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  1. Most if not all creative jobs involve copyright. For example an artist retains copyright, as does an architect, musicians, TV and films, writers. It's not just photographers. In particular if you look at music you'll see several people own the copyright, the person who writes the music, the person who performs the music owns the copyright on the performance and the record company own the copyright on the recording. Although if you look at my website you'll see I actually offer clients the chance to own the original files. Times are changing and many creative people are willing to negotiate on copyright. However, I didn't write the copyright act. Pre 1998 the copyright was owned by the person who commissioned the work. This was changed in the 1988 act, the person who originates the work now owns copyright. This is not unique to wedding photographers.
  2. I have already said that my turnover is considerably more than 50k, my profit is £50k, I pay tax at 40%. What is left is in my pocket. I don't earn £38k before tax and have never said I did. What I said was I have to pay £15k in tax and £12k in VAT each year. The VAT does not come out of my profit. VAT is a business expense, it comes off my turnover along with business expenses to give my pre tax proifit. I mentioned the VAT earlier to give some idea as why it is hard to save. Although it's a business expenses it's still another bill of £3k a quarter that has to come out of the bank along with £15k tax. Also remember that I have to pay next years tax together with any left over from this year in January, so I also have to save a considerable amount of money to pay that. When you are employed tax is simple, it gets taken off you each month. When you are self employed you pay twice a year, January & July. The January payments can be very high as you are paying next years tax based on the previous years income, plus any extra tax you ow from the previous year. So my actual earnings are 50k. That is after paying VAT but before paying tax & NI. It is the 50k figure that lenders are interested in. Although in my case I made less profit the year before and even less the year before that, so in fact they are averaging my income to a figure less than 50k and basing a mortgage on that. I hope that makes sense.
  3. Bingo! That is exactly the issue. I have a deposit, I have an income that will allow a £180k mortgage based on 3.5x income. I have a good credit history. My only problem is the lenders have tightened up and see people like me as high risk. At the end of the day, 180k is a lot of money for a basic 3 bed house in a small midlands town. Especially when the same house was worth £50k just 7 or 8 years back. I'm not sure prices will ever go back down to that level. But even if they drop to about 150k it will make housing more affordable. Even before the programme was filmed I had made the decision to sit the housing market out, not to buy.
  4. £50k is a gross income, before tax. It's the same as saying you have a salary of 50k before tax. VAT isn't a personal expense, so that figure is after I have paid VAT. Tax is a personal expense, everyone has to pay tax regadless of self employed or employed. Mortgages are worked out on your gross income (not turnover). But as I said earlier, the actual amount I can borrow was worked out on less that 50k as they average your income for three years and deduct and business loans/credit cards. The actual mortgage offered was 3.5x my averaged income. I'm certainly not going to borrow 6x income!
  5. Has anyone earning a reasonable wage every tried getting a council house? In my area Council houses are given to those who don't work or have a low income. People with a reasonable income are expected to rent privately (nearly as expensive as buying) or buy.
  6. There seems some confusion here. I said my business profit (not turnover) is £50k, turnover is much more. VAT is worked out on my turnover. Out of that £50k I have to pay my personal income tax plus national insurance, I'm also paying a fair amount of 40% tax.
  7. Is 50k really such a huge profit? Bearing in mind I'm at the very top of my profession. Other people in artistic jobs can earn far more, I mean who'd think a painting could be worth millions of pounds. Then look at how much paprazzi photographers make, they can get £50k for one photograph. People in the music industry make millions from their talent. My business is probably 20% photography, 80% business. Being a great photographer is the easy bit, running a small business is very difficult.
  8. I did own a property until the early 90's. I then lost my job, had to work 60 miles away and after a few years couldn't keep up the commuting. I had to sell for half what my mortgage was (due to negative equity). The debt took along while to pay off. I am almost 40 years old. I do have a deposit of £10k, I also have other money put away in case of slack times in the business. I wouldn't use this other money towards my depsoit as it would leave me in a bad sitution if for some reason I couldn't work for several months. Self employed people don't get sick pay, so have to put money aside for that. As I mentioned before, the real issue wasn't not having a deposit. It was I got a mortgage offer, put an offer on a house and then the lender changed the criteria from a 95% mortgage to 85%. I didn't have a 15% deposit so had to pull out of the sale. The BBC filmed a whole load of stuff with me stood outside the house I was going to buy talking about this. They edited that out.
  9. The photogapher guy on the programme is me. £50k a month?? I wish! It's £50k profit for one year, and that was a very good year (other than my huge tax bill). It's very easy to think that's a large amount for an easy job. So I'll bore you with some facts. It has taken me 21 years to earn that much, 8 of those running my current business. To earn that sort of money I photographed 50 weddings in a year all over the UK, all 8 to 12 hour events with another 40 to 50 hours work behind the scenes (albums don't make themselves). Most of my clients are well off, some are celebrities, some are millionaires, some are ordinary people who appreciate photography. Why shouldn't I make that sort of money for working very hard, 60 hours a week, 7 days a week. If you run a business you take huge risks and the financial rewards reflect that. Have a look at my work, www.weddingphotojournalist.co.uk
  10. I became involved after leaving a comment on the BBC have your say about house prices. I wasn't all together happy with what they did. Especially the bit with visiting the banks. I felt a bit stupid doing that. But that's how TV works. Like the woman calling Abbey, the BBC would have asked her to call so they could film it. My previous life was as a newspaper photojournalist, so I knew how TV worked but hoped they wouldn't make me look an idiot. I did get a mortgage agreed on a property, then was told I'd have to complete by a certain date as the product was being pulled. Someone put a higher offer on the house and I couldn't afford to stretch myself further so pulled out of the sale. My Mortgage broker said if I found another house within the time given I could still use the mortgage. I found another house, put it the offer which was accepted, went back to the lender and found they had gone back on their word and wouldn't allow me to transfer to the new property. Another annoying thing is the broker did agreements in principle with several lenders as they kept pulling the products. I now have so many credit searches in a short period of time it has hit my credit rating.
  11. Don't ever let the BBC have your phone number. As well as this programme I was contacted by several radio shows and the BBC six O'clock news. All because I added a comment to the BBC website have your say page about mortgages and house prices. Personally, I'm going to sit out of the property ladder for a while. Prices around here are dropping. I looked at a house about 5 weeks ago which was £190,000, it's now up for £174,000. Still a lot of money when the average wage around here is about £17k.
  12. She's married. I did get to spend half an hour alone with her while we drove over to Northampton. She then managed to loose the ticket for the car park.
  13. When you watch the programme it looks like they knock on your door and come in for a quick chat. In fact it took all day. They ask the questions about 10 times, they tell you what to say on some of it. They film everything several times, even the knocking on the door took several goes. Then of course they edit out lots of it. In my case they edited a whole section out with me talking about how I lost money through a previous house I brought. I got into negative equity in the early 90's and my house was worth half what I owed on it. The resulting debt took years to pay off. I think a lot of people look at this programme and think it's a straight documentary, it isn't.
  14. That's part of the problem. It is complicated getting a mortgage when you are self employed. An employed person shows 3 months wage slips. Self employed people have to show 3 years audited accounts, the profits are then averaged. Another issue is it's unlikely you will have your accounts for the current year, so in fact the accounts they are working on are for 2006-7, 2005-6 & 2004-5. The next issue is some business expenses are taken as personal expenses. For example having a car loan for the business use is taken as a personal expenses (even though it's classed as a tax allowable expense on your acounts), so the lenders take whatever your annual car payments are off what they will lend. The same goes for credit cards used for the business. In my case the issue was I was offered mortagages in principle from 3 lenders at 97%, all of them removed those products and wanted anything up to a 25% deposit. That's a lot more than the 20k they quoted on the programme.
  15. I love it when people comment about people they don't know. I have been on this forum for a while. To the person who said "£50k for photos, why did I got to university". It's actually a business profit of £50k for working 60 hours a week running a business that has taken me 10 years to build up. That was after I went to university to study photojournalism. Not to mention all the years I made less than £15k profit. Most photographers earn far less, the only way you get to earn that amount is with lots of very hard work. It's more than just "photos", it's running a full time and demanding business in a very competitve field. It's not having a holiday for the past 5 years, or a day off. As to the quote above. £50k a year, £15k tax, £12k VAT. What the BBC edited out was me saying it costs the same to rent my current house as for a £180k mortgage. How do you save £20k in 6 months when that's more than you earn after paying tax? Especially when you have 3 kids to support as well and paying £1k a month in rent plus all the normal bills. I'm sure you can see it's not easy to save that sort of money. Not to mention anyone in business needs a float, so you need extra savings to pay for unexpected business expenses.
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