“My mom has to get a certain price before she will sell. We are waiting for prices to turnaround.”

“Co-worker’s mom bought two units a year ago in a presale that is slated for completion next autumn. She bought 2 two-bedroom 1100 square feet units for around $500k each. One for her and one for her son. At the time they figured they would sell their 20 year old Richmond house for $1 million plus and pay off their brand new “upscale” condos. In the meantime they would rent and move into their new digs when it is completed.
So they put their house on the market about six months ago and I was getting updates from my co-worker. In the beginning they were showing the house to three or four interested parties during every open house. After about two months they got a low-ball offer ($150k under asking) but they rejected it.
Yesterday, I got another update and I asked how the house selling was going. He told me nobody came by to look for “a couple of weeks”.
I then asked if they were considering to lower their price. He responded, “Nope, my mom has to get a certain price before she will sell and we are WAITING FOR PRICES TO TURNAROUND.”
He continued to tell me that the completion date for their new condos was pushed up to early summer of next year; therefore, I asked: “What if you can’t get the price that your mom wants before your new condos are completed?”
He then gave me a (priceless) blank stare for about three seconds and said. “I don’t know, my mom will figure it out.”
So it seems there are still people out there that have not seen the light despite all the warnings out there. They turn into ostriches and just hope for the best. I figure by next spring they will start to panic and jr. will end up with at least a $200K mortgage instead of having his new pad all paid off.
I have been patiently waiting for a bubble popping moment but it seems like we won’t see that for at least a couple more months. I figure it takes at least 12-18 months from price peaks before the average joe realizes that the tide is actually turning and this massive bubble has actually popped.”
– Waiting to exhale, at VCI 30 Jun 2012 7:32pm

Prices are initially sticky on the way down partly because sellers just can’t believe that a property that they have come to cherish and believe and trust to be worth ‘x’ should possibly be ‘given away’ for ‘x minus y’. Especially when Mr and Ms ‘uvw’, got ‘z’ for their property, which obviously wasn’t as nice, and, besides, they didn’t even have a ‘qrst’. Not to mention that we need to get ‘x’ for the property, or else plans ‘efg’ don’t work out.
For some wonderful examples of sellers who are working to overcome their innate price inertness, see ‘Vancouver Price Drop’. A few specific case cited below.
– vreaa

Example 1:

# 206 1477 FOUNTAIN WY, False Creek, Vancouver West
1400 sqft 2BR condo
Original ask: 9 Mar 2012: $568K
Last ask: 1 Jul 2012: $320K (-44%)

Example 2:

2656 W 41ST AV, Kerrisdale, Vancouver West
New build SFH on 33×134 lot
Original ask: 9 Mar 2012: $2,488K
Latest ask: 29 Jun 2012: $1,880K (-24%)

Example 3:

3346 W 10TH AV, Kitsilano, Vancouver West
Kits bungalow on 50ft lot.
Original ask: 7 Jun 2012: $1,850K
Latest ask: 29 Jun 2012: $1,488K (-20%)

– above three examples from Vancouver Price Drop 2 July 2012

36 responses to ““My mom has to get a certain price before she will sell. We are waiting for prices to turnaround.”

  1. Ralph Cramdown

    It would be great to get a followup in two weeks. Here in Toronto, believe it or not, there’s still the occasional bidding war. As a result, there’s lots of properties which get listed at a price to attract a bidding war, then repriced HIGHER a week or so later when said bidding war either fails to materialize or fails to produce the number which the seller so richly deserves.

    Some of the above price cuts are so steep that I wonder whether they’re hoping for an auction, and whether they’ll get one.

  2. Thai-born Chinese Canuck

    These examples of homes sold below asking prices are proof that speculators want to get out before things turn ugly. There is no unity among the sellers whatsoever.

    East and Southeast Asian countries, which are the sources of the so-called HAMs in Canada, are also experiencing oversupply of new and existing condos and detached. Here in Bangkok, we’ve seen an explosion of the number of ads and commercials selling condos everywhere from bus sides, bus stops, TV, radio, and newspapers. Very telling indeed. Economists are ringing the “bubble” alarm bells.

    It is a common phenomenon among the economies that have escaped the impact of the 2008 Financial Crisis.

    • “These examples of homes sold below asking prices… ”

      Theyve not sold yet. They’re just reductions in asking price. They may eventually sell over ask, who knows. Market price is only determined once a sale occurs.

  3. Van east guy

    That fairview condo above, isn’t that area leasehold properties?

  4. stupid is as stupid does.
    Sell your land in Richmond and replace it with two condos? The mind boggles.

    • Happens every day. Heck some regret selling their house because they don’t get much $ after purchasing a large condo/townhouse. Then they lament they can’t rent out the basement. Face it, you just can’t win.

    • Bizarre decision. Sounds like they still wanted to live together, but separate. So they sold the house and bought two condos in the same building (likely next door to each other). What the point of that is, I have no idea. And buying them before selling the old place is really, really dumb.

  5. Only the desperate are cutting prices significantly like the fairview condo which can only be mortgaged through one bank and meet a 20% min. downpayment.

    • Only the desperate and those who have finally seen the light and want out before it is too late. But it is too late for most already. The expectations for winning in Vancouver’s housing lottery are really still quite high. It is almost an absolute. Nobody thinks they will lose so holding on and waiting for better prices would seem the right thing to do. It is arrogance in some cases though and shows an incredible lack of understanding about what is about to take place. Doesn’t everyone automatically get to “win” a few hundred thousand dollars (or a million) just for having participated thus far? I think it is really coming as a shock to some that the myth of ever rising prices is now ending and that serious price declines might take their place.

      We will see how long it takes for the swagger and fluff to come off the attitude a lot of sellers and owners like to project to all the folks around them. The words “can’t sell” or “won’t sell” unless certain conditions are met are just so incongruous with the event that is now underway. It almost look stupid all of a sudden. That is why most of these folks will get a fail in the end.

      In the meantime, do not feel sorry for those who are about to lose. Like the lady in todays story, they were really gamblers and speculators not investors and so they have to take the odds that come with the territory.

      I won’t lose any sleep over it. That is for sure.

  6. That last place saw a 20% drop in 3 weeks. It’s going to get exciting out there.

    • popcorn and beer anyone? LOL

    • Why? They were betting on another 10% rise in prices and tried to hook the elusive foreign capital fish, they were misinformed — one might say unfortunate — and recast their expectations. I wouldn’t read too much into it. When we see asking prices well below sale prices of the past 2 years that will get the school’s attention.

  7. I’m still saying lower population growth is the biggest determinant behind this recent bout of weakness. That does not mean that lower population growth is the cause of prices falling — prices were bound to fall regardless — but it’s the catalyst by which the ball will begin rolling.

    Tighter lending and economic weakness in China are of course two other plausible catalysts.

  8. 2656 W 41ST AV, Kerrisdale, Vancouver West
    New build SFH on 33×134 lot
    Original ask: 9 Mar 2012: $2,488K
    Latest ask: 29 Jun 2012: $1,880K (-24%)

    You mean inserting a bunch of ‘8s’ into the price doesn’t work anymore? Oh wait, they’re still trying with that June 29 listing.

    • Best place on meth

      Yeah but they shifted the 8’s to the left a bit. I’m told that still works.

    • And 1,888K was just a little too obvious. 🙂

      • Sellers think they made such a great discovery. Those Chinese are all a bunch of idiots in their opinion. Just give them eights in the price and they will buy it unseen like a bunch of fish hooked on salmon eggs. Yup…those crazy Chinese. They just eat up the eights.

        Maybe they will even frame my post with all this great info and numbers. Here it is for posterity. Seems Feng Shui to me.

        88888888888888888888888888..888 more?..OK….8888888.Ha!!!

        Yeah. Numbers win when people use them to make life decisions.
        HaHaHaHaH…..Ha Ha Cough…hack…hack….cough….HaHaHa!!!!
        Bring more Chinese buyers. Those suckers will buy anything with an Eight!! Ha Ha Ha Ha. Too damn funny. Glad I am Italian.

      • OK. I don’t know if I really made my point in the previous post.

        The thing is though that there is no magic in eights when everyone knows it is just a manipulative tool employed by realtors and sellers to get a sale. The Chinese who seem to favour prices with eights are also not such fools.

        They know we are playing games with them and using cultural tradition or superstition and a tendency to buy certain numbers to our advantage. I don’t think it will work anymore either. Cripes, even the Chinese don’t use eights to sell to other Chinese and that is proven by the price drops and final sales.

        The whole concept is really idiotic.

        How about this? Fish and chips is 7.00 dollars today.
        For Chinese the new price is 8.88

        Do we really suppose they are that stupid?

    • Realtor : Dammit we need more 8s ….
      Seller: Well list it for $1,888,888.88
      Realtor: We should wait for August 8th
      Seller: Amazing, you really do deserve more than 5%

  9. Dimitri Tishchenko

    Anybody looking for a good economic analysis about island demographics, look no further.


    • “This first class Bar & Grill and restaurant with a liquor store below was just a bit ahead if its time. Youbou is just on the brink of exploding into its own, depending on world economies, that brink could be ten years down the road.”

      How very helpful for the realtors to offer their opinions on world economies.

      Also, nice photo of the ice machine.

  10. Well then, they will have to wait for a long time for a turnaround (sarcasm). It is ridiculous how silly people actually are. But I have to admit that I´m a big fan of these stories.

    Condos are particularly dangerous for the RE, as you can read in many articles, including realtors (Most Risky Real Estate Market in Canada? ). It puts an insane pressure on the owners in terms of maintenance costs. They are just ridiculous. It can almost double the price you have to pay every month.

    I hope you will post more information about their situation later. I´m really interested what kind of solution will they find.

  11. Yo mommaz so fat, she ate a house and pooped out 2 condos.

  12. lowered prices still INSANE … just dn payment on full discount … hey, did june numbers print anywhere yet? didn’t see

  13. Absolutely insane how ask prices can swing this much. I get how the market works, I get that you’re fishing for a buyer at a high price, I get it all. I’m all for free markets sorting messes out all on their own, I enjoy trading equites where prices fluctuate for reasons beyond reason. Its not new to me.

    However, it does “feel” wrong to me that you can list a house at 1.8 today, and 1.4 tomorrow. That is one way to get completely creamed, and part of the reason why I think Vancouver is starting to slow.

    People are finally starting to slow and see how rigged this game is, perhaps few even realizing that prices are only going up because of people willing to bid them up. Even fewer are perhaps finally realizing that if the ask can go from 1.8 to 1.4, its feasible that it may even go from 1.4 – 1.

    The momentum game works both ways, unfortunately for many the ride down is going to be a tough lesson. I suspect we will soon see how important that 67k average income figure is.

  14. Found this today when I was searching for #209 – 1206 1477 Fountain Wy. Saw the listing from a realtor and assumed there was something off about the price… same address was listed yesterday afternoon (Dec 10, 2012) at $250,000. Heard the building is undergoing rainscreening for the next year.

  15. Pingback: False Creek Condo Drops Ask Price 56% Over 9 Months | Vancouver Real Estate Anecdote Archive

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