“Yes, the boom cycle is definitely over”

In Metro Vancouver, The Vancouver Sun is the authority of truth. For better or for worse, their coverage of real estate sets the boundaries of the everyday opinion. I know this not because of any survey or analysis. It comes from a simple test. The test is to ask my father his opinion and see how it compares to what’s in the Sun.

On Friday, I got the call. “Yes, the boom cycle is definitely over.” It was dad telling me what he had come to know. Sure enough, the Sun had made the call too. Right there on the front page, above the fold. It wasn’t in the headline, but down below near the graph. For the headline, the editors used kid gloves. (Really, a double-digit price decline is a “dip”? Gosh, I’d hate to see a crash.)

I should be clear that the Sun did not decide dad’s opinion, much like it doesn’t decide mine and doesn’t decide yours. What it does do is set the limits of debate. For 88 months since the start of the boom, the Sun’s examination of real estate hasn’t made much room for critical perspectives. Blogs like mine and others have flourished because of their omissions. I take no joy in this circumstance. That this is a successful blog is comment on the range of opinion that’s been missing from the Sun to the detriment of the public.

So here we are. The boom is over, and it’s not a fringe idea anymore. Remember this edition of the Sun: October 24, 2008. Cherish the moment while you can. Smile but don’t get too excited. The mess is as real as it’s always been. We will not escape unscathed.

17 Responses to ““Yes, the boom cycle is definitely over””

  1. Charles Says:

    And I’m sure the advertising will get even more hilarious.

  2. blueskies Says:

    lessee…88 months on the upside and 88 months on the trough side brings us to …… 2016…. holy crap!!

  3. PM Says:

    I’m sure there’ll be a couple more ‘dips’ to come.

  4. Larry Yatkowsky Says:

    I’m actually dismayed that they didn’t time it for Halloween.

    Would be more fitting as dressed up reality.

  5. anon Says:

    As long as there’s cat food in the store, we’ll eat.

  6. jesse Says:

    It will be news when the Sun editor wakes up and reads the headline and genuinely feels this sick feeling in the stomach, the day that everybody who owns property realise they are much much poorer than they were in 2008. That date will not be here until sometime in 2010 and beyond.

    Until then the crash is not real; it’s sensationalist journalism.

  7. anon Says:

    “the day that everybody who owns property realise they are much much poorer than they were in 2008.”

    The only people who think that are the same fools who thought themselves suddenly rich a year or two ago.

  8. dingus Says:

    That 3% in 2010 sounds like the “soft landing” wishful thinking from earlier in the year. After 88 months of torrid upside, no one can imagine more than one significant down year? Bah! Plus, what significant event will occur in 2010 (hint: it rhymes with “Schmolympics”). Hard to see that milestone (millstone?) passing with a mere whimper of a 3% ebb.

    Anyway, where does 15% down, plus 3% (hah!) down leave us in terms of prices? 2006? 2005? My rough estimation is it undoes a couple of years of 10% gains, no?

  9. dingus Says:

    “The only people who think that are the same fools who thought themselves suddenly rich a year or two ago.”

    That’s a lot of people, actually…

  10. WS Says:

    These morons are still forecasting a THREE PER CENT INCREASE in prices this year?

    Every other credible source has already acknowledged AT LEAST a 7% drop since last year.

    Oh well. If it helps keep the dead men and women walking in West Van warm at night for another year…………

  11. tim Says:

    I don’t know where everyone gets their numbers from, but where it counts for me – in my price range, and in the area that I’m looking, prices haven’t dropped at all unfortunately. Maybe 1%. This is from my own collection of listings throughout the years. If they’re falling, they’re not falling fast enough, especially given a two year time horizon.

  12. ds7777 Says:

    do you think scotiabank will re-think their slogan : “You’re richer than you think”?

  13. anon Says:

    ds7777: Royal Canadian Air Farce has parodied that commerical to “We’re richer than you think”

  14. Chilled Says:

    “”Blogs like mine and others have flourished because of their omissions. I take no joy in this circumstance. That this is a successful blog is comment on the range of opinion that’s been missing from the Sun to the detriment of the public.””

    Hey, Canwest will probably now offer you a job. But be aware, thier 3.6 Billion dollar debt might mean not getting paid. I hope the propaganda machine starts selling thier ‘rags’ for what they are most suited; ass wipe.

  15. Reply to Tim Says:

    Are you looking at listing prices? From what I understand, the drop has occurred in the selling prices. A friend of mine recently bought a West Side SFH for 20% under the listing price.

  16. VancityAllie Says:

    I have to admit, I’m excited. Hopefully I’ll be able to afford to buy soon.

    BTW, thanks for this blog. It’s great, I’m a subscriber, just a long time lurker.

  17. Merridith Says:

    “Blogs like mine and others have flourished because of their omissions. I take no joy in this circumstance. That this is a successful blog is comment on the range of opinion that’s been missing from the Sun to the detriment of the public.”

    Missing? Deliberately deleted more like.

    The Sun makes a good chunk of it’s money from real estate ads. A whole section of the paper is devoted just to promoing real estate. The Vancouver Sun’s editor knows which side of it’s bread is buttered.

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