Rat and Mouse
Entries in January 2010
Fri
29
Jan

Youch. Harsh. Anyway... is Foxtons really the same company it was during the Hunt days?

20200129Foxtonsmovie

Have a great weekend, and don't forget to vote Rat if you enjoy your daily dose of property patter.

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More in this Category - Estate agents
"If we see a board and it is too big, then that constitutes a criminal act," Ryan Kristiansen, planning enforcement officer at Hammersmith and Fulham council, told Property Week.

Twenty-four by thirty-two inches is your limit, apparently.

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More in this Category - Estate agents

Sale-and-rent-back schemes target homeowners who may be vulnerable to repossession, offer to buy their homes off them at bargain-basement prices and keep them in there as tenants... a prospect that can be attractive to stressed families facing homelessness. Problems, however, have included a shortage of guarantees about the length of tenancy... some tenants have found themselves kicked to the curb after the property has been sold on to a third party investor. New FSA rules, coming into effect at the end of the June, include:

  • a ban on "emotive" advertising
  • a 14-day cooling off period
  • a ban on cold-calling
  • a minimum tenure of five years

Who'd argue with any of that?

UPDATE - APOLOGIES IF YOU'RE GETTING AN IRONIC GOOGLE AD ABOVE... I'LL LOOK INTO FILTERING

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More in this Category - _Other

Genius. Check out the lyric here.

How to say thanks for five years of daily service... for free! [January 26, 2010]

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More in this Category - _Other

Nationwide's January house price index report shows a 1.2% rise during the month, leaving the index 8.6% up on the year (compared with 5.9% December-to-December). Expect headlines-claiming double-digit house price growth when the index is revised next month, say Nationwide.

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More in this Category - House prices
Thu
28
Jan

All the property news that matters, live on Twitter:

20100128Kirstie

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More in this Category - Property TV

Winkworth wants us to know that some neighbourhoods are back at pre-crash, 2007-peak levels, after gains of as much as 20% in the second half of 2009. The main driver appears to have been overseas buyers cashing in on a puny pound. More here.

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More in this Category - House prices

Andrew Sentance, a Monetary Policy Committee member, no less, compares the 80s housing crash to the 90s housing crash, and points out that a shortage of property during the 80s crash, as opposed to a surplus ten years later, meant that prices bounced back and rose much quicker.

"In terms of the balance of demand and supply in residential property, most of the evidence suggests that the current position is closer to the early 1980s situation than the early 1990s."

He points out how quickly house builders cut back in the previous decade and suggests that - with continued low interest rates - the future may be one of house price growth.

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More in this Category - House prices

20100128Propertysleuth3
It's a new (to us, anyway) and interesting web service for estate agents to keep a track on their market share and performance in a specific postcode, or to help the rest of us choose a dominant and high-performing agent. Register (free), stick a (full) postcode into PropertySleuth and you'll be rewarded with a colourful graph showing agent market share. The data can be drilled down to specific property types, and will show new instructions, price reductions, conversion rates and more. I've found a few teething troubles (plenty of "sorry, no data to display") and if you've a choice of Safari and Firefox on a Mac, I'd definitely point you toward Firefox (I'm not getting the buttons on the left to work on Safari)... but there's time for improvement. The idea's good, and the design's solid.

20100128Propertysleuth1

[via Property Hawk]

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More in this Category - Estate agents
Wed
27
Jan
“Suzy and Kate of The Final Touch came in for three weeks,” Celia says. “I gave them a free hand because I’m too close to see what other people would want. They stripped wallpaper and sanded floors, painted everywhere in what I’d call “rich tea biscuit”, tiled the bathroom and rehung pictures.”

Man alive! Three weeks at £75 an hour?! If I was a potential buyer I'd rather have the option of the discount and paint everywhere rich tea biscuit myself.

How to sell a house [August 12, 2008]
Go on... show the Rat some love [January 26, 2010]

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More in this Category - _Other

Back in 2007, we reported on plans by Declan "Dec" Donnelly to renovate his Chiswick home so that it would match the Chiswick home of Anthony "Ant" McPartlin, which can be found, conveniently, a few doors away. The neighbours weren't happy, was the story, and I'm not surprised. A whole street can be tainted by that kind of weirdness. I didn't think Dec would get away with it... but apparently - and a little bit creepily - he has:

Just so visitors can tell the difference, Ant's is on the left and Dec's is on the right - the positions the pair religiously follow in their public appearances.

And there's nothing like mock-Edwardian when you want everyone to know you've arrived.

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More in this Category - Celebrity homes

Love this sentence:

Most homeowners would consider installing green energy systems such as solar panels or small wind turbines if they were paid enough cash, according to a new study.

Did that need a study?

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More in this Category - _Other

With mortgage fraud endemic before the credit crunch, the FSA has been rethinking its approach to broker regulation. In other words, a bit might be a good idea. New proposals include an "approved persons regime" and the mandatory recording of all telephone calls between lenders, brokers and clients, the keeping of records for three years. More here.

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More in this Category - _Other
Tue
26
Jan

Why the French suddenly think Calais is part of London [Guardian]
Sky Sports presenter Charlotte Jackson's selling her Kew pad [Daily Mail]
I'm nauseous with jealousy [Telegraph]
One more in NY... celebrity tenant defaults [Property Hawk]
Banker sues vendors after river floods garden [Daily Mail]
On London's housing problem [Guardian]

The Rat and Mouse - go on, vote for us here.

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More in this Category - Linkage

An Association of Residential Lettings Agents suggests that, coming up fast on the frustrated vendors forced to let because they can't sell, is a whole new group of buyers forced to rent because they can't find the right property or the right mortgage.

Research from ARLA also reveals that during the final three months of 2009 an average 41% of members surveyed reported more tenants than properties, compared with just 24% in the previous quarter.

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More in this Category - Letting

I hate doing this (I've never canvassed for votes before), but since we find ourselves nominated for a blog award, we'd really hate to end up being embarrassed because we started off trying to look call. If the Rat and Mouse's daily efforts for the last five years have brought you any pleasure at all... here's your chance to say thanks. Go here, and click in the box that says Rat and Mouse, and press "vote". It's super-quick, it's free, it's anonymous. Many thanks. - B x

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More in this Category - Property online

New folding technology brings you... map², a paper-based London street map folded to make it zoomable. More information, here.

20100126Map

Don't expect an iPhone version any time soon.

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More in this Category - _Other
Mon
25
Jan

£60 a year to heat Britain's most energy efficient home [Telegraph]
Zoopla lists property auctions [Property Hawk]
Earl Cadogan doesn't enjoy meal [Daily Mail]
Sam Taylor-Wood's £11m cash property purchase [Hello Magazine]
Paltrow and Martin buy 3rd home on same street, for staff [Digital Spy]

The Rat and Mouse - London's property blog, since 2005

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More in this Category - Linkage

It appears accounts have finally been lodged, and here's the picture:

  • Operating profits, 83%
  • Turnover, 30.4%
  • Number of employees, 23.5%
  • Employees' average page, 20.9%
  • Shareholders' dividend, 79.2%
  • Chief Executive's pay package, 47%

Not that windy at the top, clearly. More here.

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More in this Category - Estate agents
Fri
22
Jan

First of all, a big "thank you" to our sponsor, Primelocation.com. Remember, Primelocation.com isn't just about searching properties listed by 4,000 leading estate agents, the website's a mine of useful advice, information and links. An example? Go here to search up-to-date real life completion prices for UK property. Snoop on your neighbours. Do the maths before making an offer. It's useful, it's free... you need to register, but it's quick and easy. If you've feedback, let us know and we'll pass it on with pleasure.

If you want to know more about advertising opportunities on the Rat and Mouse, drop me a line. Or if you just want to chat with the Rat, we're on Twitter here, or email us tips here.

In the meantime, have a great weekend, and don't believe everything the statisticians tell you.

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More in this Category - About

That HBOS 50 year property report... download PDF here [HBOS]
So what's the deal with buy-to-let? [Times]
Where the American Idol judges live [Shelter Pop]
Another property tycoon faces divorce ruin [Google News]
Candys change minds about residential property fund [FT]
How does it feel to borrow value of average house every 60 seconds? Ask this guy... [This Is London]

The Rat and Mouse - London's property blog, since 2005

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More in this Category - Linkage

Because there are mixed messages in the press today. According to the National Association of Estate Agents, Santa never came, and sales per agent fell from 7.6 in November to 4.9 in December. Ah... says the tax man... sales agreed may have been down, but completions were at a two-year high, numbering 104,000, the first time the 100,000 mark has been surpassed since December 2007, and up from 41,000 at the January 2009 trough.

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More in this Category - Estate agents

Here are two of them:

One property buyer from Peterborough found 114 faults in the new home she purchased, 86 of which were upheld by the Ombudsman. And a Northamptonshire homeowner complained after a wall in his home collapsed shortly after being given the thumbs up by a surveyor.

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More in this Category - _Other

A report by the Royal Academy of Engineering slams domestic solar panels and wind turbines as "eco bling", ostentatious green adornments that might, at best, offset a tiny percentage of the energy wasted by a poorly designed property. Instead, the report calls for greater energy efficiency... lower power use, better insulation, and a design ethos that sees new builds make the most of natural light. At last... more here.

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More in this Category - Design
Thu
21
Jan

20100121Clifford1-1

If they could talk, we'd listen. It's a four bedroom bungalow in Walton on Thames's Burwood Park, and features a flash indoor swimming pool, a large garden and pink, white and siver-grey decor, presumably so a naked Clifford would appear completely invisible. It's with John D Wood, at £1.79m. Particulars here.

20100121Clifford2

If these walls could talk... big orgy edition [November 12, 2009]
If these walls could talk... they'd say "re-wind" [October 21, 2009]

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More in this Category - Celebrity homes

An amusing story to pass the time... the author of the influential NewYorkShitty blog has been waging something of a one-woman campaign on a developer planning the demolition of a local landmarked property. Her blogging resulted in Stop Work Order, which the developer traced back to the blog, and its author... his own tenant.

My husband informed me that our landlord seemed to be under the impression I was angry at him and raised a stink about 155 Calyer to take a dig at him. I can assure you (and him if he is reading this) this was and is not the case. Had I known he was responsible for this I probably would have approached the matter a little differently.

Ah, the independent journalism ethic... read on.

[via Curbed]

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The Home Information Pack was launched in an atmosphere of crisis and chaos, and was implemented piecemeal. It won few friends during one of the biggest property market busts in recent times. Now, its future clouded by a Tory promise to kill it should they form the next Government, it squats over home sellers like a big, obstinate, bureaucratic practical joke, sucking time and money while it still can.

HIPs hurt, in our publisher's latest guest column for Citywire.

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More in this Category - HIPs
Wed
20
Jan

The attention of the media has been captured by a longterm house price report by the Halifax research department. The headlines:

  • house prices have risen, on average, 2.7% more than inflation each of the last fifty years.
  • earnings have increased 2% per year.
  • the biggest single increase was in the last decade... 62%.
  • the average uk home has increased by 273% since 1959.
  • in modern money, the average house would have cost £43,000 in 1959
  • in 1959, one in seven homes had outside toilets.
  • in 2009, one in 500 homes had outside toilets.
  • interestingly, four distinct, but relatively short, house price booms have been responsible for the inflation-busting gains. Outside of these periods, the norm for house prices is stagnation or fall.

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More in this Category - House prices

Kirstie and Phil find themselves the subjects of the Radio Times "Why I Hate..." column. It's a programme, says Michael Hodges, "based on greed and sex". Okay, greed... that's endemic in the way the Brits view property. It's not pretty, we'd agree. But sex? Where? When? And - if so - what's so hateful about that?

Sex, less successfully perhaps, is provided by the intimation that, given the chance, Phil and Kirstie would be at it like knives.

To be honest... that had never really occurred to me. Certainly, C4 has made more and more of the chemistry, but personally I've always thought it's been about the way they clash (Phil's bumbling geezer v Kirstie's frosty aristo), and if you'd put them in a bed together the effect would have been more like watching Morecombe and Wise sharing their double divan than Burton and Taylor. But what do I know?

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More in this Category - Property TV
Tue
19
Jan
The mixed use development totals more than 18,000 sq m (circa 194,000 sq ft) of retail, leisure and offices including the cabaret, the Locomotive nightclub, fast food restaurant Quick, a O’Sullivan pub as well as 80 flats.

Suddenly, it doesn't sound so romantic.

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More in this Category - _Other

The Hyde Farm Estate in Balham has £100,000 in the British Gas Green Streets competition and will now spend it on making the row of Victorian terraces a showcase for energy-efficient, but traditional, London housing. A number of solar panels are expected to be fitted, and the community's looking into easy solutions for drafty sash windows.

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More in this Category - SW12

Normally, apparently, the birth rate goes down during a recession, because financial and job insecurity aren't the kind of environments that encourage a couple to throw away the condoms. But not this time.

Despite the longest recession in 40 years, rising unemployment and falling house prices - factors that might reasonably be considered a deterrent to expanding families - many couples seem to be behaving differently.

So what's changed? Interestingly, the theory is that, with this recession coinciding with a period in which it's more usual than ever for both partners to work, it's being seen as a good time to go through maternity leave... there's simply less to lose.

Recession digression 37 - soon everything really will be a pound [January 11, 2010]

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More in this Category - Recession digression
Mon
18
Jan

British vendors headed into the new year confident, according to Rightmove, raising asking prices by 0.4% in January, giving them a 4.1% lead on January 2008, and only 8.3% less confident about squeezing a buyer until their pips squeak than they were in May 2008 at the peak of the market. In a funny kind of way, though, it's a lack of confidence underlying the movement, according to the accompanying literature. Homeowners are so spooked by the economy and the looming election that they're not putting their homes on the market. Hence a scarcity of available property. Hence a sellers' market.

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More in this Category - House prices

Apparently it's over a ten-foot high metal (no less) fence, she and husband Chris Martin want to build around their garden for security reasons. Mmm... the Pentonville look.

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The Chinese are coming [Sunday Times]
City homes win the eco-contest [Mail on Sunday]
JK Rowling buys houses like we buy Snickers bars [Mail on Sunday]
Posh and Becks look at Belgravia property [AOL]
Squ-artists [Times]
The buy-to-let comeback [Mortgage Solutions]
Why property remains popular with wealthy [FT]
Heavy sarcasm about house prices [Economic Voice]
Can this woman afford a London property? [Independent on Sunday]

The Rat and Mouse - London's property blog, since 2005

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An estate agency in Dorset has spent more than a year defending themselves from an unfair dismissal case after asking an agency manager to leave because they'd discovered evidence of hours of porn-surfing and online gambling on his computer.

Stewart had claimed that he only used porn sites to take his mind off his gambling habit. He also said that the firm was aware that employees used their computers for personal use and claimed that it had no formal policy on internet use.

The NAEA is currently setting up a helpline for anyone who bought a house in the Lilliput area about two years ago and fear they might have shaken that hand.

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More in this Category - Estate agents
Fri
15
Jan

First of all, a big "thank you" to our sponsor, Primelocation.com. Remember, Primelocation.com isn't just about searching properties listed by 4,000 leading estate agents, the website's a mine of useful advice, information and links. An example? Go here to search up-to-date real life completion prices for UK property. Snoop on your neighbours. Do the maths before making an offer. It's useful, it's free... you need to register, but it's quick and easy. If you've feedback, let us know and we'll pass it on with pleasure.

If you want to know more about advertising opportunities on the Rat and Mouse, drop me a line. Or if you just want to chat with the Rat, we're on Twitter here, or email us tips here.

In the meantime, it's never too late to get out there and have fun. Have a great weekend. X

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More in this Category - About

This is St Margaret's Road in Tottenham, normally a quiet row of terraced houses, but more recently the theatre for a battle that has been rousing the tabloids. It's where Julian and Samantha Mosedale and family were apparently turfed from their newly renovated home by a gang of Romanian squatters, forced to rent locally and called racist by the police when they complained. They're now back in their home, which - according to reports - has been trashed... and the squatters have moved down a few hundred years to Strode Road, where they're either renting or have taken over an apartment. The reporting has been distinctly manipulative (suggesting there was nothing the Mosedales could do... when - in fact - they received a fast-tracked court order and the squatters were forced to leave, and resulting - in the case of at least one Daily Mail comment - in calls for the BNP to sort this out). Obviously, their position is upsetting, and the fact that they've been put to considerable expense very unfair. But - at this point - the tabloids are in danger of starting a race riot in a quiet corner of N17.

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More in this Category - N17

Three thousand, seven hundred new homes in the capital, with building starting in the next six months. That's according to Barratt chief Mark Clare, who's been making some rousing comments about the strength of the London market. Barratt has been focusing on houses rather than flats, and has seen sales rise as a consequence.

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More in this Category - _Other

Four out of ten areas "affordable" (six out of ten not) [BBC]
Credit market must be cured before house prices can rise [Money Week]
Michael Jackson's taste in interior design... wacko [TMZ]
Ten big property mistakes [Telegraph]
Could house price resilience win it for Labour? [Wall Street Journal]
The Romanian squatters, the hard-working family, and the 526 comments in the Daily Mail [Daily Mail]

The Rat and Mouse - it's about your house

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More in this Category - Linkage
Thu
14
Jan

Everybody knows what good schools mean to local house prices. So what does that mean for London?

London shines in school tables... The data shows 54% of pupils achieved the benchmark of five GCSEs at A* to C, including English and maths, in 2009. [BBC]

Almost half of London pupils fail to reach basic GCSE standards, league tables reveal. [Evening Standard]

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More in this Category - _Other

Okay - HousePriceCrash - side with the tenants this time, I challenge you.

The couple moved in with Mr Howe, 49, at his flat in Southgate, north London, when they were kicked out the home of Bush’s mother in November 2008. They exploited his weaknesses, paying no rent, stealing his food and promising to leave but failing to do so.

And if stealing his food wasn't bad enough... they killed, dismembered and scattered him across two counties too. This is an extraordinarily sad and gruesome tale. The couple are apparently now arguing in court about who did the killing and who did the dismembering. See? Constant rows about something and nothing... that's what happens when you move in together.

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More in this Category - Letting

A survey by estate agents John D Wood of 4,000 houses and 5,500 flats in London's most expensive postcodes shows astonishing house price growth of 51% from last February's low, bringing them, on average, 3% above their summer 2007 peak. The reasons? Low interest rates presumably mean there's little point in holding cash, and the weak pound must be off-setting any talk of London being less attractive than it was to foreign buyers.

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More in this Category - House prices
Wed
13
Jan

Hundreds of buyers of city apartments are facing the courts, after trying to walk away from off-plan deals.

It seems their biggest miscalculation was thinking they could simply leap out of the developers’ bed, throw on their clothes and walk away from deals that had begun to look ugly in the new post-credit crunch economic dawn. Faced with unwanted city apartments to bring up alone, the same property developers who’d been all floozy and fun-loving back in 2007 and early 2008, have put on their sensible pants and called in the lawyers.

Our publisher takes a closer look at the rights and the wrongs in his weekly guest column for Citywire.

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More in this Category - About

In a very interesting article, Estate Agent Today points to worrying flaws in the Tenancy Deposit Scheme that could leave unwitting landlords open to legal liability. The problem arises when lettings agents sign up to a scheme, but hold the money in one of their own accounts, and then go into administration. In many cases, according to the article, the money isn't adequately ring-fenced either... it's registered with a scheme, but not audited... so agents have no quick way of knowing (without performing an audit) whether they're spending agency money or deposits. The buck eventually stops with the landlord. More here.

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In Tokyo, cycling residents can stow their wheels in futuristic-looking, 6,000-capacity underground bike parks which stow cycles in a vast subterranean carousel at the touch of a button. In Rotterdam, secure spaces can be rented in lockable sheds on the street.

And in London you can chain it to lamppost, but they'll just nick the lamppost and you'll still need to buy a new one the next morning. The Independent reports on the London cyclists who demand better bike accommodation from their landlords.

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More in this Category - Letting
Tue
12
Jan

Mortgages, suddenly it's a buyers' market [Times]
BCC: still no sign of recession's end [Telegraph]
Filthy tenants [Daily Mail]
Madonna's old townhouse for rent: £10,000 a week [Daily Mail]
Books: the more of them the merrier [Telegraph]
Chimp financially outperforms 94% of Russian bankers [Daily Mail]

The Rat and Mouse - London's property blog, since 2005

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More in this Category - Linkage

Let's start with the Communities and Local Government figures, because we can at least pretend they mean something without having to pull all sorts of strange facial expressions. The data relates to November, shows a monthly rise of 1.7%, pushes the price of "the average UK home" back above £200,000 and the annual house price inflation figure into the black (0.6%) for the first time since June 2008. Now to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Want clarity? Close your browser now, then. In December, RICS reports that 30% more surveyors thought house prices were rising than thought they were falling. In November, the difference had been 35%. So, there you go. The housing market was 5% worse. Or something.

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More in this Category - House prices

Shelter have described as "a shocking discovery" data suggesting as many as 6% of UK households have been using credit cards to stay ahead of mortgage payments and rent. In Scotland, the figure's as high as 8%.

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More in this Category - _Other
Mon
11
Jan
Budget retailer Poundland is set to expand at a rate of one store per week this year after enjoying record sales over the Christmas period.

By the end of 2010, there will be more than 300 Poundlands in the land.

Recession digression 36 - squabbling couples forced to live together [January 7, 2010]

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It appears this was wrong. Lily Allen's just bought in north London, apparently, and is moving into interior design.

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More in this Category - Celebrity homes

20100111Chelseahouseboat

There's a Press Association piece here about Ocean... this extremely striking houseboat moored at Cadogan Pier, and currently marketed by Foxtons, at £1m (illustration, above). They're saying it's the most expensive houseboat they've ever had on their books, and it comes with a swimming pool, a sunken (literally) utility room, three bedrooms with bathrooms and that kick-ass location. It's not, however, the most expensive houseboat currently on the market. Check out this Putney-moored four-bedroom extravaganza, with a 30ft reception room and a guide price of £1.3m (illustration, below). I've always thought there was a real romance to the houseboat, but that may well be because I've never lived on one. Anyone have any London houseboat experiences, good or bad?

20100111Putneyhouseboat-1

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More in this Category - For sale

Can UK homeowners adapt to European rental model? [Guardian]
What about the vulture fund? [Times]
Russians push up house prices in Kensington & Chelsea [LondonInformer]
Cash-rich investors coming to the market [Residential Landlord]
At home with the Royal College of Art's new rector [FT]

The Rat and Mouse - it's about your house

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More in this Category - Linkage
Fri
08
Jan

As far as the Rat and Mouse is concerned, the fat lady doesn't start singing on 2009 until the Government's completion figures are posted, but the last Halifax survey of 2009 certainly carries some influence. Here you go... prices rose 1% in December, leaving the annual rate officially 1.1%, just pushing into the black in December. That last figures compares the three-month average, the HBOS's preferred method of comparison. If you take a more simplistic December to December view (preferred - to HBOS's dismay - by the newspapers) it was up 5.6%. HBOS survey here. Newspaper reportage here.

Now wish me luck as I attempt to travel from north Yorkshire to south west England. Further updates depending on snow, ice, trains and 3G dongle.

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More in this Category - House prices
BC Partners, the private equity group that acquired Foxtons from Jon Hunt, its founder, for as much as £360m in May 2007, has agreed a refinancing deal that will halve the agent's debt in return for giving its lenders a majority stake.

Rumours of debt problems have been circulating for more than a year. Somewhere in the deal is a loan - directly from Jon Hunt - which will be written off. Hunt, of course, sold the estate agency right at the peak of the property market. The FT is first with the story. Read it here.

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More in this Category - Estate agents
Thu
07
Jan
The idea of putting marrows and goats, as if in some miniature post-capitalist Eden, on a spot designated for stainless steel and glass, could hardly be more symbolic.

The architects, apparently, are turning. Out... steel, glass, height, air-con modernist temples of lucre. In... compost and veg. Out... buildings that try to impress you. In... buildings that appeal to your humanity. Apparently.

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More in this Category - Design
A quarter of couples who have split up are being forced to continue living together because of the high cost of housing, research has showed.

The figure's 28%, and the research was by EasyRoomMate. Two-thirds of those enduring a colder atmosphere inside the house than outside, admit it's because of the high cost of living. One in forty are stuck with a joint property because of negative equity.

Recession digression 35 - snaggle-toothed sell braces [December 21, 2009]

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More in this Category - Recession digression

Where's the business and technological innovation? asks The Business Insider. Why no cure for cancer?

What’s gone wrong? Much of the lack of innovation can probably be blamed on the malinvestment that resulted from the housing boom. It’s not just that too much funding got directed into housing—too much human capital got directed into housing and finance during the boom.

Jeez... sorry.

It's an American article, and it's very interesting... making the point that quick killings in the entirely illusory (residential property-based) debt market were much more attractive than difficult decisions funding technology start-ups in a post dotcom-bust era. But look where it got us. (Nowhere.)

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More in this Category - _Other

I've been traveling a lot. On trains. In the far north of England. During a weather "emergency". And my dongle's just not been working the way it should. Things will get better.

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More in this Category - About
Wed
06
Jan

November.. mortgage crazy [Times]
Streatham demands Bakerloo line extension [Londonist]
Lily Allen's leaving for the country [This Is Gloucestershire]

The Rat and Mouse - it's about your house

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More in this Category - Linkage

Bills. For fire safety improvements. It's lease-owners in Perronet House, Marie Curie and Castlemead who are affected, 51 of them facing bills of £500,000 between them, their share of works to the blocks. More here.

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More in this Category - SE1
Tue
05
Jan

The idea is that agents who use the company's services - HIP providers, conveyancing, financial etc - will get a free listing. They say here that profits generated by the portal will be reinvested in promotion for the site. "Profits generated by the portal"? Does that mean ads? Google ads? It'll be here shortly. More commentary, here.

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It's a six-bedroom detached house, built in 1912 for an army officer, and - although it's been properly refurbished - still has a few nice features (colonial-style veranda... presumably ordered by the India-based army officer who commissioned it, log-burning fire in hallway). Other features? A rare mulberry tree in the garden. It's with Marsh & Parsons, £3.35m. Particulars here.

20100105Tooting Hall-1

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Savills - yesterday - went against the grain with some headline-catching predictions about property prices looking forward into the decade. Expect a 40% hike in house prices by the end of 2019, they say. What? Just 40%? said Assetz.

"We would expect prices to increase by up to six per cent per annum over the next decade. “Continued and extreme housing shortages versus high demand give us confidence that growth will continue over the coming 10 years.”

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Mon
04
Jan

A Daily Mail journalist is dispatched to Notting Hill's Wycombe Square and Prestbury (Up North)'s Withinlee Road, two of the most expensive streets in the recent Halifax survey, and told to knock on a few doors, find out the kind of person who lives there. Not much luck in London... nobody's in, and if anyone had been in, they'd presumably have had their security guard take the Daily Mail journalist down, take him down to China Town, and send him home with a limp. Up north, things are different. They're... and the piece actually uses this word... "real". Real people like Andrew Flintoff, Wayne Rooney and Noddy Holder (imagine that New Year's party... pretty bloody real, I'd imagine). Conclusions? None really. Other than both roads - interestingly - feature mainly new properties. And the journalist prefers it up north. Read it here.

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More in this Category - _Other

First mortgage rate hike of the New Year spotted in the wild [This Is Money]
Bovey ordered to pay back £1m [Sunday Times]
Right-to-buy... now we're all paying [Times]
The mess that is Battersea Power Station [Reuters]
Holiday's over [BBC]
Prepare for "decade of sobriety" [Sunday Telegraph]
Unless you live in the country [Times]
Or you can sell your home to a friendly pirate [New York Times]
Ftbs find more areas "affordable" [BBC]
But fewer mortgagese [Daily Mail]

The Rat and Mouse - London's property blog, since 2005

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