect our share?  Do not mutter ‘but you get CPP because you paid your share’ – no one in my generation actually believes we will see a dime of that money.  The perception among my lot is it is money thrown into a bottomless pit that gets spent as soon as it is collected.  But I’d vote for dropping taxes in favour of dropping CPP or OAS altogether.  It isn’t like a body can live off the meagre amount of money one can collect from CPP or OAS, and we could sure use the tax break. 
 
And this is about when you have gone through the equity in the house, and the bank account is out of cash because you never planned on living as long as you have.
 
But if you get the government’s finances in order and keep the tasty perks to an affordable minimum, we might be inclined to keep them for awhile longer.  
 
And Dorothy, congratulations walking barefoot and uphill to school and then barefoot and uphill to home.  Really impressive.  Really.  Not.  I’ve done my own share of walking barefoot and making do, and I still managed to toss money into an RRSP every year.  I am not voting to keep CPP and OAS if I believe there is a darn good chance I won’t get to collect ’em.  Same with free drugs, and all the other little benefits seniors get – tho’ I don’t mind the WWI and WWII generation getting ’em as I am grateful to them for putting their lives on the line so that I could continue to speak my mind.

#159 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 4:45 pm

#143 richmond bc on 02.27.13 at 3:54 pm

Agreed…..

Another retired couple we know have 4 children all grown married and with children.

The couple sold their house to one of their children who lived in a suite in the basement. Then , the parents , now in late 70’s , switched places, moving into the suite.

The whole issue is changing the mindset and adapting. This affordability issue is not new, its been around a long time. Do you NEED a house… or simply WANT a house ?

The idea of living in a strata sends shivers down my spine. I’ve seen enough just visiting strata owners.

The other thing is..is our system set up to discourage the aforementioned??? …ie there is more money for the system in putting the old folks into a care home than making it easier to stay at home ? That’s a whole other topic…I am reading stories about how the old folks are assigned useless health care to drain their wallets…and when they are broke…well sayonara.

#160 TEMPLE on 02.27.13 at 4:47 pm

#123 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 1:50 pm

Well done, you win the tinfoil hat award for the day!

Most of them are certifiable sociopaths which people confuse as strong leaders.

Uh huh. Sure. Although I suspect you are having trouble differentiating between someone who is just a bit dim (i.e., Harper, Bush, etc.) and someone who has antisocial personality disorder. I am kind of surprised you are comfortable with the DSM, actually. I would have thought you would have categorized it as “science” or “knowledge”, or some other crap like that.

Obama has a very sordid past

Really? Like being born in Kenya? Or did you have some actual facts in mind?

Do people really think Monica Lewinsky was just an “intern” and not an agent ?

Yes I do. Do you have any evidence that she wasn’t? Not just made-up evidence, I mean, but real evidence.

What people see at the surface is simply smoke and mirrors.

Lucky for us you are wearing your tinfoil hat and took some time off from badgering Dr. Wayne and yelling “first” to clue us dummies in. Thanks buddy.

TEMPLE

#161 Ralph Cramdown Ⓤ on 02.27.13 at 4:50 pm

#146 Deb — “Really, Garth. Last week it was Meow Mix and this week it’s Purina. It is a myth that old people resort to eating cat food to survive. If it was indeed a fact, it would apply to people of any age, including the 26-year-old […]”

It’s a meme, Deb. A cultural shorthand used to express an idea, in this case, senior poverty, and it has been around for decades. When we talk about poverty among young people, the meme is Mr. Noodles or ramen noodles. Know your memes!

Besides (and as others have pointed out), with the price of cat food, it’s going to be dry dog food for sure. I hear it makes its own gravy!

#162 Westcdn on 02.27.13 at 4:52 pm

I intend to keep my current house and leave it for my daughters (millenniums) to sell providing I don’t live much more than another 30 years. I don’t know if people will still be lusting after SFH’s 30 years from now but I think it will keep more value than today’s average 1000 sq ft condo and the house will prove to be cheaper to maintain. Besides, I like the space, privacy, freedom and related chores of a SFH.
Speaking to ageing – “I am a Zoomer not a Boomer, thank you very much since age is just a frame of mind. I have earned mine, so can you”.
It is a delusional statement for me however a lot of my peers live the dream. What did I miss? I suspect inheritances in most cases. Oh well, modest retirement for me and maybe something for my girls (my mind does wander when time is not an issue).

#163 Holy Crap wheres The Tylenol on 02.27.13 at 4:58 pm

#3 Smoking Man on 02.26.13 at 9:51 pm
2+2 = 5
Now if we gave 4 the value of 5 and 5 the value of 4. Now say we stared teaching this to kids at 4 years old.

This is the math you need to know!
If a six was a nine! Ive got to live the life I want to live.
White-collar conservatives flashing down the street
Pointing their plastic finger at me.
They’re hoping soon my kind will drop and die,
But I’m gonna wave my freak flag high . . . HIGH!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWYcMkSSqPs

#164 Dorothy on 02.27.13 at 5:00 pm

#154 – Solex

I too like Nova Scotia Solex, and would be more than happy to live there. I think Garth is more of an urban dweller, and likes to be close to the GTA – which is fine, but he shouldn’t assume it’s the right lifestyle for everybody.
As I said in an earlier post, I too used to be a city dweller, and thought that lifestyle was the only one worth having. But, after 35 years of living in the north, a small bedroom community is the closest I now want to be to an urban lifestyle. Small town living grows on you after a while.

#165 Oceanside on 02.27.13 at 5:01 pm

Why weren’t more Boomers driving the cheapest econo cars that would meet their needs instead of big SUV’s over the last 20 years, pocketing the difference, and using it to build up a retirement portfolio? –
______________________________________________

Take a look at the drivers of the next few Escalades you see and you will find that the drivers are all around 40 years old. I’m 62 and both our vehicles get over 30 mpg, my work truck is a Nissan Frontier 4 cylinder . The V-Strom gets over 60 miles per hour. I always wonder how young people can afford to drive big SUV’s and 4 wheel drives.

#166 The Prophet Elijah on 02.27.13 at 5:06 pm

#146 Deb on 02.27.13 at 3:35 pm Really, Garth. Last week it was Meow Mix and this week it’s Purina. It is a myth that old people resort to eating cat food to survive. If it was indeed a fact, it would apply to people of any age, including the 26-year-old Mikey, who is hopefully about to be punted by his challenged parents. And I doubt very much that Mikey’s introduction to reality is going to involve chowing down every day with a bowl of premium cat food.
———————————————————-
Relax, I think Garth is being comical using banter. Can’t wait to hear squirrel recipes before boomer week is over.

#167 steve p on 02.27.13 at 5:32 pm

when i first saw your title of this posting I thought it was about jobs!!

#168 Musty Basement Dweller Wannabe on 02.27.13 at 5:39 pm

I am boomer hear me roar,
In numbers too big to ignore
and I know too much to go back an pretend
Cause I’ve heard it all before
and I’ve been down there on the floor
No ones ever gonna keep me down again.

#169 afraidit allmightend on 02.27.13 at 5:46 pm

Nah…I still favor the political change factor…look ..in the USA the 18-30 generation has now outnumbered the boomer generation…you can’t tell me that these young people are going to watch the boomer unionista’s sucking off the fat of the land with higher wages perks and taxes on the backs of the working poor.

Taxes will become a generational issue…the incumbent boomer unions want taxes to keep increasing, that will keep the aspirations of the young in the toilet…how long do you think that is going to last.

Heres the solution….claw back the boomer union perks and pensions….lower taxes…means test the boomer gougers….and cut cut cut …so that opportunities go to the young…not the old.

#170 Prudent Saver on 02.27.13 at 5:51 pm

Garth,

Is it true that Canadian Government is going to nullify current currency (CAD) and replace it (exchange for) with new dollars (NCAD) at much lower value (10:1 perhaps)? Please advise.

#171 Old Man on 02.27.13 at 5:59 pm

#149 GTA Girl – I have no idea what is going on, or just might, as years ago CMHC never went through a Real Estate agent to sell properties, as all was open to buy inventory on the books at huge discounts, and they even placed ads in the paper to do such. The same happened in Ontario with the new Toronto airport, whereby, farms were expropriated, and when that went down the tubes farms could be bought on the open market for peanuts from the Ontario Government.

#172 jess on 02.27.13 at 6:12 pm

“My Cuts” with “Your Envelopes”
http://world.time.com/2013/02/25/spains-corruption-scandals-the-crisis-of-the-royal-family/
=============
downsizing is your dead!
Steven Brill talks to TIME about his cover story on the outrageous pricing and egregious profits that are destroying our health care.

http://healthland.time.com/2013/02/20/bitter-pill-why-medical-bills-are-killing-us/?iid=gs-main-mostpop2

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/video/player/0,32068,2178453595001_2136781,00.html#ixzz2M8j6ne14

#173 Tom from Mississuga on 02.27.13 at 6:16 pm

Bloomberg really lays it out, ouch!

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-27/canada-losing-debt-halo-as-bull-market-housing-peaks-with-carney.html

#174 Smoking Man on 02.27.13 at 6:22 pm

151 JustTryingToProtectEquity on 02.27.13 at 4:01 pm
I have got to know who Whazzup is.

…………..
Mid 30s Lives in Ottawa, successful, learn alot from me.

Sorry can’t tell you his name….

#175 Triplenet on 02.27.13 at 6:32 pm

#170 Old Man

Highly unlikely thats the way eminent domain works. An interesting story however.

#176 Musty Basement Dweller Wannabe on 02.27.13 at 6:32 pm

I think you will see a lot more families doubling up and tripling up with relatives in their houses. I’m not saying it’s going to be fun for them always, but it may be the “lesser of the evil” options available for many.

The McMansions are probably good for that. When I lived in Vancouver and Surrey many of the larger houses had several families in them and it’s very common in many cultures. It might spread more to other cultures that aren’t used to it, in fact it already is. It’s not ideal, but I think many will choose that option over renting in someone else’s basement.

All in the family you know, and usually cheaper too.

The end result will be less demand for housing and soft prices. Gee where have I heard that before.

People who think radically lower prices can never happen need to look harder at what has happened in the States and some specific examples. It’s really not rocket science.

#177 habbit on 02.27.13 at 6:38 pm

#157 Tkid even no minds can voice an opinion. LOL

#178 habbit on 02.27.13 at 6:46 pm

#168 afraidit allmigthend opportunities are to be seized and are rarely given or taken. When the boomers are gone who will be next to blame? The young?! Jews perhaps. Immagrants? So many choices.

#179 Agop Koulakezian on 02.27.13 at 6:52 pm

Now it’s official: it’s on Bloomberg!

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-27/canada-losing-debt-halo-as-bull-market-housing-peaks-with-carney.html

#180 Canadian Watchdog on 02.27.13 at 6:59 pm

 

#147 GTA Girl

Something stinks.

What stinks is the fact that CMHC is selling properties on behalf of investors, at the same time, not disclosing if the property is foreclosed and, if the buyer is CMHC insured, they are also approving and appraising the home! This is a huge conflict of interest as CMHC can also reject loans in high listing areas to give their foreclosure inventory an advantage.

It's what I always believed: that CMHC and Government are a complete dictatorship acting in pure secrecy. 

Leader-Post – Nov 13, 1973: Gov't Rejects CMHC Probe

The Saturday Citizen: July 26, 1976: Rudniki wins – but will government [CMHC] open up?

Montreal Gazette – Mar 5, 1980: CMHC Faces Severe Losses: Secret Report

It's time to put a end to this moral hazard once and for all and get these corrupted crooks out of agencies own by the people. Enough is enough.

Something stinks.

#147 GTA Girl

#181 Dr. Hoof-Hearted on 02.27.13 at 7:00 pm

#159 TEMPLE on 02.27.13 at 4:47 pm

…yer names says it all.

Probably too cheap to get a tin foil hat, so you glued tinsel collected from old Xmas trees left on curbs.

DSM…are you serious…..? OMG !

Too bad Garth won’t let us debate this more….

PS: Say high to Monica

#182 Old Man on 02.27.13 at 7:10 pm

#174 Triplenet – not highly unlikely in the least, as you must live in denial, as to set the record straight this is what happened, as lived it all.

#183 Brew on 02.27.13 at 7:10 pm

@#133 Ralph Cramdown

No I didn’t miss the point. The point was that the house did not sell because of a lack of children in the hood. They still want the larger lot and the nicer house. But they want playmates for Johnny.

You confuse the issues.

#184 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 02.27.13 at 7:12 pm

#61 Retired Boomer – WI — “The moral of this tale: NEVER trust elected officials to do the right things. Our society has not lived within its means for a long time.” — First sentence is right on the money, second goes with #83 Live Within Your Means below.

#83 live within your means — “Stop whining about the boomers.” — Correct. The only thing now is evolution is happening so quickly, that a lot of ‘new jobs’ are fly-by-night ones, replaced by something superior a few years hence.

#84 Canadian Watchdog — Great link. Seems things may be a tad worse than what the m$m is spoon feeding us. I guess C wanted to jump from the frying pan into the fire, where he probably won’t get as much attention.

#104 Holy Crap wheres the Tylenol — “Onward and upward my Boomer friends, we changed the world before and we will change it again!” — Indeed, it will be time for us to check out whenvever, but we can never leave!

#122 Old Man — Good post. A simpler life by renting would work fine for me. No condo fees or unexpected maintenance costs sounds good!

#123 Dr. Hoof-Hearted — “One has to understand that no turd floats to the top in the cesspool of politics unless a lot of a-holes chose and groomed them. What people see at the surface is simply smoke and mirrors.” — Never ceases to amaze me how blind and stupid sheeple really are. I can understand why they are afraid to rattle the cage a little, but it’s much better to try and fail at something out of the ordinary (such as Steve Jobs) than not do anything at all.

#131 Beach Girl — “Thank God, I listened to my parents. Who scared the stuffing, right out of me.” — See, boomer parents do come in handy at times!

#185 Angry But Not Unhappy Twenty Something on 02.27.13 at 7:35 pm

I hear very few members of the real estate cartel trying to pretend that all is sunshine and flowers nowadays.

The next move for them is to start pitching people on how it will be a great time to buy RE after prices dip – “Hey you 22 year old man – buy this $300,000 home today and sell it for $800,000 when you’re 55!”

Still I have a feeling things won’t work out that way in the long-run…

#186 Dorothy on 02.27.13 at 7:35 pm

#157 -tkid
You sound very bitter; I can’t help wondering whatever happened to make a young person such as yourself so very angry at the world. But whatever it was, the whole point of my post (which you seem to have missed) was that there ARE things we can do to improve our lot in life. We are not all mere victims of circumstance.
Sometimes the things we need to do are not what we WANT to do, but they are necessary if we are to improve our way of life. And sometimes history repeats itself, in that some of the difficulties experienced by one generation, are very similar to difficulties experienced by a previous generation.
My generation also graduated into a very competitive job market, and also had to face very high house prices relative to income, particularly in cities. My husband and I addressed that problem by finding work in small isolated communties, where the pay was higher and the cost of living was lower. We didn’t WANT to go live in some of those places, and we complained a lot while we were there, but when I look back on it now those years were some of the best years of our lives. It’s funny how life works out sometimes, isn’t it?
But my point is that, if you’re not happy with the way your life is going, you’d be better served to cast around for a solution; something you can implement yourself, than sitting around blaming all your woes on the Boomers. Remember, you usually can’t change the behaviour of other people, but you can sure change your own behaviour. Think about it!

#187 syfon on 02.27.13 at 8:03 pm

#157 Tkid
It is not what a parents can do for a kid, but
what a kid can do for a parents.
Bring your kids up so they can support you in your
Golden Years.
I hope you are not my kid. !!!!!!!!!

#188 Auntie American on 02.27.13 at 8:50 pm

I’m actually wondering if joint rolling boomers like me haven’t held onto our houses too long already.
It seems that I would be very lucky to get $500,000 after commission and expenses for my middle class house in Victoria, and then only after waiting months and suffering numerous afternoons hanging around the local Starbucks while dozens (well maybe one or two) unwashed kleptomaniacs rummage through my open house while the realtor drinks my coffee.

#189 Ret on 02.27.13 at 9:00 pm

#101 Better built homes.

Builders used to build homes using their name as the company name. A few still do, notably custom builders. The builders in the 50/60/70’s built 10-50 homes a year and knew that their reputation was on the line with each home delivered. The Ontario building codes in place at the time were generally exceeded by 20-25%. Good sub trades got steady work and could be trusted to do it right because they had long standing relationships with the local builders and their own reputations to protect.

Now we have huge tracks of homes built by some benign name developer, usually with deer, maple, creek, woodland, etc. in the name of the project.

Tiffany Hills in Hamilton? Who was she? Do we really want to know on a family blog? For sure, someone is LAO on that one. I digress.

Now its squeeze every dollar out of every home and hide behind a numbered company and a big bucks Toronto law firm. Small, good builders have been crushed by the big guys. They can’t get decent lots to build on, financing to operate or keep reliable sub trades.

Driving through a new subdivision under construction in the GTA is laughable. Lots of blatant code violations and sketchy looking sub trades in unmarked trucks.

Why do municipalities waste money on building inspectors? You rarely ever see any municipal inspectors in a new subdivision, even when they are building 2-300 homes. Mike Holmes is doing shows on some homes that are only 7 years old. He needs to clearly name the municipalities and builders IMHO.

#190 Doug in London on 02.27.13 at 9:30 pm

@Oceanside, post #164:
Take a look at the drivers of the next few Escalades you see and you will find that the drivers are all around 40 years old.
__________________________________________
Wow, it must be nice to have more money than you know what to do with, kind of like a hydroelectric dam with all the sluice gates to the spillway open, because there’s far more water coming down the river than can be utilized to generate power. Obviously that 40 something generation doesn’t have any money problems and have to watch their expenses, like you or I do.

#191 TurnerNation on 02.27.13 at 9:37 pm

Dave’s not here man.

#192 tkid on 02.27.13 at 9:49 pm

Dorothy, I have a college and university education. I was taught to budget and save for my future. I was taught to stay out of debt, and why staying out of debt was a good thing. When I started working it was at fourteen, and continued to work while I went to school.

I am financially dependant on no one, and I work hard to ensure I will never be.

I also do the math on government debt, and government promises. There isn’t enough money coming out of taxes to fund today’s needs (witness the shabby state of health care in Canada), yet I am told time and time again that these needs will increase and the revenues generated from taxes will fall.

Do the math on that. In 10 years the country will not be able to afford health care, plus the CPP and OAS, welfare, unemployment insurance, etc yadda etc. In 20 years, if the country’s finances aren’t fixed, things will implode. But there is a gimme mentality going on in Canada that will not be placated by budgets, not until the country goes bankrupt.

I don’t want Canada to go bankrupt. I only have to see what is happening in Greece and Italy and the rest of Europe to know how bad things get when socialism becomes truly unaffordable. I hear how terrible things became in Argentina; I don’t want that to happen in Canada.

No health care. No looking after the infrastructure, but then we aren’t looking after the infrastructure now. No nice government cheques. Schools being suspended. Etc yadda etc.

But any reasonable discussion on the issue usually ends up with the Boomers crowing about how they have the vote locked and the younger crowd can’t do a damn thing about it, or better yet, you youngesters are spoiled brats who never had to save for anything you had and waste your money on foolishness …

Bitter? Wrong word. I put money aside because I’m fiscally foolish like that. When I say I know what it is like to ‘do without’ I freakin’ mean it! I do NOT want to fund other people’s retirement, or their health care, or daycare, if other people have no interest in getting the books balanced Federally and Provincially.

#193 tkid on 02.27.13 at 9:52 pm

It is not what a parents can do for a kid, but
what a kid can do for a parents.
Bring your kids up so they can support you in your
Golden Years.
I hope you are not my kid. !!!!!!!!!

I look after my mother. But I ain’t lookin’ after you.

#194 Chopper on 02.27.13 at 9:57 pm

This should cause a panic for the RE hornies and those who own or want to buy a Condo in the GTA.

http://business.financialpost.com/2013/02/27/im-afraid-of-a-condo-crash-canadian-real-estate-investors-fret-as-housing-blitz-winds-down/?__lsa=2592-d206

#195 2centsCdn on 02.27.13 at 10:00 pm

Great post ….. we should all chip in and contribute to a fund for the poor home and condo builders. How can the gov’t be so mean to them. If they only stopped (or slowed down) building two years ago …… they could all swim in swimming pools full of hundred dollar bills for the rest of their (and every family members) lives. Instead … a lot of the money they made in the past 6-7 years will be evaporated in the shit show in progress. They can only lie, smoke and mirror and bamboozle so long. The ship is taking on water. Lots of water.

The poor masses who try to sift through the layers and layers of lies and confusing numbers and “facts” the RE industry spits out (and forwards to the media) don’t stand a chance. If only there was a way to measure the amount of damage (at all levels) all of this will cost …. both individuals … and our country. People are put in jail for a lot less.

#196 45north on 02.27.13 at 10:06 pm

LaughingCon: Vancouver sales

comparing Feb 2013 to Feb 2012, in only one day were there more sales in Feb 2013 ( not counting days which had 0 sales in either year ). Feb 2013 sales were 73% of Feb 2012 or said another way sales declined 27%.

Well if that’s not a crash it was marked and significant decline.

#197 Chopper on 02.27.13 at 10:07 pm

Canada Marauding Housing Corporation (CMHC) exposed.

http://business.financialpost.com/2013/02/27/cmhc-seeking-to-hide-foreclosure-information-from-home-buyers/?__lsa=de36-a550

#198 jess on 02.27.13 at 10:15 pm

argo wins best movie? gives canada a nod but wouldn’t Operation Ajax make a better thriller?
=
orchestrater
Peterson Pyramid.org

#199 Kingarthur on 02.27.13 at 11:18 pm

Boomers are just a passing fad: emphasis on passing. Check the obits if you don’t believe me. Not everyone lives to 90. These too shall pass, making their 2.4 children comfortable, thank you Mom and Dad. I for one have no intention of selling or downsizing. I have a park nearby, and a pool, buses, subways, all I need. plus a few bucks to get away from the mould from time to time. First you live and then you die; enjoy it while you can.

#200 Corban on 02.28.13 at 2:54 am

This smoking man persona is really played out. I miss Utopia.

#201 Doug in London on 02.28.13 at 5:33 pm

So, is anyone here tuning into Doczone tonight (Thursday) at 9 PM EST? It’s about the Boomers. I wonder if there will be any mention of the sad state of their finances? Stay tuned.

#202 Rico on 02.28.13 at 9:23 pm

#15 Lee
By the way, isn’t Garth a wrinkly yet?

Yes, Garth is definitely a wrinkly. But, his unit is intact, and apparently still loaded.

#203 Corey Zaal on 03.02.13 at 5:45 pm

I find this survey to be be accurate, yet highly misleading at the same time.

As a real estate agent on Vancouver Island (one of the highest concentrations of baby boomers in Canada), I get to work with a large number of baby boomers retiring to the area.

True to the survey, the baby boomers I work with have little interest in downsizing, yet almost all them end up downsizing anyways.

Three of the strongest needs that tend to make my baby boomer client’s lists are one level living, low maintenance, and central location. Since one level homes are usually smaller (especially on smaller low maintenance properties close to amenities) there needs to be a compromise between the size of home and their other needs.

In my experience, their other needs override their requirement for large homes almost every time.

If they are trying to demonstrate any kind of trend they should survey baby boomers who have already moved.