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Guest Mary Rose

I went to Chatswood last night - that is changing all the time!?

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Guest Mary Rose

When I came out of the station, I was giving myself a cricked neck trying to see to the top of all the new high rise buildings, some of them built above the station itself? I had a beer in the Orchard, I think it is called - first time I've been in there, then went to the RSL with a mate of mine. He gave me a lift back to Surry Hills, and it seemed like we'd hardly left the high-rises before we were in suburban streets full of bungalows. I go to Chatswood occassionally, but I was surprised this time. It's got the new arts/cultural centre running now too?

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Guest northshorepom

Arts centre has been going a while I think. They screwed the drainage up though - the lane round the back stinks! An expensive problem to fix I suspect

 

That shopping centre/high rise development over the station was stalled for about 2 years post GFC. It was always part of the plans for the new station when they built it, they flogged off the oversite development rights to help pay for the station works (and the ECRL). The developer went bust though, then they had to get someone else to take it on before the work restarted. Just wait until it is finished - the station will be in a shopping mall, they've done a good job with the temporary walls (colorbond) hiding this but it will look completely different when it's all finished and the shop tenants have moved in.

 

A shame they couldn't find a way to demolish the Telstra building adjacent (between the station and the RSL) at the same time. Truly a monumentally ugly building.

 

I drink in the Orchard from time to time. I quite like it (standard crap Aussie pub, but it's friendly enough) but my, is it pricey. Pushing $7 a schooner which is taking the p1ss IMO.

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Guest Mary Rose

If I had not gone up there on short notice, I might have sent you a message! I can well imagine that the builders/designers of the arts centre would stuff something like that up. I was tipsy too, on four schooners, three of them, Boags, which I don't normally drink. $7 is dear. I think I had a sort of boutique beer in there too, one I did not recognize, so I ordered it. Got talking to young bloke watching the A League and he turned out to be a Spurs fan too. (The mournful expression gives us away!)

 

Those Telstra buildings ALWAYS look like they they were designed in a competition to find the worst design. There is one I particularly loathe in Balmain, right next to an attractive 19th century building - Town Hall perhaps? I think there is another one in Oxford St, Paddington?

 

I like those photographs in the station too, spent a few minutes looking at them.

 

I looked out for the Indian place you went to in Cleveland St, on the right going towards SCG? There is another one opposite, similar kind of name, but vegetarian. I think I might go down to Himalaya in a minute, have been alternating between them and the Thai in GT's pub (the Gaelic.)

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Guest northshorepom

Telstra building in Killara has to take the biscuit for the ugliest of all. Their in-house architect in the 1970s/80s must have hated the world

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Guest Mary Rose

Red brick? Angular (? is that the right word?) lines?, out of place in its surroundings? Would have been rejected even by Soviet era, Eastern bloc countries as too ugly?

 

Have you moved into your new house yet? How is it going?

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Guest northshorepom

Yep. moved in 2 weeks ago. Finally not surrounded by boxes, and finally have the internet on. Lots of jobs to do though!

 

It is *fantastic* to be out of the whole rental BS world. I have always hated it, cleaning the house for return (and at the time cleaning up loads of dirt we know wasn't ours) cemented it in my mind as something I wish to forever remain away from - on both sides.

 

I used to have 2 houses in England and rented one out, got rid of it as it became a pain in the backside. Foolishly I had idly contemplated getting back into property investment over here as there are so many tax giveaways to encourage it, but I am firm now that I have no interest - will invest elsewhere. The whole investment/rental market is just way too big here, no one (from either side, landlord or tenant) ever puts any money, love or effort into houses that are in that market so they inexorably decline over time. Looking around the housing market when buying was depressing with the amount of ex-rentals on the market, most were dreadfully tired and in need of total reno or demolition.

 

The poor quality of so much housing here is something I will never get over. I'm not blaming property investment/rental for it, but it certainly doesn't help

 

PS Buy shares in Bunnings (OK, Wesfarmers). Their profits are about to go through the roof. It feels great to be able to get on with some projects again

:D

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Guest Mary Rose

I sold my Wesfarmers shares last year, to pay off some debts, and felt a little sad to do so, as they were one of my first investments. I let the broker choose most of my stocks, but the firm I worked for did a lot of business with Blackwoods, and I liked dealing with them, so I asked the broker to buy some shares, in, I think Herbert Smith, who owned Blackwoods. I sold most of my shares to either pay for the house in England, or paying debts here. Just have ANZ and Woodside now, plus a few in Tottenham Hotspur.

 

My unit here deteriorated whilst it was let out during my sojourn in England, but I should have had it updated whilst the tenant was in there, as I could have claimed the cost of repairs against my tax. It is decidedly shabby, and needs a new bathroom and kitchen. I'm contemplating whether to take my maximum pension from Royal Mail for my service with them, or a smaller pension and a lump sum, which would pay for the refurbishment of my flat. I think my home in the UK has actually benefited from the tenants who seem to be doing it up, though I have to pay for a few improvements too. Have to think about selling that I guess.

 

I've been thinking about my income in retirement, now that I'm almost sixty, thinking about that Royal Mail pension added on to the rent from my house in UK and a small pension I have been getting here since 1996, part of my retrenchment package, when I lost my job (which led to my going back to UK.) The FX rate affects the UK part of my income. I suppose I will get a small pension from the UK Government, plus whatever I can get from my Aussie super. I'm hoping to continue the job with the ATO for as long as I can. I don't have any problems when I am working, but perhaps I should be saving a bit more.

 

I know I should not be going out for dinner so much but I like it - heading for the Trinity in a minute I think for the $12.50 schnitzels, which also means a couple of beers.

 

Buying a flat in my block might be a good investment for you? They have been here 25 years and always seem to rent out quickly. They are very handily located for the city and transport. I should have bought another one myself, or sold my unit and upgraded to a terrace home

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