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House Price Crash Forum


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Posts posted by Prof

  1. Hi, In 2001 just after starting work, I opened a Maxi Stocks and Shares ISA with ABN Amro. For this I paid in £3500.

    Fast forward to today and the fund is now managed by Artemis. My initial investment of £3500 in 2001 is now worth £3400. A LOSS OF £100 - NOT INCLUDING INFLATION

    I was told to keep it in and it will come good, but I've lost patience and need to move it.

    How do I go about moving my Stocks and Shares ISA and to whom? The focus is all on cash ISA's but I'm not finding much about these that I can understand.

    Thanks in advance.

    I reckon the secret of long term investing is not to neccesarily invest for the long term. You might have found that after 2 or 3 years, your investment might have been up about 20-30%. Stock markets can be volatile (stating the obvious), and managed funds even more so. The problem is that it is tempting, after "making" 10%+ per year for a year ot two, to think this will carry on. Sometimes it pays to cut and run.

    If you invested early in 2001, then you may never have been in profit since then, which does go to show that long term investment in the equity markets doesn`t always pay off (and I`d call 9 years - "long term"). I believe in drip feeding into the markets (pound cost averaging) which can turn a crash in the market into a benefit for you long term investment. Choosing the right fund can also help, but luck is factor too.

  2. The point I'm trying to make is I do all of what you suggest but in my experience A&L/Santander have been the worst for dropping rates and slapping on charges.

    The A&L current account was not my main one hence why I did not notice the charges straight away. I did however make good use of the 6% rate up to £2500 on it for the first 12 months so although I lost out on charges, I just about came out with extra at the end, but with a lesson learnt.

    A&L were ok actually before they were sold to Santander so it makes me suspicious about who is the cause of the drop in service, hence why I would not recommend using them now.

    But thanks for the 'how to save for noobs' guide anyway.

    Fairy nuff.

    It is possible that Santander/A&L might be one of the worst offenders for charges and dropping rates, but I treat all banks the same - I don`t trust them.

  3. ******! This thread reminded me to open a new ISA with Santander advertised as 3% + base rate. They've now dropped the rate to 2.7% Barstewards!!! mad.gif

    I think they offered the slightly better rate before the ISA deadline, to attract those that hadn`t used their ISA allowance in 09/10.

    The current offer is one of the best available for 10/11 at the moment. Current rate is 3.2%, and will increase IF the BoE raises rates, plus it won`t drop below 3.2%. Most other banks are not even offering 3%, and some are simply variable rates, but not tied to base rate.

  4. And today's lesson is: don't bank with Santander!

    I got burnt by them when they:

    1) Keep dropping the interest rates on cash ISAs & savings a year after you open it. (Yes, it is in the T&Cs but you have to be careful to remember when to switch. Also, their rates without the introductory bonus are pretty poor.)

    2) Started charging me for an overdraft without sending me any form of notice (mail, email, anything). (I left only £4 in a current account, but forgot to pay in the minimum £500 one month - so they charge me £5 for underfunding, go £1 overdrawn and then it's £5/day until I happened to log into internet banking and notice the charges. :( )

    Seriously, get your money out of any bank they own and put it somewhere less likely to screw you over.

    First of all, I am in no way sympathetic to UK banks.

    In answer to you points -

    1) Really ? That`s shocking. No other bank does this, right ?

    2) Yes, some notice should have been given. Seems like their charges for being overdrawn aren`t too bad though.

    OK. Now show me a bank that pays decent interest on savings accounts, which doesn`t fall within a year or so and charges you less than £5 per day if you go overdrawn (and tells you instantly if you do).

    Here`s my lesson for today :

    Shop arround for the best savings rates, and be prepared to move your money after a while (and keep an eye on those interest rates, if they are variable).

    Keep some money in any account that charges if you go overdrawn. If you are "sailing close to the wind", frequently check your current balance, and be careful what you spend.

    That should help.

  5. Rand, Tolkien, Coleridge....

    It was the arrival of NP that transformed not the music, but the lyrics.

    Their first album was pre-Peart and we heard lyrics such as:

    "Who-ooah I need some love" and "Oh yes, I need some love"

    Compare this to

    "Another toy that helped destroy the elder race of Man"

    and "Elven songs and endless nights, sweet wine and soft relaxing lights"


    "And the meek shall inherit the Earth".

    Not under New Labour they won`t. Mind you, the lazy shall inherit some good benefits.

  6. Well as all builders will add this charge anyway we can say that the profits are included in the build cost.

    How many times have you been quoted a price for something and then been asked to pay 'profits' on top?

    My guess is probably never.

    True, but maybe I wasn`t making my point very clear. I typed.......

    I think that the lowest price a property could be would be cost of land + building costs + some profit for the builder. We seem to have a different equation at the moment, where the cost of the land and the profit for the builder is largely influenced by the availability of cheap credit (or liar loans ;) ).

    The profit for the builder is one component that makes up the cost of a new property. If the buyer has a large wad of cash available (borrowed from the bank), then it is only natural that the builder will put up his price. That`s why I heard stories of plumbers/brickies/chippies on £200+ per day. I expect some of them would now be happy on £100 per day. Meanwhile, I know of several "fat cats" in the building trade who were making quite a lot of wonga out of the property boom. Yes, they were busy, but their large incomes were fuelled by easy lending.

    Of course, it isn`t quite so simple as this, because the cost of a new home will be largely influenced by the "value" of older homes too. So even if the builder cut his margin (because buyers had less money to offer), the asking price would be related to the average cost of nearby property.

    Sorry, this is a bit OT, and might not make sense !

  7. Cost of the build includes profits for the builder.

    I beg to differ.

    If I am a builder (building company), I employ plumbers, bricklayers, roofers etc. I buy the materials, pay my workers, then add my profit. By "cost of build", I meant the cost of labour + materials.

    Ayn Rand ? My favourite band have been influenced by her work, I believe.


    This is pretty well spot on. It can be no coincidence that when the banks "shut" after the credit crunch, HPI went into reverse. Now the banks are dishing the wonga again (albeit more slowly), HPI is back.

    It would be interesting to see what the average 3 bed semi would sell for if people had to save for the purchase, instead of borrowing. If people had to save the £100k (or whatever) first, I suppose it might put the average age of a FTB`er up a bit. Mind you, isn`t the average age of a FTB`er already well above 30 ?

    I think that the lowest price a property could be would be cost of land + building costs + some profit for the builder. We seem to have a different equation at the moment, where the cost of the land and the profit for the builder is largely influenced by the availability of cheap credit (or liar loans ;) ).

  9. Welcome back all the bulls.

    lots of posts recently about how buying a house NOW is the right time, valuations are up, get on with life etc etc.

    Thanks for the advice, but no thanks.

    2007: lending cracked the banking system...first the shadow system then the real system.

    2008: banks "had" to be rescued...they got money from the taxpayer....Nulab EXPANDED the public sector and spending.

    2009: Gordon Saved the World, rescued defaulting homebuyers, spent like billio for STIMULUS.

    2010: we have returned to normal...well apart from the election...We have Greece about to default/IMF...Ireland 32billion short, Portugal downrated, Spain a basket case and yet, and yet this return to normal features a UK economy in a worse state in reality than ANY of them.

    ALL the political electioneers are saying the spending is going to end....this means less support for the banks to come, this means no more stimulus, this means higher interest rates.

    fill yer boots guys...its your life.

    me...Im getting on with mine.

    I hear ya`, but it`s been a long wait. We know the UK property market should have corrected, but still we wait..............

  10. Seems to be the wrong place to pose the question, as many people here seem to do quite well for themselves.

    Maybe. I would say that the reason I`m doing "well for myself" is through a little discipline with my finances (a little bit of luck has also helped, but even without that luck, I`d still be doing OK). No big income here, I`m afraid, and no big house, either (which helps).

    The trick ? It`s very simple, I spend less than I earn. I always have done (well most of the time).

    Current situation is : No debt, healthy savings (not earning much interest though !) and low income (less than average).

    I`ll add that I was lucky to start buying my house before 1997, which mean that my mortgage was manageable, even on a modest income. I wouldn`t be able to do the same today.

  11. Wow, well done! I'd love to own my own company. Have an interest in business but decided for now not to go for an MBA or similar as sooo many people getting them nowadays and reckon I can get the knowledge for free anyway. Very hard for me to start a business in IC design (the field I work in) as the costs are astronomical - but full respect to you, very enviousof what you've built up for yourself :)

    You must be a "chip of the old block". :ph34r:

    IC design must be fairly interesting. IC`s, well modern CPU`s, fascinate me. How "they" cram so many tranistors into such a small space, in the correct arrangement, and get them to work is a wonder of modern technology.

  12. “It beggars belief that in 21st century Britain it takes a month to transfer information and funds from one bank to another,” said Mike O’Connor, chief executive of Consumer Focus. “The average Isa saver is getting a poor deal.”

    Indeed. My last two ISA transfers have taken >4 weeks to complete. I`m sure that in earlier years, the process took only about a week. I`ve heard about special machines called "computers" which are supposed to speed up the exchange of data and information. Apparently, these "computers" can even "talk" to each other ! Maybe if they used some of these machines to carry out the ISA transfer process, the world would be a better place (and savers would feel a little less frustrated by the whole process).

  13. The high cost of housing is exactly what is preventing the economy from recovering. When people are putting ridiculous proportions of their income (40/50/60%) into paying their mortgage or renting and saving up for a monster deposit there is little left to spend elsewhere. The government and BoE can either keep the cost of housing high, or they can have a recovery. It's one or the other. Not both.


    Higher house prices = higher deposits (unless we go back to 100%+ mortgages....... where`s Northern Rock when you need them ?) + higher mortgage repayments. Still, what do I care if the next generation are going to have to sell vital organs to "get a foot on the ladder". As long as the value of my house is going up at least 1% per month, it`s happy days !

    Now, if our economy was growing 1%+ per month, if wages were increasing 1%+ per month, I could see house price rises of 1%+ per month being a reasonable consequence. HPI of 9% over the past 12 months ? I suppose that`s to be expected, with house prices being so low. :rolleyes:

  14. With a budget of 9 billion US dollars (approx. €6300M or £5600M as of Jan 2010), the LHC is the most expensive scientific experiment in human history.[46] The total cost of the project is expected to be of the order of 4.6 billion Swiss francs (approx. $4400M, €3100M, or £2800M as of Jan 2010) for the accelerator and 1.16 billion francs (approx. $1100M, €800M, or £700M as of Jan 2010) for the CERN contribution to the experiments.[47]

    NHS Software £12.7bn.

    LHC £2.8bn.

    I know that there is quite a bit of computing power behind the LHC experiment, and I suspect that the software might be a little bit "advanced". Did the LHC computer/software cost £12bn ?


    PS. The amount of data that the LHC will produce and have to be analyzed by computer is enormous. I suspect it will be far more data than the NHS will require to store around 60 million patient`s records.

    Oh, I see someone has already mentioned this.

  15. However that is what the public keep being told it is about. I work implementing document management systems and could knock up a simple database (just use the NI number as the key), using a standard package with decent security in place for hardly any money.

    If it is far more complex than this then you can't help but think they should do a better job of explaining exactly what they are trying to achieve.

    For >£12bn, I suspect they are developing a system that will replace GPs and some surgeons, hence the delays and cost. :lol:

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