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Simon Taylor

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  1. The children will have to miss out and there is the point at which the market deflates; without the inherited housing wealth being pumped back into housing there will be no-one able to support prices being asked. This is basically the housing market eating itself.
  2. Dear voter, You raise an interesting point. However, many of us in government own houses we rent to low life like you, so, kindly, and with all due respect, FO. We remain, Sir, your loyal servant etc etc
  3. This beggars belief... For three years, the couple tried to negotiate with the bank, arguing that they were still able to pay the £770-a-month mortgage bill from their £1,300 joint income and £200 of mortgage interest support from the Government. So all those people paying rent out of taxed income are subsidising people who bought houses they couldn't really afford.
  4. The fact that banks were happy to lend on an IO basis for 25 years without verifying any ability on the part of the borrower to repay the capital might lead some to conclude that this is the banks' problem. But the very fact that lots of people were able to borrow lots of money to buy houses that , clearly, they couldn't actually afford, makes it everyone else's problem too; this sort of lending pushed house prices up and placed the earnings of the most productive years of a generation into the hands of banks. It'll be hard on the individuals involved, but for the greater good, these houses will have to be surrendered and the loans repaid. IO without the capability for repayment is no longer possible so these existing deals will need to run their course. The deflationary effect on house prices as this lending is removed from the market will be of greater benefit than the pain felt by the banks.
  5. No it hasn't. Most of the estates which are liable to IHT do so because of the value of the family home. True, the income to pay the mortgage when the house was purchased in, say, 1970, for , say, £20,000.00 has been taxed. The huge uplift which results in the same house selling in 2018 for £1,000,000.00 has not been taxed. It's a huge tax-free windfall, a gift from successive governments and their dysfunctional housing policies. Hard to imagine a fairer tax, frankly.
  6. Yep. I don't know why anyone under 40 is exercised by their entitlement to the state pension. it'll be means tested to the point of obsolescence by the time they reach an age at which they might expect to receive it. What people should be concentrating on is arranging their private pension arrangements in a way that stops future governments getting their thieving hands on it to buy the votes of those who haven't made such arrangements.
  7. If you really want a planning shake-up that might actually stand some chance of getting some better quality housing then don't give the large developers anything, make it easier for self-build instead, or small developments at the most (because there's something to be said for a single street not being a mish-mash of different designs). Now we have accord; such a shake up will remove the advantages the volume developers have. Making more land for small scale development and, even better, self build, will give us better housing. People building their own homes have the motivation to invest in good design, quality materials and good design. New development doesn't have to mean more of the same drab, pisspoor housing we currently get; it's just a shame that until the systemic bias changes, this is exactly what we'll get.
  8. Yes, the big builders would still want to treat houses as a commodity. But a reform of planning law would disrupt their business model . Smaller, more innovative business could buy land cheaply and build a better product. Competition improves the breed... The volume housebuilders love the status quo; the complex planning system suits those with the resources to navigate it and the lobbying clout for when things get sticky. Hence HTB which further boosts the market for identikit crappy little boxes. Your point about Victorian housing is valid except that these houses, with improvement and periodical updating, remain attractive and desirable places in which to live. Do you suppose the same will be said about anything built by Barratt, Persimmon et al in a hundred years time? I find it strange that you consider anyone wanting better, cheaper housing for their children as 'wierd'. I wonder as to how you are housed and what motivates your dislike of development.
  9. Indeed. The planning system creates an artificial scarcity of land on which to build. The big housebuilders want to squeeze every last inch, for sound commercial reasons. The result is the poorly designed and badly built new homes which are the smallest yet most expensive in Europe. Freeing up land would bring the price of land down. The money can be spent on the design and the fabric of new housing. Our best looking and most desired housing are the Georgian terraces, Victorian cottages and Edwardian villas which were speculatively built without state intervention. There is a very good article of the detrimental effect of land costs on housing by Philip Aldrick in today's Times. https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/business/land-reform-can-put-the-cost-of-housing-back-on-solid-ground-l5mjccg6j The last paragraph neatly sums up why we may not get the necessary reform from this government.. Reform of the 1961 law is not even that fanciful. Housing, we’re told, will be the centrepiece of the budget and the Tories pledged to make compulsory purchase orders less expensive for councils in their manifesto. It would be a brave move. Private landowners, the party’s natural constituents, made an estimated £9.3 billion profit in 2015, according to the Centre for Progressive Capitalism, or £60,000 on every new home built that year. How bold does the government feel?
  10. Indeed, but it won't support the current scale of the oil industry. Over 60% of global oil demand is for transport fuel.
  11. Now here's some news; buyers of electric cars are no longer exclusive to the ranks of eco-dreamers who knit their own yogurt. EVs make sense for pragmatic , commercial reasons. I'm all for clean air, water, trees, fields , raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens etc etc, but it's not the be all and end all. As for oil. Well. We no longer have very much of it. Those countries which have tend to be places with whom we'd rather not do business given the choice. We we don't have, as long as we depend on imported oil and LNG. A step up of the wholesale shift to localised renewable generation and storage, which is already underway, will be of massive long term economic and social benefit to our country. If the end of the oil age also brings an end to some of the most vile, backward and repressive regimes then that is an added bonus. And I love salad... (next to a bloody Cote du Boeuf and a bottle of Cahors)
  12. Yep. It is so obviously the way to a fair, dynamic, meritocratic economy/society we have to wonder why no government has ever tried it. One could be forgiven for thinking that the established political class benefit from the status quo...
  13. Oh I don't know.. we already have NPR everywhere so it's not as though we are anonymous at present. If it means that those for whom RFL and, more importantly, insurance are an unnecessary irritation are prevented from getting on the roads then that is a good thing.
  14. True, but even without tax, electric motors are more efficient on the crude basis of pence/mile. The taxation issue is moot and no, governments won't just shrug and put another fifty pence on a packet of cigs. If anything, a shift to electric, fully connected vehicles will make revenue collection easier and more efficient; no vehicle will be permitted to be sold without the telemetrics to allow tracking and charging per mile; the rent to buy firms already have technology in the cars they fund to immobilise the car in the event that the monthly payment isn't made. There is no reason why DVLA couldn't use the same technology. No fuel duty, no road tax, just one charge per mile driven . Revenue lost through untaxed vehicles ceases to be an issue and insurance records will be linked and any cars not on the register can be rendered static. It will also ensure that those who enjoy free motoring by charging a car from the solar panels on their warehouse roof - people like me for example - pay to use the roads. A smart, forward thinking government will see this as an opportunity and will be way ahead of the curve.... however , we don't have one of those.
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