When Mortgage Brokers Go Wrong

These days the NZ mortgage broking sector is fairly well regulated, and because they all need challenging qualifications and must have all signed up to a recognised dispute resolution process and have their own formal complaints process there is very little trouble in the industry.

However 10 years ago this was definitely not the case, and there was a housing bubble on and New Zealand mortgage brokers were determined to make as much money as they could as fast as they could.  A huge number of new investors will getting involved in the property market,  driven by exponentially increasing property prices and encouraged enthusiastically by a collection of property Guru up and down the country proclaiming how easy it was for them to make really good money.

A lot of these new investors were from the baby boomer generation, and perhaps they hadn’t saved enough for their retirement but one thing they did have was good equity in the family home. These new investors were attending expensive courses and conferences and signing up to expensive coaching series in order to learn the basics of property investing and help themselves get a head start in the market. Their coaches and lecturers were extolling them virtually daily to just get out and buy something, and that’s all it took, and unfortunately for almost all the investors that’s exactly what they did do.

Many first time investors ended up buying a house here, a rental property there and a new section over there, with each one of the deals promising them huge fortunes. They have no idea of the risks involved as they leveraged the equity in the family home in order to create security  for loans, and they signed up for mortgages that they would barely be able to  make payments on.

The tragedy of that period  was  that all of the coaches and lecturers were in cahoots with all of the experts they were recommending, including mortgage brokers, real estate agents, solicitors and accountants, and everybody’s intention was to take as much money off the investors as they could and as fast as possible. While the behaviour of all of these players was shameful, it was the behaviour of some mortgage brokers that cause the most problems, as these brokers in many situations lied and cheated to the banks and the lenders about their clients ability to make payments on the loan, and they lied and cheated to their clients about how risky the loan was and about how expensive the repayments would be. The end result in 2009 was a very large number of bankruptcies and the accompanying social problems like marriage breakups and worse.

How to replace fuses and reset breakers

Sometimes you will find that an appliance like a hair dryer or a kettle stops working for no apparent reason. If the other appliances and the lights in the house are still working then it is almost certain that the fuse or circuit breaker in your main fuse box as tripped. The reason for a fuse or circuit breaker tripping is because there is a short circuit, and this is almost certainly due to the appliance that you are using.

If you don’t want to hire an electrician, you can do this yourself. In this case the first step is to unplug the appliance from the wall socket, and then you must find your main fuse box which wall be invariably in some obscure location in the house such as the garage or the basement. Once you have located the main fuse box then you must search for the fuse or circuit breaker that has tripped. This is generally very simple as there will be one fuse or circuit breaker that is  set differently to all the others. You should reset this circuit breaker so that it is the same as all the others.

If you have an older house with fuses ceramic fuses, then you will need to remove each ceramic fuse mounting and check to see whether the fuse wire is burnt-out. When you do find the burnt-out fuse, then you need to remove that fuse wire and replace it with identical fuse wire. It pays to have spare fuse wire in the main fuse box ready for these emergencies. Remember that you need a light gauge fuse wire for lighting circuits and a heavier gauge fuse wire for electric switches. Don’t forget you can still hire the electricians Hamilton has on offer. You may even need a very heavy gauge to wire for your electric water heater.

If the fuse blew or the circuit breaker tripped while you were using an appliance then you should not necessarily assume that the appliance is faulty,  is it maybe that you had multiple appliances running at the same time and just simply overloaded the circuit breaker. However if you only had one appliance working when the circuit breaker tripped, then you can retest the appliance after you have reset the circuit breaker, and if it trips again then you can assume that the appliances faulty and needs repairing. You should only retest the appliance  if the original failure was not accompanied by sparks or crackling.

Why Solar Will Save The World (It Has Nothing To Do With Climate Change)

More solar power reaches the Earth’s surface every hour then is consumed by the whole world in one year, and studies in the year 2000 show that the amount of solar power that is practically useable is 3 to 4 times the world’s current energy usage.

Moreover the cost of solar panels is decreasing exponentially, due to new technologies and manufacturing techniques but primarily due to the sheer scale of manufacturing. This is a wonderful virtuous cycle in that lower prices mean much greater demand,  and this is indeed the case at both the consumer level and the utility level.

One very exciting development is the explosion of solar utility power in India, where tenders for New Energy projects are coming up with solar that is priced considerably less than coal or oil alternatives. This is dramatic as India was expected to be installing coal fired power stations for the foreseeable future. However the terrible pollution in most Indian cities, mostly due to coal and vehicle emissions, has spurred the government to be much more aggressive in seeking renewable Solutions, and the industry has come to the party in a big way with low priced solar.

Coupled with the rapid ongoing price reductions of solar we also have the development of massive battery factories such as the Tesla Gigafactory, which are able to supply batteries for utility storage at a massive volume and amazing price. The best part about the trends in solar and battery storage is that this will only get cheaper because of the massive increase and scale, where’s the cost of coal and oil and gas will only ever get more expensive as it gets more difficult to mine –  the cheap reserves have already been mined.

Unfortunately the transition to solar power is only in the very early stages in comparison to the amount of fossil fuel fuel power, and it is going to need a miracle like transport as a service using fully autonomous electric vehicles  to truly change and slow the current trajectory of climate change on Earth.