Advanced search

The arrogance of new build properties showroom people

(21 Posts)
anaym Thu 02-Mar-17 13:45:08

We have been recently looking at upsizing our property and one of the options considered is to buy new build, but I have started to get a little bit annoyed at the arrogance of most showroom staff which act as if the own the developer and actually look down on you when you ask them if there is considerable room for negotiation.

Some of the developments we have had a look at include Putney Rise, Emerald Green, Acton Gardens, Cambium (Southfields) where we can see there are plots that have been on the market for over a year.

It's clear is now a buyers market and I wonder if at some point it will bite them back for holding on to these properties for so long.

*End of rant*

Are we out of touch with the market and people happy to part with £750000 for a 2 bed 1 bath 65 sqm (700sqft) flat.

We are also not sure if going for a flat is the best route considering how many of these clone boxes in the sky are coming on to the market.

I have lived in London for over 12 years and never seen this many new developments coming at the same time on top of the projected 15000 units in Nine elms.

any comments welcome!

LeninaCrowne Thu 02-Mar-17 13:53:53

If the downturn turns to a crash then these smarmy salespeople are going to be out of a job soon.

What about all the new flats/houses at West Brompton & Fulham too.

Kiroro Thu 02-Mar-17 13:57:33

I would not buy a new build 2 bed flat in London right now, esp one off plan.

There are a massive risk area. A lot have been bought as investments and when/if foreign capital stops investing in London there will be a correction that will hit these identikit developments hard.

Also no one wants a 3 year old 'new build' when you can have a bright and shiny new one.

If you have £750k to spend I can think of better tings to buy in London than the developments you listed.

Needmoresleep Thu 02-Mar-17 14:01:03

Check when the developer's financial year end is and make a cheeky offer a month or two before.

ElsieMc Thu 02-Mar-17 14:40:41

I am glad someone has commented on this - I thought it was just me. I have been looking to move back to town and have seen a new small development of good sized detached houses. My property has been priced to sell but I have not put it in with an agent as yet as there is a possibility of part exchange, thus avoiding chains etc.

The staff working at the development office told me "there is no movement on price" whilst the majority stand built and empty bar two.

They also want me to pay for a valuation (for them) on my home as we discussed possible part exchange. I remarked this was a little unusual and what if my valuation came in low. I also pointed out that their newbuild property may value down by my Building Society valuer. Staff member imperiously told me that "bank valuations do not value down". As I worked in conveyancing for years, I knew this was a nonsense.

So rather than pursuing a deal and making the site look more attractive to buyers by having a few sold signs up, they are really not interested.

I know the London market is different - we are in the NW - but it seems the attitude is countrywide.

DaughterDrowningInJunk Thu 02-Mar-17 14:47:58

I have not looked at new builds for years but when I did I found the staff were very reluctant to let you see the property. They were often quite snooty and you had to practically beg to be allowed in at all.

GavelRavel Thu 02-Mar-17 14:48:13

they've always been like this. we were looking at new builds in Surrey 15 years ago, as 2 professionals with a young child, and the attitude of the staff never ceased to amaze me. Normally late middle aged women doing it part time. They used to sniffily suggest we couldn't afford their houses and looked down their noses at us in disdain. We both worked in technology and we're scruffy, but had ample funds, they'd obviously never heard of mark zuckerman etc. I once asked to see a bigger house on a development and the woman said "oh, you couldn't afford that!"

Sadly we went ahead and it was a big mistake. New build house and flats are lovely but any estates bigger than 2 properties are horrid. You have endless issues with the management companies, lack of parking space, housing associations that park their problem tenant there etc.

I'd spend that money on a second ownership new build or an older house.

Hoppinggreen Thu 02-Mar-17 17:06:07

I had a stand up row with one a couple of years ago!!
We went to look at a new development in our village, mostly to be nosey really. The saleswoman was talking to a young couple with a toddler and I heard her say
" of course living here you are guaranteed to get a place at x school, which is the best school in Y town"
I probably should have minded my business but I piped up " I'm sorry but that's not accurate"
Lady insisted it WAS true. I said that nobody is guaranteed a place at ANY school by living somewhere and that the school in question was VERY oversubscribed within a small catchment so while children living at the development MAY get in they may not.
Lady snootily insisted that Head Office had given her the information and it was true. I asked where Head office was - z town, 2 hours away as it turned out.
I said that it really wasn't possible for Head Office to know who would and wouldn't get a place at a certain school in any given year and she countered that " Head Office had spoken to the school to make sure"
I explained that as I was a Governor at said school I think that I would probably know if that was the case.
I almost felt sorry for her at that point but she was blatantly lying to the couple as I knew for a fact that there were plenty of children living closer to x school who hadn't got a place. Plus she was very sneery and condescending.
Not my business I know but I would have hated the young couple to buy a house there based on a lie - they followed me it and thanked me and we had a nice chat about local schools etc!!!

Catdogcat Thu 02-Mar-17 17:18:09


When DH and I have been looking recently, late twenties/early thirties, very high income in a low cost area.

We found a house that we loved on a new development but there were none available in that phase.

We let the sales woman (who had ignored our presence until I went over to her) know we were interested and could they please let us know.

This was 2 weeks ago, yesterday one came up on the development on right move.

Pretty sure she's thinks we can't afford it (we can) I'll be buying elsewhere.

AndHoldTheBun Thu 02-Mar-17 17:25:21

Many moons ago, we were looking for a new house (young professional couple with 2 young DC. We had plenty of equity and sufficient income and decide to look at new build.

We looked round a lovely small development but felt that the houses were ridiculously small for the price. We made polite comments to that effect to the sales person, who told us that a development of larger properties with larger gardens was about to be opened in a nearby suburb. The plans looked good so we gave our details and the woman said she'd phone us about an appointment when the show home opened.
On the day of the open day we were completely ignored by a very rude sales staff (rude enough to turn away from us when we directly asked about one of the corner plots which we'd been seriously considering buying it since seeing the plans a couple of weeks earlier). The staff were very obviously fawning over some of the "guests" and being incredibly attentive to them but we were cold shouldered again and again. We walked out.

We were later phoned by the company who asked us what we'd thought, so I said that I thought their sales staff had pointedly ignored us because we'd not dressed up to the 9s (we had called in on the way home from a weekend activity), and were seen by the sales staff to draw up in an old banger car. I said they had lost a sale because of the assumptions made by the staff that we were time wasters.

Sidge Thu 02-Mar-17 18:20:53

I don't know about arrogance, but they're certainly deluded.

We went to have a look around a new build site that's near us; it was so new they only had a site map, some brochures and a video demo. They hadn't even built the show homes.

On enquiry we were told that we could pay a reservation fee, secure a plot but it would only be held for 30 days unless we could show we had sold subject to contract. We said "but you haven't even started building them! How long until the properties are ready?"

A year or so was the answer. A year?!?! Who sells their house without even having seen the potential house they're buying? And who wants to sell, move into rented for a year or more, just to buy an overpriced new build? Maybe a first time buyer, but these were 4 and 5 bedroom family homes!


TurquoiseDress Fri 03-Mar-17 01:17:39


I hear where you are coming from!

We have looked at a fair few new build developments here in SE London- yes they do look shiny and lovely but the prices are breathtaking!

We are likely to need to do shared ownership or Help to buy London, as everything else seems very unaffordable. The prices are so utterly crazy but we need to escape the rental trap pretty soon or else it's just going to get even harder.

One development not too far from us is offering HTB but it's still relatively unaffordable, we went to the launch late last year.

It's interesting that they haven't yet sold half of the first phase- I guess it's a quiet time of year etc.

They did come back to us several weeks ago offering to pay all the stamp duty- this really got my interest going- properties are all 500k plus so SD is not insignificant amount.

Unfortunately, DH things it's all total madness and will not consider it!

highinthesky Fri 03-Mar-17 01:39:25

Perhaps they're just proud of being involved in the new development and think a snotty attitude might maintain the illusion that these properties sell themselves?

Agree proportions in new builds are tiny BUT I got used to it. (After 16 years and a lot of decluttering).

LarrytheCucumber Fri 03-Mar-17 16:48:25

I thought it was just us.
We went to one development that had advertised a particular style of house in the paper, only to be told, quite rudely, 'We haven't got any like that'.
On a development near us we were asked 'What's your budget?' When we told her a healthy sum for a four bed house in the area she said 'That's a bit low for us', again in a condescending way. We looked at the show house, which was quite small for a four bed, and decided to go for an older property instead.
Maybe they go to a specvial training school.

GETTINGLIKEMYMOTHER Fri 03-Mar-17 22:25:38

I live not a million miles from Putney and would not touch the newbuild flats around there with a bargepole.
One, they are all overpriced.
Two, I would guess the service charges will be a killer, and will only go up, maybe by quite a lot.
Three, per square metre you will so often get a lot more for your money with an older property.

Not too many years ago, when a dd was looking to buy a flat in Sw17, we saw poky one bed new build flats of perhaps 45 sq m, with hardly any storage, for sale for much the same price as Edwardian 2 bed maisonettes of 67-70 sq m.
And no hefty service charges, either.
OK, some of them needed a bit of TLC, but value-wise there was no comparison. Some of them had their own little gardens, too.

Brytie Fri 03-Mar-17 23:18:03

DH and I looked at a new build development 7 years ago. There was no show home for the ones available and we liked it but it looked like the master bedroom was too small for a double bed the way the bedroom, ensuite and wardrobe doors opened. We went back for a second viewing, with a tape measure and we were right. We raised it with the sales woman and she suggested we could use the 2nd bedroom as our room, which is what other people did. Madness. A master bedroom too small for a couple.

Trethew Sat 04-Mar-17 11:58:46

I looked at a new build home last year. Thought the double bed in the show home looked a bit small. Happened to have a tape measure in my pocket and measured the bed. 4'3" wide!!! What a con, using a non-standard l small bed to make the room look bigger.

HoneyDragon Sat 04-Mar-17 12:17:28

One development locally (national chain with delusions of grandeur) wouldn't deal with me as they made it clear they thought I was looking for stuff I couldn't afford.

The second were great (also national chain) I bounced in, they asked what I was interested in, I said ideally I'd like part ex to make life easier, gave a rough value of our house. We went through the houses available ....I pointed out my unattainable dream house in passing and said I'd love it but it was 70k over budget. She stated it was about to be reduced by 50k to get it sold by mid financial year.

She asked if I genuinely had all my ducks in a row, reduced it after a call to HO by a further 20k to hit the 70k through in 20k of extras and they made a viable offer on our home. 3 months later I was in my new dream house, I love it.

We're quite good mates now and she said it's easier to negotiate offers for people who don't treat it like a game/challenge or think everyone's out to rip them off.

anaym Tue 07-Mar-17 12:25:09

Well, it's good to see I'm not the only one in London delusional about prices for new builds being hugely inflated and with a correction coming up.

Funnily enough as snooty as the showroom people are, their marketing team keeps sending hints of desperation with SMS texts, emails and any possible channel.

I contacted the Putney Rise showroom to see if there was any flexibility and having an option to put an offer for consideration but the sales woman blanked me telling me they wouldn't take less than £650000 for a 70sqm 2 bed flat. (see email with names striked off as this is not a name and shame exercise)

2 days later I get the attached text message from them advertising to go for their open weekend and get a stamp duty reduction?

It's strange as I feel that they kind of want us to go there and are keen on negotiating but once we are there, just act arrogant about it.

I can tell you that they are not the only one giving away stamp duty, furniture etc.

Does this mean that flats will become a hard sale ie. prices will drop considerably? I have seen some prices being brought down but also developers don't seem to have a problem holding to stock for a considerable time (endless cash?)

JoJoSM2 Tue 07-Mar-17 13:36:15

The way it works is that a developer might have a certain number of units to shift. They will avoid price reductions at all costs as it could become a race to the bottom between them and other sellers causing the prices to drop significantly. If they have the cash flow, they might prefer to sit it out and assume that a particular development will take, say, 3 years to sell instead of causing prices going down. However, they will try to incentivise the buyers with throwing things in. I've even seen a developer offering a number of artworks with a property lol

On the pricing front, new builds always attract a premium over other similar properties.

In terms of what to get with £750k - it really depends on personal preferences... As a singleton, I had an apartment in Battersea which was pretty cool for socialising and shopping trips to the Kings Road ;). However, when DH and I got together, we moved to Sutton and we love this lifestyle at this stage of our life. I enjoy the peace and quiet, friendly neighbours, easy access to central London as well as a stroll to lavender fields, horses and sheep etc. I wouldn't swap a large house and its perks (eg dressing room, cinema room, gym etc) for a pokey terrace/nice-ish apartment in zone 2 (same price). Horses for courses really.

gillybeanz Tue 07-Mar-17 13:41:37

It used to be good weekend entertainment when I was growing up to visit the salesroom on an open day.
I can remember nearly being thrown out one day, with my parents.
They had decided to look as we were thinking of moving, and had always lived in older properties.

dad was really surprised how small they were and when he measured the furniture it wasn't even proper size and especially made to fit the small rooms.
He said the measurements in a large voice and asked where the furniture was bought as it was half size.
He soon had several couples asking for the measurements.
There were some red faced sales people.
New houses you can't swing a cat, they are tiny and look like cardboard.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: