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House Price Crash Forum


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Everything posted by DrBob

  1. "House prices only go up", eh? Sounds like someone's been telling porkie pies
  2. This one is at 124,950, and says 'stamp duty paid': http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-159...=3&tr_t=buy
  3. Surely this will be the pattern of many price negotiations over the coming years. Prices fall slowly because vendors don't want to part with their paper gains. The vendors probably regard you as just as recalcitrant as you regard them. Decide what you think the place is worth, offer 10% less and make one or two concessions on the way (but never overstep your original perceived value). Keep looking at other properties whilst awaiting responses on your offer - something better and cheaper might come along. Make sure the vendor and their agent know you're looking elsewhere! What we really need now are some TV programmes aimed at first-time buyers on how to bargain house prices down (like the ones where they buy a used car)!
  4. I wonder whether visitor numbers to HPC.co.uk would be an good indicator of public confidence in the housing market. Anyone have a graph of HPC visitor numbers over the last months/years?
  5. 6.25% fully priced-in to the 1-year rates at http://www.swap-rates.com/UKSwap_extended.html
  6. This picture appeared on the BBC Leeds website this morning. Looks like the flat has just escaped flooding at the time of this photo (presuming that the bottom of those windows are at floor level). I don't know whether this picture was taken at the peak of the river level or not, though.
  7. Forget the submarines. I'd be worried about this barge.
  8. I'm not joking! NZ housing is ridiculously overpriced, probably more so than the UK. Here are some stats if you want the evidence: Median NZ annual income: $24,400 (March 2006 data) Median NZ house price: $350,000 (June 2007 data) Official cash interest rates are 8% and 2-year fixed mortage rates are a staggering 9.25%. I'll think you'll find that affordability is much worse than in the UK. Home loans less affordable in May http://www.stuff.co.nz/4102165a13.html http://www.stuff.co.nz/4102165a13.html' rel="external nofollow">NZPA | Wednesday, 20 June 2007 A home loan affordability index shows the cost of a mortgage rose in May to 79.3 per cent of the average weekly take-home pay . But hey, I'm not going to NZ to make money in buy-to-let!
  9. You could be right here. I'd suggest a first-world country with abundant natural resources (including arable land) and low population density. Canada and Australia spring to mind. [i'm emigrating to New Zealand, but this might not be the most rational decision as house prices are ridiculously high, the economy isn't in fantastic shape and it's rather earthquake-prone. Mind you, they do great coffee and eggs benedict!]
  10. http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-157...se&tr_t=buy "A modern two bedroomed ground floor apartment overlooking the river Aire" Current Flooding Situation Page last updated: 17:30 on 25-Jun-07 http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/subje.../Northeast.html http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/subjects/flood/Northeast.html' rel="external nofollow">River Aire Central Leeds North Bank S1 Status: Received at: Severe Flood Warning 16:17 on 25-Jun-2007 Businesses and properties including Capita and KPMG. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- River Aire at Clarence Dock and Armouries Status: Received at: Severe Flood Warning 16:21 on 25-Jun-2007 Businesses and properties including Armouries and University Halls of Residence. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- River Aire at The Calls Status: Received at: Severe Flood Warning 16:11 on 25-Jun-2007 Businesses and properties on the left bank along the River Aire. Nor today. They may have left it a bit late to try and sell this place. Sandbags included?
  11. A quick peek at the FTSE100 top 5 winners and losers would suggest that some are positioning themselves for a recession: Top 5 winners: Tate & Lyle (food) British American Tobacco (tobacco) Shire (pharmaceuticals) DRAX (utilities/electricity) BP (oil) Top 5 losers: Anglo American (miner) Xstrata (miner) MAN group (derivatives broker) Kazakhmys (miner) Persimmon (house builder) The winners are all defensive stocks (OK, you could argue that BP might do badly in recession as oil demand falls, but there are lots of other factors playing with the BP share place at present). The losers are in commodities (demand falls in recession), housing and finance. Of course, watching this is a mugs game, as the list will be completely different by the end of the day!
  12. BROWN SET TO CALL 2008 ELECTION Monday June 25,2007 http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/11152 GORDON Brown has put Britain on alert for a General Election next year by promising radical change from the Tony Blair years. In a highly significant move, he used his speech to unveil his elec­tion-fighting team. He appointed new Deputy Labour Leader Harriet Harman as party chairman and made Transport Secretary Douglas Alexander – a Government rising star – as his General Election co-ordinator. Aides confirmed the move was an indication that Mr Brown is preparing the election battleground al­though he is understood to have ruled out one this year. Insiders expect the country to go to the polls as early as next May, more than two-and-a-half years before an election is necessary. Mr Brown promised a programme of change that delighted the Labour faithful, with a call for a massive programme of house building and expansion of council housing. We can make affordable housing for all one of the great causes of our time,” he said. On the face of it, a large increase in house building should bring on a house price crash, but with an election a year away I can't see Brown letting this happen. Remember that despite a small recent drop, around 70% of households are owner occupied. I'm sure that owner occupiers are more likely to vote than those who rent. So how will Brown increase affordability without allowing house prices to drop? Stamp duty reform, an increase in 'shared ownership' schemes or reintroducing MIRAS for first-time buyers are probably on the cards. Here's another possibility: Brown promotes 'affordable housing', not affordable home ownership. Perhaps he's going to encourage a new generation of corporate landlords, and take Britain back to the 1950s era of mass private renting. House prices would be supported by large private firms (private equity-backed?) buying up homes for long-term rental. Either way, although the economics of house prices clearly dictate that a fall is overdue, political meddling is likely to delay this. :angry:
  13. There do seem to be a lot of price falls in SW19, but bear in mind that most of the properties are listed twice (and some three or more times), as they have a different listing for each estate agent. This would fit with the pattern of the last house price crash in London - suburbs are the first to fall. PS: Is someone really trying to sell this flat for 465k
  14. Observer: Low meant a dream home: high is a nightmare Sunday June 6, 2004 http://observer.guardian.co.uk/cash/story/...1232162,00.html http://observer.guardian.co.uk/cash/story/0,6903,1232162,00.html' rel="external nofollow">Several lenders still offer deeply-discounted loans, including the Portman Building Society and Northern Rock bank. Northern Rock's offering charges 1.98 per cent for the first two years, but rises to its standard variable rate (currently 6.29 per cent, but which could be higher in two years' time). The loan has redemption penalties which continue for five years beyond the low rate period, costing from 8 to 2 per cent of the outstanding mortgage. Someone repaying a £100,000 loan in the second year would have to pay £8,000 in penalties. Portman Building Society has a deal starting at 2.29 per cent rising later to the equivalent of bank base rate plus 1.99 per cent. At current rates the long-term cost of borrowing on this deal would be 6.24 per cent. But a Portman spokeswoman says this is made 'crystal clear' to borrowers at the outset. When selling the loans, the society looks at applicants' ability to repay at the higher as well as lower rate. There is no evidence, adds the spokeswoman, that any are experiencing difficulties with these mortgage deals. Diane Watson, a PayPlan counsellor, says that 20 per cent of her clients face mortgage payment problems. 'Whereas people were paying £200 or £300 a month, we're seeing people facing payments of £700, £800, even £1,100 a month.' She says that borrowers become trapped in a vicious cycle: because they have missed payments on their mortgage, personal loans or credit cards - and possibly incurred county court judgments - their credit rating plummets. Then, when they try to remortgage to consolidate their debts, they are charged a premium rate by their new lender because they are deemed high risk. This often means they cannot afford their mortgage payments and need to continue using their credit cards, building up further debt. Looks like this issue was reported on back in 2004! Without a Paddle is right - borrowers could remortgage and pay the penalty, adding that cost onto their new mortgage (provided their credit rating is still kosher). The customers who will be in trouble are those who weren't disciplined with their finances during the discount period. Doubtless a small minority(?)
  15. Repossession. I'm not usually such a pedant, but we'd better all get used to spelling that word!
  16. This really is fantastic news for those of us who rent. Crash momentum really is building up in the press.
  17. I can't imagine anything more foolhardy! Borrowing 125% of the value of a property? To pay for prior overspend on credit cards? It's no surprise that there will be borrowers willing to take up these deals, but I'm astonished that lenders are participating. I presume the lenders have calculated their liabilities and decided this is worthwhile(?). This whole scenario looks like a recipe for disaster (and a wave of 'mis-selling' claims).
  18. I'm not convinced that major tax changes are needed. The current tax regime should suffice if capital gains tax is fully applied when the property is sold, and rental income above the mortgage interest cost is fully taxed. However, I do think that the rights of tenants need to be improved. This needs wholesale reform of the 'assured shorthold tenancy'. There must be: - formal mechanisms for agreeing and capping rent rises (e.g. capped to an index) - formal mechanisms for resolving disputes (e.g. a maximum time between tenant reporting a fault and repair; a system of refunds for the tenant if repairs not done) - a longer notice period for landlords which lengthens with length of the tenancy (e.g. 3 months up to first year, 6 months up to second year, then 12 months) - obligatory registration and standards for all buy-to-let properties (not just the largest multioccupancy ones) - a simple system of fixed charges (to prevent arbitrary and excessive charges by landlords) If these simple steps were taken, renting would be far safer and simpler for tenants. Rogue buy-to-let landlords would be put off. There are great potential macroeconomic benefits to renting (more mobile workforce, less boom-and-bust, fewer of the population relying on a single asset class for their entire savings), but to realise these benefits renting needs to be properly regulated. I hope the government can see this. I'd happily rent for much of my career (and be flexible/able to change jobs etc) but can't imagine doing so with children in the current system. How can you send your children to school when you might be thrown out of your property with just one or two months' notice?
  19. That's quite a scary way of putting it! Does anyone know which banks have heavy hedge fund exposure? I'm with Cahoot (owned by Abbey) and Sainsburys bank (half-owned by HBOS). Both accounts contain <<33k (!)
  20. There really isn't much of a tie-up with the NS&I certificates: 1. You can remove your money at any time 2. If you remove your money at any point after the first year you get all your interest up to the last month 3. The only way you might lose out is if you pull your money out within the first year, in which case you get no interest, but there's still no charge on your capital Sounds like a reasonable offer to me. After all, if there is a house price correction it'll take 3-5 years before the market bottoms out. Now what are the lengths of those NS&I certificates again? Oh: 3 and 5 years! http://www.nsandi.com/products/ilsc/index.jsp
  21. I'd definitely go for the NS&I index-linked savings certificates. They're safe, inflation-linked and tax-free. There's no way a high interest account can beat the savings on a tax-free investment. Although they have a fixed-term (three or five years), you can withdraw your money at any time. There's no penalty unless you withdraw your money in the first year (in which case you forfeit your interest - no other loss).
  22. Brilliantly put! I have the disconcerting sensation of watching a car crash in slow motion.
  23. Surely in a rapidly rising market, there's no incentive for builders to complete their homes quickly - if they wait longer, they'll just get more when they sell. Most important thing is to snap up the land and get the planning permission applications in. In a static or falling market (now) surely the builders will have a much greater incentive to complete the work quickly, sell up and get out. I suspect the time taken to build will quicken anyway, regardless of the OFT investigation.
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