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Bear Necessities

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  1. @crashtimus prime - I think that offering an equity stake, although potentially helping us to share the "burden" of falling prices, wouldn't really work here - I think that would give them the idea that they could be disapproving of things we decided to do to/with the house (which is something I already worry about with the loan). On balance I think I'd rather shoulder all of the risk of prices and feel that it was "100% our house". I guess finding a "do-er-up-er" in need of modernisation is the best bet. (They do come up occasionally, but nothing really decent this year so far) That way, even if prices fall I can convince myself that at least the one we do up is as we want it to be, and probably still cheaper than one that has already been modernised. Seems like it's mainly a case of whether or not I can rationalise any decision to myself, even if in hindsight it turns out to be the wrong one!
  2. @northshore - good points. I think we have the sort of family that would be fine with that and there would be no chance of immediate financial distress. but then @Fully Attached makes a very good point with "you won't be able to foresee it until it happens."
  3. @Exiled Canadian - thanks for that, really interesting post. Will think about that too. @Frugal Git - As far as saying "would you reduce the loan proportionally if house prices went don, I had initially thought I'd be paying about 3% interest on it, so the fact that it is a potentially interest free mortgage with no arrangement fee means I already feel like I'd be getting a pretty good deal as it is, certainly saving a good amount when compared to a "real" mortgage. I think I've now persuaded my mum to ease off on the houses a bit, by saying I'd like to wait for a few months after the election to see what happens, and promising to look out for things myself. - I did go off on a HPC style rant about houses being ridiculous and not wanting to lose all that money, so I think I have a bit of breathing/thinking room right now!
  4. @Venger - yes, that is a good point - we are definitely planning to get everything drawn up properly so there is no confusion about what is due and when, and no room for us to make excuses about not paying or delaying payment, or them to want it paid back faster or whatever. I'm actually worried that borrowing that sort of money could do to the family dynamic though - will all my purchasing/holiday/DIY decisions be questioned at every turn because some of it is "their money" or as long as we are paying back the money will everything go on as normal - I just don't know. I feel that lending/borrowing money can be a potentially horrible thing. @Frugal Git - that is a very good point you are making about bailing out the person of their high house price, I'd not considered that viewpoint before and it is food for thought. The issue is further clouded by the fact that my parents only have this sort of money lying around (and a similar amount for my sister) purely as a result of some "greater fool" bailing them out of their own high house price further South. Does that make things better or worse? I guess for our family it is a case of "well this is unearned money from a house sale, so if the house goes down then it's unearned money going back to where it came from" which sounds like a blasé attitude, but there it is - I'm under no delusions about how very fortunate we are to be in the position to borrow the money, but I still don't know if we should.
  5. I'm not *comfortable* with it. But then I'm not comfortable with the fact that we've paid out about £50K in rent in the time we've been waiting for the (possibly mythical) crash although most of that time we weren't in a position to buy anyway, and I appreciate that houses aren't free to run even if you own one (and boilers explode and a roof can leak and all the rest of it). My gut reaction when my dad suggested it was indeed "I don't want you to lose that kind of money" and then thinking about it realising that I'd be paying it back regardless, so it would be "I don't want ME to lose that kind of money either!" I'd be looking for a place that we would stay in for 15 years plus (and paid off in 12), so I guess a correction would be annoying but I don't measure my happiness and success based on what my house is worth, so from that point of view I'd cope ok - I'm not purchasing a house for it to accumulate wealth, just somewhere to live were we can have a pet, paint the walls, redo the garden, build a pizza oven etc without the landlady telling us we can't. I'd much rather hang on a bit and be vindicated. Or would I hang on and end up bitter because the crash was never allowed to happen? The thing that I think actually would drive me mad if prices collapsed or declined just after we buy would be knowing that I was one of the last "bears to turn". But that says more about my own mental state than it does about what is the best thing to do in our situation. (also factor in my mum sending me rightmove adverts every day with "suitable" houses (usually unsuitable and always too expensive houses obviously!)
  6. OK, So I've been on here a long time, I'm not just some new account popping up to say "haha we've got some money, where shall we buy, houses are great, you can't lose, renting is dead money" and all that crap. I'm genuinely asking for advice on what people would do in our situation: We live in Cheshire - Three bed 1930s bog standard semi around here and near enough to walk to the school(s) is about £200-£250K. But I work from home, so ideally would want four bed, or I could build an office in the garden if it was a decent sized garden. Happily married with one kid at school and another on the way 125K in the savings account My parents have just cashed in their money from a nice bit of the Midlands and have moved nearby. They have enough cash sloshing around that they have offered to loan us an additional £100K (not give us, loan us) So we would have £200K to spend on a house (as I'd want to keep a £25K buffer in the bank, in case I don't get any work or one of us gets sick, or whatever) The main thing is they have offered to give us this loan interest free - on the condition that we pay it back within a decent timescale (at say a rate of £600 a month) My initial reaction was "no, way I don't want to borrow that money from you" (although this was when I thought there would be interest to pay on it) Then I was worrying that if housing ever does fall as we all want it to, then I'm paying back money that I need not have borrowed in the first place, just as if it were a regular mortgage, for the sake of not holding my nerve for another 6 months. This then changed to "probably be better to be keeping this £7K a year in the family and pay it to my parents than just to a landlady" My current thinking is to keep an eye out for potentially interesting houses, perhaps ones that need a lot of TLC and then wait for a few months during and after the election to see if there is any sign of impending collapse - putting embarrassingly low offers on things that we like. (I'm also up for putting in some work to do a place up, I'm good with my hands and my freelance job means I could take some time out to do so) I guess I'm greedily (?) thinking "should we pile in with this borrowed money in 2015 and get a decent sized three bed, or keep waiting (the interest from our savings acocunts pay about half our rent each month) as we have done for years and years in the hope that we end up getting "more house" for the money." eventually sometime in the future Also, is borrowing from family (my family that I get on with very well) a good idea, or does it always lead to problems? Does anyone have experience of this? Being self employed means my chances of a regular mortgage are in effect zero, so if we ever want a house then I guess it's this or nothing. Any thoughts? (I had originally assumed that everyone on here would be "are you ******ing mad?, don't buy a house now, for the love of christ!" or "hold out for another year and things will be better value" but I'm wondering if most people in this situation would actually be more inclined to say "hell, you don't get an offer of 100K every day, take it you fool!") Thanks for reading my rambling.
  7. Scumbags like this tried to charge us over £500 last time we moved. The potential landlady turned out to be an acquaintance. She asked us why we weren't interested and we said we were but not with those fees. She seemed to have no idea what the letting agent was trying to charge. Rented from her directly with a £50 a month reduction in rent, (because she saved on agent fees too), no deposit and no money to the scumbag agent. Hope they go bust. Previous places have wanted £50 renewal fees but thanks to posters on here we knew we could go to rolling tenancy with no fees. This time there will be no renewal fees because I wrote the contract (well copied it from a free online one!)
  8. The straw bale houses are usually the most beautiful ones that Grand Designs feature. The ones in that article? Not so much.
  9. "I have a sneaking feeling that whatever government gets in will let the market go just after this election so that they can claim credit for the recovery that will be taking hold just before the next." This is what a lot of us were expecting/hoping for when the Tories got in in 2010. It seemed like an ideal opportunity to blame Labour for the crash but reap the rewards of a recovering economy 5 years later. Didn't happen though. I suspect that the Tory party MPs and friends had/have even more money invested in the bubble than their Labour counterparts did/do and as such would not let the crash happen, regardless of whether it was a good idea for the country and the economy. I think if Labour get in then there is *slightly* more chance of the "Blame the last guys for the crash and claim credit for the recovery" scenario occuring this time around but only slightly. I think they all still have too much invested in property to allow it to happen this time either, without a black swan event.
  10. @Davidg If your parents actually say those things then it sounds like your parents are *****s.
  11. That one in Chester is built right next to a busy roundabout (in a building partially occupied by the local council, who only moved in there because the developers couldn't get any other businesses to move in)
  12. They were "tucked away" on the front page of the BBC news site when I looked at it earlier (still there now) Not the lead story but still on the front page of the site.
  13. You might be right about the exit rush. My parents main reason was to be nearer their grandchild (because of course we couldn't afford to live anywhere near them!) but another reason for my parents moving from the village they've been in for 30 years was that a lot of their long time friends had already sold up and relocated/downsized in the last year or so, or were thinking of doing so.
  14. The buyers seemed happy to pay it, or at least accepting of the (slightly reduced) price. I'm not saying I agree with the way things are happening (retired people cashing out with a massive lump sum, increasing the cost of a younger (but apparently massively well paid) family's mortgage) But nobody forced that family to buy it (it's the sort of house that people "aspire" to, rather than one they actually need) but then what should they have done? It's the first time that such a quandary has occurred in my mind since I joined this site Put it on the market for the price they paid in 1992 so that someone can snap it up and sell it on for triple? Sell it at a massive profit and then donate the money to Priced Out? Take the money and run? Can't say I would do any different if it were me, regardless of my moral standpoint on the issue. :/ I take comfort in the fact that they think the whole thing is ridiculous as well (they've never been ones to gloat about their house value, they've just plodded along paying the mortgage (no MEWing) and agree that prices are stupid. (They just happen to have fallen onto the winning side of stupid, but they don't kid themselves that it's down to any cleverness or good judgement on their part) I've explained to them that putting some of the money into a buy to let would be morally reprehensible and foolhardy, especially when they want a quiet retirement, and would also like one day for their children to buy a house. (I think they know that already though) Plus I'm glad that they have moved to a smaller property and freed up an oversized 5 bedroom property to a family that needs it (there were 2 of them rattling around that house, whereas the new residents are a family of 6 I think. The country would be a lot better off if more older people could be persuaded to downsize.
  15. I think my parents escaped South Northants at just the right time then (from a "take the money and run" point of view). They exchanged on Friday and have moved to North Wales to be nearer to us (Downsizing to something about half of the price) With their place the estate agents had it on at a ridiculous figure and they were getting almost no viewings. Then they asked them to price it more reasonably (still ridiculous obviously, but not "estate agent ridiculous" and it was sold within a month. Still people buying it seems, but sounds like they might have gotten out just in time.
  16. I could have sworn that I read a headline this morning (on my phone) about a potential rate rise in June in the US (hopefully leading to a rate rise here soon after), but now I'm at my PC I can't find any reference to it at all. Did I dream this or can someone provide a link. Would be keen to know if it is likely true, or just one of those "ooh we might raise rates" statements that never happens (like the Bank of England are rather fond of)
  17. Wow, it's depressing how little house you get for over 200K in some places Those bedrooms don't even have enough space for two people to get out of their own side of the bed. Surprised they can even be classed as a double bedroom. The world had gone nuts.
  18. At this stage I despair. http://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/95-help-buy-mortgage-3-98-fixed-until-30-06-2017-zero-fees-post-office-2152573 Any HUKD members that could spread the word on there about why Help to Buy and 95% mortgages are evil? All the usual "renting is dead money" and "property is only going up" cliches are coming out over there.
  19. Saw this on HPC when it was announced a few months ago. The FAQ page details the storage costs (linked directly from the home page) Storage fees are charged at 1% + VAT per annum based on the average daily market value of your total gold holding that is stored in The Vault™.
  20. would still like to read it though (though not enough to want to pay the Murdoch beast!) I'm so hungry for bear food! regardless of whether or not it makes any difference!
  21. Heard an anecdotal recently that is pub related. Local "Skeptics in the Pub" group used to meet in a pub near the station. They would meet regularly on a week night when the pub would otherwise be dead. They were given use of a room (for free I think) and in return would regularly bring in 50 to 100 extra punters each time which considering they would have speakers and be there for at least a couple of hours if not all evening, is not to be sniffed at. The pub got taken over, refurbed, new manager etc. After the first or second evening under new management, the bar manager tells them that they can't meet there any more because it's too much hassle for her. They point out that without them there would be about 12 customers in the bar on those evenings. She says it's all the same to her as she was just employed by the new owners. She's getting paid regardless and 12 people are easier to serve than 100. Strange attitude, as you'd think the owners would be keen to get people in the door?
  22. Happily married so the pub doesn't have any appeal, not that I ever found the pub/club a good place to meet women. Not ones that I'd want to spend time with sober anyway.
  23. I ask mainly because I'd like to read it without paying, but also, if it is only available behind the paywall then there is a good chance that hardly anyone will see it. :/
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