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Would you live in an ex-council house if it meant being mortgage free?(90 Posts)
Just wondering what other people's perspective is on this. Basically my question is as above, ex-council house on a small estate in a desirable (to us anyway) rural village, with very good primary school nearby, good but not outstanding secondary, large garden, much larger house than we would get for the same money in non ex LA properties. There are a handful of properties fitting that description available in our two target villages, some we'd be completely mortgage free, others would require a small mortgage. Thanks for reading!
Depends - I don't think it is possible to generalise. I only ever considered one, semi detached on an estate of bungalows on outskirts of London. I had almost decided to go ahead when the neighbours appeared, along with their pack of dogs ... not sure which od two was scarier but I never went back.
My ex LA 1920s 4 bed semi, huge plot, lovely views, lovely village, wood burner etc etc. What's not to like!
Have a look at ex-council.com
When I was really ill about 12 years ago we sold our house so that dp could give up work to look after me for 2 years and bought an ex LA flat. One of the nicest places I have lived lovely neighbours and really good experience all round.
I live in a nice 1930s end terrace with a decent garden in one of the nicest areas of my city, in the catchment area for excellent schools, with nice shops nearby. The other houses are a mix of privately owned, council owned and sheltered accommodation for the elderly. In the same area, for a similar price, the main alternative would be a small terrace with a courtyard and tiny galley kitchen and yearly rotation of noisy student neighbours. I don't think that selling would be a problem given the number of estate agents who regularly approach us to try and sell our house.
before our current house, either could either go for a new build, with one decent double bedroom and a box room and a psotage stamp garden, or an ex-council with solid walls, 2 double bedrooms and a long garden. It was a no-brainer. Really well built with loads of space.
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We have lived in an ex council house for the past 20 years, loved it, big rooms, big gardens rural views, in a National park, next door to local primary school. BUT we want to move but can't sell it because it has a 3 year residency clause and any potential buyers can't find a lender to give them a mortgage. We aren't asking over the odds, infact 4 beds and a garage else where in the area would be £100 000 more. We want to sell to other locals which is the point of the clause but now we are stuck here with a house which is unsellable. A self defeating covenant and banks with lots of money but will take no risks.
You are right nelly but a lot of wankers are cowards and a letter off the council can shut them up.
Not all but some.
And there is the option.
It is also useful for barking dogs and dodgy building in the garden, crappy fences etc.
In the past it has been useful to be able to say 'you do realise that if you do not stop your kids from doing that the council can evict you, dont you?'
If someone owns their property there is nothing you can do.
In a word, yes! My mum's house is ex-council. It's a really great house - built to last and in a nice private street close to the school I went to. I would happily live in it (again!)
Definitely - in a village close to where we used to live the ex LA house go for £350k because of the desirability of the village. We couldn't afford to live there council house or not.
2 ex council houses for sale in my mum's village have just been bought back by the council. Possible due to their being only about 10 council houses left out of an original 100.
I wish they would buy mum's neighbours house as they are 2 semi-detached very individual wooden houses. Beautiful with large rooms, built in the 1940's so have downstairs loos, a coal shed and a shed and a back kitchen built onto the house. Mums has just been modernised with a new roof, central heating and a new wood skin. Next door can't afford all that so no-one is willing to shell out £150,000 plus £100,000 in essential improvements. It has been empty now for about 6 years and he won't rent it out because he won't know who is living in his house. If it was big enough for us we would move there.
My current house is ex council. We modernised it for minimal cost and it went up by value of 20k in one year. Front and back garden, 3 double bedrooms etc...
Council did sod all when my parents were threatened and harrassed by the neighbours. The whole process of eviction for nuisance is long, hard and difficult to prove.
All this talk of neighbours...
When I lived in council I knew that if my council neighbours behaved really badly I could complain. If they were very racist towards us or otherwise abusive they would get a warning and could, in theory, be evicted.
When I moved out of council and into ex council I was really anxious about what would happen if my private neighbours turned out to be rotters.
Feck all as it happens. I am pretty sure that if next door was still council they wouldn't have got away with building and living in a house in the back garden.
I live in a council house - that's still a council house. It is one of a stand of four in the middle of nowhere, with a very scenic view of a lake (about twenty metres from our front garden). These days it would be prime, millionaires' row. No-one can ever overlook us. Two of us are still tenants and two owner occupiers - one of those was born in the house, and tenant of it for years. 100 foot gardens front and back. We have no intention of ever moving - neither do our neighbours.
When I was a home owner, I had a nice Victorian terrace with plenty of character. But neighbours who made our life such hell. This house lacks character but is in such a stunning location, and has such huge gardens, and lovely neighbours and that's the trade off. We do have coal fired central heating.
I live in the middle so one neighbour is a tenant, the other a home-owner. The previous home owners were dog rough, but the ones who live their now are lovely. Council tenant the other side is lovely. I've noticed in villages round here when an ex council house comes up for sale, it's fairly unusual. I can only recall one coming up in the nearest village in the past five years. But often the pretty picture postcard cottages come up for sale, and the following year, back up again. So there seems to be stability.
Yes - our last house was ex-council and it was far better built than the 1970s house we have now. There used to be far stricter standards for council houses than for the shoddy rubbish developers managed to flog. It had lovely room sizes, loads of storage including big walk-in cupboards on every floor - I was very fond of that house.
Do you have any idea what percentage of the estate (and how many of your direct neighbours) are council tenants or own privately? If the latter, then, in many ways, its no different from living anywhere else as they're responsible for the upkeep, you can only deal with them directly if there are any problems (so you can't go to the council & make a complaint).
I lived in a series of ex-council properties in London (inc DHR which was my favourite) and found it quite a shock when I moved to a non ex-council one as the rooms were smaller, there was no garden and it just wasn't as solid.
Also, we currently rent a new build and the next door neighbour and the ones 3 doors along are an absolute nightmare! Noisy, messy and police never away from one of the doors! So you can ger them regardless of where you end up.
We move to an ex Council house next month. Quiet village location directly opposite a great wee primary school. We looked at 2 new builds in same area but we're getting 50% more sq ft with the Council one and a huge garden.
loads of positives, and just a few negative. To trills who asked if I was being a snob, it has nothing to do with who owns a property, just the location on an 'estate' and potentially the mix of people that could let such a property down. I wanted to gauge opinion as looking long term and resale can be a problem if you get it worng as nellyjelly said. I'm not talking about a standalone property that just happens to have been built by the council - those are exceptions to the rule I think. Thanks all for the input!
"one or two bad families on an estate make it hideous for everyone."
Yes, was my experience growing up as well.
I actually live in an ex council flat on an estate now but I was very anxious about buying here for that exact reason.
Its only because I knew people on the estate who could reassure me about it, that I went for it in the end.
Having said that: our end of the estate is lovely. Real family atmosphere. I feel very positive about my children growing up here.
Yes I live in one, built 1900s big rooms high ceiliings 2 gardens (back one 40ft).I love it, nice area and was one of only 2 where we are for some unknown reason.
Am not mortgage free though but you can't have it all I suppose.
As others have said it all depends on the actual property and area. I can't see why it matters who owned it previously tbh. Maybe the stigma comes from the idea of them being located on council estates that are traditionally in less well off areas?
No, I wouldn't. I probably am snobby but I grew up on council estates until I bought my first house at 21/22.
I find them ugly, and one or two bad families on an estate make it hideous for everyone. Same could be said for owned houses but it hasn't been my experience. I've never had to put up with some of the shit in my own houses that was common in the houses I grew up in.
I also like my own four walls and I've never seen a detached council house yet. (but have seen detached new-build HA homes).
Ex council in aldbury is £650,000 so yes, of course.
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