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 Post subject: There is no hope
PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:26 pm 
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In the dim mists of days bygone, one used to read the leaders of the great broadsheets and nod in appreciation of their sagacity and wisdom, confident that, whatever else was wrong with the world, at least here were a group of writers that knew what they were talking about.

And yes, I know, this probably harps back to a time that never existed and I am looking back through rose-tinted mists to an era alongside Bobbies you could trust, red Routemasters that you could hop on and off, trains that ran on time … er …

View full article here

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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 3:02 pm 
Where the info on how much 'pollution' your home emits goes, one may be sure that a 'carbon tax' on the 'least efficient homes' will follow.

More intrustion on another level of our lives from this monstorous political construct and once again deafening silence from the media.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 8:31 am 
The British "gold plating" of the directive is mostly evident in the requirement for an energy certificate (inter alia) BEFORE a property may be offered for sale.

Here in France the certificate is normally provided just before the equivalent of completion of the contract, at the same time as the obligatory asbestos, termite and electrical reports. The purchaser has a right to renegotiate or rescind the contract if the reports are significantly negative.

The reports are no more useful (or less useless?) than the UK version but the cost is only incurred if the property is actually sold and there is no delay in putting the property on the market.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 8:37 am 
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Alec in France wrote:
The British "gold plating" of the directive is mostly evident in the requirement for an energy certificate (inter alia) BEFORE a property may be offered for sale.

Here in France the certificate is normally provided just before the equivalent of completion of the contract, at the same time as the obligatory asbestos, termite and electrical reports. The purchaser has a right to renegotiate or rescind the contract if the reports are significantly negative.

The reports are no more useful (or less useless?) than the UK version but the cost is only incurred if the property is actually sold and there is no delay in putting the property on the market.


Thanks ... I'll pick that up in another post. Wouldn't it be helpful if the MSM could tell us these things!

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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 1:36 pm 
As a salesperson who deals with energy-efficient homes, I see the primary conflict of this legislation as the clash it creates with the desire of each shire and region to protect the "historical architecture." How can builders and well-intentioned homeowners be expected to comply with this directive while building with concrete blocks and red tile roofs? My company, Deltec Homes, offers a circular home that can be built in half the time of conventional construction and has been proven to perform 30-50% better on average. But the poor bloke trying to get a permit to build his little round house gets laughed at and rejected because it doesn't look like the rest of the homes there. Ridiculous. The intention of this directive must be grasped at the local level first to effectively elicit change.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 2:56 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:17 pm
Posts: 1384
The story of HIPs is a bit more complicated than gold-plating Directive 2002/91/EC.

It started in 1997 with a Labour Party commitment to take measures to stop gazumping. Basically some kind of seller's pack was on the cards from the time Labour took office. They were supposed to include a report on the state of the property, deeds, etc. That really wasn't a flier. Buyer's are naturally disinclined to rely on information from sellers, so they were going to do their own searches and surveys anyway. All that was left was the Energy Performance Certificate. The training of inspectors for HIPs wasn't thought through, and although some thousands were trained, a severe shortage was obvious - this for something which was supposed to speed up property purchase. When sections of the scheme were shelved, it left a lot of annoyed would-be inspectors.

The problem is that when buying a house, energy efficiency is very low on the list of criteria for most people. In any case, surveyors could easily have been trained to do the work and produced an Energy Performance Certificate along with the valuation or survey, which is produced before the property is sold. All the EPCs are is a resented additional expense, no one wants. Delivering them via HIPs makes the problem worse.

So what we have is an over-elaborate, unpopular and impractical Nu Labour scheme , which has basically failed, but they won't admit it, and is only propped up by the EU directive. There'd be cheaper and more satisfactory ways to comply with the directive anyway. I'd say the continued existence of HIPs has more to do with the refusal to accept that a cherished scheme was a disaster than the EU directive.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:26 am 
One would think that the opportunity to "scoop" papers on how poorly they report the doings of the EU would be a ticket to fame for a competitor. After all, the general sense is that however we may despise the MSM, they do a fair job of reporting what is out there to report. But such is not the case, especially when one does not know what one does not know. So it would seem timely that an expose (read: ex-poh-zay) should be done. Do you think any of the papers seem up for it? Perhaps a series of columns focusing on just that by Booker? Just offering suggestions. The tree seems ripe for the picking.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:17 am 
RN: "The purchaser has a right to renegotiate or rescind the contract if the reports are significantly negative."

Is that really true? The buyer can abrogate his obligations under the sale contract if he doesn't like the EPC?

If so that is even worse than the UK. Where you have full disclosure, the EPC presented for scrutiny before the contract is signed.

Frankly, if we have to have the damn things, the UK system seems much preferable.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 10:21 am 
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Guest wrote:
RN: "The purchaser has a right to renegotiate or rescind the contract if the reports are significantly negative."

Is that really true? The buyer can abrogate his obligations under the sale contract if he doesn't like the EPC?

If so that is even worse than the UK. Where you have full disclosure, the EPC presented for scrutiny before the contract is signed.

Frankly, if we have to have the damn things, the UK system seems much preferable.


From what I understand, the French treat them with the same disdain that we afford them. I can't think that anyone who wanted a property would be put off by a meaningless certificate. And, with or without a certificate, a UK buyer can pull out at any stage prior to the signing.

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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 10:53 am 

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Seeing as how the ex-Torygraph is the "house" paper of the ex-Tory party and that Mr Booker constantly points out, in the Sunday edition that F**k Up Central, aka the EU commission, is behind such lunacies, one has to conclude that this is not ignorance, laziness or stupidity, it is down to the Green Tosser not doing Europe. That the FT or the Grauniad, would willfully ignore the EU's role is a given, but the ex-torygraph has no such excuse, it also used to delight in exposeing the EU's dread hand, which also makes such poor reporting even more illogical. It is also devalueing itself to it's own readers, who know darn well where HIP's come from.

So if this is the case, it says a great deal about how the Green Tosser would govern and none of it is good.


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 Post subject: Re: telegraph's elephantiasis
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:18 pm 
For me not the least striking aspect of that item on HIPs in yesterday's Sunday Telegraph which failed to mention the EU requirement for an Energy Performance Certificate (explicitly called for in the directive as a measure to combat 'global warming') was that I have been 'banging on' about this in the same newspaper for nearly three years - more than once citing it as an example of the 'elephant in the room'. When I first described HIPs as'a 'disaster waiting to happen' in January 2006, it was already clear that the Government was trying to conceal the part played by the EPC, and by and large the incurious media have bought the party line. I agree that the real problem, as with so many other examples of that famous invisible elephant, is the reluctance of the Tories to highlight how much of our governance has now been handed over to the EU, which means that so much of the EU-element in unpopular or controversial measures (eg the closure of post offices or the chaos inflicting our waste system) remains below the politicial horizon.I may have yet another go at it this week.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:20 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:37 pm
Posts: 184
Quote:
RN: "The purchaser has a right to renegotiate or rescind the contract if the reports are significantly negative."

Is that really true? The buyer can abrogate his obligations under the sale contract if he doesn't like the EPC?"


I am not sure that is the case. I sold a house in France last year, and had to pay for the EPC (450 euros for a job that took approxiametely 20 minutes). I asked the estate agent if this could affect the buyer's decision or the price of the transaction and she assured me it could not, that it was simply a legal requirement.

I shall however try to find out the actual legal situation and let you know what I find.

My own view is that in principle it isn't such a bad thing. Why should a house that is poorly insulated cost as much as one that is well insulated? In reality, the bloke who did the inspection (an energy efficiency expert? I think not) picked up a cool 450 euros for old rope.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 5:26 pm 
Peter Lilley got it exactly right in his EDM:

"They [MPs] nobly defend and accept responsibility for Brussels's legislative progeny in whose conception they often played very little part. But they prefer to claim paternity than to admit impotence – the fate of the cuckold across the ages."


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 7:57 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:17 pm
Posts: 1384
An interesting idea but I'd lay a small bet that our representatives (with the government knowing exactly what they were doing) played a leading part in developing this directive, then the government gladly incorporated it into HIPs and it was gold-plated because it was what they wanted anyway.

So I'm not so sure that Peter Lilley does have it exactly right. It may run more like this, a husband keen on swinging, talks his wife into taking part in the scene, then finds she is having someone else's child and goes along with it proudly; not exactly a cuckold, something due less respect.


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 Post subject: Re: There is no hope
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 9:47 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:37 pm
Posts: 184
Here are two paragraphs from the French government site. (Please feel free to comment on my translation Alec in France).

Quote:
Execution of these EPCs has been compulsory, at the time of sale of / on selling (“à l’ocasssion de la vente”) every accommodation or building (without exception) in metropolitan France, since 1 November 2006, and at the signature of renting contracts since 1 July 2007

From these dates onwards, the results of these EPCs must also be held at the disposal, by the seller or lessor, to all buyer or renter candidates making the request, “dès la mise en vente” as from putting a building or part of it on the market or offering it for rent

http://www.logement.gouv.fr/article.php ... ticle=5873

The first paragraph is somewhat ambiguous on when the EPC must be done. The second states that the certificate must be present before the house is put on the market, so that's the one I go with. This doesn’t tally with my own experience, where the ‘diagnosis’ was carried out a couple of days before the actual sale. Hardly surprising right enough, we are talking about France here.

I’ve also been reading some pretty damning articles in the French press and on French blogs on the subject. It appears malfeasance is rife; many ‘diagnosers’ are hardly even competent; their ‘inspections’ are cursory; they work in cahoots with estate agents and solicitors, paying them part of the fee (loot) in exchange for recommendations, etc. This tallies perfectly.


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