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RichB

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Everything posted by RichB

  1. There was a book called freakonomics that had a few interesting things to say. The most relevant bit was a statistical analysis of house prices, asking prices and the terminology used in adverts - basically saying that the adverts with the least 'bumpf' wording (fabulous, amazing, bargain, great etc) did less well than the pure descriptive ones - and that particularly the estate agents own properties avoided the bumpf like the plague. Reading the standard it was hard to read between the ******** - the staples were in the way...
  2. 8 is still easy in aberdeen I think.
  3. RichB

    Debt

    You aren't paying attention are you zaranna? The gvmt reckons the average graduate earns £400k over the average non graduate over their lifetimes. Even tax rake of only 25% is £100k. If the cost of educating a University student for 3 or 4 years is truly over £25k per annum, someone really needs to look at the business side of academia in a hurry. Hell, top residential public schools cost less than that. If we actually look at the tax rate as being closer to 40% then it works out to over £40k pa for a 4 year course. You cannot possibly tell me that the actual cost of educating a university graduate is more than either of those figures.
  4. RichB

    Debt

    On the contrary, the real cost is absorbed by the exhorbitantly high wages (gvmt estimate £400k average over their working life) earned by a graduate compared to a non grad. Given that tax is going to be paid on that portion at around at least 30% + the national insurance, then the government rakes in at least £120k for the average graduate in extra taxes - thats before we factor in anything exciting like the extra fuel tax for the large car, the 17.5% rake on sales etc. But as a lecturer I am sure you have considered this already. Not medicine - ended up with an MA in history and an MSc in AI. Now sitting pretty as a DBA for an international online gaming group, so the £130 a month repayments are less relevant. But when your take home is £1300 its a lot.
  5. I am considering moving back to aberdeen - but only if I can get a contract job at c. London rates (£400+ a day)... then live in my student flat with the interest on the mortgage costing a massive £210 a month...
  6. Me 2... 5x mortgage on 50k just for a grotty 2 bed flat is not worthwhile. As for moving out of london - well sure, if theres a decent place with decent transport options ok, but these are the ones that are massively overpriced imho.
  7. RichB

    Debt

    :yup: hey, even the gvmnt says its ok...!
  8. Are there any decent buyers agents out there? Someone who goes out finds a bunch of properties for you and negotiates it down to a sensible price?
  9. RichB

    Debt

    I don't know how many of you lot are (former) students, but indulge me for a moment while I tell a tale of Government backed debt pushers. I started university in '93. Student loan of almost 2k was available (no grant for me, just fees paid of £750) but this was a huge amount of debt and most people shunned it. The trouble began in the first few weeks as the banks started to offer interest free overdrafts of up to £400. This is a palatable amount, tide you over between parental maintenance cheques. Only buys a few weeks worth of drinks though. The initial hurdle of debt acceptance overcome, the heavy hitters at the Student Loans Company - backed and sponsored by the government come into play. Pretty rapidly (within the first semester) most of the folk I knew were in hock for around £2200. A few had a plan to invest it. A small percentage did. The rest of us blew it in a couple of months - on computers / hifi / drinks / cars. Mostly drinks. Not sure the exact return but £1700 of government money ploughed into alcoholic beverages at what 30%+ tax, then index link the payments over x years. Winner. Anyway, in the second year the bank offers £800 interest free overdraft, SLC another £1800. 3rd year bank is up to £1200 and SLC about £2k. At this stage - or maybe slightly before - credit card approvals come through. Maybe start you light - £800. Within 6 months thats easily up to £2k. By this time the student has £1800 overdraft, £5500 SLC and £2k on the cc. Of course then I continued for another 4 years. Come out of that with £3300 OD, £10,600 SLC and £3000 cc. Or itro £17k debt. Start first job out of uni at about £19k. Not bad. Ok so I owe almost 1 years salary - or rather 1/3 of a mortgage - already. Nice one. Of course, now I am working I need to find a room £350mnth. Some suits. Travel at over £100mnth. Council tax. Bills. Food? Due to excessive overdraft - no graduate loan at pref rates... Debt payments - interest only/minimal payments at this point. A year or so later some white goods and a bigscreen tv on 5 years tic at £50mnth. Bargain. Have 2. Seems like the credit companies like me again. New credit card, balance transfer to interest free. Soon ofcourse thats 2x£3,3k ccards. So an £8k loan, smashing, a bit of breathing room. Pay off the cards. So, soon that's an £8k loan + 2x£3.3k CCs. Best get another card to balance transfer. So £4.5kcc + £2k cc. Then 2x£3.3k ccs +£4.5k. So another £8k will sort that out. Of course earnings are up by this stage - £30k +. But on top of the £17k student debt, £5k white goods theres now £10k ccards and £16k loans. Or 1.5x salary. Over half takehome pay goes as debt servicing. Fortunately I had bought a flat for £32k as a student. So theres this £27k mortgage I havent mentioned. Which happily mew'd up to 47k. Add in a loan from mum and debts down to £6k of student loans and whitegoods. Mortgage up from £190 to £290, total debt payments down to £470 (inc mortgage). Happy bunny. Not terribly interested in borrowing money any more. Recovered addict perhaps? Personally I feel the whole thing was an orchestrated, and government led campaign to get young middle class kids comfortable with debt that otherwise they would never have taken, to spend money they would not have had for several years, on stuff that dissappeared in a short time span - real short term consumers. And I understand my debts pale in comparison to the current generations of students...
  10. Let it out and rent while you work out if the jobs worthwhile? Sell it and do the same? 6 months rent wont break you, and will give you time to properly suss out the area you want to settle in.
  11. hmmm... buying from someone like asda, what level of warranty would you get? Consumer rights and all that.
  12. They could also package some extras with it - a years free buildings insurance for example. And just imagine the nectar points on £300k!
  13. Mostly I just see me getting another hole ripped if I sell from down here. "Put it on at offers over 45k, we'll only charge you 5k to do it". Basically I think that unless I go up there for a year or so contract job, I stand little or no chance of getting out of it cleanly.
  14. Ok, I will pass on bit of the sap side wisdom of BTL. I bought a flat in aberdeen in 97 while a student there. In 2001 I moved down to london to get a proper job, so stuck it up for sale. Not a sniff. So up for rent. Mortgage was £27k, or £190 odd a month. Rental was £300 (after agents keep £50 odd). Voids, bad tenants, bad repairs, council tax, safety checks, routine maintenance etc probably set me back to the point where I have made an overall loss on it. I can afford to buy down in london - I am just unwilling to part with a 5x mortgage (on £50k) for a reasonable 2 bed flat. I dont see it as being worthwhile. Anyway, back to the flat... MEW'd it for an extra £20k - pushing the mortgage up to £290 a month (£210 ish interest - but getting me out of paying over £1k a month in student based debt payments), rental is up to £325. So effectively £30 a month in my pocket -if- theres no expenses. But there are always expenses, doubly so living 500 miles from it. New holes frequently get ripped. Anyway, the point is, the thinking goes that even if it costs me £1k a year, then someone else is buying me a property which in 25 years time will be still generating an income enough to cover the costs of renting a basic flat in an uninspiring part of the country, or indeed can be sold for that value (whatever it is). It is THAT that I think most of the very amatuer btls are looking at, not the short or medium term cash flow situation.
  15. You could look into using something like goldmoney.com ?
  16. I'm guessing here that you don't have a private clamping firm looking after your off street parking...
  17. Um, just a question to throw at you lot. When I talk to people over in eastern europe, they all seem to think of the UK still in terms of being an economic powerhouse, shades of empire etc. When I tell them about the debt levels I see around me, and the extent to which house prices have inflated, the manner in which we seem to be almost entirely devoted to services/retail/financial products they seem a bit suprised. So, my question is what happens to the pound once enough of the rest of the world figures out that we basically make up the cash out of nothing?
  18. A whole new generation growing up with Candid Camera... Perhaps a bit of Running Man for after?
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