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House Price Crash Forum


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  1. Hi, I've been lurking on this site since October 2004, so I thought it was about time I registered. I found this site after reading the This Is Money forums; the wife and I were considering moving out of London at the time. I've learned a lot in that time about the housing market, and economics in general. It has also influenced me in terms of my attitude to the housing market; I was persuaded by the arguments and even bought the book 'Bubbles and how to survive them' by John Calverley. We ended up moving from London to Manchester and STR'd about a year ago, banking a six-figure profit in the process. We then thought we were in a great position, receiving hundreds of pounds a month in interest which effectively paid nearly half the rent, waiting to buy when the market slowed down. However, the reality is that our rented house is not quite what we want in terms of location and other things, and our landlord has put the house on the market (overpriced) so we need to be out in a couple of months. We have cats so moving around all the time isn't ideal, which is why we are in the process of buying. Our experience of the market in Manchester over the past year (which is how long we have been looking) is that yes, when we first started looking, the market was slow and most of the places we looked at had been on the market for a very long time (and some are still on); only in the less desirable areas was the market more buoyant. Towards the end of last year is when the whole market seemed to be stagnant, which is when we seriously started to look. We tried a tactic of making 'silly' 90% offers on large properties but discovered that greedy vendors were holding on waiting for the market to pick up. And it seems at the moment that they were right, as in the past couple of months everything we looked at seems to have sold. Acquaintances of mine who have been trying to sell for months have suddenly got reasonably high offers. One of the properties we offered on even went into a bidding war! To be honest, from an OO point of view I don't care what happens to the market, as we can easily afford the place we are buying and it is a nice house in one of the best areas of Manchester. I still think that houses are overvalued and will eventually fall in real terms to about 3x wages; it's just a question of when. As long as affordability is good (low interest rates) then there is nothing to force vendors to drop prices substantially. As someone said, people hate losses more than they love gains, which is probably why nominal price falls take so long to happen. I'm actually still hoping for a crash as I would like to BTL in future, when the numbers make sense. I've pencilled in 2011 for buying my first BTL property...
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