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JBFTB

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About JBFTB

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  1. My employer was shut down two months ago with the loss of virtually all employees (100+). A token force was kept on to avoid the >100 = 3 months consultation period vs <100 = 1 month consultation period situation.
  2. Yeah, it's amazing how attitudes can differ due to upbringing. For my own history, my mother's father lived through the Great Depression and after suffering that he never wanted to be without work again. He walked from one major city in the North West to another major city in the South West in order to find work and after he got it he never let go. In the end he worked himself to death because he never wanted to take time off for fear of anything going wrong. As for my own parents, they bought at the peak of the 70s housing boom and I can recall as a child having a lot less than my peers. At the time I only noticed to a limited degree, but looking back I realise how tight things had been back then. I reckon this is largely why I'm more prudent than most as an adult. As for the dumbed down bit and Idiocracy - yep, sounds about right. Much easier to push the buy-buy-buy culture onto people if they can barely think for themselves, and are so wrapped up in peer-pressure and jealousy that they'll pay anything just to get one over on their friends and neighbours. It's really quite sad. I was also amazed today to find that Halifax have been trying to contact me for the last week so they can push their new credit card at me.
  3. I was assuming it was similar to the situation a friend of mine has had. First off, he bought a place years back when it was dirt cheap and run down. He did it up bit by bit and then property went off like a rocket. After that, he met someone, they also had a place, so they decided to move in together. The plan was to sell each of their respective houses and move into a bigger/better/nicer one. His partner succeeded in selling. He, on the other hand, took a more complex route. He decided to extend the house in order to increase its value and then sell it. The extension bit went fine. The sale, on the other hand, did not. It must be about 3 years now since he first tried to sell it, and he's been trying the entire time. Now, since they couldn't afford the mortgage on his old place and their new place, there was only one option to achieve what they wanted - buy the new place anyway, and rent out the old place. Unfortunately the increase in the mortgage caused by the extension (and whatever other financial jiggery-pokery involved in buying the new place) combined with fairly static rents to result in him barely breaking even most months. On the other hand what else could he do? Having mortgaged up to the hilt, they couldn't afford to drop the price, but they had to pay for it somehow. Hence forced rent at a low price.
  4. I think it's the bit where they try anything to avoid coughing up when the honest and genuine claims come in. I remember years back a friend having his car stolen, joyridden and torched, and he was fuming when the insurers would only give him something like 50% of its market value.
  5. There's a handy website for non-motorway places just off the motorways...can't remember what it's called though.
  6. I've had something similar with Scottish Power. The first guy was so shifty I thought it was one of those "guy at the front keeps you talking while someone nips round the back to steal something" type setups, so I reported it to the police. They said they'd heard this sort of thing going on before and that it was usually genuine but that the salesmen were notorious for shifty and forceful behaviour. The next time round, next dodgy character, I contacted Scottish Power directly and they said it was against company policy to do this sort of thing and apologised. If it happens again, I'm going to get the guy to wait on the doorstep while I "get my bill" and then fetch my camera instead. And then I'll email them his pic and his name and tell them to get him the ****** off my doorstep and preferably fire him too.
  7. There was the case of my mother pranging another woman's car last year. Oh, except it was in fact the other woman who reversed into my mother's car while my mother was in the process of getting into it and hadn't even started the engine. Said woman was very apologetic but somehow by the time it reached the insurance stage, the story had morphed into how my mother had driven straight into the other woman's car. It escalated and escalated with increasingly threatening letters from the other woman's insurers, demanding more and more money for compensation as time went by. When it finally went to court my mother had photos of the damage to her car, which clearly indicated that something had collided with the side - unless she'd slid the car along the road sideways, it was pretty clear to anyone that the other car had driven into the side of her. Funnily enough, they backed down without a squeak after that. It seems the car was some form of company car of the woman's husband's. It also sounds suspiciously like she wasn't insured to drive it. And just to top it off, it seems he worked for the local council. The grief and stress they put my mother through... Scum.
  8. Sounds like everyone is largely OK... Cept me. I'm glad I've been in "recession mode" for a little while and have sizeable savings...because my employer is going bust. I'll be unemployed in a month or so. Let the job hunt begin
  9. Wow, it's like you live in my house! Can't wait to move away from them...if only we could find somewhere with a reasonable guarantee that the next batch of neighbours won't be just as bad or worse... Couldn't agree more with that one. The current lot are infuriating but they're nothing compared to the alcoholic mental case at the last place.
  10. I think this is the most spot-on post in this entire thread. I'm glad it's not just me who's been noticing this. What seems to be happening is that kids are over-sexualised, pushed to grow up faster, and are sometimes (through lack of proper parenting) ending up having to make adult decisions before their time. On the flip side, the adults are having decisions taken off them by nannying government interference, or refuse to take responsibility through selfishness and laziness. The end result is this sort of settling into the lowest common denominator - it seems to me we're becoming a nation of teenagers. I think the most recent term is "kidults" and that's about the size of it. Kids trying to become adults but not being equipped to be responsible enough by virtue of being too young, and adults becoming kids through not being responsible by choice. So the two meet in the middle and we have a nation of people who will sue anything or anybody the instant their own irresponsible actions land them in the shit. They can't do anything themselves because they don't know how to and they can't be arsed. It's pathetic.
  11. The sign of things to come? My current situation is that my landlady has "reviewed her finances" and decided to sell the house. After 1 person looking around a few months back, all has gone very very quiet. Since we're absolutely fed up of the area anyway, we were already looking for somewhere to live, so it hasn't made that much of a difference. Anyway, about a month ago we looked around a rather nice little place out in the country. We were happy to go ahead and apply for it provided it was agreed that either the place was cleaned up or that the first month's rent was reduced or removed completely and we would redecorate it ourselves - the basic problem was that the current tenant had trashed the place and was living in an unholy tip. Personally I would have grabbed it but my partner was less than happy about the state of the place. Having made our offer we didn't hear a thing back - until a few days ago. The same property reappeared on Rightmove for £50pcm more, with apparently the same letting agency. Partner was not happy and let rip with an email wanting to know what was going on. The response was kind of revealing. It seems the landlord ummed and ahhed about whether to sell, or whether to turn it into a holiday cottage, and finally decided to continue renting it out. He'd had to fix the place up, hence the extra rent. As for the letting agency itself... Well, it seems that they had merged with a local EA and had been on good terms until this point. More recently the bottom has dropped out of the EA's business (mention of, if I remember the wording correctly, selling houses now being a "non-viable business") and so it seems said EA has poached properties (this one being one of them) from the LA and stolen some of their business, and it sounds like they intend to go their separate ways. There certainly seemed to be a lot of bad blood all of a sudden, and a lot of bad feeling towards landlords who had been poached. So I guess it's going to be EAs vs LAs when the going gets tough...
  12. That was precisely the first thing that I thought. I honestly don't think you (we) have anything to worry about because I reckon someone somewhere will break any such story regardless of the government's ideas about secrecy, and everyone will find out anyway. It's a complete waste of time and empty gesturing, like most of the government's ideas.
  13. I noticed that too. For anyone who hasn't been to America, our pickup trucks are essentially car-sized, maybe a bit bigger, whereas American pickup trucks are on a different scale of at least 1.5 times their average car size, and they're so cheap that anyone can afford a monster. On all three occasions I've been, spanning 20 years, I've found the radio was unbelievably awful. On the other hand their driving is a million times more relaxed and less aggressive. The last time I went I enjoyed driving again for the first time in years. No chavs tailgating you, although the one idiot driver we encountered was driving.... A BMW. Pretty much everything is incredibly hygenic.
  14. It sniffs like spin to pin the blame on the nasty city people - who, granted, are involved in some of the shady deals, sure - but without any mention of the too-low interest rates and BTL and various other peoples' greed.
  15. Disappointing, ultimately. I suppose it was supposed to focus on sub-prime, but it seemed to be spending too much time trying to pin the blame on crooks and whatnot without taking account just how expensive things have become.
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