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Calling All Strers - Are You Losing Money?


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#1 Bearing Up

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 09:15 AM

BBB said in a recent thred that:

'with the backdrop of a non falling market, it's (STR) the latest way to lose money'

I saw one anecdote on this forum yesterday which suggested otherwsie and here's one from me which I've just spotted.

I was a forced STR earlier this year - offer of £220k accepted in March on a £225 marketed house and moved in August. At first I was quite worried about how quickly the market continued upwards. Another house, very similar to ours (but not quite as good in my opinion and a tad smaller) came on the market in May at £235k and sold fairly quickly - probably for around £230k. Well, the same house has just come back on the market, presumably after a broken chain, for £211k. :)

I have to admit that I was worried whether we had done the right thing, but now I am just so relieved we didn't stay in the market.

Anyone else got any evidence of this so called 'non falling market'?

#2 Who Knows

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 09:24 AM

Anyone else got any evidence of this so called 'non falling market'?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I also had to STR as a result of relocation in June - flat in Surrey valued at 225K, 235K and 245K - put in on market at £230K with very little interest - reduced it to 225K and happily accepted 220K. A month later a neighbour with a very similar flat sold up with an asking price of220K - After a month he was advised by EA to drop price by 10% if he wanted to get a sale. This was back in June when the market was supposed to be booming.
Rent well, Save Well and relax in your ringside seat as the show unfolds ....

#3 red

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 10:48 AM

BBB said in a recent thred that:

'with the backdrop of a non falling market, it's (STR) the latest way to lose money'

I saw one anecdote on this forum yesterday which suggested otherwsie and  here's one from me which I've just spotted. 

I was a forced STR earlier this year - offer of £220k accepted in March on a £225 marketed house and moved in August.  At first I was quite worried about how quickly the market continued upwards.  Another house, very similar to ours (but not quite as good in my opinion and a tad smaller) came on the market in May at £235k and sold fairly quickly - probably for around £230k.  Well, the same house has just come back on the market, presumably after a broken chain, for £211k.  :)

I have to admit that I was worried whether we had done the right thing, but now I am just so relieved we didn't stay in the market.

Anyone else got any evidence of this so called 'non falling market'?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I think you could pin this thread and get an awful lot of anecdotes; the most severe one I have is one of a guy up the road from me who's house was under offer at around 650K (big house!) but it fell through a few months ago (I WONDER WHY..?). He wants to emigrate and is now being advised to cut his losses and take around 550K.. ;)

#4 zzg113

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 11:01 AM

He wants to emigrate



Any idea where to?
Al Greenspan, who facilitated the birth of world-wide HPI with irrationally exuberant interest rates

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#5 red

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 11:33 AM

Any idea where to?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I think it's Turkey or Northern Cyprus. A lot of cheap (and very suspect, bearing in mind unstable political situation) properties out in N. Cyprus...He could by a seriously large place for 200 grand, never mind 550.

#6 brettmick

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 01:43 PM

We decided to sell as a "lifestyle" change. We want to move away from the area we live in now to live in a greener part of the UK. Timing is such that we can do an 8 month round the world trip from early Jan too.

We put the house up in time for the first May bank holiday at £249k - I thought it worth £235-240 but we were fishing (we paid £112k in May 2000). Plenty of people saying "aren't you scared you won't be able to buy when you come back?".
3 weeks later dropped to £244,950 as lots of interest but offers at £235k. Two offers follow at £241 and £240, both needing to sell. Took it off, waited for them to sell, they then changed their mind after they sold. Merv then scares the market. We get on offer of £237k which we take from a FTB (!?). This drags for months and I am not working as I took redundency (and the Mrs was finishing a PGCE) so my cash reserves were starting to drain. Finally complete eo October. Big sighs of relief.

I now have a 6 figure sum. 1/10th we are burning on the pure pleasure of a RTW trip. I will worry about pensions and stuff when we return (although I have a PPP that I was maxing out and my employer was matching contributions too so at the ripe old age of 30 it is doing very well indeed). When I get back I will rent. Not because of market conditions etc. but because I want the next place to be the right place, not a forced or pressured or panic purchase. We have a massive deposit, will have a low LTV and even if the market only GSD's then I am in a strong position. Every 1% fall is a cause for pure, selfish celebration for me. That said, I have STR not in the prospect of a crash but to take a once in a lifetime opportunity and then to make a life change that I hope will improve my quality of life and that (when they arrive) of any future children.

I have invested most of the money in "safe" places - cash accounts to the FSA compensation limit. Some I have invested in "less safe" places - shares. In three weeks I have made 10% on my share selections (since April 2003 I have made 113% on my share selections...) so perhaps I should have been bolder?

I am money savvy - I know how things work in the city and banking sector but the thing that humbles me with this is that it is pure timing fluke. People on this board might have made some lucky guesses or been "right place right time" but I defy anyone to say that they "planned" the initial success. Perhaps some people took a gearing gamble after initial success (and good luck to you if you did!).

This same timing fluke might now count against people buying at this point in time with "real" money - ie not that obtained from obtuse equity growth - even with a "GSD". Debt will not erode quickly yet taxes and other non-CPI recognised "stealth inflation" will rip through the "inflationless" pay rises of Joe Public.

"I'm alright jack" seems a nasty, vindictive statement when friends, peers, colleagues and strangers of the same age as me feel they are having to postpone the start of the rest of their lives purely to meet the "accepted norm" that is the owner occupier Daily Mail panacea. Surely life is there for the living?

#7 zzg113

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 01:51 PM

"I'm alright jack" seems a nasty, vindictive statement



Yes it is. Why, who do you think is saying it? And since you are so money-savvy, maybe you could share your perspective of how things work in the City and banking?
Al Greenspan, who facilitated the birth of world-wide HPI with irrationally exuberant interest rates

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#8 brettmick

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 04:12 PM

Yes it is. Why, who do you think is saying it? And since you are so money-savvy, maybe you could share your perspective of how things work in the City and banking?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Who is saying it? I just get this impression from the media and general attitudes regarding "renting". I might be wrong... It's still not a nice sentiment though.

I doubt I can put my thoughts on the city down in one go, but in the summer I did some contracting for a Fund Management company. Between drawing enormous salaries, comparing vintage/classic cars, arranging jollys to watch the golf/cricket/rugby they confessed to throwing darts to choose the equities for their clients. When more serious they confessed to having no more idea as to what was happening than Joe Public just more time to research and better numbers to view and if in doubt they stuck to the golden principles of value and yield - which sums up where the property "investment" market has lost the plot.

#9 zzg113

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 04:17 PM

http://www.housepric...opic=2938&st=40


See above thread for my thoughts on active fund management (rather than passive or tracker / mechanical funds). I think active management is a con.
Al Greenspan, who facilitated the birth of world-wide HPI with irrationally exuberant interest rates

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#10 Van

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 05:12 PM

Sold for £148,500 June, asking price £150k. I price realistically - others were asking up to 160k.

Near identical flat came onto the market about 3 weeks ago @ 155k. This week has been trimmed to £152k - I'd be surprised if they had any viewing at all, as it has just had 3k trimmed off asking price. Expect them to trim another few k's off pretty soon. Vendors need a dose of reality - 155k to 152k.. as if that's really going to pull the punters in.

Another stuck on the market at £157k for 3 months. LOTS of 1-bed flats now available. Nothing selling, the odd 2-3k trimmed from asking price here and there, but just not shifting. It's bad and getting worse. These places will be lucky to achieve 140k imo.

E4 market is flooded with 1 and 2 bed flats/maisonettes. Back in early spring there were virtually NO 2-bed flats, but lots of 1 beds.
"When you combine ignorance and borrowed money, the consequences can get interesting." - Warren Buffett

"If you let inflation expectations drift too far away from the target, you can end up in quite serious difficulty with a costly process to bring them back again." - Mervyn King, 2005

#11 Dee Monic

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 06:03 PM

When we sold we got the asking price and were surprised to find (from the land registry) that we'd beaten other similar props that had been on for 5K more. Ours was the highest sale price at the land registry for months until being beaten by 4K for a similar prop but that had a conservatory and ours didn't.

Since then asking prices have gone up by 10-15K but the props are not selling. One asking price went up 11K and then after months unsold it came back down 15K and sold pretty quickly.

There is one sale I'm waiting to appear at the land registry that also may be higher. Apart from that there are now six props of our type on the market who's asking prices have been creeping down. They remain unsold.

#12 Van

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 08:29 PM

What I am noticing now is that there are some vendors who ARE pricing realistically. I look on Rightmove's website every couple of days, and what I have begun to notice is that there are now some 3 bed houses priced among competitively in the sea of 2-bed houses, and some 4 bed houses priced competitively in the sea of 3 bed houses. A few of these are "SSTC". This is all good stuff that will drive the market down. Who's gonna pay 200k for a 2 bed place when there's 3 bedders out there for the same price?

Example of unrealistic pricing: 2 bed, 215k


Example of realistic (maybe even bargain) pricing: 2 bed, 155k
"When you combine ignorance and borrowed money, the consequences can get interesting." - Warren Buffett

"If you let inflation expectations drift too far away from the target, you can end up in quite serious difficulty with a costly process to bring them back again." - Mervyn King, 2005

#13 mad_dan

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 10:36 PM

errrrrrrr...... no

Actually making around $60,000 dollars per year (after tax) with my STR profit which I have invested.

And own a beautiful house in Orlando ( almost outright ).

Renting a nice house for only £450 per month, my landlord is making a small monthly loss :).

And I also have a nice sports car and 4 x two week holidays aboard a year.

It goes on but I don't want to upset the resident bulls too much incase we lose them.

So what have I lost?nothing. If anything my life has never been better. :)

I don't worry about house prices here anymore because theres far more to life. However I do look forward to watching house prices and the British economy crumble after may 2005. :lol:

The biggest losers are the biggest gamblers who bet with money that does'nt belong to them!

#14 Guest_muttley_*

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 11:40 PM

Not all STRs are doing it for the money!

Last year we lost out on a brilliant house because we couldn't act quickly enough.We first saw the house in August,but couldn't afford the asking price without selling ours first.After reducing our asking price by 20k and finding a buyer we offered full asking price.The vendor agreed,but then allowed us to be gazumped!!
We decided to go ahead with the sale of our property,partly because I thought the market had peaked (bad call),but mainly because it put us in a good position to jump in on any ideal houses.
We went into rented just before Christmas 2003 and stopped viewing by March 2004 on the grounds that the Eas were taking the piss!!

Have we lost money? Well,the interest on our sale doesn't cover rent (after tax),but we are in a much better position to complete than before.
If house prices bomb in the next 12 months then, obviously, I'm up.If they stagnate then I'm building up a bigger deposit on my mortgage (and anyway,I don't feel I have to offer full asking price)
If house prices take off again....I lose.
Frankly,I think there is a greater chance of catching BBB and zzg113 under the mistletoe!

#15 lucky

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 05:40 AM

Sold Aug 2003 for 224 (on at 235). Paid 90something, no longer sure quite how much, in Aug 98, but spent probably 20k on the place. Currently paying 1150 dollars (US) in rent a month, so this is certainly a much cheaper option. Lost money on my shares though, but getting interest on cash, and have ploughed a wedge of cash into my business, so I now have some better prospects with that.

I'm so glad I sold, even though I was reading that prices were still rising, as my mortgage was too big for my income, as I had started a new business, and I could have got into some real bother if interests rates had risen dramatically, and property can become unsellable overnight.

I imagine the flat I sold in Bristol is worth about the same now as it was when I sold, although I'm sure it was worth more in the Spring. It had a very small second bedroom, and was always going to be a problem to sell, despite being in a superb location. I certainly wouldn't want to be trying to sell it in this market.

Best

Lucky




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