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About Mickey

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  1. This has happened in my neck of the woods (North) with bottom end properties bid up from £25k to £100k. They are now back below £40k. In a crash these old terraced miners cottages always fall off the bottom of the market. What I don't understand is why this wave of bottom end value collapses is not wiping out investors. Our house values stayed stubbornly low compared to the South East right up to 2002. Values doubled from 2002 to 2004 and then coasted along with small rises. House values are now below 2005 levels and gently dropping. Why are we not hearing about investors that have been wiped
  2. When I was a kid in the 1970s we used to stay with my Grandparents for 2 weeks every summer in rural worcestershire. The local farmer grew gooseberries over 2 fields which were picked in August. Every year the whole village pitched in over a single weekend to do the harvest (farmer included). I helped a couple of times myself. It was hard work but no actual cash changed hands. It was a community occasion with a lot of chatting and laughing, a picnic provided by the farmer and a few punnets of free gooseberries thrown in. I am not suggesting this as a model for any modern business but this is
  3. The usual misinformation about the cost of cleaning up Sellafield ... The total figure of £67.5Bn is un-discounted. The government 'spends' £1.5Bn each year on Sellafield from one department but the 'income' from commercial activities at Sellafield goes to a different department. There is indeed an annual deficit which is born by the taxpayer but the annual shortfall is why BNFL was wound up. A large chunk of the overall clean up cost is military in origin. Another chunk is due to the ponds that were heavily contaminated in the 1970s and 1980s during successive miner's strikes. The UK's nuc
  4. I think there will be plenty of over 50s with teenagers or young adults living at home. My own kids won't be independent until we are retiring. Women who have spent their whole life on benefits might consider having another baby in their early forties to see them through. We need to downsize twice - once when we are in our 60s from the family home to a good sized bungalow and once again when coming up to 80ish to something truly dinky and easy to look after. Upshot is it depends on each family's circumstances.
  5. This sort of thing really gets my goat. What happened to the CEGB's decommissioning fund? What about British Energy's before privatisation? What about BNFL's £12.5 billion decommissioning fund? What about BNFL's off-shore funds? What about the proceeds from the sale of the Magnox reactor design to two foreign nations? What about the money from sale of excess Pu to the US in the 1960s (according to CND)? There was plenty of cash to pay for liabilities but the Government of the day has spent it. Uranium is the most concentrated source of energy on the planet. If you can't make sufficient money
  6. I do not understand the thinking of planning officials on such bungalows myself. We live on a 1970s estate and the local planners will not permit the 2 bed detached bungalows to be extended upwards. They are all on good size plots and the walls are strong enough. The estate is a mixture of single and two storey houses anyway - some detached and some semi-detached. The only thing I can think is that the planners want these bungalows to remain smaller 2 bed properties because the town has an ageing demographic. However, it is younger families and couples who have been buying these bungalows w
  7. I am amused at the comparison of the charming historic market town of Cockermouth to a nuclear fuel reprocessing plant. Keswick is nice indeed but always hideously busy.
  8. We traded up in 2009 and the house we sold never showed up on the land registry. Cash buyers and I think they may have done their own conveyancing. Perhaps they just didn't fill in the correct forms.
  9. The following article at WNN from yesterday tea time gives an excellent summary of the challenges faced by the operators at Fukushima Daiichi so far. http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/RS_Insight_to_Fukushima_engineering_challenges_1803112.html (I work in the nuclear sector) Regards
  10. Problem is that depending on the area, £160k might not be unreasonable. I think that in large swathes of Northern England house prices were undervalued in 1999 when prices in London and the South were racing away. I bought a 1930s 3 bed semi for £61k in 1999 and sold for £140k to trade up to a detached in 2009. I first bought as a singleton so you could argue that prices were too low in 1999 after the recession. IMO fair value for the house was around £120k. Having lived in the North since 1995, I think we are more likely to see a stagnation or drift downwards by another 10-15% than a mega cr
  11. 37 and earning £30k for a 3 day working week. Full time salary equivalent would be around £52k. I bought a 1930s 3 bed semi for £61,500 as a FTB in 1999. Husband to be then moved in with me. Started reading HPC in 2005 after we were married and looking to buy a larger home. Finally traded up in 2009 at 15% off peak to a 5 bed detached - £305k. We felt that with interest rates so low, there was no longer any point saving. Sold for £140k and plowed all our savings except a £20k warchest into the new house. Have a big mortgage but it is affordable on our income and we have no other debts. Loo
  12. Definitely a cultural difference. When my near relatives (Brits) were renting in a suburb of Dallas and they hung washing in the back garden, two different sets of neighbours came round to tell them that this was simply not done and that only Hispanics did that sort of thing. They were also told in no uncertain terms that they had to fly the flag on Independence Day.
  13. Bear with me a bit .... Strikes me that the UK is going to be in no position for a number of years to invest in major infrastructure projects. Also, private institutions like banks are starved of capital. During the second world war the general public were given the opportunity to purchase war bonds with their savings for a modest but guaranteed return. Why not fund desperately needed large scale infrastructure development through a similar route? One of the reasons why the early nuclear reactors were so profitable for the UK was that they were built by borrowing the capital from the gover
  14. I sometimes think we expect too much from politics. The central purpose of having a voting democracy at all is to avoid other forms of government - more specifically dictatorships. This seems to have worked reasonably well in the UK. Although you could argue that a long stint in power like both the Tories and New Labour have had since the 70s is a mini-dictatorship. It doesn't matter what I vote since our constituency has been labour since the late 19th century and I am happy with my local MP. I will not be voting at the next general election. I don't particularly like party politics in We
  15. This thread illustrates why BTL is so popular - income from rent is effectively index linked to wages and hence prices in the real economy rather than any projected growth in equities. My Dad's final salary pension scheme which he paid into for most of his career in the seventies, eighties and nineties will pay out less than a 10th of what it was supposed to originally. By far the best investments he has are the properties he bought outright in the last 6 years. These were paid for with a payout from an insurance policy. A lifetime of pension saving and the majority of his income in retireme
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