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About CelticTiger

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  • Location Regensburg
  • Nationality Scottish
  • Gender Male
  • Year of birth 1967
  1. Young Drivers and Car Insurance

      Thanks, this is good idea. Hadn't thought of it, and I don't really like our current car anyways :-)  
  2. Young Drivers and Car Insurance

      I didn't ask for "cheap insurance".  I asked for recommendations/ideas to minimise the cost, and was completely clear on the circumstances.
  3. Young Drivers and Car Insurance

    just to be clear, the price from DEVK is apparently same for 5 months as would be for 12 months.  This seems unfair, so I'm looking/asking if there is maybe alternative (maybe short term) approach?
  4.   Why can't you get an apartment? I know it costs a lot, but as other have pointed out you have accepted a position in Germany.   I'm self employed, live in Germany, but perform some of my work while outside Germany.  I keep my customers well informed of my actual location, even though it's practically irrelevant for most purposes. and I'm not even an employee.   You do seem to be trying it on a bit here, though I appreciate breakup of your relationship was maybe unexpected and upsetting and greatly impacts your planning, but are you perhaps trying to use COVID rather to your advantage? That's OK, we all play our cards our own way, but don't pretend to yourself you are some sort of victim here.
  5. Young Drivers and Car Insurance

    Maybe there is a "tip"/"trick"/"workaround" here that we are missing.   We own one car, currently worth around €7000, and pay around €500 in insurance for 2020.   Our 18 year old son just passed his test few weeks ago and wishes to be able to drive our car.  Our existing insurer (DEVK) says to add him to our policy will more than double the price for the remaining 5 months of 2020, i.e. another €500. He won't drive the car much, more wants the opportunity for some practise to gain experience.   Any other options here?  Since we are mid-year we cannot change insurer until end 2020.  Of course I know that young drivers are more expensive to insure but it's not as if he'd be the primary driver.
  6. Incomplete Building Work

    Thanks for detailed answers.  after very stressful few days some progress has been made.   Whether wise or not, because we needed to get our drive laid and this was planned, booked, and now upon us, the (small family) firm laying our Drive did some small parts of the remaining work, just so they could themselves progress. The building company still had done nothing at all, but when informed the Architekt went completely ballistic. And was (overly) emotional too. Tears were shed. Horrible.   After everyone calmed down over weekend the building companies Bauleiter came on site, and Architekt, and us, and drive-laying firm, and ... a way forward was found. They have had workmen onsite every day since. Almost all open items are closed, though we need Architekt to validate the work. When doing so she discovered some mistakes, oversights on earlier work, but I hope nothing serious.   Couple of little things remain open - example is they had a box which was connected for Baustrum, not our box, but still needs to be disconnected and taken away. Sounds simple but apparently might take couple of weeks to organise. And our underfloor heating isn’t working correctly in all rooms, at least I believe so, though it’s really difficult to demonstrate in middle of summer.    we’ve paid Architekt ca: 80% of her total bill. She was responsible for Bauphasen 1-8, not 9, as per HOAI. To be honest I’m ok with that aspect. We’re 2 years in since signing up for the project with her, and as written it had been mostly ok until we moved in. Slightly over budget and slightly late, but not dramatically in either case. We are also not perfect customer   But the most recent events have really shaken us. I’m musing whether to pay Gutachter to check Architekts work, especially around heating systems and building insulation. Sadly when trust is damaged it’s hard to repair.    CT
  7. Incomplete Building Work

    Architekt says VOB
  8. Incomplete Building Work

    Hi   thanks MonaMon for detailed answer. it’s big job for a family house, renovating and extending an existing property.   the Outstanding work is all external, but all could be done in almost any weather. We have an architect. She just tells us she is powerless, company is ignoring her too. She says it’s small work fur what is a relatively large company with lots of bigger jobs ongoing, but they have been hopeless since day 1. She is frustrated with them too, but much less frustrated than us. She’s not living in a building site.    to give examples some walls are not yet insulated externally with Dämmung. It’s mostly done, but some gaps remain. External pipes not connected correctly for drainage. Some plastering incomplete. Building materials not removed. Windows in correctly sealed. It’s in my eyes about a weeks work with right equipment. But we can’t move to next phase and we’re blocked by this since we moved in in Feb.   we have paid, everything as per instructed by Architekt, already more than 80% of the expected total sum to this firm. I did so rather under protest, as I’d seen how poor this company  had performed during the project, but Architekt insisted. The only thing remaining will be the Schlussrechnung.   the Architekt sent them first final demand to complete these items in January, to be completed before we moved in. We had to move in before these items were completed. She’s set at least 10 deadlines in meantime. But it has no impact, talking to the wind.   I am trying really hard to “be fair”.   CT
  9. Incomplete Building Work

    Hello   we have agreed with local building company to do some renovation work on our house. This work is 80%-90% completed.  But for ca 6 months there has been no further progress, even though we moved in during February 2020. Emails are ignored, phone calls not answered. Every now and again a vague promise of action “next week”, that just comes and goes.   this is now impacting other tasks that cannot start until they finish. Eg the external/gardening work.  Obviously a pause in March and April due to Covid is understood, even though the work was supposed to be already completed. But now time is marching on.   I’ve asked few friends who all just shrug, saying essentially building company has us over a barrel - we have no legal remedy as there is no formal “contract” specifying dates, and no chance even to apply any penalty if and when they eventually do complete the work. We could maybe ask other company to complete the work, but which building company wants to do last 15% of some other companies work?   anyone wish to offer practical advice?   CT  
  10. Child Noise - Neighbour complains ...

    Hi   It's 20:45, my kids are going to bed. My little girl, 7, slips as she is running upstairs, and raps her shins on the wooden steps. How many times I told her don't run ... ??   She cries, loudly.   My neighbor, a single man, is straight away banging on his/our shared walls, not for the first time.   Will just be a nasty bruise, so we bandage it up, sooth her as best we can, and now she is in bed. Quiet. Asleep.   I knock on his door, ask him what his problem is. He's annoyed by loud noise, can't concentrate, ...   I just walk away, not getting into this argument tonight.   He already complained about my son practising his violin (he attends classes, but should practise), and complained when we had a birthday party in the house (many kids being kids). Thw wall banging is semi-regular occurrence. Maybe once a month.   I really really want to have a good relationship with all my neighbors, I hate arguing about this type of thing. I can ignore the wall banging, usually. Today, with a screaming, hurt child, I lost my cool a bit.   I've heard child noise is protected by law in Germany, in that it's considered normal? (legal) References for that?   We rent, he's a owner. Does that make a difference?   Any other ideas? As I said, I really don't want to antagonize anyone. But now I would rather make a point that complaining about kids being kids, which means noise, is a bit like complaining about the thunderstorms around here - you either put up with it, or move.   calming down ... CT (a Dad)
  11. Is the German state pension good value?

    Hi   I have been living and working in Germany for 10 years or so. I earn a decent salary and have contributed for those 10 years to the German state pension at what is the maximum levels. Before that i lived in the UK, and have about 15 years of National Insurance contributions.   I am thinking to move (back) to the UK, perhaps working for the same employer I have now. I am wondering if I should try to continue to pay state pension contributions in Germany (assuming that is legal/possible?) rather than (or in addition to) NI in the UK. I get an estimate from German state each year of my pension entitlement, and it seems much better return than that of a UK state pension. In "just" 10 years I have now earned almost the equivalent of a full UK state pension, albeit at higher cost to myself.   Comments/opinions? CT