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General Chat Thread, The credit crunch in General; Originally Posted by chrbb Do you not think then that us people who bought our houses 25 years ago don't ...
  1. #46
    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrbb View Post
    Do you not think then that us people who bought our houses 25 years ago don't know what it's like to be broke? We only just survived financially for the first 5 years of being home owners, single income family, I couldn't work we had a child with a heart condition that only stabilised after an operation at the age of 2. We were so short of money if my husband's suit needed cleaning one month it was a financial disaster. He also went to uni one day/night a week to get a degree, eventually things got better, he was on yearly increments, got a couple of promotions and I got a job as a dinner lady at my sons local (state) school. My eldest son's just finished uni totally funded by himself and worked at the local pub to support himself, the youngest's a builder.
    So sorry don't tell me that people like me don't know what a credit crunch is as I've said before I've read the book, ate the pie, worn the t shirt. I don't care whether I'm middle classed or not, but I do know is that what we have now is down to sheer hard work over the years and therefore ours to enjoy, hopefully without being 'mocked' about being middle classed.
    chrbb....at what point did i say those who bought their houses years ago have never experienced a credit crunch.....i'll point you to what i actually said.

    sure i accept everyone has felt the credit crunch pinch, but some people are uniquely positioned to cope with it due mainly to when they bought property

    what is exactly wrong with what i've said....are you seriously suggesting that people who bought years ago and managed to weather the previous storms and who stuck with being home-owners despite high interest rates, haven't reaped the rewards of high employment, low interest rates and the soaring value of their main asset over the last 8 years ? My point is that they aren't as affected by this credit crunch we are currently experiencing mainly because of the nice decade offering this buffer for the 40-somethings and baby boomers.

    i may be mocking the a certain section of the middle-classes, and for that i probably deserve a slap on the wrist for generalizing, but i've never believed that they've always had it easy....far from it. The old stories of high interest rates, strikes and having to live above a kebab house i hear from parents/work colleagues whenever i whine about the cost of buying a house.

  2. #47
    chrbb's Avatar
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    soaring value of their main asset over the last 8 years
    That's only of any use if you are selling up and not buying another property, everything's relative.

    i may be mocking the a certain section of the middle-classes, and for that i probably deserve a slap on the wrist for generalizing
    I have no doubt life isn't a bed of roses for you witch, but next time you sit down at your piano with your IT expert husband (in his doubtless well paid job) you should spare a thought for people who've been priced out of the housing market....they are the real victims of the credit crunch, not the dual income home-owners who bought pre-2006. This govt. has for too long tried to woo middle england, for fear of upsetting them and losing their vote...as a result they have left house prices go unchecked, i think it's time really to focus on young couples and first-time buyers rather than worry about middle england seeing the value of their homes drop a few percent. What i see around me and the sandal-wearing piano players comment, masks a serious point about social mobility, or the lack of it.
    Why such a dislike for what you refer to as middle class? Do you actually know what 'middle classed' is? You're not mixing it up with 'middle aged' are you?

    Your preconceived image of a middle class household is classic

    Husband and wife happily playing the piano together in their large palatial house.
    More like snatching a couple of minutes together when one half finally gets home after a 100 mile round trip from the office and the other one is dealing with meals, kids and all matters family and house wise, or maybe one half is working away again and is away all week, bit tough to play the piano together in that senario.

  3. #48
    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrbb View Post
    That's only of any use if you are selling up and not buying another property, everything's relative.





    Why such a dislike for what you refer to as middle class? Do you actually know what 'middle classed' is? You're not mixing it up with 'middle aged' are you?

    Your preconceived image of a middle class household is classic

    Husband and wife happily playing the piano together in their large palatial house.
    More like snatching a couple of minutes together when one half finally gets home after a 100 mile round trip from the office and the other one is dealing with meals, kids and all matters family and house wise, or maybe one half is working away again and is away all week, bit tough to play the piano together in that senario.
    so what then ? The piano is just for show ? How middle-class AND middle-aged is that

    We're a single income household with young child, and i was ready and willing to put down over half my net income on monthly mortgage payments a year ago before i was beaten to the bell by a property speculator on a perfect starter family home....what's relative about the value of property is that a mortgage taken out 8 years ago on ANY property in most parts of the country is much more manageable than a mortgage taken out to purchase even the smallest of homes in the last 2 years by anyone with a 5 or 10% deposit.

    A decent sized was property was sold near to me for 65k in 2001, with 5% deposit the mortgage would have been just around 60k at the interest rate of the time which wasn't high....today that property is worth three times that, most homes in the area start at 140k minimum if you're lucky....

    it doesn't matter that those people who bought years ago don't sell there house to cash in, they've got a very manageable/modest mortgage and if they are a two income household then it's a piece of p*** quite frnakly....

    A 130-140k mortgage for a two income household with kids is a manageable commitment, if one of the earners were to become redundant they would still have managed - it would have been tight while there was a single income,

    but how many people who bought 8+ years ago have 130-140k mortgage commitments ?....in 1998 140k would have bought you something truly palatial....at that time i remember a friend of my fathers struglling to sell a huge 5 bed period property in a desirable area, his asking price was 90-95k from what i remember because 95k was a lot of money to buy a house back then...what can you get for 90k these days.

    Last year we as a family were prepared to take out a 110k mortgage and had a decent deposit and that was on a single income, and we would have found a way to cope....but if that was a middle-class, middle-aged occasional piano player, they'd whine about needing a second income. How many people who bought 8+ years ago have that kind of mortgage commitment remaining even with two incomes ? If they do, i'd like to know what on earth they bought, but more importantly why they haven't paid the bulk of it off - especially with two incomes.

    As for the 100 mile round trip, that's a choice you make, doesn't mean you don't find the time for a bit for tinkling on the ivories, making dinner AND playing with the kids. But someone who bought 8+ years ago doesn't need to make that trip, they can take a job closer to home, they're mortgage commitments can't be that huge and they have the buffer of the second income to find a different job. If they have massive mortgage commitments, and they shouldn't have if they bought at anywhere near market value, then they should downsize....

  4. #49
    chrbb's Avatar
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    Last year we as a family were prepared to take out a 110k mortgage and had a decent deposit and that was on a single income, and we would have found a way to cope....but if that was a middle-class, middle-aged occasional piano player, they'd whine about needing a second income.
    What a load of rubbish - you obviously didn't read my post then we were a single income family for 9 years, I then got a job as a dinner lady earning £12.00 a week - hardly 2 incomes Since then I have only worked part time my family are my priority, my salary doesn't even cover our weekly food bill.

    But someone who bought 8+ years ago doesn't need to make that trip, they can take a job closer to home, they're mortgage commitments can't be that huge and they have the buffer of the second income to find a different job.
    Industry has changed over the last 10 years, particually the railway industry, you go where the work is, if it means travelling and not uprooting kids during vital exam years then thats what you do.

    making dinner
    In my house we call it tea are you sure you're not really a closet middle class person because thats quite a middle class expression

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    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrbb View Post
    What a load of rubbish - you obviously didn't read my post then we were a single income family for 9 years, I then got a job as a dinner lady earning £12.00 a week - hardly 2 incomes Since then I have only worked part time my family are my priority, my salary doesn't even cover our weekly food bill.



    Industry has changed over the last 10 years, particually the railway industry, you go where the work is, if it means travelling and not uprooting kids during vital exam years then thats what you do.

    In my house we call it tea are you sure you're not really a closet middle class person because thats quite a middle class expression
    teas what we used to have when we got home from school when we were kids.....waffles, smiley faces that type of thing as mum did most of her shopping at iceland, so no, not very middle class. sainsburys was considered posh in our house when we were young....

    the point about dual incomes was not specifically aimed at you, but dual incomes has been the norm for the middle classes in past decade except in exceptional circumstances such as yours....or tends to be culturally specific.

    in most instances the childcare system is geared up to allow both partners to be in full-time employment.

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    I like Sainsburys - it keeps the riff raff out of Waitrose

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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    teas what we used to have when we got home from school when we were kids.....waffles, smiley faces that type of thing ..
    Rock on, that man. I recall it well. Can we go back to those day? I liked them.

  8. #53

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    Thank you chrrb - you have said pretty much everything
    I do think that the current situation re house prices is appalling and I am very sorry for anyone starting out today. Do remember, Torledo, that people like chrrb and I have children who willl soon be looking for somewhere to live - and frankly with salaries/bills etc as they are, we just don't have the money to help them on to the property ladder.
    What annoys me is that you seem to think that we are smug about what we have. We also worked very hard to get where we are -as I am sure you do - and I know that the current housing market makes it very difficult for you - more so than in our day - but it wasn't a bed of roses. You seem to hate us because we did find it slighlty easier to buy a house than you - but that isn't our fault, is it?
    And what DO you have against the middle classes? I went to a grammar because that's what the education was where I come from (and still is, actually). My children go to comprehensive school as we have a very very good one here - as well as good grammar schools, it has to be said. But I am not keen on selective education, as I am a good left-of-centre, Independent reading person.
    I learned the piano when young because my family are very musical and we all play and sing. My piano is indeed a second hand 'church hall' model and I do only play it occasionally as my main instrument is the French Horn.
    My husband is reasonably well paid, but worked hard to get where he is, making the decision to leave hardware (he started as a test engineer) because he could see what was happening in the industry. But he works 75 miles away and has to commute for nearly 2 hours each way EVERY day as there is nothing around here at any salary.
    So - I think you need to stop and think about why you are so insulting to a group of people who mostly worked hard to get where they are.
    I am middle class by definition (I eat dinner!) and proud of it but my dad was the son of an engine driver and clawed his way upwards himself.
    As I said, I do see how the housing problem is a huge issue (although as chrrb pointed out, having a house worth a lot of money means nothing if you arent selling) but the rest of it.....

    As for the childcare system: Unless you have an INCREDIBLY well paid job, most people I know have found that once you have more than one child, it is not worth it to put them in childcare, and so that is why many 'middle class' families have one parent doing Classroom assistant/dinner lady type work.
    Of course at the 'top end' of the middle class, there are many people with two incomes, but that is far above most of us.
    Last edited by witch; 10th June 2008 at 10:05 PM.

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    chrbb (10th June 2008)

  10. #54
    somabc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrbb View Post
    In my house we call it tea are you sure you're not really a closet middle class person because thats quite a middle class expression
    Well traditionally the evening meal has been called several things.

    (from the book - Amazon.co.uk: Watching the English: The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour: Kate Fox: Books

    * If you call it "tea", and eat it at around half past six, you are almost certainly working class or of working class origin. (If you have a tendency to personalize the meal, calling it "my tea", "our/us tea" and "your tea" - as in "I must be going home for my tea", "what's for us tea, love?" or "Come back to mine for your tea" - you are probably northern working class.)

    * If you call the evening meal "dinner", and eat it at around seven o'clock, you are probably lower-middle or middle-middle class.

    * If you normally only use the term "dinner" for rather more formal evening meals, and call your informal, family evening meal "supper" (pronounced "suppah"), you are probably upper-middle or upper class. The timing of these meals tends to be more flexible, but a family "supper" is generally eaten at around half past seven, while a "dinner" would usually be later, from half past eight onwards.

  11. #55
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    Well there you go then I'm working class, we have tea in our house

    @Torledo
    Sorry to spoil any stereotyping that middle aged home owners with husbands, pianos, two incomes (although one may be a tenth of the other) and a pair of flip flops is middle class.
    You've made assumptions on a particular group of people based on what you'd like to believe, everyone's circumstances are unique and life's difficult enough as it is without someone bemoaning what they haven't got and they perceive you to have.
    Last edited by chrbb; 10th June 2008 at 06:42 PM.

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    working class too..

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    * If you normally only use the term "dinner" for rather more formal evening meals, and call your informal, family evening meal "supper" (pronounced "suppah"), you are probably upper-middle or upper class.
    Well there you have it...I'm upper-middle or upper class

    Which must be right as the credit crunch doesn't effect me I have no debt/mortgage/credit everything I own is paid for including my house.

    My opinion...the people today just starting out are no worse off than I was when I started out.

    Me, wife, baby lived with my parents in 1 room until we got a council house.
    I worked 6 days a week, wife worked 4 hours each night as a cleaner ( no child care vouchers in them days all we got was free cheese and butter from the EU mountains).

    Still needed 3x my wage + 1x wifeís wage + 10% deposit to get a £20000 mortgage to buy a basic 2 bed terrace. Every penny we had went on "living" extras like a new TV etc were bought with money made doing "homers" at night - used to be a mechanic so always a pound to made at night .

    Now 25 years on...everythingís paid. I just packed this job in to go back to being a mechanic @£21k a 7k increase. Wifeís worked herself in to a nice $23k council job. Kids are up and one has left home and we have money to burn...even after just spending £4500 cash on a new toy - Honda VFR VTEC

    Donít you for one moment think it wasnít hard getting this far, struggling to find £1 to buy a leccy card, living on turkey twizlers and beans, first holiday we had was when the baby (mentioned above) was 15. ....you people today donít know what tough is!!! If you cant manage on one wage then quit your boohooing and get 2 jobs. Live on food from farmfoods/iceland, walk, no holidays, no mobile, in fact no phone at all, no sky tv, no nights out, use second hand shops for clothes/kids toys etc etc

    Iím afraid any one caught by the credit crunch gets no sympathy from me. You should have seen it coming, I did!!

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    EeEk, you really haven't got a clue of what it's like for the rest of us. £20k on a 2 bed council house mortgage isn't the real world, and doesn't sound very tough to me. People just starting out are now looking at £180k+ for a 2 bed terrace and last time I checked that wasn't achievable by taking a 2nd job anywhere.

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    I think that 20K 25 years ago gybe78

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    EeEK - while I do in some ways agree, I disagree on your "no worse off"...house prices are that insane now that as I say - I'll rent until the proce bombs, then consider my options...right now, even with Jem and I working and on the same wage (which isn't staggering for either of us), we'd have no hope in raising a mortgage.

    As to the rest - I do agree. We iceland every fortnight (great value for freezer), Holidays - no (unless it's a family wales week using the Sun offer..heh..), mobiles yes, but PAYG..£10/month if that, no fancy TV (just a £13 freeview box, that barely works), no nights out...take the bus, walk if we can (i'm limited in that regard), shop local, look for bargains (like the veg in a box scheme, and buying from our butcher..FAR cheaper than even Tesco)..electric is watched religiously..no standby in my house, everything off or timer based, all lights are the £3 for multipack 9w CFLs..and most of our furniture/electrical kit is second hand or seriously cheap argos wonder.

    About the only thing that's annoying me is fuel costs..which is why I'm switching to the bus. The weekly shop last week for the first time using the local bits came to £25..for more and better than we could get in Tesco (usually about £40). Electric is a tenner a fortnight or so, gas is a fiver a fortnight.

    I really do try and see how far it can be pushed..it's a challenge. We have a phone..but 95% of the cost of that is the line rental..sigh..that annoys me.

    Still..I look at my brother who buys brand name everything, expensive everything...even looked at his accounts (mum's an accountant)..he's always in debt..and I smile. I've never been in debt..I don't intend to be either (except for a possible mortgage in the distant future maybe). I can't say as I feel i'm living a lower standard of life either..we were debating this last night.

    It's true what you say - look at our grandparents...mine still say "make do and mend", and are incredibly reluctant to spend money unless there really is no other option..people could learn a lot from the older generation (no offence to anyone).

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