So trivial, yet it really ticks you off.

Discussion in 'The Observation Bar' started by GHT, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    19,875
    Location:
    London, UK
    The real difficulty for many affordable home in London too is that if it's not a newbuild, you can't apply for any of the help-to-buy schemes (those all end up being out in th burbs), and much of your competition are buy to let landlords. The latter tend to do very well in London, not least because they could afford to buy in Hackney or Peckham or any of these areas when they were very good investments and known to be such, but still places you wouldn't want to live, because they could afford not to have to live there.
     
  2. tonyb

    tonyb Vendor

    Messages:
    7,438
    Location:
    My mother's basement
    ^^^^^
    And those investors would be the first to tell you they “saved” the neighborhood.
     
  3. We don't have much of a public transportation system here in Houston because apparently it smacks of socialism. Which is more or less defined around as two people within shouting distance of each other.
     
    tonyb and vitanola like this.
  4. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    The Soviets built one of the finest subway systems in the world in Moscow, the Commie rats.
     
    vitanola likes this.
  5. KILO NOVEMBER

    KILO NOVEMBER Practically Family

    Messages:
    743
    Location:
    Cheapeake Bay Drainage Basin
    And the Nazis built the finest highway system in Europe. When you have slave labor, costs go way down.
     
    tonyb likes this.
  6. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Indeed.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    19,875
    Location:
    London, UK
    To be fair, they often did.... the people who wind me up are the ones who save the old neighbourhoods and then whine with faux nostalgia for what they used to be before.
     
    vitanola likes this.
  8. tonyb

    tonyb Vendor

    Messages:
    7,438
    Location:
    My mother's basement
    Saved for whom? Certainly not for the former residents whose incomes haven’t come close to keeping pace with housing costs.

    I lived in districts that those who didn’t live there often found downright scary. But, because those districts were close-in, and because changing demographics over the decades made those “inner city” neighborhoods increasingly “desirable” (read: costly), longtime residents got priced out.

    It worked out okay for me personally. The dewy-eyed bride and I sold our place for a helluva lot more than we paid for it.

    Now we live in the suburbs, because that’s where the relatively affordable housing is. And that’s where the more recent arrivals to this fair land tend to congregate. My suburban district is considerably more “diverse” than my old in-city ’hood is now.
     
    vitanola likes this.
  9. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    19,875
    Location:
    London, UK
    A lot of the areas here in London that became gentrified really were dreadul places. Not places tat were 'only scary if you're rom outside', but genuinely dreadful. Hackney was rife with crime (a main throoughfare was known as the Murder Mile for good reason), Soho was full of prostitution and drug and human trafficking. Initial stages of development made these areas pleasant places to be, and *that's* the nice bit of redevelopment - when they become nice areas. Of course that's hen the negative type of redevelopment kicks off - the newly "nice" areas are then flooded with profiteering-type reevelopment, and all the good flushed out. Notting Hill is a classic: various worthy critics sneered at the film for being unrepresentative of the "real" Notting Hill - full of white, wealthy people, no diversity - except that, by 1999, was reflective of the real Notting Hill, or much of it at least. There's a stage at which redevelopment absolutely has benefitted these areas, but it's the money grubbing that comes later that pushes people out.... and it's always those late money-grubbers who bemoan the "loss of character" when all they have is a sense of false nostalgia for the areas when they were hellholes, long before they ever knew them. It'd be a lot like somebody moving into Whitechapel now, having had rosey memories of living there as a student in 1998, and then complaining "Oh, it's not as nice as when the Krays were here."
     
    vitanola likes this.
  10. GHT

    GHT I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,764
    Location:
    New Forest
    By 1998 I was living in gentrified Wanstead, but I can tell you that I worked, in a number of locations, for the same company, between 1968 and 1977, from Aldgate to Bethnal Green and on to Bow. In all you felt the sinister touch of The Krays. One night in The Carpenters pub at Stepney, I was the worse for the grog, Con, (you never called him Cornelius,) bodily lifted me to the door, put me down and hailed a cab. Thank goodness that's all he did. Con, known as Cornelius Whitehead, one time driver for Ronnie Kray, later an enforcer for the Krays, before his falling out, went down for seven years at the gang's trial. The area had character? Some might describe it as that, depends on your definition of character.
     
    Edward likes this.
  11. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    19,875
    Location:
    London, UK
    A number of the residents of our block remember the Krays, though generally in a refreshingly objective way: they aren't shy at recognising when they or their boys did decent things, but nor are they backwards about the bad they did either. I imagnie it as abit like living in a police state - you wouldn't need to worry about your house being done over, but all the same it would take its toll being careful what you said wherever you go...
     
    vitanola likes this.
  12. tonyb

    tonyb Vendor

    Messages:
    7,438
    Location:
    My mother's basement
    "Murder Mile"? Compare homicide rates here in God's Country versus those in yours. (I'm tempted say that your country resembles a primary school in comparison, but in light of the epidemic of school shootings we've seen over here, I'll have to find a more fitting analogy.)

    Hookers were a common sight in my old neighborhood, as was fairly conspicuous drug trafficking. (The clientele, for both, was primarily people from outside the district, by the way. They don't tolerate that sort of thing in the "better" districts; it drags down property values, after all.)

    Neighborhood "desirability" is to no small degree a self-fulfilling phenomenon. People perceive, rightly or wrongly, that one district is more dangerous than another and the property values reflect that. People get the sense a district is "improving" and property values escalate. And then others smell the money, and if money is what you ain't got, well, they ain't got a place there for you anymore.

    Me, I appreciated the groups of scowling young men congregating on street corners. They helped keep the riffraff out.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  13. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    That's how I felt about the junkyard in my neighborhood. Once the owners died and it was liquidated and cleaned up, the bourgies started sniffing around the neighborhood. The house across the street from me is now for sale, and I'm desperately trying to find someone I know who can buy it. The last thing I want is a snotty retiree neighbor who's going to sneer across the street at my no-account dooryard and my overgrown bushes and my grubby driveway and complain that I'm bringing her property values down. Well, I'm doing the best I can.
     
    vitanola, tonyb and Bamaboots like this.
  14. tonyb

    tonyb Vendor

    Messages:
    7,438
    Location:
    My mother's basement
    I gotta believe that personal mobility is a primary driver in all of this. When generations of people occupied the same housing, when people stayed in the same jobs for their entire working lives, those people had something other than their money invested in the neighborhood. The monetary value of the family home was of little concern to a person who had no intention of selling the place anyway. He or she expected to live there until dragged out cold.

    And now? Now we have "reverse" mortgages. It's just another way for wealth to trickle up.
     
    Edward, vitanola and LizzieMaine like this.
  15. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Yep, and that really bothers me. I grew up on the same street where my grandfather was born, and it wasn't just a row of houses, it was a reasonably cohesive community of people -- some had lived there for generations, some had just moved in, but there was none of this attitude of a house being an "investment" that could be disposed of as casually as a stock certificate. You bought a house to live in.

    My mother still lives there, next door to her childhood best friend/worst enemy, but they're the absolute last survivors. The entire neighborhood has been undermined by speculators and "house flippers" who've turned it into something completely unrecognizable. It upsets my stomach just to drive down the street now and see what these hacks have turned it into.

    Someone tried to sell Ma a reverse mortgage, and they were lucky to escape with their life.
     
  16. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    19,875
    Location:
    London, UK
    I don't doubt it had nothing on some parts of the US. Mostly stabbings. Shootings are relatively rare in the UK, especially post-Hungerford; our gun laws are not as extreme in technical detail as commonly believed, but much of our gun crime is people being lifted for haing the gun rather than using it, which can make the statistics look odd.

    That's some thing that doesn't go away with gentrification, it's just much less visible on the surface. ;)

    The property market is certainly all smoke and mirrors - and location. The fortunes people pay to live in a really ratty bedsit in Kensington would buy a village where I'm from!

    Friends of mine rented a house in a very loyalist paramilitary area of Belfast when we were students there in the nineties - 97 thorugh 99, the era of ceasefires and the GFA, but there was still an air of danger and certainly you didn't upset your neighbours (some of whom were fresh out of long stretches inside curtailed by the peace agreement). Listening to the Pogues or even U2 could have risked a beating, but on the plusside they paid sixteen quid a week rent for both of them, and they could leae to door lying open any time knowing they'd never be burgled (even if they did suspec the place had been gone through to check them out when they first moved in as the house next door seemed to be a safe house...).
     
    vitanola likes this.
  17. tonyb

    tonyb Vendor

    Messages:
    7,438
    Location:
    My mother's basement
    I can't fault a person left with little choice but to tap into his home equity. What annoys me no end is that he is left with little choice. The next door neighbor has done exactly that (got a reverse mortgage), and for exactly that reason. Just a few days ago, as we were chatting in his driveway, he told me that he's told the kids not to expect much when he checks out.
     
    Edward and vitanola like this.
  18. GHT

    GHT I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,764
    Location:
    New Forest
    The problem is compounded by lifestyle. We are told that credit & debit cards are so much easier and safer than cash. To encourage us to stay with this company or that, loyalty cards are handed out. When I refused a loyalty card the supermarket cashier pointed out that I am missing out on their regular fuel discount. I told her that there's no such thing as a free lunch. Banks, credit cards, debit cards, loyalty cards, online purchases, social media, all build up a profile on you. They then sell copies of that profile and at the same time, fill the gaps buying copies from other companies, so that they almost know your sanitary and intimate details.

    A sharp suited salesman in my bank knew me by name, when I told him that I wasn't interested in a reverse mortgage he asked me, why be the richest corpse in the cemetery? He was almost in shock when that I told him that my wife and I both had company and state pensions, yet I was still working, almost nine years past the state retirement age. I left it there, because he might just make a note for future canvassing.
     
    Bruce Wayne and LizzieMaine like this.
  19. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Always remember that whenever the Boys offer you something for free, *you* are the product.
     
    Bruce Wayne and Edward like this.
  20. GHT

    GHT I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,764
    Location:
    New Forest
    Exactly so, Lizzie, exactly so. It's the same modus operandi for scammers, dangle the bait and wait................
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.