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Fred Up

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About Fred Up

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  1. I have worked on the tools building new build estates in the past and id say you can get good houses and bad houses on the same estate, This is due to most of the major house builders only employing subbys so generally you will work on a price and not be payed by the hour so consequently you have tradesmen who can work very fast and still keep up a good standard of work but you also have other tradesmen who usually have a very good standard of work but cannot keep up the quality when they have to work at full speed all day long and have to start cutting corners to make the job pay. When i say you can get good houses on the estate i mean that they look new and shiny and thats about it because the materials used are not the best and most of them probably havent been fitted correctly anyway, i would never ever buy a new build myself because they are not going to stand the test of time and a complete rip off price wise, plus id like to sit on my sofa and put my feet up after a days work without burning my feet on the gas fire thats installed 4 foot from the edge of my sofa.
  2. I could possibly buy that outright with the money ive got saved for my deposit, it would be quite nice to have a roof over my head with no mortgage to pay and its a lot better than my current living situation. Not much land available where i live though and what is available is at a ridiculous price so with no place to put it ill have to keep on saving for a "normal" house. I wonder why BTLers havent thought of putting these in the back gardens of the propertys they own to maximize their income, saying that i bet a few of them already have.
  3. Im led to believe that UCATT are already pushing for this for construction workers but the construction workers i know dont hold out much hope of retiring early, they feel that they will still be out in all weathers on a roof or down a hole when they are 65+ and ready for the knackers yard, they get minimal rights now so i cant see our government giving them a break. Im not very computer savvy so ill just copy and paste a statement from ucatts website. Alan Ritchie , General Secretary of UCATT, said: “The one size fits all policy on retirement age is patently unfair to workers in physically demanding manual jobs such as construction. Already most construction workers are forced to retire early due to injury or ill health. By increasing the retirement age , construction workers are being made to work until they drop or forced into poverty when they are too sick to continue to work.”
  4. Yes it is outsourced companys that i work for (the ones who win the contracts to do the works) and not the council directly. We never get told what benefits tenants recieve, we do get information relating to disabled tenants who will have special requirements that need to be dealt with whilst we complete the works such as providing respite flats to rehouse them temporarily due to them having breathing illnesses and such like because the dust from the works would obviously worsen their condition. As i said before its quite a lot of the tenants themselves who tell you what and how much benefits they are getting, strange i know, you would think they would like to keep that sort of information to themselves for fear of being reported. It sometimes seems that some of them take a certain pride in how well they are playing the system and just need to tell somebody how clever they are. Its now getting to the stage were these tenants 16 year old children are having kids themselves and are now just learning what to say and do to get the most benefits possible, largely due to growing up in a totally benefit dependant household and thinking thats how life works. Its a shame really because you do come across a lot of nice kids on these estates and you can see the way their lives are heading through not being taught the basic facts of life by their parents but in amongst all the lying and cheating you do come across some nice decent people who are trying to get off these estates and aspire to a better standard of life. Its often stated in the details of the contract when it is won by such and such a firm that they have to directly employ 2,3 or 4 people from the estate that they are working on for the duration of the works and when this happens you get a few 16,17,18 year old lads who are told by the job centre to turn up on the first day the site opens. the vast majority of them arrive and dont really want to be there and have very little intrest in becoming a tradesmen but after a few months of working alongside a carpenter, bricklayer, plasterer etc they are completely different people and become very enthusiastic due to the encouragement given to them by their mentors, sadly something most of these kids have never had,so far at the end of the contracts most of the young lads are offered full time jobs with the firm and for those who arent offered a job (due to the firm having enough employees already) the tradesmen on site will help them find one by ringing round all the firms they have worked for in the past and recommending them to the boss. So for all the annoying things you see the tenants getting up to you do see some good come out of these council estates.
  5. No problem, im happy to let people know how things are around me, Im definitely going to be staying with HPC because if i hadnt found this site i would possibly have started house hunting within the next 6 months oblivious to the fact of a possible HPC but after reading everybodys posts over the last few months i can now see that maybe we will get a decent crash at some point in the near future, so thanks to everybody who posts and keeps me informed because you have potentially saved me thousands and thousands of pounds which will ultimately make my life a whole lot easier once i finally start to pay a mortgage off.
  6. I agree and hope it actually makes a difference, When the council cuts were announced it was a happy day on site for all, even though it has added more worry to peoples lives in this industry though because once the cuts take hold it will mean a lot less work for people in the building game, there will be cuts to refurb and maintenance contracts and add to that the fact that not very many new builds are going up so no work there so we have a lot of lads who are already preparing themselves to be layed off by looking for different lines of work. We have apprentices that will come out of serving their time and are now becoming aware that they may have no job at the end of it, some very confused young men and women who were told by friends and family and careers advisors to get a trade and you will never be out of work, granted that used to be the case but not any more. Thats why i cant understand why the government keep saying we need apprentiship schemes for young people to get into work in the construction industry, there isnt anywhere near enough work for the people who are already in the trade as it is. Hopefully things pick up in the industry but it needs to work at a slower pace, there are tradesmen who love the building booms but the majority of them would rather things went back 20 or 30 years so they could get back to using better materials and take there time and do a job to a high standard but the way building methods are now they dont stand much of a chance of being able to do a job and stand back and look at it and take pride in there work. As a carpenter i know once said "if i wanted to work with plastic id have gotten a job at lego".
  7. I wouldnt say i was mouthing off controversially i just posted some of my experiences from my working life, wether you believe these experiences or not is entirely up to you, But the sad fact is that the couple examples of council tenants standard of living i gave are very very true. I can understand that Maybe it does come across as though i am making things up if you have never seen or heard this type of behaviour before ( i agree it sounds unbelievable but it is a way of life for some people) but its pretty common knowledge in my area that most council tenants are playing the system and getting away with it. after everything ive said though i dont totally blame the tenants for their actions, the councils could quite easily find out what they are up to but just dont bother.
  8. The simple fact is im not very good at writing, punctuation and grammar and sentence structure are not really my strong point, my work mainly involved putting ticks in boxes to indicate what works needed to be carried out. I dont understand were you are going with the credibility thing either, im just an average single working man living in the north of england who wants to buy a home and after finding this site and reading the forums for a few months i finally decided to make my first post after reading that somebody thought that 99% of people on benefits struggle to make ends meet, as i said before in my experience this is not true at all in the north of england at the very least, and thankyou to those who commented and believed what i said in my first post, obviously these people have seen and heard some of the same things i havo over the years.
  9. A bit harsh towards carpenters dont you think, if the carpenter you mentioned was middle aged or above then chances are they served a 5 to 6 year apprentiship at the start of their career, yes being a carpenter is a career, apprentice, to tradesman, to site supervisor, to site manager, to contracts manager, to projects manager and all the way up to the MD of large building firms. Thats the general route if you want to go all the way to the top in the building game. Its a very sad state of affairs when a man or woman who works in every type of bad weather and works in probably the most dangerous industry there is can be perceived not to be in a career. Could you imagine working this past january in temperatures around minus ten all day long whilst having to make decisions that could cost thousands upon thousands of pounds to fix if got wrong (its not easy to think straight when you are in physical pain from being so cold and wet) and then add to that the fact that you are surrounded by life threatening machinery and situations that could end youre so called career in an instant.
  10. Nine times out of ten the tenants will tell the lads on site exactly what benefits they are getting (strange but true), thats the reason you see tradsemen walking around council estates lying about how much they earn themselves when asked by tenants, they generally respond by saying the building game is not what it used to be so im only bringing just over a grand a week home, hope things pick up soon. Its pretty obvious that they do this to wind the tenants up and also save face because i imagine its pretty degrading for a 50 year old tradesman to deal with these people on a daily basis knowing full well he may never have such a good quality of life as the tenants playing the system due to being on low pay themselves. Also to whoever had a pop at my grammar thanks for correcting me and thanks for making youself look a bit silly in the process.
  11. Ive been reading this forum for the past few months after stumbling across it whilst tryin to find any information or indication that house prices were ever going to come down, after reading the post that i replied to i thought i would join in the discussion and give my opinion based on my experiences from a large part of my working life. I can also tell you that your local councils and housing associations carry out work that is totally unnecessary, usually around the months of jan, feb , march, got to get the budget spent you see as they wont get the same amount next year. I havent made anything up just ask anybody you know in the building game who works on tenanted properties and they will tell you the same. If you dont know anybody in the building game just go to your local pub on a friday night and look for a downtrodden miserable looking man wearing a hi vis vest and nursing half a lager and an empty buttie box and ask him because odds on hes in the trade and has had a very hard week dealing with tenants
  12. In my experience this is totally incorrect, i used to do surveys for quite a number of years on council propertys to evaluate what work needed doing to the houses, things like new kitchens and bathrooms and rewires etc and in my point of view 80% of the tenants who lived in these propertys had a fantastic quality of life for doing absolutely nothing day in day out. Most of them had numerous children with every gadget and toy a child could want for, the tenants bought these items to entertain the kids so they themselves could sit undisturbed all day and night long watching Sky HD on there 50 inch plasma tvs that tower over the xbox, ps3,wii and sky hd boxes. I lost count the amount of times i had to get keys to the propertys that had been left with the neighbours to gain entry to do the surveys due to the tenants being away for a fortnight in, Mexico, usa, egypt, spain, australia, Canada, as you can tell from those locations i always asked the neighbours if they had gone anywhere nice and they were just some of the replys i got along with a list left by the tenant stating what colour kitchen doors, worktops, tiles, floor coverings they wanted (yes they get to pick whatever they want from a large list of colours and styles) Once the work got underway the fun would begin, the things the lads on the tools would tell me about such and such tenant on a daily basis made me sick to the stomach, for example the severely disabled tenant (as stated on the job sheet provided by the council) who lost his rag with an apprentice electrician who turned off the electricity supply and consequently ruined the tenants boxing session on the wii, apparently a chronic back injury doesnt stop you aiming for something in life, namely the top score in wii sports boxing. Or the nice man at number 23 who threw the carpenter out of his house (well i say his house but you know what i mean) because he was fitting him a new kitchen and after finishing it he then refused to fit the tenants solid oak flooring in the living room, the tenants words were you work for the council so that means you work for me so get the flooring fitted NOW. Or one of my personal favourites was the single mum who ran round to the site office absolutely seething with anger and asked for the bricklayer who was currently rebuilding her garden wall to be sacked because he refused to build her a barbecue, in fairness though like she said "Im a single mum how can you expect me to build my own barbecue" , maybe she could have gotten her 5 kids to help her i suppose. These tenants sometimes had upwards of 25ks worth of work done in the space of a month so you think they would be pleased at having something that most people can only dream of done for free, well no thats were the disturbance payment comes in, the amount varied but on average it was a £100 payment for all the "pain and suffering" that they had to go through for major upgrades to their free houses and then add to that the payment they recieved to redecorate which was promptly nicknamed by the tenants as the party payment due to already having enough free benefit cash stashed away to redecorate so lets party. I could go on and on and on but i think you get the idea, ive surveyed thousands of propertys over the years and as i said before i reckon about 80% of the tenants who didnt work or were "sick or disabled" were a hell of a lot better off than the average hard working man, dont get me wrong there were some tenants who were trying to better themselves and some even ended up gaining training and then jobs at my firm through getting up off their backside and asking the site foreman for a job. So spare a thought for the tradesmen in britain who have to endure this day in day out because its not easy keeping your mouth shut when dealing with these type of people, i know of quite a few lads over the years who have been sacked by various firms due to tenants making up complete lies about them and telling them to the council or housing association just because they got woken up at 8 in the morning by a man wanting to do a days work, better to sack one of the lads than to lose the 12 month contract for refurbishing 300 houses. And dont even get me started on the state of some of these houses, saying that though i suppose its acceptable to live in absolute filth if you have to spend all your benefits on alcohol, marijuana and pizzas.
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