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As I have recently just turned the Big Four Zero, it set me off thinking about where I am in life relative to where my father was at the same age.

At 40, my father was in middle-upper management, had five kids, a five bedroom detached home, a holiday house in Wales and a new company car every year or so. I guess you could say we had a pretty good life and were one big, happy family.

I'm not saying that life was easy for my dad- he still faced uncertainty in his job, high inflation and the oil-shock of the early 1970's etc, but we lived well, on a reasonable multiple of his salary for the mortgage, and had no consumer debt (although not really so possible in those days, I know).

And what do I have in comparison? Well, I am better qualified than him and earning a very decent salary as an expat. I can't complain as I have an interesting life abroad, but if I were to extrapolate back to the UK and apply my savings and salary multiple to the property market I realise how impoverished I would be compared to him back in the mid-1960s and 1970's.

There is simply no way of being able to afford what my family had in the UK when my father was my age - even though I am better educated, have more savings and have a higher relative salary. I guess, this makes you realise how difficult it has become for youngsters to start out in life in the UK - let alone raise a family or enjoy the little extras in life.

I think rampant consumer debt and ridiculous house prices have eroded many of the things that led to happy, traditional family life in the UK. Perhaps this is why so many on this excellent forum are so concerned about the state of the housing market in the UK - they simply want a chance of giving their families a decent standard of living in the UK. A traditional right, if you like, that has been eroded away.

Perhaps I'm just nostalgic, but I think this 'new' way of life in Britain comes at the expense of real family happiness and security. Would I return to the UK? - I still love the place in many ways, but being outside and looking back makes me realise that a lot of what I admire and value is under threat. I really hope that there is some sort of major correction to pull things back in line for the younger generation in the UK - they deserve better.

Where were your parents in life at your age? Do you consider yourself 'better off' than them?

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At 30 my Mum had 4 children in a 3 bed council house and my dad lived with his parents after over commiting on a mortgage, losing his job due to drunk driving and then getting divorced. This was early 80's

My Mum has been divorced twice and twiced walked away with nothing but a suitcase and the children.

TBH my Mum has ended up doing just as well as my MIL who has also been divorced twice, MIL did very well with divorce settlements and maintence but my mother was better off on the dole, sad but true.

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6 Kids, rented accommodation and hated each other. I am much better off!!!

6 grown up kids, lived in a council house all his life, never been abroad, unfulfilling job in the building industry, best car ever was a 6 year old Cortina. Fairly content with his lot, though.

All 6 kids have had a much better standard of living, even though most of my siblings have similar jobs to my dad's. Much greater standard of living today.

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Dad at 33 - wife, 2 kids, dog and gerbils living in nice 3 bed councilish house with big garden in rural idyll. No telly but good record player (it was one or the other as they were expensive then). Camping trips to seaside practically every summer weekend. 10 min walk to work for cushy but not terribly well paid government job. No qualifications but getting some. Ice on inside of windows in winter - no central heating or double glazing only open fires. Organic wholefoods only eaten by hippy types with no money like my parents so dirt cheap. No savings - few things on HP.

Me - wife, no kids, no pets - 2 rooms in a shared house in East London (saving to buy). Big 2nd hand TV - couple of computers. No holiday except camping trip to Wales in last couple of years for me (missus went to see parents in Malaysia earlier in year tho). 40 min cycle to work for cushy but stressful and OK paid non-governmental organisation job. Partway through 2nd degree. Condensation on windows in winter - central heating on colder days, no double glazing or open fires. Organic wholefoods eaten by well-off worried well so bloody expensive. Year's salary in savings.

Slightly envious - but life got harder rather than easier there on for Dad. Not sure I'd trade places.

Edited by greencat

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Guest magnoliawalls

At my age my parents were much better off than I am today - without qualifications they were able to afford the very comfortable house they live in today. With excellent qualifications and experience, unless house prices crash, I will never be able to afford similar. They are now enjoying what I hope will be a long and healthy retirement - I do not expect to have that luxury.

I think rampant consumer debt and ridiculous house prices have eroded many of the things that led to happy, traditional family life in the UK. Perhaps this is why so many on this excellent forum are so concerned about the state of the housing market in the UK - they simply want a chance of giving their families a decent standard of living in the UK. A traditional right, if you like, that has been eroded away.

This is where I disagree - our parents' generation were extroardinarily fortunate to be born at the time they were. They have lived through periods of unprecedented prosperity and peace (of course there were recessions and tough times too). We are very lucky to have enjoyed such comfort and stability ourselves - the "traditional rights" of the generations that came before our parents did not include what we would consider a "decent standard of living".

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when my dad was my age he was a rocker/ted and would dig chicks at the local cafe bars. when the local fair came to town he and his mates would stand up on the speedway. they would buy a penneth'o chips with a gurkin from teds mobile chip shop van. then someone would put of some records from ready steady pop and they would do the twist or mashed potato until 10.30pm. then he met my mum and they must have had a 'knee-trembler' at one point because later i was born.

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At my age my Dad was 42, we lived in a massive house in Sheffield, 3 teenage kids, a dog, a large garden. My mum did not work, my Dad was a university lecturer. We had two cars and regular camping holidays.

Whilst living standards overall have increased, there is not a cat in hells chance of someone on the equivalent salary buying a similar place now.

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Whilst living standards overall have increased

i dont think they have.

technology has improved, but the quality of LIFE has fallen imo.

what do we do now ?

go to shopping centres, binge drink and watch low quality coco cola tv.

family life is dying. famlies are dying. hours are longer. holidays are fewer.

taxes are higher. room is less. crime is higher. roads are fuller and university costs money.

whats improved really ?

the internet.?

is that it....!!!

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Six kids, working in a factory, bought a four-bed house and wage inflation had already wiped out much of the cost.

technology has improved, but the quality of LIFE has fallen imo.

Indeed. We may have computers and cheaper airline tickets, but otherwise we can't afford to live the way our parents did.

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i dont think they have.

technology has improved, but the quality of LIFE has fallen imo.

what do we do now ?

go to shopping centres, binge drink and watch low quality coco cola tv.

family life is dying. famlies are dying. hours are longer. holidays are fewer.

taxes are higher. room is less. crime is higher. roads are fuller and university costs money.

The thing is half of these are personal choices.

Some of the others I am not so sure about - hours/holidays?

The others are results of personal choices at the ballot box.

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...(adopts jimmy crickets voice)....and theres more...

more people living alone.

more pesticides and dyes ect in our foods.

very expensive and low quality public transport.

no council housing infrastructure.

expensive dental care.

growing polltaxes.

less political choices.

less social contact.

less independent news.

highest teen pregnancy.

highest drug use.

most expensive cancer drugs.

most expensive housing in history.

and the good......

lots of A levels.

lots of cheap flights.

lots of nightclubs.

24hr casinos.

311 tv channels.

faster cars.

easy credit.

Edited by right_freds_dead

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The thing is, my brother and sister are trying to live the dream that we had. They have three kids each, massive mortgages for largish houses - they both bought at the peak in Sheffield and Durham. My brother earns a fair wack but my sister and her husband dont.

I think their quality of life is ok, they dont go in too much for the "Mac culture".

There seems to be plenty of things for kids to do these days, my brother was telling me about how he took his kids to see Father Xmas on a steam train in Derbyshire.

Cheap white goods mean that their homes of overstocked with gadgets.

My brother has the good fortune of regular access to Sheffield Wednesday games.

I think we can over do it on the negatives sometimes.

Personally speaking, through stupidity, bad timing and living abroad with my eye off the ball I have been screwed on the housing and personal finance side of things and I have opted out of the housing rat race for the time being.

I think my siblings are relatively happy with their high mortgages and inevitable impending negative equity --- for the time being at least. They certainly dont seem to be fretting about it all the time.

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more pesticides and dyes ect in our foods.

Tell me where you could buy organic food if you lived in a town during the 1960s and 70s?

less political choices.

Be real. In the 1970 general election most people had the choice of a candidate wearing a flat cap or a candidate wearing a pinstriped suit. You were lucky to have a Liberal candidate contesting your constituency. We didn't have UKIP, Green Party, Veritas, British National Party, or Respect Coalition to choose from back then because they didn't exist.

less social contact.

This country is a nation of telly addicts. I have been accused of turning my kids in social recluses, but most kids nowadays spend the best part of their time out of school glued to a television or game console. My generation were seen as weird if we didn't play football in the park or ride our bikes.

less independent news.

Most local newspapers are quite dull anyway. They rarely report anything truly interesting.

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We didn't have UKIP, Green Party, Veritas, British National Party, or Respect Coalition to choose from back then because they didn't exist.

What's the point of having these kind of vanity candidates when the system prevents more than a handful of them from being elected? The only real options we have today are NuLab and Tory, who are barely distinguishable... at least in the past there was some difference between them, then Labour became Tory Lite under Blair, and now the Tories are becoming NuLab Lite.

It's no wonder that so few people can even be bothered to vote anymore, when there's no choice offered to them.

Edited by MarkG

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at 30 (as i am) my parents had three kids, a small mortgage and a nice house in the suburbs. my wage is (relatively) similar to my father's at the time, and he was the only wage earner. despite this, taking into account the combined income of miss starship and myself, we are about 80-100 grand shy of being able to afford the sort of property which my parents had back then.

yes dad. of course things were harder in your day... :rolleyes:

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House in St.John's Wood, Rolls Royce, Carlton Hotel (Cannes), Grand Hotel (Eastbourne), dress manufacturer, eating out 5 nights a week. All in the swinging 60s; meeting fun and interesting people.

I'm 26, BTW. My father says ahhh, "but you have so many more horizons in today's world".

B*******

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What's the point of having these kind of vanity candidates when the system prevents more than a handful of them from being elected?

If more people got off their backsides and voted for smaller parties then they would get much better results. The crucial fact is that turnout is falling and quite often the total number of people who don't bother to vote is greater than the number of votes the winning candidate raked in. This is a potential tappable resource for smaller parties that they can use to win elections. A winning candidate with 65% of the vote on a 50% turnout does not have a safe seat.

The only real options we have today are NuLab and Tory, who are barely distinguishable... at least in the past there was some difference between them, then Labour became Tory Lite under Blair, and now the Tories are becoming NuLab Lite.

The electorate who still votes stubbornly sticks with Labour and the Tories. Some do this out of family tradition but others see the election as a horse race and back the winner or the candidate most likely to beat the sitting MP rather than vote for who they really support. A friend of mine in the BNP is using the marked register to find who does and doesn't vote. Leaflets will be delivered to all those who didn't vote in the previous election and none will be delivered to those who did vote because they are assumed to be happy with Lib-Lab-Con. This is a new BNP strategy to target those who don't vote and encourage them to vote BNP with the aim of winning elections without taking a single vote from Labour, Tories or Lib-Dems.

It's no wonder that so few people can even be bothered to vote anymore, when there's no choice offered to them.

If you are unhappy about the choice available in your constituency or ward then join a political party and stand in at elections. The general election requires a 500UKP deposit returned on getting 5% of the vote but the local elections are free.

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. holidays are fewer.

taxes are higher. room is less. crime is higher. roads are fuller and university costs money.

whats improved really ?

the internet.?

is that it....!!!

Holidays are fewer!? My kids go abroad about 3 times each per year! I didn't go abroad until I was about 27, couldn't afford to.

Oh, and Universities always cost money. It's just that people who didn't go had to pay for people who did.

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If more people got off their backsides and voted for smaller parties then they would get much better results.

Nonsense. A party which has 20% support across the country will be lucky to get a single seat in Parliament, since you can't get elected unless you have the majority vote in a specific area.

The electorate who still votes stubbornly sticks with Labour and the Tories.

Because no other party can win: Blair got a majority with 22% of the votes. Only NuLab and the Tories can possibly win power in this country, and most people know that.

Don't you think that an electoral system where a party that receives 22% of the votes wins the election by a majority is utterly broken?

If you are unhappy about the choice available in your constituency or ward then join a political party and stand in at elections.

Why? I couldn't possibly win: I'm not a media celebrity, and they are pretty much the only people who ever win outside the NuLabTory club.

The only way to end the NuLabTory rule is to completely revamp the electoral system in this country so that small parties can get seats in Parliament. Of course neither NuLab nor Tories will vote for that, since that know they'd never see a majority again.

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At 26 my parents were married, had two kids and a three bedroom ex-council house where they had lived for three or four years. I was five years old and my brother two. Only my Dad worked and both were far less qualified than I am now. It wasn't long before they moved to a nicer part of town where they remain now.

Where am I at 26? In a rented one-bedroom flat with my girlfriend. Both working, both loaded with student debt, both commuting stupid distances each day and paying stupid money for the privelidge. Struggling to save anything like a deposit. Can't begin to think about affording marriage, kids or buying a home.

edit...

I should say that my parents find things harder these days too. Despite only supporting one kid now, they both have to work.

Edited by WBFTB

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Nonsense. A party which has 20% support across the country will be lucky to get a single seat in Parliament, since you can't get elected unless you have the majority vote in a specific area.

The number of MPs elected depends on where that 20% of the total vote originates from. There is no direct and clear correlation between the percentage of the total vote and the number of MPs elected. Some Northern Ireland parties get fewer votes than the Green Party but end up getting MPs elected.

Don't you think that an electoral system where a party that receives 22% of the votes wins the election by a majority is utterly broken?

There are many deficiencies with the current election system. The two biggest are the election deposit which is a tax on democracy and the fact that the system encourages tactical and negative voting where people tend to vote against one candidate more than vote for a candidate. These problems are overshadowed by the amount of apathy and the self defeatist attitude of much of the electorate.

Why? I couldn't possibly win: I'm not a media celebrity, and they are pretty much the only people who ever win outside the NuLabTory club.

Neither is the independent doctor from Wyre Forest and he won two elections.

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Holidays are fewer!? My kids go abroad about 3 times each per year! I didn't go abroad until I was about 27, couldn't afford to.

Oh, and Universities always cost money. It's just that people who didn't go had to pay for people who did.

Or that the people who had their education paid for now refuse to pay for the generation that follows them.

Nice..

I resent much more the "child Tax allowance.."

If you can't afford to have children, don't.. and do not make me pay for them..

where does it stop..? the people on minimum wages getting a lower quality NHS treatment then the rich?

only rich people can get their kids to decent schools..?

Its a welfare state.. whose welfare it is concerned with has always been a concern.. :)

granted holidays are much cheaper..

Oh yes.. my parents... nice two bed bungalow and married at 29...

I am 32 and not married..

great job.. :) I am going places and working hard..

be nice to go home at the end of an evening.

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  • 301 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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