January 2012 Archive

Monday, January 30, 2012

Morality / Political Farce at its Best / Worse - delete as appropriate

Telegraph: Taxpayers lose £900m as RBS shares fall

The taxpayer has lost almost £900million on the value of its shares in Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group amid fears that the backlash against bonuses would damage their performance. Just shows what Twonks some of our more shallow politicians are when they insist on making a point to score points.

Posted by enuii @ 11:25 PM 5 Comments

”Investors must ask themselves the same question buyers/sellers where is the bottom?"

Fundstrategy: Property holds key to more choice

This year offers investment opportunities in residential property in Britain and Europe as the banking and housing crises – and legislative changes – motivate the sale of mortgage assets. Residential mortgage portfolio trading is more of a feature of the British market than in the eurozone. However, it is expected to become standard practice overseas, as problems in the European financial markets – particularly the banking sector – will lead to rise in motivation to sell mortgage assets.

Posted by jack c @ 09:31 PM 1 Comments

"In four years we’ve gone from an overheated purchase market to a boiling rental market"

Mortgagestrategy: Useless records on housing

The Department for Communities and Local Government made an apt retort to Lord Beecham’s criticism of housing minister Grant Shapps in the House of Lords. Beecham accused Shapps of failing to do anything for the UK’s housing market, despite a frenzy of PR activity. A dizzying 127 announcements on housing since Shapps was made minister have actually seen a decline in new start-ups for 2010/11. The accusation struck at the heart of the government’s failure to get a grip on housing. A lot of hot air has had few tangible results. But just as correct was the DCLG’s response that Labour failed equally badly in 13 years of power

Posted by jack c @ 07:02 PM 5 Comments

Land Registry confirms 1.3% drop in UK house prices in 2011

Myfinances.co.uk: UK house prices fell 1.3% in 2011

UK house prices fell by 1.3 per cent in 2011, according to the latest report from the Land Registry.

Posted by ben @ 02:41 PM 0 Comments


Land Registry: HPI News - December 2011

The December data shows that London is again the only region in England and Wales to experience an increase in its average property value over the last 12 months with a movement of +2.8 per cent. The North East experienced the greatest annual price fall of -7.1 per cent. December’s data shows no monthly price change. The annual change now stands at -1.3 per cent and has not risen above zero since December 2010. This brings the average house price in England and Wales to £160,384. The number of property transactions has decreased over the last year. In July to October 2010, there was an average of 61,274 sales per month. In the same months this year, the figure was 60,764 sales per month.

Posted by khards @ 11:01 AM 4 Comments

Save thousands on mortgage interest payments by overpaying

Myfinances.co.uk: Homeowners advised to pay down mortgage debt rather than save

With interest rates low and likely to remain so, it pays to overpay your mortgage to save future interest payments rather than save in a traditional savings account that pays low interest.

Posted by ben @ 10:41 AM 3 Comments

This is heartbreaking

AboutProperty: War veteran faces losing home to HS2 rail line

Stan Passmore, 85 served in the Royal Navy during the war on HMS Cassandra protecting ships delivering vital wartime supplies on the dangerous route across the Arctic to the Soviet Union. On his third trip, his ship was hit by a torpedo and 66 of his crewmates died. He said: "We want a guarantee of new flats before our homes are destroyed and for our community to be able to stay together. "I have known people here all my life. But no one has shown any interest in what we might want, and it feels like no one cares for us."

Posted by phil @ 10:05 AM 4 Comments

Repossession x3

Metro: March of the Bailiffs

The number of people being forced out of their homes by court bailiffs has risen by a fifth, new figures show. Lenders are also becoming less generous with requests for payment holidays or interest-only payments.

Posted by drewster @ 08:52 AM 2 Comments

3-month fall in new buyers accelerates

Independent: Chill over housing market as new buyers fall by 10.5%

Home prices have not risen for 18 months and could fall by 5 per cent this year, say analysts. Most indicators looking negative.

Posted by dohousescrashinthewoods @ 08:42 AM 1 Comments

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sinking gardens of great yarmouth.

Great yarmouth mercury: Sinking gardens

Sinking Gardens, next sinking houses.

Posted by leedel20 @ 11:28 PM 1 Comments

This is why we need to get rid of much of the planning system

Evening Standard: Wapping plan shows Cooper is no mini

The Marcus Cooper Group owns more than 1000 rental properties and are involved in 50 development projects with an end value of £1.5 billion. "What we do is buy large, prime assets with potential for change of use. We then get that change of use, or fresh planning permission, then sell on." [So they write a letter to the local council planning department saying "please give us money", and the council says "yes here you go". How much free money does the government give away like this, every day, when it grants planning permission?]

Posted by drewster @ 01:43 PM 16 Comments

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Great Housing Sell-off

Daily Mail: The Great Sell-off

The great sell-off: Property tycoon to raise £3bn by selling 1% of ALL UK homes to clear his debts 250,000 homes are up for grabs in the sale The portfolio has 15,000 homes in London alone

Posted by james stephenson @ 06:08 PM 15 Comments

Oh no

Guardian: The 95% mortgage is back

After years struggling to save big deposits, first-time buyers are hopeful of getting on to the property ladder as lenders line up to offer 95% mortgages. Five years ago there were more than 800 different 95% mortgages available to first-time buyers. When the financial crisis struck, they disappeared from lenders' shelves almost overnight. But the first few weeks of 2012 are seeing a surprise turnaround – the number of loans on offer has tripled and interest rates have fallen. Will "generation rent", until now forced into renting because they can't stump up the huge deposits demanded by lenders, finally be able to put a foot on the property ladder? Rents on mundane flats in London are averaging more than £1,000 a month.

Posted by drewster @ 11:36 AM 10 Comments

Quick! Buy now before it's too late!

Guardian: Buying now cheaper than renting, Halifax says

Buying a house is now much cheaper than renting, mortgage lender Halifax has claimed, in a remarkable turnaround from three years ago when the soaring property market priced out all but the wealthiest buyers. Halifax calculates that the monthly cost of buying the average three-bed home in the UK is now £600, 16% cheaper than the £716 it would cost to rent the same type of property. That contrasts with the peak of the property market in 2008, when a mortgage on the typical home cost around 29% more than renting. The figures come amid claims that first-time buyers are beginning to return to the property market. The biggest barrier for young buyers - the huge deposits required by lenders - is beginning to crumble as more and more 95% mortgages have become available in recent weeks.

Posted by drewster @ 11:24 AM 10 Comments

Home-owners win every time

Guardian: Who really gets government subsidised housing?

Official figures show government spends more money on supporting owner-occupiers than social tenants. In fact, council housing has been making a profit since 2008, which has been paid to the Treasury.

Posted by drewster @ 11:20 AM 3 Comments

The blight of derelict homes

Bradford T&A: Property crook told to pay £140,000

A crooked Bradford property developer has been ordered by a Court to stump up £140,000 of his ill-gotten gains. He submitted false and forged documentation to the Land Registry in order to obtain ownership of derelict and empty houses in the Bradford and Halifax areas. He tried to illegally obtain ownership of four properties. He sold two properties on to unsuspecting developers and made £140,000 as a result. The scam cheated the rightful owners out of their legal rights of ownership.

Posted by drewster @ 11:17 AM 1 Comments

50 per cent off asking price...

Daily Telegraph: Britain's 'tackiest house' sells after six years

Britain's biggest 'repossession' finally sold by receiver acting for Irish Government... but not for the asking price

Posted by stuartking @ 11:16 AM 0 Comments

Owning a property is cheaper than renting

Myfinances.co.uk: Buying a UK property is £116 a month cheaper than renting

Low mortgage rates and falling property prices mean it is £116 a month cheaper to own your own home than rent, if you can raise the deposit to get on the property ladder.

Posted by ben @ 10:55 AM 0 Comments

Friday, January 27, 2012

Pass the buck before the mess hits the fan.

Reuters: Treasury to take charge in next bank crisis

"The Treasury will have the power from next year to take charge in any future banking crisis, including being able to tell the Bank of England (BoE) to pump money into the financial system. Chancellor George Osborne published a draft law on Friday reforming the way Britain's financial system is regulated and setting out who has ultimate authority in a crisis" (It wasn't me Guv!)

Posted by alan @ 07:14 PM 5 Comments

Ex Villa star relegated to Bankruptcy league

BBC News: Former Aston Villa star Lee Hendrie declared bankrupt

"Lee Hendrie has been declared bankrupt. A petition for bankruptcy was brought against the 34-year-old midfielder by HM Revenue and Customs on December 19, the High Court was told." "The former Premier League player, who won his only England cap in 1998, has homes in Solihull, West Midlands, and Rowington, Warwickshire."

Posted by thecountofnowhere @ 05:30 PM 0 Comments

Well, he didn't get that £1 million bonus

BBC News: RBS chief Hester's £963,000 bonus criticised

Hester has seen the RBS share price tumble but he's got his bonus on top of his £1.2m salary and his Long-term Incentive Plan (not mentioned in the article), which will be worth millions. All the talking heads are saying pretty much what you'd expect them to say, but no analysis of what particular skills he brings that would be difficult to acquire without the big bucks.

Posted by icarus @ 03:41 PM 12 Comments

350 workers to lose jobs at Sheerness plant too

BBC: Serco announces job losses at Hook office

Outsourcing group Serco has announced it is to cut 500 jobs, mostly at its UK head office in Hampshire.

Posted by mark @ 03:02 PM 6 Comments

We knew things were bad in the States, but homes for under £1,000?

Planet Property Blog: Five for Friday ... US Houses for £1,000

On the market for $1,200… We all know that the US property market is bad, but we were astonished to read recently of a woman who advertised to swap her home for a car. So we’ve had a little look and come up with five of the many properties in the States on the market at about £1000.

Posted by property addict @ 11:37 AM 0 Comments

Sensible article, idiot comments

Inside Housing: Do not pass go

Root cause of housing problems is hard to grasp even for Occupiers let alone banks who effectively own most of the land through mortgage assets. The founding social organisations today are privatisation of the commons: virtually tax free private property in land. And socialisation of private property: taxation of wages, salaries and investment. Is this the right way around? We’ve been taught this is economically sustainable so never question it. Yet everyone wants property because it always rises in value for free. So through each business cycle, property prices are bid upwards by expected future selling price, fuelled by limitless credit and a speculative bubble develops. The ability of people to pay the rising price for a home to live in diminishes...

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:19 AM 10 Comments

They struggle to admit it - bubble

Bloomberg: Expensive London Loses Allure for Commercial Property Investors on Economy

Respondents “complain about the difficulty of getting hold of assets, strong competition and bubble-like pricing,” PwC said in the report

Posted by mark @ 09:56 AM 3 Comments

Time for a HPC?

AboutProperty: Housing market set for stagnation in 2012

The young can't buy and the old won't sell say HSBC

Posted by phil @ 09:25 AM 0 Comments

British Industry at its Best

Telegraph: Cost of moving house rises 69% in ten years

Title says it all and highlights the sums of money involved in this lucrative sector of the 'service' economy.

Posted by enuii @ 08:01 AM 3 Comments

Thursday, January 26, 2012

If everyone in Europe is skint won't we get a HPC?

Sky: Who Will Stump Up To Boost The IMF's Coffers?

Mme Lagarde reiterated the gravity of the situation in saying, "The IMF, being an international institution, will appeal to its members to make their contributions. European partners will also have to do more".

Posted by alan @ 08:57 PM 4 Comments

Now THAT's a crash

PropertyWire: Property price falls accelerate in parts of Ireland

Residential property prices in Ireland fell by 1.7% in December, indicating that there is still no sign of the country’s real estate market bottoming out. The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office also show that the annual rate of decline was 16.7% in December. Overall, the national index is 47% lower than its highest level in 2007.

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 05:08 PM 13 Comments

They Quote A Problem

Birmingham Mail: 99 Year Wait for Larger Council Houses

"DESPERATE Birmingham families face a 99 YEAR wait for the largest council houses, the Birmingham Mail can reveal." "The average waiting time for all housing types – including flats, maisonettes and two and three-bedroom houses – is an estimated six years." "The crisis is fuelled by the fact that 70 per cent of city residents can not afford to buy the average-sized home on their income. GOSH! Could there be a solution to all this? Hmmm . . . I wonder if it would help if house prices fell?

Posted by nomad @ 02:41 PM 3 Comments

BTL seems to be doing well

Telegraph: Buy-to-let mortgage specialist eyes acquisitions

British buy-to-let mortgage lender Paragon said it is exploring acquisition opportunities after posting a rise in quarterly profits. The company saw operating profits rise 12pc to £20.3m during the three months ending December 31, compared to a year earlier.

Posted by hpwatcher @ 12:32 PM 0 Comments

No incentive to downsize

AboutProperty: Mother offered 'affordable' home at double rent

District nurse Jill Coleman said: "It's ridiculous. My son is in the same sized house owned by Ocean Housing but I would be paying almost double his rent. It means I can't afford to downsize to a smaller house in St Agnes and will be stuck in a house too big for my needs."

Posted by phil @ 11:36 AM 0 Comments


North wales daily post: Council tenants in North Wales face 5% hike in rent

INFLATION busting rent rises for council housing are set to hit thousands of tenants – some facing a £250-a-year hike. Councils are threatening 5% increases, despite the dire economic outlook and UK Government plans to slash welfare payments.

Posted by mark @ 10:03 AM 5 Comments

Maybe a city slum in 10 years too many people on a small site

Lancashire Evening Post: Grant to turn ‘tip’ into new city estate

A cashpot of £50,000 has been set aside to kick-start work on turning a former waste site into an affordable housing estate. The ruling Labour group on Preston Council has put forward plans, as part of its budget proposals, to carry out a study of the six-acre plot on the corner of St Paul’s Road and Argyll Road in Deepdale. It will look into whether it can build up to 300 new homes on the site which was previously a waste tip.

Posted by mark @ 10:01 AM 10 Comments

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Tata Steel is to axe 110 jobs at Corb

Northampton Evening Telegraph: Corby company announces job losses

"Tata Steel is to axe 110 jobs at Corby - about 15 per cent of the workforce. The company announced the job losses today as part of a review of its European tubes business operations" The recovery gathers momentum!!!!

Posted by thecountofnowhere @ 05:02 PM 0 Comments

UK house sales in 2011 close to lowest level since records began

Planet Property: UK house sales in 2011 close to lowest level since records began

869,000 residential properties were sold last year, a figure just shy of the all-time low of 848,000.

Posted by the planet @ 03:11 PM 6 Comments

New Builds for Demolition.

BBC News: Unwanted homes in Irish Republic could be demolished

They have been called the 'ghost estates' of the Irish Republic - about 300,000 homes built in the frenzy of the property boom that no-one wants to live in now. "We were conned" Spot on.

Posted by beigemaster @ 01:47 PM 5 Comments

In the meantime Portsmouth issued with HMRC winding-up petition

Bbc: Stradey Park rugby ground: Final go-ahead for homes in Llanelli

Developer Taylor Wimpey was originally granted planning permission to build 355 homes in 2007. But campaigners, concerned about flooding and sewerage capacity, were granted a judicial review. However, His Honour Judge Milwyn Jarman QC dismissed all four challenges brought. The judicial review claim was issued last year by protester and cockle-picker Thomas Hughes, Llanrhidian, in Gower. Mr Hughes argued he had lost his home and earnings of £500,000 over a decade as a result of mass cockle deaths in the Loughor Estuary.

Posted by mark @ 01:05 PM 0 Comments

The perfect storm brewing?

Grauniad: UK family debts up by almost 50% in a year

Considering recent jobless figures, inflation and record low interest rates will the next bubble be bigger than ever? This certainly doesn't reflect an improving situation

Posted by richy richless @ 12:39 PM 9 Comments

Ole Georgy speaks without thinking

Daily mail: There will be riots on streets of America': George Soros predicts class war in U.S. as euro triggers collapse of global economy

Billionaire investor George Soros has warned the global economic system could collapse and riots on the streets of America are on the way. The 81-year-old said he’d rather survive than stay rich as the world faces an ‘evil’ period and Europe fights a ‘descent into chaos and conflict’. He has backed the euro, bought $2billion in European bonds and insisted the economic climate is similar to the 1930s Great Depression.

Posted by mark @ 12:36 PM 2 Comments

Mansion Tax - an excellent idea which would be an administrative doddle.

City Wire Money: Mansion tax: a terrible, unworkable idea

My comment under the article: "The Mansion Tax is a splendid idea, especially if it goes hand in hand with scrapping the 50p tax rate. The whole valuations thing is a doddle, even Fattie Pickles admitted that HM Land Reg could revalue every single house in the whole country for about £5 or £10 each, they got all the info they need and more on their databases.Even better, forget having a special Mansion Tax and just have council tax bands A to Z, where Band A is £100 a year and Band Z is £10,000. This is all a tenny tiny shift towards proper Land Value Tax, which is NOT a tax on "wealth", far from it, it is a user charge, it is no more a tax on "wealth" than the £4 cost of admission to your local municipal swimming baths."

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 12:28 PM 15 Comments

Rewarding "good citizens"?

AboutProperty: Bid to protect tenants from neighbours from hell

"The bill would also extend recent changes to the way that social housing is allocated to reward "good citizens" who make a contribution to their community with greater priority"

Posted by phil @ 11:31 AM 0 Comments

This bodes well for the Spring Bounce! We'll all be rich!

BBC: Winter spurt in mortgage lending, says BBA

In the mortgage market, activity remained at the low levels of the last two years, despite the pick-up in gross mortgage lending in December. The number of mortgage approvals for house purchases by the High Street banks did increase to 36,171 in December compared with November, although remortgaging did drop back slightly in the same period. Over the year as a whole, the number of mortgages approved for house purchases was very similar to 2010, the BBA said. The number of approvals for remortgaging was up 3% in 2011 compared with 2010. The average house purchase value was similar to 2010, at £145,200, the BBA said.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:47 AM 2 Comments

Yes but will it end in our life time?

Daily Telegraph: Sir Mervyn King: no reason to despair over economy

The Governor of the Bank of England, Sir Mervyn King, has urged against “despair” because “all crises come to an end” as official figures were expected to show that Britain is heading back to recession. After the steepest downturn in output since the 1930s, the UK economy is in the process of rebalancing . . . the path of recovery is likely to be arduous, long and uneven.

Posted by who stole my pension? @ 10:37 AM 10 Comments

From forestry to social housing!

Liverpool daily post: Fountains Group enters administration leading to more than 130 job loses in Kirkby

A CONTACTOR has collapsed into administration leading to more than 130 job loses in Kirkby. Fountains Group, which employed more than 2,000 people in the UK, went into administration after it was hit by the economic downturn. More jobs are going in Essex and Norfolk.

Posted by mark @ 10:31 AM 0 Comments

"the services sector, which accounts for two thirds of the economy, ground to a halt"

BBC: UK economy shrinks by 0.2% in last three months of 2011

UK economic activity shrank by 0.2% in the last three months of last year according to official figures. It marks a sharp drop in economic activity from the third quarter of 2011, when gross domestic product (gdp) expanded by 0.6%. The figures, from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), are a preliminary estimate, which could be revised either up or down by 0.2%.

Posted by jack c @ 10:15 AM 2 Comments

It started with MP's, liar loans and hundreds of petty laws to criminalize us all

Telegraph: Rise in dishonesty signals looming 'integrity crisis' in Britain

Lying, adultery, LIAR LOANS?, drug taking, breaking the speed limit, drink-driving, and handling stolen goods are all seen as more acceptable than they were at the turn of the century, it suggests. Disapproval of so-called “low level dishonesty” has increased irrespective of social class, income level or education, according to research by Essex University. Integrity levels were slightly higher among women than men but the most significant variation was by age with noticeably higher tolerance of dishonesty among the young. It is quite hard not to break the law these days with all the petty laws imposed upon us. Have you broken the law today? Do you even know if you have?

Posted by khards @ 09:17 AM 3 Comments

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Minister with (property) portfolio

Daily Mail: Huhne splashes out £1.3million on a Grade II listed building in London, taking his property portfolio up to EIGHT

Lib-Dem Chris Huhne, the Energy Secretary, has splashed out almost £1.3 million on a new London home. This is known to be the eighth property he has bought. The Grade II-listed property in Clerkenwell, previously a pub but now a flat and offices, adds to a multi-million-pound portfolio which has included a seven-bedroom townhouse in Clapham, five rental homes, and a property in his Hampshire constituency of Eastleigh. Mr Huhne has previously insisted the five rental properties were 'investments', describing them as his pension fund from a previous career in the City which made him one of Parliament’s wealthiest MPs.

Posted by drewster @ 10:58 PM 14 Comments

Lowest ever 10-year fix

Telegraph: Cheapest ever ten year mortgage at just 3.99pc

Homebuyers and homeowners looking to take advantage of rock bottom Bank Rate can now get the cheapest-ever ten year mortgage at 3.99pc. Norwich & Peterborough Building Society announced that the rate, available to those who have a 25pc deposit or 25pc equity in their home. A similar mortgage was previously available for those with a larger deposit and with a higher arrangement fee. The N&P product has a fee of just £295, and includes a free valuation and legal fees.

Posted by drewster @ 10:58 PM 9 Comments

The Euro is not just about economics

Motley Fool: Why the Euro Will Survive And Thrive

"... What this history demonstrates is that the European powers see the euro as more than a common currency. To them, it's the price of peace. As a result, the union and its currency are likely much more resilient than modern-day political and financial pundits recognise. Because [Europe's] separate currencies were so insignificant relative to the dollar, as the saying goes, they were simply holding the tail of the tiger -- that is, of the United States. This is the reason that France's finance minister under Charles de Gaulle referred to the dollar's international hegemony as America's "exorbitant privilege". And it is fear of this impotency that will keep the European countries united behind the euro going forward."

Posted by dude @ 09:53 PM 4 Comments

Even when it is free money

BBC: UK house sales down by 1% in 2011

The article states that the volumes have just falled by 1%. They fail to mention that the interest rates are at 0.5%. So even with free money around people are not buying. What does say about the housing market?

Posted by deepak @ 07:38 PM 3 Comments

FTBs set for extinction

Planet Property Blog: FTBs – get a move on or hand over £££s

It seemed like it would last forever, but the end of the Government’s failed holiday on Stamp Duty Land Tax is now in sight. And the NAEA is worried...

Posted by property addict @ 12:46 PM 0 Comments

"extra borrowing has taken total government net debt above £1tn for the first time"

BBC: Government borrowing falls to £13.7bn in December

Government borrowing in December fell for the fourth month in a row. Official figures show a drop of £2.2bn from a year earlier to £13.7bn, which was a bigger fall than expected. The extra borrowing has taken total government net debt above £1tn for the first time, against £883bn a year ago.

Posted by jack c @ 11:12 AM 22 Comments

Bear Nibbles

Money Week: How to profit from Australia’s pending house price crash

The 1987 stock market crash had hurt confidence in the economy and also the property market. So in 1988, to perk up home prices, the Hawke government brought back a scheme that gave grants to first-time buyers if they loaded up on home loan debt. Australians began piling into property. Over the next 12 years, mortgage rates halved from 14% to 7%. But Aussie households took on so much debt during that time, that their interest payments doubled as a proportion of their disposable incomes (if their debt levels had stayed static, the proportion should have halved, which shows you how crazy things became).

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:59 AM 1 Comments


Daily mail: Millionaire wins right to ban planning inspectors from nosing round his home

Mr Davies, a builder and car dealer, bought the house for £675,000 in 2007 and has since spent more than £1million on it. He admits that a new kitchen and bathrooms have been installed but claims the work falls outside the restrictions on listed buildings. Planning officials were called in after it was compared to a ‘footballer's wife monstrosity’ which may have damaged the historic gem and an injunction was taken out to stop further work.

Posted by mark @ 10:31 AM 0 Comments

The price of petrol is tax and greed nothing else

Bloomberg: Petroplus Shares Plunge After Failure of Talks With Lenders

Petroplus the Swiss refiner that shut three plants after having its credit lines suspended, said it plans to file for insolvency after talks with lenders failed The refiner had halted deliveries from its U.K. plant after lenders forced it to stop selling fuel, Richard Howitt, a European Parliament member for the east of England, said in a statement yesterday. The outlook for oil refining in the next two decades is “dire” given excess capacity in the industry

Posted by mark @ 10:17 AM 18 Comments

Solving debt problem with even more debt

G Pytel: IMF chief going bonkers

Ms Lagarde: "We must all understand that this is a defining moment. It is not about saving any one country or region. It is about saving the world from a downward economic spiral."

Posted by ant @ 09:16 AM 2 Comments

EU clause means those in arrears for just three months will default on loans

This Is Money: Mortgages Set to Soar

Homeowners could face soaring mortgage costs because of an obscure EU directive being pushed through the European Parliament. British lenders will be forced to start repossession proceedings when borrowers fall behind on their payments after three months rather than six as at present.

Posted by nick mac @ 08:54 AM 1 Comments

Monday, January 23, 2012

Long overdue

Telegraph: One in five council house tenancies in London found to have 'indications of fraud'

As many as 160,000 social housing tenants in London alone may be subletting their properties, making hundreds of millions in profit at the taxpayer's expense and denying homes to people in real need. The cheats include a councillor and a police officer. Fraud investigators matched 27,000 tenants – the entire tenant roll of two councils and four housing associations – against mortgage and credit databases. They found "indications of fraud" – such as the tenants having mortgages, utility bills or active credit at other addresses – in 5,300 cases. Grant Shapps, the housing minister, said: "It is completely unacceptable for housing cheats to get a home they don't need at massively subsidised rates, only to rent it out at market rates and pocket the difference."

Posted by drewster @ 10:55 PM 10 Comments

Is this why rents are rising?

Daily Mail: "We've got the best of both worlds": After their sale trauma, couple join the booming 'let-to-let' brigade

The week before the sale of our two-bedroom flat was due to be completed last October, the buyer demanded £20,000 off the agreed price of £326,000. We had been gazundered. With the housing market in the doldrums and our 19-month-old son Ellis now an active toddler, my wife Jessie and I were getting increasingly desperate. The solution to our need for more space was to find tenants for our flat and rent somewhere larger, thus becoming 'let-to-let' landlords.

Posted by drewster @ 10:45 PM 4 Comments

Staggering how many UK mortgages are in

Daily Telegraph: America overcomes the debt crisis as Britain sinks deeper into the swamp

Long article looking at UK debt problem. However, one fact leapt out of the page: ''Some 12pc of all UK mortgages are in "forbearance". ( Forebearance is a term where a house is 'saved' from being repossed by the lender making and agreement with the borrower)". This is a staggering amount - 1 in every 8.5 mortages! This number will only get worse as the cost of living is not going to go down and interest rates will eventually go up. If the Fed raises interest rates as suggested in this article, will other countries have to follow as surely money will flow there? It would be interesting to have some views on what this number would be if interest rates were, 2,3, 4 or 5 percent as surely they will be at some time in the future.

Posted by britishblue @ 07:24 PM 0 Comments

Bankers step up propaganda war against LVT: Shock

CityAM: Why a wealth tax is a very bad idea

The paid editorial in today's CityAM (a freesheet full of special pleading for the bankers and FS sector which they hand out at Tube stations) rehashes all the old lies, there are too Poor Widow Bogeys, it conflates a tax on rental value of land with wealth tax, says that if we have LVT then a tax on pension assets will be next, celebrates rising property prices and says that making London a tax haven for money launderers is Good For The Economy and says that compared to LVT, even savage rates of income tax are acceptable forms of taxation.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 04:04 PM 15 Comments

Keiser talks on uk property

Good old EU

FT: EU plans raise foreclosure risk

UK homeowners could face higher mortgage costs and greater risk of foreclosure next year because of an obscure clause in the bank capital directive being worked on by the European parliament.

Posted by chrisch @ 12:58 PM 10 Comments

Rental market tide is turning

Planet Property: The rental market tide is turning

Further evidence that the rental market is cooling

Posted by the planet @ 11:05 AM 0 Comments

Obligatory non-headline of the day rehashing a CML press release

BBC: Mortgage outlook is uncertain, says CML

The state of the UK mortgage market in the coming year is "difficult to call", according to a lenders' group. The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said the eurozone crisis had created uncertainty, although householders' real incomes could stabilise. The latest CML figures showed that UK gross mortgage lending stood at £11.7bn in December. This was down 12% on November, but up 12% compared with December 2010, the CML said. The figures wrap up a year in which mortgage lending has remained at low levels, in a market that has proved difficult for first-time buyers to access unless they could raise a large deposit. The CML said that lending totalled £140bn in 2011 as a whole, up 3% compared with 2010, when the market was similarly stunted.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:57 AM 5 Comments

'Experts' pre-empt criticism of their opinions

BBC News: Mortgage outlook is uncertain, says CML

Nothing new; Eurozone challenges, FTB deposits etc..nothing about affordability in relation to average earnings. Can't see much, if any, comment/contribution from the BBC

Posted by richy richless @ 10:55 AM 1 Comments

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Maybe they would have approved the plan if it didn't include 1,400 homes

Independent: Pinewood's £200m plan to rival Hollywood scuppered

Pinewood's dream to bring the mean streets of New York and the Paris boulevards to the Buckinghamshire countryside has collapsed after the Government blocked the studio's development plans. Filmmakers were yesterday left bewildered as the decision came just a week after the Prime Minister announced his backing for the industry. The studio, where the James Bond films were shot, had planned to build a complex on the 105 acres that adjoin its site. It would have offered 1,400 homes for those working on films, and permanent locations from 17 cities around the world for shooting movies. The decision letter refers to protection of the landscape: "The loss of openness would not only be visually apparent, but would all but destroy the concept of the site as part of open Green Belt land."

Posted by drewster @ 11:17 PM 17 Comments

Builders stop work as they are not paid

Reuters: London skyscraper stalls as builders down tools

Increased Skyscraper building is a sign of an impending property crash, this one didn`t even get finished

Posted by wardpsych @ 05:36 PM 3 Comments

A rather tragic tale

Telegraph: Middle-class women: the 'hidden homeless'

Paula Daly owned her own home and business before the recession caused her to lose the lot. And she’s not alone: increasing numbers of middle-class women are finding themselves among the ranks of the 'hidden homeless’. And suddenly, says Daly, 'there I was – of no fixed abode. My belongings were in boxes and sent to people’s houses, one of the girls who used to work for me took my cat and I stayed on friends’ sofas.’ She had joined the growing ranks of the 'hidden homeless’. Crisis says that 62% of its clients belong in this category, defined as 'existing out of sight on the floors or sofas of friends and family.'

Posted by drewster @ 11:08 AM 13 Comments

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Another way of fleecing the middle class

Telegraph: Vince Cable calls for mansion tax in next Budget

The mansion tax will start with the rich. But once the government will get a taste of new revenue stream it will start covering more and more house. And the threshold does not have to be lowered. Over a longer period inflation will do this it will be kept at £2m (or increased at a lower rate than inflation). No doubt sooner or later, middle class will be financially clobbered by this. Basically Vince Cable wants to set up such mechanism.

Posted by ant @ 09:51 PM 32 Comments

How independent is OFCOM?

Youtube: UK bans Press TV

Not HPC, but since press independence, editorial policy and censorship come up a lot, what do we make of this? The US wanted Press TV's broadcasting licence revoked in the UK and now OFCOM does just that.

Posted by icarus @ 11:12 AM 8 Comments

Friday, January 20, 2012

House prices and Horse prices intimately linked

Independant: Thousands of horses abandoned by owners last year

Swap Horses for Houses in the text: - "Andrew Elliott, an auctioneer at Brightwells in Leominster, Herefordshire, one of the largest horse dealers in Europe, said: "For the very best horses, the cream of the crop, prices have pretty much held up, but in the middle and lower ranks prices have collapsed. "There was a huge demand for horses, trading was becoming relentless and then, in the autumn of 2008, the bubble burst. I don't like to use the word 'cleanse', but the horse industry is a huge business – it was over-producing and it has to be adjusted."

Posted by enuii @ 10:03 PM 11 Comments

Another kick in the teeth for FTBs

Mail Online: Buy-to-let mortgages just got easier to get: Yorkshire BS relaxes lending criteria

You only need to earn £20k to get a BTL mortgage now - but what will happen when rates go up and you're tenants can't pay their rent? - Especially if you're only earning £20k - mad and totally irresponsible !

Posted by cornishtinmine @ 02:26 PM 18 Comments

Investors again!!!

LA times: GE lending unit said to be target of U.S. probe

The FBI and Justice Department are looking into potentially criminal business practices at WMC Mortgage Corp. in Burbank during the home-loan boom, according to four people with knowledge of the investigation. They declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the investigation. The government is asking whether WMC used falsified paperwork, overstated income and other tactics to push through questionable loans, two of the people said. They said the probe appears to be focusing on whether senior managers condoned improper practices that enabled fraudulent loans to be sold to investors.

Posted by mark @ 01:37 PM 0 Comments

US 30 year bond mainatins strong position

Fin Viz: Futures Performance

Despite the cries of many commentators about the bond bubble being set to burst, it is clear to see the strength of 30-year US Bonds in futures.

Posted by red knight @ 12:59 PM 0 Comments

But ... last week you said rents were going up, BBC

BBC News: Rental Costs Down by 0.8% this month

Compare and contrast the wording used here "Rental costs down 0.8%, says LSL (... a survey has suggested)" with the much more assertive "Three reasons for rising rents" last week - with the BBC citing LSL Property Services data as the basis for both! To qualitatively cite a data source one week as hard evidence and the next week as the quantitative data only "suggesting" the complete opposite is grotesquely biased reporting standards. The BBC is a taxpayer-funded media organisation. There really does need to be an investigation into BBC editors' interests ....

Posted by paul @ 12:25 PM 7 Comments

About time

AboutProperty: Bankers get house price jitters

Gráinne Gilmore, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank, said: "The sharp reversal in sentiment about future house prices among those working in finance and business services is also evidence of the toll being taken on that sector at present as many banks cut thousands of jobs. "It is striking that this sudden fall in confidence coincides with the traditional 'bankers' bonus' season."

Posted by phil @ 11:12 AM 0 Comments

It isn't.

AboutProperty: Tide may be turning in private rental market

Findaproperty.com reported a fall in asking rents. Cannot imagine that is a trend that will continue.

Posted by phil @ 11:04 AM 0 Comments

Are falling rents here to stay?

Planet Property: Are falling rents here to stay?

Down for the second month in a row: a blip or the beginnings of a trend?

Posted by the planet @ 10:50 AM 0 Comments

It scared the pants off me

Daily mail: The horrifying graph that shows UK's households, businesses and Government hold more debt than any nation bar Japan

Britain has the highest level of combined personal, national and business debt among the major economies bar Japan, research has found. Over the past three years it has risen to more than 500 per cent of national output. The alarming rise since the height of the financial crisis has been fuelled by debt in the financial sector as people seek to borrow their way out of the economic slump, according to consultancy McKinsey. Even at current trends it will take until 2020 for the UK to return to pre-2003 debt levels.

Posted by mark @ 10:40 AM 6 Comments

Lovely looking greenbelt site, why spoil it?

Daily Mail: Battle for Dale Farm II: Council set for ANOTHER fight as dozens of caravans flock to neighbouring fields

Caravans park on site next to illegal Essex settlement.Travellers to be issued with eviction at end of month.Bill for original clearance last year cost £4.2million. The council is assessing how many people living on the legal site are not entitled to be there. Although the illegal part of the site is now clear, at least 50 caravans are thought to be on the neighbouring legal site, exceeding its authorised capacity. Basildon Council completed the clearance of Dale Farm in November after Essex Police removed protesters amid violent clashes on the green belt site.

Posted by khards @ 10:36 AM 3 Comments

Australian house auction wane

Bloomberg: Hammer Falls on Australia Home Auctions as Bids Scarce in Faltering Market

'Australia escaped the housing rout seen in the U.S. and U.K. Half of the homes that went to auction in December failed to sell, APM said.' The rout seen in the UK ????

Posted by will @ 10:06 AM 3 Comments

...but can we really afford it?

G Pytel: The Economist's "Save the City" campaign

Interesting point about the costs of implicit insurance of "too big to fail" that The Economist seems not to grasp.

Posted by ant @ 09:29 AM 0 Comments

Extend, Pretend and Limp? Or Sharp Shock and Recover?

BBC: US ahead of UK on road to reducing debts

The US advantage is that householders walked away from their unaffordable mortgages or were evicted from their homes by banks - forcing the banks to recognise losses. Banks and citizens took a big early hit and then moved fast to restore their finances. It may all have seemed a bit brutal, but arguably these mortgage writeoffs have facilitated an earlier restoration of the confidence of banks and consumers. In the UK, by contrast, banks allowed homeowners with mortgages they can't afford to cease interest payments for a period ("forebearance"). The problem with easing the pain for those with big housing debts in this way is that neither bank nor borrower recovers properly. The 14% of British mortgages in forbearance or explicitly delinquent is a very similar proportion to US write offs.

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 09:27 AM 7 Comments

Home owners laughing as losses socialised and gains keep private

Torygraph: High Speed Rail (HS2): can you claim compensation?

Government will compensate any homeowner who suffers a loss but will not compensate renters who shoulder a rent increase as a result of the railway that they built.

Posted by mombers @ 09:20 AM 1 Comments

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A nightmare of epic proportions to come

Dailymail: Real extent of uk debt habit

won't be long before the 'market' turn on the uk imo...if you didn't know it was the uk you would think we were talking about greece

Posted by taffee @ 06:44 PM 9 Comments


Bloomberg: China’s Developers Slow Home Sales as They Face Worst the Market Since ’08

“If the government doesn’t relax the enforcement on the house purchase restrictions and mortgages by the summer, then we could have a crash in the housing market by the end of the year,” said Andy Rothman, CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets’ China macro strategist in an interview in Shanghai.

Posted by mark @ 04:35 PM 6 Comments

More money for our bankers

Telegraph: RBS says 'no decision' yet on Hester's £1m bonus

This is ridiculous. I hope they are discussing whether to increase discretionary his bonus to at least £10m. We have to ensure that the top talent does not leave the City in such difficult times.

Posted by ant @ 02:17 PM 5 Comments

Comedy club optimism

Telegraph: Property sales fall to lowest level for a year

Property sales fall to lowest level for a year. But an unexpected surge in interest from potential homebuyers in December bodes well for the house market this year, estate agents said.

Posted by jack c @ 12:49 PM 14 Comments

Meanwhile, interest rates on 1yr notes soars to 435%

Bloomberg: Greek Debt-Swap Talks Set for Second Day

And that is where the new 1 trillion Euro IMF fund will be shoveled. At these loan shark rates, 1 trillion would cover interest payments for four year for Greece only. We pay 4.5% of the 1 trillion, so they want hundreds of billions. All paid into the mouths of the very same bankers who cooked Greece's books to get them into the Eurozone. It is one fraud after another with these folk. Meanwhile people are being thrown out onto the street and nobody asks why. You think 435% is bad? It just keeps rising. Rates were about 350% at the beginning of the year. The more bailout, the more risk premium, the higher the rates. This is a race to the bottom boys and girls, all carried out burning your money and liberty.

Posted by libertas @ 09:08 AM 10 Comments

The continuing story of one hyde park

Evening standard: One hyde park becomes 'mary celeste'

I'm wondering if this will become the millenium dome of residential property.Some of the comments may shed some light..I have my own theories about the outcome of this development.

Posted by taffee @ 08:28 AM 13 Comments

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Time for a change in the law?

Mail: My childhood home has been invaded by Moldovan squatters

"After inheriting her childhood home from her mother and renting it out for a couple of years, Janice Mason decided to make a clean break with the past by selling the property. Having found a buyer, she hoped the heart-wrenching process could be completed swiftly. But a group of Eastern European squatters moved in before the contracts had been exchanged". "Justice Secretary Ken Clarke recently announced proposals to make squatting illegal in residential dwellings. The Ministry of Justice was unable to say when the law would come into force".

Posted by alan @ 08:07 PM 14 Comments

Marmite shortage?

Bbc: Unilever workers to start 11 days of pension strikes

Thousands of workers at consumer goods giant Unilever are starting 11 days of strike action over changes to their pension scheme.

Posted by mark @ 12:59 PM 1 Comments

Woe betide them if the Daily Mailexpressgraph get their hands on this...

The Intergenerational Foundation: A Manifesto for Younger and Future Generations

5. Re-balance Housing Wealth • The massive rise in house prices over recent decades is a key reason behind rising intergenerational unfairness. Many young people cannot afford to buy even a small flat while IF research has shown that over-consumption of housing by the over 60s has risen rapidly. • The longevity revolution leads to more prolonged demand for housing amongst older owners and tenants. Official policy should therefore help those who want to downsize through provision of more suitable housing and fiscal incentives. • Council tax should be reformed to reflect each property’s true value and to make occupying a large house when you no longer need it more expensive.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:48 AM 9 Comments

Tipping point???

Telegraph: Unemployment rises to 17-year high of 2.68m

Unemployment rose by 118,000 between September and November to 2.68m - a 17-year high - taking the unemployment rate to 8.4pc, up 0.3pc on the quarter and more than analysts' forecast of 8.3pc.

Posted by mark @ 10:35 AM 7 Comments

UK unemployment latest

BBC: UK unemployment increases to 2.685m

UK unemployment rose by 118,000 in the three months to November to 2.685 million, official figures show. The Office for National Statistics said the unemployment rate also rose to 8.4% from 8.3%, the highest since January 1996. The number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance in December rose by 1,200 to 1.6 million. That was lower than expected and came from a lower base than had been thought. November's claimant count increase was revised down to a rise of 200. The number of young people without a job rose to 1.043 million in the three months to November, taking the unemployment rate in the 16-24 year-old age group to 22.3%.

Posted by jack c @ 10:35 AM 0 Comments

New online game launched by Phil Spencer firing agent out of canon!

Planet Property: New online game launched by Phil Spencer firing agent out of canon!

All to highlight the collapse in transactions - 531k failed to go through in Q3 2011 ...

Posted by the planet @ 09:58 AM 0 Comments

Halfprice house

Mail: Better late than never: Regis Philbin sells his Greenwich mansion for $3million... five years after he first put it on the market for double the price

first listed the property in 2008 for $5.9 million but the TV veteran has had to reduce the listing value several times.

Posted by sosoon @ 09:47 AM 1 Comments

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Yes, I'm furious that it hasn't happened sooner

Daily Mail: Fury at Coalition plans to kick elderly out of their homes and downsize to smaller properties to ease housing crisis

I'm not even going to bother summarising this one. It's just one long rant about poor widows in mansions.

Posted by drewster @ 11:52 PM 31 Comments

More frothing

Daily Mail: Romanian Big Issue seller given legal right to claim housing benefit (on top of the £25,000 she already claims)

A Romanian immigrant who sells the Big Issue has won a landmark case that will allow her to claim housing benefit that could total £20,800 a year. She is currently paid £326 each week in tax credits, £60.50 in child benefits, £49.30 in disability living allowance and £55.50 a week in carers allowance. Speaking through an interpreter, Ms Vasile said she came to the UK in 2007 to look for work, but could only find a post at the Big Issue. The single mother of four - with one child disabled - works between 16 and 24 hours each week, spread over up to five days. She argued that the benefits will allow her to continue paying rent on her 3-bedroom house.

Posted by drewster @ 11:49 PM 22 Comments

The tell it how it is, well worth a listen

BBC Radio 4: Financial Crisis: Philip Coggan, Angela Knight, Maurice Glasman and Detlev Schlichter

Andrew Marr looks for solutions to the current global crisis. Detlev Schlichter dismisses the practice of printing more money in times of recession, arguing that in the next decade our reliance on paper money will collapse, and he proposes a return to hard commodities, like gold. The historian Philip Coggan pits creditors against debtors, tax payers against public sector workers, and believes it's time for a new monetary system to emerge. The Labour peer, Lord Glasman thinks we need to change the relationship between parliament and the market. And Angela Knight sticks up for the bankers, insisting they hold the key to the crisis, so deserve both a bonus and a bit of respect.

Posted by gone-to-colombia @ 09:06 PM 3 Comments

Makes no Difference

Moneyweek: Should the Buyer Pay the Stamp Duty?

An interesting idea turned up in the Sunday Times this week from John Stevenson, MP for Carlisle. He reckons that the best way to sort things out would be to shift the burden of stamp duty from the buyer to the seller.

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 05:55 PM 12 Comments

Disinflation, Disinflation, Disinflation

BBC: UK inflation rate falls to 4.2% in December

"Inflation fell sharply in December on the back of lower fuel and clothing prices. Consumer Prices Index (CPI) inflation in the UK fell to 4.2% in December, down from 4.8% in November, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Retail Prices Index (RPI) inflation - including mortgage interest payments - fell to 4.8% from 5.2%. It backs Bank of England predictions that inflation will be 2% by late 2012."

Posted by phdinbubbles @ 11:47 AM 10 Comments

Land Value Fun

Daily Mail: Double room, NO mod cons

The chap involved received serious offers of £450 pcm to rent an 8 ft square shed in his back garden, that works out at £750 per sq yd per year. So the landowner gets £750 per square yard, and what is the tenant actually paying for..? "The Hungarian lorry driver ordered the shed for £800 and laid concrete for it to rest on. However, it was never installed. The full text of the advert read: 'Nice location near Florence Park, bus-stops and shopping centers are nearby. £450 per month all included."

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 10:36 AM 4 Comments

Another bites the dust, peacocks has admins too

Shropshire star: Past Times goes into administration

Gift retailer Past Times has fallen into administration and confirmed 507 staff were made redundant before the move. The private equity-owned group, which last week shut 46 stores and 72 temporary stores, said KPMG had been appointed as administrator to the loss-making business following weak trade.

Posted by mark @ 10:19 AM 9 Comments

Really, who says

Lancashire Evening Post: New homes to inject £6m spending power

A huge new housing scheme will inject £8m of extra spending power into Preston when up to 1,000 new people move to the city, a house-building giant has said

Posted by mark @ 09:26 AM 0 Comments

Monday, January 16, 2012

Bleak prospects for central London commercial property market

Reuters: Euro zone deals double blow to UK property

"The euro zone sovereign debt crisis and weak UK economy dealt a double blow to the country's commercial property market on Monday, derailing a major London scheme and curbing growth prospects". "Five central London skyscrapers being developed by firms including Land Securities and British Land have only signed one office pre-let deal between them".

Posted by alan @ 09:44 PM 6 Comments

Mortgages at most affordable for 14 years

Myfinances.co.uk: Mortgage payments at their most affordable since 1997

British people may have found their mortgage repayments easier to manage last year, a new study suggests.

Posted by ben salisbury @ 02:25 PM 0 Comments

Yes, I know that some us bears are very selective, but the other side are worse...

Telegraph: First-time buyers alive and well as house prices become affordable, says CML

"First-time buyers are alive and well as house prices become more affordable, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML). Despite higher deposits being required, reports of the disappearance of first-time buyers are greatly exaggerated because falling house prices are making property more affordable, banks and building societies claim. Paul Smee, director general of the CML, said: “While the number of first-time buyers – and indeed all buyers – has declined markedly since the credit crunch, the proportion of loans advanced to first-time buyers has remained remarkably steady, fluctuating between 34pc and 40pc of the total since 2005. In November, first-time buyers took up 37pc of the house purchase market, the same as in October.”

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 01:48 PM 16 Comments

Kite flyers stay home.

Estate Agent Today: New listings dry up to lowest level ever seen

Estate agents’ branches are selling less than one new property a week each – the lowest level of new listings ever seen. Just 36,433 properties are currently coming on to Rightmove per week, the lowest recorded in the ten years that the site has been measuring the market. Rightmove’s monthly survey, out this morning, said that by contrast, there is a record level of search activity, with 44 million property searches in the first ten days of this year, up 27% on a year ago – but with home-hunters facing the smallest-ever choice of new listings.

Posted by sibley's b'stard child @ 01:04 PM 12 Comments

Property market stalled as time on the market rises to record high

Solution to the Euro crisis? Keep the Euro, and introduce the drachma, lire etc.

Conservative home: The creation of parallel European currencies is the only credible solution to the problems of the eurozone

An idea that keeps popping up without getting the attention it deserves... Proposes that instead of leaving the Euro, the countries with exploding debts and junk bond status re-issue their own currencies and run them parallel to the Euro. Despite this coming from a conservative, and the vomitable name of the blog, I think this is a sound idea ;-) Debts would remain euro denominated or would be defaulted in a more orderly fashion. I would add that so long as the new currencies are acceptable to national governments as payment of taxes, there should be no problem with their acceptability as a unit of account and medium of exchange. Why should someone not accept them if you can pay your taxes with them?

Posted by nickb @ 11:07 AM 7 Comments

Austerity really starting to bite

Sky News: Taxpayers 'Should Buy Queen Yacht For Jubilee

"The taxpayer should give the Queen a new royal yacht to congratulate her on her diamond jubilee, Cabinet ministers have suggested in a leaked letter." The queen mentioned something about society being too greedy. The politicians obviously don't mean Austerity for all !!!

Posted by thecountofnowhere @ 10:44 AM 0 Comments

Bad news for savers, good news for HPC?

Telegraph: UK back in recession and no interest rates rise 'until 2016'

Interest rates will stay on hold at their record low until 2016, according to a leading forecaster, amid warnings that the UK has already double-dipped back into recession.

Posted by mr g @ 10:29 AM 2 Comments

UK back in recession, HPC to follow soon??

BBC News: UK in recession says Item Club economic forecasters

The UK may have already slipped back into recession, economic forecaster the Item Club has warned. The think tank said gross domestic product shrank in the final quarter of last year and would contract again in the current three-month period.

Posted by watchman @ 09:07 AM 0 Comments

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Yahoo: Why UK house prices will fall

What's more, most economists and property pundits predict further falls for 2012. For the record, I also expect house prices to decline yet further this year, because of this toxic cocktail of problems for property prices (in no particular order):

Posted by happy mondays @ 02:33 PM 8 Comments

...we are on Titanic

G Pytel: Euro Concordia

...a Sunday morning reflection over a BBC news

Posted by ant @ 11:48 AM 1 Comments

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Indeed God's work

Sunday Telegraph: The world according to Goldman Sachs

It shows how brilliant, intelligent and wise the bankers are. They deserve every penny of subsidies they are getting from the taxpayers. It is our moral obligation to start a campaign: "no taxes on the banking industry and bankers". Preferably the government should legislate to guarantee a share of the GDP (15% - 20%) as permanent subsidy for the banks. We have to ensure that bankers are happy as they indeed do a "God's work".

Posted by ant @ 10:18 PM 4 Comments

Halve wages and cut house prices by two thirds and live happily ever after

Guardian: Cut the working week to a maximum of 20 hours, urge top economists

The New Economics Foundation (NEF) argues that if everyone worked fewer hours – say, 20 or so a week – there would be more jobs to go round, employees could spend more time with their families and energy-hungry excess consumption would be curbed. Anna Coote, of NEF, said: "There's a great disequilibrium between people who have got too much paid work, and those who have got too little or none." She argues that we need to think again about what constitutes economic success, and whether aiming to boost Britain's GDP growth rate should be the government's first priority: "Are we just living to work, and working to earn, and earning to consume?

Posted by enuii @ 03:41 PM 21 Comments

And I thought he was a robot...

MoneyWeek: Should we replace Mervyn King with a robot?

What if the recession wasn't real? What if the UK economy could return to its former growth path quickly and almost without any cost? And what if all that was needed to start this process was a short statement from Bank of England governor Mervyn King? A growing number of economists believe just that. They are called 'market monetarists'. And, led by Bentley University's Scott Sumner, their ideas are suddenly being endorsed by some of the biggest names in economics and banking. What they imagine is a world without central bankers. A world where monetary policy is managed by machines.

Posted by khards @ 10:33 AM 7 Comments

C'est la Vie

BBC: Why the eurozone downgrades matter

or.... Friday the 13th part ?? in 3 D[rachma] "The downgrade by S&P of a whole string of eurozone countries should not in the short-term cause a sharp worsening in the currency union's financial crisis." not sure i concur with RP..... comments are interesting. Actually think we are quite near the trough of the Euro selling cycle - and that after a "bit" more downside the Euro will strengthen against other currencies. When and at what level..... hmm,

Posted by techieman @ 08:48 AM 3 Comments

Friday, January 13, 2012

One down, many more to go

Novinite: Former Sofia Property CEO Jailed for 4 Years

Following a long-protracted trial, a Bulgarian court has sentenced to four years in jail the former CEO of the scandalous municipal real estate company Sofiyski Imoti (Sofia Properties), Toshko Dobrev.

Posted by noone in particular @ 07:22 PM 0 Comments

Social housing faces large rent increases

Inside Housing: Tenants face 8 per cent rent hike

Just four of England’s 50 largest social landlords are planning to protect tenants from significant rent increases next year. Of the 21 largest stock-owning councils that responded to an Inside Housing survey, just three said they would not impose the maximum increase allowed, based on the retail price index as it stood last September, when it peaked at 5.6 per cent. As a result, tens of thousands of council tenants will face eye-watering rises of more than 8 per cent. Rents on Newcastle’s 29,000 homes will go up by 8.2 per cent, while residents in Camden’s 23,000 homes will face a hike of 8.1 per cent.

Posted by russ w @ 05:55 PM 0 Comments

All that is wrong with this country

Daily Mail: 'She would have done the same for me': Single mum adopts best friend's FIVE children after they lose both parents in 6 months

This should disgust anyone: "The heroic mum, of Huntingdon Cambridgeshire, was disappointed when she contacted her local council for financial support only to be told to sell her family home. Officials suggested she would be better off by moving into council accommodation and claiming benefits, but Julie refused. 'The children are adorable we talk about their mummy and daddy a lot, we have the support of family and friends' Julie said: 'That's not something I would ever want to do. We have a comfortable home we just need a bit of help.The only thing I wish for is a bit of help.' Julie also had a grant application for an extension to make her home more suitable turned down by the council."

Posted by doomwatch @ 02:39 PM 4 Comments

QE3, QE4, QE5, QE6 etc - get ready for more inflation...

Telegraph: Fall in factory prices raises prospect of more QE

Prices at Britain's factory gates fell for the first time in 18 months in December, increasing the likelihood that the Bank of England will pump more money into the economy next month. Output prices - the prices producers charge for their wares - dropped 0.2pc on the previous month, according to official figures, reinforcing the view that inflationary pressures within the economy are falling.

Posted by hpwatcher @ 12:18 PM 32 Comments

Should read :Affordable homes!

Mail: Britain to face housing shortage of one million homes by 2015, says Barratt

Barratt Developments yesterday said Britain faces a housing shortage of one million homes by 2015 as construction fails to keep pace with the growing population.

Posted by happy mondays @ 11:43 AM 10 Comments

Fri 13th - Houses numbered 13 cheaper.

AboutProperty: Today will be very unlucky for some

Perhaps every property should be numbered 13 to help first time buyers get on the property ladder. It might make the job of Royal Mail a bit tricky though.

Posted by phil @ 09:35 AM 0 Comments

No, it's not the Express.

Bloomberg: U.K. House Prices Climb to Eight-Month High

U.K. house prices rose to an eight- month high in December as homebuyers rushed to complete their purchases before the end of the year and demand from investors increased, Acadametrics Ltd. and LSL Property Services Plc said. The average price of a home in England and Wales rose 0.2 percent from November to 220,385 pounds ($338,000), the groups said in an e-mailed report in London today. Transactions rose 3 percent. From a year earlier, values were down 0.5 percent.

Posted by khards @ 09:05 AM 19 Comments

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Asleep at the wheel

New York Times: Transcripts Show an Unfazed Fed in 2006

The desperation of homebuilders was a running joke among top Federal Reserve officials during the waning phase of the housing bubble in 2006, according to transcripts released Thursday. The officials, meeting every 6 weeks to discuss the health of the nation’s economy, did not seriously consider the possibility that problems in the housing market would send the nation into recession. Bernanke, in his first session as Fed chairman, stated "I think we are unlikely to see growth being derailed by the housing market.” Geithner predicted that that problems in the housing market would have few broader ramifications: “We just don’t see troubling signs yet of collateral damage, and we are not expecting much.”

Posted by little professor @ 11:56 PM 7 Comments

Sellers now being described as victims

The London Evening Standard: Our townhouse has been on the market since last spring

The couple have desperately being trying to sell the majestically overpriced house and are now 'rather depressed'

Posted by realitywarp @ 10:09 PM 0 Comments

Greek 1yr notes soar above 400% interest rates.

Zero Hedge: Market Implies Greek Devaluation To 1530 Drachma Versus Euro

This is what hyperinflation looks like within a single currency. We are paying 400% now on hundreds of billions of Greek debt. This is up from 360% just a few days ago. Watching now for contagion into other Eurozone countries and into capital markets. Here are the rates: http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/GGGB1YR:IND Which banks are exposed? Why won't they allow the lenders to go bust? Borrowers may have a rude awakening if their rates must rise to cover losses in Greece, which will be tremendous and are rising by the day.

Posted by libertas @ 08:36 PM 11 Comments

“Rising unemployment will trigger a surge in repossessions"

FTAdviser: Trio forecast gloom as repossession figures rise

Mortgage specialists have warned that repossessions were expected to rise this year as the stagnant economy puts pressure on struggling homeowners. Figures issued at the end of 2011 by the Council of Mortgage Lenders, the FSA and Homeloan Management Limited Business Intelligence painted a gloomy outlook for the country’s property market. Repossessions will rise by 7 per cent before starting to fall back in 2013, according to forecasts by HML. Data from the CML showed that 27,500 properties were repossessed towards the end of last year, and the figure was expected to reach 37,000 at the beginning of 2012.

Posted by jack c @ 08:13 PM 2 Comments

Unrealistic pricing

Estateagenttoday.co.uk: Unrealistic pricing hampering transaction levels, says RICS

No surprises here. "Unrealistic price expectations on the part of sellers is hampering transaction levels, the RICS has reported." Erm, and where did the seller get the unrealistic price from in the first place ? Yep, EAs still over-egging valuations. When will these muppets learn ?

Posted by doomwatch @ 02:37 PM 4 Comments

Slipping quietly under the radar..............

BBC: UK interest rates kept on hold at record low of 0.5%

UK interest rates have been held at their record low of 0.5% by the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee. Interest rates have been kept at 0.5% since March 2009. The Bank did not announce any increase in its policy of quantitative easing. In October, the Bank said it would pump another £75bn into the economy. The decisions were widely expected, and come amid concerns over the economy's strength due to weak consumer spending and the eurozone crisis. Data released by the Office for National Statistics on Thursday pointed to a surprisingly sharp downturn in industrial output - including the manufacturing sector - in November last year. Eurozone interest rates have also been left unchanged - at 1% - by the European Central Bank.

Posted by jack c @ 01:49 PM 7 Comments

Daily Mail website's search trends show buy-to-let interest double on a year ago

This is Money: Our crude buy-to-let barometer rises ... as fools rush in

The Mail's finance website says interest in buy-to-let is suddenly up - especially in the past two weeks. It puts it down to desperate savers trying to find better income. And where better than over-priced property!?!

Posted by v.idiot @ 01:49 PM 1 Comments

Average take-home pay £36,000!

MSN Money: Low rates spell cheap lending deals

Low interest rates have enabled lenders to offer some of their cheapest ever deals, but there are warning signs that borrowers will face a tougher struggle to meet lending criteria this year. Mortgage payments in England and Wales averaged £494 a month or 15.4% of home owners' take-home pay last year, making deals at their most affordable for a decade, according to recent research from Barclays Capital. Recycled bull dung

Posted by we're all in this together @ 01:44 PM 11 Comments

Rent going up and up and up

AboutProperty: Buy-to-let investors cash in on rental demand

David Whittaker, managing director of Mortgages for Business, said: "Mortgage finance remains restricted for potential owner-occupiers, meaning there is a vast backlog of buyers who are confined to the rental sector. "This is keeping demand astronomically high and pushing up the cost of renting into uncharted heights.

Posted by phil @ 12:41 PM 0 Comments

Any reason this sanctioned 'extend and pretend' won't come to UK?

Wall Street Journal Europe: Spanish Banks Try to Build Their Way Out of Home Glut .

The drive to keep building in a housing market drowning in empty properties shows the depth of Spain's banking crisis. The country's housing bust saddled banks with not just vacant homes, but also billions of euros worth (sic) of undeveloped land. Yet rather than writing off the land as a loss and attempting to sell it, banks have been building on empty lots. Francisco Gómez, a building firm's chief executive, said he hasn't been able to sell homes, or even pay interest on theie loan, for the past three years. Instead of foreclosing, he said the bank—which he won't name—has been lending him more money to cover the interest payments, adding an extra €3 million to the total debt.

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 11:08 AM 15 Comments

On green belt!!! surely some houses would be better

Chester Chronicle: Student village aims to rebalance the Chester community

Bell Developments is promoting the 2,500-bed campus on fields between Blacon and Mollington but must prove ‘very special circumstances’ to get planning permission because the site lies in green belt. I am going to buy some greenbelt land and apply to build on it, bet the council turn me down but allow these big companies to build terrible injustice

Posted by mark @ 10:32 AM 2 Comments

One for Mark. (link to hpc = people have ot less money)

Reuters: Tesco warns on profit after poor Christmas

It puts the supermarket group on course to deliver its fifth straight quarter of declining underlying UK sales. "In a challenging consumer environment at home, and with early signs of more cautious behaviour emerging elsewhere, we have seen more strain than anticipated on our profitability during the important seasonal trading period." Many British retailers are struggling as disposable incomes are squeezed by higher prices, muted wages growth and austerity measures, and as shoppers worry about a weak housing market, rising unemployment and fallout from the euro zone debt crisis. Tesco takes more than one in every ten pounds spent in Britain's shops.

Posted by khards @ 08:38 AM 16 Comments

OMG is this guy for real?

Dailymail: Hard times at the manor house

and I thought property and buy to let was a one way ticket to fortune

Posted by taffee @ 07:48 AM 23 Comments

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

VI Journalism from McCartney Stone

Guardian: Retirement home shortage is blocking the housing market

McCarthy Stone basically want the governmment to change its housing strategy some way or other so they can make more money from the only folks with untapped money. Apparently 9% of American housing is 'specialist housing for older people' but in the backwards UK the total is a meagre 2% so there is plenty of business scope to get the old folks into tidgy flats. Playing journalist Paul Teverson, head of McCarthy Stone public affairs uses newspaper column inches to advise us that 'without freeing up properties at the top of the ladder, there are no options at the bottom' and uses a jolly nice picture of a lovely Georgian property in South London to illustrate his point.

Posted by enuii @ 11:19 PM 2 Comments

Labour Mansion Tax to hit London hardest

London Evening Standard: Labour 'not ruling out mansion tax if it wins the next election'

Londoners could be hit with a new wealth tax on high-value property if Labour wins power. Labour leader Ed Miliband may make a new levy an election pledge as part of moves to raise more money and reduce cuts in public spending. But he would face a furious backlash in the capital which would almost certainly be the hardest hit.....Nick de Bois, Tory MP for Enfield North, warned Labour against backing a new "mansion tax" which the Liberal Democrats originally proposed for £1million homes. He said: "It shows that Labour still have lessons to learn on taxing aspiration" (Mr Wadsworth falls off chair laughing)

Posted by jack c @ 09:01 PM 5 Comments

High house prices needed to support SME's

Guardian: Blog home Why a shaky housing market could cripple small businesses

Entrepreneurs often secure loans against their homes, but with house prices forecast to stagnate or fall, lenders may not be keen on helping out.The government is pinning a lot of hope on the economy rebalancing. It wants manufacturing, inventions and exports to take the place of high street spending and government outlays. It wants brave new entrepreneurs creating jobs with brave new businesses. The obvious hurdle to all this is the crisis in the eurozone – currently the UK's most important trading area – which is rattling business confidence and hurting exports, as indicated in Wednesday's widening of the trade deficit.But another significant obstacle to the private sector picking up the slack from a shrinking public sector is a shaky housing market.

Posted by jack c @ 08:52 PM 5 Comments

"it is important that vendors are realistic in their pricing"

Telegraph: Greedy house sellers pricing properties too high

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said more new houses were put up for sale in December but asking prices were "unrealistic"........despite a slight increase in new buyer inquiries, surveyors' expectations for future sales dipped from November and are now flat as a result of the "unrealistic price expectations" of some vendors.

Posted by jack c @ 05:11 PM 6 Comments

Helicopter Ben tries to rescue the housing market.

Blomberg.com: Bernanke Doubles Down on Fed Mortgage Bet

Ben Bernanke is signaling his willingness to double down on a three-year bet that’s failed to revive housing, showing the extent of the Federal Reserve chairman’s effort to wrest a recovery from the deepest recession. Bernanke underscored the importance of residential real estate, which represents 15 percent of the economy.

Posted by will @ 04:56 PM 0 Comments

Tide turning against massive safety deposit boxes in Central London?

Moneyweek: Will the Wealth Tax never die?

Merryn Somerset Webb puzzled as to why our tax regime has made Central London property such a nice money laundering vehicle...

Posted by mombers @ 03:50 PM 2 Comments

Just replace 'rent' council property with 'right to buy'.

BBC: Council tenants who sub-let homes face prison or fine

Housing Minister Grant Shapps said some people were cheating the system by earning thousands of pounds selling on their council homes at market rates....

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 02:14 PM 6 Comments

Really anyone from this website could have reported that for a fee of 100k saving you money

Guardian: World Economic Forum warns of economic turmoil and social upheaval

The threat of fresh economic turmoil and social upheaval threaten to put at risk the gains produced by globalisation, the World Economic Forum said. In its annual assessment of the outlook for the global economy, the WEF set the scene for its meeting in Davos later this month by warning that the "seeds of dystopia" were being sown.

Posted by mark @ 12:14 PM 3 Comments

How is this not already illegal?

AboutProperty: Sub-letting offence to stop council home 'cheats'

A new criminal offence of tenancy fraud is being proposed to help stop an estimated 160,000 tenants sub-letting their council homes.

Posted by phil @ 11:13 AM 0 Comments

This is what high house prices achieve

Daily mail: The tragedy of tens of thousands living in 6ft by 2ft rabbit hutches - in a city with more Louis Vuitton shops than Paris

Hong Kong, one of the world's richest cities, is abuzz with a luxury property boom that has seen homes exchanged for record sums. But the wealth of the city has a darker side, with tens of thousands priced out of housing altogether and forced to live in the most degrading conditions.

Posted by mark @ 10:39 AM 8 Comments

Beware Of Rigged Bets

Index Universe: Beware Of Rigged Bets

New figures throw light on the poor value offered by hedge funds, which enrich managers at the expense of investors. But rigged bets, where agents' interests overshadow those of owners, are a problem throughout the economy.

Posted by paul amery @ 10:35 AM 0 Comments

This seems quite plausible to me...

Daily Mail: Skyscraper boom? Then your country’s about to go bust

By and large, the height and density of buildings are primarily an indicator of relative land values in towns and cities. So you get the highest and densest buildings in the town centre and then it gets lower and sparser as you move out into the suburbs. The other thing which sky scrapers indicate is over-inflated egos, and credit bubbles inflate people's egos in the same way as they inflate the selling price of land. So it's clear why credit bubbles mean more skyscrapers being built; credit bubbles always burst; hey presto, there's your correlation between skyscrapers and recessions.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 09:53 AM 4 Comments

How we look from the other side of the fence

Agent's Diary: Storm Chaser - Tuesday

"‘The market is over-valued by at least 30%.’ Proclaims the man. I’m guessing he has an account with my old friends at House Price Crash and a username like Gollum or Green Hornet, with an avatar picture to match. I wouldn’t let him near children or pretty pets.I also wouldn’t admit – publicly - he might have a point..."

Posted by tpbeta @ 02:14 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

French housing crisis highlighted by Eric Cantona

AboutProperty: Eric Cantona presidency stunt highlights French housing crisis

The footballer turned movie star is engaged in a publicity stunt to help highlight a housing crisis which leading charity Fondation Abbé-Pierre says is affecting over 10 million French people. They estimate that a lack of social housing means some 3.5 million people are living in poor or unfit conditions.

Posted by phil @ 03:35 PM 0 Comments

NIMBYism or justified complaint?

AboutProperty: Property owners face up to HS2 go-ahead

Jonathan Bramwell, partner and head of the central region at The Buying Solution, said: "Sadly, many homeowners along the route of the line will be faced with years of battling over compensation."

Posted by phil @ 01:40 PM 0 Comments

Ah diddums.

CityWire: Homeowners trapped as lenders claw back cheap loans

Arch Home-Owner-Ist Lourna Bourke on top form: "Thousands of homeowners have been left unable to move house because their mortgage lender is refusing to allow them to transfer their loan to the new property. Even worse, if they arrange a mortgage with a new lender and pay off the old loan, many face swingeing early repayment penalties. Is this treating customers fairly? An estimated million homebuyers who raised mortgages under self-certified lending criteria may no longer qualify for the loan they already have – even if they can clearly afford it because they have never defaulted. Similarly, an estimated million or more are trapped because their financial circumstances, or the lenders’ affordability criteria, have changed. [cont. page 94]"

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 12:41 PM 28 Comments

Deluded sellers (finally) get a shot across the boughs

Guardian: 'Unrealistic asking prices' will hinder housing market in 2012

More houses were put up for sale in December 2011, but "unrealistic" asking prices are expected to hinder transactions, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The number of new instructions edged higher for the third month in a row, Rics said, suggesting more sellers were coming on to the market in time for the new year. But despite a slight increase in buyer inquiries, surveyors' expectations for future sales dipped from November and are now flat as a result of the "unrealistic price expectations" of some vendors.

Posted by will @ 12:33 PM 0 Comments

One way to get an affordable property

Planet Property Blog: Haunted houses sought after in runaway Hong Kong property market

Huge discounts make good sense to buyers of grizzly listings… It’s a popular belief in Hong Kong that the ghost of a person who died unnaturally will pass misfortune on to the home’s new occupants. By law buyers are entitled to know the gruesome details, leading to discounts of 20-40% as standard, according to the squarefoot.com.hk property website, which has a listing dedicated to such paranormal properties.

Posted by property addict @ 12:12 PM 0 Comments

Lot of jobs being cut this month - Sea France , Blacks, etc

Liverpool daily post: 218 Wirral jobs at risk in Tulip factory closure plan

“Given the current over capacity in the market and the prevailing economic climate we do not believe there is a viable alternative other than the proposed closure of the site.”

Posted by mark @ 10:45 AM 5 Comments

Green belt!!!!

Lancashire Evening Post: Residents lose battle to block 450-home plan

There were angry scenes at Preston Town Hall as plans for a 450 house development on green belt land were given the go ahead.

Posted by mark @ 10:28 AM 63 Comments

Meanwhile on the other side of the earth, house price inflation is being celebrated.

Stuff.co.nz: House prices tipped to rise in 2012

Property prices in Auckland are expected to rise further this year, according to property valuation and information company QV. During 2011, the average house price in Auckland lifted 4.3 per cent to an average of $525,532 according to the sales data lodged into QV's system. This was 1.4 per cent above the previous market peak seen in 2007. "The Auckland market in 2011 was generally characterised by a lack of new listings and quality stock," QV.co.nz research director Jonno Ingerson said. "This led to increased demand for the good quality properties that did come to the market." Prices in central Auckland rose the most across the region, up 5.8 per cent in December from a year earlier to an average of $597,023.

Posted by khards @ 10:18 AM 3 Comments

Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors poll

FTAdviser: Rics reveals where house prices are dropping

Housing sales activity remained relatively firm during December and an increasing amount of new stock came onto the housing market, latest Rics survey shows............Surveyors report that unrealistic price expectations on the part of some vendors may be hindering transaction levels.

Posted by jack c @ 10:09 AM 1 Comments

Monday, January 9, 2012

Prime central London keeps rising

Telegraph: House prices hit new peak as London leaves the rest of the country behind

House prices hit a new peak last month, 7pc higher than their level before the global credit crisis began, as the most expensive parts of London became even more expensive, despite the downward trend across the rest of the country. The survey by estate agents Knight Frank stands in stark contrast to recent reports of the national housing market from Halifax and Nationwide. But, with a 35-year track record, the estate agent’s report is the longest-established analysis of house prices in the capital and it reinforces reports that London property prices are decoupling from the rest of the country.

Posted by drewster @ 11:16 PM 7 Comments

Another reason why HPC is getting closer.

Telegraph / Yahoo: Six million households have only five days' savings

Around six million households would be unable to survive for more than five days if they stopped being paid, such are the low levels of savings among Britons, new research shows.

Posted by mr g @ 06:52 PM 8 Comments

Not much to hold back risk premium now

Zero Hedge: Italian bonds surge

Italian bond yields soaring again. Few noticed that Greek 1yr notes have soared another 20% to 381% in the last couple of days. You are paying those interest rates via the bailout mechanisms. It is only time now that this over-spills into mortgage rates, which should begin behaving in a similar manner, initially in periphery countries but remember, rates went north of 17% here during the early 1990s. What you are watching here is an interest rate mega-trend, where market forces are scrambling to overcome the inflationary effects of bailouts. Expect a few years of rising interest rates across the board as counter party risk increases and premiums for it continue to rise.

Posted by libertas @ 05:25 PM 8 Comments

Capitalise the gains; socialise the losses.

Estate Agent Today: Bailed-out banks 'could need more money' as new losses loom

Both Lloyds and RBS face running up more losses over the next three years, whilst Northern Rock has been downgraded by a ratings agency following its purchase by Virgin. Standard & Poor’s downgrading has come partly because of Northern Rock’s ‘moderate’ likelihood of needing further taxpayer support. Meanwhile, analysis by Barclays Capital says that taxpayer-backed Lloyds and RBS could be hit with £33bn of new losses, and face having to write down mortgages, other consumer loans and corporate debt. RBS is 83% and Lloyds 41% owned by the taxpayer.

Posted by sibley's b'stard child @ 01:31 PM 6 Comments

Why would france and turkey jump?

Daily mail: Ireland, Spain and Cyprus slump in global house prices league, while UK stagnates, but France and Turkey jump

A 1.5 per cent overall rise was the index’s weakest performance since the March and June 2009 period, and raises fears that the next report will reveal negative results for house prices worldwide.

Posted by mark @ 01:15 PM 2 Comments

Amazing spin on a bank or blatant lies

Yahoo: Sir Richard Branson's Virgin takeover of Northern Rock gathers speed as first branch is rebranded

The deal includes 75 former Northern Rock branches and over two thousand staff. The bank will have four billion customers.

Posted by mark @ 01:04 PM 11 Comments

No tax on bankers bonuses!

The Economist: Death by a thousand cuts

This is another excellent article from the current Economist issue. Absolutely excellent and objective: a masterclass of impartial analysis. We really have to get behind the captains of our financial industry. Let's start "no tax on bankers bonuses" campaign. Otherwise the bankers can get disappointed and may move to another country to create wealth and prosperity there. If this happens who is going to take Britain out of the current economic crisis? Surely not useless and lazy lower rate taxpayers who are not smart enough to earn a decent living for themselves.

Posted by ant @ 12:40 PM 9 Comments

We really have to get behind the bankers

The Economist: Save the City

A smashing article in The Economist. As it claims on its website the aim of The Economist is: "to offer insight and analysis and services that are valued by our customers". Surely The Economist's Board member Lynn Forester de Rothschild and her spouse, Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, ensure this with respect to the financial industry in the UK and globally. I could not feel more confident and cannot wait for even more insights and analysis such as this fantastic and incisive argument.

Posted by ant @ 02:36 AM 23 Comments

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Nu Liebor lunatic legacy

Daily Mail: For years, YOU'VE paid their £2,000-a-week rents. But the housing benefit gravy train's hit the bufferset

Thank God New Liebour are no longer able to squander £20bn a year on subsidizing btl landlords and prolofic benefits lifestylers. No more £2000pw HB.

Posted by voiceofreason @ 10:39 PM 15 Comments

Fools paradise.....

Telegraph: 'Printed money' and regulatory diktat are keeping UK gilt yields low

''The powers that be deny the UK is engaged in Zimbabwe-style deficit monetisation, seeing as the Bank has been buying its gilts off existing investors, many of whom, in turn, have been purchasing fresh ones at more profitable yields. The distinction, between QE and "circular financing", though, at best, is metaphysical.''

Posted by hpwatcher @ 10:09 PM 0 Comments

While the government frets about social housing, private rentals soar

Telegraph: Mortgage squeeze fuels surge in buy-to-let investors

The share of residential housing stock owned by private landlords has jumped more than 40pc since the financial crisis, and now makes up almost a fifth of the total, according to estate agent Savills. [Yes, one in five homes in this country is now a privately rented home.] The tighter lending standards introduced by Britain's banks since the crisis have created opportunities for some investors, as the pool of potential homebuyers shrinks. And, according to Savills, rather than the house price appreciation that lured investors during the boom, it is the prospect of rising rental income that is proving attractive. The volume of mortgages handed to private landlords jumped 16pc to £3.8bn in the third quarter of last year, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

Posted by drewster @ 12:42 PM 7 Comments

Frank Field still trying to carry on Thatcher's legacy

Guardian: Extending 'Right To Buy' is a win-win

We need a radical new policy both to ease the pressure on social housing and lend a helping hand to aspiring homeowners. David Davis MP and I have published a pamphlet with the Institute for Public Policy Research on such a new policy. I tried to persuade Harold Wilson's government to sell council houses, but Britain had to wait for Margaret Thatcher's right-to-buy policy. While council houses are still open to the right to buy, most of the stock in good areas where people want to buy are owned by housing associations which are exempted from the policy. We believe the key to success is therefore to expand the right to buy. Tenants become homeowners, the building industry gains a long-term building programme and unemployed building workers get jobs.

Posted by little professor @ 11:15 AM 4 Comments

We are being taken to the cleaners

G Pytel: The ECB decided to subsidise private banks

The ridiculous business of subsiding private banks and, of course, the bankers continues. This is the largest ongoing heist in history: a massive, multi trillion transfer of taxpayers (middle classes) money to the superrich. "Communism for the rich" is booming. "We are all in it together": superrich are getting much richer and the middle classes that subsidise them are being taken to the cleaners. BTW, Happy New Year 2012.

Posted by ant @ 10:30 AM 7 Comments

POW! Take that Express...

Mirror: House prices dropped £6 a day in 2011, says Halifax

House prices dropped by £6 A DAY last year – but experts say it could have been worse. According to the Halifax, the value of the average home dipped from £164,291 at the start of 2011 to £162,095 in the past three months. The 1.3% fall isn’t so bad when you consider prices were 4.2% down, year-on-year, in May. But the Halifax’s Martin Ellis warned the housing market’s prospects for 2012 were “uncertain”, adding: “If the UK can avoid recession, we expect broad stability in prices. “There is, however, considerable uncertainty regarding the prospects for the UK economy which will, to a large extent, depend on how events in the eurozone unfold.”

Posted by khards @ 09:50 AM 1 Comments

Friday, January 6, 2012

Summary of the market in 2011

Housing Expert: How was 2011 for you?

As usual Henry Pryor produced a dispassionate and objective summary of the main market numbers for last year with great graphics to illustrate supply, demand, sold and asking prices. He has even included the last six years for comparison.

Posted by charles lister @ 07:39 PM 0 Comments

Expect more of the same

Bibliophylax: An Express year

How the Daily Express headlined the news over the last 12 months, with special mention for its house price forecasts...

Posted by stuartking @ 10:27 AM 12 Comments

For December 2011

LBG: Halifax House Price Index

Annual change -1.3% Quarterly change -0.1% Monthly change -0.9% Average Price £160,063

Posted by dill @ 08:09 AM 25 Comments

Clowns to the left of me jokers to the right?

Inside Housing: Benefit caps to make 800,000 homes unaffordable

Following on From Drewster's Telegraph article.. "CIH said: ‘Welfare reforms will see for the first time more people chasing homes than the market currently provides. The only feasible option for many families who want to stay in their communities will be to borrow more or to spend less on essential items such as food. ‘.. more than 1.3 million private tenants [will be] confronted with ...homelessness or debt. Low income families could move to more affordable areas, creating benefit ghettoes, and resulting in increased social disorder and a breakdown in community cohesion.’ VS ‘Our measures will place a lid on spiralling rents and local authorities will continue to work with tenants and landlords to negotiate down rents, which will in turn help to keep properties within reach.’

Posted by techieman @ 08:01 AM 4 Comments

All signs point down

Reuters: Britons' love affair with housing on rocks

Activity in the housing market is stagnant as economic uncertainty, the threat of a renewed recession and rising unemployment are cutting deep in terms of confidence. A decimated mortgage market has left first-time buyers hamstrung by lofty deposit requirements, and pressured banks show few signs of easing lending criteria. Transactions have fallen to record lows and fewer homes are now being built in the UK than at any time since the 1920s. Jade Heppenstall, a 30-year old youth worker and first-time buyer in Hartlepool, said: "Not only are we going to be debt to the bank, we're also in debt to our parents... we're probably never going to afford to get married, and god forbid we ever decide to have a child. I've worked my arѕe off, (so) how the hell has this happened?"

Posted by drewster @ 12:35 AM 3 Comments

Rents begin to fall

Telegraph: Why we need a cap on housing benefits

There is substantial evidence that rent levels have been driven by Housing Benefit levels. Indeed, a Parliamentary Select Committee report before the last election came to exactly this conclusion. Furthermore, since the announcement of the new caps, our Housing Options team [at Westminster Council] have been successfully negotiating down rents on behalf of households affected by the new caps by up to a £400 per week reduction. Even if larger families do need to move further afield, Westminster has excellent transport links which will allow those who move an easy trip back to visit friends or to go to work. Hundreds of thousands of people who cannot afford to live in central London do this every day.

Posted by drewster @ 12:20 AM 7 Comments

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Greek Debt totally unsustainable

Bloomberg: Greek 1 year bonds hit eye watering 369% yield

If the yield keeps rising at this rate and, if all Greek debt were 1yr notes (not the case of course), interest payments would reach the entire EU GDP by July by my calculation. Just to place this idiocy into context. Click on the 5yr tab and see the parabolic rise, which can only result in default. The default could be transferred to other countries, but default will occur, either internal or external to Greece. It really is horrid. http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/GGGB1YR:IND/chart The general public in the rest of Europe are completely unaware that they are paying these rates, and that this is why the EU is slapping on carbon taxes, new VAT's, etc. It is all going down this interest payment black hole. Who gets the cash? The very same bankers who cooked the books for Greek EU membership

Posted by libertas @ 03:03 PM 13 Comments

Affordability looks set to improve

BBC News: Mortgage rationing becomes worse

Home buyers will find it even harder to obtain a mortgage in the coming months, the Bank of England says. Its quarterly survey of lending activity shows that lenders are going to be even fussier about prospective customers. "Lenders expected a tightening of credit scoring criteria for granting new secured loans to households," the Bank said. It said lenders were worried about the poor economy and falling house prices.....

Posted by will @ 12:59 PM 5 Comments

Problem solved.

AboutProperty: Sky-high solution to London's housing crisis

Architects have dreamed up a sky-high solution to London’s housing crisis: a 1,500 metre high tower with room for 100,000 people. Great picture too. That'd be one busy tube station at the base of the tower.

Posted by phil @ 11:19 AM 6 Comments

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Best news so far this year!

Guardian: City job losses will hit London property prices, thinktank warns

Centre for Economics and Business Research predicts capital's housing market will largely stagnate in 2012 as the financial sector cuts staff and bonuses International buyers accounted for about 55% of prime central London sales in 2011, up from 52% in 2010, according to Savills, with European buyers rising from 13.2% of sales in 2010 to 19.5% on the back of the eurozone crisis. However, some economists warn that the eurozone crisis may be double-edged, and European demand is another piece of support that could quickly fade.

Posted by khards @ 04:47 PM 19 Comments

Where's The January Sale For Investors?

Index Universe: Where's The January Sale For Investors?

The UK's recession-hit shops are full of bargains, attracting an increasing number of overseas buyers. But global share and bond markets offer poor value by comparison

Posted by paul amery @ 09:46 AM 0 Comments

The slippery slope to bankruptcy

Telegraph: One million people take out emergency loans to pay mortgage

What will this do for house prices if their repayments have an APR of 4000%+ ?

Posted by vinrouge @ 07:21 AM 24 Comments

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Grand Designs house in Kilcreggan has roof blown off

Planet Property: Grand Designs house in Kilcreggan has roof blown off

Fortunately no-one hurt - house for sale for £375k....

Posted by the planet @ 02:27 PM 1 Comments

Bye Bye!

Daily Telegraph: Greece will leave euro if second bailout fails, says Kapsis

Well I thought there was a gentleman's agreement that no one should disturb the bankers holidays and that this would extend to a least next Monday. But hell no, not even time to say Happy New Year, get a coffee, switch the computer on and let it boot up and Greece is back in the head lines! Well lets just say good riddance to bad rubbish. The guy who originally fiddled the numbers to get Greece in to the Euro is now the guy the EU appoint to lead Greece! Come on Angela tell them where to stuff there blackmail threats.

Posted by who stole my pension? @ 01:06 PM 3 Comments

78% of postcodes saw price falls in 2011

Planet Property: 78% of postcodes saw price falls in 2011

Only London bucked the trend but 2012 is likely to see more falls

Posted by the planet @ 11:21 AM 0 Comments

A properly functioning market

Press Association: House prices 'down 50% since boom

House prices have fallen by around 50% since the peak of the housing boom, two reports have revealed.

Posted by montesquieu @ 02:20 AM 14 Comments

Monday, January 2, 2012

Whose next? Gordon Brown!

Daily Telegraph: Bankers ready to sue if bonuses too small

Seems like 2012 is starting where 2011 ended. Lets see if we can explain this simple bonus concept to the dumb bankers. When a company makes a big profit then the employees, if they are lucky, might get a small bonus. When a company makes a loss then the employee, if they are lucky, get to keep their jobs! So why should an industry that has been described by experts as "socially worthless" and has bankrupted the country get to sue the tax payer for a bonus! If we give in to this then Gordon Brown will want one to! Also most banks have now increased their employees base salary to compensate them for a potential loss of their bonus - so they want their increased pay and their old bonus! Time to sack them all!

Posted by who stole my pension? @ 11:46 PM 6 Comments

House price forecasts

AboutProperty: What's in store for the housing market in 2012?

"Next year could see prices edge down by up to five per cent across the country."

Posted by phil @ 01:41 PM 0 Comments

Sunday, January 1, 2012

A map of the cuts included.

Guardian: Housing benefit cuts will put 800,000 homes out of reach, according to study

"A further 800,000 homes will be put out of reach of people on housing benefit because of government welfare cuts – leaving low income families the choice of cutting spending on food to pay the rent or moving out. The Chartered Institute of Housing has found there will be thousands more claimants than properties that are affordable on benefits alone, raising the possibility that the poor will migrate to "benefit ghettoes" in seaside towns or the north of England".

Posted by alan @ 09:49 PM 22 Comments

Well Done Shappsy!

Sky: Council House Tenants Face Sublet Crackdown

"Council house tenants who sublet their homes could face jail under a crackdown on social housing abuse. New government proposals could also see wealthy tenants forced to pay the market rate for continuing to live in their council homes. It is not an offence to sublet a council house - a loophole that allows an estimated 160,000 tenants to move out and take rent from someone else". "That's why in addition to a national crackdown, which has been backed with £19m government cash, we will shortly publish proposals for consultation to criminalise tenancy fraud."

Posted by alan @ 09:40 PM 5 Comments

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