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Buying a house that needs a refurb

(8 Posts)
NakedMum33and3rd Sun 20-Mar-16 13:08:21


We have accepted an offer on our house and had our offer accepted on a house which is in total need of refurbishment.
What happens now? Can we start planning the refurb before completion? I am concerned as I know we won't be completing until at least July. DS1 starts primary school in September and ideally I would like the house to be liveable by then.
What have others done in this situation?

Thanks in advance smile

NakedMum33and3rd Sun 20-Mar-16 13:17:02

That should probably say renovated rather than refurbished although I'm not entirely sure of the difference!

scribblegirl Mon 21-Mar-16 13:45:33

Hi Naked! No advice I'm afraid but we're in the same boat. We have had an offer accepted and are in the process of mortgage arrangements and conveyancing at the moment.

The flat we're buying is empty, which has massively helped us - we've already had full survey done (on the basis that we want to uncover any unforseen problems ASAP) and have also had two builders in to quote on the work needed. The estate agents have been quite accommodating about letting us in when we can, I think they're just pleased to know we're serious about it.

Our plan is to start renovation as soon as we've got the keys and stay with family while the bathroom, kitchen and master bedroom are done - our builder's estimated three weeks for those, though I know that's not set in stone by any means! We'll then move in and get the 2nd bedroom, hall and living room done when we can.

Good luck with the refurb!

JT05 Mon 21-Mar-16 14:12:34

It is dangerous to do anything before completion, other than getting quotes.

If you work on the property and improve it, the vendor can pull out and you've lost all you have put into it.

namechangedtoday15 Mon 21-Mar-16 14:18:39

No you can't actually do anything until you've completed - you can plan it but thats difficult too without getting access to the property or knowing exactly when you'll complete. The vendor may allow you to visit with a tradesman / builder but they're under no obligation to do that.

PipnPosy Mon 21-Mar-16 14:34:02

If the property is vacant and your vendor is willing, you may be able to arrange a key undertaking agreement, which is basically a legal agreement whereby you can be allowed to do certain specified works between exchange and completion (at your own risk and expense). We looked into it as we are doing a full refurb and had a month between exchange and completion but unfortunately our vendor wasn't up for it!

summeriscoming Mon 21-Mar-16 17:04:07

We are doing the same now.
We have a quote for the builder, the architect, woodworm (yes, sadly) treatment, window restoration etc.
Our builder needs two weeks notice so as soon as we exchange, we will be booking him in and finding temporary accommodation for us.
And the day we get the keys we are hoping to have everyone planned to start.
The architects will start when we exchange, because we need to submit the plans to building regulations (once it has been submitted we can start the work after 48 hours).

NakedMum33and3rd Mon 21-Mar-16 17:17:56

Thanks for this. The property is vacant and I spoke to the EA today. They agreed to let us have the keys to get architects in and builders quotes. They are going to ask vendor if we can start works after contract exchange. Fingers crossed!

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