The fraud

The central bank won’t touch interest rates for a while. That was confirmed Wednesday. Meanwhile one lender has hacked its variable-rate to 0.99% while a major bank has four-year money at a buck forty-nine. Historic. And now we’ve got the vax. So, it’s the end of the beginning, if not the beginning of the end. Whatever. It’s good. Vamos, virus.

Oh, my, but what a legacy the slimy little pathogen is leaving for the property market.

Prices, horniness, FOMO and family debt have all leapt higher. Houses with dirt, front doors, yards and home offices are hot. And WFH – even though temporary – has created a suburban renaissance. Now Zoom Towns surrounding the big city are seeing the biggest hikes in sales and valuations.

The impact on the urban core has been equally remarkable.

Ponder this report on Vancouver condos by local analyst Dane Eitel:

The city of Vancouver condo owners, especially investors have taken it on the chin recently. Vancouver proper condo values were down to $861,000 in October, then news broke the vacancy homes tax will triple to 3% for 2021. Fast forward a couple of weeks and the average sales price has dropped to $765,875. A $96,000 loss, month over month.

From zenith to current prices the city of Vancouver condo values have lost more than $325,000 (-30%). A 10% drop from peaks is considered a correction, a 20% is a recession, and 30% drop has no definition other than, “ouch”.

More ouches in The Big Smoke. Condo listings in Q3 mushroomed 113%, and prices continue to fall. From $1,200 a foot for swishy DT condos, buyers – the few still kicking around – are now paying a grand or less. Last week one realtor held a blind-auction, bring-yer-offer day for a unit she’d priced 25% below market. What happened? One lowball, rejected bid.

As listings pile up, rents fall and the vacancy rate climbs. We all know why. Airbnb is broken. The students and bar maidens moved back to mom’s house. Immigration fell by 70%. White collar WFHers moved out. The landlord/tenant board is dysfunctional and evictions are illegal. It is just a bitter, awful, losing time to be an amateur landlord or a condo specuvestor  especially as thousands of newly-built units come online.

In Toronto, as a result, rents have fallen 17% so far this year and continue to erode. The vacancy rate has tripled in the last 12 months, from 0.8% to 2.4%. Rental condo owners are desperate for new tenants to come along, and willing to throw in months of free rent or other incentives.

Meanwhile an unknown number of condo owners who bought in order to get on the first rung of the property ladder and are ready to move up cannot. They’re trapped. No buyers. Some in negative equity – especially those who, in 2018 and 2019, dove into a hot market because (you know) real estate always goes up!

Summary: whether it’s Van, Victoria, Calgary or Toronto, renters are winning. Condo owners losing.

And what’s the government agenda? More tax, of course.

This week Toronto’s local politicians are expected to approve an empty-house tax, as exists in Vancouver, likely to take effect in 2022 and probably at 1% of the assessed value of a property. That would add $6,500 a year to the $3,000 or so paid in property tax on an average condo – tripling the burden on owners who don’t use them as permanent residences or rentals.

Says the mayor (who used to be a conservative): “We simply can’t afford, from the housing perspective, to have housing accommodation for thousands of people sitting empty.”

But with three times more units on the rental market now that last year, and landlords trolling for tenants while monthly lease costs plunge, condos are empty because of demand, not supply. The bug we know as Covid has done a fine job at making rental accommodation both more plentiful and more affordable. So what are these pols doing?

Desperately trying to squeeze out tax revenue, of course. And they’re doing it in the name of a socially justifiable goal. It’s fraud.

Now, you might not own an investment condo, or be an amateur LL, or have to do business in Toronto a few months a year and need digs there, but this still matters. Taxing people in a heavy fashion, as this levy does, because the state thinks they need to spend more nights in a property they own, or forcing them to rent, is a further erosion of property rights.

But wait. You have none.

In Canada there is no legislated, constitutional or legal right to own property. A Conservative government (Mulroney) once tried to include it in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, but that went down to defeat during the Meech Lake/Charlottetown Accord debacle. (I know. It was my idea at the time.) This means any level of government can take your land, change its usage or zoning, bust up established neighhourhods or pound you silly for not using it enough.

Taxing ‘empty’ units won’t make more of them. Or reduce the cost. Or hurt anybody except owners when apartments are empty from a lack of tenants. It’s a tax grab. Because real estate is the only sitting duck left.

Be wary of what’s coming.

167 comments ↓

#1 Nat on 12.09.20 at 2:43 pm

I agree vacant home tax is kind of dumb (can just raise property taxes to a reasonable level) but the hoarding of empty units in Toronto (I’ve head of entire floors sitting empty) is not acceptable behaviour. Speculation on housing is a result of and failure of government incentives.

#2 Howard on 12.09.20 at 2:44 pm

Of course the empty homes levy is merely a tax grab. I don’t expect it to do much for housing affordability.

But so what? Taxes are going to go up regardless. Cities are desperate for cash. Far better the burden be placed on condo speculators who are liabilities to any city rather than on the wage-earning middle class that keep the place running and are already taxed to death.

If speculators using condos as safety deposit boxes don’t like it, they can sell and move elsewhere to build their ghost home empires.

#3 Dolce Vita on 12.09.20 at 3:06 pm

Yes it’s true what you say Garth [fraud] but really, these are people speculating that got caught with their pants and panties down on a whim “RE always goes up”. And were skating on financial thin ice all the while, self-evident on drop your drawers sales pricing.

They WERE making money on paper, Gov’s wanted a piece of the action…everyone happy until S. L. Pathogen showed up to the party.

S. L. Pathogen is a real party animal. It likes social gatherings, etc.

Doubtful if it will ever be invited to a party again.

And I agree with #2 Howard. Well said. Maybe now communities can repopulate with people that actually live there.

#4 Damifino on 12.09.20 at 3:06 pm

Last week one realtor held a blind-auction, bring-yer-offer day for a unit she’d priced 25% below market. What happened? One lowball, rejected bid.
—————————-

Sounds like 25% below market is still well above market. Strange times are these.

#5 Never Get Ahead of Yourself on 12.09.20 at 3:07 pm

Canada is so overbuilt and overdone when it comes to housing. Forget about buying at overinflated and unrealistic prices and rent your way to riches instead.
Buy again after the market hits bottom sometime in the future. Watch the market prices fall…

#6 Niagara Region on 12.09.20 at 3:09 pm

The Global and Mail featured an interesting article on money laundering through casinos in BC, dirty money that, in part, made its way into Canadian real estate and cryptocurrency:
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/british-columbia/article-bcs-money-laundering-commission-hears-from-those-who-saw-dirty/

#7 604_housing on 12.09.20 at 3:12 pm

Have to eliminate housing as investment and return it back to a savings tool. Make cap gains on sale taxable with relief based on years owned.

#8 Adam Smith on 12.09.20 at 3:14 pm

Garth, any words of wisdom on this?

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/real-estate/vancouver/article-foreign-ownership-registry-a-game-changer-in-bc-say-real-estate/

#9 ElGatoNerodeYVR on 12.09.20 at 3:15 pm

I respectfully disagree with the concept that taxing holding investment properties extra is fraud. They should be taxed ;actually I would support the notion that all properties held for less than 3-5 years should be taxed full income rates on capital gains.
Out there in the real world you will not find any sympathy for people who can afford multiple properties while a solid percent of the population can’t afford it.
Investment property for holding only( non rental or not full time use) or vacation use is either a luxury or investment(sic) and it should be treated as such.
Yes the government needs money but also they found a revenue source that is and will be acceptable to the majority of Canadians living in Canada.
And in the end if it reduced demand for holding properties prices will go down, which will make it more affordable and increase demand in the long run albeit at more reasonable prices; as a bonus more money will flow into investment portfolios.
The whole concept of housing as a money making machine must die else we end up like Honk Kong.
In my humble personal opinion, housing is for living in it and sell if you need to retire or leave to the progenies not to trade like stocks.

#10 Russ on 12.09.20 at 3:16 pm

Late posting from yesterday’s thread:
———————————————-

Stone on 12.09.20 at 1:33 pm

#169 Masks really do make some people more attractive on 12.09.20 at 9:44 am
#47 Stone on 12.08.20 at 5:26 pm
#4 calgary rip off on 12.08.20 at 3:00 pm
I don’t have enough time to eject from the hospital in Calgary where I work yet. 2007-present. Not enough. Don’t qualify.

You’re an ignorant fool going on an off-topic ramble. You’re as dumb as vitamin boy.

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

Hey Stoned,

You may wish to brush up on some more training, self-guided is appropriate.

Check this out from a preeminent and worldly nursing instructor.

last March:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5yVGmfivAk

and a month ago:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxtddpoPMKo

As others comments, somewhat sarcastically, “but there’s no money in it”

Cheers, R

#11 SunShowers on 12.09.20 at 3:23 pm

I have zero sympathy for landlords and specuvestors. In fact, I have negative sympathy for them. Schadenfreude.

Homes are for people to live in, not for slumlords with too much disposable income to use as investment opportunities.

So, Canada has no entrenched protection of property rights? Well, Canada has decided that shelter is a human right, and human rights trump property rights every time.

How is a person who buys a condo to rent it out at market rates, providing accommodation to someone who could not afford to buy the same apartment a ‘slumlord’? Explain yourself. – Garth

#12 Peter McLean on 12.09.20 at 3:23 pm

Oh god damn it, do I ever hate paying taxes. I work and I get taxes on my earnings, then taxed on everything I buy, and then I have to pay tax on the house I live in a d it all just keeps going up. I will vote for whoever politician promises lower taxes. I don’t even care what else is in their platform.

#13 Guelph Guru on 12.09.20 at 3:27 pm

We have voted for big govt to make decisions for us. The State can enforce taxes to ensure it’s well being. It’s just taking care of itself. Why would the state do anything which will reduce it’s power?
The small set of elite people reading this blog are an inconsequential minority.

#14 unbalanced on 12.09.20 at 3:28 pm

I thought JJ harper squashed the Meech Accord.

#15 tkid on 12.09.20 at 3:30 pm

Garth, the take-the-CPP logic from yesterday; can it be applied to a work pension if you aren’t allowed to roll it into a LIRA? Thank you!

#16 Dolce Vita on 12.09.20 at 3:38 pm

RE: Pfizer vaccine to Canada.

Still say Canada got short changed by Pfizer made in the EU by about half quantities and will probably have to pay thru the nose for it. Anyway, if it saves 125,000 lives by sometime end of January, FINE BY ME. Still, to me it’s an EQUITY issue where I suspect Canada got screwed.

Recall: my IMAGINARY Dry Run vaccine distribution homily days ago? Well, guess what?

1. One “dry run” done (dry as in ice, no vaccine) per Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin – no results reported that I could find. Fortin also planning for “multiple worst-case scenarios, such as bad weather, cyber attacks and fires at distribution hubs”. Cdn Military are thorough. They must also think Canada is some Banana, insurretion prone, lawless, Republic (excl. “bad weather”).

2. Retired Gen. Rick Hillier “…many of the residents in long-term care homes will be unable to come out to a vaccination site…vaccinations will go to the people who work there, the personal care workers, the health-care workers, those essential visitors…that in and of itself will change dramatically the risk to the residents in those long-term care homes”.

-good one Rick, vaccinate everyone around and except those that die from the DAMN VIRUS.

[Told you so]

But Canada has had HORSESHOES up its derrière so far with S. L. Pathogen and it will probably workout fine. Fingers crossed.

Luckily our GREAT Cdn Military to the rescue though even I have to admit even they’re a little WONKY (i.e., Banana Republic Canada precautions, Hillier everyone but the ones that need it).

#17 Still employed in AB on 12.09.20 at 3:42 pm

I feel sorry for the landlord with the one other rental on my floor. It appears they are doing a full gut job on it here in Alberta. They tried to rent it (poorly furnished) at 2k, then 1900, then 1700….no joy. Last add said they needed 1700$ to break even after mortgage and condo fee…no mention of property taxes. There’s other unfurnished units in the 14-1500$ range available in my building. They have now ripped out the kitchen cupboards, floors, and bathroom tile at a minimum and are doing a huge reno. They are already 50K under water (paid 340 in ‘16 assessed at 290 pre covid.) Building is well managed having never had a special assessment in 35 years but with a 750$ condo fee I don’t know how on you can make money as a landlord unless you bought it decades ago and are still holding out for the peak in ‘07 to return. Between vacant rentals and vacant listings I think the vacancy rate in my building is ~10%.

#18 Alberta Ed on 12.09.20 at 3:49 pm

All Canadians should have the right to own property. For Canada’s aboriginal citizens, the right to own their homes and property would help to dissolve the racist, antiquated Indian Act.

#19 Axehead on 12.09.20 at 3:50 pm

Sober warning, Garth. Thank You.

Even in the great USA private land can be expropriated for public use, e.g., for bridges and roads and dams, but the owner must be reasonably compensated.

In the end, ownership of anything is only a promise held by the government in power and can be taken away at any time, regardless of what is in the constitution, laws, statues, etc. by war. Research what the communists did in Russia (or any communist coup) or what the Nazi’s did to the Jews, for example.

In the US the enshrined right to own property opens up the legal process. In Canada this is denied owners. – Garth

#20 SunShowers on 12.09.20 at 3:53 pm

“How is a person who buys a condo to rent it out at market rates, providing accommodation to someone who could not afford to buy the same apartment a ‘slumlord’?”

They’re a middleman. A parasite. The reason why a renter couldn’t afford to buy the condo themselves is precisely BECAUSE people are able to buy condos as investment opportunities, driving the price up.

If people could only buy homes they intend to live in, inventory would spike, and prices would decline to the point where renters WOULD be able to afford mortgages. Unless you think the maxim of supply and demand only works in one direction.

I hope you are happy on your planet. – Garth

#21 Shirl Clarts on 12.09.20 at 3:54 pm

There is only one rule to selling real estate – only sell when demand outstrips supply. As long as it’s in decent shape, it’ll sell.

This Zoom Town phenomenon could be a “once in a lifetime” opportunity to sell a once unloved Rural property. But the window is closing.

Hot Realtor Tip: If a rural property is “Gig speed” enabled, it might be the only thing you need to mention in the write up.

#22 ThaTroof on 12.09.20 at 3:55 pm

DELETED

#23 Masks really do make some people more attractive on 12.09.20 at 3:55 pm

Stone on 12.09.20 at 1:33 pm

#169 Masks really do make some people more attractive on 12.09.20 at 9:44 am
#47 Stone on 12.08.20 at 5:26 pm
#4 calgary rip off on 12.08.20 at 3:00 pm
I don’t have enough time to eject from the hospital in Calgary where I work yet. 2007-present. Not enough. Don’t qualify.

You’re an ignorant fool going on an off-topic ramble. You’re as dumb as vitamin boy.

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

Hey Stoned,

You may wish to brush up on some more training, self-guided is appropriate.

Check this out from a preeminent and worldly nursing instructor.

last March:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5yVGmfivAk

and a month ago:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxtddpoPMKo

As others comments, somewhat sarcastically, “but there’s no money in it”

Cheers, R

////////////////

Stone is clearly the woke reincarnation of Sail Away, following his tragic hunting accident where he was shot by his mutinous mutts.

#24 Stealth on 12.09.20 at 3:56 pm

Thank you Garth.
Can you comment on legislative, constitutional or legal rights with respect to owning assets inside a balanced and diversified portfolio?

Would it be different for each asset type or perhaps where the etf or even underlying asset or perhaps which exchange it is traded on.

Basically do you actually “Own” liquid assets or is it more like real estate.

If it is too much perhaps this can be a future blog topic for yourself or one of your colleagues.
Thank you.

#25 IHCTD9 on 12.09.20 at 4:00 pm

It’s fun to watch the big city cage match. Houses too expensive, double land transfer taxes, empty house tax, foreign buyers tax.

Why don’t they just send Trudeau a letter, to introduce a 100K grant for first, second, and third time home buyers, and then enact 45 year amortizations? That’ll fix the market quickly. 5 million dollar crooked high ranches, followed by everyone going broke, and finally RE rioters burning down the city.

After all that, a blackened 416 lot will run 30K.

#26 Stone on 12.09.20 at 4:04 pm

#10 Russ on 12.09.20 at 3:16 pm
Late posting from yesterday’s thread:
———————————————-

Stone on 12.09.20 at 1:33 pm

#169 Masks really do make some people more attractive on 12.09.20 at 9:44 am
#47 Stone on 12.08.20 at 5:26 pm
#4 calgary rip off on 12.08.20 at 3:00 pm
I don’t have enough time to eject from the hospital in Calgary where I work yet. 2007-present. Not enough. Don’t qualify.

You’re an ignorant fool going on an off-topic ramble. You’re as dumb as vitamin boy.

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

Hey Stoned,

You may wish to brush up on some more training, self-guided is appropriate.

Check this out from a preeminent and worldly nursing instructor.

last March:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5yVGmfivAk

and a month ago:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxtddpoPMKo

As others comments, somewhat sarcastically, “but there’s no money in it”

Cheers, R

———

How about this: Eat a balanced diet, exercise a bit, and sleep properly. That’s how humans have done it since the dawn of time.

Is this where your brain explodes?

As for today’s topic, happy to see condo prices dropping. Keep it coming.

#27 Sonny on 12.09.20 at 4:05 pm

#7 604_housing on 12.09.20 at 3:12 pm
Have to eliminate housing as investment and return it back to a savings tool. Make cap gains on sale taxable with relief based on years owned.

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

I completely agree. Since people have turned houses/condos into commodities, lets tax the gains on them accordingly.

#28 Stoph on 12.09.20 at 4:08 pm

A vacancy tax applied to the assessed land value rather than the property value would seem to better target of housing affordability issues. It seems to me that land is the more scarce resource rather than space in the sky though this reasoning may not hold up as well for properties downtown. It’s a rather broad brush to apply the vacancy tax to all residential property types across an entire city equally.

The construction condos employs local trades, so the sale of condos as second residences seems like a win for the local economy to me. Depending on location, there’s still plenty of space in the sky.

#29 MDM on 12.09.20 at 4:11 pm

Joseph de Maistre –>
“nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite” aka
“Every nation gets the government it deserves”..

The Libs were voted and revoted back in so here we are..

#30 Igor on 12.09.20 at 4:15 pm

Garth, so if you have a 2M house and city decides to build a part there, they can just kick you out?

In theory, yes. – Garth

#31 Timmy on 12.09.20 at 4:16 pm

I don’t know where you are getting your numbers from, but you can’t buy a decent two bedroom condo in Vancouver for much less than 800K. Who would pay that for a tiny box in the sky?

#32 The Woosh on 12.09.20 at 4:23 pm

#5 Never Get Ahead of Yourself on 12.09.20 at 3:07 pm
Canada is so overbuilt and overdone when it comes to housing. Forget about buying at overinflated and unrealistic prices and rent your way to riches instead.
Buy again after the market hits bottom sometime in the future. Watch the market prices fall…

—————————————

Such wisdom…please tell me more!

#33 zoey on 12.09.20 at 4:26 pm

Pretty accurate me thinks … RE is a sitting duck. Taxing people more for a condo thats not thier primary res is just the stooopidest thing I have ever heard of. Expect more stooopidity to come. And John Tory ? Oh the guy that shuts down the lakeshore ( a major roadway in/out of the city ) ALL summer to allow cyclist to have more space due to COVID …complete idiot.

#34 Piano_Man87 on 12.09.20 at 4:26 pm

I’d rather have a constitutional right to an Xbox One Series X at release date than have a constitutional right to property.

At least one of them I can afford, and will actually put a smile on my face.

*refreshes nowinstock.net again*

#35 The Woosh on 12.09.20 at 4:29 pm

#30 Igor on 12.09.20 at 4:15 pm
Garth, so if you have a 2M house and city decides to build a part there, they can just kick you out?

In theory, yes. – Garth

————————————————

In reality that would be a big “NO”. You’d need to be compensated if they wanted to expropriate. Take a look at Montreal in terms of their subway line expansion. Property owners who were expropriated were compensated at market rates, not just what the city wanted to pay. The city can’t just “take” it away. Drama, drama.

Of course there is compensation, but no recourse. So property can be taken through edict, not negotiation. – Garth

#36 SoggyShorts on 12.09.20 at 4:30 pm

#20 SunShowers on 12.09.20 at 3:53 pm
Funny, I LOVE landlords and specuvestors.

They’re the whole reason I never have to pay for any repairs or maintenance on the places I live.
Nor do I have a mortgage hanging around my neck, property taxes, special assessments, transfer taxes, real estate agents etc.

Thank you landlords!

#37 Niagara Region on 12.09.20 at 4:38 pm

Re: #19 Axehead and #30 Igor
1) Many American property owners in Texas recently had their property seized by the Trump administration to build Trump’s wall.

2) I agree with the majority today: The rich of the world should not be allowed to buy large numbers of Canadian housing units and leave them empty for speculation when so many Canadians have inadequate housing. A nation has a responsibility to protect those who live within its borders.

#38 yvr_lurker on 12.09.20 at 4:41 pm

A few posts ago, the moderator was saying how pandemics are temporary, the WFH crowd will have to get out of their pyjamas, and the vibrancy of the cities will soon be restored. One could then infer that rather soon on, and when the foreign student return and immigration goes zooming ahead (pardon the pun) as it was pre-Covid, rents will follow pace upwards and the vacancy rate will decrease to the dog-eat-dog levels of before. The property tax on absent owners that they are initiating now in Toronto is to help mitigate that eventuality. It did help with Vancouver pre-covid, and I am all for this tax as well as a tax on foreign ownership.

#39 Ferry Boy on 12.09.20 at 4:46 pm

unintended consequences .. my recollection is that Bob Rae’s Ontario NDP govt in early 90’s implemented rent controls. Years later however, it led to a lack of private investment and a shortage of available units, pushing up rental costs for a lot of new renters.

So when the economy and immigration levels return to normal and the current oversupply gets taken up, wouldn’t some of these same measures now being proposed end us up in the same situation?

#40 Thomas on 12.09.20 at 4:49 pm

Only two things certain in life: death and taxes.

No, real estate is not certain. Neither the balanced portfolio or any financial tool created by the mankind….

#41 Linda on 12.09.20 at 4:53 pm

Whoever made the ‘snow dog’ has artistic flair:)

Regarding the ‘vacant homes’ tax. Yes, this tax will be cheered on by those who do not own property, as those who own are considered ‘rich’ & in the opinion of many, should pay for all. Except those envious non owners will potentially one day buy a property – only to then be considered ‘rich’ in turn & subject to taxation.

But, say those selfsame folks, any property we might purchase will be our principal residence. We will occupy it & therefore not be taxed the way the speculators & landlords are. Dear innocents, I have news for you. Once the tax grab begins it will expand its borders. I expect that one day in future it won’t matter whether the building is occupied – there will be additional taxation above & beyond the ‘property tax’ bill. After all, we pay ‘user fees’ for services ostensibly funded by property taxes now. My utility bill has rate riders, service fees, special additional fees to fund future infrastructure etc. My property taxes supposedly include things like garbage pickup, but my utility bills show additional user fees associated with a service that my property taxes are not apparently sufficient to pay for. Also, if our household should happen to have more garbage than fits within the supplied cart, we must purchase tags for those additional bags. The tax creep never stops!

#42 Pre-locked and loaded on 12.09.20 at 4:59 pm

Wondering how I should spend my “pre-loaded stimulus” (40 years of savings).
Condos are out, SFH’s overpriced, bonds paying nothing and a country that seems to be headed for bankruptcy, thanks to T2 and co.
There seems to be no safe investment vehicle left, just sea to sea risk.
Can’t wait for Chrystia to tell me.

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/ottawa-eyes-pre-loaded-stimulus-in-canadians-savings-accounts-1.1531766

#43 Bartman on 12.09.20 at 5:05 pm

Re 35. The whoosh. No worries, you will be paid in Canadian dollars. God Bless America

#44 Howard on 12.09.20 at 5:07 pm

#31 Timmy on 12.09.20 at 4:16 pm
I don’t know where you are getting your numbers from, but you can’t buy a decent two bedroom condo in Vancouver for much less than 800K. Who would pay that for a tiny box in the sky?

——————————

Might have been the average for all of Greater Vancouver, not just Vancouver proper.

#45 BlogDog123 on 12.09.20 at 5:09 pm

Don’t worry new ‘surcharges’ will appear on your property tax bill or water / gas / telephone / cable bills.

Look at what Mississauga did with their ‘stormwater charge’ added to the water bill (not prop tax bill). About $100 /yr.

So look for the water bill to be where all the new ‘fees’ get added while the mayor/council says property taxes ‘hold the line’.

Coyote / animal control tax
Covid-19 surcharge
Health emergency surcharge
Pennies on your eyes charge
Noisy street racer tax
Dog barking fee
Empty condo balcony fee
Empty condo parking spot fee
Empty condo storage locker fee
School playground upgrade levy
Cat rescue fee
Mayor’s New Years Levee invite charge
Screw You We Want Your Money surcharge

etc… etc…

#46 Squire on 12.09.20 at 5:10 pm

#11 SunShowers on 12.09.20 at 3:23 pm
I have zero sympathy for landlords and specuvestors. In fact, I have negative sympathy for them. Schadenfreude.

Homes are for people to live in, not for slumlords with too much disposable income to use as investment opportunities.

So, Canada has no entrenched protection of property rights? Well, Canada has decided that shelter is a human right, and human rights trump property rights every time.

How is a person who buys a condo to rent it out at market rates, providing accommodation to someone who could not afford to buy the same apartment a ‘slumlord’? Explain yourself. – Garth
========================
I agree Garth. Sunshowers needs a cold shower.

What a silly comment. Just because someone may have a human right to shelter doesn’t mean the rights of property owners has to be trampled on.
Give your head a shake. Just because you may have nothing doesn’t justify your disdain for people that worked hard and own something.
God help us in the socialist bastion we’ve allowed to blossom.

#47 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 5:11 pm

#41 Linda
Also, if our household should happen to have more garbage than fits within the supplied cart, we must purchase tags for those additional bags. The tax creep never stops!
—————-
Poor Linda.
How unfair.
How about producing less garbage.?
Usually, I like your comments but this is just silly.

#48 willworkforpickles on 12.09.20 at 5:14 pm

There are more very serious worries for amateur LL/Condo owners you didn’t list to deal with looming as well.
The more desperate for paying tenants the amateur LL becomes, the more deadbeat renters come out of the woodwork and these condo owners are quite a bit more prone and vulnerable then to end up with.
The debt cliff looms still for vulnerable condo owners who deferred their mortgages with a wave of defaults expected by the end of Jan. 2021 and foreclosures to pile up in the Spring. Talk about price drops already. Just Wait!
The pain is about to snowball with all these factors combined and compounding…an NO…now is not the time to buy. Steep drops further in condo prices will be thing later in 2021.

#49 Howard on 12.09.20 at 5:16 pm

#33 zoey on 12.09.20 at 4:26 pm
Pretty accurate me thinks … RE is a sitting duck. Taxing people more for a condo thats not thier primary res is just the stooopidest thing I have ever heard of. Expect more stooopidity to come. And John Tory ? Oh the guy that shuts down the lakeshore ( a major roadway in/out of the city ) ALL summer to allow cyclist to have more space due to COVID …complete idiot.

————————————

If you think a tax on city-destroying condo specuvestors is stupid, then I’d like to see your definition of a tax that is smart.

Or is your comment sarcasm?

#50 At least out here ... on 12.09.20 at 5:18 pm

in BC … comrade Horgan is offering free cash for all. Just for electing him. Oh I forgot … it was ours already.

#51 Freedom First on 12.09.20 at 5:25 pm

Garth, I love your blog today! It is all about the big 3, Truth, Freedom, and, Helping others. Lines up perfectly with my belief in the bigger Big 3. Thank dog.

Freedom First

#52 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 5:25 pm

#28 Stoph
The construction condos employs local trades, so the sale of condos as second residences seems like a win for the local economy to me. Depending on location, there’s still plenty of space in the sky.
——-
It sounds good on paper, but when you have 40% of GDP being in RE construction and RE tanks there’s gonna be a lot of hurt.
Diversification is the key in every investment.
As for plenty of space.
I just read about an article in Nature, where Isreal scientist are predicting that in the next few years, manmade things will be heavier then all the Biomass on Earth.
I’m going into the Teepee business.
Looking for investors.

#53 3s on 12.09.20 at 5:29 pm

You should be less wary of Central banks and government, they have your back and will always engineer a soft landing. In this case its’s called 30 years of crushing mortgage repayments. Now go do the heavy lifting serf

#54 Brian Ripley on 12.09.20 at 5:39 pm

My TOTAL Sales, TOTAL Listings, Absorption Rates and Months Inventory charts are up for Vancouver Calgary Edmonton Toronto Ottawa Montreal:
http://www.chpc.biz/sales-listings.html

While sales and inventory in Toronto and Vancouver are following their seasonal trips to the bottom of the wave (+/- January) Montreal data is bucking the trend and setting new price highs.

By the way, November data shows Toronto Townhouses hit a new average price high while Toronto average condo prices are down 9.08% since their price peak in FEB 2020, the month before lockdown.

And the Ottawa is really nuts, less than 1 month of inventory for the last 6 months. We have not seen that since 2016-17 in Toronto.

#55 Break back Bill on 12.09.20 at 5:42 pm

“Be wary of what’s coming”

Taxing real estate is one thing.

Cash sitting in the banks accounts is another.
$170 billion and growing is sitting there doing nothing.
With $380+billion in debt this years and more debt as far as the eyes can see , you can bet that our government is eyeing that money.

#56 Never Get Ahead of Yourself on 12.09.20 at 5:42 pm

Been saying it for years – by the time the markets all settle out we are looking at early to mid 1990’s pricing for everything across the country. Certainly prices are being rolled back to levels before 1997

#57 willworkforpickles on 12.09.20 at 5:46 pm

#25 IHCTD9
“Why don’t they just send Trudeau a letter, to introduce a 100K grant for first, second, and third time home buyers, and then enact 45 year amortizations? That’ll fix the market quickly. 5 million dollar crooked high ranches, followed by everyone going broke, and finally RE rioters burning down the city.

After all that, a blackened 416 lot will run 30K.’
……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

…or entire cleared city blocks that eventually become overgrown in high grass with nothing else there but city streets running through them they can’t give away.

#58 Amok on 12.09.20 at 5:51 pm

Expropriation, at times, is totally appropriate:

The Sahotas in Vancouver

#59 Catalyst on 12.09.20 at 5:52 pm

I am pretty entrenched as a conservative. I agree with a foreign/empty house tax. Any tax that isn’t heaped onto us regular joe tax slaves on income tax, cpp, property tax, or HST is fine with me.

Also, I know you are a Ross Kay fan as you quote him often, and he was laughing about this on ross kay radio the other day about all the loop holes in this regulation so at the end of the day it is a do-nothing political move rather than a real tax. It might hurt the people with a DT condo for funsies but literally no one in Canada cares about their problems if they own multiple homes.

You can claim you are ‘renovating it’ and avoid the tax completely. There is an empty house on my street for 10 years and I promise they will dodge this tax somehow.

Finally, a condo at $1k/sqft is still outrageously high. And this doesnt even include the maintenance costs. Wake me up at $400/sqft when property might look interesting again.

As an investor in equities the R/E investors have had it way to good in comparison and I’m more put off about rising capital gains tax than any R/E grab. It’s after tax dollars we invest in companies and I need to pay tax on any potential gains??? This is why everyone shovels all their money into their tax free house because of the rediculous tax code in Canada.

#60 Sara on 12.09.20 at 5:57 pm

#23 Masks Really Do Make Some People More Attractive

“Stone is clearly the woke reincarnation of Sail Away, following his tragic hunting accident where he was shot by his mutinous mutts.”

Must have been because of all dog meat he joyously consumed and bragged about on this blog. Karma is a female dog.

#61 Sara on 12.09.20 at 5:58 pm

*the*

#62 Camille on 12.09.20 at 6:11 pm

It may sound crazy but maybe tax increases are really meant to keep public perception of where we are in sync with the public purse, to prevent derision. We all go to hell together.

Let me explain, today the Canadian central bank is considering micro cuts to the current 25 basis point bank rate, but not into negative territory. And no increases till inflation is 2%, estimated to be sometime in 2023. And its estimated the Bank of Canada will hold nearly 50% of government bonds by the end of 2021.

You’ve got to feel sorry for the poor governor of the Bank of Canada when he tries to keep a straight face. Central bankers need to take their cues from Alan Greenspan who smiled ridiculously when talking, or even Mario Draghi’s tongue in cheek routine pledging to do whatever it takes. They’re all doing it now.

#63 AGuyInVancouver on 12.09.20 at 6:16 pm

A vacant homes tax is a great idea. Doesn’t anyone wonder why the delightful Meng Wanzhou was allowed to buy not one, but two Vancouver mansions while never living here? If our governments are going to be stupid enough to allow sales of scarce housing resources to foreigners, we should at least tax the bejeezus out of them if they leave it empty. But better off to ban foreign buyers outright!

How are multi-million dollar homes in Vancouver’s best hoods ‘scarce resources’? The unbridled envy on this blog is beyond disturbing. – Garth

#64 zoey on 12.09.20 at 6:21 pm

#49 Howard

Just because its not a permanent or primary residence doesn’t mean everyone is a specuvestor … Some have cottages, some have a condo in the city. Empty rentals by investors ok sure tax them. Do you get taxed more for having 2 cars even though you can only drive one at a time ? Please.

#65 Triplenet on 12.09.20 at 6:22 pm

Garth,
The Bundle of Rights Theory and Eminent Domain….. I’d say they’re pretty fair examples of real property rights in Canada.
Common Law….from people with much more experience than us Colonists.
It’s all good…if you understand it.

#66 Brian Ripley on 12.09.20 at 6:24 pm

“Been saying it for years – by the time the markets all settle out we are looking at early to mid 1990’s pricing for everything across the country. Certainly prices are being rolled back to levels before 1997” #56 Never Get Ahead of Yourself on 12.09.20 at 5:42 pm

<1997 Wow!

And I thought I was a fantasist. My Plunge-O-Meter has only 3 suggested targets for a major correction: 2013, 2009 and 2005
http://www.chpc.biz/plunge-o-meter.html

Calgary SF Detached house prices are only 3.6% above 2013 prices.

The rest of the 6 biggest cities in Canada are anywhere from 5% to 45% higher than 2013 prices.

2009 price levels seems very far away especially for Toronto and Vancouver but reasonably close for Calgary and Edmonton.

2005 price levels was before we knew that WTI Oil would hit the 2008 oil peak and we also did not know yet that the 10yr less 2 year bond spread would invert for 3 months in 2007.
http://www.chpc.biz/yield-curve.html

#67 Rainman on 12.09.20 at 6:34 pm

The next cash grab will be a capital gains tax from 50% to 75% on investments. Just saying… you know that.

#68 Garth's Son Drake on 12.09.20 at 6:35 pm

Consumers in Canada just flipped a switch negative.

Right at the same time the Feds just started tightening the handouts. The two are related.

This is dangerous.

#69 The HT on 12.09.20 at 6:37 pm

Bad take, Garth. If there are no charter property rights, then how exactly is it a “fraud”?

Taxing empty condos in a downtown core is perfectly just. It’s not good for society to have thousands of empty units when people can’t afford rents. The argument that someone should be able to buy a condo for use a few weeks per year is valid, but weak. The vast majority of empty condos is not that, but rather way to park money. And further, they still can do it, but pay up… fine by me. Good for society, so good enough for me.

#70 Faron on 12.09.20 at 6:47 pm

w/re the spec/vacant tax and creeping housing tax expansion.

Don’t let something that “might” happen (tax creep) prevent action on something that has been and continues to happen (use of housing units as a means of investment/speculation) and is a strong driver of wealth inequality and even homelessness.

Regarding speculation driven house prices — why on earth should housing prices outpace both wage growth (not hard as no real wage growth has happened in forever) and GDP growth? Why is that kind of wild west market okay when it comes to a fundamental need of all humans? The insane price increases have benefited those lucky enough to have ridden the ramp (boomers, gen X ers) or those (myself included now) who could ride the coattails of a boomer who did so. It has benefited those who hold the power to change the dynamic so of course they will resist it.

The only way the observed divergence could have been possible is if housing was way way undervalued in the past (judging by the ability for average Janes to buy a house in the past, it was correctly valued) or through bubbly price growth through specuvestment in a commodity that has no business being in the realm of speculation and profit. Zero. None. There is NO excuse for individuals buying a second residence to just sit on it and try to reap a profit. Development is another matter.

We have a differential between housing and GDP and wage (descending order) growth rates that has increased for decades leading to where we are now. Where we are now is utter affordability of homes (both ownership and rental) for most in the cities that are the economic engines and seats of opportunity for the nation. Sure, you can move to Calg, but you aren’t going to find a job there, so what’s the point? At long last, policy is stepping in where the free market can not and will not. Best case, the market goes flat until house price/gdp or price/wage returns to something close to normal.

Canada as a whole needs to bite way harder on this problem albeit carefully to avoid financial collapse owing to the outsized portion of the economy sunk into the morass.

No, the taxation will not spread unless it means making housing more affordable (both rent and ownership) by further dinging the top end. last I checked, you can avoid vacancy taxes by renting your space. That’s a good thing. If further vacancy tax increases bring more units to market, maybe the utter insanity of Canadian housing will temper to something affordable.

end garbled rant

#71 Rowdie on 12.09.20 at 6:47 pm

Yes, you are right about the government taking ones land, home and they can bulldoze it down, and build a highway through it. When you own a home or land, rightly you are leasing it from the government. I suppose that is the only revenue they can squeeze out of any home owner is more taxes. Expect more surprises next year…. and beware what is ahead, like you said. Good post!

#72 Rob Beauregard on 12.09.20 at 6:48 pm

“Be wary of what’s coming”

WEF Predictions for 2030.

#1 You’ll own nothing and be happy.

PREVIEW
1:34
8 predictions for the world in 2030
YouTube · Predictions For The Future
Apr 10, 2017

#73 Dominoes Lining Up on 12.09.20 at 6:49 pm

“Be wary of what’s coming.”

This will start at the municipal level. Vacancy taxes just illustrate how few tools cities have. They can’t run deficits. Most are way behind in property tax payments this year, almost over. 2021 will likely be worse. A city like Toronto has actually about the lowest property tax rates in the province, but try telling that to a resident. Politicians feel stuck in this.

They are not allowed, by law, to run deficits. December is budget prep month for most cities. Stay tuned. Expect lots of hands out for provincial and federal money in the next two months. Then will come layoffs of city workers, lots of farewells of older workers and early retirement packages and cutbacks in services.

Unless magic money printing takes over totally. Maybe a $1 trillion federal debt?

#74 Drinking on 12.09.20 at 6:54 pm

In Canada there is no legislated, constitutional or legal right to own property.

Yet people are scrambling for it not realizing what they are possibly losing. This whole system is a whack a mole; sometimes one gets lucky and many others just get whacked!!!

I just do not understand as to why more people just do not educate themselves on their largest debt (mostly) ever; for a home that many cannot keep up with there maintenance or forced out due a street being widening!!

Yeah, I get it; first is either greed or desperation, conflicts at one should do in a relationship; i.e. keep each other party happy; what a farce that is; then drink yourself to sanity just to keep your head above water as long as one can! Works for me sarc!

Seriously, it is really is one great big sham!

Stay safe everyone!

#75 S.Bby on 12.09.20 at 6:56 pm

In BC, no rent increases for current tenants are allowed until July 2021

#76 DON on 12.09.20 at 6:58 pm

So Minks and workers tested positive to the virus in BCs lower mainland (Fraser Valley area) just like in Finland.

Science demands an open mind. The scientific method enforces this mindset to a certain degree.

Interesting report by Josh Gordon regarding house values and incomes in the lower mainland hot spots. He used the data that was collected in BC since 2017/18. In the BC newd yesterday.

#77 steve on 12.09.20 at 6:59 pm

How are multi-million dollar homes in Vancouver’s best hoods ‘scarce resources’? The unbridled envy on this blog is beyond disturbing. – Garth

——————————————————————–

what I find more concerning is what lead to the unbridled envy found by many on this blog (and in life).

simply recognizing the outcome without recognizing the cause is somewhat short sighted.

#78 Ustabe on 12.09.20 at 7:02 pm

I will vote for whoever politician promises lower taxes. I don’t even care what else is in their platform.

This right here is why we get the governments we do.

For such strong, sturdy conservative men and women there sure is a lot of angsty, fearful whinging going on today.

#79 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 7:12 pm

“Says the mayor (who used to be a conservative): “We simply can’t afford, from the housing perspective, to have housing accommodation for thousands of people sitting empty.”

What’s next? An “empty bedroom” tax for all those empty nesters? In theory an empty bedroom spells unutilized housing as well. Well except for the fact it is probably being used as a home office for WFH for now.

And what if you have an empty condo but it is currently being marketed for rent but no renter can be found? Do you still have to pay the tax for lack of a tenant? And with no cash flow, with what money would you do so?

The alien overlords who designed the simulation we live in couldn’t have imagined how far off the original programming it would go, me thinks. Time to reboot it Windows style with a hard power-off.

Let’s look at all the things going on in this crazy simulation at this point:

– covid
– riots
– anti mask / anti vax
– spiraling deficits of exponential magnitude
– near zero interest rates
– stolen or allegedly stolen elections
– discriminatory property taxes based on use
– lineups at Costco
– Christmas cancelled
– school cancelled
– long haired hippies everywhere because the barber is canceled
– dogs and cats living together
– airlines going broke (again)
– Disneyland closed
– McDonald’s importing beef to Canada because they can’t get enough here
– global warming / global cooling / climate change
– huge forest fires
– power outages because it is too windy to run the windmills
– Nancy Pelosi
– identity politics
– UBI
– Tesla fires
– “murder hornets”

And this is but a partial list. 2021 couldn’t come fast enough.

#80 Drinking on 12.09.20 at 7:19 pm

Too bad that good looking snow dog was not a snow pathetic feline so that I could give Felix a hard time! :)

#81 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.09.20 at 7:26 pm

@#75 S BBY
“In BC, no rent increases for current tenants are allowed until July 2021”
++++

Yeah.
Its really pissed off the Toronto based slumlord that bought our building in BC a few years ago.
They sent us a rent increase notice in Sept for Dec 1st and had to rescind it.

They’re total pricks since they took over.
Nonstop renovations as people move out. Construction 7 days a week to gut and refurbish 40 year old suites.
Then they jack the rent 100%.
Im seeing lots of empty, newly reno’s suites in the building.
Underground parking rates have been raised for new tenants 100%….so……its 30% empty and the streets are full.
The crackheads love all the new cars at 3am…..

#82 Outrage on 12.09.20 at 7:33 pm

Does anyone remember when a million dollars would give you $ 50,000 a year on 5 year gic. Now it gives you $20,000 a year. Huge inflation because the governments wanted to have huge deficits every year. How nice of them and now everyone is suffering as debt slaves and burdened with high inflation. The 2009 recession will look like a Sunday school picnic. All government pensions will likely clawed back.

#83 Grumpy Cat on 12.09.20 at 7:41 pm

Good!

#84 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 7:43 pm

If the gubernant wants to expropriate land, they first have to get permission from the Queen.
It all belongs to Her Majesty.

#85 Howard on 12.09.20 at 7:47 pm

#64 zoey on 12.09.20 at 6:21 pm
#49 Howard

Just because its not a permanent or primary residence doesn’t mean everyone is a specuvestor … Some have cottages, some have a condo in the city. Empty rentals by investors ok sure tax them. Do you get taxed more for having 2 cars even though you can only drive one at a time ? Please.

—————————————–

You didn’t answer my question though. I don’t like taxation either but it’s the price we pay for living in the civilized world, even if politicians often misallocate and squander it.

If it’s bad to tax specuvestors who collect scarce housing in crowded cities like kids in the 80s collected baseball cards, then what on earth is an acceptable tax in your view? Higher income taxes on the working middle class? GST on food staples? The government exists to prop up the housing market anyway so they’ll probably make back whatever they lose in taxes. Your example of a cottager with a condo in the city can simply declare the condo as principal residence, I believe.

You know what a good tax regime is? Texas. Ultra-low income taxes (no state income tax at all, in fact) and sky high property taxes. Work is rewarded and speculation is penalized.

LOL @ comparison to cars. When the government and BoC start propping up CAR prices like they do housing, and when people who collect more cars than they need (all 5 or 6 of these rare individuals!) impact the supply of cars to regular citizens, and when all these surplus cars overwhelm city lots and street forcing middle class drivers to park 50km away from their workplace, then an “unused car” tax might be warranted.

#86 wallflower on 12.09.20 at 7:50 pm

Having owned and rented over the years, I am quite comfortable with the term slumlord being used as a reasonable adjective for SFH and condo non-REIT/small-time ‘investors’ … all my experiences indicate that these landlords have zero interest in observing any Ontario landlord laws (try renting from someone based in Hong Kong; just sayin’ … my experience) and nor are they interested in basic things like observing fire safety code (zero smoke alarms in either public staircase or unit areas – finally took this jack— to tenancy commission and ended up getting 40% rent returned for 2 years — all because he refused to put in smoke alarms and doorbells) … rented from a family that has been in the news recently for massive potential fraud whose townhouse was a trainwreck; and recently owned my condo in a building for which 20% of the units were landlord/tenanted and not once did a single tenant get informed about any rules prior to moving in nor post moving in. (So many problems because of this.)
The landlords are not doing their jobs. Slumlord fits.

#87 Linda on 12.09.20 at 7:53 pm

#47 ‘Ponz’ – my post didn’t say we required the purchase of said tags, just used that as an illustrative point that tax creep comes in a variety of forms. The key word which you doubtless missed was ‘if’.

Judge not, lest you yourself be judged.

#88 Russ on 12.09.20 at 7:53 pm

———
How about this: Eat a balanced diet, exercise a bit, and sleep properly. That’s how humans have done it since the dawn of time.

Is this where your brain explodes?

As for today’s topic, happy to see condo prices dropping. Keep it coming.
===============================================

Hey Stoner,

I had not paid attention before but wow, man. You are easily triggered.
How did you come to the conclusion I was bothered? ‘ just lil’ ol’ me attempting to get some truth out there.

Here is a little critical thing quiz for you, in regards to your response:

Is hospital food, care home food and “fast Food” outlets institutional food?
Do you consider institutional food a balanced diet?
Do you know many people with a BMI value over 25?
Do you know if many people are under stress these days?
Do you know if the average human lifetime has increased since the dawn of time?

Do you believe a majority of the Canadian population gets enough sun exposure in the wintertime?

#89 Bob Dog on 12.09.20 at 7:54 pm

Hyper inflated housing and inequality for all.

https://youtu.be/zBkBiv5ZD7s

USA is looking like an option now. Young Canadians have been betrayed by their own corrupt government. They should be looking into a NAFTA visa if they have valuable skills.

I’m still milking EI until it runs out. May as well enjoy some semi retirement while money is still worth something. I’ve heard EI will run till Sept 2021. It’s a monthly golden goose.

#90 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 7:54 pm

“In the US the enshrined right to own property opens up the legal process. In Canada this is denied owners. – Garth”

I might suggest that if property can be taxed you are really just leasing it from the government. Or at least that is one way to look at it.

This is one of the reasons I am so against capital gains taxes on primary residences or indeed any property not used for commercial purposes (like a vacation home or condo in Toronto used for work). Sure, we have sort of accepted as part of the social contract that the government gets a slice of the spoils of all “for profit” businesses and labor. But a cabin on the lake that never gets rented out? You already pay property taxes on that. Why does that incur a capital gain? The rules are completely arbitrary, based on jealousy, and meant to appeal to the voters who don’t have a cabin (yet, or have given up hope).

Follow me along here: If I have a 6000 sqft house that I live in full time that is not subject to capital gains being my primary residence. If I have a 2000 sqft home and a 1200 sqft cabin the 1200 sqft cabin is subject to capital gains even though I never rented it out. How does this make sense? I might not even have a cabin on the property I just parked an RV there and yet it is subject to capital gains?

It is completely arbitrary that if I have 2 acres around my house that does not incur capital gains but if I have just 1/4 acres where I live to work and 1 3/4 acres where I park my RV that does. The tax system makes no sense.

But it has been the case for a long time that the government will impose whatever taxes they can convince the majority of voters won’t apply to them. However we find out that eventually we all pay the same effective tax rate through the miracle of pricing. I suspect you (Garth) are in the top tax bracket by a ways. That is also why your fees are so high. You have to get the money to pay the taxes somewhere.

But I do agree with your overall point that the government is coming for all that you own and all that you earn. How could they not with a $340 billion dollar deficit at just the federal level alone? Unfortunately, the day of reckoning is coming, when everybody will be forced to admit that a house or even an empty condo is not money. It is a bunch of sticks and bricks on a bit of dirt.

#91 Elkhart Lake on 12.09.20 at 7:57 pm

“How is a person who buys a condo to rent it out at market rates, providing accommodation to someone who could not afford to buy the same apartment a ‘slumlord’?”

They’re a middleman. A parasite. The reason why a renter couldn’t afford to buy the condo themselves is precisely BECAUSE people are able to buy condos as investment opportunities, driving the price up.

____________________________________________

With that “logic”, if everyone stops buying Lamborghinis tomorrow, we could all afford one… BECAUSE after all, we all need transportation. But only Lambo per family, please.

Or maybe we should buy Teslas because they don’t have parasitic middlemen selling me their cars!

#92 Jake on 12.09.20 at 8:05 pm

Airbnb IPO tomorrow set at US $68/share. Let’s see if it’s a flop or runs to the heavens like DoorDash did today with an IPO of US $102 and which closed at $189.

#93 Howard on 12.09.20 at 8:06 pm

#46 Squire on 12.09.20 at 5:10 pm

I agree Garth. Sunshowers needs a cold shower.

What a silly comment. Just because someone may have a human right to shelter doesn’t mean the rights of property owners has to be trampled on.
Give your head a shake. Just because you may have nothing doesn’t justify your disdain for people that worked hard and own something.
God help us in the socialist bastion we’ve allowed to blossom.

—————————————

Until people like you start to argue in favour of true capitalism in the housing market – no more CMHC, no more government and BoC asset inflation measures and backstop, no deferrals for deadbeats (forced by the feds onto the banks) in the next downturn, no more preferential tax treatment of housing capital gains – you have little credibility complaining about socialism.

#94 SOMETHINGS UP!! on 12.09.20 at 8:19 pm

VAX IS APPROVED!!!!

Can’t wait to get my shot.

Who’s going 1st???

#95 Spectacle ( front row seats) on 12.09.20 at 8:26 pm

It’s fraud…

But wait. You have none ( property rights or rihht over your body)…

Because real estate is the only sitting duck left…

Be wary of what’s coming….

Got it!

#96 Drinking on 12.09.20 at 8:28 pm

#90 Nonplused

Sometimes we disagree; but your/this post was dead on, thanks!

#97 Soviet Capitalist on 12.09.20 at 8:32 pm

Property rights?

Who needs them?! That’s just one of those barbaric things.
It seems that our society has discovered this new thing called socialism. It’s very cool, the elite at the top controls everything and throws the leftovers to everyone else. One can also rat on anyone who generates envy and that will cause that person to be fleeced by big brother.
How cool is that?

#98 Drill Baby Drill on 12.09.20 at 8:36 pm

I fear Freeland and Trudeau. They are coming after our funds any way they can. They have no choice. We are indebted up to our hair follicles. Please Canadians be aware.

#99 Diamond Dog on 12.09.20 at 8:43 pm

#20 SunShowers on 12.09.20 at 3:53 pm

“They’re a middleman. A parasite. The reason why a renter couldn’t afford to buy the condo themselves is precisely BECAUSE people are able to buy condos as investment opportunities, driving the price up.”

Wouldn’t you agree though, that this tax is coming at a time when both condo prices and occupancy rates have fallen from the effects of Covid19 crushing immigration numbers & student and work visas in Canada?

Speculation is only a part of the equation. A pandemic comes along and chops what would it be, 200,000 or more from coming into Canada this year (there’s a 90,000 drop with work visas alone or so I’ve read, potentially 150,000 less immigrating this year than last, how many international students stayed home, it could be closer to 300,000), how are unexpected occupancy shortfalls like this the fault of builders and owners?

Canada is still in the throws of a pandemic and politicians are trying to cash in on taxing a market distortion created by a crisis. The timing of this tax is markedly inappropriate, potentially egregiously so, regardless of being a reminder that wild speculation should be tempered with unexpected risk.

#100 Drinking on 12.09.20 at 8:49 pm

A bit off topic or maybe not???

I think Rex hit it out of the ballpark once again!

https://nationalpost.com/opinion/rex-murphy-seeing-red-over-that-disgusting-yellow-privilege-document-at-ubc

#101 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.09.20 at 8:51 pm

@#84 Potentate Ponzie

“If the gubernant wants to expropriate land, they first have to get permission from the Queen.
It all belongs to Her Majesty.”
++++

Well I’d rather go “cap in hand” to our figurehead dowager Queen than the ruler of Austria…… Oh….right….there is no ONE ruler…… a coalition of Greens and the Freedom Party….
What one political wag opined as a group of “eco-facists”……. kinda like what Trudeau’s Liberal/NDP coalition is morphing into today…..?

#102 jal on 12.09.20 at 8:52 pm

“In BC, no rent increases for current tenants are allowed until July 2021”

Taxes are due first July. Just in time for a rent raise.

#103 Trudeau’s Magic Money Machine on 12.09.20 at 8:58 pm

Defence of house or real property

41 (1) Every one who is in peaceable possession of a dwelling-house or real property, and every one lawfully assisting him or acting under his authority, is justified in using force to prevent any person from trespassing on the dwelling-house or real property, or to remove a trespasser therefrom, if he uses no more force than is necessary.

Marginal note:Assault by trespasser

(2) A trespasser who resists an attempt by a person who is in peaceable possession of a dwelling-house or real property, or a person lawfully assisting him or acting under his authority to prevent his entry or to remove him, shall be deemed to commit an assault without justification or provocation.

The above is straight for the Criminal Code of Canada.

#104 Stone on 12.09.20 at 8:59 pm

#82 Outrage on 12.09.20 at 7:33 pm
Does anyone remember when a million dollars would give you $ 50,000 a year on 5 year gic. Now it gives you $20,000 a year. Huge inflation because the governments wanted to have huge deficits every year. How nice of them and now everyone is suffering as debt slaves and burdened with high inflation. The 2009 recession will look like a Sunday school picnic. All government pensions will likely clawed back.

———

Does no one actually do a B&D portfolio? 11.02% YTD. Even XBAL can get you more than 9% YTD.

2% return? Can you lend me your money? I’ll pay you 3% and invest it myself to get…11.02% YTD and net 8.02% after I pay you that juicy fully taxable 3%.

Everyone is a debt slave? Not here.

Inflation? You do realize that can be easily mitigated, right? With a B&D portfolio.

Wow! You guys are so pooched with your thinking! Does no one realize all the free advice Garth hands out?

#105 Spectacle on 12.09.20 at 9:05 pm

Amazing how fast it all can turn on us:

Here are just six ghost towns across Canada.
Dorreen, British Columbia. A mining and agricultural community, Dorreen was home to around 300 people at its peak. …
Kitsault, British Columbia. …
Orion, Alberta. …
Millbridge and Millbridge Station, Ontario. …
Val-Jalbert in Quebec. …
Ireland’s Eye, Newfoundland.
http://www.travelalerts.ca › blogs › cs-gho…
Ghost Towns You Might Not Know are a Part of Canada | TravelAlerts

#106 Larry App on 12.09.20 at 9:20 pm

Garth , so prices are falling. What does it mean for detached houses in the ‘burbs?

#107 Doug t on 12.09.20 at 9:21 pm

How come T2, Morneau et all get away with their WE charity dealings and yet the rest of the country is taxed to death while trying to survive a crushed economy/pandemic ? I know I know…stupid question

#108 TurnerNation on 12.09.20 at 9:22 pm

Wait a sec this weblog debunked that so called ‘leaked plan’ for Kanada that called for inter-provincial border closures by January. But with Air Canada’s basically mothballing most of the Least Coast today…that’s a defacto ban.

Remember that you are free to leave at any time! Keep paying your “Sept 11th” security fees – which keep us safe, oh my they hate our freedoms so bad ‘over there’.

Now this: first line the pockets of the billionaire Weston family – owners of Shoppers Drug mart and Loblaws.
(Out West y’all might keep an eye on London Drugs & Mr. Pattison). THEN you may able to fly, after your Sept 11 taxes, Carbon taxes and HST.
(Assuming you are not on a No-fly or No-mask-no-fly list)

You are free to leave at any time. Oh how our elite rulers must be bellowing with laughter. The got us fighting each other in the streets, families broken up, jobless and destitute; snitching on each other. All based on what they pumped us 24/7 on the telescreens.

What comes next? I watched a Vice TV show on the cough syrup addicts in Africa. The young guys said look we have no jobs, 90% unemployment, so we do drugs.
Simple.
You think our elites didn’t know this when they legalized Weed last year? And at least 3 former police chiefs and a former Prime Minister own or sit on board at Weed companies??
….
“Globe says Onex’s WestJet offers predeparture tests
The Globe and Mail reports in its Tuesday edition that WestJet is expanding to Ontario a predeparture testing program for customers flying to Hawaii. The Globe’s Eric Atkins writes that WestJet has been offering private-lab COVID-19 tests to passengers from Alberta and British Columbia flying to Hawaii, which exempts arriving travellers with negative test results from a two-week quarantine. In Ontario, WestJet customers can take COVID-19 tests with LifeLabs at Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacies for $199.
© 2020 Canjex Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.”

#109 Apocalypse2020 on 12.09.20 at 9:25 pm

BREAKING NEWS

Sorry to interrupt, Mr. Turner.

The US is heading into Civil War.

18 states have filed to overturn the election results.
Hunter Biden is now being investigated by the IRS, a move guaranteed to undermine his dad.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/wx8geb/18-red-states-are-demanding-the-supreme-court-declare-trump-winner-of-the-election

https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/09/politics/hunter-biden-tax-investigtation/index.html

Expect the convenient distraction of war to be added to this mix in the days ahead.

PREPARE

#110 Flop... on 12.09.20 at 9:29 pm

Just watching John Kasich on CNN.

Did you see what he had to say Garth?

The man can’t believe what the Republican Party is doing.

It reminded me of an old exchange in March 2016 I had with my blog buddy Boom…

M46BC

#165 For those about to flop… on 03.31.16 at 11:18 am
#148 BOOM! on 03.31.16 at 9:32 am
#122 Flopper…

Mornin’ Boom, speaking of civility, CNN actually paid you guys a compliment about how well mannered and behaved you guys have been so far.

My wife had it on and I really wasn’t paying attention to it until I heard the magic word “Wisconsin”.

It’s funny how an online friendship can get you interested in a topic that you might not normally be interested in.

It’s a pity that John ( the normal one) Kasich is so far behind as Donny ( foot in mouth disease) Rump and Ted ( fake it til you make it ) Cruz aren’t really Casa Blanca material in my eyes anyway.

M41BC
—————————————

#173 BOOM! on 03.31.16 at 12:13 pm
#165 Flopper…

John Kasich is the only rational Republican in the running, in my humble opinion. I don’t think he will do very well in WI, simply because your governor here Scott Walker is of the same party, but more rabid! A lot of people here wish nothing more to do with Walker, or anybody remotely associated. So, Katich loses votes by association. Too bad, but that is the way I see it falling.

Bernie will get my vote in the primary, just support. He doesn’t have a snowballs chance in Hawaii of winning the nod. Hillary, not for me, thanks. Donald T. Rump, pass there, too… No Cruz control, either…

Republicans either go with a brokered convention, or they can go home. They want to play this game in the worst way, and that is EXACTLY what they’re doing!!

Somehow, we will pass this electoral this bowel obstruction…

#111 Matsebula on 12.09.20 at 9:31 pm

It would be helpful if Canada would deal with money laundering. That would probably seriously change the game in many parts of the market. Serious issue in BC, and probably elsewhere in Canada too if it is that easy to pull off.

#112 Flop... on 12.09.20 at 9:37 pm

Just watching John Kasich on CNN.

The man can’t believe what the Republican Party is doing.

It reminded me of an old exchange in 2016 I had with my blog buddy Boom…

M46BC

#165 For those about to flop… on 03.31.16 at 11:18 am
#148 BOOM! on 03.31.16 at 9:32 am
#122 Flopper…

Mornin’ Boom, speaking of civility, CNN actually paid you guys a compliment about how well mannered and behaved you guys have been so far.

My wife had it on and I really wasn’t paying attention to it until I heard the magic word “Wisconsin”.

It’s funny how an online friendship can get you interested in a topic that you might not normally be interested in.

It’s a pity that John ( the normal one) Kasich is so far behind as Donny ( foot in mouth disease) Rump and Ted ( fake it til you make it ) Cruz aren’t really Casa Blanca material in my eyes anyway.

M41BC
—————————————

#173 BOOM! on 03.31.16 at 12:13 pm
#165 Flopper…

John Kasich is the only rational Republican in the running, in my humble opinion. I don’t think he will do very well in WI, simply because your governor here Scott Walker is of the same party, but more rabid! A lot of people here wish nothing more to do with Walker, or anybody remotely associated. So, Katich loses votes by association. Too bad, but that is the way I see it falling.

Bernie will get my vote in the primary, just support. He doesn’t have a snowballs chance in Hawaii of winning the nod. Hillary, not for me, thanks. Donald T. Rump, pass there, too… No Cruz control, either…

Republicans either go with a brokered convention, or they can go home. They want to play this game in the worst way, and that is EXACTLY what they’re doing!!

Somehow, we will pass this electoral this bowel obstruction…

#113 X on 12.09.20 at 9:37 pm

The part of Toronto I watch, most places that have changed hands since 2016 are still having difficulty trying to resell and not lose money. RE fees, and land transfer taxes (city and Provincial) mean you basically need to make 10% just to break even. And if you happened to buy high, just because you were told houses go up forever, it can be a tough to learn that the newspaper headlines about RE can be misleading.

#114 Kool Aid on 12.09.20 at 9:45 pm

“It’s a tax grab. Because real estate is the only sitting duck left.”

Not looking forward to the 21 spring budget, principal residence tax, increased capital gains tax, possible increased estate/probate and a raise on the HST, how about that for a kick in the teeth.

Time to sell it all and move to the Turks and Caicos

#115 DON on 12.09.20 at 9:48 pm

#35 The Woosh on 12.09.20 at 4:29 pm
#30 Igor on 12.09.20 at 4:15 pm
Garth, so if you have a 2M house and city decides to build a part there, they can just kick you out?

In theory, yes. – Garth

————————————————

In reality that would be a big “NO”. You’d need to be compensated if they wanted to expropriate. Take a look at Montreal in terms of their subway line expansion. Property owners who were expropriated were compensated at market rates, not just what the city wanted to pay. The city can’t just “take” it away. Drama, drama.

Of course there is compensation, but no recourse. So property can be taken through edict, not negotiation. – Garth

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

You could use some wisdom…or perhaps a google search…or how about not to jump the gun on a answer when you haven’t checked first…like Never get ahead of yourself suggested. FFS!

#116 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 9:53 pm

#90 nonplussed
But I do agree with your overall point that the government is coming for all that you own and all that you earn. How could they not with a $340 billion dollar deficit at just the federal level alone? Unfortunately, the day of reckoning is coming, when everybody will be forced to admit that a house or even an empty condo is not money. It is a bunch of sticks and bricks on a bit of dirt.
—————-
Correct, but that bit of dirt is worth a king’s ransom.

#117 45north on 12.09.20 at 10:00 pm

Howard Of course the empty homes levy is merely a tax grab. I don’t expect it to do much for housing affordability.
But so what?

It adds cost with no value. Suppose, I owned a truck but under-used it. The government doesn’t impose an extra tax because I under-use it. I still pay for it, its maintenance, storage, license and insurance. Presumably, I use it to the degree I choose. It would be bizarre for the government to say “you’re not using your truck enough”. There would be the obvious cost of policing. “How much are you using your truck?” “What are you using it for?” “How big is your truck?” “How much are you spending on maintenance?”

Yet those questions apply to housing. “how much are you using your house?” “What are you using it for?” “how big is your house?” “what kind of maintenance are you doing on your house?” Those questions are answered within the context of government. Union workers. Bureaucracy. Cost with no value.

#118 DON on 12.09.20 at 10:03 pm

@the woosh

Apologies for the tone.

#119 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 10:03 pm

#109 Apocalypse2020 on 12.09.20 at 9:25 pm
BREAKING NEWS

Sorry to interrupt, Mr. Turner.

The US is heading into Civil War.

18 states have filed to overturn the election results.
Hunter Biden is now being investigated by the IRS, a move guaranteed to undermine his dad.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/wx8geb/18-red-states-are-demanding-the-supreme-court-declare-trump-winner-of-the-election

https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/09/politics/hunter-biden-tax-investigtation/index.html
—————
This time, you actually may not be that far off.

#120 Capt. Serious on 12.09.20 at 10:11 pm

#92 Jake on 12.09.20 at 8:05 pm
Airbnb IPO tomorrow set at US $68/share. Let’s see if it’s a flop or runs to the heavens like DoorDash did today with an IPO of US $102 and which closed at $189.

AirBNB is going to pop for sure. There are too many people familiar with the name to not want a piece of it.
Honestly the environment is very reminiscent of late ’90s with every idea getting an IPO. There will be some winners, but a lot of duds.

#121 TurnerNation on 12.09.20 at 10:22 pm

And there’s no more news…only the ‘Predictive Programming’.
Read it now, believe it later.

How’d they pay for it? Maybe float a new e-currency on the side, like CUBA (the ‘T’ JR and SR’s favourite
dictator, has a Peso and a Convertable Peso?
…..

“STAR EXCLUSIVE
Basic income hailed as key in kickstarting the economy in a post-pandemic Canada
Brendan Kennedy
By Brendan KennedySocial Justice Reporter
Wed., Dec. 9, 2020

A universal basic income would not only lift more than 3.2 million Canadians out of poverty, it would also create hundreds of thousands of new jobs, grow the economy by tens of billions of dollars and eventually pay for itself with increased tax revenues.
That’s according to a new report by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis (CANCEA), which was commissioned by basic income advocacy group UBI Works to look at the potential economic impacts of Canada implementing two different kinds of basic income program”

#122 High fives on 12.09.20 at 10:24 pm

Garth. Your probably the most liberal conservative I have ever heard of.
What’s up ?

#123 DON on 12.09.20 at 10:28 pm

@nonplused – Part of the issue is vacant properties not under utilized ones.

#124 Barb on 12.09.20 at 10:28 pm

#90
“That is also why your fees are so high.”

——————————-
Nonsense! Many others are higher.

#125 DON on 12.09.20 at 10:41 pm

@turnernation

Pattison…also owns fishing, grocery stotes, radio stations, sign companies etc…His accountant was my neighbor for a couple of years.

#126 Robert Ash on 12.09.20 at 10:41 pm

Some folks on this Blog, are forgetting, that many, many reasonable, regular people, waded into novice LL land, since they no longer got any return on Safe deposits, Bank, Insurance, Annuities, etc….like now almost zero or negligible interest, for the last decade. It is easy to sit in the judgement chair, but some people, just hoped a bricks, and mortar type asset, in ZIRP Land, was a better bet than Financial assets, especially after the GFR of 2008. Sadly this has the potential to really hit hard, and cause a lot of hardship. This situation, in my opinion, has been exacerbated, by poor Policy at all Government levels. It strikes, me, as kind of unreasonable, to not try to understand other peoples, rationale, in making their personal financial decisions.

#127 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 10:55 pm

#96 Drinking on 12.09.20 at 8:28 pm
#90 Nonplused

Sometimes we disagree; but your/this post was dead on, thanks!

—————————–

If we never disagree, it means one of us is not doing their own thinking. Respectful disagreement is the fuel that fires the development of thought and knowledge. “Woke” “cancel culture” is the water (or maybe pee) that snuffs the fire out.

#128 twofatcats on 12.09.20 at 11:01 pm

#86 wallflower

Having owned and rented over the years, I am quite comfortable with the term slumlord being used as a reasonable adjective for SFH and condo non-REIT/small-time ‘investors’ … all my experiences indicate that these landlords have zero interest in observing any Ontario landlord laws (try renting from someone based in Hong Kong; just sayin’ … my experience) and nor are they interested in basic things like observing fire safety code (zero smoke alarms in either public staircase or unit areas –

*****************************************
https://www.niagarathisweek.com/news-story/8749736-owner-of-port-colborne-property-destroyed-in-deadly-fire-fined/

#129 Reality is stark on 12.09.20 at 11:03 pm

Ah yes, the Taxman.
Ask not for whom he tolls, he tolls for thee.
He’ll get his pound of flesh.
A socialist doesn’t become a capitalist until he’s spent everyone else’s money.
They don’t marry you because they want to pay half of all the bills.
It has nothing to do with fairness or justice. They just want to be mediocre at your expense. Thank God for immigration because the current lot isn’t worth a damn.

#130 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 11:10 pm

Replying to myself at #90 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 7:54 pm as a PS,

So let’s say, like Garth, I live in NewfoundlandBrunswickLabrador, but I have a condo in Toronto for work purposes because I have to be in the big smoke a lot. But what if I rent said condo???? Does the landlord still have to pay the empty property tax? How does that work? The condo is rented out but empty more than 50% of the time.

The simulation has gone awire.

#131 NoName on 12.09.20 at 11:46 pm

@ russkie on 90-ie something

I fix it for you.
Copy an paste in gargle translate, chose russkie and and click on a speaker.

you are welcome

Property rights?

Who needs zdem?! Arghh ! Zdat’s just one of zose barbaric ztings.
It seems zat our society has diskovered zis new zing kalled socialism. It’s very kool, elite at top kontrols everything and throws leftovers to everyone else. One kan also rat on anyone who generates envy and zdat vill kause zdat person to be fleeced by big brother.
How kool is zdat?

#132 mid on 12.09.20 at 11:55 pm

Thanks for bringing up this topic again, Garth. It speaks to a much larger issue. You might want to check out the excellent documentary Push (about the global housing crisis). Would like to hear your thoughts on it. I found it very scary.

https://www.tvo.org/video/documentaries/push-feature-version

There is an interesting segment in the documentary about the number of vacant homes in London UK. (about 15 mins in) Shows each home on a map with a red dot. The map looks like London has a bad case of the measles. It also talks about how whole areas of vacant housing, owned by the unknown, become dead spots and destroy local communities.

The film also investigates private equity firms and their role in pushing up the price of housing. This is important because it proves that there are other factors at play for us. Real estate may not be as local as we think. And not always owned by individuals, but ownership by corporations. There are global players out there with deep pockets who are creating financial instruments out of housing soley for their own profit.

One asset firm is Blackstone, a company that buys up low-incoming housing on a global scale and turns that affordable housing into higher-end units, in order to increase value for their investors. In Toronto they have partnered with a company Starlight who are buying up large apartment blocks, renovicting tenants, and raising rents enormously. I looked up Starlight and was shock to see how pervasive and predatory they are across Canada. So much for renting!

https://www.starlightinvest.com/investment-strategies/developments/portfolio

Lots to think about in this film.

#133 Stan Brooks on 12.10.20 at 12:52 am

Selling houses at record prices, with no other supported economic activities is what was left from the once vibrant economy.

It was largely due to policies that incentivized it – monetary, lending, government policies in supporting the giant gas bag in housing that is now deflating.

It would have been exploded long time ago if not for destruction of the currency in order to support it for as long as we can in order to maintain the myth of ‘wealth’.

All the money went into the easy, leveraged housing ‘investment’ instead of productive, competitive businesses.

Now we reap what we saw. Crap.

Good luck in trying to find someone to pay for that and to keep carrying the whole cohort of parasites on their shoulders – the taxpayers. They are done.

Houses at 1.5-2 millions, kids with no jobs, retirement -mission impossible in the biggest economic contraction of our lifetime.

No wonder T2 backed up from the UBI. One time concession that would have been impossible to reverse.

Instead they will keep ‘giving’ tentatively while stealing from the responsible few and taxing the heck out of everyone in their futile attempts to further squeeze water out from a stone and take the shoes out from the bare-naked.

Cheers,

#134 SWL on 12.10.20 at 1:07 am

This means any level of government can take your land, change its usage or zoning, bust up established neighhourhods or pound you silly for not using it enough.

Be wary of what’s coming is right

Tidbits about the great reset being dropped the world over doesn’t sound all that far fetched now does it?

‘Own nothing and be happy’

Now I know they are serious about the start of the sentence, not so much the latter part

The current governemnt of Canada has given us citizens absolutely no reason to trust them and we should absolutely be questioning everything. Especially what is going on behind closed doors

Go ahead and prove me wrong. Anyone. Now that would be refreshing

#135 islander on 12.10.20 at 1:23 am

Bring it on!

“the Land Owner Transparency Registry, which came into effect on Nov. 30,(in BC) is the first in the world to require ownership disclosure of land that is owned by corporations, partners and trustees – also known as beneficial ownership”

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/real-estate/vancouver/article-foreign-ownership-registry-a-game-changer-in-bc-say-real-estate/

I’m tired of being priced out of my city and province and so are my family and friends.
Forget owning – I’m talking renting!
The NDP gets my vote. At least they are trying to slow down Vancouver/ Victoria’s insane property appreciation by taking action. Enough already.

#136 Wrk.dover on 12.10.20 at 1:58 am

*****NEWS FLASH*****

HALF OF US POPULATION HAS COGNATIVE ABILITY COMPROMISED BY MAD COW DISEASE CAUSED BRAIN ROT!!!!!

(deplorables do eat beef, right?)

#137 calgaryPhantom on 12.10.20 at 3:48 am

Biden is going to crackdown on illicit finance everywhere in world and make it tough for corrupt politicians in developing countries to launder money.

If foreign money laundering has had an impact on Vancouver and Toronto prices, then next few years might bring more surprised to the market.

#138 jane24 on 12.10.20 at 4:46 am

So Garth I see you are still flogging the idea that WFH is temporary. Of my 4 British adult kids doing WFH in their own homes I might add, the score is as follows as of today: 2 have been told that they will still be WFH for the foreseeable future and one of these employers is dumping 2 of 4 large office buildings, while the other two have been told that the final decision is still to be made but it looks like WFH for most of 2021 with part-time commuting after that for the foreseeable future.

Our children are in insurance, aerospace, marketing and an architect.

I don’t see that Canada will be any different. In fact with your climate there are even more reasons for a permanent move to WFH for many.

#139 BillyBob on 12.10.20 at 5:05 am

#182 Goober on 12.09.20 at 12:32 pm
Hey BillyBob,
Looks like no vaccine for you and your fellow pilots for now – even if you want it: https://www.avweb.com/aviation-news/faa-reviewing-whether-pilots-can-take-covid-vaccine/

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

I am not a pilot, I am a former pilot.

I now prefer the title of “Chief Home Improvement Officer, Slavic Goddess Worshipper, Imbiber of Czech Pilsners and Reader of WWII War History” as this more accurately reflects my chief pastimes at present.

Although, I try to perform them individually as things get out of hand otherwise.

Does the FAA have even a shred of credibility left?

#140 Janice Poole on 12.10.20 at 6:21 am

Thanks for the vaccine optimism. However, Canada has no supply other than the 249 K doses it received quite unusually from Belgium.

I said last week I had word that a case of vaccine had ” fallen off the back of a truck” , ( not literally of course) due to a flurry of desperate Trudeau propaganda spinners attached to a certain American PR agency begging for an out for Trudeaus horrible foot in mouth week prior and the news that Trudeaus deal with China fell apart. I got deleted for my trouble.

But, before you issue any guarantee that Canadians will be vaccinated try to confirm with any agency that will actually be confirmed, it isn’t and can’t be. The 249 K doses were a hail mary hope against hope by Trudeaus American K Street publicists, not an indication of any further shipments. Sorry to be such a downer- fact freak. You might ask yourself how I got the story a full week before the Ottawa release before you accuse me again.

#141 Steven Rowlandson on 12.10.20 at 7:46 am

“In Canada there is no legislated, constitutional or legal right to own property. ”

Proof that Canada is a communist country and secondly you should never pay anything for what you cannot own.

Thanks Garth for clarifying property rights in Canada.
Let the price repudiations begin!

#142 Tua the Redeemer on 12.10.20 at 8:16 am

#12 Peter McLean on 12.09.20 at 3:23 pm
Oh god damn it, do I ever hate paying taxes. I work and I get taxes on my earnings, then taxed on everything I buy, and then I have to pay tax on the house I live in a d it all just keeps going up. I will vote for whoever politician promises lower taxes. I don’t even care what else is in their platform.
—————————————————————

And then you’ll piss and moan about all the homeless people, and the wait times for hospitals and all the other service cuts that will come along with the lower taxes.

If you can’t afford the taxes, move.

The city should get rid of the LTT, and hike property taxes 20%. There’s no reason for people who are buying a home to get tagged with such a ridiculous tax that goes towards general operation of the city.

If everybody gets the benefits, everybody should pay for it. If that chases some folks out of the city, ok. they can’t afford to live here.

#143 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 8:18 am

@#138 Jane24
“Of my 4 British adult kids doing WFH in their own homes ”

+++++

Not to worry Jane.
That Brexit thingy will see half of them on the dole in a year or less.

#144 Justin S on 12.10.20 at 9:01 am

A few interesting developments in Toronto in the past day:

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-amazon-inks-deals-for-toronto-office-space-after-rival-shopifys/

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-dream-betting-on-toronto-with-biggest-development-proposal-since-covid/

Those Toronto condos will start filling up soon enough. As Garth has been saying all along, the downtown core isn’t going anywhere.

#145 Howard on 12.10.20 at 9:14 am

#144 Justin S on 12.10.20 at 9:01 am
A few interesting developments in Toronto in the past day:

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-amazon-inks-deals-for-toronto-office-space-after-rival-shopifys/

————————————

Wow a whole 500 jobs! And possibly not even NEW jobs, might simply be reassignments from current Amazon offices which will close. Not projected until 2022 either.

All signs point to minimum 8 months of pain remaining for condo specuvestors before rents possibly bottom around -30% from peak by next summer. That’s a best case scenario.

#146 Dharma Bum on 12.10.20 at 9:16 am

#139 Billy Bob

I am not a pilot, I am a former pilot.
——————————————————————–

Billy Bob got out while the gittin’ was still good.

Pilots used to have it pretty good. They were even well respected by the public for their skill and training. One could be proud to be a pilot.

Today, they’re treated like Ralph Kramden. Underpaid and under respected.

I’m happy to hear that Billy Bob is now leading the Dharma Bum life. Enjoy!

Timing is everything.

#147 Howard on 12.10.20 at 9:21 am

#117 45north on 12.09.20 at 10:00 pm

Well I guess that just means the city should set the vacancy tax at 3-4% minimum rather than a measly 1% in order to extract maximum value from the ghost home empires for the same amount of administrative work.

Most rented condos in a city like Toronto are owned by individual investors, who are small-scale (one or two-unit) investors, may of them now unable to find renters. How is this a ‘ghost home empire’? Why, when they allow people to live in accommodations that most tenants could not afford to buy, should they be punished? How does that help anyone? – Garth

#148 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 9:31 am

China ratchets up the harassment of Taiwan…. preclude to an all out invasion?

https://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCAKBN28K1GS

#149 Janice Poole on 12.10.20 at 9:33 am

DELETED

#150 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 9:37 am

Wow .

The Trudeau govt objected to the Canadian Military refusing to allow Chinese Communist Military to train with Canadians at CFB Petawawa AFTER the two Michaels were jailed in China?

https://www.theweek.in/news/world/2020/12/10/canadian-military-move-to-cancel-exercises-with-china-upset-trudeau-reports.html

Has Trudeau completely lost his mind?

#151 BillyBob on 12.10.20 at 9:41 am

#143 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 8:18 am
@#138 Jane24
“Of my 4 British adult kids doing WFH in their own homes ”

+++++

Not to worry Jane.
That Brexit thingy will see half of them on the dole in a year or less.

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

Now now CEF. Boris promised a Brexit Bonanza, I’m sure it will be all rainbows and ponies when they crash out, Leavers braying “victory” all the way through their worst recession of 300 years.

Despite successfully exfiltrating I still have my UK sim card, so I get texts from the NHS. This is the sequence I had recently, verbatim:

25 Nov 20-

Dear Xxxxx Xxxxx. You are entitled to get the flu jab as part the the NHS strategy (sic). Flu vaccination is extremely important. Please call reception on 0203xxx xxxx to book an appt. If you do not wish to have the flu jab text back DECLINE. Xxxxxx Xxxxx Medical Centre

30 Nov 20-

Dear Patient. We recently sent out an invitation to our patients requesting they contact us to book for their flu jab. Please ignore as unfortunately this went to the wrong cohort of patients. We apologise for any inconvenience caused

08 Dec 20-

Dear Xxxx Xxxxxx. Last week you should have received a message inviting you for a flu jab then a follow up cancellation text. We apologise for the confusion, some of our patients were wrongly communicated with.
You have however been identified as being eligible for this years flu jab. We are hosting a clinic this coming Saturday morning. If you would like the flu jab please call the surgery to book an appointment. If you should not have received this text please ignore. http://www.mygp.io/mqi

(flu jab: Britspeak for flu shot
surgery: GP’s office)

—————————-

Monty Python sketch, anyone?

If this is how organized their regular flu vax program is, Dog help them with the Covid-19 vaccination rollout.

They’re kind of like Canadians, irrationally proud of their national healthcare system.

I can practically hear the whataboutists already “But hey at least we’re not the US”.

#152 BillyBob on 12.10.20 at 9:48 am

#130 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 11:10 pm
Replying to myself at #90 Nonplused on 12.09.20 at 7:54 pm as a PS,

So let’s say, like Garth, I live in NewfoundlandBrunswickLabrador, but I have a condo in Toronto for work purposes because I have to be in the big smoke a lot.

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

Your scenario is a non sequitur, there won’t be any flights between the East Coast and Toronto.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/air-canada-saint-john-sydney-airport-atlantic-fredericton-halifax-1.5832712

WestJet has already made massive cuts.

“Bubble Purity” has it’s price.

Correct. There are 17,000 active cases in Ontario and 71 in NS. Ontario has nine times the population. Do the math. – Garth

#153 Dups on 12.10.20 at 10:16 am

Canadians are pathetic, they only talk about real estate! You don’t believe me, go for a walk at your park, have a coffee at your local coffee shop, go to a mall and listen around you! We are a pathetic society!!! Nowhere in the world, and I have lived in Europe, US, UAE, no one talks about RE as people do here. What is wrong with us? Is this all we have in our lives? It is so sad to only think of RE….

#154 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 10:20 am

@#151 Billybob

Hahaha.
I’m sure Jane24 has her EU passport and Canuck Passport up to date with US currency stuffed in the money belt.

Yep.
Never underestimate the jingoistic bleating from govt bureaucrats touting their own brilliance.
Britain heading towards the Brexit cliff Jan1st with nothing negotiated, tariffs, customs, fishing rights all hanging…. both sides of negotiators finger pointing blame……as their finances require billions more Pounds of Covid Defict borrowing.
Perhaps China could assist.

#155 Andrew on 12.10.20 at 10:31 am

Great book to help understand where things are headed

https://www.amazon.ca/Price-Tomorrow-Deflation-Abundant-Future/dp/1999257405/ref=sr_1_1?crid=P3FM8X35Z3LX&dchild=1&keywords=the+price+of+tomorrow&qid=1607614231&sprefix=the+price+of+tomor%2Caps%2C167&sr=8-1

#156 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 10:38 am

@#153 Dups
“It is so sad to only think of RE….”
+++
Sorry I was listening to the daily real estate report with all my co workers…..did you say something?

#157 pPrasseur on 12.10.20 at 10:46 am

When I saw the title (The Fraud) for a moment I thought we were talking about the US election.

But then I realized it’s a taboo subject in our liberal medias and platforms…

This is the world we live in.

Truth is Canada’s economy is a much worse fraud running on debt and money printing for governments and consumers! Might take a while to explode, but have a plan to get out in a hurry when it does.

#158 NSNG on 12.10.20 at 10:46 am

In a wide-ranging interview in the New York Times, Melinda Gates made the following remarkable statement:

“What did surprise us is we hadn’t really thought through the economic impacts.”

A cynic might observe that one is disinclined to think much about matters than do not affect one personally.

https://www.aier.org/article/we-hadnt-really-thought-through-the-economic-impacts-melinda-gates/

:-O

no words…

#159 crowdedelevatorfartz on 12.10.20 at 10:57 am

Gee the same day the story about “Trudeau govt angry at Canadian Military for Cancelling Communist Chinas Military Training at CFB Petawawa” came out…..
We get this happy bit of PR from the Canadian Govt.

https://ca.reuters.com/article/domesticNews/idCAKBN28J03Z

“The two Michaels are fit and fine….”

Damn! No Covid 15lb weight gain for them.

Now if only the Trudeau govt could spin the looming Spy Trials ( and 100% guaranteed conviction) of the two Michaels to make everyone happy…..

#160 KLNR on 12.10.20 at 11:20 am

@#153 Dups on 12.10.20 at 10:16 am
Canadians are pathetic, they only talk about real estate! You don’t believe me, go for a walk at your park, have a coffee at your local coffee shop, go to a mall and listen around you! We are a pathetic society!!! Nowhere in the world, and I have lived in Europe, US, UAE, no one talks about RE as people do here. What is wrong with us? Is this all we have in our lives? It is so sad to only think of RE….

speak for yourself bruh.

#161 KLNR on 12.10.20 at 11:29 am

@#119 Ponzius Pilatus on 12.09.20 at 10:03 pm
#109 Apocalypse2020 on 12.09.20 at 9:25 pm
BREAKING NEWS

Sorry to interrupt, Mr. Turner.

The US is heading into Civil War.

18 states have filed to overturn the election results.
Hunter Biden is now being investigated by the IRS, a move guaranteed to undermine his dad.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/wx8geb/18-red-states-are-demanding-the-supreme-court-declare-trump-winner-of-the-election

https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/09/politics/hunter-biden-tax-investigtation/index.html
—————
This time, you actually may not be that far off.
————

like the article says ‘lemming’
so embarrassing for america.

#162 BillyBob on 12.10.20 at 11:36 am

“Bubble Purity” has it’s price.

Correct. There are 17,000 active cases in Ontario and 71 in NS. Ontario has nine times the population. Do the math. – Garth

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

With respect, math is hardly needed to understand that more restrictive measures = less infections. My comments were intended to highlight the consequences. I am glad you are able to be so sanguine about the loss of these transportation links I wrongfully assumed might be vital.

They will restore. – Garth

#163 Howard on 12.10.20 at 1:03 pm

Most rented condos in a city like Toronto are owned by individual investors, who are small-scale (one or two-unit) investors, may of them now unable to find renters. How is this a ‘ghost home empire’? Why, when they allow people to live in accommodations that most tenants could not afford to buy, should they be punished? How does that help anyone? – Garth

———————————

If I’m not mistaken, an owner of a vacant home in Vancouver that is actively seeking a tenant is NOT subject to this tax. I presume this will apply for Toronto’s tax as well. Also there will be exemptions for renovations, which is reasonable so long as the exemption is not abused.

I do have my doubts on the city’s ability to enforce this, I admit. What constitutes “actively seeking a tenant”, after all?

#164 AGuyInVancouver on 12.10.20 at 1:39 pm

How are multi-million dollar homes in Vancouver’s best hoods ‘scarce resources’? The unbridled envy on this blog is beyond disturbing. – Garth
– – –
Hemmed in by the mountains, the sea nd the US border, land in Vancouver is scarce. This isn’t Calgary or Edmonton where you can build in any direction. To have a foreign national own two large empty houses on two large lots is ridiculous.

#165 Ted on 12.10.20 at 2:05 pm

I skrimped and saved with my wife to be able to afford a rentals. I did this because I saw the house/condo prices escalating out of control and I wanted to secure a future for my children–to know that they would never be without a roof over their head–even if it only meant a few hundred square feet.

I rent to nice young tenants who want to move out and know what it’s like to live in their own clean place and pay their own bills etc.

I am ready at a moments notice to replace a fridge if it fails (I’ll go to Costco and buy one) or a stove or a dishwasher (I’ve already replaced 2 dishwashers because they were not what I considered clean and pleasant to use). I treat the units as I would treat my home, I take excellent care of it, I get responsible tenants and I leave them alone.

My point is. Why am I constantly called a slumlord (on this and other online blogs) for providing excellent and clean living arrangements for young responsible couples who can’t afford to buy?

It is people like me that provide places for others to live, get their footing in the real world, move out, move up. No one said life was easy. It has never been easy. Yes, these couples will struggle to buy real estate of their own, just like I did. I took on risk and debt to be able to take a chance at making some money in the rental market and securing an investment for my children. I provide nice places to live for fair prices. So why is that so wrong?

This country and the lazy entitled people in it are ruining it for the future generations. To them I say go and hustle and work like my wife and I did and you will succeed at anything you do, and you will find a place you can afford to call your own and settle down there and be happy. Stop envying. Life is not fair, but you need a bet to win. Find something to bet on, a career, a job, a house, an apartment for rent. Don’t sit around waiting for a handout, you will never be satisfied with that. Live frugally. Invest in what you can afford–best advice I’ve ever been given.

#166 Statsfreak on 12.10.20 at 8:06 pm

…soooo…..while we wait for what’s coming….can we please have the recipe for the pumpkin spice muffins?

#167 Where's My Money Going Greedeau? on 12.10.20 at 11:56 pm

You are seeing rents dropping ONLY in the high-end. I have been following lower end rental prices for 3 or more years now in BC and have not seen any decrease.
So if you are an upper tier renter it’s all great but typically the lower end still gets the shaft, like always.
Re: #1 Nat on 12.09.20 at 2:43 pm
“Speculation on housing is a result of and failure of government incentives.”
Of course you can’t leave out the gov’t slime allowing money laundering as being proven by witnesses at the BC Cullen Commission.
Both BC Liberal Ministers Mike DeJong and Rich Coleman at the time boasted they owned multiple properties (I think I remember De Jong saying he had 6!). The market must have been pretty good for them when you know the game being played, hehehe.