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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 132

Date:- 03 January 200

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Recycling your old mobile for charity makes Sense

IF you've been lucky enough to get a new mobile phone for Christmas, why riot spread a little festive cheer by donating your old handset to national deafblind charity Sense.

Millions of mobiles are sold over the Christmas period and most of the old models will gather dust in a drawer or are thrown in the bin. Sense is asking our readers to send in their old phones to help raise money for children and adults across the UK who are both deaf and blind.

The charity will receive on average £5 for each recyclable phone. Funds raised will help to provide services such as assessments for deaf and blind babies and summer holidays for deathblind children, as well as vital support for those in later life whose sight and hearing are impaired.

Julia Barraclough, Events Fundraiser, says:- "The mobile phone recycling scheme is a great way to raise funds for a Worthwhile cause. Lots of people receive new phones at Christmas and just throw their old one away, but it con so easily be put to good use.

It's free to send to your Phone to us and by taking the time to pop your unwanted handset into an envelope, you'll make a huge difference to the lives of thousands of deafblind people across the country."

If you have an unwanted mobile phone, please Post it in a strong envelope that is clearly marked:- FOR SENSE to:--



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North West Housing Market Review 2003

SOUTH LIVERPOOL and Stockton Heath have been highlighted as 2003 property hotpots by Bradford & Bingley Estate Agents with some areas enjoying staggering 50% increases in prices.

Bradford & Bingley Estate Agents' North West area managing director, Andrew Pennells told us that:- "South Liverpool in particular has witnessed phenomenal prices rises in the bottom end rung of the market of 50% and a lower but still impressive increase of 25% in the top end. The announcement that the city was to be European City of Culture in 2008 was the trigger which lit the fuse for a dramatic surge in interest."

Stockton Heath also proved a popular hotspot with buyers during the year. Its commutable distance from Manchester and easy motorway access led to average prices rises of 20%.

The housing market offered a year of two distinct halves according to Bradford & Bingley Estate Agents' review. The traditional spring surge coincided with the Iraqi conflict and brought the market to a virtual standstill. Once hostilities were over the market picked up well, culminating in one of the busiest autumns for a decade.

Looking ahead for the market in 2004, Andrew Pennells continued:- "The housing market will remain stable with interest and prices possibly spreading into North Liverpool. 1 think we will see a steady national price inflation of around 5-7% as long as it is not affected by outside influences. The strong activity we have experienced in the second half of 2003 should continue well into the New Year with a rush of sellers taking advantage of renewed buyer confidence.

There are several more domestic related challenges facing the residential housing industry in the next 12 months. Although further Base Rate increases are expected, it is likely to rise by only between 0.75%-1.25% in 2004. Such increases are unlikely to trigger a slump, as even if it rises to 5%, mortgage rates will remain at historically low levels.

Affordability will remain the key to buyer confidence. However, possible tax rises, which are being mooted by many commentators to be announced in the Chancellor's Spring Budget and increases in Stamp Duty could have a seriously damaging affect on the market, leading to buyers thinking twice before purchasing a new home.

Although I would certainly welcome a reorganisation of the stamp duty bands into a more sensible system the last thing the market needs is any major increases in what many homebuyers consider to be an already expensive and unfair tax."

Southport Reporter is a registered Trade Mark.   Copyright © Patrick Trollope 2003.