As longtime followers of this blog know, our prognostication for the popping of the housing bubble in the Village on the Edge of the Rainforest is a decline on the order of 70%-85%.
Nothing brings more derisive emails than re-stating this prediction - even from those who already harbour a bearish outlook.
But is a 70% drop so outlandish?
Yesterday one of the properties we profiled was 2718 W. 24th Ave:
Built in 1988, this 5 bedroom, 3 bathroom house has changed hands three times since then.
In 1998 it sold for $455,000. In 2004 it sold for $700,000. In 2011 it was assessed at $1,864,000.
With no significant upgrades whatsoever, this property rose in 'value' from $700,000 in 2004 to $1,864,000 in 2011? This is a perfect example of the bubble created by the CMHC polices outlined two days ago by the Globe and Mail Newspaper.
The Globe article outlines clearly, with comments from the former Bank of Canada Governor David Dodge, how CMHC policies inflated this housing bubble.
Every asset bubble in history - when it bursts - always over-corrects past the point when the bubble first started.
Below is real estate agent Larry Yatkowsky's average price chart from the start of December 2012 (click on image to enlarge):
Look at where prices were in 2004 (and some would argue that the bubble was already on it's way by then, having started several years before this).
Take a look at the uppermost graph - the stages that all asset bubbles go through.
If we to correct back to only 2004 prices, a mere 8 years ago, consider the impact on our housing market
(In 2004 the Vancouver average house price was around $520,000)
It means this house at 2718 W. 24th Ave would drop to $700,000... a 62.5% collapse in value from the 2011 assessment.
If the bubble correction overshoots 2004 prices, this house could easily shave 70% off of it's 2011 assessed value and drop to $560,000.
But think about it. This sort of drop only goes back to 2004. When you look at the progression in panorama, it isn't hard to see how the bubble could burst in this fashion.
- The policies that created the bubble are being reversed.
- The crack cocaine of easy credit that facilitated the dramatic rise is being removed.
Just remember one important thing. History shows that the unwinding of a bubble takes as long as the inflation of one. It will take 8 years for values to fall like this... but fall they will.
And 70% will actually be a conservative number.
We are in for a painful ride.
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