August 2012 Archive

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Agent trials 'deferred purchase' system of selling

Planet Property: Agent trials 'deferred purchase' system of selling

Basically, the vendor sells the house and receives lump sum upfront while continuing to live in the property. The buyer buys at a hefty discount and then get vacant possession in 20 years ....hmmm, not that new, is it?!

Posted by the planet @ 04:12 PM 0 Comments

House buying will reflect similar caution (bear nibble)

Reuters: Credit card lending suffers biggest fall in six years

"British credit card lending suffered its biggest net fall in nearly six years in July, in a sign that households are reluctant to borrow more and casting doubt on any imminent rebound in consumer spending". " credit card lending fell by 147 million pounds, the biggest drop since August 2006, dragging overall unsecured consumer lending down by the largest margin since February this year".

Posted by alan @ 01:29 PM 3 Comments

Bank of England lending data shows small monthly rise in mortgage approvals Mortgage approvals down 50% on pre-credit crunch levels

New data from the Bank of England shows that the number of mortgages approved in July rose by more than 3,000 from June.

Posted by ben @ 11:21 AM 0 Comments

Of course, London prices remain higher...

Grow My Money: Pensioners own over '£700 billion worth of property'

Pensioners own hundreds of billions of pounds in property that could help with boosting retirement funds, according to research released today.

Posted by keithhodges @ 11:13 AM 0 Comments

Let's just sell the whole country to foreigners and rent it back

Telegraph: Rise in foreign landlords is 'crowding out first-time buyers’

An influx of foreign investors is driving a resurgence in Britain’s buy-to-let market, holding house prices steady but threatening to push up rents and crowd out first-time buyers. The Bank of England stated: “Foreign investors [have] branched out of commercial property in the capital and begun also to invest in the London residential lettings market.” While growth in buy-to-let demand had helped “to put a floor under prices”, according to the Bank, mortgage experts have warned that first-time buyers are being priced out of the market. Ray Boulger, a mortgage specialist at John Charcol said: “The basic premise that landlords are crowding out first-time buyers is right. If first-time buyers weren’t competing with landlords, then prices would be cheaper.”

Posted by drewster @ 12:49 AM 14 Comments

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Another Bankster "revelation"

Reuters: Barclays faces SFO probe on Qatar payments

"Britain's fraud prosecutors have launched a criminal probe into payments between Barclays and Qatar Holding, the British bank confirmed, adding to an ongoing regulatory investigation into dealings between the two parties".

Posted by alan @ 08:40 PM 3 Comments

London's house prices soar by 6.5%

London Loves Business: London's house prices soar by 6.5% over year

House prices in London have soared over the past 12 months despite a mixture of moderate increases and falls elsewhere in England and Wales, figures have shown.

Posted by sandra @ 05:37 PM 1 Comments

Think Tank warns Shapps against housebuilding drive

Planet Property: Think Tank warns Shapps against housebuilding drive

The government has been warned that using taxpayers money to boost house-building could cause a market crash

Posted by the planet @ 04:26 PM 0 Comments

Draghi sets out his plan for Europe's currency

ECB: The future of the euro: stability through change

I thought Draghi was really busy, but he has spared time to post this "way forward" on the ECB's website today. In the opposite corner is the Bundesbank supremo, Jens Weidmann, whose views on bailouts are widely known.

Posted by alan @ 01:41 PM 3 Comments

Land Registry reportd just a 0.3% annual rise Land Registry: House prices up by 0.8% in July to £162,900

House prices in the UK rose by an average of 0.8 per cent in July, compared to June but have increased by just 0.3 per cent since July 2012, according to the Land Registry.

Posted by ben @ 12:47 PM 4 Comments


Zerohedge: $16,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA!

November 16, 2011 was a historic date: that's when the US officially surpassed $15 trillion in debt for the first time since World War 2. We celebrated it by cheering $15,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA. Today, August 28, 2012, is when we can unofficially celebrate again, because 286 days after the last major milestone was surpassed with disturbing ease, total US debt following today's $35 billion auction of 2 Year bonds is, well, in a word: $16,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA!

Posted by general congreve @ 12:17 PM 16 Comments


Build build build

AboutProperty: Shapps gives 23,000 new homes the go ahead

Grant Shapps said: "We know that every 100,000 homes built in this country contributes one per cent to our Gross Domestic Product. So everyone who has rolled up their sleeves and got this huge development started will have played an important part in helping to boost the economy."

Posted by phil @ 11:01 AM 6 Comments

One in five 31-44-year-old's delay having kids Housing costs deter couples from starting a family

20 per cent of people aged 31 – 44 who don’t have children are delaying starting a family because of the cost of housing, according to a new YouGov survey commissioned by housing charity Shelter.

Posted by ben @ 09:54 AM 0 Comments

Exchange rate encourages international buyers Weak sterling affecting prime Central London prices

The weak sterling may be causing economist’s headaches but the improved exchange rate for international buyers is causing a flurry of activity in prime Central London. According to Cluttons’ Residential Property Forecasts for the third quarter of this year, buyers from the far east are benefitting from price discounts of up to 60 per cent in the capital since the sterling dropped in value. Buyers from the Middle East are experiencing a similar trend buying with a discount of up to 30 per cent of the previous purchase price.

Posted by jessbrown @ 09:43 AM 1 Comments

Auntie changes policy on house prices

BBC: Business Newn

Almost 10 minutes on house price falls. Wow. Seems the BBC is changing it's policy on whether speakers are allowed to say "house prices can go down as well as up". It's fairly light, with surface reassurance that America is worse off that us, but allows a tone of caution which, up to 2007, would have sent content controllers into a frienzied rage of ridiculing so as to keep things on message.

Posted by dohousescrashinthewoods @ 08:22 AM 4 Comments

Keep squeezing baby..

Independent: House prices squeezed

"As the supply demand balance weakens, we expect to see slow downward pressure on prices over the remainder of 2012."

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:43 AM 2 Comments

Likely explanation

Money marketing: Nationwide ups fixed rates for new customers by 0.3%

He says:“It’s unusual at the moment for lenders to increase their rates but when the average time from application to offering is 20 days, you can understand why they’ve done it. Normally lenders in this position take a few weeks to clear the backlog. Over the last couple of months, they have been keen to get more business in and it has caught up with them now. Like a lot of the other lenders, they will raise their rates and in couple of weeks, they will lower them again when they’ve caught up with business.” So none of this is going to trigger our HPC then.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 07:31 AM 2 Comments

A good call & close escape for ftb's

Mail: Loans dry up for struggling first-time buyers as number of mortgages available with 10% deposit plunges by a quarter

It is also happening despite the billions in cheap loans the Government is pumping into Britain’s banks and building societies under an £80 billion scheme to encourage banks to lend more.

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:25 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Prices 60% below peak for some foreign buyers

Planet Property: Prices 60% below peak for some foreign buyers

Buyers from the Far East are benefitting from price discounts of as much as 60 per cent in the UK market thanks to the devaluation of Sterling

Posted by the planet @ 05:36 PM 0 Comments

Nationwide offer 0.1 "discount" to existing customers porting to a new deal Nationwide raises mortgage rates for new customers

Nationwide has announced that it is to increase mortgage rates for new customers.

Posted by ben @ 04:52 PM 0 Comments

No money for kids

AboutProperty: Tiny feet not pattering as housing shortage bites

More people are delaying starting a family as a result of the shortage of affordable housing, according to Shelter. Kay Boycott, director of communications at Shelter, said: “It’s heartbreaking that so many people are being forced to put their lives on hold in this way."

Posted by phil @ 12:22 PM 17 Comments

There's an app for that

Daily Mail: Four in five mothers fear for their children's future over house prices, debt and pensions

You know that tax reform that I keep talking about, four out of five mothers ought to vote for it!

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 12:16 PM 4 Comments

Sun is always shining

BuyToNet: Landlord confidence rises

David Newnes said: “The majority of landlords expect tenant demand will increase in the future, and as long as lending to first-time buyers remains in the doldrums, and new house building remains subdued, we won’t see demand for rental accommodation tail off. "In these conditions, while affordability may increasingly come into play as landlords set rents, they are far more likely to continue to rise than tumble in the coming 12 months.”

Posted by phil @ 11:57 AM 3 Comments

House prices down 0.1 per cent in August Hometrack: House prices down as supply/demand balance widens

UK house prices fell by 0.1 per cent in August, according to a new study by property analytics firm Hometrack.

Posted by ben @ 09:34 AM 3 Comments

The problem and a solution

Independent: Why exactly is it so expensive for us to own a home?

An average three-bed house cost £2,000 in 1952. In 2012 it costs £162,000. That’s an inflation of 8,000%. Have you ever wondered – I mean really wondered – why this is the case?

Posted by dill @ 08:13 AM 17 Comments

Ongoing collapse into debt

Telegraph: Despite the crisis, Britons are still spending like drunkards

Article pointing out that due to the cynical misinformation provided by both parties, the myth of the savage cuts, very few realise that government debt is going to increase by 600 billion over just this parliament ( about 20,000 per worker ) while private debt goes from 1.58 to 2 trillion by 2016 (another 420 billion which would be 14000 per worker). All of this excluding pension liabilities in the private and public sector, and the costs of the bank bailouts. The UK does look as though any wealth we have is smoke and mirrors. The worse thing not mentioned is that we have no means to produce wealth as we tied all our capital up in property speculation.

Posted by stillthinking @ 05:38 AM 5 Comments

Monday, August 27, 2012

Halifax analysis

Guardian: Average cost of buying home falls to lowest in 15 years

"Halifax data shows typical UK mortgage costs buyer 26% of take-home pay, compared with 48% at peak levels in 2007". "A typical mortgage on a new property now costs the average buyer 26% of their take-home pay, said Halifax, compared with 48% at their peak in late 2007 before the credit crunch struck". Martin Ellis, housing economist at Halifax, said: "The relatively low level of mortgage payments in relation to income is providing support for house prices. The prospect of interest rates remaining at low levels for sometime yet is expected to continue to be a key factor supporting the demand for homes, helping to keep house prices around their current level. (But Santander just announced an increase).

Posted by alan @ 07:49 PM 10 Comments

Mortgage repayments at 15-year low Record low base rate means cost of a mortgage at 15-year low

A new report from the Halifax reveals that the cost of having a mortgage is at its lowest level for 15 years.

Posted by ben @ 04:49 PM 0 Comments

And this would be a bad thing because..?

Telegraph: State-backed housebuilding drive would cause price crash, warns Fathom

Fathom argued that, because first time buyers can not get hold of debt easily and because households are trying to pay off loans, a building boom could trigger "a correction back to fair value" in house prices, which it estimated at 30pc below current levels. "Banks would be forced to recognise their losses. In the absence of further Government intervention, this is likely to push a number of lenders to the brink of insolvency." ... A better way of stimulating housebuilding, Fathom said, would be to force prices to fall back to their equilibrium level by forcing banks to repossess struggling borrowers and disclose their hidden bad debts. Bank of England money printing could "be used to recapitalise the banks". That would leave them "free to lend" and make houses more affordable again.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 01:14 PM 20 Comments

Lion loose in Essex eats house sales and prices

BBC: Essex Police investigate 'lion' sighting near St Osyth

House sales and prices dropped in Essex due to lion on loose scaring potential house purchasers Essex Police investigate 'lion' sighting near St Osyth

Posted by mark @ 01:06 PM 6 Comments

...slashed the price by £500,000

Rightmove: Especially for you – we’ve got Kylie Minogue’s flat on Rightmove!

Kylie Minogue is selling her four bedroom apartment for £3,950,000 and lucky for you it’s on Rightmove! see also:

Posted by rental john @ 12:31 PM 0 Comments

Massive demand for homes where 4% are empty?

Burton News: Housing pressure could be eased by empty homes use

The part of the West Mids where there are the most empty homes has massive demand and growing demand and well demand. Yeah sure. Or cannot people afford to live any more perhaps - not such a good headline?

Posted by chrisch @ 10:35 AM 2 Comments

Don't you dare build on our views or we'll cry

BBC News: Green belt development 'not path to economic growth'

Another CPRE PR article stating, inter alia, "It [the green belt] helps regenerate our cities and stops them sprawling into rural areas. As a result no-one is ever too far from true, green English countryside." But far enough away from us to keep our views.

Posted by dude @ 07:16 AM 14 Comments

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ireland built so much housing that they have to knock it down again!

Bloomberg: Relics of Real Estate Bubble Bulldozed [video]

The Irish government is demolishing unfinished "ghost estates", because they are potentially unsafe and because nobody will ever live there anyway.

Posted by drewster @ 11:14 PM 7 Comments

Only kidding, Tractor Production will be UP this year again after all.

Press Association: Regulator will probe GCSE gradings

The exams regulator will begin its investigation into GCSE gradings this week following claims that thousands of students have been treated unfairly. - Obviously grades cannot go down any more than house prices can do down in our wonderful centrally planned paradise. It must be a mistake, for our glorious leaders would never allow this under their wise leadership. Fortunately the regulator is ready to swing into action after 24 years of paid vacation to ensure this misinformation is retracted and the mistake is corrected. Then all hardworking students can safely progress to university and realise the dream of £50k debts by age 21. All hail the great leaders!

Posted by general congreve @ 02:15 PM 0 Comments

Overvalued pound heading for stagflation

Wall Street Journal: The Real Bet is on the Pound's Decline

Article suggests that the pound has further to fall given the underlying weakness of the economy. Points out the carry trade particularly for Brazil given that the real interest rates in the UK are too low. Suggests without any supporting reasons that inflation expectations in the UK are high (which they are I guess).

Posted by stillthinking @ 05:00 AM 2 Comments

The value of your investment...

Daily Mail: 'I lost seven properties': Cut-price repossession sales 'are cheating the taxpayer'

The sorry tale of a retired policeman-turned-landlord Keith Young had seven properties in the Newcastle upon Tyne area repossessed and sold by his lender during 2011. He thinks they were worth more than they were sold for and says the taxpayer is losing out [by which I think he means he's been left with a bigger debt than he envisaged] but then he probably believed the hype that property prices can only go up.

Posted by stuartking @ 02:44 AM 7 Comments

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Yes we are.

The Guardian: Are we facing an inter-generational housing crisis?

Between March and May 2012, the unemployment rate for 16-24-year-olds hit 21.9%. In January, the local housing allowance for under-35s was reduced and in February David Cameron discussed scrapping housing benefit altogether for under-25s. Elsewhere, studies by housing charity Centrepoint and umbrella group Homeless Link suggest that youth homelessness is on the rise.

Posted by rental john @ 05:24 PM 0 Comments

They are our future, but what future will they have....

JRF (Joseph Rowntree Foundation): Housing options and solutions for young people in 2020

What will the housing system be like for young people in 2020? Recent economic, social and political change has resulted in greater uncertainty in the housing options of young people in the UK. The recession has highlighted challenges such as high youth unemployment and a lack of available credit.

Posted by rental john @ 05:12 PM 0 Comments

It's never been harder to sign up for debt slavery

Telegraph: It's never been harder to get a mortgage

Britain's borrowers continue to face a mortgage crunch five years after Northern Rock teetered on the brink of collapse. Over the past five years the number of mortgages available to first-time buyers has plummeted by 75pc. The value of mortgage lending has fallen by two thirds from a record high of £34bn in June 2007 to just £13bn in July 2012, while the number of housing transactions declined from 120,000 in July 2007 to fewer than 50,000 a month now – a fall of 60pc. To compound borrowers' misery [eh? shouldn't that be joy?], house prices have dipped sharply. The average property bought in the summer of 2007 would have been worth £200,623, while today the average property is worth just £162,126 – a drop of 20pc.

Posted by drewster @ 12:47 PM 13 Comments


Telegraph: Want to get out of recession? Start building houses

If the Prime Minister wants to boost growth, he needs to take housing seriously – he must set up a dedicated housing department in the September reshuffle. The Coalition is desperate for policies that can rapidly get the economy going. Of these, the one that ministers are perhaps most focused on is housing. There is broad agreement at the top of Government that if we can increase house-building then this will boost jobs and growth, stop rents spiralling and reduce the fear that young families will never able to afford a decent quality home.

Posted by drewster @ 12:44 PM 6 Comments

Finally bbc admits falls in the market!

Bbc: The homeowners who cannot move home

Spat my cornflakes out! The fact that some experts expect the housing market to continue falling this year and next may not encourage her to be optimistic in her search.

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:30 AM 26 Comments

Friday, August 24, 2012

New builds are outperforming old properties

London Loves Business: New builds worth more than period properties

Period properties have slipped down the value scale according to a new survey. The research by CBRE has found that new build flats in London are worth approximately 30% more than older ones.

Posted by sandra @ 02:25 PM 7 Comments

2nd QTR GDP figures get 2nd estimate Revised GDP figures in line with city expectations

Revised figures on how the economy performed in the second quarter of 2012 will be published this morning by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Posted by ben @ 09:02 AM 0 Comments

What a surprise!

Independent: Bank's stimulus plan 'has lined pockets of the rich'

"an analysis by The Independent reveals that the wealthiest 10 per cent of households would have benefited from QE more than 240 times as much as the poorest 10 per cent." and " the richest households gained by an average of £350,000 each from quantitative easing, while the poorest benefited by an average of £1,400 – more than 240 times less." Mervyn's position looks very precarious, given that he also was the principal designer of the gross credit expansion forcing all this attempted patch up work.

Posted by stillthinking @ 03:37 AM 21 Comments

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Printy, Printy

Telegraph: Fed joins stimulus party as global trade slumps

"The US Federal Reserve appears poised for a third round of quantitative easing (QE) as soon as early September, joining Europe and China in concerted global stimulus" (I'm sure the UK could print some too)!

Posted by alan @ 11:19 PM 5 Comments

Darling now an expert on the Euro

Huffington Post UK: Alistair Darling Warns Germany To Change Course On Its Eurozone Rescue Policies

"Alistair Darling (remember him?) has strongly criticised the German government's policies towards recovery in the eurozone, suggesting a failure of leadership by Angela Merkel and other European politicians risks political upheaval similar to that seen in the 1930s. In an interview the former Labour chancellor expresses his fears that European politicians will continue to kick the can down the road, despite predictions that the Greek debt crisis will come to a head in September". "Politicians will get it wrong from time to time, but at the moment everybody looks like they've given up trying" he said (that's fine coming from Labour!!),

Posted by alan @ 07:44 PM 3 Comments

Mortgage approvals rise from 15-year low Mortgage approvals creep up

Mortgage approvals increased slightly in July, up from June’s 15-year low, according to new figures published by the British Bankers Association (BBA).

Posted by ben @ 05:11 PM 0 Comments

Amazing that this can be considered true

Telegraph: Pensioners biggest winners from QE - Bank of England

"the Bank said that QE had helped “boosted the value of households’ financial wealth held outside pension funds” by about £600bn. " .....but where did the real things that this money buys come from? The BoE didn't provide any real things. Also " the Bank claimed that the lower interest payments had been offset by an increase in the size of the pension pot used to buy the annuity." wow. how stupid we all are.

Posted by stillthinking @ 04:17 PM 14 Comments

Time to waive affordable housing quota

London Loves Business: Time to waive affordable housing quota, report says

Waiving the affordable homes quota would allow developers to build more properties for let to boost the private rental market, the government-commissioned report found.

Posted by sandra @ 03:44 PM 0 Comments

Responses to Montague

AboutProperty: Montague Report: Reactions from around the property world

Jennet Siebrits, head of residential research, CBRE, said: "Although this may mean a reduction of affordable housing, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing; housing is housing and we have a chronic shortage, we shouldn’t view this as a trade-off between private rented and social housing. Not least as many social tenants currently live in private rental housing - over a third of private rented sector tenants receive housing benefit. Also it would free up existing stock for other users, so growing the sector could provide a range of advantageous housing options."

Posted by phil @ 03:04 PM 1 Comments

"Kiss & Tell"

Reuters: Ex-RBS trader details bank's Libor fixing

"A former dealer for the Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC has provided fresh details on how traders at the British bank tried to influence Libor rates, court documents filed in Singapore show. Tan Chi Min, who is suing RBS for wrongful dismissal, alleges that the bank's minutes of his disciplinary meeting held in September last year did not accurately reflect what was discussed and omitted details of conversations about how traders at the bank tried to influence RBS's interbank lending rate submissions".

Posted by alan @ 02:40 PM 1 Comments

BTL-FTB: there's only one way to find out which is better...

Mortgage Introducer: Blow by blow: the case for BTL versus FTBs

The article discusses: "renting is a much cheaper option; indices are primarily intended to track changes over time; house prices are volatile but then so are other investments; comparisons of first-time buyers and buy-to-let investors." And continues with: "many choose to rent and buy-to-let facilitates mobility; buy-to-let as part of a balanced tenure neutral housing market and comparisons with high renting levels in other countries." It ends describing "The value of buy-to-let as an investment and the work of the government and lenders to resolve first-time buyer exclusion." So BTL is better, obviously. (Or is it...)

Posted by dude @ 02:34 PM 1 Comments

Lend lend lend... or not.

AboutProperty: Less mortgage choice for buyers with small deposit

Clare Francis, mortgage expert at MoneySupermarket said: "Our analysis shows the continuing difficulty facing first time buyers and those with smaller deposits looking to find a suitable mortgage. "Despite the launch of the Funding for Lending Scheme which was designed to encourage further mortgage lending by the banks, there appears to be few signs that the initiative is helping those with small deposits.

Posted by phil @ 11:52 AM 0 Comments

Those feckless Boomers - spent it all on flat screen TVs and iPods.

Metro: Almost 500,000 to retire with thousands left to pay on the mortgage

"It's supposed to be the time of life when the house is paid off and money hassles are mostly gone, but almost half-a-million people expect to retire with thousands still outstanding on their mortgages, it seems. Most will retire with about £52,446 left to pay, a survey by the Equity Release Council shows. The older people get, the higher the debt they expect to retire with. Some 17 per cent of 45 to 54-year-olds believe they will owe more than £48,000 when they stop working." Eeh it's not like when I were a lad, we made do etc.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 11:33 AM 19 Comments

Northern Ireland blazes a trail for the rest of us!

Belfast Telegraph: Plummeting Northern Ireland property prices tumble by 53% in five years

Admittedly, the price bubble imposed on them was larger than anywhere else in the UK, but the bust is all the more impressive: "Land and Property Services — part of the Department for Finance and Personnel — said residential property prices fell by 11% in the year to June 2012. Between April and June they came down by 3%, leaving the province with the average house price of £95,623, according to the residential property price index. The index uses stamp duty records to record house prices and includes repossessions and auction sales. A spokesman said house prices had peaked in the third quarter of 2007 and had fallen by 53% since."

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 11:26 AM 4 Comments

And the Germans are fed up with Greece

Telegraph: Eurozone headed for recession as economic rot spreads

"The eurozone looks destined for its second recession in three years, as business surveys showed the economic rot is even spreading to Germany, the region's largest and strongest economy".

Posted by alan @ 10:51 AM 2 Comments

Holy Grail - is it really?

AboutProperty: Call for investment in build to let homes

Liz Peace, chief executive of the British Property Federation, called the drive to encourage institutions into building homes for rent the "holy grail" for the private rented sector in the long term.

Posted by phil @ 10:34 AM 0 Comments

Is equity release a viable solution here?

Grow My Money: Half a million 'expect to retire with a mortgage'

Almost half a million people ‘expect’ to retire owing money on their mortgage, according to research released today.

Posted by keithhodges @ 10:04 AM 1 Comments

We own land! Give us money! (Masterclass)

City AM: Montague calls for changes to rented sector

THE GOVERNMENT has today launched a long-awaited review of the private-rented housing market that calls for councils to waive affordable housing requirements on private rented schemes and for financial incentives to encourage investment into the sector.The review, conducted by 3i chairman Sir Adrian Montague, makes five recommendations to the government for encouraging large institutions to invest in privately rented homes to help meet demand. As well as waiving affordable housing requirements, these include making more public sector land available for private rented schemes and setting up a “task-force” of developers to advise the government and set standards. The report also recommends the government provide equity or debt funding to share the risk and help kickstart investment.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 09:59 AM 6 Comments

Santander accused of "profiteering" Santander raises SVR by 0.50% adding £312pm to a £100k mortgage

Santander is to increase the cost of its standard variable rate mortgages (SVR) by almost 12 per cent. The Spanish bank is raising the SVR from 4.24 per cent to 4.74 after it sent out letters to thousands of its mortgage customers.

Posted by ben @ 09:27 AM 0 Comments

More mortgage increases, more energy bill growth. Sigh.

Cash Compass: Price hikes signal 'hard blows' for consumers

With the cost of living rising and wage growth stagnant, when do price increases become too much?

Posted by keithhodges @ 09:24 AM 0 Comments

The property market looks weak

Mindful Money: Shaun Richards: UK house prices look like they are now falling, should we welcome rather than fear that?

A fairly balanced summary of the state of the UK property market from an economist who has tended to take the conventional view that rising house prices are a good thing. Nothing remarkable for regular HPC readers but it's good to see another economist ask a pointed question about monetary policy: "Whilst I do not wish for home owners to lose money newer buyers do need cheaper prices. If you look at the volume figures in the housing market which the mortgage figures above are a guide too we see that they are giving a heavy hint that prices are at the wrong level. Its makes me wonder if this is another area where monetary stimulus has made things worse. I cannot help but wonder if we would be in a better place now if house prices had been allowed to fall."

Posted by quiet guy @ 08:42 AM 0 Comments

Dear Leader will increase Tractor Production in 5 Years!

Detlev Schlichter: The Triumph of Politics

On October 27, 2010, Chancellor Angela Merkel promised the German parliament that the bailout fund EFSF was a temporary thing. Of course, as more bailouts were needed, the EFSF grew bigger. It will now be replaced with the ESM. EVERY law, regulation and restriction that was part of the original set-up of EMU has now been broken. The limits on budget deficits and overall public debt limits (Maastricht Criteria)? –Ignored. The no-bail out provision? – Ignored. The ban on ECB buying sovereign bonds to support fiscal policy? – Circumvented with the flimsiest of excuses. Let’s face it. There is no master plan here. The political class is losing control. There is not even a conspiracy. One quick-fix after another, and every one brings us a step closer to a very nasty endgame.

Posted by general congreve @ 12:38 AM 4 Comments

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I think the BBC editor is on vacation...

BBC News: US fiscal cliff risks new recession, says report

Spending cuts and tax rises due to take effect in 2013 could trigger a sharp slowdown in the US economy, Congress's budget office has said. It warned that unless Congress acts to avert a "fiscal cliff", the US could see its gross domestic product (GDP) shrink by 0.5% next year. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said the US would see growth drop by 2.9% in the first half of next year.

Posted by blinktoofast @ 11:26 PM 2 Comments

Santander SVR mortgage rate to rise to 4.74%

More good news II: BBC

Interest rates rising - other banks sure to follow - will put more downward pressure on house prices

Posted by stuartking @ 07:45 PM 16 Comments

More good news

Energy Live News: SSE unveils new domestic price hike

Scottish energy supplier SSE will be bumping up its household energy prices by an average of 9% from October. Thanks to the Govt, this should put further pressure on struggling families trying to pay their mortgages: 'Unveiling the “unavoidable” price hike for electricity and gas today, the supplier blamed the move on wholesale prices and the rising cost of transporting energy through pipes and wires, as well as having to pay for government schemes such as the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT), the Warm Homes Discount and helping vulnerable customers.'

Posted by stuartking @ 07:43 PM 1 Comments

London’s commercial gallery under threat

London Loves Business: The heart of London’s commercial gallery scene in jeopardy

Cork Street, the opulent stretch of art dealers is under threat thanks to a luxury apartment deal struck by landlords Standard Life Investments.

Posted by sandra @ 03:51 PM 0 Comments

Property nightmare: the truth about leaseholds

Planet Property: Property nightmare: the truth about leaseholds

Interesting investigation of leasehold property by Channel 4's Dispatches ... well worth a look.

Posted by the planet @ 12:14 PM 1 Comments

No Sh*t! Mr Shapps

Mail: 'The bubble locked a generation out': Minister admits housing crisis as builders profit by targeting affluent South

‘It’s ridiculously expensive for people to buy houses in this country,’ said Housing Minister Grant Shapps.

Posted by happy mondays @ 11:49 AM 5 Comments

Is it time to snap up Irish property?

MoneyWeek: Is it time to snap up Irish property?

Ireland is littered with half-built properties – a legacy from the days of easy credit. But with house prices around 50% below their peak, is now the time to buy? Matthew Partridge investigates.

Posted by martingreen @ 10:40 AM 14 Comments

Mortgage fraud up as lending criteria tightens Experian survey shows 23% jump in mortgage fraud

More people are lying about the state of their finances in an attempt to take out mortgages for homes which are beyond their reach, a study has found.

Posted by ben @ 10:18 AM 0 Comments

"House prices fell 8% from a year earlier"

WSJ: Dutch Housing Prices Tumble .

AMSTERDAM—The slump in the Dutch housing market deepened in July as prices posted the steepest drop on record, highlighting the challenges facing the Netherlands ahead of next month's general elections.

Posted by dill @ 10:15 AM 4 Comments

Meritocracy - if you can afford it

AboutProperty: Stay at home kids are cuckoos in the empty nest

Almost half of family lodgers (46 per cent) admit that they do not pay any rent but host families estimate they spend an extra £107 a month on housing them.

Posted by phil @ 10:04 AM 0 Comments

More woe for first time buyers...

Nest Finance: Lenders 'pulling out of 90 per cent LTV market'

Again first time buyers are reminded of the struggle to put a foot on the property ladder.

Posted by keith @ 10:03 AM 0 Comments

Liar Loans

Mail: Increasing numbers committing mortgage fraud by lying about their finances

"The 23 per cent rise in mortgage fraud comes as lenders have tightened their borrowing criteria, making it harder for prospective homeowners to get a loan. Finance firm Experian said 39 in every 10,000 mortgage applications made in the second quarter of the year were found to be fraudulent, representing an increase of almost a quarter compared with the previous year".

Posted by alan @ 08:58 AM 5 Comments

IOD says government doing "too little, too slowly" IOD members delay investment decisions due to recession

The Institute of Directors (IOD) says that British businesses are delaying vital investment and employment decisions that could help get the economy moving again because of uncertainty about the direction of the government’s economic policy and whether the UK will emerge from the double-dip recession.

Posted by ben @ 08:47 AM 0 Comments

"cut or spend": a nonsense dilemma

Greg Pytel: Still out their depth

We won't get out this crisis unless and until the financial system is sorted out, banks start working as banks and not as giant pyramid schemes sucking money out the economy as they currently do. Cut spending or increase spending is a nonsense dilemma. None of it will work until the pyramid scheme is liquidated and the financial system starts working normally. Expert and politicians have to get real otherwise things will just keep getting worse.

Posted by ant @ 08:32 AM 13 Comments

Boomers will love their 30yr old kids knocking at the door..

Telegraph: Boomerang generation boosted by high house prices, rents and graduate debt

High house prices, rising rents and growing graduate debts – coupled with falling or frozen wages for people starting their careers – have created a ‘boomerang generation’ where young adults continue to live with their parents.

Posted by happy mondays @ 08:30 AM 8 Comments

They own land and money! Give them more land and money!

Guardian: Borrowing figures prompt co-ordinated growth push across Whitehall

"The government will take the first steps in outlining its latest plans to promote growth on Thursday when it publishes a report on housing by Sir Adrian Montague. This is expected to say the government needs to support the industry by lending publicly owned land to developers and relaxing requirements for building schemes to include social housing." Almost guaranteed to fail, my friend, almost guaranteed to fail.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 08:02 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

What affordable houses?

Press TV: UK gov’t condemned for housing u-turn

The British opposition and housing associations have condemned the government’s plan to remove regulations that force developers to build “affordable” houses.

Posted by right old @ 09:02 PM 0 Comments

Heading for another crash

Washington Post: What trash can tell us about the U.S. economy

The US economy is heading south, dragged down by the recent slumps in both Europe and China... printing presses will soon be going into overdrive, not just in US but throughout the world, including here. Expect rising fuel and food prices, stagnant wages (if you're lucky enough to keep your job) and rising gov't benefits spending. Oh, almost forgot the one positive - falling house prices. In fact, much more of the same, only this time it will be worse.

Posted by stuartking @ 07:36 PM 1 Comments

Things are still getting worse in the eurozone

Reuters: Siemens seeks thousands of job cuts

German engineering conglomerate Siemens (SIEGn.DE) is in early internal talks to cut thousands of jobs in response to a weakening economy, particularly in Europe, a German newspaper reported.

Posted by mark @ 02:37 PM 0 Comments

Another "Gotcha" headline

Sun: The Euro’s FINNished

"Greece exit now 'likely' says Finland". "EUROPE is secretly preparing for the break-up of the single currency, a top Finnish politician let slip yesterday". (Wow)

Posted by alan @ 02:30 PM 14 Comments

Aww, diddums

This is Money: 'I was sold a dream of life in Cyprus. Now my UK home is at risk'

Sheelagh Rose was sold the dream of owning a luxury property in Cyprus. By taking a Swiss franc mortgage with a local Cypriot bank, a £110,000 loan for a two-bedroom apartment would cost them just £600 a month — money they would easily make back in rent. But seven years later, mortgage payments have jumped to £1,200 a month. The villa has slumped in value, and hasn't been rented out once. To this day, the Roses have never even set foot on Cyprus. A legal loophole means Cypriot banks can issue orders to seize property that can be enforced by British courts. Many holiday home owners are starting legal action to prove they were mis-sold the mortgages in a desperate bid to keep a roof over their heads.

Posted by little professor @ 02:22 PM 6 Comments

Quick, Keep Rates Down, Borrow More

Telegraph: George Osborne's plans hit by rising borrowing

"The damning numbers mean the Chancellor may have to tap the markets for at least £10bn more borrowing than last year, even after the planned £18bn of tax rises and spending cuts." "Benefits formed the largest single element of the spending rise. Payments increased by 7pc in the first four months of the year compared with forecasts of a rise of just 5.8pc" So, is this the end of Plan A?

Posted by alan @ 02:14 PM 2 Comments

Lazy consensus?

AboutProperty: Home swap scheme nears 1.5 million searches

Grant Shapps said: "For years, social tenants were stuck in the ridiculous situation where they didn't have the same freedom of choice as everyone else and could only swap homes with those using the same service as their landlord - or face competition from those higher up the waiting lists. "HomeSwap Direct has challenged this lazy consensus that trapped people in their homes. Instead, tenants are taking power back to arrange their own home swap by viewing properties available not just in their neighbourhood, but across the whole country.”

Posted by phil @ 12:40 PM 0 Comments

Are Scandinavian flat-pack homes the way forward?

Planet Property: Are Scandinavian flat-pack homes the way forward?

They're eco-friendly, can be built in just four weeks and look pretty cool ... so why doesn't the UK build houses like this?

Posted by the planet @ 11:44 AM 0 Comments

Monday, August 20, 2012

Taxpayer takes on more housing risk

BBC Scotland: Housing industry 'boost' from 95% mortgages plan

Scotland could be about to introduce a scheme to make 95% mortgages available to home buyers in an effort to increase house building. The Scottish government and the construction industry are said to be to be working on the plan.

Posted by ontheotherhand @ 05:30 PM 8 Comments

He is a baddy. Oh, no he isn't! Because he is only a decent landlord who commit mortgage fraud.

Mail: Senior policeman owns ASBO house

Insp Razaq is currently suspended on full pay from his post after being arrested in May 2011 charged with six offences of fraud and three offences under the Proceeds of Crime Act relating to insurance and mortgage fraud. He secured a mortgage at a lower rate by failing to disclose that he was buying to let.

Posted by peter_2008 @ 05:11 PM 2 Comments

Funding for rigging and all that protectionist jazz

Telegraph: Lending spike could end mortgage famine and underpin house prices

A sharp increase in mortgage lending last month, following rate cuts from some of Britain’s biggest banks has prompted speculation about the end of the mortgage famine and fresh support for house prices.

Posted by dill @ 04:47 PM 3 Comments

Selling off council houses

AboutProperty: End expensive social housing, says think tank

Housing minister Grant Shapps said: “It clearly makes sense to use housing stock as efficiently as possible. Where you have houses which are worth millions, you could sell them and build a lot more homes to help sometimes ­vulnerable people come off the ­waiting list. It is blindingly obvious.”

Posted by phil @ 03:12 PM 1 Comments

Selling expensive social housing is not the solution

National Housing Federation: Selling 'expensive' social housing isn't the answer

The idea of selling off social housing in 'high value' areas to build more in cheaper areas isn't the solution to the housing problem.

Posted by sandra @ 03:04 PM 0 Comments

Expensive social housing should be sold

London Loves Business: Selling off expensive London council houses 'could raise £70bn'

More than £70bn of expensive social housing in London should be sold off to pay for a new wave of housebuilding, a report has recommended. One in five properties in the social housing stock are worth more than the average house price in the area, the Ending Expensive Social Tenancies report says.

Posted by sandra @ 02:57 PM 0 Comments

CML data shows rise in mortgage lending CML reports mortgage lending up by 8% in July

The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) reports that mortgage lending increased by eight per cent overall in July.

Posted by ben @ 02:07 PM 0 Comments

Protect the green belt so that the next generation can protect it from the generation after that

Telegraph: Conservative MPs revolt over new threat to green belt

I realise that Home-Owner-Ism is based on lies, half truths, logical fallacies and so on, but do these NIMBYs really not listen to themselves? “Protecting the green belt is not simply a case of saying 'not in my back yard’. We have a duty of trust to protect green belt land for future generations." But what if the next generation would rather build a few more houses on it NOW?

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 01:13 PM 15 Comments

No pity for the BtL brigade from Banksters

Bloomberg: Irish Bailout Masters Press for Rental Home Seizures

"Ireland’s bankers and bailout masters are pressing the government to make it easier to seize homes bought as investments to rent out as defaults on the loans surge after Western Europe’s worst real-estate collapse".

Posted by alan @ 11:41 AM 4 Comments

Olympic impact causes sellers to drop asking prices by 2.4% Rightmove reports record August drop in house prices

House prices dropped by 2.4 per cent in August from July, according to new data released by Rightmove.

Posted by ben @ 11:14 AM 2 Comments

Have you paid all your bills?

Thrifty Finance: Mid-August marks 'Bills Freedom Day'

Research suggests that it's solid working until today in order to make household and tax payments, but it might not all be plain sailing for next couple of months either.

Posted by keithfinance @ 10:34 AM 0 Comments

The truth behind the stars of London’s skyline

London Loves Business: Can London’s new skyscrapers fill their floors?

A combination of economic slowdown, funding difficulties and future uncertainty means that new skyscrapers are empty. In some cases, building has actually stopped. Are skyscrapers the answer to London property demand.

Posted by sandra @ 10:14 AM 0 Comments

Darling says Osborne should spend on new homes Darling calls on Osborne to "act now" to promote growth

The former Labour chancellor, Alistair Darling, has called on the current chancellor, George Osborne to change tact on the economy or risk causing “immeasurable damage”.

Posted by ben @ 09:37 AM 0 Comments

Hidden costs of staging Olympics

Guardian: Olympics 'prompt record fall' in August property asking prices

Property website Rightmove says sellers cut asking price by twice the usual rate in August as London 2012 distracted would-be buyers.

Posted by mken @ 09:35 AM 8 Comments

Timing is everything :-)

BBC News: Bovis Homes sees profits double as sales increase

UK housebuilder Bovis Homes has reported a doubling of profit and has increased its dividend after selling more homes at a higher average price.

Posted by richy richless @ 09:16 AM 0 Comments

Game of the people

AboutProperty: Who are the Property Premier League champions?

Nigel Lewis of said: "Millionaire footballers may live in some of the country’s most exclusive areas, but average property values around the stadiums in which they make their living are in stark contrast to WAG hotspots like Oxshott, Cobham and Alderly Edge."

Posted by phil @ 09:14 AM 0 Comments

They own land so let them make MORE money

Independent: Government U-turn 'will deny council housing to millions'

"Last week, Mr Pickles announced that he was dispatching a team of experts to give councils free advice on how to limit the impact of Section 106. He also announced that developers who had entered into these agreements during the housing boom are now free to ask local authorities to reopen negotiations" "Dispatching "huh..sounds dynamic

Posted by richy richless @ 08:01 AM 7 Comments

Sunday, August 19, 2012

In conclusion....

Guardian: This truly was an event that regenerated a community, but what of its legacy?

For two weeks, a cat decomposed in Stoke Newington, watched by the world. Now it has gone, leaving a void in all of our lives.

Posted by dill @ 06:23 PM 0 Comments

40 million unwanted McMansions

The San Diego Union-Tribune: U.S. overbuilt in big houses, planners find

And so it came to pass that American developers built 40 million large lot homes commonly known as McMansions that its citizens eventually realised that they didn't actually want or need. When it should have built 10 million more attached homes and 30 million more small homes on 4,000-square-foot lots or less. It transpires that Americans of Generations X and Y do not really want to spent all their lives sat in cars like their parents.

Posted by enuii @ 12:28 PM 1 Comments

No need to worry about Hp's, may still happen!

Telegraph: Bank of England deputy governor Paul Tucker warned banks they could collapse 'before Christmas'

Bank of England officials were so concerned about the potential for a financial crisis late last year they took the extra­ordinary step of warning the entire banking system could collapse “before Christmas”.

Posted by happy mondays @ 08:04 AM 2 Comments

Good morning Hpc'rs

Moneyweek: MoneyWeek roundup: Why house prices have to keep falling

Moreover, the Bank of England can’t print money to manipulate the bond markets forever. Eventually there will be a bond market correction or a currency problem – or both, says Phil. The result? “Higher interest rates and lower house prices.” That might not sound good if you own a house, but “as far as we are concerned, the sooner this happens, the sooner the UK economy can recover”.

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:57 AM 7 Comments

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Not a word from MSM about CPIH

Mindful Money: Shaun Richards: What is the policy of the Bank of England? Are they politicians in disguise? Independence anyone?

Richards recounts some of the conversation at a consultation he attended with the Royal Statistical Society on the subject of adding house prices to the Consumer Price Index (CPIH). A member of the Monetary Policy Committee, confirmed that CPIH targeting is approaching: "However the conversation took a slightly different turn as the speakers added that a driver right now was that the current Chancellor of the Exchequer had asked for it [CPIH]. As one of the members of the Monetary Policy Committee Martin Weale was there I asked him if the MPC would therefore target such an index (CPI plus house prices or CPIH) and he replied yes." I can only think of one reason for the Chancellor wishing to target CPIH now - future price falls.

Posted by quiet guy @ 01:42 PM 3 Comments

QE, QE, QE = Inflation, inflation, inflation UK CPI Inflation Rise Surprises Mainstream Press, Illustrates Olympics Lasting Debt Legacy

"The Olympics party is now over and by the end of this month the feel good factor will have faded from the memories of 90% of the population as they focus on the economic reality of a raging Inflation mega-trend towards which the Olympics acted as an accelerant of loss of purchasing power as illustrated by today's news of public outrage at the increase in rail fares of 6.2% for millions of commuters. Well that is what happens when you PRINT DEBT, PRINT MONEY, It LOSES its value"

Posted by hpwatcher @ 01:35 PM 4 Comments

Friday, August 17, 2012

He is a baddy. Oh, no he isn't, BECAUSE he is a landlord who needed the car to collect rent!

Mail: Landlord/Estate Agent jailed after framing innocent tenant for speeding

Parvez falsely said Mr Maher - who paid rent at one of Parvez' properties - was driving at the time. In mitigation, the defence layer said: 'At the time of the offence, he had nine points on his licence and he needed his licence for for his employment (that being collecting rent, I guess)."

Posted by peter_2008 @ 05:28 PM 3 Comments

HSBC retire 2.99% five-year fix HSBC pull cheapest ever five-year fixed rate mortgage

HSBC has announced that it is withdrawing its five-year fixed rate mortgage that allowed borrowers with 40 per cent equity to qualify for a mortgage interest rate of just 2.99 per cent.

Posted by ben @ 01:33 PM 0 Comments

National Housing Federation on wage house price disparity

AboutProperty: House price wage balance gets tougher

"Saving for a mortgage has also become more difficult, with the level of deposit required soaring by 386 per cent. This is in part due to banks now being less prepared to lend, so the typical 90 per cent mortgage deposits of £12,177 in 2001 are now 75 per cent mortgages, equating to £59,129."

Posted by phil @ 12:23 PM 5 Comments

New research from reveals the most affordable places to rent as a student

Planet Property: New research from reveals the most affordable places to rent as a student

Useful info on average rents per week and the most affordable locations in the UK

Posted by the planet @ 12:03 PM 0 Comments

Rehash of press release pulled

City AM: House prices in Olympic slump

RM's August numbers are due to be released on 20 August, put they appear to have let the press release slip out before the "embargo". Naughty City AM published anyway and have been asked to remove the article from the online version, even though the URL still exists. The paper version of City AM carries the story and says that prices were down 2.4% in August "House prices clobbered in their biggest ever August fall..." is the opening sentence of the paper article. All very reliable :-)

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 11:43 AM 7 Comments

Short term gain...

AboutProperty: Is renting cheaper than buying?

Long term pain. "The fear though is that many people are trapped renting due to the prohibitive costs at the start of the home buying process."

Posted by phil @ 11:25 AM 1 Comments

Property investment will return just 3% per annum for next 10 years

Planet Property: Property investment will return just 3% per annum for next 10 years

So says a new report from priceWaterhouseCooper - growth in average UK house prices, adjusted for inflation, predicted to be 'around zero between 2007 and 2025'

Posted by the planet @ 10:21 AM 0 Comments

Homes are becoming unaffordable

London Loves Business: Houses 'becoming increasingly unaffordable'

House prices in England rocketed at three times the rate of the average worker’s salary in the last decade, according to a study by an industry body. The typical price of the average house was £121,769 in 2001 while the average salary was £16,557, according to the National Housing Federation.

Posted by sandra @ 10:08 AM 0 Comments

House prices rise by 3 times salary increases Difficulty in getting a mortgage leads to record rental costs

Rents have reached a new record high in England and Wales with the average rent paid by private tenants now at £725 a month.

Posted by ben @ 09:47 AM 0 Comments

Boris needs to be innovative to get the private sector building houses

City AM: Boris needs to be innovative to get the private sector building houses

Previous recessionary periods have resulted in an added impetus to building houses, delivered in different ways and in accord with that time. As a thumbnail summary, after the 1930s, Britain saw a huge contribution from the building societies movement, following the 1948 Olympics there was a substantial local authority housebuilding phase, and the late 1980s and early 1990s recession saw dramatic growth in the contribution made by the housing association movement, which continues today. It is private housebuilding, not social housing, which has fallen behind since the credit crunch – to levels last seen in the 1950s. By contrast, local authority and housing association completions are at the strongest levels since 1995.

Posted by warren green @ 09:44 AM 0 Comments

Local paper turns bearish

Northampton Chronicle and Echo: Cost of buying a Northamptonshire home outstrips many people’s wages

First time I can remember the local paper printing anything that shows house prices are way too high. Sentiment has changed for sure.

Posted by thecountofnowhere @ 08:40 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Hoorah! We're all getting richer

Guardian: Housing helps UK net worth rise to £6.8tn

Britain became a wealthier country last year as the economy's slow recovery from the deep recession of 2008-09 led to a 3.3% increase in the nation's net worth. The Office for National Statistics put a price tag of £6.8tn – an average of £110,000 for every man, woman and child in the UK – on the assets accumulated by households, businesses and the state. Property made up the biggest component of the country's wealth, accounting for £4.1tn of net worth following a threefold increase over the past 20 years.

Posted by crash n burn @ 02:53 PM 8 Comments

The drop in re-mortgaging is an ominous sign for UK house prices

MoneyWeek: The drop in re-mortgaging is an ominous sign for UK house prices

Matthew PArtridge explains why a drop in the number of remortgages being approved means further falls for Britain's house prices.

Posted by martingreen @ 11:51 AM 0 Comments

London’s rental rates went up by 8.4% over the last 12 months

London Loves Business: London rental rates soar ahead of UK average

Rental rates in Greater London have soared much faster than the rest of the country over the last year to reach record levels, according to research. The average monthly rent for a property in the capital now stands at £1,260 per month, the most expensive it has ever been recorded at, the HomeLet Rental Index shows.

Posted by sandra @ 11:07 AM 3 Comments

Progressive needs proactive

Guardian: Liberal Democrats propose major housebuilding programme

The Liberal Democrats would increase the rate of housebuilding to 300,000 homes per year, according to an upcoming policy paper.

Posted by dill @ 10:27 AM 0 Comments

Retail sales up in July Retail sales rise in July despite no Olympics boost

Retail sales rose by 0.3 per cent month-on-month in July, continuing the modest improvement seen throughout the year.

Posted by ben salisbury @ 10:03 AM 1 Comments

Osborne's backers say economic policy needs to change George Osborne's nine wise men turn on government policy

Nine of the 20 economists who backed the Chancellor's deficit reduction programme have now changed their mind.

Posted by ben salisbury @ 09:59 AM 0 Comments

MPC considered second dose of QE in two months MPC members considered further QE this month to boost economy

The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee considered a further round of asset purchases in August, just one month after July's decision to add £50 billion to the asset purchase programme, the MPC minutes show.

Posted by ben salisbury @ 09:55 AM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Easy to start, not so easy to stop - more from the BOE Junkies

Telegraph: More QE coming, Bank of England minutes show

The Bank of England has clearly signalled that more money printing is on the cards as it warned that the economy is at risk of suffering “an enduring impediment to growth”. Minutes of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting this month showed that, although the decision to hold rates at 0.5pc and leave quantitative easing unchanged at £375bn was unanimous, the decision was “finely balanced” for some of the nine members.

Posted by hpwatcher @ 07:55 PM 12 Comments

Alimentos del oso

Guardian: Spanish house prices drop 11.2%

"The government's decision to raise VAT from 4% to 10% on house purchases as of next year is expected to depress the market still further" Ho hum. They clearly don't understand Home-Owner-Ist economics which say that a landlord or landowner can ALWAYS pass on any tax you throw at him IN ITS ENTIRETY.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 03:30 PM 16 Comments

PhD's with bells and whistles on

The Economist: Location, location, location

After years of dizzying ascents, a big dose of gravity has hit residential-property markets around the world. According to The Economist's latest round-up, year-on-year prices are now falling in 12 of the 21 countries we track; in five of the other nine, prices are rising at a slower rate than they were a year ago. The woes of European and American housing markets are very familiar; once-frothy Asian markets are also now subdued. Prices in Hong Kong are rising at a manageable 6% a year, as opposed to 28% a year just 12 months ago. Chinese prices fell year-on-year for the fifth month in a row in June

Posted by richy richless @ 02:01 PM 0 Comments

Stratford: rom ugly duckling to beautiful swan

London Loves Business: Will Stratford property be worth your gold after the Olympics?

Will Stratford live up to hype and return your investment in property?

Posted by sandra @ 11:37 AM 0 Comments

100 sales of £5 million+ properties in London in second quarter

Planet Property: 100 sales of £5 million+ properties in London in second quarter

Most of it was high-end new-build property and the proceeds of these sales exceeded £1 billion ... presumably not your average Barratt house then...

Posted by the planet @ 10:58 AM 0 Comments

Savills expect further price falls ... but say inflation will deliver most of the adjustment

Planet Property: Savills expect further price falls ... but say inflation will deliver most of the adjustment

Average mainstream market house prices will fall in real terms, such that any correction over the medium-term occurs because of inflation rather than by way of a fall in nominal terms. Discuss!

Posted by the planet @ 10:40 AM 0 Comments


International Business Times: Bank of England Powerless to Control the Inflation That Really Matters

Inflation summary over only the last 5 years "Food price inflation has accelerated by more than 30 percent. Transport costs by 38.5 percent. Public transportation costs have sped 45 percent and home energy prices have risen at a breathtaking clip of 49 percent." . This is a bit worrying because in my view of the world if deflation is blocked purely by printing then the UK will end up in an inflationary spiral at a time when the BoE cannot raise rates as a policy response and must rely on capital controls. There must be a lot of people who have come to the conclusion that you cannot trust anything denominated in sterling.

Posted by stillthinking @ 09:00 AM 41 Comments

La nourriture pour l'ours

Daily Mail: Britons with homes in France warned that French property market is in freefall

British people with homes in France were today warned that the property market is in 'free fall'. A combination of factors including the election of a tax-and-spend Socialist government means that prices are tumbling. Some 200,000 of them currently own houses and flats in France, but Le Parisien newspaper today warns that 'transactions are collapsing' because owners have become too ambitious.

Posted by drewster @ 12:36 AM 8 Comments

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

More bear nibbles nom nom nom

Daily Fail: Homeowners slash asking prices at fastest rate this year, with 40% of homes for sale cut by an average of £19,000

The number of homes that have had their original asking price chopped has reached a nine-month high, research has found, as sellers looked to combat a lack of interest from the wet summer and the distraction of the Olympic Games. Research from property website found that 37 per cent of properties for sale in Britain have had their asking prices cut at least once since they were listed. And it isn’t a small amount of money which is being sliced of the price either. The statistics found the average reduction for a property is 7.6 per cent - or £19,000.

Posted by montesquieu @ 03:04 PM 5 Comments

"Activity contracts further"

RICS: UK Housing Market Survey July 2012

The July 2012 RICS UK Housing Market Survey highlights four main trends. Firstly, the headline price balance edged down to -24 in July.Secondly, activity levels dipped further, with transactions slipping for the fourth consecutive month. Thirdly, London remains the only region recording rising prices. Finally, respondents expect prices to fall further in the coming months, although sales expectations remain positive.

Posted by dill @ 11:13 AM 12 Comments

Bear Nibbles

BBC: House prices expected to fall, say surveyors

Surveyors are expecting house prices to dip in the coming months, prompting a call for sellers to be realistic about asking prices. Some 23% more surveyors asked in a survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) expected prices to fall rather than rise in the next three months. It found that a similar proportion reported that prices fell in July.

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 11:09 AM 3 Comments

RICS data points to decline in house prices RICS warns long term property market shows "marked deterioration"

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) warns that house prices in the UK are falling.

Posted by ben @ 10:47 AM 0 Comments

Crashy, crashy?.... discuss

BBC: House prices expected to fall, say surveyors

Surveyors are expecting house prices to dip in the coming months, prompting a call for sellers to be realistic about asking prices. .....could the writing FINALLY be on the wall.... just think of all that squidgy QE and Funding for lending money to plug the hole....could it be the money (in peoples homes) was never there in the first place?

Posted by will @ 10:27 AM 0 Comments

Hold the front page - there's an expensive cottage for sale!

Planet Property Blog: Cottage for sale makes Daily Mail lead story

We know the British are obsessed with the property market, but was this a step too far? Last night’s Daily Mail online version gave their prime spot not to Syria, not to the Olympic Games, not even to the latest in the R-Patz/Kristen saga, but to the sale of a chocolate box cottage in Dorset.

Posted by property addict @ 09:37 AM 0 Comments

Careful Shappsy..make sure you keep the balance now won't you

BBC News: China's ghost towns and phantom malls

Not particulary pertinent to HPC, posted for interest

Posted by richy richless @ 09:00 AM 5 Comments

Second chance

BusinessSpectator: Australia's evolving property puzzle

I think the big mistake by me and possibly others when realising that UK housing was in a bubble and soon to burst, was that the conclusion would be to wait. In reality, given the substantial perhaps inevitable policy response by the state, the correct move would have been to leave sterling, because the collapse would really be mainly visible in foreign currencies. The situation with Australia seems similar because while we have the collapsed Euro-zone the Australians have the soon collapsing demand from China. So perhaps the right thing now would be to anticipate a policy response induced collapse in the Australian dollar. I have no money but if I did I might try this.

Posted by stillthinking @ 05:02 AM 2 Comments

Pull the other one

FT: Coalition plans housebuilding stimulus

Ministers are preparing to unveil a new package of measures to stimulate the flagging house-building sector next month, in an attempt to help drag Britain out of recession. The plan has been drawn up by Oliver Letwin, the prime minister’s head of policy, along with Grant Shapps, housing minister, and Danny Alexander, chief secretary to the Treasury. Since 2010, the coalition has introduced several plans to boost housebuilding, such as putting forward more public land for development. [I see lots of vague plans and absolutely no concrete action.]

Posted by drewster @ 12:22 AM 3 Comments

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Olympic Effect

AboutProperty: Rents rise by up to 40 per cent in east London

Rents have soared over the last year in the east London boroughs closest to the Olympic Park, according to research by property firm CBRE.

Posted by phil @ 02:39 PM 0 Comments

Oh noes! Magic money tree stops working!

BBC: Remortgaging numbers drop sharply, says CML

Expectations of falling borrowing rates pushed down the number of households remortgaging in June, lenders say. There were 23,400 remortgaging loans advanced during the month, more than 20% down on the previous month and on June 2011. But the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said that first-time buyer activity had held up during the month. Mortgages advanced to this group were at one of the highest levels of the last year, the lenders' group said

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 01:06 PM 2 Comments

Homeowners Paying £836 Million too Much for Conveyancing

Yahoo! News: Homeowners Paying £836 Million too Much for Conveyancing According to

The typical move for a homeowner will involve legal costs for both the sale of their old house and the purchase of their new one. And if they use a traditional high street conveyancing solicitor then, on average, they’ll pay almost twice as much as they need to. This surprising figure comes from an undercover survey of 52 randomly chosen high street solicitors

Posted by johno @ 12:28 PM 0 Comments

Have house prices in your area crashed or bounced?

MoneyWeek: Have house prices in your area crashed or bounced?

Across the UK, property prices crashed in the wake of the sub-prime crisis. But in some parts of the country have made a much better recovery than others. Matthew Partridge looks at how house prices have performed in each of Britain's regions.

Posted by martingreen @ 10:50 AM 6 Comments

Rental rates in London have soared over the past year and are expected to go up

London Loves Business: Moderate yields for landlords despite soaring rental rates

Rental rates in London have soared over the past year and are expected to go up even more in the next 12 months, a report has found. The average price of renting a property in London went up 5.9% in the past year, higher than the national average of 4.3%, as tenants felt the squeeze in a tough economic climate

Posted by sandra @ 10:29 AM 0 Comments

When property details go wrong … bungalow or funeral parlour?

Planet Property: When property details go wrong … bungalow or funeral parlour?

The details say it’s a spacious bungalow with modern fixtures and fittings. Street View says something different

Posted by the planet @ 10:13 AM 0 Comments

Rents up 4% year-on-year

Planet Property: Rents up 4% year-on-year

The cost of renting a home has risen by over four per cent in the past year - and prices are expected to keep rising ....

Posted by the planet @ 09:55 AM 0 Comments

Stop moaning, it's the economy

Guardian: Students see rents go through the roof

"Cost of student rents up 25% in some areas of country".

Posted by alan @ 09:53 AM 6 Comments

Good good

BBC News (Scotland): Home sellers 'being unrealistic'

Scots selling their homes are having to settle for offers about 10% below asking prices, according to analysis by property website S1homes. Comparing advertised prices with the official register of sales, the Glasgow-based company said the "reality gap" between asking and selling prices averaged more than £15,000. It also said the gap was widest for more expensive properties - detached houses were going for almost 20% below asking prices.

Posted by drewster @ 09:00 AM 5 Comments

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Outside London, prices to drop

Independent: Analysts fear jobless figures will rise again by the autumn

"An autumn hangover for the UK's jobs market is set to swell the unemployed ranks by 150,000 by the end of this year, experts warned today". (Olympics staff get their P45s soon).

Posted by alan @ 10:19 PM 0 Comments

Clarence calls on City to embrace sportsmanship and work ethic of Olympians

Sky News: BoE Chief Urges Banks To Learn From Olympics

The governor of the Bank of England has urged those in the scandal-hit finance sector to learn lessons from GB's Olympic heroes. Sir Mervyn said: - Don't think/plan on getting rich quick - Fair play - Great success requires hard work and doesn't come overnight - Banks should focus more on serving their customers and less on making money - Top execs should not be motivated purely by pay and bonuses. He went on to encourage sharks to become vegetarian.

Posted by grumpybob @ 02:55 PM 5 Comments

The reason why millions people are waiting to get in council houses

Mail: Most expensive council flat goes on sale for £1 million

Why would you work? Seriously. WHY WOULD YOU WORK?

Posted by peter_2008 @ 01:30 PM 4 Comments

Why would that be good for UK people?

FT: Foreigners set to dominate UK property

This puts me in mind of how actually beneficial for France kicking out the rich with the 75% tax rate (I will put in the comments)

Posted by stillthinking @ 04:42 AM 9 Comments

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Signs of stress in BTL

Financial Times: Buy-to-let repossessions at record high

You will need to regsister with the FT to see this article. The FT has looked at data from the Council Of Mortgage Lenders and found that the proportion of repossessions that were for BTL properties rose from 10 percent in 2009 to 19 percent during the first half of 2012. I'm not sure what to make of this data. Are banks showing less forbearance to BTLers compared with residential households or is the BTL market rental income declining due to arrears? The total repossession rate for BTL (repossessions in total number of mortgages) is a record 0.24 percent hence the headline.

Posted by quiet guy @ 01:43 PM 7 Comments

The relentless growth of the buy to let monster

Jules Birch blog: Buy,

As the Council of Mortgage Lenders reveals yet another rise in buy to let lending (now up 45 per cent since the credit crunch to account for one in eight of all mortgages), it claims this leads to 'wider choice for tenants'. Provided, that is, they don't mind paying higher rents to fuel higher yields for their landlord. The one choice they don't have is becoming a first-time buyer - since the same lenders are concentrating on equity-rich borrowers and buy-to-let landlords

Posted by squeezedout @ 09:38 AM 0 Comments

Friday, August 10, 2012

Don’t be fooled by the drop in home repossessions

MoneyWeek: Don’t be fooled by the drop in home repossessions

Good news for Britain's housing market this week as the number of repossessions fell. But UK house prices are still heading for a 'double dip', says Matthew Partridge.

Posted by martingreen @ 10:43 AM 2 Comments

Referendum - what's at issue?

Mail: Deepening Euro crisis could force Britain out of the EU for ever

"Japanese giant Nomura said the UK government could be forced to set a date for an in-out referendum as soon as the autumn as the single currency bloc lurches closer to disaster" (things have changed quite a lot since we opted in).

Posted by alan @ 09:57 AM 4 Comments

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Beware bankers bearing gifts

Mortgage Introducer: Lender forbearance becoming “a sick joke”

After several years of government pressure on banks to find ways to keep struggling borrowers in their homes, industry experts say problems are piling up. Nick Hopkinson, director of PPR Estates, called forbearance for borrowers who would never realistically be able to repay their mortgage “a sick joke”. He said: “The banks pretending that their struggling borrowers are likely to be able to pay up in future is becoming, unfortunately, a sick joke. “In fact rolling up debts is only making the size of the eventual bankruptcy on both sides larger.

Posted by quiet guy @ 11:26 PM 8 Comments

Home repossessions dropped to an 18-month low in the second quarter of 2012

London Loves Business: Home repossessions plummet to 18-month low

According to research from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), the period between April and June saw 8,500 repossessions across the country. The closing quarter of 2010 marked the last time the overall repossession figure was so low. The CML had initially forecast that the number of repossessions would increase to 45,000 by the end of 2012. However, it noted that the latest statistics indicate that repossessions are currently on a “lower trajectory” than this.

Posted by sandra @ 03:39 PM 8 Comments

Export led recovery?

Reuters: Total trade deficit hits record high in June

"Britain's total goods and services trade deficit hit a record high in June, after a sharp drop in goods exports, confirming the bleak picture painted by an early estimate of second-quarter gross domestic product last month" ( next up - Mervyn telling us growth is round the corner and inflation will drop to 2% soon).

Posted by alan @ 01:45 PM 4 Comments


Telegraph: Home repossessions to rise 20pc

Home repossession figures are expected to show an increase tomorrow as the troubled economy starts to take its toll on households.

Posted by happy mondays @ 01:45 PM 2 Comments

The £8bn redevelopment of Battersea Power Station is expected to begin next summer

London Loves Business: Battersea Power Station's £8bn revamp 'to start next summer'

The £8bn redevelopment of Battersea Power Station is expected to begin next summer, providing a much needed jobs boost for London.Homes, office space, shops and a hotel will be built on the site, creating 20,000 construction jobs and permanent roles for another 13,000 people.

Posted by sandra @ 01:41 PM 0 Comments

The queues, the queues...

AboutProperty: Post Office introduces branch mortgage specialists

The Post Office is introducing mortgage specialists in to its branches in a bid to become a genuine alternative to the major banks as a provider of home loans.

Posted by phil @ 10:56 AM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Its not

Telegraph: Almost half of Brits are not planning to use a pension when retire

Its not really that trust in pensions has hit an all time low as suggested, its more that nearly everybody recognises that their pension money is immediately blown by government mandate basically. Looking at todays crop of pensioners, who have got about 25% of what they could have got if they had just "borrowed to save" its not so much of a surprise. But pension savings is by proxy some kind of misguided belief in sterling so if it goes south, and I think at this point it has, then you have a nation of people who will not put aside consumption.

Posted by stillthinking @ 06:08 PM 24 Comments

A house for £1: welcome to Stoke-on-Trent

Planet Property: A house for £1: welcome to Stoke-on-Trent

Derelict houses in Stoke are being sold for a nominal fee of £1 as part of a regeneration project - oh, and they give you £30k as well to refurbish it...

Posted by the planet @ 01:00 PM 1 Comments

Same story in the UK - I think.

Bloomberg: Recession Generation Opts To Rent Not Buy Houses To Cars

“This is a generation that is scared of commitment, wants to be light on their feet and needs to adjust to whatever happens,” said Zukin, who’s researched the effects of the recession on recent college graduates. “What once was seen as a solid investment, like a house or a car, is now seen as a ball and chain with a lot of risk to it.”

Posted by will @ 12:36 PM 5 Comments

Australian House of the year a converted shearing shed

Planet Property: Australian House of the year a converted shearing shed

What would you get if you crossed Crocodile Dundee with Kevin McCloud? Award-winning eco-friendly aaachitecta ....

Posted by the planet @ 12:22 PM 0 Comments

Following on from the Mail article Mervyn King "downvalues" growth forecast

BBC: Bank cuts growth forecast close to zero

The Bank of England has cut its growth forecast to close to zero from the 0.8% predicted in May, as the double-dip recession intensifies. The quarterly inflation report indicated no growth for 2012, compared with 2% predicted a year ago. The data had fuelled anticipation for an interest rate cut, but Governor Sir Mervyn King dismissed calls for a reduction in the near term. He said recovery hopes had consistently been dashed.

Posted by jack c @ 12:02 PM 2 Comments

Pound a house

AboutProperty: Empty homes in Stoke could be sold for £1 each

Empty houses in Stoke-on-Trent could go on sale for as little as £1 each as the council bids to regenerate two run-down areas of the city.

Posted by phil @ 10:58 AM 0 Comments

More pressure!

Mail: House price fall hits hopes of remortgaging for millions

For example, take the case of a couple who took out a £180,000 mortgage on a £200,000 house with a 10 pc deposit two years ago. Where a lender now values their home at £185,000 and they still owe £175,000 on the mortgage after two years, their equity — which was 10 pc when they bought it — now stands at just 5 pc.

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:36 AM 9 Comments

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Sell your gold, buy a house

FT: Cash out of gold and send kids to college

According to the website, gold is at a 120-year high (at least) relative to US house prices. On the numbers, you should cash out of gold, buy a nice house, hire some workers, send your kids to college and eat big breakfasts, writes Peter Tasker, a Tokyo-based analyst with Arcus Research

Posted by stuartking @ 07:19 PM 6 Comments

Warner looks forward to an inflationary endgame

Telegraph: Negative interest rates spell final defeat for beleaguered savers

"The Bank of England won’t admit that it is targeting nominal GDP growth, but this is in essence what’s going on. Growth which is predominately or wholly made up of inflation seems preferable to no growth at all. Eventually, the Bank will need to go rapidly into reverse to prevent more serious inflation, a la 1970s. The velocity of money will rise, and all that freshly minted cash will suddenly start chasing goods, wages, assets and commodities, instead of sitting in bonds. Unfortunately, that point still looks some distance off." This scenario appears to be years away yet. If and when it happens, that'll be game over for HPC.

Posted by quiet guy @ 01:05 PM 13 Comments

The biggest threat to UK house prices: a eurozone recovery

MoneyWeek: The biggest threat to UK house prices: a eurozone recovery

Britain's house prices have been propped up by money fleeing the crumbling eurozone. But if Europe gets its act together, that support could disappear, says John Stepek. And UK property prices could be heading much further downhill.

Posted by martingreen @ 11:15 AM 4 Comments

London house prices are too high

London Loves Business: Most London home buyers 'think prices are unfair' 6 August 2012

Around two-thirds of people looking to buy a home in London believe prices in the capital are above what is “fair and reasonable”, a survey has found. Some 65% of people living in London believe prices are higher than what is fair. Asking prices in the capital have risen on the back of strong interest from foreign buyers.

Posted by sandra @ 10:36 AM 3 Comments

Buying & investing in London property 2012

London Loves Business: Free e-guide: Buying & investing in London property 2012

This guide includes valuable help to people on their property buying journey, and is certainly something that I would recommend property purchasers to read.

Posted by sandra @ 10:18 AM 3 Comments

Thank heaven for the internet

Guardian: You Can't Read This Book: why libel tourists love London

One more step to paranoia.

Posted by stillthinking @ 08:54 AM 0 Comments

Another 5yrs should do it!

Mail: House prices have fallen by 20% in the past 5 years leaving millions in homes worth less than they paid for them

The drop of almost 20 per cent has left millions of families in homes worth less than they paid for them – and there are strong fears that prices could fall further.

Posted by happy mondays @ 02:47 AM 0 Comments

Monday, August 6, 2012

Banksters caught out

Reuters: StanChart discussing sanctions compliance with U.S

"SCB's London-based Executive Director is reported to have said "you f---ing Americans. Who are you to tell us, the rest of the world, that we're not going to deal with Iranians." (says the Street). Reuters reports: "A Standard Chartered unit conducted more than $250 billion of transactions with Iran-related entities in violation of U.S. anti-money laundering laws and may lose its license to operate in New York State, a state banking regulator said on Monday". It's just another example of the top 1% elite creaming off deals and trousering the cash (but no spare money to lend to FtBs with only 15% deposit).

Posted by alan @ 05:52 PM 5 Comments

PRS Landlords ready to collect Housing Benefit

Inside Housing: PRS landlords 'ready to buy empty social homes'

The vast majority of private sector landlords are ready and willing to bring currently empty social housing back into use, according to a new survey. A survey of 114 members of the Residential Landlords Association has revealed that 82 per cent would be prepared to purchase empty social homes if they were put up for auction. There are almost 75,000 social homes currently lying empty across England. Alan Ward, chair of the RLA, said: ‘With the country facing such a housing supply crisis, it is a national disgrace that so many social homes are lying empty whilst families across the country struggle to access suitable accommodation and at a price that they can afford."

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 02:12 PM 3 Comments

And yes you do get clubcard points...

AboutProperty: Tesco makes debut in mortgage market

Market observers pointed out Tesco’s rates are in line with those of its rivals following a series of reductions in the wake of the launch of the Bank of England’s Funding for Lending scheme last week.

Posted by phil @ 01:27 PM 0 Comments

Scare mongering or genuine chance?

Thrifty Finance: Council tax payments 'could increase'

Household bills could be set to increase further, as millions of people around the country may be set to see their council tax payments grow. This is according to a Labour MP in response to plans from a number of councils to potentially charge low income and vulnerable households up to 25 per cent of their burden.

Posted by keithfinance @ 11:33 AM 3 Comments

Which house price index is the best?

MoneyWeek: Which house price index is the best?

Britain is obsessed with property prices. So it's no surprise we have at least seven UK house-price indices to choose from when measuring the value of our properties. But which is the best? Matthew Partridge investigates.

Posted by martingreen @ 10:40 AM 0 Comments

The price having a room with view strikes again

Cash Compass: House prices in National Parks 'surge'

The cost of a little bit of luxury in the UK pops up here again. According to the figures there's been a £170,000 increase in National Park house prices since 2002.

Posted by keith hodges @ 10:07 AM 0 Comments

Down is up, says BBC

BBC News: House prices stable says Halifax

The latest survey from Halifax shows that prices fell by 0.6% in July compared with June. This means that average prices are also 0.6% lower than a year ago. Martin Ellis of the Halifax said "At a national level, house prices have been very stable over the past year or so. "This can largely be explained by the static nature of supply and demand conditions during this period," he added.

Posted by little professor @ 09:33 AM 6 Comments

The curious case of the shrinking government department

Welwyn Hatfield Times: Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps says: ‘cuts have made us perform better’

How many government departments can you name that have cut their headcount by over 50%? Usually, public sector cuts are portrayed as a good thing but given that DCLG's housing policy is about "getting the housing market - and in particular new housebuilding - moving again", Shapps efficiency claims appear to be particularly out of place considering how much accomodation we actually build these days. Call me cynical but I find it significant the the government has achieved such spectacular staff reductions in a branch of government that should be top priority.

Posted by quiet guy @ 08:34 AM 2 Comments

July 2012 (seasonally adjusted)

LBG: Halifax House Price Index

Annual change -0.6% Quarterly change 0.0% Monthly change -0.6% Average Price £161,094

Posted by dill @ 08:19 AM 3 Comments

Sunday, August 5, 2012

BBC finally admitting to

BBC News: Is the housing market grinding to a halt?

At last the main stream media can no longer avoid admitting what we on HPC already know

Posted by willwaittill2015beforebuying @ 08:07 PM 0 Comments

London property market is slowing down

London Loves Business: London property market 'has slowed down'

UK house prices have fallen for the first time in seven months as the London market begins to slow down, research has shown. The capital, which has been a key driving force behind the nation’s property sector, recorded a 0.1% rise in prices, which is slower than previous months.

Posted by sandra @ 05:24 PM 0 Comments

London continues to be an attractive property marke

London Loves Business: Six out of ten landlords looking to boost property portfolios

Six out of 10 landlords are looking to expand their property portfolios by the end of the year and London continues to be an attractive market. The majority (84%) of investors looking to increase their portfolio hope to buy more houses and flats, according to research from specialist mortgage broker Mortgages for Business.

Posted by sandra melo @ 05:17 PM 0 Comments

The Euro Is Collapsing

Gary North - Market Oracle: Keynesian Investors Being Ground into Euro Dust

Occasionally, I read something in the mainstream financial media whose degree of delusion takes my breath away. This is such a sentence (August 2, 2012) on CNBC. "U.S stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Wall Street on Thursday, with investors hoping the European Central Bank will signal further measures to aid growth and PREVENT THE EURO FROM COLLAPSING." So, all that is between investors and terror now are tentative promises of postponement to total collapse, with "solutions" which will cause hyperinflation down the road. Well, this is a nice pick you got us into Drahgi!!

Posted by libertas @ 10:30 AM 29 Comments

Saturday, August 4, 2012

That's where "LIBOR guys" may end up

Greg Pytel: Guantanamo Camp: a new lease of life?

Prof Riley said on the BBC there is a good chance that those who did LIBOR fixing would be prosecuted in the US. The US is quite good in prosecuting financial fraudsters. The "LIBOR guys" may well end up in Guantanamo doing their time.

Posted by ant @ 08:33 PM 0 Comments

You know, some people hate Tesco.

MyFinances: Tesco Bank enters the mortgage market

The range will include 2,3 and 5-year fixed rate mortgages as well as a two-year tracker. Its two-year fixed rate deal charges an interest rate of 3.19 per cent for those with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of 70 per cent, rising to 3.99 per cent for those with an 80 per cent LTV. Its three-year fixed rate product rate is 3.69 per cent rising to 4.39 per cent for the same LTV ratios. If you opt for a five-year fix, the rate goes from 3.89 for those borrowing 70 per cent of the value of the property, up to 3.99 per cent for homeowners borrowing 75 per cent and 4.39 per cent for those with just 20 per cent equity. The two-year tracker charges interest of 2.69 per cent plus the Bank of England base rate (currently 0.50 per cent) for borrowers with a 70 per cent LTV. The rate goes up to 2.89

Posted by khards @ 08:15 AM 8 Comments

Friday, August 3, 2012

But the music was Shocking!

Mail: 'Its like going back to the 1970's: How the crunch means we will all move house less

‘It is like in the Sixties and Seventies when people didn’t move that much. You bought something that was suitable for the long term. It may be a question of moving to a less fashionable area, or preparing for a long-term investment by extending or improving.

Posted by happy mondays @ 05:20 PM 7 Comments

What is UK property really worth? Here are three ways to find out

MoneyWeek: What is UK property really worth? Here are three ways to find out

Are house prices in Britain too high? Phil Oakley looks at some of the most popular valuation methods to find out what British property is really worth.

Posted by martingreen @ 03:00 PM 2 Comments

Brace position for hard landing

Telegraph: British Airways owner IAG suffers €253m loss

"Spain's economic crisis and the "deep and structural" problems of its main airline has plunged the owner of British Airways into the red". "IAG says it has set up a eurozone crisis management group, that is looking at the potential fallout from a Spanish exit from the EMU" as "BA made an operating profit of €13m, Iberia's losses deepened to €263m"

Posted by alan @ 12:40 PM 1 Comments

London address most expensive in world per square foot

Planet Property: London address most expensive in world per square foot

Just in case you were thinking of buying: £8,500 per square foot, a price set in 2008 for Kensington Palace Gardens, remains the top price paid in the world's leading cities...

Posted by the planet @ 12:23 PM 1 Comments

Luxury Irish island Inish Turk Beg for sale for €2.85 million

Planet Property: Luxury Irish island Inish Turk Beg for sale for €2.85 million

A luxury Irish island (Inish Turk Beg in Co Mayo) that cost €11m to develop is being sold for €2.85m.

Posted by the planet @ 11:43 AM 1 Comments

US millionaire buys all the foreclosed homes in county

Planet Property: US millionaire buys all the foreclosed homes in county

Bill McMachen a former yacht dealer, has bought all the foreclosed property in Macomb County, Michigan, for a mere $4.8 million

Posted by the planet @ 10:39 AM 2 Comments

Time to sell the house & trade down?

Mail: Annuity rates crisis puts pensions in 'death spiral' with worst retirement pay outs in history

"The Bank of England’s £375billion money-printing policy has triggered ‘a death spiral’ in pensions which has led to the worst retirement payouts in history, according to experts. Annuity rates, which dictate how much a worker gets from their pension pot for the rest of their lives, hit an all-time low yesterday, and are likely to keep falling".

Posted by alan @ 10:33 AM 26 Comments

RBS sets aside £310m provisions RBS presents £1.5b interim losses in "grim" period for UK banking

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) made a loss of £1.5 billion in the first six months of 2012 influenced by the need to set aside £260 million to cover payment protection insurance (PPI) compensation and liabilities related to the IT meltdown in June.

Posted by ben @ 10:20 AM 1 Comments

Ramper watch - guess who said this

Independent: Average price of a UK home is now £205,309

All of the figures in the latest House Price Watch point to positive annual growth this year with no ‘double dip’ in the forecast. The market is in fact outshining price performance in the first half of 2011 which went on to see price growth of 0.5% for the year as a whole, further dispelling this myth. However, the latest economic figures could still dampen activity in the third quarter. “Growth of 4.7% for the year to date is reassuring and it looks like the long period of price stability seen since early 2010 could be making way for a strong rise in prices this year. (H/T to Imminent_plunge on the forums)

Posted by quiet guy @ 08:51 AM 12 Comments

NIESR cuts UK growth forecast for 2012 NIESR calls on UK to delay austerity and boost growth

The National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) says that the UK economy will contract by 0.5 per cent this year and then grow by 1.3 per cent in 2013 and by 2.4 per cent in 2014.

Posted by ben @ 08:48 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Waiting for Spain to call for help?

Reuters: ECB gearing up to buy euro zone bonds, but not yet

"With its key German member dissenting, the European Central Bank took a heavily conditioned step on Thursday towards a new round of bond buying to drag down Spanish and Italian borrowing costs, but said euro zone governments must act first. ECB President Mario Draghi indicated any intervention would come at the earliest in September once governments had activated their rescue funds to buy bonds, and the countries at risk had requested assistance and accepted tough conditions". Those hopeless property loans coming home to roost?

Posted by alan @ 05:44 PM 2 Comments

Brokers welcome rate cuts and a better range of deals

What House Property News: Brokers welcome rate cuts and a better range of deals

Analysis of the reduction in lending from two of the UK's biggest lenders in this weeks news. This comes from Abbey (part of the Snatander Group) and Halifax.

Posted by james mechan @ 03:41 PM 1 Comments

Winning no matter what

AboutProperty: Taylor Wimpey boosts profits despite weak market

Britain’s biggest housebuilder has almost trebled its profits despite the weak housing market.

Posted by phil @ 01:17 PM 0 Comments

Defective paperwork, potentially aggressive and misleading sales techniques and concerns over the qu

Planet Property: Beware the dodgy home insulation market

Defective paperwork, potentially aggressive and misleading sales techniques and concerns over the quality of products and services: just some of the problems uncovered by the OFT

Posted by the planet @ 12:10 PM 0 Comments

Radical ideas considered to get banks lending Government considers fully nationalising RBS

The government is considering fully nationalising the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). Cabinet ministers are discussing whether to buy out the remaining private investors who still own 18 per cent of the bank.

Posted by ben @ 09:50 AM 14 Comments

Bank to hold off on more QE at MPC meeting Bank of England to vote against more QE and base rate cut

The Bank of England is expected to take no major policy initiatives at its MPC meeting today.

Posted by ben @ 09:48 AM 1 Comments

Goooood Morning Britain ;)

Mail: House prices falling at their fastest rate for three years... And double-dip will push them down further

The Nationwide’s figures also reveal the extraordinary slump in average prices since they peaked in October 2007 at £186,044. Today the same property is worth £164,389, a fall of £21,655 which is almost the equivalent of what a typical British worker earns in a year.

Posted by happy mondays @ 07:13 AM 8 Comments

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A New Coalition Initiative!

Sky: Launch Of New £80bn Funding For Lending Plan

"The Chancellor faces criticism as a new lending scheme replaces initiative he launched less than six months ago". "Bank lending has been given a boost after £80bn was made available to help the UK's struggling economy. The Bank of England and the Treasury have launched the Funding for Lending scheme (FLS), which will give the money to banks in order to provide cheaper loans and mortgages to businesses and households". "Shadow treasury Minister Chris Leslie said: "Despite promises from ministers, net lending to businesses has fallen in every month of this Government.” (another opportunity to peg house prices?)

Posted by alan @ 09:18 PM 5 Comments

Rhetorical question

Guardian: Why is the housing market so slow?

With mortgage approvals at their lowest for 18 months, weakness of demand and high prices contribute to stagnation.

Posted by dill @ 05:43 PM 2 Comments

Not necessarily bad, be fair, because

Telegraph: Household incomes hit seven-year low

Snowball has made unheard of efficiency gains with Boxer.

Posted by stillthinking @ 04:02 PM 1 Comments

Alternative to rental income

Edge investor: Edge investor

Why invest in houses, why not horses....

Posted by greenbay24 @ 02:48 PM 1 Comments

But only if you've got a big deposit.

AboutProperty: Mortgage rates fall on launch of new scheme

The Bank of England launched its flagship Funding for Lending scheme today and there is already some evidence that banks are cutting their mortgage rates in response.

Posted by phil @ 02:47 PM 0 Comments

Nationwide follows rivals with cheaper mortgages Nationwide launches four-year fixed rate mortgage at 2.89%

Nationwide has announced the launch of a four-year fixed rate mortgage deal at 2.89 per cent for existing Flex current account holders.

Posted by ben @ 01:39 PM 0 Comments

18-month Funding for Lending scheme launched Bank of England launches £80b Funding for Lending scheme

The Bank of England’s Funding for Lending scheme begins today and aims to provide incentives for banks to lend to businesses and individuals and to provide a boost to the sliding UK property market.

Posted by ben @ 10:08 AM 0 Comments

Unemployed Tomorrow.

Estate Agent Today...: Agency chain to make branch closures after posting losses

LSL Property Services has dropped two bombshells. First, it announced a pre-tax loss of £7.9m in the first half of this year after having to set aside £17.3m to cover claims against its valuations business. Last year, for the same period, LSL turned in a profit of £6.5m. Separately, it is to shut some of its estate agency branches because of poor house sales. The number of branches to be affected has not been specified, but just closing them will cost the firm £1m. In March, LSL’s full-year results for 2011 showed that it had decreased the contingency amount from £10.9m to £9.6m – whilst at the same time, Countrywide had lowered its provision from £11.9m to £9.3m

Posted by sibley's b'stard child @ 09:28 AM 10 Comments

House prices fall by 0.7% in July Nationwide reports biggest annual fall in house prices since 2009

UK house prices are falling at their fastest rate for almost three years, according to the latest house price index from Nationwide.

Posted by ben @ 08:39 AM 0 Comments

Interesting round up of housing & mortgage stories

Investment Sense Blog: Mortgage & housing round up: House prices creep up, house sales rise but mortgage approvals slump

Land Registry figures show a small rise in house price values, and house sales rise over first half of 2012 compared to same period last year (driven in part by the Stamp Duty amnesty for FTBs). But not all good news on the housing front as mortgage approvals slump, Jubilee to blame?

Posted by james allington @ 07:24 AM 0 Comments

-0.7% MoM -2.6% YoY

Nationwide House Price Index: UK house prices continued to slide in July

Commenting on the figures, Robert Gardner, Nationwide's Chief Economist, said: “UK house prices declined for the fourth time in five months in July, with prices falling by 0.7%. This pushed the annual pace of price growth down to -2.6%, from -1.5% in June - the weakest outturn since August 2009.”

Posted by quiet guy @ 07:14 AM 15 Comments

Australia's HPC is imminent

Mish's: Shades of 2006: That's What Australia's Housing Bubble Looks Like From US Perspective

On a timeline basis, Australia is about where the US was in 2006, essentially in a state of denial. Developers are slashing apartment prices and handing out tens of thousands of dollars in incentives - including rebates, cars, furniture and holidays - to lure buyers into Melbourne's new-unit market. While many industry players say the offers are good news for buyers, others worry that the discounting could fuel a "race to the bottom" that could harm property values. "There's no question there are a lot of apartments under construction, so everyone's trying to attract attention to get people to inquire about theirs." What if you put your house up for auction but nobody turned up? Well, that happened at the weekend. "It's definitely a buyers market at the moment."

Posted by drewster @ 12:17 AM 3 Comments

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