Have it all

DOG CAT modified

Jessica is a 40-year-old single mom with two kids, unemployed, renting a two-bedder in Kamloops, living on precarious support payments and studying to be an accountant. She has a BA. And an MA. She worked at the Bank of Canada and ran a small business for three years.

“Yet investing remains a mystery to me,” she says. “Yes, I know the difference between stocks and bonds and have a good overview of how our economy, our banking system, and the stock markets work. However, I have no idea how to buy a bond, invest in stocks, or purchase options in a manner that is not random and blind. I want to learn to be a great investor, and given my educational background, I am confident in my ability to do so, if pointed in the right direction. I am hoping that you can recommend some basic steps to get started in DIY education on investing.”

Jessica’s assets: $15,000 in a TFSA put into a 10-year GIC (“I realize this was not a wise choice”) and $20,000 in a Tangerine TFSA sitting in cash, which she is drawing on to pay the monthlies. “We moved here from Vancouver a year ago to escape life in a rotting bug-infested wooden walk-up slated for teardown.”

Here are her goals: “Not to be poor, to be in a position to help my children become professionals, and to not be a burden on my children. I would also like to travel when I am older.” She wants to a comfortable retirement, “which I would like to take in my late 50’s to pursue my artistic inclinations.” And a house. “If the bubble bursts, maybe buying a townhouse for $350,000 or a home on land for $450,000.”

There it is. “I am writing in hopes of some advice. I discovered your blog recently, and I enjoy it very much. I see you offer personal financial advice to your readers from time to time, and I am hoping to benefit from that :-)”

Why share this note with you? Because we have an advanced case of financial illiteracy in the nation, and it’s hard to imagine a happy ending.

Jessica’s in serious trouble. Her net worth is close to nil, the funds she does have are locked in to worthless assets or sitting in growthless cash, while she’s burning through her capital, going to school and responsible for two toddlers. Despite that, she wants to retire in about 15 years, live off her investments and along the way buy real estate. Her strategy to get there? Learn how to trade stocks and flip options, all starting with the grocery money.

Sad. Unrealistic. Unachievable. And yet this is the same attitude which has Millennials buying condos with credit card deposits and young parents embracing Godzilla mortgages in order to give their kids ‘stability’ when they really need to be salting away RESP money for their education. Children, after all, couldn’t care less whether you own or rent. If they do, you corrupted them.

Advice to Jess:

First, abandon the idea of trying to be a day-trader who will turn the federal kiddie pogey cheque into a house downpayment and retirement plan. The overwhelming odds are that you’ll buy a few stocks and get whacked. That’s exactly what happens to most amateur traders. The pros have them for lunch.

Second, adopt realistic goals. Given your situation and the average accountant’s salary (maybe $60,000 after a few years), it’ll be impossible to educate your kids, buy a house and retire comfortably in a decade and a half. Pick one – which will obviously be the children. Any other goal would be parental failure. So a real estate purchase is out. So is retiring any time before CPP and OAS click in.

Third, self-investing is okay, but understand the difference between that and gambling. Take that fruit-housed TFSA and invest it prudently in a balanced mix of ETFs along the lines this blog keeps blathering about. Put 10% in a government bond fund, an equal amount in a higher-yielding provincials or corporate fund, 20% in a preferred ETF with its fat dividend yield, 8% in a REIT fund and divide the remainder between funds holding the TSX 60, the S&P and diversified international markets. That’s seven positions. Buy them. Hold them. Add to them. Leave them alone.

As for the RESP, if you locked into a long-term GIC, too bad. The return is less than 2%, which means you make nothing after inflation. Go to the bank (I hope it wasn’t Tangerine) and plead poverty and financial distress to pry the money out – then get it invested in growth ETFs, leaving them untouched for the next decade.

Fourth, when you finish school, try to land a job with some branch of a government, where you can slide into an obscenely cushy DB (defined benefit) pension, forking over a benefit equal to 80% of your best five years. Then we can hate you. It’s a blog thing.

201 comments ↓

#1 ExGovtWorker on 08.10.16 at 6:26 pm

Hey Garth!

” forking over a benefit equal to 80% of your best five years”

I spent 18 years in the federal govt, left a couple of years shy of 60, and my pension (without bridge benefit) is about 27%. If I took my pension immediately, it would be a lot less than that.

Which Government were you talking about?

#2 Quebec is Great on 08.10.16 at 6:28 pm

Solid post again. Thank you Garth for doing what you do.

#3 jim salvo on 08.10.16 at 6:29 pm

first of all firsts!

#4 racoon on 08.10.16 at 6:29 pm

Poor kitten!! And Jimmy must not be happy today.

#5 Randy on 08.10.16 at 6:31 pm

Too bad I can’t sell my professional designations.

#6 steerage steward on 08.10.16 at 6:32 pm

The Canadian Couch Potato blog (http://canadiancouchpotato.com/) is a great place to go to improve your investing literacy. Read the books listed in the resources section.

After that spend ~$1k on a fee only financial planner/adviser.

#7 jess on 08.10.16 at 6:32 pm

..”account statements on a USB drive, which she concealed in a necklace worn during her trips to the United States. ”

California Businessman Charged with Conspiring with Israeli Banks to Hide Income
https://www.justice.gov/usao-cdca/pr/california-businessman-charged-conspiring-israeli-banks-hide-income
Concealed Foreign Accounts and Failed To Report More Than $20 Million

#8 george123 on 08.10.16 at 6:37 pm

Max fed. gov’t pension is 70% after working for 35 years. After 30 years it is 60%.

#9 TEMPLE on 08.10.16 at 6:41 pm

Fourth, when you finish school, try to land a job with some branch of a government, where you can slide into an obscenely cushy DB (defined benefit) pension, forking over a benefit equal to 80% of your best five years.

Garth, you know that’s not how it works. Don’t lie about it just to stir up the comment section.

#10 bdwy sktrn on 08.10.16 at 6:45 pm

I would also like to travel when I am older.” She wants to a comfortable retirement, “which I would like to take in my late 50’s to pursue my artistic inclinations.” And a house.

———————–
hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

you have zero at 40 and you want to live like those who are multi-millionaires!

funny!

#11 F.dover on 08.10.16 at 6:46 pm

I would really like to clarify my car story from yesterday seeing as to how #31 Metaxa came aboard me like a mean gurl assuming that I had not negotiated a proper discount. I had. I had negotiated 11% off list for a new early year special order model car. ( I wanted full load with out the trendy shopping cart handle / spoil;er they all had on the trunk deck in ’02.) It was only when I refused the 0% financing, that the dealer threw 8% more discount at me , which I talked about yesterday.
I paid 23G on a 27.7 sticker.

Further more at that time a GM credit card paid five cents on the dollar, allowing $500 accumulation/year for seven years.
So I cashed out the $3350 of points I had to cover the 15% sales tax.
So far owning the car has cost $4.27 per day.
How do you like me now?

#12 Doghouse Dweller on 08.10.16 at 6:47 pm

Guaranteed Investment Certificates longer than 5 years are not “Guaranteed”. GICs with seven and 10 year terms are not eligible for CDIC coverage.

If this was not disclosed by [email protected] she should have an out.

My first DIY lesson was ” The big fish eat the little fish ! “

#13 BOOM! on 08.10.16 at 6:47 pm

Good advice, Jessica. Follow it, and LEAVE THE DAM THING ALONE!!!

It can be truly amazing what growth (left alone) will do.

Good luck on your studies, and finding a decent job. OH, when you land one, feed that TFSA, or RRSP (with a match) all you can, invested mainly in growth assets.

Best Wishes!!

#14 First on 08.10.16 at 6:50 pm

How many lives have you “saved” by advising them not to buy a house. They’ll never be able to afford one now or ever.

Don’t buy what you cannot afford. The goal of life is not real estate. — Garth

#15 RentYVR on 08.10.16 at 6:50 pm

Garth, you keep pounding on ETFs, but there are good (cheap) mutual funds available to DIY’s that offer advantages to ETFs, namely daily liquidity and no purchase or redemption fees (much more cost effective for people who want to buy every two weeks when they get paid). BlackRock for example offers a suite mutual funds based off their ETFs that are very reasonable in both fees and diversification (just make sure you buy series D). Maybe mention these options sometimes too!

#16 bdwy sktrn on 08.10.16 at 6:51 pm

Pick one – which will obviously be the children. Any other goal would be parental failure.

———————–
garth sticking up for the kids – good for you!

#17 Shawn on 08.10.16 at 6:51 pm

What would the yield be on your sample portfolio?

#18 Erick on 08.10.16 at 6:52 pm

So I finally got my answer :)

You recommend investing in a preferred ETF, not individual preferred stocks.

Good to know …

#19 Lucky but not that lucky on 08.10.16 at 6:53 pm

I have a public sector defined benefit plan. On retirement, I will make 2% x number or years worked x 5 best years. It is a pretty standard formula in the industry. So, to make 80% of my top 5 years, I will need to work for 40 years. It will be generous but it won’t be an 80% benefit. If Jess got that dream job today, at age 40, she will need to work until 80 to meet your formula. Assuming she worked to age 65, she would get 25 years, times 2%, or 50% of her salary. Plus, their is no guarantee of indexing. So, she should have a little something on the side that will keep up with inflation. Cheers!

#20 Victoria Real Estate Update on 08.10.16 at 6:54 pm

NOT SOLD IN VICTORIA

Below are some examples of listings that have been sitting on the market unloved. This verifiable information discredits those realtors who recently posted comments that gave the impression that the market was so strong that most houses were selling “with multiple unconditional offers on day 1”.

3455 Bethune Avenue, Price: $1.199 M
DAYS ON MARKET: 70

Realtor: “This Brand New Home…”
Size: Above ground: approximately 1,550 sq. ft.
To view this listing, google the entire next line:

3455 Bethune Avenue for sale

106-4040 Borden Street, Price: $389 K
DAYS ON MARKET: 90 (approx.)

Realtor: “This well built 2012 condo is still under warranty…”
To view this listing, google the entire next line:

106-4040 Borden Street for sale

PRICE REDUCED: 202-76 Gorge Road West, Price: $289 K
DAYS ON MARKET: 120 (approx.)

Realtor: “Water views of the Gorge Waterway…Beautiful 2005 architecturally designed building.”
To view this listing, google the entire next line:

202-76 Gorge Road West for sale

BUBBLE CITY HOUSE PRICES MAKE US PRICES LOOK CHEAP

Let’s see how much less Americans (who have similar incomes as Canadians) pay for homes in desirable cities that have year-round summer-like weather (and not 6 months of cold rainy weather that Victorians complain about all the time).

With similar incomes and mortgage rates in Canada and the US, these examples show how shockingly overvalued Canadian homes are.

This has a lot to do with Canada’s lax mortgage lending standards that are poorly enforced or not enforced at all (CMHC doesn’t require proof of income), allowing any Canadian the opportunity to bid up house prices by committing mortgage fraud (falsifying income).

Canada’s huge mortgage fraud problem.

Mortgage lending standards in the US are strict in comparison and the rules are, apparently, effectively enforced. For example, in most areas of the US, the minimum down payment is 20%.

Criteria:
* minimum 1,800 sq. ft. of above ground (main living) area
* minimum 3 beds, 2 baths
* attached double garage
* no older than 10 years

Note: Most of the houses below are much larger than the approx. 1,550 sq. ft. (above ground) size of the Victoria home above.

Florida:
$247 K, Davenport, FL, BACKYARD POOL, 6 beds, 5 baths, 2,901 sq. ft., built in 2007, attached double garage

$141 K, Jacksonville, FL, 4 beds, 2 baths, 1,184 sq. ft., built in 2007, attached double garage

$158 K, Palm Bay, FL, 4 beds, 2 baths, 1,943 sq. ft., built in 2007, attached double garage

Arizona:

$221 K, San Tan Valley, AZ (Phoenix), BACKYARD POOL, 5 beds, 3 baths, 2,698 sq. ft., built in 2007, attached double garage

$244 K, Queen Creek, AZ (Phoenix), BACKYARD POOL, 5 beds, 3.5 baths, 2,856 sq. ft., built in 2008, attached double garage

$225 K, Buckeye, AZ (Phoenix), 7 beds, 4 baths, 4,023 sq. ft., built in 2008, attached double garage

$112 K, Florence, AZ (Phoenix), 3 beds, 2.5 baths, 2,011 sq. ft., built in 2008, attached double garage

California:

$250 K, San Jacinto, CA (Los Angeles), 3 beds, 3 baths, 1,894 sq. ft., built in 2006, attached double garage

$259 K, Beaumont, CA (Los Angeles), 3 beds, 3 baths, 1,938 sq. ft., built in 2009, attached double garage

$490 K, Spring Valley, CA (San Diego), 4 beds, 3 baths, 1,801 sq. ft., built in 2008, attached double garage

$489 K, San Marcos, CA (Oceanside), 4 beds, 3 baths, 1,967 sq. ft., built in 2006, attached double garage

Victoria’s market correction will be deep.

#21 JSS on 08.10.16 at 7:00 pm

I moved from one province to another to obtain the elusive government job. Overall I would say it’s a great place to work. Interesting work, good co workers, pay in middle percentile, vacation, and a DB pension.

During the boom, my colleagues laughed at government jobs as they made great money during those times. They are not laughing now.

#22 bigtowne on 08.10.16 at 7:03 pm

The option putting your kids first is defined by their set of values not how much money is spent on them. Children require good parents not a good bank account. Church is free.

In our family of too many kids the multi millionaire had no post secondary education and the most educated with the PHd does not come close in financial or income terms.

Education is a top priority but it is not a determinant in who ends up on top or the wealthiest.

#23 Sideshow Rob on 08.10.16 at 7:13 pm

Holy crap. She spent 1/4 of her life getting “educated” and nowhere along the way did they teach her grade 4 math??? Wow!

Garth you will always have a job unless the world runs out of stupid people. No chance of that. They seem to keep breeding.

#24 James on 08.10.16 at 7:19 pm

“I would also like to travel when I am older.”

You can. On the bus. To work.

I would like a leprechaun to drop off a million dollars at my house.

This woman is a case study in how not to plan your life. Precarious employment, two children, no father present (and apparently not paying child support).

Your choice of mate is probably the greatest determining factor in your wealth and happiness. Not your job, not your investments. I have coworkers who lost 500k in divorce… years of work to no end.

The idea that this lady will retire early is so ludicrous that it almost seems like satire. She’ll be at walmart when she is 85, greeting people at the door.

#25 ww1 on 08.10.16 at 7:19 pm

#10 bdwy sktrn on 08.10.16 at 6:45 pm

Don’t laugh at her.

There is another possibility that might make Jessica’s situation not completely hopeless. If she gets lucky and finds a “life partner” (gender neutral statement) that will share some of the load going forward then things can change.

Hope.

Like much of life, this comes down to luck so it’s easy for me to say. And life never works out simply. But getting her own financial situation in the best order possible and then moving on with her life opens the possibility that something good might come along?

#26 @careeraftschool on 08.10.16 at 7:22 pm

I agree with Garth but would recommend focusing all your energy on increasing your income first. Once you have the cashflow you can start investing. Check out the job at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops below. Decent pay, unionized and you might even get a discount on Accounting classes.

http://www.indeed.ca/m/viewjob?jk=e2e9f5646f23eecf&from=serp

#27 El Presidente Trump on 08.10.16 at 7:22 pm

And to that crazy assed dude climbing my property…my property jeez… well thanks for the support. I better build that mexican wall higher though.

#28 Ace Goodheart on 08.10.16 at 7:22 pm

Investing is just venture capitalism. Investing in options is just gambling. Avoid the latter, understand the former.

Read stuff by Warren Buffett.

Any good position is always a long position. Don’t buy anything, unless you are comfortable holding it for at least 10 years. When buying securities, act as if the markets will close tomorrow and re-open in 2026.

Understand the concept of “goodwill” and the terrible things it can do to share prices, regardless of how well the company is actually doing.

Bottom line for investing is remember you are a venture capitalist. You are putting your own money into other people’s business experiments, in the understanding that these ventures will make money. When you buy, you should be able to list 10 things you like about your chosen company. You should know what they do. You should have tried their products. You should know their balance sheet and their income statements. For an accountant ,that should be easy. You should call them up, try to talk to the highest level person you can find. I have found this is remarkably easy to do. If you get someone high enough in the chain, they usually will not lie to you.

Investing is easy. It is made to look complicated, but it is really very simple.

I remember talking to someone about purchasing shares of a certain smart-phone maker, while this stock was on a free fall off a cliff. He insisted that the stock was going to rebound past its pre-crash prices. I asked him if he liked the smart phone maker’s products. He thought they were crap and would never buy them. Had tried their latest offering and hated it. Was warning friends to stay away from their products. BUT HE WAS BUYING SHARES IN THE COMPANY. This did not seem to him, to be an odd or unusual, or frankly, stupid, thing to do.

That is what I mean. Investing is easy, you just have to understand what you are doing. So few people do.

#29 Brian Ripley on 08.10.16 at 7:25 pm

“buying condos with credit card deposits”

I updated my Canadian Household Debt, GDP, Foreign Direct Investment and Balance of Trade chart today:

http://www.chpc.biz/household-debt.html

GDP is ticking down and trade is going deeper into a chronic negative balance greater than during the 2008-09 crash. Canadian investment capital prefers the returns to be had offshore which has taken a big spike up and is in its 19th year of trend where offshore yields are better on capital and labour.

What is up big time is household debt which is growing at the same rate as mortgage debt and both are at their highs.

Low rates have not fueled production in Canada as much as it has fueled consumption and all that debt is a claim on future earnings.

If the private sector will not produce in net terms, then the government will have to, but will their “infrastructure” plans produce long term yields or short term employment.

Income is more important than asset value. IMO.

#30 Context on 08.10.16 at 7:25 pm

You might start looking around for a new target location with a small city population 35,000 to 50,000 where the real estate is reasonable anywhere in Canada. They are out there those little paradises with diverse economies and attributes that fit on your page; a secure community in every way with an environment best for your children. Research it all and use mapping to look things over carefully. Then send out resumes to the municipal governments that catches your interest and see what happens as they pay well with benefits. Its all a matter of costing going forward and an inexpensive home might be fitting with a salary high enough that in the long run will be to your benefit for savings.

Seriously. She has no money for real estate. — Garth

#31 BOOM! on 08.10.16 at 7:26 pm

#22 bigtowne

…you said it best, that ‘Character Counts’ more than anything else. Most kids turn out ‘ok.’

It isn’t the money spent on them, it is the time spent with them. There is always an exception to any rule…expect that.

#32 Danny Steves on 08.10.16 at 7:28 pm

We have a 15 year GIA with Equitable Life of Canada in my TFSA’s, RRSP’s, non-registered money that compounds at 3.6% since 2013.

It will be 70% higher by 2028 which is a 4.67% annual return. We know we will have made $147,000 in that time on our $210,000 original investments.

#33 vulcan without ears on 08.10.16 at 7:28 pm

Jessica, put all your money in BBD for about 2$/share. Hold the position 4-5 years and pray…if it dosen’t work, God will help you

#34 Jimmy on 08.10.16 at 7:29 pm

#4 Racoon

Time to share the podium!

#35 Linda on 08.10.16 at 7:29 pm

Retired Government Worker – like you, I want to know WHICH branch of government one can score such a deal. Not yet retired, in government & after paying into the plan for 35 years will potentially receive a princely $35,000 (before taxes) per annum. Average paid out in our ‘cushy’ DB plan (mainly due to people not working/contributing for more than 25 years) is – wait for it – approximately $19,000 per year. Before tax.

#36 will on 08.10.16 at 7:30 pm

The goal of life is not real estate. — Garth

Agreed. So ummm, what is the goal of life anyway? Oh I can howls of laughter already. But surely this is a legitimate question.

BTW I think Jessica should take the CSC. Not necessarily to become a DIY’er but just to clear up all her questions.

#37 Felix on 08.10.16 at 7:30 pm

Such anti-feline RACISM!!!!!!

And barely two days after World Cat Day.

You are a bigot, Mr. Turner.

#38 KAC on 08.10.16 at 7:31 pm

The right education can significantly improve a person’s chances of financial success.

Good values are routinely instilled by good parents and by choosing the right circle of friends.

Forcing (or even persuading) children to attend a church, a mosque or a synagogue for religiously inspired brain-washing is child abuse which can leave them damaged for life.

By all means encourage them learn about the existence and principals of the major religions, plus the atheist counter arguments and then, when they are adults, they can apply decency and logic to make their own decisions.

#39 Michael on 08.10.16 at 7:33 pm

The advice would be OK under different circumstances but a single mother that is currently un-employed can NOT afford to invest those very low savings that she has until she lands a good paying job at least.
She currently has no income, nothing to get at least a secured LOC against and should not invest her TFSA.
Once she lands a good paying job she can start investing but until then, especially with two kids, no way Jose!

Sure, just spend it. Good thinking. — Garth

#40 Linda on 08.10.16 at 7:42 pm

Just an addendum to my earlier comment – I just checked the 2015 annual report. Average pension paid out to pensioners per month from our DB plan is – $1,457 per month. Which isn’t even $18,000 (before taxes) per year. That doubtless explains why the annual report mentions how ‘your DB plan, in conjunction with other pension income (CPP/OAS specifically) & your savings should ensure you have a comfortable retirement’. In other words, you had better darn well have set aside additional savings & live long enough to collect CPP/OAS if you want a comfortable retirement.

#41 Grey Dog on 08.10.16 at 7:48 pm

George123; 70% 35 years, 60% 30 years;
Is that number for individual? What is it for surviving spouse?
Thanks,

#42 Andrew on 08.10.16 at 7:52 pm

#15

There are no mutual funds that are even close to being as cheap as ETF’s. My first look at your series had a mutual fund with an MER of 1.13%. That’s cheap? Try 0.05% like many ETF’s offer.

Also, buying ETF’s is completely free if you know how to do it, negating your “it’s free to buy” argument. Take a look at Questrade.

Sure it might cost $5 to sell, but anybody investing in a diversified portfolio in the long-term should not be selling anyway. $5 is pocket change when you’re earning an extra 1% every year. That could add up to tens of thousands over your life time.

Garth will never, ever recommend mutual funds, and rightly so.

#43 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 7:54 pm

Seeing lots of FOR SALE signs with no SOLD banners on them out here in South Surrey, BC.

I think the 15% tax levy might be taking a bite out of deals. Radio Talk show hosts and guests talking about hearing of deals falling apart after Aug. 1st when the new tax kicked in.

Oopsy daisy!

#44 ROCK BEATS PAPER on 08.10.16 at 7:54 pm

You could probably short all those ETFs and be in the exact same place in ten years.

Great advice for a single mom with no money – short securities. Idiot. — Garth

#45 Vundo on 08.10.16 at 7:58 pm

B.C. realtors give widowed dad condolence card — with offer to sell house
The sad effects of real estate mania. “Giving up” on buying a house in this market is not losing. It is liberating.

#46 jc on 08.10.16 at 8:00 pm

@#22 Bigtowne

Absolutely. My father was self-employed for over 40 yrs and credited my mother’s help with putting them in a position to sell. Both had minimal education but well read and ambitious. They treated customers and potential ones with respect. My father was tough but had a big heart and was self taught in many things. He hated arrogance and believed. The business still survives. Sadly they both passed of cancer within a few yrs of each other so they didn’t live to see the success of the small (but thriving) business my husband and I built and hope to sell one day. Being both business and personal partners is not for the faint of heart…but we’ve made it albeit with lots of mistakes and falls. Other siblings are much higher educated and rose up the Corp ladder and did very well. Who was more successful in our family? You’d have to ask them. My partner believes university is for learning how to learn and well, for many a PhD in partying. His degree is in nuclear physics and turned down a chance to go higher at MIT plus a job. Yup, he’s a smart ass. One of his friends is worth tens of millions and didn’t get past high school but grew and sold a business. I also heard many of the world’s wealthiest don’t have a degree. Interesting topic.

#47 Tudval on 08.10.16 at 8:04 pm

#20 Victoria Those are desirable cities? You must be kidding. Try San Diego, 700k (about 1 mil in Canadian money) gets you a small piece of land with something resembling a cottage on top of it. A nice condo starts at about 500K. By the way, if you find desirable locations that are much cheaper, you must know – it’s not so hard to move there. In Canada or US.

#48 faber fan on 08.10.16 at 8:05 pm

hopefully she’ll invest in the markets after this crash:

http://www.infowars.com/marc-faber-issues-a-stunning-warning-that-a-gigantic-50-percent-stock-market-crash-could-be-coming/

#49 Gramps on 08.10.16 at 8:11 pm

I agree with #22.
Taking care of your kids is #1
But money isn’t #1
Best advice (life and financial) might be marriagemax.com
Worked for me.
37 years married and loving it.

#50 ROCK BEATS PAPER on 08.10.16 at 8:16 pm

No need to be rude. It is not my advise to her, but my rebuttal to you for suggesting she should be the Greater Fool in purchasing asset classes that are dramatically over valued. You have no trouble seeing that in R/E but are quite blind elsewhere.

Go away bullion bunny. — Garth

#51 Steve-0 on 08.10.16 at 8:17 pm

The pension that Garth describes must be the pension for the being an MP. Plus he got the bonus of pissing Harper off.

My pension is $26,000. I donate it. — Garth

#52 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 8:17 pm

Scientific Proof.

Dog people happier than cat people..

http://www.breitbart.com/tech/2016/08/09/facebook-study-cat-owners-more-sad-and-lonely-than-dog-owners/

#53 Bobby on 08.10.16 at 8:18 pm

For #11 F Dover,

You are likeable but it is not really a dynamic car deal. Subscribe to CarCostCanada and you will see what the dealer pays and all of the incentives. Sometimes a dealer will not advertise all of the available factory incentives leaving significantly more room to negotiate.
I’ve been out looking at both cars and trucks. You have to know your stuff to get that great deal. They’re out there!

#54 Silent Observer on 08.10.16 at 8:32 pm

OK, I’m so tired of the negative comments on the cushy retirement packages given to ‘some’ government staff. I’ve spent the last 35 years working in advanced education which yes, has a decent retirement package. However, I have also spent the last 35 years listening to friends and family tell me how crazy I am staying there when I could be making so much more in the private sector, or running my own business. The banter I’ve had to endure and the “look at what I’m making” dinners and parties.
Now, after all these years, they are complaining at what my retirement looks like compared to theirs. Of course, for the last 35 years they’ve enjoyed their higher annual income along with the new bimmers in the driveways waiting for their return from their Hawaiian vacation or Vegas getaways. Of course they didn’t give a second thought to their retirement investments through all those years.
Well I did. I made a conscious decision to not worry about the lower annual salary of working in advanced education and considered the retirement benefit as part of the total compensation package, not just my salary.
I’m tired of the belly aching, life is about choices.

#55 Lulu on 08.10.16 at 8:35 pm

For one, she can have a house if she want after graduate from her school, just not a big house, maybe a tiny house, in fact is very doable for her and her two upbring, she can still have a good retirement future if she can live frugal from now on or after her graduation, live small can get what she wants and achieve her goal in life, and she can save a ton and invest in the next twenty years or so and live a very comfortable life, matter is can she make the sacrifice? A good strict discipline will work and work very well. Good Luck to her future, don’t ever underestimate a mother’s strength.

#56 Victoria Real Estate Update on 08.10.16 at 8:38 pm

# 37 Tudval

In typical realtor fashion, you blew up at someone who has provided clear and verifiable evidence that is contrary to what you tell your clients to make sales.

You claim that a tiny cottage in San Diego (as though Victoria compares to San Diego in some way, not), would cost about $700 K US, which you argue is $ 1 M CDN. Your claim is laughable and completely wrong.

You obviously missed the point of my comparisons – that Americans, with similar incomes and interest rates, pay a fraction of what Victorians pay for a similar home.

You did this, of course, without providing any evidence to support your claim. What else should anyone expect of a realtor?

You obviously didn’t read my post, which came complete with an example of a beautiful house in San Diego, priced at $490 K.

Again, here’s the listing:

$490 K, Spring Valley, CA (San Diego), 4 beds, 3 baths, 1,801 sq. ft. (above ground), built in 2008, attached double garage.

This disparity between house prices in Canada and the US was approximately the same when our dollar was at par with the US dollar.

Just for fun, let’s convert the price of the San Diego home to CDN dollars, even though that has nothing to do with how much Americans pay for American homes with similar incomes and interest rates.

$490 K x 1.31 = $641.9 K, only about half of what the smaller Victoria home costs after converting to Canadian dollars.

Again, in no way does Victoria compare to San Diego in terms of anything. Victoria’s weather is wet, cold and nasty for 6 months of the year, according to every Victorian.

Also, Victoria is a small, island city with a weak economy accessible by ferry or plane. I could go on…

#57 Kath McWynnty on 08.10.16 at 8:43 pm

Dont worry kids! Garth ir right!
There are plenty of high paying jobs in the public sector.
Amazingly, Garth understands my plan to save the Ontario economy.
More people working in the public sector making great money buying houses will save us all! And these great jobs pay a lot of taxes back to government. One more thing… with interest rates so low, it would be stupid to pay down the debt/deficit.
I love your blog Garth. I read it every day!
Have a wonderful evening
Mom Kath

#58 Mr. Frugal on 08.10.16 at 8:51 pm

Jessica,

Garth is way too pessimistic. You can certainly do this. Many people have been in much worse situations than you. Check out the article below…

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2015/06/05/success-even-after-self-destruction/

A good does of optimism will beat out pessimism every time. Work hard, save money and invest. It’s not half as complicated as Garth makes it sound.

#59 MD on 08.10.16 at 8:53 pm

I pity Jessica

#60 MD on 08.10.16 at 8:54 pm

Just a Reminder the great Canadian housing bubble is supporting the even bigger housing bubble by the name of HElOC

#61 it’s only Trump and coal (but I like it)…. on 08.10.16 at 8:59 pm

maybe she can ask David Rosenburg for some investing advice…(haha)

http://business.financialpost.com/investing/investing-pro/david-rosenberg-if-you-think-this-market-is-confusing-wait-until-you-see-what-the-smart-money-is-doing

#62 crossbordershopper on 08.10.16 at 9:01 pm

hello jessica, do what all other women do, hang on to a guy, why are you working so much , get a man to look after you and your kids. you trade your goods for his work, been around for 5000 years.
i know some people may not like it, but for many many women it is not only the easiest thing to do, but it is a good hedge for your children. otherwise have fun working the rest of your life, odds are if you are not anywhere at 40, things dont just magically get better till retirement. plan all you want, work all you want, just get a man. ya you can do it by yourself, why. thats how a lot of people see it, you can say all you want, i know the truth the majority of women 40, with 2 kids, will like to stay home with them.

#63 Hawk on 08.10.16 at 9:03 pm

#1 ExGovtWorker on 08.10.16 at 6:26 pm

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

Good point, I am told ………(don’t know if I’m told CORRECT)……that it’s Ontario Govt workers that have the gravy train,……..the Feds, not so much.

#64 WUL on 08.10.16 at 9:13 pm

Some interesting and thoughtful comments tonight on parenting styles to better ensure success of children.

Years ago I read a book written by a former Anaheim Ducks NHL’er entitled “So Your Kid Wants To Play In The NHL” or something like that. A good read whatever the aspirations of your youngsters are or your hopes for their success, regardless of the endeavor.

Early in the book he made a statement that has stuck with me for about 15 years:

“Children succeed in spite of their parents, not because of them.”

Certainly true in my case.

#65 Windmills and 2nd Marriage on 08.10.16 at 9:14 pm

That was very Don Quixote of you Garth. What she wants and what she has achieved make her goals into Mission Impossible.

First time, marry for love. Second time, marry for money…her only hope to become Diane Lane in Under the Tuscan Sun within 15 years time, be a benevolent parent to her kids educations and not burden them financially later on – the 50s Stepford Wives approach.

Second, get a Government job and if she is as smart as she thinks she is, she will have a very good pension after 25 years of service (provided she has climbed the “corporate ladder” within Government ending with a high paying job).

Finally, Garth’s investment advice is as good as anybody’s, follow up on it so she can have additional spending money after retirement.

Her situation in reality vs. her goals are whimsy. She will have as a high a probability of achieving them as winning the lottery. As a person and how she writes you can only conclude she is living in a dream world that has failed her many times to this juncture in her life…best pick up the pieces and become realistic as her time is running out.

#66 Context on 08.10.16 at 9:29 pm

She will rent first for a period of time at much lower rates in a smaller community saving her money. Its never what one earns but what is left over at the end of the month thus she acquires a bigger spread of income vs expenses. Only then does she consider a purchase after the bubble begins to settle. Property that is not big city expensive can be purchased in different ways. She might find a free and clear where the vendor takes back a first with say 15% down or look for a duplex whereby the rental income on the one pays expenses on the other. I am optimistic as have seen this all done before. Her target price will be a lot lower than her initial statement and she can do it.

Her first priority is two children, not a house. Get a grip. — Garth

#67 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:34 pm

#43 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 7:54 pm
Seeing lots of FOR SALE signs with no SOLD banners on them out here in South Surrey, BC.

I think the 15% tax levy might be taking a bite out of deals. Radio Talk show hosts and guests talking about hearing of deals falling apart after Aug. 1st when the new tax kicked in.

Oopsy daisy!

According to my peeps on the Wet Coast, that’s what’s happening.

Also a lot of talk about a class action suit because of the domino effect taking toll of innocents caught in the crossfire.

Should be interesting.

In any event it is likely to have that intended “cooling” effect on this overheated market.

Of course we are bracing for a flood of foreign buyers headed for the Okanagan market which is not subject to the tax. Might happen, might not.

We do live in interesting times.

#68 Corban on 08.10.16 at 9:34 pm

Jessica should watch the tv series “Breaking Bad” if she wants to make it that big in that short of time.

#69 Bytor the Snow Dog on 08.10.16 at 9:34 pm

OP is proof that education does not equal intelligence.

#70 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 9:35 pm

#54 Silent Observer on 08.10.16 at 8:32 pm
OK, I’m so tired of the negative comments on the cushy retirement packages given to ‘some’ government staff. I’ve spent the last 35 years working in advanced education which yes, has a decent retirement package. However, I have also spent the last 35 years listening to friends and family tell me how crazy I am staying there when I could be making so much more in the private sector, or running my own business. The banter I’ve had to endure and the “look at what I’m making” dinners and parties.
Now, after all, these years, they are complaining at what my retirement looks like compared to theirs. Of course, for the last 35 years, they’ve enjoyed their higher annual income along with the new bimmers in the driveways waiting for their return from their Hawaiian vacation or Vegas getaways. Of course, they didn’t give a second thought to their retirement investments through all those years.
Well, I did. I made a conscious decision to not worry about the lower annual salary of working in advanced education and considered the retirement benefit as part of the total compensation package, not just my salary.
I’m tired of the belly aching, life is about choices.
………………………

I took the liberty to put in some missing commas, perhaps you need a few more years in that trade. Could not do much with “bimmers.”

Good for you, you took the safe road to death. Now rewarded with what, 7k a month, I could not live on 7k a week.

Being you own boss is so underrated if it’s done right.

#71 GB on 08.10.16 at 9:36 pm

Garth,

Loaded with hyperbole.

This lady is 40 years old and even if she landed a job with government she would be lucky to squeeze out 20 years of service by the time she graduates.

The federal government does not pay particularly well for her skillsets so she would be doing well at 65,000K per year.

Meaning she walks out with 40% of her income (so around 28K). Which is then clawed back once CPP kicks in.

Meanwhile she dumped a significant portion of her own salary into the pension plan….money she could have invested.

Having a pension is certainly a nice way to go but you painted an extremely exaggerated picture of a government pension there. But that sort of misinformation is quite common out there I’m afraid.

But I’m thinking you know all this already….makes for good reading though….

#72 Dave in Kincardine on 08.10.16 at 9:37 pm

Garth, You donate your government pension. You amaze me. God bless you.

Inspiration to us all.

#73 No Mercy on 08.10.16 at 9:38 pm

My mom became an accountant in her early 40’s.

She did OK working for others. Best you work for a firm a while and then start your own and get juniors busy. I.E sell, sell, sell.

Otherwise, you will work, work, work for 60-80K.

My mom did OK but not great. She didn’t have kids to put through University since we did that without much help for our parents. She never traveled and saved every penny. She got a nice settlement when she divorced.

She worked until 70.

Don’t be so optimistic.

#74 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:39 pm

On gov’t employees pensions…

http://www.joelannesley.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Richard-Branson_Picture-Quote_I-dont-think-of-work-as-work-and-play-as-play.-Its-all-living-800x500_c.jpg

#75 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:43 pm

#43 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 7:54 pm

Bu, bu, but H.A.M. had nothing to do with the sate of the YVR market… ?!?

#76 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 9:44 pm

#67 };-) aka Devil’s Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:34 pm

According to my peeps on the Wet Coast, that’s what’s happening.

Also a lot of talk about a class action suit because of the domino effect taking toll of innocents caught in the crossfire.

Should be interesting.

In any event it is likely to have that intended “cooling” effect on this overheated market.

Of course we are bracing for a flood of foreign buyers headed for the Okanagan market which is not subject to the tax. Might happen, might not.

We do live in interesting times.

The other thing they had a NAFTA lawyer on CKNW who help negotiate the deal with I believe the province of Ontario’s needs and issues! He’s saying that this tax is AGAINST the NAFTA deal, and wait for the class action law suit to arrive. He said that Kristy Krunch will be spending all that 15% tax she raises on government lawyer fees, and settlements.

Oopsy Daisy Part Deux.

#77 45north on 08.10.16 at 9:45 pm

Fourth, when you finish school, try to land a job with some branch of a government, where you can slide into an obscenely cushy DB (defined benefit) pension, forking over a benefit equal to 80% of your best five years.

after 39 years with the Federal Government, I get 70% of my best five years. You get 2% X the number of years to a maximum of 35 years.

#78 WalMark of Sadkatoon on 08.10.16 at 9:50 pm

Reading advice from blog dogs are idiotic. She won’t read all that. Garthos advice is best for her. Simple and to the point. Read Buffett? Seriously? Won’t happen. Shorting and gold? You guys are hilarious. Hilariously stupid.

SM is right. Life is a choice. Burn 35 of your best years off your one and only life or live it. Prefer the latter. Some ppl prefer to live once quietly and die. To each their own

#79 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:51 pm

#76 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 9:44 pm

YUP. And that’s the good work for which they earn and deserve such gold plated pensions?!? :-(

I am as “right wing” as they come but this is seriously a poorly thought out plan that, I think, is going to bite her in her political posterior… HARD. Stupid is as stupid does.

#80 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 9:51 pm

#72 Dave in Kincardine on 08.10.16 at 9:37 pm
Garth, You donate your government pension. You amaze me. God bless you.

Inspiration to us all.
…………………

Seriously, he does. Oh man and I was thinking he gave no shit what others thought. Advanced to the immoral plane of fk the world.

Sometimes even a Harley driver loses his mind.

Just hope he sends his pension to the Autistic Crazy Dog Society.

My little dog Wyatt needs help…. Can’t tell the difference between hardwood floors and grass outside. When he goes on his daily run inside the house, he forgets he has brakes. That’s why I have a stockpile of drywall filler.
His tail wags at the wrong times, randomly and unpredictable.

I’ve never loved a dog so much in my entire life. He’s so needy.

#81 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:54 pm

#76 Grantmi on 08.10.16 at 9:44 pm

It’s not just the subject deal but the deal the seller struck to buy and that sellers and then that sellers and then that…

Some of these deals might effect as many as 5 or more innocent deals.

#82 Who luvs ya baby on 08.10.16 at 9:55 pm

#70 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 9:35 pm

#54 Silent Observer on 08.10.16 at 8:32 pm
OK, I’m so tired of the negative comments on the cushy retirement packages given to ‘some’ government staff. I’ve spent the last 35 years working in advanced education which yes, has a decent retirement package. However, I have also spent the last 35 years listening to friends and family tell me how crazy I am staying there when I could be making so much more in the private sector, or running my own business. The banter I’ve had to endure and the “look at what I’m making” dinners and parties.
Now, after all, these years, they are complaining at what my retirement looks like compared to theirs. Of course, for the last 35 years, they’ve enjoyed their higher annual income along with the new bimmers in the driveways waiting for their return from their Hawaiian vacation or Vegas getaways. Of course, they didn’t give a second thought to their retirement investments through all those years.
Well, I did. I made a conscious decision to not worry about the lower annual salary of working in advanced education and considered the retirement benefit as part of the total compensation package, not just my salary.
I’m tired of the belly aching, life is about choices.
………………………

I took the liberty to put in some missing commas, perhaps you need a few more years in that trade. Could not do much with “bimmers.”

Good for you, you took the safe road to death. Now rewarded with what, 7k a month, I could not live on 7k a week.

Being you own boss is so underrated if it’s done right.

7k a week eh… wow booze n fags sure have gone up in owetario.

#83 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.10.16 at 9:57 pm

#77 45north on 08.10.16 at 9:45 pm

AWESOME for you. Hope you live long enough to enjoy the fruits of your labour compensating you for the shit job you punched the clock and answered to the man for.

#84 Metaxa on 08.10.16 at 9:58 pm

Three kinds of folks at my gym.

The Regulars, folks who just do the work of picking heavy stuff up and putting it back down.

The Showboats, all guys who skip leg day because that is hard, painful work and go for the show…huge chest, biceps and nothing else.

The out of shape Newbies.

Now here is the thing, the Showboats giggle and poke fun at the Newbies because they often are lardy, sweaty and don’t know the etiquette.

The Regulars, a lot of whom have been there, done that, help out, give advice, provide encouragement.

Its interesting who is what when these kind of posts are made. Are you providing helpful advice to someone who has asked or are you just showboating, offering pity and advice to get a man…neither of which is germane to the situation.

Thanks to all the Regulars who took the time to offer this lady pertinent info…I learn from it as well.

Additionally I’ll say Garth’s mantra, repeated often is certainly working for me. Balanced and diversified.

And, Garth, I understand you about housing because I have reading comprehension, not a personal agenda that colours my every waking moment. No single asset overload…perhaps you could try changing house out for, I don’t know…ice cream. Its code that those of us without an axe to grind would comprehend.

#85 Freedom First on 08.10.16 at 10:01 pm

Yes. You can have anything you want. All you have to do is pay for it.

The Jessica’s and the Jack’s in this position are living my nightmare. I meet them all the time. And most of them sound just like this Jessica. I say nothing. I learned years ago, in my personal life, when I am talking with others: “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be happy?”

Very few people are open minded. That is why they are referred to as: sheep, the herd, and, lemmings. Wisdom only makes most of them angry.

I thank God all the time that I am me.

#86 KAC on 08.10.16 at 10:09 pm

“#53 Bobby on 08.10.16 at 8:18 pm
For #11 F Dover,

You are likeable but it is not really a dynamic car deal. Subscribe to CarCostCanada and you will see what the dealer pays and all of the incentives. Sometimes a dealer will not advertise all of the available factory incentives leaving significantly more room to negotiate.
I’ve been out looking at both cars and trucks. You have to know your stuff to get that great deal. They’re out there!”

Anybody thinking of using CarCostCanada is advised to Google the CBC report on it first. It appears to be a dealer operated program for getting new leads and for convincing unsuspecting buyers that they are getting the real dealer cost, which they are not.

#87 No Mercy on 08.10.16 at 10:13 pm

#69 Smoking Man

Nice number for you BTW!

I had a University Professor who was awesome. When he decided to leave academia, we did fine with a start-ups. Too bad we kept bouncing around with research and not capitalizing on the ideas since the research was funner. Ideas like, ebay, amazon, voice-over-ip, network security systems, honeypots, VPNs, ePayments, peer-to-peer banking, FX systems between 1992-2002.

Such a genius.

Don’t dis a man who wants to enable and inspire others to greater things.

My failings was to follow awesome ideas and not manage them.

Hence, we did OK when we sold and capitalize on 2 ideas and went our own ways.

I’ve not been intellectually stimulated since.

Don’t dis the Prof. He chooses to show others their ways to success.

University isn’t high school where teachers pump out grads that deserve it or not. Professors don’t really care about the students in University. They care about the research and sharing it.

You care about yourself, your brood, gambling and getting hammered.

All good but no comparison. 2 different people in a multi-type world.

#54 Silent Observer on 08.10.16 at 8:32 pm

Stop whining on a blog. That is not becoming.

#88 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 10:20 pm

Was in the back yard. A stray cat wondering around it. I sat in my chair.

This arrogant little thing approached. What is it about cats. Democrats I’m thinking. Lefty Man haters.

Lesbonic ball of fluff hissing at you under its breath.

I gave it a milk bone… Now its not leaving.

Just waiting for Duke my Recoon that lives in a hole in my tree in the front yard to get rid of it.

Duke shows up for feeding time. And the cat scares him away and eats his Ceasars dog food I leave for him every night.

Fking cats. Not a fan..

#89 the other white meat (pork) on 08.10.16 at 10:29 pm

#54 Silent Observer

Commute if you can. You’re going to get f*€ked. Invest with Garth or someone like him. Read yesterday’s comments and see how many people have been screwed by their pension plans. If you’re from B.C. then read about the new PBSA enacted on September 31st last year

#90 Nelley on 08.10.16 at 10:32 pm

#84-Met-if you think working legs is hard, painful work then you have obviously never done actual hard, painful work ( this is coming from a guy that has squatted 525).

#91 Rexx Rock on 08.10.16 at 10:33 pm

Learn to swing trade.Daytrading is extremly difficult and stressfull.TCK.B and FR.TO went from $4 to $22 and $24 in less then 8 months!!You can make your 3% to 5% but loose 10% to 30% of your principle and have the guts to hang in there when your portfolio is tanking.Everything is a risk except a 2% GIC.Life is tough when the central bank decided it hated giving a decent return on peoples hard earned money.Now they want you to be in debt and forget about saving money.

#92 Who luvs ya baby on 08.10.16 at 10:38 pm

#85 Freedom First on 08.10.16 at 10:01 pm

Yes. You can have anything you want. All you have to do is pay for it.

The Jessica’s and the Jack’s in this position are living my nightmare. I meet them all the time. And most of them sound just like this Jessica. I say nothing. I learned years ago, in my personal life, when I am talking with others: “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be happy?”

Very few people are open minded. That is why they are referred to as: sheep, the herd, and, lemmings. Wisdom only makes most of them angry.

I thank God all the time that I am me.

Ok so what would take .. $100 bucks? and you’d stop posting the exact same crap every single day….

#93 Baby Investor on 08.10.16 at 10:43 pm

Is Cameco a good buy at the moment?

#94 WUL on 08.10.16 at 10:50 pm

When has a securities commission or securities regulator ever arrested or halted a fraud in the making? It seems to me that always the enforcement action is a salvage operation after Ma and Pa investor have lost everything and have no hope of recovery. Add Valeant to the lexicon of Ponzi, Bre-X and Nortel.

#95 Who luvs ya baby on 08.10.16 at 10:54 pm

#88 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 10:20 pm

Was in the back yard. A stray cat wondering around it. I sat in my chair.

This arrogant little thing approached. What is it about cats. Democrats I’m thinking. Lefty Man haters.

Lesbonic ball of fluff hissing at you under its breath.

I gave it a milk bone… Now its not leaving.

Just waiting for Duke my Recoon that lives in a hole in my tree in the front yard to get rid of it.

Duke shows up for feeding time. And the cat scares him away and eats his Ceasars dog food I leave for him every night.

Fking cats. Not a fan..

I would have thought you’d like the general F-you attitude of cats – their independence

#96 45north on 08.10.16 at 10:55 pm

aka Devil’s Advocate: Hope you live long enough to enjoy the fruits of your labour compensating you for the shit job you punched the clock and answered to the man for.

here’s the job I did: http://www.greaterfool.ca/2015/01/02/defiance/#comment-342790

I’m proud of it

#97 crowdedelevatorfartz on 08.10.16 at 11:02 pm

@#83 Devils Avacado
S
moke and mirrors my…..
Ogopogo licking, fiscally usurped, sales oriented amigo.
Who give two rats buttinskis about Christy Clarks’ pathetic political pandering ………
” too little too late” comes to mind when viewing her Election looming knee jerk reaction to FOMO millenial voters whining in their wine.

This party is Oh- Vaaaahhh.

Aaaand….. The sooner you take the high road (without inhaling) and advise (not sell) your customers…er…clients…er….suckers not to buy in a falling market…..the sooner you’ll get the Jag in for a tune up.

#98 ww1 on 08.10.16 at 11:07 pm

#95 45north on 08.10.16 at 10:55 pm
here’s the job I did: http://www.greaterfool.ca/2015/01/02/defiance/#comment-342790
I’m proud of it

Good for you.

But you did say …

The site is almost entirely maps and pdf reports on soils: none of which meet the standards. So the site will be shut down this year. It represents the entire knowledge of soils in Canada compiled over generations at a cost of $800 million. This is not just waste, this is loss.

… yet about one year later, it all appears to still be there and available?

Did I miss something? Or should I really learn that the doomer rants on this website get depressing while being like a broken clock – correct only twice a day.

#99 Wild Albertan Gonads on 08.10.16 at 11:12 pm

#95 45north on 08.10.16 at 10:55 pm

aka Devil’s Advocate: Hope you live long enough to enjoy the fruits of your labour compensating you for the shit job you punched the clock and answered to the man for.

here’s the job I did: http://www.greaterfool.ca/2015/01/02/defiance/#comment-342790

I’m proud of it

Funny.. the post above yours from two years ago was smoking man in a drunken rant! and he’s also making his call for WWIII as he does every few days!

#100 Just for Laughs on 08.10.16 at 11:13 pm

#70 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 9:35 pm
#54 Silent Observer on 08.10.16 at 8:32 pm
OK, I’m so tired of the negative comments on the cushy retirement packages given to ‘some’ government staff. I’ve spent the last 35 years working in advanced education which yes, has a decent retirement package. However, I have also spent the last 35 years listening to friends and family tell me how crazy I am staying there when I could be making so much more in the private sector, or running my own business. The banter I’ve had to endure and the “look at what I’m making” dinners and parties.
Now, after all, these years, they are complaining at what my retirement looks like compared to theirs. Of course, for the last 35 years, they’ve enjoyed their higher annual income along with the new bimmers in the driveways waiting for their return from their Hawaiian vacation or Vegas getaways. Of course, they didn’t give a second thought to their retirement investments through all those years.
Well, I did. I made a conscious decision to not worry about the lower annual salary of working in advanced education and considered the retirement benefit as part of the total compensation package, not just my salary.
I’m tired of the belly aching, life is about choices.
………………………

I took the liberty to put in some missing commas, perhaps you need a few more years in that trade. Could not do much with “bimmers.”

Good for you, you took the safe road to death. Now rewarded with what, 7k a month, I could not live on 7k a week.

Being you own boss is so underrated if it’s done right.
…………………………………………..
God dam Smoking Man your such an asshole, being you own boss is so underrated ! You sound like you just came out of the projects. Great grammar ! However your trump train tirades are really funny. Stick with the plan your shtick is funny shit. Always showing my buddies the unbelievable shit you say.

#101 nonplused on 08.10.16 at 11:17 pm

Sad, sad story today Garth but so very typical. I have run into so many single moms who think that having children is basically the same as financial security, even years after the divorce and the kids have grown up they are still left puzzling as to where all the money went and why there isn’t any more coming in.

When my sister divorced her husband, she wanted 20 years of alimony after 5 years of marriage! And she was quite surprised to learn his child support was based on his income not on her expenses. She should have been aware of all of this, having been divorced myself I knew a bit about how it worked and that she was being completely unrealistic. But she didn’t ask. Of course he was a big jerk but so are all divorced men to ask their ex-wives.

So what is a single mom to do? Join PlentyOfFish.com of course. There must be plenty of high earning single men out there desperate to fund you and your kiddies for bi-weekly date nights while the ex has the kids, right? Nope.

Men, stay away from single moms. Period. None of their excuses pan out. Well I would say except one, if she is an unfortunate widow. In the case of an unfortunate widow there isn’t any evidence she isn’t a good woman just in bad circumstances. Unless she did it herself of course but let’s assume not if she isn’t in jail. In all other cases, the reasons women have for being divorced are all bad. Here are some of them translated for you:

“He’s abusive!” – I liked bad boys when I was young.

“He’s abusive! (2)” – he won’t put up with my shit.

“He’s lazy!” – Free living worked for me before we had kids but not now.

“I expected more out of the marriage” – he doesn’t make enough money.

“I want to move forward with my life” – I think I can get someone with a bigger house.

“We grew apart” – I am in love with someone from work.

“He’s an alcoholic” – I drove him to drink.

“I deserve better” – I am a delusional narcissist.

Men, of course, represent about 5-10% of those initiating a divorce, and they have excuses that need to be translated too:

“I’m banging my 24 year old hairdresser” – I’m banging my 24 year old hairdresser.

“My wife won’t let me by a Harley” – My wife won’t let me buy a Harley.

“We aren’t getting it on” – We aren’t getting it on.

“She caught me banging my secretary” – She caught me banging my secretary.

“I forgot our anniversary” – I forgot our anniversary.

Of course neither list is extensive. When you need an excuse, any ol’ excuse will do.

#102 Entrepreneur on 08.10.16 at 11:18 pm

Christy Clark has lawyers all around her all the time, no excuse for errors.

As for the gal that wants to invest: investing does not happen overnight, it takes time and money. Your priority are the kids for now and that takes time, money and juggling.

Just printed out an article on President Andrew Jackson and his hate for debt and banks.

Also printed out migratory salmon and the peace river dam. How many other dams damage the salmon migratory route? I live near one big lake where sockeye salmon came but after a dam was built the salmon dwindled, now none. Heard on the news today that the Fraser River salmon numbers are down.

Don’t worry about it we don’t need wild salmon; they are just in the way.

#103 Mean Gene on 08.10.16 at 11:25 pm

Hopefully she didn’t cash out pension from the BoC. Score a gig with the Feds as a bean counter and transfer over the pension. The province pays crap, municipal is better or a crown corporation.

http://www.civicinfo.bc.ca.

http://www.jobs.gc.ca

#104 ShawnG in TO on 08.10.16 at 11:31 pm

#32 Danny Steves on 08.10.16 at 7:28 pm
We have a 15 year GIC … that compounds at 3.6% since 2013. .. It will be 70% higher by 2028 which is a 4.67% annual return….
—– another math FAIL —–
a 3.6% GIC compounds for 15 years will give you 3.6% annual return, by definition.

if you follow Garth’s advice and put that money into a portfolio of balanced ETFs returning avg 6%, in 15 years your original $210k investment would turn into $503,277. that is $293277 in gains, 140% … more than double of your gains… and you would have paid similar on taxes in the non-registered account, because the added money is part capital gains, and not all interest.

#105 Blacksheep on 08.10.16 at 11:32 pm

Jessica,

You have higher expectations from life than most (that’s good) and this is your best shot at achieving said, lofty goals, going forward. Forget the bad advise you’ve been given so far and listen up:

1) Finish school, as strong as you can.

2) Take the 15K and invest in, yourself.

3) Spend 2K on a quality Sole treadmill, use it EVERY day for 30 minutes, at a minimum.

4) Get a quality breast augmentation done, cost 10K, I can recommend a good surgeon in Van.

5) When your ready to enter the workforce, spend 3K on a starter wardrobe, think provocative, yet professional.

6) Look for a position in a large firm or Gov institution, the more middle managers, the better.

7) Assuming your starting with at least average looks (based on your confidence) you should be able to leverage your ‘investments’ propeling your career and quality of life, farther than any shitty 15K worth of portfolio, ever could.

Some may think I’m just being a dick or joking…but I’m dead serious.

Come back and tell us in 12 months, how your entire world has changed for the better.

#106 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 11:42 pm

#94 Who luvs ya baby on 08.10.16 at 10:54 pm
#88 Smoking Man on 08.10.16 at 10:20 pm

Was in the back yard. A stray cat wondering around it. I sat in my chair.

This arrogant little thing approached. What is it about cats. Democrats I’m thinking. Lefty Man haters.

Lesbonic ball of fluff hissing at you under its breath.

I gave it a milk bone… Now its not leaving.

Just waiting for Duke my Recoon that lives in a hole in my tree in the front yard to get rid of it.

Duke shows up for feeding time. And the cat scares him away and eats his Ceasars dog food I leave for him every night.

Fking cats. Not a fan..

I would have thought you’d like the general F-you attitude of cats – their independence

I got no problem with hetoro cats. Sensibility and logic.

The cats that think wynned farms are cool. This where I draw the line.

Stupid is as stupid does.

#107 Mean Gene on 08.10.16 at 11:43 pm

No mention of a self directed TFSA and purchase into a ETF such XPF XRE and XIU. RRSPs are only good for bonds. Mr T rocks, keep up the crusade!!!

https://www.blackrock.com/ca/home

#108 yvr has turned on 08.11.16 at 12:41 am

Exhibit A
From credible realtor https://twitter.com/SteveSaretsky/status/763559181907431425
And from redneck central where they heard finally about the 15%
http://www.langleyadvance.com/news/389532231.html

Summary … sales are crashing, in some areas hard!!!

#109 Metaxa on 08.11.16 at 12:47 am

# 90 Nelly contributes:
#84-Met-if you think working legs is hard, painful work then you have obviously never done actual hard, painful work ( this is coming from a guy that has squatted 525).

Tell me Nelly, was that in pounds or kilograms?
Because I’m well over 70 and given the right situation, circumstance, gear and etc I could do 525 pounds…once.

Did you use knee sleeves or wraps or a squat-suit?
Special lifting shoes?

I’m old, I don’t do weight anymore, I do reps.
1 to 3 sets at a weight that has me fatigued at 15 reps.
Rest in between and watch guys like you…good luck with the body when you reach 70+ .

I’m all for maintaining strength and endurance, not impressing anyone.

Also, Nelly, a little life advice. A good lawyer never, ever asks a question he doesn’t know the answer to.

It would also be wise for anyone to not tell an old guy that he has “obviously never done actual painful, hard work” because its wrong, arrogant and ill considered.

#110 Jon B on 08.11.16 at 12:53 am

What a sad story. Could her reality be the culmination of many bad decisions over many years? Keeping the population financially illiterate is going to mass produce similar stories of people who live like this. I hate when children also have to suffer the consequences. When will our publicly funded education system take this seriously and add personal finance to the standard curriculum. I will teach / coach anyone for free. Nobody ever asks because this kind of subject matter remains taboo for most Canadians.

#111 stage1dave on 08.11.16 at 1:01 am

This is an interesting topic…and even more interesting replies; but they are to be expected.

Being raised in a “single parent household” after dad flew the coop, and currently being married to a fine lady who struggled raising with two kids (after her hubby #1 flew the coop) I have perhaps some sympathy for Jessica’s position.

“Investing for the future” is not something that occurs to most single mothers when it’s a daily struggle to provide for your children, go to school, and keep the rent paid.

At least she’s had the lady balls to ask for some advice!

Here’s some contrarian advice:

1) Read everything Peter C. Newman has written, but skip the parts where he profiles people who inherited their wealth. That oughta cut down yer reading time by 2/3…it’s entertaining, educational, and a whole lot more enjoyable than deciphering P/E reports…or wondering whether BMO/REIT ETF’s are a better bet than iTrade REIT’s ETFs.

2) Figure out whether you’re more happy in a secure job with possible pension benefits for kiddie security, or if you’re courageous enuff to hook up with a new and/or struggling enterprise that needs solid book keeping and clean ledgers…sometimes you can indulge two of your passions at once with the right company or business. Never discount the benefit of being happy going to work! You never know where that could lead…

3) Beware of the bank! Almost everything TNLATB tells you is good for the bank, period. (I’m somewhat familiar with their collective disdain for single moms and self employed individuals) If you want to be rich, ask rich people how they got to be rich. (one of ’em might actually tell you) A 26 yr old with a Commerce degree is regurgitating what they’ve been told, not what they know. If you’re going to listen to advice, at least listen to someone who has the successful financial experience to give it.

4) Keep your eyes and ears open…all the time! Opportunity is everywhere…always. Don’t follow the herd. (I once had a banker tell me buying a 70 hemicuda was a waste of money, and the car would never appreciate to half what I was prepared to pay for it in 83- yeah, right) Anybody on here wanna guess how that worked out?

5) When you make money on an article, recycle half of it into something else that you think will appreciate. Buy things of value and put them away. Vintage Iron Maiden tour shirts, Canada Mint $20 silver coins, pre 88 opc hockey cards, Stephen King/Anne Rice first edition hardcovers, I could go on and on here but won’t. Haunt thrift stores and garage sales. Liquidate when you want the proceeds for something better, and don’t sell in a panic.

Suffice it to say I’ve paid several months worth of rent (and mortgage pymts, in the past) every year by spending $50 or less at the right time.

6) This may be gratuitous, but stay away from pawn shops, payday loan advances, CCs, et al. Don’t borrow a nickle from anyone unless you absolutely have to. Stay out of debt.

7) Keep reading this blog…despite some of the churlish and dismissive replies, there’s a ton of good experience and free advice here.

Housing-wise, I personally won’t buy any more real estate until it’s cheaper than my rent, and won’t start liquidating hard assets (that are still appreciating) to buy something that is certain to depreciate in the very near future.

One last point; everyone I know who has supposedly made money on real estate in the last decade simply lived there and made their payments whilst the market doubled or tripled…this is not a product of foresight, or shrewd investing; nor does it denote them as entrepreneurial geniuses…its simply good luck, and should be judged as such. And very, very, few of them have monetized that gain…

A wise investor (in hindsight) would have gambled a decade ago that all that excess cash was going to head to same place it went in the mid 70s and bought ten houses…then watched them appreciate, then sold. Still waiting to meet him, (or her) btw.

Good luck, Jessica!

#112 D C on 08.11.16 at 1:06 am

Poor woman is delusional if she thinks all she wants is possible. It’s a dream for people with double her income and half her age.
She should consider the priorities Garth suggests, but also that her best gift to her children’s future is getting herself financially secure. That means prioritizing her rsp and tsfa, and forgoing the RESP. In her situation, kids may get funding for school anyway. She can’t do it all, so she needs to take care of herself.

#113 Victor V on 08.11.16 at 1:20 am

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/newsmax-host-taken-off-the-air-after-calling-out-his-network-during-live-broadcast/

Newsmax host Dennis Michael Lynch went off-script tonight and declared tonight, “This will be, odds are, my last night.”

Lynch hosts the program Unfiltered, and tonight he took a moment to speak from the heart and recall the words of a mother of a 9/11 first responder about how he’s the kind of man “who puts his money where his mouth is.”

He revealed to viewers that in “fighting for Trump” on the air, he has “been restricted” in that message and was recently informed he “will no longer have editorial discretion on my own.”

#114 macroman on 08.11.16 at 2:12 am

Ah WUL, the Anaheim Duck author was Todd Ewen.

He shot himself, Hunter Thompson style.

#115 jane 24 on 08.11.16 at 2:45 am

How do you have toddlers at 40 years old!! How is it possible to require 3 degrees to find work.

This is a problem with late pregnancies, you have little ones when you should be earning big from the best career years of your life and probably your own older parents starting to kick-up too.

Tell your kids to have their kids in their 20’s, same as you did, and avoid this situation.

I know a lot of later parents right now with job problems, high school kid problems and elderly parental problems all at the same time. They are not enjoying their 50’s.

#116 Freedom First on 08.11.16 at 3:10 am

#92 Who loves ya baby

Kojak. Hang in there long enough and you will become a member of my fan club. I will grow on you. Trust me.

#117 Andrew t on 08.11.16 at 6:56 am

#90 Nelley on 08.10.16 at 10:32 pm
#84-Met-if you think working legs is hard, painful work then you have obviously never done actual hard, painful work ( this is coming from a guy that has squatted 525).
—-
Or actual manual labour. Back in my younger days I spent a couple of summers on a landscaping crew.
We had a couple of muscle heads come on the crew- twice my size- by they quit after a week of whining and moaning. Try moving a ton of topsoil from the street to a backyard using only a shovel and a wheelbarrow in 30 degree heat. Separates the men from the boys.

#118 F.dover on 08.11.16 at 6:58 am

#91 Rexx Rock….thus my alias; F.dover.

#119 Zen Headspace on 08.11.16 at 7:03 am

“I am writing in hopes of some advice.”
———————————————————–

Rob banks.

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

#120 Freedom First on 08.11.16 at 7:13 am

#92 Who luvs ya baby on 08.10.16 at 10:38 pm

#85 Freedom First on 08.10.16 at 10:01 pm

Yes. You can have anything you want. All you have to do is pay for it.

The Jessica’s and the Jack’s in this position are living my nightmare. I meet them all the time. And most of them sound just like this Jessica. I say nothing. I learned years ago, in my personal life, when I am talking with others: “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be happy?”

Very few people are open minded. That is why they are referred to as: sheep, the herd, and, lemmings. Wisdom only makes most of them angry.

I thank God all the time that I am me.

Ok so what would take .. $100 bucks? and you’d stop posting the exact same crap every single day….

FF007

Remember dear little one…do not let envy of others enter your heart and steal your inner passion and love of tofu. There are many things you must learn, and I, as your Yiddish Zen master, will show you the way you must take if you are to ascend like me. Read what I write more carefully, as there is deep deep deep knowledge that the flippant pass right by. I will write again soon, so don’t dismay grasshopper.

Solve this riddle and you will become very wise indeed:

“What does the ant eat for breakfast on a cold winter morning, when your brother in law eats his cereal on vacation in Arizona?”

#121 AfterTheHouseSold on 08.11.16 at 7:33 am

The sorry state of hydro in Ontario.

“Ontario’s policy disaster goes many layers further. If people conserve power and demand drops, the GA (Global Adjustment) per kWh goes up, so if everyone tries to save money by cutting usage, the price will increase, defeating the effort.”

http://business.financialpost.com/fp-comment/ontario-electricity-has-never-been-cheaper-but-bills-have-never-been-higher

#122 pBrasseur on 08.11.16 at 7:34 am

Jessica

Following Garth (with the rebalancing and all) is better than what you are doing, but you can (and need) better than that.

In the long run nothing will beat a small portfolio of stocks from great companies. In the long run nothing is safer because in the end companies create the wealth. If you whant a share of that wealth that’s where you need to invest. Quality matters.

American banks (Wells Fargo, BoA, JPM, and GS) are still very cheap, Disney still quite cheap. Add to that a couple good companies in the medical and pharma sector, for example Medtronics, Stryker and you’ve got yourself a fantastic little portfolio with 0% fees.

Then just sit on it for many years, be patient, never panic, keep adding to it and reinvest the dividends, ignore the pundits and blogs.

Keep an eye on Buffet’s portfolio and annual letter to shareholder

Read The Intelligent Investor.

Bad advice. She has maybe ten grand to invest. What? Buy four stocks? Silly to the extreme. — Garth

#123 AfterTheHouseSold on 08.11.16 at 8:06 am

The end of auto manufacturing in Ontario?

“GM Canada said no decision on future investment will be made until after a labour agreement is reached, while Unifor, the union that represents 23,000 Canadian workers at the Detroit Three, said no agreement will be reached without an investment commitment from GM.”

http://business.financialpost.com/news/transportation/general-motors-of-canada-ltd-union-miles-apart-as-labour-negotiations-begin

#124 crowdedelevatorfartz on 08.11.16 at 8:22 am

@#112 Jane24
“How do you have toddlers at 40 years old!! ”
*******************************************
I have a co-worker thats 52 and his 45 year old wife just had a kid……
They have zero savings.
They have one income.
They live pay cheque to pay cheque.
They rent and he commutes 90 MILES each way every day( he thinks $500/month on gas is “saving” money because the rent is cheaper……).
They couldnt balance a bank account if they tried.
They have no pension, RRSP, TFSA’s nothing what so ever.
They still dream and talk about buying a house even though their credit is worse than zero. Thats their biggest goal/dream/fantasy.
They dont have a clue about reality.
They will work until they die.
They have doomed the newborn to financial purgatory.
Financially illiterate morons that never listen to any reasonable discussion on saving, budgeting, etc.
They will never “get” it.

#125 maxx on 08.11.16 at 8:23 am

#10 bdwy sktrn on 08.10.16 at 6:45 pm

“I would also like to travel when I am older.” She wants to a comfortable retirement, “which I would like to take in my late 50’s to pursue my artistic inclinations.” And a house.

———————–
hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

you have zero at 40 and you want to live like those who are multi-millionaires!

funny!”

Here are some possible ways:
1- Save 100K a year net for 15 years (house, decent travel budget averaging 5k per quarter, pursue “artistic inclinations” and enough left over to supplement government pensions);
2- Max out the RESPs, camp in summer, cross-country ski in winter, take free online arts courses and rent;
3- Get a government job;
4- Buy lottery tickets.

Best option: 3 (nice work if you can get it)
Most difficult option: 1
Most likely option: 2, or something very similar
Option which most resembles her thinking: 4

It borders on depressing to see so many Canadians this delusional. Financial ed needs to begin at home, before kids actually start school. When you’ve lost over 3 decades of precious learning, planning and fighting to keep your money, “travel when I am older” and “artistic inclinations” become somewhat compromised.

#126 Craig Donaldson on 08.11.16 at 8:38 am

I remember when banks and others in the financial industry where using 12% and 10% annual returns in their illustrations and projections with portfolios.

Now, 6% and how realistic and reliable is that over the next 15 years.

The past returns are not indicative of future returns. How many times did people hear this.

Most people are tired of losing money and being wiped since 2007, almost 10 years now.

While there are no guarantees of returns, a balanced portfolio has delivered an average of almost 6.5% over the last six years, two of which were stinkers (2011 and 2015). My view is the next six will be better. You obviously are investing incorrectly. — Garth

#127 WUL on 08.11.16 at 8:38 am

#112 macroman on 08.11.16 at 2:12 am

macro, it was Day Bylsma and not Todd Ewen.

#128 Government pension on 08.11.16 at 8:48 am

Garth is right after 30 years my government pension will be 60% of my best five years but after deductions it’s actually 80% of my take-home pay,that’s what really matters. in fact after 33 years it would be 101% of my take-home pay

#129 Raj on 08.11.16 at 8:52 am

Why not talk to Stephen Poloz

He got nothing to do anyhow, other than few meetings and Cutting Rates

#130 The American on 08.11.16 at 8:55 am

At #20: Victoria Real Estate Update, I do agree with your sentiments that correction in Canada is going to be deep, if not truly overwhelming for many. Its bad and it is going to get a lot worse.

However, I’d need to point out that in your comparison of U.S. cities, the vast, vast majority of Americans don’t want to live in the places you’ve indicated. FL, AZ are both absolute armpits by American standards (not to preclude Alabama and Nebraska). We still cannot figure out why Canadians love those areas so much. They’re simply disgusting, and the weather is WAY too intense and hot and/or muggy. Davenport, FL? VERY familiar with it. There’s a neighborhood there called Providence, where I own a gorgeous 5,400 sq. ft. home sitting on the golf course that I rent out (pool, spa, waterfall, interior courtyard) and I’d never live there. Canadians are in all corners of the area and seem to love it. WHY?!?!?!? Anyway, I think for comparison sake, you’d be more apples-to-apples when picking American cities like New York or Chicago to Toronto (NY is definitely more expensive), San Francisco, CA or Seattle, WA to Vancouver (SF is definitely more expensive, and Seattle is too if renting), San Diego, CA to Victoria (SD is more expensive), Dallas, TX or Houston, TX (Have no clue which is more expensive) to Calgary, and so on.

#131 Renter's Revenge! on 08.11.16 at 8:59 am

Jessica’s fine. She just needs make $2,000,000 in the next 15 years ($500k to raise two kids, $500k for a house on dirt and $1M investment portfolio). She needs to find a job that pays $133,333 after taxes and living expenses, some of which is covered by support payments. This is not unheard of. Maybe Garth can help with both the invesments and the job search. You do offer that service, don’t you, Garth? People can’t invest if they don’t have money, right? Anyways, this is your time to shine, Jessica! Just do it!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXsQAXx_ao0

#132 CJBob on 08.11.16 at 9:10 am

Take that fruit-housed TFSA and invest it prudently in a balanced mix of ETFs
__________________________
Yes, for those who understand what they are doing this is good advice. For those who are just dipping a toe in the investing waters the street wise funds at the orange fruit place charge 1.07% and the diversity is baked into the funds.

Too high a fee? Sure, but better than other options – again – for those who aren’t comfortable or sophisticated enough to go the full do it yourself route.

It’s like telling someone to buy a car with a standard transmission when all they can handle is an automatic.

#133 Wild Albertan Gonads on 08.11.16 at 9:11 am

#129 The American on 08.11.16 at 8:55 am

At #20: Victoria Real Estate Update, I do agree with your sentiments that correction in Canada is going to be deep, if not truly overwhelming for many. Its bad and it is going to get a lot worse.

However, I’d need to point out that in your comparison of U.S. cities, the vast, vast majority of Americans don’t want to live in the places you’ve indicated. FL, AZ are both absolute armpits by American standards (not to preclude Alabama and Nebraska). We still cannot figure out why Canadians love those areas so much. They’re simply disgusting, and the weather is WAY too intense and hot and/or muggy. Davenport, FL? VERY familiar with it. There’s a neighborhood there called Providence, where I own a gorgeous 5,400 sq. ft. home sitting on the golf course that I rent out (pool, spa, waterfall, interior courtyard) and I’d never live there. Canadians are in all corners of the area and seem to love it. WHY?!?!?!? Anyway, I think for comparison sake, you’d be more apples-to-apples when picking American cities like New York or Chicago to Toronto (NY is definitely more expensive), San Francisco, CA or Seattle, WA to Vancouver (SF is definitely more expensive, and Seattle is too if renting), San Diego, CA to Victoria (SD is more expensive), Dallas, TX or Houston, TX (Have no clue which is more expensive) to Calgary, and so on.


Yeah VREU’s comparisons are silly.
Way to make money off an armpit!

So is it gonna be President TRUMP.. this is fabulous entertainment! 90 more days!

#134 MGTOW on 08.11.16 at 9:12 am

Be careful, men. There are plenty of Jessicas out there looking for your wallet to save them.

#135 Nelley on 08.11.16 at 9:18 am

#108Metaxa-you miss the point-lifting is FUN-otherwise you wouldn’t have been doing it all these years-nobody paid you a nickel to lift-you have been paying money all these years for the privilege-just like me-you can’t compare lifting weights to picking tobacco.

#136 The American on 08.11.16 at 9:27 am

At #132: Wild Albertan Gonads, Trump doesn’t stand chance. The media is making its numbers with the fiasco, though. The Electoral College isn’t having it. Hillary’s numbers are widening the gap by the day. Trump is going to lose by a wide margin.

#137 Victoria Real Estate Update on 08.11.16 at 9:36 am

# 132 and others who can’t read

I made no comparisons in my posts. Read again.

In fact, I stated that Victoria doesn’t compare to San Diego or any of the other desirable US destinations listed that have summer-like weather year round.

If no Americans wanted to live in Florida and Arizona, then no Americans would live in those states. That’s not at all the case.

I’ll do a post about how Canadians also love Florida and Arizona, making those two states 2 of the top 4 cities in which Canadians buy properties.

Again, if you make a claim that, for example, Americans don’t like to live in FL or AZ, try to provide some sort of proof. Otherwise you look like a realtor.

#138 Herb on 08.11.16 at 9:54 am

Trump’s appeal –

… for two-and-a-half decades, the elites that gave us the Clint-stones and The Drone Ranger and the Bush bandits have watched Dayton and Detroit and any city where a blue collar used to mean a union paycheck go to hell. …

Who created Trump? In the end, candidates are the sums of our dreams and nightmares, the dark side of nasty little souls. You know another President Clinton will be a wink and a nod to the globalists. So why not just bet your ballot on Trump. It’s no different than going to a Trump casino. In the end you may lose; but at least you got a moment of fun at the slot machine.

http://www.gregpalast.com/ted-ralls-trump-comic-book-bio/#more-12406

#139 Prairieboy43 on 08.11.16 at 10:00 am

Every City in North America, has thousands of Jessica’s. Edmonton alone has 3500 Big Brother/Sister relationship, to help these families. Ninety percent of situation, similar to Garth’s example. Thousands of Single parents in every Province, State in North America. Collassal mess. Fifty percent marriage success rate. Has North America failed? Why?
God Bless Jessica.
PB43

#140 Brett in Calgary on 08.11.16 at 10:01 am

#54 Silent Observer
———————–

I here you, although I am still at “the grunt” level in the higher education system. Life is choices, patience and making the most of what you have. Something tells me that when I retire comfortably (probably without a pension in my case) my family and friends will say, “he just got lucky”. Of course I will have made choices (and sacrifices) to end up in that position. One big one has been to not buy a house…

#141 LP on 08.11.16 at 10:05 am

#110 stage1dave on 08.11.16 at 1:01 am

What a kind-hearted, empowering, encouraging, sensible post. Jessica, while not as clear thinking as I would want my accountant to be, is definitely not deserving of the ridicule and abuse she has suffered on here so far.

Thanks Dave! And Jessica, take heed of his advice.

#142 Tudval on 08.11.16 at 10:10 am

#56 Victoria I am not a realtor. I’m not familiar with the area in San Diego, pretty sure it’s not one of the better ones. In Toronto you can find nice detached houses in sub-prime neighborhoods, like Scarborough, for half the price of those in more desirable areas, which everybody likes to talk about as being ‘overpriced’ . I’m sure that is the case in every city, where you find ‘good value’ and ‘overpriced’ houses, but what those words mean is just a matter of perception.

Here’s one house I found with 2 clicks. Larger lot (7000sqft) for about 1.5 mil Canadian:
http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4385-Narragansett-Ave-San-Diego-CA-92107/16963682_zpid/
sold in 1995 for 275k, now 1.1 mil. Similar rate of appreciation as houses in better areas in Toronto, and slightly less than Vancouver.

My brother-in-law, who owns his dental practice in the area, would not buy in SD because it’s too expensive?? He owns a $2 mil 7000 sqft ranch (slightly oversized for 3 people I would say) in a small city nearby and thinks that is ‘good value’. Still same price as it was 10 yrs ago. Surely different people have hugely divergent opinions on what value means. It’s what makes a market.

SD is very nice city, but doesn’t have as good employment/business opportunities as Toronto of Van. It’s why I haven’t mentioned SF or NY.

#143 Wild Albertan Gonads on 08.11.16 at 10:10 am

#135 The American on 08.11.16 at 9:27 am

At #132: Wild Albertan Gonads, Trump doesn’t stand chance. The media is making its numbers with the fiasco, though. The Electoral College isn’t having it. Hillary’s numbers are widening the gap by the day. Trump is going to lose by a wide margin.


Well there’s a crazy drunken alien on here who’s convinced it will be a TRUMP landslide.. he’s made a bet with host Garth that if he loses he has to clean Garth’s toilets at the ice cream parlour…

#144 WalMark of Sadkatoon on 08.11.16 at 10:13 am

We still cannot figure out why Canadians love those areas so much…Canadians are in all corners of the area and seem to love it. WHY?!?!?!?

This doesn’t mean that AZ and FL are bad.

It means that you don’t understand the real estate market in FL or AZ

#145 Metaxa on 08.11.16 at 10:22 am

Nelly, Nelly, Nelly…

Recall the lawyer who doesn’t ask any question unless he knows the answer…

I don’t pay to lift…everyone else pays me (us) to lift.
I hold 1/3, my sons share a 1/3 and the managing partner of ten years has the other 1/3. Good lease, good crowd…mostly.

Now…was that 525 in pounds or in kilograms?

#146 Mr. Frugal on 08.11.16 at 10:27 am

#137 Herb on 08.11.16 at 9:54 am
Trump’s appeal –

… for two-and-a-half decades, the elites that gave us the Clint-stones and The Drone Ranger and the Bush bandits have watched Dayton and Detroit and any city where a blue collar used to mean a union paycheck go to hell. …

Who created Trump? In the end, candidates are the sums of our dreams and nightmares, the dark side of nasty little souls. You know another President Clinton will be a wink and a nod to the globalists. So why not just bet your ballot on Trump. It’s no different than going to a Trump casino. In the end you may lose; but at least you got a moment of fun at the slot machine.

http://www.gregpalast.com/ted-ralls-trump-comic-book-bio/#more-12406

_______________________________________

I think a better read would be the Clinton Cash graphic novel. It sold out on the first day and is currently #5 on Amazon. It looks like Corrupt Hillary will have alot of free time after November.

https://www.amazon.com/Clinton-Cash-Graphic-Chuck-Dixon/dp/1621575454/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1470925404&sr=8-2&keywords=clinton+cash

#147 pBrasseur on 08.11.16 at 10:31 am

Bad advice. She has maybe ten grand to invest. What? Buy four stocks? Silly to the extreme. — Garth

No what is silly at this point is to try to protect that small capital from short term fluctuations by rebalancing (which cost fees on top of the long term gain losses…). She needs to think long term and growth!

There is nothing wrong with owning 6 or 7 solid blue chips stocks. Owning individual stocks is the only way to own quality at minimum fees.

The cost to buy an ETF is the same as purchasing one equity position, and yet the ETF provides vastly more diversification and less volatility. Your strategy is patently wrong in this instance. — Garth

#148 macroman on 08.11.16 at 10:35 am

Huh WULLY, those Ducks have quite the roster of writers…who knew hockey pucks could even read/sarc.

Poor Ewen, gentle as a lamb off ice but a bear on ice enforcer. Writing kids books until either depression or one too many shots to the head got the better of him.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/was-todd-ewens-death-caused-by-his-nhlcareer/article26987457/

#149 Shortymac on 08.11.16 at 10:45 am

I would suggest she get into the government now and take night classes to finish her degree.

It’s a lot easier to get in as a secretary/clerk/data entry person than higher up in the pecking order because government favors internal people first.

That way she will get cash flow and stop dipping into her TFSAs, preparing her for her future career.

#150 Noel on 08.11.16 at 10:47 am

Teach your kids that education doesn’t have to be expensive! Not everyone needs a BA and an MA from UBC (whole lotta good its done for the writer of the letter – although I thought the BoC paid really well – maybe she made some poor investments into her business?).

Tons of good options for technical schools, trades and the like that the kids can leverage to start their own business, work for a small firm, or a large multinational, whatever floats your boat.

#151 };-) aka Devil's Advocate on 08.11.16 at 10:49 am

Sitting on the patio enjoying a morning coffee thinking to myself, given the absurdness of this current market and how much values have increased just of late, I’m sure glad we got in when we did.

Understand that I do believe a “correction” is imminent. When? Relatively soon. But prices seldom come down nearly as much as they went up. Based on the past I see no reason that won’t continue. On average, despite the ups and downs, real estate values, I expect, will continue to rise.

The opportune time for First Time Buyers to get in is not now but soon. For all others “in” the market it really doesn’t matter. The price your home goes ups so does everybody else. The price of everybody’s real estate falls so does yours. Unless you are getting “out” in which case SELL NOW!

#152 IHCTD9 on 08.11.16 at 10:50 am

I have a general rule for regular working single folks who want houses, early retirement, travel, and a solidly financed retirement via their investments:

Forget about it.

Those days are gone – to do all that now requires two solid incomes. Even then if you want to live in a metro area – most well employed couples won’t even pull it off.

Notice I did not mention the financial effects of raising kids or divorce, or the cost of upgrading your education.

Just forget it, make other plans, don’t set yourself up for failure and depression.

#153 cramar on 08.11.16 at 10:55 am

#116 Andrew t on 08.11.16 at 6:56 am
#90 Nelley on 08.10.16 at 10:32 pm
#84-Met-if you think working legs is hard, painful work then you have obviously never done actual hard, painful work ( this is coming from a guy that has squatted 525).
—-
Or actual manual labour. Back in my younger days I spent a couple of summers on a landscaping crew.
We had a couple of muscle heads come on the crew- twice my size- by they quit after a week of whining and moaning. Try moving a ton of topsoil from the street to a backyard using only a shovel and a wheelbarrow in 30 degree heat. Separates the men from the boys.

————————————-

Been there, done that! Three summers ago moved about 12 tons of dirt, then 11 tons of stones by shovel and wheelbarrow, much of it in 30 degree heat. Took a few weeks. I was 66 at the time. Lost so much weight, I had just bones and muscles left.

Never again.

Home ownership can be soooo difficult!

#154 Arb Watson on 08.11.16 at 10:58 am

Marc Faber is a perma bear and he loves gold. He has been calling for a crash in a while.

#155 Nelley on 08.11.16 at 11:02 am

#144met-OK you got me-I have paid guys like you so I can lift-the deep squat was 525 pounds 5 reps just a lifting belt and knee wraps. I have never even somebody squat 525 kilos.

#156 Tudval on 08.11.16 at 11:02 am

#56 Victoria Actually it was a different listing that sold in San Diego ’95 for 275k, now $1.3 mil. Exactly how a typical bungalow in better Toronto areas would be priced ’95-’16.

The one in the link posted above was last sold in ’83 for one tenth the current price. Think about how many recessions, crashes and crisis the market’s been through since!

#157 DON on 08.11.16 at 11:43 am

#114 jane 24 on 08.11.16 at 2:45 am

How do you have toddlers at 40 years old!! How is it possible to require 3 degrees to find work.

This is a problem with late pregnancies, you have little ones when you should be earning big from the best career years of your life and probably your own older parents starting to kick-up too.

Tell your kids to have their kids in their 20’s, same as you did, and avoid this situation.

I know a lot of later parents right now with job problems, high school kid problems and elderly parental problems all at the same time. They are not enjoying their 50’s

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

Simple the abundance of high paying resource jobs were not around for Gen x and y forcing more to put off their dreams of families and home ownership. I know a bunch of 20 – 30 year olds (who had children at a younger age) struggling with housing costs, and ever rising utility bills etc. University tuition has risen. Hell my nieces teachers told her not to apply to UBC as they are only taking lower mainland and foreign students. Context changes.

Who knows…Jessica’s circumstances may change yet again, but at least she has a plan. Sounds like finishing her accounting program in the main route. I initially thought was wait, accounting jobs are all around, then again she is betting off finishing her studies, raising the kids, then going back to work when they are in school. Otherwise the cost of day care will null the incoming wages. Only she knows her situation best.

Jessica: good luck and when you are ready to look for a job I may be able to help with contacts. More and more accounting jobs are able to work from home.

Good luck!

#158 Doug in London on 08.11.16 at 11:44 am

@IHCTD9, post #151:
Forget about it you say? What kind of message of hope and inspiration is that? I say learn all you can about investing by reading this blog, and books about financial and investing. A few recommendations are The Wealthy Barber and The Wealthy Barber Returns by David Chilton, Low Risk Investing by Gordon Pape, and books by Derek Foster (www.stopworking.ca). So, you need to have extra money on hand before you invest in the first place so a good blog is http://www.mrmoneymustache.com . There’s a wealth of information there about living comfortably without spending a fortune. It’s written by a former Canadian, living in The States now. The blog owner is obviously a very untypical former Canadian, having good financial skills. I learned about that site from this blog.

I’m single and gave up full time permanent employment at age 34, was working on and off, and retired at age 53 and am now 55. My friend, living in Toronto, made slightly more than half what I did, is the same age as me, has accumulated more wealth than me, and is pretty much retired, working self employed 1 to 2 days a week. I believe that if you make the right choices you still can retire early. Freedom 55 is not dead, it’s alive and very well.

#159 DON on 08.11.16 at 11:50 am

Re post – bad grammar

#156 DON on 08.11.16 at 11:43 am

#114 jane 24 on 08.11.16 at 2:45 am

How do you have toddlers at 40 years old!! How is it possible to require 3 degrees to find work.

This is a problem with late pregnancies, you have little ones when you should be earning big from the best career years of your life and probably your own older parents starting to kick-up too.

Tell your kids to have their kids in their 20’s, same as you did, and avoid this situation.

I know a lot of later parents right now with job problems, high school kid problems and elderly parental problems all at the same time. They are not enjoying their 50’s

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

Simple the abundance of high paying resource jobs were not around for Gen x and y forcing more to put off their dreams of families and home ownership. I know a bunch of 20 – 30 year olds (who had children at a younger age) struggling with housing costs, and ever rising utility bills etc. University tuition has risen. Hell my niece’s teachers told her not to apply to UBC as they are only accepting lower mainland and foreign students. Context changes.

Who knows…Jessica’s circumstances may change yet again, but at least she has a plan. Sounds like finishing her accounting program is the main plan. My initial thought for her was to apply now for accounting jobs (base on her previous education) as accounting jobs are all around, then again going back to work when her children require day care will be costly and null the incoming wages. Only she knows her situation best.

Jessica: good luck and when you are ready to look for a job I may be able to help with contacts. More and more accounting jobs are able to work from home.

Good luck!

#160 Bytor the Snow Dog on 08.11.16 at 11:53 am

Sounds like the BA in Womyn’s Studies and the Masters in Art History Ain’t cutting it, so on to accounting!

Just sad life choices really.

#161 IHCTD9 on 08.11.16 at 12:00 pm

#120 Noel on 08.10.16 at 12:25 pm

Yeah, but those places are also super boring, with few job prospects and filled with conservative leaning people. Life’s too short to waste in a place you hate, if you can afford to live somewhere better.

__________________________________________

I live rural and it’s a holiday every weekend – you just have to like the outdoors. ATV’ing, horseback riding, camping, fishing, hunting, hiking, and more.

Seriously, I probably make more out here than the same job in the GTA. The GTA offers employment variety and volume these days – not higher wages (probably lower actually). Our family income is low 6 figures, wife has gov’t job c/w pension, we have 100’s of thousands invested, house is paid for, no consumer debt. We live on a sweet 100+ year old 4 acre hobby farm, complete with a nice old barn, a pond, cedar fences, massive Sugar Maples and Norwegian Spruce trees, a pretty decent veggie garden. I’d say that we’re better off than most families busting their asses in the GTA overall.

Honestly, our area is jammed right now with Toronto folks spending their vacation time out here doing what I do every weekend…

#162 Shawn on 08.11.16 at 12:08 pm

TAX THE WEALTHY(ER)!

It is often argued that there are not enough wealthy people to tax and taxing the 1% will do little.

Well then, how about we raise taxes on the wealthier?

Here are two statistics that cannot be argued:

Fully half, yes 50%, of all tax payers earn more than the median taxpayer does.

Fully half of all adults and half of all households have a net worth higher than the median for adults and households respectively.

So, that means there are PLENTY of wealthier people. They might not be rich but they are certainly richer than the bottom half.

In America especially, the spoils of the economy are too unequally distributed even adjusted for how hard each person works, how educated they are, and how worthy they are. This applies to a good degree in Canada as well.

There is room to tax the wealthier.

The wealthier and especially the 1% and even the 33% are benefiting from a dizzying array of tax benefits.

In Canada here are a few:

Pensions contributions deducted from taxable income (the bottom 50% rarely have pensions)

RRSP contributions deducted from taxable income. (The bottom people can’t afford to contribute and many never will be able to)

TFSA for tax free investing

Half the normal tax rate for capital gains in taxable accounts.

Lower sometimes zero tax for dividend income.

RESP bonus of 20% for those that can afford RESP savings.

Tax free growth in RESPs

Company directors and executives can earn totally tax deferred compensation through deferred share units.

Ability of business owners to put family members on the payroll to spread out the income to lower tax brackets even if those family members don’t really do much to earn that income.

I am sure clever tax guys could add 10 more items to the list, but you get the point. The top third or so of income earners and probably the top 80% in terms of net worth are getting many many tax breaks. The bottom people can access these things in theory only.

Say the rich: “The retail workers don’t have pension deductions you say? Well them use (eat) RRSP deductions!”

Tax the wealthier or let the type of populist revolt we are seeing in the U.S. continue. Anyhow just tax the wealthier more because they (we) are getting too many tax breaks and it is the right thing to do.

#163 cramar on 08.11.16 at 12:15 pm

#129 The American on 08.11.16 at 8:55 am

However, I’d need to point out that in your comparison of U.S. cities, the vast, vast majority of Americans don’t want to live in the places you’ve indicated. FL, AZ are both absolute armpits by American standards (not to preclude Alabama and Nebraska). We still cannot figure out why Canadians love those areas so much. They’re simply disgusting, and the weather is WAY too intense and hot and/or muggy.

——————

Canadians do not want to go to AZ or FL in summer, it is a winter thing. You’d have to be a Canadian to understand. Some of us just HATE our l-o-n-g cold winters. AZ & FL are like Paradise for us in winter.

AZ and FL are the only two states I’d love to live in during Winter (outside of Hawaii). I like AZ best, but the only thing AZ doesn’t have is FL beaches. Can’t win.

#164 Shawn on 08.11.16 at 12:30 pm

Feel Better?

Does everyone feel better after today’s round of bashing Jessica and her life choices. Does it feel great to crush her dreams and aspirations?

Hey, we might not be the richest people in our town but we are so much better off (and have made better life choices) than Jessica and that feels great doesn’t it?

People can be so nice at times and so nasty at other times. Anonymity certainly brings out more nastiness.

#165 Nemesis on 08.11.16 at 12:37 pm

#FridayNaughticalMischief…

[ColonialTimes] – Navy commander drunk, groped U.S. sailor, court martial hears

A senior naval officer, second in command of HMCS Calgary, got drunk and groped the buttocks of a U.S. Coast Guard sailor, a court martial in Esquimalt heard Wednesday.

“He was groping on the buttocks for at least a full minute,” said military prosecutor Major Edward Cottrill, making his closing argument…

… Undismayed, Capt. John White – in charge of HMCS Calgary during the night of the allegations – called Yanchus a “wonderful XO [executive officer]” and said “I would sail with him tomorrow.”…

http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/navy-commander-drunk-groped-u-s-sailor-court-martial-hears-1.2320687

[NoteToGT: My alternate leader was, “Yanchus Goes Down During RIMPAC Manoeuvres” or, in the immortal – if apocryphal – words of Sir Winston, First Lord of The Admiralty, “The only traditions of the Royal Navy are rum, sodomy and the lash!”]

#166 Doug T. on 08.11.16 at 12:47 pm

lottery tickets Jessica

#167 TurnerNation on 08.11.16 at 12:56 pm

Nemesis what about a Peg Boy onboard I’ve heard of.

I’ve worked before with two ex military. Both are/were belligerent as all f–k.

I know two kids of military – arse parents – and you may have guessed, they are belligerent as fk.

Would have expected better.

#168 Noel on 08.11.16 at 1:01 pm

#160 IHCTD9

Congrats, sounds like you got a good thing going. Outdoors stuff isn’t for me. Don’t even like going up to a cottage on the weekend, too many bugs.

#169 Lillooet, BC on 08.11.16 at 1:01 pm

#157 Doug in London on 08.11.16 at 11:44 am
@IHCTD9, post #151:
Forget about it you say? What kind of message of hope and inspiration is that? I say learn all you can about investing by reading this blog, and books about financial and investing. A few recommendations are The Wealthy Barber and The Wealthy Barber Returns by David Chilton, Low Risk Investing by Gordon Pape, …
***************

Gordon Pape, the pitchman for CHIP?
Are you serious???

#170 john in kingston on 08.11.16 at 1:03 pm

#163 said
Feel Better?

Does everyone feel better after today’s round of bashing Jessica and her life choices. Does it feel great to crush her dreams and aspirations?

Hey, we might not be the richest people in our town but we are so much better off (and have made better life choices) than Jessica and that feels great doesn’t it?

People can be so nice at times and so nasty at other times. Anonymity certainly brings out more nastiness.

Was thinking the same thing. I love this blog and do find the comment section to be entertaining most days, , even valuable some days.
With that said the people slamming this Woman’s life.
Do you get that you are the greater fools?

Sad really

#171 farsyd on 08.11.16 at 1:11 pm

Best (though lots of other good ones) Garth advice I have read. Good luck Jessica, I will add one piece of advice to Garth. Try to stay physically healthy, you are going to need to be in order to work those extra years.

#172 45north on 08.11.16 at 1:21 pm

ww1: referring to my post Jan 2015: But you did say …

The site is almost entirely maps and pdf reports on soils: none of which meet the standards. So the site will be shut down this year. It represents the entire knowledge of soils in Canada compiled over generations at a cost of $800 million. This is not just waste, this is loss.

… yet about one year later, it all appears to still be there and available?

For the last 10 years or so management has continuously threatened to shut it down but has never followed through. I mean they have to apply the common-look-and-feel standards but they also have to use their common sense. So far common sense has prevailed.

The point is that the web site of the Canadian Soil Information System ( Cansis ) provides a window into the workings of the Federal Government. Management attention is focused on applying standards rather than providing the best information at the lowest cost. As a result, the costs of maintaining a web site are double what they should be and good information is not available. The Cansis web site is available because of the dedicated people that maintain it.

here’s the link to the Cansis web site:
http://sis.agr.gc.ca/cansis/index.html

and here’s a link that is starting point on the Government of Canada standards for web publishing:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_Look_and_Feel

#173 RentYVR on 08.11.16 at 1:29 pm

@ #42 Andrew

Sorry, but you’re wrong. Look at the Series D Growth fund. It’s globally diversified (comprised of 8 ishares equity and bond etfs) and charges an MER of 88bps. My point isn’t that these funds are comparable to ETFs fully in terms of MERs (obviously they’re not), but that they provide other benefits that do matter. Many small investors like me like to dollar cost average purchases by purchasing a small amounts weekly. Buying 8 etfs weekly or even monthly is costly. Further, many ETFs outside of simple TSX/SNP indexers have terrible liquidity and high spreads. As Garth continually points out in his posts, diversification, liquidity and transaction costs are important considerations when investing, so just focusing on MERs can be misleading.

#174 jess on 08.11.16 at 1:51 pm

20 Victoria Real Estate Update on 08.10.16 at 6:54 pm

Rebranding doesn’t seem to change behaviour
Last Updated: Aug 11, 2016 10:01 AM ET

===========================
Long Beach Savings ->ameriquest —->wamu—>citi

“The biggest and worst of the low doc lenders- Long BeachSavings,
https://www.publicintegrity.org/2009/05/06/12991/no-5-subprime-25-long-beach-mortgage-cowashington-mutual

…”eventually gave up its federal deposit insurance and its charter as a savings and loan for the sole purpose of escaping our regulatory jurisdiction.Long Beach converted to a virtually unregulated mortgage bank. It’s controlling owner changed its name to Ameriquest.” (William Black)
https://www.publicintegrity.org/news/Ameriquest-Mortgage

By early 2006, the Mortgage Bankers Association’s own fraud experts, MARI, warned the entire lending industry in writing:
The incidence of inflated income in such loans is 90%
The loans are an open invitation to fraud
The loans deserve the term the industry now uses to describe them: “liar’s” loans
The industry seems to have forgotten that these loans caused hundreds of millions of dollars in losses in the early 1990s [as we were driving them out of the S&L industry]
Even the Bush administration anti-regulators are warning against making the loans

From 2003-2006, liar’s loans increased by over 500 percent. By 2006, liar’s loans represented 40% of all the loans made that year, and half the loans called “subprime” were also liar’s loans. Liar’s loans were the loans that hyper-inflated the real estate bubbles. Far from being a pariah, Washington Mutual (WaMu) and Citigroup eagerly acquired Ameriquest’s endemically fraudulent operations and personnel. The finance industry behaved in the opposite manner of providing “private market discipline.”

http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2016/08/thomas-friedman-time-different-deregulation-makes-banking-safe.html#more-10543
exselor

#175 jess on 08.11.16 at 2:00 pm

lookback

HEARINGS BEFORE THE PERMANENT SUBOOMMITTEE ON INVESTIGNrIONS
OF THE COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS UNITED STATES SENATE
ONE HUNDRED SECOND CONGRESS SECOND SESSION JUNE 18 AND AUGUST 4, 1992

We will hear today important testimony from a member of a powerful Hong Kong-based triad who personifies
the new international criminal. We will also hear from the Financial Crime En-forcement Center about their ongoing Asian organized
crime project. International money laundering is, of course, a key aspect of international organized crime and, in my view, the potential Achilles heel of the new international criminal. I am also very pleased to join Senator Nunn in welcoming representatives from the Toronto Police who will tell us about the Asian organized crime situation in Canada. …”
https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/148449NCJRS.pdf

#176 Context on 08.11.16 at 2:02 pm

There are ways of getting free money and with a story like hers she could easily pull in thousands of dollars on GoFundMe and other sites. I have seen stories not as good as hers getting upwards of $30,000 to move forward in life. Yes, and if she doesn’t have the means or knowledge to do such someone can be appointed to act on her behalf.

#177 IHCTD9 on 08.11.16 at 2:14 pm

#157 Doug in London on 08.11.16 at 11:44 am
@IHCTD9, post #151:
Forget about it you say? What kind of message of hope and inspiration is that?
____________________________________________

It’s one of reality. She’s 40, has two dependents, no job, no real savings, no assets.

I’d be doing her a disservice advising her that her ambitions are even remotely possible. You know it, I know it, we all know it.

Your advise is all good – for a young guy/gal with no dependents. The ship has sailed for Jessica at 40 years old. The hard truth is it is too late for compound interest to help much even if she had a nest egg to start with.

Her #1 priority as Garth said is her kids – that pretty much concludes the discussion on Jessica’s financial future.

If she would like inspiration: Find a union government job in a small town, then find a rich partner to hook up with. That’s pretty much the only viable way, plenty of folks out there co-habitating for financial reasons.

#178 Bottoms_Up on 08.11.16 at 2:21 pm

Garth, that’s great advice for Jessica.

One thing you got wrong (I’m sure someone else pointed it out) is that the cushy DB federal pension is only max 70% (for current employees), and only if you work 35 years.

Not sure how many years Jessica already has in with the BoC, but at 40-something, she’s probably looking at more like a 50% pension (25 years working).

#179 Bottoms_Up on 08.11.16 at 2:27 pm

And Jessica, if you just *have to* buy a stock, there are a couple of metrics to look at.

Look at the cost of the stock relative to how much the company earns. (P/E ratio–lower is better)

Look at if the company is growing earnings…are earnings increasing over quarters and over years?

Look at the debt level of the company, and their cash balance.

If you can find a company that is growing earnings (or might grow earnings in the near future), plus has a reasonable cost relative to earnings, low debt, and cash on hand, it might be a decent buy.

#180 bdwy sktrn on 08.11.16 at 2:36 pm

#169 john in kingston on 08.11.16 at 1:03 pm
#163 said
Feel Better?

Does everyone feel better after today’s round of bashing Jessica and her life choices. Does it feel great to crush her dreams and aspirations?

People can be so nice at times and so nasty at other times. Anonymity certainly brings out more nastiness.

With that said the people slamming this Woman’s life.
Do you get that you are the greater fools?

Sad really

—————————————————
she was mostly, and rightfully, slammed for her ridiculous expectations, not her past.
/
it’s like the newbies in the gym telling all how they plan to compete in next years Mr universe. foolish in the extreme.
/
i haven’t been in a gym in decades, smoke and drink, am slightly overweight in my 40’s, but i plan to start training and be a starting linebacker for the seahawks in the fall as I’m still pretty big and can hit.

-comments fully deserving of ridicule and mocking. the harsher the better to snap her out of her delusions.

#181 Jessica on 08.11.16 at 2:37 pm

Thanks Garth for somewhat answering my inquiry, which to the point was the best resources for a DIY investing education. Thanks to the blog commenters for advice, especially #36, #121, #165 (ha, ha), and all the nice people who offered encouragement!

Don’t want a house by the way—my question was “would you advise renting indefinitely, or in 2018 or 2019 if the housing bubble bursts buying a townhouse ($350,000 range) or a home on land ($450,000)?”

As for all the marriage/men advice, seriously? If a single father came on here asking for the best resources to learn about investing, what advice would you offer him? Would any man want to be fiancialy dependent on a man? This is the 2010s people. Smart married people keep their finances separate anyway. Take that advice from a divorcee who did not if you don’t want to also lose your shirt one day (oh, yeah, divorce can happen to you, too, no matter how you smug you may feel!).

I choose to travel extensively and learn languages in my twenties and defer a PhD to have children in my thirties rather than IVF in my forties (by the way any idiot knows children do not represent financial security, but some of us want them despite the hefty price tag attached). The time off from work was also planned as your children are only babies once. I have always done what I set out to do. I have friends that never left our small town nor their miserable marriages, and they are way better off than me financially, but I pity them. The priceless part of experience and education is that, if you’ve done something once, you can much more easily do it again.

The CSC courses look great, and I love the blog, including Garth’s no-nonsense attitude. Thanks!

#182 Victor V on 08.11.16 at 2:44 pm

The Chase: A couple doubles their original budget to land a house in Forest Hill North

http://torontolife.com/real-estate/houses/the-chase-forest-hill-north/

The couple offered $30,000 over asking on this detached home—just west of the previous candidate—and then upped their offer to $1.16 million when they found out there were several bidders. It still wasn’t enough. After leveraging virtually all of the financing available to them, they offered $1.217 million to seal the deal. Sharifi says he and Khanlarkhani love that the street is “buried in trees; the first time we saw it, we knew it was our dream house.”

#183 Context on 08.11.16 at 2:53 pm

My intention for Jessica was nothing is impossible and she must look towards the future. I spoke of hidden paradises that exist now and they will always be there for her when the time comes. There is a small town filled with artesians and artists who live there which is a major tourist attraction. I looked at the real estate that is an indictor of living costs in general. A 1865 mansion caught my eye with too many rooms; taxes $1,366 a year; public transit; perfect for a B&B or a family of 8; and it was all fully renovated – $75,000 for sale. The pictures looked amazing with those updates.

Now a few miles away is the Municipal building located in a bigger town which administers 11 municipal districts and the website even has an employment button for information. This is not for Jessica now, but the impossible does exist in Canada.

#184 CJBob on 08.11.16 at 2:56 pm

US rates may be going up, CAD rates may be coming down, but the CAD dollar is up to .7711 right now. I don’t understand why.

I just bought some USD on-line at that rate, might turn out to be a very good decision.

#185 Victor V on 08.11.16 at 3:09 pm

As Ottawa doubts effectiveness of Vancouver tax to slow housing market, Trudeau finds himself in a bind

http://business.financialpost.com/personal-finance/mortgages-real-estate/as-ottawa-doubts-effectiveness-of-vancouver-tax-to-slow-housing-market-trudeau-finds-himself-in-a-bind

#186 Rational Optimist on 08.11.16 at 3:23 pm

180 Jessica on 08.11.16 at 2:37 pm

“Smart married people keep their finances separate anyway.”

This is bad advice. If you’re going to live with someone and raise kids with someone, you should not be keeping separate bank accounts. It’s just money, relative to those other things. Marrying someone and keeping your finances separate is getting priorities backwards.

“oh, yeah, divorce can happen to you, too, no matter how you smug you may feel!”

This is pretty good advice, but I bet it will be lost on most married people.

#187 Victoria Real Estate Update on 08.11.16 at 3:33 pm

#141 tudval

You’re completely lost. Vancouver and Toronto have nothing to do with my post. Try reading it again.

House prices in the US are not overvalued compared to rents and incomes, for the most part, according to the Economist.

Canadian homes, on the other hand, are extremely overvalued compared to rents and incomes.

Americans can afford their homes, Canadians cannot.

I gave several examples of houses in various desirable US locations that prove how extremely overvalued houses in Victoria are. Try looking at them. Again, Victoria’s weather is cold and rainy 6 months of the year and Victorians complain about it all the time. I know several people from here who have vacation homes in Florida and Arizona to escape Victoria’s winter weather.

Victoria doesn’t compare to any of the locations that I listed in my post. That thousands of Canadians have bought homes in southern US states proves that these locations are desirable for Canadians as well as Americans.

One of the Victoria condos was listed for almost $400 K. For that amount of money it’s possible to buy 3 detached houses with at least 3 beds, 2 baths, at least 1,800 sq.ft. of above ground living space with a 2 car garage and no older than 10 years.

That Victoria condo costs almost as much as the beautiful San Diego home. That should make anyone think before buying in Victoria or anywhere in Canada.

These examples support the Economist’s analysis that Canada’s housing market is extremely overvalued.

You can’t prove that you’re not a realtor.

In typical realtor fashion you have attempted to stear the conversation in another direction to cause confusion and take away from the original point that was supported by verifiable information.

You failed.

#188 Doug in London on 08.11.16 at 3:38 pm

@Lillooet, BC, post #168:
Of course I’m serious. I don’t know what Gordon Pape is doing now, nor do I care. His book I mentioned above, namely Low Risk Investing, contains a lot of good information. I read it in the early 1990s and the information is just as valuable and applicable now as it was back then.

#189 Context on 08.11.16 at 4:22 pm

#181 Victor V:- Its a nice looking hood but would never have bought it because its a boxed in home with no backup public bus service. They can only travel by car. Rosedale has public bus services that run about the streets taking passengers to the subway station for example. There are streets in the Forest Hill area that run a #14 to the subway station that are limited so one must pick out the home wisely.

#190 Metaxa on 08.11.16 at 4:46 pm

I live rural and it’s a holiday every weekend – you just have to like the outdoors. ATV’ing, horseback riding, camping, fishing, hunting, hiking, and more.

Me too…change a few details and I could have written the entire post.

Except for me its a holiday every day as I wait around for my significantly younger wife to decide to retire too.

So I piddle about going prawning, crabbing, kayaking, diddling in my yard….

Now, Jessica:
I didn’t get smart until I was 40 either, don’t give up despite the gloomers on here. I was lucky in that I’ve never wanted for the money part, its the living a whole life happy part that came late.

So all is not lost, you have an entire life ahead of you. Just don’t make the same choices you did in your twenties…

My main and visible thing was restaurants, diners, cafes. I had one that was written up in Bon Appetite magazine (Expo 87) we coasted on that for years of increased business. Same, same when Burton Cummings bought a place nearby and we became one of his fav spots…that increased business a lot…

Both things just happened but it was me and my team that took full advantage.
So, Jessica, take full advantage. Never say “I can’t do that” Never say “That is too hard”

#191 Revol on 08.11.16 at 6:21 pm

#180 Jessica on 08.11.16 at 2:37 pm

Ahh… Jessica, Jessica.

You still didn’t learn nor listen to Garth’s advice. #121’s advice is horrible. You are much better off with a low-cost index fund (either a mutual fund such as TD e-series or ETFs).

VXC, VAB, VCN. That’s it.

#192 Andrew on 08.11.16 at 6:34 pm

@172 RentYVR

0.88% is still quite high compared to ETF’s. I just quickly did the maths on my ETF portfolio and the average weighted MER for all of them combined is 0.18%. That’s for a globally diversified portfolio with 75% in equities (same as the fund you’re referencing, actually)

If I had $500,000 invested in both our portfolios for 20 years, I’d end up $75,000 better off in my portfolio from the lower MER. So yes, 0.7% difference adds up over the years.

Also, I dollar cost average every month, pay nothing to buy my ETF’s and can sell and withdraw the cash within hours. So, why are you better off with a mutual fund again? I agree with your points about other factors mattering, you just seem to think ETF’s are expensive to manage and tied down in some way. They are not.

Admittedly your mutual fund is a lot cheaper to own than most I’ve seen, but it’s still not as good as ETF’s, not even close.

#193 Big Jack on 08.11.16 at 7:21 pm

DELETED

#194 Tony on 08.12.16 at 4:21 am

Jessica worked at a bank yet doesn’t seem to know any GIC at a bank is not CDIC insured if the term of the GIC is more than 5 years. Good luck to Jessica in the future she’ll need it.

#195 The Vet. on 08.12.16 at 6:57 am

As stated odds are against you, but nothing is impossible. Work hard, spend rarely and only at 2nd hand stores, box grocery stores etc. Cook all your own meals. Make some money PT with a hobby or skill. Buy a cheap house in a nice hood that needs TLC but nothing too major, you and a friend can reno/repair. Kamloops is away from the Valley, good. Read books at library by Garth and Economidies, keep a written budget with every nickel in and out. In the end you will be better than most Canadians.

#196 RentYVR on 08.12.16 at 12:10 pm

@ 191 Andrew

Hmm ok I stand to be corrected on this…can you recommend some good non-TSX/SnP indexers that have good liquidity and tight spreads? Thanks!

#197 TrucMuce on 08.12.16 at 1:01 pm

At University of Toronto, my wife contributes 500$ and the employer adds 1000$. At 65, she will get paid the equivalent of her best 2 years.

That’s over 4000 employees in Toronto who don’t need to save.

Maybe there’s a lot more in that situation and many, life my wife, are ready to buy any house that will loose 20% of its value.

So much demand on the sidelines.

#198 Barb on 08.12.16 at 2:39 pm

My heart breaks for Jessica, but she has two things we older folks have exhausted: hope. and time.

Follow Garth’s advice, ignore the disgusting comments like finding someone with money. Concentrate on your kids. Don’t use credit cards, ever. And never ever buy anything you or the kids don’t need. Focus on necessities, never on “nice to haves”. All your life!

I recall my 90+ mom had never ever in her life bought paper towels! She simply cut up old towels and pillowcases etc, hemmed them and used them for cleaning. When you realize all the things that, for example, vinegar and water can clean, you won’t lack money for the important stuff.

Max your TFSA even if it hurts.

Check around: your local Boys n Girls club may have wonderful free weekly events for kids; they even rent out toys for a small nominal charge (versus buying them).

Stay strong kiddo.

Develop a stronger “gut radar” than the one you used re the kids’ father.

#199 jess on 08.12.16 at 3:57 pm

World’s Largest Banks Endorse Ending Anonymous Shell Companies

August 9, 2016
http://thefactcoalition.org/worlds-largest-banks-endorse-ending-anonymous-shell-companies/

#200 GAV on 08.12.16 at 4:48 pm

The Vet. on 08.12.16 at 6:57 am

“Read books at library by Garth”

I recommend Garth’s “After the Crash – How to Guard Your money in these Turbulent Times”, 2009.

Its a classic.

#201 Jessica on 08.12.16 at 7:15 pm

I’d like to clear something up. A lot of commenters seem to think I asked for financial advice. I did not. I make every single purchase on my credit card and I have zero debt and never have. I know how to save. I know how to live frugal, blah, blah, blah. Come on, guys, really? You think because my body produced two kids and I happen to be a woman that I don’t understand basic finances? I’ve had, and I have a 6-figure salary in my future, and eventually I’ll open my own international tax practice. But kids require huge sacrifices for women in terms of careers in Canada compared to many other industrialized countries who have much better support structures in place.

So, let’s be clear. There is a big difference between financial advice and investment advice. And what did I ask for? The latter.

I came on here because while I have a great overview of how the stock market works and our economy, I don’t know the specifics of personal investing and would like to get up to speed by the time I return, as planned, to work next year and can actually start saving: the ins and outs of choosing a particular institution, pros and cons of moving current RESP, TFSA, opening my own brokerage account, etc. Resources, people. Ideas. What works and what doesn’t. Because as a full-time student and single parent I have precious little time.

BYW, that “single mom” part isn’t for pity (because it’s not pitiful)—it’s to explain why, time-wise, I’d like a cheatsheet to get a foot in the door. (Kids eat up 99% your time.)

@ #193 Tony So you think RBC is going down? I didn’t work at a bank. I worked at the Bank. As in, the one that prints the money.

@ #175 Context GoFundMe? What a brilliant idea (sarcasm). What would I put down—single mom desperately needing to move forward in life? So up to now, I suppose, getting a great education, travelling and living all over the world, learning languages and experiencing so many amazing things before settling down for a good 25 years with kids has all been moving backward right?

@ #159 Bytor the Snow Dog Wow. The disdain evidenced in your “sad life choices” comment is a perfect example of what Hillary has to put up with simply for being a woman who DARES to meddle in politics or, in this case, a blog on RE/investments. People do great things with Women’s Studies and Art History, such as become professors at universities where they get to spend their whole working lives researching and writing on subjects of interest to them. There is a lot to be said for finding joy in work. But last thing I checked, people don’t work at the central Bank unless they’ve studied economics. So you might want to revise the studies you’ve assigned me.

@ everyone who’s shared their investing ideas/advice/experiecnes/books to read, thanks. I’m taking notes!