The disconnect

disconnect modified

Monday’s layoffs weren’t massive. But they matter.

The Globe and Mail is carving another 20 or so people from its editorial staff, while the National Post just punted half a dozen editors. Sun Media, Torstar, the CBC, CTV and Rogers have also laid off people in recent months as the media business hollows out.

So what? Well, count on even more Re/Max, Royal LePage and CREA press releases being run word-for-word as news. The MSM continues to sell its dwindling credibility to whatever advertisers are left. Sad. And in that regard, this is our canary in the coal mine – a daily reminder of where we’re headed.

(By the way Postmedia just announced its closing its Calgary call centre and sending all the jobs to the US.)

On Friday came that awful jobs report. For the first time since the crisis of 2008, we have a higher unemployment rate than the States. Job creation fell last year  by two-thirds. We created more unemployed people in 2013 than new workers. And now a majority say they feel their jobs are not secure.

As I told you, this is the gravest danger Canadian real estate has faced since the GFC. People fretting over the security of their employment are not real motivated to buy a $450,000 condo with 95% financing. Or a $1.6 million house with cash, for that matter.

This week the smart noodles at Nesbitt Burns pointed out another smelly fact. People who hate Toronto will love this.
“Perhaps the quirkiest stat in the brutal Canadian employment report for December was the fact that Toronto’s unemployment rate moved above Windsor’s for the first time in a decade.”

Windsor! Say it ain’t so. What’s with that cute little city on the wide flowing river with the best climate outside of Victoria, where the average house price is $186,203, compared with Toronto’s $520,398? Aren’t affordable houses supposed to belong in cities where nobody can find a job? It’s so unfair.

But it gets worse.

“The bigger story is the relative deterioration in Toronto. The region now has the second highest unemployment rate in the country among major metro regions,” says NB. “Only nearby St Catharines is higher. A slowdown in home building, provincial budget restraint, weakness in manufacturing and ongoing robust population inflows have all played a part in pushing up the local jobless rate versus the rest of the country.”

And while this has been going on, the average SFH price in 416 has climbed to $864,319, a one-year increase of 18.9%. That doesn’t seem compatible with 263,100 unemployed people in the GTA, or 7.7% of the workforce, until you understand the story behind the housing numbers. Single-family house sales have actually dropped, while the bottom has fallen out of new home construction. As I’ve detailed before, the market is segmenting, with struggling sellers at the top (over $1 million) and the bottom (under $500,000). Average numbers released by realtors are wholly unrepresentative of current conditions, while they continue to be quietly revised each month.

And let’s use some common sense. How can unaffordable houses be flying off the shelf when consumers are worried about the price of yoga pants? The numbers are coming in from retailers, and by all accounts, Christmas sucked. There were ‘Boxing Week’ specials a month early, 70% discounts throughout December plus most stores imported that idiotic ‘Black Friday’ nonsense from the US after Hallowe’en – and still people were reluctant shoppers. Sears and Target say sales dropped, while E&Y retail analyst Daniel Baer called the whole holiday thing, “very difficult.”

This is the disconnect.

Unemployment in the nation’s largest city jumps and is now a full 1% higher than in the US. Over a quarter-million people in one urban area can’t find work. Stores discount heavily but still can’t lure enough spending. Chaos erupts when the province hands out cheesy gift cards for food after the ice storm spreads its cold anguish.

Toronto, like Calgary or Vancouver, is still a rich place. In fact, the wealthy are getting moreso. But there’s no denying Canada or its crown jewel cities are no longer economic miracles in a post-2008 world. You can see it in the fallen dollar, our lousy trade numbers and now in job losses of 10,000 weekly.

It’s just a shame those people still borrowing big to buy houses at silly prices don’t realize what’s likely ahead. They must get their news from the Globe or the Post. Poor buggers.

173 comments ↓

#1 dosouth on 01.13.14 at 9:01 pm

Still waiting… tick tock

#2 uncle d on 01.13.14 at 9:04 pm

ouch!

#3 Linda Mulligan on 01.13.14 at 9:05 pm

The US job numbers have improved, but there is some talk that is due to people no longer searching for work – therefore they are not counted as unemployed. Canadians have been foolish, no question but I am not sure just how trustworthy a lot of the numbers being thrown around by the media are – I’d say not very because checking the facts might not be such a dramatic story after all…..

What evidence do you have that Stats Canada numbers are unreliable? — Garth

#4 Paul on 01.13.14 at 9:07 pm

You didn’t mention online shopping which is the real cause of declining sales in retail outlets. Canada Post had more record breaking parcel delivery days then ever before. A record in itself which continues to be broken every year.

True, but reported store sales numbers generally include online activity. — Garth

#5 ILoveCharts on 01.13.14 at 9:08 pm

On the plus side, the declining dollar is helping a lot of Canadian companies.

Not yet, it isn’t. It typically takes six months to a year of lower currency values to positively affect export sales. — Garth

#6 not 1st on 01.13.14 at 9:08 pm

The Post or G&M can throw up that pay wall all they want. I will never ever pay for news again especially the repetitive garbage they pump out.

So if I see a story I want to read, I cut and paste the title in google and find a syndicated site that has it posted for free.

#7 Citythatsmellslikeitsounds on 01.13.14 at 9:09 pm

FURRRRRRRRRRRRST!!

#8 TurnerNation on 01.13.14 at 9:12 pm

Cdn Watchdog is CMHC developing a care of Enron-itis? SPES and such?

Traders know markets move on technicals in the short term but fundamentals dictate the long-term trend changes. What are we waiting for: CMHC further cutting its limit – <1m (this is one of my official predictions of 2014)? Or a too-big-to fail situation and bailouts?

I can imagine H talking to his advisors and yes-men:

"sir, we've got 'em hopelessly distracted with Bread & Circuses and Heros & villians.

"I am the oil/war president!"

"Online sentiment polling and comments indicate a 45% increase of spluttering and fist shaking towards the 'lefties'.

– Billy mac he's a detective down in Texas, you know he knows just exactly what the facts-is.

Goldcorp buying Osisko. Fundamentals. I am predicting TSX outperformance in 2014 – to 15000?

Saw this, declines of miners stock prices – peak-to-trough – and back.

http://blog.learntotradeglobal.com/bid/366888/Can-the-Shine-Return-to-Gold

#9 blase on 01.13.14 at 9:14 pm

Just wait until Ontario has to start paying back it’s debt at twice or more of the current rate. 7 hospitals in an area the size of 1/3 of Cowtown? No wonder.

#10 RT on 01.13.14 at 9:16 pm

With oil under a hundred bucks and Neil Young rallying against oil in Alberta what does this mean to Alberta’s economic outlook.

#11 TurnerNation on 01.13.14 at 9:19 pm

But those gold bugs/hoarders tend to be capitalist prigs.

#12 Ryan on 01.13.14 at 9:20 pm

Move over Michigan, here comes Ontario!

#13 not 1st on 01.13.14 at 9:20 pm

“American malls are facing a rebirth, and without a complete reinvention, they will be extinct within 10 to 15 years, the head of one of the nation’s largest privately held real estate companies says.”

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101329283

Scared for my REIT holdings now.

Why would you buy US trusts? — Garth

#14 Musty Basement Dweller on 01.13.14 at 9:22 pm

So true about the deteriorated MSM.

I often wonder what happened to the globe and mail online readership when they started charging for it. That is almost comical… i. e. To think people would pay to read all of the retitled company “press releases” that they redistribute to readers.

#15 mark on 01.13.14 at 9:23 pm

Guess that digital subscription you can circumvent with private browser is going well.

#16 Tripp on 01.13.14 at 9:26 pm

No wonder the conventional media is slowly dying. No matter the newspaper one reads or the TV station one watches, just more of the same. They lack creativity, diversity and as a result, objectivity.

Just ask Conan:

http://youtu.be/GME5nq_oSR4

#17 Piccaso on 01.13.14 at 9:27 pm

Unemployed 10 months and I know i’m not a statistic as I never got to apply for UIC.

#18 mitzerboy on 01.13.14 at 9:28 pm

something must be happening in Saskatchewan too ….the jacked up trucks with bullballs hanging from their hitches are being taken off

#19 TRON on 01.13.14 at 9:28 pm

Looks like Windsor is going to pot

http://blogs.windsorstar.com/2014/01/07/company-invests-12-million-to-grow-medical-marijuana-in-lakeshore/

#20 gta drowning in debt on 01.13.14 at 9:29 pm

Realtor favorite G&M continues to lose money and is on its way to going bankrupt. The media lies for liar realtors who are more criminal then educated. The fact is majority of realtors don’t have high school. How stupid would people feel if they found out that their realtor who gave them advice on a $500-800k+ purchase had no high school? People in the gta are headed for bankruptcy . Retail are closing down and companies are leaving everyday because wages need to be high to pay for High housing and no money is left over for the economy. G&M you will go bankrupt if you continue to lie for realtor scum.

#21 pathcontrolmonk on 01.13.14 at 9:33 pm

There was much fanfare in October about Amazon opening a development center in Vancouver with an announcement they would lease space for 1,000 Amazonians. As it turns out, this was likely just posturing to get favorable tax incentives as they will now be hiring less than 100.

HR’s logic being that if people are stupid enough to pay $2 mil for an 80 yo SFH, then they are likely desperate to take what ever paltry salary is offered to live in the best place on Earth.

#22 gut check on 01.13.14 at 9:36 pm

Things are getting personal.

Our family’s primary earner suffered a job loss 4 months ago and can’t find a replacement.

We sold our home because some very major construction projects planned to be ongoing for two years have made living here unbearable. Not to mention that I – the secondary earner – work from home and the hours of 7 am to 7 pm are prime construction hours.

What to do?

Move first, then look for a job? Wait for the elusive call from HR from one of the many jobs applied for and hope it’ll pay enough not to take more than 50% of our income in rent? Back out of our deal to sell?

Rents in every town we look at (except right in Toronto) are the SAME – no matter if the place is a one horse town or a “growing” city – at least $1400 plus all utilities and usually you get your very own basement dweller with the package.

So why would we rent in such conditions when owning would cost less than half and give us peace, privacy and enough space for me to work? But then if we buy we can’t move if a decent job does come up. And if the housing market does tank, will we be stuck in some city we went to only for the sake of a one year contract job?

This all sounds like a terrible mess, I know, and I can’t shake this feeling that there’s something obvious I’m missing here… I can’t think straight. It’s been one shock after another as contract employment opportunities keep getting offered but then delayed and delayed and delayed..

You start asking yourself what you did wrong. What was the mistake, and how can I fix it?

Yeah, this is all starting to hurt.
A lot.
.. the only possible good thing I can see is that maybe, just by luck, we sold at a good time. But.. where to go now?

#23 Randy Macho Man Savage on 01.13.14 at 9:38 pm

#6 not 1st on 01.13.14 at 9:08 pm

Save the extra key strokes of copying/pasting into google and try using the “incognito mode” in google chrome, or just clear your browser history every so often. You typically get 10 free reads with most online newspapers, which is always reset after a history clean.

#24 DaleFromCalgary on 01.13.14 at 9:39 pm

Garth: Your comment to #4 misses the point that most online sites don’t have brick-and-mortar stores. I buy stuff from amazon.ca and other pure-play online stores that won’t show up in the traditional statistics.

The Boomers, as Harry Dent Jr has been shouting in the wilderness for years, will bring deflation because old folks don’t buy many goods and services. And if they do spend, it’s for tropical cruises outside the country where the money goes to someone else.

The true American economic statistics are at:
http://www.shadowstats.com

#25 Dean Mason on 01.13.14 at 9:41 pm

Blase #9

Do you know what 2 or 3 times Ontario’s current interest rate would be?

Let me know.

#26 Ben on 01.13.14 at 9:42 pm

Spot on about press releases by desperate newspapers. UK papers basically all but let the realtors write it themselves. Welcome to the big dip down. Ahead of you is the UK and ahead of them is Japan.

#27 Linda Mulligan on 01.13.14 at 9:42 pm

Regarding StatsCan numbers – well, a lot of them are out of date. Or the data being used is less in-depth than it used to be – think the Cole’s notes version. Add in the possibility that people are not necessarily answering the questions truthfully – I know I’ve had people tell me they do not answer the questions truthfully, but whether they are just saying that or have actually not answered truthfully who can say – then throw in what appears to be growing government policy to obscure, misrepresent or outright delete ‘facts’ that might not fit the picture the government wants Canadians to believe – sure, sure, Mr. Harper had NO idea Duffy’s expenses were being paid back by a personal cheque issued by his current chief of staff etc……

#28 Tripp on 01.13.14 at 9:43 pm

@#9 blase on 01.13.14 at 9:14 pm

Blase, you may want to check other countries when it comes to healthcare stats:

http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.MED.BEDS.ZS/countries/1W-CA-FR-US-SK-UA-DE?display=graph

Closing hospitals is hardly a sign of economic development and social advancement. So much for “the best healthcare in the world”…

#29 Fodork on 01.13.14 at 9:43 pm

Toronto and Detroit are in a race to the bottom (with a 3-5 year phase lag) in many ways:
1. Real estate (GTA is likely 5 years lagging)
2. Road infrastructure (example: Gardiner Expway)
3. Public Transit (services degrading by the day with no expansion)
3. Municipal governance (declare emergency weeks after ice storm hit, what a freakin joke this town is)
4. Corruption (mafia in municipal tenders, look those palaces in Woodbridge with blue collar pickup turcks parked in the driveway).
I used to love this town

#30 Smartalox on 01.13.14 at 9:43 pm

Went to that Swedish furniture store in Richmond BC on Sunday to buy a couple of pieces of furniture for the nursery. On a Sunday afternoon, despite team recent labour unrest, the place was virtually empty. Only a few young couples buying furniture, most people were buying housewares – posters, glassware, candles, the kind of cheap tchotchkes amateurs buy to try to improve their homes’ appeal. The latter group mostly represented by boomers and high proportion of Mandarin speakers.

#31 Smoking Man on 01.13.14 at 9:47 pm

No one wants washed news any more, blogs like this one are kicking msm ass, the participants in the comments section have a great variety of opinion, and character.

It’s fun, although Garth needs to maintain a relative sence of sanity, it’s his ship. The rest of us can be as loony as we chose.

Even the comments sections of moderated msm are so filterd, so set in boundaries that’s it’s bloody boring.

Garths Democratic experiment is working well.

He let’s almost anything go, res-erected monsters are taboo. OK

Great instinct on Garths part when he stood up to Harpo and said, the blog stays.

That’s why I love him.

#32 MC on 01.13.14 at 9:51 pm

Garth,

I’m relying on the step-mother and mother-in-law indicator to know when the market is prime to buy. As soon as they say I’ll lose my shirt, I’ll buy.

Now, all I hear is the boomer “nothing but a house” rhetoric.

I wonder if these job losses are Gen X/Y or the boomers.

MC

#33 Infused with Opiates on 01.13.14 at 9:51 pm

13 not 1st – good vid. Thanks. Interesting that the
speaker notes no new indoor malls have been built in the
entire US since 2006.

If we go back 100+ years we have the concept of the department store. It was great for the consumer as he
did not have to go to several different retailers. Fast forward to the 50s and we have the introduction of the suburban mall. Now the consumer did not have to go downtown. The malls were typically anchored by large department stores with speciality shops between.

Oops. Design flaw. The dept stores now had to compete with the specialty shops under the same roof. I remember going to either end of the mall and one specialty shop between in search of an SLR camera. Spec shop won. Neither dept store is in business anymore (Woodwards and Eatons).

So now what do they do? They build “retail centres” and have a Walmart as a tenant. But you probably have to drive to get to another retailer (probably a box store),
even though it is the same “centre”. They’ve captured the consumer again.

#34 Doberman on 01.13.14 at 9:52 pm

And while this has been going on, the average SFH price in 416 has climbed to $864,319, a one-year increase of 18.9%. That doesn’t seem compatible with 263,100 unemployed people in the GTA…
————————————————————

Garth it does add up, I’m telling you it’s foreign capital from Europe seeking safe havens in Canada.
Which I guess would beg the question why doesn’t it park in the US instead, cheaper taxes, a recovering economy and more…

Oh well somethings we’ll never know in this life time.

#35 JO on 01.13.14 at 9:53 pm

Hi Garth, so if the high end market and new home market is struggling, if we need to buy in 2014, would you deal with a new home purchase (can the sales reps negotiate on price?) or go for a duplex high end since we could come up with more than 20%? I am leaning toward a new detached home as I hear there are deals…this market is insane and I am working to delay until 2015

#36 Son of Ponzi on 01.13.14 at 9:54 pm

Jimmy P. is laying off 80 and closing his newspaper in Kamloops.
7 billion is not enough.

#37 Mike T. on 01.13.14 at 9:55 pm

#15 mark

Very True

I am a student at UBC Okanagan – my access to The Star or The Globe gets reset every time I log in or out. Today I maxed out at The Star, tomorrow I will have 10 fresh page views.

I think its called the Blockbuster effect – that is, what is happening to subscription print media.

#38 Alex K on 01.13.14 at 9:55 pm

not sure why anyone would pay for online subscription, read your 10 or 20 articles they give you for free and then erase your history and keep reading

#39 frank le skank on 01.13.14 at 9:55 pm

Fear not, you can always tune into Hot Property on CP24 for non-biased reporting on the current state of Toronto Real Estate.

#40 Daisy Mae on 01.13.14 at 10:02 pm

#4 Paul: “You didn’t mention online shopping which is the real cause of declining sales in retail outlets. Canada Post had more record breaking parcel delivery days then ever before….”

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

If people aren’t spending in the malls, they aren’t spending online. No moola and credit maxed. If the postal service has ‘record breaking parcel deliveries’ it’s probably mom mailing shortbread/fruitcake to her offspring….and paying in excess of $28 to do so. As we know, ya can’t fix stupid.

#41 Mr. Frugal on 01.13.14 at 10:15 pm

Garth, all of this news is too damn depressing. The way I see it, the U.S. and most of the rest of the developed world (i.e. except Canada) is slowly recovering from the GFC. This means that patient investors should see slow, steady growth over the next few years. We can participate by spending less, saving more and investing wisely. As long as I’m beating GICs, I’m happy.

#42 Son of Ponzi on 01.13.14 at 10:17 pm

Off topic.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/cvlee12/15-signs-that-you-are-obsessed-with-your-dog-fs6g

#43 P-Gizzle on 01.13.14 at 10:22 pm

Just watching Global News in Vancouver….. apparently 2014 will have the highest number of housing starts in 40 years!

Anybody know what the hell is going on?

#44 FTP - First Time Poster on 01.13.14 at 10:22 pm

Flow Through Shares as an investment Garth. Any thoughts?

Why do you get a tax break? Right. Because nobody would buy these dogs otherwise. — Garth

#45 Prediction on 01.13.14 at 10:23 pm

So, did any of us predict 18% increase for 2013 in average single detached in Toronto????

because if not,,,,,then the trend is way ahead and don’t be surprised for 2 identical years in 2014 an 2015

just think about it

I think core Toronto will climb climb, climb

do not sell yet in high income areas, might be a smart advice

#46 Rexx Rock on 01.13.14 at 10:24 pm

You can see the writing on the wall.A severe recession is coming with no mercy for any one.The low rates for the last few years will be the death of Canada.It will be a huge ripple effect ,poverty ,marriage delays and break ups,only part time jobs with no benifits.Its sad how are country is going down a slippery slope.
Garth Turner for Prime Minister.

#47 b diddy on 01.13.14 at 10:25 pm

jimmy p. should be our premier of bc, put some order in the house!

#48 Bob Rice on 01.13.14 at 10:26 pm

I’m sure the unemployment in T.O. is a little misleading. The fact is Toronto receives a majority of the country’s refugees and immigrants. Many find it hard to find work right away due to language and cultural issues of adjusting to a new land. These are not homebuyers but rather renters and are often supported by relatives or government assistance until they get their feet on the ground and integrate.

#49 Son of Ponzi on 01.13.14 at 10:28 pm

And while this has been going on, the average SFH price in 416 has climbed to $864,319, a one-year increase of 18.9%. That doesn’t seem compatible with 263,100 unemployed people in the GTA…
————————————————————

Garth it does add up, I’m telling you it’s foreign capital from Europe seeking safe havens in Canada.
Which I guess would beg the question why doesn’t it park in the US instead, cheaper taxes, a recovering economy and more…

Oh well somethings we’ll never know in this life time.
———————–
Easy answer: Uncle Sam and the IRS will asked a few probing questions about the origin of the money.

#50 Infused with Opiates on 01.13.14 at 10:32 pm

“If people aren’t spending in the malls, they aren’t
spending online.” – 40 Daisy Mae.

How do you figure that? I did about $700 online at Xmas, maybe $200 “in the mall”. I like to support my local
independent merchants when reasonable, but I dont
care so much about the larger chains.

#51 Bobby on 01.13.14 at 10:38 pm

Who believes a realtor anyways? Anytime I go look at a property that has become stale and uninteresting, there is always an offer coming in the next day.
Looked at a waterfront condo here in Victoria. Unit has sat unsold since 2009. Realtor just raised the price. Unbelievable, given a similar unit, a foreclosure, sits unsold at over $ 100k less.
How do you define stupid?

#52 pinstripe on 01.13.14 at 10:40 pm

The purpose of a statistic is to manipulate the numbers to get whatever is needed at the time. Harpo-duffie business school is the leader in this approach.

I do not believe in any of the latest statistics.

There is no shortage of money.

Spoke to a parent from Ft Mac who has a son attending the U of A. Rental housing is tough to find. Parent bought a SFH and then furnished the house. Price tag, $550 grand. CASH.

#53 Tri-Guy on 01.13.14 at 10:42 pm

#4 – Paul. You are makin me feel bad. I live 29 km from topps in niagara falls and 21 km from my American postal box. The only thing I pay for in Canada is my rent and utilities. I even get my car serviced there.

#54 Victor V on 01.13.14 at 10:43 pm

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/what-you-need-to-know-before-and-after-buying-a-condo/article16313520/

When buying a condo, you suggest starting with a low offer, say 75 per cent of asking. Won’t that just insult the seller?

Is it better to try and get a chance of a better price on a condo, or should you worry about insulting the seller? You’ve got nothing to lose. The worst that will happen is that you’ll be rejected.

#55 gladiator on 01.13.14 at 10:50 pm

Toronto is not Detroit and never will be. People who lost their jobs in Detroit had a great many cities of similar or greater size (I mean Detroit core, not its surrounding area) to move to in order to get a job. Where will torontonians go? Maybe Van, Montreal, Calgary – that’s it.

#56 Ronaldo on 01.13.14 at 10:51 pm

Decided to check out the new Target here on the west coast this afternoon. The place was like a morgue. You could have driven your car down the isles without hitting anyone (they really are that wide). The place must be a block square, unbelievable. Lot of discounts up to 90% on the left over Xmas stuff. Two gals taking stock off the shelves and designating them as donations. Doesn’t look good for this store. With all the other stores in town like Costco, Walmart, Sears, The Bay and many others, its hard to imagine how any of them can make any money with the lack of people shopping. Even close to Christmas many of the malls very bare of people. Only one that was thriving was Costco. Was hard to find a place to park. Signs of things to come. Good post Garth. It’s a good thing someone out there is talking reality.

#57 Mister Obvious on 01.13.14 at 10:52 pm

#20 gta drowning in debt

“How stupid would people feel if they found out that their realtor who gave them advice on a $500-800k+ purchase had no high school?”
——————————–

There are people with university educations who are still dumb as a bag of hammers. That’s probably who those particular realtors have for clients.

#58 ss on 01.13.14 at 10:53 pm

The disconnect is due to Banks still recklessly provide huge amount of cheap money to any breathing souls thanks to CMHC insurance. The only question is what the government will do. It is between a rock and a hard place.

#59 Victor V on 01.13.14 at 11:02 pm

Here is the link to the story regarding job cuts in MSM:

http://business.financialpost.com/2014/01/13/globe-and-mail-postmedia-announce-job-reductions

#60 Please explain mr G on 01.13.14 at 11:02 pm

Hey Garth, please explain why gold is not going down when deflation is the problem??? Should I buy gold?

#61 AfterTheHouseSold on 01.13.14 at 11:02 pm

#22 gut check
“there’s something obvious I’m missing here…”

As you work from home, identify an area that has high cluster of business suited to your partners skills and move in that direction. Purge, sell, donate, pare down your stuff and rent an apartment not a house (no basement dweller). This will give you the highest degree of mobility and agility should you need to move again for a job opportunity. Please please please do not back out of your deal to sell!!!! All the best to you.

#62 Steven on 01.13.14 at 11:04 pm

Three years pay for a single family home. I think we will need to see 1930s house prices before the market finds a floor.

#63 Sideline Sitter on 01.13.14 at 11:08 pm

#24 Dale from Calgary I buy stuff from amazon.ca

Try SHOP.CA… 100% Canadian, shipping is free, everything ships from Canada and comes from Canadian suppliers.

We’re going down the drain for two reasons:

1) because everyone wants to save $1 and buy crap made in China.
2) because everyone wants to save $1 and shop at Wal-Mart *shudder*

Support local business!

#64 Bob Rice on 01.13.14 at 11:09 pm

#14 – “I often wonder what happened to the globe and mail online readership when they started charging for it. That is almost comical… i. e. To think people would pay to read all of the retitled company “press releases” that they redistribute to readers.”
_______________________________________________

I set my laptop on “privacy” setting and I get access to all Globe or Star articles… you don’t have to pay for it! I am using a Mac (Safari browser)

#65 Victor V on 01.13.14 at 11:10 pm

http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/blogs/pay-day-/young-savers-using-tfsas-purchase-homes-survey-204604915.html

Younger Canadians, more than ever before, are using their Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs) to save money to buy their first home.

That’s one of the key findings of a newly published survey by ING Direct. The survey looks specifically at TFSA contributions, asking Canadians of all ages how and why we are saving money.

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

This won’t end well.

#66 45north on 01.13.14 at 11:15 pm

AfterTheHouseSold: Purge, sell, donate, pare down your stuff and rent an apartment not a house (no basement dweller).

good advice!

#67 Drill Baby Drill on 01.13.14 at 11:15 pm

Garth I completely agree on your assessement of the Calgary RE market. It is being set-up for a correction “Big Time”. I say this because engineering firms have been laying off for a year now. This fact gets little press. I am in the business and it is lean times for the big engineering firms. Alta has landlocked oil reserves with little capacity for future growth for moving it’s production. Unless there is a wreck in the middle east and oil prices spike then look out below.

#68 Bob Rice on 01.13.14 at 11:20 pm

#29 ” 4. Corruption (mafia in municipal tenders, look those palaces in Woodbridge with blue collar pickup turcks parked in the driveway).”

So you’re suggesting every Italian is a mobster? Most of those “palaces” in Vaughan (Woodbridge) were built with sweat and tears by hardworking Italian-Cdns. I know many of them and their drive and work-ethic should be commended. The real mobsters are on Wall St and Bay St. Every hear of Bernard Madoff?

#69 Paul on 01.13.14 at 11:26 pm

#63 Bob Rice on 01.13.14 at 11:09 pm

#14 – “I often wonder what happened to the globe and mail online readership when they started charging for it. That is almost comical… i. e. To think people would pay to read all of the retitled company “press releases” that they redistribute to readers.”
_______________________________________________

I set my laptop on “privacy” setting and I get access to all Globe or Star articles… you don’t have to pay for it! I am using a Mac (Safari browser)
———————————————————-How cheap can you get? Typical I can get it for free if I just cut a few corners or change a price tag or two!

#70 Carpe Diem on 01.13.14 at 11:27 pm

#22 gut check

“contract employment opportunities keep getting offered but then delayed and delayed and delayed..

.. the only possible good thing I can see is that maybe, just by luck, we sold at a good time. But.. where to go now? ”

Hey Gut,

Sorry to hear about your tough spot…

Here are some tips.

1. I sold 4 years ago. The first rental sucked but it was a learning experience. The second place was awesome in terms of place and the neighborhood but heating the place SUCKED! Having a castle sure sucks heat and cash.

2. Living in the area got me a rental of a wonderful home and I can stay hear for a while.

3. I also have my target homes close by but I’m patient.

4. Go Live where your clients’ (or primary earner’s) live. (I live to close to a number of headhunters and they are my friends now). I also live and hang out with people I can find work if they ever ask!

5. The contract/PO process requires budgets and does take time, depending on the client. You need to understand your clients’ budget cycle and also you need to sell your services 6 months in advance. I’m an independent consultant. I’m very lucky, I got a great client. But I also need more cash flow. So I have 2 clients in the same organization. When one department screws up with a contract, I have the other to keep me busy. Having different organizations/clients is best but I’m lazy and my rates are pretty good!

6. Depending on your client. They might just be using your CV to try to get a contract. These opps are a needle in a haystack. The best opp requires you to go out their and sell yourself! If someone has an opp for your, don’t just sent a resume. Meet them. Meet the end-client, work hard to get a sale. Don’t be greedy, get in. If they like you, 2 years later, you are making more than you expected.

7. Owing in Canada is not cheap. Renting is. Check out The Economist page. Click on Price against Rent and then Canada.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/dailychart/2011/11/global-house-prices

8. I am a free man. No mortgage (mort-age …. dead age). I can move anywhere in the world with my 3 kids family. I have no debt until I die. I’ve had one sucky place I rented but it was 3 acres and the garden I had was amazing! I learned I did not want to live close to commercial non-organic farms. Very scary what the put in ground.

Bottom line. Having no debt is freedom. Having a bunch of investments outside one address feels even better!

#71 Roxy on 01.13.14 at 11:29 pm

The truth about online shopping is that most people buy online for discounts. Even the big name retailers are known for having “sale” and “clearance” sections where they dump all their older, unsold merchandise. Why buy in stores when all you need to know is your size and you can buy most things 60 – 70% off? Which definitely, at the end of the day, does not help the retail industry.

#72 Jeff in Victoria on 01.13.14 at 11:37 pm

#57 Mister Obvious

“How stupid would people feel if they found out that their realtor who gave them advice on a $500-800k+ purchase had no high school?”
——————————–

“There are people with university educations who are still dumb as a bag of hammers. That’s probably who those particular realtors have for clients.”
__________________________________________
One thing that is very clear, a university education makes one ‘educated’, but does not necessarily make one ‘smart’. Some of the ‘smartest’ people I know, never set foot in a university.

#73 crowdedelevatorfartz on 01.13.14 at 11:40 pm

@#42 P Gizzle

Global “News” are bigger prostitutes than the papers. And my heart pumps purple pee for every one of them that loses their jobs due to falling ratings or subscriptions………They’ve earned everything that’s coming……….

#74 KG on 01.13.14 at 11:42 pm

tick tock …

#75 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 01.13.14 at 11:46 pm

HONOR THE OIL SANDS: THEY BELONG TO US ALL IN CANADA

Singer Neil Young should stick to his money-making concert tours so that workers of all races (including First Nations folks) and persuasions can keep working in the oil sands, which is to say for the REST OF US!

While I don’t begrudge anyone an opinion, whether private or public, Mr. Young may sadly have enough influence to give the oil sands industry yet another “black eye”, this one concerning some sort of violation of treaty rights, by the feds, or whatever.

So concerned was the prime minister’s office, to this untimely whine, that it responded to Young’s complaint saying that large projects are carefully planned before they are approved. That is true, even of Shell’s latest planned project that is apparently associated, in some fashion, with Mr. Young’s “concerns.”

Canada needs the oil sands, as well as the Northern Gateway Pipeline across BC, and any other pipelines that would sent domestic hydrocarbons to energy-hungry Asian, and other, customers.

It is folly that so many “useful idiots” here are all too eager to bite the hand that feeds them.

For the record: Canada is, has been, and always will be a hewer of wood, drawer of water, and exploiter of hydrocarbons and other minerals. There are no heavy duty alternatives, not even secondary industry. The historic alternative is a life that would be brutish and short for too many.

The results, of our current resource policies, provide funding for education, medicine, arts and sciences, help for the poor, dignity for us all and more.

An economy spread over such a large territory and peopled by fewer folks living in California (where apparently Mr. Young resides) and some of China’s largest cities, makes for a delicate economic way of life.

Our offshore customers must think some of us are chulish spoiled bleating brats like the ageing Mr. Young.

Neil baby, zip it and appreciate what your fellow countrymen and women have done for you lately, regardless of where you may reside.

Treaties broken in the Athabaska? Why haven’t I heard about this before? Or are you also a shill for the “indian industry”, Mr. Young?

The GFC is not nearly over. Canada is suffering from its continuing effects, namely by the self-inflicted wounds of too much debt accumulation by too many people who are about to learn the fine art of “just say no.”

Attempting to hog-tie the oil sands, through another vapid rant by some rich singer is all the jittery 99 percent need right now. Mr. Young.

#76 T.O. Bubble Boy on 01.13.14 at 11:50 pm

The Globe and Mail is carving another 20 or so people from its editorial staff, while the National Post just punted half a dozen editors. Sun Media, Torstar, the CBC, CTV and Rogers have also laid off people in recent months as the media business hollows out.

So what? Well, count on even more Re/Max, Royal LePage and CREA press releases being run word-for-word as news. The MSM continues to sell its dwindling credibility to whatever advertisers are left. Sad. And in that regard, this is our canary in the coal mine – a daily reminder of where we’re headed.

Ah – you mean like asking Brad J Lamb for his opinion on the RE market?
http://life.nationalpost.com/2014/01/13/more-of-the-same-for-2014-according-to-realtor-and-developer-brad-lamb/

#77 John on 01.13.14 at 11:52 pm

#74

You don’t begrudge him an opinion? Eleven paragraphs say you do…

#78 Andrew Woburn on 01.13.14 at 11:52 pm

#27 Linda Mulligan on 01.13.14 at 9:42 pm
Regarding StatsCan numbers – I know I’ve had people tell me they do not answer the questions truthfully, but whether they are just saying that or have actually not answered truthfully who can say –
======================================

Once when I was GM of a small business in financial difficulties, I was harassed by StatsCan to produce some kind of industry report. I just didn’t have a spare day or more to dig out the info. They sent letters and then threats of imprisonment for not sending in the info. Finally a humorless man showed up in my reception area and demanded I complete said report right now and he would wait for it. I left him in reception, took his survey form and completed it by sitting at my office window and filling in random numbers from the licence plates of passing cars. He marched off with the completed product and I never heard from them again. Mission accomplished.

#79 renters rule on 01.13.14 at 11:53 pm

You missed this one Garth:

http://www.vancouversun.com/business/technology/jobs+lost+Pattison+owned+distribution+centre+Richmond/9374536/story.html

I worked for the corporate division back in the day, we shared offices with the agency (distribution) folks. Very sad for them. Very tough.

#80 gut check on 01.13.14 at 11:54 pm

#69 Carpe Diem
and
#60 AftertheHouseIsSold

A sincere thank you to you both for taking the time and being so thoughtful.

We will certainly think about everything you two have written. I still find it really difficult to imagine upping our monthly expenses for an inferior lifestyle, which, from this vantage point, it seems like we would be doing if we rented.

I am an artist/designer and my income is unreliable. I am going to search for regular employment back in an office environment again but must wait until I know where we are going before I start looking, so it’s tough.

My partner’s skills are in demand in several cities, however thus far there have been few takers when he’s applied from here. Perhaps they want to wait to see if someone local applies? Oh who knows.

Anyway, thanks again for your perspectives.
Onward…!

#81 Flamed out in Kitchener on 01.13.14 at 11:58 pm

Garth, … you asked for some common sense … now there’s the greatest challenge we have.

As far as REITS go; the changing retail dynamic calls for careful REIT selection. Take advantage of the online sales by investing in the distribution centers and warehouses (wir.u) and lighten up on Calloway and H&R Reit (owners of Primaris), but best is always the Apartment REITS … most stable, … everyone’s gotta live somewhere.

#82 live within your means on 01.14.14 at 12:20 am

#14 Musty Basement Dweller on 01.13.14 at 9:22 pm
So true about the deteriorated MSM.

I often wonder what happened to the globe and mail online readership when they started charging for it. That is almost comical… i. e. To think people would pay to read all of the retitled company “press releases” that they redistribute to readers.
…………………..

Not just the G&M. Years ago I stopped subscribing to our local paper for a few reasons, one of which was because the national news was a day late.

Most newspapers in Canada are controlled by a few media moguls.

I visit other sites, including al jazeera. I TRY to keep myself informed.

#83 Saskatoon Realty on 01.14.14 at 12:21 am

It’s also a very localized thing. Unemployment in Saskatchewan is the lowest it has been in decades, if not ever. Out east and in BC, things aren’t so good, but blanketing the entire country isn’t really fair.

#84 Detalumis on 01.14.14 at 12:32 am

#24 Old folks don’t spend = boomers won’t spend. That’s a huge mistake people have made assuming that the minute you turn 50 you may as well be 90, only interested in buying personal alarms and funeral plots with no interest in your home, trying new products or your personal appearance. I’m supposed to have a pubic-hair perm and wear a sweatshirt embroidered with hearts and Granny on the front.

Women over 45 actually buy more clothing online than any other demographic but you would never know it would you; nobody tries to sell them a thing. Just because people who grew up in the depression don’t spend doesn’t mean that nobody else ever will.

I spend a lot more at 50 something on clothing, shoes, jewellery, furniture, books, movies and restaurants than I did at 20 something, the only problem is that nobody thinks of me as a customer. I am pretty much invisible if I go in a bricks and mortar store so I buy most stuff online where nobody knows that I am not their target demographic. That reminds me, there is a Bompard cashmere sale on this week, no acrylic Target sweaters for me, check it out.

#85 Basil Fawlty on 01.14.14 at 12:34 am

I appreciate the fact that Neil Young, someone respected by many Canadians, has pointed out that local residents are getting sick from the Tar Sands development.

#86 T.O. Bubble Boy on 01.14.14 at 12:35 am

@ #74 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 01.13.14 at 11:46 pm
HONOR THE OIL SANDS: THEY BELONG TO US ALL IN CANADA
——————

If they actually belonged to “us all in Canada”, we’d all be millionaires like Norway. “us all in Canada” doesn’t even mean “us all in Alberta” apparently:
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/01/11/oil-fund-norway-millionaires_n_4576887.html

But, the “Economic Action Plan” does remind me of a 1990’s-era Neil Young song:
Saw it on the tube
Bought it on the phone
Now you’re home alone
It’s a piece of crap

#87 T.O. Bubble Boy on 01.14.14 at 12:39 am

VICTORIA TEA PARTY must have thought these ads weren’t a work of fiction:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canada-job-grant-ads-cost-2-5m-for-non-existent-program-1.2495196

#88 live within your means on 01.14.14 at 12:40 am

#17 Piccaso on 01.13.14 at 9:27 pm
Unemployed 10 months and I know i’m not a statistic as I never got to apply for UIC.
………………..

Best of luck Piccaso.

I don`t believe any of the stats that our current or previous governments put out re employment, inflation, etc. Re inflation – too many basic necessities are excluded.
……..
Woke up in the middle of the night (as per usual) & posted so doubt anyone will read my posts. LOL

#89 World According To Garth on 01.14.14 at 12:45 am

What evidence do you have that Stats Canada numbers are unreliable? — Garth

Come on Garth really? Everyone knows that:

Welfare – not counted
Don’t qualify – not counted
Self Employed (but not making money) – not counted

There is at LEAST 10% more right there. Welfare is less than 50% single moms and disabled so don’t go there. There are lots of studies (in BC) to prove that.

And you wonder why the main slime media is dead with all the govt lies they spew.

#90 James on 01.14.14 at 12:51 am

As you say, Toronto is rich. The market is segmenting because you want to chas after affordable housing. 500-900 is reasonable for Toronto. Buy a sfh and invest the disposable income. We are richer than you think Garth.

#91 Chaos on 01.14.14 at 12:51 am

Holy smokes…even the drug sniffing dogs are being
“down sized”…replaced by temporary foreign workers dogs…this country has gone to the “dogs”…

#92 Freedom First on 01.14.14 at 12:51 am

Wow! Garth! The last paragraph in today’s post……priceless! Love it!

The list of the unethical that you have publicly outed over the years has grown to a level that has made me very very happy to see. Karma is on your side Garth, big time!

Says a lot for your character Garth. You are an honest man who speaks the truth with no fear of the dark side.

#93 Treaty 8 and Neil Young on 01.14.14 at 12:55 am

Treaty 8 that Neil Young was referring to can be read at –

http://media.wix.com/ugd/75b7f5_8cbde24a19745ce155be22f595cc9362.pdf

It is an interesting 30-page read and, based on his recent comments to the press, I doubt that Mr. Young has read it.

Alwyn

Alwyn

#94 Tanya Evans on 01.14.14 at 12:59 am

#22 Gut Check
Take the proceeds from the sale of your house, invest it (or have a financial investor do that for you) and use the interest to ease the cost of your rent. You keep your money and the rent is more affordable. We were in your position a few years back. Rent is more affordable when you get some help. The sale from our home has not only offset rent costs, the money has grown over the years. We are free to move to follow work, have money in the bank, and peace of mind, and we can sleep at night. Talk to Garth Turner if you need more info. Best of luck!

#95 HDJ on 01.14.14 at 1:13 am

Garth, Good blog. Too bad the majority of Canadians aren’t exposed to your opinions. You need a much larger platform.

#96 Roman on 01.14.14 at 1:14 am

I don’t know what all those unemployed folks thinking, but we haven’t been find plain vanilla system administrator for months (and no, money wasn’t a problem).

There are just none free out there. Zero. All employed.

And btw, it’s complete Armageddon in Toronto shopping centers over weekend: no parking, crowds and crowds everywhere.

#97 Ronaldo on 01.14.14 at 1:19 am

#54 Victor V

”Is it better to try and get a chance of a better price on a condo, or should you worry about insulting the seller? You’ve got nothing to lose. The worst that will happen is that you’ll be rejected.”

Exactly. You can be certain that the seller will not have any remorse knowing that he has extracted an extra $25,000 or more out of you. That thing about ”insulting the seller” is as lame as it gets and just an other example of the manipulative tactics used by the RE industry.

#98 Infused with Opiates on 01.14.14 at 1:28 am

82 – Stimulated backwards (its easier than spelling it…)
I basically get the opposite reaction. They are on me like a shirt. Do they smell $$? They do it at car dealers,
banks, pubs – everywhere. I remember car shopping in my early 20s and some places just ignored me or “didnt have that model” because they thought I just wanted a test drive. And good luck with the perm.

77 Andrew – ha! I remember doing something like that. This was back in the days of fax, and there were several different companies working out of the same address so
I did something silly with them all and sent it back. I got a call shortly after from Statscan. Caller could hardly control her laughter. Said it was the best reponse they had in weeks. They agreed to just send one questionaire to me and dispense with the rest. I cant remember the last one I responded to but I think I just change the numbers a few % every year.

#99 Alberta Ed on 01.14.14 at 1:37 am

The Globe went down the toilet years ago; it’s not even a real newspaper any more, which is why I don’t even bother to read it (free) on-line. The Post, regrettably, seems to be going down the same track; its business section is a joke. Neither is worth 99 cents a month on-line. Too bad for the people who have lost their jobs, though.

#100 joblo on 01.14.14 at 1:38 am

Ex Media = EI + Drain the RRSP
Then what?

#101 World According To Garth on 01.14.14 at 1:46 am

http://armstrongeconomics.com/2014/01/13/civil-unrest-rising-protesters-now-threatened-with-15-years-in-prison/

But civil unrest and govt default (cuz we gotz 600 billion for those govt pensions somewhere) will NEVER happen in Kanada !!

#102 Tom from Mississauga on 01.14.14 at 1:51 am

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-13/u-s-posts-record-december-budget-surplus-on-fannie-mae-payments.html

And for those betting against America…
More tapering to come

#103 Happy Renting on 01.14.14 at 2:07 am

#22 & 79 – Gut Check

I second the suggestion you rent an apartment for a year (if you’re getting a good price on your house.) Put stuff in storage if you can’t bear to part with it.

A large, corporately-managed, high-rise apartment building will give you the option to sublet or assign your one-year lease if you need to move to another city. It won’t be a big drama for your landlord because with hundreds of apartments being rented, they know these things happen and do it all the time.

Try changing your perspective on renting. You are not “paying more for an inferior lifestyle.” You are paying for a period of freedom (can easily move for a job) and low risk (if you buy another house and it needs costly repairs, that’s another expense you didn’t need. Nevermind the housng market tanking. As a renter, none of that risk is yours.)

Whether it’s mild, moderate, or extreme, involuntarily losing more than 50% of your household’s income is a crisis (depends on how financially independent you are). The worst thing you can do, with prolonged unemployment, is try to maintain the cost, standard, or circumstance of the lifestyle you had with two incomes. Your lifestyle must adapt to the reality of your employment situation. If you have to turn down the perfect new job for your partner because it’s out of town and you’re chained to a new house you bought, that misery is self-inflicted. Getting that next job is essential. Living in or owning a house for the next few months (or several years) is not essential.

My bluntness may sting, but our family’s been through the same job loss situation and I can tell you, doing smart things (even if they suck, short term) is what will get you through intact. Update us on how it goes!

#104 tkid on 01.14.14 at 2:15 am

#22, I hear you on the rents. I sold a townhouse east of Toronto, and rented a condo for two years, then rented an apartment in Burlington. The cost of the downtown Toronto condo was phenomenally high with the landlord determined to make it go higher. The apartment in Burlington was more spacious but it cost the same amount in rent as the condo did.

I am allowed to work from home every other day, so I moved in with my mother (we get along very well) and I pay her rent. I spend 4 hours commuting one day, 0 hours commuting the other day.

Do I regret selling the house? No. Hell no. I managed to harvest a capital gain from the house, plus I find that not having that monthly mortgage hanging over my head to be a huge relief. Especially as my job is no longer secure (my being laid off is just a matter of time now).

You’ve sold your house. I doubt you have conditions with the buyer saying ‘if you feel wobbly you can back out with no penalty’. Plus you have managed to time it so that you are selling the house when it is worth the most. Economic conditions are screaming ‘bad times are here’ and I think it unrealistic to even think that the house will be worth more in 6 months.

If I was in your shoes I’d start to look at what I can afford to buy on just my salary plus the capital gains from the house. If it won’t buy you another house in the same neighbourhood, then start to look at other neighbourhoods or at renting. Renting in a location where your partner could work is a good idea.

But more important, while you both are in flux, your partner should be aggressively looking at jobs in other locations. Neither of you are locked into a 1 year rental contract or trying to sell in a falling real estate market. If you get lucky, you may find yourself working from the States or some fabulous location.

Keep everyone here updated eh? We are rooting for you!

#105 Djb on 01.14.14 at 2:24 am

I stopped reading the papers ages ago, it was yesterday’s news. Then it just became a venue for corporations to get their message out through with no editorial or investigative journalism.

The media has cut it’s own throat for advertising dollars.

Even the evening news runs the same stories between channels at 6pm.

The world is turning to blogs to get relevant information that is not biased from advertising dollars.

Like a few posters quoted just cut and paste the headline and some news service will have the same story as the paywall media has.

#106 DON on 01.14.14 at 2:47 am

Canada is always approx 5 years behind the states when it comes to the economy or trends for that matter. Now it is our turn, unfortunate, hopefully we get a leg up sooner than they did.

#107 John Prine on 01.14.14 at 2:49 am

#20 gta drowning in debt on 01.13.14 at 9:29 pm
Realtor favorite G&M continues to lose money and is on its way to going bankrupt. The media lies for liar realtors who are more criminal then educated. The fact is majority of realtors don’t have high school.

You obviously failed the real estate exam, how many attempts did you take before giving up? I have yet to meet a realtor that has not graduated from high school although there may be a few older ones…. To take the course from the Sauder School of Business at UBC you need your high school graduation certification.

#108 Oceanside on 01.14.14 at 2:57 am

1 Bobby on 01.13.14 at 10:38 pm
Who believes a realtor anyways? Anytime I go look at a property that has become stale and uninteresting, there is always an offer coming in the next day.
Looked at a waterfront condo here in Victoria. Unit has sat unsold since 2009. Realtor just raised the price. Unbelievable, given a similar unit, a foreclosure, sits unsold at over $ 100k less.
How do you define stupid?
____________________________________________

This is not the realtor, it’s the vendor who is freaking out about losing money…Realtors want to sell places, thats how they make money. Anybody that is a realtor or knows one will tell you that convincing people that the property that they are selling is worth what people will pay for it, not what they imagine it is worth or was worth in 2008.

#109 Oceanside on 01.14.14 at 3:03 am

#56 Ronaldo on 01.13.14 at 10:51 pm
Decided to check out the new Target here on the west coast this afternoon. The place was like a morgue.

Was in theTarget store in Nanaimo for the first time a few days ago, it was virtually empty, mid day on Saturday, more employees than customers. My significant other remarked that it looked like old Zeller’s stock (cheap junk like Wal Mart) and certainly wasn’t priced like Canadians were expecting with all the drum beating on the MSM when they first opened here. Costco was busy as always.

#110 Buy? Curious? on 01.14.14 at 3:35 am

YES Garth! You’re back! With all that REIT and diversified portfolio talk, the boredom was driving me to Smoking Man’s blog and I was actually enjoying it. Now, you’re back to the meat and potatoes of pending apocolypse in the greatest city Canada (screw you, Toronto-haters! We can self-implode without any of your hillbillies’ help, thank you very much.) When I hear people talk, I can hear the fear and sense of failure in their voices. One girlfriend of mine told me she, her husband and 2 kids are moving back in with his parents “to save money”. Yeah, right. It’s because they’re NOT MAKING any money! And it’s going to get worse. As much as I love immigrants, they are not going to be able to save Toronto in the short term. I can’t wait to see how the next few months plays out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sKrpl-KBTzQ

Rob Ford 2014!

#111 Tony on 01.14.14 at 3:41 am

Re: #41 Mr. Frugal on 01.13.14 at 10:15 pm

Every country around the world except Iceland is in much worst shape today than in 2008. The European banks are in twice as worst shape and the American banks simply lie about everything.

#112 Barry in Pickering on 01.14.14 at 4:14 am

Garth: “this is the gravest danger Canadian real estate has faced since the GFC.”

Stay calm Garth. Despite your anecdotes of doom, Canada’s GDP was +1.7% in 2013, and is forecast for 2014 to be +2.6% (by RBC) and +2.3% (by Bank of Canada).
The US was a little higher (2.6% for 2013), understandable due to their huge stimulus. This is a small difference (Canada=1.7% growth, US=2.6% growth).

Yet the US is “half full” and Canada is “half empty” in all of your posts.

The “disconnect” that I see is your NEGATIVITY about Canadian growth, despite seeing POSITIVE GDP growth in previous and projected numbers.

Jobs matter more to real estate than GDP. — Garth

#113 Blase on 01.14.14 at 7:37 am

Ontario’s rates are too low, that’s all I know, since they are based on Canada’s credit worthiness, which should certainly be downgraded with the liabilities on the books for CMHC and Genworth. I’m expecting Ontario’s credit rating to be slashed anytime. The jig is up. As for hospitals, yes, they should be plentiful. Why Canada doesn’t make people pay for service is beyond me. There’s a big difference between a US system and a free-be system. Doctors visits should be at least $20 a visit.

#114 The real Kip on 01.14.14 at 9:32 am

“It’s just a shame those people still borrowing big to buy houses at silly prices don’t realize what’s likely ahead.”

Can you ever forgive us?

#115 crowdedelevatorfartz on 01.14.14 at 9:38 am

@#82 Basil Faulty
Your admiration for Neil Young’s stance on the tar sands is somewhat ridiculous.

It never ceases to amaze me when “celebrities” (Neil Young’s fan base is 50+ and care more about jobs,bills,mortgages and debt than tar sands) such as Neil Young suddenly appear in the media harping on about the environment.
A new album being released soon Neil? Need to drum up some free publicity Neil? Have some bills to pay Neil?
Call me cynical but when any celebrity spews forth an opinion it reminds me of that washed up has been country singer Glen Campbell’s answer to why he was supporting Ronald Reagan’s presidential run
“Anybody that has no gray hair at his age gets my vote!”

#116 TheCatFoodLady on 01.14.14 at 9:44 am

It’s beginning to get ugly around here. Walked downtown then uptown yesterday doing errands & not being in a rush, had a long, hard look at storefronts. Most had signs advertising %70, %80, %90 off. Few customers. More stores holding ‘going out of business’ sales.

Walked into the pawn shop – we were buying. There was a long line of people selling – ‘toys’ mainly, cell phones, digital anything, lap tops, one e-bike. We were in there a good hour & no other buyers came in; just a constant flow of sellers. We walked out with a couple of outstanding buys & a feeling that we’re just starting to see the tip of the iceberg.

More people where I live losing their jobs – most work in service jobs – cleaning & personal services. Those places are in big, big trouble. Sobering. Lots of nervous talk about it maybe being time to put homes on the market. It may be too late.

#117 T.O. Bubble Boy on 01.14.14 at 10:15 am

@ #101 Tom from Mississauga on 01.14.14 at 1:51 am
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-13/u-s-posts-record-december-budget-surplus-on-fannie-mae-payments.html

And for those betting against America…
More tapering to come
————————————–

You know what’s ironic? Read the Fannie and Freddie part closely — it’s almost like Mr. Private Equity won the election instead of Obama:

Payments to the Treasury from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were about $34 billion more last month than they were a year earlier, according to the report.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have taken $187.5 billion in U.S. aid since they were taken into conservatorship in 2008. They’ve returned $185.2 billion, which is counted as a return on the nearly 80 percent stakes the government holds, not as repayment.

i.e. the government still owns 80%, but they’ve essentially re-couped the entire $187.5 B investment in 5 years. That deal sounds like Bain Capital to me.

#118 fixie guy on 01.14.14 at 10:16 am

“Aren’t affordable houses supposed to belong in cities where nobody can find a job? ”

Doesn’t this counter the notion job reports drives real estate prices? Windsor long had, and may still have, a median reported household income above Vancouver. People have to come around to the fundamental fact that federal fiscal policy and F&H’s funneling of profits to the financial industries through the CMHC is the market’s fuel. A manufactured housing bubble creates winners and loser, and winners don’t end in debt.

#119 VICTORIA TEA PARTY on 01.14.14 at 10:24 am

T.O BUBBLE BOY #85 #6

The federal Tories is not the only government in Canada to launch a “bridge to nowhere” boondoggle. Has happened way too much, in too many jurisdictions, and is inexcusable.

As for Norway, there cannot be a fair comparison with Alberta since Norway, as a sovereign country, can print its own currency and does. It has monetary and fiscal control over its affairs. This is the financial result of such control. Good for them.

Alberta has no such power. But it does have fiscal decision-making where the current and immediate-past governments have failed so miserably to keep a tight rein on spending. It was/is trying to please everyone and, in the result, pleases no one.

I think a national heritage-style savings fund is a better idea. A national discussion could be a good start.
Resource revenues from all sources could be gathered for the future benefit of all. As for related taxation levels, corporate and indivdual, that too is an important future public policy matter requiring time and effort.

#120 TO99 on 01.14.14 at 10:32 am

Garth – given the obvious lack of affordability of property in the GTA/GVA I wish you would concede and address the elephant in the room – New Immigrants & Non-Residents.

Forget anecdotal information -there is a real threat to Canada’s housing affordability due to foreign capital.

Unfortunately few stats are published on the actual impact that immigration and foreign money is having on Canadian real estate.

Many properties are being purchased under the guise of a registered company. “Students” are funneling HAM money. Kids fresh out of university are purchasing brand new homes.

Alarms aren’t sounding by the big banks because New Immigrants typically require hefty down payments (35%+) thus on paper represent lower risk.

In certain regions of the country housing purchases are almost exclusively going to “Non-Canadians” (Richmond, West Van,,). This is not to say second or third generation Canadian – these people are in Canada for less than 5 years, or some that may not even choose to reside in Canada.

Our banks will gladly give them a mortgage, as long as they have the down payment.

In fact, the rules are different for Canadians vs Non-Canadians. If you are a Canadian and have a giant down payment (35%+), you still need to have an income to support mortgage payments (TDSR ratio) – HOWEVER if you are a “NON-Resident” or “New to Canada” you would be exempt from proof of income.

The falling Canadian dollar is only going to make things worse – all of a sudden our real estate is now selling at a “discount” to foreigners.

This problem certainly could be solved, or at least battled by requiring property purchases to be made by Canadian Citizens – or by levying some kind of non-resident tax.

Certain pockets of the GTA are transforming into Richmond or West Vancouver – regions where bungalows quickly sell for millions – to many “first time buyers” who somehow have 35% down.

I know you have strayed from the HAM issue in the past, (with all due respect it seems you were bordering on being politically correct) but can you please take a moment to actually reflect on it?

If many “professionals” commanding above average salaries can’t afford anything but a small “condo” in a place like the GTA – what about the rest of the population – including the working poor?

For those who try to say “TORONTO is a WORLD class city, the prices are nothing compared to New York/Paris/ ect….” Sure, but those cities all have a WORKING transit system to cart around the working poor.

The cleaners, support staff, restaurant employees, ect ect can all live outside the city and manage to get to work through a WORKING transit system. Toronto is a LONG way from that. Unless we expect our city to be served by a long line of zombies that commute 2 hours a day from the neither regions.

This post was much longer than expected! Perhaps I should have saved it for an email.

#121 not 1st on 01.14.14 at 10:48 am

Retail is going to have to change. There is a segment of the population that will always want to wander around stores in person, but for people who just want to get what they want fast and cheap, online is where it will be.

Malls will have to provide more of an experience than shopping if they want to thrive. My guess is that a lot of these will morph into mini-family entertainment centers with rides and shows and stuff. Connect on a casino too. Kind of like a cross between West Edmonton and Vegas.

#122 Dual Citizen in Canada on 01.14.14 at 10:52 am

I would love to see the stat which shows how many people actually own their homes, mortgage free. The problem is that home “ownership” is an illusion if you have a mortgage. You’re basically renting from the bank. The bank is your landlord and you are his/her bi**ch! People need to be educated. Party on, Garth!

#123 Buy? Curious? on 01.14.14 at 10:53 am

I didn’t play attention to it when these economists spoke of future economic collapse because I was just a young little boy, but to see their precdictions come true, well, it’s scary!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEeqS7CfRMc&feature=player_embedded#at=26

#124 Ray on 01.14.14 at 10:54 am

Heres a great example of G and M declining standards for printing real estate agent garbage.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/home-and-garden/real-estate/bidding-war-for-davisville-home-tacks-86000-on-to-sale-price/article16279612/

By my calculations, a home that sold for $750 000 in 2007 should be selling for $1 000 005 in 2013 assuming 5% year over year appreciation over 6 years, and assuming they did no renovations. I know…I was lenient to not consider it 7 years (2014). The title of the article should read “Davisville home sells for $20, 000 below market price”. The only bright side to this i see is that the higher this market is bid up by irrational people, the harder it will fall and it then real estate might prove to be a good investment at that time.

#125 dienekes on 01.14.14 at 10:56 am

Can someone tell me what is wrong with Windsor. I live in Northern Manitoba. Been watching the insanity from up here for awhile. Thinking of moving, but what idiot would pay 500k plus for a home, especially in Saskatoon. I’m from Saskatoon, it is a shit hole.
Suddenly I read about this promised land named Windsor. Cheap housing, warm weather (53 days of snow a year? That’s nothing) 200000 population, 3hours from Toronto? Shit, I drive 16 hours to have some fun. 3 hours? I would drive it for coffee! 9 hours from New York? 4 hours from Chicago. 16 hours from Florida?
Now I see the unemployment is lower than Toronto.
Seems to me this must be the greatest place in Canada.
Tell me why I’m wrong! But hurry, I’m already packing my truck. Even my wife is excited.
I have even told some of my employees. One of them, his wife is a teacher, is looking for a teaching job there now.

#126 bigrider on 01.14.14 at 10:59 am

2200 square foot, 20 year old homes on 28 foot lots in Thornhill ( Bathurst and Centre street area,Promenade mall) selling for 750k.

Nope, no housing bubble here folks.

#127 Paul on 01.14.14 at 11:04 am

Daisy Mae…. Online shopping is huge. It’s not mom & pop parcels I know that as fact.

#128 Jenn on 01.14.14 at 11:35 am

#112 Blase

How much is your tax bill? Our family tax bill is $80,000/yr. If you want to pay more, sign your name to a cheque and send it to Revenue Canada. They’ll gladly accept. Can’t fix stupid!

#129 Dupcheck on 01.14.14 at 11:55 am

@ #68 Bob Rice:

I do not believe all Italians are mobsters, but i think most of them are show off’s and a bit ignorant. They think that by showing off a big home, a big truck, a big everything, you name it, shows that they have wealth. In reality they have no savings and are in debt to their necks just because they have to keep their status as “Show Off’s”. Majority of italians have no clue how to invest. Spending all your money on things you do not need, because you have to show you are better, and then saving pennies on tomato sauce when cranking those jars in their garages.

#130 Alex n Calgary on 01.14.14 at 12:11 pm

All mighty calgary, I got laid off last month from an IT contracting place, shortage of work they said as they scooped my full-time client to divvy up among 3 other guys. Birthday house party a few days ago, nobody can believe we are moving to another rental (being booted from this one after 2yrs, owners are moving back from BC for some reason…) they all have that polite smile as they have no idea what even happens in rentals.

They perpetuate the lie that the rental market is SO tight here in Calgary, but thats not what RentFaster says. What it shows us is a huge host of houses 2000-3000$ a month in rent! Virtually everyone I know with a heartbeat has bought in Calgary, so who would pay that much in rent? These are people with 2nd and 3rd houses (I bet barley even 30yrs old) who follow the myth of “Tight rental market” and figure they can put the house up for the mortgage and more! but the truth is that people who rent are looking for low priced accomidation (temp until they can buy) or are total filth (like our total criminal next door early 20’s neighbours)

I also here tons of stories of how the houses are ruined by renters here, its because they are usually the filth of filth, normal people don’t rent here, I imagine people are heavily subsidizing their rental properties here. The crazier part is that I know lots of these people, they often have no or low education jobs (a huge % of Calgary) and will be some of the first jobs to get punted in a slowdown. Slowdown = no more workers from newfoundland or BC or SK or ON, no job to pay for own house let alone carry rental, bankrupt, inventory goes up, prices down, rinse repeat.

Calgary might be ground Zero out of all of Canada just from the migrant population alone.

#131 Bobby on 01.14.14 at 12:18 pm

#107 Oceanside,

Yes, you are correct, many sellers still believe prices are elevated. But, many realtors inflate the prospective price just to get the listing.

#132 Ralph Cramdown on 01.14.14 at 12:24 pm

#111 Barry in Pickering — “Canada’s GDP was +1.7% in 2013, and is forecast for 2014 to be +2.6% (by RBC) and +2.3% (by Bank of Canada).
The US was a little higher (2.6% for 2013), understandable due to their huge stimulus. This is a small difference (Canada=1.7% growth, US=2.6% growth). […] The “disconnect” that I see is your NEGATIVITY about Canadian growth, despite seeing POSITIVE GDP growth in previous and projected numbers.”

Canada’s population is growing at 1.1%/year, while the US grows at 0.7%. So rough and technically incorrect but close math says that our GDP per capita gained 0.6%, while the US gained 1.9%.

GDP is the more important measure if you’re trying to forecast corporate profits or the stock market, but GDP per capita counts for more if you’re examining consumer expenditures, I’d say.

Others have commented on the accuracy of employment numbers. I’d say two things: 1) they’re noisy month-to-month. 2) The trend doesn’t lie. US numbers are measured in a variety of ways, such as the household survey which dials people and asks if they’re working or looking for a job, the business survey which asks about new hires, vacancies and “separations,” government payroll tax deduction information, unemployment benefits applications and payments, and the country’s largest private payroll processor which handles pay for a sizeable fraction of America’s workers. Anyone who thinks that’s all systematically being fudged is going to need more tinfoil.

Toronto’s numbers too high because of new immigrants and refugees? Same deal. Even if it affects the level of unemployment, it doesn’t affect whether that level is increasing or declining, unless in-migration rates change.

I’m sticking to my thesis of a residential building boom and an Alberta energy boom superimposed on an otherwise weak economy. Building booms don’t last forever and I see too many signs of tapped out consumers. The US consumer has paid down debt (or had it written off) and is spending a bit again. The Canadian consumer? Not so much.

Putting less in RRSPs this year than last year? Bye bye tax refund. The budget balancers in Finance and the PMO ought to be happy about that anyway — maybe they can stress that instead of talking about telecom policy.

#133 joe the realtor on 01.14.14 at 12:53 pm

So what if realtors don’t have high school? Smokingman is right education is for people to become slaves. Lol I don’t have high school but I can convince doctors to buy or sell for a certain price. The masses are stupid and we realtors can make anyone dance to our tune.

#134 Miser Obvious on 01.14.14 at 1:15 pm

#85 T.O. Bubble Boy

But, the “Economic Action Plan” does remind me of a 1990′s-era Neil Young song:
Saw it on the tube
Bought it on the phone
Now you’re home alone
It’s a piece of crap

—————————————-

That’s funny.

You want crap? Try Neil Young’s “Journeys” DVD. A really bad (in fact, unwatchable) poorly filmed and rendered solo performance recorded in May of 2011.

Don’t get me wrong people. I like a lot of Neil Young’s music and freely grant that he is a Canadian musical legend.

But he’s really got some serious explaining to do on this one. My wife wants her money back.


Saw it on store shelf
Bought it with cash
Put it in the player
Then into the trash

(Sorry, I know this isn’t a music critique blog but I felt the above post deserved a response. The world should know Mr. Young is also guilty of profiting from questionable product from time to time.)

#135 Mr. Frugal on 01.14.14 at 1:40 pm

Re: #41 Mr. Frugal on 01.13.14 at 10:15 pm

Every country around the world except Iceland is in much worst shape today than in 2008. The European banks are in twice as worst shape and the American banks simply lie about everything.

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

It doesn’t matter where we are now. The important thing is where we are headed. Are things getting better or are they getting worse.

The way I see it, you’ve got two choices;

(a) Participate in and benefit from the global recovery which is taking place.
(b) Stuff your cash in GICs or an old sock.

#136 Babblemaster on 01.14.14 at 1:40 pm

#128 Dupcheck

You ignorant idiot! It’s not about saving pennies. It’s just that the home made tomato sauce tastes so much better.

#137 The Mayor of Transcona on 01.14.14 at 1:41 pm

#124 dienekes on 01.14.14 at 10:56 am :

I visited Windsor last year for work,

On Windsor you missed – accross the river from Detroit (in fact you can take a City bus for $4 each way). And depending what you like for “fun” there’s a fair bit in Windsor (Caeser’s, ok bar scene etc.).

Albeit its a little bit drab and I’m told the economy’s not so great.

The strangest of all was the attitude of locals though: “You’re from Winniepg, you must find this place a crap hole” Ha! People from Windsor outself-depricate Winnipeggers!

#138 We should beware on 01.14.14 at 2:22 pm

#104 Djb on 01.14.14 at 2:24 am

I stopped reading the papers ages ago, it was yesterday’s news. Then it just became a venue for corporations to get their message out through with no editorial or investigative journalism.

The media has cut it’s own throat for advertising dollars.

djb – The writing was on the wall a decade ago re the transfer of ad $ from newspapers to free online news orgs.

We should beware the loss of investigative journalists – so important for a free western liberal democracy – traditionally they have been one of the few sources of truth available to us.

Alwyn

#139 Franco on 01.14.14 at 2:30 pm

#128 —- It seems to me that you know very little about Italians.

#140 Oceanside on 01.14.14 at 2:42 pm

#130 Bobby on 01.14.14 at 12:18 pm
#107 Oceanside,

Yes, you are correct, many sellers still believe prices are elevated. But, many realtors inflate the prospective price just to get the listing.
*******************************************
Sorry, I forgot about those realtors, the acquaintances of mine that are realtors are driven crazy by those who “buy” listings then wind up lowering the price 6 months later to where it should have been in the first place. They appeal to the cheap and greedy, the best thing is to be aware of what houses in one’s neighbourhood are selling for and which ones have been listed over and over again. Some of those high priced homes have owners that are just “fishing” and don’t care if they sell.

#141 Oceanside on 01.14.14 at 2:44 pm

132 joe the realtor on 01.14.14 at 12:53 pm
So what if realtors don’t have high school? Smokingman is right education is for people to become slaves. Lol I don’t have high school but I can convince doctors to buy or sell for a certain price. The masses are stupid and we realtors can make anyone dance to our tune.
*********************************************

Joe, you are obviously not a realtor or you would not make such a stupid statement. Why make your reputation worse?

#142 Rocko on 01.14.14 at 2:46 pm

So is CIBC full of it or what?

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/tsx-will-beat-u-s-stocks-this-year-cibc-says-1.2496086

#143 Drambuie on 01.14.14 at 2:48 pm

So if my mortgage is up or renewal do i lock in a 5 year 4.79 % rate or do a one year variable. (3.59 %) Based on your 2014 outlook at my local rural credit union.

#144 dienekes on 01.14.14 at 2:58 pm

One observation I have made concerning the economy is this:
We are members of the Construction Associations of Manitoba (CARM) Saskatchewan (PACA) and Alberta CCA). We see every job posted for tender.
Manitoba usually has 120 jobs for tender, 80 in Winnipeg alone. Saskatchewan has 60 posted, 10 in Saskatoon alone. Alberta has 60 posted across the province or less, 10 in Calgary alone, most by far in Edmonton.
Can someone explain to me the whole “Alberta is booming” BS I keep hearing. From what I see, there is nothing.

#145 Steven on 01.14.14 at 3:10 pm

These real estate cultists just don’t know when to quit!
http://video.theloop.ca/news/consumer-news/watch/housing-prices-going-up-in-2014/3033614527001#.UtVamfRDvX4

#146 Daisy Mae on 01.14.14 at 3:10 pm

#79 Renters Rule: “We’ve got ebooks, online magazine subscriptions, and it’s really hard on the paper business and periodical business because information is instantaneous on line. People don’t want to wait for their weeklies in a grocery store.

“Did we expect this to happen so soon? Absolutely not. I’m sick about all these people losing their jobs.”

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

Business rep didn’t see it coming? She should have.

#147 Toronto_CA on 01.14.14 at 3:14 pm

Lookie lookie, Gord knows what he’s talking about; though it certainly is at odds with CIBCs prediction for the TSX and ReMax/et al’s prediction for RE:

Canada’s biggest banks say consumers are reaching the limit on how much they can afford to borrow, and that’s likely to slow loan growth this year.

Royal Bank chief executive Gord Nixon said Tuesday he expects Canadian households will begin to show more restraint.

“In terms of pure consumer lending (growth), we’ll probably be operating at a much lower rate than we have been over the last few years,” he told a bank industry conference.

“There’s no question that the consumer has been leveraged up.”

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/consumers-have-hit-their-limits-bank-ceos-say-1.2496269

#148 happity on 01.14.14 at 3:30 pm

“Unemployment in the nation’s largest city jumps and is now a full 1% higher than in the US”

So what, you said USA is in an economic renaissance…

#149 Paul on 01.14.14 at 3:32 pm

142 Drambuie on 01.14.14 at 2:48 pm

So if my mortgage is up or renewal do i lock in a 5 year 4.79 % rate or do a one year variable. (3.59 %) Based on your 2014 outlook at my local rural credit union
————————————————————Five year rate C.I.B.C 3.29%

#150 bentoverpayingtaxes on 01.14.14 at 3:36 pm

Hard to avoid the obvious disparity between a balanced approach….and even fee structured mutual funds. I wonder if may people realize that ‘the muts’ have been going gangbusters…..with returns above 20% on average. I left my kids surplus RESP in CIBC’s Agressive Managed Growth and see he’s up 22%……makes me want to get out of the business and go out to pasture.

https://www.cibc.com/ca/rates/growth-rates.html#CIBC+Dividend+Growth+Fund

http://www.tdcanadatrust.com/products-services/investing/mutual-funds/perforFrame.jsp

With rare exception the unloved mutual funds have been quietly outperforming in almost every sector or style. They have certainly outperformed the broad universe of ETf’s by a wide margin……what gives 8%ers?

You are absolutely incorrect. — Garth

#151 Cousin on 01.14.14 at 3:53 pm

@ #128 Dupcheck What an ignorant person you must be to say such a stupid comment as you wrote ! I Sir, am a Italian Canadian .. and I do not have ” A BIG HOME “or” A BIG TRUCK” and a” SHOW OFF THINGS ” all around me.

But I do have a Small house “PAYED OFF” in seven years
a 97 Grand am
a 2001 GM van
300K plus RRSP
300K Plus in Cash

And you know how I got at this point… ITS CALLED WORK ! That’s Right… I work 7 days a week 12 hours a day… with two weeks off a year..

TRY IT !!

#152 Ralph Cramdown on 01.14.14 at 3:54 pm

#139 Oceanside — “Sorry, I forgot about those realtors, the acquaintances of mine that are realtors are driven crazy by those who “buy” listings then wind up lowering the price 6 months later to where it should have been in the first place. They appeal to the cheap and greedy […]”

Well, there’s a bit of a disconnect, isn’t there? How can you tell the seller that the big-city real estate market is efficient and his house will sell for what it’s worth regardless of who gets the listing, and also tell him that it’s worth paying you and your broker and the buyer’s agent 5% when the lawyer only charges $1,500? Oh and if he drops a little money renting furniture and buying San Pellegrino, his house will sell for $15,000 more because, even though it’s an efficient market, buyers are easily confused by a little staging?

One of the founding tenets of organized real estate is “we can sell your house for more” so it should come as no surprise that some agents say “and I can sell it for more than that other guy can.”

#153 Shawn on 01.14.14 at 4:15 pm

Construction Tenders in Alberta

Dienekes at 143 points out a lack of construction jobs up for Tender in Alberta.

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

Well, you see, it really is different in Alberta.

I thought I heard it from an unreliable source that:

Here customers have to beg for contractors to work for them. They don’t bother to tender much since very few companies bother to answer tendrs. Instead the customers just go and beg a contractor to do the job (at most any price). If the contractor finds out you got more than two bids he leaves in a huff and won’t do the job.

Again, this from unreliable sources (i.e I made it up).

But meanwhile and seriously I can say the stores and restaurants here (Edmonton area) are VERY busy.

#154 Smoking Man on 01.14.14 at 4:29 pm

For all you newbees and morons that chirp the great man, the Smoking Man. The who is right 90% of the time. You post skippers. To bad you missed this call. But like most of my un-fans you have no skin in the game to begin with.

I give you a few calls from Sept and Oct.

47 Smoking Man on 09.18.13 at 10:47 pm

To the non belivers of BATMAN

 

I give you the Canadian bond market

 

http://www.bankofcanada.ca/rates/interest-rates/canadian-bonds/

Swap tarders of the world chance to make out HUGE

 

 

 

 

#21 Smoking Man on 10.02.13 at 9:04 pm

“Bond King” Bill Gross, the widely-regarded manager of one of the world’s largest investment funds, called for interest rates to remain lower for “decades to come” in his monthly economic commentary on Wednesday.

……………………………………………………………………..

 

I bet there are a few sneaky buggers on Bay Street that hang on every word I say. And bet big…..:)

 

My call for Rates to stay low forever has gone main stream now . The great Bill Gross is now following me.

 

1 2 3 years ago when peddling that call, It made me look insane.

 

I’m still insane but as always right.

 

Canadian Benchmark Bonds.

 

You all remember when I said BATMAN on bonds yields a few weeks ago.

 

Here you go……

 

http://www.bankofcanada.ca/rates/interest-rates/canadian-bonds/

 

Never bet against a smoking man.

 

________________________

#155 John W. on 01.14.14 at 4:35 pm

B.C assessments out. One building in my neighbourhood has seen every suite fall, some by a lot. Example: Two bedroom: July 2012 assessed at $315,000, July 2013
$262,000. That’s quite a drop. This building is not in some downtrodden part of town. It’s just off of Lonsdale in North Vancouver. Apparently, [with apologies to Frank Zappa] it CAN happen here.

#156 DM in C on 01.14.14 at 4:46 pm

And yet there’s so much disposable income in Calgary, we have salons that specialize in eyelash extensions — to the tune of $80.00 per session.

Seriously.

http://www.lolalashbar.com/

#157 Big Brother on 01.14.14 at 5:08 pm

#153 Smoking Man on 01.14.14 at 4:29 pm
For all you newbees and morons that chirp the great man, the Smoking Man. The who is right 90% of the time. You post skippers. To bad you missed this call. But like most of my un-fans you have no skin in the game to begin with.
I give you a few calls from Sept and Oct.
47 Smoking Man on 09.18.13 at 10:47 pm
To the non belivers of BATMAN
I give you the Canadian bond market
http://www.bankofcanada.ca/rates/interest-rates/canadian-bonds/
Swap tarders of the world chance to make out HUGE
#21 Smoking Man on 10.02.13 at 9:04 pm
“Bond King” Bill Gross, the widely-regarded manager of one of the world’s largest investment funds, called for interest rates to remain lower for “decades to come” in his monthly economic commentary on Wednesday.
……………………………………………………………………..

I bet there are a few sneaky buggers on Bay Street that hang on every word I say. And bet big…..:)
My call for Rates to stay low forever has gone main stream now. The great Bill Gross is now following me.
1 2 3 years ago when peddling that call, It made me look insane.
I’m still insane but as always right.
Canadian Benchmark Bonds.
You all remember when I said BATMAN on bonds yields a few weeks ago.
Here you go……
http://www.bankofcanada.ca/rates/interest-rates/canadian-bonds/
Never bet against a smoking man.
_____________________________________________

MKULTRA says we really have to pull our Smoking Man back and teach him to be humble. Down boy, down now, good boy, want to chase a ball?

#158 whats really going on... on 01.14.14 at 5:10 pm

Dollar approaching 90 cents.

Inflation with respect to dollar devaluation is at 10% year over year…

Don’t believe the rest. You are being played.

#159 espressobob on 01.14.14 at 5:30 pm

#149 bentoverpayingtaxes

As an ETF investor I know what I own. Problem with some Canadian mutual funds is they own foreign content, read the prospectus. This can create the illusion of outperformance keeping the wool over ones eyes.

Heres an example of a world index, better me thinks.

http://ca.ishares.com/product_info/fund/overview/XWD.htm

#160 harboursnug on 01.14.14 at 5:47 pm

DELETED

#161 Randy Randerson on 01.14.14 at 5:56 pm

#149
S&P was up >30% last year, so your mutual fund lags behind the index.

#162 Obvious Truth on 01.14.14 at 6:20 pm

137.

Garth was the number one media hard ass.

You got him for free.

Last great one for me was the late Bob Hunter.

Can’t debate Garth on media. If you don’t remember him from years ago you should read his bio. Anyone interviewing him is like a school kid in comparison.

Wonder how many readers actually know anything about him? Or remember watching his show. He was very serious about money.

This is way better than print or tv.

#163 Invest in Canadian Startups on 01.14.14 at 6:48 pm

Jobs come from businesses and businesses come from entrepreneurs so it seems logical to me to invest in, nurture and support entrepreneurs.

Sell your house and invest in Canadian startups.

Imagine where our country would be if people invested in entrepreneurs just 1/4 as much as they did in real estate.

http://www.DELETED

If being an entrepreneur means using this blog as your marketing tool, get a real job. — Garth

#164 Josh in Calgary on 01.14.14 at 6:54 pm

#22 Gut Check,
If you get this far I would tend to agree with most of the other commentors here. You did well to sell your house. Flexibility is your friend right now more than ever. Renting might not be as palatable to you, but for the short term you’re better off to have the freedom to move to find work without having to wait for the sale of a house and pay realty fees, etc.

If you don’t know with reasonable certainty that you’ll be staying put for 5years or more then it seldom makes sense to buy.

#165 Fishcutter on 01.14.14 at 6:54 pm

“Robust population inflows”

I don’t understand this line. Is the data saying that unemployed people are moving to Toronto from other places with lower unemployment?

#166 Ontario's Left Coast on 01.14.14 at 8:50 pm

#128 Dupcheck – Italians

Are you feeling okay? The money behaviours of Italians as a community would be virtually indistinguishable from any other segment of the population. I would have thought that most of the dinosaurs with prejudiced, outdated attitudes like yours would have died off in the ’70s. Get over yourself and stop being such a hater.

#167 Daisy Mae on 01.14.14 at 9:12 pm

#126 Paul: “Daisy Mae…. Online shopping is huge. It’s not mom & pop parcels I know that as fact.”

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

I suppose it’s getting that way. Personally, I like being able to touch and feel. Online purchasing seems to me cold and impersonal. But hey! That’s just me. :-)

One poster suggested our present malls may morph into something similar to the West Edmonton Mall — offering fun experiences — and that would appeal to the masses.

#168 CD on 01.14.14 at 9:42 pm

Windsor’s employment rate is very dependent on the exchange rate. The more it goes down, the more more people in windsor will have jobs. A lot will be junk jobs at the casino, bingo halls, or restaurants. As the rate goes down even more, small time factories will get busier and the jobs will be better.

Windsor is disconnected to toronto in many ways, some of them good (like radio stations from detroit) and other bad like the US economy (like tourists from detroit).

#169 Harry Wilson on 01.15.14 at 1:13 am

Hello, Mr. Turner; re the spammer at #162, ‘Invest In Canadian Startups’, I just wanted to point out that you left the hyperlink behind his name at the top of his comment. (I’m assuming that you wanted to expunge that one too.)

Have a good day; give my regards to T.O.

#170 thedoubter on 01.15.14 at 2:44 am

The Canadian home prices edge higher in December, the Teranet reported.

http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/01/14/canada-economy-housing-idINL2N0KO0SG20140114

#171 thedoubter on 01.15.14 at 3:33 am

Canadian home prices rise in 2013 according to Teranet.

http://www.thestar.com/business/real_estate/2014/01/14/canadian_house_prices_buoyed_in_2013_by_rebound_of_toronto_vancouver_markets.html

#172 Yo on 01.15.14 at 11:08 am

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-13/nordic-crisis-waiting-to-happen-puzzles-krugman-assessing-debts.html

#173 Mr. Frugal on 01.15.14 at 12:19 pm

Garth, this might be a bit off topic, but have you happened to notice the latest run-up in Potash (POT). It’s not all bad news – provided you pick up good stuff when it’s on sale.