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House Price Crash Forum


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Everything posted by fluffy666

  1. RTB would have been OK - ish IF the proceeds had been used to build more houses. The social engineering aspect was the deliberate preventing of this. Indeed.. A sane policy would be for governments to build lots of houses in recessions, when labour would be cheap and demand for social housing high, and sell them into booms to help keep a lid on prices. A counter-cyclical policy that has the overall social benefit of keeping rents and house prices down. But we don't do sane things, obviously.
  2. Well, I'm on my 7th MOOC.. for the specific purpose of a person in-work wanting to expand and improve their skills, they are great. Vastly better than normal training courses. As a university replacement, I'm conflicted on this. MOOCs have huge advantages of scale and accessibility, but there are elements of learning at University level - practicals, tutorials, fieldwork, that sort of thing - that are very hard to MOOC-ify. Programming does lend itself very well to MOOCS, other subjects less so. There is also the social aspect of university, which you may snort at but is still important. I suppose the danger is that the traditional University experience is shrunk in numbers and at the same time made fantastically expensive - basically it becomes an extension of private schooling with a few token talented-but-poor kids thrown in. And everyone else, if they are lucky, takes online courses and is told that they are just as good. Leading to totally predictable results, i.e. even more real-world exclusion.
  3. If there was a deliberate effort underway to destroy the historic Mutual/Co-op model they couldn't do much better..
  4. You mean a scary hyperinflation takes away practically all debt leaving the economy excellently placed for sustained growth powered by a Keynesian stimulus or two?
  5. Fair enough. What disruption would there be that could not be fixed by changing some numbers in a computer?
  6. It's worth remembering that money isn't actually real. A reset of the system might cause some disruption. But the people, the buildings, the goods.. they will still be there.
  7. I think it might just be beginning to penetrate the thick skulls of our political class that - contrary to everything they have ever experienced in life - there are people out there to whom a £250k price tag looks gigantic. You wonder just how many of the cabinet/shadow cabinet have ever actually had to pay a mortgage for their main home out of a wage - with no expenses to cover it, and not just doing it for tax reasons, and with the real prospect of losing the property if circumstances change.
  8. It's just another way that high house prices poison things. Because you can generally get planning permission to replace an existing building, even a dilapidated scout hut is suddenly extremely valuable. And since councils are permanently short of cash they shove up the rents.
  9. I heard that as well.. seemed to be an element of 'Allows people to withdraw equity' as well as 'Access lower interest rates'. Definitely got the impression that he didn't want to talk about it.. (Almost as if the real winners from rising prices were the banks/building societies) Apparently, first time buyers are up, although I can't find any actual numbers.
  10. Bear in mind that my numbers had no element of discretion. Think of it as £700 for food, other consumables, cash in pocket, days out, events.. And although it is possible to live more frugally, it's often a case of trading time for money. Harder equation with kids around.
  11. 2x Car insurance. House Contents. Buildings. Mortgage Term Assurance. Income protection in event of Fluffy pegging it. I did try and cut down to a minimum set..
  12. The scary bit is the measures you'd have to go to to make a significant reduction. Something like 60% of the costs are unchangeable direct debits, so trying to cut outgoings by 20% would mean half of the food budget.
  13. Well, if we are going to use stupidly over-simplified arguments, than you must be claiming that if I make widgets, I can increase my wealth just by making more, even if there is no one to sell to.
  14. Well, speaking as half of a couple with 2 children.. a MSE style statement (Monthly) Mortgage £850 Council Tax £150 Gas/Electric £90 Phone/Broadband £30 Cars(2) Keeping on road (servicing+tax) £80 Insurances £200 Water £40 Fuel £160 Food+consumables £700 Minimal cash savings (to replace big ticket items) £200 =£2500 Which is indeed equivalent to about £40k, but would be desperately tight. Problem is, it would be possible to cope on less than that, but you'd find that 'unexpected' items resulted in credit card bills that never quite got paid off before the next one turned up. Or you find that you can stick to a lower consumables budget for a couple of months, then clothes need buying and stuff starts running out.. Anyway, as far as the article goes then yes, you need that much for a fairly basic lifestyle nowadays.
  15. Devils advocate.. If 'investors' are prepared to pay current prices, and can easily afford current prices (just pay the interest out of rent payments), then why should there ever be a substantial crash, especially if rents are solid and supply restricted? Could be just be going down a road where most of the housing stock is owned by large trusts and private ownership tails off. Prices would never fall without serious political action. Even higher interest rates might not do much, if the companies/trusts involved simply do a debt restructuring when they get into trouble, without actually selling any houses. Essentially, we may have detached house prices from the whole concept of an average wage making it possible for a house to be bought outright. Houses may still be inherited - if not sold for care home fees - but if they are split between siblings who can't afford to buy the other share(s) then there would still be a gradual transfer to non-personal ownership.
  16. Depends - Redistribution can include employing people, which would bring most of health and education into redistribution, and providing services as well as cash transfers. Even the armed forces have a redistributive function in the form of service wages and in-UK procurement. Although anything bought in from outside the country would be lost, yes, and debt repayment/interest. The other thing could be households that are in work but have no dependent children - either before having children or after chucking them out.. That's harder to account for, you almost need to sum these things up over a lifetime.
  17. It's actually a slight indictment of the system. A capitalist society only works if you redistribute* from rich to poor (relatively speaking), and given the very lopsided distribution of wealth and income, you'd expect most people/households to be net recipients. The fact that only ~50% are indicates that those at the top are contributing less than they should. *This redistribution can take a lot of forms, means tested cash transfers being one of the worst.
  18. You just have to stop getting older whilst they sort it out.
  19. http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-kingdom/gdp-per-capita Hasn't really shifted in a decade.
  20. Bailing out the bankers was about as un-socialist as you can get.. Corporatism - running the country for the benefit of large corporations and the very wealthy - is neither socialist or capitalist.
  21. So basically you think that people should shut up and scramble for any crumbs that are available? We've tried that; apart from minor issues like basic dignity or making sure that hard work is actually rewarded, allowing wages and conditions to sink to desperation levels has knock on effects on the wider economy, in terms of weak demand and growth. (Not sure what my or your personal status has to do with it, that's just a red herring)
  22. No. This is basically incorrect at the moment. IF we had full employment, THEN people would get paid according to the value generated. Indeed, you can actually see this in the 1950-70 full employment period - wages and productivity rise in lockstep. However, what we have now is a large pool of unemployed. Which means that wages can fall with no real lower bound - any lower bound then gets set by law, not market forces. Now, in a proper market, surplus labour would simply starve to death and resolve this problem (Well, there would be a revolution and the whole thing would be turned upside down, but I digress..) But still, in the current situation there can be a huge disconnect between pay and value generated, which gives disproportionate returns somewhere down the line.
  23. Because every possible externality has been shoved onto the worker. No guaranteed hours. Pay for own transport. No continuity. No holidays, sick pay, pension, whatever. And I'd bet that it will include things like 'You have 4 hours to clean this house top to bottom and if it's not good enough you won't get paid' so you end up taking 8 hours to do it.
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