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House Price Crash Forum

A17

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Everything posted by A17

  1. It is rising because the Brexit uncertainty is removed. Uncertainty about a deal was worse for the currency markets than "no deal" or "bad deal". Currency charts Interesting to go back forty years. Whilst the 8-10% immediate Brexit vote drop was shocking, it actually led to a period of somewhat stability. Compared to the 25-30% drop in the late summer/autumn of 2008 - a much higher drop but perhaps less noticeable on a daily basis as it was spread over a few months.
  2. It looks like something from Harry Potter. Although I'm sure it doesn't magically expand when you enter it.
  3. Pre 2008: the 10% were taking from the 90%. In 2008 it was decided that the 1% would take from the 99% Now it feels as though the 0.1% have decided to take everything from the 99.9%.
  4. Because somebody else will have to pick up the mess. Modern politics in the UK isn't about governing or leading. It's about keeping the plates spinning long enough for you to build up enough contacts or reputation to get a cushy job at an investment bank/charity foundation/quango.
  5. Going back many years (1930s?) I think there was an official agreement between Cunard and the government - the government would subsidize the cost of building the ocean liners, but had the right to requisition them in wartime. Not sure if that agreement was carried through until more recent times though.
  6. Yes, I agree that Uber probably created a lot of its own market - a large number of its users would have probably taken public transport rather than a black cab. When I lived in London I rarely took black cabs - perhaps once a year to lug family presents and a suitcase from the tube station to the house when staying for Christmas. A black cab isn't really convenient in the way that Ubers are, as they mainly congregate around railway stations and tourist attractions waiting for fares. Most black cab users are probably not paying for it themselves or are tourists wanting the experience - neither would necessarily bother with Ubers. As an aside - I lost a lot of sympathy with black cabs after an awful journey. The driver didn't know the destination (about a mile away), then was rude when I told him how to get there. He claimed the credit card machine was broken, and refused to write me a receipt. He then made a big show about delaying my change, taking his time to open a coin bag, muttering under his breath in an attempt to embarrass me into saying "don't worry about the change" (the fare was £12.50, I gave him a £20 note, he gave me a £5 note and then started sulking over the £2.50).
  7. The whole problem with taxis in London is: Driving passengers is at best a semi skilled job (yes there are criminal checks etc - but most people would pass them) The Knowledge requires years of learning, but has been superseded by satnavs completely over the past few years. I've never really believed the claims that black cab drivers know all the secret routes and shortcuts. See also blacksmiths and farriers. Black cabs have been trying their luck for years - "don't go south of the river", "card machine isn't working", "haven't got the change". Black cabs have a powerful lobby group. A black cab is 3x the price of an Uber. The middle ground doesn't exist for spontaneous journeys. Minicabs can work for airport trips and doctors appointments, but not much else. Somewhere, somehow, something is going to give.
  8. The good thing about boats is they tend to hold their value, so he would have probably got most of his purchase money back. It is the running costs that kill you. At least sail yachts don't need fuel most of the time.
  9. The happiest two days in your life: the day you buy the boat, and the day you sell the boat. I know a few people who either scrimped and saved to buy a boat, or bought it with a lump sum inheritance. Unfortunately they hadn't accounted for the costs involved and had to sell them a few years later. Insurance, mooring fees, storage on land in winter, a hundred other things. Motor boats only get a few MPG - it can easily cost you nearly £100 in fuel to take it out to sea for a few hours!
  10. Prices in 1995 Back in the day a one bedroom apartment on the Costa Blanca cost £16.5k and a villa cost £40k. Although it was 1995, the prices are certainly within the redundancy payoff/inheritance/retirement lump sum scale of prices. That just isn't true now. Yep. It all sounded great moving there aged 58 after you sold the cab or were given an early retirement payoff from the council. Less so when you are 75, you don't speak the language, your family aren't keen to spend all their annual leave in the same place. You can't extrapolate two weeks of holiday fun into a permanent sustainable lifestyle.
  11. It sounds like the USA. A percentage of the property value sounds great in principle, but in reality it leads to a huge expensive bureaucracy of continual revaluations and appeals. Who has built an extension? Who has had a pool installed? Whose neighborhood has gone uphill? Who got a bargain on a house because it hadn't been updated in 50 years and what does that mean for their neighbors? I am also naturally wary of campaigns where they promise that 75% of the population will pay less than they do currently. Under their proposals I would pay nearly £700 more per year for my modest one bedroom flat in London.
  12. Millennials buying sub $100k old homes in small towns It certainly is an interesting website clicky. In many parts of the USA you can buy an older home for not much money at all. Granted, there aren't many jobs, but with more and more people working from home for longer it can be a good life for your circumstances. I can't see it happening in the UK though.
  13. Just an anecdote from fiction, but Manuel the Spanish waiter in Fawlty Towers seemed to work a low skilled job 2 years after the UK joined the EEC, but 11 years before Spain joined. Obviously it is just a television show, but there must have been some truth in it to allow the comedy to work for contemporary viewers.
  14. I do feel sorry for these people. They are on the sharp end of the current UK mission statement: "No homebuilding company or financial firm should ever have to suffer even the slightest decrease in profits, or take any responsibility for their actions". However, as @spyguy pointed out the story is always they planned to sell the flat in two years, presumably to make an easy profit. Perhaps they are the ones who are left standing when the music stops...
  15. Coincidentally in the news China's commercial jet aircraft See how this goes. China has a huge internal flight market, which could provide enough of a customer base.
  16. I am a little surprised that Chinese auto manufacturers have not made inroads to the west. In the 60s Japanese cars were a joke, likewise South Korean cars in the 80s. Now look at them. For some time now I have expected China to put a sub £10,000 compact car on the market in the UK, but no sign of that happening really. Sure, it would be a subject for comedians, but at that price people would buy it.
  17. Both of which are internal repression, not really impressive in terms of military capability. I should have clarified attacking somebody externally. Of course. My point was that Russia doesn't really do military "adventures" for what of a better word, but will happily cause trouble with its smaller neighbors (which of course used to be part of Russia). No idea tbh. My view is that we haven't had two technically advanced nations fight each other since WW2 (maybe Korea) - it's always been a scrappy regional conflict or the USA et.al. bombing a weaker country. So what would happen if a major conflict did break out between the USA/China/Russia(maybe), where modern warfare technology will go up against each other?
  18. When was the last time China actually fired a bullet or missile in anger, apart from fighting with Indian border guards in the Himalayas? Russia seems to be happiest involved in bullying squabbles with its neighbors.
  19. My experience was quite similar. Growing up in a semi in suburbia (1990s), there was a mix of families with young children, families with older children (teenagers) and long term residents whose children had left home. About 5-10 years ago there were no children. My parents used to comment how they bought sweets for Halloween but never had anybody knock on the door. Having said that, there have recently been some families with younger children move in, so perhaps things are changing!
  20. It's the people who boast about how much their house has gone up in value, but can't link that to why they have their 23 and 26 year old children still living there that crack me up. Or the people in Cornwall who moan about outsiders buying houses that local people can't afford, ignoring the fact that it is "local people" who are selling them!
  21. I remember 15-20 years ago almost all UK customer call centres were based in India. Now it seems a lot rarer - you often hear a Scottish or North-Eastern accent. Eventually the wage arbitrage shrinks, compared to the cost of losing customers due to abysmal service, so it makes sense to keep you services within the UK. China's problem will be maintaining its growth. Moving people from farming to industry is easy-ish, and increases GDP per person from $1,000 to $10,000 per year. To increase it to $20,000 or $30,000 per year will be much harder. The easy growth has gone. Will China escape the middle income trap? Possibly - its sheer size gives it an advantage of other countries that have fallen into it (even large countries like Brazil and Mexico), and China does own its high value industries. However, its international reputation has severely fallen over the past several years. You might be happy to allow China to manufacture consumer electronics (owned by Japanese or American companies), but would you be happy for China to develop your communications networks? Would you be happy to fly on a Chinese designed and built passenger jet?
  22. Falling demand leads to falling prices. However, the falling prices mean that more people can now afford to buy, driving up demand, hence pushing prices even higher than they were before! I've heard a few comments to that effect.
  23. Although I do feel sorry for people in this situation. They bought their apartments in good faith, and it is disgusting how building companies etc. seem to be able to wiggle their way out of any form of responsibility whatsoever. I haven't seen a total price tag, but the estimate for London was £4billion, so I'm guessing maybe £10billion overall. The people who are affected tend to be people who have made some effort in life to buy a property, but were reliant on government schemes due to HPI. Compared to the amount thrown at the benefits system it is small-ish change. If the government were to step in I wouldn't be too annoyed, as long as the replacement work stayed away from the big builders who caused the problems. https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-london-51851900 - £4b in London
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