wirral forums

Need property advice please!

Posted By: Gold_Moon

Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 12:30pm

Hi! hi I'm a 1st time buyer and, after much looking, I found a house I wanted. I made an offer of 5k under the asking price, (subject to survey,) which was accepted.

The survey revealed the chimney needs immediate repair, the front wall is in poor condition (due to height of garden being raised without first strengthening it,) and it has some damp.

In short, the survey values the house at a full 15k less than the asking price (or 10k less than my accepted offer.)

My question is, how do I proceed from here? I know I can renegotiate the price, but what to? I'm sure the owners won't accept a full 15 less than their asking price.

I would welcome any and all advice, please?
Posted By: Gibbo

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 1:58pm

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2012/aug/08/withdraw-offer-house

Do it quickly though in case the other party is getting their solicitor to draw up paperwork.
Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 2:30pm

Did you have a FULL survey done ? If not, then I suggest you do, or drop out of the sale. There might be hidden 'extras' that might not have shown up.

Subject to survey.. Nothing is in concrete until contracts are signed, which I assume you have not done yet and until you are 100% sure, don't sign anything. They'll wait.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 2:34pm

I had a Home Buyer's survey done.
Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 2:51pm

I do think they will try to make you offer more, however that is your choice, they can refuse any offer but with that in mind, it will not change the valuation the surveyors have placed on the property. Therefore, anyone else coming along will be hit with the same problem

If the survey was done by a Building Society for mortgage purposes, you may have to stump up the extra for the price they will accept if it's more that the surveyors valuation. Not too sure.
Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 2:58pm

Originally Posted by Gold_Moon
I had a Home Buyer's survey done.


I don't think that is a full survey.

You may find some advice here. Dated 2014

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/...worth-paying-for-a-Homebuyer-Report.html
Posted By: Heswall1958

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 4:17pm

Usually the surveyor puts a price on what he thinks the property is worth for mortgage purposes. If you are a cash buyer you don't have to go with this valuation. Sorry, just noticed you are a 1st time buyer so scrap this.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 4:26pm

Just to clarify - I still want the house and I'm willing to get the necessary work done to correct the problems mentioned in the survey, but I'm no longer willing to pay the price I offered.

To clarify further, the asking price was 95k, I offered 90k subject to survey, which was accepted, and the survey's valuation is 80k.

Any suggestions as to what my new offer should be please?

Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 16th Aug 2016 5:09pm

If the property in empty, you might as well go for 80,000 to start with. You can increase it a little at a time if you want to, but the estate agents will try to get the max out of you. (never trust an estate agent, they work on both sides of the fence, for their own advantage).

If the owners are having to buy another property it can be a bit more difficult. It's your shout really., they can either accept or refuse.
Posted By: fish5133

Re: Need property advice please! - 17th Aug 2016 9:34am

Lot depends how desperate each party is. House sale prices for that street and area can be checked on a few websites. I sold my late fathers house a few years back and dropped the price quite a bit because it was being divided between 5 of us. Your seller may just want to get out asap.


Just make a new offer based on the survey.

Home buyers report is only a basic look over the property and poking a damp meter here and there plus surveyor covering his backside.i dont think it carries any liability to the surveyor.did they even bother to look in the roof space..a structural survey costs more but is more comprehensive. How high is the front wall you mentioned.wirral council very twitchy since that poor girl got killed by a collapsing one. Very high sandstone one in wallasey recently collapsed ...i hate to think how much to repair and who liable. Insurance companies wriggle out of everything.
Posted By: kamikazi

Re: Need property advice please! - 17th Aug 2016 6:44pm

Bid them low, they still have the option to decline your offer, if your mortgaging your lender might also come up with the same valuation meaning your loan to value will shift or they may refuse to lend at the price you want to pay.

Be brave and be honest, talk to the vendors or their estate agent and tell them what you think, and what you know, chances are it will be overpriced anyway to try and leave room in the deal to negotiate.

Bid them at 75k and let them talk you up, have lost a few properties even after investing in a full survey it can really sting, you have the perfect bargaining chip, play it wisely.

K
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 17th Aug 2016 9:58pm

Thank you all for taking the time to offer your advice, it's very kind of you! happy

I've sent the estate agents an email with the survey results attached and offering the surveyor's valuation price of 80k, which I'm sure they'll reject, but I'm open to counter offers. yes

I'll let you know how I get on... fingers crossed! pray
Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 17th Aug 2016 10:29pm

All the best,Gold_Moon. We will be waiting ... yes
Posted By: Wally1

Re: Need property advice please! - 20th Aug 2016 12:09am

I would not go much above the valuation initially.
The sellers have a problem now as there is that
valuation. At best I'd meet them halfway, but
only if you really want the property.

Was your survey done for the mortgage company
or for you? If it was for you, it may be that
the mortgage company's own valuation may come lower.
This happened to me and we split the difference
with the seller otherwise the deal could not
have gone through. We were down to the bone!

Good luck! Be prepared to let it go if you cannot
get the right deal. There's plenty of houses out there.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 22nd Aug 2016 8:52pm


@Wally1: The survey was done for me, and I chose the surveyor.

And as an update, my revised offer was rejected, (as I predicted), and the seller's estate agent has come back with a counter-offer of 85k saying she'll "meet me halfway", (referring to my original offer of 90k.)

But that offer was made before the survey report which valued the house at 80k due to the faults that need to be addressed.

In all, 10 areas have been flagged as needing immediate repair/replacement/attention. They are as follows:

1. Chimney stacks - flaunching, lead flashing and saddles need replacing, and brickwork needs repointing.
2. Roof - some loose slates, ridge tiles not bedded, and damp penetration so needs checking for timber rot.
3. External brickwork - some bricks bulging, and some with spalling and cracking.
4. Ground floor interior wall needs a new damp proof course.
5. Sub floor has damp - needs air bricks for ventilation.
6. Ceiling - poor condition and damp stained.
7. Kitchen - a main wall has been removed with evidence of inadequate support.
8. Floors - rising and penetrating damp, with possible rotten timbers.
9. Front garden wall needs rebuilding.
10. Electricity and Gas supply need an immediate safety inspection. As does the main water supply pipe as it could be the original lead. If it is, it's a health hazard and will need replacing.

So a lot of messy and expensive work needs to be done. HOW expensive, I don't know. I DO know that I have to think of a counter offer, because as I told the estate agent on the 'phone, I'm NOT paying 85k. Not when I have NO idea how much it'll cost to fix all of the above problems. But as it's a 120 year old house and likely to have hidden problems too, it's a safe bet it's more than 5 grands worth!
Posted By: chriskay

Re: Need property advice please! - 22nd Aug 2016 10:41pm

There are too many "possibles" and "needs checking" in there for my liking. A home buyer's report doesn't seem adequate; I think you need a full survey and the surveyor should be able to give you a rough idea of remedial costs. My guess is that you're looking at 10,000 or more.
Posted By: diggingdeeper

Re: Need property advice please! - 22nd Aug 2016 11:32pm

You have three choices of how to proceed:-

The proper way - due to the amount of iffy faults, get a full structural survey done. This will kick up loads more faults, some which will sound scarier than they are, although estimates for repair costs are not always provided as standard, the surveyor will normally speak to you and if you ask will provide guideline costs at no extra charge. It is not uncommon for the surveyor to bring a builder along with him. As you have a homebuyers report/valuation I can't see how the mortgage company could know about another survey or could insist on seeing it but I'm not sure how that would work - the only time I had a second survey done I backed out from the property.

The cheap riskier way - get a builder in to give you a quote for all the work and give it a once over for anything else.

The really risky way - Go back and have a really look yourself, perhaps with a mate that knows a bit.

For the first two options, they will probably want to drill inspection holes and lift floorboards, some sellers co-operate, some don't. They may initially refuse but then realise they won't get anywhere without this happening, the estate agents will suggest they co-operate and that this is normal.

The homebuyers report is often a waste of money unless the building is clearly sound. In theory the surveyor is liable for the report but in practice it is always written with get-out clauses (eg further inspection is required, unable to fully access/inspect, not in the scope of a home buyers report etc etc), it is little more than a mortgage valuation survey together with what you can see yourself if you look.

I would be concerned at the amount of damp items (2, 4, 5, 6, 8) but as is usual with these reports it impossible to say how rotten things are, it maybe just need the damp access points fixing and the timbers etc drying out BUT it may need floors lifting and joists replacing (or splicing) which can be major.

The incorrectly supported wall will probably need the lintel/joist taking out and a new one put in - depending on access to each side of the wall it can be a straight forward job or a nightmare. Presumably there may be signs of movement which will need to be patched up as well.

The mortgage company will most probably insist on utility checks, certainly of the electrics and probably the gas based on the wording the surveyor has used. I've never come across a water check but that may be something these days and if there is slow flow is something you need to sort out anyway.

With many of those items the mortgage company may dock the mortgage until they are repaired, they withhold the cost of repairs they want doing until the work is done. This is really annoying if you aren't taking a full mortgage. There is also a risk that you may struggle to get a mortgage, a first time buyer taking on a semi-derelict property isn't the most desirable risk for them.

Just one other word of advice, you can phone the homebuyer surveyor, they are often quite friendly and will tell you more than they were prepared to put in the report - in my experience they are quite straight, realistic and do not tout for more work. You can ask the classic question "should I be worried?".

Sorry its all a bit negative, my experience is mostly from some years ago and it may all be different nowadays. I have generally been lucky and not come unstuck but I am fully aware that some of this was luck and calculated risk. After gaining experience on previous properties I had a valuation only survey done on a house that needed a lot of restoration - my thinking was that it kicked up the minimal amount of problems to the mortgage company and I knew I was going to restore the property anyway. I still got substantially docked on the mortgage even though it was only a 40% mortgage, they withheld about 30% of the mortgage, the full value of "essential" repairs.
Posted By: Wally1

Re: Need property advice please! - 22nd Aug 2016 11:43pm

I would add one more thing. If you have not done it already,
look at more houses at a similar price in the area and compare
their condition with the condition of this one.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 23rd Aug 2016 10:16am

@Chriskay - Yeah, that was my feeling too, that's why I back-heeled the 85k counter offer immediately. I don't want to end up with a money pit. The estate agent is acting in her client's best interests, so I can't blame her for pushing for more money, but I don't think the seller has grasped the reality that the house, which was originally valued at 95k, is actually only worth 80k because of the major repairs that it needs.

I personally think we should have a system like the U.S. have where you can't sell a property without first getting a full survey on it because A) It gives the seller the opportunity to make the repairs to get the best price or B) If they can't make the repairs, (or don't want to), at least they've got an accurate price and are spared a nasty shock. It's a shame those Home Information Packs (HIPs) were scrapped.

@diggingdeeper - Thank you for your comprehensive reply! My main concerns were the damp, that inadequate lintel, and the roof/chimney problems, because safe access to the roof usually makes repair jobs costly.

Also it's not the water or the pressure that needs checking. The property was built around 1900 and back then the rising main water supply pipes were originally made of LEAD, (which my surveyor's report says was used up to 1975.) And given the condition of the house, it's possible it hasn't been updated, so it needs to be checked, and if it's lead, replaced.

Thank you to everyone who's taken the time to read my lengthy posts and reply, I truly appreciate it. My parents can't really guide me on this because the last time they moved was 32 years ago, so all their information is out of date! I'm grateful for the many pearls of wisdom you've all shared with me and I will take everything you've said into my considerations.

And I'll keep you updated! smile


Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 23rd Aug 2016 6:52pm

Have a look on Rightmove.co.uk just about all properties are listed on there. Change the area you are looking for. Highest price, lowest price and the featured property will always come at the top of the list.

Posted By: fish5133

Re: Need property advice please! - 23rd Aug 2016 8:34pm

Ive seen new flats selling at 90K somewhere on wirral
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 26th Aug 2016 5:41pm

So I've arranged for a builder and damp proofer to come and look at the property this Wednesday. They're going to give me a written estimate on all the major jobs and I can then base my revised offer on that.

It's costing me 60, (on account of the specialist equipment the damp proofer has to use apparently,) but that comes off the bill if I decide to proceed with the work.

I have to say, if she rejects the next offer as well, I'm walking away. I'm starting to get disheartened.
Posted By: mikeeb

Re: Need property advice please! - 26th Aug 2016 11:03pm

Buying a house is a serious thing and your caution and worry is truly justified
Stick with it G_M. If it works out you will be glad that you checked
If it doesn't, you will still be glad you checked before you did commit to a life changing choice (your thoroughness puts confidence in lenders)
I think we are lucky up north regarding house prices but 80k is a lot of money and should only be parted, with caution
Hope it works out G_M
Posted By: diggingdeeper

Re: Need property advice please! - 28th Aug 2016 2:36pm

Originally Posted by Gold_Moon
@diggingdeeper ... Also it's not the water or the pressure that needs checking. The property was built around 1900 and back then the rising main water supply pipes were originally made of LEAD, (which my surveyor's report says was used up to 1975.) And given the condition of the house, it's possible it hasn't been updated, so it needs to be checked, and if it's lead, replaced.


I should have elaborated - Old lead pipes tend to be furred up and reduce the pressure, low pressure is a sign that it probably has lead pipes. If it has lead pipes it is a job that should be done but may not be a priority, the furring in hard water areas protects contamination of the water from the lead, in soft water areas the water has an additive to do the same function. If the lead pipe is disturbed or it is pressure blasted then there is an increased risk of contamination but otherwise the risk is a lot less than was once advertised.

If you need to prioritise your immediate expenditure then this could be something left to a later date, however if you have young children then that would up the priority.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 29th Aug 2016 10:34am

@diggingdeeper: Well, that's useful to know. But if the pipe does turn out to be lead, I think I'd want to replace it immediately anyway, what with lead being a toxic material, I just don't like the thought of my drinking water being in contact with it. no

Thank you for all the info... I'm learning a lot here! smile
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 27th Sep 2016 8:34pm

OK, I finally have an update for everybody. I got the builder's estimate and sent a copy to the estate agents with a final offer of 82k. And the seller has accepted. Happy days! smile Waiting on the solicitors now...
Posted By: granny

Re: Need property advice please! - 27th Sep 2016 8:44pm

Good news, congratulations.. Drinks all around ??
Posted By: diggingdeeper

Re: Need property advice please! - 27th Sep 2016 11:30pm

Thanks for reporting back, always nice when topics like these aren't open ended. Best of luck with your house.
Posted By: Wally1

Re: Need property advice please! - 28th Sep 2016 12:11am

Well done. I hope it all goes well for you. House buying can be a stressfull
experience but worth it long term.
Posted By: Gold_Moon

Re: Need property advice please! - 3rd Oct 2016 12:09am

Thanks for the kind words and advice everyone! smile And I'm sure I'll be back soon asking for personal recommendations for roofers, damp proofers, builders and the rest! LOL! laugh
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