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Panorama - Cashing in on the Housing Crisis


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I watched it. A depressing indictment of the times. The government changes the law in 2013,removing minimum legal requirements for residential dwelling sizes. Private companies buy up disused office blocks, convert into tiny rooms with a bathroom and kitchenette, charges the taxpayer 750 pounds a month for the privilege. 

 

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19 minutes ago, nothernsoul said:

I watched it. A depressing indictment of the times. The government changes the law in 2013,removing minimum legal requirements for residential dwelling sizes. Private companies buy up disused office blocks, convert into tiny rooms with a bathroom and kitchenette, charges the taxpayer 750 pounds a month for the privilege. 

 

The continuous subdivision of UK housing stock into ever-smaller units... aka Dog Kennels in the Sky... aka George Osborne's 'Plan A'?

I may have written a couple of thousand posts about it somewhere.

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2 hours ago, APerson said:

Could someone please kindly explain why the hell there is no thread on this?

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000f1wr/panorama-cashing-in-on-the-housing-crisis

indeed i mentioned this couple years back planning permission was not required to convert these to tiny units that new builds required. 

no doubt the tory friends bought these up before the plan was made public. 

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12 hours ago, APerson said:

Could someone please kindly explain why the hell there is no thread on this?

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000f1wr/panorama-cashing-in-on-the-housing-crisis

Perhaps because many of us don't have TVs. But good spot.

There have been threads on the issue of conversion of office blocks into barely habitable accomodation. I will have a look.

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2 hours ago, APerson said:

I wonder if they would allow a bunch of private individuals to collectively buy an office block and live in it?

Yes provided you deal with....

 

Office to residential 

Offices (Use Class B1a) are permitted to change to residential (Use Class C3).

This is subject to limitations and conditions, including the need to apply for Prior Approval based on the:

  • transport and highways impacts
  • contamination and flooding risks
  • impacts of noise from commercial premises on the intended occupiers of the development

https://www.planningportal.co.uk/info/200130/common_projects/9/change_of_use/2

 

 

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1 hour ago, Wayward said:

 

This is one of favourite commercial to residential conversions...Welwyn...Pack them in.

 

 

https://www.rightmove.co.uk/new-homes-for-sale/property-52209576.html

 

Exclusive and sumptuous !!

 

 

image.png

I love how they're not even described as flats or even bedsits, but starter suites lol. From £184k to £250k. Leasehold too. But the complex has an "impressive communal entrance", a designer kitched, and thank God for the nearby Waitrose and John Lewis. Thank God! That's worth putting a £75k deposit down for, aged 41, and to fork out £830 per month (+ ground rent, service charge, council tax, and bills) until just before I can draw my state pension. It really is. 

I saw a 4 bed detached in Hull yesterday for £200k. 

Edited by Orb
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2 hours ago, Orb said:

I love how they're not even described as flats or even bedsits, but starter suites lol. From £184k to £250k. Leasehold too. But the complex has an "impressive communal entrance", a designer kitched, and thank God for the nearby Waitrose and John Lewis. Thank God! That's worth putting a £75k deposit down for, aged 41, and to fork out £830 per month (+ ground rent, service charge, council tax, and bills) until just before I can draw my state pension. It really is. 

I saw a 4 bed detached in Hull yesterday for £200k. 

The thing with this one is its in the middle of an industrial estate...next to other commercial uses as originally intended and next to the B&Q goods in yard...look on the street view. 

And those prices are from 2017...can't see any for sale at mo...

Exploitation...and an inevitable consequence of policy. 

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I'm working with translators at the moment and have a nose about on Google Earth where they are located just out of interest. I pay them half as much as I would in the UK (but then that reflects the market I will be selling into anyway and the pound is very strong to their currency). What I'm seeing is neighborhoods with swimming pools at the back of 1 in every 7 to 10 houses. One of my past students lives overseas much of the time, while living in the UK they enjoyed coming to me because they didn't have central heating where they rented. Anyone who believes the UK housing crisis isn't totally deliberate must live in a cave.

Edited by Arpeggio
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12 hours ago, mallish said:

Have you ever been to Hull?

I have and no way would I ever live there.  

I've not been to Hull specifically, but been that way, especially Scunthorpe and Goole. Why wouldn't you live there?

Looking up north in general, Yorkshire for instance, there's plenty of 3 and 4 bed detached all over for £200k, Selby, Doncaster, Halifax, Huddersfield,  Rotherham etc.

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https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000f6tv

Radio programme about offices converted into 'homes'.

Main thrust though is her view that it is wrong that councils should be housing people in former office blocks.  Moaning about housing provided at tax payers expense. Nothing about those that have to rent these homes privately or have bought them as OOs with earned income.

Interesting that these issues are getting a hearing on R4 though...maybe they will begin to sense all is not well.

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On 05/02/2020 at 21:17, nothernsoul said:

I watched it. A depressing indictment of the times. The government changes the law in 2013,removing minimum legal requirements for residential dwelling sizes. Private companies buy up disused office blocks, convert into tiny rooms with a bathroom and kitchenette, charges the taxpayer 750 pounds a month for the privilege. 

 

Doesn't surprise anyone, we need journalist to bring to the populations attention what really goes on in places not that far away from them.....only a thin line between having it all to having nothing.......I feel for the young kids being brought up around drugs, violence and antisocial behaviour......like not that different to living in a prison.....and others are capitalising on the desperate needs of others with few or no other choices.....the way of the world.?

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Yes, saw this and it was depressing.

Yes, it showed us what the housing crisis is doing but also shone a light on the breakdown of our society.

As free of charge basic shelter, these bedsits are perfectly reasonable accomodation for homeless people. On the face of it, better than a B & B.

The problem is that some homeless people sometimes bring 'baggage' with them, even with a roof over their head their lifestyle won't change that much. And obviously that's a problem if you are their neighbour and possibly with a young family.

And the council has a list as long as it's arm of homeless/ needy cases requiring subsidised or free housing. They haven't got any three bed council houses left. They haven't got any properties left.

And that's where the landlords comes in and they can charge £750/ month because that will be less than the council pays for a B & B.

I don't know what the answer is.

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14 minutes ago, frankief said:

And that's where the landlords comes in and they can charge £750/ month because that will be less than the council pays for a B & B.

I don't know what the answer is.

Anyone who thinks the have the "whole" answer ... maybe doesn't understand the question (and it's complexity).

Interesting to think about 1 aspect of it though (the one that you highlight) - the price ceiling on what councils are going to get charged.

As much as housing in the UK is increased in price by the sloshing about of money in the private sector (that's a minefield of a topic in itself (can anyone say liar loans?)) ... this insanity overflows into price stress for councils too ... but largely because the councils have to compete in the private market for the housing they provide as a public service.

Council held stock on a large scale would come with significant problems I am sure. But if the council had stock then their ongoing costs would be aintaining that stock (not easy when people living in that stock of housing sometimes don't have respect for what is not "theirs") - maintenance costs, and upgrades (which a lazy civil servant wouldn't be interested in planning anyway).

OK, so they would still have to grow their stock of housing roughly in proportion to the growing number of households (as relates to growing population). But that would be a conceivably "plannable" thing ... as opposed to the volatility of a private sector market.

The sickness of cheap money, zombie corporates (and their associated zombie jobs) and the corruption at the top (at every level?) ... affects every aspect of British society. That all this monetary jiggery pokery has turned the private housing market into a sh1t-show ... hits public sector housing hard too now.

I am reminded that I live in a country where I don't have to fear for my life whilst sleeping in my car because insurgents have blocked the road ... 

But there really is no excuse for the (allegedly) democratically elected leadership to entrench the continuing and accelerating inequality. There is reason for it ... but then I might want to remove my tinfoil hat before ... alleging that the poitical system has been bought.

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On 2/7/2020 at 10:31 PM, Orb said:

I've not been to Hull specifically, but been that way, especially Scunthorpe and Goole. Why wouldn't you live there?

 

20 hours ago, dances with sheeple said:

Why not?

I have no issue per se with the north.  My mothers family hail from Sunderland so I am hardly a snob!  I have nevber been to Scunthorpe or to Goole so cannot speak from experience.  

Honestly Hull is grimmer than grim.  I have been to Huddersfield, Doncaster and Rotherham which are equally grim - just look run down and grubby.  I have a mate who comes from Hull and one who is from Donny - neither would ever go anywhere near the place other than to see family members.  .  

The economy is just very low aid jobs in the service industry.  No quality retail outlets, restaurants etc.  It is all take away chicken and chips, imitation Wetherspoon pubs, loads of betting shops, streets full of litter.  Other areas of the north such as York and Harrowgate and ares in the Peak District and the Dales and Lakes are wonderful.  

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On 12/02/2020 at 14:36, mallish said:

 

I have no issue per se with the north.  My mothers family hail from Sunderland so I am hardly a snob!  I have nevber been to Scunthorpe or to Goole so cannot speak from experience.  

Honestly Hull is grimmer than grim.  I have been to Huddersfield, Doncaster and Rotherham which are equally grim - just look run down and grubby.  I have a mate who comes from Hull and one who is from Donny - neither would ever go anywhere near the place other than to see family members.  .  

The economy is just very low aid jobs in the service industry.  No quality retail outlets, restaurants etc.  It is all take away chicken and chips, imitation Wetherspoon pubs, loads of betting shops, streets full of litter.  Other areas of the north such as York and Harrowgate and ares in the Peak District and the Dales and Lakes are wonderful.  

Fair enough, you could live there and travel about i suppose, take advantage of the cheap housing, your income would have to come from somewhere else though?

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