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ProDave last won the day on December 15 2017

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About ProDave

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  • Birthday 09/03/1963

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    Scottish Highlands

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  1. Uni Lecturer's Strike

    I am a bit like Jeremy in that I started out in what I thought was job for life, with, as it happens, a decent pension scheme. That didn't happen. The government of the day decided to close down the industry I was in. There was a vain attempt to turn it into a commercial enterprise and privatise it. I stuck that out through the early stages of the process which saw me doing a completely different job that I did not enjoy, and I could see the writing on the wall, so as soon as I found alternative employment I baled out. The rather fortunate part of that was my pension got frozen as a deferred pension in that original scheme. It was not long after I left that the privatisation happened and that came with a transfer of your pension into a new fund that was supposed to be "no worse" than the original. I still know couple of people who went with the privatisation, and as a result have lost roughly half their pension, if you are interested google AEAT pension scandal.
  2. Uni Lecturer's Strike

    What most people never take into account is the huge savings in outgoings when you retire. I know many people on half salary pensions who are now so much better off when retired then they ever were when working. So arguably aiming for 50% salary in retirement is too much. The other great pension imbalance is the different ages between private pensions and the state pension. I can get my personal pensions so much earlier, but have to wait longer for the state pension. I do not want to work until state pension age. So I am working around this little conundrum by putting one of my pensions into drawdown. I will start drawing it at age 60 and draw it at a much higher rate that you would normally, with the aim it will run dry on the day my state pension starts to pay. My state pension and my other DB pensions will then be plenty. I think it is a fact that not enough people put much planning into pensions, and I am just lucky that I started work at age 16 with an employer with a very good (some call them gold plated) DB scheme, and paying in was not optional so I was contributing from age 16.
  3. SIPS Garden Office for 3k?

    You would definitely need PP to keep that as a holiday let. We "negotiated" to keep ours after the build. Initially the planners were only going to give temporary PP for the static 'van, which is their standard policy. When I pointed out that on the day of completion, I could remove the 'van from the site, and then immediately replace it with an identical one in an identical location, and it would qualify as a garden outbuilding under permitted development, they then changed the planning permission to "habitational use of the caravan shall cease upon occupation of the house" So while I can lawfully keep my static 'van as a studio and workshop, I cannot let it. That would require PP which would be unlikely to be granted.
  4. The 4KW WBS is keeping our static 'van warm, and keep on chopping wood for it is keeping me warm.
  5. Like on an ordinary thread, there is a link to "go to first unread post" On a PM I can only ever open it at the start. On a long PM you have to wait for it to load, then select the last page, which opens at the top, then scroll down. Is there any way to add a button to "go to first unread post" in a PM to make it easier?
  6. If we are only talking of acoustic insulation between floors I would just cut the required hole in it to be safe. It's only where it is heat insulation and a VCL that downloght become a pain.
  7. SIPS Garden Office for 3k?

    It looks a bit like this
  8. Graven Hill - Custom Build Site

    I thought one of the reasons given for the "golden brick" thing is it was the only way to supply services to the plot VAT free. Personally I would rather have a bit more freedom and pay the VAT on the services.
  9. There is similar nonsense in Scotland. I had to have a partial soakaway then discharge into the burn. The soakaway bit had to be 10 metres from the burn, even though what came out of it went directly into the burn. It would have made a lot more sense to me to install a larger soakaway going right up to the edge of the burn, but that was not allowed......
  10. I have located the sales particulars. It looks a good plot BUT it shows a packaged treatment plant right in the corner of the plot. Someone more familliar with English building regs might comment, but here in Scotland, the treatment plant must be 5 metres from a building and 5 metres from a boundary. You need a proper accurate plan to see if that can be achieved (it it's applicable in England) without moving or reducing the size of the house. Start by taking a long surveyors tape measure and measure the plot to see if it is the size they say it is. Once you have the treatment plant, it will have to discharge it's treated water somewhere. If that is to a land soakaway then that could take up a lot of land, depending on the percolation test results. It will be certain there is not space on the plot to accommodate that. So your options are a soakaway under the paddock behind, or to the nearby watercourse. Both will require the permission of the owner of that paddock. Life would be simple if it turns out the paddock owner is the vendor of the plot. This issue is critical to building the house. No drainage = no house, it is that simple. So any offer should be conditional on resolving this, and do NOT exchange contracts until you have a legally binding solution (e.g a legal wayleave to lay a soakaway under the paddock or lay a pipe to the stream) Also, if the paddock is owned by someone other than the vendor, you provably will have to pay the owner for such permission. This is something your solicitor needs to sort out properly. I have not looked yet at the planning file to see if this is mentioned. It might not be. Remember it is perfectly possible to get planning permission for a house that you cannot actually build.
  11. Uni Lecturer's Strike

    If you had signed up to a decent final salary pension scheme and someone wanted to force a change upon you that would result in a significantly lower pension, would you just say "yes okay then" or do you think you might be a little upset?
  12. Things that spring to mind Generally you cannot build within 6 metres of overhead lines and when building between 6 and 9M from them you have to take precautions re scaffold and diggers etc. If you can't get the buildings that far from the lines you will have to pay to have them moved our put underground. On a small plot like that as already noted, drainage may be your problem. First check if mains drainage is available, if so how far away and get a price for the connection. Likewise a mains water supply. If there is no mains drainage you won't manage on a plot that small. Find out if the vendor owns the adjacent land, if so seek a legal wayleave to install all or part of the drainage, including soakaway under his land. If the land is poor draining you may be able to discharge to the stream but will need permission from the land owner to lay a pipe to get there. Check for planning conditions about bats, newts, contamination surveys, archaeological surveys etc that will add cost and make things slower.
  13. I assume the dowside of this is you would have to have a smart meter. It certainly looks interesting, I am sure in a well insulated house you can avoid using much in the expensive period, the difficult one would be cooking if you cook by electricity.
  14. My Nightmare Heating System

    One thing I noticed in the picture of the HM box is the "boiler demand" is not connected. The boiler demand would in this case normally turn on a circulating pump and possibly open a motorised valve to allow heat to go from the tank tot he UFH.
  15. My Nightmare Heating System

    I have always thought these grants and renewable initiatives only benefit the installers who can charge such a premium because they are the ones holding a special ticket to allow them to claim the subsidy.