Buying a house - first steps



Redecorated = fine. Replastered = FOM


When I bought my first flat, it was my first flat so I painted the living room bright orange, the hallway bright yellow, the bedroom a nice pale green (I’m not mad) and the kitchen bright red.

When I put it up for sale I covered the lot in magnolia.(again I’m not mad.)


Properties have an advertised price supplemented by either “fixed price”, “offers around”, and “offers above”. Bids are sealed until completion.

Use of them depends on market conditions - for years after 2008 you’d rarely see “offers above” in Edinburgh. Now pretty much all are.

Biggest issue it creates for FTBers is that banks won’t lend above the advertised price, but obviously a sealed bid system encourages rabid speculation. So anything you bid above has to come out of your deposit.

There’s a good twitter thread here about how mad the market in Edinburgh is right now:

We bought last summer. Advertised price was £135k, we were advised to bid in the mid £150ks as that was what comparable properties had gone for recently.

(But otoh, no freehold/leasehold system, which is great in a city where the best neighbourhoods are mostly flats)


Wow. That sucks!


Sheffield is like this (with a best and final offers system rather than sealed bids but basically the same, esp. all FTB places going for 10% over the original price.)
Seems like banks here completely ignore what it was on the market for and look at sold prices in the area+condition+Square footage as their guide instead. Otherwise nobody would get approval


Banks won’t lend on any valuation that is above the home report price (which is the single seller’s survey price. If as a buyer/ borrower you think the house is worth more the you can instruct your own survey and if it comes out with a higher price then the bank might be persuaded to go with the higher valuation if the firm doing the survey is on their surveyor panel).

So for example if the property is valued at £100,000 and you are getting an *)%LTV mortgage then the bank will give you £80k and you supply the £20k deposit. If you want to bid above that, then every £1 above must come from your own funds, not the loan.


Exactly ^this.

To a lender, the advertised ‘offers over’ price is likely to mean basically nothing. It’s the survey valuation that is the most important part.

There’s nothing built into the Scottish system that means buyers pay more than financial institutions’ value.

Many many properties sell for less than the valuation.

It’s only in ‘hot’ areas where properties sell for more than the survey valuation, and buyers add their own funds on top of the mortgage and the deposit.

Let the record state that I’m actually drawing a similarity between Scotland and England, here, rather than driving a wedge between us. :innocent:


I’m currently looking for my first flat as well and this thread has been very helpful, I got an agreement in principle through L&C last week and I’m starting to view places this week. The first place is just around the corner from where I’m currently renting and although the street is not as nice the flat itself looks lovely and very budget friendly.


Love that you realise that *)% = 80% :kissing_heart:


The agent sent me through the last survey that the current owners had done (should she have done that? Seems weird) and AHM OOT. Several issues that haven’t been addressed yet but they’re pricing it as if it’s finished. Naaaaaaaaah.


Could put in an offer for what you think it is worth, nothing to lose


I think it’s overpriced by nearly £50k :rofl: might not go down well.

Just arranged a viewing for a house that’s cheaper, more central and nicer.


Pfft. Putting in an offer that’s £50k below that asking price is fine.


That’s good to know, I thought it’d be taking the piss a bit.

The bigger issue is that we don’t really want a project house. If ultimately that’s a compromise we need to make then so be it, but for a house that already doesn’t meet one of our requirements (second bathroom) I’m not feeling good about it.


Never offer more than you think it’s worth, and that £50k is about 10% below their asking asking price. When you frame it like that, then it’s not an insulting offer.

But yeah, it sounds like you’d want/need to do a fair bit of work to it, and if that’s not what you’re after, then don’t go near it. Doing works, whether major or minor, can be very stressful and it’s why you will pay a premium for houses in good condition or new builds.

Have you looked at any of the new builds going up around Cambridge? They are more expensive, but if you sign up early enough, you can pick and choose your fittings and finishes. Cambridge is also one of the few places where the new builds are actually a decent quality.


Briefly. We want a house, not a flat, and the prices we’ve seen have been a bit eye-watering. We could probably stretch to them, but I’d rather take on less debt if possible.


Unless the asking price is £49k


Three agents this morning have asked if I’m a cash buyer. Yes, I found £425,000 in the back pocket of my second best pair of jodphurs and I’m feeling a little fruity.


Yeah Cambridge is pricey within the city boundaries. It’s always going to be about compromise and priorities. My brother lives in Waterbeach, and there are a lot of new builds going in there on the old airbase site. It’s a bit further out, and you do occasionally get a whiff from the sewage works the other side of Milton, but he works in the business park and it was a lot more affordable than the other villages around the city.


They’re not to know that Peniod tournaments don’t pay as well as eSports.