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Lurkers Amnesty


Mike1045
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Been lurking since about 2004 - can't shake the addiction! Renting suits me well as am late 20s and working short-term contracts, very much hoping we will see major damage done by 2010!

Have known a few people who have FTB'd recently and, as they are not close friends, I have kept schtum rather than comment on their timing. But sometimes that's hard. "I'm going to make my money on this flat [bought in a dilapidated state by a postgrad student in late 2006]", "one thing's for sure: they're never going to go down" etc. Oh dear, oh dear.

Funnily enough, about the same time, my folks downsized for their retirement and, though they're hardly bearish on property, I think they are realizing that their timing was wise.

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I wonder how many lurkers there are out there, Stand up and be counted! Then you can go back to your lurking ways. :ph34r:

Seriously though I’m interested to know what the interest is in this site over and above the regular posters.

Don’t care if you’re a bull or a bear just if you’re a lurker

hehe...

Been "lurking" since the site started! That is, I'm a long-term uber-bear. I tend to just view rather than post, as I got sick to death of the same old arguments going round and round in circles: we all knew house prices were insanely overvalued and were due for one hell of a correction, so why spend all your life arguing with the VI's who used to populate this place during the boom years? I notice that they've nearly all gone now, just as we knew they would...

Still, I visit the site each day for my fix. And I'm looking forward to the next few years of property declines - and steep they will be.

Spoke to my new neighbour last week. He's paying 4 times (!!!) per month in mortgage payments what I'm paying in rent, for exactly the same property. Never been more happy to be a renter.

Nomadd

Edited by Nomadd
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Blimey, you're all going to hate me!

I'd been lurking for a while prior to registering though never had the nerve to join in :unsure: as I'm what you'd probably call BTL S**m.

In my defence, I bought some run down terrace houses that in the sixties had been converted into flats, and hadn't had anything done to them since. Since buying them I've brought all the flats up to a good standard (central heating/double glazing/new kitchens etc), kept rents below market rates and try to help the tenants where I can, so I'm hoping that allows me some leeway from just being classed as BTL S**m.

Anyway, thought I'd take advantage of the amnesty and say Hi :)

Please keep posting - there are some people here who spit every time they see the letters BTL, but they've probably got their reasons, and you're going to get a diversity of opinion anyway. This place has been short of people with different opinions / histories lately, (largely in my opinion due to the fact that the outcome is becoming undeniably obvious). I for one would welcome the input of a BTL'er and to get their thoughts on the current status - and I know I'm not alone.

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I miss CGNAO: he brought such an air of drama to this forum.

But I was disappointed by the petulance of his final contribution -- berating the moderators for moving his post to another part of the forum. If he can be that petty about small things, can we really trust his wisdom about bigger things?

Unfortunately you've not been lurking long enough - that's about the sixth such petulent post I've seen from him. The whole toy-chucking thing becomes so tired. And no... I don't think we can trust his 'wisdom': his ego is altogether too fragile for him to post rationally or objectively.

TD

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I for one would welcome the input of a BTL'er and to get their thoughts on the current status - and I know I'm not alone.

Make that two of us.

Would be FTBers are mostly resigned to the fact they can't aford to buy a house and many have stopped trying - sensible people... BTLtrs however have continued to jump in way beyond where angels fear to tread, and in doing so have continued to fill the void in (and thus stalling the collapse of) the pyramid scheme that the lack of FTBers should have destroyed by 2005.

Their input, when they finally realise how much they've been shafted by propping up the death throes of an already doomed scam, should be much more gripping and "must-see" than any current "reality" TV show - and all for free (and sans Ant 'n' Dec) on the HPCuk channel...the revolution will NOT be televised!!!

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Regular lurker, I waddle in, scan the new posts, waddle back out again. Normally spend my time on cycling forums where I actually post.

Not particularly interested in buying, more fed up with renting from private landlords. Current landlord is OK (as they go), but I'd like to rent, with a bit more security of tenure, preferably from a company rather than an individual. Mrs P is French, they have this kind of thing over there.

I rent a one-bedroom flat with Mrs P, it's apparently worth £160,000. This is five times our household income. The rent is £625.

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I've been lurking for years, since the original site. Mainly 'cos I could never seem to get a post to work!

I sold up in Croydon in 2004 and have been sitting on £95k ever since (though I seem to keep spending the interest). Since then I've been renting a beautiful flat from a very fair landlord in West Sussex for £600 a month. The flat is 'worth' £200k, so that's a lot cheaper than a mortgage.

I try not to be smug about it all, but I must admit I'll be quite pleased when the proper crash comes. Most notably I had a bizarre conversation with a colleague the other day who got very aggressive about how stupid I was not owning and trotted out all those spurious 'dead money' arguments so favoured by the economically-challenged. I thought it polite not to point out that my 'stupidity' led to money in the bank and money to spend every month, whilst she is working nights to service an enormous mortgage on a not-great property in a rough area which will be one of the first to drop like a stone. I guess all the aggression comes from a need to prove you've done the right thing, and a niggling feeling that maybe you haven't.

Anyway, you've got me talking now, and I'm a lurker, remember. I'll see you on the other side. I'll be the one quietly buying a flat at the bottom of the market, like I did last time.

Cheers all. Good luck to you.

Simon

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I've been registered here since May 07 but have been visiting/lurking for longer than that. I think I first heard about this site from the TV or radio and have dropped by most days since then, mainly to affirm my own bearish opinions.

I don't post because I have nothing to add that any of you would find of interest :unsure: Everything I think about the housing market is already written by posters far more capable of getting their point across than I am.

In any case most of my online time is taken up tracking H5N1 - bizarre but true - well someone's gotta do it :D Just can't let the (in)capable WHO blunder around the world unchallenged.

Thanks to all the contributors here - I've certainly learned a lot from you guys.

Edited by Solitaire
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Great, an excuse to post something after a few years of lurking. Usually when I have something worth saying, I'm beaten to it by all the smart people on here. In fact, is there much left to say? The same arguments are repeated so much that they're now like some kind of ritual mantra, but there are hardly any bulls left to hear it!

I'm still addicted. I've learnt so much. Thanks.

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Great, an excuse to post something after a few years of lurking. Usually when I have something worth saying, I'm beaten to it by all the smart people on here. In fact, is there much left to say? The same arguments are repeated so much that they're now like some kind of ritual mantra, but there are hardly any bulls left to hear it!

I'm still addicted. I've learnt so much. Thanks.

It's great to hear from all of you. I wish you would all post more.

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I can only echo Heroic Purchases' post above - I've been hanging around and feeling guilty for not signing up for over a year now. Thanks for a great site.

We are in rented accommodation. It started out being the result of a fast job-move, which is common for us, but we've always bought before and somehow here, despite it being a great area and also despite having the funds to buy (within reason!) and having viewed over forty houses, fourteen months later we've just continued to have the creeping feeling (aided by all the research it's been possible to do here and elsewhere) that the properties we were seeing just weren't worth the money people were paying for them, for many reasons. Also that our currency was in the same situation.

I also remember the Economist special of, oh, five years ago, stating opinions on the property market from a rounded batch of international experts that suggested readers hit their estate agents over the head with a copy of the magazine if they tried to tell you that the property bubble wasn't about to burst. And the economic arguments stood up then. Frightening really.

Anyway, here I am standing up and being counted and now I can go back to lurking.

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Yep i be a lurker too.

Came to this site when i found out we had a baby on the way and was needing to move from our 2 bed flat to a house. The Nesting instincts of a pregnant lady are a powerful thing.

Moved in to our new house about 3 months ago, bought at the top of the market i know but we moved outside of town but sold our centre flat at the top of the market as well. I am a neither about property really think things are going to take a downturn but dont really factor it too much into my life. I believe in protecting yourself as much as possible and just getting on with it really.

Thanks to the advice/info on this forum bought the new house with 3.5x combined income, 4.5x when missus goes back only part time after maternity leave finishes. Got a 10 year fixed rate protect from any rate issues and have 6 months full income in the bank in case of emergency.

We also bought a house we dont ever have to leave so cannot be trapped with something unsuitable so prices no longer matter to me really. No other debt whatsoever if i dont have it i dont spend it.

The only unknown is actually keeping my job :o

It was always suitable for me to buy (try telling your pregnant wife you plan to STR and when you are in hospital you have plenty of time to read through the ESPC to find a house :lol: ) but thanks to the info from this site i feel i have protected myself as good as i can really. So thanks guys.

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Whatcha. Today I will be mostly lurking. I live in an average priced house in NW Kent. A pebble-dashed 4 bed 1930's terrace in a pretty average street. I have an average family income and an average mortgage. I have two children, one boy and one girl which is about average for the UK. My wife and I have two average cars, both Ford obviously and I'm 40, which is also a pretty average age for the UK.

I am Mondeo Man, I am Mr Pebble-Dashed and I am Mr Middle England. And I know what is happening to the housing market is wrong, wrong, wrong. I do not want to spend the rest of my life living in debt slavery to the banks and I'm desparately worried for the future of my children. I can see a time when simply to live in a house you will only be able to afford it by taking out an interest only loan to buy 49 % of it. The bank will keep the other 51 %. You'll work until death just to pay the interest and then the bank will take the house back from you ready to extort the next generation with it.

I don't think we're that far off from that situation today and its upsetting.

:angry:

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Nothing exciting going on with this lurker. :)

We own our home outright and our children are a few years off wanting homes of their own so, with no debt at all, we feel a little buffered from the madness.

Over the past three or four years my initial bemusement at the way house prices kept going up and up, and the amount of both secured and unsecured debt people were taking on, has given way to absolute horror. I just don't understand how apparently intelligent people can be so totally oblivious to where it will inevitably lead.

I can't recall how I originally came across this site, but do remember thinking 'wow, people who think like I do, I'm not alone after all' and I've stuck around ever since. I don't post as I don't have a lot to say, and everyone else seems far more knowledgeable about it all anyway. :P But I'm here, watching, and reading, and learning. :ph34r:

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I have been lurking every day for over a year. Out of the shadows now because I am VERY dissapointed with the treatment of CGNAO. See his thread in the abouthousepricecrash section. I don't care how many times he has left, but it is vital he comes back. CGNAO ignore the insults, your posts are respected by many, many lurkers. Mods, wrong again. It's becoming a habit.

CGNAO if you do leave, and you really really shouldn't. PM or post a message to where we can all find your valuable insight.

Your's were THE most important posts.

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Another lurker

First lurking in 2005 until the interest rate rise sparked more speculative madness......then found my way back to the fold late last year and what a year its been.... thanks to all for getting the best bear news straight to me, with analysis to boot.

Agree with those that dislike the anti immigration/chavs/not like me threads, and bring back CGNAO, being uber bear in my outlook its good to see someone calling the greatest credit bubble in 70 years or prehaps ever, for what it may bring. If you call yourself a bear i'd hope you'd be of the outlook to listen to contrarian views rather than poking fun at those that stick ther head above the paraphet...either make your case, read another thread or stay silent... like us lurkers.

No plans to buy... give it 4 years of my landlord subsidising me

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I guess I qualify as a lurker too as I pop in every day when I get the chance and rarely post. I have no obvious vested interest in a property crash; a good part of the family fortune is invested elsewhere so whilst our home has rocketed in paper value like the rest, we intend to just carry on living in it so it really does not matter if it is worth £1m or £100.

I started lurking about 3 years ago, joined originally with a different username, never used it and then forgot the password. When I finally wanted to post, I tried to retrieve the password, failed, ended up registering again (and then got an email with the old password!). Originally, I was really just a curious occasional browser but that changed recently through growing awareness of the social ills that hpi and its attendant developers and speculators have wrought on the town where I live, and this summer it really started to get to me and I began wishing seriously for a crash and for these parasites to be flushed away and the natural balance to be restored.

What I see here sickens and saddens me: people have become so greedy and money obsessed; whole neighbourhoods have been changed beyond recognition because developers have converted old victorian houses into flats, "redeveloped" the few existing plots in the town (wonderful old landmarks like the site and buildings of the old ladies college and the old nursery, replacing them with the standard cardboard box houses we all know and love), knocked down rambling old houses with large gardens to build 4 new, characterless houses on the plot, built on plots stolen from existing gardens etc etc all of which eats away at what used to make this a fine place to live and along the way destroys communities all in the name of making a fast buck. As these unscrupulous types build on every tiny scrap of land and squeeze every last bit of profit out of the place and disappear, we are left living with the consequences; I am sure the same thing is happening all over the country but it doesn't make it any less tragic.

I grew up here and hate what is being done to the place. It may not be paradise, but the old Eagles song "Last Resort" says it all.

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ok, I've lurked awhile, about time I contributed too - a good effort to flush us all out!

I'm an equity investor, and an economist by training. I've focussed on financial services, not just UK, for many years. So, I'll be one of those in the City that so many of you despise.

I'm not into property except I own my home, and it is my home, not an investment, I'm not moving. So I have no vested interest in prices either way as such, but i'm interested in the implications of changes in the housing market on the economy, company profits and hence share prices. So I lurk for the anedoctal views and conflicting evidence that I hope will enable me to spot trends before they are properly discounted in share prices.

But I guess given I see so much news it would only be fair for me to put a bit back into the system. Much of what I see finds its way onto this site anyway, but not all. For example, yesterday hard data (DataQuick) from California showing prices down 12.4% from the peak in April, and down y-on-y 8%, compared with only 4% in September (new and old houses combined, so it includes the hidden subsidies from the home builders I've seen discussed here). The US looks to be about a year ahead of the UK on most measures, transaction numbers are still falling - down 43% year on year, and down 61% from the peak in October 2004 and that's with a growing population and growing economy - and for those who see rate cuts in the UK bailing out the market, I'm afraid you can draw no comfort from the US, where rates have been cut twice now but the decline is, seemingly, accelerating. Falling prices there are not driven by higher rates or recession (not yet at least... ), the usual causes of stress in the past. Median prices now appear lower than the UK (incomes are higher), and it started as a soft landing. Hard landings always start as soft landings.

Whilst I try and keep an open mind (closing ones eyes and ears to emerging evidence as to what is going on is a quick route to failure in the investment world I live in, but seems common in BTL world), I'm a bear. There's too big a disconnect between what's happening to banks/lenders - who have fund much of the euphoria in housing and clearly will not continue to do so to the same extent - and the strong beliefs and behaviour of a now shrinking majority of the population. Fundamentals will always out.

Perhaps the bulls out there should consider selling at least some of their property and buying bank shares, they'll get a much higher yield (7%+) with no voids, less effort, no problem tenants, no depreciation, no having to finding a plumber to do CORGI checks or solicitors/valuers/assorted other fee-charging parties, quicker access to their capital, a massive reduction in stamp duty and much lower transaction commissions. You could go on holiday, paid for with the extra yield, to occupy all the time you would free up. If you are right to be bullish, the banks will surely be fine, lending will grow, few losses will accrue on mortgages, the shares would surely go up. You could even get the gearing benefits from options at modest cost without the real downside risk. That's really not a recommendation, by the way! And if you don't think that a good idea, perhaps you might ponder whether there are any inconsistencies embedded in your thinking.

I hope a lot of you "lurkers" continue to post! You all have something to add. The person above, for example, could be the new dstars, who seems to have disappeared. Anyone know what happened to dstars?

There's a wealth of knowledgeable posters here, but it's starting to look a little lob-sided these days.

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It's good to realise I'm not the only one whose been skulking around for a long time. I've been reading HPC on-and-off since late 2004 and on a daily basis for about the last 8 months. I've always been too lazy to register :)

Anyway, this is my first post in all that time - see you in three years for the next one ;-)

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