March 27 Market Update

Weekly stats update courtesy of the VREB.

March 2017
Mar
 2016
Wk 1 Wk 2 Wk 3 Wk 4
Unconditional Sales 107 312 532 757
1121
New Listings 209 484 740 990
1445
Active Listings 1581 1614 1604 1573
2618
Sales to New Listings  51% 64% 72% 76%
78%
Sales Projection 852 896 930
Months of Inventory

3.3

I feel like a broken record every week talking about inventory and how it shouldn’t be falling this time of year.   But it is, and I still can’t get over how unusual that is.   If we don’t add significant inventory in the spring, then what happens come July when inventory usually starts dropping for the rest of the year?   I can’t imagine that it can be reduced much more than it already is.

With sales at 17% below last year’s rate, and inventory at 39% less, months of inventory is still trending lower and a bit below this time last year.  If we look at months of inventory in March for the past 20 years, we can see that this month will almost certainly be a record low.   Projecting current sales out to the end of the month, we should expect about 1.4 months of residential inventory which is lower than the previous record of 1.6 in March 2004.

People aren’t listing because there’s nothing to buy, and there’s nothing to buy because people aren’t listing.  At some point it has to break, but when?

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278 thoughts on “March 27 Market Update

  1. Secondly, not sure how you would ever know that you got beat out by a referential offers – those types of details are not disclosed by the listing agent.

    Yes they are. You just happen to be one of the agents with a functional moral and professional compass.

  2. I had a real estate agent knock on my door and tell me they had a client that wanted to buy my house. Is this a common practice in Victoria?

  3. … not sure how you would ever know that you got beat out by a referential offers – those types of details are not disclosed by the listing agent.

    It was a private sale. The seller and my friend’s husband are both IT folks at UVic. So he learned about it, they eventually made an offer, and among the other offers was the open ended one. The latter offer did get the house. They have since enlisted the help of an agent due to their situation I described, who apparently described the practice as “not very legal”. Whether that’s true, of course, I can’t speak to.

    The sound of it though just got my attention, as I can’t imagine making a blind, blank cheque offer. But in this market, who knows.

    I had no idea there was a name for the practice, “referential offer”.

  4. Referential offers lasted for about 2 months last year and then many brokerages basically banned them as they are not an enforceable contract.

    Plus if they were acceptable everyone would start writing referential and then you would have no actual offers.

    Secondly, not sure how you would ever know that you got beat out by a referential offers – those types of details are not disclosed by the listing agent.

  5. Pretty sure this is not a enforceable contract.

    Or is it? When we bought in 2004 (in Victoria), our realtor then told us that there was another offer, and suggested us to offer $1000 more over whatever the other one was, and it was on the contract (forgot about the exact wording), and it was enforced (other than standard house inspection clause). So we ended paying about $3k over asking (The house was solid and very well maintained and we liked it a lot, so no regrets there).

  6. When did natural gas first come to Victoria? IIRC they started building the pipe to the island in the early 1990s.

  7. @Local Fool is that actually true? Are you able to tell us which house that is for by any chance?

  8. Local Fool, sorry to hear about your friends’ predicament (hope she’s careful with the benzodiazepines – a friend of mine took them and made the anxiety worse – it took 6 months to withdraw, had to start relaxation therapy, etc)

    I’m concerned that they were convinced by the developer to sell – too many of these flyers arriving in everyone’s mailboxes to sell for “top dollar!” and a lot of people just don’t have enough time to study the RE market to understand current conditions.

    It’s the same reason people fall for the advice from “financial advisors” – your average person is just too busy trying to earn a living to become an RE expert, so they trust so-called “experts” that are just trying to take advantage of their inexperience. I don’t know if that’s what happened, but a former co-worker of mine fell into the same trap in the 2000s.

  9. Offering $___ above the highest offer was a question on Tony Joe’s radio show? (ad?) the other day & the realtor on the radio agreed that it is not actually a real offer, because they are not specifying a price. Also that most realtors would not agree to write such an offer ($3 million + $10,000 it is!)

  10. they simply wrote, “$10,000 over the next highest offer”.

    Yeah, that would be fun for the sellers if two peoole wrote that. Seller could name their price. Yes, the buyer could back out, but then the seller just goes to the other brave bidder.

  11. Leo S

    Then they can get stuffed. Seriously it won’t help them lead a happier life so if they feel so strongly about it themselves they can get a scholarship.

    Ha. Fair enough. I paid my own way through university, so I have no issues with that. Some parents believe it is their duty to pay for their child’s education (like my friend). So if it’s going to cost 40K/year they had better plan for that. Front-loading may make sense for some. I definitely don’t fit the scenario.

    Personally I don’t see any point in putting in more than needed to maximise grants.

    Pretty sure this is not a enforceable contract.

    Yeah.. most likely not, which makes it a great tactic. Write “10K over best offer”, the seller will call you up after the bidding, “Yeah, we got a bid for 900K.”

    You can either back out or write a proper legal offer for 910K.

    If the seller accepts the 900K offer with no counter conditions that buyer can’t back out (unless the buyer revokes his/her offer before acceptance), but your 10K above gives you the option to say, “Nope.. too rich for my blood.”

  12. I like your owner buildor idea better dasmo. Nice to see your house is coming along. When do you figure it will be ready for move in?

  13. It’s to the point where she has been prescribed benzodiazepines for anxiety and mild panic attacks she is having due to this situation

    More evidence that there are no winners in this market, only losers. And another example of where their accumulated equity means nothing in practical terms.

    No wonder there aren’t any listings.

  14. they simply wrote, “$10,000 over the next highest offer”.

    Pretty sure this is not a enforceable contract.

  15. I meant a talent agent… but true you are an agent now. A Realtor even. Too bad you’re not a Realter like me though….

  16. What if you kid wants to go to Stanford or Princeton or something similar?

    Then they can get stuffed.
    Seriously it won’t help them lead a happier life so if they feel so strongly about it themselves they can get a scholarship.

  17. …they simply wrote, “$10,000 over the next highest offer”.

    Amazing. Marko, have you ever seen or written offers like this for clients?

    I don’t know if they regret selling now, but it just shouldn’t be like this for anyone.

    I’m sorry, Local Fool, but I have little sympathy for them. They either didn’t pay attention to market conditions, or they foolishly assumed they would find a place despite the conditions.

  18. In fact in 2015 we added 600 new listings from Jan 1 to end of March. This year it’s about 120.

    I sure as heck wouldn’t want to be a buyer in this market. A friend of mine and her husband sold their home to a developer a few months ago, which gave them quite a bit of time to find a place and move. They still have got nothing, despite many attempts. Their move-out date is coming up in a few weeks.

    It’s to the point where she has been prescribed benzodiazepines for anxiety and mild panic attacks she is having due to this situation. Showing after showing – getting nowhere. Last week they put in a bid on a place, and her agent later advised her that the winning bid didn’t even have a price – they simply wrote, “$10,000 over the next highest offer”.

    They are looking at places to rent as well, but that is difficult due to a child and a few pets. I don’t know if they regret selling now, but it just shouldn’t be like this for anyone. They aren’t poor by any stretch of the imagination, and I can’t imagine they are alone in this situation. Just terrible, IMO.

  19. You need an agent now!

    But I am an agent! It’s just agents all the way down.

    Still it is early in the spring but should inventory not be building up right about now?

    Yes! In fact in 2015 we added 600 new listings from Jan 1 to end of March. This year it’s about 120.

  20. We are approaching that number but my point is that when comparing Victoria to Winnipeg even with the latest surge in prices we are still below the historical ratio

    According to some, Victoria is grossly overpriced and is sure to crash imminently. According to others, Victoria is undervalued and these prices are a “deal.”

    What a world!

  21. Rates have been this low for years. I have bought twice in this phase. Once in 2012. No competition, long list of conditions, bought for less than assessed and negotiated more off after house inspection. Bought my lot in 2016. Three month feasibility study condition, financing condition, They had to clear the blackberries, no competitors, bought for 16% under assessed. Shoot, I was eyeballing the property for months online while we were still in Rotterdam… Same rate environment as now. This is the very definition of buying begets buying…. There was no sudden anything to trigger this surge. I saw it unfold as people started coming around the lot while my conditions were still on. I’m glad I got the memo before everyone else but I am also saddened by this since it feels like the Vancouverization of Victoria. 🙁

  22. Wages are just one factor driving prices probably the drop in mortgage rates by 50% has had more bearing during that time

    I would suggest the rise is wages between Victoria and Winnipeg in that time period would be very comparable as with the cost of mortgages, so the ratio should still be meaningful.

    For some inexplicable reason Winnipeg prices increased 40% between 2008 and 2014 while Victoria prices went nowhere – we are now just catching up.

  23. @cityslicker. The ratio would be fine if wages also matched. Bottom line is 16 years ago people were not making 1/3 the wages. Wages have increase very little in 16 years. Or is it only mine?

  24. My perspective coming from Winnipeg.

    I came to Victoria 16 years ago. The average price for a SFH in Winnipeg at the time was $86,000 and the average for Victoria was $280,000 (it was a sticker shock at the time). So Victoria was about 3x Winnipeg prices. This ratio was steady for at least the decade prior since both housing markets hadn’t moved since the late eighties.

    Today the average price in Winnipeg is a little over $300,000 – If one took the historical ratio then the Victoria average should be $900,000+ We are approaching that number but my point is that when comparing Victoria to Winnipeg even with the latest surge in prices we are still below the historical ratio

  25. I didn’t say guaranteed Ash, I said odds are higher than ever and we’re in the 9th inning. It’s the end of a business cycle with record debt levels and rising long term rates. All we need is a catalyst and there are many to choose from.

  26. A price reduction I’ll get to it before Hawk gets to it… 😉

    2737 Satellite St, OB – in the shadows (overlooked) of the OB Hotel. On huge .10 ac lot. Price plummeted today from $1,278k to $1,198k! Hurry while you can! Beat the coming frenzy!! Days OM much longer than 35… Fish bowl living! Wave at the tourists from your enormous yard!

    The market must be crashing fast!! This, along with 1217 Hewlett Pl which was reduced from $2.2m to just under $2m are sure signs! 🙂

  27. Saying something is guaranteed is a recipe for disaster

    So true Hawk! And of course it applies to other guarantees like “this market is guaranteed to crash!”

  28. Totoro

    I just wanted to point out a DIY way to invest that is far superior to the financial adviser/or way. Just look it up here: http://canadiancouchpotato.com/

    That’s what the wife uses for her portfolio and it works quite well. Add money, periodically rebalance. No advisor overhead, super low MER on ETFs (as opposed to mutual funds, which basically have another advisor fee added in) and good diversification.

    I’m quite happy with Questrade as a discount broker (free ETF purhcases and trade fees/commissions that were quite a lot lower than bank investing platforms).

    I self manage our RESPs through Questrade as well. They do all the grant application stuff for you. The money just magically appears in the account ready to be invested.

    Leo S

    Max contributions frontloaded, compounded at 6% for 19 years is $144,000. I don’t think they will spend that especially with a co-op degree.

    IF they go to school in Canada and only do an undergrad.. sure. Totally overkill.

    One of my friends in the US has a kid graduating HS shortly so they are checking out colleges. I told him to check out UVic and UBC international tuition as well. Paying for her to come to Canada and live in an apartment is cheaper than any of the colleges she’s looking at (ones she can commute to). For the subjects she’s thinking of studying it’s really a wash for which school she goes to.

    What if you kid wants to go to Stanford or Princeton or something similar? Those are >40K+ USD per year before living expenses.

  29. If you READ what I said instead of jumping to conclusions, you will notice I said this was done WHEN RESP’s were introduced…

    I can be lazy and skim things, especially if I’m working. Which I am. Sorry if I misunderstood. I would still say the same thing as a general principle though.

    You really are antagonistic…

    I wouldn’t take me too seriously if I were you. I’m nothing more than an anonymous tool on some internet forum…who suddenly has a craving for some Tim Horton’s honey crullers. Lunch time yet?

  30. db,

    You said it was easy, smart planning, tax-free, and you knew someone who did it. No need to scream, leave that to gwac and AG. 😉

  31. Thanks Lurkess for the info on the house. I only saw the pics, but it really proves how people have to beware of the cosmetic fixes – they have to look under the hood!

  32. HAWK HAWK HAWK…

    READ IT AGAIN….

    QUOTE: Maybe that’s how these students are funding property acquisitions…

  33. Thanks db, very interesting. By the time our kids hit university we should have around 150k each in there for them. I didn’t realize it was so flexible, but good to know!

  34. “Leo

    Makes a good down-payment on a RE during education…

    Tax-free and all you have to do is provide proof of attendance…

    Smart planning by parents and Grandparents…

    Maybe that’s how these students are funding property acquisitions…

    I should clarify.. I know someone who did just that from Vernon when the RESP’s were first introduced…set up her grandchildren in Victoria.”

    Sounds like someone saying it should be done now and in the future. That’s not twisting anything.

  35. db,

    The high odds of bubble bursting more than ever with rising rates is more than probable. Saying something is guaranteed is a recipe for disaster when every financial institution who lends the money agrees with me.

    Now we have banks using high pressure sales tactics like US did before they blew up.

    How Canada’s biggest banks have become complicit in the housing bubble

    http://www.canadianbusiness.com/economy/how-canadas-biggest-banks-have-become-complicit-in-the-housing-bubble/

  36. You really are antagonistic…
    Where did I suggest that one do this today…?

    I simply explained a process to answer a question by AG.

    If you READ what I said instead of jumping to conclusions, you will notice I said this was done WHEN RESP’s were introduced…

    Hawk is the one who twisted it around.

    I earlier raised the observation that this may be the source of Student funding.

    Who is to question whether that is a good choice or not.

    You have your pre-conceived ideas and are locked into them. That is your choice.
    Usually when someone wonders why someone else succeeds…
    It’s because they “JUST DO IT” .

  37. Re. Leo S on CTV – Good for you, and I had no idea you were that young. Thankfully, finally, an alternative to Tony Joe?

    Yes it is indeed scary times when buying a ‘pre-sale’ is looking like a better option than going into a frenzied bidding war. Personally I was always scared of buying something that wasn’t built yet – you never know what could happen before completion. The rest of the spring is going to be very interesting indeed – hopefully more inventory comes on board otherwise we will really be in unprecedented territory.

  38. The homeless issue is indeed very complex. But it could be largely resolved or reduced. All it will take is a coordinated approach and we need the Federal Gov’t on board w/ all the Provinces.

    When my British relatives were visiting here recently, and they were shocked at seeing all the homeless/drug addicts milling about everywhere downtown, I basically told them ‘if you fall between the cracks in BC/Canada, or fall on hard times here, you are SOL. You are on your own left to the vultures of society. The social safety nets here are very limited and grossly inadequate’. They were shocked as it was their first visit here, because people in the UK have this perception that Canada is some kind of utopia, and ultra wealthy, and that everyone here is well taken care of. Then they come here and find that isn’t true and it isn’t what they thought it was. Every time I visit the UK I get people eagerly asking, if they haven’t visited here ‘what’s it like with to live in a place with all that space, in that dreamland (Canada) you live in’. It’s quite interesting when I tell them the grass is not as green here as they think.

    What little is here to help homeless, is in sharp contrast to the UK where local authorities actually have legislated duties to house homeless people under means testing laid out comprehensively, by law, in their ‘Homelessness Act 2002’. What do we have in BC? $610/mo. ‘Income Assistance’ to live on and virtually nothing much else other than leaving it up to private organizations like ‘Our Place Society’.

    The other thing I think that may compound the homeless problem here and in Vancouver is the fact that we are the only places in Canada with a relatively mild climate… so, this brings up another question, do homeless people gravitate here from all over Canada? And, if we only did more to help in BC than other parts of Canada would we end up w/ more and more coming here from everywhere? That’s why I think a National coordinated approach, rather than just a Provincial one, is necessary.

    Tent city brought much needed attention to the issue, but much more needs to be done. I think that homeless people can be divided into several camps:

    1) those that have fallen on hard times, with health issues, lost a job, no family, have nowhere else to turn, were evicted and ended up homeless through no fault of their own. In UK, the means testing makes sure that people who have nowhere to turn (i.e. no family, etc) are taken care of, and able to get back on their feet – we need something like this in BC.

    Then there are those who fall into the following categories…
    2) those with mental health or addiction issues that are sometimes extraordinarily complex and challenging to resolve.
    3) Those who want to be homeless (yes these people really exist)
    4) Those who are just plain lazy and want a free hand out.

    I think giving people free money on the streets is a bad idea and just encourages them to beg for more. They probably end up spending the money on booze or drugs. Give them food instead.

    What we really need is a coordinated system put in place by gov’t w/ a ‘means test’ that will ensure that people who meet the criteria are taken care of. Not just the Province buying old motels in bad parts of town to house people. It’s shameful that a place as wealthy as BC and Canada has this issue without a coordinated system in place to address it.

    The other thing, that could compound and worsen this problem going forward is : The hugely increasing price of housing and lack of diversity of housing that only seems to be getting worse and worse here. If nothing is done we will end up w/ more and more homeless than ever before as people find it more and more difficult to exist on minimal wages – did you know that almost 50% of the jobs here pay less than $12/hour – could you live on that?? These people are forced to put more than 50% of their incomes to shelter costs.

    What a mammoth problem it is, but it’s not without resolution. If we do nothing, we probably actually pay more through policing and health care costs. Having a coordinated approach to address the problem will not only result in less cost to society in the end, it will also help people greatest in need. I’m not saying the UK has all the answers, it doesn’t, but numbers of homeless people on a per capita basis there is sharply lower than here, and it sets a good example of where we can start to put an end, or sharply reduce this problem in BC/Canada – to the benefit of us all – cost wise and community-minded wise.

  39. Whatifs get you nowhere in life…

    Neither does making major financial choices having little to no regard for market conditions.

  40. “The Vernon grandmother maxed out the $30,000 per when the plans were introduced. The grandchildren wisely invested in RE while attending Uvic.”

    How many grandma’s have a spare $30K per year after tax to put in the grandkids RESP ? Few and far between.

    What happens when the market tanks and the grandkids lose big coming out of college and their career plans to sell and leave turn ugly ? What did they buy ? A house, a condo ? Did they rent out rooms that are taxable that they dodged on that CRA will be on to now ? Did grandma cosign ?Many dangerous caveats in that game.

  41. Interesting idea. The grandkids have a nice place to live while attending UVic, and they make money at the same time, because Victoria real estate.

  42. AG

    You misunderstand the rules of RESP’s . There is no clause restricting the USE of the funds.
    The principal can be withdrawn in one lump sum without taxation and can be used for ANYTHING.
    The grants are taxed in the students hands and restricted to the max allowed per year withdrawal.

    The restriction is qualifying for withdrawals. ie. Attendance.
    If you want to buy a car with the funds, that’s your choice. If you want to booze it up at the PUB..ditto..

    The Vernon grandmother maxed out the $30,000 per when the plans were introduced. The grandchildren wisely invested in RE while attending Uvic.

  43. the feds are probably just letting the markets run a bit wild here & in toronto to get a bunch of the just under $1 million dollar houses off of CMHC insurance.

  44. In all of south Victoria (Oak Bay, James Bay, Rockland and Fairfield) there are only three houses listed under a million. (I am counting 995 asking as a sneaky million).The number of listing seems to be the same, or a bit less than we started the month with. If you take the 2 million houses out of the mix there is only 28 listings in all of south Victoria. This Strikes me as extremely low but I have only been in Victoria for four years.

    Still it is early in the spring but should inventory not be building up right about now?

  45. Makes a good down-payment on a RE during education…

    Can you use RESP money for a downpayment? I kind of doubt that. I’m sure you could use it to pay monthly mortgage payments though.

  46. Leo

    Makes a good down-payment on a RE during education… 😉

    Tax-free and all you have to do is provide proof of attendance…

    Smart planning by parents and Grandparents…

    Maybe that’s how these students are funding property acquisitions…

    I should clarify.. I know someone who did just that from Vernon when the RESP’s were first introduced…set up her grandchildren in Victoria.

  47. Problem with front loading RESPs is i don’t think that the kids will necessarily need all that cash. Max contributions frontloaded, compounded at 6% for 19 years is $144,000. I don’t think they will spend that especially with a co-op degree.

    RESPs can be used for accommodation, computers, furniture, utilities, books, sports… It would be pretty easy to spend some big money over 3+ years.

    And RESPs can remain open for 36 years, so you can always use it for their MBA, industry training, or something else.

  48. Problem with front loading RESPs is i don’t think that the kids will necessarily need all that cash. Max contributions frontloaded, compounded at 6% for 19 years is $144,000. I don’t think they will spend that especially with a co-op degree.

  49. By the way, has anyone else front-loaded their RESPs? I’m surprised more people don’t talk about this.

    This is great, I hadn’t heard of this but will consider it.

  50. 100% agree. Anyone can build themselves a low cost, diversified portfolio these days. You might need a little advice on which assets to put where.

    That’s where I’m at – conceptually I like the simplicity of holding ~3 ETFs per CCC, but I’m not clear on what to put where. E.g Load up RRSP with US stocks to avoid the withholding tax? I’d appreciate thoughts on this or where I can go to learn more. Trying to avoid going the traditional route of paying fees to an advisor.

  51. @Vicbot – new roof, new heat pump needed, all drainage pipes, gutters, need to be redone. all electrical wiring (all messed up), no proper insulation in attic, fire hazards, vermiculite everywhere, just aweful, all hidden behind the nice cosmetics that weren’t done properly.

  52. Leo’s more famous than Tony Joe now – finally! 🙂

    By the way Lurkess: 4354 Columbia looked like it had a new kitchen & bath. What would the new owners have to replace, eg., the roof?

  53. @ Introvert, we took a look at that Columbia house, EVERYTHING needs to be replaced. The buyers are going to have to shell out 100-200k to replace literally everything. Huge issues.

  54. 4229 Oakview Pl sells for $190,000 over asking, 34 DOM.

    A property where the accepted offer was with conditions. So it stayed on the market while the conditions were removed, now sure when that offer came in though.

  55. Routine:

    4354 Columbia Dr sells for $98,000 over asking, 6 DOM.

    Remarkable:

    4229 Oakview Pl sells for $190,000 over asking, 34 DOM.

    That’s the second house I’ve seen recently in Gordon Head that took a decent amount of time to sell, but still sold for WAY over asking.

    That’s unusual, n’est-ce pas?

  56. Recent dates are hardly any better.
    February 2017, VREB says 988 residential properties, and 1537 total inventory.
    Matrix says 1576 on the residential tab.
    If you go to cross property it says 2351.

    Will look into this more.

  57. @John Dollar.
    Here’s the differences:
    VREB says there were 1345 residential properties on the market in March 2004
    Matrix says there were 700.

    So that’s a massive difference. VREB is almost certainly correct on those numbers because the matrix ones don’t even make sense.

  58. Thing is I’m not concerned about the difference between 2.28 and 2.39. A couple sales here or there doesn’t make a difference. But going back further, the Matrix stats appear to become wildly inaccurate

    Vreb may have changed the way they calculated the MOI. I can get the actual sales by blocking the date and that does match the STATS. What I can’t get is the active listings back in the 2000’s. Everything else seems to match with the STATS.

  59. Please explain. You mean putting in a large chunk up front to give maximum time to grow and then trickling in the 2500/year until the grant is maxed and you hit the $50k contributions?

    Yep. It’s also worth contributing even more in Year 1 and forgoing some of the grants from the last few years. Only if your TFSAs and RRSPs are maxed out, of course.

  60. By the way, has anyone else front-loaded their RESPs?

    Please explain. You mean putting in a large chunk up front to give maximum time to grow and then trickling in the 2500/year until the grant is maxed and you hit the $50k contributions?

  61. @totoro. Yes. Second low cost etfs. You can get a fee based adviser that has a fiduciary responsibility to act in your best interest, but even then we know that stock picking isn’t likely to work. So why not save yourself the 1% drag on your portfolio?

    100% agree. Anyone can build themselves a low cost, diversified portfolio these days. You might need a little advice on which assets to put where. Or you can ask around in forums. There are lots of knowledgeable people out there.

    By the way, has anyone else front-loaded their RESPs? I’m surprised more people don’t talk about this. If you have the cash, it’s a great strategy.

  62. @totoro. Yes. Second low cost etfs. You can get a fee based adviser that has a fiduciary responsibility to act in your best interest, but even then we know that stock picking isn’t likely to work. So why not save yourself the 1% drag on your portfolio?

    All that is useful is a financial counsellor to talk you out of selling everything when the next crash hits.

  63. Leo S
    Yes, it would be similar to your “Exclusive Buyers Agency Contract”. We have to have one signed for every offer even if it just for a 24hr representation.
    This came about because of Agency for Buyers which of course didn’t use to exist. (We all were working for the seller because they were paying the commission) . I never could agree with that scenario but those used to be the rules. Buyers can pretty well opt out of the Contract for any one of many reasons but if they go back and purchase a home the Realtor showed them under asigned contract they are liable to pay.

  64. I just wanted to point out a DIY way to invest that is far superior to the financial adviser/or way. Just look it up here: http://canadiancouchpotato.com/

    We use it and it works well and we are not sophisticated investors. We also used advisor/ers before and it never worked well – their fees eat into your returns and the funds they recommend are the ones that pay them the most. A very unethical industry imo that you should not and do not need to support.

  65. That’s cause you’re spending all your time being a TV star. 😉 Looking good on CTV tonight LeoS !

  66. I remember when coffee was .25, then $0.50 was outrageous, not long after $1 a cup was outrageous, now Timmy’s charges $1.95 for tea, and Starbucks? what $4- 5… You may not believe the 7 year doubling, but it doesn’t have to do with VALUE doubling it has to do with currency devaluing.
    I noticed I wasn’t the only one who perceives this.

    You may think a doubling in PRICES in Victoria in 7 years will be outrageous. But seriously, I’ll bet you thought a Million for a Victoria House on average wasn’t in the cards as recently as 2007 and anyone predicting we were on that path (me) was a lunatic. Yet, here we are at $800,000 (and the QE of 2009 was not supposed to revive economies worldwide, who’d have thunk?)

    So rule it out. You live your reality.

    But those fiat dollars you think are real are not the same as a GPS co-ordinate that can’t be shared or replicated (divided into smaller pieces? yes… or stack’em higher on the same spot which is why you get $20 million dollar penthouses on a postage stamp)

  67. Very strange that they don’t match as the data is the same. It some times takes an agent a few days before they enter the data onto the system. In order to get the published monthly data out quickly at the beginning of the month it is necessary for VREB to make projections.

    Thing is I’m not concerned about the difference between 2.28 and 2.39. A couple sales here or there doesn’t make a difference. But going back further, the Matrix stats appear to become wildly inaccurate.

  68. However in Alberta (and I really didn’t want to get into any specific differences between Alberta and BC) we are now REQUIRED (as of July 2016) to enter into a commission contract with our buyers which stipulates if there isn’t a selling commission the buyer agrees to pay a negotiated commission.

    Is this the same as our exclusive buyers agency contract? In other words does it bind the buyer to your services for a period of time? If so in my opinion that is very consumer hostile. I hope with our real estate council now in the hands of the government this will never happen here.

  69. I don’t know how to solve the homeless problem, but I have never met a homeless person with as much free time on their hands as gwac and Hawk… 🙂

  70. “The problem Hawk is that every do gooder would have been up her ass in this city. ”

    Hate to plug up the blog further but defending poor Christy being totally useless when a lone neighbor went to the government to close tent city when a few tents were there and got shot down in spades.

    Did it draw a spot light to homeless ? Of course, but what about tent city previous 10 years before all down Pandora the government did nothing about until the city had no choice but to bust it up from business pressure. Where was Liberals then ? Nowhere to be seen when it was front page news.

    Can’t have it both ways gwac. Damn those do gooders. 😉

  71. You think it’s just the 200 who sleep outside are the only problem which is wrong and not the only problem. The other 1500 in the new shelters(who you see on the street in the day) are getting one on one help which is part of the solution, but should have started 15 years ago, not at election time. Keep spinning.

  72. FYI AG, there’s 1300 to 1800 homeless in Victoria, not 200.

    I would argue that you’re wrong Hawk.

    Here are the stats from 2016:

    Total homeless: 1,387 (2016)
    – unsheltered: 192 (2016)
    – emergency sheltered: 353 (2016)
    – provisionally accommodated: 842 (2016)

    As you can see, the vast majority of ‘homeless’ people are actually in government-provided accommodation already. There are less than 200 sleeping on the streets.

    We could throw $10m at the problem, and you’d likely still have those 200 people sleeping rough. That’s why a different solution is needed.

  73. Hypocrisy

    One bitching about why tent city was left open
    vs

    All the other pro homeless posts that person made.

    Tent city whether you like it or not got the spotlight on Homelessness and lead to more beds. Funny hawk how you say it should have be closed right away.

  74. gwac, your “society owes them” mentality is lame and another weak assed cop out. Maybe go ask some of them if they want to be there. Could be your kid some day, maybe your buddy, maybe you.

  75. ” the old excuses of “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” …

    Yup. Honestly more people need to volunteer to be mentors for the homeless.

    The guy I’ve worked with took 2 years before we could have a conversation about math. He eventually opened up to me about how crazy stupid it makes him feel, about how his family & school provided no support, how he dropped out and people bullied him severely, and how it causes severe panic attacks, but he had to trust me first.

    That’s why it’s WAY more about 1-to-1 mentoring than anything else. He’s now very productive, I’m so proud of him.

    Imagine if all the people on this blog spent a few hours a month mentoring someone. You could never employ enough gov’t workers to create the individual support they need.

  76. Hawk

    When one believes society owes them a lot, you will never be happy but instead always disappointed and angry.

  77. “Maybe a couple of nights in jail is the answer – they’d get some decent sleep, a good meal, and a chance to speak with someone about their issues.”

    You think most haven’t been there already ? Do you not see the street workers out there trying to help them get off or are your blinders on too tight ? You sound much older than your posts AG, ancient actually.

  78. Well said Vicbot. Shit happens to people and some can’t ever get back up. It’s called life but the ignorant use the old excuses of “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” BS mentality. Fricking painful.

  79. gwac you and AG are a couple of grumpy old right wing pricks

    I’m pretty sure I’m quite a bit younger than you, Hawk 🙂

    Although the rest of your description might be right!

  80. So AG, your solution is give them a begging ticket or throw them in jail for being mental or drug addicted ?

    You sound exactly like the kind of woolly minded person who gives money to beggars. By allowing them to stay on the streets (and in fact encouraging it by allowing them to beg), you discourage them from sorting their lives out. Yes, they’re in a crappy situation, but your actions are perpetuating that.

    If they have mental or addiction issues, they should not be on the street. If they don’t have any issues and are just bums, they shouldn’t be on the street either. Maybe a couple of nights in jail is the answer – they’d get some decent sleep, a good meal, and a chance to speak with someone about their issues.

    There are probably a couple of hundred people here sleeping on the street. It wouldn’t cost too much to fix this. All it would take is a little willpower from the political class.

  81. Excuses ? gwac you and AG are a couple of grumpy old right wing pricks who offer up no solutions just bitching about your taxes and can’t keep your facts straight.

    Local Fool, I’m calm as can be, thanks for asking. 😉

  82. If you’re against seeing the homeless on the street, then you need to volunteer some time at a shelter, or to mentor or provide some educational training to them.

    I worked with a guy who was homeless for a while, and I’ve never met a harder working person in my life.

    But he’d be the first to say that not everybody can work their way out of it on their own. Most of the homeless have no life skills or family or mentors, or have problems like PTSD, or are unlucky, so they spend all day focused on survival (food and a place to sleep)

    That survival treadmill doesn’t end unless you have support services that provide food, shelter, and job counselling. That’s not only a gov’t responsibility – it’s everyone’s responsibility (because it simply makes our neighbourhoods a better place to live).

    If the wealthier people in society don’t help, or don’t treat them like human beings that deserve respect, then it’ll never get better.

  83. So AG, your solution is give them a begging ticket or throw them in jail for being mental or drug addicted ? You going to build more jails for multi millions for homeless people ? You offer up nothing but “get rid of them”. Unreal.

  84. @ Hawk,

    Nobody really told me I should leave Hawk, and what was implied was not from a place of hypocrisy. I don’t even work in tech.

    It’s okay. You really do sound angry sometimes. I bet you’re different in person. You should reconsider and come join us on the 7th. Happy times, good times. You can sit with me and we can talk about housing, ISIS, Christy Clark, basket weaving, car stuff, the nunnery…whatever. Tell me how you got started on HHV. I will tell you about the time I discovered that using grocery store bags as parachutes when jumping out of trees is a bad idea.

    I really will buy you a drink! 😀 😀

  85. “Hawk I will say it again. People need to take responsibility for themselves. ”

    Again, more ignorance as many don’t have the needed support systems. Maybe you need to move as it’s only getting worse.

  86. gwac , then why the ignorance on homeless people ? You think they all want to be there ? You make zero sense and come off like you’re clueless.

    What’s your solution then, Hawk? Throw more money at the problem? Because that’s what they’ve been doing for years here and in Vancouver, and it hasn’t worked at all.

    True ignorance is making the same mistake again and again, and expecting a different outcome.

  87. “The problem Hawk is that every do gooder would have been up her ass in this city. BTW they took her to court and forced the gov to keep it open”

    They took them to court 10 months too late when it was oveflowing, infested with rats/crime in the hood. That’s ignorance like your spinning the facts.

    Defending Christy is like defending Trump, same lies, corruption, different locale.

  88. Hawk I will say it again. People need to take responsibility for themselves. If you are dealt a shitty hand and have addiction issues. Get help, if it fails try again. I do not have time for those who do not take responsibility to change.

  89. 319 Lillouet Heights sold for 2.535m. I know it’s a 2yr old house, but I can’t believe that someone paid that much for a 4900sf lot. And I guess there’s some kind of strata too, from the listing?

  90. gwac , then why the ignorance on homeless people ? You think they all want to be there ? You make zero sense and come off like you’re clueless.

  91. gwac

    A smart youngish guy such as yourself is probable better off somewhere else to build a career.

    Like Vancouver? I’d make the same there as here but have to pay more for living expenses. Overall a net decrease. No thanks. I assume Local Fool is in a similar boat.

    Depending on your career Vancouver doesn’t pay much better (definitely not enough to justify the housing price difference). I could be doing better in a US city, but Vancouver isn’t going to improve my work situation.

    There could be an argument as far as networking and being in Vancouver or Toronto over Victoria (better for your career overall), but if you travel for work and have enough contacts outside of Victoria I don’t think that’s a big deal anymore. We have this thing called the internet now. I regularly skype with business contacts and colleagues in Vancouver, LA etc.

    While I don’t 100% love Victoria, so far I haven’t found a better alternative.

  92. Hawk my dad was an alcoholic and I have a very close relative with mental health issues. That good enough for you.

    Never said there was a ton of high paying jobs. Please find that post.

    If someone does not really like the island and has major career aspirations yes they should leave.

  93. Local Fool,

    Why should you have to leave ? gwac just told us Victoria has tons of high paying jobs with the explosion of tech etc. More hypocrisy.

  94. Funny how AG & gwac always come back with the “you’re angry” BS while they spew right wing idiocy verus acknowledging the facts.

    Obviously they have never known anyone who has experienced mental health/addictions problems in their families or friends because they live the silver spoon perfect life.

    Whose gonna pay for all the new begging cops ? Oh right, the taxpayers who will get tax increases they despise. Hypocrites.

  95. Gwac, you’re making me turn the same color as my shirt. You’re too kind. I’m not that smart; most of my comments and arguments are actually very simple.

    The point was highlighting the subjectivity. I love the island, and Victoria. Was born here and have always come back from the other places I have lived. Not sure I want to leave.

    I don’t think I’d live in Vancouver if its prices were half of here. Last year I was flying there what felt like every other week, and I disliked it more and more each time. Veritable purgatory. God forbid they build a bridge from here to the mainland, cause Gold River might become interesting…

  96. Local

    A smart youngish guy such as yourself is probable better off somewhere else to build a career. Does not seem you see the benefit that older person such as myself sees in our little island :). Personally like that this is an island. Keeps a lot of the riff raff off.

    For a younger person I see the frustration at the expense of living here while good paying jobs are very limited. Me I am just good at numbers you seem to have a lot more to offer. I hope everything works out for you and your family, work and house wise.

  97. Hawk’s angry because he wanted a spot in Tent City and now they took it away from him 🙂

    Here’s my answer to the homeless problem here. Ban begging from the streets entirely. That would eliminate those who could work if they wanted. And it would force those who can’t work to get help.

  98. The trend says they are not going down anytime soon regardless of what the fundamentals say.

    You’re in abundant company wondering if the fundamentals are no longer important, others take it further and assert new fundamentals. Like I said in my earlier over-sized post, these arguments tend to surface in highly charged markets wherever they are. Have a look online at Toronto bulls right now – it’s much the same, although they attempt to play up the “world class” meme a lot more. The funny thing is, you can actually go back and see precisely the same “different now, foreign buyers, no land, strong economy” arguments were publicized in 1988, shortly before it blew up. It reminds me of Georg Hegel’s line “We learn from history that we do not learn from history”. Renders me a bit more misanthropic.

    Your extrapolation from the trend is somewhat reminiscent to an earlier claim on this site of every 7 years prices double, ergo they will continue to double. Simple mathematics, IMO, showed that’s impossible. I don’t think we’ll blow up in the manner that I am increasingly thinking Toronto will and must, but I do think we’re in for an unwinding to the point that I am not going anywhere near the market, regardless of whatever my income is or income potential will be. With people so leveraged with an almost religious conviction we’re going to the moon, it won’t need much of a pull back to really cause people grief.

    Being on an island is what gives Victoria more charm, and makes it a better place actually

    Do you know people who live in NWT often say “once you come here and look at the nature, see the sky at night, you will never leave”. Well you know what? No thank you. Not in your life, not for one moment. The only way I wouldn’t leave is if during my attempted escape on foot, some furred quadruped lurking in the snow decided I was dinner. With the amount of frostbite I’d have, I’d taste freezer burnt anyways. Serves him right.

    Victoria? Many would feel “stranded on an island”. It’s part of your charm; it’s part of their repulsion.

  99. Mental health I do, drug addiction and alcohol addiction I do as long as steps are taking to address it. Government needs to be there for those who want treatment. Mental health is a difficult one since no one seems to know how to deal with it. Money needs to be spent to figure that one out. Productivity and family well being is losing out because of that.

  100. Lighten up Luke – just having some fun.

    Having said that, comparing Vancouver Island to Great Britain is a stretch.

  101. The problem Hawk is that every do gooder would have been up her ass in this city. BTW they took her to court and forced the gov to keep it open. Ever since the HST fiasco which was a great idea she is paranoid to offend the idiot masses who cannot balance their own check books.

  102. Gwac, you continue to show your ignorance. Who has been in power for the last 15 years and done fuck all about it until election time rolls around ? Your pal Christy.

    Who let tent city happen when many tried to tell those clowns in the very beginning to shut it down ASAP ? Your pal Christy.

    You clearly have zero understanding of mental health and drug addiction. Shocking but why am I surprised bad on your other idiotic posts.

  103. Luke I am just against everything the ndp stands for so since I cannot vote conservative here. She is the next best thing. This is very harsh view that a lot of people will criticise me for but here it goes. I am so fed up of walking down town and seeing people just wasting their lives doing SFA while the rest of us work and pay taxes. Ya Ya I know I do not know their history but sorry some people need a swift boot and stop blaming society for their problems. My upbringing was no bed of roses. People just seem to expect a lot these days from the government, from their parents from strangers (go fund me). . Final before I get bashed those that truly cannot take care of themselves should have a safety net from the government. Those that can get a second job or third to pay for the things they want. Anyways my rant is over

  104. “It’s the same phenomenon that’s helped Britain over the ages – having the moat to protect it from Europe’s troubles, ”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invasions_of_the_British_Isles

    Er… reason first… the last successful invasion of Britain was 1066. Or, if you count revolutions the ‘Glorious Revolution of 1688’ That was a long time ago, since then Napoleon, the Spanish Armarda and the Nazi’s all failed. The moat helped, you can’t deny that. As for present time – the moat has also kept most of the horde of refugees that flooded over Europe, mostly to Germany and Sweden, over the last two years. With the ‘Jungle’ refugee camp now dismantled, and Brexit to set the stage to limit the flood of EU worker migrants, the moat will help again.

    As for us here in Victoria on Vancouver Island – you could argue that our ‘moat’ keeps many of the Lower Mainland ‘gang land’ troubles out. We are also more removed from the US and it’s troubles b/c of it.

  105. I’m not sure how anyone can prop up our ‘booming’ economy today, unless they have their head in the sand about what’s keeping it afloat. We are in debt and putting many of our eggs in the same basket and the only thing that will keep the party going is an ever increasing price for homes. 18% of our GDP is real estate, yet it only provides 2% of the jobs in BC. Christy’s jobs numbers are a joke for all other sectors… yes, we’ve increased “jobs” under the Liberals. Part time, low wage, precarious jobs that do nothing to support our communities. A balanced budget built on the backs of the working class, who cannot even buy a home here anymore, is nothing to brag about. There’s some great points in here about what our balanced budget actually means for young people, with an obvious housing focus :
    http://www.gensqueeze.ca/_codered_b_c_is_the_worst_performing_economy_in_canada_for_younger_generations?utm_campaign=20170323_elxn1&utm_medium=email&utm_source=gensqueeze

  106. But the amount of bank lending is a function of interest rates. Banks lend as much as they think borrowers will be able to repay. When interest rates are low, due at least in part to BoC guidance (policy race currently 0.5%), the cost of borrowing is lower so banks think it safe to lend more.

    Currently we have a BoC policy rate 1.5% below the BoC target inflation rate (and the way the bank measures inflation understates the actual inflation rate), which means that real interest rates are near, or in some cases below, inflation.

    What that means is, that in theory, borrowing doesn’t cost, it pays. So what do you think is going to happen. People are gonna borrow their brains out buying houses, to borrow Garth’s colorful language.

    The people that are borrowing their brains out are… well… stupid for falling into that trap. And the banks lending such huge amounts to them are only aiding the problem that leads to false increases in house prices, more debt, more hopelessness for younger folks who feel they may never afford a home, etc. What happens if interest rates rise? What happens if the house prices fall below what the bank lended and the bank is stuck holding the bag. They are still making money out of nothing as well.

    While I feel Victoria is not as in much danger as say, TO, I don’t think it’s a good path to continue to go down. Anyway, off to work now – that’s it from me for today…

  107. Luke I am a guy but appreciate how hard it is for women to get ahead in this world. I just think Christy has tried and done very well to please as many people as possible while still keeping taxes low and balancing the budget. Politics is tough game.

    Interesting gwac, of course I thought at first the way you were talking you were a woman. Chrusty needs to do more to help the poorer working classes and disenfranchised, is my view, but that’s not her agenda. She’s spent a lot of time just helping her wealthy developers and friends, etc. Only come near election time she changes her tune. After the election, if she wins, right back to her old patterns I’d predict.

    I happen to work in what was traditionally a ‘mans’ job – and still only 1 in 7 people in my job are women. 20 Years ago that was more like 1%. When talking to some of the women who came in early – they had stories to tell me of how they were confronted by the overwhelming majority men who thought they should stay home barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. One of the gals had an interesting retort when, 20 years ago, a guy told her she was in the wrong job and should go home to the kitchen. She brought in baked goodies the next day and slammed them down in front of his face in front of everyone in the lunch room. This more or less forced him into a sheepish apology. I commended her on it and made sure she knew that, esp. with being in the younger generation, I had more progressive views. But, it’s a good example of how women have often had to confront these ‘old fashioned’ views. I commend any women who can make a go of it and excel to leadership roles, anywhere in life. However, I would caution them to avoid becoming ‘man – haters’, just because they’ve faced, and still may face, some more adversity than a typical man might.

    As for Chrusty, I’m not voting for her, as she’s shown so many examples of how she doesn’t care enough about the common person, and I think we need a change, even if it is NDP, as unfortunately that’s the only option. Perhaps they have learned from the mistakes of the 90’s? Dare I hope?

  108. @Luke

    You forget the #3 cause which is banks lending too much money out of thin air/nothing – thereby contributing to false increases in housing prices in so many places, it’s happening all over the English speaking western world – from the UK, to Australia/NZ, to the US, to here.

    But the amount of bank lending is a function of interest rates. Banks lend as much as they think borrowers will be able to repay. When interest rates are low, due at least in part to BoC guidance, the cost of borrowing is lower, so banks think it safe to lend their clients more.

    Currently we have a BoC policy rate 1.5% below the BoC target inflation rate (and the way the bank measures inflation understates the actual inflation rate), which means that real interest rates are near, or in some cases below, inflation.

    In turn, that means that, in theory, borrowing doesn’t cost, it pays. So what do you think is going to happen? People are gonna borrow their brains out buying houses, to one of Garth’s colorful phrases.

  109. There is a rule in investing that says, whatever you may think,” watch what the smart money is doing, not what they are saying”.
    They want you to think a certain way, otherwise, they don’t have the edge.

    It was apparent when Costco decided to come to the Island, it wasn’t by happenstance.
    I don’t think Sobey’s is a flipper.
    And Pattison, well , you decide…

  110. You might get angry at Christy about the housing bubble. But the main drivers behind it are:
    1. Low interest rates
    2. Zoning

    They are both out of her control.

    Could she have done more to restrict foreign ownership? Probably, but that kind of restriction is a big call and not what you would usually expect from a right-leaning Liberal government.

    You forget the #3 cause which is banks lending too much money out of thin air/nothing – thereby contributing to false increases in housing prices in so many places, it’s happening all over the English speaking western world – from the UK, to Australia/NZ, to the US, to here.

    I actually don’t blame Chrusty for causing the housing bubble, but she could’ve done something more about it much much sooner. It would’ve avoided all those people having to take on too much debt for FOMO, and she should’ve totally restricted (not just taxed) foreign absentee speculation and ownership by people – Province wide – who don’t intend to live/work here and pay taxes here. In fact, restrict speculation altogether as houses should be for living in, not flipping. But, you’re right, not on her right wing agenda. She only introduced the foreign tax b/c she saw that there was too much anger being generated by what was happening in Van (and we did see foreign – Chinese mostly – buyers being a major market force there – more like 20% not 5%). So, in my view, the foreign tax is just an attempt to win the election, and it may work for her, esp. given the weak presence so far we see from the NDP, and people still have horror memories of the NDP in the 90’s.

    As for isolation, it is. Any city with 400,000 people (that is small) that is accessible only by boat or plane, far from any globally significant city, is isolated. Toronto by contrast, is near Boston, New York and several other major population and transit hubs. That’s not isolated, IMO. Yes Gold River is isolated, but that’s like saying that Iqaluit isn’t isolated because it’s not Alert Airport, NU.

    Yes, on a global scale 400k people is small, but for Canada it’s not – it’s the 15th largest in Canada. Being on an island is what gives Victoria more charm, and makes it a better place actually, more removed from many of the world’s troubles. It’s the same phenomenon that’s helped Britain over the ages – having the moat to protect it from Europe’s troubles, being on an island can be a very good thing. You forget the other things that make Victoria so desirable compared to other Canadian cities of the similar size, but I already exhausted that argument, and the weather lately isn’t working in my favour (though it still beats anywhere east of the Rockies).

  111. Local Fool

    You are a mart guy and can tell very thorough in your analysis. Me I am a lazy person, that`s why I chose Technical Analysis as a field of study. Figuring out all that fundamental crap is tiring. History has a tendency of repeating itself. Human at the end of the day are very predictable over a period of time in their actions. House prices in Victoria have followed a very noticeable trend over the past 30 years. The trend says they are not going down anytime soon regardless of what the fundamentals say. Toronto on the other hand has a trend of getting to a big boom and than a big bust. That pig will blow eventually. Vancouver is a positive price growth than big boom and small retracement than all over again. Not everything is always perfect but I will go with it.

  112. The planned Infrastructure projects also aren’t finished overnight and draw in many resources. Naden has just spent a few years upgrading and still in progress and trades even come from the U.S. and have to be security cleared. These are not short-term options.

  113. I don’t think Costco, Sobey’s (taking over Thrifty’s) and Pattison (taking over Qualicum based Quality Foods, last week, when he already has Save-On established on the island) is just random investment and lack of well thought out growing presence locally.

  114. Isolated would be somewhere like Gold River or perhaps Prince Rupert. I predict, unless there is another 2008, the next ten years will see Victoria change dramatically from what it is today or was in the past.

    Local fool. I think you may be surprised at what this isolated city by the sea may become. It is the capital of BC. It’s tourism is exploding, its tech industry is building a solid base. On a real estate basis there is no more sfh land of significance to build in the core.

    In fact, I agree with both of you – but you’re both talking about development. That’s not new at all; the one constant you can bet on is change.

    However, you will not have my agreement (for the pittance it’s worth anyways) if you are implying that due to the above, run-of-the-mill houses should be near a million dollars, that it explains or justifies 15-30% YOY gains – it doesn’t. In fact, I don’t even think it comes close.

    The semantic trick many employ (including the BOC) aside from the “advisor” thing is to argue that the “underlying fundamentals are strong” when referring to stratospheric prices. The trick is in the word “underlying”. I believe Victoria’s underlying fundamentals are indeed strong. Then again, so are Toronto’s.

    However and again, I don’t think that our fundamentals justify what’s going on in our market, even if there were triple the cranes on the horizon, double the tourism, or the tech industry twice as large. In fact, what is happening here is happening in 1/3 of the country and I think it is a mistake to use what are some locally positive attributes to rationalize or mitigate out-and-out mania.

    As for isolation, it is. Any city with 400,000 people (that is small) that is accessible only by boat or plane, far from any globally significant city, is isolated. Toronto by contrast, is near Boston, New York and several other major population and transit hubs. That’s not isolated, IMO. Yes Gold River is isolated, but that’s like saying that Iqaluit isn’t isolated because it’s not Alert Airport, NU.

  115. You might get angry at Christy about the housing bubble. But the main drivers behind it are:
    1. Low interest rates
    2. Zoning

    They are both out of her control.

    Could she have done more to restrict foreign ownership? Probably, but that kind of restriction is a big call and not what you would usually expect from a right-leaning Liberal government.

    For the most part, she’s been fiscally responsible and relatively pragmatic. Which is about as much as you can ask for from a premier.

  116. Luke I am a guy but appreciate how hard it is for women to get ahead in this world. I just think Christy has tried and done very well to please as many people as possible while still keeping taxes low and balancing the budget. Politics is tough game.

  117. 2068 Milton St. listed for $948k sold for $1,031k – in the ‘cheap seats’ part of Oak Bay. It was nicely fixed up though. Forget the OB rules about suites w/ full ovens – it has a full on suite clearly visible from the front of the house. But, then I heard an anecdote recently on how around 1/3 of homes in OB actually have suites.

    Here’s an example of a home that was listed to get offers over asking. If it had been listed the same as Lillian (better location but so much more far gone), it may not have sold at all. The list price is, therefore, not meaningless.

  118. Local fool. I think you may be surprised at what this isolated city by the sea may become. It is the capital of BC. It’s tourism is exploding, its tech industry is building a solid base. On a real estate basis there is no more sfh land of significance to build in the core. Downtown construction is booming. The Government is growing. I think we may all be surprised at the next 10 years. This is not saltspring or Gabriella island.

    Well Gwac – on this I have to agree. Hardly isolated – though Vic is less connected globally than Van of course. Isolated would be somewhere like Gold River or perhaps Prince Rupert. I predict, unless there is another 2008, the next ten years will see Victoria change dramatically from what it is today or was in the past. I only hope our leaders take care in ensuring the change is for the better and not for the worse. It is happening so fast I hope we don’t act like Langford where all the change has been so poorly done, and I hope we make sure the change that comes is for everyone’s benefit – like more diverse housing, and something done about the lack of rentals and lack of affordability.

    A pipe dream, perhaps, though – is this an example of diverse housing, finally? Condo’s with vegetable gardens and ‘forward thinking’ amenities? http://thewade.ca/

  119. I like Christy. Single Mom running a province. Do not get the hatred. You go girl……Put those men in their place.

    Nothing to do with her being a women Gwac. Actually, I’d bet you’d vote against a man if there was another women to choose just for that reason alone. I have nothing but respect and admiration for certain women in leadership positions who knew/know how to lead – like Margaret Thatcher who marched into the boy’s club and turned Britain around from being the ‘sick man of Europe’ to one of the world’s leading financial and technological countries as it is today. Now, we have Teresa May doing a fine job (so far) steering them away from the mess Europe is becoming with Brexit. She has her work cut out for her though…

    Re. the recent US election… I also thought ‘you go Hillary’ though I have to admit I thought she’d be more of the same as before and the Dem’s should have chosen a different leader, they might have won over the nightmare that got in.

    I also have to agree w/ Hawk (feels strange again) that Chrusty has done virtually nothing to help the poor or disabled – only forced to make recent announcements on housing that don’t go far enough, and the foreign tax which will be shown to not work, all only done b/c she has an election coming. The recent taking away disabled bus passes was extraordinarily vicious and unnecessary – the buses run regardless of weather or not they’re empty. The welfare rate has not changed in ten years and is pathetic to start with – could you live on $610/mo.?

    -Since her gov’t got in way back in 2001 w/ that awful man Gordon Campbell (yes, men can be k*nts too), we saw it all start with heartless cuts to social spending left right and centre, gutting of the health system and BC Parks, while benefits started to go to the rich instead. Now, we see more evidence of desperation/homelessness/many people barely scraping by, as the rich get richer and the working poor get more disenfranchised. When my British relatives were visiting here recently they’re jaws just dropped and they made numerous comments at all the desperate/sad/drug addicted people milling about in both downtown Vic and Van- and it reminded me how we don’t take care of the less fortunate here at all in comparison to Britain. And, we are supposedly a very wealthy province/country so we could be doing a lot more. I’m not saying everyone deserves a free handout – but a society is measured and judged by how it treats it’s most vulnerable. We don’t do well at all in that regard.

  120. advisor = adviser?

    My crap detectors are firing. That is clearly an intentional blind eye on the part of “regulators”… or are they “regulaters”.

  121. But seriously, how dumb are the regulators to regulate “financial adviser” but then allow a bank to call someone “financial advisor”?

    Terrible indeed. That smells very much like a carefully orchestrated and negotiated loophole. Thanks for the tip – I’ll be watching for that fraudulent title.

  122. Leo,
    Many, perhaps even most FSBO’s will pay a selling commission. Yes, one always must clarify that before presenting an offer.
    However in Alberta (and I really didn’t want to get into any specific differences between Alberta and BC) we are now REQUIRED (as of July 2016) to enter into a commission contract with our buyers which stipulates if there isn’t a selling commission the buyer agrees to pay a negotiated commission.

  123. Yes I’m aware of the Stats module. Problem is the stats don’t match what the VREB publishes.
    February MOI:
    Matrix: 2.39
    VREB: 2.28
    Residential (condo + townhouse + manufactured + SFH) / residential inventory: 1.66
    Which one is correct? How are they counting sales? That’s why I consistently use the same definition, for which we have data back to 1996.

    Very strange that they don’t match as the data is the same. It some times takes an agent a few days before they enter the data onto the system. In order to get the published monthly data out quickly at the beginning of the month it is necessary for VREB to make projections. I have never been able to reconstruct the published data with the data system using the way you have explained or using the STATS module. Once published on the VREB site they remain carved in stone. In contrast, the STATS can change and are the actual numbers right up to the last half hour.

    If you want to go back further then set your customized year at 2011 and check the box for previous years going back 9.

  124. Richard Haysom, Leo S, thanks very much for the information about buyer’s agent’s commissions.

    Wonder if I got those apostrophes right. Maybe they should have come after the ss? Seems like a high IQ grammar question, that.

  125. But seriously, how dumb are the regulators to regulate “financial adviser” but then allow a bank to call someone “financial advisor”?

    This almost sounds too tragically comical to be true.

  126. There are now in approx.7% of listings where the listing Agent does not offer to pay a selling commission. In these cases it is up to the buyer’s Agent to negotiate a selling commission with their client in the case they make an offer on a property which isn’t paying a “selling” commission.

    Normally the buyers agent would go to the seller first to negotiate a commission (in case of FSBO) before approaching their client the buyer. No?

  127. CS

    Since no one has answered your question I’ll give it a shot.
    Approx 93% of listings are conducted the traditional way in which all commissions are paid by the seller, or as per Agency B’s client in your question.
    There are now in approx.7% of listings where the listing Agent does not offer to pay a selling commission. In these cases it is up to the buyer’s Agent to negotiate a selling commission with their client in the case they make an offer on a property which isn’t paying a “selling” commission.
    I explain this to my clients before looking at any properties and notify them of all properties that apply to this situation. It is the same as if I were showing my buyer a listing by a “For Sale by Owner” commonly known as FISBO’s.

  128. Re winners in the present market, they are, most obviously, the flippers, but more importantly the banks who get to lend lots of lovely money they create simply by means of some fancy book-keeping entries and then charge interest on. That is to say the banks are the winners unless interest rates take a sharp upward course and borrowers start to default. Then not only the banks but taxpayers are likely to become bigtime losers.

    But the biggest winners are the builders who are making fortunes plus the trades people, the framers, the dry-wall haulers, etc. who do the work. When the boom ends, recession will surely follow.

  129. Would someone be kind enough to explain to me something about agents fees. Specifically, if Agent A of Agency A, acting for a client, presents an offer for a property listed by Agent B of Agency B, who pays what fees to whom?

  130. Housing affordability and the effect on the working poor.

    http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/working-poor-series-affordability-crisis-hits-low-income-earners-hardest

    Talking to CTV today about low inventory. The question was who are the winners and losers in this market. I gave some lame answer about the winners being those selling and moving to a cheaper market, and the losers being those trying to get into the market for the first time.
    Reality is we are all losers when there aren’t affordable housing options out there. Not everyone needs to own, but the rental market is a disaster too.

  131. On politics, I find myself siding firmly with Hawk…. Christy has been a good feminist role model, but I her policies were stale back in 2013. The extreme face-saving and lack of humility is pathetic. The approach to the teachers’ strike was cynical beyond belief, Site-C is a project that needs far more review, and the RE-based corruption and wild west campaign financing needs to end. She and her cronies killed Vancouver as a city – it’s sad, really.

    Although I do fear for the future and see some clouds gathering, I don’t see a crash coming anytime soon for Victoria. For better or for worse, quantitative easing, divestment and years upon years of low-rates and low corporate returns have made RE a convenient cash parking lot for both domestic and international investors. Victoria is safe and beautiful and vibrant and culturally interesting, and therefore a good place for those with money to consider investing in or moving to – Canadian or foreign. I also favour ensuring more benefits come to Canadian communities and individuals. It’s a national embarrassment that cities like West Van ‘boast’ high child poverty rates due to the lack of local income sources – complete exploitation of our safety nets by undeserving 0.1 percenters.

    I’m not sure why others haven’t mentioned it – one thing Canada does extremely well is public university education. There’s a reason so many foreign students are RE investors; our schools are very good, the prices are cheaper than foreign private sector alternatives, and the study environments are generally safe, diverse, and engaging. Better (and cheaper) than most American public schools, better than Europe. We do education very well, in general. Ok, we could/should do better with the trades & apprenticeships programs, but the highly educated middle class here should be a much greater source of national pride (having lived for 6 years in the US, the contrast is dramatic).

  132. If selfie boy can be PM anyone can.

    Prime Minister Christy Clark. Has a nice ring to it. 🙂

    The one who should go for it is the current conservative leader. She is impressive. Too bad it will either be one of those 2 clowns in the lead.

  133. Please, nobody even joke about CC becoming PM, I do not think I can take it. How anybody that naive and ignorant rises to the position of Premier is beyond me.

  134. John: Another clue that the Matrix stats module is defective.
    MOI for March 2007 they say was 1.77 which is significantly lower than what it says for right now (2.07).
    Problem is there is no way this is correct. The market was slowing down already in 2007. If we look at the actual months of inventory it was 3.7 (833 sales and 2357 inventory).

  135. Instead of “Search” go to “STATS” on the same line. Then you can run presets and then customize and chart them.

    Yes I’m aware of the Stats module. Problem is the stats don’t match what the VREB publishes.
    February MOI:
    Matrix: 2.39
    VREB: 2.28
    Residential (condo + townhouse + manufactured + SFH) / residential inventory: 1.66
    Which one is correct? How are they counting sales? That’s why I consistently use the same definition, for which we have data back to 1996.

    Also you said the MOI was 0.83 in the 2000s, but Matrix doesn’t let you go back that far. How did you calculate that?

  136. Gwac, Tourism is the same level as 1998 so it may be up but there have been similar years. Can you show us where government hires are exceeding retirements ?

    How big does tech get? Isn’t tech about designing ways to eliminate jobs ? Yes it has a solid base but the I think the jury is out on seeing massive growth when new talent wants big bucks to pay for the high costs of living here. Last time I looked the Viatec jobs page seemed lower than usual for entry level jobs.

  137. Great post Local Fool. We all love it here but making it the greatest place on earth to the outside world is a stretch.

    Well said oops. My timing may be off but no one can deny this story is in the 9th inning built on an ocean of debt. I hate seeing people get hurt bad getting caught up in manias when they blow up, but bulls lose sight due to almighty greed. Thus their dislike of the bears posts and seeing the Home Capital mortgage fraud resurface. This is where the horses leave the barn.

    Did you know Christy’s approval rating is 31% which is below Trump ? Yep, Christy for PM. 😉

  138. Local fool. I think you may be surprised at what this isolated city by the sea may become. It is the capital of BC. It’s tourism is exploding, its tech industry is building a solid base. On a real estate basis there is no more sfh land of significance to build in the core. Downtown construction is booming. The Government is growing. I think we may all be surprised at the next 10 years. This is not saltspring or Gabriella island.

  139. Markets are just like personal relationships. It takes time to really build trust (confidence), and even longer to drop all pretense of caution/suspicion. It takes little to no time to destroy all of it. The housing market is psychology, and little else. Many people are so confident now, that all legal and questionable means are being used to bid up prices – for it doesn’t matter – “I can sell for a higher price tomorrow”. The problem is, it works so well. The bigger problem is, it doesn’t work well for long.

    There is now a pervasive belief that the Canadian housing market is different, and exceptional. It’s a mix derived from nearly 2 decades of substantial price growth, a belief that our regulators know what they’re doing and are keeping lenders on the straight and narrow, and the fact that our house prices were nearly unscathed by the US housing bubble popping.

    People here are increasingly comparing our cities to a few other jurisdictions on Earth, which I find especially sad and humorous. Partly because the comparison is almost always apples to oranges or missing some important details, or, the repetition of the argument. On the latter, I mean that the same arguments were made in times long past – no more land, foreign buyers, world class, migration etc. These aren’t just made here, people in other places claim similar virtues. People who claim that it is unsustainable are laughed at, or accused of being envious or bitter.

    The funny thing is, in the future when we’re at this point again, all the same arguments will be made, graphs will be shown, statistics will be convincingly and expertly quoted. And in the end, absolutely none of it will make any difference.

    When housing prices get away from the underlying economy, they come back to it eventually. Housing prices in most areas of Victoria have now done this. The eventual outcome is absolutely inevitable, no matter what anyone else on here says, who they quote, what chart they show or what credentials they flaunt. This is elementary folks, not rocket science.

    We are not like Hong Kong, we’re not world class, our tech industry isn’t going to sustain this foolishness, the Chinese won’t, and neither will the Boomers nor their progeny (especially their progeny – guess what most people do when they run into large amounts of cash). Victoria is in many ways desirable and I love it here. But it’s not Mecca, and that’s ok.

    Victoria should just be proud of what it is and probably will always will be – a fairly small, isolated city by the sea, that happens to have flowers come up in the winter.

    Off my pulpit now, the Mrs just made me a quesadilla, and it looks delicious. 😀

  140. Just following up on Leo S. post regarding Home Capital to put a little context into the article he posted. The company has a footprint in Canada’s hottest housing markets, including cities in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario.

    Hawk, Leo S., Local Fool et al may come across as “bears” but their posted links demonstrate the fragility of this “bull” market. There is little value in warning people about a housing bubble but great value for certain people in pushing the mantra of ever increasing home prices. We may not be the United States, but we are sure doing our best impersonation.

    Marc Cohodes just made another bundle.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/real-estate/the-market/californian-short-seller-targets-home-capital-group-canadian-real-estate/article25715455/

    “While he won’t disclose the extent of his short position against Home Capital, Mr. Cohodes has certainly been rewarded in the ensuing months as the company’s share price waned on concerns over falling oil prices.”

    http://www.msn.com/en-ca/money/topstories/home-capital-shares-dive-after-company-terminates-ceo/ar-BByYzzx

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/home-capital-brokers-alleged-fraud-bigger-than-estimated/article27110594/

    “A group of 45 brokers suspended by Home Capital Group Inc. for alleged mortgage fraud generated nearly $2-billion worth of outstanding mortgages for the lender, twice as much as executives originally estimated, the company revealed Wednesday.”

  141. Exactly. I was talking about taxation on successful people.

    So true, those sub 200K peons hardly contribute anything of value. Why do they even bother trying?

  142. In BC your tax rates have only gone up since 2015 if you are in the 200K plus bracket

    Exactly. I was talking about taxation on successful people. And it’s apparently only going to get worse, when they start messing around with capital gains, holding companies, etc.

  143. Gee I wonder why one third of Calgary downtown is empty. Couldn’t be the oil price bubble popping. How about all the developers who kept building as Rome burned ? Nah.

  144. JT won’t stop until anyone successful has been taxed to death.

    Now that sounds like right wing talking points.
    In BC your tax rates have only gone up since 2015 if you are in the 200K plus bracket. If you are in the 45-90 k range rates have gone down. If you are sub 45K rates have stayed the same. If you are 90-200K you paid the same marginal rate but saved a few dollars due to the break on income between 45-90K. The Libs have gotten rid of some stupid boutique tax credits that were terrible policy.

  145. Can’t help adding my 2 cents worth coming from Alberta, yes, that’ll get a few of you going!
    Looks to me things are going pretty well in BC right now. Yes, there are a few problems but when arn’t there problems especially when the economy is hot. CC has you folks in an enviable position. Choose corruption over incompetence anyday especially if things are going well. Besides show me a government that has’nt had some form of corruption.
    Here in Alberta the NDP are wonderfully idealistic and well meaning, but they have no competency in creating jobs or attracting business which we desperately need. One third of Calgary’s downtown is sitting vacant.

  146. JT won’t last much longer. Middle class folks I’ve chatted with lately have all brought up without prompting how much more in tax they’re paying this year. It’s not gone unnoticed. Some even said wow Harper was right about that. Yeah you don’t say…

    But muh weed

  147. As per David Rosenberg, the only reason JT didn’t increase capital gains is because of the “housing bubble of epic proportions”. The JT hate is getting lame too. Let’s bring in O’Leary or one of those other right wing clowns to blow this up.

  148. I’d rather have Christy as PM than Justin. JT won’t stop until anyone successful has been taxed to death.

  149. Christy for PM ? Now there’s no doubt you’re out to lunch. So how many do you know that are faking being disabled ? Just another alt right false perception.

    Her accusing NDP of hacking with zero proof is the equivalent of Trump accusing Obama of “tapping” the phones. Without a script she’s a disaster.

  150. Caveat

    Right on about her. I honestly believe she is a good premiere. Like to see her as conservative PM one day.

  151. Hawk

    No I just believe those that can take care of themselves should. Those that cannot the government needs to be there.

    Those that are not really disabled should not claim they are, only takes away from the deserving.

  152. I do believe if Christy was a man. The hatred would be less.

    There are lots of valid reasons to oppose Christy Clark, but I tend to agree with gwac that there is some extra vitriol directed against CC that may have to do with her being a woman. IMO you see the same thing in AB and ON.

    While I am not a huge fan of Christy Clark if I look at all the BC premiers since WAC Bennett I’d rate her in the top half not the bottom half.

    The good thing about Christy is that she isn’t terribly ideological and she is good at reading the public mood. This means that ideology doesn’t hinder her from supporting some popular ideas that aren’t particularly right-wing or free market.

    Her weakness is that same lack of ideology. Without much of a guiding principle she comes across as an opportunist.

    And then there is the corruption both perceived and real. One remedy to corruption is to change governments from time to time.

  153. Gwac likes it when they take away disabled people’s bus passes. Now thats looking after the poor. These alt right Breitbart types crack me up.

  154. The Liberals are poster children for croney capitalism, regardless of who their leader is.
    The New York Times said it best:

    British Columbia: The ‘Wild West’ of Canadian Political Cash
    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/01/13/world/canada/british-columbia-christy-clark.html?_r=0&referer
    “Unlike many other provinces in Canada, British Columbia has no limits on political donations. Wealthy individuals, corporations, unions and even foreigners are allowed to donate large amounts … Critics of the premier and her party … say the provincial government has been transformed into a lucrative business, dominated by special interests that trade donations for political favors, undermining Canada’s reputation for functional, consensus-driven democracy.”

    Or: Huge windfall from new taxes highlights B.C. economy’s dangerous dependence on real estate
    http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/huge-tax-windfall-highlights-b-c-economys-dangerous-dependence-on-real-estate

    What’s disappointed me about Christy is lack of direction – at least Gordo was on the green bandwagon & had teamed up with the governors of CA, WA, & OR for an electric car charging station highway up the coast.

    On the other hand, the NDP has been completely incompetent in actually getting anything done.

    So there you have our choices: corruption or incompetence. How depressing.

  155. “Reason

    Thanks I will look that word up later. I love getting people going….”

    Says the guy who said he had to leave the blog because he can’t handle the bubble posts. 😉

  156. AG,

    Try Google, piles of info back in 2013 saying the frack bubble was bursting or about to due to a glut by reliable sources in the industry. People in power listen to who pays their tab. Didn’t you learn that working at the bank ? They lost billions lending out while it tanked.

  157. I love getting people going….

    I don’t know what the value to you is in doing that. That’s just asking people to not take your arguments seriously. Why take the time to post then? Anyways.

    she has done a pretty good job and keeping the economy going, running a surplus and still giving out cash to all the needy people who want government handouts.

    I have no idea about the second part, but the first part I find more questionable. There’s no question that their raw numbers in many ways are good; the problem occurs when you look a bit deeper.

    I think attributing the “positive” fiscal numbers to good governance is a bit of a weak argument. Personally, I don’t think the province isn’t actually doing all that well. With the exception of Vancouver and Victoria, much of the province is fairly lackluster. The lower mainland and southern VI has boosted the GDP and other macro numbers via the housing crisis. If the FIRE sector were nominal, I suspect BC would continue to be what it has traditionally been – a have/have-not province, that alternates back and forth.

    With debt levels in BC exploding, I think there’s some room for questioning whether things have really turned around from that traditional paradigm, or we’ll go back to normal.

  158. Painting all people in a union as a socialist is another sad and ignorant statement gwac. You sound like a disgruntled management type.

  159. BTW the natural gas bubble was evident all over the industry the day she started pumping LNG

    Sounds like you knew all about the drop in oil and gas prices, before anyone in the industry did. Well done!

    However, it’s a shame you sold your house in Victoria just before prices skyrocketed. Market timing’s tough, isn’t it.

    It seems that Hawk is moving further and further to the left as his dream of renewed home-ownership continues to evaporate. Maybe the NDP will buy you a house?

  160. Hawk not a liberal… Big time conservative but you do what you do to make sure those union socialist stay out of power.

  161. Local

    While I am just trying rile people up. I do believe if Christy was a man. The hatred would be less.

    I think with the GST crap she was handed she has done a pretty good job and keeping the economy going, running a surplus and still giving out cash to all the needy people who want government handouts.

  162. gwac – your statements are blatantly sexist – you sound like a misandrist (I just looked that up).

  163. “… cushy Teaching or Union jobs into something they can not actually do any harm

    Wow, what a deeply misguided view. So sad.”

    For once we agree. Very sad.

    gwac , your “government handouts” bit is getting totally lame for a Liberal pumper. I’m against corruption and for fairness for all. End of story regardless of party. The Liberals are the most corrupt ever and it’s well documented.

  164. You mean when Christy wasted multi-millions of tax payers money fighting teachers in court for decent class size so kids can learn better ? Then she loses and then wastes more millions appealling only to lose again ? The woman is a vindictive photo op joke.

    Site C will be the next disaster for billions like Gordo did with his Hydro fiasco we paid billions for.

    BTW the natural gas bubble was evident all over the industry the day she started pumping LNG in 2013 but like housing bubble it’s the party that will never end.

  165. … cushy Teaching or Union jobs into something they can not actually do any harm

    Wow, what a deeply misguided view. So sad.

  166. Examples of men hating this amazing powerful Lady. They just feel threatened at the amazing job she has and will continue to do.

    In fact, there is plenty of room to criticize the current leadership and the opposition that don’t originate from a misogynistic motive, and I saw nothing in anyone’s argument that suggested that was the case. That’s like implying a vote to Christy Clarke stems from misandry. Ridiculous.

  167. How has voting for the NDP worked out Hawk….

    Only good thing I guess is to get 35 useless people out of their cushy Teaching or Union jobs into something they can not actually do any harm,

  168. AG and gwac voting liberal in Victoria is a joke and a wasted vote.

    Christy doesn’t know how to read a fricking oil chart or get advice from independent oil analysts and not idiots from the oil companies who can’t see past their last buck they donated to her party ?

    This is a prime example when things blow up, and the powers to be are clueless. She rolled the dice on one big thing and it blew up in her face.

    Wait til rates rise faster than expected due to global forces that are predictable like the oil and gas bubble was.

  169. That is the dumbest thing I have ever heard. Housing is not your retirement fund. It is a necessity for people.

    Whether one’s house is a retirement fund is up to the individual. People can always rent, so owning is not a necessity. What’s next? A brand new Honda Civic is also a necessity? No, anyone can buy a $2000 used Honda Civic, if they cannot afford a new one. Both vehicles do the job. Both renting and owning put a roof over your head.

    Most people who own homes do not think like that.

    The ones who live in areas where homes don’t appreciate very much probably don’t think like that—and that’s probably wise.

    NDP would expand B.C.’s foreign buyer tax

    Are we all going to pretend that governments keep their promises?

    The fact is, no one knows what any government will follow through on once in power.

  170. How about LNG ? Fail.

    Hawk – you can’t blame Christy for the drop in oil and gas prices. Just sounds like you’re ranting.

    I’ll be voting Liberal.

  171. Hawk you are just pissed and want the government to fix your error or give you money.
    I pay my own way you should try it. Stop looking for Government handouts.

  172. The longer one is in power, the higher chance for corruption (purposely or not), regardless the gender.

  173. There’s the answer to foreign nationals owning property, do as Florida does! Double or triple the municipal tax. That way there is no way to avoid paying tax regardless of their citizen tax status and the monies go to the municipalities directly affected by the demand providing extra money for affordable housing to those communities.

  174. Exactly caveat. Speculation is not healthy for a place. People owning the homes they live in is. This is what is more important to me, not simply profiting from my property. I feel no glee in it. I feel grateful I’m not on the other end. That’s it. I chose to live in this great place and it aggravates me to see it devolve into this. I welcome a full on assault on house flippers and speculators.

  175. Hawk

    Examples of men hating this amazing powerful Lady. They just feel threatened at the amazing job she has and will continue to do.

  176. What happened to “families first” gwac ? Fail. How about LNG ? Fail. Gives out $700 million for newbies to keep jacking up condo prices. Fail. Ministry of Families and Children. Fail. There’s many more.

    Easy credit from an oil price collapse is the only reason the BC economy is hot, as it’s based on borrowed foreign money and FOMO. That’s a disaster waiting to happen.

  177. “I like Christy. Single Mom running a province. Do not get the hatred. You go girl……Put those men in their place.”

    Make me puke. The woman is so corrupt, have you lost track of all the scandals and her close friends she hires that are under criminal investigation ? How about the phony health scandal that drove a poor guy to suicide and they never answered for it as they lied to the RCMP.

    On and on it goes with friends in high places as conflict judge. It’s never been so disgusting in BC history. The woman couldn’t tell the truth if her life depended on it.

    Gary Mason sums it up well as her cronies cover her pathetic lies.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/has-premier-christy-clark-had-her-enoughs-enough-scandal/article33991257/

    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/sarah-miller2/top-9-scandals-christy-clark-liberals_b_7658002.html

    http://www.metronews.ca/news/vancouver/2017/03/15/premier-christy-clark-lays-low-as-donations-scandal-grows.html

  178. I don’t think what I or anyone else anon. says on a blog makes any difference to reality anyway.

    No, but I was still curious what you thought, and thanks for responding. I guess the idea of flattening out for a while would depend on interest rates. Victoria did flatten out, I suspect because interest rates dropped further. Had they done otherwise, I think the price would have dropped. So the question is in part, what will the interest rates do.

    The other part is, I don’t think interest rates alone explain current pricing. Once the mania dies down and the gridlock stops, there may be a number of headwinds for this market and others. I agree another 20% YOY is possible, depending on when the 2 measurements are being made.

  179. I like Christy. Single Mom running a province. Do not get the hatred. You go girl……Put those men in their place.

  180. NDP is polling high at the moment but I suspect once people really start to pay attention it will tighten up a lot. I think the only way the NDP could actually win is if they hide their platform. There’s no way the Liberals will let them do that.

  181. cavaet emptor – please run for premier! Given there are no choices right now… I’d vote for you 🙂

  182. Would you say you are optimistic or pessimistic about the short and medium prospects of this market, and why so? If…you don’t mind indulging me. I am curious.

    Local fool – I think I mentioned this in an earlier post – but here goes again… As I peer into my crystal ball and the purple smoke clears, I think the market will rise this year perhaps as much as 20% for SFH in the core by years end over 2016 levels, then flatten out for a while. Later on, patterns of the past repeated – where Vic’s market rises for a while then goes flat for a while. But, I definitely don’t see a repeat of the early 1980’s. I can’t see interest rates ever going to 1980’s levels and the world is so much more globalized now than it was then. In the early 1980’s, for ex., most of the Chinese were still just peasant farmers and none were vastly wealthy like the 1% (almost half of Canada’s population) of them are today.

    The question is, when it stops rising? I can’t really go further than this year as so much could change after 2018. Things can could derail the market: NDP gets in – this would change things pretty quickly I think all those cranes would disappear. A disaster would be if Trump does something spectacularly stupid (lets hope – not nuclear armageddon then nothing matters) at least it does appear that on most fronts he’s made impotent by their political system, so I’ve stopped worrying about him. If there’s a repeat of 2008 (or worse) that would definitely extinguish the market. If interest rates were to rise sharply faster than we expected (unlikely). Lastly… any one or more of Hawks doomsday predictions would certainly kill this market 😉

    And – I don’t try to talk anything ‘up’ or ‘down’. I just talk about what’s happening and I guess that can be interpreted by some as talking things up or down, but I’m not attempting either. I don’t think what I or anyone else anon. says on a blog makes any difference to reality anyway.

  183. Foreign housing tax should not be expanded until all the court challenges. After that go ahead. If the Government loses no need to have a bigger mess.

  184. I’d love to see a federal and provincial government that worked together to reduce speculation in the housing market.

    1) Close loopholes in the PTT
    2) Apply foreign purchaser tax more broadly in BC and other have said make it refundable after a certain threshold of income taxes are paid in Canada
    3) Alter the principal residence exemption so it is reduced for short holding periods. Less than 1 year (no exemption), 1-2 years 33% exemption, 2-3 years (67% exemption), 3+ years 100% exemption
    4) Set threshold for property buying and selling (# of transactions) that makes the net proceeds automatically income rather than capital gains
    5) Clarify rules around suites and principal residence exemptions so as not to discourage the renting of suites
    6) Eliminate the Homeowner grant and plow the savings into a cut of income taxes or a reduction in percentage rate of PST
    7) Enforce existing rules on Air BnB and similar services.

    Couple that with a new mindset at City Hall that would encourage family friendly condo townhouse developments as an alternative to skyboxes and SFHs

  185. Caveat

    Totally agree. On election Day those conservatives fearing an NDP gov will vote Liberal. I think the NDP has no clear message and the greens will keep taking votes from them. I went on the NDP website to see their platform. Pretty empty. I goggled it and all I could find was something about logs and 10 dollar a daycare. Wonder how much that daycare thing will cost.

  186. Since the talk is turning to election here are the current polling averages. http://www.threehundredeight.com/p/british-columbia.html

    NDP currently leading, but I wouldn’t put too much stock in that given the early date and the epic polling miss in 2013.

    If CC wants to win again she has to scare people about the socialist bogeymen. OTOH if JH wants to win he has to hammer Christy on her weak point which is the pervasive air of corruption surrounding her and her party. That’s the negative. I also think it will be important which party is better able to articulate a positive vision.

    I wouldn’t underestimate Christy at all, she is a smart politician. She is far enough to the centre that she doesn’t leave that much room for the NDP but far enough to the right that there has never been a serious challenger to the right. If the vote is close then the amount of votes siphoned off to the Greens and Conservatives will be a key factor. Personally I’d expect the Conservative vote to collapse and go sharply Liberal while the Green vote will decline from projections but not collapse. Greens will tilt NDP, but not as strongly as the Cons will go Liberal.

  187. FYI, as per the bad ole NDP, despite a global commodity crash they still managed decent growth numbers versus Campbell’s stretch.

    From 1992 through to 2000, during the New Democrats’ nine full years in power (which excludes the last two months of 1991, and the first four months of 2001), B.C.’s GDP grew by an annual average of three per cent.

    Under Gordon Campbell’s BC Liberals, provincial GDP from 2001 through 2008 rose by an annual average of 2.8 per cent. However, if we include the Royal Bank’s estimates for 2009 and 2010, that number slips to 2.4 per cent.

  188. Financial Post take on lack of inventory:

    “Realtors call it a type of gridlock. Detached home prices have soared past $1 million and become out of reach for young buyers. As a result, more children are moving back home and that forces their parents to stay put, cutting down on the supply of family-friendly homes. Reduced supply drives up prices further, putting even more young adults out of the market.”

    “56.3 per cent of young adults were living at home in Toronto. ”

    http://business.financialpost.com/personal-finance/mortgages-real-estate/giving-them-the-boot-how-to-get-rid-of-your-millennial-children-in-five-easy-steps

  189. @ Luke,

    I confess to be a bit confused by your posts too. You do seem to alternate between a tourism Vic employee, and then talk the market dynamics down.

    Would you say you are optimistic or pessimistic about the short and medium prospects of this market, and why so? If…you don’t mind indulging me. I am curious.

  190. “We want to keep our paradise the way it is (or was).”

    Luke, it’s obvious you want everyone to drink the Koolaid but facts are the market is in red alert zone via CMHC and every bank in Canada.

    Again you pump you don’t want it Vancouver but then you say it must go that way so you can make more money on your gamble on Oak Bay real estate. Keep on pumping though, your missing out on your calling for Victoria tourism. 😉

  191. You seem to pump it both ways Luke, you don’t want it turning into Vancouver but you pump Victoria like a tourism employee.

    Corporations and developers run this province through influential donations. This has to end. There’s growth, then there is insanity which we are witnessing now. As the Eagles sang: Call some place paradise, kiss it good bye.

    You’re right Hawk – everybody reading this blog – listen to only what Hawk says from now on! Victoria’s an awful place you DO NOT want to come here! We want holes in the ground and no economic growth! Stay away! We want to keep our paradise the way it is (or was).

    I’ll get to this one before you Hawk 😉 …
    1821 Lillian St. in Fairfield Price reduced (or as Hawk would say: ‘slashed’) by $50k now a bargain basement price of $1,199k. I think this one compares to the 224 Robertson joint but the Robertson people were smarter as they priced that to get an over-asking. If John Dollar is right and the list price is ‘meaningless’ then the Lillian St. people should listen to that and price the listing like nearby Robertson. I love how the dining room set (green) matches the awesome kitchen cabinets.

  192. You seem to pump it both ways Luke, you don’t want it turning into Vancouver but you pump Victoria like a tourism employee.

    Corporations and developers run this province through influential donations. This has to end. There’s growth, then there is insanity which we are witnessing now. As the Eagles sang: Call some place paradise, kiss it good bye.

  193. Luke, you place too much importance on the asking price. It’s meaningless in today’s market and only meant to entice prospective purchasers. There are better metrics available to show what is and what is not happening in the market than the listing to sales ratio.

    Set yourself free Luke, do not go towards the listing price.

    Very funny John Dollar – the video link from Yoda’s advice – however, I disagree the listing price is ‘meaningless’, but agree the sales price is of course what is more telling. The examples I post are not just over asking’s and that illustrate’s what is really happening in the market (however, there are lots of ‘over askings’ happening so one can’t avoid that). I only post what’s happening of notable interest in OB and Fairfield as other people have the other area’s covered.

    Oh dear – Vicvan – that is not helping me in my reluctance to vote NDP 🙁

  194. I don’t think either major party has a handle on the social and economic forces surrounding the housing market.

    The Liberals moved too late on the foreign buyers tax in Vancouver, but move they did unlike in Ontario. Plus hey are beholden to big money in the real estate and construction industries. They are corrupt but competent.

    The NDP is stuck in the 90s. Too many old dinosaurs in terms of policy and people that simply have not kept up with the times. Their obsession with making the rich pay captures the local hardworking upper middle classes but lets the real rich and the real cause of the housing crisis – offshore money – off the hook. Plus they are just too incompetent to manage a complex economy/society like BC.

    Both scare me to death.

  195. “My worry is, however, that unless something is done quickly, Victoria is heading in a similar direction. It will never be as nightmarish as Van as it’s simply nowhere near as big, but – we have a growing issue here …”

    Agree Luke, well said. When I started posting here, I was getting concerned about the nature of some condo and luxury home developments, because I could see the same patterns happening here as in Vancouver – the disappearance of family-friendly housing.

    One of Canada’s advantages has been that we have a mix of demographics & socioeconomic classes in the same neighbourhoods – it’s made us more tolerant and welcoming as a society.

    As soon as you suddenly create ghost-town neighbourhoods, and the feel of “gated” communities, it changes a city for the worse.

    Local Fool, I hear what you’re saying about flipping that paragraph around (“coveted” is not a fact!). But the numbers are significant for smaller towns, so we need to get motivated to be involved in zoning decisions & neighbourhood plans – before this just becomes a city to park wealth, at the expense of the next generation.

  196. The NDP will never get elected in 2017. Those people could not manage a convenience store without bankrupting it.

    Maybe not. On the other hand, Trump will never win the nomination or get elected as POTUS.

    Just saying, I wouldn’t be advising people to take it to the bank just yet. We’ll see what happens – just make sure to vote!

  197. Take this to the Bank

    The NDP will never get elected in 2017. Those people could not manage a convenience store without bankrupting it.

  198. Luke, since you weren’t here in 2008, you might want to refresh your memory what Victoria looked like last time there were cranes all over Victoria. Many large holes for many years and no one wanted to finance them even at low rates for those times.

    Actually Hawk – I was here – I moved to the island in 2007 and visited Victoria frequently after that until I actually moved to Victoria in 2015.
    There was this thing that happened in 2008 which almost crushed the global economy… anyone remember what that was? I guess if that happens again you may get all those holes in the ground you so eagerly desire. We may not have to wait too long though as I think if the NDP get’s in the cranes all over Victoria’s skyline will disappear – maybe not an entirely bad thing. Too much growth and we end up like Vancouver here. I find myself comparing BC’s upcoming election to the recent one in the US – lacking in choice. Choose the lesser of two evils. I guess I may have to, reluctantly, vote NDP. Can anyone convince me to not be reluctant about it? I certainly won’t vote for Chrusty.

  199. “Hawk may be quite right though that they crush the economy again as they did in the 90’s, and people still don’t forget that.”

    That’s another Liberal campaign slogan AKA as fake news. You might have forgotten the 90’s too Luke, but NDP did not crush the province economy, the global commodity crash did.

    Since BC was heavily built on commodities back then it’s common sense what happened but many still want to spin that false narrative.

  200. NDP would expand B.C.’s foreign buyer tax

    “The problem with the foreign-buyer tax, unfortunately, is it doesn’t affect anyone who got into the market before the tax was introduced,” Eby told Business in Vancouver.

    Eby said that, under the NDP’s proposed Housing Affordability Fund and Speculator Fee Act, a foreign national who did not pay taxes in B.C on his or her income would be subject to a retroactive foreign-buyer tax on all B.C. home purchases, regardless of how long the properties had been owned. Eby said an NDP government would apply a 2% tax on the assessed value of all such property.

    The NDP would also close what Eby termed two “loopholes” in the foreign-buyer regulations: the use of trusts and other corporate vehicles to disguise home ownership and the exemption on transactions of pre-sale condo assignments.

    Currently, the foreign-buyer tax does not apply to any foreign national who sets up a company in B.C. as long as no more than 25% of the shares are owned offshore, said Christine Duhaime of Duhaime Law in Vancouver, who is considered an expert on Asian real estate.

    Eby said the NDP would require that the owners of the property be disclosed and “whenever the beneficial benefit is transferred, through selling shares in the company, or any manner, the property transfer tax would have to be paid.”

    The NDP would also move to police and tax transactions of sales contracts for pre-sale condos. These are know as assignment sales. He added that the NDP would require registration of all pre-sale contracts on new homes, and the foreign-buyer tax would be triggered by the sale of such registrations, not just on transfer of title.

    https://www.biv.com/article/2017/3/ndp-would-expand-bcs-foreign-buyer-tax/

  201. Not everybody in Van is moving here, but there’s a lot of evidence that people are moving out, and even if it’s just 1%, it’s enough to shift the balance of the market here (eg., StatsCan data indicates it by net intraprovincial migration out of Vancouver in 2015)

    We’ve moved back home to Victoria (after enjoying Van for 30 years), but what we find interesting is how Victorians sometimes under-estimate the sheer magnitude & speed of change to Vancouver over 10 years.

    Thank you VicBot – having left Vancouver ten years ago now – I can say I hardly ever return and the best view of that place is in the rear-view window! That city was fast becoming a nightmare even ten years ago, and it’s worse now. Busier, more hectic than ever, gridlock that blows Victoria’s traffic issues out of the water – you can’t drive anywhere in a reasonable amount of time, there’s tons of rain that turns everything green w/ slime and moss (esp in area’s along the mountains, and much more than in Victoria), it’s full of faceless unfriendly people -which is sharp contrast to Vic, it has a much higher violent crime rate (gangs, etc) than Vic, there’s loads of empty homes or condo’s owned by ultra-wealthy overseas owners while numerous locals go homeless or barely get by in squalid rentals. I really don’t understand the global appeal it has, but that’s mostly Chinese/Asian centred, so I guess compared to hugely over-polluted and populated China, it is better than that.

    My worry is, however, that unless something is done quickly, Victoria is heading in a similar direction. It will never be as nightmarish as Van as it’s simply nowhere near as big, but – we have a growing issue here with lack of affordable housing for both renters or owners – and we are fast approaching Van on that front. We also appear to have a growing problem w/ homelessness. What can be done about it?

    As for the NDP – I was really unimpressed by their website, but given the alternative I’d say there’s a good chance they get in. Hawk may be quite right though that they crush the economy again as they did in the 90’s, and people still don’t forget that. Here is the section on housing speculation, where they say ‘homes are for living, not for flipping’, but it doesn’t go into detail about what they propose to do? The whole website is lacking in detail, and that’s what’s unimpressive… https://www.bcndp.ca/housing-speculation

  202. “Notably, 23% of B.C. Gen-X respondents looking to move elsewhere (if money was no object) prefer Victoria, followed by 22% of B.C. Boomers and 18% of Millennials.”

    Local Fool,

    Luke’s problem is that “if money was no object”. Kinda kills the “pump to eternity” right there unless you sold your $3 million Vancouver digs which apparently is not the case for many of the transplants.

  203. Luke, you place too much importance on the asking price. It’s meaningless in today’s market and only meant to entice prospective purchasers. There are better metrics available to show what is and what is not happening in the market than the listing to sales ratio.

    Set yourself free Luke, do not go towards the listing price.

    https://youtu.be/wVJyf5yKxuo

  204. “But I guess all this and the other homes selling over asking or for high prices, and all the construction cranes all over town means Victoria is not really all that desirable and hardly anyone wants to move here, right? Right…”

    Luke, since you weren’t here in 2008, you might want to refresh your memory what Victoria looked like last time there were cranes all over Victoria. Many large holes for many years and no one wanted to finance them even at low rates for those times.

    Holes in the Ground

    “There’s such an unprecedented level of construction activity in Greater Victoria that it’s easy to overlook one aspect of the long-running building boom: there is a growing number of holes in the ground and demolition sites where nothing at all is getting built.”

    http://www.douglasmagazine.com/holes-in-the-ground/

  205. But I guess all this and the other homes selling over asking or for high prices, and all the construction cranes all over town means Victoria is not really all that desirable and hardly anyone wants to move here, right? Right…

    It is desirable to some people, but according to your March 2 post, not most. Recall:

    According to our respondents, Victoria is perceived as a coveted place to live, with Metro Vancouverites identifying it as the second-most preferred location to move to, after Vancouver. Notably, 23% of B.C. Gen-X respondents looking to move elsewhere (if money was no object) prefer Victoria, followed by 22% of B.C. Boomers and 18% of Millennials.

    Also recall how I responded:

    “I could just as easily flip that paragraph to invert its bias:”

    According to our respondents, Victoria is not perceived as a coveted place to live, with Metro Vancouverites identifying it as the lesser preferred location to move to, compared to Vancouver. Notably, 77% of B.C. Gen-X respondents looking to move elsewhere (if money was no object) would not prefer Victoria, followed by 78% of B.C. Boomers and 82% of Millennials.

    🙂

  206. “As a home owner like 70% of the people in our country, anything to stifle values is fundamentally against a home owner’s interest”

    Agreed, that’s saying the market must be rigged to only go one way which means it’s not a free market at all. Those in the US learned the hard way what excess greed is and the end result will be just as bad here.

    This notion of Canadians as conservative borrowers is so far past being a joke. 167% household debt says its a debt bomb waiting for the fuse to be lit.

  207. Some recent OB sales –

    2111 Kings Rd sold for $998k after starting at $1,065k reduced to $1,035k. This ‘lipstick on a pig’ small rancher was overpriced and sat for a while. I guess I shouldn’t be shocked that $1 million just buys just a small rancher.

    436 Monterey – listed at $1.3m sold for $1.452k – obvious bidding war here. Large lot w/ ocean views probably a builder for a new luxury house as the existing home is practically a pushover.

    And finally, 2167 Granite St. Across from Municipal hall so they can keep a close eye on you… Listed at $1.289k sold for $1.300,020.

    But I guess all this and the other homes selling over asking or for high prices, and all the construction cranes all over town means Victoria is not really all that desirable and hardly anyone wants to move here, right? Right…

  208. people who like to RE as a long term investment because of income stability(e.g. that our current pension system doesn’t adequately cover) will be rather pissed in favour of people who need to get into the market.

    This comment is a perfect example of the myopic, ignorant mentality that unfortunately has become pervasive in many parts of this country. Someone who counts on their house to fund their retirement is a fool. And doubly so, if they think the market will function over the long term without new buyers entering.

    The way to cutoff cheap credit and speculation, if that is the goal, and of which I am also against is quite simple

    I agree with the other posters; go play in the stock market. A RE market based on cheap credit and speculation is generally destructive, most especially over the long term. How someone could make such a comment just as Americans have had this reality shoved in their face is beyond me.

  209. “As a home owner like 70% of the people in our country, anything to stifle values is fundamentally against a home owner’s interest”
    That is the dumbest thing I have ever heard. Housing is not your retirement fund. It is a necessity for people. If you want to play with money go to the stock market. Most people who own homes do not think like that. Look at Vancouver where 90% of residents support the foreign buyers tax.

  210. Try this instead

    Instead of “Search” go to “STATS” on the same line.

    Then you can run presets and then customize and chart them.

    Have fun!

  211. Still not getting those numbers Leo S. What are you including as residential – detached duplexes condos manufactured, etc. And what areas are you using?

    Not sure if you have access to the same system but: Matrix -> Search -> Residential -> Select Status: Current. Results: 1110 matches This is what I am saying is residential inventory.

    For sold: Refresh page, select Pending Date: 2017/03/01-2017/03/27
    Results: 733 matches. (note I made a mistake in earlier post and only selected status: Pending which ignores those that went to Sold during the month).

    Now 733 * 27/31 to estimate full month sales = 841

    1110/841 = 1.31 residential months of inventory (not 1.42 as I said earlier).

    For past months I’m using the residential inventory published by VREB compared to residential sales which gets me 1.6 for March 2004.

  212. @ numbers hack: “As a home owner like 70% of the people in our country, anything to stifle values is fundamentally against a home owner’s interest.”

    Maybe if you take a “one generation” view of the world. If you take a multigenerational view, this is not true because most people have kids. With one house and one kid, at best, house price increases are a wash since you have to live somewhere and your gain is your child’s loss. Hopefully, they will get the house eventually though. If you have more than one kid, then an increase in the one house you own is also an increase in the two or more houses your family will have to buy later.

    To your point, I would say almost exactly the opposite: Unless you can afford more houses and land than your family will need for an infinite number of generations before prices start outstripping incomes, (like Totoro maybe), then house price INCREASES are fundamentally against a home owners interest.

  213. Still not getting those numbers Leo S. What are you including as residential – detached duplexes condos manufactured, etc. And what areas are you using?

  214. I would expect a province wide foreign buyers tax if NDP get in. New rules for money laundering and spec taxes for flippers. Christy’s corrupt developer and foreign friends have ran roughshod over this province the last 15 years, time for major change.

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see a renters tax credit come in too, along with Airbnb taxation.

  215. “Fundamental what we really need is interest rates to be gradually raises 2-3% over 5 years. This would cool things off but the market wouldn’t crash and burn.”

    Rates need to go up 2% in a year. A crash/major correction of 20-30% is healthy for the system and flushes out excess greed and lets new blood into the market. It’s called a business cycle, it how markets function.

    If you think it’s just going to go to the sky to keep your new sheep happy then you’re in for a rude awakening and would just end in more than a crash, it would be nuclear devastation.

  216. Inventory is a very odd thing. In hot markets in the US we saw it super tight and everyone was wailing about needing more new construction. Then the market turned and suddenly there was lots of inventory.
    Whether it was people investing in multiple properties, or leaving town, or empty houses, or consolidating families, somehow those properties freed up.
    I can’t wrap my head around it though. I still think we need to step up construction pace to add more supply to the market.

  217. 1/ Homebuyer 1st House: 5% min. downpayment current rules
    2/ 2nd House: 50% downpayment
    3/ 3rd House +: 70% downpayment

    Problem is ways around rules…..put it into spouses name, child’s names, mom’s name, etc.

    Fundamental what we really need is interest rates to be gradually raises 2-3% over 5 years. This would cool things off but the market wouldn’t crash and burn.

  218. “one man’s insanity is another man’s reality” 😉

    (borrowed from Tim Burton’s ” One person’s craziness is another person’s reality”)

  219. Buyer’s Tax on the Southern Island:
    As a home owner like 70% of the people in our country, anything to stifle values is fundamentally against a home owner’s interest. However, since it is the perception of many that implementing a foreigner’s tax will help solve this, which I don’t think it will IMHO, we can do it. But I would do it on a sliding up scale:
    1/ $1mm or less 20% Tax
    2/ $1mm to $2mm 15% Tax
    3/ $2mm+ 10% Tax

    This tax should be fully refundable over a 5 year period if a foreigner declares income and pays taxes 4/5 years. The rationale for a sliding scale is that this will do little to hurt new construction which constitutes a large part of our economy right now and where there seems to be the most amount of competition for homes. IMO, as foreigners only represent 2% worth of buying, this will not even translate to 1 additional month of inventory and will have little or not effect.

    The way to cutoff cheap credit and speculation, if that is the goal, and of which I am also against is quite simple:
    1/ Homebuyer 1st House: 5% min. downpayment current rules
    2/ 2nd House: 50% downpayment
    3/ 3rd House +: 70% downpayment

    This aforementioned downpayment system has been effective in many countries in terms of reducing over demand. It is a very dangerous system because demand would be greatly reduced; and prices will either flatten or decrease and overall new build activity will slack off. On top of it, people who like to RE as a long term investment because of income stability(e.g. that our current pension system doesn’t adequately cover) will be rather pissed in favour of people who need to get into the market. Not a win-win situation, but one for the political arena.

  220. “Has anyone heard what the NDP is proposing to tackle the affordable housing issue in the upcoming election?”

    I’ve inquired about this with the NDP office as well as David Eby… we’ll see what they come back with.

  221. Check this out – 2949 Charlotte Drive, Colwood. It was listed for $649,900 and just received an accepted offer tonight for $686,500.

    I had to take a second look at this one…..insanity.

  222. The NDP housing critic David Eby says the foreign buyers tax should be applied to southern Vancouver Island. This would increase inventory and drive prices down quickly.

  223. Check this out – 2949 Charlotte Drive, Colwood. It was listed for $649,900 and just received an accepted offer tonight for $686,500.

    It definitely checks a lot of boxes, like a suite. I just can’t believe that it could get that much..

    Should be an interesting summer.

  224. Funny listening to Ron Neal pump Victoria, comparing our prices to Beijing, New York etc. Like duh, they’ve always been cheaper than a metropolis for a reason, we’re on a frigging island.

    That new twin tower is pricing at $700 Sq ft. Sorry Ron, that ain’t cheap for this town.

  225. Has anyone heard what the NDP is proposing to tackle the affordable housing issue in the upcoming election?

    I was wondering this myself. Anyone else get the feeling there is a complete vacuum of election news out there?

  226. I have 1,629 active listing and 720 actual sales so far this month. And that’s for everything, all types of properties and all areas. New listings at 960.

    The graph in the post above is residential inventory. Checking now, we have 1112 residential properties on the market and 680 went pending from March 1 – 27.

    So, 680/ 27 * 31 to estimate sales at the end of the month (it’ll be a bit more than this due to increasing sales rate) means we will get about 780 residential sales this month.

    That is 1.42 MOI for March.

    Most of 2003, 2004, and 2005 had lower months of inventory with March 2004 hitting the lowest value at 0.83 MOI.

    I have no idea how you got that answer. I have 1.6 months of residential inventory for March 2004. All MOI is 2.0
    Consider what 0.83 would mean. That is we are selling more properties than exist on the market. It’s possible with new listings I suppose, but we’ve never seen it here in Victoria that I can tell.

    Nope. Median prices have remained stable at around $530,000 +/-5% for the last six months.

    I don’t understand what you are measuring here. Median for the whole market? More or less meaningless to measure this given the mix of SFH and condos.

  227. Home Capital will be the next big catalyst. Rumour the fired ex-CEO might be under investigation too.

    I read today on VV that foreign money is behind many of the projects going on. That’s even more scary. I thought Victoria wasn’t influenced by foreign money ? Holes in the ground may be a popular sight once again.

  228. It’s interesting because it’s 2003 when prices took off. Mind you at that point it was cheaper to buy than to rent AND rates were plunging down pretty fast. Now? Prices are sky high and rates have been at the bottom for a decade….

  229. Post Script. I shouldn’t have to tell some of you that March is not over yet.

    If you want to project what the MOI for March might be then just
    27/31 x 2.25 = 1.96

  230. Has anyone heard what the NDP is proposing to tackle the affordable housing issue in the upcoming election?

  231. I don’t get the same numbers as you do Leo S.

    I have 1,629 active listing and 720 actual sales so far this month. And that’s for everything, all types of properties and all areas. New listings at 960.

    Still that is a low low inventory, just not the lowest. Most of 2003, 2004, and 2005 had lower months of inventory with March 2004 hitting the lowest value at 0.83 MOI.

    I guess our prices must have gone ballistic given the low low inventory – right?

    Nope. Median prices have remained stable at around $530,000 +/-5% for the last six months.

    Month Months of Inventory Sale Price, Median
    Oct 2016 2.60 $525,000
    Nov 2016 3.00 $529,950
    Dec 2016 3.39 $520,000
    Jan 2017 3.27 $495,000
    Feb 2017 2.39 $529,900
    Mar 2017 2.25 $567,900

    Calculated using 6,000 listings

    The market seems to have adapted to operating in a low inventory environment. Since prices are stable and not rising or falling significantly then the market is balanced between buyer and seller at these low sale volumes and high prices.

  232. Yeah I imagine he’s done pretty well on that one. Wonder if he’s short on anyone else next?

  233. Is there a precedent for the current MOI at this time of year? When was it worse, or closest to now?

    The previous record was 1.6 Months of inventory in March 2004. We are currently on track for about 1.4. See updated chart in post.

  234. @penguin: “the reasons you described for staying in Vic are the same reasons we are not going to see all the vanvouverites moving to Victoria. I will agree that there are some but until someone shows me some real evidence I’ll remain skeptical. They are used to a big city and Victoria just doesn’t compare”

    After talking to yet another friend that’s decided to move here, I wanted to add …

    Not everybody in Van is moving here, but there’s a lot of evidence that people are moving out, and even if it’s just 1%, it’s enough to shift the balance of the market here (eg., StatsCan data indicates it by net intraprovincial migration out of Vancouver in 2015)

    We’ve moved back home to Victoria (after enjoying Van for 30 years), but what we find interesting is how Victorians sometimes under-estimate the sheer magnitude & speed of change to Vancouver over 10 years.

    The changes have been so fast & extreme that it’s disrupted quality of life. It’s reached a tipping point where younger & older folks who aren’t tied to their jobs or property want their quality of life back.

    The sheer number of condo towers + lack of adequate expansion of roads have create extreme prices & gridlock. Friends also say, “Look around – none of the lights in these houses are on – they’re just holding properties for people overseas” Then you see it’s true.

    You drive around and see multiple condo towers being built into the side of a steep hills that have major roadways carrying multi-ton semi tractor-trailers accelerating or using air brakes up/down hills right beside their windows. Would you want to live there? Most people don’t.

    People are moving for quality of life.

    No one is saying they’re all moving to Victoria (well maybe Luke 🙂 ) but some are, and it only takes a few hundred to make a dent. Also, no one is saying this to scare anybody, but to help provide some info about the mindset of people moving, ie., to help people make decisions for their future.

  235. Leo or anyone who knows,

    Is there a precedent for the current MOI at this time of year? When was it worse, or closest to now?

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