Housing Starts Are Up; “My mom is trying to sell a condo in Richmond. 2 months on the market and nothing. Not a soul. Already dropped the price twice.”

“My mom is trying to sell a condo in Richmond. 2 months on the market and nothing. Not a soul. Already dropped the price twice. It’s a newer condo in central Richmond.”
VanCity Girl at greaterfool.ca 10 Aug 2011 3:04am

And in related news:
Metro Vancouver’s housing starts are up 25 per cent for the first seven months of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.
Most of the starts were in Richmond, Burnaby, Surrey and the city of Vancouver.
“The focus of new residential starts remains on multi-family construction, especially apartment condominiums,” CMHC senior market analyst Robyn Adamache said in a statement.
“In the first seven months of this year, 5,903 apartment starts were recorded, compared to 3,882 during the same period last year. A pickup in condominium sales as well as stable economic conditions gave developers the impetus to undertake such projects.”

Vancouver Sun, 9 Aug 2011


Keep On Framin’

20 responses to “Housing Starts Are Up; “My mom is trying to sell a condo in Richmond. 2 months on the market and nothing. Not a soul. Already dropped the price twice.”

  1. “stable economic conditions”

    LOL. This guy could be a writer for The Onion.

  2. Question to the bearish posters; What economic period would you classify as good/stable?

    • This is a great question. I think it depends on what industry you’re in and where you live. There are probably some bond traders who are laughing their way to the bank right now and for anyone in tech, 97-00 was all hookers and blow.

      • 1980s in the US were pretty stable. Even the stock market crash didn’t do much to the overall economy.

        ’90s mostly good except for the dip and then crazy dot.com. But the dot.com boom-bust didn’t destroy the overall economy the way that the housing bubble did.

        I think things now are really really unstable, and that’s part of why the markets are acting schizophrenic. The US economy is not going to de-leverage for years. The Eurozone is a mess. China is kicking the can down the road with its stimulus packages.

    • Yeah, good question.
      You could say all periods are different, very few are truly stable (there is always something going up and something going down!); some periods do ‘rhyme’ as they say, and one’s task is to try and identify the major themes of the day, and to use that info to keep your head above water.
      Stocks/Tech 1980-2000, RE 2000-2006/11, Commodities 2001-present, Gold 2000/1-2020 (with volatility), Bonds up to…now. (Vancouver’s own Bob Hoye called a top in bonds yesterday). Currently stock markets are for nimble traders. Buy and hold is dead (for now).
      So yeah… the only thing ‘stable’ is the tendency for things to change…

      Afterthought: One aspect about a period that would lead us to classify it as ‘good’ would be times where the major economic ‘engines’ drive/encourage people to work hard, be productive, and innovate.
      But perhaps that also goes on somewhere, during all periods… even though the tech boom spawned a massive destructive speculative mania, it also produced innovation and some great tech advances.

      • i would say a stable period is one where interest rates are neither 1% nor 18%

        stop punishing prudence and rewarding heavy speculation

        i am not an expert but it seems to me that capital is flying in all directions frantically looking for a save place – my guess after reading the Shaxson book re: tax havens is that so much wealth has flooded off shore without anyone really acknowledging this that the system cannot stagger on much longer like this without even more severe pain/contractions.

        and as always, it’s the poor that suffer the most. i love watching wealthy people (or people who perceive themselves as wealthy) lose their marbles.

        frankly i just want some deflation

        any more inflation and things are going to get very nasty

    • VIX below 20 would be nice. We’re currently at 43.
      http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=VIX#symbol=vix

    • For me a good/stable economic period is one where you can focus on the non economic aspects of life without having the economic aspects in your face weather you want them to be there or not. Not sure if that has ever been in the the case.

    • Never, ex ante anyways…

  3. “[The Chinese] government is urging [Chinese executives] to invest overseas to diversify China’s foreign-exchange holdings, develop business partnerships and improve the country’s leverage in international affairs.”

    From an article about HAM in NYC:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/11/nyregion/chinese-investment-grows-in-new-york-city.html?_r=1&hpw

    • but it’s totally not neo-colonialism

    • vreaa, you might enjoy some of the comments here:

      “This is worrisome on several levels. As the US enters what some are calling a depression, working people are losing their ability to buy housing in the places they call home. Meanwhile, rich Chinese fly in for the weekend and throw down $30 million on an apartment. What is that going to do to a housing market where normal working people are already struggling to survive? Take a look at what has happened to the real estate market in Vancouver- there is the answer. And the EB-5 program sounds like a blatant commercial transaction- if you’re rich enough, you too can live in America, permanently!”

  4. The problem with selling a condo is not surprising. Nearly all major Canadian cities are facing the same situation: a growing supply of condominiums and with many other condominium projects planned for the future this is very unlikely to change.

  5. Developers have a minimum $/waft that they can turn a profit on and will keep building as long as they are positive margin. If developers see the writing on the wall of a market downturn it is in their best interest to build as much and as fast as possible at the top.

  6. I second VREAA in saying that there are no “stable” economic times. Save way before I was born. Maybe post WW2 until Bretton Woods?? There’s a theme of the day it seems, and markets are driven by pumping, fear and ultimately dumping. The idea is that some get rich some are left holding the bag. Nature of the beast… or as Gordon Gekko would say, “It’s a zero sum game pal, somebody wins, and somebody loses.” I think the next bubble is either energy or precious metals. But we need something, and we need it quick to keep the old ponzi scheme rolling…

    • wasn’t the post bretton woods era 46-73 really ‘the golden age of capitalism?’ y’know, where america and the west actually “grew”?

      everyone keeps saying PMs are a bubble – fiat was the real bubble

      • “everyone keeps saying PMs are a bubble – fiat was the real bubble”

        Well, yes….BUT. Can’t anything be a bubble? Case in point: tulip bulbs. I think that PMs could become a bubble, I don’t think we’re there yet. I subscibe to market maker theory. No one wants a gold backed currency more than those who already used all that worthless paper to amass huge quanitities of PMs.

        Surf’s up.

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