Tag Archives: housing

would u want to live in these .electricity bill jan-mar 16

8 Apr

london 9.01am sunny 9.3C friday 2016

Digital StillCamera

Digital StillCamera

a new block of luxury flats on the thames. the riverside development. contrasting it with the terraced houses in the foreground of olden days. the rooms inside both are very small.  in the background is the MI5 building across the river. i prefer my own flat actually.

if i knew it was so easy to catch piranha, i would have used it when i was in manaus, brazil, and on the amazon and its tributaries; (quite a long time ago). it is a staple on the menu .

this video shows how. .my guide didnt even bother with bait, just threw in a line of hooks, and pulled them up. they are quite small, but perfect for deep frying, i think. but the locals dont do it. 

the locals are not very imaginative when it comes to cooking them. which is why people get bored with eating them, even me… haha. because they are always on the menu.  i cannot help thinking if it were chinese, they would drum up a delicious meal out of them.

added 1.32pm 13.9C cloudy . came back from the library to find a letter waiting for me with a £25 premium bond cheque. i won it in this month’s draw. last month i won £25 too. yet recently they have reduced the number of prizes. just goes to show it is all luck really.

oh my electricity bill came too. for the 3months jan-mar2016.

265kwh used over 90days @.1667p/kwh = £44.18 .

2.94kwh per day. (last year’s was 2.52kwh/day). 0.486p /day

i am posting it just for my own records. 

added. 6.36pm 14.3C dry but rain clouds . friday 2016

i got a wordpress post in my wordpress reader saying all the blogs are now protected with a https.

i have not noticed but when i read that, i took a look at my url, and saw the https is operative in mine. well, it is good. i think it must be operative in my blog for quite some time, because chrome wont let me go into any website that has no https. and i have been using chrome for quite some time allready and all that time i have been able to get into my blog easily.  

oh, i read it more carefully and it says it is now operative in custom domains…whilst domains like mine using the name.wordpress.com has allready got https since 2014.  



Public Housing Residents Wary of Mayor de Blasio’s Plan – NYTimes.com

20 May

Public Housing Residents Wary of Mayor de Blasio’s Plan – NYTimes.com.

this one tells of how public housing is so starved of funds many repairs are not done and the housing has deteriorated. new york has controlled rents kept so keeping rents artificially  very low. for those of you who want more public housing, this is a cautionary tale. london used to have this problem, too, but with the bill to allow residents to buy their flat, at a discount, many of these housing estates were able to get their repairs paid for by those who bought, and finally allow the council to undertake the huge task of bringing them up to scratch.

my case in point is this flat i bought in 1991. the estate was very run down, and council was only able to start the repairs when about half the flats were sold, so that the repair bill can be part paid by the leaseholders.

i recall my share of the bill for a 2bd room flat was £20,000 . that was in 1998. without this contribution the buildings would never be renovated. i knew of this bill before i bought the flat in 1991, so was able to budget for it.

the cleaning of the walls revealed lovely red bricks where previously it was black. so that was a nice surprise. but what i want to say is public housing is all very well, but there must be an element of a sinking fund in the rent charged… and ring fence that fund so that future councils wont be tempted to raid it and spent on other things.

at the moment, london has this policy about rents for council flats , that it must be 80% of commercial rents in the area. a lot of people complain that it is not right, but u can see if it is too low, than there is future trouble ahead when the place gets very run down. at the moment it is about £850 a month for a 3bed flat, £650 a month for a 2bed in this area, rather similar to the public housing rent given in that article in new york. (i think these figures are not normal. my examples are from two pensioners living in their homes for a long time so they do get a discount.)

it is not related to income,(unlike in new york, where it is 30% of income which means one neighbour can pay significantly higher than another living next door;

here in uk if u are low income, u get it all paid for by housing benefits. but the govt is bringing in a cap on benefits so that is why so many are having trouble living in london. unless they work, when the cap does not apply. hence u see so many previous households on benefits where no one works now have one working.

housing…rent or buy?

14 Jul


I was reading in the newspaper about a family who got evicted after 13yrs in a low rent accommodation. their landlord finally decided to sell. so now the family cannot afford to rent other flats as prices have gone up so much.

 it makes me realise that if they had a high rent from the start, they might be forced to be homeless 13yrs ago where it was so much easier to get onto council’s housing list and they might be in a council house now, where rents are more stable.

here is a case of what seems to be  good fortune to get a low rent accommodation and a low rent landlord makes them lose out on a council flat, or  even buy a flat in those times when flats, especially ex council flats, are really cheap.

That is why i am glad i got evicted from my bedsit in 1991. I was living in balham, the landlord was selling up to a housing association and all of us have to move.

that was when i decided to look for a flat to buy and i was sure glad i did because i caught the housing just when it went down to the lowest slump in ages. the stock market crash of 1989 caused house prices to drop drastically right through the early ’90s. it was a good time to buy. Though i did not realise it then. 

I think this is a very good reason why it is better to buy than to rent. Rents can and will go up. whereas if u buy, u can pay off the mortgage when u retire, and so live practically free.

I have a feeling that the system is geared towards companies … if a person dies that property is lost , sold off. and subjected to inheritance tax, whilst if it is a company there is no inheritance tax and the heirs can still use the property as they will control the company. company tax is always lower than personal tax too.

That property will keep its value and over time increase in value. it is  inevitable, even though they keep telling u properties can go up as well as down. over a long period, it always go up.

And when we are talking of companies, the time scale is vast, we are talking of generations and it is easy to imagine that prices must go up.

 That is why the rich form companies so that their heirs can enjoy the wealth.  it will also prevent any one heir from wasting the inheritance. 

now that the football world cup is over, people will not know what to take its place. summer is here and i suppose people should be out and about and enjoying london instead of being glued to the telly.

maybe that is why the summer tv schedule is always full of repeats and is dull. 

There is no shortage of things to do in london.

Tomorrow i shall most probably go to trafalgar square and watch the 2nd opera BP sponsored showing ( it is la boheme )to the public on the big screen there. 



The slow death of Silicon Roundabout | Cities | The Guardian

10 Mar

The slow death of Silicon Roundabout | Cities | The Guardian.

this article says the silicon roundabout area (near old st tube station) which everyone thinks will be the seedbed for our own high tech industry is morphing away. hackney council controls the area and is approving development building student housing for the rich kids come to  studying in london and is razing the area and kicking the startups out because the reduction in office space is causing rent to rise.

i should say using the word ‘kids’ to describe the students is a misnomer. a lot of them are adults come to study in london, for eg there is a fashion school just down the road from the roundabout, london seems to be a hotbed for students studying these things andnot just old style students learning in universities and colleges etc. in fact in nearby kings cross there is going to be a big building housing scientists, and they would need accommodation. 

i have noticed another student high rise being built right next to the plaza hotel in that roundabout south of westminster bridge. at the time i had wondered is it that lucrative to build  new high rise solely to house students? where is the money in that? because to my mind students are the poor. but it seems in london, students are rich. haha. they come from overseas. and i have a feeling that even if that bubble bursts the new housing will be in demand from others , because it is so central. studio style housing will be in huge demand … it is like a modern version of bedsits.  i was also thinking once the students are on summer holiday, their rooms can be let out to tourists for the summer. a win-win all round.

I have a feeling that the silicon roundabout area is the victim of its own success. like gay old compton st, when it became popular with us gays, the landlords came in and raise the rent and priced out all the gay businesses that started there. in this area, with its run down 60s style flat roofed buildings it is ripe for redevelopment with high rise. and the silicon roundabout hoohaa simply brings that area to the attention of property developers.  Soon, if not allready , there will be no area of london not ripe for such development, and even the most run down areas in central london will be desireable places to live. 

added.11.3.14 another viewpoint on the same subject.