New house dilemma, opinions?(18 Posts)
Really had no clue where to post this, but thought this would be the best place.
Yesterday DP and I went to see a potential new house, and i'm really in two minds about it.
We have one DD, 13 Weeks and want a nice place for her to start growing up in as our situation at the moment isn't ideal.
Anyway we found this house, and it's incredible for what we can afford (we're renting) the space is amazing, more than we ever imagined having, it would be PERFECT for DD (and us) and I was gutted to discover that it's all single glazing AND electric heating there is also no garden (it's an apartment house) but a huge park/playpark/lake only 5 mins walk away.
I am torn and would really love some opinions on this, will it be too cold for DD? (Or me for that matter)
Will it be ridiculously expensive to keep a single glazed house warm with electric eating?
Will the lack of garden be a problem at the moment?
DP has his heart set on this house and I wish I could have a trial week to see what it's like as i'm really not one to jump in to things and I don't know what's best for DD.
Could you save up and have central heating installed in a year or two? Untill then, yes it will be expensive to heat but not for ever.
I don't think that the garden is a real issue. You have to be in the garden with your children for a few years anyway to supervise. (or maybe I was an overprotective mother).
You won't have to "do" the garden so will have more time to play with DD.
I think the lack of garden would be the deal breaker for me. My dd loves to be outside.
I do not think i could live in a house without one.
Windows and heating you can sort out in time.
Well, it has a patio area but it's not paved, just rubber roofing (as it's a second floor apartment) but my mums house is a ten minute drive away and she has a lovely garden... So I guess it's not that bad
That's even better with the patio area. Can you make it safe with some kind of high fence?
You don't have to live there for ever and it sounds absolutely fine for a small child to me.
The way heating prices are rising I would not go for it .... it costs us an arm and a leg already! It would be worse presumably with single glazing. Also, no garden would be a real no for me.
You sound as though you love it which is as good a reason as any for buying a house. Unless you're in the oligarch class, buying property always requires compromise.
Can you afford to have double glazing and a decent heating system put in? Also, living without a garden is fine with a baby, but fast forward a 2 or 3 years: no swing / paddling pool / sandpit / unless you go out, no growing flowers and veg in anything but pots, having to use a tumble dryer all the time... Garden would be an essential for me.
Given how expensive electric heating is and given how much heat will escape through the windows I would avoid it. Probably this is exactly why it seems so affordable ... the moment you add whopping heating bills it is not very affordable. The way heating bills are going, I would only consider double glazing and proper loft and cavity wall insulation going forward.
I would say never ever buy a house for children without a garden and electric heating may have been fitted because there is no mains gas so gas central heating may not be an option at all. Single glazing can be sorted though. There are reasons it is cheap and these are the reasons.
I was in this situation a short while ago, we rented a great house but it was freezing cold. Our energy bills were enormous and as others have said we needed the tumble drier on loads as it was too cold to dry anything. We moved to our new house about 6 weeks ago (renting like you) and chose it purely for the space and the large garden. The decor is questionable but the space for the money is great..but we did look at the energy rating on the rental intently. Its always the bit on the rental details I'd skim read but this time it was critical. We have an energy efficient boiler, central heating and a wood burner so we can use that to heat one room rather than the house.
I suggest you contact the letting agent and ask them for the full energy report, this will show you all the recommendations for the house not just the energy score you see on the details. If its a low rating with lots of recommendations I wouldnt rent it, the money you will spend on fuel bills could be spent on a better standard of home.
You could also offer to get double glazing installed in lieu of a rental reduction if you could afford it.
The single glazing wouldn't bother me but no direct access to a garden or patio definitely would. Central heating OK would be nice but you can always save up for that (or offer X amount less to cover the cost) & wouldn't be a deal breaker for me.
We're renting a (very cold in the winter) house and really desperate to move to buy our own place that you can do stuff to and make a family home (DS - 8 months). However, DH seems to think that maybe we should sit tight for a bit longer as prices are likely to come down now the recession is starting to bite (higher food, energy etc). I don't know where you live, but close to us virtually nothing over 100k is selling and prices are gradually coming down for some properties, but knowing whether they'll drop further is tricky.
So, do you follow your heart (buy) or head (rent)? It's a tough one, but I'd hate to loose the great position of renting to buy somewhere with issues (no garden etc), for it then to only loose value in next couple of years. We're obsessed with soldhouseproces.com and propertybee to monitor what's sold for what and how long things have been for sale as a current indicator of the market.
TBH, I think renting a bit longer, maybe somewhere different might not be a bad plan, but a totally get your need to go for it. Good Luck x
We are in a block of flats with no functioning heating and single glazing... it's really not that bad, maybe cos you have a relatively large number of inside walls and fewer outside walls than usual. We brought newborn DS here and just heated the room he was in, and wear all our jumpers elsewhere. I have to say it wouldn't put me off.
Well, thank you everyone for your opinions, you all make very good points
Yesterday I went to see another house just to see how I would feel, and it's made my mind up.
It's smaller but still spacious, a lot nicer, (cheaper too) gas central heating (which I would prefer because it's true that the money we would have to pay for the other place really could go on better things) it has an actual patio back garden and a grassy front garden, but the whole area is surrounded by huge grass and tree areas and there's a park either side of the house. So we would have so much outdoor space right on our doorstep, I think that would make up for the loss of space in the house.
I know DP is a bit disappointed but seems to like it (he's very easy going) i'm thinking of DD really. This house is just as good but in different ways iyswim.
Oh good luck, pukeyrag, sounds much better, well done x
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