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I’ve been lurking here since about 2009, so I’m aware of the arguments and agree with most of them, but I feel like it’s going to be another 10-15 years before the mess that we’re in works its way through the system. I’m really tempted to buy now rather than wait until then. I’ve been looking at flats on the outskirts of east, south east, south London where it looks like 200k gets a decent 1 bed. 25k deposit, 50k BOMAD, and 125k mortgage works out at £600 pcm which is what I’m paying now to share with two others in Hackney (it’s actually a really great place but the sharing sucks). My reasons are thus…

1. A place of my own. Walking around naked, bringing home girls/friends without having to consider if my flatmates are going to be sprawled out on the sofa covered in blankets watching a sh1t film.
2. Being able to shape my environment. Everyone wants to sort their home out how they want, I’m an architect and its really frustrating designing other peoples homes and not being able to do my own.
3. My dad has offered to lend me 50k which he will need back in about 10 years. I thinking about this as ‘mortgage replacement’ rather than ‘additional loan’ it makes sense for me to take him up on this offer while its there.
4. Job is secure, I’m a qualified professional. Granted things can go wrong for anyone anywhere but I think I’m in a better position than many.
5. Macro: the only possible way out of the problems is a lot of money printing -> inflation. Is there any reason to be afraid of a 4x earnings debt?
6. Single man, no girlfriend or kids to worry about. If I don’t buy here, then the alternative is to move to a different country, but I like London, like buildings and the work I do here and in this industry the culture is very London-centric and you pretty much have to be here for your career to go anywhere.

So, written out that that it looks pretty convincing to me. Have I missed anything or should I be seeking the services of a mental health professional?

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In my opinion the recent Help to Buy scheme shows that the government is getting truly desperate in its attempt to prop up the housing market. Just wait if you can, 1 or 2 years and when this bad boy bursts the whole market will crumble.

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Heard an interesting story of a bargain in London.

£2m paid in part exchange on a £1.5m house - Richmond area.

The new house is about a mile away, twice the size and needing a fair bit of work to make it perfect for a large-ish family. But very nice place - one of the kids' bedrooms would pass as a studio flat in some parts of London.

The buyers said they waited about a year before sealing the deal.

Two factors: the couple selling were in the middle of a divorce (hubbie took the smaller house in exchange for himself) + the price range means it's too expensive for people to move into the area but not so expensive for people to move out to a mahoosive property. If you see what I mean.

Anyway, it's twice the house + garden for about 1/3 more. So not a flat! Just pointing out there are micro-systems within the London housing market.

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Heard an interesting story of a bargain in London.

£2m paid in part exchange on a £1.5m house - Richmond area.

The new house is about a mile away, twice the size and needing a fair bit of work to make it perfect for a large-ish family. But very nice place - one of the kids' bedrooms would pass as a studio flat in some parts of London.

The buyers said they waited about a year before sealing the deal.

Two factors: the couple selling were in the middle of a divorce (hubbie took the smaller house in exchange for himself) + the price range means it's too expensive for people to move into the area but not so expensive for people to move out to a mahoosive property. If you see what I mean.

Anyway, it's twice the house + garden for about 1/3 more. So not a flat! Just pointing out there are micro-systems within the London housing market.

Sorry, maybe I'm missing something but did you just use the word bargain in relation to a £1.5M house?

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I’ve been lurking here since about 2009, so I’m aware of the arguments and agree with most of them, but I feel like it’s going to be another 10-15 years before the mess that we’re in works its way through the system. I’m really tempted to buy now rather than wait until then.

I can't speak for London but I've been on here since 2005 (more of a blog than a forum poster though, I joined the forum pretty late).

I'm in the process of completing on a place in east Berkshire. I'm at the opposite end of the age spectrum but also getting cheesed off waiting - essentially I have 15 years to buy and pay off before I collect a pension. Mortgage will be 2 x joint salary, 15 year mortgage with overpayments, so targeting payoff in 10-12. Crash or no crash I can't save enough to buy outright after 15 years while also paying my current level of rent. So mortgage it is.

However, if I were your age, with time on my side, I suspect I would wait before buying a 1-bed flat, and buy a bigger one later instead. London is a bubble on top of a previous bubble and it must burst at some point. I really don't think it'll be 15 years.

It may be very tempting to jump in from a lifestyle perspective but I would caution you to wait. Couldn't you perhaps go and work abroad for 2-3 years while you wait for things to unfold.

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Could you post links for the type of places you are looking at around the £200k level? I've tried searching in that range and am not seeing much without some serious downsides these days (many fewer options than three years ago.

If you are interested in working abroad wouldn't it be worth doing so before becoming encumbered with a mortgage?

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I've been lurking here since about 2009, so I'm aware of the arguments and agree with most of them, but I feel like it's going to be another 10-15 years before the mess that we're in works its way through the system. I'm really tempted to buy now rather than wait until then. I've been looking at flats on the outskirts of east, south east, south London where it looks like 200k gets a decent 1 bed. 25k deposit, 50k BOMAD, and 125k mortgage works out at £600 pcm which is what I'm paying now to share with two others in Hackney (it's actually a really great place but the sharing sucks). My reasons are thus…

1. A place of my own. Walking around naked, bringing home girls/friends without having to consider if my flatmates are going to be sprawled out on the sofa covered in blankets watching a sh1t film.
2. Being able to shape my environment. Everyone wants to sort their home out how they want, I'm an architect and its really frustrating designing other peoples homes and not being able to do my own.
3. My dad has offered to lend me 50k which he will need back in about 10 years. I thinking about this as 'mortgage replacement' rather than 'additional loan' it makes sense for me to take him up on this offer while its there.
4. Job is secure, I'm a qualified professional. Granted things can go wrong for anyone anywhere but I think I'm in a better position than many.
5. Macro: the only possible way out of the problems is a lot of money printing -> inflation. Is there any reason to be afraid of a 4x earnings debt?
6. Single man, no girlfriend or kids to worry about. If I don't buy here, then the alternative is to move to a different country, but I like London, like buildings and the work I do here and in this industry the culture is very London-centric and you pretty much have to be here for your career to go anywhere.

So, written out that that it looks pretty convincing to me. Have I missed anything or should I be seeking the services of a mental health professional?

West-ish London here and I get your points 1-6. Most of which are based around quality of life. Having flat shared for 4 years, no matter who you live with, the quality of life is not ideal and to the extreme it can be a nightmare. Sharing sucks big time, as does the cost of renting of your own flat. Currently I've lucked out and been given a 3 bed house to look after by a mate, live on my own, decorate how I want, and all for the price of my previous flatshare. If I was still having to share now then I probably would have bought because space and sanity would have been my priorities, regardless of cost or "what if's". You just have to consider how you'd feel if you went into negative equity or interest rates rose. It may not happen, it's just a consideration. Although, my number 1 choice in your situation would be to work abroad. Single friend of mine has just gone to Dubai, is earning double London money, renting an amazing flat and having the best time ever.

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In my opinion the recent Help to Buy scheme shows that the government is getting truly desperate in its attempt to prop up the housing market. Just wait if you can, 1 or 2 years and when this bad boy bursts the whole market will crumble.

The problem is, people always say wait another year, and nothing happens.

I've been seriously considering buying since early 2009, but held off on the collective advice of this forum, and all that has happened in the area i'm looking (SW London) is that houses have become more expensive. If I'd bought in 2009 I'd be much better off now, and would still be better off even after a decent sized nominal crash!

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I’ve been lurking here since about 2009, so I’m aware of the arguments and agree with most of them, but I feel like it’s going to be another 10-15 years before the mess that we’re in works its way through the system. I’m really tempted to buy now rather than wait until then. I’ve been looking at flats on the outskirts of east, south east, south London where it looks like 200k gets a decent 1 bed. 25k deposit, 50k BOMAD, and 125k mortgage works out at £600 pcm which is what I’m paying now to share with two others in Hackney (it’s actually a really great place but the sharing sucks). My reasons are thus…

1. A place of my own. Walking around naked, bringing home girls/friends without having to consider if my flatmates are going to be sprawled out on the sofa covered in blankets watching a sh1t film.
2. Being able to shape my environment. Everyone wants to sort their home out how they want, I’m an architect and its really frustrating designing other peoples homes and not being able to do my own.
3. My dad has offered to lend me 50k which he will need back in about 10 years. I thinking about this as ‘mortgage replacement’ rather than ‘additional loan’ it makes sense for me to take him up on this offer while its there.
4. Job is secure, I’m a qualified professional. Granted things can go wrong for anyone anywhere but I think I’m in a better position than many.
5. Macro: the only possible way out of the problems is a lot of money printing -> inflation. Is there any reason to be afraid of a 4x earnings debt?
6. Single man, no girlfriend or kids to worry about. If I don’t buy here, then the alternative is to move to a different country, but I like London, like buildings and the work I do here and in this industry the culture is very London-centric and you pretty much have to be here for your career to go anywhere.

So, written out that that it looks pretty convincing to me. Have I missed anything or should I be seeking the services of a mental health professional?

The only things I'd consider, if you haven't already are:

Plan to stay there for 10 years. Moving costs and a possible flatlining/reduction in house prices may mean you have to. Does it still look attractive?

Say you hook up with a lass and decide to start a family. Would the flat still be appealing under those circumstances (seeing staying there for ten years). If you are in the early 20s, you might move out before that happens. If you are in your late 20s, perhaps not.

Are the bills still payable if interest rates return to historical norms - say 5-10%? It sounds unlikely now, but it's a possibility within the next ten years (few anticipated the current situation ten years ago).

How long have you lived in London? The first five years I loved it, but I was ready to move out after eight. My industry is also very London centric - but there are ways around it, particularly once you are established. See also starting a family, very few people who grew up outside of London want to start a family there.

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Thank you all for your comments. Wisdom of crowds seems to be saying 'don't do it', but that's largely what I was expecting (and hoping) from posting.

So you are prepared to let your parents sink 50K in your 1 bed flat. Many parents did that in NI to see their kids on the "property ladder' often mewing from their own properties since "you can't lose with bricks and mortar" Now the bubble on a bubble has burst here they have effectively pissed away the saved deposit and BOMAD donation and are still sitting in negative equity.

Think again -- do you want your parents to sacrifice this amount of money for you to have your 1 bed flat. How would you feel if in 2 years all that money disappears in a bubble burst like NI? Will you feel sick and foolish?

Just to be clear, the BOMAD money is a loan—he's said he'll begin to want it back in about 10 years, so I don't really feel guilty about that. If things go t1ts up then I'm still on the hook for it. He's charging me 2% interest, and in classic HPC boomer-bash rhetoric, he's been the recipient of 25 years of HPI. He bought our last house in 1986 for 80k, and sold it last year for 400k. I don’t see it as a sacrifice in those terms, any more than the 50k I’ve spent in rent in the past 7 years is a sacrifice—it’s a cost of living.

I can't help thinking that if there is a massive crash like NI, it won’t just be a simple situation of me sitting back happily and saying ‘well I’m glad I waited, now I can buy the same house for less’—it’ll be a case of getting out of dodge as quickly as possible. Does it make sense to always base your actions on the worst case scenario, or at some point to you have to accept that anything you do will have a level of risk attached?

If you are interested in working abroad wouldn't it be worth doing so before becoming encumbered with a mortgage?

It's something I think about a lot, I worked in New York from 2004-2006 and had the time of my life. I think if I moved back out there again I'd find it very hard to leave, and I'd still not have a place of my own, be waiting for 10 years to get a green card etc. But yes, it's still a very tempting idea and I'm 50/50 right now.

Plan to stay there for 10 years. Moving costs and a possible flatlining/reduction in house prices may mean you have to. Does it still look attractive?

Say you hook up with a lass and decide to start a family. Would the flat still be appealing under those circumstances (seeing staying there for ten years). If you are in the early 20s, you might move out before that happens. If you are in your late 20s, perhaps not.

Are the bills still payable if interest rates return to historical norms - say 5-10%? It sounds unlikely now, but it's a possibility within the next ten years (few anticipated the current situation ten years ago).

How long have you lived in London? The first five years I loved it, but I was ready to move out after eight. My industry is also very London centric - but there are ways around it, particularly once you are established. See also starting a family, very few people who grew up outside of London want to start a family there.

10 years is the timeframe I’m thinking of—that’ll make me 42, by which point I’ll probably be thinking about setting up a business on my own, and starting a family (I’m in no rush for this to happen and happy to consider it might not happen at all). Even if houses crash say 25% nominally over that period, I should still be about 80k in equity excluding dad loan, which by that point, I’ll just be starting to pay off, and won’t affect LTV remortgaging etc.

Interest rates are my main concern. 125k mortgage should be about £600pcm which is easy, if that doubles or worse then yes I could be in trouble. But, that's assuming a worst case scenario of UK financial apocalypse, coupled with no wage growth.

I've been here since 2006--if anything I like it more than I did when I first moved here, it's only really recently with moving up the career ladder, having a bit more purpose (and a bit more discretionary spending) that I can make the most of it.

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Could you post links for the type of places you are looking at around the £200k level? I've tried searching in that range and am not seeing much without some serious downsides these days (many fewer options than three years ago.

Here are a few on Rightmove. With an offer of 10-15% under asking they would be places I could live. Admittedly I haven't viewed any of them.

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-38765419.html

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-22803219.html

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-37641523.html

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Does it make sense to always base your actions on the worst case scenario, or at some point to you have to accept that anything you do will have a level of risk attached?

No it doesn't make sense, I agree. It's good to have a Plan B or to think things through, but this is a forum full of people who look at the worst case scenario of everything. You'd end up never doing anything. No point getting married, just in case you get divorced, ad finitum. Everything comes with risk which is why my original reply to you was a bit "flim flam" and non committal, do what you want to do. Put it this way I bought my second house in 1997 (in my 20's when it was easy to buy) and my estate agent friend said directly to me "You are insane, you are spending £110k on a 3 bed victorian semi! You will be repossessed I'm warning you!" The rest is history.

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The problem is, people always say wait another year, and nothing happens.

I've been seriously considering buying since early 2009, but held off on the collective advice of this forum, and all that has happened in the area i'm looking (SW London) is that houses have become more expensive. If I'd bought in 2009 I'd be much better off now, and would still be better off even after a decent sized nominal crash!

Ditto. I've been "smart" and sold up at the "right time" a couple of times, gone travelling, and completely misjudged it, landing me in a situation now where I'm rapidly getting priced out of London. One thing I 've learnt from this forum is there a lot of very knowledgable well informed people who know what should happen and what is the right thing to happen, however it doesn't necessarily happen at all. It may have done in Hull but not where I'm living.

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I'm in the process of completing on a place in east Berkshire. I'm at the opposite end of the age spectrum but also getting cheesed off waiting - essentially I have 15 years to buy and pay off before I collect a pension. Mortgage will be 2 x joint salary, 15 year mortgage with overpayments, so targeting payoff in 10-12. Crash or no crash I can't save enough to buy outright after 15 years while also paying my current level of rent. So mortgage it is.

However, if I were your age, with time on my side, I suspect I would wait before buying a 1-bed flat, and buy a bigger one later instead. London is a bubble on top of a previous bubble and it must burst at some point. I really don't think it'll be 15 years.

I find myself with some of the issues that may have pushed you. Early 40's, waited a long time for a crash (2009... if only....), very frustrated with rapidly rising rents in London. I, like many people have an insecure job. I feel that I'm getting to a position where if I get a new position with my current employers which looks like it has any sort of longevity I might just need to buy something to escape the rental trap and the risk of spending years in contract positions unable to get a reasonable mortgage. Inflation looks a real risk right now.

Whereabouts are you buying? Is East Berkshire also going into a bubble on a bubble?

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Here are a few on Rightmove. With an offer of 10-15% under asking they would be places I could live. Admittedly I haven't viewed any of them.

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-38765419.html

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-22803219.html

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-37641523.html

Many thanks. I'd never thought of Bromley but those flats seem pretty decent. Do you know the area?

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Could you post links for the type of places you are looking at around the £200k level? I've tried searching in that range and am not seeing much without some serious downsides these days (many fewer options than three years ago.

If you are interested in working abroad wouldn't it be worth doing so before becoming encumbered with a mortgage?

What is your definition of 'London'? Because if you are finding it hard to find flats costing £200k or less you really aren't looking hard - sorry!

You could try somewhere like Wanstead, E11 - a nice generally middle class area on the central line. You can easily get flats there for £200k - also South Woodford (E18). They are just as nice as west London - and actually far more accessible to the City!

You can actually get houses in lots of parts of London for less than £200k - if you look hard enough!

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2. Being able to shape my environment. Everyone wants to sort their home out how they want, I’m an architect and its really frustrating designing other peoples homes and not being able to do my own.

Architecture is a highly skilled profession. It takes years of training. It's highly regarded and well paid. Why then can someone with your experience and salary only afford a houseshare in Hackney or a little flat in Kent? Meanwhile, your un-skilled office cleaner on minimum wage will be receiving an equivalent income to you and will be living with their family in a 3-bed town house round the corner from you in Hackney, courtesy of the taxpayer. And that, in a nutshell, is pretty much all you need to know to explain the bizarre and gravity defying London property market. Indeed the perverse incentives in this scenario is what is dragging the entire economy down and it's not sustainable.

If you believe the common wisdom that London is a special case propped up by an unlimited supply of foreigners who don't care about returns, then go ahead and buy a flat in Kent. If on the other hand you consider the London property market to be a simple manifestation of out of control public spending, then it makes sense to wait for a bit. Right now benefit cuts are beginning to bite and rents in some parts of London are in free fall. There are hundreds of thousands of BTL mortgages in this city and many of them wont survive the new reality. My money is on this being the beginning of the end. Most people disagree with my analysis though.

Are you under pressure from your parents to get on the property ladder before it's too late? If so, by borrowing money from them, you are carrying all the risk. Instead, why don't you buy a flat jointly with your parents and agree to live in it for a fixed number of years and sell it or rent it out after that. That way you reduce your exposure and your parents get to put some skin in the game. I suspect they might not be so keen!

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Which parts of London are seeing rents in free fall??

My area for certain. That's zone 3 West London. Not unsuprisingly, anything marketed above the housing benefit cap is proving impossible to let. There is, of course, no market above this level. How many families can afford £30K a year of their own money on rent? Rents in my area are not too far off where they were a decade ago. And that's in nominal terms!

I can't speak about other parts of London, but I'll wager that any areas where the benfit cap is lower than typical historical rents will be experiencing similar falls.

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Many thanks. I'd never thought of Bromley but those flats seem pretty decent. Do you know the area?

Not really. Went down to see a place on Saturday, seemed like a fairly anonymous place, lively-ish town centre with standard issue chain shopping, nice housing stock dotted around. Mate who grew up there has just bought a place and likes it, conversely my boss who also grew up there hated it and thought i'd probably feel pretty isolated. But there's pretty good transport links, I got a train from Bromley South which got me into Victoria in about 15 minutes.

Not terribly informative HPC thread: http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=189443

Suggest you go down and check it out. I'm also looking east at Walthamstow/Leytonstone/Snaresbrook which seems to be a similar price bracket.

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Architecture is a highly skilled profession. It takes years of training. It's highly regarded and well paid. Why then can someone with your experience and salary only afford a houseshare in Hackney or a little flat in Kent? Meanwhile, your un-skilled office cleaner on minimum wage will be receiving an equivalent income to you and will be living with their family in a 3-bed town house round the corner from you in Hackney, courtesy of the taxpayer. And that, in a nutshell, is pretty much all you need to know to explain the bizarre and gravity defying London property market. Indeed the perverse incentives in this scenario is what is dragging the entire economy down and it's not sustainable.

If you believe the common wisdom that London is a special case propped up by an unlimited supply of foreigners who don't care about returns, then go ahead and buy a flat in Kent. If on the other hand you consider the London property market to be a simple manifestation of out of control public spending, then it makes sense to wait for a bit. Right now benefit cuts are beginning to bite and rents in some parts of London are in free fall. There are hundreds of thousands of BTL mortgages in this city and many of them wont survive the new reality. My money is on this being the beginning of the end. Most people disagree with my analysis though.

Are you under pressure from your parents to get on the property ladder before it's too late? If so, by borrowing money from them, you are carrying all the risk. Instead, why don't you buy a flat jointly with your parents and agree to live in it for a fixed number of years and sell it or rent it out after that. That way you reduce your exposure and your parents get to put some skin in the game. I suspect they might not be so keen!

Thanks. Architecture is not as well paid as most people think, and the long training means you can reach your career development is behind most of your peers'. I'm 32 but only qualified 18 months ago, and I make 33k. I take your point about market distortion but still think it's only a small part of the picture. If as most BTLers do, you have a big deposit, you mortgage costs are going to be easily covered by rents attainable. Let's say you buy a 200k one bed or studio, like the ones I've been looking at, with 50% down. Your 100k is going to cost you £500, even allowing for broken boilers and voids that's covered by the £700-1000 you're charging for it. And even if the rent drops a bit I think most would accept that you're contributing to something that's eventually going to be a debt free asset paying you an income. The only thing that's going to hurt them is if they're on trackers and interest rates go up--but that's not going to happen because it would put the whole country down the pan.

No pressure from the folks, they know they've been lucky and this generation has it pretty tough. They're not wealthy but they're doing what they can. Lending both their kids a total of 150k, which is basically their pensions, is pretty brave/dutiful/foolhardy if you ask me. The idea of jointly buying a flat is certainly something I'd consider, but can't see them being interested in--they're not bothered about investing and becoming 'entrepreneurs', if they were they would've BTLd already. They'd be happy keeping it in the bank paying 2%, but see this as a way of helping us out.

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West-ish London here and I get your points 1-6. Most of which are based around quality of life. Having flat shared for 4 years, no matter who you live with, the quality of life is not ideal and to the extreme it can be a nightmare. Sharing sucks big time, as does the cost of renting of your own flat.

I've been living in shared accommodation ever since I moved to uni at 18. Few students still have to do this these years (only foreign students are willing to) but in my first year, I even had to share a 120 sqft (approx) room with a fellow student. I'd say it's a humbling experience and considering that a lot of people who went to my uni go onto better paid jobs, I think it does you quite a bit of good rather than the rich (mostly International) student experience I see in London where kids believe they deserve their own luxurious flat before they've even graduated and end up with a standard of living that most graduate salaries won't allow them to afford subsequently.

Anyway, that was just my boring student life story. Possibly because I haven't switched out of the student mindset (despite being in my early 30s), I still actually enjoy sharing. After a decade of sharing, you learn a lot about people and whom not to share with: you learn that the "fun, sociable extrovert" type of sharer that seem so great and fun when you meet them for a drink first hand might actually be too much to handle on a day-to-day basis if you know yourself well enough that you don't want to be in party mode 24/7. Also had quite a few "extreme" housemates in the past including drug addicts, skinheads and complete loonies.

Despite having had enough of a deposit to buy any London flat that I'd like (I probably wouldn't ever want to go over 500k) in the areas that I'd be looking, I still don't feel a huge urge to buy. I probably will because I feel like I'm getting on but financially, I don't feel the need. In London, if you find the right share arrangement (I live with my partner and a friend who's the owner and we get on great and the flat's lovely), it still works out significantly cheaper for me. Whether it's splitting the bills, not having to pay ridiculous London service charges, ground rent, these things all add up.

Even if I could move out and pay a similar amount for a mortgage, the flat would not be as nice and the additional bills and charges/bills would easily hit £300-400 more (i.e. as a renter I am not responsible for service charges and currently the bills are split) than what I'm paying in some cases even if the mortgage payments were equal to the current rent.

Now someone might have realised that I said that the owner is my friend. Why don't I do like my friend? And indeed, I think that is a good compromise if you are ok with sharing: having someone to pay rent and help you out with your mortgage payments yet you're still paying off your mortgage but as a lifestyle, it's not that viable i.e. you're in a flat that you can only afford to live in, if someone else is there helping you out with your mortgage.

And to the typical comments about "well at least you're not throwing money away and the money you're paying is going towards the property", if you take a 25-year loan, as a young professional, you probably can't see much further than 5 years, after which you might see a certain lifestyle change. After 5 years of paying that loan, with having paid 20% of the whole amount of mortgage payments, you will have actually only paid about 12% of the total capital, so little more than 1/3 of my payments would have actually gone towards the property. What was this about not "throwing money down the drain?". That's an amount that I could very easily save by not paying service charges and other ownership-related fees every month and by having a rent that is actually quite a bit less than the actual mortgage payments. Of course this all falls through when my assumptions don't take into account capital appreciation. But haven't too many people been betting on capital appreciation recently? Sure, it's a self-fulfilling prophecy that can only go so far.

Your personality will also matter a lot. As someone who doesn't go much out of their way to keep an active social life, I know that if living by myself or just my girlfriend and I, I could very easily get too settled down. Sharing can sometimes be a bit of a kick up the **** to socialise rather than developing the house-proud, slightly neurotic "obsessive about my property" attitude that is very common in the UK.

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No it doesn't make sense, I agree. It's good to have a Plan B or to think things through, but this is a forum full of people who look at the worst case scenario of everything. You'd end up never doing anything. No point getting married, just in case you get divorced, ad finitum. Everything comes with risk which is why my original reply to you was a bit "flim flam" and non committal, do what you want to do. Put it this way I bought my second house in 1997 (in my 20's when it was easy to buy) and my estate agent friend said directly to me "You are insane, you are spending £110k on a 3 bed victorian semi! You will be repossessed I'm warning you!" The rest is history.

Not now buying is not being risk-averse. Plenty of people believe in taking risk with their money but when it makes financial sense to them. Who hasn't heard the endless chorus of kids from middle-class families saying "if I don't buy now, I might never get on the property ladder"? Does that sound like a statement that is free of any fear about risk-taking? I'd say quite the opposite.

One anecdote from 97 hardly justifies any decision now: simply taken objectively, in 97, this was a few years after a short-lived recession, a property crash and the UK was starting to reap the benefits of deregulation with a lot of inward investment into the City and the UK. Basically, anyone who had seen the Big Bang of the 80s and had started to see its effect could have made a smart, informed decision that things were looking up for London and the UK without taking that much risk.

Just as London was transformed in the space of a few years, why can't that happen again? If anything, not buying now would be taking the risk of expecting that things don't look great for Europe, for the UK or for London. Show me where economic growth might come from and sure, I'll take the risk that the British economy will do better in the future. I see London as maintaining a stable, stagnating position as a financial centre, trying to reinvent itself as a hub for IT innovation but with limited results (simply because there are plenty of other places in the world with far more of a talent pool) but actual full-blown growth? I don't buy it.

This isn't from someone who's hell-bent on seeing a property crash. I'm looking to purchase soon myself but after deciding that it won't be based on a bet of any capital appreciation.

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  • 261 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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