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Mrs Bear

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Everything posted by Mrs Bear

  1. Didn't I read somewhere that SJ's brother has a property business/empire? And that SJ used to work for him, or be a director of said co., or something? Pls correct me if wrong. Would be a great deal more to the point if instead of rewarding LLs who 'do the right thing' they would start heftily penalising those who do the wrong thing, I.e.slumlords renting out dire hovels - probably the very ones who conveniently forget to tell HMRC about their rental income. IIRC a bill to compel LLs to provide accommodation fit for human habitation has been voted down at least once.
  2. You do like having a go, don't you? Helping one's children does not equal being unsympathetic to the housing situation. If I didn't give a toss I'd never have joined this forum in the first place. Presumably you'd prefer it if I'd told my kids to sod off and conformed to the evil-boomer stereotype by spending it all on cruises.
  3. Well, if she is, she's bound to be right. As any parent of one probably knows, sixteen year olds know everything, and frequently get exasperated having to explain to their stupid parents how wrong they are about everything.
  4. The rot was well under way with Labour. Just for a start they could have put a stop to Right to Buy, but didn't. I suspect they thought it would lose them votes.
  5. Because he's maybe thinking of a second sproglet and would still like a spare room/office/study?
  6. Some years ago, but I knew of a flat that was sold way below market value at the time - say £185k instead of about £220k. I knew an offer at the higher figure had been turned down. From the circs (it was owned by someone at the EA which was marketing it) should imagine it was def. sold cheaply to avoid CGT (it was a BTL) and very likely sold either to a mate or a son or daughter. You do wonder how often, or rather whether, these things are ever picked up.
  7. We flew Monarch recently. Have to say we were very impressed - crew v pleasant and cheerful and service v good. Will be sad for them if they go under.
  8. Well, yes, agreed, but maybe the penny is beginning to drop at last? However, Foxtons are still good for a laugh. I just checked the mini area I keep an eye on in SW17. There is a terribly dated maisonette - a hideous-decor probate (by the looks of it) - needs LOADS of work - which was originally on with some faraway and evidently clueless agent for way over what was reasonable even by daft standards, given the cost of doing up. Now on with Foxtons at a good chunk more than sensible even by still-daft standards - and it's described as 'superb' with a 'smart' kitchen!
  9. There was some very blunt talk from an EA - I think from Pendleton's - in that article, about the need to price realistically, and EAs needing to be honest with vendors, etc. Of course it's obvious and common sense but good to see them actually saying it - as more and more are doing now - because they know they're not going to sell anything overpriced and if they don't sell anything there's no money coming in. You do have to wonder how Foxton's is rethinking its former strategy, which apparently was to overvalue everything at ludicrous + 10%.
  10. If this pair win, I don't think there'll be a shortage of others who won't mind pretending they were too stupid/naive to understand what they were getting into. More like a tsunami of them, once a precedent has been set. For that reason I can't see it happening. You can bet there will be huge pressure behind the scenes from lenders with bicycle clips.
  11. I once remarked to a French neighbour of a BiL, how often it was said here that it's only the Brits who are so keen on buying. She replied very emphatically (re the French) that they most certainly do prefer buying to renting. I have a Swedish friend who's lived here for over 20 years, , but is moving back to Stockholm after being widowed. She has already bought a flat to return to - I don't think it even occurred to her to rent - and her son in Stockholm with 3 young children, is on house no. 3 since first child - they did up 1 and 2 and sold at a profit. He has friends who have done the same. Prices in Sweden have gone up a lot in recent years and a lot more people want to buy than used to be the case. My friend always lived in rented as a child. While she was undecided over which flat to buy, her daughter in law said something on the lines of, 'But it's an investment - you can always sell it later if you change your mind.' The mindset is not just a Brit thing - far from it. Edited to add - that was supposed to be in reply to whoever asked why Brits are so obsessed with ownership.
  12. There are quite a few tiny terraced 'cottages' in a conservation area of Tooting. Looked at one with a daughter some years ago - barely 50 sq m IIRC, 2 beds, front door straight into the living room. We didn't bother looking at any others similar. They were built around 1910, so it's not invariably the case that houses were bigger. For around the same price in the same area then you could get a purpose built 2 bed Edwardian maisonette, 70 sq m, with its own small garden. Prices have more or less doubled now, but I still keep an eye on them and they're beginning to come down a bit.
  13. There are houses that have been converted into flats around here, but mostly they're the very large ones, of which there are relatively few in just a few roads. In between some of these are low rise blocks of 60s/70s flats - easy to see which houses were bombed by the Luftwaffe aiming for the aircraft factory nearby.
  14. Agreed. In the very late 60s or very early 70s my rather older sister and brother in law, only 2 or 3 years out of university, bought a new 3 bed semi in a London-commute-area of the SE. It cost about £3500 and my sister stopped work soon afterwards to be a stay at home mum. She didn't go back until a 2nd baby was 11. They did have to be very careful with money, but since they'd never had much it was a habit anyway. They celebrated their Golden Wedding last Saturday. God, that did make me feel old! Even more so than realising very recently that my niece's birthday meant she was 46...
  15. Around here, I should say that at least every other 2, 3 or 4 bed house has had a loft conversion or a kitchen/downstairs extension, and many have had both. They are nearly all either Victorian/Edwardian or else on a large estate of 1930s houses, some of which were very small to start with.
  16. Or have to go into a care home. That's our family experience with 3 of them, all decrepit/dementia and well into their 80s. My mother did downsize in her early 70s, still perfectly fit, from a modest house to a slightly smaller one with less maintenance. But then she'd always been an inveterate mover - restless - anyway. She didn't move out of that house until the care home became necessary at 89.
  17. NOW they think of it, when it's been obvious for so many for so long that foreign buyers were contributing to ever rising prices, and builders ignoring what locals wanted or needed. Why would they give a toss when they could flog so much off-plan in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia?
  18. I don't suppose they do deal with it. They pay letting agents to do it for them.
  19. Quite apart from anything else, there's all the cleaning and sheet-changing between short lets.
  20. TVs lasted longer?? I remember them often going wrong, which is one reason why a lot of people rented them. Mr B's folks had a B&W from Radio Rentals well into the 70s, until he bought them a state of the art Sony Trintron, just in time for his tennis mad dad to watch Wimbledon in colour.
  21. And most other stuff - clothes, all household goods - were relatively a lot more expensive since they were mostly made here and not in China. Anyone else remember petrol stations giving out free glasses? As in drinking, not as in specs. It would be a joke today, when you can get them for pennies in supermarkets. I am not disputing at all the relative cost of housing now,. but I think many people would be shocked at the relative cost of other things then, everything from a T shirt to a TV.
  22. Aside from S24, there is also the removal of the automatic 10% offset for wear and tear. In future only actual expenses can be claimed for, though I dare say plenty will contrive to get around this by hook or by crook, probably by crook.
  23. Yes, the Sunday Times is very bearish today. I particularly liked the saga of the woman who was advised to price her 'sprawling' North Oxford house for £9m, though it was valued at £8.4. She put it on for £7.5,m, subsequently reduced to £6.95m and then £5.95m - still no takers. Owner admits she has 'completely missed the market'. Elsewhere in Times property they are plugging the new development outside the Oxford ring road, towards Barton - which is the sort of place most buyers want to avoid. They kindly tell us that anyone who can't afford to buy within the university city can pick up a new 3 bed here for £595k. And very ugly boxy houses they look too. I'd have thought £595k decidedly optimistic for that area outside the ring road, but with Help to Buy still sloshing the money around, who knows?
  24. Not long ago we saw a play by GB Shaw, entitled Widowers' Houses, first performed 1893. It was about London slumlords, and IIRC questions of morality arose when a young bloke became very attracted to the daughter of a rich man - and not long afterwards found out how Daddy made his money. Going back a bit more, there is Tom-All-Alone's in Dickens - Bleak House?
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