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Considering purchasing a house built in late 80's - quality/issues?

(8 Posts)
mrscog Wed 12-Feb-14 21:26:54

We at the 2nd viewing stage for a property which ticks a lot of boxes for us. It was built in the late eighties and so it is missing a few 'mod cons' most notably double glazing, so I was just wondering if anyone who lived in a property of a similar age could share their experiences of living in a house of this sort of age. Any observations/thoughts would be great! Thanks smile

Preciousbane Thu 13-Feb-14 10:59:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lessonsintightropes Fri 14-Feb-14 01:09:49

I would agree with the PP's builders assessment - I have worked in housing for 15 years and to be honest think that some of the 60s/70s stuff is okay, but you get better quality with interwar and pre WW1 homes and I personally wouldn't look at stuff later than 1980 onwards for space considerations alone. The exception, oddly, is council or housing association-built property which was held to a much higher construction code than private developments - although this too took a turn for the worse in the 1990s. It all depends on the individual property. My sister lives in a late 80s townhouse in London (ex-LA) and she's had no trouble at all with the main house - although the loo/entrance hall (not built on the same foundation as the main house) has a nasty structural crack which will need attention at some point. I would be interested to look at what type of windows there are. I would also be a bit worried about noise as sound insulation does not tend to be that good. But you might be fortunate and find somewhere that was well built - I would strongly recommend a full survey rather than just the mortgage company's valuation visit, as this could save you considerable expense down the line.

What you might also want to consider is that building components from 90s onward were built with specific lifespans - i.e. a roof is meant to last 50 years with routine maintenance etc - whereas before that they were pretty much built to last. So it depends how long you plan to own the property too. The other era to avoid is Georgian property actually - the original cowboy builders - we lived in a beautiful flat in Belsize Park in a Georgian villa - but the house had no foundations as the builders had run out of money halfway up the street!

mrscog Fri 14-Feb-14 09:09:15

That's very interesting lessons, you're right about the windows - they're single glazed so this is something we're already considering if we offer. As for space, well it is quite spacious and it is a significant step up for us at this point in time so I'm not so concerned about that - it does also have potential for a bit of extension too.

Will definitely consider full survey too if we do go on to buy, thank you smile

lookdeepintotheparka Fri 14-Feb-14 14:50:00

We have a late 80s house in an estate built by a small local developer and is excellent quality. I think it will depend on the builder and many other factors. We haven't needed to do anything major in 20 years and it has loads of space too. I think it's good news that you could also extend if you wanted.

Whilst it might need updating and possibly insulating further, I wouldn't discount it (I have so few problems with my house compared to some of my friends who have bought a new build property recently shock

poocatcherchampion Fri 14-Feb-14 15:38:10

We have a mid 80'a house and although it has barely been maintained since it was built it is a really good structure. Its on a road not in an estate and has 5 double bedrooms and a 35ft lounge. Massive garden too.

Our wiring was fine although fuse box needed upgrading, radiators are mircobore and no way big enough for the rooms so we are brrrr. Boiler is old but functional probably not effieicnet but we are not replacing it until we have to. We've had to replace the 1970s bathrooms (bizarre!!!) And all decoration but that's fine. We are wowed by the space And basically love it.
Oh and it had double glazing but needs improving on the draught front.

So I'd say go for it!

cafesociety Fri 14-Feb-14 15:45:25

I have bought an 80's bungalow. It was an ok build but a couple of floor joists had not been seasoned properly and had twisted and I had to remedy the floor in the hall.

The house I did up before that was also an 80's build and was ok.

The biggest down side of them both [for me] was that the floors were chipboard sheets. I hate the stuff. It moves when walking around on it and the joints can creak and that cannot be easily resolved.

Also chipboard floors should not be tiled over without being reinforced [and still no 100% guarantees] as it flexes far too much. In my case I took up all the chipboard [part was rotten under a leaking w/m] and replaced with 22mm waterproof ply.

worldgonecrazy Fri 14-Feb-14 15:57:36

I had a house built in 1989. It was rubbish (Bryants Home). There were some pretty serious issues with it and the build quality was appalling. I would never buy a house from that period - we heard so many horror stories from other people, not just about Bryants but about other contemporary builds too.

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