very new to this. have read the forum and news blog for 3 months.
I live in Germany (UK employed/UK taxpayer). Moved here from Lincolnshire in 2001. Sold UK house in 2001 and have been in a state of clinical depression ever since as prices started to rise. Also the dismay in the wake of 9/11 as central banks cut rates, wiping out my savings and really lighting the touch-paper of house price inflation (was Osmama bin Laden an estate agent by any chance). Yes, I felt guilty, just a bit, as I knew deep down I probably wasn't the only victim of 9/11, and others had suffered as much, if not more than me. Still I felt it was unfair that UK property owners were coining it in just as I had left the UK property market. Then there was Enron and even lower interest rates, higher property prices, more gloom.
For a time on satellite TV from UK I kept seeing the " Loans.co.uk" ads promising ulimited loans for UK mortgage payers who were promised unimaginable rewards just for having a property. Then came the "debts.co.uk" ads (which seemed to have the same actors and producers) promising those who had taken out loans, that repayment was totally uneccessary (and illegal) as a result of something called IVAs. Then, perhaps logically came credit cruch and northern rock.
I have been scanning property in Lincs for 2 years now. I did consider moving back there in 2006 and was struggling to find a 4 bed family home for less than 300k. I did look seriously at a nice house for 280k and almost put in an offer. In 2008 the 280K house is back on the market at 225K and there lots of family homes for 200-250K. Not quite 2001 prices, but definitely asking prices 20% less than 2006. Interesting that rightmove/halifax/DLG stats just don't convey this. Problem is that "my" 280K house looked good value in 2006, it now looks good value at 225K (or does it?...........if I buy will I get a new neighbour in 2009 who has bought for 175K). The psychology of a falling market is almost as worrying as a rising one (if you're a worrier). Anyway, I think sanity is returning, to me, if not to the housing market. House prices are now falling at the same rate as my equity investments, which is a step in the right direction.