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chalky

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About chalky

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  1. Nah they come knocking on your door when you haven't paid your council tax.
  2. chalky, on 23 February 2010 - 06:27 AM, said: My link More Public Sector madness heard this story on BBC News but couldn't believe what I was listening to so had to do look it up to convince myself it was true. "Several councils have been saving money and cutting down on pollution by turning off some of their street lights. But this week Conservative-led Coventry City Council announced it is planning something more sophisticated - putting them all on a dimmer switch. It means that sometimes they will actually brighten the lights - after a football match for example - but that overall they hope to reduce their carbon emissions by 40% and cut energy bills by £684,000. The cost will be considerable though - requiring all 28,000 street lamps to be replaced over the next 25 years. However some of the street lamps would have needed to be replaced anyway. The Coventry Evening Telegraph offers the following explanation of the figures: The government is giving the council £125 million spread over 25 years towards the cost of the street light project to pay the PFI contractor, and the council will put in roughly the same by paying the current annual lighting maintenance bill of £3.1 million plus up to £1 million a year extra to cover the rest of the project’s costs." So let me get this correct £250 million pound investment to save £680,000 per year. I bit of research shows that the cost of running a normal street light is approximately 16p per day. My link So the regular cost would be 16p x 28,000 lights x 365 x 25 years = £40,880,000 Net extra cost to tax payer £250 million - £41 Million - (£640,000 x 25) = £193 Million When the Chief Exec of Coventry Council was on the radio he argued that the project didn't cost anything 'because the funding was from PFI' Has this country gone ******ing mad? Have edited my figures as I didn't read my own link correctly still an obscene waste
  3. My link More Public Sector madness heard this story on BBC News but couldn't believe what I was listening to so had to do look it up to convince myself it was true. "Several councils have been saving money and cutting down on pollution by turning off some of their street lights. But this week Conservative-led Coventry City Council announced it is planning something more sophisticated - putting them all on a dimmer switch. It means that sometimes they will actually brighten the lights - after a football match for example - but that overall they hope to reduce their carbon emissions by 40% and cut energy bills by £684,000. The cost will be considerable though - requiring all 28,000 street lamps to be replaced over the next 25 years. However some of the street lamps would have needed to be replaced anyway. The Coventry Evening Telegraph offers the following explanation of the figures: The government is giving the council £125 million spread over 25 years towards the cost of the street light project to pay the PFI contractor, and the council will put in roughly the same by paying the current annual lighting maintenance bill of £3.1 million plus up to £1 million a year extra to cover the rest of the project’s costs." So let me get this correct £250 million pound investment to save £680,000 per year. I bit of research shows that the cost of running a normal street light is approximately 27p per day. My link So the regular cost would be 27p x 28,000 lights x 365 x 25 years = £69 million Net extra cost to tax payer £250 million - £69 Million - (£640,000 x 25) = £165 Million When the Chief Exec of Coventry Council was on the radio he argued that the project didn't cost anything 'because the funding was from PFI' Has this country gone ******ing mad?
  4. As soon as the VAT was reduced (1st December) 2p duty was added to Diesel & Petrol although this made no difference to your average punter any VAT registered company was worse off. Another example of Gordon helping small businesses' seemed most of the media missed it aswell. Think there is another 2p duty increase scheduled for April also.
  5. I got a mortgage offer in January for 105K from the co-op. They only offered me 62K yesterday when I applied for another agreement in priciple. Interestingly I had a 4K wage rise in April. January - Salary 19K - Mortgage offer 105K - 5.5X Salary July - Salary 23K - Mortgage offer 62K - 2.7X Salary When I asked the girl on the phone why the current offer was lower than the one in January they said the underwriters are "worried about affordability".
  6. No driver should be driving for 60 hours per week. All HGV drivers are governed by the maximun 48 hour working week & VOSA regulations of no more than 90 hours driving in a fortnight. Any compnay encouraging these rules to be broken (very difiicult now with digital tachographs) i.e. by paying the drivers to work more than the maximum allowed will see their Operators License strpped and prison term for the Transport Manager.
  7. Average basic slary (40 hour per week) for a tanker driver in the north is about 20K. Tanker drivers on Shell (sub)contracts have always been a lot more than the average.
  8. Was quoted $145 a Barrel of oil for delivery in 2015 by one of the major refiners. I think the current price is about $135 - they describe the current situation as a "super spike". Interestingly though they won't quote in sterling so it looks like they have no confidence in the pound.
  9. Local Shell station ran out of all products yesterday, they must of sent their staff home because the garage was closed. Looked a bit eriee TBH. The Shell Jarrow terminal was picketed by the striking Shell drivers & not one driver from any other company has crossed the picket line. I would say that the terminal supplies over 80% of the fuel for Tyneside (as nearly every other supplier & distributer aswell as Shell collect out of there) so expect some serious shortages in that area soon. Speaking to the supply manager for one of the refiners he said his drivers were threatened when they tried to cross the picket line at another Shell terminal - he is telling his drivers that if they are not prepared to collect the fuel (cross the picket line) then they will not be paid. We may have some civil disturbances if the strike continues as it will affect other drivers pay. It has always been known in the industry that shell pay their drivers a lot relative to other companies. To put in perspective the local industry standard is about 20K basic for a tanker driver.
  10. Hi I'm currently renting a lovely 4 bed detached bungalow with nice front & back garden for 410 PCM. Been here for 2 & half years on the same rent reckon I have no danger of incresaed rent as the place was empty for 5 years before I moved in, suffered with squaters & was flooded the previos winter when a water pipe froze & burst. Am on a short hold tennancy so can be chucked out with only two months notice. The landlord, I think, only planned it as a short term deal as he owns a huge field behind the property which he has been trying to get planning permission to build on for the last 7 years. The original plan was for him to demolish the property once he got planning permisison for field behind (as the land that the property is on is the only access). Speaking to one of his employees they think he no closer than ever, & in the current falling market is not as keen to build, so there is no imminent danger of being evicted. Saying all that despite everything I have read & heard regarding the housing market I have recently been getting urge to lay down roots & get on the property market am 28 now so really don't want to be paying a mortgage too far into my 50's. Have been looking at 3 bed semi in a nice area, 2 reception rooms, front & back gardens & a detached garage. Currently up for 115,00 (reduced from 125,000 in January). The property is advertised as a vacant possession, as a result of a death I think. There have only every been 2 sales recorded in the street one for 90,000 in May 2005 & one for 80,000 in April 2004 (the I'm looking is slightly bigger than those 2) so not really much info to go at. The street is home to a lot of retirees so the only way you usually get houses up for sale is due to a death. Been looking at the place for a while and promised myself that if I could get it below a 100,000 I would take it but now not so sure. Obviously I'm spending 5K on rent every year I also think I could save another 1K on council tax, and gas etc (as I currently pay a much higher rate of council tax & the place I live is very big & not double glazed). So a 6% annual price drop would not cause any real losses. Currently am looking at getting a 10 year fixed at 5.99% with a 850 fee but I wonder how long that is going to be available. I was working out that a 1% rise in interest rates is roughly equivalent to a 10% drop in price on monthly payments. Obviously the prices are going to drop further but I guess the question is how far (if at all) are interest rates going to rise?
  11. I got a reply from an email I sent to my MP regarding the government interference in the housing market keeping out of FTB reach. Most of the letter was nonsense (falling house prices are not needed for FTB to get on the housing market shared equity/home Buy is the way to go etc). He did state though that the local housing association would be investing 200 million to buy property off the open market for Home Buy/Shared Equity schemes & social rent. He didn't give a time scale for this investemnt but at anverage price of say 100,000 - 120,000 the 200 million allow them to buy 2000 properties. The fact there are at least 6 new estates/city centre blocks of flats in the town (and another 2 on the way) already struggling to sell surely it will make no differnce to property prices, FTB or social housing waiting lists. They would be better off using the money refurbing existing empty properties (of which they have 100's). This would give a bit of stimulas to local trade aswell as allowing the houses to be sold rented thus generating an income - rather than just being demolished once vandals are finished with them. Also in the letter My MP stated that the government is going to 'address the housing shortage' (didn't realise there was one TBH) by investing 8.4 Billion over the nest 3 years in an effort to ensure 240,000 new homes are built every year. You would imagine this would dilute the housing market even further.
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