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Surveyor doesn't think the property i was going to buy is good value

63 replies

Sofia109 · 23/09/2022 21:07

Do surveyors often pick apart a house you're planning to buy or are they overly cautious? There were no structural issues, just some snagging, but due to the small plot of land with a very small garden, he thinks the 3 bed detached will be hard to sell. Its a good size inside, but usually families would want a good size garden and this one is really the size of a balcony and with a very small third bedroom. It sat empty for quite a while before i purchased it and the seller had a family member living there for a while too.

I know its not my forever home, and I'd probably be looking to move on in 5 years or less if i meet someone, but im concerned now i might have trouble selling it and there's also a real risk developers may build another house in the space right next to it, extremely close like this one is the the neighbours next door. (roofs are only around a foot apart!!)

Literally have no idea what to do now!

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Schoolchoicesucks · 01/10/2022 18:20

OP, sorry that the vendor pulled that on you at the last moment - but try to see the bright side. You had doubts about resale and potential new building next door. Yes, you'll have lost the lower interest rate, but may also have had a lucky escape being tied in with an unsaleable property.

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Samara26 · 01/10/2022 17:09

anderosonnmj · 01/10/2022 17:05

So, how wide is the garden? 3 to 4 metres long sounds very, very small. Are there fences surrounding it?

Personally, I'd love a house with a small courtyard-type garden, but I'd need enough space for some planters and borders, our bbq stuff, and seating. And a small shed. Is the garden big enough for this?

It's about 4 x 10 meters I'd say

A shed would fit but it would take up a lot of space and seating again would definitely fit but all those things would make it look very busy!

As above, sale fell through. Seller asked for an extra 20k cause he said it's take too long and then when I refused he withdrew it from the market and said he's giving it to his daughter instead. What an a**hole lol!

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anderosonnmj · 01/10/2022 17:05

So, how wide is the garden? 3 to 4 metres long sounds very, very small. Are there fences surrounding it?

Personally, I'd love a house with a small courtyard-type garden, but I'd need enough space for some planters and borders, our bbq stuff, and seating. And a small shed. Is the garden big enough for this?

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Samara26 · 01/10/2022 16:50

But with interest rates so high, how can anyone take advantage of the reduced prices?

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DeadHouseBounce · 01/10/2022 16:45

Sofia109 · 23/09/2022 21:07

Do surveyors often pick apart a house you're planning to buy or are they overly cautious? There were no structural issues, just some snagging, but due to the small plot of land with a very small garden, he thinks the 3 bed detached will be hard to sell. Its a good size inside, but usually families would want a good size garden and this one is really the size of a balcony and with a very small third bedroom. It sat empty for quite a while before i purchased it and the seller had a family member living there for a while too.

I know its not my forever home, and I'd probably be looking to move on in 5 years or less if i meet someone, but im concerned now i might have trouble selling it and there's also a real risk developers may build another house in the space right next to it, extremely close like this one is the the neighbours next door. (roofs are only around a foot apart!!)

Literally have no idea what to do now!

This is the peak of a massive property bubble, and within a few weeks basically all the conditions needed to pop that bubble have turned up like buses running late, of course it is not going to sell for the price you paid!

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Samara26 · 01/10/2022 07:24

Can someone explain how it makes sense to wait till the market crashes to buy, when by that point interest rates will have hit at least 6%, so although you'll be borrowing a bit less, your repayments will still be way way higher than if you had bought the house full price on a lower interest rate? Affordability criteria will also have changed so it will be much harder to get a mortgage 🤷‍♂️

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ChampagneCamping · 01/10/2022 07:19

Houseplantophile · 24/09/2022 06:17

Hi-
Surveyor here.. our job is to be objective on your behalf. We don't want to put you off a property for the sake of it, but we see A LOT of properties and you really do get to know their value based on many tangible and intangible elements.
Our job is to make sure you know what you're buying and the issues, whether they be aesthetic or structural, that you're likely to encounter...
you can't do anything about the garden size so it's a pretty big deal... please don't gamble on being able to buy a portion of someone else's garden.. not only is it highly unlikely to happen you should know that it's a very expensive process.. the land will be expensive (because what other incentive is there for the neighbour to sell if?!) plus you will need a land surveyor to measure up the two plots, mark out the agreed space to transfer and then draw up plans of each garden. Your solicitor will then be doing a conveyance of the lans- ie much the same job as they'll do for your purchase of the house- and then they will need to register the purchase on Land Registry to ensure it is properly recorded and formalised. You'll likely find yourself paying the neighbour's legal fees too... is the house really worth it?!?! Because the value of the new section of land need added to the garden need to be far greater than the costs associated with the purchase... it's risky and unlikely to have the desired outcome.


5 years is a short turnaround time on a property investment, especially at a time when the country's economy is in a poor state and will take years to recover... when you want to sell you need the widest market possible to sell quickly...
the fact that the property has been on the market for 2 years during what has been an incredibly busy time for property sales is a huge red flag and suggests no one wants the property for reasons other than the price... that garden is too small against the size of the house and you will have the same problems selling it as the current vendors.

Also... re your mortgage valuation saying it's 'ok'- bear in mind they are no confirming the market value of the property, they're confirming that the value of the property exceeds what they are lending on it... so if the property is £300,000 and your deposit is £50,000, the bank ONLY cares that the property is worth more than £250,000... they are only protecting their investment, not yours! They don't care if you lose £50,000.. they just need to know that in the event that the property is repossessed they can immediately put the property back on the market and get their money back. Your mortgage valuation is not a survey and it is not for your benefit...! So tread carefully when taking their advice over another surveyor's who is working for you and looking out for you...

Honestly I think your surveyor has done you a favour by making you aware of this.

Either renegotiate the price WAY way down or walk away... if it was me, I'd walk away. If the current vendors haven't been able to sell easily in the market we're just coming out then this property will never sell easily.

Sorry if that's all a bit blunt! 😬

Very knowledgable and I would follow this advice to the letter. Offer less in light of the worsening political and financial situation which is predicted to effect the housing market. I’d read that prices are to drop as landlords and second home owners sell and families lose their homes .

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Samara26 · 01/10/2022 06:18

So the seller pulled out just before contract signing and said he wants another 20k cause it's taken so long 😂

I said I can't pay that and so he withdrew it from the market and said he's giving it to his daughter lol.

You couldn't make it up 🤦🏼‍♀️

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 18:47

The mortgage broker is trying to scare me a bit as he obviously wants the sale to go through for self-interest, but I'd have to put a larger deposit down or borrow less. I'm stomach a fairly good position in terms of affordability but certainly I have to be mindful of increasing costs and what is reasonable for me to pay towards a mortgage and bills every month. I'd probably have to go to a cheaper area and perhaps even buy a smaller property

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TooMuchToDoTooLittleInclination · 24/09/2022 18:42

@Samara26 (it would make it easier if your reported your first post and asked MNHQ to please put all your posts on this thread into the same name, so your posts show up as OP posts)

IF, for any reason, this sale fell through, would you be able to borrow the same amount of money or do you think the bank would offer you less due to affordability (now rates have gone up & are expected to go up twice more fairly shortly)?

What is in the market that you could afford to buy??

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Tomorrowisalatterday · 24/09/2022 18:24

A lot of people do seem to want a big garden but there are people who don't, it just might take longer to sell.

I don't like gardening and would have loved a house with the right amount of internal space for our family but a small garden. Some older people feel the same way.

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 18:15

We spoke on the phone at length that should say

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 18:14

He told me everything he knows, we spoke on the other home. There are no damning secrets

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ginghamstarfish · 24/09/2022 18:11

I'd listen to him.

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2bazookas · 24/09/2022 18:01

You should listen to his advice.

Surveyors acquire a huge level of local knowledge. He may know damning stuff about that property's history that he can't possibly put in writing in a formal report.

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 17:48

bellac11 · 24/09/2022 17:43

Yes if you asked for his opinion then fair enough

We have a small garden and while I might long for Monty Dons garden at the end of the day I wouldnt be able to manage it. Our garden is about as big as your picture, perhaps just a smidge bigger. Ours is a 3 bed semi with 3 reception rooms but its just the two of us now which means that not every 3 bed house will necessarily have a whole family in it who want a big garden

The issue about the land is valid though and therefore would it be an option for you to buy this

Do you need a 3 bed at all?

When u day the issue about the land, do u mean someone building next door?

Tbh I will contact the council as I've no idea how they got planning permission to build this one so close to the one next door. The surveyor does think it will de-value the house if they did but it's difficult to say.

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bellac11 · 24/09/2022 17:43

Yes if you asked for his opinion then fair enough

We have a small garden and while I might long for Monty Dons garden at the end of the day I wouldnt be able to manage it. Our garden is about as big as your picture, perhaps just a smidge bigger. Ours is a 3 bed semi with 3 reception rooms but its just the two of us now which means that not every 3 bed house will necessarily have a whole family in it who want a big garden

The issue about the land is valid though and therefore would it be an option for you to buy this

Do you need a 3 bed at all?

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 17:18

I asked for his opinion and spoke to him on the phone. There's also a risk the neighbour on the other side may sell the bottom of their garden like the other 3 neighbours have, and then I'd have another neighbour very close the other side.

I am Concerned about resale value because it's impossible to know how long I'll be there. I think u always have to consider this when buying, even if u may sell in 10-15 years.

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bellac11 · 24/09/2022 17:12

Sofia109 · 23/09/2022 22:33

that's useful to know, but this house was already valued by my mortgage company and the valuation came back 'ok' - that's all they tell you. My surveyor did not do a valuation, he just said i think you can get more for your money and it will be hard to sell as its a family house and most families wouldnt choose a garden thats around 3 meters wide at the back of the house

Did you speak to him or is this in the report

I actually think is none of his business whether he thinks you can get better value for money, hes not a financial advisor or your accountant.

Surely if you like the house and the drawbacks are not something you see as negatively affecting your life then buy it.

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 17:06

I think the kitchen would help sell the house as it's quite big and looks straight out of an Instagram feed.

I personally like the tiled driveway for 2 cars and would make use of it. I wouldn't want to turn any of it into grass and it wouldn't work with the layout.

The rent of the house is just like a modern new build, neutral and plain. The ceilings are sloping from a meter up in all rooms but the filing goes a lot higher than standard

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Randomword6 · 24/09/2022 11:06

Did you say there is room for 2 cars? Could you repurpose some of that space as garden? Or have fully foldable windows across back wall so part of the house functions as part of the garden?

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C4tastrophe · 24/09/2022 10:57

It’s been on the market for 2 years during a boom. Personally, I’d take the surveyor’s advice and jog on.

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NorthernDuckling · 24/09/2022 09:12

You could make the garden lovely, what is the rest of the house like? Is it very plain rental style because that may also be putting others off.
A small garden isn’t going to appeal to families, but a cool outdoor relaxing space would appeal to young professionals or a nice green space with lots of pots/easy gardening to an older buyer.
If you do go with the house I’d recommend getting a proper garden designer to do you a plan that you can implement. We had it done it was £150 and our garden is fabulous (our NDN has copied our design) 😍
A park across the road is also a bonus, my grandparents had a very similar sized garden when they downsized (into a 4 bed semi) with a park opposite and 2 mins walk from a good high street, as kids we were allowed to play in the park as my gran could still see us from her living room window. When we sold it, it took longer than the estate agent expected (6 weeks) rather than offers before going on the market and we sold to a couple exactly like my grandparents who still wanted space for family to stay, a good sized kitchen diner but a smaller more manageable garden and no steps to the house.

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Samara26 · 24/09/2022 08:20

5 years but by then interest rates could be going down again. It's a saving of 15k

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Petronus · 24/09/2022 07:52

How long is your 2.19% deal? It’s not going to be the term of the mortgage, you’re going to come out of it and pay higher interest rates, quite possibly higher than what is being offered now. I’m not sure the saving is going to be as big as you think compared to the loss you could make on a house that’s difficult to sell in a falling market/recession.

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