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Everything posted by DavidSWP

  1. It's very difficult to start a business while working a 40, 50, 60 hour week. The people who start businesses are generally people who don't have to work and have that safety net and the time and breathing space to develop a business idea. One thing I notice again and again are the amount of entrepreneurs who have a great maternity/paternity leave package and say that they started their business while on maternity leave. In Sweden especially where I work people get about a year off (male and female) and they often use the time to start a business of their own.
  2. Does anyone know what the process is likely to be for people who had funds deposited with Alpari UK? I had a few hundred quid in an inactive spread betting account (no open positions). Their login page now just redirects to the message about them closing. As far as I understand it, I shouldn't have lost it due to it being in a segregated account and governed by FCA rules. Do you think I'll have to claim it somehow?
  3. Penwortham is really underserved with shops. Its just a main road with a few crappy shops and then council estates, bale hostels and mixed housing. And it's built on a bog.
  4. I haven't watched videos yet but I agree. Most people are unlikely to want to risk losing their house starting a business because there are no such things as unsecured business loans really. I have loads of business ideas, some of which are pretty low risk, but I would never take out a loan to start them up. I would only do it with an disposable income or a disposable proportion of savings I had built up. I suspect most people would be the same and it seems strange that the economy and society celebrates only risk-takers. There is no reason that normal balanced human beings can't set up and run a business without a loan, but that would require less proportion of income spent on property and taxes. Many people will only start businesses when they feel comfortable, I'm not going to start one when working every hour in the day to save very little.
  5. It's a bit different in that in Sweden you have far fewer rights over the apartment you paid for and the tax you pay on an owned apartment + the mortgage is vastly more than the rent you will pay if you are a native Stockholmer and got a social housing apartment. In the UK renting may also be cheaper, but not much in most cases + if you buy you have many more rights + prestige. Having a rented apartment in Stockholm having been on the social housing queue for a number of years is actually the most prestigious thing in Stockholm. In the UK if you rent you are regarded as scum. When I ask people in the UK why they bought a place rather than rent, the first thing is generally 'to have a place of our own' and not to have to put up with having no rights over the apartment, bad landlords etc. but if you ask a Stockholmer its only ever about capital appreciation because there are no advantages at all in owning.
  6. I work in Sweden every week (Stockholm) - lived here for 7 months last year and was looking at buying property. The strangest thing about buying in Stockholm is that if you buy an apartment (most people live in apartments) which will cost you say 3 million - 5 million SEK (£300K - £500K) for a modest apartment, get this - YOU DON'T EVEN OWN IT! You buy are buying shares in the company that owns the building and own the right to occupy one apartment. All rights you have on this apartment are severely limited - If you want to rent it out legally, they may let you do it for 6 months but if you don't live in it personally for 6 months (1 year in some cases) they will force you to sell your share. If you rent it out legally it will be at rent controlled prices which will no-where near cover the mortgage repayments. People in Stockholm absolutely only 'buy' property as an investment expecting it to go up in value - there are almost no other advantages to owning it. If you are a Stockholmer, you typically join the social housing 'queue' when you are about 16 (previously parents used to add their newborn babes to the queue but I don't think that's allowed any more). If you are on the queue for say 10-20 years you have a chance to rent an old-build apartment in the city center and you pay a quite small rent which reflects the fact that the building is old and has already been paid for. You may pay about £400 for an apartment in the old town which would be valued at £2 million. If you have been on the queue 5-10 years you may get a new build fairly close to the city center for say £1000 per month rent. Or if on the queue for 2 years pay £600 to rent a small apartment in a suburb 5 to 8 kilometers from the center in a 90% immigrant area, though still on the outskirts of the metro/underground. This is if you are a lucky one who can even join the social housing queue. Most immigrants and Swedes from outside Stockholm have no choice but to sub-let from someone who got the apartment on the queue or an 'owner'. Rents are controlled and people subletting are only legally allowed to charge 10% more than the apartment would be rented out directly from the co-op company that own the building. What actually happens is that people who got the rental on the social housing queue or 'own' the apartment charge massive illegal rents and a blind eye is often turned to this practice. There is a massive underclass of disenfranchised people in Stockholm, may of whom can't even join the social housing queue because you first must get a 'personal number' (a bit like a NI number), these a jealously guarded by the powers that be and while you can live in Stockholm without one you can't even go and see a doctor without it! Stockholm is set up for Stockholmers, immigrants work as cleaners. Hence riots. 'Property' prices are held up by: 1. speculation mainly 2. immigrants/outsiders who have done well and want to 'buy' to avoid having to wait 20 years on the social housing queue . 95% of housing in Stockholm is owned by social co-op companies. If you buy a free-hold house (of which there are few), expect to pay £4,000 in council tax equivalent each year (I think they reduced this recently but still high)
  7. Got it in one. The FMOTL position is valid in my opinion but it will simply be ignored, laughed at, ridiculed and it will land anyone who follows it in destitution or prison. The whole system is sown up pretty tight and you will only get away with such arguments if you are rich or influential.
  8. Well they certainly aren't built using road tax or fuel duties. It goes into one big pot and could just as likely be used for war mongering. We should receive an itemised receipt for what we are spending our money on - think about it.
  9. I am not missing the point - I know its a bias towards married people, that's the very point of it. The conservatives are very fond of reminding us that raising children within a marriage is most beneficial for society and on one hand they try to encourage marriage, so that's why it beats me why they are doing this. In theory I am quite pro-marriage but really there are massive financial dis-incentives to it especially if one person stays at home to bring up children and be a homemaker, or just earns a lot less than the main bread-winner. If you are the bread-winning spouse you have a massively increased legal financial responsibility for looking after your spouse and children in all circumstances compared to a single bread-winner with a partner. If, for example, a single male bread-winner with or without children decides to separate from the wife. The wife will get child support (if children are involved), most likely nothing else, and most likely end up on state benefits. If you are married, the financial obligation is to provide for your wife for the rest of your life to avoid them ever claiming any benefits even when you separate. That's just one reason why favorable pension terms were offered to married people because married couples cost the state less in many other ways.
  10. Are spouse's pensions really paid to spouses who are younger than the UK retirement age? I think that they should be changed so that the spouse can only claim them when they are at retirement age. I'm amazed that this isn't the main point.. There is nothing unreasonable at all about a Spouse's pension even if the spouse never made any NI contributions and its definitely not a loop-hole or anomaly. If a spouse has been bringing up children and a home-maker in the UK then they have contributed to UK society. Some would say that home-makers should be paid. If the spouse has never stepped foot in the UK then its a bit more dubious that they should get anything, but again not unreasonable because the UK citizen with a full NI contribution record has a right to expect his wife and family to be looked after. I agree with an earlier poster that its more about forcing home-makers into the workplace. Not exactly conservative.
  11. If so then yes definitely. Why does an annuity cost 20-30K though? Is it because people can live past 95 (retirement age + 30K @ 1K per year assuming the investment makes nothing). Surely some scam going on because the average age of death for a man is about 78. If you retire at 65 (now 67) an annuity can't possibly be more than about 12K even assuming the investment makes 0 profit.
  12. Yes I agree totally. Someone else said in reply that their house would be worth around $1 million though but its actually worth about 260K - I said Lancashire remember! I think they paid about 5-6K for it in 1978. My Dad was a teacher and not a fancy one, I think he was 'head of year' once - a bit like being a 'team leader'. My mum didn't work a lot of the time. I earn about 45K (about 65K atm because working abroad so get lots of bonuses) and I would still need some very dodgy mortgage to buy that house. Actually I am lying because I have about 50K savings so I could probably get it but I never would because its a complete rip-off and I can't count on earning 2.5x national average wage the rest of my working life. I could be back to 25K very very easily. I suspect the purchase for them was very comfortable.
  13. I never thought my parents were typical boomers based on a lot of things written on this site, however on the poll criteria they are I suppose. Their first house was a small 3 bed semi in Lancashire but I suppose even that would be out of reach as a first house for most people these days. Second house was a large 4 bed detached which was bought when my Dad was about 34. I am 38 and have a job paying 3 times what a teacher his level earned and I could not afford it. Dad (Teacher) retired around 55 I seem to remember and my Mum about the same time. They didn't take lots of foreign holidays until they were retired - camping holidays in France was about the most exotic, but now they are retired they go on tons of holidays all over the world for months each year. I think their position now is a result of some financial prudence and saving rather than spending and of course a very privileged situation compared to younger people today.
  14. I believe equity should be taken into consideration when deciding if a home owner receives mortgage interest assistance. This should be along the same lines of savings held by a renter to make things fair.
  15. I always found RyanAir very good and much cheaper than alternatives albeit needing to fly to airports that are a bit out of the way and need to uses buses afterwards. I travel to Stockholm each week and the flights from Manchester (SAS/BMI) frequently run to £650 return (average about £350). Ryanair average about £150. Ok so it takes an hour longer each way because Ryanair flys to Skavsta which is 1 1/2 hour bus away and SAS flys to Arlanda which is 30 mins away. Also on Ryan air if you get there earlyish and get priority booking (about £5) you can typically get in the seats that would be business class on all other airlines. The planes are also very new - the SAS/BMI ones are about 40 years old! Yes the website is terrible though.
  16. Does it include those Charles Eames chairs in photos 6 and 7? They are probably worth more than the appartment http://www.heals.co.uk/armchairs/vitra-lounge-chair+footstool-black-by-charles+ray-eames/invt/700323?source=119_74 http://www.express-furniture.co.uk/item--Charles+Eames+Inspired+Office+Chair+Low+Back--EFW-DO802.html
  17. I still save, I don't share my car allowance or bonuses with her so my personal account is building up but not near 2K, more like 1K because I put 1.5K into our joint account each month and it all disappears on her visas and shoes and holidays. But basically yes, she wouldn't be happy with my lifestyle choice if I decided to do that in a few years, I doubt many women would. I am working on her though (she is now my wife and living in the UK) but I think having kids will put paid to my current amount of saving. I think I've convinced her to get a job in ASDA now so she may buy her own shoes
  18. I agree it's low but if you earn say 25K and just living 'hand to mouth' and then get a payrise of 5K a year (say 3K after tax), then you can have 2 or 3 very nice holidays a year extra or do a lot more of what you want. Once you break out of the 'covering your expenses' salary just a change of a few K is massive. I live in Preston and went from working for a local firm BAE Systems and about 29K a year and living in a shared house and saving nothing, to working for a company down south (still living in Preston) and on about 50K and 65K with bonuses. I could save 2K a month easily if I kept the same lifestyle as I did when on 29K. Unfortunately I decided to get a Russian girlfriend on the internet Unfortunately for me I hate my job and I'd prefer to travel around in a dirty caravan and read books and play the guitar. Just I never had the courage to do it. I think you can live on very little and be happy - travelling, bumming around, busking, doing whatever makes you happy. Once you get a job you are in the system and it messes with your mental health and you are ******ed and chasing that extra few K. It probably makes people sick when they see that the TS considers £2,400 per month 'nothing'. But I kind of agree, the extra hassle and stress in most of these 'high paying' jobs isn't worth it. Drop out..
  19. Sweden is very nice and the Scandinavian countries have heavily planned economies. Maybe it can never be as good as a truely unplanned economy but unplanned economies have a habit of becoming planned economies pretty quickly due to a mixture sensible measures and corruption. Mostly corruption in the UK.
  20. The national trust is nonsense. Most of the buildings they 'preserve' were knocked down five times in the past and/or converted into new uses with extensive alterations and rebuilds. They just stoppped evolution. Apart from that they want people to pay £5 to walk past some ruined castles on the coast that are surely the people's property now.
  21. Wow I thought it must be in London or a nice vibrant town and clicked on the google map, zoomed out - Bradford and its a flat not even a house!
  22. I thought Lotus and then found they were Malaysian Complete list of car companies headquartered in UK followss, not no big volume names and only big name is Aston Martin: AC Cars AC Cars United Kingdom AC MKVI West Norwood n/a Alexander Dennis Alexander Dennis United Kingdom Enviro 200Dart, Enviro300, Enviro400 Falkirk n/a Alexander Dennis Alexander Dennis United Kingdom Javelin chassis, R-Series chassis, Enviro300 chassis Guildford n/a Ariel Ariel United Kingdom Ariel Atom Crewkerne n/a Ascari Cars Ascari Cars United Kingdom Ascari Ecosse, Ascari A10 Banbury n/a Aston Martin Lagonda Aston Martin Lagonda[37] United Kingdom One-77, Cygnet, DB9, DBS, Vantage, Virage Gaydon 5,323 (2010)[38] Bristol Cars Bristol Cars United Kingdom Blenheim, Fighter, Blenheim Speedster Filton n/a Caterham Cars Caterham Cars United Kingdom R400, CSR260 Dartford 435 (2003)[38] Ginetta Cars LNT Automotive United Kingdom G20r, G40 Junior, G50 GT4, G50 Cup, G50r, G50 EV, F400 Leeds n/a LTI Manganese Bronze Holdings United Kingdom TX4 Coventry 2,346 (2003)[38] Marcos Marcos Engineering United Kingdom TSO Kenilworth n/a McLaren Automotive McLaren Group United Kingdom MP4-12C Woking 4,000[47] Morgan Motor Company Morgan Motor Company United Kingdom Morgan Aero 8, Morgan Plus 4 Malvern 1000 (2003)[38] Noble Automotive Noble Automotive United Kingdom Noble M12, Noble M14 Barwell n/a Optare Optare Group United Kingdom Solo, Alero Leeds n/a Plaxton Alexander Dennis United Kingdom Panther, Paragon, Profile, Primo, Centro Scarborough n/a Plaxton Alexander Dennis United Kingdom Cheetah, Pronto, Beaver Sheffield n/a
  23. I wonder how much of a hand in this big insurance company lobbyists had? The fact that these people think that someone is a more dangerous driver because they have no insurance just shows how stupid they are. There is no cause and effect betweem the two but most of the sheeple believe 'no insurance = attempted murder', this just shows how successful the brainwashing is/ If anything having no insurance makes people more careful drivers. I know when I've had no insurance at times I am much more vigilent. The real reason for having no insurance is that it is not affordable to many people (especially young peope), it is also a big scam. Once something is made compulsory by law it always leads to corruption and greed. Less that 50% of car insurance policy money ever goes to pay off claims - 50% goes into the pockets of lawyers, company directors, shareholders and other parasites. The solution is to make car insurance none compulsory again, this will mean insurance premiums will plummet. People should insure THEMSELVES if they want or chose to and if they are hit or hit someone else and were not insured then that's their own choice. Its time that people started to act more responsibly and hiding behind insurance is just an excuse for being a lazy dangerous driver. There is even a good argument to be made that car insurance should be totally banned. Another alternative would be a nationalised car insurance because all that money that is now paid in premiums could pay for all the damage caused by accidents on our roads for EVERYONE and billions would be left over for other more useful things. In short this is just another 'pseudo free market' industry supported by legisilation stealing people's hard earned cash. Basically car insurance is just a TAX where half of it is skimmed off to go to the already rich.
  24. True but that's still the fault of the public sector for not gettting value for money and efficiency out of them. Just another example of tax money thrown down the toilet.
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