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justthisbloke

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About justthisbloke

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    HPC Senior Veteran

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  • Location
    Edge of The Fens
  • About Me
    Neutral on houses. Bear on Bonds. Neutral on equities. Neutral on gold. Bullish on bitcoin. Bullish on improving the veg patch.

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  1. As parent you get first dibs on indoctrinating the kids (until the state does something about that as well)! Mine are properly brainwashed into HPC ways. They always use cash, won't touch debt, query the value of university, and are achieving savings rates of over 80%. Their peers and pals, OTOH, are a disaster zone. Would sell their grandmothers to Big Brother if it made for a more convenient payment mechanism.
  2. justthisbloke

    Well, That Was A Bit Of Luck....

    Yeah - but if you'd stuck your wonga in one of those accounts - how long would the rate have lasted and what would you be getting now? IME, if you don't keep alert, your previously "high interest" account will change to 0.00000001% as soon as you turn your back. And these days with AML and KYC, it's a thorough pain in the **** to move money around.
  3. justthisbloke

    Well, That Was A Bit Of Luck....

    One of the advantages of holding equities is that it's less hassle than trying to keep on top of savings accounts. I've got shares that I bought two decades ago - and all I've had to do is collect the dividends. If I'd opened "market leading" bank accounts 20 years ago and just sat back, the only person to have done well would be the bank!
  4. Liberty and privacy are threats to the power of the state. When coupled with the tax dodging potential that cash brings, it's easy to see why those who want an all powerful state are so anti-cash.
  5. Anyone who remembers the pre-AST rental market will say the 88 Act was a Good Thing. Prior to the Act there was barely any legal rental market. People rented but it was grey and dodgy and landlords were even more unpleasant than the current mob. I don't think it was even the banks willingness to lend that created the nightmare we see today. In the natural course of things, reckless lending would have eventually reaped its own whirlwind. No, the blame must lie squarely with the government - the combination of bailing out reckless banks, a low interest policy, inflated Housing Benefit, and the HTBx schemes are what has turned a minor bubble into a structural disaster.
  6. justthisbloke

    Is Retirement Over?

    Cost you £95k but I'll bet being debt-free saved you from some sleepless nights. Well, it would me. Moving into an even more speculative, soft-issue realm: did it even cost you £95k? Did being a filthy renter and needing an unconventional Plan B (rather than the usual middle class mortgage-work-pension-with-side-order-of-school-fees story) influence the path you chose and that has resulted in a FIRE-size pot of loot?
  7. justthisbloke

    Sell The House, Live In A Van

    The best credit score to have is a trashed credit score, IMO. Being able to borrow money just enables you to borrow money - horrible. I know someone will pipe up and say "but...but...but...mortgage to buy a house" - to which my response is "save up - like JoeD". Re: registered addresses - when Mrs JTB and I were toying with becoming itinerant boaties on the high seas (we she chickened out) we looked into this. You can work around it for most things - PO Boxes, mates/family, boatmail et al. Those will work for insurance/driving licence primarily because no one ever checks and it's *probably* legal anyway. My worry was investments - I had a vision of being addressless and trying to prove I was indeed the owner of all my lovely wonga.
  8. justthisbloke

    Sell The House, Live In A Van

    What I've read so far is a good read. Now, I'm no motor expert or car mechanic but are self-tapping screws through the bodywork really considered acceptable workmanship? And where he makes holes for wires and ventilation, shouldn't he be doing some rust prevention after he's hacked through?
  9. justthisbloke

    Is Retirement Over?

    I'm eight months into my post-work FIRE life. If I snuff it tomorrow, every day of those eight months of total freedom and independence more than compensates for tat foregone. Equally, I'll go knowing that my wife and children will be financially OK. People sometimes see the FIRE road as an exercise in delayed gratification but it never felt that way to me. It's very gratifying to have money in the bank.
  10. And that's the problem with directly held property - minimum investment of £200k required. So most people aren't going to have a big enough pot for this to be part of a balanced and diversified portfolio. And even if they have sufficient wonga that £200k is, say, 15% of their pot then they still cannot be diversified - they've bought one house in one location. It's like your equity allocation being a single holding in a single AIM stock with a single factory and dependent on a single local market. Of course, lack of diversification is just one of the (many) problems with directly held property - even as a pure investment and without borrowing to totally screw you up.
  11. Most people are idiots. Why on earth is it a "bad thing" if prices are lower because a company understands its tax obligations? Most of the savings are being made by people who need the money. Need the money for rent, their children, heating bills - that sort of thing. Or maybe some people think that paying tax is a means of "doing good". Well, it's a very poor means.
  12. You're kidding me? They've had so much cash out of me over the years it makes me weep. And it's not even as if great or even good things have been attempted, let alone achieved. My taxes have funded pointless bloody wars, a benefit system that will crucify the economy and the poorest in it, and the vanity projects of vacuous politicians. From now on, I retain ownership of my money. If I want to "do good" (which I do), I do so directly. Every £100 of donation I make to one of our local charities (a hospice, a youth club, a generic village trust) gets spent on doing good as I intended. Not a penny gets diverted to wrecking the economy. Not a penny gets spent on interest or debt. And not a penny is used to kill people.
  13. I've just come back from my almost daily shopping run. A quick internet shop to see what's cheap where, call in at a couple of supermarkets, the greengrocer and some roadside stalls and back home. Actually, it's just an excuse to get out for a couple of hours cycling every day - I doubt I save that much compared with paying for a £1 midday delivery slot from ASDA!
  14. Ditto. Age 45 for me. Towards the end, I was paying more in tax than the sum total of *all other expenses*[1]. What sort of muppet do they take me for? Mrs JTB works - mainly for her sanity rather than cash - and with judicious use of a SIPP, we should be able to get the household income tax bill to zeroish. The status anxiety of the middle classes has always been their Achilles' heel that keeps them enslaved. I doubt that'll change. [1] Admittedly, I live cheap. Which is the only respectable exit strategy, IMO.
  15. justthisbloke

    Ftse 100 Companies Pension Collapse

    Trouble is there are so many unknown unknowns that it's very hard to model - even if you know what you want! Much as I like the diversification of having an income stream that is different to equities, I also like the idea of knowing exactly what I hold. Currently, I'm promised (lets say) £20k pa when I'm 64. Rising with inflation (capped at 5% for the majority of that income, 2.5% for some). Mrs JTB gets 50% of that whenever I snuff it - whether in drawdown or deferment. You know, I'm happy with that. I'm not out to try and max every penny - I'll trade gain for security. But what are those promises worth? If the pension review changes the inflation rates, I lose shedloads - we're 45 ish so are counting on lots of inflation protection even before starting drawdown. Wouldn't prudence suggest taking the capital sum that I can see, hold, monitor, and manage? I'm waiting for the capital sum quote. Every man has his price. But, to be honest, calculating what my price is has proved utterly beyond me. I've read a lot of "wish I could afford one's" blog - he seems like a man at a similar stage in life to myself. IIRC, he's just declared himself FI although he hasn't pulled the trigger on the job yet. I'm slightly ahead of him on that - I've been an unemployed layabout since Christmas. Currently living off divis for basic living costs + Mrs JTB's part time income for the bunce in life.
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