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Has anyone bought at a property auction?

(5 Posts)
feelingthechill Fri 10-Jul-15 17:53:35

I'm trying to buy somewhere as a home but like loads of others here, I'm finding that prices seem to be just going up and up hmm I'm being priced out of where I want to buy basically. So, buying something (a wreck) at an auction and doing it up seems to be an interesting option. I've got a lump sum so I don't need mortgage finance but I'd think I'd be buying at the lower, more competitive end of the market. Has anyone bought at auction? It seems a bit intimidating but that is maybe because I'm not familiar with it all. I know you gets legal pack with search info and leasehold title info etc. but what are the main pitfalls? Am I mad?!

lalalonglegs Fri 10-Jul-15 18:12:22

I've done it several times. The main pitfslls are that often the properties are ummortgageable in the short term usually because of defective title or, with flats, a problem with the lease/absent freeholder etc. The problems can usually br sorted out once you own it but occasionally they can't so you need to know which ones to avoid.

Although legal packs are theoretically available in advance, sometimes there arr gaps in them.

I don't have surveys done and work on the basis thst everything will need redoing/replacing and that's budgeted for. It's worked out fine but one day of course I mihht hit something big (subsidence is the real worry).

Do go to some auctions before to watch the auctioneers andvhow they operate. They are fantsdtically skilled at pushing prices up, learn to recognise when they are playing the bidders.

feelingthechill Fri 10-Jul-15 18:38:22

Thanks for your reply Lala. That's interesting to hear, and good advice. Can I ask how you check the legal side of it beforehand? Do you run the legal pack or what there is of it past a solicitor before the auction?Presuming you have to be fairly certain about the property otherwise you risk running up the cost and then you might not get it. I suppose I'm curious as to how much prep you can do beforehand really. I'd also want to find a good builder to take round first - not as thorough as a survey but cheaper I suppose. Although maybe most people do a survey?

lalalonglegs Fri 10-Jul-15 22:34:52

I have a very good relationship with my solicitor so I tend to read the legal pack myself and then ask him to check/explain anything I'm worried about. Generally practice now means I can grope my way round the documents and get a good idea of what I might be getting into.

You do end up kissing a lot of frogs if you are thinking of buying at auction because there is a very good chance you will be outbid so it's best not to set your heart on a particular property (unless you have very deep pockets). I've bought six times but probably bid on another 20 or more. The whole process is pretty pointless if you haven't got a good eye for potential as you will see some real shockers - I've been to places that are absolute horrors: fire damaged/not cleaned in years/ex-homes of alcoholics with empty bottles everywhere and stinking of fags/one place had a dead cat under the hot water tank.

feelingthechill Thu 16-Jul-15 16:35:30

Thank you Lalalonglegs. Just checked in and have seen your response. Yes, having a good sol on hand seems pretty essential, and a good builder, unless you're a pro at DIY which I'm not, unfortunately.

But apprehensive about it but I'm going along to a couple of auctions this month so will be good to check it all out. I'm thinking one small factor in my favour is that I'm not looking for a massive margin, as some (most) developers will be - I'm really just hoping to bump up my capital over say a 12 month period.

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