• Avid Amoeba
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      6 months ago

      That’s the point. We’re adjusting the market by getting some people to lose their shirts. Mainly homes and jobs.

  • Inky
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    6 months ago

    For me personally higher rates have been a net benefit. I have no debt and my capacity to save increased considerably over the period that rates were rising. It’s been great to get better cash yields and to pick up longer dated bonds at generationally low prices.

    • Victor Villas
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      6 months ago

      That’s one of the many tragedies of high-inflation + high-interests economies, those who are free of debt have plenty of opportunities to cash out with relatively low risk investments. That’s about 30% of the population (debt-free), but really those who are truly able to take meaningful advantage is a subset of the ~4% of Canadians that have a maxed out TFSA. So yet again we’re tilting the playing field towards the widening of wealth inequality.

      • Inky
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        6 months ago

        As a counterweight to the widening of wealth inequality, rising rates lower the value of essentially all risk assets. So the ones who truly benefit the most are the ones who only acquired their assets after the hiking cycle.

        This is partly why there are examples of periods with high inflation that also saw a narrowing of wage inequality. The post-war period in Europe was such an example. In that time the relative bargaining power of labour also helped because the high inflation was met with even higher pay raises. So working people were acquiring new wealth through their wages during a period of sustained low asset prices.

        For 2023 wage growth in Canada actually exceeded inflation. I would bet that we’ll see that trend continue this year as well as inflation comes down.

  • carbonprop
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    6 months ago

    We had to sell a piece of dream property this year because rates made payments go up so much that we could barely do minimum payments. We had planned to build on it eventually. Inflation and interest rates made it impossible. Now the dream is a memory. We just hope we can hold on to our current house.

    • Numpty
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      6 months ago

      I can afford my house even at 5% because I intentionally bought WAY under what I was approved for. I knew the lower interest rates wouldn’t hold… and there was no way I was willing to buy into a multi-million dollar home at 1%. Rates go up and down over time. I bought based on the assumption that a renewal would be in the 6-8% range. At 5% I can afford it just fine… question is, do I want to?

      A LOT of people I know bought right at the max they were approved for, and at 1-ish percent interest. Renewals are coming up within the next 12 months or so, and they are already panicking. That $2M home is going to suddenly become VERY expensive… well beyond their ability to pay for it.

      I plan to sell this year… and take that equity, whatever we get, and set ourselves up elsewhere outside of Canada.

      • AnotherDirtyAnglo
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        6 months ago

        +1 for being cognizant of the fact that interest rates wouldn’t stay low forever.

        I bought my place near the limit of what I could afford, but always mentally prepared for the idea that my monthly payments could go up by 50%.

        The weird irony is that since interest rates crossed over the 5% mark, I was thinking that I needed to start making lump sum payments to knock down the total interest I’d be paying – but throwing the money into my investments has paid back far, far better… One of my broad-market ETFs is up 25%. A tech ETF is up nearly 50%. I’m considering the idea that it might make sense for me to retire with a mortgage, because the markets are going up enough to cover the monthly payment, and then some.

        • Inky
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          6 months ago

          From a purely expected return perspective it only makes sense to pay back debts vs investing if the credit spread in the debt is larger than the investment’s risk premium.

          For secured debt (like a mortgage) held by someone with reasonable credit the equity risk premium is most likely larger than the credit spread.

          The analysis becomes more complicated when you take into account an uncertain income stream to use against the debt. Paying off your mortgage is like buying insurance against the tail event that you lose your house because you can’t make your mortgage payments.

          Insurance is generally a negative expected return activity. But the value is in reshaping the outcome distribution. Your average outcome is lower but you’ve flattened out the tail.

          • AnotherDirtyAnglo
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            6 months ago

            I’ll readily admit that my situation isn’t common. I almost have enough money in my TFSA alone to wipe out my mortgage. But I’ve easily gained several years worth of interest expense. And while I don’t expect that it’ll stay that way forever, a drop of more than 10 or 20% is… unlikely.

            In fact, you’ve got me thinking that when my mortgage comes up for renewal in a couple years, I may opt to cash out some savings to wipe out the mortgage, and take another look at early retirement.

      • carbonprop
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        6 months ago

        We did too. Bought for less than $100k. We have fixed rate ATM on our mortgage. But as soon as it is ready to renew we hope things have settled down. We never want to live above our means. We got lucky.