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cjc

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About cjc

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    Hove
  1. Sadly I agree - as crazy as the current prices are I think in a few years when a litre of petrol costs a tenner, £500 odd k for this house will seem like a steal.
  2. Just looked at a large 3 bed in good but not great part of Hove on for £550k. Wife looked at it the day it went on market - Tuesday. Phoned agent to make offer and there are now 4 offers, in under a week of marketing and they are doing no more viewings and going to best and final offers. Agent said he has never been do busy. I think prices are going to go up and up until something major happens - it seems gov action is ''working' well in Hove. ;0(
  3. I probably agree with you in thinking the state is too big in UK. However I do not think a smaller state would necessarily improve the effort / reward ratio for the average person. I think the 'lucky' people as described before would get to be even richer and the average person would probably have a lower standard of living overall, assuming less redistribution. I think there is lots of stuff only the state can and should do (police, defence, roads, justice, some education, some health etc but there are plenty of areas where the state has no business being and I would suggest that giving some people more housing than they need is one such area. It needs to be realised that far from the government having a parasitic relationship with the private sector, it is a symbiotic relationship - try running a business in a place that does not have, police, an educated workforce, justice system etc. Gov activity facilitates private enterprise just as much as the other way around. The poor kids never being born if purely capitalist is a rather unpleasant but interesting idea - however I am not sure that India has much in the way of social security and I think you will find their poor reproduce in rather large numbers. Not so sure you can blame government for planning issues, ultimately it is the people that want to limit building in 'their' area and if anything gov now tries to limit the power of the nimbys.
  4. I totally agree that equity and equality are not the same thing, however I do not agree with your assumption that hard work equals prosperity. I think it would be very difficult to demonstrate any relationship between effort and reward in UK. I would guess that modt people doing long hours and mulitple jobs would be some of the poorest. I would argue that luck (principly of birth and circumstance) and innate ability / talent seem to be far more important to earning potential than hard work. I think capitalism works (and in some way is fairest) in new economies like the USA or Hong Kong years ago when most people had very little to start with and there were opportunities for all. In a mature economy wealth and opportunities are not evenly shared out or open to all and hence there is more need for government intervention. Think of a game of Monopoly - in the beginning it is quite fun for all the players as there is property for all to buy and everyone has a chance but as time goes on someone ends up with all the property, cash and opportunities and it stops being fun for most players.
  5. You make it sound like any country in a financial mess now or in the past planned to get into that situation. Greece did not plan to be were it is today any more than the UK did in the 1970s. Usually the mess occurs when short term decisions catch up with the longer term. I do not 'know' what is going to happen in the future but I actually think inflation (prices and wages) is very likely more likely than the still entirely possible but IMO improbably deflationary outcome.
  6. First point: Agreed in the short term - and I did say my forward analysis was derived from looking backwards with the usual caveat. However, over a longer period say a 25 mortgage term, I would bet the farm that there will be wage inflation. As said with all the money printing I would bet on wage inflation in the not too distant. People have taken cuts and freezes on the understanding that better times are to come. Anecdotally, I know of places that have made cuts, freezes over last few years but are now giving quite healthy rises - cut staff numbers / overheads and now need to raise wages for remainder to retain and keep a productive workforce. Can't cut / freeze for ever, staff will leave or stop working (hard). Second point: Not heard this?? Sure if your parents were teenagers when they had you and you are obese and smoke / drink like a fish then I would advise not banking on inheritance. But I would imagine most people will outlive their rents??
  7. At the macro level IO does increase demand and push up prices so for many this would be seen as negative for society as a whole (others love rising house prices) but historically, certainly over most of the last 50 odd years they made perfect sense for the individual: Had I of bought an average house 25 years ago it cost £45k, or 30 years ago £26k. Why should I have had 25 or 30 years of substantially reduced standard of living with a repayment loan when I could have gone IO and only be left with an amount that many people now have a as credit card debt? If you also factor in that many people will inherit before the term is up it makes even more sense to not repay with a mortgage. As stated this makes sense with hindsight but as all the ads say past performance is no garanteee for future performance. Clearly if prices fall and then Stagnant for 25 years then IO would be a terrible choice, but then buying any property IO or repayment would be a disaster in this scenario. Personally I would eat mine and several other people's hats if House prices were lower in 25 years time. IO for people that are bad with money (spend high % of income on consumption - seems like very few on this site fit this profile) with no hope of inheritance is probably a bad idea. But I would say for many, individually, it makes a lot of sense. Say if IO means you pay 30% less a month then this means you could afford a 30% more expensive house. Keep it for 25 years and even if you can not pay off the principle (my guess is that if gov keep printing then average weekly wage will be about the principle in 25 yrs time!) then sell the house and you will still be able to buy out right a better house than the ones you could have bought on a repayment loan.
  8. I do not see this as some absolute moral imperative, I do not think the government should criminalise under occupation of housing. I just think that as a guiding principle, under occupation should be seen as undesirable and it should be discouraged. To be fair, in pretty much the way it is now happening, people are not being thrown out of council houses by the police nor are they being fined £1000s a week, they are just not being given £20 odd pounds a week by their fellow tax paying citizens. Also in the private sector many of the tax breaks for under occupation are being removed and instead council tax is being increased. I think these are none too brutal steps in the right direction. Completely agree with this logic: "If you really wanted to allocate space more fairly, then the government wouldn't have exempted pensioners. Indeed they are the group that should ideally be encouraged to downsize." No idea why old folk are exempted - I would have thought these would be the key group of people that this should be aimed at and without them it probably makes the policy rather pointless. Sure pictures of confused and upset old ladies does bad things for politician's ratings but if you want an omelette some eggs have to get broken. . Finally i would like to point out that I do not agree with government's general policies on housing -indeed the fact that Osborne looked at the housing market (which so obviously has a problem of too much demand and not enough supply) and concluded the solution was to intervene and boost demand is completely baffling and disturbing.
  9. OMG - looks like Eastenders is wading in on the debate. Amazed how overtly political the Dot eviction story was in the last episode! I recon BBC should get a big slap or at least have to have an episode where it has to focus on a family of 4 that is 'forced' to live in a B and B so Dot can live alone in a three bedroom house. The most annoying part of the story line is that she is largely in trouble for renting out the spare rooms - this should be encouraged and not punished!
  10. Council are beginning to remove discounts for single / second homes for council tax and are now looking to go over 100% for empty property. I think more tax for under occupation is the direction of travel in the private sector and I don't think it will result in much protest. As has been pointed out in the press the amount a tenant loses in benefits can be more than made up for by renting out the spare room. As I said before, if a council does not have enough one and two bed places then in the longer term they can convert or sell the larger properties and get more small ones. But the first step is to get the unwanted larger properties vacated. After all the comments made in this thread I still find it hard to believe there is any debate as to what is the right thing to do - wasting any scare resource is simply wrong.
  11. What makes me laugh in the wages debate is the way that financial / city 'experts' bang on about the need for places like Greece and us in the UK to be more competitive and that workers need 'competitive wages. Then in the next breath these invariably blokes often with red braces and limited intellect and education go on to stress how the city must be able to pay as much as possible to attract and retain the brightest and best. Suddenly the rules of competition do not apply to them and their chums?? I would have thought that if the average banker in UK was 40 odd % less than one in NYC or HK etc then many banks might suddenly want to open up shop in UK - but then what do I know,I don't own any braces red or otherwise.
  12. Re where will they go. Just an idea but once vacated, big houses could be converted to flats or whatever the need is. Or could be sold off at full market rather than discounted right to buy prices and then councils could buy appropriate stock or heaven forbid actually built new homes. For the displaced people - maybe they could sort themselves out within the private sector or if unable they could go into B and Bs which are far more suitable for singles and couples compared to families. Not an instant solution I know but IMO a bit of longer term thinking would not go amiss.
  13. I find it incredible that there is a debate in this country as to whether it is right or fair to expect council tenants to vacate larger properties when they no longer need them.. How anyone can think that having one person in say a 5 bedroom house is right when families are waiting on lists and living in hostels or B &Bs is totally beyond me. I think is really shows just how stupid we are in this country about housing. I think policies don't go nearly far enough and that they should be extended to the private sector. If anyone under utilises this scarce resource they should be heavily encouraged through the tax system to own and occupy a more appropriate amount of housing. Unbelievably we have had tax breaks for under occupation for years - second home, single person council tax discount - not to mention the poll tax. When food was scarce due to ww2 we did not leave allocation to market forces ie rich get fat and poor thin or starve. If we won't build then surely we have to share out what we have more equitably.
  14. If you have to pay extra for unfurnished then surely everyone will just put in some cheap funiture??
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