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Everything posted by the_dork

  1. Thanks for reply, that's seriously comfortable I'm naturally frugal and on bad work days wonder if could retire by sweating out 500k assets, I think a single man could but bit negligent with kids
  2. Forgive me if nosy but out of interest roughly how much did you make to become independent? Do you have dependants?
  3. Thanks for the replies everyone. I should stress that we have a great relationship and decisions like this always taken mutually rather than imposed, we are very lucky like that. I suppose one reason for not wanting to buy is arguments made on sites like this.I think the system is so screwed and don't particularly want to be a part of it. However this is probably distorting what would be right for me personally. I've made over 10% per year for the last 3 years just dabbling in trading with small sums, however this could well be beginner's luck I'm surprised at the complacency of a Corbyn government. My prediction is that he will stand down and a younger less tarnished more media savvy version with more or less the same policies would easily gain another few percentage. Other than children of pretty well off people, I can only see labours percentage going up as new voters are added over the next few years, topic for another thread of course. Thanks again
  4. Yes a lot, I really like some northern cities and if was starting out in life I'd be up there. But for better or worse, our ties to folks in London mean the economic case doesn't override personal one at this time
  5. Due to various reasons mainly non-economic, I have convinced the missus to cash in on the London boom and take our 350k equity (mainly inherited by her btw) and get out, either to Kent or far Essex. I can get work in London down to couple of days a week and she is flexible though we do have family and friends there still.However she still has the mindset of renting being second class, which under current tenant laws it sort of is, though also with advantages. 1. Taxes/ fees on buying/selling property 2. Flexibility of finding what precise areas we like without commitment of owning 3. Most importantly in my view, prices likely to go up maybe 5% in five years max? If I could make 20-30% on investments in that time we would be significantly better off 4. high chance of Corbyn government which will reduce many of advantages of ownership. Anything major I've missed? anyone else had to have this discussion?
  6. I'm no Corbynista but this is a good podcast depending on the guest and the host (the 'commie' girl is an awful provocateur, this guy is much more fair minded and balanced). It was very interesting where the host asked if he would oppose private property if it was one house per family with no one owning more and he was essentially forced to admit he would not. Such an egalitarian scenario isn't coming back and certainly not from the Tories, the alternative isn't actually interested in property rights at all. Tories have dug their own graves, they were able to preserve the wealth/status of the top 5% who comprise their key sector by offering enough to the rest of the population above the average wealth level as long as they felt they had a crack in the employment and housing markets-both now broken beyond repair. So the alternative Corbynomics, (or more precisely Mcdonnell who is the brains behind the operation and in charge of domestic issues) is something that would make the post 1945 intervention economy look like free market capitalism and the Tories ain't getting those votes back... Interesting times and as I say even as a centrist liberal minded person I can't resent the country having a pop at a radical alternative for a bit. Essential aims seem to be making landlordism unprofitable over time, tenant rights, higher and restributive inheritance taxes above a pretty low threshold, encouraging worker ownership, taxing top 5% to almost prohibitive levels to fund fairly vague public spending goals (national education service anyone?) international peace almost regardless of the cost...this isn't mainstream social democracy!
  7. My problem is how will these be allocated? Why would anyone want a 'non-affordable' home, either to rent or buy when there is affordable available? It basically creates an arbitrary 2-tier system where a lucky few (whether deservedly or not, separate issue and irrelevant to my main point) get a benefit that others never will. I have nothing against rental properties per se. We need a certain amount of rental stock especially in London and other bigger cities with dynamic economies and high population churns.I'd marginally favour being a tenant of a staffed, taxed and regulated company/charity/housing assoc than Bobdownthepub plc. It's the trumping of this scheme as being part of the wider solution that bothers me.
  8. not really mis-selling as you/your surveyor are free to measure the property (and should), small discrepancies are inevitable due to measuring equipment/walls etc. Also, not many really think per sq ft other than in most expensive parts of town. 3 bed semi with large garden 500k, smaller garden 460k etc
  9. affordable (aka social or even worse, subsidised shared/part ownership) housing in one of the most expensive parts of the capital city...what a PR focussed stunt.
  10. Travelling is when you realise the decline of the UK in many ways. Even in much poorer parts of Europe, there seems to be a generally higher level of trust, less small stresses in life...perhaps I'm over romanticising as I've never lived abroad other than Southern Spain for 3 months. If I were single and somehow had a decent pot I'd be interested in trying a new life in Eastern Europe or Spain, say 5% off a 500k pot would give you an above average wage there and could choose what additional work you wanted. However, living solely on local wages is a different matter.
  11. was never in a position to be significantly helped though I lived rent-free at my folks for 3-4 years which let me save up about 30k I will inherit half of their 500k house though at some point( bought under right to buy 1986 for 30k!) More signifcantly, my Mrs inherited a 500k flat which we live in without mortgage, her uncle having won the pools in the 70s and bought it for the equivalent today of around two year's average wages. I tell her she's lucky, she rightly points out a combo of Hitler and Stalin killed off most of her other relatives so these things balance out... Whilst personally comfortable, I'd take a hit for a sensible adjustment, not just on housing but the broader economic model. Harder to poll that here as actions louder than words but I bet many are similar
  12. I agree that MK is under-rated in terms of having some local amenity though too car based for my liking, I suppose that’s the trend everywhere though. My problem with it is that the trains seem very expensive (£40 a day) and a good chunk of it needs a bus to the station with the flats around the station being relatively more expensive accordingly. Travel time to Euston is great though, definitely one I’d consider.
  13. I agree that HS2 is madness, the concentration in London is already bad enough and out of kilter with other Euro nations. Objectively I would agree that the Southeast in generally is a mug's game, the Northern cities are cool and there's some nice spots in the Midlands and elsewhere. However many of us are fairly tied here, not just in terms of work (I am an above middle, non high earner but wouldn't get the same anywhere else in my field if I even got a job). Family ties and friends count for some of us more than others, it's hard to up and move completely after your 20s in my opinion. Hence the thread and thanks for the views so far
  14. I couldn’t see a thread but apologies if there is. London is grossly overpriced and it amazes me how it sucks people in (I know there’s a thread), but it remains where the jobs are even if partial home working is available. At some point, many middle class people want to become 'homeowners', (I'd take a secure tenancy on acceptable terms but again that's another topic), get a bit more space and become less bothered about bars/restaurants being on the doorstep. It obviously depends on precisely where you have to get to but for me, the Medway towns are a good combination of local amenity, travel time/cost and house prices (around £250-275 per sq ft for houses, a little more for flats). Obviously there are nicer spots in Surrey and Herts, basically at average London prices. Bits of Essex are cheaper but on the whole less character on their own terms. The average spots in Herts are a little more expensive with worse train links and Bucks as a whole is again grossly overpriced with fairly poor links unless you’re going into Marylebone. I don’t think I could face a journey time much over an hour each way, I guess longer is palatable if going in only 2-3 times per week. Any strong views on this?
  15. That's fascinating, presumably includes tax credits etc? Not everyone getting a benefit is a net recipient depending how you measure it
  16. The Tories are stuck. This is a small tokenistic policy responding to the zeitgeist but they'll never compete with the Corbynistas on changing the status quo so they have to target the voters broadly happy with existing system. Probably favour some small real terms reduction over 10 years with minor tax changes to encourage owner occupation, keep lending going with crazy new debt/loan innovations Whereas Labour are offering much more progressive tax, mass social housing, tenant friendly laws in private sector...these wouldn't particularly be my solutions but they have appeal to those with little stake in the current system. The Tories are stuck and they know it, interesting times!
  17. I can't see London/Southeast prices dropping significantly, there is global demand for prime London which filters out and plenty of business supporting them and others. I would say a 'fair' price is cost of building by a reasonably efficient company within the law using non-exploited labour, including their usual business costs (marketing, sales, finance) not just the basic construction costs some on here cite. In most of the world this is the case as land costs are minimal. Here land value is captured by existing owners. My guess is this would be about 200-230k for a good new house of circa 1000 sq ft with some outside space. Not far off the actual national average of all stock
  18. interesting thanks. Both models are obviously over-simplifications of the real market but I'm not sure I quite get yours. Surely prices would adjust as the 9 existing homeowners would compete with the surplus housing, ie. circa 10% adjustment not price collapsing? That ignores people selling to rent/leave country etc too
  19. But if interest rates/lending were such that those who could borrow against their existing wealth including property could bid more than those without wealth, would they not out bid them and rent out to them? It's fairly hypothetical so let's stick to 2.7m houses being built next year, though I refuted my own thesis slightly by focussing on the national stock rather than London/southeast. What do you think would happen in such a scenario with no other changes to current system and policies?
  20. Recent lurker, I used to post here a bit when I was considering buying and like many assumed the crash was en route. Like many I hadn’t realised the extent to which things could be propped up and waited…my own situation then changed dramatically when I inherited (through my now wife) a small but grotesquely expensive flat in South London (value circa 450k now). I have lived there since 2014 having been at home before that and briefly renting a couple of rooms in fun house shares around North London. We earn about 70k gross together which is about average for London but obviously perfectly comfortable with no rent/mortgage costs though we would like to have children soon. I will also inherit half a terraced house in Enfield (astonishingly also ‘worth’ 450k within 10-15 years based on current life projections), obviously I hope my mum lasts a bit longer. We are working in London but could probably find work elsewhere within our fields with fairly minor salary drop. Most of my friends have left London and indeed the UK so ties are limited and London becomes more unpleasant by the day. I’d happily take the capital gains tax hit we’d pay, and try to make 7-10% on the stock market from the sum with a view to buying a larger family property a bit further out in a few years or renting somewhere appropriate, at least in the short term. I use the above introduction not to boast (I’m embarrassed about it and don’t talk about my situation IRL other than with good friends), only to declare my biases and changing perspective. I don’t have the direct skin in the game than I used to but this allows me to analyse objectively I hope. I would still take a house price crash though as per below I'm not sure the national picture is as distorted as some will thinkl I think the UK housing market is grotesque by any measure and this, rather than some philosophical conversion to socialism is behind the rise of millennial Corbynism. I would just like to raise a few points as I see them before I get more involved in some of the specific threads. Feel free to shout me down and tell me why I’m wrong ? The housing specific crisis is primarily a London/Southeast issue. This is, not coincidentally where many of the best paying jobs are in finance, IT, construction etc as well as the more interesting positions that youngster try to break into in arts, politics journalism etc. Related to the above, single earner ratio to average house price wont come back, even in the lowest value areas. Dual earner lending is here to stay and to my mind, a ratio of 3-4 to that isn’t infeasible, given building cost (take out the land which is ultimately what house prices reflect and can ultimately be negative, say in Wales/North East England) of a standard terrace/semi-house is depending how you measure is probably 130-170k...the UK is the most unbalanced country in Europe and it wouldn’t take much in terms of tax incentives/govt direction to mitigate this though there isn’t really a political will for this as the current system ‘works’ on some measures. Building won’t much change house prices. We have about 27m residences, broadly defined. To get say a 10% decline in a year, ceteris paribus, would require 2.7m new buildings (10x the current rate). You are adding too small an amount to the broader stock that without addressing other issues won’t much change prices, though could arguably be a good idea for other reasons. Even doubling the stock (a disgusting thought in my view) wouldn’t cause a halving of property prices without considering the other factors. Low interest rates have driven capital growth in recent years. I know this is quite a common position on this forum but it rarely seems to be discussed in media or by otherwise quite well informed people I know. Not only has this made ‘property’ more attractive in relation to rival places for people to dump cash, it has changed the dynamics on renting and most importantly, made buy to let (for a time and before some relatively minor tax changes) easy money for those who could best access the loans, ie. speculators with lump sum capital. Again, there could be good unrelated reasons to keep rates at historic lows for such a long time (I’m inclined to think not), but from a property point view this is the main factor Demographics/Immigration. I think 4) is the main driver but I’m still amazed by the amount of people who don’t think this has an impact on housing. TBH, I’m inclined to support fairly open immigration within the EU at least but to pretend that adding a certain amount of people each year, whether ‘net contributors’ or low wage serfs (not something I personally care much about) has NO impact on values is madness to me. As I said to a friend of mine when trying to explain, would 100m people moving here tomorrow have any impact on demand/supply of housing? Would 10m? Then so would 1m? (I believe we’ve had about 3-4m over ten years. There are good and bad reasons for supporting/opposing immigration, whether French quants or Somali cleaners but don’t pretend it doesn’t affect the topic we’re discussing here. Linked to the above, I don’t think people have grasped the impact of capital inflow to London, though this ultimately derives from the above issues-no one would speculate/invest in a static capital growth market. We can’t all live in Nine Elms newbuilds but when for some reason prime London property has become the safest investments in the world (again, this is lunacy to me), this filters out. So top 1% earners who would have bought in Chelsea buy in Highgate, the next tier down look at Finchley instead of Highgate, to the point where average earners have to pay 450k for a terrace in bloody Enfield! Benefits/Tax. Social housing in my view would be a fair system for the masses with clearly defined rules and obligations, investment of surpluses over time. Unfortunately it has become a lucky lottery to arbitrarily gift a small % of the country secure tenancies at below ‘market rent.’ It is the lack of social housing that has led to growth in housing benefit, and whilst I believe in ‘hating the game’ not the player, the bill is astronomical and again represents an artificial forced transfer from a good chunk of the working population to another (often non-working, or part time etc thanks to Labour’s mad tax credits) The changes to BTL by the Tories were surprising to me but again shows how they have to at least pretend to compete with Corbynism in limited ways though dropping stamp duty completely would be regressive and awful. As per my introduction, I didn’t realise when I first signed up the extent to which our whole political/economic edifice depends on the housing market. I am not particularly left wing but it seems to me that the Tories are now a status quo party who won’t make any radical changes and will always be outflanked anyway now by the Corbynists. Clearly Brexit is the defining issue of the next couple of years but I can still see more chaos after that though it seems change is finally on the agenda. My own ‘solutions’ such as they are: Limits on immigration, at least for a set period-this has been public majority view for so long but it would affect businesses in the short term so the government has wimped out. Land Value tax. There are whole threads on it here, it’s not a panacea but it would help encourage ‘shelter’ markets rather than ‘property’. We also have a significant issue of under occupation which the current system doesn’t provide enough incentive to change. Densification around city centres and transport hubs. Without LVT this could be an arbitrary gift to existing landlords/property owners and I would like to move away from London/Southeast being the be all and end all. Normalisation of interest rates to C20 rates/models. Not going to happen any time soon Build to rent social housing. These units couldn’t be re-sold at ‘market value’ but the rent could cover build costs over say 15-20 years. As with all social/affordable housing I’m not sure how this could be done fairly without giving some groups an arbitrary benefit but if a good chunk of the population would benefit it’s a theoretically good system. Changes to tax/benefit system as explained above. Not directly related but I’m more in favour of a conditional benefits system than our current system allowing a small % to live not much worse than the bulk of the working population without working themselves. Sorry for the length, wasn’t intended but I haven’t posted for a while and some of this is a bit speculative! Looking forward to joining in again EDIT: just changed the worst of my abysmal wording, I'm not a natural writer sorry
  21. I am definitely noticing a slight shift towards anger from apathy by young adult. It's slow, imperceptible, but it's coming. There's also still a mad load of cognitive dissonance out there. A good friend of mine is a centre leftie Labour supporter, moaning about how his average office job means he's got no chance of staying in London in anything approaching comfort...he just cannot connect this with his ideas about benefits (basically the more the merrier) and immigration (ditto). Lots of people think there is a sinister cabal keeping the hoi polloi in place rather than my own view which is that we are a short-termist, zombified nation who don't understand trade offs, unforeseen consequences or long term goals and so get the ruling class we deserve.
  22. It's an interesting area and in many ways a pleasant place to live though I still find prices ridiculous for what it is ie. a commuter borough with a nice park and a mix of Victorian terraces and ugly modern council flats plus the small smattering of trendy new builds. I am coming up to 3 years and have probably had a 70-80% increase. I had hoped to cash in and left by the time of the next election but sadly inertia has kicked in. I think you're right that UKIP will never really crack London. Harman, Abbott, Umunna, Hodge and my newest favourite Emily Thornberry...Labour have some absolutely awful people here. I sometimes wonder if anyone short of a convicted paedo/terrorist/murderer would actually lose an election in certain boroughs if they had a red rose. We truly get the governments we deserve
  23. Wish it was so. As an 'awesomestow' dweller (her awful word not mine), I'm stuck with the attractive but childish Stella Creasy Here's the 2010 score, if anything the area has become more gentrified since then as well as more East European immigrants so it's hard to see the kind of swing that would be needed. Could make yourself a millionaire with a bookie though if you really have the hunch! Name Party Votes Share Change Creasy, Stella Lab 21252 51.84% 1.5% Ahmed, Farid LD 11774 28.72% 1.6% Hemsted, Andy Con 5734 13.99% -4.2% Chisholm-Benli, Judith UKIP 823 2.01% -0.3% Perrett, Daniel Green 767 1.87% Taafe, Nancy TUSC 279 0.68% Mall, Ashar Christian 248 0.60% Warburton, Paul Ind 117 0.29% -1.8%
  24. Not read the whole thread but in my view, UKIP have made gains across the divide for several reasons, most of which can be blamed on the 'convergence' of the other 3 on some key issues 1. Farage speaks human. He makes mistakes. He tells jokes. Not everything is calculated for how it will effect different demographics, he says what he believes. He seems normal rather than a trained political drone who talks in buzzwords and slogans. 2. Immigration. For the Labour years this was taboo to even discuss. It's now seen as too late. Farage has correctly spotted that most people don't view it in 'economic' terms of filling skills etc but as a cultural matter. Few people have an issue with sensible managed migration but unless we all want to live under one state (clue : we don't) then free migration within Europe leads to too fast change and a sense of 'loss' People aren't viewed as coming here due to a shared ethos or desire to get involved in the country but as economic units maximising their wages/benefits. 3. Political correctness. Not sure if all cultures are equal or that all religions are basically the same? Think having hundreds of languages spoken in our capital city doesnt' mean 'diversity'? 500 (maybe 1000) 'British' people joining Islamic State apparently has nothing to do with Islam. There's no clash whatsoever between Islam in its current form and liberal democracy, secularism, womens rights etc.For years you will have been labelled as racist. UKIP have tapped into again what has been a taboo topic for the understandable fear of being racist. Add in support for grammar schools, opposition to HS2, reversal of draconian smoking ban, questioning whether gay marriage means anything...all policies I support and which are just not mentioned by the main 3 parties which have reached the same bland PC consensus. Carswell was always one of the more interesting Conservative MP's and IMO could be a real driver for them as they clear out some of the more amateur people who were there from the start. Patrick O'Flynn on QT last week was very good, Suzanne Evans was on Free Speech and also seems a sensible middle of the road type. I really hope they start some sensible economic policies (basic income, land value tax etc) rather than being too Thatcherite as this will really make inroads into the Labour vote. I can't really get excited about UKIP for two main reasons that some people will. 1) Denial of global warming as a significant issue. 2) Isolationist foreign policy. Not sure if he's still their 'spokesman' but I also believe their housing guy at some point was a BTL spiv, not really most on this site's cup of tea... As I live in a safe Labour seat I'll be voting Green or possibly LibDem as my 'protest' but LD's have too many weird people and too bland centrist a mood to really inspire. Greens are also a mess on most policies. However, if I had a chance of UKIP unseating Labour or Conservative I would almost certainly vote for them but without illusions...the main thing has to be the breakup of the 'LibLabCon' consensus
  25. It's the comparison with non-utopian, sensible alternatives that should rankle the youth, not that they are better off than people in the 1920's. I increasingly think we get the rulers we deserve though. If we're all short-termist, selfish, unreflective voters then don't be surprised when the people we elect have to pander to this. Then civilisation collapses and we realise we should have had a bit less fun
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