Flying blind

SEEDS modified

If you’re shopping for new digs in Victoria and wonder what the market’s doing, don’t ask the real estate board!

Here’s how the cartel reported the latest numbers this week to an anxious city:

Current MLS® HPI composite for the Victoria Real Estate Board area is 139.3 – compared to 139.1 this time last year. While these overall numbers indicate little change in the last 12 months, some areas have changed more than others. Local REALTORS® can interpret what this means to specific neighbourhoods in the region.

Huh? What the hell does that mean? This is 139.3 of what, exactly? Let’s turn to board boss Tim Ayres for an explanation:

The Victoria Real Estate Board uses the MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) to report on property values. The MLS® HPI uses the concept of a benchmark home, a notional home with common attributes of typical homes in a defined area. Through the analysis of ten years of Victoria Real Estate Board MLS® sales data, the MLS® HPI defined benchmark homes for Victoria in each category (single family homes, townhouses, condos) and for each neighbourhood. The benchmark starting point was 2005, where each type of property and neighbourhood was assigned an index value of 100.

Well, that’s clear. The average Victoria house today costs 139.3 compared to 100 nine years in the past (the number was 148.3 three years ago). Except that it’s not an average property but a ‘notional home’ that has ‘common attributes’ with others in an, er, defined area.

In fact the local board has entirely stopped telling people what the average selling price for detached houses or condos was in the previous month, effectively masking vital information. By using the HPI thingy, the local real estate industry is able to prevent consumers from seeing abrupt or potentially critical swings in investor sentiment, reflected in average prices. That, of course, is the whole intent behind this national push by CREA and its members to obfuscate stats – a vital tactic once markets start to correct.

Add this to the Toronto Real Estate Board’s ongoing habit of secretly revising monthly sales numbers, which always result in better year/year gains. Or the acknowledged practice of double or triple-listing homes on multiple boards. Or adding private sales, then comparing totals to years when they were not included. It’s all led to an inescapable conclusion that REALTORS® fib.

By the way, I’m not the only guy who believes the industry’s opacity is misleading consumers or leading to dangerous and wrong conclusions about whether housing’s stable, or a monstrous gasbag with the power to blow up the economy. This week CIBC economist Benny Tal weighed in with a report decrying the lack of solid, reliable data about both houses and our piggy approach to mortgages.

“The gap between the importance of the real estate market to the economy and the lack of publicly available information on it is mind-boggling” he said in his study called “Flying Blind.” Tal’s main focus is on the massive amount of money we have all borrowed. While Americans have a detailed analysis of consumer debt, we must guess how many mortgages are being taken out in any given period, or the creditworthiness of the borrowers, how many people are refinancing their houses and sucking out equity, the average downpayment or how many filthy-rich yoga pants manufacturers from Guangdong are snapping up mansions on Vancouver’s Westside.

His big point: “All agree that the real test of Canadian housing will take place when interest rates start rising, but how can you determine the level of rate sensitivity if you do not have information on the distribution of mortgages by actual mortgage rates, the level of down-payment and the distribution of borrowers by their debt service ratio?”

Exactly. Hell, we don’t even know the official average price for a house in Victoria any more. Or Vancouver, for that matter. And the real estate industry’s indicated that ‘benchmark’ pricing will be spreading further in the future, making it tough for Mr. & Mrs. Frontporch to know if the big market arrow’s pointing up or down.

By the way, it looks like prices are dropping in Vancouver while sales are rising, but still sit 17% below the 10-year average. Listings jumped a hefty 8% last month from February, meanwhile, and this all indicates the market is loosening a little, especially as the volume of deals on the Westside slides (remember what I said about the defunct investor immigrant program?).

In Calgary, a contrast: listings have fallen another 5% while sales increased along with prices. Cowtown has now surpassed the delusional level hit pre-financial crisis and the average is $490,000. No, wait. That’s the “unadjusted single family benchmark price.”

Did you hear about Regina? Lowest sales since 2006. Prices are up 5%, but even the real estate board admits, “these increases are entirely attributable to a shift to higher-priced homes…and are not indicative of increases in the values of properties.”

That’s blunt. Maybe those flatland guys didn’t get the CREA memo.

Maybe they just care.

154 comments ↓

#1 Holy Crap Wheres The Tylenol on 04.03.14 at 7:53 pm

My wife lives watching Hot Properties with Ann Rohmer, she used to be hot! What a load of crap they let loose and thousands of us watch it, gobbling up their words as if they were gospel!
Going to drink heavily now!

#2 Smoking Man on 04.03.14 at 7:57 pm

REALTOR®

Woh, someone’s testosterone is elevated…

Thought using that word was taboo. You even put that little thingee at the end.

Grath, you Crack me up…

#3 waiting on 04.03.14 at 7:57 pm

Here is my housing price index number for Vancouver.

Through meticulous data analysis of pre-fabricated numbers over a meaningless time period starting in 1936 and ending next November, take the average of all sales, divide it by the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin and voila: 139.2 Hey! Almost the same as Victoria.

#4 www.totalinvestor.com on 04.03.14 at 8:01 pm

Anybody got pics of yesterdays female realtor?

#5 TnT on 04.03.14 at 8:01 pm

Data schmata….

Everyone knows Canadians are maxed out yet somehow these houses keep selling.

It is obvious that it IS different this time around….

How can so many “experts” be so wrong on calling this RE market?

Real Estate agents are making fools of the bean counters and laughing all the way to the bank.

#6 Blase on 04.03.14 at 8:02 pm

Re: CREA “statistics”

Don’t ask a whore if you need to get f*^+=%.

#7 IVoteIndependent on 04.03.14 at 8:04 pm

You didn’t pick a nickname for the trademarked sellers of fantasy yet?
Now that you have clearly demonstrated an ability to type ®, why don’t you just refer to them as ®?

#8 Todd on 04.03.14 at 8:05 pm

Time to legislate these boards.

#9 Sebee on 04.03.14 at 8:08 pm

139.3

I just honestly laughed out loud. Thanks for that.

Tell me these guys are not laughing their asses off as they write this stuff.

Now go and 139.3 yourself!

#10 Van Isle Renter on 04.03.14 at 8:15 pm

#9 Sebee

Now go and 139.3 yourself!
+++++++++++++++++++

I’ve never seen a number used a as a four letter word before. Well played!

On to the topic at hand. If the real numbers were good, the REALTORS would use them. But they don’t. That tells you all you need to know.

#11 S.T. on 04.03.14 at 8:17 pm

Hey wait a minute…….you mean to say that Regina isn’t booming like people say it is?

#12 Victoria Real Estate Update on 04.03.14 at 8:20 pm

March single family home sales were, once again, well below Victoria’s long-term average.

House prices in Victoria remain in bubble territory. Prices have fallen about 10% from peak, but remain well above the level where incomes and rents could provide price support.

How bubbly are house prices in Victoria?

Let’s compare house prices in Victoria with prices in Phoenix.

House criteria:
* min. 3 bed, 2 bath
* min. 1800 sq. ft. of above ground primary (main) living space
* 2004 or newer
* double garage

A house like this would probably cost $700 K or more in Victoria.

For approx. $700 K it is possible to buy these 5 houses (that fit the above criteria) in Phoenix:

$105 K (3 beds, 2 baths, 1,838 sq. ft.)
$151 K (3 beds, 2 baths, 1,863 sq. ft.)
$166 K (4 beds, 2.5 baths, 2,010 sq. ft.)
$148 K (4 beds, 3 baths, 1,949 sq. ft.)
$149 K (4 beds, 3 baths, 2,048 sq. ft.)

Obviously house prices in Victoria are extremely overvalued. Extremely overvalued housing markets always go through deep, multi-year price corrections as prices revert to the mean.

Girls and guys, the US experience is a valuable learning tool. Buying at or near the peak of a major housing bubble is always a bad idea.

Renting for now is a no-brainer. You have everything to gain by renting (for now) and everything to lose by buying now (close to the peak of Victoria’s housing bubble). All major housing bubbles deflate. House prices in Victoria will correct a lot more before they reach bottom. Wait for lower prices.

Until next time – Cheers!

#13 I'm stupid on 04.03.14 at 8:24 pm

Garth why don’t you start a petition for transparency in Realestate? You may not be a politician but you do have a lot of followers and that gives you power.

I think even your biggest critics would agree that transparency is a good idea.

#14 Ronaldo on 04.03.14 at 8:24 pm

#7 IVoteIndependent on 04.03.14 at 8:04 pm

”Now that you have clearly demonstrated an ability to type ®, why don’t you just refer to them as ®?”

or maybe “The Circle R Gang”. R for Rustlers.

#15 blase on 04.03.14 at 8:31 pm

Why don’t the bank economists start using Ross Kay’s numbers? And Garth, how about completely ignoring mls numbers and start using Kay’s. The state of transparency in statistical reporting in Canada is an abomination.

#16 Calgary Owner (2nd Round) on 04.03.14 at 8:34 pm

Hey Garth,

Hope you are well on your way to full recovery. How do you know when prime rate is going to be raised? I mean, is there a scheduled meeting where the Finance ministry reviews it and makes decisions on it? I got a variable rate and I’ve realized that I won’t sleep tight until I fix that sucker.

Thanks.

#17 TheCatFoodLady on 04.03.14 at 8:37 pm

#10 – Van Isle Renter said what I was thinking. REAL numbers should be used. Give some concrete examples of homes, (eg. 3 bed, 2 bath, 1 attached garage) for X amount of dollars.

Anything else is complete obfuscation.

#18 omg on 04.03.14 at 8:37 pm

Victoria HPI a Complete FRAUD

So essentially the HPI says that current Victoria house prices are 39.1% than what they were in 2005?

So that means the $800,000 Oak Bay bungalow was 39.1% lower in price in 2005 – which would equate to $575,000.

NO FRICKEN WAY. That $800K house in 2005 was in the range of $725K to $750K.

Prices in Victoria have been about flat in the last 8 or 9 years. They blipped up to about 2009, then have been on a very slow decline ever since.

We will eventually need a CLASS ACTION lawsuit by all the poor suckers that got scammed by the real estate boards’ fake numbers.

#19 Happy Renting on 04.03.14 at 8:39 pm

#4 http://www.totalinvestor.com on 04.03.14 at 8:01 pm

The ad’s been taken down. Hopefully she got some takers and can report back on the viability of her new business model/value proposition!

#20 Ralph Cramdown on 04.03.14 at 8:53 pm

“Benny, how does our residential mortgage portfolio compare with those of the other large Canadian banks? If this sucker goes down, will our portfolio blow up in a conventional way similar to our peers’, so that no one can really blame us?”

“I’m sorry Gerry, but we don’t have the data to know. Some other banks let a few things slip on their quarterly earnings calls, and there’s the numbers from the Bankers Association and CMHC, but it’s not enough to know.”

– Excerpted from “Ben & Gerry’s Excellent Mortgage Portfolio Adventure,” tentative release Christmas 2014

#21 jan on 04.03.14 at 9:05 pm

Canada is a number 1 destination for organized crime to move to.
Shady regulations, reporting plus very lenient laws etc.
This ongoing bullshit the RE cartels pull is a good example of the hopelessness that is this country.
My 5 cents,thank you.

#22 Cash Is King on 04.03.14 at 9:10 pm

WOW! Sounds like Tim Ayres has been listening to GM CEO Mary Barra far too long.

When you have nothing good to report, create obfuscation by numbers.

#23 Freedom First on 04.03.14 at 9:13 pm

Nice Garth. Love it.

There are outright lies, and then there is also lies by omission. Both are equally deceitful and corrupt. Shame, shame, “liar liar house on fire”.

#24 WhiteKat on 04.03.14 at 9:21 pm

The spring market in Ottawa must not be looking too good. A well known Ottawa realtor allegedly beat his wife at home with a baseball bat yesterday morning. Neighbours heard the commotion and called for help.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/ottawa-realtor-charged-with-attempted-murder-1.2597174

#25 souvereigninternational on 04.03.14 at 9:21 pm

solution: scrap CREA – bring Zillow

#26 Mrs Hubris on 04.03.14 at 9:24 pm

The Victoria Real Estate Board has also incrementally introduced a revised display system for listings – ie the listings that realtors supply and update for potential buyers. Their new system began by reducing the total number of current and historical listings you could look back through. Overall their new system essentially serves to markedly minimise and restrict the data available. The system experienced in our first few years here allowed you to track back considerably on two separate lists: current listings and sales/expired/withdrawn listings (No Longer Matching). There is now only a single list and the number of properties on this list has been radically reduced. Very useful detail to be found on the earlier system, such as repeated listings, earlier asking prices etc., can no longer be found. Easy to understand why of course. Further, whereas it was previously possible to see very clearly whether a property had been sold and for what price, on the earlier and separate No Longer Matching list, the new list only details the Pending offer. Properties now simply disappear so it’s no longer possible to confirm whether the sale went through. All of this amounts to restriction of information available to buyers. Benjamin Tal is, of course, correct in pointing out the lack of data available on Canada’s housing market but I would also observe that his words are very carefully crafted to indicate that better information would, of course, support the idea that there likely is no housing bubble in Canada. This also is an approach to information that is quite as manipulated as that in the Real Estate Industry and which we have become very used to. It is interesting that in an advanced western nation, so much detail fed to the public on real estate is routinely placed in the mainstream media by government, bank economists, mortgage brokers and the real estate industry. A more independent press and objective sources of public information are essential for a more sophisticated society. Perhaps we can start by replacing the vested-interest-stranglehold by giving Canada a system like the U.S. Zillow: http://www.zillow.com/ Fat chance I suspect. Carry on borrowing guys.

#27 X on 04.03.14 at 9:26 pm

It really is a shame that the gov’t doesn’t have a regulatory body to oversee RE, seeing as most Canadians, have most of their wealth in RE, shouldn’t someone see that we aren’t being misled by parties with a vested self interest.

#28 devore on 04.03.14 at 9:28 pm

#16 Calgary Owner (2nd Round)

http://www.bankofcanada.ca/core-functions/monetary-policy/key-interest-rate/schedule/

#29 Sasquatch on 04.03.14 at 9:29 pm

Regarding Hot Property with Ann Rohmer. I absolutely despise that show, in particular that Realtor clown Al Sinclair. Al goes on the show to pitch his properties and show the World how wonderful the real estate market is. Then you have guests who are just developers pitching their garbage.

#30 Smoking Man on 04.03.14 at 9:42 pm

I’m convinced Nicky, writer of true detective is a blog and a Smoking Man Fan.
Here are some of Rust Cohles Quotes… Sound familiar, check the archives.
Maybe I’m Nic?

“Back then, the visions…most of the time I was convinced that I’d lost it. But there were other times, I thought I was main-lining the secret truth of the universe.”

“The world needs bad men. We keep the other bad men from the door.”

“To realize that all your life—you know, all your love, all your hate, all your memory, all your pain—it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream. A dream that you had inside a locked room. A dream about being a person. And like a lot of dreams there’s a monster at the end of it.”

Religion

“If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward then, brother, that person is a piece of s***. And I’d like to get as many of them out in the open as possible. You gotta get together and tell yourself stories that violate every law of the universe just to get through the goddamn day? What’s that say about your reality?”

Nature vs. Nurture
“I think human consciousness, is a tragic misstep in evolution. We became too self-aware, nature created an aspect of nature separate from itself, we are creatures that should not exist by natural law. We are things that labor under the illusion of having a self; an accretion of sensory, experience and feeling, programmed with total assurance that we are each somebody, when in fact everybody is nobody. Maybe the honorable thing for our species to do is deny our programming, stop reproducing, walk hand in hand into extinction, one last midnight – brothers and sisters opting out of a raw deal.”

#31 Aggregator on 04.03.14 at 9:50 pm

TREB appeals to Supreme Court in Competition Bureau case

(Apr 3, 2014) The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) is appealing to the Supreme Court of Canada in its ongoing dispute with the Competition Bureau.

In a statement today, TREB says it has filed an application to the Supreme Court for leave to appeal the Feb. 3, 2014 decision of the Federal Court of Appeal that would send the case back to the Competition Tribunal.

“The Commissioner of Competition is persisting in its efforts to erode the personal privacy and contractual safeguards afforded by the MLS system,” says the board in a statement. “TREB will continue to work to protect the personal information entrusted to it and its members by the general public, while it strives always to do what it can to ensure a highly competitive environment for real estate professionals in the GTA.”

In the Federal Court of Appeal ruling in February, the court allowed an appeal of an April 2013 decision that dismissed the bureau’s complaint against TREB.

Canadian organized real estate just doesn't want to give in on Zillow-fying MLS®. What are they afraid of? Is it giving data access to third parties that would allow the private sector to count actual sales, as CoreLogic did with NAR, only to find that presales were being counted as resales and that existing (resale) homes were 20% below what NAR reported? OR, could it be that if they did Zillow-fy MLS®, that its own members may realize there is more incentives and profit to be earned in the non-cartel sector?

NAR Joins Move Lawsuit Against Zillow, Samuelson

Realtor.com® operator Move Inc. has filed a lawsuit against Zillow and former realtor.com® president Errol Samuelson, who unexpectedly defected to Zillow on March 5. Move, who is joined in the lawsuit by the National Association of REALTORS® and other subsidiaries such as the REALTORS® Information Network Inc., allege in the complaint that Samuelson’s departure caused a breach of contract, fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets.

You see. They hate you, ex directors, innovation, competitiveness and even the private sector. And somehow they still argue hoarding data is not anti-competitive. Unbelievable.

#32 Old Man on 04.03.14 at 9:50 pm

No surprise to me, as that poor young woman has obviously been eating a genetically modified GMO watermelon and now has a belly pop; oh my now what!

#33 jan on 04.03.14 at 9:58 pm

#25 souvereigninternational on 04.03.14 at 9:21 pm
solution: scrap CREA – bring Zillow

Me – beautifully said my man.

#34 AisA on 04.03.14 at 9:59 pm

“Why should we, however, in economics, have to plead ignorance of the sort of facts on which, in the case of a physical theory, a scientist would certainly be expected to give precise information?”

Friedrich August von Hayek

#35 Chris on 04.03.14 at 10:03 pm

Hi Garth,

What are your thoughts on Detroit real estate. It looks like it’s taking off. Do you think it will be the same as Toronto? Why or why not?

#36 LJ on 04.03.14 at 10:05 pm

Benchmark? They should call it “skidmark!”

According to the Calgary chapter of house floggers, our “index” is at 208.

Never mind that house prices were nowhere near being less than half of their current prices in 2005 (during the run-up to our last “boom”).

Whatever happened to the truth? And, who believes this BS®?

#37 BossHogg on 04.03.14 at 10:09 pm

“The average Victoria house today costs 139.3 compared to 100 nine years in the past”

HPI is just like the CPI, “If it is measured, It will be manipulated/managed”

#38 Please stop ordering hot water and lemon as your beverage on 04.03.14 at 10:11 pm

RIGHT!?

in all seriousness, fellas like Benjamin Tal pander to the masses when it is convenient for them to derive page views. Do a quick google search on Benny Tal, CBC, and real estate…..the guy is all over the map.

This site has consistently delivered accurate up to date info, often months in advance of the MS media.

Benny Tal is like the Damien Cox of sport reporting – IE short memories

maybe that is best :)

GO JAYS

#39 DigDeep on 04.03.14 at 10:12 pm

“The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” – George Orwell

#40 World According To Garth on 04.03.14 at 10:14 pm

#21 jan on 04.03.14 at 9:05 pm
Canada is a number 1 destination for organized crime to move to.
Shady regulations, reporting plus very lenient laws etc.
This ongoing bullshit the RE cartels pull is a good example of the hopelessness that is this country.
My 5 cents,thank you.
—————————-

That is absolute fact. But be careful here or you will be called a racist. No truth telling allowed.

#41 mitzerboy on 04.03.14 at 10:15 pm

hopefully Saskatchewan will revert back to
1 horse cities in a
2 bit province with a
semi-pro football team……

#42 Nemesis on 04.03.14 at 10:25 pm

#ZeroHour! #SuspenseLikeYou’veNeverFeltBefore!

http://youtu.be/RbEM1MoSgUQ

#43 Mike on 04.03.14 at 10:26 pm

Enough talking about the issue, what do we do about it? What do you propose? That StatsCan take a role in providing reliable information on housing? Maybe we can all sign a petition, then someone will listen.

#44 Nemesis on 04.03.14 at 10:31 pm

@SmokingMan#30

“The world needs bad men. We keep the other bad men from the door.”

http://youtu.be/2Bls1KKDwmo

#45 Realtors are scum of the earth on 04.03.14 at 10:35 pm

Realtors seem like financial terrorists who will do anything to make a dollar using whatever tactics. Realtors are true scum of the earth.

#46 Nemesis on 04.03.14 at 10:36 pm

@Ralph#20

http://youtu.be/MBymMlbeaPY

http://youtu.be/4pbVxyL-OeM

#47 KommyKim on 04.03.14 at 10:36 pm

There are lies, damn lies, and then there are REALTOR® lies…..

#48 GuyFawkes on 04.03.14 at 10:44 pm

A shrewd guy once said that time to buy is when there is blood in streets…the only question is will there be? Given the low interests rates are here to stay for another 20-25 years, I see that to be a highly unlikely scenario…Alas I missed the boat and have to keep renting for the rest of my life ….

#49 Kia's 4 Kanadians on 04.03.14 at 10:46 pm

Whats a CREA?

#50 CREAscum on 04.03.14 at 10:47 pm

CREA is useless garbage which threaten Canada and Canadians future. Garth start a petition to rid Canada of these greedy evil monsters.

#51 att on 04.03.14 at 10:51 pm

Meanwhile in Burlington, Ontario I just checked on realtor.ca in our neighbourhood and there is a house listed 3 TIMES with 3 different ID #’s. I wonder why this isn’t considered fraudulent when this information is used to report # of homes for sale in the media. Is there any other industry that is allowed to go unchecked like this?

#52 will on 04.03.14 at 10:57 pm

Yeah benchmarks are misleading. Especially one with such a short life history as 2005.

But let’s look at the DJIA. It keeps rising because THEY KEEP CHANGING THE COMPONENTS.

An index is supposed to reflect the conditions of the market and indirectly the life of the economy. Garth, you will disagree with this because I know you are bullish on “America.” But some people -myself included- think that a company like Eastman-Kodak, not that long ago kicked off the DOW, accurately reflects the American economy. Old economy. Failing to adapt.

Ok, maybe the DOW isn’t a good example because it is only 30 stocks and underrepresents the market.

Anyway, with such a short life history, it sounds like the Victoria index is being used to obfuscate. What hoods is it excluding?

I don’t think a RE index is a good idea to begin with. But if (IF!) we would pay attention to one, what would its components be? Maybe we should come up with one of our own. Maybe we can say to the maker-uppers of this Victoria index that if they want us to pay attention to it, these are our expectations of its components.

#53 Bobby on 04.03.14 at 10:59 pm

I just read the latest Victoria Real Estate update for March and it is complete gobbledygook. What does it mean, I don’t think they even know. What I do know is median prices were trending down so it didn’t bode well for a supposed rising market.
Remember, these are the same clowns that suggested last year the government might raise interest rates to spur the housing market. No, you can’t make this stuff up.
One has got to just look at the MLS to see many of the condos and houses for sale are empty. Been that way for a long time. If one bought in 2009 or 2010 prices are down 10-15% so some buyers are now underwater.
A good place to get accurate information is
bcassessment.ca. You can get the latest data for homes near your property search that have sold in 2013. You will see most are selling at or below assessed value.
Have a look. Or you can ask a realtor about the HPI. Maybe it is related to metric time?

#54 Bill Gable on 04.03.14 at 11:05 pm

RE: Realtors/Realty Boards –

Quoting the late John Winston Lennon – “They’re swine”.

#55 World According To Garth on 04.03.14 at 11:19 pm

In Vietnam you get executed. In the USA and Canada you get bailouts and bonuses. Yes Cdn banks were bailed out with tax dollars just like the too big to jails down south look it up.

Keep at it sheeple……..

http://armstrongeconomics.com/2014/04/03/vietnam-rising-discontent-over-corruption/

#56 Surly on 04.03.14 at 11:34 pm

Data from provincial transfer fees collectors could certainly be mined for real estate stats. Do you know of any premier wannabe interested in spilling info?

#57 Hickster on 04.04.14 at 12:02 am

Ya there are a lot of listings right now here in Regina. Prices are stabilizing and for condos even dropping. Unfortunately rents are still beyond rediculous for this city, even compared to prices.

#58 Mark on 04.04.14 at 12:04 am

Mention the changing “sales mix” to Realtors or even on real estate forum threads, and they’re liable to troll you. There was a guy on the RFD forums, a PF4RedFlag, who was trolled right off the board because a few sell-side types showed complete ignorance towards the shifting sales mix.

#59 Son of Ponzi on 04.04.14 at 12:07 am

#34 AisA on 04.03.14 at 9:59 pm
“Why should we, however, in economics, have to plead ignorance of the sort of facts on which, in the case of a physical theory, a scientist would certainly be expected to give precise information?”

Friedrich August von Hayek

Great quote!
Bring on the Austrians!

#60 Jane54 on 04.04.14 at 12:08 am

Dear Canadians

You are just too close to a federal election now for any RE correction be it by CHMC changes, interest rate rises or RE market regulation. The current government with Justin snapping at its heels is not going to bring the show down. It would be electoral suicide.

The show will go on until after the election and then stop as the voters will then have 4/5 years to forget the whole thing ever happened.

Yes I agree with another poster that this will result in class action suits. I cannot believe how unregulated RE is in Canada. Everyone is making life changing decisions individually in the dark. The situation is crazy but again nothing will happen until after the election.

It would be so easy for the land transfer tax folk to publish their own calculations every month but they don’t. Why? Leaving market data to salespeople whose income depends on the data being good makes no sense at all and will eventually bite everyone. Chomps all round.

Sandstorms from the Sahara Desert here in England. My car has been covered with sand these last few mornings.

Cheers

#61 Pope SweetCheekSnugglebums the 666kd (aka Nosty) on 04.04.14 at 12:16 am

Very vastly far more importantly and, Monty Python won’t be touring, as most of them are dead. Incl. a video of their strange, Pink Floyd version of Money. Cleese is full of fake parts, so the MOSW is a no-go.

Speaking of which, David Letterman announced his impending retirement, and that when all is said and done, he and Paul Schaffer will be married.

TAFTA, another version of NAFTA.

#62 Waterloo Resident on 04.04.14 at 12:49 am

For those of you worrying about small things like house prices, just imagine if we had every single piece of electronics in your city burn out all at once.
Plus have every transformer in the city literally explode in flames, including those big ones that take 1 to 2 years to replace (custom made, they don’t carry them in stock).
I found out that this past Sunday the Earth got a side effect from some rather MASSIVE blasts from the Sun. We didn’t get directly hit by those blasts, they missed the Earth by a large distance, but their effects were still large enough to cause a radio blackout in some parts of the Earth for a few minutes:
http://www.arrl.org/news/view/solar-flare-causes-march-29-radio-blackout-minor-geomagnetic-storm-expected-april-2

http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2014/0331/Humongous-solar-flare-causes-radio-blackouts

If you want an idea of what a big hit by a CME (coronal mass ejection) is like, read here and get a bit of an idea. Now if a thing like that happened, who cares what the prices of houses would be.

http://www.thesleuthjournal.com/several-near-misses-experts-warn-next-carrington-event-will-plunge-us-back-dark-ages/

My advice to everyone is this: Who cares, live it up and enjoy life while you can, and if you like that $1.2 Million house, then go ahead and buy it and don’t worry about the consequences.

#63 MJ on 04.04.14 at 12:55 am

Everything here in Calgary is selling – for sale sign goes up and within two weeks it’s sold. Unreal, doesn’t look like it is slowing down here. Is it because everyone is moving here for jobs? I just don’t get it. There are also bidding wars on most of the sales – a buddy of mine just purchase a fixer upper for $680,000. The asking price was $650,000. There were 6 other offers on the property.

#64 juno on 04.04.14 at 1:35 am

So Why does the government let CREA put out these frankennumber?

Probably because,they can get some better numbers on the GDP so they can get elected new term.

BTW everyone in the industry knows whats going on. They just turn a blind eye to it

#65 sciencemonkey on 04.04.14 at 1:59 am

@30 Smoking Man
I’m on vacation, just watched all of True Detective. Heh, the tent revival scene, “I don’t see anyone here splitting the atom anytime soon.” It really sucks that McConaughey won’t be in Season 2.

I’m confused about the multiple listing scam. How does the RE board benefit from a property being listed two or three times? I would think that more listings leads to higher inventory, which would indicate a slow, weak market. Wouldn’t it be better to have less listings?

#66 TRT on 04.04.14 at 2:05 am

Jan, World According to Garth:

If you’re looking for truth, this place it is not.

If you’re looking for methods of psychological coercion, this place is.

#67 Buy? Curious? on 04.04.14 at 2:51 am

YES! Garth, sticking it to the Man. That’s the only reason I come here. I don’t want to get into a pissing match with some wanna-be smart dude who thinks my path to riches and a happy life is wrong. I bought a house. Am I better off than the nerds I went to high school with? YES! I skipped on doing a B.A in English, but am I smarter, better read now? YES! As most of the ladies in Toronto know, Am I sexy? YES!

Why don’t they publish the price registered at the Land Transfer Office once a property sale is complete? Wouldn’t that be the smart thing to do? Yes!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJbmB9k2Y88

Rob Ford in 2014? Yes!

Did you read Brad Lamb’s total destruction of Rob Carrick? Called him an advice columnist. In my hood, amongst us educated gangsters, those are fighting words!

#68 Notta Sheeple on 04.04.14 at 5:09 am

“…….The gap between the importance of the real estate market to the economy and the lack of publicly available information on it is mind-boggling……
” – CIBC economist Benny Tal
=========================

Since when did the ‘flipping of houses’ of the existing housing market become an economic barometer of the financial welfare of a nation? If all the nation’s used cars suddenly traded hands would everyone be dancing in the streets?

If everyone was happy in their current home and no houses traded hands, would we declare an economic disaster of biblical proportions?

And why the continuing celebration over increasing housing unaffordability? So we can have a split nation of boomers sitting on a pile of pyramid equity propped up by a young generation of mortgage slaves who will never afford a home for themselves?

Not to mention expensive housing requires expensive wages, and our children’s future jobs will continue to be outsourced overseas to countries whose citizens don’t require above market wages to pay for half-million dollar bungalows

Sickening isn’t it? Witnessing this group of deceitful, data-manipulating, fear-mongering, neck-tied, land pimps continue to spin their manipulative, self-serving monthly pump & dump press releases from cherry-picked statistical data to their MSM press-ti-tutes? Not exactly your most honourable source of truthful information.

#69 Realtor # 1 GTA on 04.04.14 at 6:46 am

Benny Tal has access to a large sample of mortgages, buyers income, and HELOC, line of credits

Why doesn’t he tell us some of the information he has??

He could easy tell us the median of a price of a home in any city?????

#70 Squad on 04.04.14 at 7:12 am

@ #60 Jane 54

We were talking about that the other day – I agree with you, the Harper government absolutely doesn’t want anything to happen to the housing market yet – why rock the boat – it’s probably the best thing going for them at the moment.

Makes you wonder why Flaherty left recently – maybe he doesn’t want to be there when the carnage occurs.

However, if the Conservatives didn’t get back in next year, you would have to wonder what the next government would do? If the Liberals get in, would they want it to crash? I suspect they would also do their very best to keep it going…and going…and going.

My thought is that only when interest rates rise will we witness real tremors in the market.

I still cannot believe how long this obsession with housing has gone on!

#71 Realtor # 1 GTA on 04.04.14 at 7:18 am

If real estate is regional why would you want a broad number to be released ?

Everyone has a desired area to live in, subscribe to tosolds.com and look at the homes sold in your desired area. And judge for yourself. Or get a real estate agent to send you the sold listings.

Its not hard people!!

In terms of interest rates (why I don’t think its the issue)

If there is a housing correction then the BoC will not need to raise the overnight rate- thus the variable rate will become the popular rate again and perhaps be around 3.5% (prime minus one)

#72 Ronaldo on 04.04.14 at 8:13 am

#49 Kia’s 4 Kanadians on 04.03.14 at 10:46 pm

”Whats a CREA?”

It’s the short form of this: CREATURE

Be careful when approaching them.

#73 Dr. Wu on 04.04.14 at 8:14 am

Why do people write stuff like:

‘the government should do something’ (to protect us from pumped up stats)

Only an certified simpleton could type something like that.

These boards, TREB CREA etc are under no obligation to release anything to the press. When they do, if they are self serving that’s their right- they work for their DUES PAYING MEMBERS, not YOU

Yesterday Derek said ‘it’s a long term investment’, and I agree and would add that stats are irrelevant- in the long run. Buyers don’t care about stats- couch potato blog typist do. Buyers care about recent sales on the street of interest, but even those are irrelevant in overheated markets.
Analyzing stats is like trying to tell the time by looking at the second hand. Home buyers are not day traders.

#74 TurnerNation on 04.04.14 at 8:27 am

I was at two fancy downtown places last eve one for a ‘networking’ event and met two Realtresses. As the evening flowed one tried convincing me my renting is throwing money away and to buy a Toronto Kando for all the reasons. I limped.

#75 Paul on 04.04.14 at 8:37 am

Market up or market down people want homes even in the days of 12 to 14 % mortgages they buy 70% ownership proves it, are prices crazy are people going to be crushed for sure. Everyone knows it homes go up and sell in days or hours listings are short so bidding wars and huge premiums paid.If you think it’s the agents get in the business and clean it up be sure and get all the sellers to list at a minimum 15% less then the last house sold for on there street.You will make millions. lol

#76 Montellino on 04.04.14 at 8:42 am

# 62 waterloo hippie – it’s not about buying a $1.2 mill house and planting lettuce in the front yard as you have no $$$ left to buy actual food.. Its about mortgage rates going from 2.5 to 5 percent and that barely scraped monthly payment doubling up and people bailing… yes there are non hippies who have a million bucks laying around but there are more 99&-ers out there with record high home ownership and debt rates….

Selling friendship bracelets on your front yard won’t be enough to come up with extra dough…

#77 Holy Crap Wheres The Tylenol on 04.04.14 at 9:05 am

#61 Pope SweetCheekSnugglebums the 666kd (aka Nosty) on 04.04.14 at 12:16 am
Very vastly far more importantly and, Monty Python won’t be touring, as most of them are dead. Incl. a video of their strange, Pink Floyd version of Money. Cleese is full of fake parts, so the MOSW is a no-go.

____________________________________________

Still love these guys. One of my favorites!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vuW6tQ0218

#78 AisA on 04.04.14 at 9:06 am

Are there actually adults out there that believe the Government of Canada can do anything else to prop up a saturated market?

They’ve done everything already, that is why prices are at levels lacking oxygen let alone causing nosebleeds. If the market turns, it is gone and won’t be coming back for a decade.

If prices were to ease 10% in a year, it would take 5 years of those drops for them to float back down to earth. Doesn’t mean it will happen, but that’s what I need to see to care.

Interest rate doesn’t even matter to a rational mind anymore. What do I care if I buy a mortgage at 9% or 3% if buying at 3% means taking on triple the principle.

(facepalm) I just megaphoned the choir.

#79 Dual Citizen In Canada on 04.04.14 at 9:11 am

#71 Realtor # 1 GTA on 04.04.14 at 7:18 am
It’s not just about sold price but also the history of sale, property tax, rental estimates, etc.. We need zillow.ca up here. I can’t understand why the historic selling price for homes would be an invasion of privacy. I have a home in Florida and everything about my home is public record. I used that public record site to find a home! I don’t want to have to ask a real estate agent for this information.

#80 Clueless About YYC Income Growth on 04.04.14 at 9:18 am

#63 MJ on 04.04.14 at 12:55 am

| Everything here in Calgary is selling – for sale sign
| goes up and within two weeks it’s sold. Unreal, doesn’t
| look like it is slowing down here. Is it because
| everyone is moving here for jobs? I just don’t get it.
| There are also bidding wars on most of the sales – a
| buddy of mine just purchase a fixer upper for
| $680,000. The asking price was $650,000. There were
| 6 other offers on the property.

Ahhhh you bears make me laugh. Ever take a look at the in-migration statistics for YYC? This place is growing in population to the tick of 30k to 40k residents per annum. All those new bodies (whether working at Tim Hortons or Suncor) need a place to live. Get a clue.

Listings are down in YYC because THEY SELL BEFORE YOU BLINK. Anything worth living in is getting bought up, and fast. New grad engineers are earning an easy 80-90k before bonus. And if UofC spits out a surplus of anything, it’s petro engineers. Good luck with that correction in YYC. Perhaps you should focus your efforts and time blogging about pathetic Ontario, where nobody wants to live.

#81 Sinful Man on 04.04.14 at 9:38 am

Eschew obfuscation.

#82 Basement Dweller on 04.04.14 at 9:42 am

Ben Tal has access to a large sample size of mortgages,
prices paid for homes, HELOC, and lines of credit, incomes etc.

He could easily provide sales numbers, ratios – income to debt, income versus mortgage etc., for the public

#83 Daisy Mae on 04.04.14 at 9:54 am

#2 Smoking Man: “REALTOR®

Woh, someone’s testosterone is elevated…

Thought using that word was taboo. You even put that little thingee at the end.”

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

Garth isn’t easily intimidated. LOL
And it’s a free country…isn’t it?

#84 saskatoon on 04.04.14 at 9:54 am

canadian passivity.

more proof we are the dumbest humans on earth.

personally, i blame water fluoridation–at least in part.

google chinese medical NaF studies concerning IQ reduction.

#85 Infused with Opiates on 04.04.14 at 9:59 am

“Did you hear about Regina? Lowest sales since 2006. Prices are up 5%, but even the real estate board admits, “these increases are entirely attributable to a shift to higher-priced homes…and are not indicative of increases in the values of properties.” – Garth

This actually suports CREAs HPI methodology

Only with an understandable explanation. The issue is transparency. — Garth

#86 Smoking Man on 04.04.14 at 10:08 am

#65 sciencemonkey on 04.04.14 at 1:59 amI’m on vacation, just watched all of True Detective. Heh, the tent revival scene, “I don’t see anyone here splitting the atom anytime soon.” It really sucks that McConaughey won’t be in Season 
……

It’s all about the writing, season two going to be just as good.
Hell if the director likes my mug shot, I might make a cameo appearance.. Altho the credits will have me listed as smokey.. Lol

Nic and I are surfing the same universal wave.. Almost best buds.

He’s posted here twice…

He left academia for self-employment and Hollywood.

Wonder who put that thought in his head…

Same with the director of flipped…

I got reach man….

#87 realistical on 04.04.14 at 10:09 am

when you have 40k people moving to your city every year which already had a housing shortage to begin with. Well prices are going to go up and it’s going to be a hot market for a long time. Common sense. Canada is pretty much made up of city states with localized economies. You can’t compare Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto. Like in Europe, you can’t compare the market Geneva with the housing market in Athens

#88 Ret on 04.04.14 at 10:34 am

Now I know where I got Dunlop’s disease (aka spare tire syndrome) from. It was those darn watermelon seeds!

Methinks that Benny Tal knows his hand all too well but would like to see what his competitors hold in their mortgage book, especially the smaller banks and credit unions.

Wouldn’t he like the feds to make all his competitors be required to reveal the stats of their mortgage portfolios?

Let’s also find out the numbers in the reverse mortgage market as well.

#89 liquidincalgary on 04.04.14 at 10:47 am

@ #62 Waterloo Resident

ever wonder if ‘coa$t 2 coa$t am’ was just a four hour infomercial?

#90 happity on 04.04.14 at 10:57 am

That jobs report isn’t helping the proclaimed USA economic renaissance.

But when 90% of all USA jobs earn less than $35k, well what was anyone expecting? The middle class of India to take up the slack?

#91 Ralph Cramdown on 04.04.14 at 11:02 am

#78 AisA — “Are there actually adults out there that believe the Government of Canada can do anything else to prop up a saturated market?”

Of course it could:
– make home mortgage interest tax deductible
– and for second/vacation homes, too
– more wealthy immigrants!
– increase tax rates on dividends and capital gains
– allow writeoffs of primary residence capital losses against regular income
– back to 0/40 mortgages
– lower interest rates
– property taxes based on number of occupants rather than assessed value
– preferential or no taxes for foreigners investing in real estate here
– more first-time buyer subsidies

Most of this stuff has been done in other ostensibly sane jurisdictions. I’m not saying it’s likely in Canada, but it’s certainly possible.

#92 JL on 04.04.14 at 11:05 am

Huge job numbers out this morning.

42,000 jobs created in Canada in March, and loonie rising in the news.

http://www.bnn.ca/News/2014/4/4/Canadian-economy-adds-43000-jobs-jobless-rate-fall.aspx

Guessing this news won’t be the topic of a blog post, doesn’t jive with the doom and gloom readers here are obsessed with.

#93 rosie "moving forward" in the knowledge that, "this won't end well" on 04.04.14 at 11:13 am

I remember the sugar bubble of 74. Dot.com, oil, all doing the parabolic.

http://www.financialsensearchive.com/Market/wood/2008/0808.html

#94 ss on 04.04.14 at 11:15 am

The seemingly unstoppable demand is because everyone is buying 2nd or 3rd homes, or people moved up but not selling their 1st home. Thus you have much larger demand than the usual historic data would suggest.
The immediate impact is people are stretched to the limit soley surviving on low interest rate. In another word, Canada is beyond sub-prime – everyone is on teaser rates. Stock pile homes like stock pile canned tuna in your basement, the only difference is you can eat tuna, but not houses (and endless taxes and maintences)

#95 Ryan the Thirtysomething on 04.04.14 at 11:16 am

Luckily we Victorians have GARTH® — Garth Advises Renting That House.

#96 Aggregator on 04.04.14 at 11:24 am

#82 Basement Dweller

Ben Tal has access to a large sample size of mortgages, prices paid for homes, HELOC, and lines of credit, incomes etc.

That would only reflect CIBC's holdings which could differ from other major banks or national balances. If anyone has the capability to collate the data Tal is requesting, that would be CMHC and CBA. The issue is, when a country's  housing market is structured on government insurance and guarantees, bonds and covered bonds and other credit securities stamped with Canada AAA ratings, it wouldn't be in the interest of issuers to divulge credit sensitive information. So it's best to keep it under the radar and if anyone asks, they're told not worry about it because the government guarantees everything.

People don't realize what our government really did in 2008. They threw all your mortgages along with the property titles into the hands of global investors in order to keep yields from skyrocketing. If they didn't do that, Canadian bond yields would have soared like peripheral eurozone nations. This was/is a major risk that will one day come back to haunt Ottawa. Chart

It's not a matter of if, but when.

#97 blase on 04.04.14 at 11:29 am

Looks like my earlier comment was prescient today. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/rob-commentary/rob-insight/why-canada-is-roaming-blind-through-a-statistical-desert/article17808975/#dashboard/follows/

#98 Paul on 04.04.14 at 11:33 am

79 Dual Citizen In Canada on 04.04.14 at 9:11 am

#71 Realtor # 1 GTA on 04.04.14 at 7:18 am
It’s not just about sold price but also the history of sale, property tax, rental estimates, etc.. We need zillow.ca up here. I can’t understand why the historic selling price for homes would be an invasion of privacy. I have a home in Florida and everything about my home is public record. I used that public record site to find a home! I don’t want to have to ask a real estate agent for this information.
———————————————————-Simple stay is the States problem solved

#99 blase on 04.04.14 at 11:36 am

#80 Clueless About YYC Income Growth.

You must be one of the newbies to the province, as you only have to go back to 2009 to see when the bottom fell out of the housing market there. Luckily the BOC lowered the prime rate to .5% and saved the day. Unfortunately for you and other debt pigs, as rates continue to rise on US treasuries and the American economy continues its recovery, rates have nowhere to go but up, up, up. Your dumb dumb friend is the last one to leave the party. By the way, jobs report just came out, Alberta jobs and down, down, down, even with all that flood repair work. News flash, they have lots of cheap oil down south that doesn’t need to be refined to death. So many pigs are going to get slaughtered in 2015. Too bad pigs don’t follow the markets.

#100 Chickenlittle on 04.04.14 at 11:36 am

No place in Canada is worth these prices.

Is the weather good? No one sane moves somewhere because it rains a lot or snows a lot.

Do we have decent jobs? Not any more.

Good transit? No. Romania was easier to get around when I was there 13 years ago.

Good government? No comment.

Decent taxes?

The list goes on….

#101 Calgary Owner (2nd. Round) on 04.04.14 at 11:44 am

#28 devore on 04.03.14 at 9:28 pm

Thanks a lot, hopefully this won’t be helpful but we’ll see what the rate does in the future.

Cheers!

#102 :):(Ying Yang on 04.04.14 at 11:45 am

Smoking Man are you at Seneca right now? Vacation?
I am in NF Canada now.

#103 Dr. Wu on 04.04.14 at 11:50 am

@ dual citizen

I only know Ontario and all that stuff is available from
MPAC and Teranet, get out your credit card. The ‘government’ outsourced it; I expect the companies they outsourced it to will someday sub-outsource it to Mechindia.

“your call is very important to us”

#104 airhead princess on 04.04.14 at 12:11 pm

I love the line where Tal says….and I paraphrase…” we don’t know how much foreign buyers are skewing the data……because the data is secret…for competitive reasons”

Bwahahahahahahahahahahahaha

HAM….what HAM?

http://business.financialpost.com/2014/04/03/ed-clark-supportive-of-finance-minister-joe-olivers-hands-off-approach-in-mortgage-wars/

Apparently all those black towers are just energy conscious Canadians keeping abreast of the latest rate hike by Hydro.

#105 Renter's Revenge! on 04.04.14 at 12:31 pm

“No place in Canada is worth these prices.” – Chickenlittle

My own little conspiracy theory is that our wonderful, forward thinking federal government foresaw the looming retirement crisis, a la boomers lack of savings and concentration of assets in residential housing and sought to engineer a housing bubble, providing boomers with a way to fund their retirements by selling their overpriced houses to the next generation, instead of raising taxes and handing the money over to retirees, which would have been much less palatable to the masses. Theoretically, this can be repeated ad infinitum with each new generation, given sufficient population growth and available credit. It’s called the “social contract”. Don’t you remember signing it? Me neither.

#106 Chimingin on 04.04.14 at 12:33 pm

Here is a link to a story that will likely occur with greater frequency in the future:

http://business.financialpost.com/2014/04/04/condo-price-drop-vaporizes-couples-life-savings/

#107 Alberta_bound on 04.04.14 at 12:34 pm

I live in Victoria, take a spin through the westhore and look at the mass of For Sale signs with Reduced on the bottom lining every street. Im living rent free because the owner couldn’t afford the mortgage and the bank doesn’t want the place falling apart. It’s been for sale for 2 months along with 2 other identical townhouses 100ft from my front door and a new 40 unit condo being built 500 ft from my front door. Or a developer telling me he’ll shave 200 bucks a month if I sign a 1 year lease on a brand new house. Who knows where it goes from here but like they say…there’s a sucker born every minute

#108 Panhead on 04.04.14 at 12:39 pm

Kinda reminds me of going into a grocery store … everything priced per 100 grams. That is until it goes on sale and then it’s per pound. I guess they figure it will trigger something and get you to buy. Kinda like fishing for sheeple.

#109 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 12:42 pm

#92 JL on 04.04.14 at 11:05 am
Huge job numbers out this morning.

42,000 jobs created in Canada in March, and loonie rising in the news.

http://www.bnn.ca/News/2014/4/4/Canadian-economy-adds-43000-jobs-jobless-rate-fall.aspx

Guessing this news won’t be the topic of a blog post, doesn’t jive with the doom and gloom readers here are obsessed with.
—————————–

39,000 were Govt Jobs that will take the income taxes of 150,000 taxpayers just to pay their salaries and benefits. Taxpayers making 1/2 of what Govt Workers make of course.

FAIL – what else is new

#110 Bast on 04.04.14 at 12:45 pm

#63 MJ
Not everything here in Calgary is selling. Plenty of condos in my area (Sunnyside) languishing for months. Happening in other areas too.

#111 Notta Sheeple on 04.04.14 at 12:47 pm

#80 Clueless About YYC Income Growth on 04.04.14 at 9:18 am

“….Good luck with that correction in YYC….”
=========================

Another smug post from a newbie too young to remember the Alberta boom/bust cycles of the 80’s & 90’s. I lived through three of them. It’s not pretty when you see people walking away from foreclosures at midnight leaving their bathtubs running for the bankers in the morning.

Don’t think you’re special just because you’re province sits on a pile of dinosaur feces. History always repeats itself, especially when your province is run by a monopoly party too incompetent to even balance its own books.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/04/01/alberta-pcs-using-undisclosed-trust-fund-legal-only-for-their-party-to-finance-its-deepening-debt/

#112 Babblemaster on 04.04.14 at 12:47 pm

#78 AisA — “Are there actually adults out there that believe the Government of Canada can do anything else to prop up a saturated market?”

———————————————————-

There are plenty of adults that believe the the Feds will do everything they can to prop up this bloated gasbag. That includes, first and foremost, keeping rates low and supporting CMHC so the banks continue to lend. The next obvious tactic is to have generous giveaways for first time buyers. Much better than they currently are.

The point is, it should be obvious that the Feds want to keep the market at nosebleed levels because, though it’s all fake, it makes it look like we are prosperous. After all, they helped to bloat it in the first place. They will keep this Ponzi scheme going for as long as they can.

#113 TnT on 04.04.14 at 12:56 pm

#99 blase

Check this post from 2008 on Garth’s blog….

http://www.greaterfool.ca/2008/03/31/on-the-vulture-bus/#comments

**********

#5 Jeff on 04.01.08 at 12:36 am
William:
Wake up neighbour! I am a Realtor in Vancouver and word on the street amongst Realtors is that we’re due for a 20% correction. And I am of the opinion that Vancouver will experience a 40% plus crash.

**********

Everyone who counts beans were so sure of the doom and gloom and now have egg on their face….

To bet against Calgary is foolish and it’s not just the Oil…

There has been a shift in power from Ontario / Quebec (Laurentian Consensus) to the West…
http://www.ipolitics.ca/2012/07/10/jared-milne-understanding-the-origins-of-differing-viewpoints-is-key-to-finding-common-ground/

Calgary is an economic power house on the rise and will be for decades to come…

Ontario and Quebec are burnt out politically and socially… Nothing but dark days ahead for this region… corruption and lack of excitement has permeated everyone here.

And this is coming from a Toronto lifer… Wish we had the same sense of excitement and adventure in our region…. All we have is Municipal and Provincial chaos in both Toronto and Montreal + the Provinces

#114 Penny Henny on 04.04.14 at 1:00 pm

#86 Smoking Man on 04.04.14 at 10:08 am
It’s all about the writing, season two going to be just as good.
Hell if the director likes my mug shot, I might make a cameo appearance.. Altho the credits will have me listed as smokey.. Lol

Nic and I are surfing the same universal wave.. Almost best buds.

He’s posted here twice…

He left academia for self-employment and Hollywood.

Wonder who put that thought in his head…

Same with the director of flipped…

I got reach man….

————————————————-
You’ve got reach?
I was going to say you are a bit touched.
But if you want to call it reach, to each his own.

#115 Smoking Man on 04.04.14 at 1:03 pm

#102 :):(Ying Yang on 04.04.14 at 11:45 amSmoking Man are you at Seneca right now? Vacation?
I am in NF Canada now.

Heading to Seneca if a few hours. @SmokingMan

On Twitter

#116 Tony on 04.04.14 at 1:04 pm

Re: #109 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 12:42 pm

Hoping for at least a repeat of October 19th 1987 this Monday. I’d like to see all the circuit breakers tripped and have the U.S. markets closed for at least the next week.

You are a joke. — Garth

#117 AisA on 04.04.14 at 1:27 pm

See what I mean when I say peoples jaws will be dragging on the ground and their eyes will look like they stuck a fork in a socket?

Even the choir thinks the bubble can be pumped further.

#118 Aggregator on 04.04.14 at 1:32 pm

Royal Bank of Canada Films present.. The Mortgage (2014) Video Trailer

Husband: Maybe we should take our time
Wife: We're running out of time
Husband: It's just a house
Wife: It's not just a house. It's our home [weeps]

Rated B for broke. Parental co-sign advised.

—–

Oh boy. RBC has really done it this time by pulling out the emotional weapon of mass destruction. This is all too reminiscent of those Countrywide commercials in the U.S., and just another reminder of how this market is heading over a cliff at full speed.

#119 Retired WI Boomer on 04.04.14 at 1:33 pm

There are “lies” “Damed LIES” and “Statistics”

When one has appropriately heated up ‘statistics’ they can become malleable, and stretched, and contorted into a variety of shapes, and sizes.

139.2 is an example of this. So are ‘revised’ unemployment numbers, ‘revised’ profit reports etc etc.

You will notice the company that issued a ‘revised earnings report’ is often pummeled by their investors, yet the politicians, and the bureaus they run, issue revised data – few are accountable. Fewer ever challenge WHY the revision occurred.

I find that VERY odd Beware of data bringing “happy data”

#120 Poorgeoisie on 04.04.14 at 1:36 pm

105 renters revenge, I think you’re giving the govt too much credit. As far as boomer conspiracies go maybe it had less to do with their retirement and more to do with them paying off their mortgages and needing more debt slaves to take their place. But I doubt it. These days people (corps,govt) don’t think too far ahead. It’s just get as much as you can right now and hopefully if there are any consequences they won’t be known until after you have been promoted and they can pin the blame on the new guy.
I’m a railroad guy back in 2008 during the GFC I watched as factories faced slumping demand and started shipping less railcars. The railroads response was to invent new charges, this maintained the old profits for a time but the customer couldn’t afford them for long and eventually they had to shut down. In the end the railroad screwed itself long term in favour of short term gains. This practice is the norm now be it cell phones, internet, utilities. Stretch it till it breaks. Pay people less, charge them more.

#121 A Yank in BC on 04.04.14 at 1:58 pm

Only in Canada would a monthly jobs report be trumpeted by much of the media as a roaring success when over 90% of the new jobs created were in the public (not private) sector. Keep drinking that Kool-Aid till it runs out.

#122 Chickenlittle on 04.04.14 at 2:02 pm

Renters Revenge:

It may be, or it may not be. I don’t think these guys are smart enough to do that, but you never know.

The timing IS convenient though! Right when a bunch of Boomers are set to retire, the prices go up, waaaaay up….(And I’ll call Rusty).

I guess we are experiencing a JC Penney housing sale in a way:

http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3390910/

#123 Sean on 04.04.14 at 2:08 pm

But Garth – TREB just put another video on youtube saying that Toronto is well under the affordability guidelines!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwKYzK5Gf7U&feature=youtu.be&a

#124 TheCatFoodLady on 04.04.14 at 2:22 pm

‘Roaring success’ my scrawny butt. 30K jobs were part time & mainly filled by 15-24 year olds. So we’re training a bunch of barristas, fast food cooks & customer service reps… These are the sorts of part time & SUMMER jobs I wouldn’t expect a serious jobs report to look at too seriously.

The meat of this report states 58K SERVICE SECTOR jobs were created, (right – part time) but 15K GOODS PRODUCING jobs are gone. That’s a fair few jobs making things – LOTS of things in these days of increased automation – that are gone.

It means a lot of shopping not happening either – did the shopping stop before the jobs drop or were they anticipating… or a bit of both?

#125 Bottoms_Up on 04.04.14 at 2:28 pm

#109 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 12:42 pm
———————————————————–
You’re the fail. A public employee earning $60,000/yr gross, only gets paid $40,000 net.

That’s $40,000 NET dollars that had to come from somewhere.

The government (and the taxpayers) effectively get that employee’s work on their behalf for much less than it costs in the private sector.

#126 Son of Ponzi on 04.04.14 at 2:35 pm

Mac Donald’s is moving out of Crimea.
At least something good coming out the strive.
Maybe they were not allowed to serve Putin.

#127 Shawn on 04.04.14 at 2:39 pm

Why the Revisions?

Retired Boomer at 119 asks:
You will notice the company that issued a ‘revised earnings report’ is often pummeled by their investors, yet the politicians, and the bureaus they run, issue revised data – few are accountable. Fewer ever challenge WHY the revision occurred.

***************************************
The revisions to unemployment, job creation and GDP are necessary because those are estimated numbers. Stats can relies on millions of inputs and estimates need to be made.

This is vastly different than a single company doing its own profit numbers.

just what accountability would you like? Your money back for the free data?

This relates to the excellent coments of Dr. Wu at 73, most statistics providers certainly have no accountability to their non-paying customers.

And to suggest that a government outfit like Stats Can is manipulating figures is just silly doomer nonsense.

Now, everyone, go make some money!

#128 AfterTheHouseSold on 04.04.14 at 2:41 pm

#120 Poorgeoisie
“The railroads response was to invent new charges, this maintained the old profits for a time but the customer couldn’t afford them for long and eventually they had to shut down”.

Good gawd. I’m having flashbacks to Atlas Shrugged!

#129 April in Paris (Ontario) on 04.04.14 at 2:42 pm

Garth,

At the beginning of the year, you surveyed the Canadian Jobs report, and told us that “More job cuts are likely” http://www.greaterfool.ca/2014/01/

Care to revise that, given the 43K jobs Canadian jobs created (not cut) in March? And better still, we’re now up 65K jobs so far in 2014!

Canada created 43,000 jobs in March
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/canada-created-43-000-jobs-in-march-1.2598048

#130 #swaggot on 04.04.14 at 2:44 pm

Re Calgary.
Everything above 500k stays on the market for months. High 300s to mid 400s doesn’t last very long. Which should tell you everything you need to know about how wealthy these newcomers from Vanronto are. There are no 30k bidding wars lol @ that desperate guy above. One more thing: there are A LOT of boomers trying to cash out their retirement savings by selling their “balla” houses in Canyon Meadows/Woodbine/Bonavista.

#131 jan on 04.04.14 at 2:57 pm

Garth isn’t easily intimidated. LOL
And it’s a free country…isn’t it?

Me – no, its not !!!
Without transparency and free access to information there is NO FREEDOM.

#132 Ralph Cramdown on 04.04.14 at 2:59 pm

Another way the government could keep the gasbag inflated a little longer:

http://www.mortgagebrokernews.ca/news/riskbased-cmhc-insurance-would-benefit-firsttimers-177268.aspx

#133 Habs76-79 on 04.04.14 at 3:05 pm

I nor anyone can state with full clarity when and by exactly how much a Canadian real estate correction will come, BUT COME IT WILL!

Some say with a Canadian Federal Election coming within a year that no correction can or shall come as if the govt. can prevent such. BUT! turn back the pages of time to 2008 and a year or so earlier, the Excited States was in the midst of a Presidential election as well as significant Congressional and Senate elections and yet the melt down of real estate and the markets mostly from the corruption of such happened!

To think any govt. and it bureaucracy can stall or stop what is in reality a real estate orgy from collapsing is a fool, a GREATER FOOL as Garth might say.

The questions one who is all orgasmic over the future of Canadian real estate buying should ask of themselves are, could I withstand a collapse of market (if/when it happens), a significant interest rate hike and being locked into a home that may not be sell-able at the price I had hoped for? If your answers are YES, then you likely have no worries. If it’s maybe not or no, then maybe it’s time to leave the corrupted orgy of Canadian real estate, cool your jets and if you have a home to just be happy to live in it if you can afford to. The property ladder may not be as sound to use as one may think today. Many a real estate dream in history has been well hampered or even crushed by a failing property ladder.

#134 Habs76-79 on 04.04.14 at 3:09 pm

reply to #121 Yank In BC,

Not only public created jobs but mostly part time ones too!

YIPPIE! LETS ALL CELEBRATE! (NOT)

#135 :):(Ying Yang on 04.04.14 at 3:09 pm

#115 Smoking Man on 04.04.14 at 1:03 pm
102 :):(Ying Yang on 04.04.14 at 11:45 amSmoking Man are you at Seneca right now? Vacation?
I am in NF Canada now.

Heading to Seneca if a few hours. @SmokingMan
On Twitter
_____________________________________________

Just left Niagara headed to Markham. Seneca was good to me but ate in Canada, played out had business in St Catherines so what the hell. These guys now give me $275 every week plus some other deal now I get $100 every day in April. Couldn’t resist, these guys are marketing geniuses. Draw me in with a few hundred bucks and boom I blow $1500 in a few hours. I did manage to walk out just about even. Ive got bridge toll anyway plus enough to eat and take the girlfriend out.
Can’t tell the girlfriend they assigned me a hot Asian host named Joanna, what the hell did they give me a Asian host cause I’m Asian background? Anyway she is hot!
Have fun tonight!

#136 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 3:23 pm

#125 Bottoms_Up on 04.04.14 at 2:28 pm
#109 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 12:42 pm
———————————————————–
You’re the fail. A public employee earning $60,000/yr gross, only gets paid $40,000 net.

That’s $40,000 NET dollars that had to come from somewhere.

The government (and the taxpayers) effectively get that employee’s work on their behalf for much less than it costs in the private sector.
“““““““““““““““““““““`

NO Mr Govt Worker your wrong…….

Govt does NOT provide any GDP to the country but rather consumes it. Govt Workers are paid with TAXDOLLARS they do not create wealth or NEW tax revenue. And those workers are not just getting salaries they are also getting GOLD PLATED PENSIONS and BENEFITS paid for with tax dollars.

Govt’s job in today’s society is to STEAL STEAL STEAL. Go read Martin Armstrong. He lays it all out. All the smart countries read his material. He was good friends with Margaret Thatcher. Soon there are going to be two sides – Govt and The People

Look at Ukraine, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuala, Thailand, Vietnam on and and on…all falling apart because of GREEDY GOVT WORKERS and CORRUPTION

But its different in Canukustan right?

Still a FAIL

#137 Tony on 04.04.14 at 3:26 pm

Re: #129 April in Paris (Ontario) on 04.04.14 at 2:42 pm

It’s called voodoo accounting, as we are well aware no jobs were created as one only has to look at all the help wanted sections of all the major cities and low and behold no jobs.

#138 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 3:52 pm

129 April in Paris (Ontario) on 04.04.14 at 2:42 pm
Garth,

At the beginning of the year, you surveyed the Canadian Jobs report, and told us that “More job cuts are likely” http://www.greaterfool.ca/2014/01/

Care to revise that, given the 43K jobs Canadian jobs created (not cut) in March? And better still, we’re now up 65K jobs so far in 2014!
———————————————————-

Only 3000 count as the rest were govt workers. This actually HURTS the economy because not taxpayers have to pay for their salaries, pensions and benefits that the private sector is not “entitled to”.

Its pretty obvious the Main Slime Media works hand in hand with Govt in bullshitting everyone because they always JUMP UP AND DOWN when it takes two seconds to see the real numbers from Stats Can.

#139 Penny Henny on 04.04.14 at 4:03 pm

Hey Smokey,
if you are so in tune with the UCC, or whatever you call it, then why can’t you and Ying Yang ever hook up?

I’m sure you too would make a cute couple.

The drama.

#140 DM in C on 04.04.14 at 4:18 pm

“Everything above 500k stays on the market for months. High 300s to mid 400s doesn’t last very long. Which should tell you everything you need to know about how wealthy these newcomers from Vanronto are. There are no 30k bidding wars lol @ that desperate guy above.”

Wrong if you live in Tuscany — there are bidding wars and most sales going in weeks if not days. My brother had both next door and next-to-next door neighbors sell within a week of each other – last month.

There are only 2 detached places for sale under $500k in this large neighborhood, and places are getting scooped up pretty fast.

Must be the new LRT opening soon. YMMV

#141 Pope Peachykeen Snugglebums the 666rt on 04.04.14 at 4:45 pm

#126 Son of Ponzi on 04.04.14 at 2:35 pm — “Mac Donald’s is moving out of Crimea.”Temporarily, but what of this?

US jobs? “So, jobs to make products to sell declined, but there are more people serving food at minimum wage, which sounds good until you remember that a lot of companies are letting go their full time workers and hiring multiple part time workers to evade Obamacare, but the Labor Department counts a part time job as the same as a full time job for the purpose of the unemployment propaganda.” wrh.com. Seems most of the west is fudging numbers. To boot, this.

Terry Gilliam I didn’t know this had happened. Learnt something new today!

#142 Dual Citizen In Canada on 04.04.14 at 4:45 pm

#98 Paul on 04.04.14 at 11:33 am
———————————————————-Simple stay is the States problem solved

I have a choice, US or Canada. I wish you had the same so you can understand my post.

#143 shawn on 04.04.14 at 4:47 pm

Government Jobs and Taxes

Bottoms up at 125 said:

A public employee earning $60,000/yr gross, only gets paid $40,000 net.

That’s $40,000 NET dollars that had to come from somewhere.

The government (and the taxpayers) effectively get that employee’s work on their behalf for much less than it costs in the private sector.

*****************************************
I don’t really disagree with that but would look at it a bit differently.

Two ways to look at it:

1: Government worker costs and gets $40k net. No tax involved

2: Government worker costs $60k (in theory, the free market cost of a worker) . She nets $40k and pays $20k tax. She pays tax like anyone else. the net cost to the government is $40k

As long as government hires for work that needs to be done and is worth doing, and paid market wages, the government job is just as valuable to the economy as a private job. (In reality government no doubt has more unproductive workers, but that does mean all government work is useless or not valuable to the economy.)

If a junior computer programmer is worth say $60k on the open market, it is nonsense to suggest he pays no tax if he works for the government. Also nonsense to suggest his work has inherently less value to the economy as a government worker.

If governments happen to over-pay that is not the workers fault.

But… nonsense abounds doesn’t it?

#144 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 4:57 pm

As long as government hires for work that needs to be done and is worth doing, and paid market wages, the government job is just as valuable to the economy as a private job. (In reality government no doubt has more unproductive workers, but that does mean all government work is useless or not valuable to the economy.)
—————————————————————

Unfortunately Govt is so disgustingly in-efficient that we as taxpayers are paying GIGANTIC taxes and getting nothing for it. And its going to get worse when 600 BILLION of “no money there” pensions for govt workers retiring are going to soon be demanded. That is where most govt spending goes when they say they “increase spending in healthcare and education”. Bullshit. Most of it goes to pensions. This is public information anyone can look up.

#145 Aggregator on 04.04.14 at 5:06 pm

#132 Ralph Cramdown

I'm just waiting for CMHC's next scheme to be unveiled. My view is there's a glut of presales and assignments coming up for occupancy that were preapproved years ago, but don't qualify with major lenders anymore so they're being directed to b-lenders that won't be able to earn profitable spreads on securities without insurance. I call these preprime mortgages, and they're even worse then subprime because many of them didn't intend to get a mortgage in the first place and presumed they could flip or rent the unit on occupancy.

This makes preprimes even more likely to default, but developers will be happy in the short term as they get to take their deposits and sue for any losses below the agreed purchasing price. The problem is, developers still need a liquid market to sell those units, and by the looks of it, sales remain in a slump.

I see it coming already. The premarket is gong to take the entire RE market down once developers run short on cash and start falling into DIP.

#146 Mark on 04.04.14 at 5:25 pm

“You’re the fail. A public employee earning $60,000/yr gross, only gets paid $40,000 net.

That’s $40,000 NET dollars that had to come from somewhere.

Don’t forget the cost of office space for the hypothetical “useless” government worker. And the cost of transportation/external training. As well as the damage they often do to the economy through their actual “job”.

For instance, there’s a security guard public servant at the local passport office. Who kicked me out at 5pm, closing time. I was literally the only “customer” left, but they decided to go home instead of staying even 5 minutes to accept and process my application/documents.

#147 Ralph Cramdown on 04.04.14 at 5:30 pm

#136 World According To Garth — “Govt’s job in today’s society is to STEAL STEAL STEAL. Go read Martin Armstrong.”

Hey, what’s the difference between a government employee with a gold plated pension plan and Martin Armstrong?

The civil servant didn’t do an 11 year bit for running a ponzi scheme… http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-09-28/felon-forecaster-blogs-on-8-6-year-economic-cycles-after-11-years-in-jail.html

You just go on believing a fraudster who claims to be a good forecaster but needs to steal money.

#148 What about CMHC? on 04.04.14 at 5:35 pm

This is what I wrote to that GTA Realtor:

Dear Sister, I pray to the Creator of the Universe (the One who created our solar system and billions of stars in the universe) to guide you to the right path. Hope He shows you what is right and what is not. The troubles of this life (100 years?) are nothing compared to the success or failure of eternal life (everlasting HereAfter) that is coming to us. I wish you all the success in the HearAfter. Please reply to me if you want to be guided to the straight path as shown by Our Creator. Best Regards.

#149 Blacksheep on 04.04.14 at 5:40 pm

Dual In Canada # 142,

“I have a choice, US or Canada. I wish you had the same so you can understand my post.”
———————————————–
This is coming from an ignorant (as in unknowing) canadian perspective, but I feel confident I could find at least five places I would rather live in the US, rather than any place in canada.

#150 TEMPLE on 04.04.14 at 5:47 pm

#136 World According To Garth on 04.04.14 at 3:23 pm

Govt does NOT provide any GDP to the country but rather consumes it.

I like you better when you troll as Airhead Princess, but whatever.

Here is a challenge for you: name a single economic activity or industry that hasn’t benefited from government spending. Just one. Should be simple, right?

TEMPLE

#151 bankruptcy geek on 04.04.14 at 10:56 pm

Link to Federal Court of Appeal decision. The decision itself just refers the matter back to the Competition Tribunal but the facts are pretty interesting. See paragraphs 3-6 for those.

http://decisions.fca-caf.gc.ca/fca-caf/decisions/en/item/66660/index.do?r=AAAAAQATdG9yb250byByZWFsIGVzdGF0ZQAAAAAB

#152 Rainclouds on 04.05.14 at 12:23 pm

And the rot slowly and steadily creeps closer to the lower mainland. (Van Island, Okanagan, Sunshine Coast, Fraser Valley)

REBGV Count discrepencies……… With such a sterling reputation? Hard to believe!

#153 Rainclouds on 04.05.14 at 12:24 pm

The link

http://vancouverpeak.com/showthread.php?tid=5236&pid=6051#pid6051

#154 Investment Virgin on 04.06.14 at 10:57 am

http://reginarealtors.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=11&Itemid=20

How do all the new builds that aren’t listed on mls plus the private sale listings factor into this? I’m guessing the report would be much worse.