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By Herring (Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 09:23:03 AM EST) (all tags)
I know it's Daily Mail-ish to be obsessed with house prices, but ...


(Ill thought out and quickly typed between meetings)

In November 2003, before he was evil, Vince Cable said:
"Is not the brutal truth that ... the growth of the British economy is sustained by consumer spending pinned against record levels of personal debt, which is secured, if at all, against house prices that the Bank of England describes as well above equilibrium level?"
Even with recent falls, house prices are still above what they were in 2003. Numbers vary but Nationwide figures I've seen indicate an average house price around £165K. That's about 7 times the (median) average salary. With banks being more sensible/cautious about lending you would expect the price to collapse but it isn't. The question is, why not?

Well, we know that there is a shortage of housing - around 250,000 new households each year versus a new build rate that has been between around 150,00 per year. However, if demand was being met or exceeded then would it not be likely that the price would crash? So, reasons why new builds aren't keeping up:

  • Planning. This is the usual reason given - that red tape and NIMBYs are preventing the construction of new housing. I've got no way of knowing if this is true.
  • Developers are sitting on land with planning permission, knowing that if they build too much now then the price will go down. Again I've got no way of knowing if this is true.
Governments too are caught in a trap - they don't want to be seen to be presiding over a massive house price crash. People who have paid off their mortgage are amongst the most likely to vote.

This page has a graph of the number of property transactions in the UK (source data here). It shows transactions being about half what they were in 2007. This might be driven by people hanging on in the hope of getting a better price in the future.

The number of new builds has fallen from a high of 206,620 in 2004/5 to 146,960 in 2009/10 (source data from a link in here). That lends some weight to the argument that developers are deliberately restricting supply, but on the other hand that's about a 30% reduction where the fall in transactions is about 50%. It could be explained by planning regulations but I'm not aware of these being tightened over that time period.

Of course most the "problem" is only really serious in the South East. If only people and companies could be persuaded to move away from London to where prices are more reasonable then that would equalize things. But, for whatever reason, that doesn't look likely.

It can't be good for the country as a whole either. Wages are held down by competition from India/China but people in those countries don't need to spend £1,200 a month to house their family. Prices have to fall but this will be unpopular.

Some people will point out that immigration has an effect on demand for property. It does. But from here:
Professor Nickell, who advises the Government on affordable housing, said that since 2000 the ratio of average house prices to average annual earnings had risen from four to seven. If net immigration had been zero, house prices would, according to Professor Nickell, still have risen to 6.5 times average income
Of course, it would be irony beyond the average Daily Mail reader that their house price is being kept up by immigration.

So, where I'm short on facts:

  • Are developers artificially restricting housing supply? Is this even possible?
  • Is planning really a problem?
  • I've seen estimates of between 500,000 - 1m unoccupied premises. How many of these are immediately habitable?
  • If a load of affordable housing was built, what would stop it being snapped up by the Buy To Let gang?
  • What happens if councils are inundated with homeless people who cannot afford housing on the open market?
  • What's going to happen when interest rates go up?
I realise I've gone on without mentioning renting. I'm assuming that shortages will drive up rents too. Since people have to live somewhere, they'll pay what it takes.
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Work with developers by marvin (4.00 / 2) #1 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 09:44:12 AM EST
One of my responsibilities is the planning end of a water utility, and my previous job saw me on the site assessment, so I've dealt with developers on a regular basis for the past 14 years.

They are driven by the market, and by their expectations of whether they will make money. If there is money in it, they'll do it, 100% guaranteed. They have the scruples of real estate agents or used car salesmen. Constraints include prices (land, development charges, construction costs), the length of time between committing to the project and making your first sale (often 2-5 years), and most importantly, financing.

I don't know about your planning processes, but that is usually a function of time - you can get most things approved, it just takes a lot more time and effort to grease political wheels when planners oppose it. Where I live, communities are required to have a growth target, and ensure that their planning processes show how that will be met through identification of future land use in an Official Community Plan. If you change a land use (rezoning) in a way that conforms with the OCP you will almost get rubber-stamped. So if the OCP shows medium density in an existing single family neighbourhood, you'll have an easier time getting an apartment building approved. Not so with a commercial development in an area designated as single family.

Right now, money is tight. Developers don't have cash inflows from the sale of existing units, they have to carry higher financing costs from their unsold inventory, and banks are not financing the type of outrageous developments that were approved during the bubble.

When interest rates go up, so will mortgage defaults. That is likely a key consideration of your central bank when they look at interest rates. If they can keep people making their mortgage payments for a few more years, inflation will help close the gap between housing prices and their value, fewer people will be underwater on their mortgage, and they can avoid an echo of the 2008 collapse.

What I was getting at by Herring (2.00 / 0) #2 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:00:15 AM EST
is that if they have a choice between:
a) Build and sell 150,000 houses at £200K each
or
b) Build and sell 250,000 houses at £100K each
they will take option a.

It may also be that they bought land in 2007/8 and wouldn't be able to sell at a profit. In that case they may want to hang on until prices "recover".

I wouldn't hold out much hope of wages rising to match house values - downward pressure from globalisation will see to that.

Still, at least the sun is shining.

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
Around Cambridge by Vulch (4.00 / 1) #4 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:19:04 AM EST
On one big development on the edge of the city where construction had started it has been stalled for a couple of years. This is not popular with those people who had bought and moved in as the roads are still unadopted and the area is a building site, even if one where nothing much happens.
In the surrounding area the next phase of expansion in a "town" that had actually been started hasn't happened yet, but the bus subsidies that were being funded from s106 payments have run out and without the extra passengers the bus company has dropped services as unviable or increased fares. Another new town is suspended indefinitely, the guided bus that no-one other than the County Council wanted and which was going to carry the extra traffic from it is at least two years behind schedule and currently running at twice the original cost so that's OK.
I suspect the first case is explained by having paid inflated prices for the land and not being able to put a building on it and sell it for a profit, the other cases are probably also land price based with no developer currently willing to stump up the readies.


[ Parent ]
Heh by Herring (2.00 / 0) #9 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:54:47 AM EST
Since I started this job, years ago, the patch of land across the road by the station has been going to be "something great". Rumour has it that they've actually started work now, but I'm not sure I believe it.

But we shouldn't pick on property developers. Many of them have worked very hard to earn what they've got.

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
And the sun still rises in the east by marvin (4.00 / 1) #11 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 11:38:31 AM EST
What I was getting at is that if they have a choice between:
a) Build and sell 150,000 houses at £200K each
or
b) Build and sell 250,000 houses at £100K each
they will take option a.

Depends on the cost of building each home, and their ability to sell it on the market. Assuming an equivalent rate of profit on each sale, of course they will take option a, as would anyone who can do basic mathematics. Whatever gives the most money in the shortest time at the lowest risk is what they will build.

Not sure about the UK because you have higher density, but the unit mix fluctuates over time in Canada. The most desirable units are single family detached dwellings on 0.1 to 0.2 acres of land. Multifamily (townhomes which are somewhat similar to your row housing, and apartments) is less expensive per unit, but less desirable. It also gives the developer more profit per acre of land, but it takes longer to get on the market.

During the bubble, new market entrants were priced out of single family homes, and more multi-family units were built. There has been a glut of multi-family in recent years, including units that were started during the boom, and completed after the bust. Single family prices are dropping back to more affordable levels, and I am seeing development changing. Several properties in my area that were in the planning stages for multifamily before 2008 have been on hold for the past three years, and are now going to be developed as single family.

[ Parent ]
Interesting by Herring (2.00 / 0) #12 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 11:52:42 AM EST
During the boom times here, the authorities had to regulate to get developers to build anything other than "executive" homes. They weren't interested in building more affordable stuff. I'm not sure if that's still the case though. There is a breakdown of house types built on that government stats site but I'm not sure I have the mental strength to face it again.

I often wonder if it would work out cheaper to buy a plot and get someone to build you a house to order. There are kits and stuff ...

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
So long as your time is free by marvin (4.00 / 1) #13 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 12:32:42 PM EST
Coordinating subtrades is the reason I would hesistate to do that, unless I could devote most of my time to the construction for six months. I have enough relatives and friends who are plumbers and electricians, along with a retired carpenter or two, but the biggest problem here is getting qualified tradesmen, and coordinating them. A good builder who has a long-term relationship with subtrades is going to get better prices from them, and is more likely to have them show up on time, or at all.

When you have a critical path that involves return visits at various stages of construction, with dependancies along the way, this is important. You need the electrician in to run wire after the framers, but before the drywall (gypsum wallboard) is installed. You need the drywall before the painters and the cabinets, and the plumber at 2 or 3 different points - before footings get poured, after framing, and then after finishing.

Unless you are willing to take a long time, scheduling is the biggest worry I would have. One delay can cascade down the chain, and remember, you're not a repeat customer or their highest priority. Delays can increase your costs as well. Trades know a good builder has a better chance of sticking to his schedule, and avoiding rework, indecision, and clusterf**ks. Some homeowners who act as their own general contractor are brutally indecisive, inexperienced, naive, and need a lot of handholding, which all gets built into the cost estimates.

There is very little regulated housing out here, and any government that tried to mandate the unit mix to developers would get destroyed. Some multifamily units are subsidized by the government, but that accounts for a tiny fraction of the housing market here - maybe a couple of percent at most.

[ Parent ]
You would expect so. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #14 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 12:42:13 PM EST
I would say that house prices are still the same multiple of land costs they were pre-boom. I'd say that within Bath (the small, expensive city where I live) about 50% of new buildings are on single home owner built plots or conversions.

If I had the money,...

[ Parent ]
Built to order by Vulch (4.00 / 1) #15 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 12:54:48 PM EST
Unless you go the Grand Designs route and have an odd design, build costs don't vary that much across the country. Depending on the height and plot conditions it seems to be £1000 to £1500 per square metre, a tall building in a swamp will be more, a bungalow on granite just under the surface will be less. Though of course the bungalow on granite will involve you in Radon pumps...


[ Parent ]
Rent: by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #3 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:15:29 AM EST
According to the 2007 value of my flat, my gross rental payment is the same as a 25 year mortgage at 3.93% APR. Given that there's a service charge for the flat, I'd say that renting's not a great thing to do with your capital at the moment. But I could be talking bollocks.

when is it ever? by bobdole (4.00 / 1) #5 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:30:12 AM EST
I mean as long as it is realistic to own rather than rent, when does it ever make sense to rent?
-- The revolution will not be televised.
[ Parent ]
Well, at the moment, by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #7 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:47:25 AM EST
you can buy a bank bond that gives the same yield as my landlord gets. It's a moot point which is riskier, although the risk of a total loss is less negligible for the bank bond.

[ Parent ]
You can't drive your house by dmg (2.00 / 0) #18 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 04:39:11 PM EST
But you can sleep In your car...
--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
Good point. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #19 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 04:53:25 PM EST
I can't sleep on any of my bikes either. Nor the cars which I don't own but rent whenever I need.

[ Parent ]
WTF? by lm (4.00 / 1) #44 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 08:58:43 PM EST
I'm pretty sure that if you rented a car overnight, the rental agency wouldn't have a problem with you sleeping in it.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Fair point. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #48 Fri Jun 10, 2011 at 05:34:47 AM EST
Although given that the daily rate for hire cars exceeds that of hotels, I'd spend the money on the hotel.

Ironically, my colleague had to leave a lease car unlocked last night (3 year old Passat with a dead battery) and I was having fun teasing him about the tramp who'd sleep in it overnight, and how much it'd cost to clean it.

[ Parent ]
I actually meant my landlord was better off by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #21 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 06:09:32 PM EST
doing something else with his capital than letting, but I'm not sure I'm particularly right about it.

[ Parent ]
Probably by bobdole (2.00 / 0) #25 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 03:20:31 AM EST
There are many forms of investments that might give capital gains faster than property, but on the other hand there are (in most jurisdictions) multiple ways of gaining tax advantages through properties not available to more pure capital gains.
-- The revolution will not be televised.
[ Parent ]
It heavily depends on the jurisdiction by lm (2.00 / 0) #45 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 09:05:26 PM EST
Aside from all sorts of tax-free investments (e.g. municipal bonds, etc.) in many jurisdictions capital gains tax only apply when one sells at a profit. Moreover, many jurisdictions offer special advantages to residences that aren't offered for investment property.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Many times by lm (4.00 / 3) #22 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 06:19:32 PM EST
There are many reasons to rent rather than buy.

To begin with, a guy who gets laid off while renting isn't limited to looking for a new job in a particular geographial location like a guy who gets laid off who has a mortgage.

Not to mention, the large number of people in the US (and other coutnries I suspect) that are upside down on their mortgages right now.

And then there is the question of yardwork ....


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
not really by bobdole (2.00 / 0) #24 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 03:17:16 AM EST
Being in mortgage-woes is more to do with poor decision-making (or probably ill-adviced decision-making).

You can also rent above market rent, which is similarly "non-smart". If your mortgage is higher than the value of the property you're not really an owner... the bank is. Similarly if your rent is higher than market value you are lining your landlord's pockets faster than necessary - neither of which is really related to the core of the question, when is it better to rent than own...
-- The revolution will not be televised.

[ Parent ]
yes, it comes to poor decision making by lm (2.00 / 0) #26 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 07:33:44 AM EST
Poor decisions such as buying when renting is more appropriate to the situation.

I'm not saying that renting is always better, mind you. But the fact is that home ownership has quite a few hidden costs and exposes one to quite a few risks that renting does  not. (Renting, in turn, has different risks.)

In the area I live now, the amount of money I pay in rent wouldn't buy a flea infested shack about ready to fall down. But, rent wise, I have a very large apartment in a secure building with a proper gym, swimming pool, lounge with a billiards table and wet bar, etc.

Back in my hometown, the situation was pretty much reversed. Decent houses could be found where the mortgage + insurance + taxes + regular upkeep costs came to  quite a bit less than you could rent similar space for.

The answer isn't always cut and dried.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
OTOH by Herring (2.00 / 0) #8 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:48:08 AM EST
If, as some people have done, you extended your mortgage to buy stuff so that you've only really paid interest for the last 10 years, you've effectively rented off the bank.

There isn't really the rental market in the UK that (I gather) there exists in much of Europe. Nor is rented accommodation secure enough from a tennants point of view - if you have family (I got moved on every 18 months or so when I rented).

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
Aping the Daily Mail by CheeseburgerBrown (4.00 / 1) #6 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:45:54 AM EST
In order to properly follow in the inspiring footsteps of the hard working trolls and unmarriables at the Daily Mail, it is important to follow certain key conventions:

1) Your paragraphs are too long. Some of them contain more than one sentence. This is not acceptable writing by the standards of the Daily Mail.

2) Your headline is insufficiently shocked and/or outraged. Try to integrate something in the title about immigrants/travellers, corruption in the house, or incorrect breasts.

3) This post needs at least one sexy picture, sexy enough that it still looks kinda sexy when reduced to a thumbnail. If you expand your post to complain about sexiness, make the picture even sexier.

4) Make somewhat less sense.


Science-fiction wallah, storytelling gorilla, man wearing a hat: Cheeseburger Brown.
The Daily Mail by Herring (4.00 / 1) #10 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 10:58:41 AM EST
is beyond satire.

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky
[ Parent ]
I've found lots of satire sites devoted to it. by ambrosen (4.00 / 3) #17 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 03:08:07 PM EST
My favourite one is the one that takes the piss out of Daily Mail readers for thinking that they're influential and intelligent. It's really subtle, but its inspiration is abundantly clear.

[ Parent ]
addendum by Merekat (4.00 / 1) #16 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 02:24:52 PM EST
You have to pretend the sexy picture isn't really about being sexy but is about someone minorly famous being too fat, too thin, or simply related to the Duchess of Cambridge.

[ Parent ]
Exception by spiralx (2.00 / 0) #30 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 09:13:02 AM EST
If it's exam results time then pictures of hot 18 year old blonde twins in a park somewhere is an entirely acceptable choice of imagery.

[ Parent ]
Developers and Land Banks... by Metatone (4.00 / 1) #20 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 05:37:02 PM EST
I did some work that put me in conversations with developers.

Some of the big firms do own a lot of land and they only build on it at a steady, relatively slow pace - even in the boom times.
And when prices are low, building slows to a crawl.
There's a whole bunch of rational, not particularly evil reasons for this.
The key is the interaction of this with the planning system - the land banks are pools of land that have planning permission.
If you started a building firm tomorrow and went looking for land, you'd be stretched to find land you were allowed to build on immediately.
And depending on the area - that you could build on at all.
Worth noting that big houses make more profit typically, so no point in building affordable accomodation...

Is planning the problem then? Only really in so much as people want a green belt in the SE.
The real problem is the attempt to squeeze everyone in around London - and everyone wants a house and a garden.
If you really wanted to solve the problem without fixing regional disparities, then you'd need to concrete over much of the SE and build a lot more blocks of flats. And somehow get people to live in them as family homes. Oh, and totally rebuild the sewage and water supply systems to cope...

Easily between 500k - 1m unoccupied premises across the north of England. Habitable? Probably 75% are more habitable than the flat I rented last year in London. Problem is, rubbish flat in London is bike ride away from the job. House in Burnley = nowhere near work.

BTL - only way to stop them muscling in right now is to build council housing. However, you could change the tax regime to make BTL a lot less attractive. Of  course, if your aim is a continental style renting culture, then BTL isn't inherently bad, they just need to think through tenant and landlord rights in law some more.

Homeless people go into hostels and B&B paid for by the council, and then as austerity kicks in, onto the streets. Starvation and homelessness are all good market solutions to a shortage of basic goods.

When interest rates go up ... depends on the state of the economy, if it hasn't recovered (i.e. can people keep up the payments?) then it's going to be negative equity time, like the last housing crash in Britain.

Renting - Dsquared often points out on his blog that there is no classic housing bubble in a lot of London and the SE - prices are very high, but so are rents. i.e. Prices are high  for buy and rent because of demand to live in the area.





 

I don't really have an aim by Herring (2.00 / 0) #23 Tue Jun 07, 2011 at 06:22:34 PM EST
vis renting versus buying. There's an argument I suppose that a workforce with mortgages are more compliant - less likely to strike etc. but I'm not sure how far this is true.

BTL, well before the bust I heard it described as "When a person conspires with a bank to get someone else to buy them a house". I suspect that it looks like less of a sure thing now with uncertain prices etc.

I am not sure what's happening with the housing benefit changes now, but it did look like it would have a potentially serious effect on people on low wages living in London. And someone on £12K a year isn't going to want to spend £4K on a season ticket to commute in from somewhere cheaper (like Burnley). How desirable is London going to be if you can't get cleaners, nurses, teachers etc.?

My feeling/opinion is that something has to be done about the cost of housing. It is ridiculous. But that it will be impossible to do so without serious economic repercussions.

(Selfish motive: I want SD to move out one day)

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
In many organisations, by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #27 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 07:44:21 AM EST
the London weighting really is that large: for the NHS, there's a minimum Central London weighting of £3855, on top of a lowest starting salary of just under £14k. Obviously it still makes it near impossible to scrape by, and I realise your figures were made up, but the situation could be worse.

[ Parent ]
Weighting by Herring (2.00 / 0) #28 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 07:54:05 AM EST
Mrs. H. gets London weighting. Just. I don't think it's that much though.

With the £12K, well that might be quite a lot for a cleaning job. When the debate on HB was going on I remember some guy being used as an example - £12K job in inner London. HB restrictions could kick him out of there which would mean he wouldn't be able to do his job but the DHS could deny him benefit because he resigned rather than being let go.

But then you could say that London weighting and housing benefit distort the rental market in London and drive up prices.

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky

[ Parent ]
I can believe that £12k's quite a lot by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #36 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 06:21:45 PM EST
for a cleaning job. But if the NHS can afford £18k (full time equivalent) for its cleaners in Inner London, then why not other people? It doesn't outsource cleaning much in general, on account of it being a core competence, so its wage scales apply here. I think there's a £2k outer London allowance and a £1k peripheral London allowance.

The housing benefit thing's a conundrum with a lot of conflicting goals and interests. I know I pay about 160% of what the council tenant living above me pays, about 90% of what housing benefit would pay, and about 25% of median net income for my rent for a nice-ish one bedroom flat. What those 3 figures should be, and how to change them to that, I don't know.

I do know that a social security system does have the responsibility to make sure that there is the possibility somewhere decent to live for every citizen. I include in the definition of somewhere decent that it is a stable situation, that it's not too far away from the occupier's roots, and that there are job opportunities available within a sensible distance.

I think there's probably a way to fulfil the criteria of the last paragraph without coughing up huge rents to landlords in central London. If the government were actually concerned about things other than sending the signal "no more 'freeloaders'", I suspect it would be the kind of thing that should be introduced right at the beginning of a second term of office with several years for implementation and gradual resettlement. Keeping the city centres of very large cities functioning without polarising between the rich and poor is not really a solved problem. Does Amsterdam or Berlin do it?

[ Parent ]
I didn't mean to suggest... by Metatone (2.00 / 0) #32 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 12:46:55 PM EST
that you had an aim, beyond getting SD to move out...

It was just basically a data dump of what I know about the housing market.

My own view is that it'll be years before anything changes because while planning could change to build more houses in the SE, there's a limit because of the expense of traffic and sewerage provision. So the solution only comes when we become less SE focussed... and that means a sensible transport policy, etc. 

[ Parent ]
How is there an undeveloped acre of land by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #29 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 08:52:41 AM EST
on your tiny island?

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

The feudal system by Oberon (2.00 / 0) #31 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 12:45:16 PM EST
Basically there's still some green space reserved for the nobility to shoot peasants [sic].

How now, mad spirit?
[ Parent ]
Something like 97% of it by dmg (2.00 / 0) #33 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 03:55:39 PM EST
Is not developed. Nearly the entire population of the county lives in London, Greater London and the home counties. The rest of it is pretty much empty. There's no shortage of land.
--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
Nearly the entire population meaning by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #34 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 05:47:40 PM EST
about a third, right?

[ Parent ]
40% at least. by dmg (2.00 / 0) #35 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 06:06:56 PM EST

--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
34% of the UK by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #37 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 06:27:37 PM EST
live in the regions of East of England, Greater London and South East England, which goes from Norwich to Southampton and Dover to Banbury i.e. larger than the area you described.

[ Parent ]
(Comment Deleted) by dmg (2.00 / 0) #38 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 10:30:22 PM EST

This comment has been deleted by dmg



[ Parent ]
(Comment Deleted) by dmg (2.00 / 0) #39 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 10:32:26 PM EST

This comment has been deleted by dmg



[ Parent ]
Exact numbers are not important by dmg (2.00 / 0) #40 Wed Jun 08, 2011 at 10:33:31 PM EST
My real point is that there is plenty of land to build on if the will was there, but uk voters are all nimbys. Why do we make such a fuss about green belt? The entire south of England used to be a forest. In simple terms we need to build more accommodation. In the long run depopulation is the trend but that will take 100+ years to manifest.
--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
I have no idea what you're on about. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #41 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 05:52:25 AM EST
The fact that there's a world in the UK outside of London seems not to have come into your thinking, so I don't know how to respond to you. Maybe IHBT.

[ Parent ]
The uk outside greater london by dmg (2.00 / 0) #42 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 06:45:03 PM EST
Is subsidised to the tune of approx £10bn/year by the economically productive residents of the greater London area.
--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
Sadly, by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #43 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 07:13:20 PM EST
I believe that you believe that means more than its barest face value.

[ Parent ]
Labour mobility. by dmg (2.00 / 0) #46 Thu Jun 09, 2011 at 10:13:53 PM EST
Northerners fail it.
--
dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.
[ Parent ]
Yeah, by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #47 Fri Jun 10, 2011 at 05:30:07 AM EST
but so does all of the northern infrastructure. And if we're playing the 'northerners' game, I'd like to point out you're north of me right now.

[ Parent ]
Well by codemonkey uk (4.00 / 1) #49 Fri Jun 10, 2011 at 10:31:52 AM EST
You bitches are both north of me.  Eat my south coast dust, northern scum.

--- Thad ---
Almost as Smart As you.
[ Parent ]
Gladly. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #50 Fri Jun 10, 2011 at 10:39:01 AM EST
You've just reminded me about another friend in Pompey who I must pop down to see one weekend.

[ Parent ]
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