Thursday, 31 December 2009

Easy Curry Recipes

A great way of using leftover turkey is to make a curry. This is a collection of simple, easy to do Indian curry recipes.

This is a selection of incredibly simple and easy curry recipes. They all take less than an hour including cooking time and some of them can be made in even less time. There are no hard and fast rules for making a curry, and to an extent, what you have available in the cupboard will dictate how the curry turns out. The first few will give some ideas for using up leftover Turkey. Easy curry recipes

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Gadget love

Interesting developments in the world of electronic gadgets? I don't think so. I was massively disappointed with my last macbook pro, although I am hoping my iPod touch last a a little longer than the lousy two years I got from the macbook.

More and more bluetooth headset makers keep pounding out the same stuff, I mean how many iphone bluetooth headset makers can possibly survive? As far as I can tell, with the possible exception of the Aliph Jawbone, the damn things are exactly the same as each other and most of them are rubbish.

The advertising is enough to make anyone puke - I mean - it is a headset - for your phone. How cool is that going to be? Not very.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Housing market trends and news

Some headlines from the property markets - mostly indicating more drops in sales volumes, still falling prices and no end in sight to the down turn. The British market has reached the point where it will collapse if prices do not drop. With sales volumes at the lowest point since the land registry office began keeping records, something has to give and it will be prices. So UK house prices will fall drastically over the winter. Exactly how much is difficult to predict, but another 50% fall in total seems in order.

Candy and Candy are being sued for non payment of a $365 million debt in the USA.
Luxury property developers, Christian and Nick Candy, have hit the news once again, and are being sued by Grupo Financiero Inbursa, a Mexican banking conglomerate owned by Carlos Slim. Candy and Candy sued

When will the real estate market bottom out?

“Are we there yet?” is the question on everybody’s lips. As in – are we at the bottom of the real estate downturn? If I could answer this question and be perfectly accurate, I would be a rich man. Having said that, I am going to try and answer it anyway. real estate bottom

Sunday, 16 August 2009

How to make money blogging

Making money blogging is not for everyone, and most of the people I see attempting to do so eventually fail. For several reasons. There is more to blogging than merely starting a blog and going for it.

I am a professional blogger and have written a step by step guide to making money blogging. This is an excerpt and a link:

If I have been asked the question,” how on earth do you make money blogging ?” once, I have been asked it a thousand times. There is an awful lot of misinformation out there about blogging and the problem is that the failures outweigh the successes by about a million to one, so for every successful blogger out there, there are 999,999 people telling you that you cannot make money blogging. What they really mean is they cannot make money blogging. How to make money blogging

This guide is completely free, and if you follow the instructions, a guaranteed way to making money from a blog.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Average property prices in Dubai fell 17 percent Q2 09

Dubai, UAE - August 9, 2009: Owner behavior is preventing the leasing market from reaching a price floor, but they are just delaying the inevitable, indicates Landmark Advisory's Q309 Dubai and Abu Dhabi Real Estate Report. In an oversupplied market like Dubai, price floors are consumer driven. Jesse Downs, Landmark Advisory's Director of Research and Advisory Services, said "landlords are opting out of the market because of lower rents creating a temporary respite in the price correction process. This short term decline in supply is a market distortion, which will end. Real prices will be determined by what Dubai residents are willing to pay."

The Landmark Advisory report also investigates new macroeconomic factors affecting those interested in investing in property in Dubai. "With mortgage rates currently averaging 8.5%-9%, and construction financing rates at 7%-8%, there is a systematic imbalance. Residential demand is restricted by high borrowing costs and credit scarcity, while building is incentivized by lower capital costs on construction loans." Ms. Downs went on to say that "disjointed lending practices can widen the supply-demand gap in Dubai."

In terms of sale prices and rents, Dubai's average sale prices for villas and apartments declined 24% and 17% respectively during Q209. Sales demand was stronger for villas, which accounted for 73% of all residential sales.

During Q209, Dubai's leasing market saw average villa rents fall 19% to AED 220,350, while average apartment rents declined 23% to AED 129,900. Despite falling rents, transaction volumes increased significantly for both villas and apartments, by 25% and 20%, respectively. Commenting on this, Ms. Downs said: "relocations from Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, and within Dubai are the primary factors driving leasing demand."

Dubai apartment rental trends showed a significant spike in demand for International City. During Q109, International City accounted for only 2% of all apartment rentals, but in Q2, it registered as many leases as JLT, the second most popular area for apartment rentals after Dubai Marina. Ms. Downs explained that "increased demand was driven by existing tenants within International City upgrading to larger units there."

Turning to Abu Dhabi sales, average residential listing prices regained some stability in Q209. However, secondary market asked prices fell 11% for apartments and 8% for villas. Over the next quarter, sale prices will start stabilizing and are not likely to suffer significant decline. "Furthermore, the delivery of first phases will likely encourage some price recovery for those units as they transition from the off-plan market to end-users," continued Ms. Downs.

Average asked villa and apartment rents in Abu Dhabi both fell by roughly 10% in Q209. Low quality apartments saw the heaviest rent declines, while rents for higher-end units were more resilient. According to Ms. Downs, "as more supply enters the market, average rent levels in Abu Dhabi will likely decline significantly, especially for low quality units, larger apartments, and villas located outside Abu Dhabi Island."

The commercial property prices in both cities are struggling. Office space requirements for most companies already in the UAE are either static or shrinking. However, "Abu Dhabi's mid- to long-term prospects for commercial demand growth are stronger than Dubai's. Abu Dhabi's potential for population growth and job creation, combined with significant pent-up demand, bode well for the medium- to long-term performance of its office market," Ms. Downs concluded.

For further information please visit the Landmark Advisory website: or follow Landmark on twitter @LandmarkDubai. Landmark Advisory welcomes your opinion on the region's real estate market and has recently launched the Landmark Connect panel. Please visit to register and share your views.


Monday, 10 August 2009

Refinancing with bad credit

Anyone who has tried to get a mortgage refinanced recently will know that the options are limited and expensive for those with a bad credit rating. In fact, if you are below average in this area - the chances are that you will not be able to refinance a loan on a dog kennel, let alone remortgage a home.

Whatever garbage may be being thrown about by the governments and banks about recovery and health in the banking sector is just that - garbage. Whether we like it or not, and despite massive efforts on behalf of the government to prevent a market correction from happening one thing is pretty clear - we are returning to the "good old days," of due diligence to make certain that whoever the banks are lending to are in a position to repay the loan. Which pretty much means that of you need to refinance a loan with bad credit, you are going to be SOL, unless you can find a "non-traditional," lender.

Finding financing with good credit is bad enough, as most mortgage providers are requesting a 30% deposit or equity in the property as collateral for any loans provided. the real estate market is still headed downwards price-wise, British property prices are still crashing hard, no matter what the newspapers might have you believe. US property prices have already corrected back to 2003 levels and show no signs of stabilizing, unless you call buying distressed homes at 20 cents on the dollar stabilizing. We still have a rocky road to recovery in front of us.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

California, here we come

Suspended in permanent sunshine, the golden state of California attracts millions of people each year, some trying to catch the fame train, others drawn by the climate and stunning scenery. Now, new figures released by the state’s Department of Finance show that the population is higher than ever…

The question isn’t who does want to go to California, but who doesn’t. California tourist attractions are numerous and diverse. Whether you enjoy cities, mountains, forests or oceans, the State of California offers more variety than any other state in the U.S.

A demographic survey conducted by the state’s Department of Finance showed that the population of the west coast state surpassed 38 million after growing by 1.16 per cent this year. That equates to 436,000 new residents all eager to sample a taste of the golden state.

These latest figures mean that since 2000, the population of California has increased by a whopping 4.3 million people at an overall growth rate of 12.6 per cent.

The majority of the growth (75 per cent) has been attributed to more people being born than are dying, with the remaining quarter being accounted for by immigration.

With the buzz of the City of Angels and the stars of Hollywood, the lush Napa Valley, sun kissed San Diego and Santa Barbara, the education on offer at Berkeley, the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, the beautiful wild beaches of Carmel and of course Disneyland in Anaheim, the world’s most famous theme park, California is a true feast for the senses.

Located on the western coast of the United States, California extends along the Pacific Ocean from the Mexican border in the south for nearly 900 miles to its northern border with the state of Oregon.

The state is approximately 200 miles wide from its western beaches to its eastern deserts bordering the states of Nevada and Arizona.

OK, I’ll admit it, I am biased. I spent one of the best years of my life at the University of California in Santa Barbara, an hour outside Los Angeles. The weather was warm, the beaches were beautiful and the living was easy. Returning to the UK was a struggle of epic proportions.

If you are considering investing in properties in California overseas and are keen to take a long term view of a property market, you could take advantage of the lower prices in the US at the moment and snap up a bargain property in California.

The rising population should ensure a strong rental return on a California property should you choose a buy to let purchase.

Due to the recent interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve in the USA, which saw them drop to a guide target of between zero and 0.25 per cent, you could be in luck with mortgage financing too.

For more information on American properties and the market in general, please visit