Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Richmond real estate agent gives us "the facts"

Diligent readers of this blog know what the real estate situation is like in Richmond right now... it's abysmal.

The latest monthly update from real estate agent James Wong leaves no doubt: a real estate downturn is in motion and that values are going to keep dropping. Dropping dramatically for that matter, to the point where owning a home makes fiscal sense again.

And that's one hell of a drop.

Richmond detached home sales have all but evaporated and most homes are selling below assessed value, some as much as 25% below assessed value... with no end in sight to plunging prices.

Buyers, it seems, are staying away in droves; afraid of catching a falling knife.

But have no fear, says another Richmond agent. Meet Owen Bigland.

Bigland wants to encourage to you to buy in Richmond. He wants you to learn from Warren Buffet and "be greedy when others are fearful and be fearful when others are greedy".

(mind you... I'm not aware of Buffet buying in Richmond right now so I say do EXACTLY what Buffet is doing in Richmond, but I digress)

Bigland, you see, has been very busy these past six weeks, so busy he hasn't had time to get a haircut...  yes, he tells us this (no offense Owen, we don't care).

Bigland informs us up front; October 2012 has been part of one of the slowest summer's on record for real estate sales.

(actually bloggers will tell you October has been a little busier than expected, but hey - this is Owen's story and he hasn't sold squat this month.  Perspective, I guess)

Bigland's brokerage, MacDonald Realty Westnar (which Owen claims is one of the biggest in the Lower Mainland with 175 agents), has had the slowest summer in over a decade.

Bigland has a number of listings he's getting little or no phone calls on, others that are getting a lot of viewings on, but buyers are
"hesitant and scared and... there's just so much news out there right now... there's just no urgency right now.  They (buyers) just figure, lets wait and see, I think prices are still going to be coming down a bit... and we'll play accordingly."
Gee Owen... sounds like buyers are playing it quite smart to me.  Do you disagree?

Of course he does (no commissions coming in, I guess).  Owen wants to share his insights but presumably he doesn't want to come right out and say "buy now you cheap bastards", so Bigland tells us he:
"won't sugarcoat it, won't put my spin on it, I just tell the facts" 
Oh?... another James Wong in the making? Ok Owen... tell us the facts:
"Ok... here's one more where I'm just going to tell the facts. And I tell ya what I had happen in September and the sales that I did. I know I'm going to get some flack, people are going to make some comments on my youtube page here, telling me you sound like a typical realtor, you sound like what they teach you in real estate school, it's always a good time to buy, and it's always a good time to sell. There's a lot of negative people out there, for sure. I've got news for you, I don't really care. I'm not really interested in doing business with negative people, I've got plenty of clients that trust me, uhhh, they know I'm going to do a good job for them, they know I take my job seriously. So here we go with it."
Blink! Blink!

Ok... fact #1. Sales suck right now and Owen just spent two minutes telling us he is, in fact, your typical realtor.

Do go on:
"In September I had two substantial sales, these were million dollar plus sales, one approaching close to two million dollars. Now these buyers, these two buyers, have a lot of things in common. And I thought I'd share it with you because maybe we can learn something from this."
Err... that there are still idiots out there with more credit than brains which puts commissions in your pocket?

Incredibly all this self-absorbed blathering takes up the first half of Bigland's 5 minute video clip. Bigland then tells you a tale where two older rich guys, who were hesitant to buy, pulled the trigger and bought. They bought because... wait for it... it's always a good time to buy and if they waited they might have lost the opportunity.

(Surprise! I think we call that 'buy now or be priced out forever')

Ummm... thanks Owen. Glad we got the 'facts' straight.

Not that I want to appear negative, but these aren't 'facts' and despite your update - I have a feeling you'll have lots of time for that haircut now.


Email: village_whisperer@live.ca
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  1. This guy makes Ian Watt likeable.

    1. Completely agree. Ian Watt is one of those self-professed "Type Triple-A" personalities so common in real estate, but at least there's something genuine there. He doesn't pump falling-knife real estate, and he's mercifully discovered the "Park" setting of his transmission.

      This Bigland (seriously?) guy is a real piece of work. If you disagree with him your "negative". If you're patiently watching on the sidelines as prices collapse around the Lower Mainland before buying, you're not being "Buffet" enough. Clearly we are still on the "Greedy" side of the ledger given current rent-price ratios in Vancouver, and not the "Nervous" side. So his logic fails.
      Bigland seems to be channeling Sarah Palin and Waldo from Where's Waldo while pushing an overly-pronounced Canadian accent that would make Bob and Doug MacKenzie proud (it probably "markets" well to an older generation to talk like a hoser while looking like a complete d--che). Sheesh.

  2. What's the point of being negative? Really ask yourself that at some point and see if you can come up with a good answer.

  3. Funny, as a future buyer I see falling real estate prices as a positive. Let the rally in affordability continue! :-)

    Good answer?

    1. Im thinking by the time the prices drop to their equilibrium price.... people will be wanting to escape any populated area in droves. Five years time should have peak oil concerns impacting everything from transportation to credit availability... and ultimately jobs.

  4. Please buy a house from me... please... please... please...

  5. How much do you want to bet that those fashion glasses are a 0.0 perscription... bets, anyone?

  6. Wow, that's so bad it's funn. Don't these guys get someone neutral to watch these things and give feedback? I mean... wow. Does he honestly think that's going to promote a buyer or a seller to utilize his services? Wow.

  7. "there's just so much news out there right now"

    Well shit, people are are catching on to just how insane the market is and possibly taking a moment to think rationally rather than act on their house horny feelings.

    I believe anger is the second stage of grief?
    He's got a long ways to go. But I don't totally blame him for feeling that way, he's probably shocked that the easy money has suddenly dried up and he'll have to actually work for his bread like normal people do.

  8. ewwww. you're so negative. you dont agree with the herd and our propoganda. you shall be shunned and forever be banished from our clique, eh. Lower Mainland adult social circles are just continuations of thier high school lives. What a pathetic place

  9. This guy probably serves a rich clientele.

    The two people who bought probably did so with very little financial consequence, and either paid cash or borrowed little. Their purchase was fine for their situations. A housing correction will not effect them.

    Unfortunately this accounts for probably, sorry to use the term, "the 1%" of people living here. The rest would have to take out giant mortgages, liquidate many assets, and live off of credit cards to make similar purchases. Housing corrections DO effect these people, if they wind up underwater it can be an impossible situation if one loses a job or has to move.

  10. Real Estate school? Is there such a thing? This "kid" has been out of "real estate school" for all of what 5 years? Otw it was the cheerleader school of the BPOE. There is yer facts. And btw douchy mcrealestate whore, your "real estate school" may not have had time in the rigorous 5 weeks of training to have taught you the difference between a cynic and negative.
    Negative would be.. real estate will always suck, cause you suck, and your dog sucks and i hate my life and listen to Radiohead. See, that is negative
    When you say that people will point to your "cheerleading" by pointing out that all real 'tards say that its always a great time to buy and its always a great time to sell and its what they all learned in "real estate school" (btw.. where is the campus, last i heard it was a 1982 C-Class RV in a wal-mart pkng lot) pointing that out is called Cynicism.. named for a School of Greek Thought..Wheras "negative" is derivation of "hater" which was coined by the people pushing Backstreet Boys albums in NorthAmerica in 1998.
    The difference is us cynics are typically educated people who have a skill called critical thinking that allows us the luxury of translating your self serving spin down to the core essential of blind faith and boosterism that is the basis of every religious or or personality cult that has existed since the dawn of humanity.
    Im sure you think youre oh so very orginal. But HL Mencken said: Why let the facts get in the way of a good story. PT Barnum said. There is a sucker born every minute. And Albert Einstein said. "Three great forces rule the world: stupidity, fear and greed."

    So there is hope for you yet. Graduates of the 5 week part time real estate school and your "inside" knowledge. Peace be with you. I know we all cant be fashion models someone has to pimp.

  11. I love your post. I didn't watch the video yet because I just don't want to loose 5 minutes of my life I won't get back.

    I read your blog instead. Keep up the good work! :-)

  12. Standard Re agent lies:

    "Prices coming down a bit."

    "I had a busy September"

    Apparently he was too busy to get a haircut, more like too broke to afford one.

  13. "Owen Bigland" = "Owing Bigtime" if you follow his self-serving advice.

  14. The Germans have a word for someone like this: Backpfeifengesicht. Google it.

  15. Two points I take away from this:

    "Both buyers were (successful businessmen) between the ages of 55 and their early 60's."
    - I'd like some information on what business they are in, particularly if they are involved in some other aspect of the housing industry other than being an overpaid mediator in selling houses.
    - How much leverage did they use just prior to their theoretical retirement? (Always encouraging to see seniors trying to pay off their $1 million + properties.)

    Second, if you bought stocks 4 years ago when they dove 10%, you still had a lot of pain ahead and are probably still underwater on your purchase.

    I could go on picking apart this guy, but instead he deserves a break...

  16. No word of a lie I saw this guy selling steam vacuum cleaners at the PNE this summer.

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