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Starla

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Everything posted by Starla

  1. It's periodically IN the Thames. There's a reason why Sasha Baron Cohen chose it as Ali Gs chav base. I've seen an encampment of tents last Summer in Richmond. A316 Richmond side as you drive through Deer Park. Tents, washing lines, the lot. If you're going to camp you may as well make it somewhere decent.
  2. Great that you chose to adopt/rescue. Unfortunately it doesn't fit with a lot of peoples shiny-new-designer-disposable narrative.
  3. I volunteer for an animal charity and foster unwanted, abused, neglected pets, until we can find them their forever home with a permanent adopter. There's a whole range of reasons why people give up their pets, breakups, rental properties not allowing them, but the most common reason is people get them on a whim and can't be bothered to look after them. They don't think about the time, cost and commitment. Most people think they love their pets but haven't got the first clue about minimum RSPCA recommended cage sizes, food, bedding, exercise or correct care. As there are no pet welfare laws enforced at a basic care level, and the Nemesis, Pets at Home, keeps churning out pets and bad information, I don't see it as a bad thing that pet ownership is declining. Apart from a few long established pets, I don't think animals should be in cages anyway. A lady who adopted an animal last week did tell me a funny story about her landlord coming round so she put her pets (variety of rodents) in the wardrobe and turned the radio up really loud so he couldn't hear them rustling and squeaking. Edit: I'm looking at this as "work experience" for my CV as it's definitely occurred to me that Pet Sitting/Holiday Care is a good move post my corporate job.
  4. Starla

    Mexican standoff

    Sorry, there's always one smart-**** But, it is a serious point, and the article is quoting stats for Stress, Anxiety, Sleep Problems, Depression and Panic Attacks. The point is if we're now at the stage of the bubble cycle where even the BBC are admitting the damage housing problems cause, then we're past the "Denial" stage for sure.
  5. Starla

    Mexican standoff

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-39631083
  6. Cycle commuter here, but the same rules apply. I can't wait for driverless cars. Bring on the day I don't have to deal with cars pulling out on me, and the driver saying "Sorry I didn't see you" when I've got lights flashing like a Christmas tree and dressed in a fluro jacket. I don't mind if I have to pay cycle insurance (all tax payers pay for roads as standard), because it will still be cheaper than a gym membership, petrol and car ownership/hire. It's about the exercise and quality of life for me, but with the demise of cars as we know them, I can only see cycling (and E-bikes) and motorbiking getting more popular and much safer.
  7. And so it begins. According to this post in MSE anyway. http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5748543#topofpage Seller Hikes Asking Price Hi,My partner and I are FTBs due to exchange on our property in 2 weeks and complete soon after. The stamp duty changes mean that we save 5k on what we would have paid earlier.Our seller has emailed us saying that he expects prices to rise significantly as a result of the changes (gave me some guff about how the extra money towards a deposit can now be leveraged by buyers 4-5 times to get a mortgage 20-25k bigger, etc) and has said that he wants 10k more. I'm hopeful that he is open to negotiation but essentially I guess he wants us to fork over the stamp duty saving to him.We definitely can't afford 10k more (unless we go back to our mortgage broker to see if we can get a bigger mortgage).I know there's no law against the seller pulling out before exchange, but any tips on how to handle this?Cheers.
  8. Starla

    November Budget 2017

    By 2027 they will have eliminated rough sleeping altogether. I fear for the safety of the rough sleepers.
  9. I was thinking of the 10k of the rental income being pushed into the 40% tax band. I didn't consider the child benefit aspect. Nice! In this case they do. This is the BTLer I've mentioned before on here that didn't pay tax on rental income and HMRC caught up with them 6 years later. They'd have to be seriously stupid to try and evade tax again. My BTler isn't immune to Section 24 and they're about to take the massive shaft. They don't think it will affect them because they are completely ignorant and financially illiterate. No other reason.
  10. Same. I've reluctantly explained S24 to 2 BTLers. Annoyed with myself as it ruined the surprise. One BTLer looked glazed and said it didn't affect them. 40k paye salary, plus £16200 annual rental income tells me it does. Whatever.
  11. It was a happy ending. They paid up.
  12. The dividend cut affects me, as I'll be running at about £3,500 in dividend payments next year. Thought I'd be sailing nicely under the £5,000 threshold, but no. Issue (first world problem) is they're all in a work sharescheme account which I've just left ticking along without much thought. Doing a bit of digging I might be able to transfer a tranch of 20k's worth doing a Bed & ISA. I.e. selling the holding, moving the cash into a Shares & Stocks ISA, then re-purchasing the shares. Apparently the sale and purchase are almost instantaneous so you're not potentially stuffed over by price movement. I've no idea how easy this is? Otherwise it's sell them, re-buy them and hopefully at a lower price. There will be stamp duty(tax), 0.5% (£100) and trading fees, so that will be marginally more expensive than the Dividend Tax in the first year (affairs arranged so I'm paying 20% tax, i.e. 7.5% on divs). By the time that's sorted, they'll be taxing ISA's.
  13. I've said before on here that I would more than happily take a commission only role at HMRC, flushing out non payers of tax on rental income. I'd be extremely motivated at work and have no problems hitting any targets. Venger for Team Leader Yes and they do. Amateur BTL'er at work got a surprise from HMRC, after letting a flat out 6 years previously.
  14. Great idea. Look out for the new government policy of sticking the price of a chicken up to £51.
  15. Starla

    Private Debt Reaches All Time High...

    Maajid Nawaz at LBC Radio is covering the personal debt issue on his call in today. He's talking about Israel at the moment and then he's moving on to "Are you in debt and how do you cope?"
  16. Starla

    BTL to lose more?

    Which reminds me of this on a recent search http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-56915986.html Not a butchered BTL, the architect got there first. What is the point of having 2 toilets (one described as a "family bathroom" ) and a utility room and a "storage space large enough to fit a single bed" when it's a ONE bed flat. Surprised they didn't put "excellent local schools" in the blurb. I just want to re-draw the floorplan and make it a workable 2 bed.
  17. I'm very aware that the priced out in London and the South are going to be viewed with the same annoyance as Foreign Investors in London and do the same damage to prices. I've done my research and know what's good value or not in Norwich, and was happy to walk away, even though I could buy. Tbh, given the choice, I'd rather stay down South. It's whether I get that choice that remains to be seen. Fromage Frais would be better placed to comment on higher value larger places that have shot up in value, I can't see the money coming from local wages put it that way.
  18. Report from the coalface. I went up to Norwich for a week last month, to view some houses. I live and work in London, but I've got family up in Norwich and like a lot of Londoners I've been evaluating whether it's worth being down here much longer. I've been dithering with either Monday to Thursday-ing it down here and having a place up there to go "home" at weekends. Or just jacking it in down here, to move permanently up there. I got a mortgage approved in principle to buy 150 miles away from where I work, but a lot of lenders are very suspicious of residential mortgages on that basis, as they suspect BTL on the sneak. A good work and credit history plus a hefty deposit worked in my favour. So it's possible. Viewings were the standard Victorian, 2 down, anything up. Up to 200k price range. NR1 and Thorpe Hamlet. I took a walk round the "Golden Triangle" but in my price range, if I hadn't been aware of the hype, I'd have said Thorpe Hamlet should definitely be the more expensive area, not the other way round. On one viewing I had a very bearish conversation with the EA. Amazingly he agreed with everything I said, demise of BLT, local prices out of sync with wages etc (Not sure what brought on that level of "honesty" and I had considered he was trying to put me off as he wanted to buy the house on the cheap, but it's still for sale!). His view was that the market was stagnating/going into slow reverse at the level I was looking at. Conclusion. I was underwhelmed, prices seem way too expensive in comparison to wages so I'm not going to bother. I'll stick to plan A and just keep saving and investing cash and either buy outright up there when I'm finished with work or stay down South if we have some sort of meaningful correction or flat-lining of prices. For the first time in ages I'm actually quite relaxed about this current clusterfck.
  19. Starla

    Talking a relative out of BTL

    Yes. Or that's certainly what I was told by a mortgage adviser 4 weeks ago. I was looking into the possibility of buying a house 100+ miles from my work with the view to renting a Mon-Fri down in London and going "home" to where my family are at weekends (after some number crunching,examining my own sentiment, I'm right off the idea). I got a mortgage approved in principle due to 50% deposit, good credit and work history. However, I had a good grilling about whether I was intending to buy it as a BTL on the sneak via a residential mortgage and was told if I applied for a BTL mortgage I'd struggle to get approved. The underwriters don't like lending when you don't already own a property. I.e. something the bank can get hold of when everything goes t*ts up. I'm sure it's possible down some route but I doubt it would be favourable rates or terms.
  20. By way of an update, this is STILL for sale. Now dropped to £149,950. From memory it started at 180k. I have absolutely no interest in this sort of BTL offloading clag, but I do have in interest in the fact it won't shift and it will drag other prices down at the margin.
  21. Starla

    Are The 118 Croud Geniuses Compared To The Average Btl Joe?

    I'd agree. The II8 lot have an awareness of how fcked they're likely to be, which is a headstart on your average Joe. I know quite a few BTL'ers as well. I don't socialise with any if I can help it because their moral compass is set adrift of mine, but I do keep "friendly" tabs to see how they're thinking. Heard it all... "It won't pay 40% tax because I'm only a 20% tax payer". "It won't affect me because I don't even make a profit". "I was going to put the rent up anyway".If I had that many chips stacked on black, then I'd at least understand wtf is going on. It'll make the run up to 2020 more interesting.
  22. My Outlaws (somewhere on Page 6ish) are exemplary at this. It's not just flatscreen, it has to be 3D, then curved, every year. Same goes for iPads. Constant replacement of everything because they can. I'm sarky and just ask "Why do you have to keep replacing everything, what brands are you using that don't last, our stuff lasts for years..." It's occurred to me that a good exercise would be next time the opportunity arises, ask a Boomer if they would spare some time, with a pad, paper and a calculator, for an indepth financial analysis, so they can help us understand how their hard work achieved what it did. Where we're all going wrong? How can finances be organised so much better? If they weren't lucky, then Impart the wisdom. None of this "it was hard in our day", a proper conversation on how to achieve the same. My Outlaw is an IFA, who positively avoids any questions I ask about finance (mainly because I don't think he has a clue and lucked out in that career too). He often "wishes we/I would buy a house in the South East. I'm really tempted to force the issue, sit down, show him my my work package (just skimming the UK top decile, but that means sod all anymore), my savings rate meaning I'm living on below minimum wage, and how my savings are wiped out my HPI in this area year on year. I'm obviously not trying hard enough, so it genuinely would be a massive help to understand what I should do differently. It really bothers me that a hard working stay at home mum and a manual worker bought the place I'm currently renting in the 70's, it's only worth 500k now, so I obviously need some helpful pointers.
  23. I mentioned on another thread 6 months ago (ish) that a neighbour had put their house on the market for stupid money. (Circa 500k, Zone 5 Greater London, unremarkable terraced 1930's, 2.5 bedder, usual blueprint design, not a particularly "nice" area). Reasons for wanting to move; 1. More space 2. Nicer Area They "sold" it after 4 months, but have now taken it off the market. Reasons for not moving; 1. A fraction more space would add at least £150k to their mortgage 2. The stamp duty costs would be in the region of £22k plus other moving costs and fees Despite "making" a couple of hundred thousand in equity, they're stuck and p*ssed off and they're not the only ones. To their credit they do recognise prices coming down would be a good thing. Clarifies to me why less is coming on the market in this area anyway. Soon to grind to a halt at this rate.
  24. That's what the Rightmove Sold Prices tab says, and it seems consistent with others in the road. Honestly, not only are BTL taking houses away from owner occupiers, but this one would have made comparable "profits" by using a Super Saver Account instead (at an unsophisticated minimum, assuming cash buyer, otherwise the rent would barely wash the face of the mortgage). Not even taking into account voids and things breaking. I realise some parts of Norwich have gone to stellar heights, but not everywhere. Sig - Ha ha thanks, I'm surrounded by this sort of fckwittery in Corporate London Work-Land constantly. Apparently I wholeheartedly support BTL because I rent. Next week I'll object to drunk drivers and be told I'm hypocritical because I own a car.
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