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Old February 12th, 2016, 05:57 PM   #1
Taller, Better
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A crisis in Vancouver: The lifeblood of the city is leaving

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opini...ticle28730533/




A crisis in Vancouver: The lifeblood of the city is leaving

Gary Mason

The Globe and Mail

Published Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016 4:20PM EST

Last updated Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016 4:21PM EST


There is a growing societal divide in Vancouver that is threatening its future.

The city is increasingly becoming an investor haven for the rich. Sure, there are some lucky souls, relatively middle-class people who got into the housing market before prices took off and who are now sitting on a gold mine. Most realize how fortunate they are, the lottery ticket they won.

And they have consciences when it comes to the plight of those who have no hope of buying a house of any description in the city......



read it all here:
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opini...ticle28730533/
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Old February 12th, 2016, 06:19 PM   #2
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They are just moving to the suburbs where the house prices are cheaper. The city of Vancouver itself is pretty small with a relatively small pop of just over half a million, while Surrey is projected to overtake its bigger sister soon and its house price is half the price compare to the same type of houses in Vancouver.
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Old February 13th, 2016, 02:07 PM   #3
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sad, in many ways.
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From Panorama Ridge to Tynehead to East Clayton, Surrey has become home to practically dozens of cities within cities with endless potential
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Old February 13th, 2016, 02:24 PM   #4
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I have been visiting Vancouver quite regularly over the past 2 years because of work. I love the city, but the real estate prices are just ridiculously high, while at the same time the economy is not necessarily standing on such a strong base.
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Old February 18th, 2016, 07:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulpia-Serdica View Post
I have been visiting Vancouver quite regularly over the past 2 years because of work. I love the city, but the real estate prices are just ridiculously high, while at the same time the economy is not necessarily standing on such a strong base.
According to BMO, Vancouver has the 3rd hottest job market in Canada.
http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2016/02/k...market-canada/

Real estate prices are high, but they're not ridiculous. A lot of people just can't get used to the fact they won't be able to buy a detached house where they grew up. If you grew up in West Vancouver, forget about buying a detached house in WV in your 30's, perhaps ever, unless you can make a 3-5 million dollar price tag work. But there are a million other options. You could buy a very affordable condo. You could buy a detached house on the other end of the city. You could buy a 1.1 million dollar house built in the 70's in desirable parts of North Van and sit on an appreciating asset.

Nobody's leaving the metro area. I need to see data to believe that. The data says Vancouver is always gaining. Demographics will just shift in the coming years. From one suburb to another.
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Old February 19th, 2016, 06:36 PM   #6
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If I were to move there, there is no way I would live in a suburb. No matter how expensive it would be I'd have to rent a place downtown. Maybe on South Granville, which is an area I particularly like.
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Old February 21st, 2016, 06:58 AM   #7
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I just had an argument with someone about "foreign ownership" and his race (white) is relevant to my hypothesis. Tell me if I'm wrong (specially if you're a Vancouver resident.

IMO this "foreign ownership" thing is bull shit and a lot of white people are just getting annoyed that "brown people" and "slanted eye people" are driving better cars and owning homes/condos. They see this and scream "foreigners" when the majority of us are citizens or permanent residents working towards citizenship. The stats I've seen put foreign ownership for the entire GVA at something like 2%. That's nothing. Half of that 2% are Americans btw (according to that report).

Children of Asian immigrants are FAR more likely to be university educated than white children. On top of that, we're more likely to study something useful. Here's proof of this:

Quote:
young Canadians with immigrant backgrounds are almost twice as likely to go to university as students whose parents were born in Canada.
So we're twice as likely to go to university, but even the white kids that do go to university mostly go into useless programs like acting, marketing, film making, women's studies, dancing etc... That's the case in my university where every engineering, science, computer and useful business program (like accounting) is filled with East and West Asians while the useless programs are filled to the ceiling with white kids. We're also more likely to be tight with our money (higher savings) and more likely to spend our money on appreciating assets like homes and condos.

Quote:
Asian immigrants being more educated and often more affluent than third-generation Canadians. They’re also more urban; Metro Vancouver’s population is 45 per cent foreign born.
Only 35% of UBC is white!!!!!!!!!! And even this low number doesn't tell the whole story as I said earlier (they tend to choose useless programs like women's studies and acting).
http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2014/0...-universities/

I'm 27 and I have a condo downtown. I went to university for a couple of years, worked for a few years and saved for a condo and now I'm back in university to finish my degree. My brother is always on the Dean's honor list at UBC and job offers left and right (he's studying chemical engineering). My uncle got his undergrad and graduate degrees in engineering from UBC. Both my parents have graduate degrees (economics and computer). Virtually my ENTIRE family is university educated and all their kids are either going to university or have already been graduated. Now multiply this across all Asian families (West and East Asian). We also never study useless subjects.

Next time you pass a truck in Vancouver look inside and see who's driving. Ten times out of ten it's a white tradesman or a young white boy driving a beaten up truck. White people here dominate in blue collar jobs that don't pay much. They rarely send their kids to university. The ones that do go, study useless subjects like music! Is it any wonder that Asians do better?

Of course, there are no solid statistics on foreign ownership, but in light of the above facts I don't think it's foreign ownership that is pushing prices up. It's a combination of low interest rates, record low supply and speculation. In this environment, Asians are proving to be more successful. That's all it is. I get annoyed looks when I tell people I rent out my condo downtown for over 2000 a month. They assume mommy and daddy sent me cash from "overseas" and I'm just sitting here living it up. Nope! On the contrary it's the white 3rd generation population that doesn't do anything with the opportunities they are given.

Make sure you read this article:
http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2014/0...-universities/
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Old February 21st, 2016, 07:23 AM   #8
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I can't say as I don't live in Vancouver.
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Old February 22nd, 2016, 05:05 AM   #9
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even some experts admitted that they don't understand why the housing markets in Toronto and Vancouver are still so hot while the rest Of Canada has been slowly declining. The only thing I can see is because of the low Canadian dollars that makes it attractive to the foreign investors regardless of their ethnic backgrounds.
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Old February 22nd, 2016, 05:12 AM   #10
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The last few times I had been to Vancouver, I had started getting the impression it was basically turning into a giant resort city.
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Old February 22nd, 2016, 05:22 AM   #11
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@abii,

While I understand your frustration, I think it might be helpful to understand that it's possible for there to be "too much of a good thing." Well-educated people and well-off people are great to have, but when you get such a huge amount of them, they start to drive up real estate prices to stratospheric levels, and the people who don't happen to be so lucky are just kinda stuck. I don't know what the solution is (maybe there isn't one, except for the stuck people to move), but at least it's helpful to understand their frustrations. Not everyone can have an advanced degree and a job making 6 figures to help them afford a $500K house. It's nothing to do with race, it's everything to do with "too much of a good thing."
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Old February 23rd, 2016, 03:19 AM   #12
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@abii
You just countered what you justifiable believe is a racist straw man argument with racist straw man argument of your own.

Furthermore, you are confusing "highly educated " and "well educated" and think they are the same. In reality they are two entirely different things. Highly educated people tend to be one dimensional because all their time was spent in their particular area of study and they tend to lack the ability to move beyond their narrow area of expertise. This tends to be a real problem for people in STEM disciplines.

Well educated people are more expansive in their education for they not only have areas of technical expertise they also have a broad based understanding and the ability to continue to learn throughout their life. In short they have the ability to think as well as learn and that makes them infinitely more adaptable than the highly educated.

I have a BS in Urban Planning / Design and a MS in Architecture and Urban Design from one of the more highly regarded universities in the USA. I am a fairly typical STEM graduate. While my technical abilities help me in my profession, it is the, as you call them, worthless classes that I took in college, like Art, Philosophy, Sociology and Music that have better prepared me to live a more well rounded life.

As a senior manager in my profession I often have to make hiring decisions and I will always take a well educated person over a highly educated person every time. Well educated people are teachable, adaptable and bring far more value to my business.
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Old February 23rd, 2016, 10:12 PM   #13
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Despite abii's assertions to the contrary, there are foreign ownership issues with real estate in Vancouver. The issue is not with the WHO but with the HOW. Yes, this is a popular city to live in, at least partially because of the geographic constraints; that's why I've been here as long as I have. We have an issue here (or at least the perception of one) with speculative purchasing - there are foreign owners who are treating residential properties here solely as investments, instead of as residences. This has definitely had an effect on the pricing of a commodity that is in limited supply - speculation drives prices upward.

Abii, congratulations on your university education; I'm sure your parents are very proud of you. That and a twoonie will get you a cup of coffee in my field; but if you really feel the need to keep score, both my wife and I also have university educations, and so did our parents. One of my sons does as well; the other one hasn't got there yet only because he's not old enough, but will be entering a field of study that requires post-grad work. My niece is a commercial pilot, and my nephew is taking doctorate studies in astrophysics. I recommend not judging people that you really don't know anything about and remove the chip from your shoulder.
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Old February 24th, 2016, 04:39 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trece verde View Post
Despite abii's assertions to the contrary, there are foreign ownership issues with real estate in Vancouver. The issue is not with the WHO but with the HOW. Yes, this is a popular city to live in, at least partially because of the geographic constraints; that's why I've been here as long as I have. We have an issue here (or at least the perception of one) with speculative purchasing - there are foreign owners who are treating residential properties here solely as investments, instead of as residences. This has definitely had an effect on the pricing of a commodity that is in limited supply - speculation drives prices upward.
Good point and there is a fairly simple way to help validate this contention. Look at the west end city view at night and look at the all the apartments, condos etc. that are dark and consistently dark. It's a good indicator of units that are owned but not occupied.
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Old February 25th, 2016, 04:53 PM   #15
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@abii

I'm sorry you feel that way about the whites but I thought the days were gone when people judged me by the colour of my skin... (I'm white but it doesn't bother me anyway)
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Old February 25th, 2016, 07:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abii View Post
According to BMO, Vancouver has the 3rd hottest job market in Canada.
http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2016/02/k...market-canada/

Real estate prices are high, but they're not ridiculous. A lot of people just can't get used to the fact they won't be able to buy a detached house where they grew up. If you grew up in West Vancouver, forget about buying a detached house in WV in your 30's, perhaps ever, unless you can make a 3-5 million dollar price tag work. But there are a million other options. You could buy a very affordable condo. You could buy a detached house on the other end of the city. You could buy a 1.1 million dollar house built in the 70's in desirable parts of North Van and sit on an appreciating asset.

Nobody's leaving the metro area. I need to see data to believe that. The data says Vancouver is always gaining. Demographics will just shift in the coming years. From one suburb to another.
The definition of a "hot job market" is at best a relative one (given that a town booming with low wage service jobs is not the same as a town booming with jobs in high income/high tech and head office oriented employment). Thus, I think the comments of the foreign observer relating the Vancouver's economy is fairly accurate.
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Old February 25th, 2016, 09:06 PM   #17
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You guys are making the accusations and pointing figures and I'm the one providing links and evidence! Until you can show evidence, your claims are simply fairy tales.

Quote:
Toronto leading with 2.4% of all its condominium apartments foreign-owned; Vancouver second at 2.3%; followed by Montreal at 1.5%. Next was Victoria (1.1%), Ottawa (0.7%), Quebec City (0.6%), Saskatoon (0.3%), Calgary (0.2%) and Edmonton, Regina and Winnipeg (each at 0.1%).
http://business.financialpost.com/pe...few-believe-it

So, Vancouver is second at 2.3% and most of those foreign owners are actually Americans. Even in the article above, the author is still moaning about foreigners, when the number says otherwise lol

Here's another source:

Quote:
Less than one per cent (0.8%) of all Metro Vancouver dwellings are occupied by foreign and/or temporary residents.

This is “about the same (insignificant) share as in other Canadian metropolitan areas” with populations of at least 200,000, reports Urban Futures.
And what about the "unoccupied" home claims?

Quote:
In Metro Vancouver in 2011, 3.2% of detached homes, 6.8% of townhomes and 6.2% of apartments were unoccupied.

How does this compare with other metropolitan areas? Looking specifically at apartments, Metro Vancouver’s 6.2% unoccupied units were “below the 7.0% average for all 33 of the Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) in Canada,” reports Urban Futures.
Quote:
“The bottom-line is that the 2011 Census data clearly shows that much ado is being made about nothing when it comes to the prevalence of foreign and/or temporary residents and unoccupied dwellings in this region,” reports Urban Futures.
http://www.rebgv.org/are-foreign-own...les-and-prices
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Old February 25th, 2016, 09:59 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abii View Post
You guys are making the accusations and pointing figures and I'm the one providing links and evidence! Until you can show evidence, your claims are simply fairy tales.


http://business.financialpost.com/pe...few-believe-it

So, Vancouver is second at 2.3% and most of those foreign owners are actually Americans. Even in the article above, the author is still moaning about foreigners, when the number says otherwise lol

Here's another source:



And what about the "unoccupied" home claims?





http://www.rebgv.org/are-foreign-own...les-and-prices

Your links are cool (as far as housing related issues are concerned) Abii but you help confirm or deny if it's fairy tale as to the nature of the employment boom in Vancouver??? Are most jobs low wage/service sector ones or well paying high tech/upper management (head office related) jobs!?
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Old February 25th, 2016, 10:06 PM   #19
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@ abii

I feel bad you think us whites are jealous of darker skinned people owning better cars and houses but I really don't think that's true. My family of white Northern European ancestry has already married Africans and Asians into our family, and I love all people of the world.. So please don't feel like you have a chip from your shoulder.
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Old February 26th, 2016, 08:03 AM   #20
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Guys, please let us steer this discussion away from anger or racial bickering. I did not post the article with that intent. Thanks!


And by the way, I do not wholeheartedly agree with the premise of the article in the first place as I do not believe the heart and soul is moving
out of Vancouver. I believe when people love their city they find ways to get by even when cost of living goes up. I'd not move from here if my
cost of living went up; I'd figure out a way to get around it. And from what I've experienced in the past, Vancouverites really love their city!
You cannot measure everything in life with dollars and cents, and moving to some wilderness town to save money will not make true urban downtown Vancouverites
happier in the long run.
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