Remembrance Of Markets Past – “It was a bit of a scam going on, and somebody was left holding the pot at the very end.”

Helmut Pastrick, trapped in a Proustian cross-fade
“This is not, in my view, the beginning of a major correction, or recession, or decline in housing prices of 15% or 25% as some predict, mainly because we’re not seeing an economic recession play out at the same time.”
Helmut Pastrick, on Global TV News, 2 or 3 Nov 2012 (‘Deflating Vancouver Real Estate Bubble’)

We don’t need an “economic recession” for our speculative mania to collapse, it will do so, and is doing so, under its own weight.
Pastricks’s words of comfort are filed in the ‘It’s Only A Flesh Wound‘ sidebar collection. We fully anticipate that some market participants, like the Black Knight, will insist on the market’s strength all the way down, as it is hacked to pieces chunk by chunk.
– vreaa

Alleyway dashcam to prime-time
“Back then, it was more like a stock or commodity that you would day-trade… you’ve made a small percentage, pass it on to the next person, and they will make more, and they will make more, it always happened… (laughs) it was a bit of a scam going on, and somebody was left holding the pot at the very end…”
Ian Watt, local realtor, on Global TV News, 3 Nov 2012 (‘Death of the Pre-Sales Condo Market’)

Ian Watt might as well be describing the entire Vancouver market.
The horse-trading is less obvious with other property types, but the crucial buying-premised-on-future-price-appreciation, is identical.

[hat-tip to Greenhorn, as always, for the archived videos.]

33 responses to “Remembrance Of Markets Past – “It was a bit of a scam going on, and somebody was left holding the pot at the very end.”

  1. That’s Helmut Patrick. Not Muir.

    • Oh my God, thanks, you’re right.
      You see what’s happening here? I’m punch-drunk from all the spin, and, also, all the industry guys are looking (and sounding) the same to me. I almost want to headline my mistake as symptomatic of the exhaustion (or perhaps rather, bear ennui).
      Post corrected.
      Thanks again.

    • Helmut Pastrick is “chief economist for Central Credit Union 1, the central financial facility and trade association for the B.C. and Ontario credit union systems.”

      He has been previously featured in numerous posts here, including:

      “I don’t see a price bubble”
      VREAA 21 Oct 2012

      Global TV; CMHC; Sommerville; Pastrick – “No Bubble” – “We don’t have a sort of financial environment where people are looking at major financial corrections”.
      VREAA 18 May 2012

  2. Host, I think I saw the person variously identified above as Muir or Pastrick in the Global TV (not CTV) piece I mentioned the other day in my comment on Nem’s photo essay…. I may be wrong, but Chris Gailus (Global) did the lead-in to the story in which this gentleman above was quoted.

    • Hi epte; thanks for the careful reading.
      It turns out both clips are from Global, post corrected to reflect.
      Clearly my setting up of the above post was sloppy (misnamed one talking-head, and incorrectly cited both sources as CTV).
      Now, in reviewing the clips, I note it appears that Global has changed it’s practices:
      1. No ‘Global TV News’ logo accompanying the announcers opening comments
      2. No on screen text names identifying the talking heads. This appears to be a recent departure.

  3. UBCghettodweller

    Posted in a Reddit thread about the death of the condo pre-sale in Vancouver:

    “Your comment is suggesting that anyone who invests in real estate is a fool and that those sitting on the sidelines are somehow the only ones that know the real truth and your hoping that people trying to make a better life for themselves “lose everything” and end up in a “personal hell” and that those who have sat on the sidelines somehow “deserve” for the market to crumble.
    If you can’t afford a home here fuck off and move somewhere else, nobody is forcing you to live here.”

    So much Vancouver real estate gaming and house horniness that it’s awesome.

  4. Well… but my money where my mouth is…
    and sold it seams…
    Signed for $1,0250,000.00, due dil. for Dec. 15th. then $100,000.00 G non-refundable, and close Jan 31st, 1213. Nice split on the tax year.
    Am i really so lucky…
    Paid $315,000.00, owe $160,000.00,
    Mortgage payment monthly $640.00, property taxin 2005, $4000.00 year, current uncontested hitting $2000+ a month… neg real equity being developed… property tax more than mortgage.
    I think that it is right… to sell. the math works… good profit. Limit losses.
    Bye the way… the historic rise in property value from 1958 to 2006 was $7,500.00 a year… time to take profit and run.
    Commie… now Vulture Capitalist… tired of the public welfare bums.
    Oh… and just a question but if 63%+- of the jobs in Canada are Government or Public tax-payer supported does that mean that 63% of the home sales are dependent on Public Tax revenue???? Any thoughts???

    P.S. thank for the work on the site folks…. good both side stuff…

    • Congratulations on your windfall profits.
      Anybody who gets out in the vague vicinity of the top, by design or by good fortune, will be considered wise in years to come.

    • Rusty approves of everything you do


      you are proof that you don’t need brains to get money

  5. From ‘timber2012’ at RE Talks 6 Nov 2012 10:04am:
    “3042 W21st. – purchased for $2.168M in Dec/10. Sold (now) for $2.157. Are we now below Dec/10 pricing?”

    [For that property, clearly we are.]

  6. Meanwhile in that poverty stricken town of Calgary luxury homes sales means anything over $1,000,000:

    On the real estate scene, sales of luxury homes in Calgary’s resale housing market have already set a record this year. In October, Calgary hit 459 year-to-date MLS sales of properties over $1 million, one more than the previous record set in 2007 for the entire year.

    Read more:

    • Real Estate Tsunami

      Here, on the ancient Fraser flood-plane, also known as Richmond, there are over 5,000 SFH assessed at over 1 million. Assessment date July, 2011.
      New assessments (as of July 2012) are coming out in a month or so.
      Many house millionaires will find out that they are poorer than they think.

      • Rusty approves of everything you do

        there are as many homes assessed at or over $1 million in the GVRD as were SOLD in the entire United States in 2011. i forget the actual stat, but the number is absurdly close. this is similar to all the real estate in Tokyo being priced at more than all the real estate in the US in 1990.

        too lazy to google, sorry – watching kentucky go 80% for Romney..

  7. Out in my neck of the woods (rather, they *were* woods before the bulldozers arrived), the land is still being cleared, the workers are still building well after dark and in the unending deluge, the mess from sloppy construction practices is as unavoidable as the For Sale signs, and very, very little of this future ghetto is selling. It’s a miserable, ugly sight, particularly when viewed under the constant gloom of the eight-month BPOE winter.

    There’s one group of newly built crapholes in particular that deserves mention. Eight SFH’s in a row, all facing north with virtually no backyards and perhaps six or seven feet of clearance between them. I “toured” one of them some time ago, and wasn’t exactly shocked by the lack of quality finishing. Framing joints that didn’t quite sync, patchy, single-coat paint jobs, cheapo no-name plumbing fixtures, the ugliest carpeting since the days of shag, doors so uneven that they’d swing wide open with the gentlest of nudges. And a sliding glass door on the upper level that *should* lead to a deck but instead leads to…nothing. Three bedrooms (two of which couldn’t comfortably fit a queen-size bed), yet four (count ’em…four) bathrooms. Go figure. And wonderful views into the kitchens of your closest neighbours. Needless to say given its close proximity to neighboring homes, there was very little natural light inside on what was a rare sunny day.

    These malevolent monuments to mania *start* at nearly $600,000. No wonder none of them have sold, despite being on the market at least six months.

    The obvious plan down here was and is to barf out these monstrosities as quickly as possible to catch the end of the bubble. It’s not working. To see these horrid, dark little row homes priced at $400,000 – or less – by the middle of this decade is, IMO, not a stretch.

    • I think they put in extra bathrooms because they know the new owners are going to need them feeling constantly sick as they watch their equity drain away in a steady stream of falling prices coupled with expensive repair bills.

      • Real Estate Tsunami

        I never understood the appeal of all these extra bathrooms.
        Given all the extra work cleaning them. Even if you close them off, they still get dirty.
        Most be some extra money for the builders.

      • Rusty approves of everything you do

        you need extra bathrooms for your exchange students that you shoe-horn in to pay for the mortgage.

    • Any chance you have seen the junk they are building at the 176th & #1 exit? North side of the freeway… looks like the plan is to build a small city there with these 10-14 buildings per section… I bet you can’t hold a conversation with out yelling for the noise of the freeway must be great. Ghost city in the future i am betting.

    • Rusty approves of everything you do

      sounds like all the bullshit they’ve built up on Burke mountain

  8. For that location, I’m not sure I would even pay $400K for a good solid house, never mind a crappy mind. Might be cheaper to torn it down and restart than trying to fix it.

  9. Mr. Pastrick, you are “locked in”.

  10. 4SlicesofCheese

    80% sold for MC2 on opening weekend, not too bad in a weak market.

  11. 4SlicesofCheese

    From an email,

    With 347 homes sold on opening weekend, MC² is 80% Sold! Transit, value, and of course location have once again proven to be the driving forces behind the success in Vancouver’s residential market. Great value with one bedrooms starting from $259,000 and two bedrooms from $428,500!

    We have now released all remaining inventory with a great selection of homes still available. We have over 40 homes under $299,000!!

  12. Pot was legalized today in WA and CO…

  13. Real Estate Tsunami

    Please explain how you can sell 347 “homes” during a weekend.
    There are 48 hours in a weekend, if your agents go without sleep.
    According to my calculations, they must sell one home about every 10 minutes.

  14. On the other hand… Gooo Reston, Manitoba! May you not be the next Stockton, CA

    $10 plots of land. Reston, Manitoba

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