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Sell or let my cottage? Change agents? Head spinning. Any advice?

(8 Posts)
WineGoggles Thu 01-Nov-12 09:43:00

(Originally posted in chat but it was suggested I should put it here, so sorry for the duplicate).

Sorry it's long but I didn't want to drip feed.
I'm getting myself in a tizz and could do with some advice from you MNers please. My little rural cottage has been on the market for ages (I have to sell it to get exDP's name off mortgage - no other suitable options), and I'm being hassled to pay council tax on my late mother's empty bungalow which I inherited last year. The practical issues are:

1. Mum's place needs work before it can be rented out. Even though it's not occupied I still have to pay 90% council tax on it as it's classed as a second home.

2. The 2 properties are a 6 hour round trip apart which makes popping in and out to do work on the bungalow very difficult. I don't know any tradesmen in that area so can't leave them to do it without me being there.

3. When my cottage sells I shall move into late Mum's place and do it up. It will be my forever home. But I'm having trouble selling my cottage.

4. Due to the lack of interest in the cottage, the time of year and my desire to get to Mum's bungalow, the agent suggested I take it off the market and let it for 6 months (followed by monthly rolling contract) instead. My initial reaction was "great, I can move" but now I'm getting very anxious.

5. I'm on estate agent number 3, and even though I thought I chose carefully they are the worst so far. They make careless mistakes, some of which have really inconvenienced me, which I've already pulled them up for. I'm in 2 mnds whether to sack them ASAP, but then I'd feel slightly guilty as they've done work to get it on the market then to change it to the rental market, and they won't get paid for it. Plus, changing agent means I have to start all over again with new ones who then have to take photos when the garden looks it's worst.

6. I've shown 2 lots of potential tenants around this week and they were very positive but last night my anxiety levels rocketed because...

I worry about my ex getting shirty because I wouldn't be trying to sell it for 6 months. He has history for getting upset because it should've sold by now.

I worry that the tenants might damage the wooden worktops (they look gorgeous but need to be treated with respect and care) or f* up the septic tank, etc.

I'm concerned that even if a tenant moves in before Christmas as the agent predicts, this still means it can't go back on the market until mid June and I've heard that Easter is when the market tends to pick up.

I worry that tenants will put potential buyers off.

Arrrgh! My head is spinning. Can anyone help please?

RedHelenB Thu 01-Nov-12 10:01:45

Could you drop the price so that it will sell?

RedHelenB Thu 01-Nov-12 10:02:37

Put it in an an auction with a reserve price?

catinwitchyboots Thu 01-Nov-12 10:04:46

Would the bungalow be easier to sell - so you could pay off DP?

Or do you specidically want to live in the bungalow??

WineGoggles Thu 01-Nov-12 10:15:43

Wow, thanks so much for the replies smile.
I'm prepared to drop the price, and that would've been the next step if it stays on the sale market.

I suggested an auction with reserve but the agent said it's too nice a property for that. However, I like the idea of selling it that way as it saves a lot of faff.

Even if I sold the bungalow it does not make enough difference to the mortgage to enable me to have it on my own and get XP off of it. Plus I really want to live in it as it's a perfect size for me, lovely location, and no mortgage or rent to worry about. It's also nice because it was my Mum's home IYKWIM.

7to25 Thu 01-Nov-12 13:24:28

hi Wine,
I was on your other thread but didn't have time to reply.
my initial thoughts were that you should
1/ Agree an action plan with your ex so that there is no blame attached to the sale. it is not your fault that this has not sold. you sound like you are quite meticulous about your cottage; you are on the third set of estate agents; none of the feedback you have received can be acted on in any way.
2/ Please do not leave the property empty over the winter, horrible things can happen with burst pipes and worse.
3/ You mention the septic tank and the worktops so you are still very involved in the property in a heart rather than head way. this is what deposits and letting agents are for. Try and detatch and look at it in a "head" way.
I'm not sure how much price affects rural sales, you have a smaller number of potential buyers.
Could the Estate agents hold the property on their books so thet anyone interested in Spring could be told about it and that it will be for sale in June?
Does the floor plan show on right move without downloading the whole brochure? It should.
Do all comparable local properties have a septic tank?
Has the industrial unit been taken int account when pricing?

Good luck!

WineGoggles Fri 02-Nov-12 08:26:31

7th25, thanks.
1. Thankfully I have an acquaintance who is a barrister and he said my ex wouldn't have a leg to stand on if he got arsey, because I have been trying my best to sell it. None of the feedback has been anything I could alter.

2. From the help and advice I received on MN I have decided not to rent the cottage and to stay put until I find a buyer. As you say, bad things can happen to empty properties in the winter!

3. I see your point. I've actually mentally detached from the place and find myself dreaming of the changes I shall make to the bungalow. But I must admit I was so worried about tenants causing damage because of the hassle (I've really had enough of life shit over the past few years) and that the potential for the deposit not to cover the repairs concerned me greatly.

I was going to ask the agent if they could inform buyers that it would be back on the market in June but don't need to do that now. In fact, having had a chat in my little bank yesterday 2 people recommended another agent and I popped in to see them yesterday. So I plan to change agents and try and sell with someone else. I'm fed up of the lax attitude of the ones I'm with (and will take great delight in telling them exactly why they are fired when I do so!)

I've just checked Rightmove and my place doesn't come up on searches, either to buy or to let! F***ing useless agent, I am sick of their crap angry. It went up for let a week ago and was supposed to stay up for sale until a tenant had been found but no, they balls it up yet again. It is also not showing as for sale or let on their company website. So, technically speaking, my place is pretty much off the market at the moment because of them! angry

Do all comparable local properties have a septic tank?
Has the industrial unit been taken int account when pricing?
Yes and yes.

WineGoggles Sat 03-Nov-12 08:51:43

Quick update...
Useless agent called yesterday saying one of the viewers wants to rent my place but I told him I now want nothing to do with their company because I'm sick of all the mistakes and bad comms. I then phoned the regional manager and explained why I was bailing out and sent him a long email with all the issues I've had with them over the past 3 months (there have been so many incidences that even without waffle it was still 2 sides of A4!). Manager replied saying he'd look into my complaints but I didn't receive a "sorry we haven't lived up to expectations" or any talk about trying to make it up to me. They don't deserve the custom IMO. Twats.

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