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To ask what you would offer on a house?

(196 Posts)
PurpleFlower1983 Sun 14-Jun-20 09:16:30

Hi everyone, we’ve had some unexpected inheritance and have been round the houses (literally) with how to spend it. We considered buying abroad and staying in our current home which I love but is too small downstairs really now we have our DD.

We have seen an amazing period property, it’s on at £420k (Yorkshire). We viewed it yesterday and it is stunning, 12ft high ceilings, original features, gorgeous. There are compromises though, only 2 bedrooms on the first floor, 2 more in the attic and they’re not ideal, quite small space in terms of full head height and a spiral staircase to access. The boiler works but is coming up to 20 years old. There are damp patches in the corners of the upstairs rooms, probably to be expected at this age of house but needs investigating as it has damaged the cornicing in places. Also the original land has been cut up and sold meaning the garden is quite small for what you would expect at this price/property and the drive at the back has to have right of access for the two flats next door. It has been on the market for a year, we are hoping to keep our current property to rent out so this will mean we will be pulling out all the stops financially to get it as the mortgage will only be in my name. Plus there will be over 20k of stamp duty to factor in.

What do you think would be a good opening offer? The seller said he had had a couple of offers but the estate agent didn’t mention them. She said he was open to offers and ready to sell.

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PurpleFlower1983 Sun 14-Jun-20 09:18:44

Just to add, the inheritance is not coming in for another 4-6 weeks but we are trying to get our finances in order ready to proceed.

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ToelessPobble Sun 14-Jun-20 09:34:15

Really not being funny but is this the right property for you with the downsides you mentioned? I think you need to cost up a new boiler and how much damp could cost to fix with the cornicing. You can then work out your budget and what is affordable. I would certainly ask for money off for those items as a minimum and probably a little more, although if they have been on for a year they may be holding out for asking price and not forced to move. The other reason I question whether it is the right property is whether you are planning on having more children as having two rooms in the loft via a spiral staircase would be an absolute nightmare. It is potentially a really good budget you have for Yorkshire, dependant on where you are trying to buy

Ickabog Sun 14-Jun-20 09:39:09

We viewed it yesterday and it is stunning, 12ft high ceilings, original features, gorgeous

This is the only positive in your entire post. You don't mention anything about the area, having more space, if it's closer to family, or your jobs, better schools etc.

The things you list as compromises aren't going to change, small bedrooms, lack of outside space, access for the 2 flats. Over time I suspect you will resent these compromises, and since the house has been on for over a year others must have had the same thought.

My advice. Don't buy the house.

BarbaraofSeville Sun 14-Jun-20 09:41:46

Impossible to say from what you have said. If it's been on a year it sounds like it's overpriced or there are serious issues, that you might need quite a lot of money available to address.

Prices vary so much by area. £420k would be reasonable for Ilkley area or golden triangle but possibly far too expensive for somewhere in urban Bradford or Huddersfield areas. Are there any similar local comparators?

LorenzoVonMatterhorn Sun 14-Jun-20 09:41:51

This doesnt sound like the house for you at all.

Seeingadistance Sun 14-Jun-20 09:42:29

Sorry, OP, going by what you’ve said here, I wouldn’t buy it.

AJPTaylor Sun 14-Jun-20 09:45:35

With damp that's obvious to you I wonder what other people's surveys have thrown up.
Calm down. You don't need to move in a hurry. This does not sound like a house going anywhere.
Keep looking. When the money comes in, consider it then in the cold light of day. Pretty houses that are still on the market after a year are there for a reason.

MynameisJune Sun 14-Jun-20 09:48:31

Sounds like you’re rushing out to buy the most expensive house you can afford without even thinking about it.

You don’t mention many positives about the house, it doesn’t sound like the house for you.

Also I wouldn’t buy anything right now, I’d wait and see what the market does because you could pay £420k now and the market could tank in 2 months.

Neverender Sun 14-Jun-20 09:50:15

Wouldn't offer anything at the moment - there's a huge crash coming

Heismyopendoor Sun 14-Jun-20 09:51:11

Another here that wouldn’t be buying it.

Srictlybakeoff Sun 14-Jun-20 09:53:10

We lived in a beautiful Victorian villa for 12 years when the dc were young. There were 3 bedrooms upstairs - 1 large and 2 small. Even in the large one it was difficult to fit furniture in because of the coombed ceilings.
Eventually we moved because as the dc got older the lack of bedroom space became very frustrating. I wouldn’t move to a house again where the bedrooms were a compromise.And the house you describe sounds that it’s really only got 2 properly functioning bedrooms
We also had major probl

PurpleFlower1983 Sun 14-Jun-20 09:56:01

I understand the negatives, I really do. The damp concerns me as does the bedroom situation, it’s very much a ‘heart’ house not a head one but it’s not the type of house that comes up very often at all. It has been restored beautifully. The location is good, village location but on the edge of town, 20 mins walk to local pub, 35 minutes to my parents’ house, school over the road, village green, community centre both a minutes walk away. Lovely community feel. What would be considered better family standard house or less grand period houses have gone on this road in the last 3 years between £350k and £410k, the latter had a turret! hmm

Sorry I was bit clear in my first post, the 2 main bedrooms are very large as are the attic bedrooms but the attic bedrooms are not the most practical in terms of space. They could both be double rooms but you would need to be careful what furniture you bought etc.

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PurpleFlower1983 Sun 14-Jun-20 09:57:24


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titchy Sun 14-Jun-20 09:58:38

Agree with pp - sounds like one to avoid. Remember buying a house is a long term commitment. You don't need to rush about and buy the first thing you see with nice coving. Take your time. Do your research. Aim to move next year once the market has resettled from Brexit and Covid.

user1486915549 Sun 14-Jun-20 10:00:39

You mention so many negatives I think you would live to regret buying it
Even shared access to the flats would be a deal breaker for me

Ickabog Sun 14-Jun-20 10:01:47

school over the road

I wouldn't buy a house with a school over the road.

I also encourage you to stop and think. If the house is as amazing as you're now saying it is, then why has it been on the market for a year...

TheChestnutCafe Sun 14-Jun-20 10:03:26

I think a survey would throw up all kinds of issues. Would you have the funds to carry out repairs and renovations? High ceilings are beautiful but expensive to decorate as difficult to do yourself. Speaking from experience here 🙄
The damp would be a major concern to me.

Agree with others that I would certainly hang fire to see how the property market looks in a few months.

StillCoughingandLaughing Sun 14-Jun-20 10:03:29

With all due respect to those of you saying you wouldn’t buy it, the OP wasn’t asking ‘would you buy it if you were me?’ - she was asking what we thought would be a reasonable offer.

OP - what you need to do is think about the issues you’ve described and ask ‘is this a problem full stop, or a problem for me?’ Potential damp and an ageing boiler are problems full stop and ones that should affect any offer. The configuration of the bedrooms is a problem for you - this will have been taken into consideration in setting the original price and for another buyer this may not be an issue.

They’ve been waiting a long time to sell. The market is also very flat at the moment. However, you are not in a position to move yet, so can’t use that as leverage. I’d consider a punt at £390k or, if you’re feeling brave, £385k.

Gemma2019 Sun 14-Jun-20 10:04:52

I wouldn't offer anything on it, you should look at dozens more properties until you find one that is perfect for you.

Lampan Sun 14-Jun-20 10:05:17

I agree with @user1486915549
The shared drive alone is a dealbreaker. Even if everything else was perfect.

PicsInRed Sun 14-Jun-20 10:06:17

The bedrooms and layout are annoying and will eventually make you want to sell. Then the other, structural, issues will cause issues with getting buyers.

The boiler works but is coming up to 20 years old.

That will need replacing. £££ and pain in the arse - especially if it fails one night in winter before you've had it done.

There are damp patches in the corners of the upstairs rooms, probably to be expected at this age of house but needs investigating as it has damaged the cornicing in place

Don't buy it. There will be places without suspicious damp. If it was an easy fix, they would have done it themselves.

MatildaTheCat Sun 14-Jun-20 10:06:50

You say it’s been beautifully restored but are you sure it hasn’t been given a cheapish facelift? A decent restoration would include a new boiler and ensuring the house was watertight. An old lady wearing a lot of makeup is a description that springs to mind. (My DB bought a similar house and it has had issues with almost everything because nothing had been done very well).

If you are very set on it I’d be putting in a quite low offer to reflect the work that’s needed. Maybe start at 375?

And then get a very thorough survey done. But genuinely, it doesn’t sound very perfect. The right of way over your land could be a headache and there are multiple issues you mention.

Sillybilly6 Sun 14-Jun-20 10:08:20

I would also think about if you could afford the bills to heat such a large house. We have a period property with high ceilings and it costs an absolute fortune to keep it warm during Autumn/winter because of the high ceilings etc. It sounds like a money pit , especially with the damp.

Truthpact Sun 14-Jun-20 10:09:09

The phrase 'a fool and his money are soon parted' comes to mind..

Why buy a house that has negatives for almost half a million? It will cost you a lot of money to fix the damp problem, and that's assuming it's not being caused by something you can't change like the location. You've got to share access with two other families, what if they are horrible? The boiler could break the moment you walk in being that old or already is broken.

There's a reason it hasn't sold in a year. Good houses don't take that long. Judging from what you've said, that's why. I imagine the survey reveals more wrong with it.

Buy it if you want, but you're just wasting a shocking amount of money on something that will cost you a lot of money to try and fix and inevitably, you'll hate it. For £420,000+ lost.

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