Spot The Speculators #87 – “To add to our stress, the condo we were living in before we purchased this house isn’t selling.”

“Overheard this conversation today at a bus stop in the Lower Mainland:

A: I haven’t seen you very much lately

B: Yeah, we just bought a house and it is constantly in need of repairs. Every time we touch something it breaks. We opened a window and the glass fell out so we had to fix that. We had to get a new furnace. We had to replace this. We had to replace that. We keep finding deficiencies that need to be replaced.

A: Oh that sounds stressful!

B: Yes, it is stressful. And to add to our stress, the condo we were living in before we purchased this house isn’t selling. Our realtor told us the reason our condo isn’t selling is because the carpets smell bad and that we should replace them. We can’t afford to install new carpetting so we are thinking about just getting them cleaned to save money. He is telling us that these carpets are such a big problem but we don’t understand because the same realtor sold us that condo with the same smelly carpets in it. I don’t understand what has changed.

…It was all I could do to bite my tongue and not tell this person that they have a much bigger problem than smelly carpets.”

joe_blown_away_by_high_housing_costs at VCI 19 Jul 2012 5:10pm

Carrying TWO properties, with leverage, into a downturn, is a recipe for personal financial disaster.
A good number of Vancouver households are carrying more than two.
– vreaa

12 responses to “Spot The Speculators #87 – “To add to our stress, the condo we were living in before we purchased this house isn’t selling.”

  1. Ralph Cramdown

    You only get one chance to make a first impression. The agent should have told them to steam clean the carpets BEFORE they listed, and maybe bought some of those things they call “air fresheners.”

    Agents love this kind of thing. If you tell the client to sell before buying, the place might not sell, and no commission for you! But if you get the client to buy before selling, you’ve already got one commission and, since the client now HAS to sell, you’ll likely get two. Plus, the client was probably too dumb to negotiate a discount on the basis that he’s doing two deals.

    The easiest way to further corrupt a realtor is when you want to do a flip or a teardown/new build. Directly approach the realtor selling the subject property and tell him you’ll list it again with him when you’re done in six months to a year. Now if he does the deal he gets three ‘ends,’ both sides of the original sale and one side of the significantly higher subsequent sale, whereas if he waits for another buyer, likely coming through another agent, he only gets one end. Think he’ll be working in the best interests of his original vendor in that scenario?

  2. That awkward moment when you realise agents get paid on sales, not by looking out for your best interests.

  3. MotherNature seldom affords ink stained wretches such splendid opportunities to lampoon… as today… DearReaders, here’s your Quote ‘O TheDay!… and… bonus mucho apropros retro nostalgia…

    “We don’t know what affordable housing really means any longer.” – Allan Buium, Riley Park-South Cambie Community Committee.

    [CBC] – Vancouver’s Oakridge Centre proposes major expansion

    …”Ivanhoe Cambridge Inc. wants to build a broad range housing ranging [sic] from luxury to affordable, as well as more office and retail space, parks, bikeways, walking paths and a library, Senior Development Director Gordon Wylie said Monday. Wylie said most of the development would occur on what are currently the mall’s massive parking lots.”…

    • In an unrelated, late-breaking, development…

      [CBC] – B.C. software firm fined $100K: InfoSpec sold software enabling retail businesses to hide income, avoid tax

      …”InfoSpec Systems Inc. was found guilty of fraud last month. The company was selling what is known as a “zapper” program to restaurants and retail outlets, which would automatically erase cash sales from electronic cash registers, enabling businesses to report less income.”…

      [NoteToEd: InfoSpec management emphatically deny all rumours alluding to their involvement in recent GVREB/MLX systems upgrades/maintenance]

    • “We don’t know what affordable housing really means any longer”

      Just like I don’t know when I’m being sarcastic.

  4. The similar situation happened to our former townhouse new owners – the one we sold last summer on a peak pricing (thanks to Ben Rabidoux for the timely eye opening). They (Chinese Mainland family) bought our big townhouse for $578 K and later realized that there are to may stairs there. The market for townhouses started to decline but they didn’t know that…”No problem” their realtor said, lets buy a big apartment in Burnaby and make some reno at the townhouse and we will sell this one with the profit. They did a 22K reno and listed it for 599K (down 1K already), then after few month no takers they lowered the price to 578K (down by 23K) and still there are no takers. I am wondering how much lower are they going to go before it sells. Plus they are going to pay the RE commission for a sale at least 15K when (if) it sells.

    • So whatever happened to Ben anyway? There has been a lot of action in the markets since his last article several months back. I know he drops in here once in awhile but has he quit his own blog for good?

      • Ben Rabidoux now consults for a market research firm (M Hanson Advisors) and since taking on that role doesn’t post as many public pieces as before. IMHO, he’s still the publicly-known Canadian RE analyst who best ‘gets’ the RE market.

      • Ben is on twitter at @benrabidoux

  5. Joe_blown_away_by_high_housing_costs

    Ha ha! I sometimes cross post my comments at both Vci and vreaa. For whatever reason I only posted this one at Vci but it still made its way on here.

    I swear I truly heard this conversation at a bus stop. When I read it, it almost sounds scripted and made up. But I truly heard this. And it only took about 5 minutes for this person to say all this. It’s amazing what you hear at bus stops.

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