Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

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Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

So you can't justify renting a home here or buying without risking renting the broom closet to a stranger? You need the job, your options, fly in fly out? But you like fort mc and are married with children,and pets are not wecome! Who is to watch and raise the offspring when your both living the dream and spending near 16hrs a day with work? Fort mc rents and properties rocketed annually since the mid 2000's. Remember them good ole days of loa? Retention incentives galore. Overtime galore? Jobs galore, don't like this one, quit next shift and your hired elsewhere tomorrow? Remember the short ride to syncrude or suncor? I rent, didn't want to get tied down here. I started to get loa in 2006. It was gone for me by 2010. But every year rent went up. Jobs started to focus on fly in fly out. Locals preferred is a lie. People get flown in, not all, but those who do FIFO get free room n board. Locals get no offset money, but the rent climbs. And the commute gets worse. Fort mc has done me just fine, but for me the glory days are over. And over for many I know. Some can't find steady renters for the privacy sharing suites or mortgage beaters. Some can't wait to move into their newly built home. Some can't find a buyer for that condo listed since 6 months past. For some it's just an issue of not being able to park in their neighborhood. Or not being able to cope with never ending road construction and delays. The oil glut in the US is triggering fears, lowering prices as stock overflows, remember the eighties? Big oil companies are hiring global,slashing shifts and shelving projects, killing big union rates and retention incentives. Will Ft.mc survive, will the housing market climb or fall? Will the 1970's infrastructure ever catch up to the cities growth? Will homeowners cut n run, boom or bust, what's your take on Ft.mc today?
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Re: Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

Unread postby Duffer » Tue Nov 11, 2014 11:38 am

I cut and ran and just in time I think. Listed and sold within 2 weeks in late August - early September by accepting an offer (the first offer at that) on the low end but still high enough to walk off with a nice chunk of equity. Bought a newer and nicer home in Edmonton for a quarter of a million less than the one we sold. I see homes that were for sale long before ours that are still languishing due to asking prices that are excessive or lacking what current buyers want among other reasons. Some of them may have been purchased over the past few years at peak price. Others may be just not getting, or heeding, advice from their realtor. I have heaved several long sighs of relief as I see the Fort McMurray market cooling and oil prices declining. I knew a fair of people who merely handed their keys back to the bank when they had to leave due to the market collapse in the mid to late 80s. Timing is everything in a volatile market. Hopefully it will bounce back soon and that any market correction won't be too severe.
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Re: Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

Unread postby MacDaddy » Wed Nov 12, 2014 7:19 am

I used to recommend Fort McMurray to my peers. I no longer do this as I feel the real estate market is out of control. I used to recommend moving here when you could purchase a house on an engineers salary and actually live in the house without renting out a significant portion to strangers to cover your mortgage. What kind of life is that for your family? There are great opportunities here for families but family friendly housing is becoming a thing of the past.

I blame much on the so called property investors who are willing to run illegal rental operations while the municipality turns a blind eye to what is going on. Real estate agents have joined the party and list homes purely on the rental potential and nothing else. When you can tell how many "bedrooms" are in a house strictly by the asking price and not by location or quality of the building something is wrong. MLS listings often show bedroom counts that are higher than what is actually present. To reach this number one has to include rooms like the windowless offices and family rooms as bedrooms. This situation has gone on so long now that I think the big employers in the area are being forced to act and I don't blame them.

I know there will be many folk who scream bloody murder at the thought of their home value dropping but it needs to happen if we don't want this town to turn into a giant work camp. Yes, some are making retirement plans based on selling their property and nothing else. For those people I say would you place all your retirement savings in a single stock? No? Then why look at your property differently? For the record, yes I do have investment property in town. It is however only a percentage of my investments and its main purpose was to help some family members get established in town. Now it generates rental income, less than what I could ask for but I prefer a quality long term tenant.
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Re: Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

Unread postby Yossarian » Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:18 pm

Home values have dropped. Significantly this year.
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Re: Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

Unread postby Tropics » Sun Nov 16, 2014 5:51 pm

I just bought back in September.

I had/have very little faith in the short to mid-term housing market in Fort McMurray so I bought a studio condo on the low end of the Fort McMurray price point with 20% down to avoid the housing insurance and the instant loss to equity it represents.

I knew that buying when I did was likely not a bottom, and I may see housing prices drop further, but my mortgage and condo fees combined are WAY lower then rent and I no longer live with a landlord breathing down my neck, I no longer need to worry about unscheduled visits or sharing storage space or the noise of neighbors or going through the hassle of going to the bank to grab thousands of dollars in cash every month to pay my rent and then screw around for hours with documents to prove residency so that I can claim the northern living allowance (which Revenue Canada called me on last year, causing me to jump through many hoops collecting documents and proof I actually "did" rent a basement suite where I was told I could only pay cash and was never given a receipt despite asking for them).

Now I have my own private mailbox where I can receive mail that comes directly to me and I don't have to think about spending money on a PO box for that ability. Now I have mortgage payments coming out of my bank account automatically which is easy and I don't have to think about it. Now I have a mortgage payment barely over $900 a month and of that money nearly $500 comes off my principle atm and builds equity.

I was sick of renting. Had a 1-bedroom apartment where weekly "cleaning" (read walkthroughs to inspect the property) were "included in the price". That place cost me over $2600 a month! Then I rented a non-legal basement suite for a year, paid well over $2000 cash for the rent, never got a receipt, and ended up almost getting stiffed for my northern living allowance by the CRA.

I might not be here long term but renting is a PITA and for anyone who is here for at least 2 years I would recommend just getting something cheap. If I stay here for 2 more years and I need to sell my place I could take a $20,000 hit on the already low selling price I spent on the place and ultimately break even on the money I saved over the cost of rent in this city and the equity I gain eating into the mortgage and what I will owe after another 24 mortgage payments. The win I get for that is simply not having to mess around with the BS that comes with renting a place.

Things are definitely going down atm, and many people in this city remain stubbornly oblivious to this fact. There is one development being built here that I would most definitely have bought into here in Fort McMurray but the developer and sales have sat rigid on their pricing of the units for the last 2 years despite the fact that sales are outright anemic for the development and in particular the unit/floor plan I was interested in. What is ultimately going to happen to that development when they cannot sell the units above the current market value is that they are going to rent the units out on the open rental market and that is in turn going to mess over the people who "have" bought into the development with the intent to be owner/occupiers. It is a known fact that the percentage of renters vs owner occupiers is a very important value when maintaining the living standards in a property, and this company is going to send that percentage WAY higher into the "renters" category then it should be due to their rigid pricing stance and the ultimate fact that they can fleece the renting public for the units given the still crazy high priced rental market in this city. I own a income/rental condo property in Calgary where the market is considered red hot and renters are said to be getting fleeced atm due to low vacancy rates. The rental rates in Calgary are a joke compared to here, they are dirt cheap. Fort McMurray actually has WAY HIGHER vacancy rates then Calgary but would that cause people to drop prices and lower the vacancy rate? In Fort McMurray? Pfft, yeah... right...
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Re: Housing market dropping, FIFO, greed, incentives dropped!

Unread postby MacDaddy » Sun Dec 14, 2014 9:47 pm

Well done Tropics! It is so refreshing to see someone with a healthy attitude to housing. After all this is a place you live in and too many people discount quality of life when they talk housing. Living with tenants underfoot, or worse yet roommates, was OK when I was a ne'er-do-well university student. At some point I just grew accustomed to living with my immediate family only and being able to paint a wall or do other upgrades without permission. Er, well actually I should say with only the permission of the wife.

I actually think condos in decent buildings are the only remaining properties without a ridiculous asking price because some real estate agent has told the owner that you can subdivide your basement into a twelve unit high density housing complex. Some people in this town need to take a painful hit to the wallet before they realize the days of hot bunking and renting out the living room sofa have past by.


Last bumped by Misterbill on Sun Dec 14, 2014 9:47 pm.
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