West-Side Detached Specifics – “The cycle of buy / tear-down / build / sell is not completing. There are really no sales of new-builds.”

“Van-West gives the impression that inventories are high. Now they are definitely seasonally high right now but when you get into the details, it tells an interesting picture. To do the analysis, I took all sales going back in time such that the total sales was the same as current inventory (approx 800 units). To get 800 sales we have had 225 days of activity and takes us back to mid-July. That’s not a great stat. However what’s more telling is how the cycle of buy / tear-down / build / sell is not completing. There are really no sales of new-builds. One may say this is HST and that is possibly some impact. However, It is very dramatic such that you would not expect it to be so significant.
For “new” properties, there are 17 months of inventory. Compared with a 7.5 average for the whole market. When breaking all properties by price, there is a very strong drop off in sales above the $2.8 million level. I know it’s not a bargain but I’m just telling the facts. For properties under that level, MOI is only really about 4 months – which would indicate quite tight supply. However, above that value, it immediately jumps over 10 and reaches 24 months at the 4 million level. this would not normally mean much as these units take a long time to normally sell but there are not normally 450 units for sale over 2.8 million. That is a crazy amount. you have to wonder how many are spec builders who will eventually have to bail. Or builders who will now have their capital tied up in these projects such that they can not buy a new tear-down. Or is it flip investors who suddenly will realize the game is over.
Volumes for the month are not great but not bad. I would say for Van-West they are above the 10-year average (unlike most other regions). However, are these now the last suckers who want to make some money and now who will be left with large losses? It appears that the cracks are showing.
How did the US housing market start it’s fall? Something about new home sales coming to a stop? The stats are interesting. Next analysis at month end will be on the Vancouver condo market. This is now showing signs of cracks – sales are really low, inventory is starting to really increase.”

ZRH2YVR at VREAA 22 Feb 2012 at 2:18pm
[Thanks for this considered analysis, ZRH2YVR. -ed.]

Some of the comments that followed the above post:

“I’m fascinated to see, via what you’ve revealed, that what I thought I was observing here with my own eyes really is supported by statistics (new homes are not selling. This is also what the speculator I spoke to who was considering a bid on 6225 Balsam said).” – Vesta

“Your analysis re west side housing is spot on. Quilchena has many new homes for sale but only the original houses are now selling at even higher prices than last year. Hopefully these aren’t being purchased as tear-downs.”
Maybe, just maybe, buyers have caught on that these new particle board McMansions aren’t so great after all. Does anyone really need 7-8 bedrooms and 7-8 bathrooms in a SFH? As well, it’s very costly to maintain these huge houses!”
– West Coast Woman

“Richmond is screwed big time! As of yesterday for the month of Feb, 937 sfh total listings, 32 sold. West Van sfh total listings 434, sold 34.” – Van Guy

Vancouver still appears to be nuts, the rest of the province should be causing mega concern for politicians. If prices start cratering another 10-20% that’s going to cause significantly more distress than the previous 10-20%. – jesse

72 responses to “West-Side Detached Specifics – “The cycle of buy / tear-down / build / sell is not completing. There are really no sales of new-builds.”

  1. Bad news at sunrise
    Slowly first then all at once
    Closed eyes remain shut

    • Indubitably.

      e.g. – here are three headlines pulled from this morning’s CBC regional/BC feed…

      “Fire at Vancouver Restaurant Goes To 3 Alarms”

      “Thief grabs $500K in Jewelry in Vancouver”

      “BC Casinos Rapped for not Checking Patrons’ Backgrounds”

      PatternRecognition, much?…

      CoMorbid Bubble epiphenomenon… Sorry BoyzNGirlz… but it gets worse before it gets better.

      • At the risk of belaboring the point…. (hint: it starts ‘at the top’… and ‘trickles down’)….

        [G&M] – Star lobbyist swayed B.C. Liberals on proposed asset sale

        “He served as a strategist during Christy Clark’s campaign for the BC Liberal Party leadership. Patrick Kinsella – the quintessential insider in B.C. politics – also lobbied the province to adopt a new liquor distribution system, which Ms. Clark’s government this week vowed to do…. The Globe and Mail reported last month that Mr. Kinsella was a registered lobbyist for five companies that had contact in October with several cabinet ministers: Exel Logistics, Pacific Western Brewing Company, Mark Anthony Group, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation, and the New Car Dealers of BC.”…

        http://tinyurl.com/79q8vvc

        [Thanks, Nem. Our expectations confirmed.
        From the article:

        “They brought it up as part of the conversation, there was no lobbying to do, this was what they thought was an opportunity for government,” Rich Coleman, the minister responsible for liquor sales, told reporters Wednesday. However, when pressed, he said meetings with the company’s representatives did amount to lobbying.
        “I guess by any definition when you come on behalf of a company, you are lobbying, so I guess they were lobbying me.”

        Gotta hand it to the skilled lobbyist – the guy is being lobbied and he doesn’t even know it; he thinks it’s his own idea!
        – vreaa
        ]

  2. Bumping this up from the bottom of the previous thread – – – (Will post full list by neighbourhood later)

    Looking at the areas most affected by the fact that high prices are not moving are that the following areas have the highest percentage of homes over 2.8M.
    Shaugnnesey (94% – MOI 18 months)
    South Granville (78% – MOI 12 months)
    South Cambie – (68% – MOI 15 months)
    Quilchena – (61% – MOI only 5.4 months)
    On the other end of the spectrum is:
    Marpole – (11% – MOI 9.3 months)
    Kits – (15% – MOI 3.4 months – This is lowest MOI in all areas).
    Dunbar (40% – MOI 6.2 months)

    Next analysis will be attached.

  3. Renters Revenge

    “450 units for sale over 2.8 million”
    That is astonishing.

  4. Of the 332 properties listed for sale in Squamish on the MLS(Trailers, condos, TH SFH etc) , 71 are over $650k. This segment of the market is DEAD. High end houses have been languishing on the market, some for a year or more. How long can the high end of the market hold it’s listing prices before the 800ks become the 600ks and the 600ks become the 400s and so on down the line?

  5. All of this is looking very bad (or good)…

    West Van is looking like the nosebleed stakes table in a poker economy: all the feeder fishies’ losses have percolated their way to the massive pots seen changing hands between the big players. However, there is a problem: The local big players have converted all their winnings into chips and are sitting at the tables, waiting for the loaded, high rolling (HAM) fish to show up… only trouble is…. the chips they bought from the Casino are not refundable… and there’s still no sign of the Hamfish…. Uh oh…

  6. Just wanted to bump my question from yesterdays comments.

    I over heard someone today talking about some media report on Squamish RE. I think it was by Sarah Daniels (is she with Global?) Did anyone see, hear, read it? I’ve been trying to find it but I can’t seem to find a link to it. Thanks

  7. I’ve taken a quick look at some of the sales happening around greater Vancouver and have noticed sellers that are quite stubborn. Many homes that are sold have been sitting on the market for months. Sellers aren’t giving to much discount yet either. The longer they are stubborn, the more flooded the market will get. With sales down and listings way up, why in hell would anyone not want to wait it out?

    Its mind boggling that many buyers don’t even research before buying. Why would a person want to dump a whack load of money on a life long investment? I don’t get it.

    • Fooled by research

    • Dear Van Guy – forgive another comment from a YVR man across the pond (atlantic, I mean) – but this is, again, exactly what happened at the top in the UK. People clung on, telling themselves they didn’t have to sell & kept the prices high. There are documented cases where people REALLY didn’t have to sell (retirement, etc) and in those cases, houses stay on the market for 2 years ++. There are also well-known cases where the sellers have had to drop big-time. I’ve got my eye on a couple of places on the North Shore in YVR and I’m amused (as a current non-participant, but future possible) to see that real estate guys in YVR are no different from the UK, i.e. some of the prices have been quietly dropped by 5-10% in recent weeks with no great fanfare.

      Next step? Watch out for the “independently valued at CDN$900,000, a steal at only $750,000” headlines on the websites, etc… and so it begins…

    • Those who are stubborn, those who will not sell at market prices will be the biggest fools of all. You cannot get through to them now exactly as you could not get through to those who bought in at the top. I have no idea why. They just don’t listen and they refuse to see the facts. Human nature is so bizarre.

  8. Boiler room tactics- sign of a top. Always a get rich easy double/triple story sold to bandwagon jumpers.

    http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/2/23/nation/10788631&sec=nation#13300171194211&if_height=411

  9. MOI Stats by area (This is a lookback calc based on past sales – on lookforward, it would be less as we go into spring).

    17.7 Shaun.
    14.9 South Cambie
    11.7 South Granville
    11.5 Southlands
    10.2 Arbutus
    9.5 SouthWest Marine
    9.3 Marpole
    6.7 Kerris.
    6.2 Dunbar
    6.0 Cambie
    5.7 Mackenzie Heights
    5.4 Quilchena
    5.3 Point G.
    5.1 Oak
    4.8 University
    3.4 Kits

  10. In my corner of the US, the condo market was definitely a bellweather for the overall housing market. I think the speculation was a bit more pronounced in the condo market because a condo unit is easier to think of as a commodity. There was a lot of pre-buying a unit then reselling before the building was even finished. We had one building in town that finished too late and found out that less than half of the pre-buyers had ever intended to live there.

    • If you follow “Jim the Realtor” down in San Diego it’s apparent there was significant speculation in detached dwellings as well but yes I agree condos seem to be able to converge more quickly on price because there are direct comparables. Detached — especially the multi-million-dollar variety — is more of a “luxury” so it takes longer to match sellers with buyers. At the very high end it’s not unusual for a property to take years to sell.

  11. NBAM – used to stand for “nothing below a million”.
    Now means, “not buying any more”.

  12. Vancouver Sun has a story about the new $10k tax credit and its potential impact on sales. They are spinning it directly as a “downpayment booster”:

    http://www.vancouversun.com/business/First+time+buyer+bonus+will+make+bigger+difference+suburbs/6194441/story.html

    • Buy an overpriced home to milk the government for what, a $1000 in tax savings? Pathetic

      • It takes high leverage to infinite leverage, so it’s more than just the fairly small $10k of actual dollars. Plus how many months of savings is 10k for a lot of buyers? 12, 24, 100?

    • LOL Look at the form itself. I has two formula’s for providing grants. One uses 150,000 as a benchmark. Can someone please find me a non-trailer/non-hotel condo I can buy ANYWHERE in the Lower mainland that is in this range.

      Checked MLS, still cant seem to find it…

  13. Oh-oh… Excellent article on the Globe and Mail.

    Canada’s housing bubble: This time is not different

    “The resilience of the Canadian housing market continues to confound experts. Last April, I wrote about the hot housing sector in Canada. Since then this sector has become even hotter, exhibiting strong signs of a classic bubble. More than ever before, I believe that Canada’s housing market is due for a severe correction.

    Bubbles are hard to see in advance and even harder to know when they will burst. No matter how high prices go, there are always analysts who try to justify them by arguing that “this time things are different”. This was the case during the dot com bubble in late 1990s and this is what has been happening nowadays with the housing bubble in Canada.

    I have heard many arguments of why this time it is different. Toronto, for example, is becoming New York or London and current prices are thus justified. Bank economists are also justifying current house prices with convoluted explanations arguing that this time things are different ignoring multiple signals of overvaluation that have worked very well historically and in other environments. But as Sir John Templeton said, the most misused expression in the world is “this time is different”. It is never different.

    Statistics never lie
    One can massage the data to give them a twist to support one’s argument, but unadulterated data do not lie. House price increases have not been matched by underlying increases in fundamentals such as growth in disposable income, growth in GDP per capita, inflation, population growth, annual immigration growth or the rental indexes produced by CMHC. The ratio of house prices to rent (a ratio equivalent to price to earnings ratio used to identify valuation risks in stocks) is now higher in Canada than in any other developed country.

    Moreover, average house prices are now 12 times personal disposable income, way above historical averages. This ratio reached 9.7 times in the last housing bubble in the late 1980s. As a result, household debt as a per cent of disposable income has risen to over 153 per cent in Canada, reaching record levels and coming close to the levels that the U.S. reached before the housing crash.

    In economics, it all comes down to demand vs. supply. Canada has a significant excess supply of housing that sooner or later will have to be reflected in lower prices. Toronto, for example, is at the top of the world when it comes to the number of condo buildings under construction.

    Housing investment as a share of GDP climbed towards a record high last year. It reached 7 per cent of GDP as at the end of 2011 vs. a 50-year average of 5.8 per cent and previous peaks of about 7.26 per cent in the late 70’s and 7.18 per cent in the late 80’s. After residential housing investment as a percentage of GDP peaked in the previous two cycles, the housing market crashed within a few years. This ratio peaked at about 6.1 per cent in the U.S. in the mid-2000s at the height of its housing bubble, and toward the end of the 1980s in Japan, when that country was nearing the end of its own property boom.

    At the same time, the home ownership rate has reached 70 per cent in Canada – it was 69 per cent in the U.S. at the peak of the housing bubble there. Where will demand come from in light of aging population and negative demographic trends?
    (…)
    Two developments have propped up the housing market in Canada and have delayed the correction. First is globalization which has benefited Canada as the country has been an oasis of stability in an uncertain world. Over 60 per cent of all new condos in Toronto are bought by investors – the number rises to 80 per cent in the centre of the city. Influx of non-resident Chinese and world investors have driven condo prices in key cities. Foreign investors are buying up to five properties each.

    Second, low interest rates and the belief that real estate holds its value better than other forms of investing are also driving the housing market in Canada. Small down payments along with CHMC mortgage insurance, loosened lending standards and mortgage rate competition by Canadian banks have all helped the housing boom.
    (…)
    Canada’s high house prices in relation to incomes, combined with record household debt levels and overinvestment in residential construction, combined with a slowdown in demand, will cause a severe correction in the real estate market. This time it is not different. It never is.

    • And here is an excellent comment made by an american fellow.

      “I’m American and planning a move to Canada and believe me, I’ll rent. I’ve seen this movie before. Record debt levels, low or zero down payments, long amortizations, prices screaming past any kind of wage growth, and absurd moral hazard conditions with the lending industry (everyone in Canada seemingly thinks that all the loans given out to people who couldn’t afford them in the US were perfectly within the rules, but that wasn’t the case, the banks just turned a blind eye and faked it during a period of “irrational exuberance”), just every factor in Canada seems to be what you’d see right before a crash.

      I live in Boston, a very well protected city during the recession due to our medical, scientific, and educational economic core, and in particular, I live in a very posh area where no one defaulted and there weren’t any financial problems during the depth of the crash/recession, nevertheless, my condo at the low point was about $100K off from the high point. If I would have sold when I saw the warning signs here (about 2007) I could have rented the exact same unit a floor above me and still be more than $30K in the black if I would have rented this entire time. When a correction hits, it hits everyone across the board and overshoot. People who think that only TO and Van will be effected are wrong. I’m planning to move to Sudbury, ON, a relatively remote place with limited economic opportunity, limited amenities, relatively low income levels, cold weather, and infrastructure problems, nevertheless, the prices there have probably doubled or more over the last five years. Just like in the US, if you give people access to cheap money, they spend it, quickly. And as to foreign investment, we had more then you do and those areas are some of the hardest hit because those foreign investors pull their money at the speed of light when things tend to go south.

      I love Canada, I wouldn’t be moving there if I didn’t, but Canada has let itself go down the same path as the US and it kills me. Why so many Canadians look over to this side of the border and constantly tell themselves that they’re better is beyond me given that you keep repeating our history over and over again, be it a housing bubble, or torture, or bills which strip away privacy, or “tough on crime” legislation which has no effect other than to bankrupt the taxpayer, just on and on. How some people keep saying that “it’s different this time” boggles the mind.”

      • Peoples brains go numb while bubbles build. I honestly don’t get it. Never will because it is so baffling. Normal well educated people I meet will refuse to even look at good charts that warn of the danger. They know how to judge economic trouble and even have training to alert them to the signs of complacency. Yet where homes are involved the good processing bits of their brain just seem to shut down and stop working.

        It has got to be instinct or primitive conditioning. How else to explain the mental blind spot of not only a generation of new buyers but an entire society that includes those who should know better…..the parents.

    • Told-you-so-in-2007

      The article in the G&M is written by the same fellow (George Athanassakos) who was interviewed in the Boomberg article last week. This is article is written from a personal perspective, and will hopefully hit home to a much wider Canadian audience.

      He’s a bit late to the party, though.

    • Great link, thanks for posting it. The B-word is definitely getting a lot of play in MSM as of late (more at the national level than regional level).

  14. And here is BoC warning of a housing correction!

    Bank of Canada issues fresh warning on debt

    “The Bank of Canada is warning again that growth in household debt supported by a decade-long increase in home prices means families and the economy as a whole are vulnerable to a correction in the housing market.

    “Rising house prices can facilitate the accumulation of debt,” the central bank said Thursday in a collection of its recent research on the subject. “Households could therefore experience a significant shock if house prices were to reverse.”
    (…)
    Since much of the growth in debt has come from households borrowing against the value of their homes – through home-equity lines of credit, or HELOCs – the report suggested a swift reversal in prices could have a “relatively large impact” on consumer spending
    (…)
    In Thursday’s report, central bank officials said loans backed by homes made up almost 50 per cent of all consumer credit last year, largely to finance home renovations, a surge from 11 per cent in 1995. Although low borrowing costs and rising home prices have been significant factors, the central bank also pointed to financial innovation that “makes it easier for households to access this credit,” as well as increased marketing of such loans by financial institutions.

    The central bank said Canada’s housing market has not yet shown signs of “the excesses seen in other countries,” [WTF?] such as the United States and the United Kingdom in the years before the global financial crisis, which in no small part was triggered by the bursting of real-estate bubbles. However, other comments in the report reinforce the notion that the central bank – which is not expected to be able to counter a runup in debt through higher interest rates any time soon – is more and more worried about this issue.
    (…)
    Also, the central bank published data showing that younger Canadians are more debt-strapped than Canadians of the same age were just over a decade earlier. In 2010, the bank said the mean real debt load of a typical household led by people aged 31-35 was $120,000, up from $75,000 in 1999.

    “Given the increase in household indebtedness, the exposure of households and the financial system to fluctuations in house prices has increased markedly,” the bank said.

    Speaking in Toronto, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty also urged prudence for Canadians.

    “People have to be wise in how they look at things. Interest rates are going to go up. They have nowhere to go but up,” he said. “So people need to be sure that they can afford higher mortgage interest for example.

    “It isn’t necessary for everyone to have the most expensive house they could possibly buy, maxing out the potential mortgage they could get from a financial institution. In fact, it’s probably easier on people if they do a little less of that and have more cash in their lives and enjoy life a bit more. So moderation in all things.””

    Conclusion: we’re screwed!

    • ““Rising house prices can facilitate the accumulation of debt,” the central bank said Thursday.”

      So can a decade of free money.

    • And here is the contrast between what BoC wants and what the country is doing…

      Average Canadian’s consumer debt hits $25,960

      “The average consumer’s debt load climbed to a record high $25,960 at the end of 2011, although annual data from a credit bureau report released today suggests that the Canadian love affair with debt is waning.

      Consumer debt, which excludes mortgages, edged 1.4 per cent higher in the fourth quarter of 2011 from the previous quarter, according to a report released early on Thursday by TransUnion.
      (…)
      Debt levels among Canadian households have soared to new highs in recent years, with people turning to credit to finance purchases of cars and home renovations.
      (…)
      Lines of credit are by far the biggest source of non-mortgage debt among Canadians, accounting for 42 per cent of the overall debt pie. This type of debt, which is cheaper than credit card debt, continues to grow although at a slower pace, Mr. Higgins noted.

      Other key credit statistics listed in the TransUnion report include:

      Canadian average credit-card borrower debt declined 1.49 per cent on an annual basis but rose 0.61 per cent quarter over quarter
      Canadian lines of credit (LOC) borrower debt increased 1.1 per cent year-over-year and 0.64 per cent from the previous quarter
      Canadian installment-loan borrower debt fell 5.3 per cent year over year and 2.58 per cent quarter over quarter
      Canadian auto borrower debt jumped 9.7 per cent year over year and 2.8 per cent from the previous quarter
      The data released Thursday by TransUnion also shows that while debt levels are high, most Canadians are still able to meet their debt repayment obligations.”[for how long?]

      • Basement Suite

        “”most Canadians are still able to meet their debt repayment obligations.”[for how long?]”

        Maybe as long as interest rates stay this low, which looks to be a long time yet. Free money begets debt.

      • Money may be free, but it still needs to be repaid. I can’t imagine paying off a million dollar mortgage, and I don’t think anyone actually intends to.

      • Basement Suite

        Free money (i.e., stupid low interest rates) means people CAN afford to pay off a million dollar mortgage if they stretch it out over 30 years. In normal times the monthly payment is X, and 30*12*X is mostly interest. In stupid times the monthly payment is also X, but 30*12*X is mostly principle, because free money begot a housing bubble. Grand total paid is the same. The monthly payment is all that matters to most people. As long as they do not care about a possible crash (which I do), and do not plan to pay off the house early (which I do), they can jump in with both feet.

  15. Colleague’s anecdote: We looked at 4 homes in lions bay over the weekend. We liked 2 of them – but – too big for us (and too expensive).
    Both realtors came back begging for a bid, “motivated sellers”. Both properties have been on the market over 200days.

  16. So what happened to the purported “chinese new year” boom for the west side RE market?

    • Folks are still buying over here in Kerrisdale — a number of sales this week. However, the ones I know of are all older houses, which will be torn down, and — get ready for a laugh — on the “less expensive” end of the market, at below $2.5 million.

    • In Chinese astrology, the dragon is the only animal of the Chinese zodiac year that is not real. This year is also not real. The fiction of building true wealth in real estate will be exposed as fake exactly as the dragon will be shown to be a fictional character. That is my prediction.

      (PS: that is just a white guys version of Chinese Zodiacs)

  17. They should have given 10k per buyer right away, had them put it in their RRSP before next week, get the tax deduction, take the 10k back out on home buyers plan, then buy a condo with the ~13k proceeds. That would have juiced the builders even more, made some quick fees for banks, and forced the feds to pay some of the stimulus.

    With an RRSP loan you can still do this trick, quick!

  18. Front cover of the new Macleans will wake some people up. It says “You’re About to Get Burned” with a picture of a house in flames and the sub note that we are in a worse position than the US was just before their crash. Perfect timing, it’s about to get ugly and despite being a home owner myself I look forward to the elimination of massive amounts of unearned wealth.

  19. o-m-g magnum! mdapoe^10^10^100. part of reason for the freeze up is total insanity situations such as here:
    http://tinyurl.com/6vql3y4
    t’aint hard to find comps illustrating the mdapoe extremis nature of the vanwest. you should start calling it the dubyah. here is one in bill gates’ neighborhood
    http://tinyurl.com/7vmzvql

  20. The house at 115 W 49TH AV has been on sale for 16 months. Started at $3.8m, now $3.3m.

    • So price decreased by 500K in 16 months means a decrease of $31250/month or $1041/day… ouch!
      I hope the owner has a good job to compensate!

      • if spec, builder probably ‘only’ into it for $2M-ish. at this rate, got a couple years of price reductions to breakeven 🙂 but yes of course … perhaps even more ultimo-supremo-dumbass than adera. 49th at main/cambie we’re talking here, vcc langara, busy-busy-bzz-bzz-bzz. target mark there should be be $1M tops, $1.5M in the insanity market. what sort of doorknob does sh-t like this? i know. either the kind that has backstop handy or the kind that’s hoping, praying pls-pls-pls, let there be someone who somehow has piles of money but is stupider than me.

    • That’s a sweet looking home. It will probably sell for 3.1-3.2M

  21. Victoria… MOI and Average SFH price on the same chart. Look at the trend!

    • I’m no technical analyst, but that chart looks like there’s going to be a bearish cross soon.

      • Seems a good Bet Ralph. I would give it until no later than the end of March before inventory and the price lines cross and reverse. This is going to get ugly even faster than I first guessed. Spring really will be a bust.

  22. And here is another article from the financial post!

    “Why we’re in trouble if housing craters”

    http://business.financialpost.com/2012/02/23/why-were-in-trouble-if-housing-craters/

    • Another great post, thanks.

      While I’m amused by their rhetoric, “we” are not in trouble. The people in trouble are the fools who gorged on credit and bought into the bubble. Also, undiversified seniors, developers and realturds.

      And, unfortunately, the Canadian taxpayers who will have to fund the impending bailouts.

      • dont kid yourself. If the housing market tanks we are all screwed big time whether we own or not

      • I’m interested to know why you say that. Some of my friends in the US who bought houses they couldn’t afford got hurt. Most of my friends in the US live within their means, have recession-proof jobs, and are doing just fine.

      • Got to agree with Vanreal here Jeff. There are no winners in these situations. That is why some of us have been taking the trouble to talk about the coming housing crisis in the hopes of averting some of the damage.

        Too few listen though. It has been two long years of wasted breath.

        The forces behind the creation of this bubble were much stronger than all the voices who objected to it. In the meantime, you could have been good and honest and hard working and a saver but this bubble can still ruin your life.

        Many thousands will lose their jobs in the coming years and be displaced. Thousands more will almost certainly lose their homes and their main asset in life.

        There are no winners in serious asset deflations.

  23. This house sold in less than a week. Still too much kool aid or HAM.
    http://www.REALTOR.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=11574214&PidKey=1922326988
    Basically an old timer, middle of the street with some renovations.- 3 million??!!

  24. “Let’s cut it by $1.3M.” At $6.7M, the 32nd most expensive property in Toronto is C2217766. A stucco 5+1/8 on 100x134ft in Forest Hill. Was 23rd at $8M until this week’s price cut. I don’t follow this rarefied bit of the market, so I can’t say whether the previous price was delusional. But it had only been on the market four months, and that isn’t a lot of time to market something this $$, here. I don’t think we see too many bidding wars break out for a property like this. Cash flow issues? Or is talk of the melt getting to people here in still-going-strong Toronto?

  25. Makaya, thanks for posting all these interesting articles.

    More info that may be useful for this blog: readers have expressed understandable mystification about 6225 Balsam going for $1.7 million. Apparently, very few “teardowns” (not how I’d characterize many of these houses that will be bulldozed) have come on the market in certain “hot” areas of town, like this area of Kerrisdale, for about half a year now. So there’s pentup demand from, apparently, builders. In a recent bidding war for another nearby bungalow that was sold for “lot value,” (about $1.6 million), of the nearly 20 parties who bid, all but a few were builders (I think I understood correctly too that the builders bidding were nearly all South Asian), who are convinced that the Chinese market for new houses in certain places in town cannot fail.

    But to make a profit on a rebuild after you’ve shelled out $1.5M+, you need to sell that new house for $2.6 or 2.7M I think, and as we’re finding out via observation and statistics both, these new houses are NOT selling.

    So if any of you know any builders who think they are going to make a killing, it might be kind to let them know other points of view now….

  26. Village Whisperer

    Those builders are blinded by past profits and clouded by visions of a market which will be juiced by the removal of the HST when their latest purchases come to market.

  27. logic/reason cannot remedy this sort of dumbassedness. it’s an ego thing and the only fix is a brutal thrashing.

  28. Pingback: Sticky Price Seller Shoots Self In Foot, Slowly – “$488K, listed for 13 months, negative cash flow, unable to come down in price at all due to “circumstances”.” | Vancouver Real Estate Anecdote Archive

  29. I am a follower of VREAA but I have never made a comment before. While driving my daughter to school, I noticed that 88 West 27th is back on the market again for $2,198,000 and marketed as two lots. I am not sure of the specific dates, but I know that 3 or 4 months ago, the same property was listed for $1,628,000 although I don’t know what it was sold for. Even though we have been warned of a housing bubble and its imminent bursting, the west side of vancouver totally defies logic. This lot is pie shaped not rectangular so how they will get two lots out of it, I have no idea. The house is a wreck, by the way. If new builds on the west side aren’t selling, why is this being sold as a development lot? Crazy.

    • Good to see other new people besides me speaking up Cate. This site has really been gaining in popularity as the bubble has evolved. It is a great place to send the in-laws for a primer on what is happening in the local market too. And some of the old hands around here really are the experts on what is happening. Bar none. I would listen to their comments first before tuning into the 6:00 O-clock News. Any damn day.

      Even the media gets its news from sites like this.

  30. Vesta | 27 February 2012 at 2:49 pm | Reply
    More possibly relevant market info:

    I’ve now heard (and other commenters here have mentioned this) that new builds may not currently be selling because potential buyers are waiting for the government to deal with the HST. I’ve even heard that given how much this issue affects the RE industry, the government will probably act sooner rather than later to remove this obstacle. I’m wondering now if new builds will start selling later this spring, though I can’t imagine there won’t be price reductions, given the rise in inventory.

  31. F1 – you left off a significant part of this posting of mine you copied from another thread to this thread. (Haven’t you heard this argument yourself, about the HST, if you’re a realtor?) The significant part you omitted was that this was information from someone in the RE industry. Readers need to know that, to try to judge on their own whether or not someone in the RE industry would have a vested interest in saying this or would want to believe it because of a generally bullish outlook, for example.

    If you transfer my words to another thread again, you may want to indicate if you’re leaving something out.

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