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  1. Well the day arrived where the extended/refurbed section of the town hall was opened to the tune of 40 million. If adding a Zara, Lush and H&M are the indications of future development in Bolton god help us. Quite of few of the shops are not let and one handbag shop moved from across the street to take a place in the new environment. There were mixed reactions from the public about the new place. People came out of curiosity to see what had been done but I think eventually the curiosity will peter out and the punters will go to Manchester instead. If you look around Bolton more and more shops are vacating and literally shutting up shop in the town. The rents and rates are too steep. The council is still persisting in its fight to glamourise a town which is basically toppling over on benefits. Again the council a looking to demolish yet another lovely old building. They say it would cost too much to refurbish and have decided to make it into another car park. They are absolutely mad. The car parking fees are keeping most people away from Bolton. On the one hand they want to attract more visitors to Bolton but are suffocating the town with expensive car parks. Do we have dunces running the council?
  2. The problem with this country is that there a few overpaid individuals with so many privileges who produce nothing whilst the rest of us are getting massively poorer. So many people aspire to get the pay of a banker, footballer, celebrity and yes rich property developer that they forget nothing of value is really being produced by them. Money is chasing money. The Goverment is disguising huge areas of poverty in the North West, North East etc and wasting money in giving benefits to those who do not want to work or unfortunately do not have access to available work in their area. Londoners can still earn 2-3 times as much money than their Northern counterparts. Property is expensive in London but it is equally expensive in the North and beyond the purse of Northerners who are earning meagre sums of £12,000-£16,000. No wonder the culture of drugs, people trafficking, stealing identities, benefit fraud etc is profilerating. The vast majority of people pursuing dishonest lives is all they have to survive which I do not condone.
  3. We continue to be short changed by the government cronies and appear so helpless. There should be some form of civil strike and unrest. Do as the French do and object strongly and loudly and take action. We are punished by chasing the ever elusive inflation figures which ultimately rob us of the value of anything we currently earn/own and it is not getting any better. Those who own several homes with plenty of equity are the winners and they will carry on using all the loopholes their tax accountants suggest to avoid heavy taxes. Yet the rest of us who may have one or two homes will have to find a way to facilitate the best way to live/retire. Doubtless the government will continue to take away the last drop of our blood.
  4. The council are begging the local people to contact them and make suggestions for improving Bolton. They have a cheek when they have totally ignored the residents over and over again. The time limit for the public submissions are very short indeed. I suppose if the public do not contribute this time round the council members will have a field day saying that there was a lack of interest. I think the council members ought to extend the deadline and give voting rights to the public to stop them from manipulating, influencing and overspending on daft strategies, developments and unnecessary blocks of flats.
  5. The big whole in the ground, I heard on the grapevine, has well and truly been abandoned by the original builders!!! Just goes to show the council do not know what they are doing by allowing the old cinema to be pulled down by unethical developers and builders. The grand opening of the market hall looms ever near but what kind of shops are going to display their goods and entice the poor and unemployed (who incidentally make up a huge proportion of the population) to spend their well earned and not so well-earned pennies. I was born and bred in Bolton and I cannot say one good thing about it because the council has wrecked it with its grand hi-faluting ideas. Instead of assessing the real needs of the town it is disguising its fundamental problems. More flats, more developers knocking the stuffing out of the town is not the answer! The massive complex that they intend to build close to the town centre in the Croal Valley will not be able to conjure up jobs from thin air. There are no cotton mills or steel mills left and there are no big companies producing anything of value. They think that people living in Manchester may consider living in Bolton because it is cheaper. It is an ugly, ugly town. Bury is a much better town. Bury council have been more thoughtful and shown consideration to its public by building a pleasant, cohesive and inviting centre. Bolton's current bus station, I was told by some commuters, was a no go area after 7pm. All the bus companies run a limited service after six in the evening and have allocated a couple of platforms where the public can catch the bus. Drug users, alcoholics and ASBOs profilerate so the bus company, in order to protect the public, have subjected everyone to a minimal service. At a time when the government is trying to encourage people to take the bus there are very few to be taken. How daft does that sound! The Bolton Evening News, of years ago, tended to be a good local paper but now its news items and contents are thin on the ground because there is very little to report of any value. It sounds as if I am bitter about the entire town. No it is more about the bundling idiotic council and its antics. Otherwise the older generation in the town are good decent human beings who have been given a raw deal.
  6. It seems that Bolton council will continue to dessimate the town even further to the tune of a 25m revamp of the recently built bus station next to the train station. They never learn! The latest proposal for this new bus station will not draw any new business to Bolton. The local press has already agued that the cost is twice what it should be!!! The council just want to keep on spending like mad on an ailing town. Why could they not have kept the two cinemas and refurbed them instead of allowing horrendous blocks of flats to be built? The 25m would be better spent on refurbing the existing property languishing in the town centre and helping small businesses to provide work to those in need of jobs. A majority of the money should also go towards apprenticeships etc so that when there is a workforce it will enable people to buy homes and make renting viable. Others argue more trains should be provided to and from Bolton to facilitate its practically non-existent, overcrowded service to those who have work outside the district. One of the cinemas's, a grade II listed property, has been domolished much to the consternation of the general public. In its place there will be a block of flats close to the old outdoor market and bus station. It will probably be poorly built, badly designed and way overpriced. For some reason, probably the credit crunch, all building works have been halted. There is now a dirty big hole there. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the developers would be liable for tax on an empty new build. Or, have they gone out of business? The properties are not moving, the prices are sticking at the two-year old price. One house that I had planned to buy over two years ago eventually sold only to come back onto the market not once but twice in such a short period!!! There must be something wrong somewhere. Thank god I did not buy. I have friends who bought when the terraces were only £12,000 and they had made a killing. Now I would not buy here if the council paid me I would sooner invest abroad where you get value for money. Sellers are not being reasonable and insist on hanging onto these inflated prices. Estate agents mutter such words as 'if this house was in London it would cost.............'. But we are not in London but Bolton I say!!! Both sellers and agents have made a pact in hell to keep prices artificially high. So if you are looking for a bargain forget it. If you are looking to successfully rent forget it.
  7. The latest on Bolton................. Most speculators have long since gone and made their money. The prices of property still appear to be too high. Many people, like some of the deluded Americans, think that their property is worth much more than they really are! Some people even think that by putting their property on with different estate agents, at last years prices, that they will fool the public into thinking that they have reduced their prices. The developers are hanging on for dear life with their inflated prices by offering 75% ownership. But really, who wants to be saddled with a mortgage and then have to top it up with a rent!!!!!!!!!!!! Why don't they just drop their prices and cut their losses? The council are suggesting that if there are enough signatures condoning congestion charges this will enable them to build a huge bus station next to the train station. The fact that they wasted a whole lot of money on a small reformed bus station next to the train station not so long ago suggests that the council is in a panic to turn Bolton around. The Market Hall has taken far longer to restore and rebuild than the council anticipated. The grand opening date is scheduled for the 16th September 2008. Somehow I don't think the public really care. It will only have an abundance of cloned shops. It would have to be something really spectacular to make up for the loss of the many small businesses that were evicted some time ago. With an increasing unemployment problem I really cannot see how Bolton can keep investing in a town that is dead. People are being pushed from the jobcentre onto the books of New Deal then if they do not get a job onto the books of companies like TNG to place people into dead end jobs. The whole situation is escalating into a nightmare. Young kids roam the street with their multiple babies getting enormous support from the taxpayer's pocket. Drug addicts and Asbo's make some parts of the town centre a no-go area. Loads of incapacity benefit claimants are unemployable and want to remain that way. The average income is way below the government quoted figures. All this investment strategy and manipulation by the council will come to nothing because there is very little work that exists in Bolton!!!
  8. I love Brazil too. Everything you say is corrrect. I only wish I had bought there too. I don't want to buy from the jumped-up snotty-nosed UK brokers or estate agents who are only interested in big commissions and would flog their own grandmother without a conscience. Though I am reading adverse press regarding certain areas to buy and not to buy in. What areas would you suggest? Someone said the North was being overdeveloped and that the South was a much better bet. If you are buying to live there it is a different matter but if you are investing then you need to get the area right.
  9. When is the next novel due for its release?
  10. Whilst Turkey is essentially a beautiful country and you have some money in your pocket you can really live a good life be it for long-term investment or the lifestyle. Beautiful as it may be the laws keep changing. Currently if you bought a piece of land which was arsa (non-agricultural land with building permissions) sometime last year the laws stated that you could buy it under your own name. By the time the Tapu (title deeds in your name) arrive which could be a few months then you are subject to todays law which states that you have to form a limited company. This can be ridiculously expensive if you have only bought a plot of land for one house!!!!!!!!!!!!! Something like 2-2,500 YTL to set the company up, and then, though the the limited company may lie dormant (not trading) you still have to employ an accountant monthly to do the non-existent books. This can also set you back by 2-250 YTL monthly. Then there is something called the 'stopaj' where you need to pay out further sums (unknown quantity) of money to the government. The laws were changed only recently to stop large swathes of land being purchased by huge companies. The trouble is the Turkish government has not the commonsense to differentiate between the small private plot-holder and the truly large business land holders. The laws are a mess!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So reiterating, if you bought last year assuming that you got the Tapu under your own name unfortunately you have to now accept the new law which is totally unfair. No doubt this will really put paid to some people even bothering going there. To top it all you cannot get rid of the limited company that easily (this can take in some cases almost 2 years). Until you have sold you will have to continue paying the exhorbitant fees for what I don't know. The whole purpose of hiring a lawyer is that they will do their job. However, this is not to be. Solicitors make up excuses of not knowing what is going on and are vague and uncommunicative about the changes going on. I don't know whether in some instances it is because they want to continue lining their own pockets. Since there seems to be no regulated body as such in Turkey you cannot really question their motives and actions and they do tend to get on the defensive about this. Turkey is a place that once you start paying for property services through a solicitor you keep on paying out more and more with no real breakdown of costs and no proper set prices regarding different priced properties. You can buy a big or small house and you can still pay a set fee. If the property is small the fee appears terribly high if it is large then the fee seems OK. They do not seem to understand that a good pricing strategy and policy would be more efffective, and certainly, more transparent for the customer. The the laws are under review again. Let's hope that the government will sort these stupid problems out for those who genuinely only want to buy for themselves.
  11. I have bought in Turkey but never an off-plan unit. Though people have mixed feelings about Turkey, prices not going up quickly enough or at all for investors, property laws constantly changing etc etc I still wanted to buy for my own reasons and not to necessarily keep up with the Jones's. I put a reservation fee, though small, on a 1 bed flat on the outskirts of Istanbul on the basis if I was not satisfied with the contract/place Regnum, the Developers, would return my money. I went on an inspection trip to view Astrum Towers and thought they were good for the price but some of the materials were really cheap and would fall to bits in no time. It was the same on their complex, Bargylia, Bodrum. My niggling feelings concerning the complex was that it had far too many flats and it was miles away from Istanbul itself. The domestic market for rental appeared to be good but the returns very low and if you had a mortgage you might even lose money. When I looked through the contract I was not happy with some of the clauses and returned it to their solicitor to amend. They would not budge on any of their clauses and after some time (a few months) and many emails and phone calls and unbelievable pressure to buy I stated that the deal would only go ahead if they would reach a compromise concerning their contract. Because I would not agree to the contract they withdrew the 1 bed flat put it back on the market and kept my reservation fee. I disputed this with them and they said the matter was closed even though we had verbally agreed that should we not come to a mutual agreement on the contract and if I was not happy with its contents that I would get my money back. I never received the emails informing me of their decision and had been under the impression that they were rewriting some of the contract (foolish me)! I asked them to send these emails to me as a matter of record. This has left me with a very bad feeling concerning Regnum and their sales methods. I not only got pressure over the phone but endless emails and phone calls from one of their agents who tried to tempt me in so many ways to go ahead with the purchase. I don't think I will ever go down this route again. Off-plan is for the big boys, those who can afford to throw away their money. Giving control to a bunch of rogues over your money is one of the biggest mistakes I want to avoid. So far as Regnum is concerned I would not recommend them and I would not purchase a single unit anywhere from them. I suppose I should be thankful that my reservation fee was only the cost of a good laptop but in all honesty I would much prefer the laptop!
  12. Esmerelda, I too am small fry & only invest in places that I would like to live/holiday in myself... Maybe others should try this concept because if you like what you buy then others will surely feel the same when you come to sell............... The big-boy investors would dispute this as not being a very good investment strategy. A lot of people who bought over the odds and paid ridiculous prices for their property. are now rueing the day they did. They are faced with repossessions and poor buy-to-let yields. I assume there are a lot of unhappy people who are reeling from that word 'greed'. It has left a nasty sting in the tail. Then, again, there are lots of hardened investors who have done all the right things and have gone onto successfully build their empires. The only question I have to ask is are most of these people truly happy running after those who make wild promises of big profits? Are they really living or are they putting their lives on hold for the next best big fat profit? The huge credit explosion has pushed many people to the limit for all the wrong reasons. Some if not most have lost touch with their true values in life. From my experiences, good and bad, the only person you should be listening to is your own inner voice once you have gleaned all the strategies and well-intentioned advice from others. You can only live one life, and, to be happy and content is tops in my book with the added bonus of not being a nervous neurotic wreck because I might be so overstretched. That is not living. Some might call it a challenge etc etc. who cares!!! I will go back to the original statement you made Esmerelda that I 'only invest in places that I would like to live/holiday in myself'. Stuff the rest.
  13. Kalkan was a lovely place when I visited a few years ago, I loved it. At that time it was a bit remote too and away from the maddening crowd. However, the difficult aspect of its location did not deter such companies like Avatar from building there amongst the many. First they were in Bulgaria then they quickly went over to Kalkan to make a killing, so to speak. Detached villas were being built at ludicrous prices, some starting from £350,000 when everything else was so much cheaper. I can't help feeling that these companies instigated the proliferation of overpriced property in Kalkan and also assisted in its defacement. The press where also responsible for the stampede. Everyone began to pile into the beautiful Kalkan like sheep and probably spoilt it for others from thereon. Kas is another place that looks like a minature Fethiye. But I reckon this has also gone the same way as other towns. However, no matter how much someone goes on about Turkey and its political stance in the world and its borders that need to be protected essentially the normal man in the street lives his life very much like the resident in the UK. They struggle with increased prices and inflation. Alright this is an earthquake region but they don't have earthquakes every five minutes!!! The downside of them not joining the EU may be a blessing in disguise. If prices are a 1/4 of what the English have to pay for living a basic quality of life in the UK then I say it can't be all that bad in Turkey. However, if inflation starts charging ahead as it did prior to 2001 then there is a definite need to worry. If you live in Turkey and own your house outright with no mortgage it is better than sitting depressed in the UK with a house you may not own and having to pay way over the odds for the basic bills!!! Turkey is a place you either love or hate and probably long term it may be an added investment bonus but don't necessarily count on this.
  14. Yes, I read your other post. Like I said it is impossible to say how the market is truly fairing since there aren't any statistics only anecdotal info. People who moved out to Turkey were probably hoping that they could live like they do in England (home from home) but Turkey is such a different culture. You have to want to live amongst these people and understand their mentality, put up with low wages, and all the inconveniences in life associated with the Turkish life. You can get luxury and sophistication if you live in Istanbul, Izmir and the major cities however it still feels very foreign and strange. From an investment point of view the coastal regions have a glut of summer houses that were occupied by the Turks from the major towns, and have been put onto the secondhand market competing against new builds hence the market stalling and stagnating. People went in for refurb, or renovation or building new on plots of land which has left a lot of off-plan developments and completed developments unsold. The EAs were saying to people that they should not buy anthing more than 7 years old as it was not earthquake proof. But buyers, pouring into the country, looking for bargains would steer towards the old resales because they were a lot cheaper and they could do them up. There is where they made their profit much to the disgust of the EAs. Because of the burgeoning secondhand market EAs then began to up the prices on the secondhand properties which to some degree made it seem as if the property market was on the rise. But the glut of property is still there. Investors really are in competition with the very cheap hotels. Why would people want to necessarily pay over the odds to stay in private accommodation when they could find 4-star hotels at £7 per night half board. It sounds as though I am arguing against investing in Turkey but I am saying that you are investing for yourself if you live there as the prices are affordable! Are you suggesting with the civil war imminent that all the Germans, Brits, Dutch etc will be expelled from the country? Many chose to live there and have been doing so for years so they must like it and feel relatively safe!!! In fact the Germans and the Dutch have been living there when inflation was way off the healthy scale. They have lived there when times have been very much tougher than at present. From an investor's point of view it is not cut and dried because there is such conflicting news out there. There are no hard figures to play with. There has also been an influx of Russians canny for their spying out opportunities. Oh yes, newspapers are also notorious for making up stories!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If we were to believe the press like the magazines we truly would be gullible. You have to go out there and spend the time to find out for yourself the pros and cons for investing, living etc in a country such as Turkey.
  15. I hate it when people have to be so mean to one another!!! I suppose everyone is trying to survive the best way they can. As in my post concerning the Turkish market, and any other market for that matter, you have to go and do your own ground work. It is great getting insight from everyone but at the end of the day you are the mover and shaker (excuse the cliche). What will happen during this global depression is anyone's guess. Trying to predict the hotspots before they become the hotspots is also a difficult venture. However, relying solely on others is not a good plan. It seems to me that those who truly have made a lot of money on the property market don't necessarily shout about it they just get on with it.
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