Tag Archives: Nuisance

Absentee Landlords

Falling standards

Housing shortages are often quoted as the reason for the rise in “Buy to Let” properties. I suggest it’s simply greed!

Landlords of these properties see a chance to cash in on people who either can’t or don’t wish to buy their own homes. People on low incomes, often on state benefits.

As far as those landlords are concerned it’s a great little earner, as in many cases the rents are paid by the government through benefits, so their income is guaranteed. The tenants, many from the lower section of society, have little pride in the property, just grateful to have a house and knowing someone else is paying for it!

Win Win for both parties.

But wait; what about the residents of nearby properties, people who’ve saved to buy their own homes. Suddenly they find that a new, transient, type of neighbour is in their midst. In very little time these residents find the value of their homes falling as renters move in. It’s a vicious circle; renters move in, existing residents dislike their new neighbours so move out, more renters move in because sale price of houses has fallen due to new residents and Buy2Let landlords buy up the houses at knock down prices. The downward spiral continues, and all the time the greedy absentee landlords rub their hands together! They don’t care about the neighbourhood as long as the rents are paid.

What do government do about it? Nothing, making out that it’s helping the housing shortage.

The real losers in all this are the hard-working folk who bought their own homes, but who lose out to greedy people. The whole thing stinks!


BlackBerry Bombard Users With Ads


BBM Rip OffBlackberry, the company behind the messaging application BBM, have hit on a money-making idea that really annoys users.

Sponsored content (in others words adverts) appear in channel feeds, but if you don’t want to see these ads then, at one time, you could simply block them. Simple, ad gone!

Not any more. Blackberry weren’t making enough dosh.

Obviously users didn’t like the ads so blocked them, so Blackberry responded by removing the option to block these annoying adverts, UNLESS you pay!

That’s correct. When pressed BBM support replied, in a private message so that most people wouldn’t see it, with “Advertisements can be removed from BBM for $0.99 USD per month with the No Ads subscription. This subscription removes all ads from your feed, and you will no longer receive sponsored invites from our partners.

They may argue that $0.99 / month is a small amount, but multiply that by the hundreds of millions of users! A tidy profit, just for annoying people!

Companies that use such tactics deserve to lose customers, and they’ve certainly lost this one. BBM isn’t worth the hassle!

Why do cars…


Cars reflect drivers personalityNot true in every case, though there’s a strong argument to support the theory. Butched-up pickups driven by guys who can’t be bothered with seatbelts, who’re on the phone as they drive, and who think speed limits are for everyone else. Expensive 4×4’s (the Chelsea tractor), designed for off-road terrain, yet driven by a female accompanied by 2 kids on the school run, the aim of which is to “be protected” from every other road user. Then there’s the boy racer, been driving 5 minutes yet knows it all, car trimmed with every conceivable gadget designed to make the motor sound faster than an F1. There’re many other examples, and I haven’t even touched on white van man!

It’s also true that many traits crossover between drivers.

When we get into our cars it’s as though we put on a cloak of invincibility. We become the best driver around, and all the problems are down to other “idiots”. Heaven forbid anyone less able than ourselves should be on OUR road when we are using it. Here comes road-rage!

Vanity – Image… Come on people, grow up!!

Some might say “why aren’t police tackling these problems?” Cuts, in funding from government, but that’s a different issue (too big to deal with here).

Why can’t we police ourselves? Whatever happened to courtesy? It’s simple enough; traffic laws are there for everyone’s benefit, and apply to everyone! Ignoring them isn’t clever, that just makes you one of those idiots you so vehemently despise.

If everyone drove as though they were carrying their most precious cargo, every journey, roads would not only be safer but a lot less stressful too.


French want rid of migrants


Calais chaosThe migrant chaos in Calais is out of control, everyone – apart from politicians – can see it!

It’s also common knowledge that the French want rid of those migrants, and the obvious way is through the channel tunnel in to the UK! Thing is, they can’t openly say that, though the distinct lack of effective preventative action speaks volumes. There is another way though.

As EU members, both France & the UK are bound by the “free movement” EU principle. So, if France issues the migrants with passports it effectively makes them EU citizens and, as such, they can simply walk in to the UK – quite legally! David Cameron is powerless to stop it.

There are already “help points” within the migrant camps giving advice on how to get in to Britain. How soon before we see the first French passport office too?

So much for UK border control. As EU members it’s non-existent!!!!

Security Lights

Who benefits?

Security LightsThey come in many styles, the household security light, ranging from small porch lights to those massive floodlights. There’s no doubt they have benefits for the householder but they can also have drawbacks, particularly the floodlight type.

Once such problem is poor installation, leading to annoyance for others.

The idea is plainly to illuminate the immediate area around your own property. Simple enough, or it should be. Yet we’ve all seen those 500 watt lamps lighting up the entire neighbourhood!

Who does that householder think they’re helping? Certainly not the neighbours, they get a blast of daylight every time the light is triggered, leading to disturbed sleep and the consequential discord. It’s residential property being protected not a sports arena!

Maybe the electricity company benefit. Certainly with 500 watts of power firing off several times a night the bill will soon mount up. Is it really necessary to have such a powerful lamp? With an average light bulb being around 60 watts that’s like turning on 8-9 of those each time something (i.e. cat) walks across the area. Crazy! A light of only 250 watts is ample to illuminate a garden or driveway, provided it’s positioned correctly, and it’ll save money!

Without getting in to legalities, nuisance is something that can often be dealt with under local authority by-laws, but who really wants to go down that route? Simple answer is for anyone putting up a security floodlight to think and not just about themselves! This is one case where Bigger is definitely not Better.

Totally reliant on technology


PlatesFrom 1st October 2014 the tax disc (or road fund licence) is to be abolished, after 93 years. Vehicles will still be required to be taxed but there won’t be the familiar paper disc displayed on the windscreen. This is, according to the government, a move to reduce unnecessary paperwork and cut hassle, all leading to monetary savings. So what’s happening instead of the tax disc, how will we know if a vehicle is taxed or not?

The government say “most on-road enforcement action is now based on using Automatic Number Plate Readers. These cameras use the number plate rather than a visual inspection of the tax disc.” So, unless you have access to ANPR and the database you won’t know the tax status of any vehicle. Not important some may say, but wait, what about the “neighbour” who always had a “tax in the post” sticker on his screen or the one who just never bothered with road tax at all? You pay your road tax so why shouldn’t they? The government want us to report wrong-doers, but under this new system you won’t be able to.

There’s also another, more sinister, problem. As the checks are to be done using only the vehicle registration number this opens up opportunities for unscrupulous people (let’s call them criminals) to physically steal (or just clone) the number plates from a legitimately taxed vehicle and transfer them to their own (same make/model/colour). For all practical purposes they’d then be driving a taxed vehicle, and would only get caught if further checks (i.e. VIN or Vehicle Identification Number) were carried out, something that is beyond the scope of ANPR cameras. Maybe now it doesn’t seem quite such a good idea…

So, are we to expect a rise in the theft of number plates? Certainly those “security fasteners” (modified screws) that companies sell at somewhat inflated prices will become more of a necessity. It may encourage more people to tax their vehicles, or it may just encourage crime. It remains to be seen just how beneficial, or otherwise, this move turns out to be. One thing’s for sure though, I’ll be keeping an even closer eye on my number plates from October!

P.S.- What about those “funny” plates, the ones made to read like something other than the index number of the vehicle; ANPR cameras can’t cope with those, so the driver gets away with it..?


It’s Official, you can!


Parking OKLearner drivers are always taught to obey parking laws and in particular not to park where it may cause obstruction. The Highway Code has many examples, and states “Parking on the pavement can obstruct and seriously inconvenience pedestrians, people in wheelchairs or with visual impairments and people with prams or pushchairs”. So, don’t do it.

Unless you happen to be in Lancashire.

According to Lancashire Police, through the Police & Crime Commissioners office, they say “as a general rule officers of Lancashire Constabulary do not enforce parking on the pavement unless the vehicle is blocking the pavement completely and a wheelchair/pushchair user would not be able to get past”.

So, Lancashire folk, as long as you leave the merest gap for people to squeeze past you can park as much on footpaths as you like. The Police won’t bother you!

I wonder just how many other things they’re turning a blind eye to?

Update 07/10/15Another thing they turn a blind eye to, though they describe it differently, is speeding in 20mph zones. In over a year they have prosecuted nobody! They blame this on budget cuts, saying they prefer to educate drivers. How? By sending them letters telling them they’ve been seen speeding. Judge for yourself the effectiveness of that.