I am starting a new category on PooterGeek: “Mad As A House”. This will be for the looniest reality-denying tales of British property market craziness I read online. Here’s my first example.
You know those “money surgery” type articles they have in the weekend broadsheets where some thirtysomething media drone living in London on £28K pa asks a panel of financial advisers how she can take a year out from doing the photocopying for a design consultancy in Wardour Street to “find herself” in Ulan Bator, clear her £20 000 credit card bill, buy a house, and retire at the age of fifty? (Then they all stroke their jaws in an effort to hold back their hysterical laughter before suggesting that Bridget might start by cashing in the £25 she has saved as Premium Bonds to offset some of her unsecured debt and putting aside some money for when she comes into work one day to find her colour-coded Pentels have been swept into a black bin bag and she has to go running back to mummy and daddy in Reigate.) Well, this week’s Independent has an absolute doozy:
Fauzia Begum, 18, receptionist
Personal: Currently taking a year out before starting at King’s College London next year. Working as a receptionist to increase savings.
Savings: £3,000 in cash ISA.
Debts: Annual student loan of £6,170. Receiving a grant of £2,700 and a King’s bursary of £1,350.
Mortgage: She is hoping to purchase a property in the near future, either for her own occupation or on a buy-to-let basis.
La la la la la.
Meanwhile, in Manhattan, “real estate” prices fall 13 percent in one quarter.
[Thanks to the Motley Fool’s “Property Markets and Trends” discussion board, which is getting more interesting by the month.]
[And, before the emails and comments start, I’d just like apologise to anyone reading this who really does work for a design consultancy in Wardour Street and has parents living in Reigate. I just make this shit up, okay?]
…how she can take a year out from doing the photocopying for a design consultancy in Wardour Street to “find herself” in Ulan Bator, clear her £20 000 credit card bill, buy a house, and retire at the age of fifty?
It’s easy. Tell her to take 20 years out instead of 1, and go to Dubai or Doha instead of Ulan Bator.
Its still better than the ‘money problems’ columns where someone says they have £70,000 in a mixture of accounts and are worried that they could be getting .01% more interest if they moved it around.
I always want to shout “You have seventy grand stashed away. You don’t have money probems!”
I was thinking about Peter Mandelson this morning, and his situation back then, before it all kicked off.
Part-time spin doctor and constituency MP, not married (no kids yet), on a Cabinet Minister’s salary. Required to maintain a token presence in constituency, and keep an office there, but really really wants to buy a f*cking mansion in a trendy part of London, in order to, you know, feel like a success. But although the bank will lend him a little bit of the money he needs but does not have, he’s still £373,000 short.