Support thread for house sellers

(993 Posts)
Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 10:33:21

Just what it says on the tin, really! I'm sure there must be other stressed house sellers out there? Hopefully we can band together and get some small joy of (hopefully?) seeing our houses sell so we can get a move on!

This is a thread of hand holding and mutual support for the EA dealings, weeks of silence, frantic house tidying, no-show viewings, silly offers and tough decisions. This is not for house bashing and price slating. There are plenty of other threads for that! wink

I've been trying to sell for a year now. Had a surge of viewings earlier in the summer making the right noises, but all has gone quiet for the last few weeks.

However, we have a viewing booked for later this afternoon from someone who has sold their house and is able to proceed - wanting to move before Christmas. Currently swinging between pessimistic and optimistic, while trying not to look at the house we want to buy!

Anyone else out there? smile

underthemountain Thu 06-Sep-12 10:46:51

Hi, I'm still here too. Sold earlier in the year but fell through. Viewings now dried up. Contemplating giving up!

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 10:47:11

I will jump on this bandwagon. I need somewhere to vent!

I accepted an offer from FTB's on my vacant house end of May. The FTB's did not apply for the full mortgage until end of June. Two weeks ago they got the mortgage offer through, which was all they were waiting for to exchange and then announced they wanted a damp report for very minor damp work on the day we were due to exchange. Report was done the next day and they agreed the day after to exchange after some negotiation (ie me offering to throw £100 at the problem - total cost to repair £150). They were supposed to exchange yesterday but their solicitor was not in and no-one else would take on the file in the solicitors firm, Estate Agent has chased up this morning and their solicitor is in but now they cannot get hold of the buyers ffs. Their solicitor needs to confirm with the buyers that they are happy to exchange before she will. EA has given them a deadline of today at 1300hrs.

What is even worse is since accepting this offer we have moved back from overseas. We are currently living in work accomodation, but we have found and offered on a home we want to be our 'forever home' that is also vacant, so if things did progress we could be in before Christmas (I hate my husbands work accomodation). If not we might have to let the people we are buying from down, and we have already appointed solicitors to complete the purchase and put money on account, and made a full mortgage application.

My Mum is stressing because she is having to check the property every couple of weeks, although in reality she goes most days, for insurance purposes.

So tired of all of this now, and I am terrified the buyer is going to pull out.

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 10:49:00


That is my greatest fear at the moment because we can't live in husbands work accomodation longer than another year, and the house we own isn't big enough for us anymore sad

I hate this house selling lark

jenduck Thu 06-Sep-12 10:55:45

I'll join you! Only had our house on the market for 3-4 weeks, but seen another one which we really really want (and which is probably the only one of its type we could afford in the lovely village location), so want things to get moving asap! Also want to be in said village by January so we can apply for DS1's school place.

Have had about 6 viewings total, each one a 'no' (except one yesterday morning I've not heard about yet), it is so disheartening. I am starting to think "is our house really that bad?" sad

Had 2 lots of people yesterday, the one who I've yet to hear from (but that was first thing, so probably a 'no', I'm thinking), one in the evening at 1.5 hours notice, just as I was giving DSes (3 & 1) dinner & planning for a bath (but couldn't as had to whizz round tidying up & not mess up bath/get talc everywhere). They said they like the house but the garden is too overlooked hmm. It is a terraced house, our 2 NDNs + 1 further down can see into the garden, entirely as you'd expect!

Totally agree about having to keep house tidy, no-shows & all the rest! I find it difficult keeping on top of laundry as me hanging a load out seems to be like waving a flag that we want viewings!

Hope your viewing this afternoon goes well, Spirael. I am hoping not to get any today & tomorrow as we go on hols for a week first thing on Saturday & I haven't even started packing yet as too busy tidying for viewings!

underthemountain Thu 06-Sep-12 11:07:14

Wizard-hope it all goes through for you! Ours supposedly couldn't get the full mortgage they needed, it was ironic that until that point we had been considering pulling out as we couldn't find somewhere to move to. As soon as we had found a place they pulled out instead.

Enjoying not having to clean up for viewings-that is my only silver lining at the moment!

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 11:27:45

Thanks underthemountain. I am feeling like it will never happen. At least if it exchanged I could relax a little bit.

DivineInspiration Thu 06-Sep-12 11:46:48

Checking in! I accepted an offer 8 weeks ago from a cash buyer who the EA assured me had bought several investment properites through them this year with utterly flawless transactions and was a sure-thing. He produced all the evidence of having funds and being procedable and I accepted a slightly lower than anticipated offer on this basis.

Have spent the past 8 weeks chasing him about the survey, about trying to agree on contract terms, about returning documents to solicitors etc only to find out from the agent on Monday that he was a cash buyer, but that it appears that soon after he showed them his proof of available funds he went and spent them on something else (!) and, rather than admit he was no longer procedable and pull out so flat could go back on the market, has been trying (unsuccessfully) to get a mortgage ever since. It's a non-standard property and can be difficult to mortgage: hence why I instructed the agent to make this clear to viewers. So instead of expecting completion in the next fortnight, it now looks like it'll be weeks/months away; if he's even a goer at all. What's more, it turns out that all the EA's assurances over the past two months that they'd spoken to him, that things were fine, that they'd seen or done X/Y/Z were bare-faced lies - they admitted on Monday that 'buyer' was out of the country for most of August and they didn't hear from him in all that time.

There have been other viewings going on, but no other offers yet.

And breathe!

We all need a big bottle of virtual gin to get through our house-sales! All the faffing about that solicitors and EAs do which takes three times as long as it needs to. Grrr.

Woodlands Thu 06-Sep-12 11:52:05

Ooh hello! We are about to put our flat on the market and hopefully about to have an offer accepted on another place. Flats on our road usually sell within a few days of going on the market, and ours has got everything going for it (long lease etc), so am not too too worried, but maybe I should be!

Woodlands Thu 06-Sep-12 11:52:34

Ooh hello Spirael (from post-natal thread), didn't see it was you!

Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 12:02:16

[waves] Hi Woodlands! smile

I'm sorry to hear so many people are having problems selling... But secretly I'm also a little happy that I'm not the only one. wink So annoying to be stuck in limbo with housing!

Problem with selling our house is it's in an area where 3 bed semis are the norm, and there are currently over 100 of them for sale within a mile in the same price range. Buyers can basically just pick their favourite!

Hopefully the viewer later will pick ours. [chews nails]

guineapiglet Thu 06-Sep-12 12:04:56

Hi - am hoping my message will give you some hope - we had our house on for over a year in a market which fell and fell over the year we had it on ( NW) - lots of viewings, lots of positive comments but no offers - EA told us people very unwilling to proceed due to uncertainty of jobs, economic situation, lack of mortgates etc - it is a horrible process and I remain utterly amazed that there is no better way to sell something so major than the useless, stressful system we have at present. Most culpable really are the Estate Agents, they posture, give bad advice, are not remotely pro active and earn a whopping great fee for doing so very little - compare this to the solicitors who do actually seem to work hard, for all their dithering, they do usually come up with the goods. All the EAs have to do is measure up, use their digital cameras to produce inadequate photos, use Rightmove and sit back. We finally accepted a low offer, very reluctantly at the end of June, and it is taken until yesterday to complete, with lots of to ing and froing etc. We made some money on the house, not much tho' but at least have not had to face the prospect of renting it out indefinitely which was our other option. It is very much a buyers market I'm afraid. My only advice is to keep up the pressure on the EAs, change them when you can, negotiate hard on their fee and be prepared to swallow hard and drop the price if necessary, it is a tough, tough decision to make tho.Nobody communicates properly, the whole business is conducted through smoke and mirrors, horrible, utterly horrible.

Woodlands Thu 06-Sep-12 12:24:08

I have been very tempted to go with an online agent - have been looking at the premium package on which for £700 or so gives you really good photos, premium listings on Rightmove plus all the other big sites, an ERC, a For Sale sign and they help with negotiation. But my DH doesn't want to pay up front, plus he thinks the big agents will negotiate a better price. We're just at the stage on trying to haggle down their fees. I'm aiming for 1%, is that realistic?

DuchessofMalfi Thu 06-Sep-12 12:36:37

We have had our house on the market for nearly two years now. We had one really stupid offer so far under the asking price that it wasn't really proceedable. We have had no viewings for months. We're on our fourth agent. Nothing is selling. We're surrounded by houses on our road that are also up for sale and nothing's shifting at all. I despair that we will ever be able to sell.

Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 12:41:18

The EAs near us refused to haggle... But the fees are below 2% and the houses round here are cheap (no stamp duty level!) so the cost is proportionally low. Meanwhile the EA running costs (salaries, etc) are going to be similar to ones elsewhere. So I'm not too upset, especially since our current EA have been quite good.

I'd be wary of paying up front, Woodlands, as it doesn't give the EA much incentive to work hard as they've already got your money! You're the one that loses if they turn out to be rubbish.

We ended up moving EA after our first one had the house on the market for 9 months and managed to produce two viewings in that time. First couple of weeks with a new agent and we had six viewings. Even over the quiet summer months they've been in regular contact with explanations and suggestions.

Good that you made money on your house and can move forward at least, guineapiglet. smile

We're already listed as £10k below what we paid and expect to have to accept an offer £5k below that. We've done so much work on the house since we moved in too... Decorated every room, new floors/carpets, brand new kitchen and landscaped garden. It's heartbreaking!

Gravenwithdiamonds Thu 06-Sep-12 12:47:50

Gosh, it all sounds depressing! We're about to put ours on the market and I had sort of assUmed that we would sell quickly as we're in London and our area is cheap (ex-council) for the general area - though maybe that works against us if there are fewer FTBs around?

It's never occurred to me the house may sit on the market for over a year. I think I'm rather naive about the whole process...

Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 12:52:53

You might be ok in London, by all accounts things are still moving there. smile We're up in Yorkshire where the market has flat lined!

Don't know why, it's lovely up here! And you can get so much house for your money. smile Of course it is cold and wet for 90% of the year.

Woodlands Thu 06-Sep-12 14:23:25

We're in London too and in a relatively affordable but up and coming area. We're probably going on the market for £240k which is in the right sort of range for FTBs, and hoping for an offer of maybe £235k. We're then hopefully going to be paying £248k for a 4 bed house just up the road that needs shitloads of work doing to it. I think I should not be too optimistic about this all working out!

Have actually just been for a peek at a house round the corner that's up for auction in a couple of weeks time, with a guide price of 175k. It needs everything doing to it (including central heating), but has a massive garden, and similar places are going for £275k or so when done up. Am tempted but terrified by the prospect of buying at auction! There were loads of people there at the viewing so I suspect it will go for a fair bit higher than the guide price.

I got chatting while there to a family who lives on my road who are also about to put their flat on the market. It sounds similar to ours but with not quite such a good layout. They are after a very quick sale so are putting it on at £225k. Competition!

Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 14:36:50

London prices are scary... My 3 bed semi with conservatory, garage and good sized garden in a nice suburb of a city, with excellent transport links and loads of local conveniences, is currently listed at £120k. wink We're cheap as chips!!

stikmatix Thu 06-Sep-12 14:39:07

Please can I join? We're not living in the UK anymore, returned to our apartment abroad as DH came back here to work. Decided to sell so put it on the market in
August with an EA we have known for a few years.

Went on holiday and left EA the keys (as I said, known and trusted). Thank goodness I left the place really clean and tidy as we got back on the Saturday and on the Monday the EA called and said he had done a viewing with a family while we were away and they made an offer!

The big BUT is that I don't trust them. We accepted the offer, got the first document signed, they have a 7 day cooling off period which is end COB today (I will call EA this evening to check), then after that they can only pull out if they don't get a mortgage. The husband of the family is an accountant so they should be OK (not rich type accountant, but should know that he can get the mortgage), but the wife keeps spinning these stories about how hey don't know if they'll get a mortgage, and loads and loads of other BS.

It's going to be a long ride, but we're going to move to rented so perhaps not so bad. The buyer (the husband) used to be in the accounts dept of the EA so fingers crossed he's legit and it'll go through!

stikmatix Thu 06-Sep-12 14:39:34

Forgot to add, good luck to all of you, fingers crossed you all get the sales you're after!

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 15:53:56

Well, you could blow me down with a feather. We did actually exchange today, and am due to complete on 18th September. Now all I have to worry about is the lender approving the mortgage and exchanging before my husband goes away for 8 weeks with work in 6 weeks. Why did I do this to myself?

Good luck ladies. I hope everyone gets what they need x

bumbez Thu 06-Sep-12 16:12:39

Fab news FW, we're meant to exchange this Tuesday and complete 25th, it's well over a year since we first put the house on the market.

We were so close to giving up and taking it off the market I just hadn't got round to telling the estate agents, so almost didn't let our buyers view!

They are relocating from London selling their titchy 2 bed terraced for the same or even more than our 5 bed detached!

Still can't bring myself to pack though till we've exchanged!

Good luck every one smile

stikmatix Thu 06-Sep-12 16:28:16

Great news FW, hope you complete super fast!

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 16:41:13

bumbez - Good luck for next week. I do wonder where you are living because I am selling my house down south for only 25k less than what I am buying for. The house I have sold is a 2 bed and we are buying a 4 bed detached hopefully. I will only stop saying that when we exchange on the purchase.

bumbez Thu 06-Sep-12 16:55:32

Ryde Isle Of Wight, - that strip of water does put people off ! Our buyers are going to commute to London for work which although doable is a bit far IMO.

Great to be only spending 25 more on next house FW sounds like a bargain.

financialwizard Thu 06-Sep-12 17:02:57

Is a bit. I will have to commute for any work I want but hopefully no more than 40 minutes. That is the compromise.

bumbez Thu 06-Sep-12 17:03:50

How did your viewing go Spirael, were you there, or did you leave it to the EA?

CuddyMum Thu 06-Sep-12 17:08:15

Spirael - we are still on the market too. It's been 6 months and we've reduced the price as low as we can. Remarketed with a new agent and the brochure looks great etc. Feedback from viewers is lovely house BUT too small, too big, overlooked, used to live in the road and were having a look, not on the market, etc. I'm beginning to wonder if we'll ever get a sensible viewer who actually wants to buy our house. I cleaned the house top to bottom (again) today just in case - I must be mad. I almost dread the next call advising of a viewing, just knowing it will be another time waster. Rant over!!

Gravenwithdiamonds Thu 06-Sep-12 19:45:08

Photographer booked for next Wednesday and I have NO idea how we are going to get house clean and decluttered in time. We are moving out of London butcan't decide whether to just move a further bit west for a slightly bigger house or go way out east and get a lot more for our oney ut a totally different way of life - small town life, long commute etc.

I can't believe anyone will actually want to buy our house, it's such a state - i'm really hoping the london market is as buoyant as it's supposed to be.

Well done on exchanging financialwizard!

CuddyMum Thu 06-Sep-12 20:03:30

Gravenwithdiamonds - you could buy my house smile

Spirael Thu 06-Sep-12 20:08:08

Well, that was probably the most positive viewing we've had! My husband (who seems to be naturally lucky :P) handled it, I took the toddler out to go grab takeaway having spent my entire day intermittently working (from home) and cleaning/dressing the house.

Apparently the couple made all the right noises, were impressed by the room sizes (they thought they were smaller! confused), liked the fact we have off road parking, liked the conservatory, loved the kitchen and were impressed by the amount of storage room the house has.

Unfortunately they're leaving early tomorrow morning to go on holiday for two weeks. hmm So we're not likely to get any feedback or (tentatively optimistic) progression until they get back.

johnnycomelurky Thu 06-Sep-12 20:14:31

Can I join? Been on market a few months now, three viewings, all liked it but two not in proceed able position yet and third planning to look at others so prob not that keen smile. Have another viewing tomorrow. House is empty as we've moved away for work and are now living with in-laws so feeling quite desperate to sell! I really hate this.

CuddyMum Thu 06-Sep-12 21:42:58

Fingers crossed Spirael and Johnnycomelurky too

Gravenwithdiamonds Thu 06-Sep-12 21:44:28

Where are you cuddy? we are lookng in very specific areas but I'm open to ideas wink

CuddyMum Thu 06-Sep-12 22:19:07

Olney in Buckinghamshire - lots of people commute to London from here. It's a market town in Buckinghamshire. We're on for £435k - 6 beds smile

buttons33 Thu 06-Sep-12 23:11:38

Good luck to everyone.

I received the contract to sign for our house sale today. Still waiting on the contract for the house we are buying before we can exchange though.

I am keeping everything crossed, hoping that it all works out. The two months so far since offers were accepted have been very stressful. Now I need to talk my buyer into waiting to complete until our new build is ready. Not sure if this will work out but hoping!

Gravenwithdiamonds Thu 06-Sep-12 23:41:20

Sounds lovely! We are looking at Suffolk or Surrey/London but best of luck smile

CaliforniaLeaving Fri 07-Sep-12 02:50:26

Can I join? We are abroad and getting the house ready to sell, every time I think we are getting closer theres more to do/fix Dh showed me all the boards that need replacing on the deck yesterday confused and last week we were pricing new carpets as the whole house has to be done. It's all painted ready inside and out, and we've been getting rid of excess furniture.
EA's charge 6% of the total sale price. Which is daylight robbery. They do all the showings, we get out and leave them to it. Dh has even moved to dat shift for this, as people viewing and walking in on him sleeping in the day would be bad grin

CaliforniaLeaving Fri 07-Sep-12 02:51:37

day not dat

bumbez Fri 07-Sep-12 07:03:47

6% shock

I watched a program the other night based on the book freakanomics - written by Americans, apparently estate agents get on average 10% more when selling their own properties than when selling yours !

Good luck, where are you off to leaving? smile

Spirael Fri 07-Sep-12 09:18:42

I'm not sure if it's impressive or depressing that my house is so much better presented, with all the niggly DIY and decor finish off, since I started trying to sell. Are others finding the same?

For some of the changes (modernising the door handles jumps to mind) I wonder why I didn't do them years ago!! Others, like rearranging my lounge this weekend to make it seem bigger and appear more conventional, are going to be a bit of a PITA to live with.

But if it gets us a sale, then so be it! If it doesn't, you'll find me rocking gently in the corner. wink

bumbez Fri 07-Sep-12 09:50:50

We definitely should have put off road parking in and if it all falls apart we will do that.

The main negative for our house though has been the size of the garden, have just had to wait patiently for that 1 buyer who loathes gardening.

We did also finish off some small DIY jobs though, ie filling in some holes in the ceiling where Dh had hunted for the joist to hang a pan rack. They had annoyed me for 3 years and took 1/2 hour to fix!

But agree that it's depressing that house looks amazing to sell. After a viewing I was always so in love with my house but then all the hidden crap would appear and remind me why I want to move smile

I hope you find a buyer soon Spirael smile

bumbez Fri 07-Sep-12 10:41:12

We definitely should have put off road parking in and if it all falls apart we will do that.

The main negative for our house though has been the size of the garden, have just had to wait patiently for that 1 buyer who loathes gardening.

We did also finish off some small DIY jobs though, ie filling in some holes in the ceiling where Dh had hunted for the joist to hang a pan rack. They had annoyed me for 3 years and took 1/2 hour to fix!

But agree that it's depressing that house looks amazing to sell. After a viewing I was always so in love with my house but then all the hidden crap would appear and remind me why I want to move smile

I hope you find a buyer soon Spirael smile

Spirael Fri 07-Sep-12 11:22:19

Well, evidently they liked our house... They made an offer via email this morning before going on holiday! shock grin confused wine

Unfortunately it's a bit too low, so we've rejected. But we have made clear we're willing to negotiate and throw in the bits of furniture they were eyeballing. As long as we can meet in the middle of their offer and our asking price, then we're good to go.

Sounds like they'll have email/phone access once they're not in the air, so we may not have to wait two weeks. Now busy crossing all fingers, toes, legs, etc!!

wine wine wine

Woodlands Fri 07-Sep-12 11:35:52

Woohoo! Great news! Fingers crossed for you.

bumbez Fri 07-Sep-12 11:50:43

Fab news smile

underthemountain Fri 07-Sep-12 14:22:04

Wow! Gives us all hope! I hope they follow up with a good offer.

CuddyMum Fri 07-Sep-12 15:03:49

Wow! Fingers crossed for everyone else.

CaliforniaLeaving Fri 07-Sep-12 15:35:04

Well done Spirael, fingers crossed it goes quickly.

Bumbez we are moving back home to UK. I can't wait. (happy dance)
Dh check prices at the big hardware store, deck is going to cost at least $300 with him doing the work with my interference help.
Carpets about $2000 installed if we move all the furniture and rip out the old stuff and take it to the dump. Poor Dh has to do thins on his holiday week off work.

financialwizard Fri 07-Sep-12 16:08:00

Fingers crossed for you Spirael.

CuddyMum Mon 10-Sep-12 16:21:59

Well no viewings this weekend - am wondering where the next viewers will appear from as all of the houses in the next bracket down are either splitting up or moving away.

Spirael Mon 10-Sep-12 16:52:41

All gone quiet here too... The EA hasn't been able to reach our interested viewers, so no idea whether they're going to make a higher offer or not. Might not find out for another two weeks! shock

In the meantime, we changed the living room floor from mouldy old carpet to nice shiny new laminate over the weekend. EA are coming out on Wednesday to rephotograph. So hopefully that might help drum up some additional interest! Maybe? [clutches at straws]

At least there's still no-one else interested in the house we want to buy. smile

Hopefully now that schools are back, interested buyers will come along for all of us-!

YellowWellies Mon 10-Sep-12 17:03:44

Hello all - been on market 11 days had 9 viewings, 4 second viewings and now going to closing (which for those not in the know of the Scottish system is where buyers put in their best and final offers in a blind auction by a certain date). It's all a bit scary biscuits as I'm 7 months pregnant and we were hoping in the slow market that we'd be here until Christmas / the New Year so we are now just planning on moving into rented as we can't be arsed fannying around with a chain when you've also got a labour and due date to think about. Also we're moving areas from the Northern Isles to Fife / Edinburgh so it's going to be tricky for us to look at houses together until after the wee one is born (otherwise it would mean a flight and I'm approaching my flight ban with lots of airlines), and whilst I love DH - he's not picking a house on his own!!!

So there is hope (minds we'll have to see what offers we get at closing). To be fair I would say two big bits of advice we've learned from our process - look at your particulars - if the pics are not amazing - get those agents working for their commission to come and take some decent ones. Our agent took the most lovely photos and even came back on a really nice day to make sure he'd got a pic that made the most of the view.

And price. It really seems to be about price. We'll not make back all that we spent doing this house up (I doubt we will - if I'm being realistic, we might, but but only if we get some amazing offers which in this recession aren't going to happen are they?) but we'll have enough for a deposit for the next step which is fine by us we bought this as a home.

As for what we're going to do next - we're going to sit on the sidelines and rent for 6 months as our target market is falling quite quickly like £2-3k a month and we don't want to buy and end up in NE immediately, so spending £400 a month on rent is a no brainer - even if the popular view is that renting is 'dead money'. When we got the valuation back from the surveyor we were both a bit put out as it was less than we'd hoped after all the effort we'd put in (new heating, bathroom, total redecoration, months of hard graft!) but we decided not to be greedy, to trust his expertise and put it on for offers over that price - and that seems to have worked in terms of getting lots of viewings. Our agent said if we'd not had a viewing in a fortnight he would see that as being proof that the price is wrong. He seems quite a savvy guy and has been really upfront with us about being realistic. Also if in doubt never go for the agent that values your house the highest - they are just trying to 'buy' the commission and get you on their books. The agent that offered us the highest price - has the most dire particulars and shit website am sure noone would have bothered to come and view the house - especially not at a daft price.

YellowWellies Mon 10-Sep-12 17:15:32

Am amazed at the difference in EA fees around the country - ours are only 0.75%. Is this because the solicitors fees for conveyancing are separate in Scotland? Or is this just a really good deal?

Good luck all

guineapiglet Mon 10-Sep-12 19:34:01

Hi - I really think the exhorbitant fees the EAs charge should be subject to a public review, I think their greed has gone unchecked long enough. On our recent sale, the EA gained 1.25% plus VAT - and the solicitors charged just £600 for sale only - the amount of work the EA did was negligible, came round, took some photos with digital camera, minutes to upload, came up with some completely inaccurate details which had to be changed 4 times ( why are my proof reading skills better than theirs?) and sat back. Probably about 20 phone calls, 18 of which I paid for. Never returned calls, told 'lies' about the buyers ( well, lets say, embroidered the truth to keep us hanging on) and raked it in - easy money for minimum amount of effort. We finally completed last week, they have earned well over 5k and NOBODY from the EA has rung to tell me, no further follow up, other than a 'how did we do selling your house' type survey, minutes after completion through email. IS this service? WHY is there no better alternative. Still feel very bitter and twisted about them, when my inner self says,' be grateful and get on with life'. I wish I could earn 5k for so little.

CuddyMum Mon 10-Sep-12 20:06:02

I have to say my EA so far is working quite hard - a y

CuddyMum Mon 10-Sep-12 20:08:14

I have to say my EA so far is working quite hard - a good brochure and professional photographer etc, lots of advertising. Good communication but so far time waster viewers which is frustrating all round.

buttons33 Mon 10-Sep-12 23:05:44

My EA did very little for the money. Very little indeed! I had to proof read the particulars. The best error was putting a bathroom where a bedroom should have been (little two bed flat, it's not complicated). They got lucky when our buyer contacted them instead of the online agent we were also using. I have not heard from the EA since accepting the offer. The solicitor has been working far harder and will get about 1/4 compared to the EA fee.

financialwizard Tue 11-Sep-12 08:08:05

My EA charges 2% + VAT (negotiated down from 3%). They are absolutely superb though, could not fault them at any stage. I would most definately recommend them to anyone should they be in the area.

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 09:08:59

Hmmm with our 0.75% fee - we do the viewings (or just leave a spare key with the agent and folks can let themselves in to look around when you are out, we're very trusting up here on the isles!) - I'm guessing folks paying more are in a contract where the agent does the viewings? I'd pay upward of 5% if they did the sodding cleaning pre-viewing grin

CuddyMum Tue 11-Sep-12 10:34:43

Am thinking I may have to reduce the price even more but this doesn't leave much room for negotiation... I would really like to move before Christmas.

Woodlands Tue 11-Sep-12 10:36:32

I had a good read of the advice on MSE before choosing an agent. We managed to negotiate down from 1.75% to 1%, with a 5% bonus on any amount over a certain figure (which I doubt we'll get, but the agent must think there's a chance). It does seem like a crazy amount of money to spend. My DH insists it's worth it as they will be able to negotiate well with buyers. We shall see!

First proper viewing already booked in for Saturday - eek! We're having an open house the following weekend too. Photo probably being taken early next week. I have a window cleaner booked for tomorrow afternoon. I also need to get a grouting pen for the bathroom mouldy/manky grouting, and hire a rug doctor to clean the carpets - not to mention general decluttering and depersonalising. It's all go!

Spirael Tue 11-Sep-12 12:03:58

For cleaning grout, what you need is HG Mould Spray, Woodlands! It's awesome stuff.

Good luck with your viewing on Saturday! That's very quick to get some interest, especially if your photos and stuff aren't done yet. Hopefully they'll love your house and offer you lots!

No news yet from our holidaying potential buyers, but we have another viewing booked for Thursday from someone who was ready to go on another house where the sellers pulled out at the last minute. She has all her finances in place and is urgently trying to find somewhere else ASAP to keep the chain going.

Fingers crossed she likes us and gets into a bidding war with our other interested party!

Woodlands Tue 11-Sep-12 12:42:02

I periodically have a go at the grouting with bleach and old toothbrushes, but the trouble is we did the grouting (and sealant) ourselves and we didn't do a very good job, so the surfaces aren't smooth and there are lots of bits for the mould to get into. I've scrubbed and soaked and all sorts to no avail! Our bathroom is a bit of a mess really and new buyers would want to rip it all out and start again, I'm sure. We just never got round to it!

Woodlands Tue 11-Sep-12 12:42:31

Good luck with the Thursday viewing - sounds v promising!

CuddyMum Tue 11-Sep-12 13:10:38

Fingers and toes crossed Spirael!! I am awaiting a call from the EA branch manager to discuss ways forward - not sure he can do anything but it will make me feel as though I am doing something (other than cleaning on my day off).

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 13:51:24

Has anyone read the new RICS market report summary for August 2012 - it makes pretty eye opening reading - I'm just reading the comments from the EAs at the end of the document each describing their local pitch. It makes interesting reading to check out your local area and might explain why what we think are cheeky offers might require a second thought. Hmm I do hope we get over our asking price when we go to closing but we won't know until the 20th September (it's doing my head in).

Lots of agents are blaming the Olympics for deterring house viewings but really, really - with iPlayer and 24 hour news does anyone think people would put off the biggest purchase of their life because they want to watch a race? I don't buy that. Ok maybe I'm a cynic (which is maybe why I'm running to get out of the market now before it really tanks, which is my fear). It seems to be the same old but slightly different excuse (the Jubilee, Kate and Will's wedding, bad weather, good weather) that they churn out every month to explain why people aren't keen to buy often overpriced houses which they can't afford without a vast mortgage that the banks aren't offering anymore. IMHO it's all about prices being out of touch with falling wages and a return to responsible lending (i.e. checking folks salary claims are true and asking for proof of income) meaning there is no more credit to fill the gap.

Between the lines the message from lots of the EAs quoted in that RICs doc seems to be - sellers have unrealistic price expectations. I guess we probably did until our surveyor knocked that out of us. Still ultimately (after a bit of time renting) we plan to upsize so I'm trying to be an optimist as a falling market is good for upsizing as it brings the gap between house levels closer together. Hopefully we might be able to go from a 2 bed to a 4 bed without getting a scary increase on our mortgage.

CuddyMum Tue 11-Sep-12 14:28:25

EA just returned my call. He's currently trying to persuade a previous viewer to offer - they loved the house but thought it was too big! It would be too good to be true if anything comes of it.

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 14:30:15

Fingers crossed. I can't ever imagine 'too big' being a bad thing! Oh the luxury of space would be wonderful. Good luck xx

Gravenwithdiamonds Tue 11-Sep-12 16:19:06

Very interesting 'yellowwellies'. We are about to put our house on at - what I think is - a very high price. This is because (a) we haven't yet found a house to move to so are in no rush (b) our house is big for the area and has some advantages that most don't eg, off-street parking, downstairs loo (c) we're in London and the market is still (supposedly) buoyant, and (d) I'm prepared to come down if we are being very unrealistic.

Do you think it's still bad to go on the market with a high price? We haven't sold before so feel a bit clueless and I feel the EA is dictating what we do though, to be fair, they are local and know our area very well.

CuddyMum Tue 11-Sep-12 16:27:54

Graven - try it and see if you get any viewers. You never know.

noddyholder Tue 11-Sep-12 16:33:20

Definitely unrealistic expectations. I am fed up with agents coming back to me re offers I made months ago saying they would accept now. Now I want more off as I have seen the decline and expect further. I offered 275 for a house on for 315 in feb. Agent mailed me today to say do we want to look again they have it at 275k and another agent has it at 269! So assume could get for 250k. Absolutely nothing selling here even near good schools which I don't need now. My advice is drop your price and try and negotiate the drop up the chain. We have realised if we wait til January we may get what we want and save a fair chunk.

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 16:33:40

I guess it depends if you want to sell quickly, we didn't want to linger on the market for too long as when I see houses that have done that (I use a little add on called property bee with mozilla firefox and it allows you to see all previous price changes and description changes for a property on Rightmove) - I instinctively think something must be wrong with them, or the vendors are unrealistic and 'kite flying' rather than serious about moving. If it's somewhere I'm serious about I look at the last selling price through the Land Registry too so I can see what someone bought it for and how much they're out to make a profit.

It's your choice I guess. Personally that strategy would make me a bit uneasy... but then I'm not in London and it is a very different market. Looking at the Land Registry figures - London is still rising and prices there rose 6% over the last 12 months and are masking large falls over the rest of the country when national stats are reported. I can't see what is fuelling London other than perhaps a case of the Emperors New clothes-itus?! As the last market crashes hit London last but hardest of all - if it were me I'd be tempted to not hang around on the market too long in case you catch the turn in sentiment. But then, wouldn't a crystal ball be a marvellous thing. Certainly up here in Scotland there is a steady crash with sensible values returning and overpriced houses simply not selling. I wouldn't advise you to do what you are doing up here and indeed most agents wouldn't advertise a house on their books above the home report value (we still have those) as everything is selling beneath that.

Good luck! I have no clue what I'd do in your situation. I guess it depends on what you plan to do, if upsizing or moving somewhere cheaper (where you could haggle a reduction in price) then I'd try to undercut the market by putting on at a sensible asking price, as there is so much unsold stock on EA's books that it's easy for your house to stagnate and linger on for sale amongst everyone elses. I did worry that the flurry of activity re our house meant we've put it on too cheap but at least with it going to blind bids - we stand a chance of a fair market price.

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 16:40:41

V true noddy - I wouldn't want to chase the market down - that was our biggest fear. Hence we put it on at a realistic price. I know lots of folks think prices are going to go back up again - but I can't see what would drive that with the current economy. If you are willing to cut dramatically then try putting it on at a high price and be willing to drop and then buyers might feel they are getting a really good deal - just don't slowly cut a few thousand here or there on a very expensive house as that looks like the agent has had to pull teeth!!! grin

PurpleGeekyGirl Tue 11-Sep-12 16:40:52

I'll join in here too if I may! Boyfriend has just put his house on the market and we have had deafening silence as a result. I hate all this sluggish slow moving malarky... I tried to sell mine 2 years ago but couldn't and ended up having to rent it out instead and ended up with the tenants from hell angry (anyone in yorkshire, avoid dacre son and hartley with a bargepole!)

noddyholder Tue 11-Sep-12 16:46:05

Most buyers are quite savvy and watch the houses that chase down. Most houses that have sold have been re available weeks later. I think the old style waiting for a recovery won't happen this time due to the state of the economy and housing. A lot of people I have worked with in property in the past are jumping ship now me included grin

YellowWellies Tue 11-Sep-12 16:54:40

Hmmm. I'd love a crystal ball. It feels really annoying to be the first generation in years NOT to make a packet from selling their home but m'eh.... my strategy is plan for the worst and hope for the best, and well - we are trying to look on the bright side - it will make our forever home cheaper ultimately if prices keep on falling.

Before we decided to sell to rent instead of buying, I was getting very annoyed when looking at houses to buy - at being expected to pay an inflated price to cover a new car, holiday or kitchen that someone had bought out of their house equity. Unless I get the car or to go on the holiday - we decided we'd be buggered if we were going to pay for it for someone else!!! (I'd check what they bought for and often ask as politely as possible, what work had been done to the house in the intervening years to justify the price rise - usually nothing but there would tend to be a spanking great range rover on the drive...).

I think most procedable buyers are more savvy these days as the muppets easily separated from their money can't get mortgages anymore. Which I guess is a good thing (other than for us trying to sell our houses!!!) if we don't want the banks to go under again. The days of someone coming along and falling in love with your house and paying over the odds - won't happen with the tough lending criteria but I guess could still happen with a cash buyer (but then aren't they more savvy and less likely to be ruled by their hearts?) Fingers crossed and well, let's hope for the best and plan for the worst.

noddyholder Tue 11-Sep-12 17:04:31

We went to fill out some forms at our letting agent today. They do a tiny amount of sales too.They know we are looking to buy and had several houses in our bracket but teh girl we spoke to said everyone would be in negative equity if they took an offer and so they hadn't sent to us as they knew we wouldn't pay over the odds shock so they know they are over priced and were effectively asking us to bail out their clients or forget it!

Badvoc Tue 11-Sep-12 17:47:36

Agree with noddy...most houses round here (Derbyshire) are on the market again after a few weeks/months.
Exception are the smaller/cheaper houses like 2 bed terraces or ex LA properties.
We bought our house 6 months ago for £172k
Our next door neighbours have just out their - exactly the same - house on the market at £200k!!

Badvoc Tue 11-Sep-12 17:48:13

How do you mean "jumping shp" noddy?

noddyholder Tue 11-Sep-12 17:50:05

I have been renovating houses for years and have stopped for now.

Badvoc Tue 11-Sep-12 17:53:28

I see.
Am still in shock about neighbours putting their house in at £200k! What in earth are the EAs thinking! They are the EAs that we bought this ine from so not like they don't know the score!

Gravenwithdiamonds Tue 11-Sep-12 19:17:47

It's tricky as I think the market locally is very different compared to what other posters are experiencing. We're in an affluent area of London where £million-plus houses are the norm. We live in an ex-council area which have about the only 'affordable' (under£500,000 is considered a bargain round here) housing and, to be honest, I think they're still under-priced for SW London. Usual buyers round here are young couples moving from a flat to a house and the occasional first-time buyer - I assume there's a lot fewer of them around. My NDN tried to sell her house a couple of years ago at what I thought was an inflated price and it didn't sell, though her house is very different to ours.
We are upsizing but also moving out so our next house will likely be cheaper, certainly no more expensive.

The EA is just so bullish about the price - mainly because 3-beds (which we have) are rare round here.

YellowWellies Wed 12-Sep-12 09:00:40

Oh aye Graven it's definitely a very local market and London seems to be bucking the trend at the moment - but it didn't during every other crash, it just crashed last and hardest, I guess because London always feels itself special and different to the rest of the country, but despite this sometimes hard economics will just have their way.

I am surprised that you really think 500,000k is 'underpriced' given that a traditional rule of thumb is that houses should be 3.5x single salary or 3x joint - is that not totally out of touch with local wages? That's still half a million pounds (a lottery win in my books!) for a roof over your head. Ok I know city boys earn a lot compared to folks up here, but no offence meant - but would they want to be living in an ex council house at the opposite side of London from where they work?

Badvoc it sounds like the EAs 'bought' that commission by promising a high price to deluded folks. I bet they try to put the thumb screws on in a few months to get them to lower the price. One of the agents up here is going down this route - flattering you to win your business about how lovely your house is, then telling the truth a few months down the line when no one has been to visit. A pal is just going through this, it would have been much easier for her to just know the real value at the outset.

Noddy - interesting. Everyone I know who used to develop property (ok only like 4 people!) now wouldn't touch it 'with someone elses' - as it were. They've banked gains and are sitting on the sidelines. It's seems only to be the amateurs on Homes under the Hammer that still haven't realised that the music has stopped...

Well we've got 3 more viewings arranged yesterday which I need to try to fit in before closing a week thurs, and am hoping to try to put them off until Friday when I'll be working from home as I can keep the house looking nice (the cat has a tendency to spray cat litter everywhere) and until then we've lent our spare room to a pal (who needs internet to work from home, but is awaiting a BT connection at their new house, and it looks like Dr Evil's lair filled with computer screens), also have got antenatal class tonight so am hoping that'll be ok. We've been really flexible with viewings until this point but I am starting to lose the will....

Gravenwithdiamonds Wed 12-Sep-12 10:19:07

Our area is all city workers (including me and DH) - the transport links to Waterloo are excellent and many cycle (including DH). I still don't know how FTB in particular afford it but then, we were FTB, don't have a large mortgage and aren't bankers. A large deposit is a must I think as, like you say, large mortgages aren't available. I do think £500,000 is a lot but it's not unprecedented for sold houses here and I'd be prepared to negotiate. We're not in a great rush so will sit and see.

yes, it's ex-council but it's a pretty 1920s garden estate - red brick, cottagey conservation area, big gardens. If London is going to crash, that means I'm more anxious to sell now. I had half thought we were daft to sell as prices have risen so much, i'm keen to hang onto our best asset - rents are crazy at the moment. But we need a bigger house and we need the deposit for that house...

Best of luck with your viewings. We're having photos done this morning - my house has never looked tidier or more clutter-free. It will be impossible to keep this up for viewings!

TunipTheVegemal Wed 12-Sep-12 10:31:57

I don't think there's the stigma there used to be attached to ex-council. Largely because some of the older ones are built to a much higher spec than most newbuilds. There's an ex-council estate in my village that is probably the second nicest part of the village - lovely solid pretty brick houses with big gardens built round a green.

guineapiglet Wed 12-Sep-12 10:36:50

Good luck to all of you with viewings today - hope the sunshine helps to bring out viewers. We have just sold in the NW in a very turbulent market, have had to take about 7% off the price to do so, and consider ourselves very lucky after a very stressful year. We have moved to an area where we would roughly have to pay twice as much as the house we have just sold for a property of the same size - it is heartbreaking! To most of us, half a million pounds is a lot of money (too much) but in this area it seems to be the accepted norm - but I cannot understand how the UK as a whole will be able to sustain itself with such huge discrepencies between north and south ( in general, although I know there are pockets which buck the trend) - we simply cannot have one half of the country continuing to prosper whilst the other is not. We have friends trying to selll a gorgeous house in Cumbria, a few years ago it would have been snapped up - at the moment it is on for a good price, but there are no takers and no interest, the market is simply flooded and flat. Someone - aka the housing minister, is going to have to look at this stark situation as it is heartbreaking for families who have to move. If we all accept the principle that prices have to 'drop' to more realistic prices, especially to encourage the FTBs, there will be some areas immune to the principle, - there has to be some kind of consistency.

Gravenwithdiamonds Wed 12-Sep-12 10:52:30

Yes, the discrepancy is awful - i'm from the NE and my childhood home is now worth less than what it was sold for 15 years ago. We would consider moving there, I think the quality of life is fantastic but there just isn't the kind of work that we do available in the NE whereas in London we find it very difficult to recruit.

Saying that, many many people I know with children, if not most, are moving out because the property prices are so high and the secondary school situation very complex.

YellowWellies Wed 12-Sep-12 11:06:24

Aye prices up here are easily back down to 2004 levels (which was nearly before the credit splurge started) - I'd consider 2003 prices to be about right in line with the long term trend and for purely personal reasons would be great as would enable me to be able to stay at home with the kids rather than us both going out to service a huge mortgage to keep the bankers rich! The regional falls have been dramatically masked when the national figures are announced by the BBC, Halifax etc as positive figures in London keeps things propped up and makes it seem as if the national market is 'stable'. Properties are losing thousands a month in many parts of the country and have been for a couple of years.

I do think worse is coming though. We've had 8 years where anyone who could fog a mirror was offered a 110% mortgage by Northern Rock - no wonder the market went nuts. I think the Inland Revenue ought to go over old mortgage applications with a fine toothed comb as there must be a lot of back tax owed given how inflated some folks made their incomes 'seem' on mortgage applications. Such fraud (which ok was done out of desperation to get on the ladder, and with the complicity of mortgage brokers) bust the system for honest people. People found to lie on their applications by the banks are now having their mortgages pulled. About time too, they ought to have checked at the time and none of us would be in this mess. But then the higher house prices went - the bigger mortgages people needed, and the more they borrowed from the banks (and the more they had to pay back!) so no wonder the banks didn't try to stop the bubble. They were raking it in.

Good luck with the pics. I didn't recognise my house on ours!!! grin My Catholic nan has advised us to bury a statue of St Joseph upside down by the front door as apparently that is a sure fire way of getting a buyer at the price you want. In her octagenarian wisdom - I kid you not... but am tempted to try it! blush

Ah and cheers for the clarification on ex-LA housing - I forget that some of it in London is actually very nice! I still reckon that a greater premium would be attached to Edwardian, Georgian or Victorian jobs - but that's probably me showing my own preferences.

CuddyMum Wed 12-Sep-12 15:19:52

Another viewing lined up for Saturday - someone renting locally. Am feeling a bit more buoyant now. I'd better seek out a statue of St Joseph... smile

CuddyMum Wed 12-Sep-12 16:13:12

Aha!! They sell St Joseph statue sell your home kits on eBay!! I think I am losing my mind... But I'm going to buy one.

YellowWellies Wed 12-Sep-12 16:51:14

Ah go on - hah if the government thought the Olympics (a bunch of lovely folks running and jumping?!) would have a long term impact on house prices then why not some sympathetic magic grin Just make sure you bury him upside down by all accounts and don't forget to dig him up when you leave.

God I sound mad. blush

Got another viewing scheduled for Friday. After our pal and his 3 computers will have moved out of the spare room. Whoot. Will be glad when the closing date gets here to be honest. Am so nervous - but can't wait until thursday next week when we found out if / how much anyone has bid. And the next day we've got another growth scan for the baby (so all very exciting).

Is anyone else paranoid that viewers are going to attempt to open a cupboard and get flattened by all of the stuff you've hidden in there? Or is that just my definition of 'housekeeping'. wink

YellowWellies Wed 12-Sep-12 16:52:49

And I shouldn't even mention my cat's impeccable timing at dropping one in the litter tray usually as a viewer's car pulls up on the drive....

CuddyMum Wed 12-Sep-12 17:47:26

I opted for a St Joseph medal as I wasn't sure about burying an 8 inch statue! Good luck with your viewings - hope the cat doesn't curl one mid viewing! I am luck, I can take the dog out with me smile

Gravenwithdiamonds Wed 12-Sep-12 17:52:53

Good luck with your scan and viewings.

There have been 3 burglaries on my road today<sigh>, I think I will need that St Joseph!

YellowWellies Wed 12-Sep-12 17:56:45

Jeez that's awful! Ok I live in the back of beyond (Orkney) and decent take aways and other luxuries of modern life (next day deliveries from the mainland) are non existent but I honestly haven't locked the house since we got back from holiday in May. Even when we're out at work we leave the door open in case the postie has a parcel for us. That's so shit!!!!! Mindst I guess in a recession petty crime rises - but burglaries are so scary - hope you're ok Graven. One not to mention to viewers!

Gravenwithdiamonds Wed 12-Sep-12 18:49:15

I know, it's horrid. The silly thing is, they usually go for the big houses and our area is thought of as really safe because the neighbours know each, the houses ae much more crammed together and we have a very good residents' association. The car is always unlocked (I think it's too rubbish to bother stealing!) and I leave windows open etc. Not any more... sad

MoreBeta Wed 12-Sep-12 19:05:57

Very definitley a lot of sellers with unrealistic expectations.

In our area we looked at a house a few days ago and the seller is expecting a 25% profit on the house they bought 7 years ago. The Land Registry shows that house prices in our area have actually fallen 3.5% compared to 7 years ago.

A lot of older people like the sellers of the house we looked at in our area are trying to sell houses at a 25% price over what the market will bear. They just sit on the market for years. It is just as frustrating. I am a cash buyer but the sellers just will not get real.

Woodlands Thu 13-Sep-12 08:37:29

I hope people don't look at what we bought ours for and think we are being greedy. We bought it five years ago for about £193k and it's on the market for £240k. But we extended the lease (which cost £26k) and we spent at least £10-15k on doing it up - replastering, new boiler, new radiators, new kitchen etc etc. We reckon our break even point is about £233k (and ideally we'd like to get £235k).

Badvoc Thu 13-Sep-12 08:48:49

Woodlands, sorry but you can't expect buyers to pay for your improvements...I know what you are saying but you chose to do what you did and a buyer will not necessarily want to pay for your improvementsmifnthey are not to their taste iyswim?
We only got this house for the price we did because it was being sold by a building company who had done a part ex with the previous owners.
Like you we have had to have a new boiler, roof repairs, etc but I wouldn't expect a buyer to cover those costs tbh.
Good luck.
More beta...we were In your poaition last year...we made 3 offers of £5k under asking and they were all refused. We were no chain, deposit and mortgage aip in place.
2 of them are still in the market and 1 was taken off.
One EA did phone me about one of them about 3 months ago indicating the vendors had had a change of heart....too late!

Woodlands Thu 13-Sep-12 09:27:20

Well I can kind of see what you mean with regard to decorating/kitchen design etc, but surely you would expect money to be taken off the 'standard' price if a house needed a new boiler/had a really skanky old kitchen/a leaky roof etc? Identical flats on this street are going for similar amounts so it's not like we're massively overpriced. For example, the house we're hoping to buy is priced at around £40k less than similar houses as it needs a new kitchen, the bathroom to be completely reworked, needs new plastering etc. You wouldn't say that once we've done all that work we should sell it again at the price we paid for it, would you?

YellowWellies Thu 13-Sep-12 09:37:44

Hmmm we're on the market for 10k under our break even point after fitting and extending a new bathroom, installing a heating system and brand new radiators and hot water tank, insulating the walls, buying an additional 1/4 acre of land to ensure that our septic and garage were on land owned by us (rather than the next door farm - gotta love Orkney deeds!!!) and redecorating from top to bottom of the entire house. Our agent was very clear - the current market won't pay for improvement works. I mean it's not as if we did them for someone elses' benefit or to the buyers taste - we did it for ourselves to make the house nicer whilst we lived here. The time for improvements being an investment is long past. In fact the time for houses to be an investment seems to be gone - if folks wanted peak 2007 sale prices they should have sold then. We were humming and hawwing about doing the kitchen but surveyor friends were clear - you won't get even half your money back - so just leave it to the buyer to do to their own taste.

If the market had fallen Woodlands yes you could easily do all that work to the house you are proposing buying and it could still be worth less than you paid for it as a wreck. sad we're not considering a fixer upper when we look to enter the market again next year (largely because I'm preggers and the thought of living in a building site again is hellish), but might if it were our 'forever' house - however if we knew that we might want to sell in a shortish period i.e. less than 5-10 years I wouldn't touch a fixer upper as you'll not cover costs IMHO.

Spirael Thu 13-Sep-12 09:39:31

Whoa whoa whoa... This thread is for supporting sellers through the awkwardness of dealing with EAs, prepping for viewings, coping with periods of silence etc. Not for tarring sellers with the brush of “If you can’t sell you’re priced too high!” or “People shouldn't pay for your X, Y, Z!”. It’s right there on the tin in the intro.

We're not all evil money-grubbers, you know. And all markets are not created equal. If you need a buyers support thread for where the sellers you're dealing with are overpriced and/or refusing to negotiate, then go and make one. This is the sellers support!

Very grin at the idea of all the upside-down St.Joseph's being buried. Not something we're intending to resort to... Not least because our front garden is concrete - there'd be no-where to put him!

Got our viewing this afternoon, left the house immaculate this morning. I really hope she likes it! And offers asking price. wink

Badvoc Thu 13-Sep-12 09:42:10

I just dont think the current market is bouyant enough to pay for improvements, however much they are needed.

YellowWellies Thu 13-Sep-12 10:07:05

Good luck with the viewing! No need of a buyers support thread here as to quote Dragons' Den - we're out (to rented for a while!). Apologies if a bit doom and gloom - I think a bit of realistic market analysis is helpful (even if its not what we want to hear, I could have throttled my surveyor but with closing and a sale in sight I'm grateful now) I suppose how keen folks are to sell will determine their actions - we just can't at this point in our life sit on the market for years - as we'll be far too cramped with Junior arriving and we want to be back further south closer to family. I guess it depends on how much folks want life to move on or whether they can sit and wait for a dream buyer. We just want sold quick and for as good a price as we can - and looking at the long term trends (up here in this market!) that seems to be bail out quick grin hence St Joseph, and thinking about putting a cork up my cat's arse.....

Badvoc Thu 13-Sep-12 10:12:51

Erm....I was a seller a year ago.
We dropped our price by £20k and low and behold we got a chain free cash buyer in 3 days.
but if you dont want to hear that, fine,
I'm off.

Spirael Thu 13-Sep-12 10:23:01

Well, that was a fantastic result for you Badvoc. smile

Meanwhile we've dropped our price by £20k and are still waiting, so unfortunately it doesn't seem like that's the magic solution for everyone!

grin about corking your cat, YellowWellies!

Badvoc Thu 13-Sep-12 10:23:50

I hope it all works out for you.
Its a soul destroying business., thats for sure.

CuddyMum Thu 13-Sep-12 11:41:06

Was very pleased to come home just to see that next doors gardener has trimmed our front bushes - he hoped I didn't mind and said he was just told to tidy the bushes up!!! They l

CuddyMum Thu 13-Sep-12 11:41:15


CuddyMum Thu 13-Sep-12 11:41:58

Bloody phone ... Anyway great timing for our Saturday viewing!

Woodlands Thu 13-Sep-12 11:55:47

Well, we'll see - we're not desperate to move so if we don't get a decent offer we'll hang on. A very similar flat a few doors down recently sold very quickly for about the amount we're looking for, and nothing on our road hangs about for long, so I'm quietly confident. We do need more space but if we can't move and the market crashes we'll simply do a loft conversion. We would have considered that anyway but we know we wouldn't get our money back for that as people won't pay over the stamp duty threshold.

Good to hear about the hedge trimming, CuddyMum! Our downstairs neighbour has just done our (joint) hedge and it now has no leaves on it! Ah well.

YellowWellies Thu 13-Sep-12 11:58:45

Hahah brilliant! I wonder if I can somehow divert a cleaner from somewhere to do my house before the viewings tomorrow as I'm having a can't be arsed / fat preggers / shirking from home day.... Oh god hurry up closing date and hopeful sale, am normally such a slattern - I am so looking forward to not having to clean with more than a monthly frequency again....

As to Badvoc dropping by £20k I would say it depends on your market as Spirael says. (I guess it also depends on whether it's 20k off a 500k house which is a 4% reduction so small beer in some areas where prices are falling that every two months, or 20k off a 100k house which is 20% and probably more tempting to buyers but scary for the poor seller!).

I think it's very local and some of us will have to be more realistic than others. Some places are still seeing rising prices (some but not all of London), but other markets are really price sensitive at the mo' (check the RICS report to read more on yours) - sadly for us, ours is very price sensitive - a similarish 2 bed house to ours (not quite as good views but still nice, equally done up, more land, more outbuildings, but perhaps to an older persons' tastes) which is on the market for only 10k more than us has sat there for eight months with NO viewings whereas we've had 11 and have 3 more lined up and are going to closing after only a fortnight on the market. It's with exactly the same agent, the particulars look nice (and whilst I don't think it's as nice as ours, I'm biased to love my own house more and recognise that to someone else they probably look equally nice). I can't believe that such a small difference in price (about 7% of asking) can make such a big difference. To us that amount of money was worth a quick move - but I recognise that for other people that amount of money is a make or break.

The flurry of interest in ours has made me wonder if we underpriced and whether we should have added 5k onto the asking (which I would have liked but took professional advice from a couple of surveyor friends against this) but I wonder if that would have priced us out entirely. At least this way we stand a chance of a bidding war and getting over the asking price.

Maybe.... Roll on Thursday! At least we'll know then.

For those of you with more staying power in this market determined to get your ideal price - good for you. You have much more patience (and love of cleaning) than me!!!

CuddyMum Thu 13-Sep-12 12:01:53

Off to clean now (after my Crunchie and coffee). Good luck for your viewing Spirael smile

CuddyMum Thu 13-Sep-12 12:02:32

And good luck YellowWellies for Thursday.

AllBellyandBoobs Thu 13-Sep-12 12:56:27

Hi, can I join in? We've had our house on the market for about 7 weeks now. No viewings for the first 6 weeks but 3 have materialised in the last week. I followed the list of what not to do when showing someone round the house for the first viewing so let DH take over for the last two smile Haven't heard a peep from any of them since so I imagine that's not good news.

As for pricing, I think we overpriced ours but it's difficult to gauge because buyers seem to expect to knock a certain amount off the asking price. We would be happy to get (and judging by recent sales nearby, would be reasonable to get) 20k less than we've marketed for so we sort of took that into account when setting the price. Not sure if that's the right strategy however.

YellowWellies Thu 13-Sep-12 13:08:39

Allbelly - I think it's a tough one to call - so far by potentially underpricing we seem to have rumours of offers over our asking price. We shall have to see on Thursday when we go to closing.

Whether it's a bidding war for a 'cheap' house or folk making 'cheeky offers' on 'overpriced' houses - the market will find it's balance I guess. A house is only worth what someone is willing to pay as the saying goes.

Good luck and welcome!!! I'm worrying that I'm sounding a bit like Eeyore (gloomy gloomy) on here because I'm pretty pessimistic on the market (rather I think the economy is totally jeffed!!! grin)but honestly I'm a fairly cheerful soul in real life. Also we're hoping to upsize so a falling market actually is really good for us as the next step gets closer and we won't need to get a scarily big mortgage (apologies to those downsizing for whom a falling market is not good).

AllBellyandBoobs Thu 13-Sep-12 13:44:12

I've been quite gloomy about our chances of selling, I'm driving DH mad with my complaints I think. Having said that, since I first posted the EA have been on the phone arranging a second viewing so maybe it's not all bad!

We're also upsizing, well, probably the same size but in a better area, so can also see that a falling market won't really affect us negatively.

bumbez Thu 13-Sep-12 14:44:28

I'm on tenterhooks waiting to exchange, should have happened 2 days ago but bloody HSBC lawyers being picky.

Good luck every one else smile

YellowWellies Thu 13-Sep-12 15:05:12

I've been driving DH mad as the anti-clutter Nazi. The poor guy can barely take his shoes off let alone leave a book lying somewhere without me tidying hiding it. I blame nesting instincts combined with a desire for a quick sale so I can stop fannying around pretending I live in a clean, tidy and hygenic way.

Good luck Bumbez!

Woodlands Thu 13-Sep-12 22:28:03

Thanks for the recommendation of HG Mould Spray, Spirael! It has indeed worked wonders.

TunipTheVegemal Fri 14-Sep-12 09:03:09

What is this mould spray of which you speak?
(not a seller yet but will be in a year or two)

Woodlands Fri 14-Sep-12 09:10:30

Spirael recommended it further up the thread to deal with our mouldy grout/sealant in the bathroom (to at least make it look nice at first glance even though it all needs ripped out really). I got it in Homebase (£5.49, ouch!) yesterday. I have tried spraying with bleach before and also Cilit Bang mould remover spray but neither had much effect. However this stuff really did the trick - I sprayed it on, left it for 30 mins and then rinsed off. The vapours were really getting up my throat - powerful stuff and needs lots of ventilation!

Spirael Fri 14-Sep-12 09:10:57

It's this stuff, Tunip. Though you can get it from other places too... Homebase, B&Q, Robert Dyas. There are some sellers on Amazon as well.

It's amazing stuff, clears bathroom mould from dirty grout and sealant with minimal effort. grin

It does make your bathroom smell like a swimming pool for the next day or two, however. I quite like it.

Spirael Fri 14-Sep-12 09:11:42

X post, Woodlands. wink

Gravenwithdiamonds Fri 14-Sep-12 10:03:11

Well, we got our photos done after manic decluttering & cleaning, only to have a complete change of heart - we have decided to rent out our house and sell DH's flat, which is currently rented out - a 2-bedder in a different part of london - and use that cash instead as a deposit as the house is a better longer term investment. The flat will be a pain to sell as there's an ongoing issue with the managing agent (it's on a large mansion block of flats) so so we won't be moving any time soon unless we go into rental and there's no suitable rental properties in theplace we're going to.

I'm disappoined not to be moving soon but at the same time, it's great to not rush and feel like we're making too-hasty decisions. Best of all, I can stop tidying the house!

Hope all your viewings/de-mouldings/exchangings go well!

TunipTheVegemal Fri 14-Sep-12 10:11:28

Thank you Woodlands/Spirael!
I think I've got some Lakeland vouchers somewhere....

YellowWellies Fri 14-Sep-12 10:37:38

Graven I'm in total envy of anyone who can stop decluttering (stuffing stuff in cupboards) and cushion plumping and manic cleaning.... good luck with your decision sounds like it is right for you. I almost wish we didn't have to move, but having battled out to the woodshed to get coal, in near gale conditions complete with horizontal rain, whilst 7 months preggers, this morning - I am so glad to be moving closer to civilisation!!! Even if we have no clue as to where this baby is going to be born.... let alone coming home to... hey ho!

CuddyMum Fri 14-Sep-12 15:33:39

How was your viewing Spirael? My little St Joseph medal arrived today and I will be burying him later and saying the prayer. Shame I'm an atheist!

Spirael Fri 14-Sep-12 15:40:30

I called up a few minutes ago for feedback, and apparently there was nothing wrong with our house but the woman has found a different one out of the bazillion available in this area that she preferred more. sad

Oh well, hopefully the holidaying couple will up their offer when they return! Only another week and a bit to wait to find out whether they're going to. wine

CuddyMum Fri 14-Sep-12 15:59:37

Oh people are so fussy. Hope you hear back from the couple when they return from holiday.

YellowWellies Fri 14-Sep-12 17:03:42

CuddyMum don't worry (I'm a pagan shhhh don't tell anyone and burying the charm is more linked to old fashioned folk magic / hoodoo than formal religion!).

Our viewing today was a young girl and her Mum - who seemingly was brought along for advice. It was nice to see a genuine FTB as this is very much a FTB house and they seem to be rare beasts priced out of the market at the mo. They seemed really positive, loved the Rayburn as it was something the girl had grown up with - which is good as it can put some folks off used to oil fired central heating - the other option up here, but once you've had one you become nostalgic about the odd beasts, even if they do blow out on stormy nights. Mindst - they were hardly going to say anything awful in front of a heavily preggo lady I guess.... so who knows!! I'm rubbish at spotting who's genuinely interested. Both of the couples who have put formal offers in were folks that I thought didn't like the house.

I guess we will find out on Thursday. I might ring the agent on Monday for a catch up to see how things are going. Or should I just be patient and wait until Thursday at 4pm??

Good luck everyone else with viewings planned. Tough on the lack-lustre viewing outcome Spirael - there's so much on at the mo' it's so hard. Still at least there is nothing wrong with your house? Fingers crossed for lots more viewings.

Can I join in? smile

Ours has been on the market for 4 weeks but we nee to move fast as dh starts working on a new job 150 miles away on 1st October. Work will let him live on expenses till Christmas thankfully. We need to be settled by January so I can apply for ds' school place.
We found a perfect house by accident and put in an offer in principle which was accepted. So we JUST need a buyer and the we can go.

So far we've had 8 viewings, 2 lots liked it and EA thought one might make an offer. But she's been chasing them since Tuesday and heard nothing so I'm guessing they're not serious. sad

I am getting really fed up because we NEED to be into the new house before the primary school deadlines. The school is mega over subscribed BUT we'd be super close so should be ok. As long as we are in the hose in time.

Aaaaaarrgh! It is driving me mad! I am not a patient person! blush

CuddyMum Sat 15-Sep-12 09:11:56

Right another morning of cleaning, gardening, arranging fresh flowers, lighting candles, hiding evidence of teenagers and a pug and not forgetting to bury St Joseph!! The viewer had better turn up!

No viewings today. sad

Not a happy bunny.

CuddyMum Sat 15-Sep-12 11:07:03

It's a horrible feeling when you have no viewers sad

DuchessofMalfi Sat 15-Sep-12 13:16:00

I don't like to visit this thread too often, as it's making me depressed sad We haven't had a viewing for over 6 months now.

The housing market in our area has completely collapsed. Our Estate Agent says he's barely selling anything now, just the occasional small property to first time buyers and nothing more. We've all but given up ever finding a buyer. It's a complete nightmare.

CuddyMum Sat 15-Sep-12 17:04:16

Oh no Duchess - what area are you in?

DuchessofMalfi Sat 15-Sep-12 17:46:35

We're in Dorset sad

CuddyMum Sat 15-Sep-12 18:15:02

Lovely part of the country - expensive house prices though. Just had a quick flick on Rightmove and so many million pound plus houses!

MoreBeta Sat 15-Sep-12 18:21:02

Hasn't Dorset been bid up a lot by retirees in the past decade and now the flow of retirees has slowed to a trickle as they cannot sell their houses elsewhere so cannot move?

YellowWellies Sat 15-Sep-12 19:39:21

Ouch - that has to hurt Duchess - do you have to move urgently? Are you in NE or do you have a bit of wiggle room to drop the price slightly to get the process over and done with?

I know some folks are sentimentally attached to a certain price which feels 'right' in their minds but for us we've had to forgo that to move when we need to and get on with our lives. Not of course, that I still wouldn't wish to achieve this price this Thursday when we go to closing. I really hope we do, but we'll sell regardless TBH with new baby etc we just want to be close to family and back in civilisation (we're at the opposite end of the UK up in Orkney). M'eh we're just taking it on the chin to be the first generation not to make a packet from property - but then we were also the first to be screwed by student debts - so I don't us as being particularly 'lucky'!

Woodlands Sat 15-Sep-12 21:42:39

Sorry to hear that Duchess - it must be really panicky when you need to sell and can't.

We had our first two viewings this morning. The house is cleaner and tidier than it's ever been before - wish it was this way always!

We have friends who live round the corner who have also just put their identical flat on the market, with the same agent. Inevitably we had the same two sets of viewers this morning! We are both having our photos done on Tuesday. Interestingly theirs is going on the market for £5k more than ours, although ours has a view of a park and is marginally closer to the tube. I haven't been to their flat before but I think it is more recently decorated so that could be the difference.

I bet she's a MNer - I wonder if she'll see this thread!

DuchessofMalfi Sat 15-Sep-12 21:52:35

We're not in the expensive retirement part of Dorset. We're in the north - a long way from the sea. Property prices around here are quite low compared with, say, Poole or Swanage.

Our Estate Agent has told us it won't make a scrap of difference if we drop the price by £50k or more, there just isn't anyone out there. Anyone want a 4 bed house in north Dorset?

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 14:00:41
YellowWellies Sun 16-Sep-12 14:12:41

Why isn't there anyone out there Duchess?

Is it the disparity between prices and wages? (That would be my best guess).

A third of a million for a family home in a rural relatively low wage area does seem massively out of whack with local wages (what's the average wage for that part of the world £25k, wow that makes them more than 10x local wages!)? Perhaps the market has run out of people trading with equity and 'free money' from HPI and is now relying on those using wages - which aren't anywhere near high enough to allowing them to buy houses at that price.

I can see why now the banks are returning to traditional, more risk averse lending, i.e. 3.5 to 4x salary loans - there are huge areas of the country where that just isn't enough to buy anything, let alone a family home sad Gosh it'll take decades for folks to save up a 20% deposit there - I've no idea how long it would take me to save up £60k on a £25k wage but it would be a long time. God what a mess.... sad this bubble has only been good for the banks and it nearly killed them.

Have you had a look at the land registry for actual sold prices in your area rather than asking prices?

TunipTheVegemal Sun 16-Sep-12 14:22:53

I wouldn't be happy with an agent with such a defeatist attitude. He's supposed to be selling your house for you dammit and if he starts off with the view that it's not going to sell and there's nothing he can do about it why the hell did he take the instruction in the first place? Can you change agent or are they all like this?

YellowWellies Sun 16-Sep-12 14:41:15

I'd be inclined to agree with Tunip. The EA's job isn't to make excuses about not selling it - his job is to sell and if he needs a new strategy to do this - then he should take it! Have you put a rocket under his arse and explained that you want to sell, not just put it up for sale, and you need to know what if anything you can do to achieve this (up to and including changing agent)?

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 15:53:14

Actually this is our 4th agent and it's just getting worse here. We're all in the same boat. It isn't the EA's fault - he's doing what he can. Changing agents won't help now and people are giving up. Dropping the price won't help either. We tried and no-one came. Nothing we can do. But it does appear to be quite a localised problem.

YellowWellies Sun 16-Sep-12 16:07:44

I dunno - from reading this months RICS survey (from EAs all across the country all reporting on their local markets - definitely worth a read), it seems to be a problem across the UK - bar London, and areas which have already seen big price drops - Scotland, NW, Wales, NI, NE - where the market is more in line with wages and is starting to move again as FTB can get mortgages on real wages. I mean the trigger factors - the economy - seems to be pretty similar nationwide I guess?

RCheshire Sun 16-Sep-12 16:38:13

I can tell you that in the most desirable parts of the NW prices are at or above 2007 levels and stick unsold for months/years. If that weren't the case then we wouldn't still be renting!

I've never understood the 'there are no buyers' line trotted out by EAs. If they surveyed everyone in the locality and asked "would you like to buy/own a house" I imagine they'd get an overwhelmingly positive response. If they asked "would you like to buy this 4 bed detached for £1m", the answer may be 'no'. If they asked "would you like to buy this 4 bed detached for £1", the answer may be 'yes'.

Of course it boils down to price - whether that is caused by the buyer's perception of what constitutes reasonable 'value', or by their being unable to get credit to meet that price.

I've been renting for 18 months now and have offered on two places. The first had started off looking for 900k and ended up asking 595k before selling. The second started at 750k and ended up asking 550k before selling. Everything has its price.

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 16:57:11

YellowWellies - is the RICS survey readable online? Do you have a link to it? Would love to have a look at that.

What hasn't helped our local problem is that a brand new estate was built in the last year and the developers were offering 95% mortgages and all sorts of extras to attract buyers, so it meant that any buyers who were out there flocked there instead. We had one viewing earlier in the year where the family said how much they loved our house, and seemed very keen. They even came back for a second viewing. We thought great, this is the one. They then found out about the development in the next town and that was that. They told the EA that, whilst they loved our house, they could get a better deal on the new house. You just can't compete with that.

Friends of ours are also trying to sell their house - they have dropped their price several times, to the point where they are almost prepared to give it away out of desperation. They can't get anyone through the door - no viewings for months.

The rental market seems to be slowing down round here too. It's a major problem.

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 17:05:06

RCheshire - we started off at an asking price in line with all the other houses the same size as ours in town, we've dropped and dropped. We had an offer at £75k below the asking price which we accepted. Our buyers had dropped their asking price so far down to make their house acceptable to a first time buyer, who then got nervous and pulled out. The chain collapsed. We would have had to make up a huge shortfall to afford to buy anything else - we were prepared to move to a cheaper area but our seller refused to drop their price. We've done everything we can to be flexible - we've accommodated a low offer, we've dropped our price significantly. Absolutely nothing has made a difference.

noddyholder Sun 16-Sep-12 17:07:52

It is about prices coming down countrywide to allow a true shift in the first time buyers ability to buy and more than that to pay a mortgage! There are a lot of potential buyers waiting for falls before they proceed

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 17:09:58

Sorry to hear that duchess.
We were also desperate to move sad and dropped our modest £150k asking price to £130k. We got a no chain cash buyer within 3 days.
I live in Derbyshire (and not the nice part!)
we had put in new windows, new boiler and complete re-dec the year before.
In my more depressive moments I tell myself that's why it sold so quickly....
I think some vendors (like my sis and bil) will have to accept selling and owing money on their property in order to move...

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 17:16:13

I wouldn't even mind if we got someone through the door who liked it enough to make a cheeky offer. We'd consider it. After all, a buyer's a buyer. As long as we could pass any drop onto our purchase. What really pissed me off was having to take the drop and find the shortfall ourselves - no-one else was prepared to drop or meet us half way.

noddyholder Sun 16-Sep-12 17:24:11

Yes that is unfair. Can you drop the 75k now to make your house look like a bargain?

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 17:25:14

Even after dropping our price we on,y got 2 viewings...ine of whom bought it
I know here that seems no rhyme or reason at all...houses £125k and under do ok and issues over £500k sell really quickly but anything in between....sad
Is renting it an option duchess?

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 17:27:05

Can you match the Offers/prices new made by the new estate builders?
They are offering 95% mortgages here too....

DuchessofMalfi Sun 16-Sep-12 17:43:17

Actually we'd have to put our house price up grin to match the prices of the new houses - it's the mortgage and the extras that we can't compete with.

The cheaper houses in town - FTB types are slowly going according to our EA, and he's also sold some really expensive stuff too, which doesn't seem to be affected. But the ordinary housing stock like ours is stuck.

We're priced now half way between what we were originally and what we were prepared to sell at before, so that if we got a cheeky offer we could accept the drop down again. But if we start off at the lowest price then have to accept a cheeky offer it wouldn't be worth selling - it would be taking it down into the FTB price range, which ours isn't - it's a nice sized 4 bed house with a good size garden and we wouldn't be able to buy anything.

We're left with leaving it on at the current price and watching what comparable prices do and taking our EA's advice, or taking it off the market which we may have to do.

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 17:52:42

That's how it is here tbh...really expensive and ftb places selling and mid range 3/4 bed not selling.
On my sisters estate three are 3/4 large 4/5 bed houses that have been in the market for 2+ years....
Whereas the 2/3 beds are selling.
I hope to god we never have to move again!....I didn't think I could take it!

TunipTheVegemal Sun 16-Sep-12 17:54:08

There was a report out a week or so ago saying that affordability for 2nd time buyers is the worst for 25 years here. It's no wonder you're having trouble, with the extra problem of a new estate in the same area.

CuddyMum Sun 16-Sep-12 18:31:42

Well no initial feedback yet from our latest viewing... I wonder what the excuse will be this time. Feeling a little negative right now.

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 20:10:07

Oh how I hated waiting for feedback!
I don't know what was worse...a couple who came to view knowing we didn't have a garage saying they would have bought it except there wasnt a garage sad
Or another couple saying they didn't like the colours we had painted the rooms...rooms good size, good storage, nice flooring etc just didn't like the paint job?

They might not actually have known there was no garage. IME EAs tend to insist on offer to book in other 'suitable' properties whenever you ask to see one. We were sent to all sorts, including one 3 bed when we'd said we were looking for at least a 4 bed. We didn't know until after the owners started showing us around (when we got upstairs we had that sinking feeling). They were lovely, and we felt really bad about wasting their time but it was really the EA wasting both of our time. The house had just gone on the market and the EA clearly wanted to show them they were getting viewings.

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 20:37:21

Nope. They knew we only had a car port.
They were locals.
They were also arseholes smile

suebfg Sun 16-Sep-12 20:46:14

I've been trying to buy a house for nearly two years. I'm a cash buyer in rented accommodation so you'd think it would be an easy task. However, of the houses we have seen which we would like to buy, the vendors have been completely unreasonable as regards the value of their houses and guess what, those houses are still on the market 12 months on. If vendors could accept that their house is worth less than it was in 2007, maybe more houses would sell. I think it is also partly down to estate agents too who over-value houses in order to gain business.

We even had one muppet of a vendor who decided she didn't want us to buy her house and wouldn't give us a second viewing. Well, guess what, her house is still on the market too.

CuddyMum Sun 16-Sep-12 20:50:15

Badvoc - that made me smile smile

Badvoc Sun 16-Sep-12 21:04:57

Sue - we had the same thing last year....we only got this house because it was being sold by Building company not a private Vendor!
cuddy smile

suebfg Sun 16-Sep-12 21:07:40

I wish they were building new houses by us sad

YellowWellies Sun 16-Sep-12 22:42:11

Shit news on the new estate. That's harsh. Good for buyers but not for sellers. Which is why all of these 'newbuy' housing finance schemes the tories are announcing to help the market are no such thing. They are designed to bail out builders alone, but they actually make it harder for your average person to sell their house - as it can't compete with new builds. They are also artificial props to the market and yet more socialism for the rich business types.... capitalism my arse.

Duchess you have my total sympathies you're clearly not one of the many numpties on the market who still believe Kirsty and Phil's nonsense that 'house prices only ever go up' instead you have priced your house to match the market and are more than willing to be accommodating to the change in sentiment. That really sucks sad I would echo the others advice, which is if you're going to cut - cut first and cut sharp - there is no sense chasing the market down.

I really want to get out sharpish as listening to the IMF and other professional bodies (none of which you ever seen reported on UK media!) they reckon UK prices are still 30% too high and will crash over the next few years. We couldn't afford to lose a third of the value of our place hence are getting out sooner even if we have to take a bit of a hit now.

Please find attached a link to the RICS report for August, the pages of most interest (along with the stock vs sales ratio - which shows it is still a buyers market and that sales are well down on peak) are the last few pages of the pdf which contain the individual feedback from EAs across the UK on their local situations. You have to read between the lines when it comes to the headlines in the actual report though as there is a lot of consultant weasel speak (she says herself a consultant!) 'a broadly level national picture' i.e. translates to 'rises in London are masking dramatic falls across most other regions but we don't want to announce this nationally and scare the horses.... '

RCheshire you're speaking a hell of a lot of sense. Everything will sell at the right price. Ultimately that's the nub of it. I guess at present the price buyers want to pay is just not acceptable to sellers.

But as prices keep falling - I think sentiment is turning and there is a realisation that tomorrow's offer is likely to be lower than todays. NE, rising mortgage rates, divorce, death, relocation, redundancy and a need to move - will ultimately force some people to have to take a price they don't want to. These forced sellers will then set a new precedent for their local areas and outcompete other properties which in turn will look overpriced and poor value. Hence see above - why we want out now and are priced accordingly.

GreenEggsAndNichts Sun 16-Sep-12 23:25:40

I'm a buyer. Cash buyer, currently renting. We want a 4 bedroom house. Finding one in my area which is not asking the exact same price as those houses were going for several years ago is very difficult. I did finally find one, leapt on it asap, and hopefully the survey will come out alright. I know this is a terrible time to buy, for all the reasons Yellow gives above. I know if I bought a house at the price most would like to sell them for here that I would lose that money within 2-3 years. sad So hearing that it is a buyer's market is amusing to me. Anyone buying right now has to be aware that they won't be selling again anytime soon, because those prices are going to continue to go down for a while longer.

I just had this conversation with two friends from the town I live in. Both bought their houses for 50k-ish, and both houses tripled in price over the last ten years. Truly. That's not normal; that's a bubble.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 06:32:06

I sold my last house last September as I had been watching this unfold. He house 2 doors down is now on the market at 10% less and is not sold. It s bigger too. The market has peaked and now t is damage limitation. Unless you can afford to reduce I think staying put and making your home suit you by extending etc is the way to go for now. Chasing the market down is soul destroying better to cut now. Even though prices are 30% ish inflated most people would still buy at 15-20% as there is such a shortage.

Badvoc Mon 17-Sep-12 08:02:59

It is mad.
We spent more on this house than we wanted to because a) it was only house dh liked in 2 years of looking! and b) we hope to be here til retirement age.
Our mortgage is only 3 x Dhs salary but it still feels a lot when our first home 13 years ago cost £53k and the deposit was £2.5k!!

Badvoc Mon 17-Sep-12 08:08:05

However, despite completely gutting it and spending £££££ on our old house we did not make our fortune on it!
We remortgaged twice to do major works (extension, new windows, loft room etc etc) but we were still left with £20k for a deposit dor this house in the middle of a recession so in many ways we were lucky.
Like oddly, I too got very itchy feet last year..I said to dh if we don't sell now at a reduced price we will be stuck here forever sad
A big warning sign for me was the lack of mortgage products offering 85-90% mortgages....from pages and pages of products to 2.
That told me all I needed to know,
Good luck everyone x

Badvoc Mon 17-Sep-12 08:11:12

Noddy I mean, not oddly!

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 08:59:39

V true Greeneggs if it looks like a bubble, walks like a bubble etc - it was a bubble - deliberately inflated (or allowed to be inflated) to create a fall sense of wealth (amongst homeowners) to mask a decade of falling wages.

I think there is a good argument that the 'tough times' we are now facing economically are not so much a recession as a return to normal. And as the Bank of England itself said last year, they expect them to last for at least this coming decade - which Mervyn King has christened the 'nasty decade' (aka time to repay debts after living on hock and bubbling asset values for the last decade). All of those folks who used to gloat 'my house earns more a year than me' needed their heads read - that's a bubble!

My genuine sympathies go to those priced out - they didn't cause this mess, they saw none of the benefits yet they are the ones suffering the most. I hope their time comes when they can buy a home of their own.

Folks who are selling, who have a mental figure in their head of 'what their house is worth' so that they don't feel as though they are 'giving it away' (often not based on anything real other than sentiment - i.e. 'we'd like to make £40k profit') are likely to learn, the hard way, that their ultimatums are not as real a barrier as the banks not lending daft LTVs anymore, or the need for the desperate to sell low to avoid bankruptcy.

They'll realise that such an inflated asking price was wishful thinking possible to achieve only during the peak of the bubble, and not based on any economic reality.

Who can be more stubborn? I would argue that ultimately those that CAN'T offer more are in a more powerful economic position that those who would LIKE not to cut their prices. It's choice versus compulsion ultimately. But if sellers don't have to sell then there will be stalemate. However it only takes one forced seller (a divorce, lost job, relocation etc) to set a new low price threshold for a street.

Our EA reckons that 80% of new instructions are from folks downsizing (due to poor pension prospects / annuities, rising bills etc) - think of that - if 80% are downsizing - only 20% are upsizing. That's a hell of a disjoint in supply and demand on the horizon isn't it - when it comes to large family homes, and is not going to end well for the downsizers, regardless of whether or not they 'don't want to give it away'.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Sep-12 09:23:17

YellowWellies - I very much agree with everything you said. The volume of transactions has collapsed because sellers are asking prices based on what they would 'like' or 'need' to get for their house whilst buyers have an absolute limit on what they can offer because of lack of mortgages and low wage rate growth.

The house we offered on last week was exactly this situation. An older couple with no children close to retirement who 'want' £x because they want to buy a cottage in Devon, do a world tour and also give some money to their children. All those things add up to £x and that figure has absolutely nothing to do with what their house is actually worth. They will not accept our offer because it would not allow them to do all the things they have planned.

Their expectations will have to change and that wil take several years. They are the typical downsizer for whom it wil not 'end well' as they will not take our offer which is 15% below their inflated asking price and ultimately end up selling for 25% less 2 - 3 years from now. It happens a lot in our town.

In fact, we offered on a house a few years ago where one of the owners eventually died and teh hosue was finally sold for 5% less than our original offer. Bizarrely, the EA never came back to us.

There is definitely a return to normal going on. I am old enough to remember banks only allowing mortgages of 3.5 x joint salary - asking prices on large family homes though are still based on expectations that a couple will come along with 2 children and be so desperate that they will offer 5x their joint salaries. They can't because banks will not allow it and no matter how much they want that beautiful home.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Sep-12 09:31:41

Incidentally, for those people who are selling on this thread I am not having a go at you. We are all probably in the same boat even though I dont have a hosu eto sell.

The entire problem is getting older 'over housed' sellers to sell family homes at a price that families can now afford in the new reality of the market - not in the bubble conditions of years ago. The market has to clear eventually.

Anyone who is buying for the first time or moving up to a bigger property as their family grows needs house prices to fall. Problem is that older sellers have the ear of Govt and they vote.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 10:00:26

Price falls will benefit everyone in the long run

Gravenwithdiamonds Mon 17-Sep-12 10:11:05

Out of the 4 houses we looked at in the last month, they all had youngish retired couples looking to downsize. Three of the properties had been on the market for months and there was a definite sense that they were priced according to what the sellers 'need' to retire plus what they had paid for the house, rather than what a buyer would pay. To be fair, it's a difficult area to price (not much housing stock, particularly of family 4-bed houses) but the fact they had sat on the market for many months surely is some indication that the price was wrong. One house was over-priced (by our reckoning, given that we've been looking at houses there for 6 months or so) by £100k on a £500k property. I'm not convinced they really wanted to sell.

The feel of the market just seemed so different to London, where the market (in our borough at least) is still very fast, lots of properties moving and therefore it's difficult to over-price as there's so many comparable properties on at the same time.

iseenodust Mon 17-Sep-12 10:24:44

Some good news from the sticks - we've just had a proceedable offer in only 5% below asking price. Been on the market 4 months and previously had a couple of non-proceedable offers. Potential buyers have 1st time buyers' offer on theirs, so fingers crossed we can proceed without too many glitches.

Things are moving round here. All the ones I've had an eye on for us but not been to look because in no position have sold.

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 10:55:05

Great news iseen, we've got another viewing scheduled for this morning too, and we're counting down the days until Thursday when we go to closing. The viewing is from a friend bizarrely - which I'm not sure how I feel about... Would it be odd to sell to a friend? I've got to work in the office, so have just told her to let herself in... but have just remembered we need to hoover, put the washing away and make the bed - arse.

Beta some great points there. Indeed sellers future plans are no business of buyers, and to expect them to pay for it is just greed - I'd like to get a ferrari and world cruise from selling our house - but m'eh in this market - what I'd like doesn't come into it. Hard economic reality will trump fluffy wishful thinking.

I do see a pinch point and scrap between downsizers and upsizing families for three bed houses - given that the downsizers who came to view our place were thinking that two bedrooms would be too small for the two of them and considered three beds a minimum (I think a certain generation has got used to having much much more space than the rest of us). Although if there is a dash for the exits from big family homes as energy prices rise - it could mean that the market is disjointed and the difference between unpopular big houses and more popular modest houses becomes compressed.

Badvoc Mon 17-Sep-12 11:09:09

You have described my neighbours exactly!
They want to move to a seaside town and need xxxx amount to do so.
Shame we bought our identical house 6 moths ago for £30k less than they are asking!
There are bigger houses with garages for sale only streets away for the same price!

iseenodust Mon 17-Sep-12 11:14:15

Selling to a friend is an interesting one.... but a buyer is a buyer?

It's a 3 bed we're selling. One sold round the corner a couple of weeks ago for just £1k more than we've been offered. There are 2 new build developments within a mile in similar price brackets. What you're not getting with those is a garage nor more than handkerchief garden.

higgle Mon 17-Sep-12 11:24:18

This is a very interesting thread - DH and I will be downsizers in another couple of years. We will be doing some work on our house and if we can get what we want we will downsize, but if we can't then we will stay put and enjoy it ourselves. The point is that we won't want to sell for less than £x not because we can't look ahead and see he house might be worth still less in years to come but because we are assessing one set of pleasures ( loft flat and lots of hols) against another (living in a house we love and having time to garden etc). I don't think there is an answer to this problem for buyers trading up.

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 13:08:01

No I think you're right higgle I think the market will make the decisions for a lot of people but until then lots of folks will be weighing up the pros and cons as you say. If austerity bites and the current benefits which allow pensioners to afford to stay in big homes they couldn't afford to heat on their own (without the winter fuel allowance for example) are cut - and it's looking increasingly that way, and if fuel prices continue to rise and the market continues to fall, I think lots of people will decide that downsizing might offer them a less stressful life. Especially as rising costs for repairs etc continue.

It's funny isn't it - it would be ludicrous if someone who had had say dot com shares and didn't sell them before the crash, was still insisting they were worth dotcom bubble prices - we'd all tell them they were mad. But that's exactly what the 'not going to give it away' crowd are doing with their houses - they missed the peak but aren't willing to accept the new reality. I guess it's the emotional attachment. But yes when we have looked at places and the buyer has priced in the equity they withdrew for a new car or kitchen - well unless they are going to throw in the car - we're not paying for it, is my rule.

Friend's viewing went well. Am trying to wrack my brains as to whether there are knickers and socks on the bedroom floor from going to bed last night. Classy bird eh? Hey ho she might have got a more 'realistic' viewing than most...

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 13:28:42

I know it is either an investment so you take the ups with the downs or it is a home and you live in it.TV property shows have sold a dream of £££ easily made and people can't let go.It is over even though most people esp agents can't admit it

DuchessofMalfi Mon 17-Sep-12 13:41:01

Adding insult to injury, we had a flyer through the door this morning "Join us on 29th and 30th September for our Home buyers' event at xxx sales centre ... Reserve this weekend and receive a superb Sony entertainment package: 42" HD LED TV, DVD Home Cinema system, and HD digital recorder".

MoreBeta Mon 17-Sep-12 13:43:15

EAs are just as unrealistic.

I rang the selling agent on the house we offered on. Told him the hosue was overpriced as it was on at only 50k less than a much larger house at the end of the terrace.

He argued that the house seller at the end of the terrace had accepted a lower price for 'a quick sale'. I told him I knew that it had taken 3 years to sell so hardly a quick sale.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 14:04:33


YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 14:09:38

I think the slow pace of the market also has to be factored in - it gives buyers much more time to research their potential purchase. In the boom you would be rushed into making an offer as the EA would be making out that there were two or three other parties interested and you had to offer today (often not even subject to survey!). Now they can't do that.

And when buyers have time to do research they can figure out a) what the vendor bought for and when and b) what they have done to the house (and note if there is a disconnect between the two sums) and c) what has happened to regional prices and d) other recent sold prices. And make an informed offer accordingly. This isn't helping sellers achieve the prices they want if they are unrealistic. Pace of the market is another key feature to consider.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Sep-12 14:17:21

YellowWellies - those steps a - d are precisely the ones I went through with the house I made the offer on. It makes no difference. The sellers have been led to believe prices have gone up by the EA when in fact they have gone down in our area over the last 7 years.

I set out my calculations in a letter with evidence from Land Registry and other house price indices, added estimates for the work that had been done. It was the calculation the EA should have done when talking to his seller.

Fact is that EAs simply quote a high price to a seller to get them to sign up and then leave them to sweat on the market for years. Bad for every one.

I am not even trying to get a bargain, only pay the actual fair market value based on real transactions.

If they come back in 6 months my offer will be lower.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 14:30:35

I have been looking to buy since last year november onwards. Most places I have viewed which subsequently sold re appeared within 6 weeks or so. We made about 3 or 4 offers all refused 3 of them came back to us. There is limited finance for people without a decent deposit and a spotless credit check so this will push prices down.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 14:56:22

Well we had an offer today but at £55k below! I have declined and will see if they come back or not. I am flexible but not that flexible. It's almost certain that we would not get this amount off when we buy.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 14:57:48

What is the % though you may be surprised If you will take a reduction so will others.Do you have a minimum?

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 15:01:48

87%. In an ideal world i would like 96%. I rather wish I hadn't spent £40k on the loft conversion as a similar house (without any work) sold for about the price I am looking to achieve.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 15:03:43

I have made enquiries about a house we are interested in to see how flexible they are.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 15:13:15

Well it appears the vendors of the house I am interested in are really not flexible. They have an offer of £10k under the asking price on the table but looks like they are holding out for more. This would make our downsizing exercise pointless.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 15:43:54

Ah if you are downsizing you can'r really expect the same reduction. What about renting for a year?

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 15:52:49

Well they are looking at an offer close to 98% and it needs new bathrooms, kitchen, flooring, plastering. Mine is in perfect condition. I would bite someone's hand off at that offer but they still want more.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 15:56:52

Offer them what you think is fair and leave it on the table.They may think again in a couple of weeks

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:00:29

They already (allegedly) have an offer on the table for 98% from apparently a cash buyer so there's no point. Either they are being greedy or the EA is bullshitting... He's not a local EA so I am wary.

noddyholder Mon 17-Sep-12 16:02:37

If they had a 98% cash offer in this market they would have taken it. Agents are desperate atm. I have heard every story going over the years and this time round the lies are ridiculous. Everything we have viewed in the last year is still available most of them reduced. Where are the other buyers I was warned were my competition? Try and push your buyers up a bit too

ThisisaSignofthetimes Mon 17-Sep-12 16:03:40

I'd still make the offer, if they turn it down and can't sell they may be back. Vendors are achieving around 93% of asking price at the moment, so unless their property is very desirable they are unlikely to achieve it particularly as it sounds like it needs work.

ThisisaSignofthetimes Mon 17-Sep-12 16:06:47

cuddy have you looked the property up on Zoopla, I don't set much store by their valuations but you can find sold prices and also you can see whether its being marketed previously and at what level. I found the property I've just had an offer accepted on was on the market last year and that they had reduced a couple of times, I offered accordingly.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:07:24

The only reason it is at all desirable is because it has a big garden which is very unusual for the area. It's ugly from the outside but I could make it lovely inside. They are divorcing (he has left already) - saw him in the pub with a newer model!! I am awaiting a call from my EA to see if they will up the offer.

nemno Mon 17-Sep-12 16:13:07

Can I just add that you need to be careful with last sold prices. Try and establish when current owners bought their house if you are interested in buying it. The reason I mention this is for our current property the rightmove, Zoopla type sites say it last sold in July 2005 but we actually bought it in March 2009 for 35% less. There are various categories of sale that do not get included in many house price websites or in the statistics derived from them. What difference do you think it would make to potential buyers of our property if they thought we paid that earlier figure? Presumably at some point it would become apparent that we were not the '05 buyers (if we don't let on, that is), when would this be?

Does anyone know if you can actually get the data about repossesion/corporate sales prices?

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:13:18

Yes they bought at 335k four years ago - have done sweet FA to the property. They have an offer of 340k but want more.

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 16:14:19

CuddyMum. I'd find a more reasonable seller if you can. These guys sound like they are totally unrealistic, and (bad person that I am) they deserve to sweat it out on the market for a long time not to be saved by a 'greater fool' coming along and keeping their unrealistic dreams going. Use your head - don't fall in love with a house. Otherwise you risk ending up taking the hit on the house that they might avoid sad

I think most EAs seem to be boasting where they can get 90% of asking price so 96% might be a tad tricky but it depends on your area (check out the RICS link). Asking prices have fallen 4% nationwide since July. Selling prices vary by region but most are falling 1%+ per month.

Any reason you'd not consider renting and stepping out of the market whilst prices fall further? That's what we're going to do. Ok it's one more move but prices in our target area are falling 2k per month (Fife) so if we buy right back in now we would risk NE in just over a year (and our deposit was saved from earnings, it hasn't been built up by house price inflation so it's reflecting much more blood, sweat and tears than those who have just sat on their house and made £30k!!!!). Whereas if we rent it would only cost us about £500 a month and the hassle of an extra move (but hey we're of the generation that has moved dozens of times in our twenties thanks to the AST tenancy agreements and being priced out). My DH's work are paying for our first move so it's not such a biggy. Although of course we will have a small baby to move... so it's not all peachy. But we figure that if prices drop 2k a month - by the time we've paid mortgage interest over the lifetime of the loan that's a saving of 6k in real terms per month. After a year that's over £70k - more than enough incentive to stand out.

It is a bugger but the old saying is that you upsize in a falling market and downsize in a rising one (am amazed how few folks know this basic financial truism though). It sounds as though neither of us are doing it right!!! Oh for a crystal ball eh?

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:14:36

The date is correct as I know the person who did the conveyancing

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:15:59

We are prepared to rent smile

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 16:18:21

The land registry is the only place to get reliable figures (or Scottish registers up here). Zoopla is pants. It costs about £3 for each property you want to check on the LR but is worth it if you are seriously interested in a house no? I believe they do include repossessions in the registry figures but NOT in their quarterly house price sale trends, which I consider to be a significant distortion of the figures as it is omitting a large and low priced segment of the market. If they omit repos then they ought to omit fixer uppers / developments as it's not comparing like with like.

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 16:22:52

Good for you Cuddy - I'd leave them to their unrealistic expectations - or take the approach recommended by Noddy. Good luck!

Our agent reckons we will achieve above our asking price (but we priced low) as we've gone to closing and have several interested parties. I remain highly sceptical but will let you all know on Thursday. I won't believe anything until we get the money in our account and are going to be very wary of any offers subject to finance as so many mortgage products seem to be being pulled at the mo' - I guess the banks are scared of exposure to the Euro and having a panic?

nemno Mon 17-Sep-12 16:23:34

That's good to know Yellow, I wasn't sure repo etc information was at all available, thanks for that. Yes I agree about manipulated figures, in our area (in London!) I think it would seriously affect the numbers as I do notice there are quite a lot of enforced sales (from the required public notices prior to sale).

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:29:31

I do wish people would ring with counter offers on the same day! I can't stand the waiting. I just want to crack on and make a decision.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:34:00

Wonder if I ought to have buried St Joseph a little deeper...

CassandraW Mon 17-Sep-12 16:38:46

There should be plenty more houses to choose from soon at more realistic prices.

The Rightmove Index has dropped to £234k today from £246k in June. So people not buying have saved £12k in 3 months.

YellowWellies Mon 17-Sep-12 16:42:19

And they've saved £36k once you count in the lifetime costs of servicing a £12k mortgage debt. Oh god hurry up sale I want out now.

CuddyMum Mon 17-Sep-12 16:50:03

No other houses at the moment unfortunately ;(

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 08:59:41

We had another viewing last night, a young builder (we vaguely know) and his Mrs. He offered on the house last year when we bought it (it went to closing then too) but missed out and came to quote for some work we needed doing. He seems a really nice guy. They're just a classic young FTB couple. I know it sounds daft but I really hope it goes to them in closing as they seem to really love the house and with him being in the trades - he can get loads of free waste timber which would be perfect for the Rayburn! Some of the downsizers were just plain unrealistic (not on the market yet, but reckoning their third of a million pound house will sell 'in a heartbeat because it's lovely') and having had things their way throughout their entire housing career - I'd like to give the young couple a break. Mindst if the market is going to tank - maybe best to sell to the downsizers who have equity as a cushion.... Well only two and a bit days to go until closing.....

CuddyMum Tue 18-Sep-12 09:13:27

It's all sounding promising YellowWellies - the best of luck to you smile

iseenodust Tue 18-Sep-12 09:43:43

Yellow you are beginning to persuade me of the benefits of the Scottish system. Or is your market skewed by a real shortage of property up there?

financialwizard Tue 18-Sep-12 10:36:33

Well my place is supposed to complete at lunch time today. Not heard a bean, so will just let the solicitors do their stuff today.

iseen I have worked with English and Scottish cases, and the scottish ones are always much easier (I was a mortgage underwriter at a brokers until made redundant a few years ago). I definately think that England should adopt the Scottish system of house buying. It is much fairer.

financialwizard Tue 18-Sep-12 10:37:14

Forgot to add: fingers firmly crossed for you YellowWellies

CuddyMum Tue 18-Sep-12 13:18:36

Well I've not heard any more from my EA since I rejected the very low offer yesterday. The viewer is either trying to make me sweat or I may never hear from him again sad

financialwizard Tue 18-Sep-12 13:36:02

Woooooooooooooooo hooooooooooooooooooooooooooo have completed!!!!!

There is hope for you all ladies and gents I am sure. Will keep my fingers crossed for you all.

Piemistress Tue 18-Sep-12 13:46:42

This popped up in most active convos and seeing as just put house on market thought I would join!

Am in Scotland though so the whole thing is done a bit differently here.

House went on market on Friday and have had one viewing, that's it! No more phone calls. Maybe I am expecting a bit much but was hoping for at least 3! But as DP said you only need one buyer. They are coming back today for a second look so fingers crossed. We haven't seen a house we like though which worries me a bit! Keeping house tidy with a toddler and a newborn is a nightmare!

iseenodust Tue 18-Sep-12 13:48:22

Congatulations FinancialW wine

financialwizard Tue 18-Sep-12 13:56:53

Oh CuddyMum I didn't see your post before my completion one. I am sorry, I hate it when people keep you hanging on like that. Fingers Crossed they are number crunching.

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 14:15:15

Congrats financialW. I hope that's us soon!!!

Iseenodust I think it depends on where you are in Scotland really. There's only a couple of properties going to closing on the islands where I live (Orkney) at present - lots of others are languishing on the market for months with no sign of one offer let alone several. Looking at the RICS report other areas of Scotland haven't seen a closing date in months.

I think it's because we have priced realistically and because we are at the end of the market that is still vaguely in sync with local wages so it's easier for folks to buy. We also seem to suit a range of buyers - divorcees, FTB and downsizers. There is a heap of optimistically priced houses sitting on the market for 3+ years up here which are £300k+ (largely owned by second home owners now looking to downsize and yep, you guessed it, 'not giving it away') that go months and months without viewings - given that the average household income here is 20k there is no way anyone local can afford them.

I do think the Scottish system gives us (as a seller) the very best chance to accept the highest offer - when you get a closing date as everyone has to submit blind best and final offers (sealed bids) - but it can mean that buyers offer too high in desperation at securing a house so in boom times it can make the Scottish market prone to bubbles. Also the home report system is handy as you don't need to pay for a survey for each house you are interested in (unless you are more serious and want a full structural). It also means you get a flood of viewings before the closing date (so compresses the number of weeks you have to keep your house clean!!! grin)

We have another viewing tomorrow from someone whose name we were both sure sounded like something out of Kill Bill..... wink Will keep you posted. Wah roll on Thursday!

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 14:16:00

Cuddymum could be mind games I reckon - they probably don't want to appear too keen. Good luck xx

Woodlands Tue 18-Sep-12 14:37:27

YellowWellies the Scottish system does sound very good.

Had our photos/floorplan/EPC done this morning and have just approved the brochure text (after making plenty of spelling/grammar corrections, they are rubbish!) so it should go online tomorrow.

Don't hate me though, we've just had an offer in! It's a bit low (though still 93% of the top of the range of the asking price) so we're holding off until after the open house viewing on Saturday in the hopes of more. It just goes to show how different the London market is from that elsewhere.

CuddyMum Tue 18-Sep-12 14:45:16

Sounding promising for you too Woodlands smile

CuddyMum Tue 18-Sep-12 14:48:11

YellowWellies - I think you're right it could be mind games. I bet the man wears the trousers in their household smile

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 14:49:53

Awesome news Woodlands - good luck for the open house! Proof indeed of regional differences. The market up in Scotland seems to still be busy but it is falling - I think it's because wage / house price disparities are less up here so there is less opportunity for the banks 'computer say no'.

CuddyMum Tue 18-Sep-12 17:24:09

Well it's the end of the day and I didn't receive an increased offer... I'd better keep my fingers crossed for some more viewings at the weekend.

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 21:05:56

Has anyone else just watched Sarah Beeny's 'Double your house for half the money'? It struck me as quite zeitgeisty! Folks can't afford to upsize anymore (by virtue of downsizers and their 'not giving it away' attitude, and banks not throwing mortgages around willy nilly) so Beany's programme's aim is to prove that it is easier to create your dream home by missing out the middleman and not bothering to try to buy as the step between 'rungs' on the property ladder has now broken. Now what will this trend do to the market if it becomes commonplace? Downsizing will become even more tricky...

TunipTheVegemal Tue 18-Sep-12 21:09:00

Do you mean she's telling you how to build an extension? confused

YellowWellies Tue 18-Sep-12 21:20:31

Hahaha pretty much but as she's applying the 'property porn' glamour that managed to con a lot of the UK walking headlong into the last house bubble - she might start another trend.... grin

YellowWellies Wed 19-Sep-12 13:07:01

Cuddy any news? If they are playing hardball they might be making you sweat a bit. Was their offer last and final? If you've not heard anything I would be tempted to come back with a counter offer that you would accept (higher than the lowest price you would go - just in case they counter-counter offer) to show that you are flexible and not averse to some haggling? So if they have offered 87% - perhaps come back with 97%? I know that in an ideal world you want 96% but could you consider meeting them half way - say 92-93%? That is the average that most houses are going for at the moment according to estate agents.

I guess that is the thing with the mad high prices down south - even a few % translates into tens of thousands of pounds. Crackers! We'd be on the streets (or have to have a much shitter work life balance) if we lived down there. It must be tough.

Lots and lots of luck to you Cuddy

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 15:29:47

Thank YellowWellies. EA hasn't heard anything from him at all. She has posted a note through his door today to ask him for his best and final offer. He has only been renting for 3 months and now has a new partner with children plus some of his own that would stay over so he needs 6 bedrooms (which we have) and there are no other houses like ours on the market unless he pays £700k plus. I would like to know either way.

YellowWellies Wed 19-Sep-12 15:39:17

We've just had what I think might be our last viewing before closing tomorrow (I kinda hope it's the last as we've got an antenatal class tonight and I've got a midwife appt in town tomorrow so won't be able to show folks round), it seemed positive but I kinda got the impression that the lovely older ladies I showed round were tyre kickers looking for something to do on a sunny afternoon rather than serious buyers. You'd think with closing tomorrow at 4pm that most folks would have viewed already if they were serious.

Am wondering whether I should ring the agent to see if we have any offers yet, or should I just be patient and wait for the grand unveiling in the solicitors' office tomorrow... gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa I don't DO patience very well now I'm updiffed.

Hmm we shall see.

Gosh Cuddy £700k for a house - in my head that's lottery win territory - I don't think DH and I will ever be moving back south - I highly recommend Scotland! smile I would say that with such a big brood to house - you are right he is going to have limited options really isn't he. Good luck. Don't despair xx

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 18:47:56

Tyre kickers - have had a few of them smile

Monstermuncher Wed 19-Sep-12 19:39:12

hello, can I join you? We are just on the market and had our first viewing today. Finding it all a bit stressful already!

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 19:44:05

Good luck MonsterMuncher smile

Monstermuncher Wed 19-Sep-12 19:47:04

Thanks CuddyMum, and to you!

Monstermuncher Wed 19-Sep-12 19:56:30

I have just seen that you can see which are the most viewed properties in your postcode on Zoopla .. woo, I'm going to get a bit obsessed by this I think

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 21:13:36

Off to check that ...

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 21:21:28

Ah, my agent doesn't advertise on Zoopla - shucks.

CuddyMum Wed 19-Sep-12 22:09:59

But on the plus side my house value estimate is way higher than I am marketing it for.

YellowWellies Thu 20-Sep-12 13:02:18

I would say not being on Zoopla isn't the biggest worry - not being on Rightmove would be a serious hindrance to a sale I reckon (though less so up here on the islands where it's more about having your property in the paper - given that our internet is so shit!!!!).

Wah closing in 3 hours. My friend has just texted me asking that if she isn't the highest offer we give her the chance to meet it.... she's a cash buyer and is flexible on dates which really works for us (given the uncertain arrival of the baby) but she is a bit fussy, overdramatic and (whilst I love her) she can be a real pain in the arse. All in all not who you'd really be wanting to go through legal stuff with.... but given that the sale price will be on the land registry / Scots registers it's not as if I can try to disuade her by quoting an inflated highest offer to put her off matching it. I also need to check with the solicitor to see if it is legal to do this anyway... as I thought closing was 'best and final offer'.


Monstermuncher Thu 20-Sep-12 13:19:55

I'd never actually heard of Zoopla up until a few weeks ago,its pretty big but I agree that Rightmove is still king!

Stay calm YellowWellies! Fingers crossed for a good outcome for you

CuddyMum Thu 20-Sep-12 13:40:40

The Scottish way of selling houses sounds great.

YellowWellies Thu 20-Sep-12 13:46:34

Well you say that but it gives you very little wiggle room for setting your own asking price. Most agents now are going for the home report value only when houses go on the market and surveyors are being very cautious (as lots are being sued for overvaluing in the bubble) so I think some English sellers would get a nasty surprise as many agents up here will chart the market each month and ensure that asking prices reflect any falls. This realistic pricing probably is the reason our market is still moving I guess.... but it doesn't tend to give much shrift to the 'not giving it away' lobby. Lots of agents simply won't take them on if houses are priced above HR valuation. Our HR valuation was £5k less than I'd expected / hoped for - but we took their advice. The clamour of interest we're seeing might suggest we were right and that it was pitched a bit low - but hopefully we'll have a bidding war and get close to what we'd like. Even if we don't we want to move on with our lives so hey ho....

On a plus note - NO MORE SODDING CLEANING! This nesting preggo lady is officially off nesting duties.

CuddyMum Thu 20-Sep-12 14:01:03

Hope the bidding goes well. A bit awkward with the friend thing though. Look forward to the update later. Hope you will be able to put your feet up and enjoy your pregnancy.

CuddyMum Thu 20-Sep-12 15:25:50

EA just popped round (their phones are down) to say the other half of the man who made the low offer popped in. She is still interested and EA asked her to think about upping the offer to something more sensible. Apparently he is thinking about it (it's his money) but she said to leave him to it... Hope he makes his mind up either way soon.

CuddyMum Thu 20-Sep-12 16:25:32

YellowWellies - will you hear today?

Woodlands Thu 20-Sep-12 20:04:23

Any news YellowWellies?

The people who offered on ours have upped their offer by £10k. There are loads of viewers lined up for the weekend so we're going to wait till after then, but am thrilled as the figure on the table is what we were hoping for really. Don't hate me!

CuddyMum Thu 20-Sep-12 20:15:00

Ah, I don't hate you Woodlands. It's sounds like good news smile

Spirael Fri 21-Sep-12 08:44:04

I might hate you a little, Woodlands. wink We'll see what happens when our interested party finally get back from their holiday and let us know whether they're going to up their offer!

Another one interested in whether YellowWellies has heard anything! Though depending on the answer there might be more envy and angry. grin

financialwizard Fri 21-Sep-12 08:51:55

Oooh sounds good Woodlands

Come on Yellowwellies we are impatient and want to know what is happening!

marshmallowpies Fri 21-Sep-12 08:55:57

Hello - just spotted this thread & feels a bit like I've found a life raft in the ocean...

We are selling a 2 bed house as we have a 5 month old DD and need the extra space (DH works from home so we need a 3rd bedroom as a study).

Nearly 3 months on the market - we've had 2-3 viewings per week but no offers. I'm feeling rather despondent about it all. Feedback is usually 'bedrooms are too small' or 'I like the house but I want one like this £40k cheaper that I can do up myself').

Our contract with the EA is up next week so we'll be going with a new agent and hoping they can generate a bit more interest.

We wanted to be in a new house by Christmas but that's looking quite unlikely now...

MisForMumNotMaid Fri 21-Sep-12 09:13:12

We've been on the market for a whole day now and no offers. What's going on with the world.

The for sale board went up yesterday, the house is near as possible spotless, the three dc (4 if I count DH )are being rewarded for tidying up before school and bed. Now all we need are viewings.

I hate selling houses and its only one day in!

Toomuchtea Fri 21-Sep-12 10:39:21

Can I join in? We've been on the market for a week now. Four viewers, including the ExH of one of my friends, whom I haven't seen since he walked out on her and their girls. Now that was awkward. Latest viewers have two places to sell which aren't even on the market yet, so why on earth are they looking already?

Good luck to anyone who has viewings booked this weekend. We have nowt, so are planning to do major work on our huge rambling rose. It would be sod's law for someone to turn up when the entire garden is garlanded with vicious, thorny, cuttings.

underthemountain Fri 21-Sep-12 11:28:36

I want to hear about Yellowwellies too!!

We have a viewing for tomorrow but the Estate Agent didn't wax lyrical about them being in a wonderful financial position so I don't know how serious they are. The EA is also asking us about dropping the price. Think we will probably take it off the market and maybe try again next spring if we still feel like moving.

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 14:15:53

Hello all good! Just trying to sort out stuff with solicitors. Have three offers - one 1% over asking, one 12% over and one 13% over. Am chuffed to bits. We're going with the middle offer as it's not subject to survey and the buyer is totally flexible on move in dates and is happy to move in jan - so that gives us time to have baba up here in the wonderful hospital on the island. just spending a lot of the day on the phone as we need to change solicitor to prevent a conflict of interest on the closing... wah...

iseenodust Fri 21-Sep-12 14:21:07

Yellow Brilliant news. All the best !

Toomuchtea Fri 21-Sep-12 14:24:05

Wow, that's great YellowWellies. Relief! Hope it all goes well for you. The Scottish system is so much more sensible than the English one.

*Cuddymum", you're quite close to me. We're near Wellingborough.

We have another viewing for Monday. Another whose house isn't even on the market. But you never know.

TunipTheVegemal Fri 21-Sep-12 14:24:05


Are you going to tell them on HPC? wink

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 14:27:32

Island pace of life is not however helping us change solicitor quickly... answer yer fecking phones!!!!

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 14:28:50

I should stress that the 12% over asking only just allows us to break even on the refurb - so we're counting ourselves very very lucky in this market. Another house went to closing yesterday with our EA and got no offers sad

stikmatix Fri 21-Sep-12 14:57:10

Congrats YellowWellies! My ILs are in Scotland, so much better system. I'm pleased you got price that allowed you to recoup everything.

noddyholder Fri 21-Sep-12 15:05:50

I have just had an offer accepted! I saw this flat originally last november it was on teh market for 300k huge and in a lovely location but lady has lived in it 60+ years and so needs complete refurb. We decided against it at the time due to costs of refurb really.Dp sprung it on me the other day that he still loved it. So I sent an email to the agent as it was no longer on the website. He said he would speak to her and he thought I would have to offer as she found the whole process stressful last year. I offered 245k and she said she would talk to her sons and get back to me next weekend. An hour later she called back to the agent and said she had spoken to her son and they said she should go for it! Stay positive everyone I would never have got it for that price last year so things are changing albeit very slow!

noddyholder Fri 21-Sep-12 15:06:51

Just realised I am on wrong thread blush

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 15:08:15

Well done YellowWellies! Toomuchtea, we had a viewer with two places to sell and not even on the market - infact they viewed twice and tried again for a third viewing to which I said no thank you. Wonder if it's the same people?

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 15:15:53

Good job noddy! It's nice to see the market moving - it's good for all of us. Also it sounds as though this lady has still made a pretty penny - it's great to see big family homes being freed up and the older generation moving into more manageable homes which still allow them to retain their independence. Family homes are best for families in my view.

Well fingers crossed we have managed to change solicitors, my last call of the day is done. I'm away to lie down like a big fat preggo cetacean. Tonight I am having a big glass of wine. I'm so chuffed that (fingers toes, eyes and legs crossed) this bid will allow us to have the baby up here on the island because the hospital is amazing and we know and love all of the midwives (we also rather fancied confusing future genealogists as DH is from Kent, I'm from Yorkshire and we married in Oxford) so didn't want to go south and be attended by strangers.

Also had a growth scan this morning (have family history of prem labour) and found out junior is 3lb11! I was born at 4lb4 so am really reassured.

What a crazy 24 hours. Where's that wine. grin

noddyholder Fri 21-Sep-12 15:24:26

Thanks YW hope yours goes smoothly too. Wish we were in Scotland!

Toomuchtea Fri 21-Sep-12 15:40:27

Huge good wishes to you YellowWellies - sounds like Junior is doing well!

Cuddymum - I wonder if they are the same? Couple who want to buy with their daughter. They want a second viewing.

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 15:47:24

The woman is from MK and he is from Leighton Buzzard. I wish people would at least be marketing their properties.

Toomuchtea Fri 21-Sep-12 15:54:17

Not sure where these are from. I do agree though. We haven't gone to see anything yet, and won't until (if!) we get an offer. Doesn't really seem a lot of point falling in love with something if you can't actually buy it.

I do wonder if we're getting house tourists who have always wondered what the house was like inside. But maybe I am just being cynical.

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 15:59:19

I know how you feel - we had a first and second viewing, both at very short notice, from another lot not on the market. They were in the house with the agent for an hour each time. We called them the goldilocks viewers as they sat on every chair, stool, bed, sofa. They were complete time wasters and I later found out that they do this all of the time.

marshmallowpies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:09:11

I tell a lie: we've had 1 offer, £20k below asking price. I tried to make them meet in the middle, but no luck. I'd happily accept£10k below the asking price, not sure if I'm being a bit precious holding out for that.

My sticking point is knowing how much I spent, more or less, on renovating the property - £10k under asking price is break-even point, £20k under is a loss. sad

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:09:17

We had a couple of viewings from those with houses not yet on the market who I quote 'didn't want to put ours on the market until we'd found somewhere as ours will sell in a heartbeat and we'd hate to have to rush and settle for something we didn't love'. They were both from people who had houses in the order of 20x the local average wage and hadn't gone through the house selling process in anything other than a rising market. Looking at our market they could have easily sat on the market for 3 years. We had already decided that we'd not accept an offer from them - interestingly none of our offers were from these people. I think there's an element of tyre kicking from folks who think they want to downsize but don't appreciate the reality of downsizing (i.e. you don't have 5 bedrooms anymore!!!!) and are a bit taken aback by smaller houses....

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:19:17

I reckon we've lost £500 on renovations, once we factor in moving costs - we'll have lost £3000 but as our mortgage was cheaper than our rent - maybe closer to £2k - but m'eh we want to move on and the market is falling quite steadily up here. It was this or accept a bigger loss next year and our buyer is looking for a forever home and is a cash buyer. The other option was to hang on up here forever and wait for the market to rise - but that could be a decade given the economy.

I'd be careful of getting too set on one specific price in your head. We were told quite clearly by the EA that we'd struggle to recoup all of our renovation costs as we'd put high end stuff in (a Rayburn, posh bathroom etc) which were suited to our tastes and we couldn't assume to expect these back - that's something that only happens in a rising market.

I don't know where you are but it could be different. We've been very lucky - we knew at the time we were buying it might well be a dead cat bounce in the market and it turned out it was - I was expecting to make more of a loss and if we had left it I think we might.

I've been a total cleaning nazi and the clutter has been banished for the last fortnight. DH can't find anything - poor sod. I'm soooooo happy to now be slobbing on the couch with washing on the rads, cat litter on the floor and washing up undone. Ahhhhh. That feeling is just priceless to be honest - especially at 8 months preggers. I just hope it all goes through smoothly....

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:20:57

If DH's work pay for relocation (which there is rumour they will) we'd break even or make a £500 profit - not much for 3 months hard graft, still we're counting our blessings. Another house with the agent went to closing yesterday and despite lots of notes of interest - there were no offers shock

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 16:27:34

Where are you relocating to YW?

TunipTheVegemal Fri 21-Sep-12 16:30:45

When we come to sell we will almost certainly lose money on the loft conversion - I say that because when we were valued in 2010 the price they suggested (which was probably a bit optimistic as they all are) would have made us break even, and the market has come down since then. But that is fine - the way we look at it is that it has enabled us to stay in the house for longer and thus not have to upsize at the top of the market, so it will still have been worth doing. Other than that any money we've spent really counts as maintenance (eg replacing a tired bathroom suite with a new one of similar quality) so we would expect that to be dead money.

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 16:46:11

We will never get back the £40k we spent on our huge loft conversion either.

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:46:36

Good attitude Tunip - we did ours to turn an unliveable wreck in the most perfect location (think views like these:Hoy Hills and Scapa Flow into a lovely house - and it's been such a happy home. I'll miss the life up here very much. But not the weather. Once (fingers crossed) the sale has completed I will put the rightmove link up. We're relocating back to the Central belt for a combo of work and family reasons.

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 16:47:45

Think of it this way - you might end up getting a cracking conservatory or garage or loft conversion in the house you buy - and the sellers there might end up effectively 'paying for it for you'?

Spirael Fri 21-Sep-12 16:50:33

If it makes anyone feel better about their break-evens, we're currently listed at £10k cheaper than what we paid in 2005. Since we moved in we've spent £10k doing major renovations, above and beyond general maintenance.

So we're on a £20k loss so far (on a house currently listed at £120k) and we haven't sold yet...

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 16:56:50

The owners of the house we like have done bugger all to it and have added no value but still want close to the asking price that is now £15k more than they paid 4 years ago. They apparently have an offer £10k under on the table and has been for weeks but have not accepted!

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 17:06:05

Cuddy sod them. Don't fall in love with the house - you'll pay through the nose for it. Apparently a friend who works for one of the bailed out banks informed me that the banks are ending their forbearance with those in arrears this spring (as they'll have re-capitalised sufficiently to be able to take the hit) so there are likely to be a flood of repossessions on the market. Go for one of those rather than giving credence to your sellers' unrealistic attitude. You've been utterly reasonable.

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 17:07:06

Spirael are you upsizing? Fingers crossed you get the same percentage off your future home. A falling market always helps upsizers - so long as you find a realistic seller. There must be some out there - we all seem reasonable!!!!

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 17:21:48

I have fallen in love with the garden - its so unusual to have anything larger than a postage stamp round here. However, unless we get an offer I won't go back to view the house. No viewings lined up for this weekend and bugger all new houses (apart from little houses) have come on to the market in ages.

Toomuchtea Fri 21-Sep-12 17:32:26

CuddyMum, there was a house in the area we like on Rightmove a few months ago which was £200,000 more than any other house in the road, and they've done nothing to it. We know the neighbours, and the people bought right at the top of the market and flatly refuse to come down beyond that price. They've been on with a lot of agents, none of whom have apparently been able to talk any sense into them.

CuddyMum Fri 21-Sep-12 17:35:39

Wow craziness!

YellowWellies Fri 21-Sep-12 17:45:18

Stay strong cuddy think head not heart. Though I know that's much less fun. For example I saw this and rather fell for it (largely for the garden) but it's far too small, right on a road, is a bit of a wreck and we are not doing a fixer upper again especially with a baby - but I could so easily have had my arm twisted. We're not looking until the spring / summer even if i have to wear blinkers by which time our target market could have fallen by another £16 -25k or so if the current trend continues. Which could save us up to £48-76k once mortgage lifetime costs are considered. Remember every £1k borrowed costs you £3k to pay back.

marshmallowpies Fri 21-Sep-12 17:49:09

Cuddly and Tunip we've resisted doing a loft conversion for that reason - if we did it, we'd gain the extra bedroom we need, and could stay in the house for a few more years, but we wouldn't gain any space downstairs and we're already at breaking point there too! So it seems more sensible to stretch ourselves now to move to a bigger place and hopefully stay there for 10 years at least.

TunipTheVegemal Fri 21-Sep-12 17:54:58

Adorable but teeny, YellowWellies!

Head not heart Cuddy.

These houses that are on at crazy prices though - well, this might not apply in cases where all the houses on the road are the same, but in the few years I've been watching the market closely it has been interesting to see that actually a few of the houses on at apparently silly prices have gone for something close to asking eventually. Most don't, of course, but if you're not in any kind of a rush to sell it isn't entirely irrational to put your house on at a kite-flying price and see if anyone with more money than sense bites. There's a big house in my village that went eventually after a couple of years despite everyone in the village laughing about it. The vendor was in a position to wait because he sold off half the garden to finance his purchase of his downsize house. Eventually a rich banker with roots in the area turned up and bought it as a weekend retreat.
Meanwhile houses where the vendor has been in a hurry have been reduced massively.

Woodlands Fri 21-Sep-12 21:10:29

Congratulations YellowWellies, fab news!

Well we've been busy today. Our interested buyer upped his bid again, on condition we cancelled tomorrow's open house and that we are out by early December. We were very tempted to accept his offer (it is more than we imagined we'd get) but have decided to proceed with the 16 viewers we have tomorrow. We just found out the house we hoped to get has sold so we are kind of starting from scratch with looking. I've booked three viewings for the morning so hopefully one of them will be good. One is kind of out of our budget but is huge with an amazing garden - worth a look I think!

marshmallowpies Fri 21-Sep-12 22:03:26

Viewing tomorrow at midday. DH arriving home from business trip on the redeye at around 11. I burnt the rice cooking my dinner so the house smells of burnt rice.

Washing on the line got rained on and I haven't yet cleaned up the fox poo in the garden. If this candidate tomorrow ends up buying the house it'll be a miracle!

On seemingly unrealistic asking prices. The house across the road from where we are currently renting sold for £390k about 3 months ago (the info was just released). We thought our old neighbours were bonkers when they put it up at that price (as we were looking to buy and knew what their competition was priced at). But they sold very quickly for full asking price, which makes it the most expensive house on our street by a long way. They did a lot of work on the house (various extensions and a loft conversion) so we have no idea if they broke even on all that, but they got about £100k more than comparable properties were/are even asking for.

We concluded that the market makes no sense at all right now.

CuddyMum Sat 22-Sep-12 09:13:19

Good luck for the viewing today Marshmallow. Fox poo - possibly the stickiest poo there is wink

CuddyMum Sat 22-Sep-12 09:14:00

Stinkiest I meant!!

TunipTheVegemal Sat 22-Sep-12 10:00:46

I think it's the sparseness of both buyers and sellers making extremes more likely. You can see it in the indexes as well - they fluctuate more with a slower market. While it's true that as YellowWellies says, there's a falling market which benefits upsizers, the other factor is that in a sparse market the people who benefit are the ones with the most flexibility about where and when to move.

Fingers crossed for you MarshmallowPie. If nothing else it would be so cool if this was the one because then you could dispense soothing advice to anxious sellers in the future all about how your house stank of burnt rice, there was fox poo on the lawn etc, but the buyer still liked it....

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 22-Sep-12 13:52:33

First viewing in 9 minutes. I have butterflies it's a cash buyer!

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 22-Sep-12 14:54:01

First viewing done. Very polite, asked lots of rehearsed questions but I don't think she was sufficiently blown away here just 30 mins. Her relatives really liked it and asked me for details of my wallpaper and curtain fabric as they're just doing up a cottage. Maybe they were property tourists looking for design ideas!

CuddyMum Sat 22-Sep-12 16:14:46

You never know - fingers crossed. No viewings for us today so I'm now watching back to back Location Location...

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 22-Sep-12 17:16:30

Is it sufficiently old programmes that you think wow that's cheep to everything?

Estate agent closed at 4 and not open again till Monday so it's been a quiet launch into the quiet market here. 1 viewing three days on market. Hopefully it will provoke interest for next weekend. At least the kids and I can be messy tomorrow as we know no one can phone to look around. I might cook everything with garlic or a potent curry because I'm guessing that will need to be avoided on potential viewing days.

CuddyMum Sat 22-Sep-12 18:37:22

The thing with Location Location is that they love the houses and offer on them and the deal is done - makes me jealous! Our EA is open Sundays so I'm always prepared (ish)

Toomuchtea Sat 22-Sep-12 18:43:23

Heard yesterday from my sister that she put her house on the market ten days ago and now has an asking price offer. Coo. I am not jealous at all very pleased for her.

marshmallow there is nothing like fox poo. And burned rice is a lot better than eau de teenager.

CuddyMum Sat 22-Sep-12 19:20:41

Ooh Toomuchtea I would be so envious! There really is nothing like the smell of a teenage bedroom - we have just had to clean up after another dreaded sleepover!!

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 22-Sep-12 19:49:16

Gives hope to the rest of us green eyed soles that there is movement in the market!

It's not the offer bit that stresses me its the posturing between offer and sale I'm not looking forwards to.

I sold my last house to a couple who kept changing their mind then on day of exchange wanted another 10% off. I had a deep and meaningful with family, arranged funding to stay and it was all back on at original sale price when I called their bluff! I was so exhausted at the end I was really quite ill for a few weeks.

But I may yet wait a long time for a offer and eat my words that its the selling bit that's the stress.

Woodlands Mon 24-Sep-12 11:38:17

Our gamble not to cancel the open house paid off - we already have two offers equalling the one we turned down on Friday. Am hoping to get as much as we possibly can as we totally fell in love with the house we saw on Saturday but it is out of our budget. We are doing our sums and trying to work out if we can afford it.

YellowWellies Mon 24-Sep-12 13:08:35

Good for you Woodlands! Great news! Also try to work out how you'd feel if the market dropped the 5 or 10% most commentators are predicting for this year. Would you be in NE? Would you be ok with that if you were (i.e. is this a forever house or are you likely to have to move with work etc in the foreseeable)? We'd not be cool with this as our deposit is all money saved from actual earnings and living like church mice - rather than 'earned' from house price growth - hence we're moving into renting until the market in our target area slows down a bit - at present it's falling £2k a month and that would wipe out our equity in a scarily quick time if it continued. I think we're going to wait until next summer at the earliest. It is sheer torture not to look at rightmove for new houses.... as I'm a bit excited sad.

Went to the solicitors today to confirm our acceptance of the offer - so just waiting for the paperwork to trundle through now. The buyers' proposed move date is the 11th January - which works perfectly for us as even if I went over my due date we'd still have time to have the baby up here and not have to move for a month or so....

Our house looks disgusting as there is clutter and mess everywhere. After a weekend of being slatterns I want to have a bit of a clean - even though we have no more viewings... I think I've got used to living in a nice 'show house'. It must be a form of house-selling Stockholm syndrome.

Woodlands Mon 24-Sep-12 13:18:49

I know, we're very conscious (or at least my DH is) not to overextend ourselves. I think we would expect to live there for at least ten years. I would worry about interest rates going up to 10-15% but if that happens we're all fucked anyway really, plus we're going for a 5 year fixed rate mortgage. We're not going to go about 70% LTV on our mortgage so should avoid negative equity, I hope.

Toomuchtea Mon 24-Sep-12 15:31:59

Well done with the open house Woodlands. Our agent doesn't do them, but I think I might suggest they think about it. Just got back to house after removing myself for another viewing. Yet another who doesn't have their own house on the market. Obviously had a seriously thorough poke around as cupboard doors were all left ajar. As I have the contents of my sister-in-law's cupboards as well as my own can only hope 1,000 tons of assorted crud didn't fall on them. I think.

CuddyMum Mon 24-Sep-12 16:00:18

I wonder why people who don't have their houses on the market need to inspect your cupboards and wardrobes - it's a bit cheeky! Well I haven't heard from the guy who made a very low offer last Monday. It would be nice to know either way.

Toomuchtea Mon 24-Sep-12 18:02:31

Well, I thought it was a tad cheeky too. I hope the low offerer gets their act together, Cuddy. Maybe they're all hibernating because of the rain?

We were supposed to have two second viewings this week but neither have materialised. Sigh. Have even put the bloody heating on, specially for them. Never normally put the heating on until until November because I don't want to take out another mortgage enjoy the freshness of the cold, which is so much better for one.

CuddyMum Mon 24-Sep-12 18:11:21

Am considering taking the house off soon and might whack the heating up to 30 degrees smile I just can't see where any more viewers are likely to emerge from. No one around here is upsizing and we don't even have any competition. Ooh what to do!?

underthemountain Mon 24-Sep-12 19:57:59

Thinking of taking ours off too. Had a viewing on the weekend and have another one booked (and some old folk knocked on our door to ask what the area was like-strange!)-but will fall off my chair in shock if anyone actually makes another offer now. Bit depressing being rejected all the time-especially after all the tidying up I have to do.
Maybe I'll give it another week!

marshmallowpies Mon 24-Sep-12 20:27:39

We had 2 viewings on Saturday in the end - one thought the rooms and garden were 'too small' and the other apparently liked it but was going to get back to the agent with a final answer. Had rather too many of those 'waiting for them to come back with a final answer' style of responses, it's like a job interview where you know you are being fobbed off without proper feedback.

No more viewings booked for this agents will be taking photos at the end of the week so hopefully next week it will be a fresh start for us.

MisForMumNotMaid Mon 24-Sep-12 20:27:51

Our first viewing is coming back for a second, shock. The odd bit is she felt that the one of the bedrooms might need extending for her daughter. They're all generous doubles so neither I nor the agent quite get it. Not very easy to extend so I'm trying to get the agent to probe for which room. If its the nursery it might be because its the one room that I hadn't had the chance to present and its over furnished with stuff I should have shifted. I guess I'll be shifting furniture this week then!

Spirael Tue 25-Sep-12 08:51:33

I think we'll be taking our house off the market at the end of October if we've got no hopeful prospect of a buyer at that point. Then we need to decide whether we unpack all the things we've packed into boxes in the loft and actually have our posessions again, or leave them until we can remarket next year!

Still got some prospects for the moment though... The holidaying couple apparently got back yesterday and the EA dealing with them is in the office today. So he's going to speak with them and hopefully persuade them to up their offer. At least we should finally get some feedback, even if not!

In the meantime, a woman is coming down from Scotland to view houses in the area today and tomorrow, with a view to moving ASAP as she starts work in the area soon, and we're on the list. Only found out yesterday though, so last night was spent running around frantically cleaning again.

Hopefully your second viewing will go well, Mis! And more nice-natured, easy-going, cash buyers with money to burn will appear out of the woodwork soon and buy all our houses without quibble. wink [delusional]

CuddyMum Tue 25-Sep-12 08:58:58

Good luck with your 2nd viewing Mis and hope you get some news from the holidaying couple Spirael or an offer from the relocater. I just don't know what to do - my house price just keeps on going up and up on Zoopla and Mouseprice - I know they're just made up guesstimates but still... Are people still going to be viewing houses now that the weather is getting bad?

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 09:50:23

We'll be viewing houses whatever the weather (admittedly rentals for the winter) - if folks want to move then yes they'll keep moving. If folks are of the 'houseviewing as a hobby' ilk then no the weather will stop them. So you'll still get serious viewers I would have thought. I'd dismiss Zoopla and Mouseprice and focus on the real indices i.e. Land Registry, Nationwide and Halifax (as they're based on actual sales - though the latter two don't include cash buyers and the former excludes repos) - Rightmove is a joke as it's asking prices and at the mo' there is typically a £60k difference between asking price and selling price. What my EA called the 'reality gap'. shock

Woodlands Tue 25-Sep-12 10:27:27

Fingers crossed Spirael!

Right, we are accepting an offer from a v nice lady. And if it falls through we know we have at least 4-5 other people interested at around the same price. Now we just need to find somewhere to buy. ANd now of course the real stress will begin with the legals etc...

CuddyMum Tue 25-Sep-12 10:34:04

Well done Woodlands - great news. How exciting smile

I've just dropped a mail to my EA to say I am thinking of taking the house off and remarketing in spring or to hang on until the houses we like go under offer or lastly to leave it and wait but risk only attracting those who think they'll get a bargain. I asked for their views on this.

iseenodust Tue 25-Sep-12 10:53:41

Woo hoo! Woodlands

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 11:04:51

Great news Woodlands! Good luck whatever you decide to do Cuddy

MisForMumNotMaid Tue 25-Sep-12 11:06:26

Congratulations woodlands. It's so good/ lucky to have a buyer you. If you hit any glitches later down the line you know you can relate to them and potentially work through it. Several buyers in the wings is amazing in this market, we'd be happy with several viewers to start with.

Toomuchtea Tue 25-Sep-12 11:48:57

Congratulations Woodlands - that's great news! Sounds like the market's busy where you are, so will you have a lot of competition when it comes to buying
your next place?

How did your second viewing go Mis? Or haven't you had any feedback yet?

I also at this point would be happy to get viewers, though as the cat peed all over one of the bedroom curtains and the rug this morning (she is alas prone to such shows of protest) they can wait until the end of the week if they like.

CuddyMum Tue 25-Sep-12 11:49:05

EA just called Mr Low Offer is dealing with some personal problems (new partners ex husband) so they are not pushing him too hard at the moment but we now have a viewer on Saturday morning. EA advised to keep the house on the market for another 6 weeks.

Spirael Tue 25-Sep-12 11:50:22

Nothing's ever simple... Still no answer from Holidaying Couple. Scottish Woman is stuck somewhere between there and here due to the weather, so can't make today and is coming tomorrow instead.

But the EA haven't got anyone available to do a viewing then, so we have to do it at 6:30pm - right when we're normally eating ahead of DD's bath/bedtime routine at 7pm. Oh, and DH might be working late. Not entirely sure how to juggle that one!

We also now have another interested party, I guess I'll call him Local Man, who might be viewing today with EA instead of the Scottish Woman. At least that means our frantic tidying last night and this morning might not have been completely in vain!

Three parties... One of them has to like us and make a good offer. Right? Right?! wine

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 11:57:58

Good luck spirael - always nice to not have wasted cleaning efforts. Go in with an open mind. Try to forget any preconceptions about figures you'd like and see how it goes. The weather is pretty shit here (it'll not make the news, not being the south of England...) so there's no wonder your viewer from Scotland is stuck. Look at this pic of Aberdeen - that weird stuff all over the houses - that's sea foam from the storm!!!! I personally wanted to avoid putting off our sale til next year as I just can't see any reason that the market will get better not worse given how the economy is moving. At least the Olympics gave some sense of optimism - I think once austerity really bites - the sentiment of buyers will be even lower.

CuddyMum Tue 25-Sep-12 11:59:02

Oh my Spirael I hope one of the three potentials is interested. Poor timing for your evening viewing - at least I can kick my kids out of the house for an hour.

underthemountain Tue 25-Sep-12 12:28:42

Wow-that photo is amazing! Very wet and windy here but not near the beach so nothing interesting like that.
So hard trying to time viewings around small children. Mine aren't that small but still small enough to cause trouble!

Piemistress Tue 25-Sep-12 13:43:53

That photo of Aberdeen beach is about ten miles from me!

Have got two notes of interest on our house now but solicitor said the couple that came for their third visit at the weekend have just offered on another house, boooo!

Am also struggling to time viewings around small children, everyone wants to come in middle of dinner/bath/bed time!

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 14:03:56

Good luck piemistress I imagine the market in Aberdeen is still pretty buoyant given the oil money? Prices there always have me falling over in shock when I glance in solicitors' windows grin. Fingers crossed you get another note - did your agent say to you what their trigger is for going to closing? Up here on the islands it's typically two or three notes of interest.

Sympathies to all of those combining viewings with wee ones. Total nightmare!

Spirael Tue 25-Sep-12 15:50:26

Gaaah... The Holidaying Couple, after leaving us hanging for two weeks, have come back from holiday and found another house they like better than ours. So that one, our best chance, has fizzled. sad

Local Man now isn't answering calls, so sacrificing my evening yesterday tidying for today was a waste of time after all.

We still have Scottish Woman potentially interested, but she has now moved the viewing to 7pm, because she's viewing somewhere else at 6:30pm. And somewhere different to that at 6pm. Unless they're all on my street, she's pretty much guarenteed to be late.

I hate house selling!! I've stopped looking at dream house, the chance of us ever getting it is decreasing by the second. sad

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 15:55:28

Oh nooooo spirael! Don't look until you sell. It's just not worth the heartache and sinking feeling as places you'd love get sold. Put yourself in the shoes of your holiday couple - if you had been genuinely interested in the house - you'd not leave it until after yer hols to inform the seller would you? I'd be too scared to lose the house. I guess it wasn't meant to be and they were not serious. Fingers crossed Scottish lady (who sounds like a serious buyer keen to make an imminent purchase as she's cramming in the visits into one recce trip, and who, as you say, has to move) is the one for you!

Spirael Tue 25-Sep-12 16:19:08

At least we're popular this week. confused After months of no interest, we have ANOTHER interested party, apparently 'hot to go', who wants to view the house this Saturday at lunchtime.

Poor DH, who is so busy and stressed and never gets to see his friends, had invited some of them over on Saturday for a day of relaxing board gaming. Now they're all getting handed a toddler and turfed out the house!

And the Local Man is going to view at some point on either Thursday or Friday at short notice. So now I have to fight against the tide of toddler and have my house immaculate all week!

It's going to be one of those weeks, isn't it??? I found out yesterday I need to have a minor operation under general anaesthetic, booked for two weeks time. Life currently seems to be piling on as much stress as possible!


YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 17:56:08

Oh heck - sounds like it's raining potential buyers down there. The flood of viewings sounds like you have pitched the price ok - as otherwise you'd just not get any viewings. Well done but sheesh, from experience it's a stressful few days. Fingers crossed for you. Also fingers crossed re the op. In a few weeks am sure all of this will be behind you

Woodlands Tue 25-Sep-12 21:54:39

eek sounds stressful Spirael! I sympathise with the stress of having to keep toddler mess away from viewers. Though the woman who has offered on ours viewed on Friday when DH was in but somehow hadn't had time to do ANY tidying. We even hadn't done the previous night's washing up (yes, I know, yuck). So who knows whether it matters...

We're debating offering on a place which we were interested in a while back but which had sold but is now back on the market. We're not sure if something dodgy came up on the survey or what, but it's very unusual and quirky and we both really liked it when we viewed it this evening. It needs a fair bit of work but is in a liveable in condition. The only problem is the location isn't quite what we were looking for. But it's so nice to see something different from the same two or three different layouts we've looked at endlessly so far.

YellowWellies Tue 25-Sep-12 22:02:53

Woodlands - I'd ask the agent what happened with the last sale. I bet it's back on the market because the mortgage valuation was less than what the sellers were hoping for / or the buyer struggled to get a mortgage. That's what's happening up here. I wonder if the seller still thinks that the price in their head is the right one though...

financialwizard Wed 26-Sep-12 09:44:22

Good to hear all your updates ladies.

Will keep my fingers crossed for those of you still cleaning/tidying and trying to sell x

Spirael Wed 26-Sep-12 10:04:15

I just hope the woman later likes curry. wink The 'emergency fast microwave meal' in the freezer at the moment is a set of curries/rice/pakoras/etc, so the house is going to stink of it.

Current the plan is to run into the house, microwave/eat those then DD and I will go for an exciting drive to Tesco for half an hour while