Friday, April 13, 2007


Well, I've been skulking about, not posting much - blaming it on new fatherhood...

It is true - it has stolen my "time", but I have also been at somewhat of a loss for words in discussing the RE scene in Van. these days.

We all know it will crash - even the bullish amongst us. But when? Will it crash like the gas prices - dream on... There is something in the water, I think.

Anecdotally; business sucks lately. Decidedly un-busy. My income relies on discretionary spending, and it seems to be in decline. Not just me, but others in the same business are reporting similar results.

Restaurants seem less busy, stores seem less busy. New car sales are on the decline. Anything else?

On a bright note, condo hype is doing really well. If you haven't checked it out yet, it is a recommended read. If only I was so funny, well read, and had a little more time...

I am going to start opening up the soapbox again because I think that the commentary is often better than the scribing - here, and other places too. So think of what you want to say, and in the spirit of Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park, London, Sundays will be your chance to have your say.

I noticed last week that the hit counter here was 6's right across the board. What does that mean? Not much, really, but that some of you are still interested in my pontification(s). I will try to satisfy that interest in the coming days.

Being a new parent does indeed change one's life. I'm so tired...


Anonymous said...

It does get easier! (Or, at least, there's eventually more sleep... *g*)
Enjoy your little one. The first year, they go from needy but heart melting little-loafs of baby to little people. The year does fly by...

As for RE, I don't know what to say. I'm watching the US implosion, and I shake my head. I wonder why we think we're not going to be effected. In psychology alone: when Vancouverites learn our American colleagues, friends, and family were pantsed in RE, they're going to be less likely to invest in anything but their primary homes. The great revelation that there IS a possible downside.

Mrs. Hairy Woman said...

The best is yet to come.. Being a parent keeps you humble..I checked out condohype and I really like that blog too.. I don't even live out there.. and I can appreciate the sentiments regarding the RE market..

Unknown said...

Anecdotally, I think that spending is up for marketing and sales staff. Seems like everybody is looking for (and hiring new) marketing managers, graphic designers, web designers, etc...

Maybe I am just lucky to have booming clients, but I don't think that spending in this segment is indicative of the health of the economy as a whole.

Out of curiosity, what market does your business serve?

Unknown said...

Yes, bringing up baby does take time, but they are SO WORTH IT!

Aside - check out the new Fraser Report on schools as covered in this weekend's V.Sun Interesting material there - house desirability does go up and down depending upon which high schools (especially) are top marks earners.
Also, been to Australia for a while again. They've been through some hard corrections there, especially in parts of Sydney. I think their government controls interest rates better than we do. It's part of the Aussie dream to 'own one's own home' and their govt knows that and acts on it. (I suspect ours would too, if the bubble was in Toronto...not out on the outer edges of our civilization, here in lotusland.)

After being in Australia, where the weather IS actually great, I find the Vancouver market totally and completely insane. It's like it moves upwards on air alone. Once we get used to a certain price, Vancouverites then move along to the next higher one.

Perhaps it is because we are the only city in Canada where the TV and radio staions constantly bombard us with ads about loan consolidation, 2nd mortgages, new mortgages and surviving bankruptcy, etc. One of my acquaintances is a bankruptcy accountant and he is doing better than ever, btw.

RE: High end merchandise: They opened a Tiffany's downtown this year. They've opened a larger Hermes. The Coach purse chain has expanded into Oakridge, etc. So we do have the luxury spending here whether it's tourists, film people or 'Astronaut' Chinese families, I don't know, but it's here.
But I personally don't believe that home prices can go up forever. I'd love to buy in before my child gets totally settled in her primary school, but I just don't have the 'willing suspension of disbelief' necessary to act in this market.

That 'condohype' is up and running just goes to show how high ridiculousness quotient is too. When advertisements begin to describe what, in any other part of Canada would be appallingly tiny 'dwellings' as luxury items, suddenly we aren't in Kansas anymore, in fact, we aren't even participating in the Canadian economy. We are our own little hotbed (aka BUBBLE). Unlike Albertans, who have been experiencing a genuine boom in their economy, other than the luxury store chains opening, I'm not sure what would qualify as an economic boom here (other than construction itself).

Arwen said...

I'm not sure what would qualify as an economic boom here (other than construction itself).

Silly Catherine, it's Retail! Retail workers make BIG, BIG BUCKS!

patriotz said...

Aside - check out the new Fraser Report on schools as covered in this weekend's V.Sun Interesting material there - house desirability does go up and down depending upon which high schools (especially) are top marks earners.

The usual ass-backwards analysis from the F.I. The reason that the most expensive houses are near the schools with the most high achievers is - surprise - kids from rich homes do better, on average, than kids from poor homes. Little things like 3 meals a day, books & computers at home, educated parents for role models, lack of ESL problems, money for tutors, etc.

That's equally true in small towns where there is only one high school.

It doesn't mean that your kid would do any better if you moved to the rich part of town.

If you bused all the west side kids to the east side and vice versa, the top performing schools would be on the east side.