Condo burns, buyers happy?

The media firestorm over the Surrey Quattro is burning hot. The local rags gave it major front-page treatment. Metro Vancouver — that “other” McPaper you read to avoid being social on the bus — used its headline to ask the only question that counts: Will buyers be getting their money back?

The answer is no, but this didn’t stop wishful thinking on the part of the speculators. Quattro buyer Claus Sandhack says it best:

The realtor who sold it to us phoned us up and told us the unit was on fire. We were happy. We thought we’re going to be able to get out. It cost me $308,000. In two years is it going to be worth $200,000? A $150,000?

As much as this comment is sad — really, Claus, you were “happy” the building was burning? — it’s an accurate reflection of what many pre-sale owners were probably thinking when they saw the flames. This is the nature of speculative markets. Nobody cares so long as money’s being made. Now that the party’s over, everybody’s looking for an exit.

Expect more of this.

11 Responses to “Condo burns, buyers happy?”

  1. blueskies Says:

    love that graphic!
    perfect description of our market….

  2. Disbelief Says:

    I thought if the builder couldn’t complete by a certain date then deposits would have to be returned. I guess someone should have read the fineprint before they lit the match… Sorry Claus

  3. Larry Yatkowsky Says:

    A hot topic for those who share in the joy of not reading their agreement.

    Note to all: the developer has total control and your money too!

  4. S2 Says:

    Now aren’t you glad you didn’t fold up shop?

    Look how exciting it is all getting now.

  5. Mcgarnickle Says:

    This is an interesting topic for sure. All those people snatched those condos when they went on sale because they though it was a guaranteed investment. But seriously, they bought a cheap wooden condo in Whalley and now they regret their purchase?

  6. ds7777 Says:

    REQUEST: a blog post on the the Ritz Carlton Residences shutting down operations in downtown Vancouver. just a big hole in the ground now.

  7. Strataman Says:

    I second this! “REQUEST: a blog post on the the Ritz Carlton Residences shutting down operations in downtown Vancouver. just a big hole in the ground now.” Actually there is a whole new class of condo spin starting, like”I think we’ll change the parking so lets stop building and take the signs down!” 🙂

  8. Bubble Lad Says:

    Mr. Yatowsky is right – there was a show on condos on CBC’s marketplace that laid it all out:

    according to most (all)condo contracts, the developer can take your money, hold on to it for as long as they please, as long as they claim they’re planning on building (and of course there’s no way anyone can really verify that – for most people the “proof” is a rented office with pretty pictures and floorplans of the place that may or may not ever get built, according to specs they can change at any time, on a schedule that can telescope indefinitely into the future.)

    And oh yeah, they are under NO obligation to pay you interest on the money you put down…NONE…if they want to be nice they can, but there is NO LEGAL OBLIGATION TO DO SO.

    so SUCK ON IT Vancouver!

  9. scullboy Says:

    Wow…. if I was glad to be out of the market before, I’m extremly glad after hearing about the power of developers in BC.

    What the hell is WRONG with this province? Oh well…. all those “dead people lying in the field” lifestyle ads did the trick, I guess.

  10. observer Says:

    Can people give up the deposit and go? if the market is down to only 200k or 150 even. what’s the point in holding that 30k you initially put in? just leave it and go… better than over paying 150k for a place

  11. bob barker Says:

    Can you imagine waiting in line for 5 days in the cold rainy BC weather for a possible opportunity to purchase a condo in Whalley. Well thats part of Whalley history. The truth is people were lined up to buy multiple suites and the sales people were only allowing these potential purchasers to buy one per person in line. Of course not all sites had this rule but many did. These people should be so happy they were denied to buy more than one. So many of these Real Estate investors begged and pleaded to buy more than one. It was amazing to watch real estate agents camping in that very line up for the chance to buy a place or reserve one for their clients. What was discusting was watching those same agents drop every ethic in the real estate act to do it. To bad there was not cameras on the line ups watching some of the Realtors lie ,cheat, fight, offer money to people in the line up, break into buildings across the street, get drunk and even get arrested. Funny thing is this was more than one building launch. Very sad day in BC real estate history. I wonder if any of the Realtors that have 100 plus deals out there in certain buildings are informing their clients of their rights during certain situations


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