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Everything posted by BearGlas

  1. Different strokes for different folks. The two hour lunch is great and it also means most shops are open until 19:00 because of it. France works, just in its own way. I spend much of my time there - in Chamonix - and I'm always amazed at their efficiency; take the delivery structure as an example: if what you are looking for is not in stock most retailers will manage to have it for you next day. Little wonder you can get fresher sea fish in the middle of the Alps than I've had anywhere in the UK. Productivity per man hour expended is amongst the highest in Europe and certainly higher than th
  2. Get real. Come and see my family living in our small flat and tell me your house is too small. I dream of owning a three bed flat, never mind house. It's a no brainer. With that mortgage deal; simply stay put. Either build an extension or cull the kiddies plastic toys. You'd be amazed that they can live equally happy lives without a sea of plastic. Good look with the coming little 'un
  3. That was my first reaction too but then I looked at the address. The area around Carrickmines might be called the Surrey of County Dublin, the "Hampstead" of Dublin - Dalkey - is only a stone's throw away and Carrickmines itself is close to the new motorway into the city. The "Bishop's Avenue" of Dublin of Stepaside and Kitiernan are next door. EUR €350k isn't bad all considered.
  4. Ireland was great in the '80s. No one had any money but you didn't need money to enjoy life. Sure things were relatively expensive, especially with so little money kicking around, but you always knew someone who knew someone else who could get it for you. Housing was cheap. People had time. The roads weren't great but there was no traffic. There were almost no rules either. I remember driving from Dalkey to Whitehall in 15 mins at two in the morning. No traffic, no cameras. Even if stopped for going through a red light it was easy to talk your way out of it. It was an easy place to live in. N
  5. Funny isn't it. Couldn't stand him as PM but now I find every time I've heard in talking in recent years I agree with everything he says. Was he always talking sense and we didn't hear it before, or is he finally free of the mendacious party spin-doctors?
  6. The horror! I was one of the first converts to CDs back in 1983 and then again to MP3s back in the mid-nineties. Recently I rediscovered LPs and there is nothing to compare with them. I've spent the last two years trying to recreate my whole CD library in vinyl. If you have any more you want to chuck out send me a PM.
  7. The banks are already implementing worse. A good friend who does work for banks told me of a conversation he had recently with one branch manager. He asked the manager what is really happening in the lending market and the manager told him "nothing" he gave one example: senior Civil Servant on 120k per annum, owns his house outright probably worth 600k in the current market, wanted to borrow 150k towards a property in Spain costing 300k with both properties put up as collateral. He was refused.
  8. If it was it certainly didn't deserve to be. It looks like a spec-built "Luxury Executive Two Bedroom Flat" pumped up on steroids. Yeuuch!
  9. It's the Angles and Saxons I object to. Coming over here invading our country then being racist about any further in-comers. Briton for the indigenous Celts I say. But more seriously Lord Rumba of Rio has a point. A good friend of mine employs twelve in his sandwich business in central London. The only one British worker he has been able to find is a chap over seventy (retired teacher on a pitiful pension) who isn't afraid of hard work. The other eleven are from the far corners of the globe. Of course the wages are low, that's par for the course and always will be.
  10. Also, bankers are being attacked on the streets. http://www.independent.ie/national-news/gi...et-1649057.html
  11. I'm in the same boat at the moment myself. My brother and I are minor beneficiaries of a late aunt's house. Her surviving sister is the main beneficiary. As mentioned above a house is more to some than a mere investment. For my aunt's part the house reminds her too much of her sister and we feel it would be too upsetting for her to see successive tenants trashing the place. That has a been a principle reason is us jointly agreeing to sell. Before reaching this decision however my brother and I agreed between us that we would follow our aunt's wish whatever it might be. A house is just a blo
  12. No. Sterling melting away like last week's snow has been a body blow to Ireland. The UK is still Ireland's single biggest export market and the 25% exchange rate shift, plus everyone in the UK been skint of course, has over night turned off Ireland's principal market. They are fecked.
  13. Foxtons Camden opened their massive trendy and no doubt ridiculously expensive super-branch right in the teeth of the recession. I walk past it regularly and I've never seen a single customer in it. There are dozens and dozens of workstations and I'd guess only about 5% of them are even staffed. I can't believe they've managed to keep such a white elephant open this long. Anyone looking for a lease on Parkway should keep an eye on this building. It will be empty soon.
  14. I predicted he would be gone by the end of summer 2008. Shows you how much I know Now I think he will hang on for grim death. He will only go when forced out kicking and screaming at the last possible minute.
  15. Well I have to say a big thank you to everyone here. In 2003 I received some settlement monies and every man and his dog told me to invest in BTL. I knew then it was a house of cards but stood back aghast as prices doubled and doubled again. Then in 2007 a friend was trying his best to get me to come in half-half with him on a development opportunity in Surrey. I still had a bad feeling about things and finding this forum helped me to understand them better. At the 11th hour I backed out of the deal incurring some minor legal costs. Every time I see that friend now he congratulates me for sav
  16. A cynic might think they've stuffed all the cheques in a drawer and are waiting for the BOE rate to come down again before they open our accounts for us at the new low rate.
  17. France has its own problems, big problems too, but the central tenet of his article is correct. As my French partner has pointed out to me, her father has never shared his salary details, savings or any other personal finance information with her. Not because he doesn't trust his own daughter but because in France people just don't talk about money. When you attend any social event that has both French and British (or American) guests at it you will find the two groups naturally separate. The French groups will talk about food, sex, religion, and politics. Indeed they'll have heated argument
  18. What is going on with Tesco Finance? I sent them a cheque to open an account on the 12th Jan and still haven't heard from them. The cheque hasn't been lodged and I've tried every phone number for them I've been able to find on the 'Net but they are all engaged permanently. Have they gone bang but kept it quiet?
  19. Not my experience. I simply rang them and cleared out my Anglo account into my Barclays current account in the same day. Whether Barclays survives is another question! (Of course, my account was a wee bit less than €20m).
  20. It's quite believable. A simple example. My aunt sold her horrible little terraced ex-council house in the crime-ridden shitty suburb of Crumlin for EUR €500,000 in 2007. She moved out of Dublin and bought a new-build out in the sticks for which she was charged similar insane monopoly money. The average industrial wage in Ireland is EUR €32,448 http://www.cso.ie/statistics/indearnings.htm What's 3.5 times earnings? It's a miserable EUR €113,568. If you've ever seen Crumlin I wouldn't even pay that much for her previous house. Given that markets always over-correct on the way down I can easil
  21. 2003 - when I had a falling out with my employer and walked away with some settlement monies in my pocket. Every man and his dog told me to immediately plough it into BTL but even by 2003 the maths just stank to high heaven for me. At that time I think London property had already reached 5 and 6 times average earnings. It was just unsustainable. I had to endure taunts from those same friends as prices doubled between 2003 and 2007. I would love to say I'm now sitting pretty reaping the rewards of my caution but the fact is I'm frantically moving my money around trying to get some sort of dec
  22. I thought the plan was disgusting.............. until I scrolled down and saw the visual
  23. Interesting. What's the definition of having "received my application"? I filled in the internet application form in early December and received their document to sign on the 15th December. I'm only getting around to signing it now because I was away. I am guessing the date of the client's signature is the date they count
  24. As I understand it the Dutch guarantee is currently EUR €100,000 - or around GBP £88,000 at the moment.
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