Sunday, July 27, 2008
good and cheap, and fast
Well, the lawns have withered, the trees are thirsty, and the bloom is off the rose. No real relief in sight. Oh, a few raindrops over-night, but that is nothing compared to the rains that are needed, and will come - as sure as November will.
Waidaminit! I am I writing of the weather? Or the RE market? Both, really.
I don't bother checking inventory much any more, I see a lot of "For Sale" signs, a lot have regular open houses marked, but all that traffic on the streets must be heading to Well-mart, they sure are not going house shopping from what I can see. I don't see enough "REDUCED!" signs though. Very few in fact. They will come in November too.
My neighbour finally dropped $35 and had the grass cut, but still, no takers. She has not lowered her ludicrous asking price - I don't think that she can, and still get away clean. The renters moved away, and now she is renting the place out furnished. It seems that a few people have come and gone, so I don't think that it is working out so well. Stagnation seems to be an appropriate descriptor.
Inflation rhymes with stagnation, and I came across a link to an article entitled The Great American Nightmare. I won't rehash it here, but it is worth a read. The author talks about "shadow inflation" - as opposed to official figures, and talks of how the numbers are twisted to make things "look better" than they really are. We all know that though, and it is the same with unemployment numbers.
The article is in relation to the US, and some may be quick to point out that we are somehow insulated from it in Canada because we are special, and have the oil sands, and timber, and weather, and the mountains, and the Olympics, and, and... But we know how goes Amurika, so goes the world. Globalization is just that. No doubt that power and influence is shifting, but he who has nukes, well, still has power.
The US has Freddie Mac, and Fannie Mae, and we have CHMC. They have subprime, we have zero-down/40 year amort. Oh yes, and then BoC buying junk bonds, or ABCP if you will.
The US has hundreds of banks failing, and we have noises of deregulation of banking, and the big five buying ABCP. I don't even want to touch that.
Inflation is a lot higher than reported in Canada, and we "smart ones", who did not buy in, are seeing our savings erode. Maybe the 0%/40 Year bunch (or at least some of them), are not so stupid after all. The dumb ones are about to lose a lot more though.
Oh well, at least I am sure that the next shoe to drop is higher interest rates. Hopefully, they will be high enough to off-set inflation. But they never are, are they? Maybe randombabble was not so wrong on the future of gold.
I'd rather buy tins of food and ammo.
The title of this post was a lame attempt to tie the picture to the post (it is cheap, and sort of fast, but good? Huh?). We all want to see houses get good and cheap, and fast, do we not? But I can't help but think that anything built in the last five years will not be good - no matter how cheap it is. Too fast.
I ripped off the photo at top from another blog, but at least I straightened it, cropped it, and adjusted contrast, etc.