Saturday, April 28, 2007

How's This for Condo Driving?

Interesting article in the TC today about the Bayview and yesterday's untimely Spring rain: it seems that the torrential downpour wasn't able to dampen the perpetual pump and dump of condo marketing in this, the mother-of-all-retirement-markets.

Some notable highlights:
  • in this market that sells itself, a developer must charter private jets and commercial airliners for 200 guests for a special "buyer's weekend" (estimates are "dozens of buyers" came out of that marketing campaign)
  • the "buyer's weekend" includes golf tourneys, spa treatments and sightseeing activities
  • Most buyers are from Alberta and Ontario and include former provincial premiers Mike Harris and Brian Tobin
  • the next target is "people from the desert" looking for "opposite seasons"; I guess summer here, winter there?
  • the two aforementioned premiers are said to be wooing "King" Ralph of Alberta to join their exclusive living in luxury accommodations

Bayview has units ranging in price from $400K to $3M. If you have political aspirations, that $400K studio apartment may be the best investment you can make in your career: you'll have an inside seat in the lobby where you can wait patiently for the twice-yearly appearances of the busy ex-politicians.

Either Palm Springs is getting unbearably hot in the global-warming winter, or all the well-publicized anti-American sentiment in Canada is making life uncomfortable for our heads of state down south as Mike Harris is quoted describing yesterday's weather as "beautiful West Coast"; of course, what else is he to say when his money is tied up in a development and he just arrived at the golf course in a stretch-limo to woo potential buyers with a little shoulder rubbing prior to their full body treatments later in the day?

And to think most of us just get a complimentary LCD flat-screen HDTV when we spend $400K on a closet-sized condo; we're going to start demanding free trips to Hawaii for a little "opposite seasons" with all our conditional offers to purchase from here on in.


Vicguy said...

In other words these buyers will offer very little to the local economy as they will only be here a couple times a year so expect to see the place more than half dark at nite time. So much for the glittering lights bouncing off the harbour in those scenic tourist postcard pics,there won't be any.
Maybe the Tim Hortons guy can buy up more than a few condos and just leave the lights on timers to at least make it look good.

Anonymous said...

Oh my heavens. I didn't see the article. This is a joke right?

Condos must just not be flying off the shelves (anymore?) for them to do so much to get 'potential' buyers here.

Earlier in the month I was on another website and I had posted what I was seeing about the future of the real estate market in Victoria (they were telling me I was calling it doom and gloom but I say realistic) and there was a couple who were fighting me tooth and nail on this and I couldn't quite understand why.

Looking back it turns out that in March they put their house up for sale. "It will sell itself" they said so they were going to do a FSBO. Flash forward to the end of April and now they are asking about MLS and realtors.

Oh yes, it is still a hot market and places sell themselves. If so, why the planes and spas and such. What a crock. I use to be slightly amused but I'm beginning to get irritated.


olives said...


That is hilarious, particularly considering her husband (I assume because they have the same "name") was the one who was the supposed "expert" because he is the "financial advisor" and "economist". He said he was "amused" by our opinions. LOL!

Anonymous said...

Olives and $2:
I was the one who asked the hubby to explain why the Dow did not go bust THIS TIME, just before USA housing prices bit the dust. HE had said, with emphasis, that every RE downturn was PREceded by a huge dip in the Dow. He then re-said: "ALWAYS"

So much for the Economics background there. Still no explanation. And yes, they find it too expensive to pay some struggling realtor a piddly 1% to do the dirty work. Too bad, AY?

Anonymous said...

Oh thank goodness Olives and Anon are here.

Smacks hand on forehead, smacks hand on forehead.

I was just over on the other site and had to come over here and do the smacking of forehead or I would have posted something over there in frustration and then looked like a crazy lady.

So far tonight there is a post about a house not selling quickly and it may be because of the floors.

Another post by a realtor that said "currently changing market conditions".

And we look like crazy people who don't know what we are talking about.

Not one person over there has said boo to any of this and so I've come over here to smack my forehead.

Sorry everyone. Please continue on with the original subject as it is really interesting. I'm finished venting now.


talus said...

Ok - I give. What is the "other site"

Anonymous said...

TALUS: It's called 'kids in Victoria" with Moms posting on different subjects. Enjoy

olives said...

The good thing about posting this conversation on the Kids in Victoria site is that the message gets viewed by a wide audience.

Anonymous said...


The thing about posting on the other site is that us bears keep acting like Henny Penny and saying the sky is falling, the sky is falling but the average person is not seeing that so then we come off looking like crack pots that eventually get tuned out.

Prices ARE still going up albeit at a much, much slower rate than before but all the average person is interested in is that the prices ARE going up. They don't seem to care or understand the rate of appreciation.

It won't sink in until either the media say something or they start seeing it for themselves.

I find it best to say something, then pull back for a while and then say something else especially depending on what we see at the end of May.

Also, on the other site someone mentioned that they had an offer on their house but the financing fell through and the deal collapsed. No one questioned that not that long ago anyone and their dog could get financing but why did the financing fall through now.


hhv said...

I've seen three deals in my area fall through in the last week. I wonder why the banks are tightening their purse-strings? If the professionals aren't seeing good things in this market, we should follow.

Anonymous said...

Please update Rob's website, as your link is to the old one he shut down. Thanks a lot