Monday, January 26, 2009

What happens when we recover?

Industry and media wants us to keep this current downturn in perspective. We're told by the BoC that this will be a short and steep dip, followed by a fairly quick recovery. We're told by the real estate experts that this is a crisis of confidence, not a crisis of fundamentals being out of line.

In the 1970s, after a period of stagflation, governments rapidly expanded monetary policy, that is, they dumped money into the system to stimulate their economies. It was a developed-world wide phenomena that led to a quick and dirty uptick in household spending, and also spending on houses. When their monetary policies led to crazy inflation levels, they did what all governments do, and jacked up interest rates by almost double in just two short years.

Fast forward 32 years and they did it all again. Economic demand sucked after the dot com explosion and 9/11. Greenspan and then Bernanke, and by proxy, David Dodge and then Carney, opened the monetary taps in the US and Canada. The money supply became so cheap it was almost free. Kind of like it still is today. House prices soared, people racked up debt like kids collect candy on Halloween. And no one understood what was happening nor why.

The situations are very similar. However, the volumes are very different. Take a look.

Here's the US Fed's monetary expansion policy over the past 100 years or so:


Here's the period 1970 to 1985:

And here's the last thirteen years (1995 to 2008):

We've expanded the money supply, so fast, and so far that we've outstripped the 1980s S&L crisis and yet Obama is still looking for almost this much money to be dumped in again. If the BoC is right, and we recover relatively quickly from this downturn, then interest rates will have to climb in order to absorb the excess cash to keep inflation in check. How far up will they go and what will be the impact on local house prices?

73 comments:

boomer said...

As they keep telling us, we're in uncharted waters here-with no precedent -so all that is possible in this environment is OPINIONS.

Look at the response to tomorrows budget deficit numbers with half of our economic gurus saying its too MUCH and the other half saying its too LITTLE.(without even having the specifics of the whole package)

NOBODY has a clue-and that applies to the equity markets, gold, interest rates, the cdn buck, the us buck, and real estate.
but
EVERYBODY has an opinion.

and thats MY opinion.

hhv said...

The captain has a bit more analysis, at a bit more right-spectrum too.

Anonymous said...

Obama spending spreading worldwide love of hope and change to everyone. Good time to buy house always since hope here with helicopter flying overhead. Big news for everyone.

Anonymous said...

Well its Monday morning and I thought I would once again look at the sales over the last week.

Last week some 11 condominiums sold for all of Greater Victoria. When I looked back on the sales history of most of them, I saw that the difference between the new sale price and the previous purchase price is now under $100,000 for most of them. Which is different from a few months back when most showed over a $100,000 in equity gain.

In my world, I consider condominium sales as the starter home for most people. These condos are bought with the miniumum down and insured by CMHC or Genworth. The hope of many of these purchasers is to build equity in order to buy a single family home.

I would also say, that if you have been stung by CMHC once, the chances are quite good that you don't want to deal with them again. Therefore, you want to put down at least 20 percent. Since the equity gain in condominiums is falling, it would only make sense that home prices will also have to fall due to the lower amount of downpayment realized from the condo sale.

In summation, I would theorise that as long as the equity gain in condominiums is declining, so will home prices.

Subject to the following disclaimer:

This is MY reality any other persons reality I therfore reject and will subsequently substitute my own!


just jack

the thinker said...

HHV, Let's just say that I chose NOT to take your and justharmony's side over on KIV, as I prefer to dodge controversy that would occur from my bluntness. I was upset, though...

JJ claims she'll ignore harmony's spiel because it was not the 'purpose of this thread.'

What IS the purpose of jj's thread? Her very first opening line was that she'd seen RE become more busy lately.

Isn't that statement meant to encourage some KIV FTBs or mover-uppers into buying from her? Regardless of market conditions which she claims are useless?

Does the fact that she's a KIV advertiser mean she has financial interest in making commissions from buyers and sellers?

Just asking.....

roger said...

Just Jack

If there were only 11 sales last week there will probably be less than 50 for the month of January. That will be less than December and 40% of last January's sales. Maybe this is why the developers of the Juliet are heading for the exit.

So... Looks like I will have to update the condo slideshow:

GV Condo Bubble Burst

Anonymous said...

Ah, pshaw. We don't need backing up. :-)

jj is a salesperson doing a salesperson's job. Can't fault her for that.

S2/OnceHarmony

roger said...

the thinker said,

Does the fact that she's a KIV advertiser mean she has financial interest in making commissions from buyers and sellers?

Just asking.....


Of course and networking for clients on KIV is a good business strategy and no one should find fault with that. KIV allows advertising and is a commercial site as opposed to this one. However, the RE market perspective should be accurate and balanced and that is what constructive debate is all about. This is what seemed to happen.

You seem to be a new poster so here is something I wrote in the last thread you might find interesting.

Many folks are suspicious of stats and analysis prepared by bloggers and independent real estate analysts. However they seem to trust "real estate professionals"

So I encourage readers to distribute the local realtor report I mentioned earlier. Here is a short link to the pdf file.

http://tinyurl.com/realtor-report

At least there will be some balance presented to potential buyers and sellers.

hhv said...

Anon @ 11:34.

I'm not seeing two sides over there. It may appear like it because someone suggested I was a raving wingnut, but I didn't take great issue with JJ's original post, and heck, I've been called worse than Ann Coulter in my life, so no worries on that.

My point initially was to clarify her experience with some hard facts. It wasn't so much a refutation of her claims, it was more an attempt to keep them in perspective with a broader swath of time. I also had some legitimate questions I wanted to ask her.

I'll take JJ at face value, I have no reason not to. I don't know her, haven't met her and can only assume she is good at what she does, which is help people buy and sell homes, and truly does care for her clients.

She's right that sales volumes have picked up relative to what they were in the first two weeks of January. But they are still way down from past months.

I think JJ posts for two reasons there: she enjoys the conversations about a variety of topics she is interested in and it is an excellent form of viral marketing for name-recognition advertising.

There are all sorts of tools for online marketing. Tim Ayers is probably the best REALTOR at it in the CRD that I've come across. I don't have any issues with it. They're up front about it and don't seem to participate only in discussions related to their profession.

I think you have to be a paid advertiser at KIV in order to include business information in your posts. As a commission compensated person, JJ has a financial interest in all real estate related discussions.

Current market conditions have made it more difficult to encourage buyers into the market. REALTORS have to adapt. I have no idea what they're telling their clients these days, but I don't envy their jobs right now.

That's my perspective. I'm no expert either, just someone trying to figure it all out with a healthy dose of critical analysis. Hopefully people find it entertaining along the way.

Just Jack said...

Well Roger, I'm guestimating 60 condominium sales out of a total 1,100 condominium listings.


Just playing with numbers here to see how volatile our condominium market could be.

Say 1 percent of the listings were people under duress, such as court action, divorce, etc. Then that could account for 20 percent of the sales.

This is spooky. I have been involved in real estate for over two decades and I have never seen numbers this bad.

Anonymous said...

In reference to the previous blog entry where future rental market was discussed...

... this just in today from digg.com:

(USA)Rents Drop Nationwide as Vacancies Spike

Have a read through that, but don't worry, we'll never see this in Victoria. We're isolated, insulated, impenetrable and immune!

roger said...

Just Jack said:

Say 1 percent of the listings were people under duress, such as court action, divorce, etc. Then that could account for 20 percent of the sales.

1% is a pretty conservative guess. I bet it is much higher when you add in the other "have to sell" owners.
- job transfer or job loss
- estate sale
- financially stressed (stock market losses)
- desperate flippers (could not assign contract)
- developers stuck with unsold units
- real estate agent "investors"
- frustrated landlords losing money every month

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:58 said "We're isolated, insulated, impenetrable and immune!"

And all that means is we get the sh*t two years behind the US and everyone else.

Which means they'll be two years into a full recovery before we hit the bottom.

Sometimes being the caboose sucks.

Dumb Canuck said...

Anon 7:11 - no, the poop will hit here quicker - the back end of the train crashes quicker than the front

patriotz said...

In fact the "must sell" and "the longer I wait to sell the more money I lose" properties are the ones that drive the market.

Almost all of the true "don't have to sell" properties are people who just want to buy another house, and so it makes no difference to the net demand whether they sell or not.

Anonymous said...

Dumb Canuck, only when the train is running full speed in reverse.

Canada isn't that bad. Not yet.

Nope, as far as this crash? Full speed ahead.

hhv said...

It seems as though the story of the day is that business is picking up for local REALTORS.

"We have seen positive improvement just in the last three weeks, in terms of phone calls [and] activity. I'm seeing more offers coming through the office," said Carol Geurts, managing broker at Royal LePage Coast Capital Realty in Victoria.

"I'm sensing a lot of optimism. I'm certainly sensing that in first-time buyers."

Anonymous said...

"I'm sensing a lot of optimism. I'm certainly sensing that in first-time buyers."

Oh, yes Carol, I'm VERY optimistic. I'm optimistic that prices will be 30 to 40 percent lower a year from now. Talk to ya then.

dub said...

Is an increase in activity really very surprising coming out December? What? Were they thinking sales activity would remain at Nov/Dec levels through-out 2009?

Of course, the telling sign will be in comparison to years past.

roger said...

HHV,

Thanks for the link to the "activity" story. I was reading the Homes section of the TC on Saturday and was surprised to see so little advertising by realtors and developers. So, Canwest management must have asked the business editor to do some investigative journalism on the local real estate market.

The TC investigative journalist carefully weighed the options: contact bank and mortgage brokers; visit VREB and look at this month's stats; attend open houses and speak to buyers; interview home inspectors about January activity and poll multiple real estate firms for anecdotal stories.

The decision was simple. Go to Tim's and get another coffee and a box of Timbits. Then back to the office and call a local real estate office to see if they have had more phone calls this month than in December. Regurgitate the Royal Lepage press release and voila you get:

Real estate activity starts to pick up

hhv said...

Roger,

In Carla's defense, I think she would have visited the coffee stop hut outside the TC building beside the bus stop... it's much closer than Timmie's.

I can't help but wonder if this "activity is picking up" messaging is part of a broader communications strategy? We saw it on KIV this w/e. I saw it on Twitter last week. It definitely is the key message being delivered to consumers right now.

They need to instill confidence, and the best way to do that with sheeple consumers is to let us know that our peers are feeling optomistic (because Obama will make the sun shine brighter, the rain fall lighter, and house prices rise again) and re-energized by the extra bottle of Dom Perrion per month they can now afford with that slight mortgage rate reduction...

roger said...

Once again it is time to counter the RE industry spin with facts.

Here is a new chart that shows the MLS sales statistics for Greater Victoria over the last 4 years.

MLS Statistics Chart

Readers will note the following:
- The sales cycle follows a predictable pattern
- Sales peak in April-May every year
- Sales bottom out in December every year
- Every January there is more sales activity as a new cycle begins
- In 2005, 2006 & 2007 total MLS sales bottomed out in December at 385-410
- In 2008 total MLS sales bottomed out at 239
- In 2005, 2006 & 2007 peak MLS sales were in the range of 909-963
- In 2008 MLS sales peaked at only 770

Conclusions:
- Sales follow a cyclical pattern
- 2008 sales were the lowest in many years
- There is nothing newsworthy about sales activity picking up in January

Anonymous said...

In USA: RE Price Freefall


Today’s Case Shiller report for November 2008 showed a 18.2% decline y/o/y for the 20 city Home Price Index. This is the biggest decline in this cycle, and is now down 25% from its price highs of July ‘06.

Picking up in Victoria? i haven't see the bottom there and here yet.

Anonymous said...

The agents are getting busier, there have been 221 properties listed for sale in the last 7 days.

roger said...

anon said:

The agents are getting busier, there have been 221 properties listed for sale in the last 7 days.

Yes, that always happens in January (see chart here. In fact listings often increase at a faster rate than sales. I suspect this will be especially true in February when the dismal sales numbers for January come out of VREB. Sellers will be heading for the exits.

It is difficult being an agent right now, especially for condos. There are expenses associated with taking on a listing and many properties are not selling.

womp said...

HHV,

I have no doubt it's part of a "broader message". A co-worker who was able to unload his condo two weeks ago was just told by his agent that "things are heating up" and she was pressuring him to buy.

He fired her. This is because that when he got an offer on his condo, she told him the "market was terrible" and he needed to accept it, even though it was a big lowball. They got in a fight about doing a counteroffer and eventually she did do one, and it was accepted, so he saved himself about $15k.

Now that he might possibly buy something - "the market is heating up!".

It just highlights an agent that was working for herself, and why so many people have the hate on for Realtors.

Anonymous said...

Garth Turner is on "This Hour with George S" tonight on CBC at 11pm. (11:05). Should be interesting!

Anonymous said...

Shave and a haircut, from $759,000 to $525,000 in 9 months...check out mls 243482. I would post the pcis screenshot but I don't know how. Maybe it's one for Roger's slideshow.

VicREBear said...

"I can't help but wonder if this "activity is picking up" messaging is part of a broader communications strategy?"

I went to six open houses this weekend specifically to hear what the realtors had to say about the market and four of them told me the same thing in almost the same words: "Things have really picked up this month; we're getting a lot more activity!" No mention of sales - just "more activity".

Must be a directive form VREB to provide a united front.

roger said...

Government announces new HRTC

To provide some $3 billion of much-needed fiscal stimulus and encourage investments in Canada’s housing stock, Budget 2009 proposes to implement a temporary Home Renovation Tax Credit (HRTC).

The HRTC will apply to eligible home renovation expenditures for work performed, or goods acquired, after January 27, 2009 and before February 1, 2010, pursuant to agreements entered into after January 27, 2009.

The 15-per-cent credit may be claimed on the portion of eligible expenditures exceeding $1,000, but not more than $10,000, meaning that the maximum tax credit that can be received is $1,350.

The credit can be claimed on eligible expenditures incurred on one or more of an individual’s eligible dwellings. Properties eligible for the HRTC include houses, cottages and condominium units that are owned for personal use.

Renovation costs for projects such as finishing a basement or re-modelling a kitchen will be eligible for the credit, along with associated expenses such as building permits, professional services, equipment rentals and incidental expenses.

Routine repairs and maintenance will not qualify for the credit. Nor will the cost of purchasing furniture, appliances, audio-visual electronics or construction equipment.


More details here

hhv said...

Tim Ayers and Fred Carver were twittering back and forth last week about increased listings, offers and sales. Both indicated that they had 2 or 3 sales deals on the go.

Over the weekend, Jane Johnston started a thread with "the market has picked up this week" and specifically referenced conditional offers, lack of new low-end SFH listings and "lots of buyers."

I'm not for a minute suggesting that any of their claims are untrue... but the echo chamber seems to be getting a little louder.

hhv said...

Further to Roger's budget info... they've apparently ceded to CREA's demands and upped the RRSP homebuyer's limit to $25K, also they've given a FTB tax-credit of $750. I doubt either "improvements" will provide much stimulus, but the tax credit will at least cover your legal fees when buying a house.

roger said...

Get ready for the realtor pumping over the RRSP increase to 25K (50K for a couple) and the $5000 homebuyer credit (750 tax reduction).

roger said...

More on the HRTC from National Post

The HRTC, however, simply requires homeowners to apply for the tax credit, directly on their income-tax returns. The only demand is that the taxpayer save the appropriate receipts in case of a future audit by Revenue Canada.

It also, though, means contractors will have to produce invoices for jobs such as backyard landscaping or basement refinishing -- work that Finance officials yesterday noted is often conducted on a cash basis, with no paperwork produced.


Oops - there goes "under the table" economy.

mln said...

People are still attributing the downturn in Victoria sales and prices to the financial crises, and see it as a "dip". If you follow thing line of reasoning, sales picking up would be evidence that the confidence is back and Victoria prices will return to the ever-upwards trend of the last few years.

They are completely ignoring the fact that prices were dropping for months before the stockmarket crashed, and that sales picking up is expected for January, as Roger's sales figures show.

VicREBear said...

The new budget will allow the government to buy another $50 billion worth of CMHC insured mortgages, on top of the $75 billion already bought last year, in order to "free up" the banks to do more lending. Yep - keep the bubble inflated at any and all costs. I could puke.

womp said...

VicREBear, I'm with you. Who the hell is leading the blind here? What's with this universal assumption that it's a good idea to invest in Canada's housing stock? Why must the housing market be propped up at all costs?

Puke indeed.

VicREBear said...

Between the new $50 billion for real estate and the $8.4 billion to backstop auto loans and leases, it looks like we taxpayers are going to be on the hook for a whole lot of defaulting house and car purchases not too long from now. As someone who has saved my money, stayed out of debt and lived within my means during this seven year debt party, I find this budget deeply offensive as well as downright frightening.

Nick said...

VicREBear said: "As someone who has saved my money, stayed out of debt and lived within my means during this seven year debt party, I find this budget deeply offensive as well as downright frightening."

I totally agree, I'm pretty upset that more of my tax dollars will be going to pay for other people's mistakes. And as a renter, I'm doubly disgusted that some of my tax money will go towards people renovating their homes!

roger said...

Here we go again with CHEK news @5 PM

- Mentioned the $1350 renovation credit but no mention of the fact that you had to spend 10K in order to get it.

- Talked about a nearly $1000 home buyer credit but posted $750 on the screen.

- No mention that you had to wait until you file your tax return in 2010 to get the money.

Then went on to say we may have a mini-boom soon with all the stimulus and that "everyone wants to move here". Grr....

There will be a boom this summer but it will be the noise when the bottom falls out of the market.

hhv said...

After the dot com collapse and Sarbane/Oxley, I noticed that reporters and commentators on business shows had to disclose if they owned any of the companies they talked about.

I can't help but wonder if when this nonsense is over, if reporters and commentators will have to disclose that they own property.... shills, irresponsible shills, every last one of them.

Anonymous said...

There are sales happening around town but buyers are not paying the asking price.

Saanich East

Anonymous said...

The first wave of foreclosure sales pump up the volume a bit. Same thing is happening down south.

But those who've grabbed them too early are the greatest fools of all as more hit the market and are sold for even lower.

California, Nevada, Florida, and certainly Arizona are headed for Detroit sales prices.

And we're next, about a year to 18 months behind.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:45: That creaker STILL sold for double what it's worth.

There isn't a 1955 house in the world worth a penny more than $200,000.

In any market, at any time. I know. I grew up in one of those POS. Give me a 70's tract home any day.

omc said...

The govn't has to try to prop up the housing market at this time. Things are really shaky, the US in a big time recession with the rest of the world following along. The job stats here have been terrible for years as most of the private sector jobs created have been in construction. I remember hearing something over 90% in 2007 and 2008. 1 in 6 is now dependant on construction. If the govn't doesn't try to prop things up I would think we are going to end up worse than the states. It's their job to do this, it may not be to our advantage but we can't change that.

$750 won't push me off the fence, but hey if someone wants to put a basement suite in, fill your boots.

Does anyone remember that anoying talk song a few years ago that told us to wear sunscreen? I think he should have offered another piece of advice..ignore realtors.

patriotz said...

The govn't has to try to prop up the housing market at this time.

The government has to stop trying to prop up the housing market.

The reason that the global economy is in such a mess now is that too many people bought houses for more than they are worth.

The solution to the problem is to let housing prices return to traditional levels so people can buy houses at prices they can afford, not trying to prop them up so even more people will buy houses for more than they are worth.

Got that?

Anonymous said...

Well said Patriotz... Or has Mish points out so well - the solution to the problem can not be the same as the problem.

Just Jack said...

I am in agreement with the previous posters. This is an asset bubble that has to be pricked.

When assets fall to the value that people will start buying then banks will then feel positive about lending. This is as true for Bob's house as it is for General Motors.

I think if we temporarily remove the Capital Gains tax, this might stimulate both seller and buyer. Although listings would increase substantially which would cause lower prices, sellers would be more favourable to selling as the net received would be now be higher. This would only be temporary, say one or two years which again would immediately stimulate action on the seller.

If we are going to dump billions into a pit, why not billions in the peoples pits, not just Bay Street.

Thoughts?

hhv said...

JJ,

Most homeowners are already CGtax exempt... it's only mutliple property owners that will benefit. Is that market big enough to do the job?

Anonymous said...

anyone see garth turner on cbc's the hour last night?

hhv said...

you can see it here.

hhv said...

garth is on about the 15 minute mark. he's selling books. I'm taking it with a healthy serving of salt.

Anonymous said...

Anyone see this in the TC today?

"Region near top of least affordable list

By Judith Lavoie, Times Colonist January 28, 2009 7:01 AM"

I would put in a link but mine never work.

Shall we dissect?

S2

hhv said...

My favourite line: "The study also argues that the cost of building a house has little to do with the price, and, instead, the price is dictated by tight land-use policies."

I'd argue that it has less to do with restrictive land policies and more to do with local mindset... but I'll agree that the perception of restrictive land is partly to blame.

mln said...

Region near top of least affordable list

Anyone who has tried to buy a home in Victoria over the last year knows that, too often, salaries lag far behind house prices.

Now, a report by a group of land use consultants, who looked at housing affordability in six countries, has confirmed that Victoria is the seventh least affordable city in which to buy a home.

The 2009 Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey found Vancouver is the most "severely unaffordable" Canadian city, only beaten by Sunshine Coast, Australia, Honolulu and Gold Coast, Australia.

Anonymous said...

The report was done by land use consultants. What else are they going to say? :-)

S2

B2B said...


My favourite line: "The study also argues that the cost of building a house has little to do with the price, and, instead, the price is dictated by tight land-use policies."

I'd argue that it has less to do with restrictive land policies and more to do with local mindset... but I'll agree that the perception of restrictive land is partly to blame.



Exactly - in bubble locations, the price is dictated by a massive hysterical speculative bubble. The land restrictions are just used as one of many excuses to explain the bubble: "running out of land", "everyone wants to live here", "throwing money away on rent".

They're just focusing on land use because as S2 said, this is talking their book.

You may as well explain the dot-com bubble by saying that a lack of bandwidth caused a massive shortfall of capacity to meet internet demand among users. It ignores the fact that the dot-com bubble was primarily a psychological phenomenon, with thin justification in terms of real-world phenomena.

patriotz said...

Thoughts? (about temporary suspension of CG tax on RE)

Not needed. Dropping prices are a far more powerful incentive for investors to sell than any tax policy. Watch for the mad scramble for the exits once they realize this year that this market isn't going to turn around.

boomer said...

I would think that an immediate temporary (say 3 months initially-maybe with a possible extension) elimination of the GST would be a much more efficient spur to the economy than 2009 tax credits (or elimination of the capital gains tax)--since you dont get your hands on any real cash for over a year.

But really I think the whole massive "stimulation" plan is bogus and we should have tried to stay with balanced budgets as a better long term idea for this country- but the political pressure by the lefties was just too great..Well, their kids will be paying for it---along with increasing medical costs and unfunded pension plans etc..

vg said...

"Victoria is the seventh least affordable city in which to buy a home."


Goes to show how insane this market is. Of course the MSM and RE agents will run with this as the reason people will continue to overpay here for a place to live. It's a nice place for sure but all this shows is we have a long way to go down.


Even that dork on CHEK the other night had to spin it that "everyone in Canada" is moving here and the boom will just carry on. No mention of all those empty holes in the ground.

Anonymous said...

"Victoria is the seventh least affordable city in which to buy a home."

Besides, most newspaper readers just skim the first couple of sentences in an article, so many will be thinking that Victoria is the seventh least affordable city in CANADA, not on the whole friggin' planet.

Anonymous said...

"The 2009 Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey found Vancouver is the most "severely unaffordable" Canadian city, only beaten by Sunshine Coast, Australia, Honolulu and Gold Coast, Australia.

Then comes Sydney, Australia, San Francisco, and Victoria, which ties with San Jose, Calif."

Wow, yippee, we ARE a world class city!

(Good grief, what is wrong with this picture?)

S2

Anonymous said...

I know whose buying all these properties.

Some guy named PIPA

dub said...

Check out the haircut on this fractional (1/4) ownership condo at Bear Mountain:
MLS# 244278

Orignal price: $168,500
Sold Price: $77,000

Assessment 2008: $578,000.

I can only assume that the assessment per 1/4 ownership is $144,000, which means it sold for half the assessed value!?!?

Anonymous said...

It somehow looks more like a 1/8th fraction.

Capital gains tax relief? They will trade it for a return to death tax. The remaining wealth in Canada is with the oldsters and they will be on the hook (ie your inheritance) in the years to come.

This budget does so little to address the economy that I'm afraid we will pay for it for decades. How else will they be able to continue to justify income tax, property tax, preoperty purchase tax etc etc (I decided to leave the typo,) Have a look at the primary drivers for taxes (municiple, provincial and feds) - the interest expense is huge.

I agree you cannot fix this problem with more of the same problem. It's too bad Harper is so weak.

patriotz said...

Fractionals are going to take a huge pounding. Since you can't live in them or rent them out year round, they have the least ability to recover expenses and are the first to get dumped when times go bad.

The same thing is happening in the Okanagan, etc.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing the USA has told the other industrial countries to devalue their currency. If everyones currency is falling then no country has an advantage. However, none of the money can be used to increase the productiity of the country.

So Harper is going to spend billions of dollars on crap, just like Turner did in the 1970's to appease the Americans.

It would have been nice if Harper could have been a visionary and taken those billions and put them into universal day care, high speed elevated commuter rail from Manitoba to Alberta powered by renewable energy (hydrogen). A tunnel from Vancouver to Nanaimo. Rebates for electical hybrid vehicles.

Ahhh the possibilites.

But what can you expect from Mr. Personality. Can the Canadian people prorogue the politcial parties?

Anonymous said...

"It would have been nice if Harper could have been a visionary and taken those billions and put them into universal day care, high speed elevated commuter rail from Manitoba to Alberta powered by renewable energy (hydrogen). A tunnel from Vancouver to Nanaimo. Rebates for electical hybrid vehicles."

Daycare doesn't increase productivity. I'm not sure that people commute between Manitoba and Alberta... but if they did, I'm pretty sure the railway wouldn't need to be elevated. A tunnel between Nanaimo and Vancouver, a tunnel in one of the deepest stretches of inland water in Canada?

I can only assume all of this was tongue in cheek?

Libresprit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

New home sales in the United States fell 14.7 per cent in December at an annualized rate from the previouse month, versus expectations for a 2.5 per cent dip. On an annual basis, sales are now down an amazing 47.7 per cent, making it the worst year since 1982

Let's spin:

we are different, here in Victoria Canada. Our bottom was last year, we are in recovering stage. Blaaaa.........blaaaaaaaaaaa....

Anonymous said...

If your going to blow billions, do it in style.

Everyone in Canada gets a Canadian made hybrid car when they trade in their old gas car. Two dozen energy saving light bulbs for every home. Two bicycles in every garage. And a copy of Garth Turner's book in every living room.

Muriel said...

Nice haircut
MLS# 252021
South Oak Bay

3 bed, 2 baths, 2,279 fin. sqft
Lot: 5,3550
Built in 1943

Originally listed Sept. 2/08 for
$779,900

Sold, Jan.16 (after several reductions and relisting) for
$610,000

However, that is still $60,000 above 2008 assessment.

I mistakenly posted something in the other thread - that Garth Turner is speaking in Victoria this Saturday at 9am, at the convention centre - just in case all do not already know this - saw it on his side yesterday.

Muriel said...

Oops, make that sold Jan. 29.
Jan. 16, they reduced the price again, to $639,000