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Bear Necessities

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Everything posted by Bear Necessities

  1. You know that the minimum Sky subscription is £0 right? It's called the "Cancel Sky" package. Of course you lose 1000 channels of crap, but that's a price I'm willing to pay.
  2. nearly as disgraceful is the fact that they've described it as having a "chest of draws".
  3. I think there are requirements that there is a door to separate living spaces from toilet spaces, and I think for kitchens it is supposed to be 2 doors distance. This is an utter disgrace.
  4. Oh I forgot to mention, in the other Zopa thread someone said that it was rumoured (or perhaps just stated as fact) that some people borrow £15K from Zopa to use as a house deposit. now that is something that upsets me. I don't own a house but someone is happy to borrow my money to "get on the ladder" thus pushing prices up even further out of my reach. Plus if the whole thing does come tumbling down, in which order are they likely to pay back the debts? Bank loan first, Zopa last?
  5. It wasn't the things they were purchasing as much as that in my mind those things are purchased by people who are of the "I want this now so I shall have it" mindset, and I then worry about someone that impulsive actually paying the money back. But as has been pointed out, different people do different things and as long as they pay it back then that's fine. I guess loans generally are more likely to be taken out by people who "fail" the marshmallow test (would rather have something right now and pay more for it, than save up and get it cheaper) some people just don't do delayed gratification I guess! (which is good in a way as it gives zopa people to lend to)
  6. I have some savings in Zopa. As mentioned above, you get some of the money back each month as people pay back some of the capital as well as the interest on the loans, so your money isn't totally tied up for the 3 years, but of course if you take this returned money rather than reinvesting it in the system then you are only getting your 4% on the remainder, not on the total sum because you've removed some of it. Also if you did need to suddenly access the money after a few months you can opt to pay 1% and get it back almost straight away (in days I think) so that's like a get out clause but you lose 1% They will be regulated by April (I think the guaranty figure if likely to be set at between £20K and £50K so then it will feel more secure than it does at the moment. They also run deals occasionally when they require a load of new investment, where they give you 1% back on anything you up in between certain dates (so I put in an extra 5K and got 50 quid bonus. I know that is not a lot, but you could look at it like them giving you back the 1% that they charge you for fees (at the moment the rate is about 5.4% but they take 1% for fees so you get 4.4% rate. so bonuses are worth looking out for. They also do an offer where if you recommend someone and then they lend £2K, you get a £50 thank you for that as well. So that could be worth doing for anyone with a partner as you could invest in two accounts and pocket the bonus. I know these are small sums, but every little helps I guess. My only problem with Zopa is that you can see what people are getting the loan for. Mainly Home Improvements, Car and Consolidating Debts. Even the grade A borrowers have the "consolidating debts" box ticked, which worries me slightly. More annoying is that amongst those there was someone who was borrowing £10K for a WEDDING, another borrowing £15K for a car (my own car cost about £900), 10K for a HOLIDAY HOME and another person borrowing 8K or so for a FECKING BOAT. Probably no more annoying than the people that banks lend your savings to, it's just irksome to read individual loan applications and not have any control over whether you want to lend £20 to those people....
  7. There are different grades of listing. I grew up in a grade II* listed house (1720s) from the age of 10 until I left home (this was due to the death of my grandfather and our family taking my gran in to live with us (which she did for 15+ years) and so needing a larger house in the same area, and stretching finances to make that happen. The listing II* essentially meant exterior only listing (including windows) but inside you could do what you liked, and no one would come to inspect because the interior was not listed. Interestingly, when my parents had to redo the guttering after we moved in, they of course were not allowed to replace with plastic (of course) BUT there was a grant available (perhaps English Heritage/National Trust or some other organisation) which covered the difference in cost between the plastic pipes and the cast iron ones (a not inconsiderable difference in price). I think the same might have been true for the slate roof tiles (they purchased the house in a state of significant disrepair and restored it as best they could. Personally I loved growing up there, and a lot of my friends (apart from the guy whose dad had converted a chapel!) preferred visiting my house, to playing at theirs because the house was "cool" and not just a little soulless box on a faceless estate. It had (has) a decent sized garden, really good sized rooms and proportions and some soul to it. I felt at the time that we were very very fortunate to live there (having not been born into anything like a monied family) despite what some people might consider to be the many drawbacks. Those same friends who enjoyed playing in the trees and the house didn't have to sleep there in the winter and put up with the terrible drafts and impossibly expensive heating (I used to put clothes in the bathroom which had its own heating system, so that I could be warm in the mornings before school, which sounds ridiculous as it was the 80s and there was central heating and this wasn't the 19th century, but I still preferred it to the overly hot boxes my friends lived in. My parents still live there and it has all that nostalgia value, but of course if I'd grown up in a modern house I would associate that with nostalgia and so I might feel differently about period properties because they wouldn't hold such personal memories. Of course this has totally ruined any chance I have of enjoying living in a modern place (as I am likely to have to do if I ever buy) because my parents were fortunate/unfortunate to have a series of circumstances in the early 90s which conspired to put us in that house in the first place (rates, family tragedy, offers of work, a house that came up at the right time etc) and the house they are in would be about 4 times the price they paid (houses around there regularly sell for that sort of figure). There's no way I could ever dream of living in a house like that. But when I do view more modern houses I'm always struck by how ridiculously small the rooms are (you can barely get around the double bed) and the laughable descriptions of "good sized rooms and a good garden" when they are noting of the sort. Apologies for the rambling, just wanted to give the perspective of someone who enjoyed an old house when he had the chance to live in one). Plus I have work to do and this is a good strategy for not doing it.
  8. More interesting will be to see how they edit the show. Often someone who has a lot to say on a certain topic will be edited down until they are almost mute. It probably depends on the age of those in the editing suite. Assuming the edit is done in London, then any editing team under 35 (and less likely to have a house or BTL empire) might sneak him a bit more air time. Fingers crossed.
  9. I don't really have a problem with the new lending system, it was always a bit daft being able to set your own rates because if you didn't set them within a very narrow band then you just would never lend anything because someone else would lend cheaper. My only issue is now that I've found out the sort of crap people are getting loans for, but then again its the same with the high street banks where the rest of my savings are, but in that case I don't get told what crap people are buying!
  10. Just found another one that is only 30 but needs £15K to pay off credit card debts. twit. and wow, one that has borrowed £9,200 for wedding expenses. What better way to start your blissful marriage than £10K of debt. Fecking morons. I must say as well as allowing me to vent my judgemental rage, this is also an eye opener as to what the hell people piss money away on.
  11. Having found the bit where you can see what each person wants the loan for, I'm even more pissed off now! One of the people who I've lent to (you don't get to choose the people yourself) has borrowed £15K for a car, another has borrowed £8K for a holiday home, one has borrowed £5K for a holiday, and someone who is borrowing £10K to consolidate their existing debts! - yeah they sound like someone in control of their finances! Oh, and I just found one more who is getting a loan to buy a flipping boat!!!!! What the Feck?! Those are all classes as A* borrowers (lowest risk) I can't seem to find the "Don't loan to *****" button. There really should be one. When it's someone who wants 3K to get a new (second hand) motor then I can understand that, but some of these other things are just taking the piss. The guy who borrowed £15K for a car commented that he wanted to be able to loan to people himself one day. Uhhh, not if you think borrowing £15K for a new car is a good idea mate. FFS. Which leaves the question, where the feck do I put my money now? I was only using Zopa to get some of the money out of the main ******* banks and to stand a chance of perhaps keeping up with inflation (fat chance). So where do I turn now? Any suggestions?
  12. If that is true then that's another good reason for me to stop putting money in there. I'll be damned if I want people gathering housing deposits on my savings, interest rates to keep prices high have damaged them enough without adding fuel to the fire. Grrrrrr!
  13. They cover the bad debts now, so that you don't lose anything. at the expense of the interest rate being set for you (you have no control any more). They *claim* to have a fund that will cover all bad debts, but I doubt it would be able to come in the face of financial Armageddon.
  14. Was looking the other day at what people were borrowing for (for each borrower you can see where your £20 is going. Of course I'm not sure what there is to prevent them lying on the form, but the most common thing seems to be "new car" (new to them of course, might be a second hand one that they would struggle to purchase otherwise) followed by "home improvements (which could be anything!) followed by the most worrying one "debt consolidation". (uh oh) Since I discovered that list I've reconsidered lending any more via zopa. I really don't like the sound of debt consolidation, especially as some of those people are classed as A grade borrowers (which to me sounds like they are really good at borrowing!). Zopa have 10% of my savings so I'm going to keep that much with them just for the sake of diversification. No I just have to figure the best time to put 10% of my savings into gold. Oh, I think the best time for that was about 6 years ago. Damn.
  15. Additionally the only reason they had a bumper week of people putting money into Zopa is that they were offering 1% of your deposit back for any amount over £2K that you put in during the last couple of weeks. When rates are so low, an extra 1% is quite appealing. (pays for their 1% annual fee at least). But of course it also means that there are far more lenders than borrowers this week, which means it takes longer to lend.
  16. as a thirty one year old I resent having buzzfeed explained to me! I know what it is! I'm not that old! (Booo hooooo hoooo, why can't I be 21 again!)
  17. sold data won't show up if it was purchased through a company or something like that. I never did find out how much my old boss paid for his...
  18. Yeah, the fact that it's right there on the same page, that's what helps. If people see much lower numbers right next to the eye watering sum they are thinking of spending, it might give them pause for thought. More so than expecting them to spend five minutes googling the most expensive purchase of their lives.
  19. Might as well crosspost this into here as well as I created it for another thread, but seems appropriate
  20. Here is my own humble effort if anyone wants to share it. Just changed the text to one of George's own quotes. If you give someone enough rope... It's the right size for facebook and twitter sharing if anyone wants to send it into the wild? I'm pretty happy with "selfservatives" was going to go with "*****servatives" but this one is more "family friendly"
  21. Our landlord owns the houses either side of ours as well. He's selling the end one because the tenant moved away. The house has been up for sale for 2 months. Went on at £230K Reduced this week to £220K But now they have that local selling prices thing on Rightmove, it only lists the three (almost identical) houses that he owns, as they are all that have ever sold in the street (the rest are Duke of Westminster rentals so never go up for sale). so this new feature shows that the property that they are trying to sell for £220K was purchased for £120K (2001), the one on the other side of us for £145K (2002) and the one we rent for 190K (2005) This is for a 2 bed (one double, one single) terrace with single glazing, a tiny back yard and on road parking, in Cheshire. Sad times.
  22. It says converted FROM two flats, not into two flats. I think he is going to convert it back into a house and live in it with his family Pretty sure that living there for at least 5 years is one of the stipulations for getting it. When they were giving houses in Middlesbrough away for 50p each I did idly think about buying an entire row of houses and making a super house with a bowling alley in it (knocking through the walls of several houses. But you could only buy one house (and would have to spend too much on security to make it worth it! Not to mention having to live in Middlesbrough.
  23. Other HPC type comments would be very welcome on there. I think it would be a good thing if every article everywhere about Help to Buy was filled with comments pointing out how mental the world has become. (I am seeing a lot of HPC type comments on these stories, but the more the merrier. I'm sure these writers read through some of the comments (whatever people might say about never reading below the line) and if sentiment is strongly skewed in one direction then they are likely to skew future articles in the same direction to appeal to the commenters.
  24. A standard sort of article from the Bitter Wallet website here My link The first commenter sounds like a total tool. Thankfully the 5th commenter tears him a new one.
  25. The hindsight isn't too wistful in my case as in 2008 I didn't HAVE much money to invest anyway, so I missed out through being relatively poor not through mis-investment!
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