Housing market is losing momentum, Nationwide says

housing market1 Housing market is losing momentum, Nationwide saysNationwide said house price inflation slowed to 9.0% in October on an annual basis, down from 9.4% in September

House price growth is continuing to show signs of slowing down, according to the UK’s second biggest mortgage lender.

Nationwide said house price inflation slowed to 9.0% in October on an annual basis, down from 9.4% in September.

Indicators suggest the market has “lost momentum”, it said.

The trend may continue in the near term, especially in London, Nationwide added.

Monthly house prices rose by 0.5% in October, taking the average house price up to £189,333.

However, Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, said: “A variety of indicators suggest that the market has lost momentum.

“The number of mortgages approved for house purchase in September was almost 20% below the level prevailing at the start of the year,” he said.

Despite the gradual slowdown in house price growth, the broader economic outlook remains positive, Nationwide said.

‘Irrational Exuberance’

The figures are the third piece of evidence this week which suggest a cooling of the UK housing market.

Yesterday the Bank of England said that the number of mortgages being approved had fallen to its lowest level in 14 months.

The Land Registry said that house prices in England and Wales had fallen during September, for the first time in nearly a year.

The Land Registry figures include cash sales, which can be a third of the market.

The Nationwide said tougher mortgage lending rules which began in April may be one reason for the slow-down; a fear of higher mortgage rates next year another.

Jonathan Samuels, chief executive of Dragonfly Property Finance, said the “irrational exuberance” in the market appeared to have subsided.

“The new lending rules introduced earlier in the year clearly triggered a slowdown, but since then I suspect some good old-fashioned common sense has also played a role,” he added.

Original Article Posted by the BBC

Charles Dickens’s former home gets a £3.1 million revamp and reopens to the public.

The former home of Charles Dickens will reopen to the public today after undergoing a £3.1 million revamp to give the impression that the great author has just “stepped outside”

Charles Dickens House Charles Dickenss former home gets a £3.1 million revamp and reopens to the public.

The Charles Dickens Museum, in Bloomsbury, central London, was the family home of the 19th century genius between 1837 and 1839.

Visitors will be able to tour the house where he wrote Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby and finished writing The Pickwick Papers, stripped as far as possible of modern additions and restored to its original condition.

The Great Expectations project, funded largely through the Heritage Lottery Fund, has also restored neighbouring 49 Doughty Street to include a visitor and learning centre and a cafe, welcoming regular school trips for the first time.

Visitors will be able to tour Dickens’s dining room, complete with place names for famous visitors such as William Macready, the great Shakespearean actor of the time, and to see Dickens’s marriage licence.

His original writing desk and his reading desk, which he designed himself, are among a series of items and documents on display.

The museum includes photographs on display to the public for the first time of the 1865 railway accident in Staplehurst, Kent, in which Dickens was involved.

It will also include costumes from the recent film adaptation of Great Expectations, including Helena Bonham Carter’s Miss Havisham and Ralph Fiennes’s Magwitch costumes.

The redesign, which opens the attic and kitchen of the house for the first time, has transformed the museum, first opened in 1925, from being viewed by visitors as “atmospheric but tired and slightly shabby” to reflecting the house in its original state, director Florian Schweizer said.

The reopening comes in the year that marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Dickens in Portsmouth, Hampshire.

Brits still not switched on to energy saving, shows new study.

saving energy Brits still not switched on to energy saving, shows new study.Despite ever-increasing fuel costs, the British public just can’t seem to get motivated on energy saving, regardless of our good intentions. According to a new study, while 94% of us say we want to become more energy efficient, only 37% of us currently rate ourselves as such – and it’s the basics that are still eluding us.

 

 

With energy costs at an all-time high and four of the ‘big six’ energy firms putting up their prices again this week, it is surprising to learn that 40% of us still leave the heating on all day and a third of us leave windows and doors open when the central heating is on.

 

Two thirds of people say they leave the TV on when they’re not in the room and almost half leave it on standby overnight, while 63% leave their mobile charging all night. Almost half of those asked say they still leave the tap running unnecessarily when brushing their teeth or washing up.

 

Although rising energy prices are quoted as being one of the biggest concerns for UK homeowners, almost a fifth of us still don’t have energy saving light bulbs, 29% overfill the kettle when boiling it, and only 46% of us would use extra layers of clothing or blankets when it gets cold instead of turning up the heating.

 

The study, which was conducted by Anglian Home Improvements to mark Big Energy Saving Week (22-27 October 2012), found that 40% of us still don’t have energy efficient windows or doors, even though around 30% of a home’s heat is lost through windows and doors, and only 44% of us have an energy efficient boiler.

 

Yet 82% of people say if they could make one simple change to become energy efficient they would, and 88% say that if making that change would be guaranteed to save them money over the next five years, they would do it.

 

TV presenter and environmental science expert Philippa Forrester has championed environmental issues for many years. She says, “In light of the latest news about rising energy costs, heating our homes and using electricity is going to cost us more and more. How high do prices need to get before we think about making fundamental changes to the energy efficiency of our homes? We can all stop money leaking out of our roofs, windows and doors and by reducing our energy consumption, we’re also reducing our bills and our carbon emissions, so we should all try to make it a top priority. Saving energy and saving money – it’s a win-win situation.”

 

Melanie McDonald, Head of Marketing and Communications at Anglian Home Improvements, says, “The cost of running a household is radically increasing due to rising energy prices and food inflation. So as we head into the winter months and energy consumption increases, it’s more important than ever for people to look at ways they can improve their energy efficiency. There are lots of quick, easy things we can all do straight away and there are also many ways in which homeowners can improve the efficiency of their property for the longer term. Installing the best thermal windows on the market, for instance, will ensure they get the maximum return on investment and benefit for many years to come.”

 

Anglian Home Improvements is an Energy Saving Trust Recommended supplier and offers a broad selection of stylish and energy efficient products, including windows, doors conservatories, roof trim, solar panels and much more. For more information and to view the full product range, visit www.anglianhome.co.uk.

Amy Winehouse’s Property For Sale

amy winehouse11 Amy Winehouses Property For SaleIt’s a three-bedroom semi in Camden Square… with CCTV, security gate, a decent garden for such a central location (although it’s a pity so much of the grass has been concreted over) and the sad and somewhat macabre distinction of being the location Amy Winehouse was found dead last year.

amy winehouse2 Amy Winehouses Property For Sale

House Network describe the property as a substantial and impressive three double bedroom, three reception room semi detached period villa with well-proportioned private front and rear gardens, directly overlooking Camden Square and its communal gardens.

Having only changed hands once in over 40 years it has undergone major structural and cosmetic refurbishment retaining many original features with modern upgrades including, new electrical and heating systems, integrated sound system, CCTV and magnetically secured front gate and an impressive Master Suite with vaulted ceiling. The property measures approximately 2,500ft2.

amy winehouse3 Amy Winehouses Property For Sale

There had been rumours that the villa in Camden Square, north-west London, could be turned into the headquarters for the Amy Winehouse Foundation, a charity set up to support causes close to the singer’s heart.

The Sun reported a family spokesman as saying: “The Winehouses have decided to put the house on the market, with great regret. Amy loved that house but none of the family felt it appropriate that they should live in it.

“It was not practical to keep it empty while paying for its upkeep. It is a wonderful place and will be a happy family home for someone.”

The house is currently on the market for £2,699,950 , selling agents are “the house network” and can be contacted on 0845 199 1000. Additional particulars can be found here.

Cristiano Ronaldo Home Up For Sale

Cristiano Ronaldo Selling His UK Home

Cristiano Ronaldo Home1 Cristiano Ronaldo Home Up For Sale

A palace fit for a WAG: Cristiano Ronaldo puts his £5m home up for sale

He’s left Manchester United behind, but Cristiano Ronaldo is still looking for a buyer for his £5million mansion.The player, who recently made an £80million move to Real Madrid, bought the home for Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo Home Up For Sale£4million just 18 months ago. But, despite the slump, the 24-year-old is hoping to make another £1million when it sells.

And who could be a better occupant of the huge three-storey Cheshire home than another footballer?

Manchester City’s new player Carlos Tevez, 25, is said to be very interested in the home, which comes complete with a private pool.

The £150,000-a-week Argentinian has already taken a look around the sprawling five-bedroom property, which stands on acres of prime land.

House for sale with pool Cristiano Ronaldo Home Up For Sale

The house features a pool, jacuzzi, sauna and steam room.

A source told the Daily Star: ‘It is an absolutely stunning place and has everything in it that you could possibly want in a new home.

‘If it was bought by another footballer they will be the envy of their team mates.’

Country garden Cristiano Ronaldo Home Up For Sale

Ronaldo's leaving the stunning country garden behind.