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Over 35's - Whats Your House & Working Status


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My entry from the last time we did this thread 3 years ago...

40 year old male, married, run my own business. My brief property CV from the last time we did the morbid introspection thread:

FTB with a new build in 1997 for 77k.

MEW'ed 30k for a deposit on a 225k place in 2002. Rented out the first house.

At the same time I also bought a new build apartment in Brussels for 90k. It took the lazy f*ckers about a year to finally finish building it and I sold it almost immediately for about what I paid. (Work situation changed and I didn't need it any longer.)

Sold the first house for 185k early in 2006. Bought another (better for BTL) house from distressed sellers (divorcing and possibly having nervous breakdowns) immediately for 175k and rented that. Kicked the tenants out and sold it for 212k

Also bought new build apartment in Tallin for 48k in December 2005, again for work purposes.

I've since bought some land in Australia upon which I'll build my eventual retirement house.

Interesting to look back. Was anything ever easier than making money in the UK property market from 1997-2007?

3 years later, I've built a house on that land in Australia and am now retired and living in it. I've still, in theory, got the place in Tallinn but it's been empty for almost 5 years and is probably worth much less than the 48k sterling I paid for it.

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You do realise that if you have an IO mortgage then you are only a renter?

-1

I'm going to have to tell you a story now, just because of that!

"Chalk, cheese and Beans" by Nice Tuna Sandwich. Does that have a ring to it?

Chalk and Cheese

Once upon a time in a town called New York, there was a man called Peter Lynch. In a book "One Up on Wall Street" he wrote: "A house! What a deal!" Buy a house before you buy any other sort of investment. Lifetime capital gains exempt. Of real utility throughout your entire ownership!

The day you buy the house is the day you acquire a very real asset, funded by the very real equity you put in + the very real borrowing you secure. If house prices rise (which by and large, over time they do) then your equity increases while your debt is constant. Your tenure is secure while you pay the interest. You get to choose whether to build a repayment vehicle, or to plan to sell and downsize in the future.

On the other hand, the day you rent a house, is... the day you rent a house.

Buying with an IO mortgage is pink chalk, buying with a repayment mortgage is blue chalk. But renting is cheese. (Buying with cash is bright yellow chalk.)

Beans

In another town, there was a hard working 37 year old company director. His wife, same age, took time out with the kids, but is now back at work+ writes and lectures + probably works harder than him. income and expenditure streams seem to be of 57 varieties, so I hope you will allow me to describe them as beans.

They got a head start with an unexpected gift of 5 beans when they were newly married. Now they have a family. In the least lucrative of the last 5 years they grossed 9 beans and in the most lucrative 21. Their first ever house cost 7 beans, but their current house cost just shy of 80 beans & very happily ensconced in it they are too.

They opted for a big IO mortgage of 43 beans. Almost a can of beans, because they decided that, at some point in the next 10 years, the UK is more likely than not to have a period of high inflation. A cheaply borrowed can of beans seems like a good thing to have in anticipation of that scenario (after all, lots of HPCers talk about hoarding beans).

They went and fixed their interest rate for 10 years, because they anticipate interest rates rising in tandem. And rIght or wrong, win or lose, 2-and-a-bit beans is what it will cost them to finance their house each year until March 31st 2018.

A spoon of beans each year, they spend. A spoon of beans each year, they invest. The spoons started off different sizes, but already they are quite similar. They are filling up a tin, which on April 1st 2018, they plan to give back to their bank.

... and, apart from losing a bit of sauce to SBUL and Connaught PLC, they all lived happily ever after.

The end.

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I'm 42, earn £33-40kpa (depending on bonus), have about £30k in savings, and rent.

For anyone under 35 reading this thread, I'd say my income/savings are typical, verging on above normal, for most people of my age, although many are better off in terms of property.

HPC posters are skewed towards the high earning IT types, so don't think what you're reading on this thread is typical!

Phew - good....! Otherwise it'd be very depressing... :)

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my job is a bag of spanners, gas fitter k100+.

dont care about IT or estate agents. houses? theres are right time and a wrong time

i will share the best bit of advice i ever had, "sometimes the best place to invest is yourself"

good luck everyone.

Jesus - 100k+ as a gas fitter? I'll have to look into this....!!

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We are always getting IT guys saying how their income has been eroded by cheap foreign labour.

Judging by the numbers in these posts that's either untrue or you guys really used to take the P with your wage demands in the past.

If IT work ever becomes just another ordinary average pay job 90% of the members here will be in real trouble.

I'm getting regular jobs in my in-box looking for experienced people paying up to 35K.

That was close to a new grad salary 5 years ago so I'd say that IT work has become just another ordinary job. There are so many new people coming available in the next few years and the threat of offshoring (and onshoring) that I don't think it will rise back up again

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39, wife is 34 today ! Happy birthday dear.

left school at 16 with 9 O levels. Did a science based apprenticeship with a large drug company. Paid very little, had enough to live in a house share and get wasted a little bit too much. Could never save much more than a few weeks wages. I could run a car but only had very occasional holiday. No debt could never have afforded even a flat in the South coast town early 90's. Wasn't too fussed about it either at the time. Screwed up my HNC by doing no work and too many drugs. Resat a year and eventually scraped a pass. My company would not put me up a pay grade and a relationship breakdown at the time made me take stock.

Took a job with an upcoming drug company for 40% more pay ( still a bit less than average wages at the time ) Cleaned my act up ( a bit B) ) knuckled down worked hard. Bought my first property in early 1996 4 bed Victorian Semi with no parking on a very busy road but in a lovely seaside town. 3 times salary mortgage, borrowing 95% cost me £50k my parents loaned me the deposit, my company paid all the fees as part of a relocation package. I remember moving in with no more than a bean bag, a wooden chair, a small colour portable TV and a boom box. I spent my modest savings on second hand furniture to furnish the place. Took in a lodger and my wife (then girlfriend). The 2 lodgers paid the mortgage interest I just had to pay the endowment and the bills. Interest rate fell from around 8% and house prices went silly. I got a promotion and finally earning what I would call good money ( 140% of average wage). The wife was doing an apprenticeship similar to the one I did, and after finishing her HNC around a year after she moved in with me, she was earning around the average wage. We had our lodger for around 5 years and although the mortgage was interest only we were both saving a good deal of money every month even though we both had nice cars and 2 or 3 holidays a year. My salary had doubled in those 5 years with the promotion. I remortgaged to a better deal and went repayment over 20 years and my monthly payments were still less than they were when I initially bought the house.

In 2003 we were planning on getting married, the lodger was long gone. I had a new job on shift work, sideways move but I got a 20% raise in effect through shift allowance plus I could do anywhere between 20 and 100hours overtime a month. We sold the house for £155k over triple what we paid for it less than 8 years previously. I had improved the first house considerably but the total spent on it over that time was less than 10K and most of that went on the double glazing. We bought a 3 bedroom detached around 200 yards from our first house in a quiet cul-de-sac with a garage and loads of parking and a very big plot. Cost £217K but with the equity and the savings we put down the mortgage was less than 90K, 20 year term. We immediately overpaid the mortgage by 500 every month. I was caning the overtime working nights and weekends. The wife was working hard on an OU degree, this was taking a toll on our relationship and in 2006 we separated. We sold the house for £286K 3 years after we bought it, we never spent one penny on improvements. The company had already shed some jobs by this time and around the time we were selling we had an announcement that all the manufacturing jobs were to be shed, we were both at risk of redundancy. I had considered buying the wife out around that time and I could have done it as I was regularly taking home over 4K a month but the prices seemed way OTT, I was certain to lose this job (with all the overtime) and I had just worked like a dog for 10 years only to get a broken marriage. I moved into a property that my parents owned and only used at weekends and paid them £500 a month, I have the most amazing sea views ! B)

After separating for a year and remaining on good terms and getting a decree nisci we decided to give it another go and the wife moved into my parents place. I continued to cane the overtime at work but as I knew I was going to get laid off it was a case of making hay while the sun shined for 2 more years. We both got laid off in the summer 2009 and with 14 years of service each we got around 1 years salary as redundancy pay. My final salary in 2009 was 42K basic but I was getting double that with shift allowance, bonus and overtime. The wife finished on around 36K. We spent 20K of our redundancy doing the trip of a lifetime with 7 months traveling in SE Asia Japan Australia and New Zealand. Prior to our trip we still had those nice cars that we bought 12 years earlier (with cash) and we only really spent cash on holidays and good restaurants. We came back to the UK in June and both signed on my missus got a first class degree in the end and although there was no jobs at first after a hectic month she had the pick of 3 temporary jobs at the company we used to work for (paying average wages) She took one and worked for a week before being offered a permanent job for just shy of her previous salary :lol: My contribution based job seekers runs out in 3 weeks and I shall then sign off and make sure she has some dinner on the table when she comes through the door. Hope to be starting a family soon and intend to enjoy doing that properly. The wife would then like to go part time.

We want a nice house with a bit of land and an annex that we could do B and B or holiday lettings with. We'll grow our own veg (doing that now) and get some chickens and maybe a couple of goats. We have £500k in cash for the house (plus another 2 years cost of living set aside) but can't afford what we want locally at the moment (these types of property cost 650 to 750). We need a 20% correction to achieve our goals and be mortgage free or have a very small mortgage on a very large property. If we get there we shall jump in even if 40% falls would seem likely.

We are still paying £500 a month for a house on the beach and all my bills are paid (except the council tax) I just have to entertain my parents around 2 weekends a month :) Although my folks are retiring next year and this place was bought with that in mind. Lovely as they are we would have to move out next summer for the sake of everyone's sanity.

The wife and I consider ourselves very very lucky to be where we are but we have also worked very hard and lived relatively modestly. I was planning on buying a chip shop on my return but it's back to very hard work and unsociable hours for high rewards. There are no pockets in a shroud.

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Oh mate I just read your post that's exactly how I feel and what happened to me.

After the elections, we got a new MP (Con) I thought ok I'll see if he can help. Made an appointment and went to see one of his staff. Told her my story to which she thought it was a totally disgusting situation and that I was in housing need.

Anyway the MP has written several letters to the council on my behalf and has even spoken to the Mayor but no, council still not interested in recognising that I am in housing need. MP has said that there is nothing more that he can do for me as he cannot make the council do anything if they don't want to do it. So there we go, I'm stuck at my friends house desperate to get back to work but there's no way till I get a place, government can shove it. Worked all my life, payed shedloads in taxes and get the least in benefits, been driven to the edge several times and was on a high prozac dose at 18. All I would like is my own place so that I can put my stuff out, that's affordable safe and secure. I think I've done enough to deserve this but for some reason my own country wants to keep kicking me down. Would have loved to have had a family and kids, now getting to old.

By the way Hi all, I was going to do a first post in the Welcome thread but when I read Dan1's post I just had to post, as what he said is exactly how I feel. I also apologise for any spelling/grammar error, It's late.

Hi Mate.

You've obviously been through a decade [and then some] of shit. Hopefully that means the second part of your life will be great.

Not a trivial story. I dont think anyone ever really knows what to say to that kind of tale.

The only thing that keeps me going is blind hope.

Here are a few aphorisms to chew on. :0)

"In all things it is better to hope than to despair."

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.

Dale Carnegie

Hope is the poor man's bread.

George Herbert

' If we all did the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves.' Thomas Edison

'In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.' Einstein

"Where does one go from a world of insanity? Somewhere on the other side of despair." TS Eliot

"Do not despair of your life. You have force enough to overcome your obstacles." HD Thoreau

"Never let go of hope. One day you will see that it all has finally come together. What you have always wished for has finally come to be. You will look back and laugh at what has passed and you will ask yourself... 'How did I get through all of that?"

And one for the entire HPC Crowd:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Some of the wages on here are astronomical. If I was on this kind of money, I would not be wasting my time ranting about house prices, I'd be out there living.

Fortunately, [and Unfortunately,] I know my own situation is a lot more typical of someone my age, priced out of housing, than most of you.............................

Edited by Dan1
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1980 : Scotland. Leave Uni,start in the housing market by getting a council house under emergency housing regulations.

Self employment was sufficient to pay the £1.72 monthly rent. Yip single males did get housed.

Fast forward to 1990.

Have trouble selling my 2-bed slave box in Hampshire. My financial advisor returned with 33 refusals from mortgage applications due to the fact I was self employed and couldn't produce the 3rd year accounts at that time. Managed to juggle some debt and hold the 50K slave box and 110K 4-bedder. Wife about to drop the first sprog, me contracting in a recession, and a pile of debt. Yummy. Sold the slave box shortly after and paid off the main house.

Never ventured into the property market again - save a very close run to buy myself a winter 5-bed bolt-hole in Oz in 2006. 400K AUD - was spare cash at the time.

In the end I didn't buy and the self same one are going for ~$700K. Meh!

Work : per other threads I have a wont to start, I can find plenty work at ICT rates with that added bonus of paying UK tax. So thanks, but no thanks. I'll take yet another jaunt to Europe when I can be bothered. I won't start the dcik swinging contest about usual incomes, not least because there are two members of this board who have earned more than me.

will buy in mainland Europe, and one in Oz too (to set the kids up).

Blightly? 9K tuition fees? My names Duncan Bannatyne and ahl soon be oot!

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35, married (this year)

Working in software support

household income = above average for 2 people

living in 3 bedroom detached house (bought at end of 2009 (for 2003 price) ), remaining mortgage = 2x joint basic salary

Edited by OzzMosiz
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Coming up 39.

Lived with parents until a job took me away just before I turned 26.

Bought my first home (2-bed apartment) on the Isle of Man in 2006 after 9 years of renting there.

Sold up in 2009 for a small profit (IOM Government does a First-Time Buyers scheme whereby you get grants and loans to help you purchase approved properties, but you have to sell back to the government if you haven't had the property for 10 years).

Moved back to the parents' house in summer 2009, with the plan to find somewhere of my own to buy ASAP.

Still living with parents :lol: Prices are stupid even here in Somerset (town has pretty high employment levels, so not very many distressed sellers)

Now engaged to my American girlfriend, and starting the visa process for me to move over there (Utah), so I'll be staying put at the parents' house until I move, another 10 months or so.

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39, Married with one baby... with twin boys due in January 2011 :o

Was made homeless at 24 (1995) when rented family home was repossesed (landlord didnt pay his mortgage)

Picked myself up, crashed on peoples floors and worked for no pay for 3 months as a programmer in a private bank to get work experience

In 1999, I bought a 3 bed terrace in a shabby part of Hampton, London for 113K (100% mortgage, no bank of mum and dad for me!), sold that in 2006 for 220K and moved to Bishops Storford and bought a nice 6 bed detached for 328K (managed to negiotiate 50K off asking price). No intention to move again.

Still working in IT, but now in the City - household income around £110K. Savings around 20K in cash (emergency fund) and 40K in investments. Mortgage less than 200K and should be paid off in 7 years

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Almost 36 (where is the 35 year old post), I was a CAD technician working on roads, flood reports, flood walls and harbours, and high street rejuvenation.

2007 Joint income £92k with 50% mortgage paid off

2010 Single income £11.6k

Some how we are still keeping everything paid, funny the worst bit is when people treat us as I was always the one to do that. Now the shoe is on the other foot it makes me sad me that I cant return the favour. But at least I have friends that will do that so its good really.

Once wife sorts job/ebay out well probably keep the same kind of money coming in but both go part time, no point working your ass off for chicken feed, well go out cycling, dancing and drink beer instead.

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Systems Management. There are Administrators and Project Managers on the same band as me. NuLabour's largesse really was spread far and wide in the public sector.

I may well die, alngside others in my generation, whilst still working into our 70s having paid, via NuLabour's largesse, for your house and your early retirement in taxes over my lifetime

please remember that whilst you're on the beach

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my job is a bag of spanners, gas fitter k100+.

dont care about IT or estate agents. houses? theres are right time and a wrong time

i will share the best bit of advice i ever had, "sometimes the best place to invest is yourself"

good luck everyone.

This post perfectly illustrates the major problem with a thread like this.

Gas fitters don't get over £100k.

I don't doubt that this guy is pulling in that kind of money but at the same time I am certain that he is not just a "gas fitter".

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Age 47, work as a small-scale private housebuilder, 2-4 dwellings a year if by some miracle I can get planning permission and finance. Income a mere £5K p.a. from my business, as I need every penny working for me given the lack of bank capital; also I've recently had to pay £80K to my local authority in advance S106 agreements in order to secure planning permission on 2 sites, because they won't let me leave payment until I start building - result, real cashflow problems. Own 3 houses via the business on BTL loans - one is about to be replaced by a development loan as I start building, the other two are rented out pending the receipt of planning. Main PPR house is "worth" £475K but is 90% LTV and let out, which pays my share of rent and running costs on the house I rent elsewhere with my wife (I got married earlier this year). Main house is rented out because it is also a development site, in the wrong location for my wife's work, and the £11K p.a. net income/rent it generates at the moment with super-low interest rates is temporarily enough to live off.

Previously worked as university postdoc and lecturer, then project manager for electronic publisher until I started full-time as a developer. First house bought for £56K in 1992 when I was 30, deposit £16K and mortgage guaranteed by my mother, and kept as an investment while I worked in the USA, sold in 1996 for £60,000. Second house was first real PPR, bought for £68K in 1996 aged 34 on salary of £16K, sold in 2003 for £201K. Have bought and sold 14 houses since then, owning never more than 4, either as BTL investments, renovation projects or development sites. Ceased doing pure-BTL in 2005 as the returns in income terms were so poor and I wanted a better return on capital than a buy-and-hold strategy would obtain. Ironic really as I still got hammered when house prices crashed, because I owned several development sites instead of BTLs, but at least development sites have potential for investment and capital gain. In my view pure BTL investment just isn't worth it: the risks are too high, both at a macro-economic level and the micro one of void periods and failed boilers and getting lumbered with a dodgy tenant. Why do people think that large companies rarely get involved in renting private property and it's a small landlord's game? It's because the tax treatment is so poor, the maintenance costs so high, and the risks of default or damage or general lunatic behaviour by tenants is just too high: far easier to invest in commercial property and deal with business tenants.

I now only use BTL as a mechanism to buy development sites on which I have a good chance of adding value, since it's almost impossible to obtain commercial mortgages on residential properties and the interest rates are punitive. I rent out the houses while I develop the site, so I get some income to cover my costs and the house isn't sitting there unoccupied when people need places to live.

No doubt for most people on this site, I am an evil ******* BTL landlord and property developer, buying up houses that "ought" to be bought by "ordinary people" on 3 times their salaries. However I'd argue someone has to build new homes, and they need sites to do this, and surely it makes sense to let out the existing houses on the sites while they are being redeveloped? I am adding to the housing stock, not reducing it. I've always let the properties as houseshares, to young people who are students or in their first or second jobs, who'd never be able to buy a place to live in anyway, in any generation. They need someone cheap and affordable to live while they save deposits, just as I did, and houseshares provide that. I've lived in houseshares myself for years, and didn't buy my own place to live until I was 34, so finding it hard to afford a place and buying in your thirties is not some new phenomenon. In fact, renting nowadays is miles, miles better than it was in the 1980s and 1990s: the quality is on average much higher and the supply of property is much better too. Renting in my experience, as both a landlord and tenant in recent years, is much cheaper than the total cost of ownership, at least in a normal interest rate environment, so I am quite likely to keep renting for the long term now, and keep my capital for investment in my SIPP pension and my business building new houses for people.

Why are new houses so expensive? Three main reasons:

  • our highly restrictive planning rules make land incredibly expensive, and if, like me, a developer only has the capital to develop small backfill sites, the land money goes straight into the pockets of owner-occupiers who often pay no tax on their capital gains. This combined with the lack of a tax on capital gains on one's principal private residence (as there used to be before 1965) shows how owner-occupiers get a very, very good deal in tax terms from the government. The cost of getting planning is also horrendous, with all the surveys and reports that are now needed - land, bats, environmental, perhaps noise and highways, asbestos if there's a demolition involved, etc etc.
  • Government sees new houses as a cash cow: S106 "contributions" are now running at £26,000 per 4-bed house in my area. On top of that, if a developer's site has more than 15 houses, 33-50% of them have to be given away to housing associations as "affordable homes". The builder only gets the construction cost back, so all the land, finance and development costs have to be borne by the remaining private houses for sale. All these costs have to be charged on to the eventual buyer, otherwise the builder can't sustain his or her business. Therefore, if you are buying a new home privately on an estate, it's probably (not) worth remembering that you may be paying the local authority to waste its money on tearing up the playground it only rebuilt 5 years ago or on the pet schemes of the powerful councillor on the other side of the borough, and you are in part paying a housing association to offer a highly-subsidised rent to the "vulnerable" person living off benefits (a.k.a. your taxes) in the house next door.
  • the cost of construction just keeps on climbing, as the Government imposes ever-more stringent building regulations in the search for the chimera of the "zero-carbon house". New houses are vastly more thermally efficient than second-hand ones, but this only adds to the cost of a new-build, which the developer has to recoup somehow. In my experience buyers are not prepared to pay the extra that reflects the real cost of building a new house - they rarely look at running costs and just compare a new house with the second-hand ones on the market at the time - so the big developers in particular have to cram their sites to make any money, as well as meet the Government's rules on minimum housing densities.
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Age 47, work as a small-scale private housebuilder, 2-4 dwellings a year if by some miracle I can get planning permission and finance. Income a mere £5K p.a. from my business, as I need every penny working for me given the lack of bank capital; also I've recently had to pay £80K to my local authority in advance S106 agreements in order to secure planning permission on 2 sites, because they won't let me leave payment until I start building - result, real cashflow problems. Own 3 houses via the business on BTL loans - one is about to be replaced by a development loan as I start building, the other two are rented out pending the receipt of planning. Main PPR house is "worth" £475K but is 90% LTV and let out, which pays my share of rent and running costs on the house I rent elsewhere with my wife (I got married earlier this year). Main house is rented out because it is also a development site, in the wrong location for my wife's work, and the £11K p.a. net income/rent it generates at the moment with super-low interest rates is temporarily enough to live off.

Previously worked as university postdoc and lecturer, then project manager for electronic publisher until I started full-time as a developer. First house bought for £56K in 1992 when I was 30, deposit £16K and mortgage guaranteed by my mother, and kept as an investment while I worked in the USA, sold in 1996 for £60,000. Second house was first real PPR, bought for £68K in 1996 aged 34 on salary of £16K, sold in 2003 for £201K. Have bought and sold 14 houses since then, owning never more than 4, either as BTL investments, renovation projects or development sites. Ceased doing pure-BTL in 2005 as the returns in income terms were so poor and I wanted a better return on capital than a buy-and-hold strategy would obtain. Ironic really as I still got hammered when house prices crashed, because I owned several development sites instead of BTLs, but at least development sites have potential for investment and capital gain. In my view pure BTL investment just isn't worth it: the risks are too high, both at a macro-economic level and the micro one of void periods and failed boilers and getting lumbered with a dodgy tenant. Why do people think that large companies rarely get involved in renting private property and it's a small landlord's game? It's because the tax treatment is so poor, the maintenance costs so high, and the risks of default or damage or general lunatic behaviour by tenants is just too high: far easier to invest in commercial property and deal with business tenants.

I now only use BTL as a mechanism to buy development sites on which I have a good chance of adding value, since it's almost impossible to obtain commercial mortgages on residential properties and the interest rates are punitive. I rent out the houses while I develop the site, so I get some income to cover my costs and the house isn't sitting there unoccupied when people need places to live.

No doubt for most people on this site, I am an evil ******* BTL landlord and property developer, buying up houses that "ought" to be bought by "ordinary people" on 3 times their salaries. However I'd argue someone has to build new homes, and they need sites to do this, and surely it makes sense to let out the existing houses on the sites while they are being redeveloped? I am adding to the housing stock, not reducing it. I've always let the properties as houseshares, to young people who are students or in their first or second jobs, who'd never be able to buy a place to live in anyway, in any generation. They need someone cheap and affordable to live while they save deposits, just as I did, and houseshares provide that. I've lived in houseshares myself for years, and didn't buy my own place to live until I was 34, so finding it hard to afford a place and buying in your thirties is not some new phenomenon. In fact, renting nowadays is miles, miles better than it was in the 1980s and 1990s: the quality is on average much higher and the supply of property is much better too. Renting in my experience, as both a landlord and tenant in recent years, is much cheaper than the total cost of ownership, at least in a normal interest rate environment, so I am quite likely to keep renting for the long term now, and keep my capital for investment in my SIPP pension and my business building new houses for people.

Why are new houses so expensive? Three main reasons:

  • our highly restrictive planning rules make land incredibly expensive, and if, like me, a developer only has the capital to develop small backfill sites, the land money goes straight into the pockets of owner-occupiers who often pay no tax on their capital gains. This combined with the lack of a tax on capital gains on one's principal private residence (as there used to be before 1965) shows how owner-occupiers get a very, very good deal in tax terms from the government. The cost of getting planning is also horrendous, with all the surveys and reports that are now needed - land, bats, environmental, perhaps noise and highways, asbestos if there's a demolition involved, etc etc.

  • Government sees new houses as a cash cow: S106 "contributions" are now running at £26,000 per 4-bed house in my area. On top of that, if a developer's site has more than 15 houses, 33-50% of them have to be given away to housing associations as "affordable homes". The builder only gets the construction cost back, so all the land, finance and development costs have to be borne by the remaining private houses for sale. All these costs have to be charged on to the eventual buyer, otherwise the builder can't sustain his or her business. Therefore, if you are buying a new home privately on an estate, it's probably (not) worth remembering that you may be paying the local authority to waste its money on tearing up the playground it only rebuilt 5 years ago or on the pet schemes of the powerful councillor on the other side of the borough, and you are in part paying a housing association to offer a highly-subsidised rent to the "vulnerable" person living off benefits (a.k.a. your taxes) in the house next door.

  • the cost of construction just keeps on climbing, as the Government imposes ever-more stringent building regulations in the search for the chimera of the "zero-carbon house". New houses are vastly more thermally efficient than second-hand ones, but this only adds to the cost of a new-build, which the developer has to recoup somehow. In my experience buyers are not prepared to pay the extra that reflects the real cost of building a new house - they rarely look at running costs and just compare a new house with the second-hand ones on the market at the time - so the big developers in particular have to cram their sites to make any money, as well as meet the Government's rules on minimum housing densities.

Building houses is certainly value added in my books however most so called developers paint a wall and add a wooden floor. That isn't really value added and most who made money that way did so due to expanding credit nor their skill in painting a wall.

I would also suggest to you that housing is not expensive due to the cost of new builds being high. The cost of new builds is high because house rice are high! Your land and section 106 are costly because those people know they can charge those prices. Were house prices lower they wouldn't be able to charge those prices and ypurcosts would be lower

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late 30's, married, self employed construction engineer (this work largely unaffected by recession to date). would earn about £60k if worked full 12 months (spend about half the year in southern hemisphere). wife earns about £10K pa pro rata'd. no kids. got a bit of professional work experience after uni and then spent next 10 years travelling overseas with transient employment (diving instructor, ski bum, tour guide etc etc). bought 1st house in 2003, and caught last big leg up in my area. split it in two and sold half (other half still rented). then went on a credit binge that would make HPC'ers eyes water (should point out....never borrowed money to buy anything that i did not expect/hope to go up in value.....or defaulted on a penny). used massive leverage to buy up property in Argentina. started an apartment block development there, but that was derailed by credit crunch. sold on to a local developer there and did well, but not as well as good of done if i'd sold earlier or held my nerve. sailed close to the wind when bought into a vineyard development but had understanding partners. also got a nice house on the golf course. just bought 3 bed repo in uk for ourselves. yeh i know market might/could/should/will fall but got 95% LTV at base +3% fee free (as i said i gained quite a bit of experience of borrowing money......i don't think you'd get that deal in a tanking market). and yeh i do sleep soundly at night becuase all my assets are out the jurisdiction of my liabilities. don't really care what UK housing market does as would like to buy something better later on (still enjoy reading the opinions on here though)......interests linked more to US dollar and particulary cable.

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36, working in finance in London, earning £200k+ pa, live with gf in rented flat

Owned once, turned out to be a nightmare money-pit (joint-freehold flat in victorian conversion with maintenance problems and shite co-freeholders), lost about £20k

Cash in the bank to buy as/when prices become sensible

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I`m 55. From the age of 28, I have never worked more than 25 hours a week. I have been a sole trader for the last 25 years now. I have managed to get to travel to many countries in the world always for pleasure. Yet all the time just looking for something, not knowing what. I still only work around 20/25 hours a week.

I earn around £400 weekly net. I live in an ex local authority house and have a 20K mortgage remaining on it.

In reality , up until ten years ago..I was absolutely clueless in regards to saving or looking to my future financial security. I feel I should have done better and yet at the same time I feel deep down that society as a whole is totally out of kilter when it seems we are perpetually promoting the idea we should plan for the future.

When all that is happening is we lose a sense of well being for today, and the happiness that should be brought about from a decent family life today, and not tomorrow....It also seems to me we are posessed with the need to consume and collect stuff on our way through life.

I`ve often owed money but never let it get out of control,have a perfect credit rating, and now live quite frugally. I`m getting married next year for the third time around, to a lady 21 years younger than I... this is one time I am really looking to the future. She will hopefully look after me in my dotage...

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39.

Until mid 2008, when we were in London, combined household income was around £200k plus bonuses.

Had to take a hit for the move down to South West though, so now down to £120k combined. Bonuses don't happen any more. Life is not any cheaper in the South West than it was in London.

I am professional. Other half is Blue Light Emergency Services.

£700k in savings/STR, roughly, but just about to jump back into the housing market and buying a house pre Xmas.

Bought 1996 for 62k; sold 2000 for 137k; bought 2000 for 310k, sold 2003 for 510k; bought 2003 for 775k, sold 2008 for 1.35m; buying 2010 for 875k ..... Big salary increases through those years helped fund the big leaps in mortgage. New mortgage will be less that x2 combined income.

Now spending like a frenzy in prep for new house - cars, TV's, Imac's ....... Risk. What risk ....... Hang on for dear life through inflation; long term fix; keep chickens and grow cabbages. If all else fails, turn it into a B&B ...

Edited by rex
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This post perfectly illustrates the major problem with a thread like this.

Gas fitters don't get over £100k.

I don't doubt that this guy is pulling in that kind of money but at the same time I am certain that he is not just a "gas fitter".

Actually, my old plumber in London earned/earns around 100k and he was a CORGI qualified gas fitter / plumber. He drove a top of the range BMX 4x4 and changed it every year. I know this because we used him so much over the years, he became a personal friend and we ended up sharing these details. He even comes down to stay with us in the South West now. I used think we were probably paying for his BMW's he charged so much blooming money. But then, what price a plumber in London who will come as soon as, and whenever, you call him and do anything you want him to do .....

Edited by rex
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Posted this in the 'under 35', didn't think to see if there was an 'over 35'...

36, married 9 years, 2 kids (just adopted).

Bought a house in 1998 for £73k, now worth £230k and gradually falling. Pay about £650pm (added £25k on for IVF so it could have been £420 but who knew eh?). 12 years to being debt free but likely to be sooner as in 8 years time the outstanding amount will probably be peanuts after all this inflation. Looking forward to that day. Work pays my pension, and I've always funded one, not that it's worth a pot of piss at the moment

Was on a combined £100k+ pa but obviously the wife is at home with the kids now, so it's a bit under £60k, with one of those naughty Finance companies. It was tough, but I decided to join 'em 'cause I sure as hell couldn't beat them :/ It's the only industry this country has left now (at least, where I live anyway). Once that goes, I could well be selling up and living in Australia with my brother who went 2 years before.

I spend all my money each month one way or another. Yeah I bought a new car or two when it was all good, but also made sure when we hit Jan 2008, it was with no overdrafts or debts other than the above. Save a bit and spend a bit but it usually balances out to a bit under £10k - always in the +ve though!

I feel I am in an extremely privilaged position and am fully aware of how lucky I am (good job thanks to a Uni hons degree when it was free, bought a house before it went stupid price, didn't load up on debt when the banks were giving it away, had small savings that can't be erroded by inflation and enjoyed the money I made when I made it), and just stumbled my way throguh life so far without much of a plan past being debt free and dependant free (with any luck!) by the time I'm 50~55.

Owe a LOT to my parents and 'the 90's', who taught me what was going on, and how to avoid the pain they went though - my gift back to them was to be able to tell them that I don't want their house and money when they get old so sell up, spend it and enjoy your 60's and beyond knowing your kids are going to be alright without having to pass it down to us.

I genuinely feel sad for the kids (teens and 20's) who have all of the oppotunities I got denied to them... I hope there is some other way to 'succeed' with their time on earth...

Edited by Djini
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38, single, live in a flat I rent from my mum that used to belong to my grandparents.

A few years back my career started taking off, and I've gone from earning 40k to around 700kpa.

I found two new build houses that I liked in the doldrums of early 2009, but in one the developer pulled out asking for more money and eventually sold to someone else six months later for the same price.

The other one the developer decided they wanted more money, literally days before we were due to exchange contracts. The developer didn't sell it and now lives there.

So I'm still looking for my contemporary £2m pad, while living in my nan's old 1bed ex-council place. The English house buying system is mad. I'm not sure that my situation could arise anywhere else in the world!

Every now and then, an estate agent rings about a house that I saw months earlier and is still on the market at the same price...

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  • 444 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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