Overheard At A Cafe On South Granville Strip – “We didn’t get out like them. They got out at the top of the market. Oh well. We’re still happy.”

“Last weekend we stopped in at a cafe in S. Granville near all the hot high-end shops and I overhead these two women talking about their condo. Of the things overheard was…
: “We didn’t get out like the [Name]‘s. They got out at the top of the market. Oh well. We’re still happy.”
: “We did the roof, we did [something else] so there’s only a few more major jobs to do..”
: “I guess that’s the best thing you can do when your condo goes down in value is just make sure that it’s well maintained and all the building work is done. That way it will pick up value in the long run.”
And then tons of bitching about everyone else on the strata or who lives behind a door. Clearly not much love in this building wherever it is.”

mac at VCI November 20th, 2012 at 7:00 pm

34 responses to “Overheard At A Cafe On South Granville Strip – “We didn’t get out like them. They got out at the top of the market. Oh well. We’re still happy.”

  1. That’s a thought. If condos drop by a goodly amount (choose your number), will battles over money and upkeep among owners and in strata meetings become more common, and nastier? If X percent of the owners in a building are feeling really cash strapped, or subject to a vanished wealth effect, how likely are they going to be to vote for an increase in strata fees, or approve special one-time projects, even if those projects are obviously required? Could be very frustrating for owners who do want to keep ahead of the maintenance on a building.

    • Real Estate Tsunami

      With the mandatory Depreciation Reports coming in next year, Stratas will have to disclose any deficiencies to potential buyers.
      I foresee unhappy times for owners of condos and town homes, who will have to face the music of high assessments.

      • Owners of poorly maintained condos will feel the pain but well maintained buildings should enjoy a relative premium.

        This is probably a very good thing for the good buildings and for the condo market in general because it will remove one of the big fears that many buyers have about special assessments.

        Soon a buyer will be able to realistically assess what special assessments will occur in the future and will be able to adjust their bid accordingly. This is much better than the current “buying blind” situation which often occurs with real estate today. The problem of future huge maintenance cost surprises will still exist with single family homes but at least the condo market will be safer.

    • When important maintenance jobs are needed the strata council is legally obliged to do them, wether they want to or not. It only needs one disgruntled owner to force their hand.

      Their only other option is to initiate a winding up of the strata corporation but that requires 100% vote.

      • Out of curiosity – what would be classified as “important maintenance jobs”?

        Is there maintenance that the strata is legally obliged to perform, even if nobody asks for it? e.g. due to health & safety issues?

    • You can look at the state of some buildings what happens when owners simply cannot pay for routine upkeep and repairs.

      Interestingly many of these are cooperatives; CMHC refuses to subsidize co-ops without decent capital reserve planning and therefore having a low chance of being sustainable. So they’re not all evil with taxpayer money. I doubt many private condo buyers are asking the same difficult questions.

  2. RecentlyOverheard during BreakfastAlFresco @ Le Pain Quotidien… JoshFlag, RodeoRealtor™ [RodeoRealty’s latest ‘catch’ – the BravoTV celebrity agent from “Million Dollar Listing!” and self-declared “Platinum Triangle!” specialist.]

    “Everybody who has cash is doing flips.”

    [LA Times] – Flipping gets an expensive twist

    “Luxury-home flipping is heating up in affluent neighborhoods as well-heeled builders and investors seek better returns than they get on other investments.”


    [NoteToEd: See… Truly… does Life Imitate VREAA Art. There actually are RodeoRealtors™. As for “PlatinumTriangles”, that’s got to be either a MaximusRealtus™ volume sales award, a euphemistic allusion to SanFrancisco’s new ‘SumptuaryLaws’ or, possibly, a coy reference to a popular depilatory beauty treatment.]

  3. 4SlicesofCheese

    I currently know of two couples who have to sell because they just had kids and the 1br are no longer cutting it.
    List price is break even price, or at least that is what they say, not sure about how they are accounting.

    • I can’t help but wonder if there won’t be a whole bunch of Vancouver kids who end up being raised in 1br condos.

  4. Do you guys have any friends? The way it’s going if your mother were to purchase a condo, you would secretly hope she will be underwater and in a financial ruin in order to prove your point.

    Shit still smiles stink even it comes from a financial wizard.

    Only wish bad luck on strangers, not your friends and family or you will end up having none. (Ok, you will also have cheap housing prices by then.)

    Come on guys, it’s Thanksgiving.

    • Cris -> You’re confused.
      You’re like somebody who has spent a day on the beach, the sun starts going down, and everybody else starts packing up and pointing out it’ll soon be dark, and you’re yelling “Pessimists! Think positive and we can keep the sunshine going all night! Why wish for darkness?!”.
      Many of us here understand the dynamics of a debt fuelled speculative mania in RE. No matter how many good thoughts you hold dear, the whole bloody thing has to unwind, in a bloody fashion. This is not what any of us really wish for; we’re just bearing the (now very obvious) message.

    • And, BTW Cris, you’re behind the times: Thanksgiving was more than a month ago.

    • Yah my friends that own all think I am sub-class for renting 🙂

    • thanksgiving was in October, dude

      • American Thanksgiving was yesterday. Today is Black Friday.

      • [NoteToEd: I didnt want anyone to feel left out – albeit, try as I might, I was unable to locate a jolly Eid al-Adha clip. Never mind. As for Festive RitualRoastings… I’d take a TangyTandoori over a GrislyGobbler or a ToastedGoat any day… TrueConfession: LongLong ago, in a dark moment of dire pecuniary necessity… I relented… and agreed to illustrate a cover of “PoultryMan Magazine”. It was, needless to say, a particularly challenging creative brief. There are only so many things a farmer can do with a live chicken in a mass circulation trade publication.]

      • Oh yes, I nearly forgot… You’ll NeverGuess! what Tel-Aviv’s Hanukkah celebrants are debating this season…

        [Haaretz] – Municipal tax hike on ‘ghost apartments’ in Israel stalled at Interior Ministry

        …”One of the suggestions to come out of the Trajtenberg committee, the public panel that looked into ways to lower the cost of living, related to higher taxation on apartments that stand empty most of the year. The committee thought this would add to the supply of available housing and help drive down prices, but the recommendations have been stalled.”…


  5. “Thanksgiving was more than a month ago.”
    To some, it has never come. It is the very sad to hear something like this during holiday seasons. Don’t you think? Hamas has stop fired rockets into israel (or vise versa). It’s something to celebrate for the moment if you can’t find deals during Black Friday, vreaa.

    • Seeking knowledge...

      Cris: There are many horrible things happening in this world: war, murder, torture, famine, genocide, the list goes on. But let’s focus on what this blog is for: disseminating knowledge and opinions about Van RE.
      By the way, why do you think the holiday season are particularly important for all the bad stuff happening around the world. Shouldn’t it be an every day thing?

    • Do they teach illiteracy in Troll school or do you have to be illiterate in the first place?

    • Mostly we’re annoyed people are getting themselves into bad situations with respect to housing speculation. Don’t take it personally that a real estate blog doesn’t deal with the complicated details of middle east politics. There are blogs for that too.

      • As much as I am a illiterate, I can see wishing people ill is a common theme here. It doesn’t take a lot of education to see that. And as far as I can see, we are all speculators here. It’s just your way of treating people a bit more vicious.

    • Cris, you have crossed over into nonsequiturville and forgone the right to a serious response from any of us.

      • Ok, here are my responses
        Vreaa: Holiday Seasons is the period from Thanksgiving to New Year. Yesterday was Thanksgiving in the US.
        Bally: I haven’t gone to Troll school, just a regular public school, therefore I am not much of an educated man like thyself.
        YVR: I am just thinking even these peoples are at war before Jesus was borned. They pause the war for their holidays.
        4slicesofCheese: They are NOT your friends. Find better ones.

      • 4SlicesofCheese

        Um Cris, my parents think I am an idiot for renting, should I get new parents too?

      • hey cris, [very well know expletive deleted here. -ed] you!

        ha ha (that`s how you do it)

  6. Listening to Bob Marley would help.

  7. I cant believe how many people still will buy in this market, I say to them, wake up and study history, you can never call the bottom but it will be in a few years. -40% for sure in my opinion only.

    • Yeah, it is amazing to consider the buyers.
      We have long considered the fact that there will be a subgroup of buyers who still have the 2008-2009 dip in mind, and will believe that they are “buying the dip” when they purchase at 10% off the peak, or at anything below assessment.

      • i heard a proud father boasting to his son over dinner tonight that he had bought *** 5 *** condos recently – including one in the MC2 for grandma (when she arrives) – not sure if it`s for her to OWN or actually live in.

  8. Pingback: “I heard a proud father boasting to his son over dinner tonight that he had bought FIVE Vancouver condos recently.” | Vancouver Real Estate Anecdote Archive

  9. @Liu Yunshan: I bet it’s just an investment, I doubt a grandma would move to one of the new 5! condos… I hate to hear stories like this, because people who speculate with homes contribute to the ghost city scenario – whole neighbourhoods are full of empty condos. empty condos mean empty streets and empty streets means less safety in neighbourhoods around Vancouver.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s