Monday, November 15, 2010

Sales slowdown again? Monday market update

MLS numbers courtesy of the VREB via Marko Juras.

Month to date November 2010 (last week's month-to-date totals in brackets)
Net Unconditional Sales: 228 (131)
New Listings: 359 (192)
Active Listings: 3,750 (3,749)


November 2009 totals
Net Unconditional Sales: 604
New Listings: 796
Active Listings: 2,973

Current average SFH price is $613,649 with original list price of $651,200. Many homes selling are first dropping their prices. Home sellers, on average are getting about 94% of what they originally thought. In other words, buyers are negotiating deals around 6% below original asking prices. Condo average currently is $323,708.

The biggest change I'm seeing is a decline, perhaps significant, in the sales volume again. Between November 8th and November 15th, only 97 units sold, down from 131 in the first 7 days of the month. If this trend continues, we'll see sales around 450 for the month. This is down slightly from November 2009, but almost double the 268 sales recorded in November 2008, which is why we're not seeing prices tumbling faster throughout the fall as we did in 2008. 

74 comments:

Alexandrahere said...

Thanks HHV & Marko for the stats.

Here are mine for the week of Nov 8 - Nov 14.

SFH: Minimum two beds and 2 baths and priced from $375K to $775K in the core areas of: Victoria, Oak Bay, Esquimalt, Saanich East and Saanich West.


NEW: 18
SOLD: 13
P/C: 20
O/M: 10

Average Selling Price: $551,846
Median Selling Price: $534,300

No homes within this criteria sold at or below the BC Assessment.

Homes sold for 95.2% of the original asking price.

Condos'

Minimum 2 beds and priced between $260K and $665K in the areas of:

Victoria: Most areas (not downtown)
Oak Bay: All areas
Esquimalt: All areas
Saanich East: Most areas
Saanich West: Gorge, Tillicum & Interurban

NEW: 14
SOLD: 12 Apt's and one Townhouse
P/C: 16
O/M: 7

Average apartment sell price:$$344,833

Median apartment sell price:$335,000

One townhouse sold for $472K down from $479K

Three apartment condos sold for below BC assessment and the one townhouse also sold for below BC assessment.

Apartment type condos sold for 94.9% of the original asking price.

omc said...

I still think the market is a different market from before they did the small changes to the CMHC rules; there are less people that can now qualify. We changed the equation, therefor we changed the market. The market needs to find out if the prices can be sustained at the current prices. I really don't think we will find the answer to that until May/June.

Right now I almost view as a possible dead cat, as people who were waiting are now getting tired and settling for what is available.

Phil said...

Let's not forget that the banks are currently offering the lowest mortgage rates in Canadian history - despite the fact that the BOC is trying to back track with it's danger of debt message and raising of rates.

The banks are clearly upset with the sales declines and since they can unload the risk on the government why not drop the rates? It's because of them and our blundering government the housing bubble will take years to unwind. The damage it leaves will take decades.

Alexandrahere said...

Scratch your head on this one:

1760 Broadmead in Mt. Tolmie area of Saanich East.

Original Asking Price: $619K
Sept 17: 589K
Oct 6: 569K
Nov 15: SOLD FOR $680K ?

BC Assessment: $463K

Al said...

The buyer must find gold inside :-) or a out of town buyer.

We live a few streets away, the house is in no way worth close to 680K.

Rhino said...

I agree with omc's point about the market being different since the CHMC tweak. Remember buyers are now qualifying using the 5-year rate which is set in the bond market. The last 2 weeks of bond market activity will soon find its way to mortgage rates. This will push out a few buyers for sure.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/quote?ticker=GCAN5YR:IND

Rhino said...

^ that link is the 5 year bond yield. In an upward trend this month

HouseHuntVictoria said...

Alexandrahere, that has to be a typo. It may have ended up selling for $580k. If not, whoever bought that place for that price is a f'n idiot.

omc said...

I am pretty sure that house on Broadmead is a typo. There are tonnes of them on my PCS.

omc said...

Yup, that house on Broadmead is back on the market unsold. It seems they have been having more than a bit of trouble entering data in to PCS lately. Mistakes in floor space and assessment abound. Funny enough, it isn't usually to the properties advantage.

Al said...

I said to my other half when 1760 Broadmead first came for sale: that house shouldn't get much more than 550K, could be less.

Note that we sold one house just one street over last Oct (private sale, 6 offers).

Marko said...

I am curious as to what it was like to be a Realtor when the market was hot.

Clients sent me a list of 4 homes (with suites) they wanted to view last night, went to book the showings for Wednesday this afternoon, one status switched to sold, one has an accepted offer. What the?

Alexandrahere said...

Thanks all....I see the house on Broadmead is BOM. Guess it was just another keying in in the wrong field.

This one warms the heart though. 820 St. Charles St. in Rockland/Fairfield area. Original Price 825K; Sold for $680K with B.C. Assessment at $767K.

Marko said...

Wholly crap....3rd home also has an accepted offer.

I think there is a lot of activity currently going on not being reflected in the numbers. Strong possibility we break 500 sales for the month.

Feel free to flame me at the end of month if I am wrong....

Muriel said...

Can anyone tell me how much the house at 731 Vancouver Street sold for?

It sold in the last three weeks, I believe - I hear for about $800k. I've been told that when it sold a couple a years before that, it was for $1 million - wondering if that can be confirmed.

I'm not sure whether the selling prices have included the cost of B&B business that operates out of the house.

Marko said...

Current pending price of $865,000 and sold in July of 2007 for $950,000.

omc said...

That house on Vancouver sold at $865k, BC assessment. I don't know what it sold for a few years ago, but $1mill sounds off as it would have affected the assessment a lot. Fairfield seems to be taking the housing market on the chin, as I have seen far more better deals than Oak Bay. You can get a hole lot more house there.

Marko, you are looking at one part of the market on a Monday. My end had 7 new listing, 3 price corrections, 2 sales and a back on market. One of those sales is that st charles house. Mondays always look busy.

omc said...

oof! I stand corrected. Thanks Marko

omc said...

Marko, can you tell me if 4432 Houlihan crt has an accepted offer.

Marko said...

I only find out about accepted offers when I contact listing agents to arrange for viewings. So, don't know about that one.

omc said...

Thanks any how.

Marko said...

"Marko, you are looking at one part of the market on a Monday. My end had 7 new listing, 3 price corrections, 2 sales and a back on market. One of those sales is that st charles house. Mondays always look busy."

Yes I agree with you, some markets are dead such as the 700k+ SFH in Langford.

I still think we break 500 this month.

Leo S said...

Wholly crap....3rd home also has an accepted offer.

Thats right people. The housing market is getting hot. Buy now or be priced out forever!

I think there is a lot of activity currently going on not being reflected in the numbers.

Hmm, let's ask Jason Binab about what else is not reflected in the numbers: "Victoria is its own niche market" , "it's a destination place".

HouseHuntVictoria said...

The market is busier now than it was in the summer. This is caused by two factors: sales volumes are up while listings are down. You have more buyers picking from fewer properties. That said, even if we do hit 500 sales for November, this isn't a large number of sales (sales to active listings ratio will still be over under 15% (balanced is typically 20%).

Marko, I think what you're experiencing is the same thing that has been a consistent factor in Victoria's market for many months over the past few years: a larger % of buyers are competing for the few % of properties that are either realistically priced for their segment of the market or in the only segment of the market that people can realistically afford.

Just Jack said...

Victoria has a lot of "dumpy" homes, so when the inventory drops the selection of "good" housing is narrowed quickly.
That's a big reason why you have multiple offers in a slow market. For the most part, Victoria is not a city for families. Victoria is a retirement village of two bedroom houses and one bedroom condominiums. You want family housing, move to Saanich or the Westshore.

I think most of the house buyers today, are move up buyers with 20 percent or more down payments. With the low interest rate, most would be paying less in monthly payments that it would be to rent the home.

But, the amount of these type of buyers are dwindling and prices are eroding in the blue rinse hair capital of Canada. Historically, any market shift begins in the spring months around March and April.

The winter months have buyers and sellers treading water. The spring market is when buyers and sellers sink or swim. Which is about the time we find Harper and Flaherty ending the economic stimulus package and we have a new BC government.

Maybe even a NDP government - and we all know how that worked out for businesses in the early 90's.
Don't wait for the rush, reserve your U-Haul today.

commuter12 said...

Sounds like 2010/2011 might not be the much anticipated emergence of the bears from their caves. Sorry to say but you might be really old before the crash happens. By that time I'll probably be mortgage free living it up on fine wines and caviar.

a simple man said...

Good for you, commuter12. You are obviously a very wise man/woman.

Marko said...

and the 4th home has an accepted offer as well....!

Anything under 700k with a suite in Sannich East appears to be in high demand.

omc said...

Wow, commuter12. You live in Langford, I'll bet you are rich.

omc said...

I don't know if I am wrong, but i am not expecting the "move up" sales from the sale of those basement suite hell homes. The reason I am saying this is that I have noticed that many of them were not owner occupied. It seems like a lot of long term investors are selling as they don't expect any growth in real estate for quite a long time.

Just Jack said...

Commuter12 is a wise man, and we should all spend a minute contemplating his wisdom.


..................
.....
Okay I'm done.

Just Jack said...

I have to admit that being a renter has worked out for me over the last two years. To be stuck with a $2,500 to $3,000 a month mortgage payment, $3000 in property taxes and repairs for hot water tanks and roofs is not my bag, especially since prices have flat lined.

The current recession has hit my industry, which would have required me to subsidize my income with a home equity line of credit if I had bought a home. I am meeting a lot of people who are bleeding $3,000 to $5,000 a month on second homes they can't sell and are facing foreclosure.

There are times when its good to be a home owner and then there are times like now, when its better to be a renter. Without a steady double digit increase in annual house prices it would really suck to be a high ratio home buyer and have to pay 50% more for accommodation than a renter. That's money going to your banker's family holidays and better education for their kids. Money that you should be spending on your family.

The home buyers dream is to be mortgage free. A two percent increase in the interest rate and the home owners will achieve their dream. You'll see him pushing a shopping cart along Douglas Street - wow, living the dream.

Alexandrahere said...

Quite true Marko about the houses in Saanich East with suites going fairly quickly. But as I have said before...just wait til the tax man grabs these people for the income. Man, all Revenue Canada has to do is look at a pcs brazenly divulging the rent from these suites. If you are clearing $1500 per month from a suite that equates to at least $2000 per month in real earnings. The situation will not go on forever where the tax man is going to ignore $24,000 per year of extra income. It seems that at least one in four houses have suites in them now (maybe more Marko?) Anyone buying a home now better make themselves aware of the ramifications of the situation if they chose not to declare this income.

Al said...

Is this something specific to suite? Shouldn't all the rental income be reported , regardless house, condo, suite, room, room&board or even parking space, right? Why do people buying house with a suite need to be more aware of ramifications of the situation than say, people buy a house and rent out a room, or rent their house out during winter vacation?

Alexandrahere said...

Al: Of course all income needs to be reported to Revenue Canada. Pretty well everyone (i think) reports income when they rent out an entire condo or home. But you can bet most people that have a suite in their home, especially non-legal suites are not reporting that income. What I am saying is that over the last decade there have been so many homes being built pre or post with a suite. Also so many more pre-owned homes have been putting in basement suites in gay abandon. The revenue from these suites is someday going to be impossible to overlook if the owner is not reporting it and it is now becoming so much easier to "catch" these people. Hey....this is just my take on the situation. Perhaps I am all wet.

Westerly said...

FYI, Any one that has purchased a home (to live in) with a suite over the past 3-5 years will not likely (assuming low down payment) be subject to income tax on the suite income: proportion of interest, property tax, utilities, repairs, bank charges, ...all come together to bring income from suites to zero or often negative = tax savings. the Taxman is actually often subsidizing those with suites.

Similarily, when the principle residence is sold there is no capital gain on any part of the property provided it has been used primarily (defined as 50% or more) for personal use. No capital gain.

CRA is not interested in negative suite income.

Introvert said...

Also, I just want to point out that non-legal suites really aren't that big of a deal. In fact, BC Residential Tenancy Agreements are valid irrespective of the legal or non-legal status of the suite.

Al said...

Isn't it true that being non-legal, your neighbour can shut you down if they choose so? Also heard some insurance companies wouldn't re-build the suite (2nd kitchen ...) portion for a non-legal one even if they insure your house as two units.

HouseHuntVictoria said...

The municipalities have an interest in overlooking secondary suites. I've heard of cases where the Saanich bylaw officers have been called out by neighbours to investigate suites and phoned ahead of time to let the "offender" know what needs to be removed ahead of time in order to pass the "inspection" - mostly just the stove/range.

There is little in municipal bylaw that prevents you from renting rooms within your home. As a previous poster already stated, CRA isn't chasing this because it's a small monetary adjustment for a large, and very political, undertaking.

I know nothing about the insurance side of the issue, though I'd assume if you demand your renter get renter's insurance, any suite damage would be covered by that, no?

Al said...

Alexandrahere,

In Ont, people can claim rent paid (with address and landlord name) as part of provincial tax credit, that forces landlords to claim the rental income and related expenses. BC could do the same to put landlords (legal or illegal suite) in the open, if they think that they can collect more income tax to compensate the credit paid out.

Al said...

HHV,

I would think renter's insurance only covers his/her own contents, not the house structure re-build.

By rule, the house owner should tell his/her insurance company that there is a rental unit just like he/she should tell if there is part of the house used for business purpose.

That is for protection of both sides, although your insurance payment would be a little higher (good for the insurance company), if the house is burned down, the insurance company would build as it was, including the suite. Otherwise, not just they wouldn't build that suite, they may even deny the claim as you didn't tell the truth.

Chickinvic said...

Al - we used to be able to claim our rent payments for tax credits here in BC too. It sucks that they took that away from us.

Just Jack said...

If you want to be nasty. You can always report your landlord for income tax evasion. I think CRA will pay you 10% of the owed tax amount.

It's a crappy thing to do, but if you have the landlord from hell who's been taking your panties from the laundry for the last six months. And besides your broke and he's a rich land owner.

happy renter said...

I once found out the hard way that the insurance company has to know EVERYTHING about the house you live in, the number of suites in it, etc., for your insurance to be valid. A suite I lived in didn't have its own access entirely separate from another suite in the house (the downstairs tenant could open her door into our place, although her door was locked and we couldn't get into her place). That meant that our place was vulnerable to the other tenant leaving her door unlocked, etc.. So when she did leave her door unlocked and someone broke into our place through her place and the insurance company found out how the house was set up, our tenants insurance was void. Not the best thing to find out after the fact... The landlord had no idea that his whole house wasn't set up properly for his own home owners insurance until this happened. Be careful, people!

Al said...

Just Jack,

Never heard about the 10% reward thingy, but reporting to CRA could be done by anyone: neighbour, co-worker, real estate agents, even relatives, if they know a landlord is renting out without paying tax and feel strongly to do so.

Not sure if "rich" people like to share their house with strangers, but if you are sure that the landlord is not reporting and does own tax after expenses wrt their total income, a better way might be to let him/her know that you would or wouldn't need the receipts to claim some tax credit, so they could charge rent accordingly.

Patience said...

Daily reader, occasional poster...

http://victoria.en.craigslist.ca/apa/2064093205.html

(A little OT, but had to share). I watched this duplex being built last summer on a lot 20 feet from the Pat Bay Hwy, with a pedestrian overpass looking down in to the yard to boot. For a while it was FSBO; now I see it's for rent at a premium price. I really can't see anyone paying that kind of rent to live next to the highway...what was this builder/developer thinking? Another example of real estate foolishness in Victoria (well Sidney in this case)

a simple man said...

Here is the ad for that lot straddling Oak Bay and Victoria...Wowza

Al said...

Maybe Elizabeth May, with a big green sign outside? Would be good for the party :-)

caveat emptor said...

My wife and I have a basement suite in our house. After apportioning a share of utilities, mortgage interest, general house repairs etc to the suite the rental still turns a modest profit. I do report this small net income to the CRA. Maybe I am being overcautious, but I just figured that the small tax hit is worth it to avoid the remote possibility of a CRA audit. I have self-employed relatives who have been audited. It seems that once they audit you they look at EVERYTHING - big hassle.

We have a small mortgage and of course low interest. With a bigger mortgage and higher interest it would be quite possible to have negative net suite income

kabloona said...

Travel agents and stockbrokers are nearly obsolete thanks to the Internet - are real estate agents next?
by Michael McCullough
Monday, November 15, 2010
- Canadian Business

http://tinyurl.com/2vjctck

HouseHuntVictoria said...

I've never understood why people don't report suite income on their returns. The write-offs will almost always outweigh the negatives, especially if someone in the household is self employed as well. I chalk it up to laziness and ignorance more than outright fraud, but for anyone who has ever been self employed, the tax credits are very generous if you play the game on the straight and narrow.

Deanna said...

Oh god, tenant's insurance. Landlord stipulated that tenant's insurance was my responsibility and I agreed that of course it was. Little did I know that that was code for "you're going to have problems getting insurance and that is not our problem".

I've always had insurance so I just updated my address with my agent and reported the wood stove in the suite. They sent back a form that they asked to have filled out. Landlord didn't have the info to do so, but hey, they had a copy of the install certification from Saanich so we sent that along. Long story short, when the time period that I had purchased insurance for previously was up, insurance company informed us that they were not renewing without an inspection report on the stove. So we informed the landlords. They told us that the cost of inspection was our problem. We pointed out that no, it was part of the structure of the house and that they were responsible for it. Plus, if they paid for it, they would have a copy of the inspection for future tenant requests. They wouldn't do it.

We had a friend take a peek who told us that it wasn't properly installed in the first place and we'd never get insurance if the insurance company knew. The landlords were basically cycling tenants through, hoping to get some that didn't care about insurance.

We moved out. If I were vindictive, I'd have tipped off their insurance company, who surely would dropped them like rocks.

But on that note, are there any owners of older houses in this city who aren't lying to their insurance company? We had been shopping around and actually got to the point of putting on an offer and getting an inspection report done. We supplied the report to the insurance agency and they informed us that it would be impossible for them to insure and would require specialty insurance. Naturally, we walked away from the deal.

I'll grant you that our inspector was probably more thorough than most, but what is the point of lying to the insurance company? If something goes wrong, it gives them the perfect excuse not to pay up. If you're going to lie, may as well save the insurance payments since you're not going to get a penny back if something goes wrong. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Alexandrahere said...

When renting out a suite(s) in your home you DEFINITELY must report this to your insurance company. They will insure you and it will add maybe $10-$20 per year on your insurance.....much of the time they don't charge any extra. They do charge extra though if you have the entire house rented plus having a suite. There again, they will only charge a minimal amount. Some insurance companies will charge more and some will not insure at all if you have a common door between the main house and the suite. To avoid this though, all you have to do is leave the door intact but on the one side, insulate and and drywall over the door frame.

happy renter said...

Yes, Alexandrahere, that's exactly what my former landlord should have done. With a door between the main suite (mine) and the basement suite, both his owner's insurance and my tenant's insurance were void.

Just Jack said...

Had my first opportunity to see the new homes in Westhills today.

Hamster huts to go to after spending 8 hours in a government cubicle. Truly a home that makes the statement "I have wasted my entire life and now live in mediocrity ville"

The same house, the same furniture, the same car, the same spouse, the same kids, the same TV sitcoms. And for 3 weeks each year you go to the same place on holidays as your neighbors.

Rows upon rows of children's wood blocks stacked two high, repeated over and over again. I wonder if the developer got a deal on photocopying the floor plans.

The Pope said there is no hell, obviously he hadn't been to Westhills.

Bubble 'n Fizz(le) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Bubble 'n Fizz(le) said...

I know the truth hurts, HHV, but deleting the post doesn't make it less true.

Introvert said...

HHV, you're censoring opposing points of view? Brutal!

I just want to say that I agree with Bubble 'n Fizz(le)'s sentiment (luckily I read it before it was yanked!). I've been reading this blog for a few months and, on balance, find it to be very anti-homeowner, anti-landlord, and anti-the-market-will-improve. All this is perfectly fine, of course, but it would be nice if opposing opinions weren't REMOVED from the discussion.

Thankfully some of my previous posts weren't censored; however, I was accused of being the same person as someone else. After all, dissent has its price on House Hunt Victoria!

HouseHuntVictoria said...

Despite what you might think I'm not deleting "opposing views," I deleted a waste of space written by a commentator who has a habit of popping round only to antagonize. He's never added anything of value whatsoever to the discussion on this blog.

There are many different view points expressed on this blog by a variety of different people - you need only read the 56 comments above to see this is true.

Trolls like B&F ruin the discussion - until s/he adds something of value I will delete comments meant only to piss people off.

Bubble 'n Fizz(le) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
HouseHuntVictoria said...

^ done. ;-)

It's not your views, it's your tone, which is only meant to antagonize.

msr said...

It's similar to a while ago when HHV went to requiring log ins for the blog. Sure the number of comments dropped, but so did the noise. While we do lose out on the occasional insightful drive by commenter, we also don't have to deal with dozens of puerile & petulant posts by anonymous cowards. B&F is just a hold over of the by-gone days.

Bubble 'n Fizz(le) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
commuter12 said...

Just wondering just jack why you think westhills are "hamster huts"? I've checked them out and they look quite nice actually inside and out. They're a lot nicer than say oh I don't know maybe a boldozer special on the gorge.

PainInThe said...

Thanks for muzzling B&F. It's one of the reasons I haven't been around as much.

Introvert said...

Thank goodness for the "tone police."

HouseHuntVictoria said...

Introvert, do you have anything you'd like to ad to the discussion besides criticism of me for deleting pointless posts? Perhaps you'd like to provide some analysis that supports your opinions about the local market? Or maybe you'd like to state your thoughts on the types of properties and the market segments where potential buyers can find exceptional value? What's the point of continuing baseless assertions about imbalance on HHV? If you don't like the blog, don't read it.

Introvert said...

HHV, fair point about my not having to read the blog if I don't like it. You're very right.

However, my assertions of imbalance are not "baseless." There are a number of measures by which I could argue that this blog is imbalanced, but I'll just go back to the recent past when I posted a dissenting comment--something to the effect of doubting a market crash and mentioning that homeownership has its pleasures--which immediately elicited suspicions that I was an imposter. When a commenter posts that s/he thinks one would be dumb to buy a house now because the market is sure to crash, no one questions the commenter's identity. Right? HHV, let's get real here. Of course there's imbalance.

HouseHuntVictoria said...

Introvert,

Your definition of imbalanced is very different from mine. First off, I, as in the HHV blog, neither questioned your identity or alleged duplicate identity nor would have done anything other than to ask you to back up your opinion about the local market with some sort of basis in fact, which I don't recall having done, but may have regardless.

Despite your belief that I censor, commentators on this blog are free to post whatever they want in response to each other. All I ask is that they keep it respectful. If you feel you were not given the respect for your opinion it deserves that's something entirely different than this blog demonstrating imbalance - don't confuse comments left by others, with "this blog."

There are plenty of examples of a wide range of opinion on this blog, both from my writing and comments and from regular commentators here who, for the most part, keep things on an analytical and respectful level.

There are a few examples of commentators who have taken things too far, you'll even find comments from me asking for more respectful dialogue and respect for individuals contributions. I have rarely deleted comments. The times I have include obvious spam links and the isolated case of BnF, on this post only, who only commented to jab a stick in the eye of some commentators and who's comment had little relevance to the discussion at hand.

Introvert said...

HHV,

You didn't question my identity (and I never said you did), but a commenter (omc) did.

I don't believe you censor (in general), but you did censor B&F's post when you removed it.

As for your wanting comments to remain respectful, do you think it's respectful for a commenter to question my identity on the basis that I happen to agree with a different commenter who believes that buying a house now is smart? I find this disrespectful. But this obviously wasn't disrespectful enough for you, because you didn't censor omc's comments. You also say you use the measure of "tone" and a comment's "pointlessness." Well, isn't it a bit pointless to question my identity just because I concurred with a minority viewpoint? You could have censored omc by this logic, as well. You're not always consistent.

Also, just to clarify, what I mean by "this blog" is all of its posts (written by you) and all of its comments (written by you and everyone else) taken in aggregate. So, rightly or wrongly, I do consider comments left by others as being part of "this blog."

There may be a wide range of opinion on this blog (again, I'm using "this blog" in the sense described above), but the number of posts and comments articulating certain opinions/views is quite imbalanced: it's at least a 4:1 ratio between number of posts and comments saying the market will face a big correction vs. the market will stagnate for a while, then return to going up. This is what I'm getting at when I say "imbalance."

Look, I'm not arguing that this blog SHOULD be "balanced." It shouldn't have to be. This blog is simply a reflection of those who write the posts (you) and those who contribute to the discussion through comments. That's what it is. And what I'm saying, I guess, is that this blog is imbalanced insofar as there are way more posts/comments articulating "view A" as opposed to "view B." And maybe this imbalance exists because the majority of folks who contribute to the blog are either renters or possibly homeowners looking to get out of the market and go back to renting. Fine. But this blog is imbalanced (by my definition of it). I was just hoping you'd concede this point to me.

Lastly, I don't think B&F's comment, which you censored, was only meant to "jab a stick in the eye of some commentators," and I don't think that it necessarily had "little relevance to the discussion at hand." I mean, sure B&F's comment wasn't "nice," but let's take his sentiment at face value: what if a lot of the denigrating of Langford (and other spots), the ill-will toward landlords, and the disdain toward the CRA were all manifestations of a larger anxiety that the market will never face a "correction," that we're not in a real estate bubble (even though there seem to be several signs that we are)? Overlooking the inartful way B&F made his comment, isn't his comment nevertheless "relevant" when thought about in this way? I certainly think so.

HouseHuntVictoria said...

Introvert, you're really reaching.

The G&M is different than the National Post. Is one less balanced than the other?

This blog is not a source of original news. It's a place that people come to online to discuss issues related to Victoria real estate. There are a wide variety of people who comment. Some own a home or rental property and have no plans to sell. Some rent. Some don't like renting. Some love renting. Some have plans to sell their home and rent. Others have plans to sell their home and buy another. Some make a living selling homes for others. Some make a living selling mortgages. There are all kinds of reasons why people may be interested in what gets discussed here.

Many have done the basic math and research to come to the same conclusions that you think are the basis of 80% of the posts and comments: that local real estate is over priced relative to incomes and rents and that it's likely Victoria real estate is in a bubble. I tend to agree, so I'm not going to provide balance to those arguments. I'll point out that the reason I agree is because I've been researching and writing about it for over 3 years now.

If you disagree, you're free to state why. If you do, and you get challenged to back up your opinions with some measurable empirical evidence (like we often do here on the flip side) and you don't, is it really unreasonable or disrespectful for another regular commentator to question your motivations for leaving the comment? If they feel it necessary to try to link you to another commentator via writing style, well, I find that it's unfortunate but more unfortunately a reality of the games that have been played here over the years by people with a vested interest in muddying the waters around the true state of the local market.

It's the internet. We need to have thick skins. BnF was consistently leaving comments meant to antagonize which led me to finally just hit that little trash button beside the comment. Sure, BnF is not an isolated example of poor blog commenting etiquette, but BnF is the only example I can recall who consistently popped onto this blog ONLY to provide us examples of poor blog commenting etiquette.

As for the relevancy to the discussion: commentators were discussing the common practice of tax evasion - and BnF told 'em to "mind their own business" in a much less nice way. I don't think BnF holds the moral high ground on that one.

People are free to slag Langford all they want here. Same as Uplands, Broadmead or any other neighbourhood/municipality. Who cares? To each their own.

Same as they can feel free to criticize landlords. Why should anyone have an issue with someone who's had a poor experience renting from venting or being bitter about it? Who cares?

And as far as this being some indicator of a deeper anxiety that the correction so eagerly anticipated in these parts isn't coming... well, psychology wasn't in my Uni studies so I'll leave it to the experts but I'm thinking that if an argument exists for that an argument exists on the opposite side too (perhaps you, BnF and anyone else arguing limited correction probabilities is motivated by a deep anxiety to not see your home worth less than you owe?).

Introvert said...

If you disagree, you're free to state why. If you do, and you get challenged to back up your opinions with some measurable empirical evidence (like we often do here on the flip side) and you don't, is it really unreasonable or disrespectful for another regular commentator to question your motivations for leaving the comment?

HHV, I don't recall being challenged to support my opinions with empirical evidence; I just recall my identity being challenged. And if look back at the comments (in the Magnum Opus thread), you'll see that this is true.

What do you mean by "(like we often do here on the flip side)"? This sounds vaguely insulting to me.

HHV, I may not have a wealth of studies, articles, and statistics at my fingertips the way you do, but I don't think that gives you permission to insult me.

HouseHuntVictoria said...

"What do you mean by "(like we often do here on the flip side)"? This sounds vaguely insulting to me."

I meant no offense. I simply meant that those of us who believe real estate is over priced are consistently asked to prove, using real empirical evidence, why. I simply meant turn about is fair play.

As I said, no insult intended. I'm sorry if you took offense.

Introvert said...

Thanks for clarifying. I'm glad you meant no offense.

I, personally, will never ask you to prove with empirical evidence that house prices are overpriced. If you think they are, that's enough for me.